Invictus BY WILLIAM ERNEST HENLEY Out of the night that covers me, Black as the pit from pole to pole, I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul. In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance My head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade, And yet the menace of the years Finds and shall find me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.
Independent Reading Poem List Poem – create a list of things that help define your main character in his or her complexity. These can be real things (a broken pen) your character might carry but also abstract concepts (the whisper of his mother the day he skinned his knee). Try to get specific with these details and to describe them in compelling ways. Lyrical poem from the perspective of one of the characters. What one of the characters wants to say to another or to us. The story told in a condensed powerful way. Question Poem
SOLDIER MISSING ON DESERT MANEUVERSSun blinding down behind a lava cone. Dark comes, but not cooling. How long till dawn, till he sees a distant scroll of dust - dancing-devil moving closer, becoming truck to take him back to camp. Another day of seeking shadow at his post, scanning all directions for that dust-devil that doesn't come. No truck to the lost horizon. How far can a soldier walk or crawl on two canteens of water? Which blind star might guide him on the death-march home? Taylor Graham Woman Found In Wooded Area She ran through the woods to escape him. He followed the path knowing he would reach the same place. She wore stockings. The thorns tore at them and she bled. When she came out, her breath was visible and he could smell her. Like a deer, she stilled, hoping he could not see her. But he could.
L.A. Police Chief Daryl Gates Dead at 83 —We were the finest. So the parents blamed the children, and the children marched barefoot through the alleys, spray-painting their age. And the preacher introduced the word lascivious and accused the congregation of not tiding when the daughter died. And the deacon board smoked. And the economists saluted Reagan. And the police called it an economy of dust. Our meteorologist predicted a low-pressure system in the abdomen. And the junkies swore perfume rung the air. The grocer had his union; the butcher couldn’t outrun his quarter of spoiled blood. And the girls wore extra rings and caked their skin with Vaseline. And the men slept the afternoon, growing childishly morose as they dreamed. And I think I thought we’d burn then, when the refinery blew, and rust began to bleed through the whitewashed fence, when the lawns were done, and the schoolyard darkened, and the side streets began to split. AmaudJamaul Johnson
Newspaper Titles, Taken Literally or Not • The Trials of Jacob Mach • A Grandchild’s Love Quells the Demons of Addiction • Climbing a Ladder Safely • Couple transforms tour bus into a cozy home on wheels • Disappearing ink: Tattoo removal booming with new laser • Baby Angel: Spring Valley cops hoping DNA will ID mother • NYC man dies in paragliding crash
Create a poem that uses at least three tenses. Present I run (simple) - I am running (progressive) Past I ran - I was running Future I will run - I will be running Present Perfect I have run - I have been running Past Perfect I had run - I had been running Future Perfect I will have run - I will have been running • TygerTyger, burning bright, • In the forests of the night; • What immortal hand or eye, • Could frame thy fearful symmetry? • In what distant deeps or skies. • Burnt the fire of thine eyes? • On what wings dare he aspire? • What the hand, dare seize the fire? • And what shoulder, & what art, • Could twist the sinews of thy heart? • And when thy heart began to beat, • What dread hand? & what dread feet? • What the hammer? what the chain, • In what furnace was thy brain? • What the anvil? what dread grasp, • Dare its deadly terrors clasp! • When the stars threw down their spears • And water'd heaven with their tears: • Did he smile his work to see? • Did he who made the Lamb make thee? • TygerTyger burning bright, • In the forests of the night: • What immortal hand or eye, • Dare frame thy fearful symmetry? -William Blake
Rewinding the Universe • Bad People • BY MARK HALLIDAY • The guys who drank quarts of Busch last night • here by the backstop of this baseball diamond • had names given them by their mothers and fathers— • “Jack” and “Kenny” let us say. • Jack might be • a skinny guy in a black fake-leather jacket, • he’s twenty-five, his gray pants are too loose on his hips, • his jaws always have these little black extra hairs, • his mother won’t talk to him on the phone, • she lives on french fries and ketchup, • he hasn’t been able to send her any cash • in the last two years, ever since he lost • his job unloading produce trucks at Pathmark; • Jack’s father disappeared when he was ten. • “No big deal,” Jack says, “he was a bastard anyway, • he used to flatten beer cans on the top of my head.” • Kenny offers a laugh-noise. He’s heard all that before. • Kenny is forty-eight, a flabby man with reddened skin, • he is employed at the Italian Market selling fish • just four hours a day but his shirts hold the smell; • his female companion Deena left him a note last month: • “You owe me $12 chocolate $31 wine $55 cable TV plus • donuts—I have had it—taking lamp and mirror • they are mine.” Kenny hasn’t seen her since. • He hangs with Jack because Jack talks loud • as if the world of cops and people with full-time jobs • could be kept at bay by talking, talking loud . . . • (I’m talking gently and imaginatively here • as if the world of bums and jerks could be kept far off—) • Jack and Kenny. (Or two other guys dark to me with wounds • oozing in Philadelphia ways less ready to narrate.) • Last night at midnight they got cheesesteaks at Casseloni’s • and bought four quarts at the Fireside Tavern • and wandered into this park. After one quart of Busch • Jack said he was Lenny Dykstra • and found a stick for his bat. “Pitch to me asshole” he said • so Kenny went to the mound and pitched his bottle • for want of anything better and Jack swung in the dark and missed; • Kenny’s bottle smashed on home plate and Jack heard in the sound • the absurdity of all his desiring since seventh grade, • absurdity of a skinny guy who blew everything since seventh • when he hit home runs and chased Joan Rundle around the gym • so Jack took his own empty bottle and smashed it down • amid the brown shards of Kenny’s bottle. • Then they leaned on the backstop to drink the other two quarts • and they both grew glum and silent • and when they smashed these bottles it was like • what else would they do? Next morning • Nick and I come to the park with a rubber ball • and a miniature bat. Nick is not quite three • but he knows the names of all the Phillies starters • and he knows the area around home plate is not supposed to be • covered with jagged pieces of brown glass. Like a good dad • I warn him not to touch it and we decide to establish • a new home plate closer to the mound (there’s no trash can • handy). “Who put that glass there?” Nick wants to know • and to make a long story short I say “Bad People.” • Nick says “Bad? How come?”