Thursday, 3 November 2011

Guerrilla Poet

The Urban Dictionary describes Guerrilla Poetry as an infiltration of a public place previously unprepared for the 'attack'. This is the example given:
Two young women walk into a Starbucks, one distracts the barrista while the other whips out a book, chants the words of "Ozymandias of Egypt" in her guerrilla poetry attack on the crowd and then they are both gone into the morning chaos.
At the hospital yesterday after long hours of infusion, I wrote a poem on an autumn leaf. I thieved a bit of sellotape and attached my leaf to the wall space between lifts.The traffic that presses those buttons! People would be sure to read it! I stood back. I had been seen, unfortunately, and a dour orderly informed me that someone would remove it 'for hygiene reasons'. I felt my guerrilla-ness deflate a little. The lift doors opened and she was gone. I unstuck my leaf, and re-taped it, to a bright blue board near the lifts. It was empty, except for a sign that said ACT. Bright yellow leaf, velvet ink board. Take that!
Ok Ok, it isn't remotely on the scale of bursting into a coffee shop and reciting 'The Ancient Mariner' but it's a start, right? The road home from the hospital looked like it was smiling...
But my cherry tree, when I did get home, was positively ablaze with laughter!


Anonymous said...

Haha, love it :) You definitely brightened my day, and doubtless many others at the hospital as well.

Kathy G said...

How ingeniously creative!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Shaista, I so love you! So lovely to see you posting at the Think Tank. I LOVE your leaf poem. Beautiful words. And love the smiling street and laughing cherry tree - such a BIG tree! You made my day, kiddo! Keep shining!

Anonymous said...

Striking colour contrast, that pale gold leaf on royal blue... and the poem is lovely. Well done!

Ella said...

I love what you did :D and your words! Stunning and I love the contrast, too~ I know you made someone's day, perhaps many souls smiled seeing your thoughtful gesture~! Lovely~

I hope you are feeling okay (((hugs)))

Isabel Doyle said...

well done in your guerrilla act - infusion=feeling better today?

I was also hooked up all this past week ...

Hope you are keeping on top of it.

Isabel x

Ruth said...

You are light and love and beauty, and soft lightning!

The image of the gold leaf on the blue wall with your poetry in your hand is SO SO WONDERFUL.


Lorenzo — Alchemist's Pillow said...

After reading this beautiful story and seeing your leaf-poem the sight of all the leaves on the cherry tree "ablaze with laughter" is striking. Thanks to you, I guess they, too, had a loved one in the hospital.

Bee said...

Hospitals desperately need poetry . . . maybe you have started something? The presence of your leaf poem might have been brief, (like the show of autumnal colour), but no less precious for all that.

I have two acer trees outside my front door, and they are vivid orange right now . . . although dropping their leaves quickly. How they lift my heart! (as did this post)

mermaid gallery said...

leaf poet!...another creative volley into the world of tired people....smiling still....

PattiKen said...

Oh, I love your spirit of defiance. People can be so oblivious to beauty around themselves. They had a chance to enjoy a little "lift" with their lift, and they missed it. I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt because they were in a hospital and an otherwise occupied mind would be understandable.

rch said...

This one struck a vein in me - probably how the earliest poets recorded their work b4 paper was created ;-)

R.Ramakrishnan said...

Hi Shaistha, Thats a lovely meaning ful verse.Posting it on a leaf is ingenous.Yes Hope is the greatest driver that keeps you going. Never lose it.

Gerry Snape said...

that is the best feel good post of the day. well done you!

R.Ramakrishnan said...

And of course the lovely photographs are so lovely & refreshing!

Other Mary said...


Cait O'Connor said...

I love the idea of leaving poems about like you did, yours would certainly have brightened the day for patients and staff alike. I loved it.

Jinksy said...

Nice idea!

Lady Nyo said...

Oh! I am new to your site, and I must say: I am absolutely in LOVE with it....and You!

My heart just flipped, Shaista, when I saw your 'leaf' at the elevator.

We start where we can, and age and illness certainly get in our ways for this kind of activity. But the point is this: what you did...with the a wonderful 'medium' for so many things!

And inspiring post for all us poets.


Lady Nyo

Ian said...

My name is Ian Liberman . I spend my my time as a elementary supply teacher with a hobbies in particle physics. I am writing a science book and have lupus. I base my life science based evidence and have email contact with doctors and physicts around the the world. Based on research , I experimented with high doses of vitamin D and got good results at 16,000 IU a day. Then a new study came out yesterday.
Pretty well the same thing. You started with D . It is time to look into using it again. It looks really effective and was totally effective for me. Had no side effects and none in the study. Ian

Tess Kincaid said...

Oh, yes! I LOVE's just what I was thinking about!

Terresa W. said...

I love this, Shaista, and it's so like you to do! (Saying that, I want to join in the tactics!)

I recently read about the anon poet who has gifted works of paper art around Scotland, the latest being at the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh (which I happened to wander into last year!).

Patent Lawyer said...

I'm not sure why, but reading this post has made me a little more ready for the day ahead, you've injected a sense of positivity and fun into my soul, so thank you for that!

Patent Attorney said...

It sounds like the sort of thing that might happen in a musical or something, but instead of bursting into song you burst into poetry!

Shaista said...

Thank you! I did once wonder what the other patients would do on the ward if I did suddenly burst into song!

Shaista said...

Thank you so much for saying so!
Perhaps you should write a poem on a leaf and leave it somewhere for a lucky recipient?

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