March Poetry Contest: Short Form Resolutions

Remember back in January when I held the haiku contest about New Year’s resolutions?  Zillions* of you submitted entries!  It was awesome!  I had to split it into two contests, though, in part because there were so many entries that I wanted everyone to have a better chance at winning, and I didn’t want the post with the entries to be so long you’d stop reading before you even got to the massive poll.  It was easy to split the entries along the simple line of who had really conformed to the guidelines of the outlined form and who hadn’t.

This is the contest for the people who took more license with the form.

The entries are great, the prize for the winner is a copy of Strange New Words by Ari Marmell, and you have until midnight central time on Sunday, March 16th to vote.  You may vote once a day.  Please spread the word and share this contest with others who might like poetry.

And — especially if your poem is one of the entries here — be sure to keep checking back on this blog to learn the results.  I will announce the winner in a new post soon after voting ends, and the winner will need to contact me by email to give me a mailing address to send the prize to.

Good luck, all, and happy voting!  🙂  Here come the entries…

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by Mystic RK:

think differently,
intent to live;
my life

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by Kuheli (@AamiKuheli):

my new year’s
resolution; pedal out
our sufferings

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by Aaijoni Das:

one resolution;
regular exercise,
an illusion.

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by PURUSHOTHAMARAO RAVELA:

keeping old promises
onto winter winds
new resolutions spring on wings

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by surajvinay:

stroke of midnight..
the year’s last puff with fireworks
is new years first

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by Ajaya Mahala:

resolutions
to clear the cache before
starting afresh

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by B. Lee Brown:

Snow lays like spilled milk
pooled in brown fields. The crows
don’t cry, nor will I.

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by Poornima:

new years morning
I resolve not to sing
your songs

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by Charishma Navneet Gupta:

new year’s eve –
my resolution sets
at sunrise

 

 

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*  Okay, not actually, “zillions,” per se, but a heckuvalot of you — more than ever before — and I do appreciate that.

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Generosity Day

What a neat idea that I first heard about from Brené Brown’s blog Ordinary Courage.

http://www.causes.com/causes/646624-generosity-day/actions

What will you do to make Valentines’ Day a day to share kindness with anyone and everyone?  I’m going to try really hard to be patient and as non-ogrish as possible all day…  And I will have chocolates available in my classroom all day for anyone who wants them.

New Year’s Resolutions

Happy New Year, everyone.  Have you made any resolutions?

I tend to root myself in traditions, which I find stabilizing in the general maelstrom that is my overbusy life.  Not all traditions, mind you, and not even all the ones I grew up with.  Just the meaningful or interesting ones.  Among my New Year’s traditions, along with black-eyed peas for good luck on New Year’s Day (which, sadly, my husband and children have so far refused to eat even when I make them with ham) and drinking a toast at midnight, is setting for myself some resolutions.

Sometimes these are successful.  I remember one year, before we had children, before we owned our own home, even before I was teaching full-time, when my husband and I decided we watched too much television didn’t indulge enough our passion for reading and so would stop sitting in front of the idiot box, spending our unoccupied evening hours with books instead.

That was one of the best Januarys ever.

We managed it for a full month and really enjoyed it.  But we sort of missed our favorite television shows.  (This was back in the day when Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? and the incredibly offensive Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire? and MTV’s The Real World were the only “reality” shows on the air, and back before we owned a house that offered us opportunities for improvement and upkeep and so home improvement shows on HGTV were fun to watch.)  So on January 31st, we decided that we’d had a good time reading and would allow television back into our lives more sparingly without letting go of reading every night.  We learned how to enjoy the proverbial best of both worlds, and our lives were better as a result.  I count that as a successful resolution.

I have made other resolutions over the years that did not turn out so well.  I remember the time in college when I decided I wasn’t going to shop anymore.

That lasted almost a week.  I tried giving it up for Lent that spring, too, which turned out slightly better.

There was that other time when I resolved I would stop procrastinating.  I ended up having to give that one up for Lent, too.  Didn’t work out either time.

I could go on, but somehow spending the first day of the new year recounting past failures seems counterproductive.

So in thinking about this year’s resolutions, I determined that — as in any good problem-solving strategy — I should look at the root of the problem to find a way out of it.    And if the purpose of making resolutions is to improve the quality of my life — and honestly, isn’t that the idea, really? — then I should figure out what about my life needs improving.

I know, I know:  Elementary, my dear Watson.  Sometimes I come to these epiphanies slowly.  Bear with me.

There are things in my life — and most of us can say this — which drive me a little nuts on a daily basis.  And I would love it if I could eliminate those things, or at least ameliorate them, so that they didn’t bother me so much.  (And maybe not letting myself get so worked up over them would help, too, although I admit I’ve tried that before with little success.  I just ended up feeling like a slacker who had given up on her standards.  Not really the direction I was looking for.  There has to be a compromise in there somewhere.)

So here we go, New Year.  Today, January 1st, is the day I identify the things that stress me out unnecessarily and figure out daily ways to make those things better.  This is a resolution to enjoy my whole life more, every single day.

It’s a noble goal.  Wish me luck.