Submit Your Poems
Get Your Premium Membership

Cyndi MacMillan's Blog

About Cyndi MacMillan
(Show Details...)
Bloggers Photo

Cyndi MacMillan is a well-rounded writer who embraces many genres and forms. Her work has been published in local newspapers and has won contests. She enjoys reading literary journals, and she is actively pursuing publication within their glossy covers.

Verse is both magnetic and kinetic. She attempts - madly- to give equal attention to her poetry, short stories, and a novel-in-progress, the Trim of Wicks.  Regardless of genre, she focuses on language. One word has the power to repel or pull. She never forgets the reader and does her best to make their ride interesting.

Poetry soup is a good forum which enables people from around the world to share poetry. It has some great resources and provides a nice space for friends to meet.

Cyndi lives in a small town in Ontario with her husband, young daughter and far too many books.

.


MY NEW CONTEST: Z is for ZARIA: AN ABC Couplet


Blog Posted:2/26/2013 11:31:00 PM

My girl is turning four this spring, she is  currently working on her alphabet and has learned more than half of it already.  She inspired this contest.


THERE  WILL BE A PRIZE

FOR  THE

FIRST  PLACE WINNER.


I’d  like you to write 14 couplets, 28 lines, no more and no less, and create a  unique didactic poem that teaches not only the alphabet, but also delves into  another subject (see example below)

This alphabet poem must not use the old standards of A  is for Apple and B is for Butterfly. Think… A is for Andromeda, B is for  Belatrix (stars and constellations.)

Huh,  you say? Whatcha talking about, lady?

Your  mission is to take a subject and create an Alphabet “book” on ONE THEME. YOU  MUST KEEP THE THEME THROUGHOUT YOUR POEM.

Truthfully,  I was cocky when I came up with this challenge. I thought, easy peasy. Guess  what? It took me about 6 hours to write mine! Trust me coming up with something  that makes sense for the subject and does not sound like forced rhyme is work  people. Prepare to sweat, at least a bit!

So  here’s an example…

A is for  Allspice, one pinch will perk up a dull coffee cake,
B is for Bay leaf,  smart cooks know it’s a kitchen help mate. 

C is for Cinnamon, a perfect  partner for ripened apples,
D is for Dillweed, tell me, Dear, do you pucker for pickles?

E  is for Epazote, so zesty in quesadillas,
F is for Fennel seed, a healing herb as old as Judea.

G is for Ginger, lets make  a sweet house from gingerbread,
H is for Herbes de Provence. “C’est bon!” Grandmere often said. 


I is for Italian Seasoning, spaghetti sauce made for you,
J is for Jamaican Jerk, rub on meat and then barbeque.

K is for Kala Zeera which has a rich, nutty flavor,
L is  for Lemon Grass, steep for a tisane to savor.

M is for Marjoram, superb in a potato casserole,
N is for Nutmeg, add to warm cider, season your soul.

O is for oregano, this spice, dried or fresh, is so  ersatile,
P is for Piri Piri, a taste loved by the people of Portugal  .

Q is for Quassia, brew just a bit to aid digestion
R is for  Rosemary, pork and lamb’s ideal companion.

S is for Saffron, not only luscious, this spice is also luxurious,
T is for Thyme, use in stews and turn a bland meal delicious. 

U is for Uzazi, a rare pepper grown in Eastern Africa
V is for Vanilla, this fragrant gift is from Mesoamerica.

W is for Wasabi, eat in moderation or you’ll need to recoup,
X is  for X Striata, cooks in Nigeria grind this into pepper soups.

Y is for Yellow mustard seed, keep the faith and remember to pray,
Z is for Zaa’tar,  sprinkle on hummus then dream of lands far away

Rethink meals, replace  old spices, refill those tired coffers,
then enhance every dish with the  gems the world offers.




You  can play with syllable count, use any kind of near or slant rhyme that you wish.  Your X and Z words can be a stretch, but do not use EX for X…

Stuck for a  theme? Here’s JUST a few ideas...


BIRDS
SEA CREATURES
INSECTS
FLORA AND  FAUNA
FAMOUS POETS and WRITERS
FAMOUS WORKS OF  ART
PHILOSOPHY/PHILOSOPHERS
BOOKS OF FAITH/FAITH FIGURES
FAMOUS  HISTORICAL SIGHTS
CITIES OF THE WORLD
ANY OF THE SCIENCES (Geology,  astrology, medicine, herbology, math, biology etc)
FASHION AND  CLOTHING
COMPUTER TERMINOLOGY


If  you’re still stumped, consider what interests you… literature, music, sports?  All good, too!

So …. Rules this time

1)Write a 14 couplet poem – 28 lines total – about the alphabet using one  theme.
2)
No old  standards, no C is for Cat.
3)EACH LINE  MUST GIVE A BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE WORD YOU HAVE CHOSEN FOR THAT LETTER … i.e….K is for Kala Zeera which  has a rich, nutty flavor)
4)The last  two couplets should underscore your poem’s theme.
5)You  may include a brief footnote about yourself (see below)

Please,  read my winner's blog once this contest is judged, where I will highlight what I  enjoyed about your poem.


There will  be a gift exchange, so to speak….


The  first place winner will receive the children’s alphabet book

M  is for MAPLE

A  CANADIAN ALPHABET BOOK

BY  MIKE ULMER



This is a great gift for kids and older kids, and hey,  even we who pretend to be adults. You can keep or give it to your children,  grandchildren, neighbour’s children, your public library or your local literacy  agency.


The gift YOU will  give? I will be printing off copies of these poems for my daughter and having  them coil bound, solely for the enjoyment of my family. I hope to give this to  her years in the future… tell her about Soup and its wonderful poets (hence, why  I am asking for a small bio, if you'd like to give one.)

So, game on, people. Show me your  magic!

xoxo
Cyndi


Please Login
 
  1. Date: 2/28/2013 6:14:00 AM
    Cyndi, you are fertile soil for this old brain, I will give it a try, give your little angel a big kiss for me, and to mama angel, have a blessed day, your scented Rose, xxx

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 2:38:00 PM
    sounds interesting, cyndi. I have done a few very similar to this style in the past!!

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:46:00 AM
    Thanks again, Ruben.For those in checking the readability of their poem, go to for how to do it with word. http://www.wa.gov/esd/training/quickguides/readability.htm Mine was only grade 2.8! LOL! Though I don't know many 7-8 year olds in my neighbourhood who'd know the word 'Judea.'

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:32:00 AM
    wonderful example poem, this will be a tough contest for those brave enough to try

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:09:00 AM
    Love it! It's a real challenge, Cyndi. One question: you said didactic, do we have to write a poem for children? ...using words they can understand?

    Login to Reply
    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 2/27/2013 9:36:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    :) GREAT question. I was going to add notes about this to the contest, then didn't. Okay, I'm thinking the language should MOSTLY be for, say around a grade 4-5 level,but a few challenging words, too, a chance to open up conversation and increase vocabulary... I think there used to be a program for that. Tells you what grade level you're writing is at?
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:06:00 AM
    This sounds like an interesting challenge. I think I'll give it a go.

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 7:08:00 AM
    What a loving and "Entertaining" mind you have---sounds like fun!

    Login to Reply
    cornish Avatar craig cornish Date: 2/27/2013 9:41:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Oops I've already done one on another subject and you're right--took a while---btw z isn't hard with zephyr and Xebec a Med, Sea boat---anyhow, already did one on another love--cooking. Thanks for the idea tho !
    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 2/27/2013 8:25:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    My girl is using her tools to fix her Barbie car, so I have a moment, LOL... future mechanic? Okay, I have one for you :) A is for Aboard, B is for Berth, Nautical terms! You'd have to go through the dictionary and brainstorm for X and Z... but then you'd end up with a nice one for your grandkids, too. You could add pictures for them gotta go
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 6:51:00 AM
    Wow, very cool idea! It sounds a bit intimidating, but I will give it a try. Yours is awesome :)

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 5:44:00 AM
    Sounds interesting. And daring. .. have fun..pd

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 1:07:00 AM
    Cyndi will give it some thought...great idea...David

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 2/26/2013 11:49:00 PM
    This a nice idea, Cyndi. A fine ABECEDARIAN poetry contest. "A is for apple" is the easy form, but I think that I have licked it with My A - Z Affairs..... I do not think I have another one inside of me. Good luck with the contest and hope to read the entries when time allows. Love, Su

    Login to Reply
    Richards Avatar Suzette Richards Date: 2/26/2013 11:52:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    ABC poetry form is derived from Abecedarian, but distinctly different, and another form is the Name poetry form....
  1. Date: 2/26/2013 11:42:00 PM
    Sounds a great idea, not an easy one, but a great one. If your ears burn it will be my mumberlings under my breath, lol....Seren

    Login to Reply

My Past Blog Posts

 
Terrorist attack at Parliament. Ottawa, our national capital, is on lockdown.
Date Posted: 10/22/2014 11:59:00 AM
PUBLICATION ETIQUETTE, TWO IMPORTANT THINGS
Date Posted: 10/16/2014 5:28:00 AM
****EDIT******POETRY AS LITERATURE AND AS SELF-EXPRESSION. YOU DON'T NEED TO CHOOSE.
Date Posted: 10/6/2014 11:58:00 AM
ANOTHER WOWSER. TRULY BEAUTIFUL. COME IN FOR A CHAT.
Date Posted: 10/2/2014 9:39:00 PM
A ROMANTIC POEM I THINK MOST WILL LOVE, COMMON GROUND, COME TAKE A PEEK
Date Posted: 9/30/2014 5:37:00 PM
How I judge Contests by Cyndi MacMillan
Date Posted: 9/10/2014 9:58:00 PM
A RESPONSE FROM MAUREEN HYNES
Date Posted: 9/8/2014 8:54:00 PM
MAUREEN SAYS SHE LOVES MY RESPONSE
Date Posted: 9/8/2014 10:25:00 AM
READING POEMS LIKE A POET, INCLUDES AN ANALYSIS
Date Posted: 9/6/2014 6:23:00 PM
PUNK TUATION IN POETRY
Date Posted: 9/4/2014 9:39:00 PM
Grammar and poetry: a Fiction Writer’s Oddball View
Date Posted: 9/2/2014 10:52:00 AM
GREAT ARTICLE ON FIGURATIVE WRITING
Date Posted: 8/22/2014 10:47:00 AM
THIS IS POETIC PROSE
Date Posted: 8/20/2014 9:28:00 AM
GARDEN PARTY CONTEST WINNERS
Date Posted: 7/15/2014 9:57:00 PM
NEW CONTEST
Date Posted: 7/13/2014 5:19:00 AM
LEATHERBACK BOY
Date Posted: 7/11/2014 9:53:00 PM
MINDING MANNERS
Date Posted: 6/11/2014 6:17:00 PM
TORRENT: A CONTEMPORARY SONNET
Date Posted: 6/7/2014 6:56:00 AM
NEW CONTEST
Date Posted: 6/4/2014 10:19:00 PM
GENITALS in PRINT, AN OPEN DIALOGUE
Date Posted: 5/27/2014 3:20:00 PM
THE CLEARING, WORD PAIRINGS, COLLABORATIVE WORK
Date Posted: 5/8/2014 10:21:00 PM
WORD PAIRINGS. BUILDING POEMS.
Date Posted: 5/6/2014 9:04:00 AM
THE BEST POETRY WRITING ADVICE I'VE EVER HEARD
Date Posted: 5/5/2014 9:13:00 AM
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PROSE & POETRY
Date Posted: 5/4/2014 12:50:00 PM
GINGHAM AND LACE, ANOTHER BLITZ
Date Posted: 4/4/2014 9:32:00 PM

My Recent Poems

Date PostedPoem TitleFormCategories
10/15/2014DARK ANGELS OF HIGHGATESestinafuneral,psychological,sad
9/4/2014I COMESFree versesexy,
9/2/2014cummings and iVersepoetry,word play,
8/25/2014LIFE WILL BE A HONEYMOONLyricparadise,passion,romantic
8/25/2014HOSTEL, QUEBEC CITY, 1978Free versehistory,places,
8/21/2014DEGREESSonnetbooks,sensual,words,
8/7/2014NEUTRALIZEDSonnetcolor,home,
7/17/2014CRADLEDTrioletbaby,love,
6/9/2014THE RETURNSonnetdepression,giving,life,lo
6/7/2014TORRENTSonnetcelebration,life,women,
4/21/2014LA MARQUISEFree versepsychological,
4/8/2014BUKOWSKI CONTESTFree versemoving on,power,teenage,
4/4/2014GINGHAM AND LACE, A BLITZ POEMVersedaughter,love,
4/4/2014NUDE, THIRTY DOLLARS, A BLITZVerseart,imagination,lost love
3/24/201450 GODSFree versegod,peace,philosophy,
3/15/2014WINTER IN PORTLANDFree versedepression,winter,
3/11/2014FREEDOM BLUESTail-rhymefreedom,
2/28/2014WELCOME TO THE BLUENOSEAcrosticfish,history,journey,sea,
2/25/2014PITY THE PIRANHAFree verseintrospection,people,
2/13/2014DOUBLE OH, A BOND CROWN, EXAMPLE FOR CONTESTCrown of Sonnetsfilm,sexy,
2/11/2014ORION: A PERSPECTIVE for third to tenthSonnetmythology,star,
2/10/2014TARTANS, A SONNET FOR FRANCINESonnetfriend,patriotic,places,p
2/9/2014TESTIMONIALS, A SONNET FOR BRIANSonnetfaith,friend,nature,
2/5/2014ON THE FRINGE, A SONNET FOR MARLONSonnetafrica,allegory,culture,f
2/3/2014SUMMERLAND, A SONNET FOR CARRIE RICHARDSSonnetfriend,music,places,poetr
2/2/2014WORD ON THE STREET, 2009, A SONNET FOR DAVIDSonnetbooks,friend,places,poetr
1/31/2014HEROES, A SONNET FOR CRAIGSonnetfriend,hero,places,poetry
1/29/2014DIVINE STEEPLES, A SONNET FOR CATIESonnetfriend,love,places,poetry
1/28/2014SNIPPETS, A SONNET FOR ANDREASonnetfilm,friend,poetry,
1/28/2014HEY WAITER, THERE'S A TURTLE IN MY SOUP, sonnet by SYNISTER TRENDENCIESSonnetconflict,metaphor,poets,
1/27/2014GOSSIPHaikuanimal,funny,people,
1/27/2014NEW-DALI, A SONNET FOR CHANSonnetart,friend,poetry,time,
1/26/2014MUSE, A SONNET FOR KATHRYNSonnetfriend,love,places,poetry
1/24/2014ONE TWO ONE, A SONNET FOR DEBBIESonnetfriend,love,places,poetry
1/23/2014FIREWORKS, A SONNET FOR LINDA MARIESonnetfriend,heaven,life,metaph
1/22/2014UNREHEARSED, A SONNET FOR NETTESonnetart,friend,love,
1/21/2014THE WIT OF ROSE, A SONNET FOR MYSTIC ROSESonnetfantasy,friend,places,
1/20/2014CHANTRY, A SONNET FOR GAILSonnetlight,memory,places,
1/20/2014SUNCATCHER, A SONNET FOR CHARMAINESonnet 
1/17/2014HAT MAN, A SONNET FOR RUBENSonnetfriendship,poetry,
1/14/2014FANFARE, A POEM FOR CALEBSonnetbooks,friend,imagination,
1/14/2014MY HEART BELONGS TO MONTREAL: A CONSTANZAIambic Pentameterheart,places,
1/13/2014AN EDUCATED MANFree verseeducation,life,truth,wisd
1/9/2014SPICYSonnetfood,passion,
1/7/2014UNTITLEDFree versesummer,time,
1/6/2014THE STANDProsetruth,
1/4/2014WOMAN, I BEI do not know?life,
12/19/2013EXPLORING THE BASEMENTFree verseabuse,childhood,courage,
12/12/2013LET ME INFLAME: A POET'S PRAYERVersepassion,poetry,
12/11/2013PARDON ME, DID YOU JUST BAN CHRIS AECHTNER FROM SOUPProsefeelings,freedom,friend,
12/10/2013UNHOLY Versewinter,
12/3/2013LA VIE EN ROSELight Poetrycharacter,imagination,
12/2/2013OPENING A POET'S VEIN, WORDS,Versewriting,
12/1/2013MOTHER'S NIGHTRondeaumother,mythology,
11/29/2013RIPPLESFree versesad,writing,
11/8/2013A LETTER TO MY DAUGHTER - HARD CONVERSATIONSProsedaughter,introspection,
11/7/2013TRAINEDGhazalrelationship,
9/28/2013EMILY DICKINSONSonnetpoetess,
9/27/2013HEY WAITER, THERE'S A HITLER IN MY SOUPFree verseparody,poetry,
9/26/2013THE VIRGIN AND CHILDSonnetfaith,jesus,mother,
9/21/2013YOU, JUST FOUR, KISSEDFree versejudgement,
9/12/2013LAST WISHESFree versedeath,niece,sad,
9/10/2013SAFEWORDSonnetlove,lust,
8/24/2013Sijo 1Sijoimage,innocence,
8/23/2013UNMASKEDPantoumdance,desire,fantasy,
8/6/2013THE OTHER-WISEFree verseart,introspection,
7/24/2013PIMPEDFree versechildren,lust,society,
7/17/2013MARGINSFree versedaughter,summer,
7/15/2013SPINNING WHEELFree versechange,home,moving on,
6/6/201336-18-34Shapefreedom,history,women,
6/5/2013COME, ARIONSonnetfantasy,horse,mythology,
6/5/2013BAIT, 1986Free versegrowing up,lust,men,
6/3/2013COME AND PLAY MELyricmuse,music,passion,romant
5/31/2013haiku 6Haikuchildren,summer,
5/29/2013TURNING WENDIGOFree versemurder,mystery,
5/28/2013HER FIRST PLACESonnetart,imagination,
5/28/2013BLAMELESSPersonificationrain,
5/27/2013THE SHININGSestinaevil,film,horror,
5/22/2013ALL FALL DOWNSestinadeath,history,london,
5/18/2013POETRYFree versepoetry,
5/13/2013MADE IN BANGLADESHGhazalchange,clothes,death,
5/10/2013Contemporary haikuHaikuchildren,family,mother,sw
5/7/2013LOVE CLAMORSVillanellecare,people,rights,
5/6/2013haiku for CatieHaikugames,sexy,
5/5/2013SUNDAY SOJOURNHaibungarden,morning,time,
5/3/2013haiku - For MomsHaikulife,may,mother,
5/3/2013haiku 7 - verblessHaikuseasons,
5/2/2013FLOWER FAERIESQuintain (English)fairy,flower,
4/28/2013WOMENFree versefriendship,gender,
4/26/2013SYLVIACrown of Sonnetslife,poets,writing,
4/20/2013THE POET'S CREEDFree versepoetry,world,writing,
4/18/2013TYPEWRITERFree verselust,writing,
4/17/2013ITFree versepoetry,writing,
4/11/2013GET ME TO THE PUBLyricfunny,life,places,song,me
4/10/2013TWELVE DOLLARS, UNLESS PRICED DIFFERENTLYFree versenostalgia,women,
4/9/2013haiku 2013Haikuflower,food,
4/8/2013THE ADJECTIVE IMPERATIVECoupleton writing and words,word
4/1/2013MY JANESonnetromantic,
3/31/2013haiku for CharlesHaikunature,people,time,
3/28/2013THE THORNY CROWNRondeaueaster,faith,

My Photos


Fav Poems

Poem TitleFormCategories
The Sowing Free versedevotion,
Ten Little ToesRhymedaughter,lifeold,old,,gra
Woodland RhapsodyQuatraininspirational
Contradicting KeatsSonnetintrospection,life
Surrender to LoveRhymeloveme,
A Totum Pole OdeConcretenative american,people,
MORE DREAMS TO ROWRhyme royalinspirational,life,
When the Tab Comes DueFree verseinspirational,introspecti
Lighting My Candle From WithinQuintain (English)caregiving,introspection,
The Kirk by the SeaCoupletnostalgia,religion,love,
Moonlight On The WardChokahealth,life,
Nocturnal PoetryRhymeimagination,life,poetry,
SlumberEpicdedication,epic,slam,
FROSTY NIGHT STROLLCoupletinspirational,seasons,
Our ThanksgivingLight Poetryholiday,
Tomorrow's GraceEthereepeace,
A New Star Shines Above HawaiiRhymededication,music,
Jesus, Our SaviorShapereligion,life,
Monarch of SummerHaibunanimals,devotion,inspirat
UntouchedRhymeforgiveness,me,me,
Midnight PearlsThan-Baukintrospection,love,
Beaucoup BloomsTerza Rimanature,spring,spring,
On Heaven's DoorwayNarrativeinspirational,life,care,c
WALKING ON FAITHVersefaith,for children,
BeachworldFree verseplaces,sea,sun,
Sleepless NightsNarrativeangst,imagination,mystery
Another FaceRhymelost love,
What Dreams are Made Of - LGTBlank versefear,life,mystery,
Paired ParingsBalladchildhood,
AUTUMN'S SPLENDOROUS BEAUTYQuatrainnature,autumn,autumn,
PneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosisEpicabuse,analogy,corruption,
AnticipationFree verseautumn,death,life,
friend to friendHaikupeople,philosophy,
CalligraphyVerseon writing and words,
CyndiSonnetdedication,
Night ComesRhymetime,
Without Hope's GleamTerzanellehope,flower,flower,joy,pa
When Your Dead YOUR DeadRhymefriendship,love,wife,
after my prayerHaikuinspirational,
Chamber Music ChoppedBlank versemusic,
Money-GodFree versededication,hope,love,reco
Down FallItalian Sonnetbeautiful,miracle,nature,
God ForbidCoupletangst,devotion,write,life
To Kashinath and CyndiRhymededication,devotion,frien
EdinburghFree versededication,
CHERISHEDSonnetlove,peace,
Shield WallsLyricimagination,love,
Live The ClichesFree versedream,hope,love,poetry,
Bliss StateQuatrainfaith,
A Reminder: To BeFree versetruth,writing,
She Came In and Changed EverythingDramatic Verse (Verse Drama)death,deep,epic,evil,sorr
IN THE MOODLight Poetryadventure,woman,
EdinburghFree versededication,hope,life,love
The BywayRhymecare,
To Love MyselfSonnetlove,new year,self,
Westward MovementFree versedevotion,love,peace,
The Rocking ChairRhymechild,christmas,sister,
To the Rescue Rhymesnow,
A Perfect StormRhyme royallife,
Onward Christian SoldiersRhyme 
BEYOND TEARSRhymechild,encouraging,hope,
Dewberry CobblerHaibungrowing up,
ReleaseFree verseencouraging,grief,hope,st
A Girls Night OutRhymehumorous,
IN STILLNESSFree versechange,life,

Fav Poets

PoetCountry 
Debbie Guzzi United States Flag United States Read
Caryl Muzzey United States Flag United States Read
Andrea Dietrich United States Flag United States Read
Joe Flach United States Flag United States Read
nette onclaud Philippines Flag Philippines Read
Drake Eszes United States Flag United States Read
Mystic Rose Canada Flag Canada Read
mourning mist France Flag France Read
elizabeth wesley Canada Flag Canada Read
Rhonda Johnson-Saunders United States Flag United States Read
Ruben O. Argentina Flag Argentina Read
Carrie Richards United States Flag United States Read
kathryn collins United States Flag United States Read
Catie Lindsey United States Flag United States Read
craig cornish United States Flag United States Read
David Williams United Kingdom Flag United Kingdom Read
Charmaine Chircop Malta Flag Malta Read
Francine Roberts Canada Flag Canada Read
Eileen Manassian Lebanon Flag Lebanon Read
Poet Destroyer A United States Flag United States Read
Faye Gibson United States Flag United States Read