Daily Task ~ memento

Daily Task

In hands both worn and never still
a simple watch was held
before

the daily tasks could be fulfilled
and all life’s worries felled.
And more

than that in times severe and lean,
each day it was resolved
that time

and labor served without machine
would take away the pall,
align.

This is my response to Meeting the Bar: Memento, the prompt from Grace at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to write a poem in the memento form or about a memento. I have done both, writing about a daily occurrence (though not a holiday or anniversary) involving a particular object, a pocket watch that was my grandfather’s and handed down to my father (and then to me). My grandfather was a laborer all of his life, one that was mostly consumed by hard times.

Memento: The form was created by Emily Romano and is a poem about a holiday or an anniversary, consisting of two stanzas as follows: the syllable count should be 8 beats for line one; 6 beats for line two; and two beats for line three. This is repeated twice for each stanza. The rhyme scheme is: a/b/c/a/b/c for each of the two stanzas.

 

As Above ~ sijo

As Above

So below. Within a shared pulse
       star fields merge to engulf

the depth of myriad layers
       always there, never concealed.

Light dances as stars celebrate
       a quickening pulse, an embrace.

Image source: Astronomy Picture of the Day ~ © Mehmet Hakan Özsaraç
The Colliding Spiral Galaxies of Arp 274

This is my response to Ronovan Writes Sijo Challenge #45: Embrace.

Sijo (a Korean verse form related to haiku and tanka)
~ three lines of 14-16 syllables each
~ a total of 44-46 syllables
~ a pause near the middle of each line
~ first half of the line contains six to nine syllables
~ the second half should contain no fewer than five
Originally intended as songs, sijo can treat romantic, metaphysical, or spiritual themes. Whatever the subject, the first line introduces an idea or story, the second supplies a “turn,” and the third provides closure.
Modern Sijo are sometimes printed in six lines.
Read more here: Wikipedia

 

Cold Shoulder ~ quadrille

Cold Shoulder

What separates us
does not make us better.
Even the thinnest
layer of ice threatens
to shatter all that we’ve built.

Words left unspoken,
never allowed
to reach the surface,
only serve to strengthen
the divide, remove
the chance to heal.

Speak to me.

 

This is my response to Quadrille #168,
the prompt from Mish at dVerse ~ Poets Pub,
which is to use a form of the word ice in a Quadrille – a 44-word poem
(excluding title), with no required meter or rhyme.

 

Janus

Janus

Which face to wear?
Looking forward
or back? The past,
both blessing and weight,
does not cease to be,
even as what will be
approaches. To know
both is not possible,
yet one gives insight
to the other. I wear both.

This is my response to Reena’s Xploration Challenge # 264. It’s January, and Reena asks us to consider Janus, the Roman god of beginnings, transitions, and endings, who is depicted as having two faces.

Shared with OpenLink Night LIVE at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

You Call This Winter?

You Call This Winter?

Take a hike in the wild during a Missouri winter,
and it’s a crapshoot. Bare branches heavy
with snow and turkey tracks the only impressions
in the white blanket that lies before you,
or t-shirt weather with the sound of rustling leaves
as you scuff them out of your way wondering
what happened to the four inches of snow
that shut things down just last week.

I may not miss the storms of New York’s winters,
but I sure miss the snow of New York’s winters,
where it knows how to fall and stick around
until it decides to fall again. And again.
Where the beauty of driving through a forest
with a blanket of snow can be appreciated
in spite of the inconvenience of slick roads
or the need to clear your windows of frost.

As much as I may appreciate warm spells
that are more frequent than cold, or the need
to shovel the driveway all of three times,
give me a New York winter, any time.

This is my response to the prompt Poetics: The Blizzard of the Self, from Sanaa at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to speak to winter.

 

At Home ~ gogyohka ~ senryū

At Home

What is a trip to a place left behind,
one that always lives in my heart?
Have I returned home when I visit there,
or when I leave?

This is my response to Twiglet #308: returned home.
As an exercise, I have also written this as a gogyohka and a senryū.
(Also shared with Colleen’s #TankaTuesday
Weekly #Poetry Challenge No. 303, Senryū.)

always present

a trip to a place left behind
always in my heart
at home in two places
past and present as one
never gone

 

have I returned home
when I visit the past
or when the trip ends?

Senryū are similar to haiku, but they tend to be about human nature, rather than nature.

Gogyohka (pronounced go-gee-yoh-kuh)
 ~ a form of Japanese poetry pioneered by Enta Kusakabe in the 1950s
 ~ 5-line poetry ~ like tanka, but with freedom from restraints
 ~ no fixed syllable requirement
 ~ no conventions regarding content
 ~ brief lines in keeping with the tradition of Japanese short verse

Words of Healing ~ gogyohka & sijo

collection of poems
in heartfelt delivery
friends from near and far
hear labor of love in words
poetry reading

I wrote a gogyohka this morning, then realized
I could use the same theme to write a sijo to respond to
Ronovan Writes Sijo Wednesday Challenge #44: Overcome.

Words of Healing

Searching both heart and soul,
       a poet finds words of healing.

Held close at first, they come alive
       when read to a circle of friends.

Recovery follows loss,
       as a gentle rain quenches a drought.