The Black Widow

Imagining herself on silver screen,
seductive in lace, she hosts a soiree.
She lures her guests, her evil goal unseen,
with delicate threads to lead them astray.
Her hourglass figure, tempting when seen,
is summoned to weave a web for her prey.
Beware,  Miss Arachnid’s truly notorious.
Her venomous kiss, always victorious.

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Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where today, Frank is hosting and asks us to write an Ottava Rima. A new form for me, and quite challenging. It is actually an old Italian form of poetry that has multiple stanzas of 8 lines, in iambic pentameter (10 feet per line), with an ababababcc rhyme scheme. Frank gave us a reprieve and said one stanza was acceptable. Iambic pentameter also involves a pattern of unstressed and stressed syllables — which I find extremely difficult — so I originally went with 10 syllables per line and avoided the stress! The version you just read, went back and aimed for the iambic pentameter. I have new admiration for Will Shakespeare! Stop over and see what others have done with the form — or better yet, give it a try yourself and join us — we’re a very friendly bunch! Photo in public domain.

Icelandic Lava Tubes

Descending into Earth’s belly
we clamber over solidified lava,
misshapen slabs, coarse and sharp.
Crouch. Walk. Crawl in darkness.
Her innards surround us.

Two thousand years have passed
since she belched fire
spewed molten fury
hurled detritus,
encased this land.

Liquid anger flowed and ebbed
cracked in cooling drafts
left behind tunnel pathways,
cold witness to those fury days.

My mouth agape,
body chilled to the bone,
we move through this, her confession,
the scars of a temper once unleashed.

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where Paul asks us to write a poem from our underground travels. Paul opens Tuesday Poetics at 3 PM Boston time.  Photos: from our recent excursion into the lava fields and extinct volcanoes outside Reykjavik, Iceland. We actually went underground and explored a 2,000 + year old lava tube. That’s me in the purple. Last photo is what the land above the tube looks like — that’s lichen growing on ancient lava fields. Very barren and harsh. Iceland is one of the world’s most sparsely populated countries. It has extensive volcanic and geothermal activity (see photos with my one sentence poem entitled Geyser. About 50% of Iceland is mountainous lava desert. Only 1% of their land is cultivated.

Geyser…

…belly full,
earth spews steam
in unseemly belch.


Photos from outside Reykjavik, Iceland. There are 300 volcanoes in Iceland. 50% of Iceland’s landmass is mountainous lava desert. The famous Blue Lagoon is in the midst of lava fields with waters heated by the natural geothermal heat “beneath the earth.”  These photos show the steam belching from the earth. In some places, large geysers shoot up. Iceland collects this geothermal energy and uses a system of pipes below streets in Reykjavik to keep streets from icing over and they also provide heat and electricity to homes in Iceland. Absolutely amazing to see.

Lysefjord

Echos of light reflect rugged beauty.
Silent walls of rock carved by glaciers,
mirror themselves in ancient seas.

We sail, necks craned,
staring, gaping in awe.

Awareness dawns
in setting sun.

We are but specks
on the scales of time.

       

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets where Monday’s quadrille (4o word poem, no more no less) prompt is to include the word echo within our poem. Photos from recent Norwegian Fjords cruise. 

Norwegian Fjords

Frosted in snow
gouged by ridges and crevasses
steep sentinels of time.

Tall giants anchored deep in sea
warmed by kinder sun as days extend,
they shed their winter cloak
rushing waterfalls from heights on high.

Simple homesteads perch on ledges
steep paths above cold waters.
Historical remnants,
they housed rugged folk.
Those who dared to live and love
within the soul of Norway’s fjords.



Photos while in Geirangerfjord, Norway. Absolutely stunning to see! 

Backyard Wonders

Introduction first : this poem is written by my 10 year old granddaughter, Stella Hallberg. She and I are sharing monthly prompts – for April, I sent her the word “glisten.” She could use any variation on the word. There are no edits here. This is what she wrote.

Backyard Wonders

I slip outdoors
left foot, right
sounds, sensations, engulfing me,
taking me far from my bustling home
into the undergrowth and brush.

The birds make thousands of different peeps
in a language not known among men.

The sunlight filters in through the trees
glistening like magic everywhere I look.

Gazing up I see the butterflies
seizing their chance in the spot light
forever free
to be stars in their hearts.

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And the Waters Live

Ghost riders no longer hover.
Train tracks dismantled long ago
phantom posts reveal their route. 

I did not mind their crossing,
if they could have glided silently
like parrot fish within my realms
or shape shifter clouds above.

It was the daily clatter,
metal wheels on transom
wide-open window chatter
reverberating rumbles.

I much prefer the quiet.
Hikers who gaze,
mesmerized by lapping waters,
sun glisten upon my face.

Occasional thunderstorms
pelt rain upon my scenic demeanor.
Rarer still, they apologize
reflecting rainbow arcs in smiles.


Posted for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets where today Mish asks us to “give nature a voice.” Photo from Bermuda — along the Old Railway Trail. The Bermuda Railway operated from October 1931 until May, 1948. The hiking trail stops and starts on various parts of the islands that make up Bermuda — with ruins of stations, trestles, and roadcuts. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Stop on by!