POEM: “5am Derelict”

grafitti
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

5am Derelict

.

I make the predawn turn

on the way to my husband’s work,

note the same tall building

we pass every time:

window treatments of particle board,

graffitid exterior spray painted

to match the neighborhood palette.

.

I think of the apocalypse:

such a building would well serve

to barricade against a plague

of our own making,

keep out the undesirable

as we shelter ourselves

from those we cannot see.

.

Then I realize, we do that

already.

POEM: “Original”

Original

.

I sip poetry with my tea,

it seeps out like sun through a window,

it leaks through my fingertips.

I breathe in each page,

I live in these words.

.

Can I claim my voice as my own

when nothing comes of nothing?

There is no sound in a vacuum.

.

Can my whisper be heard

above the roaring wind,

or am I part of the chorus?

POEM: “A Bee Sucking Honey”

close up photo of honey comb
Photo by Archana on Pexels.com

A Bee Sucking Honey

 

Leaving is so hard to do.

A million things call me back

from this respite from the drudgery

of my life’s day to day to day.

 

I sip honey words dripped

from fragrant tongues, flutter

from one to the other

as the dial quickly ticks on by.

 

My time is over. I’m called away

back to toil and tedium, but

my feet, stuck in viscous sweet syrup,

slow this unwelcome parting:

 

I am an insect caught in amber,

unable to tear herself away.

 

*

I’ve been feeling very nostalgic lately, and the above poem was inspired by my attendance at multiple poetry readings last year. Hopefully, we’ll all be able to attend them again soon. In the meantime, stay safe, stay well, and read often!

POEM: “My Wildest Dreams for Them”

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My Wildest Dreams for Them

 

that live in the future

are pretty predictable.

I’d like to say what

a humanitarian might:

that my descendants

live in a world of peace

free from disease and distress.

But what I really want,

I mean the very first thing

that popped into my brain,

was that my great grandchildren

would live on Mars

with robot servants

but the kind of robots

that are smart enough

to fulfill all their basic needs

without violating the pesky

ethics of unpaid labor

performed by sentient species,

and also they’d win Nobel prizes

(my descendants, but not

the robots–although I don’t

see why not) in literature,

maybe become

Martian Shakespeares

encapsulating their era’s

Martian-humanoid

culture for generations to come,

long after their own demise,

so that everyone could

devote themselves to art

and science and poetry

and beauty and also spend

Sunday afternoons sipping tea

between monster-movie marathons

because what’s the point

in an ideal future

if you can’t have a little fun?

 

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Since my second book, An Optimist’s Journal of the End of Days and Other Stories, is due to be published via Venetian Spider Press this coming Tuesday, I thought I’d post a scifi-themed poem in honor of its publication. I hope you enjoyed it!

 

*image courtesy of publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons Licensing

POEM: “To The Poetess”

GreekStatueNudeWoman

To The Poetess

epic battles of heroes on bloody foreign fields

or gods meddling in the lives of men and women

were not subject fit enough for your sweet lines.

 

instead you delved deep into the bittersweet

affairs of human hearts,  the union of souls,

the intoxication of lovers sharing the common cup.

 

your words like wine lingered on the lips

of ancient vocalists thirsting for vintage reds

singing verses you cultured long ago.

 

your gleaming feast of words filled from apple trees

you strode by long ago as honey breezes blew waves

through your shining locks. your bold steps soon followed.

 

your words are only known to us from ancient admirers

or from torn and tattered fractions lining paper mache coffins.

How great your work when fragments alone

grant you immortality.

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I wrote this poem last month when I was reading a free ebook, The Poems of Sappho, via manybooks.net

* image courtesy of publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons Licensing

POEM: “Patriotism”

Patriotism

 

The call to act with love

against the hate that spills into our streets

Not follow the same drummer’s beat, beat, beat

while others are simply beaten



Fighting hate with hate increases

the blaze across our states

Fighting hate with love abates outbreaks

soothes the aching wounds of history

Kindness is not complacency

 

Shake this world gently

Shake this world with love

Shake this world with peaceful protest

Shake this world with words

Words have power 

 

Speak out.

 

*

Happy Fourth of July weekend! 

I know this poem seems especially written for the current circumstances, but I actually wrote it June of 2018 as a response to a tweet I read on twitter about the usefulness of nonviolent protests. I was also inspired by this quote from Ghandi: “Where there is love there is life. In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” 

Another special thing I’d like to do this weekend is offer my poetry collection, Soul Picked Clean, on sale at a discounted price to celebrate both the Fourth of July (Saturday) and my birthday (Friday)! 

If you’d like a copy of my poetry collection, Soul Picked Clean, for only $10, please credit my paypal at this link, and don’t forget to include your address so I know where to mail the book! 

Stay safe, stay well, and read often!


**image courtesy of publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons Licensing.

FOUND POEM: “Spider Flight”

Spider Flight

 

Spiders have no wings, 

but take to the air 

nonetheless.     climb, 

raise abdomens to sky, 

extrude strands of silk, 

and float    away.  

ballooning.  away         

from predators 

     competitors

toward new lands 

       abundant resources. 

 

two-and-a-half miles up, 

1,000 out to sea.

 

sense the Earth’s electric field, 

use it to launch   into air     

thunderstorms crackle 

around the world, 

Earth’s atmosphere a circuit. 

The upper reaches 

           a positive charge, 

the planet’s surface 

           a negative. 

 

operate within increase 

those forces   climb 

twigs, leaves,  blades of grass. 

 

Plants, being earthed, 

protrude into the positively charged 

 

electric fields between the air around 

and tips of leaves and branches

spiders detect 

 

ruffle tiny sensory hairs on feet, 

like when you rub a balloon 

and hold it to your hair



a set of movements     Tiptoeing—

help gauge wind    speed    direction. 

 

prepare for flight 




#

*Found poem based on text found in article, Spiders Can Fly Hundreds of Miles Using Electricity, by Ed Yong published in the Atlantic on July 5, 2018.

**image courtesy of publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons Licensing.

POEM: “Playing Inspires”

 

Playing Inspires”       

 

Doctors said 

/he would never talk 

/he would be/ quadrilegic/ for life

 

/cerebral palsy /diagnosed at 6

/two brain surgeries/ physical therapy

/he worked/ tried/ beat the odds

 

“Don’t use the word ‘can’t’”/ beat the odds

Shawn did his best/ took time to get better

/excelled at sports/ never needed a wheelchair

 

/when frustrated/ came back/ always

/listened/ tried/ pulled it together

/practiced every day to hone his skills

 

/every day came and worked/ beat the odds

/a good bowler/ a good teammate/ he’d high-five

/he listened/ tried/ beat the odds

 

/every day did his best/ to get better

/every day/ he took time/ excelled

/doctors said he would never talk/ he speaks well

 

Shawn Nolan’s doctors said

/he would never/          

/bike/ basketball/ horseback/ 

/karate/ bowl/ weightlift/ swim

/patrol the neighborhood on his bike

 

 /make sure everyone is safe

 

 /inspire kids with disabilities

/to beat the odds

               /kids with disabilities

 

/Shawn makes sure

/other kids with disabilities/ never forget

“Don’t use the word ‘can’t.”

 

#

I composed the above found poem by taking bits from an online article, rearranging, adding and subtracting words and phrases, to make something new. The article by Roger Gordon was an inspirational sports story about a young bowler, Shawn Nolan, born with cerebral palsy, who is a competitive athlete. 

 

*image courtesy of www.publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons License.

**original article written by Roger Gordon

POEM:    “Oasis”

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"Oasis"




warm water streaming over strained muscles  taut with the tension of
 a thousand

   stir-crazed hours of intrusive solitude within a small space yet

     none purely owned by me excepting this waterproof box

           where for five too short minutes

                steam tingles wet skin

voice reverberates

                Beatles and Aretha

                          bounces against panels

                          of thin

      acrylic as

                    peppermint

         suds wash my

worries

       down the

drain

                alongside

            white

soapy

                 bubbles...  .. .   .

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Thank you for visiting my blog! I’ve been wanting a break from all the depressing news lately, so I thought I’d share this poem as (hopefully) a little break for you too: an oasis in this shared storm we’re all weathering. 

Wherever you are, stay safe, stay well, and read often!

*Image courtesy of www.publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons License.

POEM: “Orpheus the Coward”

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Orpheus the Coward

 

I did not kill myself for love.

I didn’t tear apart my broken heart,

show its bloody pieces to the world

 

unless you count my music.

In that I laid myself bare,

my grief as exposed as an infant

left on a lonely hill

for beasts to feast upon.

 

I did not kill myself for love.

I didn’t choose to die,

to trap us both in that deep darkness,

breathe the earth above our heads

as we quake in Hades’s rich domain,

both doomed to finally drink

from that fatal river that makes us forget

each other.

 

I did not kill myself for love.

I chose to run to hell

to bring my love to life,

to calm the viscous demon-dog’s rage,

to bring salt tears to the icy cheeks

of Hades and his Queen,

to rescue my wife of a single day,

to bring her back to that same day’s sun.

 

I did not kill myself for love.

I chose to lead her back

from those cold depths,

feel her silent steps

behind me but never look to see.

The price of her freedom

my uncertainty.

 

But the Fates are bitches

that toy with human lives:

my feet touched earth,

yet still I looked back too soon.

She remained in darkness.

I lost her at the border

between life and death,

dark and light, fear and hope.

Her fading farewell,

as translucent as the hand

I reached for

but could not grab.

 

No second charm would work

on Hell’s cold denizens.

 

I did not kill myself for love.

I sat and thought and tried

to find a way through the fog

of my brain to win her back again.

None came, but as I struggled

to compose my next hopeless plan,

alone with my lyre,

just me and my pain,

I was torn apart,

my body as broken as my heart.

 

I did not kill myself for love,

but I was not sorry to go.

 

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Thank you for visiting my blog! The above poem was inspired by the Speech of Phaedrus in Plato’s Symposium in which Orpheus was dubbed a coward because he did not die for love like a more traditional hero. 

Wherever you are, stay safe, stay well, and read often!

 

*Image courtesy of www.publicdomainpictures.net via Creative Commons License.