NaPoWriMo – Day 26

Each day for the month of April, the Cedar Bark Poets are writing a poem a day in celebration of NaPoWriMo, National Poetry Writing month. Poems are posted here daily. Let Katheren know if you would like to participate!

“And last, but not least, our prompt (optional, as always). Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that incorporates a call and response. Calls-and-responses are used in many sermons and hymns (and also in sea chanties!), in which the preacher or singer asks a question or makes an exclamation, and the audience responds with a specific, pre-determined response. (Think: Can I get an amen?, to which the response is AMEN!.). You might think of the response as a sort of refrain or chorus that comes up repeatedly, while the call can vary slightly each time it is used. Here’s a sea chanty example:

Haul on the bowline, our bully ship’s a rolling,
Haul on the bowline, the bowline Haul!
Haul on the bowline, Kitty is my darlin’,
Haul on the bowline, the bowline Haul!
Haul on the bowline, Kitty lives in Liverpool,
Haul on the bowline, the bowline Haul!
The call can be longer than the response, or vice versa. But think of your poem as an interactive exchange between one main speaker and an audience. Happy writing!


Rough Draft

When the day was done,was done
We became part of the sky

Part of,part of,we are

When the sun failed to shine
We found light in our minds

Part of,part of,we be

When the breath was final,clear
We rose to beautiful highs

Part of,part of,we live

My heart is full,so earthly full
This miracle of breath,I cry

Part of,one with,we be

I am,you are forever,my family
We join in work together

Part of,part of,we are

–  Kath


Little Line

One, two, three, and four
Everyone march on the floor
-hop, two, three, four, hop, two, three, four Five, six, seven, and eight Make a line and make it straight
-shimmy and shake, shimmy and shake
Nine and ten
And that’s the end
-everyone shhhh, everyone shhhh

– Rhiannon


Overhauling the Roast

Oh my chicken and geese
– oh my chicken and geese
Just lost its fleas
-just lost its fleas
Just cook it on high
-just cook it on high
And swat out the flies
-and swat out the flies
Just brush on the oil
-just brush on the oil
And turn on the light
-and turn on the light
Just watch them get baked
-just watch them get baked
And dive in like cake
-and dive in like cake

– Jonah


Last one there buys the pizza.

There are days when you just need a good piece of pizza, and only authentic will do
somewhere on the west coast, perhaps we could travel, sail the whole night right through
crossing to the bay, to be there then next day, what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

but I’m going to get there first, as the sea all around us bursts,
no matter how hard you complain or curse, I shall keep my comments terse and just row through the worst, what do you have to say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

Campania awaits, if you want to bet on it, lets tempt the faits, what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

I will be the first, to hear distant notes of the mandolin’s mirth, but you can be second, for what ever thats worth. what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

by the time you get there, the opera’s third act will be laid bare and at an empty pizza plate you will stare, what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

the Sirens may call, as we stand on the deck straight and tall, but though a green sea we’ll haul
even if only at a crawl
but I think we can still be there in a day, to a counter where a slice lay, if we don’t listen to them in of their off odd ways, what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

pizza at the Piazza del Plebiscito and a table for two, but only if this horrible storm we can make it through, what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

I shall speed past both you, the storm, and the islands of Procida, Capri and Ischia too, all before three blinks of the eye I will by fly, what do you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea ,and lets see whom’s first there to be —

and so at quarter to three, at the start line waiting was me, aimed slightly into the lee, what did I look over to see…

A power drag boat, with eight stainless steel exhaust pipes angling back with a blue flame coming from each stack
and in blue flame lettering the name stencilled on the back ’Duct tape & Staples’ did flack.
as the start horn sounded , and ‘Duct tape & Staples’ away bounded, by a wall of water I was instantly surround and your last words across the water smacked… what did you say?

— Duct tape and staples, can get me half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, now row hard into the sea, and lets see whom’s first there to be —

for Duct tape and staples, got him half way from here to Naples, in three blinks of the eye, as I rowed hard into the sea, the first there, lets face is, wasn’t likely going to be me.

– W.B.

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