Juxtaposition and Paint Chips

My choices were limited this week. I mean really limited. There is a single entry in the J section of the poetry dictionary. I don’t know what I’m going to do the next time we get to J. Other letters will have to provide more than two prompts for us to get to the end of the year, especially since I also discovered there are no entries for X, Y, or Z. If you ask me, John Drury wasn’t very creative in creating this dictionary.

The Challenge

Anyway, this week our challenge is to use juxtaposition in our poems, which is defined as follows:

JUXTAPOSITION (jux’-tuh-puh-zih’-shun; French, “placed close by”) The placement of contrasting things (such as different images) side by side. The effect can be startling, amusing, or illuminating. Sometimes a metaphorical connection is implicit, as in the last line of Guillaume Apollinaire’s “Zone,” which juxtaposes images of the sun and a throat that has been slit: “Soleil cou coupé.” In section fifteen of “Song of Myself,” Walt Whitman juxtaposes images of different people in adjacent lines. . .

Later on, Whitman places a prostitute who “draggles her shawl” next to the President “holding a cabinet council.”

the poetry dictionary, page 151.

This week I’m only giving you six paint chips to work with. If you’d like, you can juxtapose each of these pairs. Or you could mix them up. Or maybe you want to pick your favorites and juxtapose them with ideas from your own imagination.

The words and phrases you have to work with, listed as I’ve paired them, are bougainvillea and fountain of youth, blue ribbon and panther, and lightning and lighthouse. You only need to use two, but extra bonus points if you use them all.

By the way, is anyone keeping track of extra bonus points? I’ve lost count.

My Poem

I decided to just use two of the paint chips myself and write a tanka.

Steady the lighthouse
Shines bright into the dark night
Guiding a ships crew
Terrified by lightning strikes
Threatening and unsteady

Your Turn

You know the drill. Write your poem using juxtaposition, then either share it in the comments or post it on your blog and put a link in the comments. I look forward to some interesting poems inspired by this prompt.

I am a Jesus Freak, and I don't care who knows it. I am a wife, mother, sister, aunt, daughter, and friend. My blood family is only part of the larger family of Christ that I belong to. I love to write, especially about my dear Savior.


17 Responses

  1. Looking forward to trying this today! I like your poem, Linda. 🙂 I also love the word “juxtaposition” so was sure not to forgot about the paint chips this week! 😅

  2. Of course, I looked up the word i never heard of, and of course, I’m brain went in all different directions, and of course, it is contrast, so i think it counts as juxtaposition. But if it doesn’t, well im wrong. Only used two words. I usually try to use all seven. That is juxtaposition. I looked up the pronunciation of bougainvillea and it is 4 syllables.

    Beauty captivates
    I’ve known lightning to strike twice
    Bougainvillea tree

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