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  • Carolyn Cohagan

Poetry and Imagination with Laurie Filipelli


In one short week, this small tribe of fearless poets explored personal identity, studied objects intensely, wrote haiku and travelogues, and delved into the dreamy waters of surrealism. Best of all, we collaborated and generously shared our poems with whomever was lucky enough to cross our path. We all finished the week feeling smarter, more connected, and eager to write more. Forever we will be the Poetic 6, spreading joy with just a hint of dark mystery! - Laurie Filipelli

–––

Harini Senthil Arasu

Haiku

A grey stone in the shadows

Looks very much like a gravestone

Maybe it is a grey gravestone.

In the distance is a Moonlight Tower

Not what I expected at all at all

Tall is the tower, but not like the moon.

The sun is very, very hot today

But nobody can predict the sun

It is Texas and nobody can predict it.

The Moonlight Tower is a tower of death

People have died climbing it

Maybe they planted the pomegranate

tree in memory of them.

Poem

Down on 13th street

There is a murder house

Who knows who died in there?

Life does frighten me very much

Is there a robber or a rubber in there?

This does not frighten me at all...

Who has committed the murder

Not you nor I

Wait, maybe it could be you.

Two poems after Federico García Lorca

I Have Lost My Sight

Oh no! Oh no! I have lost my sight

It is now in a cave

How did you lose your sight?

An evil king stole it from me

Why did the king steal if from you?

Because the king wants four eyes

Why does the king want four eyes?

Because fireflies surround the cave

and that’s why. And no more questions.

“I have still lost my sight,” I moaned.

I Have Lost My Taste

I cannot taste

I tried and tried but I just can’t taste

I ate a sandwich

I still cannot taste

I have eaten a lemon

I still cannot taste anything

“Where has my taste gone?”

Just then someone came along

“Do you know where my taste is?” I asked

“Oh, yes, just eat another lemon,” she said.

I ate another lemon.

My taste is back!!!!

–––

Venusta Benét

What Kind of a Person

after Yehuda Amichai

“What kind of a person are you?” you ask.

I’m like an enormous banyan tree, old and

filled with knowledge.

Its roots drooping to the floor

Its intellect spreading across my soul.

I’m an eagle nesting on

the branches of the silent orator. I’m not brave

but rather nervous and shy. I take off,

the rustle of my wings reminding me of old pages.

I glide over to a mountain,

tall and empowering. Here

I am closer to the sun.

I bathe in the light.

The sun is coming to her end.

I slowly take flight. I am

Nothing here, so I will trade

my life in exchange for the sweet sun’s.

The Poetic 6

A girl who’d rather be a bowl than a spoon

A tower that looks nothing like the moon

A sweet woman name Debora

A red square nebula

A Dorito flying up high

A teacher whose knowledge

could reach the sky

A microscope that displays things readily

The pomegranate tree that’s deadly

Six amazing poets,

here are their names:

  • Ella L.

  • Harini S.A.

  • Josie K.

  • Laurie F.

  • Mina T.

  • and me

As our pens danced

across our papers, we

soon became friends

But as our time slipped

away, we learned that

all good things come to

an end.

–––

Jozie Kramer

Perspective

Nebulas bask in solitude

Only exploration from afar

No souls should ever come close

To my expanse of greatness

One star dies

In a cloud of ever-widening ash

And is replenished

By millions

We are all so hollow

Longing…

Always craving something

From far away

We look so full of beauty

A lake of shimmering stardust

In reality

We sit in an excruciating

Lonesome

Abyss

Showered by enormous tealights

Untitled

A pacifier

in a crib

a batman lamp

a princess tale

a cat

licking itself

on a bed

a toothbrush container

corroded in toothpaste

a remote control car

lying lopsided

on the floor

a set of headphones

plugged into a phone

a picture

of him and his friends

at a skatepark

a scholarship to Stanford

an empty room

with no soul

anymore

Untitled

On 13th Street

the death house sat

In the refuge of old rusted signs

that all children obey

Perseverance

after Maya Angelou

We ride

Along the choppy seas

Of life’s journey

The tsunamis of emotion

That envelope you

And still we ride

On that frail raft

Without protection

From the wild sea

But still

We ride

–––

Ella Lickwar

Haiku

Tall sprays of foam

Churning, teasing us

Laughing as it gurgles

Tall and metal

We stare up at its dormant lights

Beside the pomegranate tree

Towering above us

So close, yet so far

Our destination

A poster on a pole

Found dog, brown and panting

Oh joy, the happiness of finding

Blank

Blank

A white piece of paper

A poet’s pen

Waiting…

waiting…

Auuuugghhh!

“Come to life,

stupid paper!”

Oh

sorry

I didn’t mean it that way!

NOOOOOOO

CHOMP!

Cavorting About

Oh, where are the kitties?

Oh, where have they gone?

Miss, they’re cavorting about,

please don’t shout!

Cavorting, cavorting about!

Oh, where is my bunny?

Oh, where has he gone?

Is he prancing on the lawn?

Miss, it’s okay, it’s only May;

he’s out, cavorting about!

Oh, where is my snake?

Oh, where has he gone?

Is she eating (er...greeting) her friends?

Miss, don’t distress, I’m trying my best

but your snake has eaten your pets!

Fetch the water, Mary,

For the mistress has fainted!

I guess that’s what you get

for letting your pets

Cavorting, cavorting about!

Ode to the House Cats

The silent

creeping

hiding

stalking

feline

street cat.

Hunting

with its Clan

by its

side

the tangle-furred Himalayan

and

the squash-face Persian

its friends

the rival cats

the food

and the

FIGHT

and the bright lights

where

has everyone

gone?

The big monster

with boxes of bars

in it

and

HUMANS!

Strange, Mean

HUMANS!

Thrown

into those boxes

and moving into

a new place

a place that is

NOT

the streets

and

the alleys

with warm, torn, cushions

for comfort

this place

smells

of ANGER

and

FEAR

shoved into a new

Much

bigger box.

Hardly better.

It sits

It waits

It hopes

Hope

into

hope-

less

n

e

s

s

and despair

and sadness

all

alone...

BUT!

WAIT!

Oh!

A HUMAN?

A strange

warm-smelling

HUMAN

Why?

how?

hide

where?

the smaller box

the only choice

the cat,

faster

than lightning

runs.

The box closes.

Trapped

the box

is lifted

up

up

Moving to

another

place

a home

FINALLY

The Persian is there

The Himalayan is there

The CLAN is there

Finally

no more fighting

no more hoping

or hopelessness

no more

Just

comfort

and

happiness

and

peace

at last.

hallelujah!

–––

Mina Talebi

A Slice of Life

A bunch of sweets, some

pillows & a desk,

those are the things

that I like best.

A box, a book, my little

brother Champ,

those are the things

I take to camp.

Potatoes, pickles, soup & macaroons,

those are things you

eat with spoons.

Pens & pencils, houses &

Trees, those are the things

that I do need.

Balls & doors, wood

& gnats, those are the

things you hit with bats

Cousins, neighbors, family,

& friends, those are things

you love till the end.

I’m Afraid of Nothing

after Maya Angelou

Cockroaches, curtains

guns & robbers.

I don’t know what I’m

afraid of.

Twelve year-old boys,

teenagers & snakes

I don’t know what I’m

afraid of.

Great heights & cages

suffocation & fear,

I don’t know what I’m

afraid of

Dragons & wounds

loud noises & mice

I don’t know what I’m—

Wait!

Did you say mice?!

Nevermind!

I know what I’m

afraid of!

Good-bye!

They Say I Cannot

They say I cannot see

but I can, I can.

I can see the wind

that will blow them

away.

They say I cannot hear

but I can, I can.

I can hear their

hearts whisper in pain.

They say I cannot feel

but I can, I can

I can feel the hurt they feel every day.

They say I can’t taste

but I can, I can.

I can taste the blood

of remorse

They say I can’t smell

but I can, I can.

I can smell the fear

they send.

They say I can’t think

but I can, I can.

I can think of their

life all crushed

with despair.

So when they tease

and when they jeer,

I take their hand & smile.

Give

Give a soldier a sword

& he’ll start a war.

Give a writer a pen

& he’ll start a story.

–––


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