I lie on cool moist earth waking dreams in outdoor’s chill. Stars gleam through obsidian scrim, slivered moon slices ebony sky. Night’s breeze whispers, lullabies me. Thoughts float to loved ones from generations past. Do they live now, somewhere out there in the universe?
Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today De asks us to write a quadrille, a poem of exactly 44 words sans title, that includes the word “star” or a form of the word. Image from Pixabay.com
She walked the lane alone but not lonely in her solitude. Sun deserting the sky above, unforgiving stone beneath her feet. Cold seeped into her bones. Barren trees stood starkly, as if joining in her grief. This day she walked to the burial ground, basket of pinecones in hand. She would spread them on his grave, autumnal offering for her sin.
Written for Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe.
Today we’re working with ekphrastic poetry: poems written about works of art. Merril asks us to choose from several paintings she provides, and write a poem inspired by one of them. I’ve selected the painting, A November Morning (1883) by John Atkinson Grimshaw. I’ve taken the liberty of borrowing his title for my title as well.
‘Tis scared she’d been, two hundred years ago. He’d locked her away in the family mausoleum, she crying to be free. Abandoned, starved, she suffered a godforsaken death. Her curdling wails still heard in howling winds on stormy nights at Charter Street Burial Ground.
Written for Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today De asks us to use the word “scare” or a form of the word, in a poem of exactly 44 words, sans title.
Photo was taken a number of years ago when we visited the Dissidents’ Cemetery in Valparaiso, Chile. Image is of a lock on a mausoleum, obviously not opened in many many years.
Also note: the Charter Street Cemetery is Salem, Massachusetts’ oldest cemetery, founded in 1637. Salem is of course, the home of the Salem Witch Trials of 1692.
So many have blood on their hands. Mirrors avoided to save face hands folded to avoid guilt tremors heads bowed – horse blinders unavailable.
In another world, nineteen children don angel wings. Their days playing on the beach never to be again.
Together with angels from Sandy Hook they hover, watch intently, hope . . . surely this time change will come.
Written for Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today Merril asks us to consider summer and write an ekphrastic poem. She provides a number of paintings that are in some way related to summer. We are to choose one or more to work with. Our poem should be inspired by the painting; not describe the painting. The painting I chose from among those provided is Summer Day, Brighton Beach by Carl Zimmermann.
To clarify the references in my poem:
On December 14, 2012, in Newtown Connecticut, twenty children, ages 6 and 7, were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Attempts to enact stricter gun laws in the United States failed. On May 24, 2022, in Uvalde, Texas, nineteen children, ages 9, 10 and 11, were murdered at Robb Elementary School.
Sun melted snow trickles down, enlivens creek, soon to expand to winding river’s width. Once a harbinger of spring, displaced cherry blossoms float downward in breeze. I grieve the season’s loss and the loss of you, as pink petaled rain gently falls. Blossoms cling to gurgling stream, like sweet rosé lingering upon nature’s savoring lips. Kingfishers nest in branches looking down upon headstones, all ornate save one. Your simply etched name and the grandiose sculptures, all indiscriminately covered. What more wealth do you or I or any of these dead souls need than nature’s unconditional kindness? This reminder of her accepting love. This exquisitely serene pink rain.
Written for last Tuesday’s Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Laura is hosting and reminds us that today is UN Chinese Language Day.
She asked us to choose one of four poems she provided, and with as many re-reads as we needed, to imagine what the poet painted and what impressions were conveyed…and then reinterpret the poem in our own style. We must use the title of the poem we choose and of course, credit the author. We may only use a few words from the poem itself. The poem I chose to reinterpret is below:
Winding River ~ Du Fu Each piece of flying blossom leaves spring the less, I grieve as myriad points float in the wind. I watch the last ones move before my eyes, And cannot have enough wine pass my lips. Kingfishers nest by the little hall on the river, Unicorns lie at the high tomb’s enclosure. Having studied the world, one must seek joy, For what use is the trap of passing honour?
Just before the world ends cockroaches, horseshoe crabs, velvet worms and millipedes shall gather in one place. Perhaps atop a tower of rubble, or a desecrated piece of earth where once redwoods stood. They are the superior ones.
Earth’s five remaining humans grovel nearby, scarred by cancers, and unspeakable genetic defects. Expected, given their disregard for the natural good. They drool pathetically. Neon spittle sans words, drips from radioactive tinged lips.
The superiors, once considered the vilest, issue only three words: You were warned.
Sincere apologies to Maya Angelou. Day 18 NaPoWriMo’s prompt was to take a chapter name from a book of poetry and respond to it in a poem. One chapter in Maya Angelou: The Complete Poetry is titled “Just Before the World Ends” which I used as the first line of this poem. For whatever reason, my mind went to the other side today. The creatures names are some that have existed for millions of years. Apologies. I promise, tomorrow will be sunny again!
Death rattles nearby cold winter has stripped trees bare. Branches jerk in wind create shadows in our room. I seek comfort in your arms.
Frank is hosting MTB at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today, he asks us to write a Japanese death poem which can be in the form of a tanka if we choose. He explains that a Japanese death poem speaks of imminent death but at the same time, extolls the significance of life. A tanka is similar to a haiku, but longer: 5 lines of 5-7-5-7-7 syllables.
That night . . .
my body turned against me
you praying, willing me to live.
My last breath
words unheard by you. I am still here. I hover
in rays of sun
in soft mist beneath grey clouds
in star lit and blackened nights.
My essence ever walks with you.
Savor life, my dearest.
I am content, waiting patiently.
ii. In Absentia
That night . . .
your breath rattled
never to open again.
we celebrated your life
even as emptiness suffocated me.
I redecorated yesterday
all mirrors removed.
My reflection without you
too painful, too alone,
reminder of you
I’m hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse today, the virtual pub for poets, asking folks to write a poem that somehow deals with opposites or uses the literary device of antithesis. One can include simple words in opposition happy/sad, inside/outside; or describe one event from two opposite viewpoints. The opposition can happen in one poem; different stanzas; or even two short poems. Folks are free to be creative….as long as they deal with opposites! For a different take on the prompt, a satirical one, go to my second post, Mishmash Succotash.Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time….come join us and write in opposites or just read along!
Raw winds blow. Rusted lock bars entrance to dark, dank family crypt. Souls long forgotten. Generations ceased their lineage, lost in the dust of time. Undisturbed cobwebs ensnare no prey. Nothing lives here.
Steps away, a young mother’s tears salt the ground below open-toed shoes. Her gaze locks on the small white coffin. Follows it lower, lower, and lower still, until its sides are nestled by mother earth. Stunned mourners file by, gently releasing miniature white roses into fresh dug grave. Wind shifts. Breeze rifles through nearby trees. Magnolia blossoms, rift from spring green leaves, rain quietly on forlorn scene.
Rest little one, love shall follow you. Mother, father, sisters too. All will come in time. And more. And more. Until the dust of time consumes them all.
Used for Napowrimo day 28 where the prompt was to write prose poetry. Photo taken several months ago at the cemetery in Valparaiso, Chile. Shared with dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, on Thursday, May 3rds OLN.