Luther Hughes’ You Smell Like Outside: A Cute Little Syllabus for November
“You Smell Like Outside” is Luther Hughes’ wonderful column for Frontier where he seeks to answer the question every month: can poetry help us with our real, day-to-day life? For November, Luther’s introducing a new mini-series, his Cute Little Syllabus—a new cannon featuring works by poets of color. With each syllabus comes a prompt and exercise, which you can submit here. Luther will select and publish one of your poems with each new Syllabus!
HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS
Writing about home: What is a “home”? Is it a place of residence? Is it a person? A city? A country? A language? A cooked meal? A body? How do we define home and what shapes our definition? It is as elusive as we make it to be, right? Sometimes home is all of these things and sometimes home is the way the leaves tremble. Can we find a new home? What happens if the home we’re born into is not the home we want to claim? Can home be in migration? Immigration? Can we have more than one?
- Think of an artifact that reminds you of the city you were born in
- Describe the artifact in great detail in a list
- Color, size, smell, taste, etc.
- Take this list and move to another room
- List things in the room that resemble this artifact
- Take both lists outside
- What do you see? Hear? Smell?
- List things outside that resemble this artifact
- Write a poem while outside defining “home” using the artifact and the two things that resemble the artifact
- The title must be the name of the city you currently live in
- Must include at least 2 colors
- Must include the word “home”
- Must be in 3 sections
- Submit your creation here!
Luther Hughes is a Seattle native and author of Touched (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2018). He is the Founding Editor in Chief of The Shade Journal, Executive Editor for The Offing, and Editor-at-Large of Frontier Poetry. A Cave Canem fellow, his work has been published or is forthcoming in various journals including, Hayden’s Ferry Review, New England Review, TriQuartlery, Four Way Review, and others. Luther received his MFA from Washington University in St. Louis. You can follow him on Twitter @lutherxhughes. He thinks you are beautiful.