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

A Higher Plane

A Higher Plane

I follow a light and the path
it offers, the secret held
in musical notes that float
as they dance with sunbeams,
stepping stones that lead higher
and higher. The notes become
so numerous they can’t be
discerned from the light
that wraps itself around me
and opens my eyes to a new day,
one of acceptance of all, by all.

This is my response to Poetics: Visionary Poetry, the prompt from Ingrid at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which asks us to write a poem inspired by a vision or dream.

The Intent of Moonlight and Ethereal Synapses

 

The Intent of Moonlight and Ethereal Synapses

A haze struggles to dim a light traveling
the distance that binds two bodies.

Our growing world of disconnect, challenged
by invisible connections. Clouds shift,

strain to cast shadows, oblivious to the aura
framing them. Different wavelengths of light,

thoughts conflicting, gelling. Powerless
to impede, branches sway their hips to its pull,

the flow from one chamber to the next echoing
tidal forces, defying the disconnect, absorbing

those wavelengths in a way not imagined
but realized. The embrace of affirmation, a kiss.

 

This is from a reading at The Gumbo Bottoms Single Pot Still Poetry Society … Gumbo Bottoms Ale House, Jefferson City, MO (09 Jan 2023).

First appearing in easing the edges: a collection of everyday miracles, edited by D Ellis Phelps, The Intent of Moonlight and Ethereal Synapses is now included in my poetry collection, Glass Awash, published by Spartan Press.

 

How a Heart Heals ~ quadrille

How a Heart Heals

Long held in self-imposed darkness,
removed from all past pain,
a heart boldly wills itself to open
to possibilities, that light of day
might reveal a world open to it,
return to it a joy long lost,
that it might once more know love.

 

This is my response to Q44 #167 – To BOLD-ly Go,
the prompt from De Jackson at dVerse ~ Poets Pub,
which is to use a form of the word bold in a Quadrille – a 44-word poem
(excluding title), with no required meter or rhyme.

 

I Was Never There

I Was Never There

Traveling this lonely highway,
occasional headlights
the only break in the darkness,
I count oncoming white lines
as they flash before me,
pass beneath me, each one
as familiar to me as the numbers
on my dash that measure my progress.

My surroundings may be
hidden by the darkness,
but I’m not lost. I’ve traveled
this road so many times
that every curve wraps itself
around me. The rumble strip
knows my name, warns me
when the siren of sleep beckons.

Longing to reach the other end,
I wonder if the road is all there is.
Am I meant to be anywhere
but where I am, passed by mile marker
after mile marker, the road passing
beneath me while I remain
stationary, one more element
in the night, yet never really there?

 

This is my response to Poetics: Are you listening? – the prompt from Merril at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to write a poem that uses two titles from a provided list of podcasts, keeping all words in order and changing only punctuation, if necessary. My poem includes “Rumble Strip” and “Not Lost.” Also, I’ve used another podcast title, “I Was Never There,” as my title.

oil and water

oil and water

speak to the truth
of our time together
the drive gone
from the start

we could better
shoot the rapids
of the wildest river
our boat sinking
the entire time

than find the drive
to refute the testimony
of any fly on the wall

no right way
no wrong
just straight through
no matter the cost

even as we resisted
at every step
no effort to preserve
even rekindle the fire
until it came to a close

This is my response to Wordle #585 at The Sunday Whirl.

boat | preserve | speak | resist | oil | fire | drive | fly | shoot | matter | close | right