Photos for January Stones and April PAD 2012 property of M J Dills (exception 1/16)

Friday, April 30, 2010

The End

As this poetry ship sails into the sunset, I would like to thank you for all your support and appreciation. This has been a good month for poets. There have been features on several radio shows, television and even governmental recognition in these busy times. The only poem not posted is "Five Times," which I wrote on April 26 and just considered it too sappy. I did post it with the PAD Challange. Please peruse the poems and choose your favorite five. I will be submitting them to the PAD Challenge for the honor of being Poet Laureate of the Challenge. Even if I don't win, I have entered and there is true honor in that. Thanks again for reading.

The End

It’s over.
We pulled the plug and let go.
The curtain came down
At the end of the show.
You packed up your kit
And started the car,
Waved goodbye,
To follow your star.
Picked up your diploma.
Paid all your bills.
Checked off our lists;
We can head for the hills.
I swept the floor clean,
Switched the lights,
Tossed the key.
It’s over;
Time to face destiny.
We’ve parked, moored and docked
The ship to the shore,
The car in the port,
And the plane at the door.
We may have arrived,
As we say our goodbye.
The future’s the past
In the blink of an eye.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

And Suddenly

We expect our lives to rumble along in a fashion in which we wake up mornings, go to bed nights and perhaps have some minor interruptions. Huge changes only take a fraction of time to make a difference that may effect the remainder of many lives. To get back to a point of comfort is a major achievement.

And Suddenly

A warm morning
Fireplace crackling
Bitter cold on the windowsill
Frost tapping at the glass
Soup bubbling on the burner
Kitty curled in a corner
My music, my book
To comfort me
In an attempt to forget
How sweet was our life
And suddenly
Like an old star dying
Missing in its constellation
Changing all the pictures
Everything we knew
And trusted
Rethinking the future
Reconsidering the past

And this was my Haiku I was inspired to write:

Suddenly spring came
Winter had not been informed
Ice covered tulips

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Line

Today's prompt was to write about the end of the line, or a line of some kind. I had a hard time with this one but in the afternoon we were listening to Adele while driving in the car and I wrote this poem (more like song lyrics) imagining her singing it.

The Line

I kept giving you another chance
How many times I took you back
I always knew that our romance
Was on some wild railroad track
We wrecked, we wrecked
So many times
We loved the sorrow
Loved the bliss
The drama as our lives entwined
Crushed rose petals
Bloody kiss
I watched you walk away
Come back
The torment we devoured each day
The nights without you
Someone else’s arms about you
I swore that I would never doubt you
Sat beside a silent phone
Waiting for you to come home
Hoping that you drank alone
The train I rode was fueled on pain
I took you back again
Every time I loved you more
The line I drew was in the sand
Moving with the wind and rain
To lose you time and time again
Until I stopped and
Recognized that
You were never really mine

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Curandero April 27, 2010

Today's prompt was to write a poem about "hope."
After today there are three more days/poems. I would like you to vote on your favorite FIVE and will tell you how to do that in the next couple days. I will then be submitting them for the possible honor of Poet Laureate of the PAD Challenge. I appreciate your comments and support. Thank you SO MUCH for reading.

The Curandero

The curandero knocked on my gate.
I heard the little bell tinkling,
Set down my pen and my worries,
Received them with kisses and closed the door.
Maria Leticia led him by the hand
Through my kitchen,
While the cat followed them with her cobalt eyes,
Curled into a ball
Pulled one paw over her ear
As if to shut out any disturbance.
Chima was the curandero’s name.
His arms held fragrant bundles of
Basil, marigolds, coriander and pine sheaves.
On the bare tile floor
He lit a fire and stood me in its ring;
The heat flamed me in all places
And I hardly dared to breathe.
Maria Leticia made crosses in the air
With delicate fingertips dipped in scented water.
Candles burned at the edge of the circle
Where the greens and flowers lay in a pattern,
Smoked by the fire and sheltering its outer rim.
Chima spoke quickly and quietly
But I could hear his words
“Padre nuestro que estás en los cielos,”
With many “amen’s,”
Repeated countless times.
Mingling Magic with the Lord and Nature,
The chants pulled me into their spell,
And what wickedness dwelt in my house
Was banished, sent back to my enemies.
I was left with the scent of heaven
And hope.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Pachelbel’s Canon in D April 25, 2010

I find it redundant to write a poem based on the title of a song, the prompt that was given by Robert Lee Brewer. And so, in my attempt, I’ve chosen a piece of music that traditionally is without words.

Pachelbel’s Canon in D

German monks’ chins quiver
Voices raised in liquid harmony
Sorrows not quite forgotten
Blend in muted joy
While memories of mothers and possible lovers
Drift like motes
Through eyes closed to lives unlived
Waiting for angels’ embrace
Forgiveness of sins
The confusion of hope, faith
And the countenance of fear

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Firefly April 24 2010

The prompt today was to write a poem about evening.

The Firefly

The firefly appears in the soft evening light,
Fluttering from one branch to another,
Settling finally on one slumbering blossom,
Asleep for the night… yet
Emitting a hint of its daytime fragrance,
The firefly glows,
At times disappearing altogether,
Like a thought too painful to acknowledge.

Friday, April 23, 2010


"For today's prompt, write an exhausted poem. The poem can be a first person account of your own exhaustion, or it can describe the exhaustion of someone (or something) else. Heck, I guess it even could be about exhaust, huh?" Robert L Brewer wrote his poem today about his new baby and getting him to down for the night. I have come to realize that Robert is pulling these prompts out of his ass. I am proud to say I have been able to make something of them.


The wind has blown me to the wall.
I can hardly move at all.
I feel the sand that cakes my eyes.
I try, but I cannot rise.
My breaths are shallow, short and thick.
My head feels like a brick.
My feet and toes are made of jello
And my bones of marshmallow.
If I could, I’d surely crawl.
To try and stand, I know I’ll fall.
Like Alice down the rabbit’s hole
Escape was not the actual goal.
At both ends I’ve burned the candle;
A little more than I could handle.
The situation isn’t dire
But I’m tired of prompts that don’t inspire.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

EARTH DAY April 22, 2010

Earth’s conveyor belt, the ocean, is
Always moving her changing ecosystems, in
Rotation, while her atmosphere is
Terrorized by the burgeoning
Human population, the overwhelming majority

Damning themselves and generations to come
Aware only of their own needs,
Yet constantly complaining of climate chaos

April 21, 2010 According to My Mother

Thanks for all the kind comments and support. I promise you I will stop bashing you with poetry by the end of the month. Thanks for reading.

According to My Mother

According to my mother,
I have lived a little too high on the hog
And shouldn’t buy lattés,
Go on trips,
Or spend money on others,
Especially those who are not grateful.
According to my mother
I have been too generous
And my magnanimity is one reason I am in
The trouble I am in
My mother suggests I save my money
Budget wisely
And stop being so extravagant.
One day I will go to France
And drink wine in the Provences
Take in the Prado, the Louvre and
And buy Italian shoes in Italy.
I will “return” to my wasteful ways
Perhaps to truly be what my mother thinks I was.
This loss is not too big a wound to heal;
Not many losses on this kind can be said to be
Money is like love…
It is better to have and have lost
Than to not have had at all.

April 20, 2010 Mrs. Carlson

The prompt for today is: "Write a looking back poem." or "Write a poem that doesn't look back."

Mrs. Carlson

With a dignity that shows in old, elegant photos
Scattered through a house filled with
Memorabilia, dust and Tole painting,
Mrs. Carlson bides each remaining day.
The television shouts rubbish at her
Though she can’t hear a thing
So isn’t really bothered
But likes the company
Of daily soaps and dreary re-runs.
A basement filled with possessions
She hasn’t seen in years
And will rely on someone else
To judge their worth.
Images of a life spent
And now waiting for the inevitable
With patience and perhaps a little understanding.
On a lower shelf sits
A gilded frame encircling her
With three friends, dressed in a rainbow of satin gowns
In Norway, before she learned a new language and eventually
Became the person she is now,
Not completely aware of who comes and goes,
But smiling with firm satisfaction
At a hot cup of weak coffee.

April 19, 2010 Everett Ruess

The prompt for Monday was to write a poem about a person and use their name. My internet has been down until now. Following the poem is information about Everett for anyone who is interested. I actually wrote this poem last year and have tweaked it for this prompt. Thanks for reading.

Everett Ruess

Everett Ruess was found last year;
Seventy-five years after he went
It has been concluded that
Everett found death
(Not at all what he was looking for)
At the hands of youthful Utes,
Whose luck would be to find
A white man and two mules
In the high desert, traveling with no other company but
Lofty ideals.
Everett was
Seeking gentleness,
Detaching himself from
An absolutely perfect life
(Or so some might think).
Everett wanted simply to be immersed in beauty
(Or so he said).
Everett Ruess lay dead,
At the age of twenty,
Buried by a stranger.
His saddle settled on a ledge
Above his head
For seventy-five years;
Killed for
Having gone too far alone.

Seventy-five years ago, a young man named Everett Ruess rode off alone into the Utah wilderness, never to return. The mysterious disappearance of the 20-year-old artist and writer baffled thousands and inspired several books and a film. Now, a team of geneticists and forensic anthropologists has finally put the mystery to rest.
Ruess was raised in Los Angeles and moved to San Francisco during the Depression. He tried to make a living at his art — cutting wood block prints and writing poetry. But even as artists like Ansel Adams and Maynard Dixon reached out to him, Ruess turned his back on city life. He said it drained him and left him uninspired.
At age 16, Ruess took two mules and immersed himself in the beauty of the Southwest. For four years, he wrote, painted and sketched, enchanted by what he saw.
"The beauty of this country is becoming a part of me," one of his letters reads. "I feel more detached from life and somehow gentler. I have good friends here, but no one understands why I am here and what I do. I've gone too far alone."
In November 1934, Ruess stocked up on supplies in the town of Escalante, Utah. He then headed into the empty expanse of Davis Gulch, frequented only by sheepherders, cattle rustlers and outlaws.
Ruess never came out of the desert.

April 18, 2010 To Wren; A Message Undelivered

The prompt today is To_______
I guess you could do just about anything with that. So I did.

To Wren; A Message Undelivered

Your mother never meant you to be caged,
Though she named you for a bird.
How was it that you locked yourself in and hid the key?
But that was long ago.
The last time I saw you, you were so thin
In your tattered sleeves, concealing your weary arms,
Fingertips fluttering,
To your lips,
Your throat,
Your lips again.
Your eyes cinders in a wild, pale mask.
I remember when you sister said,
“We’ve lost him. Wren has blown.”
“Flown?” I said.
She rolled her eyes.
She’d grown sick of that.
“He could be dead for all we know,”
And her lack of remorse pierced me.
I asked about you in all the usual places but by then
Even the people had changed;
No one knew.
Someone thought you’d gone to Arizona where it was warm.
But Davy said
“Not there; too many Goldwaters.”
And then we stopped asking.
You became a person in our history,
My poems,
Davy’s tiny pencil drawings.
You went the way, Wren, so many went:
Scattered, like wild seeds in a hungry field.

April 17, 2010 THE NAVIGATOR

Today we were supposed to write a poem about Science. I'm offering this and claiming sea, navigation and ornithology. Thanks for reading.

The Navigator

An eagle flew
Taking advantage of our draft.
I’d seen this many times with gulls, terns,
But never an eagle.
My intent to stay on course was thwarted by swells
That forced tacking;
Into the trough,
Out of the trough;
The harbor in sight
But not growing closer
Or so it seemed.
The stern wheel spun
Under my deadened fingers,
My eyes straying to the compass setting,
Back to the eagle,
On to the harbor,
Bur mostly at the angry sea.
My captain,
Stricken with some complaint,
Left his trust in me
And languished below,
While I tackled battle after battle
With Neptune and his leagues.
The eagle left me as I finally rounded the bulkhead;
I saw him light atop a tall fir
As I tossed my lines to
Chattering boaters who helped me tie up
And told of watching my approach,
The eagle as my guide.
The skipper rose from the hatch,
Blinked his eyes, his ailment yet lingering
Said “what’s this?” and
Held up a
Shimmering tail feather,
Light as air;
A final indication of fortune, fate
And talisman of the navigator.

APRIL 16, 2010 A Good Leaving

Today's prompt is to write a poem about death. My dad died February 11, 1985, at home in his own bed, surrounded by his loving family. It seems like yesterday sometimes.

A Good Leaving

When Dad hallucinated, he said Charlie McCoy was standing in the corner
Playing his mouth harp. We thought that was a good thing; it relieved us momentarily while Charlie took over.
There was an insistent fly on the window and it irritated the hell out of Dad;
Though I never saw the fly, I killed it many times.
I wrote in my blue, ratty spiral notebook about all the things Dad saw; sat in the hall
or at the foot of his bed and listened, wrote.
The doctors said the cause was chemical changes in the brain.
I thought it was Dad’s imagination
And his lively memory.
He was losing his body but his recollections were alive.
After eighty action-packed years, his parts wore out.
I think he saw heaven when he sat up
and reached with both heavy, swollen hands
for something he said was beautiful. So beautiful.
Hours later he was gone, maybe to that place.
It was a dark hour my cousin nudged me awake.
We put coffee on and called the sheriff,
Then waited for the coroner to come on the first ferry boat.
My brother keened on his hands and knees; his cries pierced my middle.
My mother wrung her hands like I’d never really seen her do.
She relied on me. I’d never seen that either.
I know Dad touched me from the other side but that’s a story for a different occasion.
I still have his gold rimmed eyeglasses and finger them from time to time.

APRIL 15, 2010 Winter’s Appearance Failed This Year

In honor of tax day, Robert has given the prompt to write a poem about a deadline. Somewhat inspired by the mild NW winter and early spring, I leave the interpretation up to the reader. “Winter’s Appearance Failed This Year” is written in iambic tetrameter in homage to Frost.

Winter’s Appearance Failed This Year

Winter’s appearance failed this year.
Before we knew it, spring was here.
Most of us were caught by surprise,
Deadlines for planting weren’t clear.

We’ll be plagued this summer by flies
Whose larvae we can theorize
Survive as malevolence can
When wearing seasonal disguise.

I think of a child lost to man,
Believes he’s done all that he can,
But loses what he holds most dear,
Circles back to where he began.

He puts the seed, he sheds a tear,
Will not give in, will feign good cheer,
And resurrect his hope sincere,
And resurrect his hope sincere.

April 14, 2010 SUCIA ISLAND

We have been given another blank.
______Island is the prompt.
Many of the participating poets are grumbling about the lack of emotional content and imagination in these prompts. I’m going with Sucia, named for its reefy, rocky shores (Spanish for dirty), by the conquering explorers who named islands, coves and bays at whim. They should have branded this one Paraiso (paradise). It is one of the northernmost San Juan Islands and uninhabited. We often anchored there.

Sucia Island

Water lapping under the open porthole;
A larger boat in the passageway
Favoring the night for travel
While we prefer the day,
Finding safe anchors in places
Like Ewing Cove.
Salt air fills the head
Like a sleeping drug
And we awake revived
From the weary battle with
The Strait the day before.
Easing up the companionway at sunrise,
Bringing water to boil in the galley,
Mixing the ocean and seaweed odors
With coffee and cinnamon.
Off the stern, I wipe away the heavy dew
And settle in the early day sunbeams.
A seal pup pokes his whiskered face above the surface
Black eyes curious
Disappears and reappears
Amusing me with his sport.
Shorebirds twitter and dart
Playing tag with their bigger counterparts
Dropping shells, berries and twigs
According to the task at hand.
An eagle dips and everyone scatters.
I hear rattling cups below and unfold the charts
To map the day.

April 13, 2010 A Love Poem

Robert's prompt for today is "Write a Love Poem," which I believe I did yesterday. So here is my contribution:

Love Poem

I thought I was in love
Heck, I knew I was.
The way my heart flipped around
Inside my underdeveloped chest,
I could barely catch my breath.
I wanted to cry,
Let it all out.
And fickle?
I couldn’t begin to decide who would
Be the lucky one
To deflower me.
Going through a list that expanded
Faster than my 45 collection;
Brian Carl Mike Dennis Al
John Ringo George Paul
Fabian to Donovan…
My taste in romance
Diverse as my ken for music.
Enrico Caruso
Of strong possibilities
And Jack Jones,
(With those bedroom eyes),
I could have danced all night
With Bobby Darin,
Even when he became passé.
Ah, love…Teen Idol Love.
A phase so wonderful…
To have it and yet
Know none of the reality.
I’ve no idea who Jason Bieber is.
Zac Efron blew by in just a moment’s notice
Under my unwitting nose.
But I envy every little girl
Who tapes those posters
Above her bed,
And lives for the day
Jason or Zac
Or some other beautiful, youthful boy
Will visit her dreams,
Until she has that growing-up-moment;
A kiss,
A feel,
A simple word
That changes everything
About the tune of love.

April 12, 2010 SAYULITA

Robert's post this morning: "For today's prompt, pick a city, make that the title of your poem, and write a poem. Your poem can praise or belittle the city. Your poem could be about the city or about the people of the city. Your poem could even have seemingly nothing to do with the city. But the simple act of picking a city will set the mood (to a certain degree), so choose wisely."


I have forgotten
The black shiny sand stuck to my bare feet
Always came home with me
Ending up on my shower floor day after day.
Mosquitoes attacking me
When the sun went down and
In the early damp bittersweet morning.
“Your blood so sweet,” you said.
It was long ago and so I have forgotten
Unsaddling the horses
After a long day;
The pungent scent of their toiling sweat,
How they swayed,
Your tender care to every detail
Without a notion of the time.
Cicadas screamed in the jungle
As you sang in your strident voice
A song about “Only Once.”
The yellow flame of candles
Flickering under the smudged glass of hurricane lamps.
But this, too…I have forgotten.
Dusty streets and rutted roads
Rusting buses rumbling through the town,
Never early, never late.
Old men playing dominoes in shaded doorways;
As their knobby fingers shuffled tiles.
Vendors in the square
With sleeping babies in blankets strung from palm to palm;
Children sucking on tied plastic bags full of flavored water,
Bees buzzing
Around tacos stands;
The odor of sizzling chicken, roasting pork,
Chiles, cilantro.
Ice cold Modelo. In a can.
“You wanna beer?” you would say.
Before the surfers took over.
Just the brown skinned local boys
Out on the waves, bobbing, fingers fluttering
Waiting for an early morning curl;
Gone by afternoon to jobs that required white shirts,
Leaving the ocean empty with nothing but diving pelicans.
Before the realtors came and brought internet
And cash machines,
Paved roads, bridges, rich women.
Since I have forgotten,
I can accept with no regret that
Time erases memory,
Closes wounds and doors,
So that I no longer recall your
Big laugh and your little laugh,
Your childish jokes,
Your cousin’s house,
Your sister’s café,
The street in your father’s name: your name.
Our long drives over the mountain,
To and from,
From and to.
But it no longer matters,
For Sayulita has changed...
And I no longer remember.

April 11, 2010 The Last Apple

Yesterday's horror poem didn't seem to go over too well. My poet group liked it fine but my regular fans may have been taken a little aback. (A few Sebold comments were made and that was very much in mind; if you're going to write "horror," you may as well may it horrible.) Wait 'til you see the Sestina, which I am sure will be assigned, a metered poem that I consider a waste of time in this challenge but it does exercise certain meter muscles. Today is another Fill The Blank (which curdles the blood of some of the participants) but I have come up with an apple. (Really, truly... thank you for reading.)

The Last Apple

The last apple
Was left on the tree.
“For the apple gods,” Elmer said.
Every tree picked bare,
But for one apple;
The last apple
Given back to the earth
In thanks for all her bounty.
Prayers filled with hope
That next year’s yield
Will be as grand and abundant,
Healthy and hearty.
Wearily as I climb down the ladder
Stretching my back, hands on hips,
I gaze at the last apple
On this, the last tree,
In the last moment of the last long day
Of apple picking;
A day filled with singing and
Cheerful greetings,
Silence and broad long shouts,
Camaraderie amongst man
And apples.

April 10, 2010 horror

For today's prompt, write a horror poem. Make it scary. Make it cheesy. Make it funny. Whatever you do, link it somehow to horror."
I could have done cheesy or funny but then that wouldn't have been horror, really. I didn't like this prompt when I started it (not that I'm any kind of Wes Craven) but it's okay, as far as this type of thing goes, I suppose.


as fast as her legs will carry her
catching herself just before a sprawl
the terror of giving up
heart pounding
so loud
her eardrums may explode
the sun a memory of the day
as trees lengthy shadows disappear
blend into one blackness
dark makes a complete descent
she can hear his ragged breath
twigs snapping and
soft scent of pine and bracken
innocent leaves
fallen with the chill autumn air
unwillingly disturbed
divulge her position
it is impossible
the beam of his torch
reveals the wet wood, the browness of the forest
in brilliant streaks
and his dog
can tear her to bits at one simple command
pink tender skin
she stops
curls like a soft weak snail
who has lost its shell
she understands
as the dog stands over her and snarls
his hot breath on the back of her neck
muddy shoes and ragged jeans
what she sees
with one open eye
and pulls her thin sweater over her head
it’s finished. she is done.

April 9, 2010 A Girl at Sixty

Here is the prompt for April 9:
"For today's prompt, write a self-portrait poem.Other artists study themselves to create compositions (not all of them exactly flattering either), so it is only natural that poets, who are word artists, write self-portrait poems from time to time. In fact, some poets make self-portrait poetry "their main thing." For at least today, make it yours."

Self-Portrait of a Sixty Year Old Girl

Inside me lives a girl.
An adventurer who
Wears skirts just a skosh below her cheek-line,
Holds a microphone with absolute command.
Babies at her breasts, overflowing with mother nectar;
Dances in the sand,
Or backwoods tav;
Shoots pool, plays poker, rides biker mama,
Challenges cowboys, cops and all authority;
Hitchhikes at freeway on-ramps;
Writes letters home
Telling weary lies;
A seamstress, farmer, carpenter,
Who forsakes aging
And won’t surrender
To swollen knuckles,
Stiff ankles,
Bloated belly,
Sensing the girl within,
Noting surprise
At the unfamiliar old woman
In the mirror.

April 8, 2010 My Father's Nail Set

"For today's prompt, pick a tool, make that the title of your poem, and write your poem."

My Father’s Nail Set

I have my father’s nail set.
Made of cast steel,
Its patterned gripping surface
Has been worn through the decades,
Giving a familiar firm home to fingers that grasp it.
The flat point is somewhat rounded and smooth now
And it sets a nail with absolute perfection;
No sliding, no drifting to mar a perfect surface.
My father gifted me this nail set when I was a carpenter,
Taking it from a vast collection in his basement shop
That smelled like must, dust, pipe smoke and crankcase oil.
He gave me a hammer, too and some other tools,
But it is the nail set that I treasure.
He had many nail sets but this one, this one was his best, he said.
It was made for fine-work and he expected me to use it well.
I learned to set a nail in place, a nail that had been pounded
Into a surface, with just a smidgen poking up…
To be gently tapped firm,
Made pretty with a fingertip of putty;

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Until Light April 7, 2010

Another "fill-in-the-blank" prompt. This time "Until _____."
This is a bit of a rush job. Not my best but I am quite sure, not my worst, either.

Until Light

Muffled sound of
Late night cars
Whisper along in the street below.
A car alarm, close or far, I can’t tell
Gives off erratic songs
Changing meter, volume, pattern
In the effort to wake someone (anyone).
Errant drops sift through leaves in the gutter
And fall,
Banging out a rhythm on some hidden piece of tin.
Refrigerator humming
With an occasional clunk
Adds to the thump of my heart,
Ticking clock
Keeps a beat near my ear
In its quest to jangle me
Mere moments before I’ve fallen asleep.

April 6, 2010 MARY

The prompt for today is to write an ekphrastic, which is poetry that "imitates, describes, critiques, dramatizes, reflects upon, or otherwise responds to a work of nonliterary art, especially the visual."

The accompanying visuals for today’s prompt were a photo of Jessica Biel as Pocahontas (smarmy; you can google it if you like) and Goya’s Flight of the Witches (not. pretty.)
SO! I am inspired to write about my great-grandmother, Mary Elizabeth Micheaux, who on her birth certificate was said to be 1/2 Cherokee Indian and 1/2 French fur trapper, with a grandmother by the name of Pocahontas Culpepper (you can google that, too, where you will find a connection to Africa, which might explain some genetic revelations in my family’s offspring.)
This is a photo of Mary and two of her children, who would have been aunt and uncle to my father. Mary had ten children of her own and helped raise my father and his brother.

Grandmother to Scores, Granddaughter of Pocahontas

From a faded image of
You and yours,
Descendants of true American royals;
Still disputed to be of genuine African lineage,
Where real monarchs came from,
(Yet called “high yellow”
By the ill-bred),
I see your majesty
In noble nose,
Head held up;
Children at your beck.
You are content in your veiled nobility
Unaware of your effect
On future voyeurs,
Who seek
Chiefs and warriors,
Only to discover
A princess of Pocahontas pedigree.
My pride comes with satisfaction
I am of sovereign line
To stand tall, reach high.

April 5, 2010 La Tentación

Today's prompt was to write a poem about TMI. I took an old poem that had been waiting for some redemption and re-worked it. I think it falls into the TMI category.
Thanks for all your comments, emails and support. I really appreciate it.

La Tentación

Walking up the shadowed hill
With a bucket of live lobster balanced between us
We stopped to listen. The music
Drifting thru the iron bars of a dirt floor café
Captured us;
We… moths
To the flame.
The horn player leaning back in his
repose, Spied us with a single eye
Knowing us
and our contest.
We slipped in the doorway and
slowly settled the tin bucket
‘til it found the floor;
(clacking sounds of claws clambering
ignored us with intention to escape.)
Your fingers, still wet with the sea
Wound a nest in my hair.
You held me in sway
And bit my bare pink shoulder
Your damp hair, your bare feet, your white teeth
still linger in my present senses.
It wasn’t really dancing what we did
Intoxicated by Scent and Sound.
Damn that smiling waitress
And offered us her room.

April 4, 2010 Easter

Today's prompt is to write something about history.


Easter Sunday morning
Forty four years past…
In my dreamy almost sleep,
(Wondering if Easter bunnies bring baskets for teenage girls)
I hear the fuzzy sound, with some familiarity, of a ringing phone
And then my mother’s cries.

I am suddenly awake and soon, dressed sloppily
Trailing behind her,
In the chill spring morning
I watch my grandfather sob
His shoulders quake and he keens
“My pal, my pal…”
As we wait for the coroner to arrive.

The night before I watched my delicate little grandmother
Eating peaches
“It’s for you,” she said as she pointed to the porcelain bust of my treasured
Hans Christian Andersen, peering down from the mantel.
“Someday,” I said.
Spoon poised halfway between the little crystal bowl
And her tilted face,
I watched her nod. And nod again.

My mother insisted we go to church
And so, of course we did
The cloying Easter lilies.
I am still affected by their scent.
The Kyrie droning in my middle
For days and days
Until replaced by some insistent Beatles tune.

This day, when I see my mother
We shall celebrate her eighty-ninth Easter
Once again she will remind me
(As if I could forget)
And we will remember my grandmother
Her shape
Her smell
Her soft bosom, her many aprons,
Her sweet smile, her exclaimed “oof-das”
Her Danish ways
And we will pass the history on.

April 3, 2010 Partly to Blame

Today's prompt is to fill in the blank of "partly _____."
I admit, "fill in the blank" prompts are not high on my inspiration list.

I know that I am partly to blame;
That I can’t deny.
But I won’t take the entire burden
For things that have gone awry.
I never made false promises
Or promised them the sky.
I did my best with all I could
And did more than get by.
To stand alone so thankless
I tire of asking why,
It’s time to slip into the night
And simply say “goodbye.”

April 2, 2010 Kelsey Fontaine

PAD Poetry Challenge

The prompt for today is “Water”

Kelsey Fontaine

Fontaine his mother named him.
“Why?” cried the father
Who was consigned to the sea.
“Name him Kelsey, who is Cenal’s land,
Anything but water.”
And so it was he was named for both.
Torn between the two;
Finding comfort not in oceans
Nor mountains, rivers nor trees.
Disabled as a fisherman, hunter, farmer
Or boat builder.
Unable to drink it;
“Turns ya to rust,” he bellowed in the pub
And ate great hunks of meat.
He fathered none, as no clean woman
Would come near a man
Who’d rather burn than bathe.
His moral compass vanished
Along with all the rest;
The sun and moon and stars
Were lost to guide him.
As ale his only companion,
Friend of none,
Nor even the priest who’d first presented him to the
Fluid of life,
While he wailed in the font
Like the child of a banshee.
Cursed by a name;
Never truly dry,
Drowned in drunken tears,
Commited to a pyre…
The ground too frozen with ice
To make a grave.

April 1, 2010 PAD Challenge LONELY

I have decided it might be a really good idea to post my PAD poems here on my Blog! the dates are going to be all screwed up until the 22nd of April but that's okay. They will all be April posts.
Here is Number One:

Today is the beginning of the Writer's Digest PAD (Poem a Day) Challenge. For the third year in a row, I will be writing from a daily prompt to come up with an appropriate poem. Being the perfectionist I am, it can be agonizing to post on the site with such short notice but I will do my best to not embarrass myself.

Today’s prompt is “Write a lonely poem.”


To say that I miss him
Is to listen to each drop of rain
Falling apart from all others, lost in its own rhythm,
Like tapping on a timpani;
One fingertip, one thought, one inspiration.

To say that I miss him
Is to listen to
The human metronome:
The heart.
My beat alone
Unshared, uncommon.

I am surrounded
Yet stand solo,
Missing him
Not in my crowd.

To say that I miss him
Is to confess that I loved him.
Yes, how I loved him.

The night, in its silence,
Makes my ear sentient,
Accepting my single self
To be alert to all sounds, all notices, all alarms,
And to the notion
That I miss him.