Calendar Crazed

March,
that month after February,
thirty-one days before April.
A season unto itself.

A time for bluster. . .
pushy blow-hard March winds,
nature’s  ill-tempered signal
she is ready to move on.

Impatient crocus tips,
tulip and joinquil crowns,
clamor beneath the soil
desperately seeking warmth.

Sun tries to abide.
Sharpens her rays,
pierces leaden skies,
melts errant snows.

And we, with pens in hand,
cross off calendar days.
Like Sousa leading the band
we march forward . . .

wanting so badly
to pick up the pace,
to quick-step
our way to spring.

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I’m hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, asking folks to think about the verse from Ecclesiastes quoted below. It was set to music by Pete Seeger in the late 50s and became a full-fledged hit Turn! Turn! Turn! by the Byrds in 1965. We’re writing a poem about “a time to/for ______.”  Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time, so you can find the exact prompt there.
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven:  a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.”

Seasonal Ditty

Winter kisses.
Snowflakes on lashes
tip of nose
caught on tongue.

Winter fury.
White-out curtain
howling winds
sleet and ice.

Winter warmth.
Wooly mittens
snuggle downs
‘neath gramma’s quilt.

Winter leaving.
Snowman drooping
puddles form
days grow long.

Winter gone.
Crocus pop-ups
daffodils shine.

5378634594_1149da7a53_b (1)De is hosting dVerse Quadrille Monday. She asks us to include the word (or a form of the word) “kiss” in our exactly-44-word-poem (sans title). Thought I’d go lighthearted today. Seems to me we can always use some smiles. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time….come on over for some smooching! Image from Bikes And Books on Flickr.

Midwest Winter

Frozen branches shudder-click.
Lonely sentinels
guarding empty Chicago streets.
Humanity hibernates
while nature wins this round.

One state over . . .

Country fields shiver deeply
as polar vortex rules.
Farmhouse chimneys puff outside
while Iowa hunkers down,
quilts and afghans piled on high.

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To our friends and family in the midwest, stay warm and stay safe!
Poetry form here: two tankas joined by “One state over” line.
First image from Pixabay.com; second photo is our old Iowa farmhouse we rented in the early 70s.

Music Returns

Earth warms herself
sun gazes more deeply.
Snow crystals liquify,
trickle downward
through softening hillside,
quicken to rushing rivulets.
Winter stillness disappears.
Stream babbles, meanders,
gains strength through shifting pebbles
as plant life regenerates.
Grasses wave to river’s symphony.
Nature steeped in spring song.

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Mish is hosting Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. “Steep” or a form of the word must be used within our quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title). Photo in pixabay.com

Fall’s Egress

Melancholy autumn rain.
Nature weeps as color takes its leave,
once golden amber, streaked through brown.
Droplets cling momentarily,
cleave to hawthorne crimson berries.
Lover’s farewell kiss.

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Photo taken outside our Boston high-rise yesterday. Coincidentally, our building is called Hawthorne Place and yes, this is a hawthorne tree after the morning’s rain.

She Melts

blue ice                                             cold as cold can be
cleft from frozen earth                 abandoned
floats alone                                      drowning
so deeply down                               in sea of despair

deplorable evidence                      scarred inside and out
man’s neglect                                   his indifference
temperature rises                           her tears flow in melting fear
frequent fissures                            pulled asunder
disaster nears                                  she dies more each day

 

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where today Paul asks us to write a contrapuntal poem. The term is taken from the musical world and means counterpoint…a piece of music with two or more independent melody lines.
Read this poem three ways (IE three melody lines if you will).
1. left column only
2. right column only
3. from left to right in total – as in all the way through the first line, ignoring the big spaces between the columns; then all the way through the second line etc.
Iceberg photos from out trip to Antarctica. Eyes photo from Pixabay.com.

Eye on Spring

Ole Man Winter retreats.
Cinder-smudged snow pile,
shrinks in April’s pushiness.
Skinny tree branches
open arms to warming sun,
anxious to leaf out and bloom.

Knees planted in moist soil
I gather and bag rotted leaves,
uncover sprouts of green.
Gleefully I smile,
tips of crocus tops peeking at me.
Eye spy spring!

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Post is motivated by this painting recently seen in New York City’s MOMA: James Rosenquist’s Lady Dog Lizard, 1985.  Off prompt, but still appropriated for day 27, Napowrimo.

Bane of Beauty

Be afraid,
I am Pterois Volitan.
Beautiful mane of dorsal fins,
lionfish in the reefs.

Venemous.
I eat as I please.
No predators have I,
save men no longer fooled.

I have crossed seas
multiplied,
wreaked havoc
and swim where I please.

Biodiversity be damned.
I am your nightmare
even as day dawns
gracing your shores.

IMG_9736Posted for Napowrimo Day 25. The challenge: to write a poem of warning. Photo taken at the Bermuda Aquarium/Zoo.

Lionfish are native to the Indo-Pacific, but have somehow invaded the U.S. southeast, the Caribbean, and parts of the Gulf of Mexico. Because they are not native to the Atlantic waters, they have very few predators. They feed on small crustaceans and fish, including the young of commercial species. They are dramatically and negatively affecting the fishing economy, native ecosystems and biodiversity.

Gifted by the Sea

Gulls squawk
fight over half-eaten fish carcass,
wave-tossed, then shored
reclaimed to float and churn.

Gathered in hot sun
barefoot seekers squabble,
fingering shards tumbled smooth.
Blue-flowered ceramic slivers,
amber and green bits of hazy glass.

Neptune’s discards,
remnants with anonymous past.
Treasured leftovers.

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I’m hosting Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. The challenge today: write a quadrille (exactly 44 words, sans title) using the word, or a form of the word gather. Photo is a collection of sea glass and ceramic shards from our recent stay in Bermuda. Pub opens at 3:00 PM Boston time. Join our gathering today! Post also shared for day 23, Napowrimo

Tracing Whitman’s Path

Lying back, blue sky beckons me
carries me through dreams
until flock of geese interrupt serenity.
Rolling on my side, eyes shift to daffodils.
Yellow ruffles near still pond,
quiet in their breezy sway.

Noisey crowd above migrates north
racing through scattered clouds.
I rise reluctantly, retrace my steps.
Well worn path through banks of trees
leads to asphalt covered parking lot,
return to life’s routine.

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Written for Napowrimo Day 18’s unique prompt. Select a poem (or stanza from a poem), cover up all but the last line: write a response to that line. Now cover up all but the second to the last line: write a response to that line. Etcetera.  In essence, you read the poem backwards, creating your poem. Your poem responds to the original poem, and is its reverse.

I’ve used the first 6-line stanza of Walt Whitman’s famous poem,
I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud:

Fluttering and dancing in the breeze
Beside the lake beneath the trees
A host of golden daffodils
When all at once I saw a crowd
That floats on high o’er vales and hills
I wandered lonely as a cloud.

First line of my poem responds to last (6th) line of his stanza; second line of my poem responds his 5th line; third line of mine responds to his 4th; fourth line of mine responds to his 3rd; fifth line of mine responds to his 2nd; sixth line of mine responds to his 1st.  My last stanza simply completes my original poem as the “speaker” of the poem must leave the beauty and serenity of nature and return to life’s routine.