NaPoWriMo 5 ~ Golden Shovel

The prompt for day 5 of NaPoWriMo I found incredibly difficult. The challenge was to write a “golden shovel.” This form was invented by Terrance Hayes in his poem, The Golden Shovel. The last word of each line of Hayes’ poem is a word from Gwendolyn Brooks’ poem We Real Cool. You can read Brooks’ poem by reading the last word of each line of Hayes’ poem! It was a tortuous process but so rewarding as it introduced me to a poet I had not come across before, Terrance Hayes.
I chose a short poem to use for my golden shovel:

Their relationship consisted
In discussing if it existed.
-Thom Gunn

My inspiration was a walk back from town yesterday. I was admiring a beautiful display of daffodils when I was suddenly aware of a group of boys playing football nearby. They suddenly charged after the ball and threw themselves down on the grass with no thought for the flowers, bent, broken and crushed by their bodies. And so my poem was born…

Plodding through fields of daffodils their
Yellow hearts performing, I pondered the relationship
Between plants and poetry.  Concluding it consisted
Of long periods of silent suffering in
Deep, dark soil, alone.  Discussing
This is futile.  But bleak experience can be transformed if
Hidden hurts are buried in fertile soil for long.  It
Results in a joy and beauty we never knew existed.

Phew, I hope day 6 is a little easier!
daffodils by a fallen branch at St Peter's Grange, Prinknash Abbey

6 thoughts on “NaPoWriMo 5 ~ Golden Shovel

  1. Wow! You have really done this form justice with this gorgeous poem! I love it. Im not doing the challenge (too challenging!!) but Im following you all and I was puzzled by this Golden Shovel at first. But I slowly realised what it’s all about and find it quite fascinating. I may try one sometime!


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