A seed poem for Chalkboard’s Time to Rhyme project

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Like cheap tea brewing in a fragile cup,
they let you steep
then wrung you out, releasing bitter words
you could not keep.
And as they spilled and stained, they scalded, scarred.
The pain runs deep.
I listen; there is nothing I can do
to help. I sweep
shards and fragments, wipe away all trace
and watch you weep.
A burden shared is doubled, never halved.
I do not sleep.
Each day I strain and struggle and each night
I work to break what’s wrong and fix what’s right.

This cavatina is a seed poem for the collaboration on Chalkboard. To continue the rhyme chain, choose rhyming words from this piece as a base for your poem.

I am
not who you think I am
not who you expect me to be
not who you want me to be —
I am not defined by you

I am
not designed in your words, your deeds
not created by the presence or absence of you
not born in opposition to you
I am not defined by you

I am
uncounted pieces melding to form one
implying imprecision, defying definition
nothing less, nothing more than
I am

Wild. Photo by Raj Sharan

I wrote this poem in response to the following challenge:

❤ Submit your serenade ❤

I promise:

  • You won’t be the only one who submits a song to Chalkboard’s .
  • You won’t be the only one who submits a spoken word piece, either.
  • It doesn’t have to be polished.
  • It doesn’t have to be fancy.
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It might still feel scary to submit your piece, but I guarantee you the experience of writing a lyrical piece that’s set to music is well worth stepping outside your comfort zone.

And just to get you started, in the spirit of vulnerability and trust, here’s one I prepared earlier:

(You can also use this as a template to check you’ve provided appropriate licensing information.)

Photo by on

Call for submissions — new deadline February 21st

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, you’re probably getting bombarded with images of how romance should look (red), feel (warm), smell (like roses), taste (chocolate, champagne)…but how does it sound?

Let’s find out!

Spoken word or song

You don’t need to be a composer for this one. In the true spirit of Chalkboard…

Tamyka Bell

Sponsored Altra Red Team Member. Sobah Beverages Fit Team Member. writes. runs. drinks coffee. doesn’t go in for that whole sleep thing

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