Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Poetry Bus goes to Meetin’


Argent is driving the bus this week. She has asked for a poem about a meeting. The ones at work are so deadly that I went back further to an entirely different type of meeting.

I suppose camp meeting means different things to different people. My church didn't have the tradition, but when my cousin KJ was a youth minister she took me to the one her church participated in. I was in college at the time and I was fascinated. Staying in little shacks for a week (which were coveted – if you were a family with a shack you were gold). Going to revival meetings. Hearing the bellowing that meant there was a good revival preacher – just in the background as you walk around and around the circle, cruising without cars. As far as I know, my mother never attended one, so the poem below is a work of fiction.



Camp Meeting

Cammeetin' is
an elaborate
courtship ritual.
Chasing and being
chaste under the
watchful village eye -
avoiding the glory tent
where my mother
is being washed
in the blood
of the lamb
one more time.



Pictures from here. Definitely check out the website if you're interested in learning more! And go visit Argent to read other what the other Bus commuters have to say.

15 comments:

  1. Chasing and being
    chaste under the
    watchful village eye -

    Oh, so clever! LOL :)

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  2. Yikes! Sounds like a place to avoid at all costs to me.

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  3. Interesting...powerful too. And yes, for those of us of an unreligious bent, totally terrifying!
    x

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  4. I grew up in a fire and brimstone kind of church complete with camp meetins. If you are a believer, it can be a transcendent experience. If you aren't a believer or if you are a small child, it can be funny and terrifying.

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  5. I can't believe it! I've been to that very camp. A friend in college lived in Newton and one summer she invited me to come to the camp meeting with her family. I couldn't believe how well furnished the shack was. I spent two days there and was fascinated. We did more socializing than anything else in the carnival-like atmosphere. Quite an experience.

    "Chasing and being chaste under the watchful village eye" rings so true. The poem perfectly describes camp meeting.

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  6. I don't know if Jinksy chose that quote in recognition of the real attraction of 'Cammeetins', but I did!

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  7. Nifty contrasts there and chased/chaste - clever. Short and complete, one of your best I think.

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  8. I endorse what others say about your clever pun. I have studiously avoided anything to do with religion and religiosity (even more dangerous!) all my life.

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  9. finding this poem extremely intrigueing... and very cool!

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  10. Couldn't stand camping in a row like that- Wow the scrutiny!

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  11. I'm trying desperately to catch up after having been gone for so many days--you've been prolific! It's quite delicious, I must say, to enjoy a bug marathon of posts. Glad to be back to stay apace with you!

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  12. That's bloody good, Bug. Each word reaches out and grabs you. Great finale.

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  13. Wow! That's wild! You have captured so much with only a few lines. The "blood of the lamb" line is really superb.

    Kat

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  14. I never attended one, but I certainly knew of them. Great ending.

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  15. Excellent! I want to go & see, and run fast away, both.

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