A Cento is a poem made up entirely of lines and passages from other works, arranged in an order to mean something completely different. Here is a Cento comprised of a little bit of everything from Spike Milligan to Sylvia Plath. Enjoy! Let me know what you think.
It’s always ourselves we find in the sea,
The green waves foam and thrust and slide,
the sea was wet as wet could be,
all my dreams come back to me.
It’s really best that tides come in
(The water soon came in, it did).
It looked so pitiful and sad,
despite this careful scrutiny.
Deeds cannot dream what dreams can do
No birds were flying overhead –
They “noticed” me-they noticed me
made of pumpkins and pelican glue.
A secret, kept from all the rest
(I never could talk to you)
Of pygmies, palms and pirates,
said the Duck to the Kangaroo.
There was an old man in a boat,
and as in uffish thought he stood,
they danced by the light of the moon.
Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
I only sing the tunes.
Walking on the sand
he noticed that
erosion plains occur
every so often,
as run-off from heavy rains
strip away layers and sculpt
the low-lying landscape.
It is only a lake
and not a great ocean.
It is a place where rivers and creeks collide.
Behind a manmade wall,
where ancestral lands
and cemeteries were slowly drowned,
the living and the dead
were displaced with equal sluggishness.
The basin slowly filled
to cover first the grasses,
then underbrush and the trees.
He never felt the desire
to trample a sand castle,
except this once.
Count your blessings for the extra slice,
dance the jig
and share your newfound gains.
Go feed the ducks in the pond down the street
make a doubledecker grilled cheese sandwich
for you and your beloved to eat.
Take a moment
and contemplate the loss
of the other loaf,
and sweeten its memory
butter and sugar
a jelly roll up
impromptu french toast
and cheers for using this lost bread,
now found, by you.
Toast it for croutons
on your next chef’s salad.
Tear and grind it up,
seasoned with salt and rosemary
and spread over chicken
or pork loin for oven bake.
Savor the moment and
this bookend bounty
that allows you to go just beyond
the edge of shadows.