The Story Teller

Her clan’s scheherazade.
Last in her lineage,
skilled by birthright
in the ancient art.

She follows the stars.
Finds her way,
village by village
to listen, to tell.

Stories they share
of birth, death, harvest,
and ceremonial hunts.
All grace her plots.

Mitochondrial details
events infused by voice,
sadness, daily banter, and joy.
Emotional spectrum wide and deep.

She the vessel of tales,
ewer of their heritage.
She is their story teller,
the carrier of life.

Written for my almost 11-year-old granddaughter who decided we should start the year with the same prompt word, “scheherazade,” meaning storyteller. Also penned for dVerse where Paul hosts today, with the word “grace” for a prompt. Apologies in advance to all who read and comment — it may take a while to respond as we embark today on a 34 day journey to S. America and Antarctica! 

 

Haibun from Days Gone By

Looking back from this vantage point, from who I am now and how we raised our children, I’m surprised at my calm, unquestioning “okay” to one man during my lifetime. Wally Rucks, high school football coach and my guidance counselor.

I only had one meeting with this overweight, jowly faced man. In 1964, at the beginning of my senior year.
“Are you filling out your college applications?”
“Yes.”
“What career are you aiming for?”
As the only female on our award-winning debate team, I was ready with the answer. “A lawyer.”
“Girls don’t do that. Study to be a Speech and English teacher.”
The meeting was over. I walked out the door and that’s what I did. I became a high school Speech and English teacher, albeit a very good one.

And then years later, I earned a second Master’s Degree and a PhD. Became a university dean and traveled the world solo, meeting corporate executives, establishing internships for our Global MBAs. Go suck an egg, Mr. Rucks.

smallest acorn
trampled in mud by hiking galoots
tall now in forest green

It’s Haibun Monday at dVerse and today we’re supposed to write about something that surprises us. Come join us at the virtual pub for poets — bar opens at 3 PM Boston time. Haibun: short, precise prose (cannot be fiction) followed by a haiku.

Simplicity

Slip on spectacles;
do not seek spectacles.
Seek slightly furrowed brows
tear drops forming in their duct
delicate veins on clover leaf
cloud wisps tinctured in palest pink
puddled reflection of toddler’s yellow boot
catsup melding into whole wheat bread
smiles of mirth ‘neath crinkled eyes.
Slip on spectacles to see the good.

In the spirit of the poem, no photo or illustration included.
Motivated by a prompt from Holly Wren Spauldings online class…a list poem. 

Lost

She lurched through life
masked as some kind of bandit
hoping to steal affection,

waiting impatiently
for the mardi gras of life
to throw beads her way.

She stumbled on embankments
peripheral vision hampered,
mask drawn too close to her soul.

Glancing downward,
sun blinding, glare too harsh,
she saw the rat staring from gutter’s grate.

Tomorrow would be yesterday.
No map to guide her.
she finally gave up hope.

wanderratte, rattus norvegicus, common rat, brown rat, norway rat

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets where today Mish is asking us to write a poem that somehow deals with the word “mask.”

Poet’s Plight

Words tumble round my head
searching for mates to copulate,
birth meaning upon the page.
Sleep eludes me as words deluge me.
May I write, please?
Spackle paper in alphabet hue.

Night remnants. Darkened window pane.
My muse flickers like candles upon the sill,
fickle handmaid of creativity.
If light begets light
perhaps dawn will quicken her step,
drawn to these sputtering flames.

Words slowly seep from pen
cursive dips and curves.
I write tentatively,
then speed the pace
racing to beat the dawn.
And then,  I rest.

FullSizeRender-3

 

shroud

deep within the soil
perennial seed lies dormant
safe from winter’s scorn –
would that I could sleep as sound
oblivious to my pain.

winter-2643901_1920

Frank is hosting today at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. He’s asked us to write a poem about sleep or to use the word itself. My post today is a Tanka: 5 lines with a 5, 7, 5, 7, 7 syllabic content.  A Tanka should include a shift in tone after line 3 or 4. Here, line 4 shifts from nature to the personal.  Added note: written in the voice of another.

Two Lives – Metaphorically Speaking

i.
He lived a crab’s life
sidling through his world
without confronting anything head on.

—————————————————————————————————————————–

ii.
She never knew who she was.
Today, servant to his whims
yesterday his foil.
Tomorrow, his jewel case on display.

In her youth, the obedient child.
Perfect pianist stretching to reach the pedals
daddy’s little girl,
mama’s protegé.

Turn this way, look here.
Here, not there.
Do this. Do that.
Twisted. Manipulated.

She’d led a kaleidoscope life
until all the pieces crumbled,
reduced to shards.

surreal-402830_1920

Two poems, one short, one a bit longer, written for dVerse. Today, Bjorn hosts and asks us to write metaphorically. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time.  For those who need a quick review from their highschool poetry unit, very basically stated, a simile is a comparison using the words “like” or “as.” A metaphor is a comparison without using the words “like” or “as.”  Both photos in public domain at http://www.pixabay.com