Today I thought I’d get some inspiration from Charlotte Henson’s blog, she is posting a poem and a related prompt a day for this month, and they are really interesting and definitely present a challenge to my comfort zone of writing.
Firstly, her day two is the Carol Ann Duffy poem Psychopath, and the challenge is to write a dramatic monologue in the voice of a ‘detestable character’, ie dictator. Well Charlotte, I chose Hitler. And has anyone ever read Chocolate Cake with Hitler ? I’d never heard of it till my research into Hitler’s last meal, which by the way is not really known. People differ between cheese ravioli and vegetable soup.
Secondly, her day three is a poem (new to me) by Henry Normal (great name). I am intrigued by the slashes splitting his poem into pieces. I struggled writing my monologue until I began to incorporate his technique, and then it all began to hold together better.
This is not a way I would ever have tried writing, so here is my attempt, which was really interesting to write, albeit slightly disturbing. It probably helps that I re-read Lolita for the tenth time this week; it’s one of my favourite novels.
The Poison and Pistol Method
The dog first / then the wife
Fresh claimed / the shortening hours
Well well well / look at where we’ve ended up
why not give that conformation / the day is young
there’s nothing to hold out for.
I wanted flames / and surety
Death’s guises / one
The poison / two
The gun / chocolate cake rich and thick
Floats momentarily gluttonous / I wanted
To eat my way home / every door would
Have opened to welcome me / the only
Unconditional love you can guarantee would be
A dogs / I have checked their salutes
For firmness / their veiled eyes /
Can you hold my gaze / no / I didn’t think so /
Curiosity killed the pet perhaps you should
Keep your looks to yourself / nosy as a next door neighbour
You came in here looking for surrender / regret
You’ve booked the wrong room / bunker
Have a light / I know I quit some years ago /
Fuck it / you won’t make me look / a fool.