Madness! 2012 has arrived at the Final Four. Round 5 will feature two poetry pairings:
- Suz Blackaby representing the HUMOR bracket vs. Stephen W. Cahill representing the LOGIC bracket
- Debbie LaCroix representing the EMPATHY bracket vs. Greg Pincus representing the PASSION bracket
Their words have now been assigned, and they now have 36 hours to come up with what will be their fifth poem of the tournament. If you’re wondering why there are no numbers next to their words, it is because their respective “seeds” are now ignored for the Final Four and Finals. Instead, the word prompts were decided by a process that included all 60 poets who were previously eliminated from the tournament in earlier rounds. The poets eliminated in Rounds 1-2 suggested a total of 80 words for consideration by the poets eliminated in Round 3. In turn, each of these poets picked their favorites, and passed the aggregate top 12 to the poets just eliminated in Round 4. These poets then had the privilege and responsibility to assign the word to the poet who beat them to reach the Final Four. (Fun, don’t you think?) Check out the matchups and leave a comment with your thoughts on these latest word prompts.
Now, some miscellany.
Since March 11th, the poets in this tournament have introduced 120 (ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY) new poems to the world. Amazing! In total, they used 7,114 words (59.3 words per poem on average). Which words, exactly?
This is a word cloud of the most frequently used words among those 7,114. See if it brings back any memories …
I love how even the cloud itself shoots out fleeting little lines of poetry …
“Love Kissed, Jumped, Dreamed”
“Children Think, Learn, Know”
Oh, there have been a few votes cast. 10,970 of them. That’s about 1 per minute for the entire duration of the tournament when polls were actually open, including overnight time.
And we’ve enjoyed terrific interaction among poets and readers alike. We collectively contributed 1,400-1,500 comments (double that if you count spam — thank you, Askimet plug-in, for your 99.9% capture rate and 0.2% false positive rate!), which made for a nice mix of encouragement, trash talk, consideration, and congratulation.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the tournament so far. Just remember: National Poetry Month STARTS on Sunday … this event is just the tipoff.
Now go write/read/share some kids’ poetry!