Discerning Shadow

Discerning Shadow

This fine line I walk,
contentment to one side,
to the other a darkness
that would deny any comfort,
is the path I have chosen.

This most delicate balance,
holds an edge of uncertainty,
for the darkness casts its shadow
across that line. Otherwise,
it is revealed as the shadow.

I shun that darkness, yet
one cannot be had without
the other. They are as one.
Had I known, would I
have chosen this path?

This poem is my response to dVerse – Poetics – Edges & Fringes, the prompt
from Lisa at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. I have chosen the first of the four options offered:

1. Write a poem using the word edge;

Image source: Shutterstock (edited here)

Waiting ~ magnetic poetry


Branches still bare,
nascent buds breathe
this fresh winter air
that would be spring,
given the chance.

Shoots nudge earth
and leaves in search
of sunlight beckoned
by a gentle breeze
of poetry and longing.

If you want to try magnetic poetry, you can do it online, here.
You can read more of my magnetic poetry

(click image for larger view in new tab)

the journey ~ found poem

the journey
a gift of love, life, and Mother Nature

to write of hope
of survival, like a flame
to have mattered is a joy

to become a better vessel
letting go of illusions
learning how to say goodbye

tomorrow is an uncertainty,
rebirth an existence beyond this one
more than belief… the Design

brought into manifestation
part of the One, still part of the One
the fruits of our learning

Creation’s understanding
the One is All… separation
through loss or death is illusion

seeing both sides of life
we know how deep love goes
in the end, choosing the way forward

learn from living
even more, dare to dream
love is always enough

This is a found poem. I hesitate to say it is a blackout poem, because I would not dream of blacking out one word from its source. Sue Vincent’s health is failing, and with no way of knowing when her time will have run its course, she has put into words her thoughts on life and what it will mean to be gone. The full body of that message, The Last Post? can be found at The Silent Eye. By no means is my poem meant to be a summation of her words. It is inspired by her message.


A Whisper in the Mist

A Whisper in the Mist

The voice of a lifetime, yours,
calling to me through the years.
Some would say it’s a roar.
That’s hard to deny, but
it can also be a whisper.

Those moments beside your brink,
wrapped in my father’s arms.
Your mist reaching out
to gently caress my cheek, a whisper
even there beside your might.

Floating, bobbing in the current
at your base, you towering above,
your sound drowning out
all else, while we drown
in the torrents you rain upon us.

A bright summer day, standing
beside you, drinking in the rainbow
held in the mist that embraces us,
a whisper within the roar that speaks
all languages to all visitors.

Even now, a thousand miles away,
I hear that whisper, your call to me.
I take any opportunity to travel,
to stand beside you, to continue
the conversation of a lifetime.

I’ve read many responses to “earthweal weekly challenge,” but this poem is my first time participating. To quote earthweal weekly challenge: NATURAL FORCES:
Personify, magnify, glorify nature… How have natural forces shaped you?

~ One of my earliest visits to Niagara Falls ~
~ The view from the deck of The Maid of the Mist, at Niagara Falls ~
~ Visiting Niagara Falls with my wife ~

Awake Beyond Smoldering

Awake Beyond Smoldering

It was a withering husk,
and I almost didn’t recognize it
as my own broken heart,
that which had been fractured
through years of denial
over what had been lost
long ago. But that was then,
when I could not accept the truth.
When fear of the unknown kept me
from finding a happiness
that could be mine. I turned my back
on the charred remains to find
that happiness, knowing my heart
would follow, hopeful we would succeed.


This poem is my response to MTB: Middles and Turns, the prompt from Peter at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to write a poem that takes a dramatic turn.

Image source: freevectors.net (edited here)

Still Cold ~ solo renga

Still Cold

melting snow
in afternoon sun
nights still cold

breath in the crisp air
fogging my glasses

frosted panes
see only shadows
drifting by

waterfowl swimming
in ice-jammed river

dark shadows
stray geese overhead
seeking food

sparrows at feeder
still cold and hungry

This solo renga is my response to
Frank Tassone’s #Haikai Challenge #177: Still Cold.

Images ~ 18 February 2021
The Moreau River in Missouri (snow covered)
The Missouri River at Jefferson City, Missouri



Carried in a current
barely perceptible
beneath the ice,
yet beyond the limits
of these banks,
my thoughts flow.

Wider waters await,
as near as the next thought.

This poem is my response to Reena’s Exploration Challenge #173,
where the prompt is Flow.

Our recent subfreezing temperatures means local streams will be iced over and that I’ll have to paddle on the Missouri or the Osage River if I want to fulfill my ritual of a monthly kayak venture. Sunny and 56ºF is predicted for next Tuesday, so I’ll plan for a paddle on the Osage, which has a much milder current than the Missouri.

The Missouri River is currently witnessing a rare occurrence. Five miles upstream from Jefferson City, MO, an ice jam has reduced the flow of the river, so that the channel depth (not the overall river depth) at Jefferson City is at or near zero.

Also shared with Open Link #284 – Live Again at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

Images (18 February 2021)
The snow-covered Moreau River
The Missouri River at Jefferson City, at half its normal width
with the State Capitol in the background
Chris & Jason with the U.S. Geological Service
preparing to measure the river’s depth

Five and Counting

Five and Counting

Yesterday’s internet outage was brief – less than two hours after the snowplow broke the “temporary” cable lying in the street near my house, the cable was replaced. With all of our calls about lost service in the last month, it appears we have been made a priority for repair.

A phone call to the city’s Streets Department was met with sympathy, but, “That’s between you and the cable company. The streets need to be plowed.”

And the snowplow struck again this morning.

January 15th – 3 days
February 8th – 1 day
February 14th – 2 days
February 17th – 2 hours
February 18th – ?? –– update – 2 hours

My new SIM card, which will allow me to switch to T-Mobile with unlimited data (at a savings) will arrive today. Just in time. Verizon has notified me that, with two days left in my billing cycle, I’m about to go over my data allowance, which is no surprise since this snowplow/cable situation has forced me to burn data on my phone.

And yes, this blog was uploaded from my phone.

Cutting the Cord
Three for Three
Four for Four

Four for Four – the abridged version

No — this was not composed on my phone
                         ~ Edited for profanity ~

  • My internet service was restored yesterday, after a two day outage
  • At 9:30 this morning a snowplow came down our street
    – breaking the temporary cable that has been in the street since summer
    – disrupting our service for the 4th time since January 15th
  • My wife was working from home
    – so I took her to her office so she could continue working
  • I continued on, grocery shopping before heading home
  • Arriving home at noon, I saw a new cable, connected and lying in the street
  • Internet service was restored
  • Our morning call to customer support bypassed all voice menus
    – something unheard of
    – apparently our account has been flagged as a priority
         ~ a perk for suffering four snowplow-induced outages?
  • Two work orders were placed
    – a repair to restore our service — Surprise! Completed this morning!
    – an order to bury the cable under the street
  • That cable has been there since last summer
  • There’s now a foot of snow — That cable ain’t goin’ nowhere
  • We anticipate more outages before spring weather arrives
  • And probably after