Mother Dearest

I don’t know why I was surprised every time love started or ended. My mother taught me love could be turned on and off. As a teenager, I could only go steady with a boy for six weeks. She kept track on her calendar. I hated her every time I fell in love. But then, after about five weeks, I’d tire of the boy and happily blame the break-up on my mother.

When she died, so did my excuse. So I became a recluse. Until I met John. He surprised me with his persistence. We met in coffee shops at first. Then his place. I was a good girl and told him no sex until I got a ring. I marked that special day on my calendar. Now I’m in widow’s weeds with a blood encrusted knife holding this year’s calendar on the wall.

 

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Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where today is Prosery Monday.

Merril is hosting and asks us to use, word for word, the line “I don’t know why I was surprised every time love started or ended” in a piece of flash fiction that is exactly 144 words or less, sans title. The line is from Jane Hirshfield’s poem, I wanted to be surprised. 

Night Flight

Tell me a story, magical and gentle,
like Shasta daisy petals
dancing in soft winds.
Lullaby me through foamy seas.
Envelop me in undulating waves.
Stir my imagination
beyond daily doldrums.
Guide me into Neverland
on etheral dream wings,
soaring beneath sand encrusted lids.

img_4092Quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title) written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets where De asks us to use the word “stir” within the body of our poem.
Photo taken on La Jolla, CA coastal walk last week. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us!

Indifferent Model

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Feline lies on ledge
aloof, pristine.
Basks in sun
seemingly thoughtful –
certainly Zen-like.

Aperture opens,
quickly clicks and closes.
Image frozen in time.
Unaware or insolent,
she doesn’t appear to care.

Languidly cleaning her paws,
she stops to stare through me.
Stretches, slowly unfolds to stand,
silently slinks away
with one swish of her tail.

No hello.
No goodbye.
No sound.
Simply present
for a moment in time.

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Photo taken yesterday on the deck of our rental apartment in San Diego. She wandered in and wandered out. Paid no attention to me. Will we see her again?  No idea. Cats are such interesting creatures.

Lion: High Trump in the Jungle

The angry eyes do frighten me.
The mane, his crown, doth cause great fear,
and I recoil, my wish to flee.

The angry ayes do frighten me,
my voice, once loud, drowned out. His glee.
The king now rules, his roar severe.
The angry eyes do frighten me.
the main, his crown, doth cause great fear.

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Poetry form is a TRIOLET, suggested by Frank who hosts Meet the Bar today at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. A TRIOLET = 8 lines with iambic pentameter and an abaaabab rhyme scheme. If that’s not enough of a poetic sodoku for you: the 1st, 4th, and 7th lines must be the same; and the 2nd and 8th lines must be the same.

PHOTO taken yesterday at the incredible San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Yes, the lion was that close to me….but there was glass between us!

Parlor Game

Pick a plant most like you.
Obviously, she said,
Prickly Pear.

Haughty. High-society.
Stiletto heeled.
Rouged pink bosom blossoms,
bursts forth from green signature gown.
Rapier scathing words,
thorns thrown at his every overture.
Succulent indeed,
but peeling away her defenses?
Nigh to impossible.

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It’s Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today Mish asks us to include the word “peel” or a form of the word, in our quadrille: a poem of exactly 44 words, sans title.
What plant best describes you?

 

 

After watching the news . . .

if I put on lacy anklets
chalk hopscotch on my sidewalk
tie these grey locks into pigtails
and read Golden Books,
will everything be fun again?

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Written for Open Link Night at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. I’m “tending the pub today” and look forward to reading all the posts. Photo taken a few weeks ago at the Corvette Diner in San Diego’s Liberty Station – our waitress’ feet!

Back Again

She’d agreed to this assignment. Put retirement on hold for one more case to smoke out a mole. The honeypot. Dumb blonde stereotype. She still had the body for it, so she gave in to their persuasive pleas. And he’d fallen for it.

Now as he snored, she quietly rolled over, about to get up and finally walk out on this life. Until a cold blade chilled the back of her neck. No sounds except her gasp of shock. There are moments caught between heart-beats. Some see their whole life flash before their eyes. She saw only what could have been.

His hand tangled itself in her hair. Jerked her head back. One last look at that god-awful bare ceiling fixture. It looked different from this angle. More sinister than when she was lying on her back. The yellowed light flickered. Then sputtered out.

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Kim is hosting Prosery Night at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. She asks us to use the line “There are moments caught between heart-beats” from Louis MacNeice’s poem Coda in a piece of flash fiction that can be up to or exactly 144 words. Back Again is 144 words. Photo from pixabay.com. 
YES! Even though dVerse is usually poetry….this is a prompt for flash fiction, using an exact line from a particular poem.

Delectable

Strawberries.
Luscious dimpled red,
capped by emerald-leafed crowns.

Thumb and forefinger
pinch greenery,
slowly bring to mouth.

Eyes dilate.
Yearning at first sight
turns to absolute delight.

Sweetness explodes.
Taste sublime
brings smile divine.

Nectar-trickle escapes lips
stains white linen,
evidence of fulfilled lust

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Fulfilled hides the prompt word fill
Photo taken as we brought these amazing strawberries home from the Hillcrest Farmers Market in San Diego. Poem written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where today De asks us to include the word, or a form of the word, “fill” in our quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title). Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us! 

Waiting for Spring Tending

The small San Diego garden plot lies waiting. Remains stripped bare from summer past. Green straggling leggy vines meander over and under blunt-cut branches of a now anonymous plant. Dried tall corn stalks stand in leaning stance, blown by winds or simply bent from lack of care once the cobs were picked.

Long woody stems are capped by dry flower tops, their name a mystery to me. Brown scaled outer shell still holds tight to popped open pods. Each pod is perhaps six inches across and contains what looks like spiderweb short wisps of silken threads. I am smitten by these long-past-their-prime blooms and try to capture their beauty in photos – some in monotone black and white, others in their natural earth like tones. I am sad to know these plants, beautiful in their drying state, will soon be cleared as new seed is sown.

migratory bird
transports dried seed in plumage
beauty travels far

Photos taken Saturday, on a walk through the beautiful campus of San Diego State University. We came upon a small garden plot by the art buildings. It was obviously left untended until spring, when it will be cleared and replanted.

Written for Haibun Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today Frank asks us to write about the coming spring. Haibun: two or three tight paragraphs of prose (must be true) followed by a haiku that invokes a season.