Reunion 2019

Somewhere above the sun
Mor Mor, Far Far,
Grampa and Gramma Hallberg,
Pat, Jay,
Ina, Wes,
Bertha, Bud,
Florence and Milt
shine bright,
smile so proud,
knowing they live on.
Three generations strong
remember.
Still gather
to laugh, love and care.

“Far Far” is my father’s father in Swedish; “Mor Mor”, my mother’s mother. Photos from this past weekend’s family reunion in the Adirondacks. See previous poem for fun pics!

Quadrille (44 words sans title) with prompt word “sun” written for dVerse.

There comes a time. . .

Developing her own voice
testing her wings,
child no longer.
He understood as a poet does,
metaphorically . . .
you cannot tether a bluebird to your wiles,
no matter how loose the string.

Written in response to Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Linda is hosting and asks us to write a poem inspired by one of six particular paintings by Jacquline Hurlbert. I’ve selected Bluebird’s Journey, with permission of the artist. Find all paintings and information about the artist at jhurlbert.com

Wandering Troubadour

Serial killer, folksong singer,
croons Pete Seeger tunes.
Strums guitar strings
while pressing fret on neck.

Wicked smile then splays his lips
when nightfall comes, he changes gigs.
Metal strings undone from fret
now seek a human neck.

Reminder note:
new strings needed tomorrow.

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Kim hosts Quadrille Monday today at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. She asks us to include the word “fret” or a form of the word, in our post. Quadrille: a poem of exactly 44 words, sans title. Photo from Pixabay.com

Number Me Not

Somedaze
life is like a giant Sudoku.
I should fit in here.
So (how) do I?
So-do I do ok
with you?

I’m good with Jumbles.
I can fill in those kind of blanks.
______ and I are ______.
But I don’t do numbers.
Not like that. Not linear.
So not Sodoku.

Can we just
turn the puzzle page . . .
please?
Better yet,
let’s get a different book . . .
can we paint by numbers instead?

I‘m hosting OLN (Open Link Night) at dVerse today, the virtual pub for poets. Why not drop by and post any one poem of yours so we can all enjoy?  Photo from Pixabay.com

Walk with me . . .

Warning: Pack lightly when traveling abroad. Leave ethnocentrism at home.
Cultural biased cataracts blur the view of many.

Come walk with me in Busan,
savoring South Korea’s largest fish market.

My eyes espy wriggling, clinging, squid and octopi.
Cartiliaginous skates with long dead eyes,
phallic shaped Gaebuls beside sea worms,
long slithering swarm-swimming eels.

I jerk back reflexively
as red knobby sea pineapple
squeezed slightly by seller,
shoots its swallowed water at me.

So many live fish, tank after tank,
humongous to small.
Dried. Pickled.
Crustaceons. Amphibians too.

Offered sannakji to eat,
small “baby” octopus barely chopped,
some not.
Dipped in sesame oil,  swallowed like that.

I would feel them
squirm down my throat.

I remind myself silently –
Things are not better. Things are not worse.
They’re just different.

Then politely I simply say,
no thank you
and smile . . .
and stroll away.

Sarah hosts Poetics today at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. She tells us about her love for visiting markets – especially when on holiday. It’s something we always do when visiting another country…..visit markets and grocery stores. It’s always so very interesting to experience culinary culture. And yes, Sarah wants us to go to market today!

Photos from our April trip where we did indeed visit the amazing fish market in Bousan. Over 500 booths — so many kinds of sea creatures!!!

Prosery I

She stumbled through life, nomadic in her search for meaning. Somehow alone when surrounded by others. Even more alone with the one identified by many, as her true love. She finally fled the good life in New York City, to homestead in Montana. Cleared the land, blisters budding on calloused hands. Days passed into nights and nights into days. She savored their rhythm, beginning to understand who she was. Only then did she put pen to paper . . .

. . . Please know, we never could be, even when we were. My voice was too matched to yours. I am not who you heard or saw. I never was. Do not search for me. When far away, an interrupted cry reminds you of that last night, please know that cry, from wherever it comes, is my spirit thanking you, for letting go.

Word Count: 144. Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today Bjorn hosts, and begins, a new category of writing for dVerse: Prosery. Prosery is similar to Flash Fiction, but with a dVerse spin! Writers must write a piece of fiction with 144 words or less, that includes a particular line of poetry, provided by the dVerse host. For the inaugural Prosery prompt, Bjorn asks us to include the line “When far away an interruped cry” taken from the poem acquainted with the night by Robert Frost.

Eulogy

Lost too soon . . .
gathered in pews
eyes tear-glistened,
memories spill from pulpit.

Amazing Grace reverberates
voices swell in unison.
Hear us missing you,
lost too soon.

Written for Tuesday’s Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Amaya prompts us to “Cry Me a River” — write about a song that brings us to tears or makes us melancholy. 
Photo from Pixabay.com

When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth, you are weeping for that which has been your delight.
Khalil Gibran

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Juxtaposition

Some say
art attempts to mimic life
represent what is.
Sunrise, sunset, shifting clouds.
Feelings within, so real and so deep.
Elation, grief, giddiness, disbelief.

Innumerable mediums
used to model, massage,
meld, shape,
perhaps punctuate.
To express what is
what was or what could be.

Juxtaposers of the real
and the contrived.
Can we identify the essence,
make that available to another?
Or does the essence change
by the time or while we try?

That moment of utter despair.
Does it curdle
as we convey its circumstances,
its shredding of our soul?
Can we freeze reality
in paint, or clay; words or tale?

Or is all art
but a flicker of perception,
the artist’s, the essence,
and the observers as well.
Never static,
though made apparently so.

Poem was motivated by a walk in Boston’s Public Gardens last week, when I took the first photo of the beautiful and graceful swans with the Swan Boats in the background. 
History: The Swan Boats have been in operation since they were created by Robert Paget in 1877.  He was inspired to make them after seeing Lohengrin, based on a German tale where a character rides on a swan. In 1877 the bicycle was gaining in popularity so he created the swan boat using a catamaran with benches, powered by pedaling, similar to pedaling a bike. The photo on the right is from the late 1800s. Interesting to note: the swan boats are still operated by the Paget family….and still have the original design. Tourists flock to ride them….and my grandchildren love them! 

 

Down under the bridge . . .

she rolls words round her tongue,
mingled with saliva slurs.
Thick words, rich like dark beef-gravy,
some whispered with spicey-hot plots.

She cooks up campfire tales,
huddled over dumpster fires.
Her cronies, eyes glazed,
listen intently, hands over flames.

Homeless, devastating
s’more-less, too-real scene.

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Quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title) written for dVerse where Kim asks us to use the word “rich.”  Photo from Pixabay.com

I am . . .

labeled Taurus by sun,
emerald green by hue.
Fire and earth,
my elements.
1947,
year of the pig.

All this I am told.
All this I read . . . and ignore.
You are my mirror.
In you, my reflection
has no labels,
no boundaries.

You release me,
you always have.
I suspect
you always will.
Stalwart, loving,
supportive, accepting.

Together,
two individuals
side by side,
in sync.
Two harmonious melodies
with unique time signatures.

Two strong vines,
you and I, intertwined.
We blossom sans labels,
sans categorizing systems.
We soar in harmony,
Zodiac be damned.

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Amaya is hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. She asks us to consider cosmology, the various systems that define us by elements, astrology, etc. Image is from a family album of geneology I am creating. That is my writing…and this is actually a page from my father’s desk calendar, ripped out the day I was born; laminated, and carried by him in his wallet until the day he died. He had another one from the day my brother was born. That small block printing “LILLIAN” below the calendar, is his handwriting. A draftsman, he always wrote in block print.