4 American Sentences

   The image above was first used with my poem "The Girl Who Loved Hemingway."
                  I suspect she might also love American sentences.

Allen Ginsberg's American sentence, in case you might not know, is a response to his feeling that haiku did not work well in English. It is simply 17 syllables arranged how ever you like, and it must be, of course, a sentence. (That doesn't mean it can't have periods within it.) While haiku are normally concerned with nature, an American sentence can be about anything. Kerry, at The Imaginary Garden, first told me about them. And so here are four I wrote today:

my joints grind like old bricks. 
garden warms.
my cane is sturdy.
sun is strong.

dog, i am your mother
though i am not a dog.
bed is yours to hog.

baseball on tv.
dog and me on couch.
we sleep through several innings.

in age i find beauty in more faces
than i ever did when young. 

And so, I have written 30 poems in 30 days this April. As I depart The Imaginary Garden With Real Toads--like a tv actress or a back-up singer embarking on a preposterous and disastrous solo career--I want to say that the inspiration from all of you has been instrumental in the writing of so many of the poems on this blog, Coablack's House of Pain, and Black Mamba. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything. I will still see you when I appear as a  "legendary" (read: washed-up!) guest on the show. (Fireblossom as Aunt Biddy, with one line: "Follow your heart, Chrissie!") xoxoxox

a little road music:


Margaret said…
..and you jump off your toadstool with quite a splash! Haiku?! ... and quite fine ones at that. I just tumbled from mine! Kersplash.
Fireblossom said…
They are not haiku! They are American sentences! ;-)

*hands a towel over*
Sherry Blue Sky said…
Wonderful, especially the dog mom ones. I will let go of your ankles as you exit the pond, only because I know you are still only a mouse-click away. Smiles.
Anmol (HA) said…
AH! I love American sentences — you have done a mighty good job with them. Very well penned! :-)
tonispencer said…
I love American sentences and wish more people knew if them instead of calling everything haiku. Your last ine is a true beauty. The ithers are great but that one is beyond true and beautiful
I love it, and I have never heard of American Sentences until now. Thank you!
Carrie Van Horn said…
I love your American Sentences and your smooth and rockstar goodbye to Toads. Your visiting there will always be a blessing I am sure.
Susie Clevenger said…
Yes, you took a giant leap off the lily pad, and I love the splash of each of your American Sentences. Looking forward to your guest appearances in the garden and I'll be watching for your work. I have three poetry blogs now because a girl likes her options. ;)
I too love American sentences; thanks for reminding me of them. And I love the way you've arranged these, as well as what they say.

Well, I'm only a visitor here too, albeit a quite frequent one. I like it that way; don't have to scrape the dust off the lily pads or anything responsible like that. I just bring a plate to share, and enjoy nibbling on what others have brought. Looking forward to seeing you back here now and then.
robkistner said…
Cool that you finished with Allen’s devices Shay. I loved the truth of the last one. Congrats on your tenacity!
grapeling said…
Damnit Shay, even though your blogs are accessible (I mean that in the purest sense, not that you are ever inaccessible. maybe you are. sue me.) - even though I'm no longer a toad but just a smudge on the road - y'all come back after you get done with your haikuing. Hiking. walkabout. ~
Kerry O'Connor said…
dog, i am your mother
though i am not a dog.

This speaks directly to my own dog-mother heart!

I love all your unique sentences, Shay. I like the way you have ended off April with a kind of promise that there is a lot more to come!.
brudberg said…
Actually every sentence more or less connect to the other for me... sounds like you had a great day
Marian said…
Are you my mother?
Reminds me of those two Eastman children's books smushed together... Are You My Mother and Go Dog Go. That is high praise!
Also, let's talk about getting older. I see way more beauty in faces now as you say, but have a real barrier seeing my own that way. Ugh!
Cloudia said…
"in age i find beauty in more faces
than i ever did when young. " Me Too!

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