NaPoWriMo : Day 22 – An ode to baking

And now for our daily (optional) prompt. As our film for the day shows, art and poetry can richly affect one another. Frank O’Hara’s poem, “Why I am Not a Painter,” speaks to this mutual engagement, as do explicitly ekphrastic poems (i.e., poems that are about a specific work of art), like Thom Gunn’s “In Santa Maria del Popolo.” Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that engages with another art form – it might be about a friend of yours who paints or sculpts, your high school struggles with learning to play the French horn, or a wonderful painting, film, or piece of music you’ve experienced – anything is in bounds here, so long as it uses the poem to express something about another form of art.


 

artist

 

Some call me a poet, some an artist

For poems I write and art I do

Perhaps I am a little of both

Or perhaps I am neither

 

If writing your heart in verse

for the pure love of it

Makes me a poet, then I must be one

 

If the only test  be, that these words are my own

And they not be judged

for meter, stanza, rhyme and the rest

Then maybe I’d agree.

 

If bringing a canvas to life

for the sheer joy of creating

Makes me an artist, then I must be one

 

If my art makes you appreciate in awe

If it not be judged

for its originality, abstractness, roots or the rest

Then maybe I’d agree.

 

But I can tell you what I’m not

I’m not a baker, though I’d love to be

So if you called me that, I would not agree

 

For ne’er a cake hath risen

Or a cookie not crumbled

Or a bread not brown’d

When I did wear the baker’s hat

 

An explosion of dough, broken egg shells and dirty dishes

messier than cleaning paint off my palette; easier

to paint a cake of any flavor and top it with the brightest colors

 

Making of fondants a distant dream

So much harder than writing a verse or painting a picture

the whisking, the sprinkling, the layering

 

If it were enough that I lie engrossed

Unaware of the passing of hours

And the the ebb and flow of tides

To knead a wonder

 

Then maybe I’d be a baker

Or maybe I am

For with the weave of words and the dash of strokes

I can be all I want to or I can be none.

artist1

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8 comments

  1. You do have the gift of writing and painting Smitha and not only because of a passion for it – but this poem does call to mind all the people who don’t call themselves writers or artists because they aren’t published or don’t get paid for it – when they are, because they do it. As for baking, well we can’t be good at everything 🙂

    Like

    1. Thank you so much Andrea. Coming from a talented and gifted person as you, it means the world to me. Yes, I very often doubt my writing because I haven’t been paid and I’ve never studied writing or Literature beyond grade 10. After that it was only general English. So your words are encouraging. Thank you🙏

      Liked by 1 person

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