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.

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
Thank You, Lord
Life Doesn’t Frighten Me
Slave Coffle
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
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.

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

Alone Not Lonely

She lives her life as a barnacle would,
clinging tenaciously to existence
in the fast moving currents
of today’s world.
A recluse, without the vanities,
the banalities of every day life,
she escapes it all
living in the far reaches
of the dunes of Cape Cod.
She journals each day.
Pecking words into being
from an old Smith Corona,
sounding every bit like gulls
pecking again and again
at stubborn crustacean shells.
She writes of Victorian love,
placing herself in another world
with a lover of her design.
Her dreams inscribed on paper,
ream after ream after ream.
Like gossamer wings
too ethereal to touch,
to reach in any reality,
but delectable none-the-less.

Written for NAPOWRIMO, Day 24. Today we’re asked to write in the style of Novelist Raymond Chandler who wrote hard-boiled detective novels known for their use of vivid similes. “Channel your inner gumshoe, and write a poem in which you describe something with a hard-boiled simile. Feel free to use just one, or try to go for broke and stuff your poem with similes till it’s . . . as dense as bread baked by a plumber, as round as the eyes of a girl who wants you to think she’s never heard such language, and as easy to miss as a brass band in a cathedral.” Photo from

And she asked him . . .

Isn’t what amazing?
Ants tugging five-thousand times their weight?
Fibonacci’s relationship to the nautilus shell?
Humming birds’ wings
beating fifty-three times per second?
Women growing human beings inside their bodies?
Yes. Yes. Yes. And definitely yes.

So what makes you so amazing?
You forcing me to take your name if we wed?
You making laws to govern my body?
You body-shaming me
while you’re lugging around your beer gut?
Yes. Oh please, please tell me, yes.
Exactly what makes you so amazing?

Written for NAPOWRIMO, Day 13. Today’s prompt challenges us to write from the perspective of “everything’s going to be amazing” . . . I admit. I went a little off-kilter with this one!

Journey Gone Askew

She picked one of the two.
Not her roots in rural life,
golden brick road more tempting.
Drove it to wealth,
fancy home in fancy heights
prestige, black tie events.

Ignored the signs.
Exit ramps,
detours available,
this way outs.
Drove and drove,
hard and harder.

Too late she realized,
the road she picked?
Sadly a dead-end street.

I’m hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. I’m asking folks to choose one adage/proverb from a list I provide, and use it as their inspiration for their poem today. The list includes adages from Aesop’s Fables, Adagia, Poor Richard’s Almanack, the Bible. I also provide one line from a movie, which is the line this poem is inspired by: “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get.” Forrest Gump, the movie.

Join us at 3 PM Boston time to see the full list. Then write your poem and post it so we can enjoy together! Image from


Blizzard blind,
vision veiled by shades of white.
Snow accumulates,
known markers entombed.
She struggles to remember
through haze of memories,
her life without these days
of whirling, pummeling storms.
Frozen iced in daze.
Time shifts. Skies clear.
Sadly, somewhere in her mind,
she remains
buried in the drifts.

Although I am in San Diego for two months, I’m watching the weather channel, seeing Boston get hit with a historic blizzard. Somehow this poem came to my pen. Image from


Curtain billows in wind.
Candlelight flickers,
flame shivers, dips,
almost snuffed out.
for our predicament,
but a gentler scene.

Healthcare systems threatened.
Tsunami of violence,
hatred, inequities.
We cup our hands
around the flame of hope,
trying to protect it
through these storms.

It’s Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today we’re to include the word “shiver” or a form of the word (not a synonym) in our poem of exactly 44 words, sans title. Pub opens at 3 PM, Boston time. Come join us!

* A derecho is a wide-spread, long lived, dangerous windstorm.