Infinitesimal pipe, or: Night song of the breeze

Poetry Partners #21

‘bird & bat’, a poem by Shay Simmons of ‘Shay’s Word Garden’

bird and bat both claimed the sky
and each to that element kept--

except one by day and the other by night,
in nest or cave where they slept.

bird had no fur, and so to keep warm
began to sing and sings yet--

bat heard her song in his cellar of stone,
but bat couldn't sing, and so, wept.

A Cento by ben Alexander of ‘The Skeptic’s Kaddish’

Like supersonic babies, the sound (Rekdal)
Black piper on an infinitesimal pipe(Lawrence)
The bat flies in the Seventh-month eve(Whitman)

One might hear the bat’s small wing(Wilde)
The night song of the breeze(Byron)
Flits the twilight-loving bat at eve(Warton)

We are afraid of what our eyes have seen(Roethke)
Tremble even at the thought. Asleep(Rekdal)
The bat that flits at close of eve(Blake)

Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

List of Poetry Partners

33 thoughts on “Infinitesimal pipe, or: Night song of the breeze”

    1. ❤ Punam, thanks! ❤

      TBH, I was rather unsure of how to respond to Shay's poem… so I thought I'd try a form that I'd been meaning to explore for some time now 🙂

      1. The Cento worked perfectly. ❤️ But I am sure you spent a lot of time in research. 🙂
        On a lighter note PP is making you the encyclopedia of poetry forms on WP. 😉😀

  1. I trifle…that’s what it is
    Filled with so many flavours
    Different textures and colours
    I indulged and thorougly enjoyed
    Shay and you worked magic
    Oh how the tiny bat cried…
    I know that feeling

  2. Impressive pieces by both of you. The creativity here is a delight to behold. Reminds me of my childhood on the farm and the evening bats chasing moths around the halo of our mercury light. Such rich imagery! 🙂

    1. thank Mike 🙂

      before settling upon a cento for this particular poem, I spent some time researching bats to decide what direction I wanted to take this in… they’re quite interesting!


      1. I need to make pizza for my hungry family. Even through the Christmas evening Prosecco, I can recognize superior skills. I mean dorky as a complete compliment. Later…

  3. David,

    A gorgeous choral of many voices! I like the way Shay’s poem – so powerfully raw and so lyrically poignant – echoes off the voices you congregate in your cento. Beautifully done, you guys!


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