Birds migrating North
sunrise, listen to them sing
knowing spring has sprung
(How could the haiku-a-holic in me miss out on another opportunity to write a haiku?)
And now, the prompt! Marianne Moore (she actually lived in this area around Harrisburg, PA) is probably best remembered for two things: long, long-lined poems that nonetheless had a precision to their music and imagery, a finicky grace, and the fact that she wrote so much about animals. For examples of both things happening at once, try The Fish, or He â€œDigesteth Harde Yronâ€, or The Pangolin, or any of dozens more.
In her honor, I challenge you today to write a poem about an animal. If youâ€™re feeling up to it, try Mooreâ€™s trick of incorporating quotes or text from other sources â€” maybe you write about an elephant, and incorporate some elephant facts. This trick gave her work a collaged feeling, as though it is both educational and lyrical. You could also play around with varying line-lengths, oddly-shaped stanzas, or trying to write with her formal tone (she always sounds like a very dignified great-aunt to me). Happy Marianne Moore-ing!