Wednesday, May 29, 2013


being poor's only  
a liability  
if she lets it define her  
"rising above the hand you're dealt."  

A note on form:  This little number is called a clarity pyramid.  It is meant to start with a single syllable word (all in caps that doubles as the title).  The two lines that follow are to be synonyms or some how clarify the definition of the word; these are two and three syllable lines (respectively).  The second stanza, also composed of three lines (5, 6, 7 syllables respectively) pose a scenario or real-life application of the original word.  The final stanza is a single 8-syllable line (written in quotes) that defines the first word.  
When beginning this explanation of the form, I said,"It is meant to start with a single syllable word."  The reason for this is that sometimes (as with any poem) inspiration does not always follow order.  In this case, the second stanza founds its way to me, followed by the last line.  The tricky part was finding the word that matched my definition.  
Inspiration for this piece:  3WW (Three Word Wednesday) post a challenge every week of three words to be used in one piece (be it a poem or prose); this week's words were badge, darken, and liability.  My intent as is the case on the last Wednesday of the month is to use all three words in a clarity pyramid.  I'm still working on that.  But in the mean time, this happened along; and rather than throw it out because it didn't hit each word, I ran with it.

Exposing word choice:  After coming up with the final line, I had a general idea of a word.  After my brain puzzled it through, "overcome," sunk in.  The trouble was identifying corresponding one and two syllable words.  "Prevail" came naturally.  But in working to find just the right opening word, the idea of using "best" with its less common use just spoke to me.  There was something in the idea that if she was able to best the hardships that lay in her way, then she would become the best her she could be.  It seemed all the more poetic.


Brian Miller said...

nice...the middle section nails it for me...the being poor only being a liability if she lets it define her...truth...

Mary said...

I love this short poem form really. And the message of the poem really resonates with me. I think it really starts with BELIEVING one can rise!

Nico said...

Excellent clarity poem--you know I've praised this form (or your use of it) in the past here, but I still have not managed to write a decent one. Very nice!