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March Slice of Life No. 31

For my 31st and last slice for the March Slice of Life Story Challenge 2019, I have composed a poem from my March titles. Though it is utter nonsense, somehow meaning seems to linger just below the surface of the words.

As for requirements of form, I had two. Each line must contain one and only one of the titles. All titles must be exactly as they are– capitalization excepted –in my March slices, i.e., no inflection of any words.

I had fun composing this poem. I hope you have fun reading it. Oh, and if you grasp some meaning from it, please let me know in the comments below as I am still uncertain of it.

Madness in March

We heard it was on a March day
while they were land-locked,
when the grandma asked ’em,
Where’s the snow?

But they gave her no answer.

They shrugged with indifference,
eating sticky buns and asking,
Jam anyone?” All speaking
no more than six words.

As she blended a smoothie, Grandma
cautioned “Pays to pay attention,
or caged birds eatin’
seeds is what you’uns’ll be.”

Hoping they were saving time,
they took the bike ride that morning
beyond the old pear tree where
the gypsy was said to live.

There he sat, among winter trees,
nicely dress in a black suit,
making pot cheese and
steamy canned soup.

They talked about possums,
about how the earth moved,
looked at his travel journal: TSA.
Then he asked, “Your name is Nine?

But they gave him no answer.

It’s a draft,” said Grandma.
“Now you’uns must inhale, exhale,
if you can, for in time
our day begins again
in the garden room.

© 2019 Alice Nine


Writing about my writing…

1 I listed my 30 slice titles.

2. I did not capitalize title words; I retained question marks on two titles

3. I read and reread the list several times: starting at the top of the list and reading down, starting at the bottom of the list and reading up, starting in the middle of the list and reading randomly.

4. I decided the grandma and the gypsy would be two characters in the poem. The rest of the characters would be represented by pronouns without antecedents.

5. I thought about the setting and selected slice titles I could use for time and place.

6. I began to sort titles in threes that seemed to go together grammatically and with a nod to meaning.

7. First I worked to create 3 line stanzas. Then I took the remaining titles and created another line for each stanza.

8. I wrote a single line stanza after the first full stanza and repeated it before the last full stanza (with only a pronoun change) to give the poem a feeling of form.

9. I read it over a couple time and did some minor revision that created major changes, e.g., deleting an article here or there, switch word order, changing a line break.

10, Finally I needed a title. I’m not a basketball fan, but others in this family do watch the game. So, I’m familiar with “March Madness.” And of course “mad as a March hare” comes to mind from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland… and “mad as a hatter” … now I am stretching it at the risk of sounding “mad” myself.

11. So with a nod to all the above in #10, I settled on “Madness in March” as the title.

The Gossip of SOL17

At the end of March 2017 I wrote the poem using 112 blog names. I called it “The Gossip of SOL17.” It was such a fun poem to write and so specific to this SOL community, that I decided to post a link to it on this last day of #SOLC19. “Reply” is open on that post, so feel free to comment.


Because this is my last #SOLC19 post
Because it is Sunday morning
Because it is the fifth Sunday of March
I share this cup of tea with you…

– @jcsnine


March 2019 SOLC–Day 31
Thank you to

Two Writing Teachers