The Blog

The Group Poetry Project: Nibbles, Nibble, Nibbling

For the month of June, writer and poet Mike Maggio decided to start a group writing project that would bring together twenty poets and end with twenty-one new poems. After each poet contributed one line to the collaborative poem, each had the chance to revise the poem within his or her style while maintaining the integrity of the original lines of the work.

Each poet has his or her own ideas for rhythm, line breaks, and what to cut. Below are two sections of the original collaborative poem, followed by revisions by Edward Belfar, Stephanie Floros, and Carrie Teresa Maison. Revisit our blog to watch how the poem continues to evolve.

 

*To read the entirety of the original collaborative poem, or to learn a bit more about collaborative poetry, go here.

 

Apples

photo credit: Ed Ivanushkin via flickr

 

From the original “An Apple Is Not A Story”:

tasting line by line
nibbling, crisp tart words, to salivate
and satisfy her curiosity, vast and unquenchable.
Mystery rests in this pale delicate flesh

Edward Belfar’s revision of the same lines:

Rather to be tasted, line by line.
She salivates as she nibbles\
Crisp, tart words,
Her curiosity, vast and unquenchable.
Mystery rests in this pale delicate flesh,

Stephanie Floros’s revision of the same lines:

still, better tasted line by line.
Nibble crisp, tart words to
satisfy for a moment
curiosity, vast and unquenchable.
Mystery rests in this pale, firm flesh.

Carrie Teresa Maison’s revision of the same lines:

tasting line by line
nibbling, crisp tart words, to satisfy her curiosity, vast and unquenchable.

Mystery rests in this pale delicate flesh.

 

From the original:

waiting in the trees for its resurrection
as chlorophyll-laden leaves transform rays of sun
into nectar-filled flowers that will become
crimson harbinger of joy, foreteller of truths
She steps carefully over
the circle of bodies that surround her

Edward Belfar’s revision:

She steps carefully over
The circle of bodies and sees
Resurrection waiting in the trees
As bright-green leaves change rays of sun
To nectar-filled flowers that will become
Crimson harbingers of joy
And foretellers of truths.

Stephanie Floros’s revision:

An apple is more than a story,
waiting for its resurrection.

Leaves transform and sun rays nudge
nectar-laden flowers to be foretellers of joy,
or truth.
An apple is more than a story.
Step with care.

Carrie Teresa Maison’s revision:

Waiting in the trees for resurrection
as chlorophyll-laden leaves transform rays of sun
into nectar-filled flowers that will become
crimson foretellers of truths
carefully over the circle of bodies that surround her.

 

Complete Revisions

 

Edward Belfar

An apple is not a story.
Its ripeness holds the weight,
Tipping juicy balances with time,
Forbidden to be consumed in one sitting,
Rather to be tasted, line by line.
She salivates as she nibbles\
Crisp, tart words,
Her curiosity, vast and unquenchable.
Mystery rests in this pale delicate flesh,
For an apple is more than a story,
A primly wrapped promise, a ruse, a guise,
Concealing secrets of the soil that sustains it
And seeds buried for doubting tongues,
Coming to life for those
Not afraid of seeing.
Glutted with the ripe flesh,
Wasps murmur in the grass,
Earth-bound with drunkenness,
Heedless of the roaring blade.
She steps carefully over
The circle of bodies and sees
Resurrection waiting in the trees
As bright-green leaves change rays of sun
To nectar-filled flowers that will become
Crimson harbingers of joy
And foretellers of truths.

© Edward Belfar, 2013

 

 

Stephanie Floros

STORY

An apple is not a story.
Its ripeness holds weight,
tips to a juicy balance with time
never forbidden to be consumed in one sitting;
still, better tasted line by line.
Nibble crisp, tart words to
satisfy for a moment
curiosity, vast and unquenchable.
Mystery rests in this pale, firm flesh.

An apple is more than a story.
An apple is a ruse – a guise
concealing secrets of the soil
and seeds buried from doubting tongues.
This primly wrapped package, comes to life for those
unafraid of seeing.

Glutted with the ripe flesh,
wasps murmur in the grass.
Earth-bound with drunkenness,
heedless of the roaring blade.
An apple is more than a story,
waiting for its resurrection.

Leaves transform and sun rays nudge
nectar-laden flowers to be foretellers of joy,
or truth.
An apple is more than a story.
Step with care.

© Stephanie Floros, 2013

 

Carrie Teresa Maison

An apple is not a story.
Its ripeness holds weight,
tipping juice with time,
forbidden to be consumed,
tasting line by line
nibbling, crisp tart words, to satisfy her curiosity, vast and unquenchable.

Mystery rests in this pale delicate flesh.

A primly wrapped promise, a ruse. A guise.
Secrets of the soil that sustain it
seeds buried for doubting tongues,
coming to life for those
not afraid of seeing
the ripe flesh.

Wasps murmur in the grass
Earth-bound with drunkenness,
heedless of the roaring blade.
Waiting in the trees for resurrection
as chlorophyll-laden leaves transform rays of sun
into nectar-filled flowers that will become
crimson foretellers of truths
carefully over the circle of bodies that surround her.

© Carrie Teresa Maison, 2013

 

 

Contributing Poets:

Edward Belfar, author of the short-story collection Wanderers, published in 2012 by Stephen F. Austin State University Press, is a Long Island native who now lives with his wife in Maryland and works as a writer and editor. His fiction has appeared in ShenandoahTampa Review, ConfrontationNatural Bridge, and numerous other publications. His short story “Errors” was chosen as the winning entry in the Sport Literature Association’s 2008 fiction competition.  Learn more at his website here.

Stephanie Floros is a Fairfax County Public Schools middle school reading specialist and an adjunct instructor of Developmental English at Northern Virginia Community College.

Carrie Teresa Maison has more than four years of professional writing experience in various genres. Her poetry has been featured in several online journals and publications. Maison has a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and is an adjunct professor of English.

 

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