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Category Archives: poetry

The thrust of this poem is…

the letters have     c
                                 o
                                  l
                                  l
                                 a
                                 p
                                 s
                                 e
                                 d
black holes threaten to swallow whole
any abstract word they attempted to create

even concrete words find themselves
endangered, drowning in the pools of
quizzes and lectures, having grown
weary from academic nonsense

the narrow views of those who think they
know more than the Omniscient:
chronic disease filling lungs with a
sickness worse than pneumonia

pretty piano music plays softly while
silver-tongued lies relentlessly reveal
their designs of attack on the Spirit

refuge is offered:
no latchstring is needed
to unlock some imagined bolt—

protection found
in the Word which never will collapse.

written for Monday Melting #19

Nature’s Work (5/7/5 haiku)

forces stronger than
i work to influence you
Faith: my one true Hope

 

This little poem can mean so many things, and I certainly had specific life situations in mind when writing this haiku.  But a “nature image” (which I believe is a requirement for a “true” haiku) that came to mind as I wrote this is a “sideways tree” that grows in my father’s pasture.  Decades ago, the tree was blown over by a hurricane.  But instead of dying, it just grew new roots and became the best “climbing tree” one could ever hope for.  The tree is also inspirational to me.  There were times as a teenager, and even now as an adult, when I’ve felt “blown over” by life and will visit that tree to remind myself that I can dig in and become stronger no matter what blows life has dealt. 

p.s. the tree above is not my father’s but looks very similar.

Examining H2O

“Examining H2O”

Anxious for sailing,
this mast-of-Don’s rig provides
primitive pleasure

 

Notes:  Written for Shawna’s Monday Melting, and linked to the dverse “open link night.”

Why He Had to Hitchhike Home

“Why He Had to Hitchhike Home”

She found it rather quixotic indeed
Her date’s idea of a good time would lead
Straight to this seat, this concert hall, this town
Hearing cadre of violists get down
Play tunes of bohemian rhapsody
Bit much for this girl of simplicity
 
So during a lovely intermezzo
She decided to really impresso
Unsutured herself from theater chair
In spindle-like fashion, let down her hair
Roving hands grabbing his pockets surprised
And excitedly, he looked in her eyes
 
Hope sprang infernal; in fact, atrophied—
She only reached in to bilk him of keys

 

Notes:  I wrote this for Shawnas Monday Melting prompt & today’s d’verse prompt.  I was able to incorporate nearly all of Shawna’s words while writing this “Clarian” Sonnet.  Had much fun with the prompts.  Hope you enjoy!

“Prodigal Avenue”

Prodigal Avenue (part 2)

shaken up, he staggers away from the scene
barely coherent, he mutters something obscene
then spits out blood so that he can savor
the flavor
of one
last
smoke

the low humming noise sung by streetlights
fades in and out as he stumbles, block by block,

only stopping to grind out his cigarette,
kick an empty orange juice bottle,
and stare blankly into the night sky—

thinking again
of Father

he remembers an abnormally kind daddy
who is fluent in the language of love
for all of mankind—even
those who aren’t quite lovely, and

maybe even for a wayward son walking
down a dead-end-street

but it’s said that all roads lead to home,
so he suddenly turns around

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

written for the Thursday Melting poetry prompt at rosemary mint

“Prodigal Avenue”

Prodigal Avenue (part 1)

shiny new sports car lurching
violently
into the wall of a faded building:

copper metallic paint smudged and smeared
all over slaughtered bricks and skewered siding
“I miss Father”—
his last thought before blacking out

hours later, trembling hands swiftly sift debris
hoping to find some semblance of a life left behind

prickly membranes hold together memories
of the Dad who grilled steaks and
served them with a side of asparagus …

meals he enjoyed

before the slimy stories of a scaly serpent put him
in the seat of a too-fast-car on a pot-holed-street
crashing head-on into the “Pig-Out BBQ”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Notes:
Written for the Monday Melting and today’s dverse prompt, which is to write an “allegory.” One of the suggestions is to use a Biblical story as the inspiration for our poem today. I think it’s quite obvious which story I have chosen. 🙂  Check back for part 2 in the next couple of days.

Tides of Crimson

This is the first poem I wrote for Shawna’s Monday Melting.  Today I’m posting it on my blog as well and  linking it to dverse.  Hope you enjoy.

“Tides of Crimson”

The glint of your luminous devotion
remains perfectly visible
from just the right angle

Corseted against your ivory skin
that crimson velvet
punctured, yet worn

Extracting passionate ripples
from a past
recent, not irretrievable

I yield not
Refusing any ochone

 

Notes: ochone is a Scot/Irish word and was part of the “word prompt” that day.  It is defined thusly: “an expression of sorrow or regret”

“Wildflower”

written for dverse poets’ “Framed Couplets” prompt using word lists from this week’s Sunday Whirl and Monday Melting

 

Wildflower

a forceful push opens doors that kept you inside
a remorseful aspect of life had once made you hide
exchange fear for courage like that of a Marine
range over terrain you have not yet seen

spray over here once the seed is planted
play in the field that is sunshine enchanted
glance at the beauty of this harvest-to-be
romance Mother Nature—basic chemistry

stand in the rain that blows up from the south
hand-fan the flames you breathe out of your mouth
sprinkle moisturized blends of fertilized tricks
crinkle the stems and splinter the sticks

taste the sweet berry, gain rich energy
waste not this permission to run carefree

Finally Recognized

 

“Finally Recognized”

Climbing the rusted caracol, I
found myself happy to let you go first,
yielding center stage, while you basked
in a potpourri of much deserved applause.

Goofy, silly, awkward, somewhat clumsy;
perfect in every way.

Senescence was of no concern as
we walked the quad and you proudly
displayed that emblazoned medallion
trophy-cased around your neck.

Mine savagely stuffed in some pocket;
I forget which one.

Young lovers lay on a bed of
kiwi-colored grass; laughing,
tickling their bodies and their fancies.
Their moment though, eclipsed by yours.

Miraculously cured from faux insignificance
and homesick heartache.

 

notes:  This is one of the first poems I wrote.  It was originally written for Moday Melting before I had a blog of my own.  Hope you enjoy (even if this is your second time reading this poem.)  🙂

An Award Winning Week

It has been a pretty exciting week around here.  Personal life and “blog life” both have seen some awesome developments.  Firstly, I’m blessed to celebrate an anniversary with the most amazing woman I’ve ever known!  Thank you Sweetie for the best days, weeks, months & years ever!  This week has been especially wonderful.  🙂  An anniversary celebration with my Beautiful Bride has already made this week “award-winning,” but then…

Secondly, a couple of my favorite bloggers have honored me with blog awards.  Terry (an amazing woman in her own right!) has nominated me for the “Sunshine Award.”  And over at “allthingsboys” (not written by boys by the way—published, in fact, by another amazing female) I was nominated for the “Versatile Blogger Award.”  You both have lots of readers and followers so I feel really honored by the selections.  Just need to get busy and answer some questions!

And just today I found out a poem I’ve written has been selected as the winner in Kellie’s poetry contest.  To say I’m shocked would be a huge understatement!  Thank you Kellie for the recognition; I’m looking forward to receiving a copy of your new book soon!

“At the Front Door”

written for Sunday Whirl #51 and Monday Melting #12; linked to dverse poets “Open Link Night”

“Off the trampoline!” Mom yelled.
I pretended not to hear and just jounced:
up and down, up and down, until
the crinkled lines on her forehead told me
I had pushed as far as she would allow.

It was near dusk as I staggered in the house,
knowing my destiny was a scolding—and
chores. Tonight’s first order of business was
wiping down the door I had just stepped
past and making the prismed glass sparkle.

I was entranced by transmuted images of sunlight
dancing against the wall, the last rays of the day
becoming beautiful rainbow paints when not blocked
by the old sleeveless t-shirt I held in my hand—I
controlled this adagio, though the colors chose their partners.

The shirt had been Dad’s; so had the song I softly sang.
I was careful that Mother not hear any happy tune winding
its way down the hall and risk infecting her broken
mentality—a grief she carried since Father was buried.
She has a mawkishly sick addiction to anger and sadness.

Yes I’m careful. Fearful really. I’ve learned not to emit much joy
in her presence—apparently I’m not yet allowed to feel such.
But kids like me still need to hear bedtime stories and fairy tales
to ensure sweet slumber. So I choose to hope that playmates
will knock on this door tomorrow. Not an undertaker.

And I clean this door, eviscerating the prints of the man
with a bony hand who was wearing the heather gray tie.
By now, Mom is standing next to me inspecting my work.
“I’ve never seen the glass shine so brightly,” she says, almost
sounding proud of the job I’ve done and the girl she has raised.

“One Eye Closed”

She writhes in discontentment,
disturbed by the hacked gauge—
a mirror reflecting acidic accusations.

Robbed of joy, removed
from tenderness, repulsed
by the false images her supple fingers
refuse to relinquish.

Mr. Bluejay lands on the lemon tree,
violet feathers flutter, almond beak bellows,
and she listens to the sweeping tune sung
just beyond her paned glass.

Creative juices will contribute to her craft,
leaving little time to root out the lies—
looming specter of tomorrow’s repeat.

written for Magpie Tales, Monday Melting, and Sunday Whirl; linked to Dverse Poets Open Link Night

image by Duane Michals

“Why I Walk With a Cane”


Flipped Helix left little doubt:
his days as an easyrider were over.
Gestures to passing cars seemed futile.
Carrying the scratched-up, dented-in helmet,
he footed it to the nearest rest area—
stepping over lilies and on maple leaves along the way.

Thankful for feet to stand on.

Previously, he had no worries about the dangers
inherent in such freedom-riding activities.
Yes, she had expressed concern about how
she may one day be a grief-stricken bride,
but hobbies are for enjoying and exploring,
even if, sooner or later, the crash is inevitable.

written for Sunday Whirl and Monday Melting; linked to Open Link Night at dverse poets

“The King and I”

 
 
The King and I
 
Out for an evening stroll; napping is over,
there’s much plotting to be done.
 
Plotting for kingdoms and wars and
lesser things.
 
Things that arouse and excite, inciting
temptations that have ruined a stronger man.
 
Ruined little people too.
 
People like me.
 
 
An Explanation
This was written in response to “Free Write Friday.” The prompt today is to write about an affair, from a “fly on the wall” perspective. I’m not sure that I “nailed” the perspective, but my hope was to at least capture the destruction caused when people abandon those sacred vows. My inspiration was the story of David and Bathsheba.
 
photo

“Arriving Home”

arms and hands reach high
naked feet dance funny jigs
screams ring out: “Daddy!”

written for Sensational Haiku Wednesday (theme: excitement)

“Still Standing”

 
Feeling that tingle again, she shifted her feet—
feet that screamed for her to flee, running fast from
whomever, whatever was watching.
 
But acorns don’t choose where they fall, and
trees spring up growing tall. No matter how
chaotic their branches bend, they simply stand.
 
Still.
 
So she stood, gingerly
twirling too-short-cropped-hair,
eight inches cut off, no longer there.
 
Ponytail gone; no string to hang on.
Leaves loudly scraped pavement,
driven by winds that could not move this
Little Red Riding Hood, who simply stood.
 
Still.
 
 
written for Magpie Tales #108, Monday Melting #8, Real Toads “Open-Link Monday,” and dverse poets “Open-Link Night”
 
image by Uzengia Aleksander Nedic

Oh No You Didn’t!

So you had an idea that I kind of liked;
Can’t remember why now, but I really was psyched.
“Let’s get married ‘fore the end of the century!
And give up your sports; can’t risk an injury.” 

“Two become one.”
Signed. Sealed. Done!
And while it was still ’99,
you showed yours and I showed mine.
 
“Two become one.” Could we have known what it means?
In-over-heads, newlyweds, barely out of our teens.
Love. Honor. Cherish. It would have been so awesome.
Had you only liked me and your mother-in-law some.
 
“Two become one.” Let’s get started!
Wedded bliss ruined? Just ’cause I farted?
I was such a good spouse, as everyone knew.
I’d have been completely selfless—had it not been for you!
 
So you had an idea that I (secretly) approved of;
let’s move on with our lives, find us some new loves.
Turned math upside down—that was so you!
Hired lawyers and judges, turned one into two.
 
 
 
written for Poetics “1999”

“Insomnia”

 
Sleep was my mistress; how I loved her embrace.
She held me all night, made me feel so grand.
But lately, she makes excuses, won’t come by my place—
Sleep was my mistress; how I loved her embrace.
 
Tonight she refuses to meet face-to-face;
at this point I’d settle for a one-night-stand.
 
Sleep was my mistress; how I loved her embrace.
She held me all night, made me feel so grand.
 
 
 
This triolet was written for dverse poets “Form for All

“Across the Street”

 
 
Woman unknown, I
saw you cry for the man you
love. I know plenty.
 

Looking at the Flip Side of Love

Looking at the Flip Side of Love.

If you click on the link above you will find a bit of explanation about this thought-provoking piece written by Linda Krushchke.

Hate Is . . .

Hate is impatient,
toe tapping, eye-rolling,
in a hurry for instant gratification

Hate is mean,
treating others unkindly,
bullying, and insulting

Hate is envious,
not happy for others’ prosperity,
wanting what others have,
and for them not to have it

Hate is boastful,
puffed up, pointing to self-accomplishments,
not recognizing contributions of others

Hate is not humble,
but is arrogant, filled with hubris
proudly thinking oneself better than all,
pretentious and vain, always vain

Hate is rude,
abusive and insulting, vulgar,
disrespectful, and never caring for others

Hate is self-seeking,
it’s-all-about-me attitude,
selfish and egotistical, self-important

Hate is easily angered,
irritated by the slightest mistake,
hot-headed, unwilling to forgive

Hate keeps a record of wrongs,
every little sin catalogued and indexed,
ready as part of its arsenal of hostility

Hate delights in evil,
revels in rebelling against authority,
is pleased to go its own way

Hate despises truth,
closes its ears to teaching,
refuses instruction and correction

Hate attacks,
harms loved ones and strangers alike,
injures all in its way without care

Hate distrusts,
lacks faith in God or anything,
doubts there is anything good

Hate despairs,
has no hope for a future,
lives in misery and sorrow

Hate gives up,
at the smallest obstacle it gives in,
is defeated by the tiniest tribulation

Hate never wins

Written by: Linda Kruschke