Prompt #20 (for January 3rd, 2020) As we know, the ancient Greeks used six different words for the concept of love: eros, or sexual passion; philia, or deep friendship; ludus, or playful, childlike love; agape, or universal love for everyone; pragma, or longstanding love; and philautia, love of the self. Once you’ve looked over the list and have considered which of these loves most applies to you, choose one that relates the least to you. Write a poem that explores this type of love. Consider doing so as a prose poem without concern (at least right now) for line breaks—create your draft as something that looks like a prose paragraph. (Here’s a more detailed description — with examples — of a prose poem, in case the format is new to you.) You can always revise your prose poem and break it into lines and stanzas. For extra credit—or to get a jumpstart on February 14th!—try writing a poem or poem series that includes all six forms of love—or create and write about a seventh.
Ready, (Go) Steady, Flow…
“manunkind,” e.e. cummings called us, and i – agreeing – felt less in charity with caritas than before – the rounded vowels of agape overripe and oozing sticky connection, a web of corrupted sweetness – far too profligate, like the nose-stunning reach of a pollen… And who were these faceless strangers who deserved… what? that i stop for the crosswalk, and honor the Law? that i take in courtesy my turn in line, wipe down a weight machine, or stand on tiptoe in a grocery aisle with a woman bowed by age? is it only women and children first, never mind shy men and surly uncles? toward what world does agape compel me, into what weave am i shuttled whose warp cannot be sustained alone?