The reason my own personal contribution is entitled “ The Natty Hat Competition” is that when I first chose to participate in this Hop, I came to the conclusion that I needed some receptacle to posit the names of all those brave enough to enter my challenge. This meant such a vessel needed to be found, so off I went suitably attired in coat, scarf and hat, despite it being a heat wave (always been a martyr to ones own individual style) in search of such a reticule. After many an hour searching for something that would be commodious enough to be fit for purpose, I came to the conclusion that the effort involved was far beyond the ideal image I had of myself as someone of a laid back disposition, with borderline attitude of a laggard, much suited to a more decumbent position. At this moment the proverbial bolt of lightening struck, and the resultant shock incurred, allowing this singular idea to form “ Why Not Use My Hat ?????????” After laying in a supine position for a week in an attempt to recover from such a formative response to my dilemma, this is what I did and The Natty Hat Competition” was created.
Now following the tradition of The Natty Hat Competition, I set you a slight challenge and as per usual it is related to poetry. My challenge is also related to my plans for world peace, now before you broadside me with the weapons of logic, yeah I already know that this is my personal delusion, so please allow me this slight chimera, this one legged stance of posturing against this fiction of detente and you’ll gain entrance to this the most wondrous of giveaways. So after the waffle I should state what my plans are….. Name me a favoured poet and/or poem from a nation different to your place of birth. Place in the comments the name of a poet or to gain my undying fondness, a poem (with name, writer etc.) plus your email or contact details and you shall be guaranteed your place within this legendary Valhalla, that is the The Natty Hat. As per tradition I’ll start.
And electronic labyrinths
With a blackout and no computer
In a rented house, at seven thousand a month;
Kabul, the Afghan capital!
What silly poem is this?
You ask yourself, is poetry the same lonely words that wander in electronic corridors,
Cut off from their existence,
Thrown away, with no choice but to become a poem?
You watch imagination wandering through paths, over the paths,
You throw the leash at yet another word,
Trying to subdue this wild one,
And if you fail,
You stop functioning,
Like a computer crashed.
There was someone, someone who wrote viruses
Behind a diesel-powered laptop
Looking for URLs and
An anonymous mail would be sent
Connecting you to a site, infected;
“I am from Florida, the USA, and 23 years of age,
Looking for someone to follow the link, and make happy”;
To open the mail and to make someone happy?
First, stop the programs;
Passing through security, typing 97, 98, 99,
Approaching the death of romance between zero and one.
A virus-writer drank half a beer bottle at once;
Then, computer deaths;
First to the east of Paris, a house,
Australia, three minutes more,
A man is waiting out the last minutes of an office shift
Needs to get home;
A party is starting in half an hour;
The Philippines, minutes later,
A 19-year-old girl
In a chat room,
Showing off a used body;
In Egypt, more or less the same time,
And the next morning, Kabul.
You, and you, also you,
Yes, you and also you,
You are all arrested!
They tell me, stop writing!
You write and we’ll show you Guantanamo at home,
You write, we’ll kill you.
Kabul, summer of ’07
Hands in handcuffs, feet tied up;
This is Afghanistan, and this here where it is going,
Dead bodies over dead bodies.
The poem has no choice but to stop writing itself.
This is prison.
They asked a Kabul sparrow
Just what is mankind up to?
The sparrow considered this and died!
Kamran Mir Hazar(Afghanistan, 1976) is a prominent Hazara journalist, human rights activist and writer who now lives with his wife and one-year-old daughter in Hønefoss, Norway.
Now that you’ve survived the florid verbosity of my post, thank you for your polite silence. The reason for it was to provide an antithesis to Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s definition that
Prose, words in their best order. Poetry, the best words in the best order.
And to allow you to fully appreciate the Prize Giveaway - Definitions by Octavian Paler, this is a fantastic collection of poetry that I described as “beautiful, clever introspective poetry, not merely one individual’s exploration of self, but that it relates to you, us, all of us”. Here is more information on this book.
PS. To enter this giveaway You Do Not need to follow my blog or like, or tweet or any other dance steps that may occur to me, but if you do like what you see, please feel free to join & add your own ideas, as a polite introduction to a new idea, whether its a Book, a Poem or your favourite writer is always welcome. Thanks Parrish.
PPS, A big Thank you & respect to Judith from Leeswammes’ Blog, for organising and for the original instigation of this Literary Giveaway.
If you would like some ideas on poems check out my Pomesallsizes page for links or visit poetry international and whilst you’re out and about visiting please pay a call on my fellow conspirators in this, The Sixth Literary Giveaway Blog Hop