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Penning Ponderings on Poets: Tortured Tales(?) and More

As I pondered about something trending for P, I landed upon Taylor Swift, not literally, but the fact that her Tortured Poets Department is dropping at midnight tonight! And while it is not really something beginning with ‘P,’ I will take it! Wouldn’t you? So my trending section for today is about just that: Tortured Poets: the one that Swifties are looking forward to and petite tales of other tortured poets as well.

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Poets: The Tortured Tales for You

About the Taylor Swift Version

Titled colloquially as “Tortured Poets,” Taylor Swift’s forthcoming eleventh studio album is slated for release on April 19, 2024, through Republic Records. Swift penned this anticipated album collaborating with producers Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner.

In one stop on her Eras Tour, Swift apparently told the crowd that she ” needed to make it, it was really a lifeline for me, it sort of reminded me why songwriting gets me through life. I’ve never had an album where I needed songwriting more than I needed it on Tortured Poets” (source).

Are you looking forward to getting the album for yourself? I know many in my friends and family circle (including at home) who will love it for themselves!

Petite Tales of Tortured Poets

  • Sylvia Plath

In a bell jar, she danced with words,
Each line a thread of her tormented worlds.
Her verse, a symphony of pain and plea,
Sylvia Plath, in her poetry, set herself free.

~ Vidya Tiru @ LadyInReadWrites

  • Edgar Allan Poe

In tell-tale hearts, his words take flight,
In midnight’s realm, where darkness bites.
The Raven caws, in mournful flight,
Edgar Allan Poe, lost to the night.

~ Vidya Tiru @ LadyInReadWrites

13 P- Poets -ry Books For You to Peruse

Many of these (more than half actually) are Cybils finalists while I added the others I loved over the years to my list to get to a total of 13 for Thursday 13!

As for a review, each of these books is pretty phenomenal in its own way. Where I already have a review for the book, I have linked it via the author’s name below.

The P Poetic Parables

  1. Paper Hearts by Meg Wiviott (Holocaust Fiction/Novels in Verse | 12 years and up)
  2. The Path to Kindness: Poems of Connection and Joy edited by James Crews (Poetry Anthologies)
  3. The Pet Project: Cute and Cuddly Vicious Verses by Lisa Wheeler with illustrations by Zachariah OHora (Stories in Verse | 4 – 8 years, and up) 
  4. Phenomenal Woman: Four Poems Celebrating Women by Maya Angelou (Poetry)
  5. The Places We Sleep by Caroline Brooks (Novels in Verse |  8 – 12 years, and up)
  6. Poems to Learn by Heart by Caroline Kennedy with art by Jon J Muth (Poetry Anthologies | 10 – 14 years, and up)
  7. Poems to See By: A Comic Artist Interprets Great Poetry with art by Julian Peters (Poetry Anthologies | 13 – 18 years, and up)
  8. The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo (Novels in Verse | Teen and YA, and up)
  9. The Popcorn Astronauts: And Other Biteable Rhymes by Deborah Ruddell and illustrated by Joan Rankin (Stories in Verse | 4 – 8 years, and up)
  10. A Portrait in Poems: The Storied Life of Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas by Evie Robillard and illustrated by Rachel Katstaller (Biographies in Verse | 6 – 9 years, and up)
  11. Prairie Lotus by Linda Sue Park (Novels in Verse | 10 – 14 years, and up)
  12. The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog and Other How-To Poems by Paul B. Janeczko and illustrated by Richard Jones (Children’s Poetry | 6 – 9 years, and up)
  13. Pug: And Other Animal Poems by Valerie Worth and illustrated by Steve Jenkins (Children’s Poetry | 4 – 7 years, and up)

Penning my Pensive Ponderings

NaPoWriMo’s day 18 prompt: Write a poem in which the speaker expresses the desire to be someone or something else, and explains why. Two possible models for you: Natasha Rao’s “In my next life let me be a tomato,” and Randall Jarrell’s “The Woman at the Washington Zoo.”

dVerse’s MTB Prompt: Write a pantoum with rhymed or unrhymed lines. However, you must use the third line of your first stanza as the second line in your final quatrain AND end with the first line. You may change/add some words and punctuation in your repeating lines to make the lines fit or to alter the context.

Given I am playing catchup and I did write a pantoum about sunshine a couple of years ago here, I rewrote that in first person for being a ray of sunshine, lighting up dust bunnies (love watching them playing in that slant everytime), brightening dark corners, and warming up the room. Plus, I call my kids (even now at 21 and 18) sunshine and sunray as I wake them each day! And I would love dancing with the dust bunnies and discovering treasures in hidden corners!

I am the slant of bright sunshine’s gleam,
Slicing through the room with gentle grace.
As I watch, shadows vanish, it would seem,
Revealing secrets in their hiding place.

Slicing through the room with gentle grace,
I illuminate each corner with my light.
Revealing secrets in their hiding place,
I bring forth treasures from the depths of night.

I illuminate each corner with my light,
Cutting across dust bunnies, I play.
I bring forth treasures from the depths of night,
Guiding them into the warmth of day.

Cutting across dust bunnies, I play,
As I dance upon the floor with delight.
Guiding them into the warmth of day,
I am the slant of bright sunshine’s sight.

~ Vidya Tiru @ LadyInReadWrites

When Poets Pen

The names: Pranay (my son’s name) – meaning love. And Pratima (one of my BFFs) meaning reprsentation or statue. And from what I know, I have heard both these names used in many a song in various Indian languages. So poets love to use these names for sure!

And the poets / lyricists who wrote these songs did it so well. I love both the songs. The second one is another favorite of my dad’s. He sang it often, and on stage as well a few times in our little town.

Pardesiya Yeh Sach Hain Piya from Mr. Natwarlal

Pyar Hua Ikrar Hua from the iconic Shree 420

And Now, the End of This Post

Dear reader, do let me know if you have read any of the books listed today? Which book would you pick first? Will you attempt a poem today? Do share any book recommendations, poetry you loved or wrote, and of course, all and any thoughts on this post.

I am linking up to A-ZBlogchatterUBCNaPoWriMo

And you can find all my A-Z posts (this year and previous years’ as well) here:

A to Z Challenge Posts

7 thoughts on “Penning Ponderings on Poets: Tortured Tales(?) and More

  1. How delightful to imagine being a ray of sunshine! (And that you call your now adult children sunshine and sunray. ) 😊
    I like the alliteration, the rhyme, and the gentle flow of your pantoum. Thank you for writing to the prompt!

  2. I’m sad to say I haven’t read any of those books, but Poems to See By looks like something I would check out. I only got through less than half of Taylor’s Tortured Poet’s songs. There is just so much! I love the slant and slice of light in your poem.

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