December Dailies – Day 30 – The Paradelle

The next to last “daily” is in the book (on the blog?) Today I chose to write a Paradelle (click here to learn more). I chose this particular form because it was invented by Billy Collins, former US Poet Laureate and is all about poking fun at strict poetic forms. I’ve been doing that for 30 days now; it’s just no one got the joke, I guess. I’m a fan of Billy Collins, not only because he is an outstanding poet who writes in a down-to-earth way, but also because he works tirelessly to make poetry accessible to everyone. One of his shining examples is a project called Poetry 180, which was designed to get high school students reading a poem every school day of the year.

The world could use a lot more poetry and a lot less of some of the other crap we consume in the media. That is the only rant you’ll get from me during this project. 😉

I also wanted to post a couple photos of the creative process… I think there may be some people out there who think I just sit down, type these and hit publish… That’s a big ol’ nope. I will admit most of everything gets typed initially, but I often print a hard copy and noodle with a pen if I get stuck.

Once I get the poem all finished in my word processing software I normally run it through Grammarly to find any glaring spelling and punctuation errors. For poems, this is not ideal as I sometimes ignore punctuation… Some famous poet somewhere told me that is ok.

I then turn the poem into an image. It keeps the formatting as I intend. This is important to me, probably only to me, which is fine.

Finally, I write the post for the poem in WordPress… The blog platform I have chosen to adopt for It’s a robust platform and reasonably intuitive to get things done. It also works with Grammarly so that I don’t look quite as illiterate as I would without it.

It’s a fun little system and it works well.  I think it’s essential that you all know that each poem has taken at least an hour to create and post. The longest I spent on any poem was nearly 5 hours. I won’t tell you which one, but I think it reflects a higher level of craft than many of the others. This Paradelle took about 2 hours from start to finish. It was great fun and even turned out better than I expected. I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for reading. I appreciate you.

The paradelle:


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