Rogue Homilies by Deidre Price

a study of life that smacks of the divine

Tag: poem-a-day

“The Method to My Madness, or How to Write a Poem” by Deidre Price // 2016 Poem-a-Day Challenge

The Method to My Madness, or How to Write a Poem


For Billy Collins


When a poem starts, I start with I.

I follow I with a certain verb–

steady sureness like I know and I am,

abandon my perhapses,

leave breadcrumb maybes in my margins.


When a poem starts, the speaker finds me,

tries on my every word, losing lipstick to heavily starched syntax

cast off to the dressing room floor of my page.

She leans into the light until it flatters for me,

the best friend standing by, opinions clenched in fists.


I want to see what happens.


I quiet as the show begins and silence my phone.

Language takes the stage–adolescent, unruly

with packed pocketfuls of bribes for candy rhymes.

The I arrives and says this music has to die, then Tybalt

stabs the adverbs like Mark Twain told him to.


I keep my Descartes close because he tells me what I like:

People cannot tell the difference between the dream and the world,

so we can stop pretending in the distance between them–

and the distance between us.


A miniature Anne Sexton descends like Tinkerbell might.

I can see her wires but do not care.

I clap and amen because I believe.


A chorus boos my jokes as critics censor from too many front rows.

I hear them backed by half a dozen echoes of dying fathers.

These voices linger, ruthless, proud, like Lost Boys’.


Suddenly, I become everybody’s mother.


I threaten to turn the poem around so fast their heads spin.

The back seats quiet.

I remember I know all the lines.


Sylvia commiserates

then bakes us pies.



April 2

An idiom is a phrase or a fixed expression that has a figurative, or sometimes literal, meaning. An idiom’s figurative meaning is different from the literal meaning. 

The meaning gets lost over time and what was once a new and interesting expression becomes “old hat.” 

You’ve heard them, “A penny for your thoughts, back to the drawing board, devil’s advocate, just to name a few.”

For today’s prompt, take a popular idiom ( or more than one if you can manage it), and recreate its meaning. Make it fresh again.

Share your idiom poem in the comments, and join us tomorrow for another! 

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“Beams” by Deidre Price // 2016 Poem-a-Day Challenge



My outdoorsy husband’s iPhone charts the stars.

He holds it to the sky, and an app plays

dot to dot with fire suspended in spaces

he’s never been.


He dreams of Nashville evenings,

classifies his days as though they are the fine woods

he turns into better things.


We want to turn into better things.


I dreamed of New York before the children crept

into me. Now every inch of my home is a crawl space

as colored plastic works on my sanity, diligently

as though it will be paid.


My days are floors and counters.

I identify stains and know not just that it is urine

but also whose.


We sing old songs to fill the air that fills

the rooms between other people’s dreams–

a violin among the dance shoes,

caped costumes and batarangs, 

tea at noon for twelve puppies and an octopus. 


The skies come to me these days.


As sure as my husband’s astrophysics,

my own sun and moon come bedside, gifts in tow at 6 a.m.–

Lego heroes in need of repair from their long night of sleep,

a sushi backpack full of marbles, missing jewelry, and silverware,

carried in with a blanket, blue as our Florida sky and covered

in white circles our smallest one calls “moons.”


We realize new dreams,

beaming at us, always whole.


April 1

Today’s prompt is “What kind of moonlight comes through your window, covers your lawn or glistens over the last of the snow?”

Share your moonlight poem in the comments, and join us tomorrow for another! 

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