Hello, everyone! It’s the fourth day of NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo, and also a Tuesday. Fun fact: it will be Tuesday all day today. That’s right: all day today, Tuesday.

Today’s featured participant is Katie Staten, whose elegy for her father-in-law is full of tender humor.

Our interview for the day is with Lawrence Ferlinghetti, one of the most important figures in the “beat” generation of poets, a great poet in his own right and also the publisher of many others through his influential City Lights press. You can learn more about Ferlinghetti here, and read some of his poems here.

And now for our prompt (optional, as always). One of the most popular British works of classical music is Edward Elgar’s Enigma Variations. The “enigma” of the title is widely believed to be a hidden melody that is not actually played, but which is tucked somehow into the composition through counterpoint. Today I’d like you to take some inspiration from Elgar and write a poem with a secret – in other words, a poem with a word or idea or line that it isn’t expressing directly. The poem should function as a sort of riddle, but not necessarily a riddle of the “Why is a raven like a writing desk?” variety. You could choose a word, for example, “yellow,” and make everything in the poem something yellow, but never actually allude to their color. Or perhaps you could closely describe a famous physical location or person without ever mentioning what or who it actually is.

Happy writing!

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