Wednesday, December 31, 2014

End of year haiku..

Welcome the New Year
Let peace and love be our goals
It's still possible

Winds left broken trees;                                                        
tilted, uprooted, fallen
Sun floods forest floors

Skies break wide open
Stars leap from cold indigo
Reality bites

Fallen from a bluff,
a cottage now is kindling
Rains caused much sadness

Ease racial tensions;
no keeping score anymore
Unarmed can be tazed

Iraqi war toll
take responsibility
for torture, murder

Life is worth living
then brains can  become quite ill,
Most joy slips away

Welcome the New Year
wipe the tears and blood away
Now is the right time

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Winter retreat...


The last Saturday of the month is Open Link Night  at and we are all writing what we are feeling, thinking, or celebrating this holiday season.  There will be a well deserved break until after the New Year, when the hosts who tend bar will open the doors in again in January 2015.

I've waited for snow laden firs
edged in hunter green,
to see the white owl blend into 
a bank of birch trees
Whose design was it - who opted 
for a palette white,
then threw in blues skies as backdrop,
with bright stars at night? 

I've waited for the wind to brush 
white powder from boughs
cedar, spin it into tempests
that whirl from fence posts
to a newly made white meadow
As I've seen icicles melting,
drip by drip, my heart 
miraculously keeps thumping; 
I breathe in and out

I've waited to hear loud cracks of
ice laden branches 
I have scattered mixed nuts and seeds, 
watched them disappear 
I've seen dried, shriveled
leaves skip across the crusty snow,
turning sharp cartwheels, 
darting in and out crevices
of the broken barn

I've heard a tree fall with a thump
loud in the dark night,
seen acres of shimmering snow
reflecting the sun
I've waited for the fabric of 
chickadee feathers 
that closely mimics a man's suit  -
with a cheery orange 
and chestnut accent on his wing 

I've waited for days of winter
the peace of solstice
warmed by a mulled hot cider mug
and a warm bonfire
Today as the earth is turning,
I'll look out to sea
And I'll be waiting for the spring - 
when my heart flies with butterflies
as they emerge from their retreat

This is your birthday song..

Yesterday was your birthday
I called you long distance
It was good to hear your voice, 
as always
Not long ago, 
you shared Santa's knee with me,
a black and white photo.
I look like a young Jane Wyman; 
and you, wide-eyed, age 3-4
I always felt I knew you best; 
and you pretty much understood me
You were scrawny, skinny, 
yet you were a feisty baseball player -
Speedy Gonzales
I was a beanstalk and plain. 
You stuck up for me;
I was a tattle tale 
We grew up in different directions, 
traveled dissimilar roads.
Little did we know then 
who we would be today.
Our lives were based in fiction, 
a too perfect family 
with secrets
We lived under patriarchal control  
Feelings rarely validated,
we weren't allowed 
to make up our own minds
We learned hard lessons
as teens and adults; real problems arose 
after we had our own families
Struck with facing hard issues with 
incorrect or obsolete information, 
based on wrong premises,
signals sent to us were inherently misleading
Our responses therefore,
way off base
We lacked self-esteem;
day to day life required counseling
or sublimation to one certain something
We've come a long way, 
but our children suffered some 
as we tried to break the cycle
of dysfunctionality. 
Funny looking back, 
how you loved to tease and poke me 
You gave me Indian burns, 
socked me in my upper arm
I chased you out of the bathtub 
we used to share

Then there was space and time 
between us.
We battled to get our equilibrium back.
We admire each other's talent, 
give encouragement and support
We appreciate each other's talents, 
cheer on each other's growth.
We talk things out
Yesterday you turned 65
We have a lot to look forward to still, 
if we just take care.
You with your RiverDance 
and I and my clumsiness, 
will always be friends.
When I'm gone, 
it would be so strange for you;
when you are gone it would seem 
so odd to me
But for now we celebrate, 
have a good time
You tell me your joke and I'll tell you mine,
Happy Birthday, brother.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Bread and wine...

We climbed the last steps up the hill
carrying a picnic basket
to a clearing of soft green grass
I spread a blanket on the ground
where we lay back comfortably
In the basket, bread she had made
with her loving and winsome hands
She put out the Manchego cheese,
and candied fruit made from her own
spring flowering quince tree

The bread she had kneaded with care,
still warm from the oven's hot fire,
smelled of our home's kitchen and hearth
and tasted of the salty air
of the sea that welcomed us there
Bread that filled places in her heart
relaxed deep lines crossing her face
eased the toll long years had taken,
Almost like something magical -
helped avert the precipice' edge

We opened a bottle of wine
made from loganberries she picked
from wild bushes nearby; now she
writes in purple script in blank sky
her life story with ink from the
loganberry wine
On the horizon, parting clouds,
the color of home made whipped cream,
rise with the help of afternoon steam
Preparation and a giant
leap of faith are necessary
for there are chasms along the way

If the point is to only love,
and relationships are the bread
and butter of life, all that really matters,
she would let there be no voids where
hearts once played, no echoes fading
into the hands of father time
In spite of deep grief and sorrow,
and chimney sweeps have gone away,
She wishes for her family  -
forever mornings of birdsong,
rock candy afternoons, moonbeams
to lead an unfinished opus
for never ending evenings

We are writing about bread today at     dVerse

Thursday, December 11, 2014


Arrived early yesterday in Freetown,
moored the skiff alongside the quay,
where the harbor runs into the long spit -
within sight of the stone bridge
spanning the mouth of the river
There was a high tide as the current surged,
debris had washed ashore
As the tide recedes, it leaves
 a lacework of brown foam
As children we spent long summer days
on the banks making little blue paper boats
with white paper sails,
setting them off to float downstream
...I dozed off as I was daydreaming

Then, it rained for 4 days and 4 nights
As it continued to pour, clearly, 
it became an emergency
I worried the already restless animals 
would be spooked, there would be chaos,
my duties impossible to complete
Inches of rain turned to feet faster than I could measure
Engulfed land became islands, tops of hills, actually
The sea swept up more structures,
fisherman were caught in the wake
By evening all people had evacuated
I tried to not panic, to focus on my mission

As yet I had still to collect the rams, 
chipmunks, gorillas, and reindeer;
nowhere to be found were the kangaroos!
"Two of each", I had heard in my dream,
"you must save as many as you can!"
Had it really come to this... already?!
Suddenly, I'm not worried about the octupi
 and other sea life.  "I will do all I can!", I replied. 
Global changes - everything's happening too fast
Torrents of rain blocked my view as
the downpour continued into the dark night

Upon my last look, rain 
steadily seeped through the plank floors
to the cavernous storage below the cabin
I heard animals bleat, cry, moan and screech 
while being shoved into corners
As the heaving waves rocked the Ark,
mauve and coal black clouds gathered to thunder
My drained body collapsed and when night came, 
I buried my face in my arms;
my soul then fell into slumber
Steady rain rapped on the boat's roof
 I dreamed of my paper boats
floating on and on under a starlit indigo sky

Hours go by, it seems
I awaken to smell the sweet night air
to which I am accustomed
I see tinted light captured in fine silver threads, 
spritzed by water sprites, 
filtered by a rainbow or two
Misty drops become the purple of an arc, 
follow sophic pulses through newly- bathed
half circles of blues 
Somewhere mid spectrum,
between lotus green and soft yellows
they disseminate into the soft clarity
of translucence        
Had I dreamed of a storm,
heavy rain, collected and met with gravity?
Almost weightless, raindrops now touch the
ground in search of new meaning
Randomly made aqueducts
take the water on detours, newly defined,
as it streams into fields and streets, 
eventually flowing into the quay
where I saw glimpses of the sun as the
rain departed
Still a dream, I wondered?

We set out anew, the Ark and I,
on new adventures
I lift the anchor into the small craft
My boots set foot inside and find balance
in the floor of the skiff as it rocks
 in the wake of small waves
I think of how much I love the rain...
how similar we behave
I coax the boat away from the bridge,
steer it toward the channel,
 leaving the shore
 Everything has changed,
yet so  much seems the same
The elements and I constantly change;
 we may even think in the same vein
Thunderstorm or not,
nightmare or dream
I realize life after life goes on
and I know - I could live without
many things, but never without the rain

     Everyone is having fun writing from Claudia's prompt today -                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
  • something or someone that/who is not real suddenly comes alive
  • a character from a book shows up in your poem
  • someone suddenly disappears and finds themselves in a whole new place….
  • someone who appears out of a book or you put into a book... 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

She's all that...

She's eclectic, 

wears moss and leaves
in her flowing, often tangled hair
She's full of ideas,  
for language and culture, she 
has quite a flair
One gets to know her, slowly, 
to form an opinion worthwhile
I've seen her through only distant eyes;
it's said one either loves her 
or they don't - seems there's 
no middle ground
A sailor will return to her from 
open seas, endure days to just 
reach her elongated throat.
Her eyes dark as the night sky,
her body curves like a highway
along a mountain ridge
Sitting crossed legged, 
her thighs press together like 
layered hills and valleys
Her waist expands or cinches tight
for adjustments needed

She is eccentric,

beyond belief!
She's winsome, enchanting, 
sexy, and endearing;
but many think her cruel and 
full of greed and guile
I imagine her to be benevolent,
tolerant, open-minded -
in spite of all the lies,
I think all the while,
she feels loss and gain with 
all her heart,
in a very personal way,
She fight corruption,
tries to keep hatred at bay,
has the power and will to change 
direction, make the next chess play
She has flaws and woes, 
can be driven to fury,
yet compassion is her strong suit
One side of her is cold, even numb, 
but she eases her wounds, goes on
by pursuing the best rule of thumb -
striving to be the best of 
what she can be...
she is tough, but she still 
can steal your heart anyway

She is electric -
her dress a resplendent array
of flickering lights;
her poise is unquestionable; 
it's the voices she hears
that try to break her soul,
her colorful lifestyle
Her investments come from
her center, reaching afar
Although her skirts hide the 
darker side of things,
she is demure and bubbly champagne, 
above par
People of all walks of life 
yield and bow to her
She's a caretaker for all;
her Native American history 
goes deep into the hills,
yet she designs dreams for the future,
new pathways to follow
She is built like a formidable ship
ready for battle, yet as a woman 
she is whole, and dynamic;
delicate when it comes to the 
slightest details
She knows-
She's New York - 
her rich history is the vigor
in her blood that fills her veins
and makes her body tick every day,
every year, with new excitement 
There's so much more to her 
than room here to write,
Ric Burns did a nice job on PBS

We are writing poems about cities today at

Monday, December 1, 2014

To a discouraged heart...

When we were young, we did not know 

how much things could change
We heard the phrase "on a dime"
and  "people grow in different ways" 
different directions, at varying speeds over time

We learned tough challenges,
get in our way, continually
Yet when one knows his or her own true self, 
strength and courage will come 
and we face them with power 
from deep within, repeatedly

Anything is possible, they say,

a phrase I never quite believed,
I guess it is meant to be taken
metaphorically - one door 
closes, another opens,
"there is a season for everything"
So many cliches

Answers are not always 
what we want, expect, or dream
but if there were no rocks or branches
obstructing a pretty stream, 
there would be no babble and splash - 
and no one would hear its sweet melody  Today we are writing about winning or losing in any way, shape or form.