Butterfly Ballet ~ haibun

Butterfly Ballet

What to do on a special day, when clouds and rain try to make it anything but special? And so, a drive to St. Louis, the rain no more of an annoyance than those who don’t know how to drive in it, and an afternoon spent indoors among some of nature’s most beautiful creatures. Butterflies crossing our path with their dance, lending an air of magic to our anniversary.

oasis of green
outdoors, inside house of glass
butterfly ballet

For the prompt at dVerse, Merril asks us to write a haibun about magic in nature with
Haibun Monday – Lost and Found: Nature’s Magic.

Images: The St. Louis Butterfly House

Taking Note – quadrille

Taking Note

I stop for a moment,
even as I begin, fingers pressing
strings, and fret over the possibilities,
take note of the heartbeat sounding
through the delicate wood
pressed closely against me.
What better music could come
from a beginner with a life already lived?

This is a response to Quadrille #82 – Fretboard of Poetry, the prompt from Kim at dVerse, which is to use the word fret in a 44-word poem that does not require meter or rhyme.

Morning in the Market ~ with audio

Morning in the Market

Children race across the square
hair flowing, skirts blowing.
Shopkeepers lower their awnings
and bring out their wares.

An apple falls from a cart,
bumping along the cobblestones,
evading the children as it tumbles
between a vendor’s legs.

Old women file into the square,
some with aprons, some without.
Kitchens await their return
with breads and meats for the day.

The air buzzes with conversation,
prices questioned, gossip shared.
Mid-morning finds the carts half-empty,
breads arrayed to fill the spaces.

An apple rolls from beneath a cart,
cool from lying in the shade.
Sunlight glints on red,
and the children spy their quarry.

The bustle lessens, somewhat,
the shoppers finding fewer choices.
A reminder of the mid-day meal,
the sun shines high overhead.

The day’s fare nearly gone, now,
the last remaining vendors close up.
Plans already set in motion
hint at tomorrow’s activity.

An apple lies, half-eaten,
the game long over.
The taste of nearby orchards plays
on the tongue of a laughing child.

This is my response to the prompt To market, to market!, from Sarah at dVerse.

Image source: Wikimedia Commons – Market Scene, by Pieter Aertsen

Ken G.

Final Lament

Final Lament

I paddle along a river on a quiet morning. Except for the hoarse “kee-eeeee-arr” of a hawk high overhead, the air is as still as the water. Drifting between the shadow of overhanging trees and the light of open air, I see a lone Mourning Dove on a branch of a dead oak at the edge of a small bluff. The silence is broken as it seems to address me with its lamenting call. As plaintive as it sounds, there is a comforting tone to it, perfect for the serenity of the morning.

I drift past, leaving it well behind me, when, far away, an interrupted cry reaches me. Dragging my paddle to the side of my kayak, I swing around to see the hawk dropping to the ground beneath the oak, dove tightly clutched, reminding me of the fragile nature of my surroundings.

This bit of flash fiction is my response to Prosery #1, presented by Björn at dVerse. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For Prosery #1, the line to be included is “When far away an interrupted cry” from Robert Frost’s “Acquainted with the Night.” My flash fiction also meets the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.

Image source: The Cornell Lab of Ornithology (edited here)

Adagio for Strings

Adagio for Strings

One heart stops, while another beats,

yet feels as though it has stopped,
knowing that mourning
has the power to be endless.

Time passes, and a life follows
its course, its pulse subject
to random intrusions.

Music will play the strings
of a heart, so that it seems
as if it will never heal.

A memory, no true intrusion,
may become a knife, turning,
tracing old scars.

Yet it’s the brilliance of that music
and the beauty of those memories
that have the power to sustain.

And a heart continues to beat.

This is a response to Poetics: Cry Me a River, the prompt from Amaya at dVerse, which is to write a poem about a piece of music that has the power to bring a listener to tears. That would be Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings.

Image source: Curtis Institute of Music – Samuel Barber

Two Hearts ~ quadrille

Two Hearts

Theirs is a flaming brilliance.

Not wildfires, nor dragons.

Two stars blazing. Embracing,
yet orbiting each other.

Two hearts bathing
in the warmth of their passion.

Each heart knowing, needing,
the pull of the other.

Their love burning without
consuming, yet quenching their desire.


This is a response to Quadrille #81 – Here there be dragons, the prompt from De Jackson at dVerse, which is to use the word dragon in a 44-word poem that does not require meter or rhyme.

Image source: Astronomy Picture of the Day – (cropped here)

Unknown Horizon ~ quadrille

Unknown Horizon

I once thought it was the separation
of distance that magnifies
this richness I find in family.
Now I understand it is age,
with reflections on the past
replaced by a wistfulness
for future lives I will never know,
as they continue without me.

This is my response for Quadrille #80 – Eat the Rich, the prompt from Kim at dVerse, which is to use the word rich in a 44-word poem that does not require meter or rhyme.