The ravages of war are sometimes steeped in silence . . .

Orderly spaced headstones
gleam pristine in morning sun.
Blood stains and broken bodies,
beneath the verdant green.

Stilled smile in photo frame
clutched to breast each night.
Bereft widow lies in bed,
his voice only within her head.

Stanley, called to World War II,
assigned to stressful desk job.
Safe, his thankful family thought,
gentle soul far from battle.

But war destroys in different ways.
Pressure built. Commands grew harsh.
Time, country, lives at stake.
Stanley broke . . . mind imploded.

Other soldiers moved forward,
Stanley retreated inward.
Into the mind’s maze.
once in – no way out.

His world, one room. His eyes vacant.
No words. Only rare mutterings.
His way lost in the war,
once a brilliant mind, is where?

Weekly family visits
in his once was home.
Devoted family tried
tried to talk, to share.

You bring me to be with you
but Iamnot here

I amnotanywhere

The cacophony of war –
sometimes evident
in the silence we see.

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets where today Bjorn asks us to consider the poetry of war.
My first thought when I read this prompt, was of Arlington Cemetery. And I thought of the hushed silence in that sacred space. And then I thought of my husband’s Uncle Stanley who came back from World War II a different person. I am of the mind that war is hell . . . no matter one’s role in it.

Image from


Gaggle me group think
wisps of snipers
brooding, hence their evil
festers in murmuration.

Starlings not, cowards yes,
they prey on innocence
maim, murder,
crow hatred as they kill.

Life and exhaltation, a lark to them,
bombs strapped on chests
with heaven their goal,
wing straight to hell.

Let us become congregations
like plovers in flight with doves.
For they are small as one
but pure of heart,

powerful as they soar
symbols, nay beings
of peace and love.


Written for dVerse. De asks us to write a poem using the names given to gatherings of birds. She thoughtfully provided a wonderful list from which I’ve chosen the following: flight of doves, brood of hens, congregation of plovers, exhaltation of larks, gaggle of geese, murmuration of starlings, murder of crows, and wisp of snipe.  Photo credit: Nevit Dilmen.


What Fury We Hath Wrought

Moon sliver fades in and out through shards of clouds in pitch black sky. I peer from my window, wrapped in warm flannel, pane thrown open. Tree frogs mute with wailing winds. And I know, though I cannot see, ocean currents are whipped in fury, hurling themselves upon eroded shore.

Mother beats her breast
mea culpa my children
peace I cannot bring.


Written for dVerse Poet’s Pub, Haibun Monday #9. Hosted by Rajani who asks that our subject include the moon. Photo by Lucretia.