Confessional

My heart slips,
falls.
Ice encrusted long ago,
disappointed.
Abandoned. Ignored.
Disgorged.

Shattered sound
ricochets.
Too late I understand.
I am the abandoner.
Aortic contractions
in northernmost veins.

Earth shudders
heaves
lets go,
as I have her.

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Anmol hosts Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today, she asks us to explore confessional poetry. In Confessional, whose voice is heard in the first stanza? The confessor appears in the second and third stanza. This is how I felt when we took our trip to Alaska several years ago. I witnessed and heard the calving that is occurring more and more as we ignore the plight of our earth. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us!

Telltale Signs

Dandelion wisps
tangled in hair,
cooing to butterflies
fingers she flutters.
Turning she runs
ready for flight,
clambers on swing
wishing she might.

Higher she shouts
Daddy push higher!
Smiling, he does,
thankful for fairies.
Their magical gift
a changeling,
the child he adores.

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It’s Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, and De asks us to use the word “change” (or a form of the word) within our poem of exactly 44 words, sans title. Image from Pixabay.com. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us!

Alter Ego

Trash art.
But not to me.

Paint brush body
bottle opener arms.
Metal disk eyes
always open.
Clock innard springs
‘neath blooming heart.
Curved metal strip
forever smile.

They say
art speaks to you.

 Pull yourself together,
use what you’ve got.
Uniquely assembled,
bloom where you are.
Wear a perky hat
eyes wide open,
smile at the world
and they’ll smile back.

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I’m hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets – which means I create the prompt. And today’s prompt is “Come hang with me!”  Choose something hanging in your house (on a wall, from a bookcase, in your closet, etc) and write a poem about it! I’ve asked that folks include a photo so we can see what they’re writing about. This lovely piece of “trash art” hangs in my study, on the side of my desk. I see her every morning and she always makes me smile! Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us!

Namrah, Figment of Childhood

Oh why have you deserted me these nights,
your golden wings and glistening silver beak?
We soared through star lit skies to mystic sites
my Namrah, childhood friend, to me unique.

Adulthood now, so taxed by tasks each day
the years have sped, imagination dulled.
My dreams are doors no more, no passage way,
no you. But stress instead, and nightmares mulled.

Oh why have you deserted me these years?
Is there another child who claimed your dreams
whilst I, within the dark, doth shed my tears
for youthful innocence and moonbeam gleams.

As wrinkles steep and footsteps slow my gait,
I see the light in death’s dawn – tis there you wait.

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Written for dVerse MTB where Bjorn hosts and asks us to write a sonnet. Sonnets can take a number of forms. I’ve chosen a Shakespearean Sonnet: 14 lines with the following rhyme scheme in iambic pentameter: ABAB, CDCD, EFEF, GG.  I find this form extremely difficult and find myself counting out syllables etc on my fingers. So this is my go at it. A Shakespeare I’m not! PS:  Over the years I’ve written a number of poems about Namrah. Many folks have childhood imaginary friends. I did not – but I’ve created Namrah in a number of poems, speaking in the first person, as if this beautiful mythcal bird is just that. 

Empathy

What if I became you?
A three-letter being instead of a one.
Not won but lost.
In your shoes with one lost sole.
A lost soul.

What if you became them?
A four-letter being instead of a three.
Not a one. Never won.
You as them. Not allowed in.
On the other side.

Outside, like them.
The other’s side.
Not here. Never here.
What if you were them?
You, an other.

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Merril opens the new year at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. She asks us to consider time and space and what if. Her prompt: “What if you – or someone else – or some THING else – took that less or more-traveled path? Would it make a difference? Will it make a difference?  Look backward, forward, inside, and out. Then wonder, what if?” Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Stop by and begin your 2019 by imbibing some words today!

The Old Farmstead

It struck with a howling fury. High winds. Snow so thick it obscured the view outside the kitchen window. Tool shed. Abandoned teetering barn. Rusted ancient Deere. All swallowed in a swirling mass of white.

I climbed the well-worn steps, carpet long since removed as a tripping hazard. Climbed into what we’d called their sleigh bed. Oak veneer now peeling. Loneliness was my only companion. Empty rooms down the hall. Memories jostling in my head: childhood tasks in overalls; mom and dad, steaming mugs of coffee in hand, engrossed in quiet whispered conversation about next year’s crop, Jimmy’s ever-growing feet, the upcoming school board meeting. Sleep finally came, in the midst of stuffed, sealed packing boxes.

I woke to a still, darkened house and padded my way down the familiar but different hallway. No giggles or doors slamming. Bare walls waiting for a new owner’s decorative touch. Melancholy seeped into my body. How did time take over my life so completely? Gloss over so many years so quickly, that my visits here shortened in length, but lengthened in days and months and sometimes years between? How could I not notice their slower steps? The peeling paint. The hired hand plowing the fields.

The kitchen window was partially covered by frost on the inside. Like an etching on fine glass. Dawn slowly revealed familiar rolling hills, glistening white in winter’s cold. Snow drifts obscured the woodpile while a small portion of the drive, somehow windswept in last night’s gale, revealed gravel and bits of dried leaves. Nature gifted the land with uneven blessings, just as life did us.

My coffee began to percolate in mom’s old stainless steel pot, plugged into the wall next to the small curved hook where her potholders used to hang. I’d leave this house in a few hours. Say my final goodbyes to what once was . . . birthday celebrations; the bright yellow school bus lumbering down our dirt road; mom gathering sheets from the line outside; dad coming in from the fields.

Looking out that glazed window, my eyes suddenly focused on a spot of crimson red in the blanket of snow. Two cardinals sat beneath the old wooden birdfeeder, long since bereft of seed. They sat patiently, as if belonging to the scene. Bright living color in the midst of all that visual cold. Just as I began to notice the aroma of fresh brewed coffee, their wings began to spread, elongating their shapes. And they rose together, disappearing into streaks of sun now blinding my eyes. Snow glare. The new day was here.

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Written with memories of winters in Iowa. Prose fiction . . . but I imagine many folks face the leaving of their old farmsteads as generations pass, land is bought up and farms become more “corporate.” Photo is of a country home we rented in Iowa; either the old Folkman or Voitman house….down the road from the Bean’s farmstead. They were very special years for us…..over forty years ago.

In the midst . . .

of headline news
frenetic must-dos, should-dos,
buy-this-sales and shopping bustle.
Before the dawn of daily busyness,
Christmas shimmers and gleams.

Candles glimmer,
tiny white lights shine.
Treasured ornaments hold memories –
children grown, loved ones passed,
moments shared.

There is a serenity to the season,
if only we pause to savor.

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A blessed Christmas season to all.  The pink reindeer ornament is actually one of the pieces that hung on my children’s mobile, over their crib when they were infants. They are now in their 40s and both have a wooden animal from the mobile on their own Christmas tree. The pink bell, just barely showing at the top of the final photo, was on my mother’s girlhood tree.