Today was back-the-front because the Poetic Factoid pome came first, which then gave me time to stop & think what I should write for the Big O sequence. It was an easy choice. Somewhere along the way, I started (perhaps subconsciously) pairing the two thematically or otherwise; now it’s become intentional.
Day 27 — TIL a bit about biology
i’ve long known the human body is largely water (60% on average) however TIL the percentage changes slightly with age, sex, & hydration ranging from 45 to 75%
i’d like to posit it also varies depending on the time of night because at 3am doonasnuggled nearing zero outside then i feel close to 98-99% aqua before the suddenly urgent dunnydash — yet strangely only about 12 or 13% upon my safe if shivering return to 4-poster perfection
some folks argue sex with your true love is about as wonderful a sensation this gourd offers but the zen of empty bladder after holding on too long surely comes close
With Big O & Eurydice being the theme this year, it feels a little like every day/poem explores the issue of grief so at times I’m not sure whose writing what about whom or when. The only thing I am sure of is why.
Day 15 – NTBLAILabout more than a forgotten letter of the alphabet
In Celebration of &
the ampersand’s formed from the ligature of the letters ET — the Latin word for “and”
… & the term “ampersand” is a corruption of and (&) per se and which literally means “(the character) & by itself (is the word) and”
… & this small odd looking character was actually once (kind of) the 27th member of the English alphabet*
… & when reciting the alphabet in the 1800s long-suffering schoolchildren would sing-song-say, “X, Y, Z, and per se and” so the students were essentially chanting “X, Y, Z, and by itself and”
… & being lazy children this was routinely slurred to the mondegreen ampersand & thus entered common usage
… & there’s a graffiti & in Pompeii from 79 CE
… & when it appears as &c where it means etc. (the ampersand time travels back into its E & T bones)
… & in screenplays, an & denotes a writing team [the word and designates the writers wrote separately, read: someone rewrote, & if there’s more than three ands on a credit, it’s a good sign you should probably stay the hell away from that movie]
… & when creating new type faces the & character allows designers to inject a little joie de vivre & artistic flair into proceedings
… not to mention some quite nice poets really love it & if that’s not a cause for celebration — then there isn’t one
*the thorn and the wynn are also membersof the Former Members Of The Alphabet Club but sadly we don’t have time (in this pome)to learn what led to their demises
2 Bob’s worth: a bonus poem
i. Jerk Bob that old bundle of chuckles the joy-killing chump Robert Hartwell Fiske in his dreary, dull AND utterly unreadable Dictionary of Unendurable English: A Compendium of Mistakes in Grammar, Usage, and Spelling with Commentary on Lexicographers and Linguists believes ampersands should only exist in proper names, business names, book titles, and the like never in place of the word and
he further opines: aside from the hurried, the only people inclined to use & in place of and are those who have scant sense of self and scant sense of style, and believe using & somehow swells them both.
ii. Lovely Bob Robert Nares in his far more charming highly erudite & intellectual work A Glossary; or, Collection of words, phrases, names, and allusions to customs, proverbs, etc., which have been thought to require illustration in the works of English authors, particularly Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Vol. I. A new ed., with considerable additions both of words and examples believes the ampersand’s calligraphic qualities make it a compelling design element that can add visual appeal & personality to any page.
For someone who loves this myth, I’m really struggling for quality content. Wondering if I should abandon it for something different for last half of the month. The Poetic Factoids, however, remain a treat to create.
Day 14 – TIL how deeply brain & body are connected
when your “inner voice” whispers wisdom deep within the wetness of your brain tiny muscle motions trigger in your larynx
no wonder i suffer so many sore throats after my multiple personalities have had their say on every conceivable topic
the muscular cacophony leaves my chords, exhausted
I’m really struggling to find Big O’s voice in this project. I’ve tried not writing in first person but it comes off very cold (which I suppose could be good thing) but I always end up flipping it back again. Worse, the words which are coming out are far more banal than the ideas which sound in my head. Frustrating, yes. Unusual, no.
Day 13 – TILI learnt about birth & lightning but not maths
the odds of — giving birth to a baby at 12:01am on January 1 are around 1 in 526,000*
which is roughly the same as getting struck by lightning
the odds of — giving birth to a baby at 12:01am on January 1 while getting struck by lightning
involves — knowledge of maths way way above my pay grade
A simple poem for Day 1 of the Festival of Grief; the second day of my annual wallowversary not till next weekend. Trying to combine my usual subject matter for this day with The Big O. It works okay. My Poetic Factoid has the potential to include words from other languages but I don’t really have the motivation to make it bigger today.
Day 9 – TIL about taking photographs of Victorians
where we say “cheese” as a prompt to make us grin
Victorians said “prunes” despite preferring to keep things in
Today’s volume of poetry was one of Bukowski’s I’d recently bought second hand but never read. Diving into him was like jumping into a lovely warm jacuzzi (where the water had just been freshly added & mine was the only body to have been immersed so it was all quite clean & hygienic thank you very much) — soothing, comfortable, relaxing, delightful, & I wondered why I don’t remember to read/reread my fave poets more often.
With that in mind, I set out to write a Big O poem in B style. I gave myself the added task of just stream of consciousing & not editing it (that can come later).
wedding day goat song
why’d the god-damned fool girl go & step in a snake nest for anyway it’s the stupidest damn thing i’ve ever heard & i’ve been hearing stupid damn things all my damn life
& now the wedding guests are gone home & my amphora is empty but i’m still full so i step outside to take a piss come back in pick up the amphora realise it’s empty still empty swear at the fucking gods for their sick son-of-a-bitch senses of humour
look about for my lyre till i remember i smashed it after i found her dead (my second best lyre obviously i’m not quite so stupid as to smash Hecate)
decide i’m no where near drunk enough so set out to visit Calais & see if i can drown myself in his ample cellar
Day 6 – TIL the Scots can deal with forgetfulness
title tartling tartan-style
so the Scots have a word for that brief panicked pause experienced while you temporarily un-remember someone’s name as you rummage through the haggis-baggage of your overworked, irrelevant fact-clutching, bewilderbeasted brain
all well & good
tartle is not that terrible
after all — the name’s known you’re simply having trouble accessing the correct datapoint in the outdated software system of your cerebral substance
but do these paragons of polite protocol these pontificating Pict-progeny have a word to personify that bowel-clenching juncture when you realise you’ve already forgotten the name of the person introduced to you mere microseconds ago