A Scattering of Poems
In the street of the sky, night walks, scattering poems. In the streets below, poets follow, gathering inspiration in hopes of doing justice to that which cannot be equaled. They speak of a distant darkness filled with a light that seems just out of reach, one that appears as a mist yet offers sparkling clarity. Each might write about the vast expanse that seems to wrap around her, or about the countless points of surrounding light, of which he is one.
Those who read, who listen, will understand and recognize the beauty that can bring such inspiration. They will join the poets, become poets, themselves. The streets will be filled with those who walk the night. Their numbers will be such that they stretch halfway around the globe, and night will see the reward that the people have reaped from its scattering of poems.
This is my response to Prosery: Tulips & Chimneys, the prompt from Linda Lee Lyberg at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, where the challenge is to write a prosery, flash fiction or creative nonfiction, with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line is from Tulips & Chimneys, by E. E. Cummings – the last line of IX Impressions: “in the street of the sky night walks scattering poems”
The image is a crop of a larger image from Astronomy Picture of the Day
“Two Comets in Southern Skies” – Copyright: Jose J. Chambo (Cometografia)
Embers to Stars
On a still night with the light of flames
rising from a bank of embers
beneath slowly settling logs,
we gaze into the sky,
of awed silence.
I have revised yesterday’s poem as a nonet in response to Day 9 at napowrimo.net, in which we’re asked to write a nonet ~ a poem of nine lines and a syllable count of 9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1, with rhyme optional.
My first nonet was written in 2015. Go to this link to read my collection.
Image source: wallpaperaccess.com
Blue collar, with roots deeper than any walnut or oak.
I remember those black walnuts from Uncle Bill’s farm.
Shells as hard as the hammer to break them.
And bitter, but hard work can be that way. Even if
a vacation on his dairy farm was more work than play,
it still made great memories.
He wasn’t a man to shy away from work.
Neither was his brother, whose lessons carried me through life.
Even before I worked beside him on a loading dock,
there was work in the yard, digging a trench for a foundation.
Pulling the transmission out of one of my first cars and replacing it.
Building a barn when he finally bought his own piece of land.
The years I put in on the dock after he retired.
The many years after that driving a truck, making deliveries.
The lesson that got me through all of that was simple.
There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.
This poem is my response to Day 6 of napowrimo.net, which asks us to use a quote from a favorite book as inspiration and as the title for a poem, and then to change the title of the poem. The term TANSTAAFL (“There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.”) was a theme in “The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress,” by Robert Heinlein, (1966). The complete phrase was already in use by the early 1940s.
~ Day 6 ~
The Sweetest Wine
Together, our horizon knows no bounds.
The nearest rose and the most distant star
could not be closer to this truth.
Yet the scent of a rose,
the beauty in a star, cannot compare.
One kiss from you, and I know the sweetest wine.
This poem (off-prompt for Day 5 of napowrimo.net) is my response to Quadrille #125 – In Praise of the Grape, the prompt from Linda Lee Lyberg at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to use a form of the word wine in a 44-word poem, with no required meter or rhyme.
~ Day 5 ~
Wikimedia Commons – Rosette Nebula surrounding star cluster NGC2244
Astronomy Picture of the Day – “cluster galaxies and cluster dark matter, analogous to the many points of light one would see while looking through a wine glass at a street light”
Just as Bright
Who could know the blanket of stars
wrapt round us on our first night together,
so tight they shone in your eyes and mine
as we strolled through Millennium Park,
would bind us, still, these many years later?
Shine they do, just as bright.
This is my response to Quadrille #113: Blanket Us,
the prompt from Merril at dVerse Poets Pub,
which is to use a form of the word blanket in a 44-word poem,
with no required meter or rhyme.
Image: Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Chicago, Illinois
photo taken 02 September 2012
As the Stars Would Have It
The sky has been ours
from the moment we met
Whispered words of light
in vision and dreams
Blue nebulae in the dark of night
Embrace of sun and moon
I in your orbit, you in mine,
just as the stars would have it
This is my response to Quadrille #112: The Sky’s the Limit,
the prompt from De Jackson at dVerse Poets Pub,
which is to use a form of the word sky in a 44-word poem,
with no required meter or rhyme.
Image: the banner from our wedding,
held on the lawn of the lighthouse at Presque Isle, Erie, Pennsylvania
moonbeams dance ’round
your face, mingle with the light
of nebulae swirling within
your eyes to shine on this heart,
a reality this writer struggles
to put into words
Reena’s Exploration Challenge #137 offers three phrases for inspiration:
1. Writer’s Platform
2. Writer’s Cave
3. Writer’s Reality
This also is linked to Open Link Night #267
Image source: © Francesco Batistella via Astronomy Picture of the Day
huddled in darkness
overwhelming fear of plague
no comfort in stars
This senryū is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Tanka Tuesday
#Poetry Challenge No. 170: #ThemePrompt,
where the theme is The Night Sky.
Image source: Yale University Art Gallery – Starry Night, by Jean-François Millet
looking to the stars
Frank Tassone’s #Haikai Challenge 124 – Martha Magenta Tribute asks us to write a poem that honors the spirit of a haiku by Martha Magenta. My senryū is inspired by:
night watch . . .
I follow her gaze
to the stars
From her Poet Profile at The Haiku Foundation:
“Martha was in a hospice for the last week of her life and was well looked after – her son was with her at the end. She passed away on January 14, 2020.”
I realize my words pale in comparison to hers, which are a fitting tribute to one who is no longer with us.
one starry night
to make that one painting –
the rustling leaves
branches sway in gentle breeze
starlight twinkling in their wake
would be stargazing painter
inspired by the night
nature’s canvas in the sky
with myriad points of light
moon rising above the trees
leaves dancing before the moon
silhouetted by its light
framed by counterpoints
lights much closer than the stars
planets in the night
shifting shades of red and blue
sparkling in a star filled sky
so much to choose from
all these heavenly bodies
wonder where to start
shooting star in star filled sky
the first of many brushstrokes
Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation #107 Soliloquy no Renga … one starry night offers a haiku by Chèvrefeuille (in blue) to be followed by subsequent links of a renga by the responding poet, with a minimum of six links. A “closed chain” is attained when the hokku (starting verse) and ageku (closing verse) connect in a way to make “the circle” complete.
This is my response.
Photos: Hunter’s Moon, 13 October 2019
Star image: The Galaxy Above, © Rodrigo Guerra, via Astronomy Picture of the Day