NaPoWriMo 2023: Day 14 – Stuck with you

Today’s featured resource is actually more a series of possibilities. Over the past few years – prompted in many cases by the pandemic – organizations that used to host in-person poetry workshops have increasingly moved their offerings online. These range from a few hours focused on a particular topic to multi-week intensives. They’re not always (or usually, even) cheap, but if you’re trying to push your writing in a new direction, or devote serious time to working on a particular issue (like revision, or organizing a manuscript), they can be very helpful. While there are a very large number of organizations that present such online workshops, here are a few to give you a sense of the kinds of offerings you might see: Poets House Workshops and ClassesMaine Writers & Publishers Workshops, and Poetry Barn Workshops.

And now for our (optional) daily prompt. Hopefully, this one will provide you with a bit of Friday fun. Today, I challenge you to write a parody or satire based on a famous poem. It can be long or short, rhymed or not. But take a favorite (or unfavorite) poem of the past, and see if you can’t re-write it on humorous, mocking, or sharp-witted lines. You can use your poem to make fun of the original (in the vein of a parody), or turn the form and manner of the original into a vehicle for making points about something else (more of a satire – though the dividing lines get rather confused and thin at times).

The poem I’ve chosen for the excercise is Sweet Nothings by Alan Shapiro

Here’s my poem, ‘Stuck with you’

I shouted into your offered ear
what you were shouting to mine.
I shouted what I thought

you wanted me to shout,
not only to show you I was listening,
but because I half-believed

that, if I screamed, others might hear it
or something like it, near it,
and come to our rescue, closer

and get us out of where we were,
stuck in midair, shouting
back the same words, felt.

At such a height
from land and sea
how comforting it is, even,

in a way, consoling,
to know I’m not alone
dangling in a cable car

with the ocean beneath
and the sky above
and it’s a free-fall

It is so much better
with you beside me
even if we blame each other

For taking this cable car ride
It’s not the worst scenario
Besides this failure

to check the vendor,
unregistered, tenderness
is what I feel here with you.

Here is the original poem

Sweet Nothings

I whispered to your offered ear
what you were whispering to mine.
I whispered what I thought

you wanted me to whisper,
not only not to disappoint,
but because I half-believed

that, if I said it, I might feel it
or something like it, near it,
less unrevealing, closer

to what I wanted to be feeling,
what I was sure you, whispering
back the same words, felt.

At such a distance
from that time and place,
how easy it is, even,

in a way, consoling,
to finally realize the fooling
had all along been mutual,

and that the whispered wished for
feelings we would later
blame each other

for not feeling were nonetheless
offered, if not in good faith,
not with the worst intentions,

with no betrayal to confess
besides this failure to
repay the debt

of a pretended, not
untender, tenderness
we led each other to expect. All Rights Reserved.


My debut novel, ‘Coming Home’ was released on 24th March 2023.

For the Kindle edition of the book, please click here. The book is available in most countries.

The paperback edition is currently available only in India. You can get your copy by clicking here. I am working on getting the paperback version in other countries as well.

Blurb: Twenty-six-year-old, Shanaya, finds her idea of home and family ripped apart when she loses her mother. Her effort to drown herself in her job proves to be financially rewarding and her work is recognized by the organisation. But, even this is not enough to fill the vacuum in her heart or answer the questions, her mother’s sudden death had given rise to. In her quest for peace and the need to hold her family together, she leaves her job in the Middle East and moves to India. The story finds Shanaya journeying across geographical planes and inner landscapes to finally reach ‘home’. Coming Home is a heartwarming story about self-discovery, relationships, loss, love, destiny, the choices we make, and how these choices eventually lead to what we are destined for.

5 responses to “NaPoWriMo 2023: Day 14 – Stuck with you”

  1. Cheryl, Gulf Coast Poet Avatar

    Getting stuck at the top of the Ferris Wheel is bad enough, Smitha, but swinging in the wind above the ocean?! No wonder people were blaming each other for taking that cable car ride! A very amusing parody! ❤


  2. Miriam Hurdle Avatar

    Excellent job with your poem, Smitha. A dangling cable car! Oh mine. My palms are sweating!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thanks,Miriam😃. I had no idea what to make them shout to each other about and not fight. Lol…but I definitely wouldn’t want to be on a dangling cable car. Thank you so much for writing back💕


  3. Jim Avatar

    The cable car was a clever addition, the picture is nice also.
    Thanks for peeking in on mine, seems I try to be a couple of places at one time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thanks so much,Jim🙂. I’m very glad to know you enjoyed reading it. I’m not sure if I commented on your poem…if I did not, it must have been that I was on my mobile and couldn’t.


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