Today’s daily prompt is called “Junk Drawer Song,” and comes from the poet Hoa Nguyen.

  • First, find a song with which you are familiar – it could be a favorite song of yours, or one that just evokes memories of your past. Listen to the song and take notes as you do, without overthinking it or worrying about your notes making sense.
  • Next, rifle through the objects in your junk drawer – or wherever you keep loose odds and ends that don’t have a place otherwise. (Mine contains picture-hanging wire, stamps, rubber bands, and two unfinished wooden spoons I started whittling four years ago after taking a spoon-making class). On a separate page from your song-notes page, write about the objects in the drawer, for as long as you care to.
  • Now, bring your two pages of notes together and write a poem that weaves together your ideas and observations from both pages.

I used the song, la isla bonita by Madonna for this prompt. My poem is called ‘Madinat aldhahab aljamila’ *

I rummage through my drawer
knick-knacks I find
of the past we left behind
It all seems like yesterday, not far away

A name plate in gold with my name inscribed in black
I trace my fingers on the letters engraved
It takes me back and I think
This is where I long to be

A cream colored diary dated 2016
'Friday' Magazine, June 2018
That month we left
Madinat aldhahab aljamila*
the place we met and fell in love
A banana clip you got for me when we sat on the abra**,
How the wind blew in my hair
Rings through my ears and stings my eyes
laqad waqaeat fi habk***

Picture of a yellow camel on a postcard
Orange sunset, golden sands
Desert safari, you and me
the Arabian music, the beautiful belly dancer
I prayed the days would last,
they went so fast

A butterfly bookmark
a notepad from Marriott
This is where I long to be
Madinat aldhahab aljamila*
A promise we made to each other
whatever may come,to stay together
Rings through my ears and stings my eyes
laqad waqaeat fi habk***

I want to be wherever you are
Even if that means to leave
The place that I love
or my job or my friends
for that's when
a girl loves a boy and a boy loves a girl

On your birthday I made a wish for us
It all seems like yesterday, not far away

A butterfly bookmark
a notepad from Marriott
This is where I long to be
Madinat aldhahab aljamila*
A promise we made to each other
whatever may come,to stay together
Rings through my ears and stings my eyes
laqad wiqayat fi habik***


a bookmark with an elephant
A reminder of where we are
It doesn't matter where
as long as we're together
laqad wiqayat fi habik***
we made a promise to each other
whatever may come, to stay together
Rings through my ears and stings my eyes
suhra' aljazirat alearabiat aljamila****

-----------------------------------------------
Madinat aldhahab aljamila* - the beautiful city of gold
abra - dhow boat
laqad wiqayat fi habik*** - I feel protected in your love
suhra' aljazirat alearabiat aljamila*****- the beautiful desert of Arabia

The words in italics are the words from the song 'La Isla Bonita'
In my bedside drawer were a diary of 2016, a magazine dated June 2018 from Dubai, a butterfly clip, a postcard with the picture of a camel, a bookmark with a elephant head and an old photograph and a notepad from Marriott

Copyright@smithavishwanathsblog.com. All Rights Reserved.

Posted by:Smitha V

A banker by profession, a blogger by choice, a poet by accident, and an artist at heart. Imperfectly perfect - that's me. Welcome to my world!

8 replies on “NaPoWriMo Day 10 – ‘Madinat aldhahab aljamila’

  1. Smitha, you have weaved it so wonderfully with your memories, it feels like going on a trip to a different era, maybe a dream. Love how you have italicized and incorporated the lines. The refrain gives a soothing sense.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you dear Deepa. It’s always a pleasure reading your comment. I think writing it was a good reminder for me of ‘the promise’🙂.
      Please send me a link of your blog. Since it’s not on WordPress, I cannot just click on your name and reach it.
      Thank you again for taking the time to read the poem so attentively.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Namratha. It makes me happy to know you liked the poem considering I had a hard time deciding on the song or selecting a drawer🙂. Thank you again for writing back. It’s very encouraging.

      Liked by 1 person

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