Monthly Archives: February 2022

Cold Assurance

Cold Assurance

I’m tired of writing alone in my safe room. I crave the cold mountain and my gasps in the thinner air. The threat of clouds. A bleeding sunset that seeps behind an obscuring peak.The small terrors of things heard but unseen in the dark. The press of stones in my back as I roll over in my sleeping bag. Evidence through sensation that I’m still alive.

The comfort of light,
but no form without shadow.
Nature’s cruel truth.

A Cold Mountain Haibun for dVerse Poets
Go HERE to read the prompt.

Mr. Wordy

Mr. Wordy

If you have any questions, he’s there for you to query.
It’s rumored he’s a veritable walking dictionary.
Phrases pile up around him, Paragraphs drift like snow.
He simply has to put in words all that he claims to know.

If you’re breaking the rules of grammar, he’ll put you in your place,
and if you mispronounce a word, he’ll tell you to your face.
He’s a pain to talk to, a vain and tiresome man.
So if it’s possible, I’d say avoid him if you can.

He leaves his words behind him, tracking nouns right down the hall.
Adjectives and participles fall where they may fall.
As rotund in his rhetoric as in his derriere,
if words were spoor, I’m sure that we could track him anywhere!


Prompt words are rhetoric, rotund, breaking, spoor and dictionary.

Ancient and Modern History

Ancient and Modern History

As long as there are riches, then rich men will host wars.
“What’s mine is mine” does not insinuate that “Yours is yours.”


Prompt words today are war, insinuate, rich, host.

Turning the Tables

Turning the Tables

The turtle stuck his neck out to see where he was going,
but might have hidden in his shell if he had means of knowing

that the chef had plans for turtle soup, so caught him at the threshold
and put his hands around his neck so he could gain a flesh hold.

But such plans “gang aft astray.” The turtle put a spin on
and designed a different course from  one that he had been on.

He dragged that gourmet chef along and headed for the sea.
Their noise of battle was the thing that awakened you and me.

We put our vinyl raincoats on and fiddled with the locks,
scooting feet into our shoes, devoid of any socks.

No moonlight eased our journey, for rainclouds obscured all,
and amidst the raindrops, we commenced to slip and fall.

Around us, many turtles were streaming towards the sea,
intent upon their journey. Ignoring you and me.

So we turned back homeward, to sit upon our stoop
imagining those turtles enjoying human soup.


Prompt words for The Sunday Whirl are: turtle neck shell hidden
but design no spin fiddle amidst noise vinyl

For Wordle 542 Image by Dusan Veverkolog on Unsplash.

Long Morning

Click on photos to enlarge and read captions.

Long Morning

When I brought her home two weeks ago,
she was so tiny I didn’t know
what an excess of energy
was going to be required of me.
One older woman and two old dogs
obsessed with squirrel-patrol and blogs
have taken on a task most bold
raising a puppy six weeks old.

At first it was just her and me
Never was I puppy-free.
My favorite bag, a shoulder sling,
has become her favorite carrying thing.
Her head outside to view the world,
when she preferred, she snugly curled
inside its secure little nest
lined with “her” nightgown now—my best.

But daily life behind tall walls
contains the chance of dangerous falls,
swimming pools and dogs and cats
that have been known to prey on bats—
also each possum, ground squirrel, mouse
that threatens to invade the house.
How are they to know that that
tiny creature is not a rat?

But since she seems to have no other,
Diego’s subbing as godmother
when I need a tiny break
to photograph and write and make.
This new member of their gang
is the one that he’ll harangue
to go here, not over there,
but he is a strange au pair.
He’s so immense and she’s so small
that she is hardly there at all.

This period of tear and raze
is just a usual puppy phase.
She’s active now, without surcease.
There’s little time for rest or peace
for old dogs who need their rest,
but still we do for her what’s best.
Since it’s hard to quantify how long
before she knows what’s right and wrong,
the pool is the greatest threat
we’ve had to deal with as of yet.
So Diego and I keep an eye
to see where present dangers lie.

We herd her from its dangerous rim.
Then she’s distracted by a limb
of palm that’s swaying in the breeze—
a new adventure for her to seize.
Diego follows close behind,
mindful of dangers she might find.
An hour passes, then another
as we share the role of mother.

But, it’s up to me to plan our rest
exhausted from her youthful zest,
Diego sinks down for a nap.
So, when Zoe jumps down from my lap,
I chase her down and lift her up.
Too old for such a frisky pup,
I pile the hammock with pillows and
put first her, and then my hand
inside that cave so soft and deep,
stroking ’til she’s sound asleep.

In mere seconds, or so it seems,
Diego, also, falls to dreams.
Spread out in the cool grass,
he snoozes as the hours pass
and Morrie goes to do his thing
beneath where she’s content to swing.

It’s five hours since Zoe first woke me up and at least three hours since I put her in the hammock and she’s still nestled there, sound asleep. This is the first time Morrie has shared a bit in her care. He’s dubious of her puppy ways so keeps his distance, but it looks like he’s found his proper role. Zoe, on the other hand, has been asleep for hours and this is what has given me the time to write this blog. You can see where I’m working in the photo above. Zoe’s hammock is in full view and when I’ve seen it rocking a few times, I’ve gone to check. She was awake, but perfectly happy to remain in her little nest. I’ve had the morning outside in the garden where I’ve not only written the above poem but also taken pictures and videos, trimmed a few plants, marked the limbs I want cut off the pistachio tree and taken down the one hammock which finally split in two when I tried to lie in it. (Yes, I wound up on the stone floor beneath it, thankfully with a pillow right below my tailbone, which has already been broken twice in my life.) I went up to get Zoe’s lunch, but although the other two were very interested in it, she has slept right on, an hour and a half past her usual lunch time. So that’s the Zoe report. She is now two months old and weighs three pounds!!! I’ll be posting a video of her later.

Prompt words today are harangue, peace, quantify, raze and other.