NaPoWriMo/ GloPoWriMo 2019: Days 12, 13 & 14

I’m lucky enough to have been travelling a lot these past few days, and this plus a lack of access to the internet has meant that I have somewhat fallen behind on the NaPoWriMo challenge. Well, today I am catching up and repaying my three-poem debt!

For day 12, I wrote about an unimportant detail – the crumbling sky that used to be painted on the cupola of the Heilige Magdalenakerk in Brugge, Belgium, which has undergone some drastic changes over the past few years.

Constable sky
Landscape with a Double Rainbow (1812) by John Constable, from the V&A archives

The Old Sky in Heilige Magdalenakerk

The sky that had been
a little painted plaster
was cracking at the seams,
and delicate blue flakes
peppered the floor,
soon to become
blue dust. In this
holy untidiness
people were praying
without knowing –
all thoughts, no matter how
mundane, become prayer
on consecrated ground.
On the altar,
heaps of died flowers
rustled in the breeze
that had tricked its way
through the door, whispering:
“Rest awhile, for even the sky
gets tired.”

For day 13, I wrote about how there are no such things as coincidences.

railway station seton
The Railway Station, Redfern (1893) by Arthur Streeton, from the Art Gallery NSW collection

Wrong Ticket

Only fools do not
regard coincidence
with reverence.
Of course, you only happened
to be on that train
that stopped at the wrong
station, but what about
all the other people
now forced to spend the night
in a dingy hotel
by the railway
where no other trains
ever pass? What about
the storm that kept you all
on your toes, in dirty rooms
that refused interference
with their senile and stubborn
sense of time? Coincidences
only happen in stories,
but this is life.

And finally, for day 14, I responded to the prompt that called for creative wordplay by writing – for the first time ever! – a limerick.

William_Hogarth_-_Grotesque_Female_Head_-_Google_Art_Project_(2330008)
Grotesque Female Head by William Hogarth (1697-1764)

A Modern Politician

A mind tied in noughts
has her really distraught
since her table
is as stable
as derailed trains of thought.

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