Hushhhhh . . .

. . . shadow me to sleep.
Hush headlines, past regrets,
and lists of tasks undone.
Toss full moon behind gathering clouds.
Snuff stars until dust drips silently
crusting my eyes.
Sink me into primordial seas,
ombréd in shades of grey
that I might rest in peace.

Written for Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today Sarah asks us to include the word “sleep” in our poem of exactly 44 words, sans title.

Photos taken last night from our deck here in Provincetown, as the moon was rising. That’s my husband’s hand. Unfortunately, it did indeed totally cloud over and we never saw the eclipse or infamous blood moon….but this was an amazing sight as well.

Provincetown Off-Season

There’s a quiet to this place
in that transition between winter
and when-will-it-get-here spring.

Ocean ombrés from greys to taupes
bereft of sails and buoys,
lonely tides missing congregant gulls.

Lulling seeping fog muffles sound.
Low-lying dulled clouds meld into one sky
misting all that lies beneath.

And if perchance the sun should shine
clearing skies to blue,
cold damp air chills the bones still.

Lean-into gusts of wind
accompany the lone walker,
a speck of time on these vast sands
in the quiet of this place.


Written for Open Link Night at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets.

Today Sanaa is hosting and from 3 to 4 PM, Boston time, we will be LIVE. Poets from around the globe will meet via Google Meet and read aloud one poem of their choosing. It’s amazing to see the faces of folks and hear their voices….come join us either to read a poem of your choosing, or just to sit in and listen. HOW TO JOIN US?

Go to https://dversepoets.com at 3 PM or just a few minutes after, and the links to join us will be there…just click and come!

Photo taken this morning from our deck in Provincetown.

We’ve spent two weeks in Provincetown, at the Watermark Inn for the past twenty-two years. We’ve been here in January, July, May, and September. For some beautiful photos over the years, click here!

Dune Shack

He courted me online. Sent me airfare from Paris to Boston. Met me with flowers and a grin. We sped out of the city, not slowing down until we crossed the Bourne Bridge onto Cape Cod. Small towns appeared and disappeared until we reached Provincetown. Shifting into four-wheel drive, he maneuvered through a maze of sand dunes, finally reaching his secluded shack. The one he’d so romantically described. For three glorious weeks we made love under down comforters and hiked the deserted beach. Off season was best, he said.

On April thirtieth, he muttered “you’re not enough.” He walked out and left me stranded, scared to death. For how can I be sure I shall see again the world? On the first day of May, I got the nerve to climb up the nearest dune. I hoped the world was on the other side.


Written for Prosery Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets across the globe. Today Merril asks us to use a line from Sara Teasdale in our prose: “For how can I be sure I shall see again the world on the first day of May.” We can not change the words – must use them exactly as written. However, we may change the punctuation.

The Bourne Bridge does indeed separate Cape Cod from the mainland of Massachusetts. Since 1998, we’ve spent two weeks every year at Provincetown, at the very end (tip) of Cape Cod. We usually take the fast ferry direct from Boston – it only takes 90 minutes – and we usually come in September. However, because of another commitment, we arrived in Ptown on Saturday and will be here until May 21st. Definitely off-season. The ferry isn’t running yet so we took a bus. After the bus crossed the Bourne Bridge, we did indeed ride through many small New England towns before we spied the National Seashore coming in to Ptown. done A number of years ago we did Art’s Dune Tour in his 4-wheel drive. He takes you way out and up and down all the dunes. To this day, there are still some very secluded artist’s shacks in the dunes.

Above image by Jan Aldrich has been cropped showing a sand dune and part of an artist’s shack on the National Seashore.

Photo below is of me today on our morning walk at low tide. Chilly but still beautiful.

Character Sketch

She enjoyed a staccato existence,
never a sustained note
ecstatically percussive.
High on life,
she jived from one gig to another
town after town,
no stage too small.
Showmanship and flair,
nothing static in her repertoire.
Gender be damned,
she was a one-man band.

Quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title) written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Mish is hosting and asks us to include the word “static” within our poem.
Note: I ecSTATICally included static twice!

Photo by Erriko Boccia on Unsplash

Brooding (from the lines of Maya Angelou)

When I think about myself
there is a deep brooding.
The day hangs heavy
no sound falls.
I see you,
shadows on the wall
just beyond my reaching.

Lying, thinking
I almost remember
when you came to me, unbidden.
Your smile, delicate
a young body, light,
your skin like dawn.
We saw beyond our seeming.

One innocent spring
it occurs to me now,
the dust of ancient pages.

A cento (poem made up of lines taken from other poems) written for NAPOWRIMO, the final day.

Every line in this poem, is the first line in one of Maya Angelou’s poems. The poems are listed below, in the order of their appearance:

When I Think About Myself
My Arkansas
Greyday
After
Thank You, Lord
Life Doesn’t Frighten Me
Slave Coffle
Alone
I Almost Remember
When You Come to Me
Woman Me
To Beat the Child Was Bad Enough
Passing Time
We Saw Beyond Our Seeming
Now Long Ago
Changing
Communication II: The Student

In Sober Response to a Prompt

Blessings at birth
two parents, one brother
warm home, and sustenance.
Curses at birth?
I can think of none
for me.

I shuddered last week as I read
of a child born underground
as missiles struck
and millions fled
and “never again”
kept coming again.

Written for NAPOWRIMO, Day 29.

Today’s prompt: Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem in which you muse on the gifts you received at birth — whether they are actual presents, like a teddy bear, or talents – like a good singing voice – or circumstances – like a kind older brother, as well as a “curse” you’ve lived with (your grandmother’s insistence on giving you a new and completely creepy porcelain doll for every birthday, a bad singing voice, etc.). I hope you find this to be an inspiring avenue for poetic and self-exploration.

Life as an Hourglass

My life is like a fragile hourglass
sand grains drop through.
Some moments I savor
slip past me before
I can taste them.
Other times
lag behind
move so
slowly
I can
not
stand
it and so
I open my
mouth and
scream aloud.
I want to control
each and every grain
of my life, especially now
in our winter season when the
path ahead is far shorter than the
glorious one we’ve been blessed to share.

Written for NAPOWRIMO, DAY 28. Today the prompt is to  write a concrete poem, in which the lines are shaped in a way that mimics the topic of the poem. Also shared with dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where today it’s OLN: Open LInk Night where we can share any one poem of our choosing.

Glendalough

Walk with me in the fields of Glendalough,
walk quietly amongst its tipping stones.

Ancient headstones stand quietly askew,
testament to centuries of monastic life.

Sixth-century monks lived secluded here
prayed within primitive stone structures.

Evidence of their medieval dwellings
still lies scattered in verdant landscape.

Lush hills gently swell, envelop sacred history.
Hushed visitors walk through hallowed grounds.

St. Kevin of Glendalough first blessed this land,
centuries later, still a place of pilgrimage.

Many come to pray, to see, to touch this land,
seeking calm, finding a place of primal peace.

Written for NAPOWRIMO, Day 27.

Today, we have a tough prompt; what I call a sudoku prompt !  

We are to write a duplex. Like a typical sonnet, a duplex has fourteen lines. It’s organized into seven, two-line stanzas. The second line of the first stanza is echoed by (but not identical to) the first line of the second stanza, the second line of the second stanza is echoed by (but not identical to) the first line of the third stanza, and so on. The last line of the poem is the same as the first. The only part of the requirements I did not follow was the bit about the last line. I like the way mine ended as is.

Photos taken some years ago when we visited Glendalough in Ireland. An absolutely beautiful and serene place. Saint Kevin is an Irish saint, known as the founder and first abbot of Glendalough in County Wicklow, Ireland. His feast day is June 3rd. He was born in 498 AD. After his ordination, he moved to Glendalough to live as a hermit in a partially man-made cave. His companions were the animals and birds around him. He lived as a hermit for seven years, wearing only animal skins, sleeping on stones and eating very sparingly. Soon others sought him out as a teacher and holy man. Glendalough grew into a renowned seminary of saints and scholars. Until his death around 618, Kevin presided over his monastary in Glendalough.

Victorious Tanka

Caught in his maelstrom
she survived a winter’s tale.
Fighting against his  
blizzard of heartless demands,
she left when the crocus bloomed.

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today, Ingrid asks us to consider the bard, William Shakespeare. We may choose a title from a list she gives us, a partial list of his plays. I’ve included A Winter’s Tale within my poem

Also, off-prompt today for NAPOWRIMO, Day 26.

Tanka: A poetic form of 5 lines with the following syllabic requirement: 5-7-5-7-7. Image from Pixabay.com

Ode to Mary Oliver

I see her walking through peonies
waiting patiently for the strawberry moon.
She, the night traveler in my dreams.
She bids me walk slowly, eyes open in my sleep,
to explore her natural world.
Together we soar on the wings of a hawk
as goldfinches sing and wonder precedes us.
Approaching Provincetown,
we marvel at migrating wild geese
making their cacophonous way
to their winter’s resting place.
As I begin to drift near rising
she leads me past fields of goldenrod
to a small pond bedecked in floating flowers,
lily pads asleep and yet to bloom.
Cool winds ruffle my eyelids
like rustling leaves in a tree.
The lilies break open over the dark water
as my dream retreats into dawning sky.
I awaken to a certain sharpness in the morning air
ready to take up pen, inspired by this woman.
She, the night traveler in my dreams.

Written for NAPOWRIMO, Day 25. Today we’re to write an aisling: to recount a dream or vision featuring a woman who represents the land/country on/in which the poet lives.

Mary Oliver moved to Provincetown in the 1960s and sets most of her poetry in and around this wonderful town. An avid walker, much of her poetry comes from her observances of the natural world. I’ve incorporated 9 titles of her poems in my Ode:
Peonies
Strawberry Moon
The Night Traveler
Hawk
Goldfinches
Wild Geese
Goldenrod
The Lilies Break Open Over the Dark Water
A Certain Sharpness in the Morning Air

We’ve lived in Boston for the past twenty-five years and spend two weeks of every year in Provincetown, at the very tip of Cape Cod. Photos from our visits to P’town.