Friday, October 28, 2016

Poetry Friday: Magnet Topics

Recently I read the term "magnet topics" for the first time.  (It may have been in a Poetry Friday post.)  Magnet topics are the subjects you keep returning to in your writing, subjects you just can't let go until you explore them in a few more ways.  I've been thinking about my magnet topics, and this past week I sat down to write more about them.  Somehow I ended up with another sonnet, like the one I posted last week.  I don't usually write much with rhyme, but my daughter has been writing sonnets lately, and sometimes we text each other about scansion - I can hardly imagine anything that says "book geek" more than that - and there's something so satisfying about working with those fourteen lines, especially on days when other things in your life aren't quite so contained.

So anyway, here's my sonnet about magnet topics, and yes, Daughter, I have incorporated your advice on the scansion of my first draft.  I also shared this with my writing group (I love saying that - did I mention I'm in a writing group for the first time in my life?), and have used at least one of their suggestions, too.

Magnet Topics

Goodbyes.  I’m left behind, they drive away.
A white beach lined with palms, a field of tea.
Earthquakes, the Odyssey, friends, Saturday,
Tears, reading, teaching, swimming in the sea.

Babies (with fragrant, fuzzy heads) held tight,
Letters received and sent, bright-colored flowers,
Paris and London, homesickness at night,
Planes, trains, long darkened hallways, lonely hours.

Wherever else my far safaris take me,
My magnet topics won’t be left behind,
My same dear loves, which, though they may forsake me,
I’m always coming back to in my mind
And always loving more than strictly wise,
Which brings me back to topic one: goodbyes.

Ruth, from

The wonderful Linda has the roundup this week.


Tabatha said...

Your ending made me give a happy sigh. Great topic, nicely handled. (Marvelous to have a daughter with whom you can discuss scansion!)

Brenda Harsham said...

Yes, wonderful to have a daughter who gets scansion. Lovely poem, tangling all the threads of our human relationships into goodbyes that are disguised as hellos, almost.

Linda B said...

This is quite beautiful, Ruth. I liked the rhythm very much, and read it aloud several times. It includes so much that is personal, and you wrote the ending so perfectly.I love that you and your daughter share, and that you have a writing group. I had a bigger one, but we have become just a pair, but I value that very much.

Bridget Magee said...

Lovely on multiple levels - the poem and your relationship with your daughter. I will think about the concept of magnet topics in my =)

Violet Nesdoly said...

Ruth, I think you and rhyming get along very well... such a natural relationship. And I love the idea of magnet topics. (Maybe if I get them listed somewhere, space will be created for new topics. Or is that now how it works?)

Mitchell Linda said...

Oh,my....what beautiful images. And, the sadness is there. Goodbyes are a magnet topic. I wonder what magnet topics I return to again and again. You give me something to think on. And, hooray for joining a writing group! It's wonderful to have people to share with in that way. Have a great week. See you in November!