Monday, March 31, 2014

The Annual NaPoWriMo Intro Post

Every April since 2010, I've transformed my music blog into a poetry blog for National Poetry Writing Month (aka NaPoWriMo). This April will be no exception.  The idea behind NaPoWriMo is to write a poem every day for all 30 days of April. While not required by the "rules" of NaPoWriMo, I also strive to post that poem here every day. This is sometimes complicated by travel (as will certainly happen this year), but I try to do this on a best-effort basis.  And, you know, you get what you pay for as far as free poetry.

In 2010 I wrote a poem about a different Major League Baseball team each day.  In 2011 it was poems about chemical elements. In 2012 and 2013, however, I turned vocation into avocation and wrote space poetry, which I also plan to do this year.

As in the past, I know some other folks will be joining me in NaPoWriMo with space themed poetry, most notably Christine Reuter (aka tychogirl), Amee Hennig (aka astropoetamee), Alex Parker (aka alex_parker), and Noam Izenberg (aka iyzie) . I also expect Jennifer Grier (aka grierja) and Michele Bannister (astrokiwi) to take part in NaPoWriMo though they may keep their poems from the web in order to allow them to appear in publications.

NaPoWriMo is about getting people to write without worrying about having it be perfect, which pre-empts the whole process. I encourage all of you to write something! In previous years I've come up with free verse, sestinas, sonnets, haiku, and a whole heck of a lot of doggerel. It doesn't need to be a poem every day, it doesn't need to be The Rime of the Ancient Mariner or Leaves of Grass. It doesn't have to be anything you share with others, it doesn't have to be about planets or space or science at all. But if you want to try your hand and are willing to share but don't have a venue to post what you want, I'm happy to do so here. I'll post it under your name or anonymously as you wish, with any accompanying text you like. If you can find this blog, you can probably find my contact information either in my profile here, or on Twitter (@ asrivkin) or elsewhere.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

After The Judgment Day

It feels like I haven't picked up my guitar in ages, so I thought I'd indulge myself a bit today after a crazy stretch. The most proximal crazy was moving everything out of the house in Pomona NY where I lived when I was in high school, in preparation for selling it (hopefully the closing will be this week). I've been using Twitter to chronicle the various bits and pieces of my childhood that I ran across. These two elements come together in today's post, sort of, as I wanted to record something relevant to the house.

In retrospect I was always writing lyrics, which segued into writing songs. I have a few different candidates for my first "real" song depending on definition. Some of them were written in the house previous to the Pomona house. Love at First Sight was written there, but there's already a Gedankenband version of the song. Kumiko was also written while living there, but with somewhat different lyrics.   Watching Rainbows is a personal favorite, but I'm saving it for a landmark anniversary this fall. So I turned to After The Judgment Day.

The song was written at the behest of a very-short lived band I was in. I'm not sure we ever even played together for more than an hour or two of practice. The name came from Jon the lead singer, who took the first initials of our names (Tracey the keyboardist, Darren the bass player, Jon, and me) and came up with the phrase. It was the first "band song" I wrote but not the last, with songs for Dr. Lüst, Jury Rig, and even the Gedankenband getting songs (Out Of Our League was written as a Science Diet equivalent but doesn't mention the band).

The lyrics for ATJD are a bit awkward, but were earnest. :)  I wrote it in March 1986, so it just turned 28. Recorded, as is often the case, solo with my guitar using Audacity. I hope you enjoy it!

After the Judgment Day