Saturday, January 9, 2010

Rings and Ribbons

In our culture we write poetry alone.

In Japan, a tradition of collaborative poetry developed called Renga. I learned about Renga from Jim Wilson's blog on poetry called Shaping Words.

Spontaneously, collaborative poetry similar to Renga happened recently when steven of golden fish wrote a poem called "with ribbons streaming" on his golden fish blog. He included a bit of my response to his poem. Here is how it went:

with ribbons streaming
by steven and Dan

in the half-light of a winter morning,
light and shadow coexist side-by-side.

inside and out.

undulating across snowy hummocks,
thin threads of sunlight rise and settle.

the shadow loves the light.

without the light's knifes-edge glare,
the shadow
is merely darkness


"light loves shadow.
because without shadow's soft depth
is merely blinding glare."

Here is another iteration of our collaboration, this one set in outer space:

Rings and Ribbons
by Dan and steven

in the cold quiet beyond Jupiter
light and shadow play side by side

inside and out.

arcing across vast planets
thin threads of sunlight rise and settle

the shadow loves the light.
because without the light’s knife-edge glare,
the shadow
is merely darkness.

light loves shadow.
because without shadow’s soft depth
is merely blinding glare.


The Pollinatrix said...

Wow - these speak very strongly to me right now, the whole light/shadow/darkness thing.

I love collaborative poetry. You guys did a great job with these.

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

A collaborative effort that seems to cover much of the interplay between shadow and light. Well done!

Dan Gurney said...

Susan, thank you. steven started it. light/shadow/darkness and sound/silence and hot/warm/cold and joy/sorrow and nirvana/samsara. It's our playground.

Dan Gurney said...

Bonnie, thank you.

Like many others, I've been thinking about your recent post on self disclosure. Rather than leaving a comment I may do a blog post as it would allow for fuller discussion. Like steven did, sort of, today.

steven said...

hello dan - i just finished posting a response to your comment on my blog - you mentioned a similarity to the teacher "thay" in your comment and i was taken aback. i drift in here and there are our words and you've reworked them cleverly to take us out into space. a favourite place of mine actually. this morning i was listening to gustav holst's rendering of jupiter, saturn, uranus and neptune. i haven't listened to them for over a year. it was blissful. thankyou for this and for so much more! steven

Jenny Stevning said...


Dan Gurney said...

steven, it's amazing to me how much synchronicity has appeared in my realm lately. Your post today has been with me all day, warming my heart.

Dan Gurney said...

You, too, Jenny. I love your blog and the story you told in answer to my question. I hope you really will open your store. I'd like something of yours hanging on my wall.

Haddock said...

That must be tough......writing together.

Dan Gurney said...

Hi, Haddock, thank you for stopping by. Actually writing together with steven was effortless and fun. Although we know each other only through the internet, we seem to share similar sensibilities.