Friday, June 19, 2015

June Gloom and the Letter Z: Poetry Tour of the Forms Class

Stop looking for God in the sky; let’s find him on Earth. On the Tower Arcanum, from The Way of Tarot: The Spiritual Teacher in the Cards, Alejandro Jodorowsky with Marianne Costa

To counter the overcast “June Gloom” we wake to in summer on Coronado Island, here’s a red table from a darling coffee shop, Yo El Rey Roasting, that I visited in Calistoga this winter. I love the embedded typewriter keys in the table and the fact that the coffee shop doubles as an art gallery/literary venue. In the window was a copy of Michelle Wing’s Body on the Wall, and all across the base of the front counter, a chalkboard covered in words…words…words…

In the early morning February fog, I sipped coffee with my poet friend Lisa Rizzo, our writing notebooks closed in front of us. Often separated by miles, we agreed we could just revel in one another’s company and save the morning writing for another time. 

Photo by Robyn Beattie
Today finds Lisa writing in a blue-tiled room in Sorrento and Naples, blogging and posting photographs at Poet Teacher Seeks World. I’m raising my home brewed coffee to you Lisa, and to the letter “Z.” Write me a poem from Sorrento using the letter “z”, and I’ll write you one from here!

In celebration of fogginess, or at least its’ enchanting pewter hue, here’s a photo of a bull nestled in my wedding veil by my poetry movie collaborator Robyn Beattie. 

The moment I saw the bull I wanted to write a fairytale for him. But it’s been done: I’m thinking of "The Brown Bull of Norrowa," starring a princess (tossing her three glass balls into the sky) and a snorting bull (uprooter of trees); I first found the tale in The Tapestry Room, A Child's Romance by Mrs. Mary Louisa Molesworth (1839-1921) and illustrated by Walter Crane (1845-1915); published London: Macmillan and Co., 1893. 

There’s a night ride for which the princess is a willing captive on the back of the bull and a lonely Tower toward which they ride that houses riddle of bull’s past. 

Illustration by Walter Crane
Here’s an illustration by Walter Crane from my pale blue volume (all the way from England, gift from my Aunt) which sits on the top shelf of my roll top desk. I’m living with the bull…listening…he’s in the dreamfield…making his way towards inevitable poem or tale or translation.

The Tarot Tower

In synchronicity, for the Wheel of Archetypal Selves Tarot class I’m teaching, we are in Tower week, living our way to an understanding of the Tower card. For me that means writing some Haiku, blogging at Tarot for Two with Mary, and comparing Deck interpretations as I did earlier this month with the Temperance card. I love this line by Eden Grey from A Complete Guide to the Tarot: As we learn to transfer the Life force from the imagination (moon) to the activity of the conscious (sun), the will is developed and the imagination purified so that in pouring from the silver cup to the golden one we lose nothing. You’ll remember that this card features a guardian angel dipping her toe into a river, two cups in her hands between which stream an elixer. I began to think of the cups as the hearts of two lovers, the elixer a form of love:
Illustration by Walter Crane

Angel wields two cups
Ash blue elixer between
My chalice: my heart.

Lover then, you form
The second cup, Art’s angel
Brutal, winged, firm, kind.

Cupless my two hands—
All I’ve done or craved blessed by
Silver mobius.

Guardian witness.
Seer, keeper of secrets
My turn to translate.

Poetry Play: A Tour of the Forms

If you are looking for the kinship of writing and translating your experiences in poetry with others, join me for six weeks of sheer poetry play. We will try our hand at haiku, haibun, sonnets, sestinas, and more in person at San Diego Writers, Ink, located in what I think of as one of San Diego’s best kept “secret gardens” of art and chocolate…during Poetry Play: A Tour of the Forms we will be writing upstairs around the corner from Chi Chocolat and Con Pane Rustic Breads and Café and all manner of art studios and shops (including Moment Bicycles sure to please triathletes like my husband). Poetry class runs from six Thursdays starting already this coming Thursday, June 25 ($180 SDWI members, $216 non-members). We meet from 10-12 noon in Inspirations Gallery in Liberty Station. Sign up here: Poetry Play: A Tour of the Forms; for further links and a full description, visit my website.

Story Circle Network Reviews November Butterfly

My gratitude goes to Susan Schoch at Story Circle Network for this latest review of my poetry collection November Butterfly:

If there is truth to Pryputniewicz's voice, and I believe there is, it is in her search for the beauty to be found in dark places. Certainly her title poem reflects that, as she takes "...a butterfly with a frayed / wing pinned living / to the windshield" and makes the gesture of liberating that wounded yet vibrant creature. It is a liberation of all our wounded selves and our sorrows.--Susan Schoch

To read other reviews and for information about how to order November Butterfly visit my website


Sandyfrankstudio said...

I want to sit with you again in that cafe.....Also, I've been getting into the Tarot lately too(Thanks to you!)....and reading some Alejandro Jodorowsky(sp?) So great indeed.....Life is magical.

Have fun with your writers on retreat....and we will talk soonish. Summer overtakes but it is all necessary....

Love to you...Sandy

Tania Pryputniewicz said...

We will sit in that cafe! Let it be so! Yes, I'm really enjoying the Jodorwosky/Costa Spiritual Teacher in the Cards book, just rich and what I need to hear right now. Summer indeed overtakes but we will find time in it too, we must! xoxo T

Marisa said...

My desk is strewn with tarot cards from two decks (and a few 30 year old Star Wars trading cards). I'm tired, yet pushing away sleep. I just let your words wash through me and now I wonder if I will dream of another bull altogether... My dreams, Celtic-starred as they often are, would include the great bulls that caused a great war and launched an Irish saga in the Tain - a story about a cattle raid and pillow talk gone astray.

Tania Pryputniewicz said...

Beautiful, that is a story I would love to read (and it sounds like it would be more than one)...tell me, do tell me...I hope you will, when you write your version...

Marisa said...

I will, dear Tania. That particular story is about three deep on the list of "novels to write," but someday!