Category Archives: NaPoWriMo

Bucket List

Bucket List

I have learned it is not wise
to reveal to other eyes
one’s bucket list lest they despise
those things that you
have chose to do
that they eschew.
Their judgement  might be too severe
for what you’ve yearned for, year on year—
to saddle up a wild deer
and ride for miles through his world,
fearing not that you’ll be hurled
to die out in the wild, not curled
within your room of board and nail
with loved ones there to hear you wail,
wanting to help, to no avail.

Or, to choose a pilot that you trust
to carry you to some high gust
that will waft you, chuteless, down to dust.
Do not dismay, oh friends of mine.
Do not doubt and do not pine
because I’ve chosen to decline
that death bed pressed and white and clean
with prolongation by machine
devoid of beauties of the scene
of forest, ocean, mountain, beach—
those places that by choice I’ll reach
more quickly in that final breach.
Know that the wildness of their lending
creates for me less painful  wending
toward my journey’s final ending.


For NaPoWriMo 2023, Day 7, we are to write a list poem…or an anti-list poem. That certainly widens the field!!!

I”m combining this prompt with my usual poem that makes use of prompts from six different  blogs. The prompts are linked to their source. Today they are: wise, dismay, bucket, severe, trust and nails.
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Cruel Comedy: NaPoWriMo 2023 Day 5


Cruel Comedy

The campfire collapses into a plaintive rune,
echoing the plangent wolf call of a loon
that floats the silver pathway of the water-jellied moon.

I face our final parting. As I hear its taunting croon,
the humid night surrounds me in its tight cocoon.
Life is a cruel comedy whose laughter ebbs too soon.


This is the NaPoWriMo prompt for April 5:

Begin by reading Charles Simic’s poem “The Melon.” It would be easy to call the poem dark, but as they say, if you didn’t have darkness, you wouldn’t know what light is. Or vice versa. The poem illuminates the juxtaposition between grief and joy, sorrow and reprieve. For today’s challenge, write a poem in which laughter comes at what might otherwise seem an inappropriate moment – or one that the poem invites the reader to think of as inappropriate.

Happy writing!

Speaking in Tongues: NaPoWriMo 2023 Day 6,

Our assignment was to pick a poem in a foreign language we didn’t know and to write a poem saying what we think it means.  I have done this twice for NaPoWriMo in the past 13 years so I’m going to say turnabout is fair play and do a reblog.  My excuse is that I have literally been on the phone, internet and emails for 12 hours trying to do my taxes… dealing with banks in U.S and mexico, Charles Schwab, my investment people and my sister.  Going crazy!!! A friend just pointed out I hadn’t don’t NaPoWriMo for the first time yesterday and today. Mea Culpa.  I’ve been distracted.  So, here are the first two stanzas of my poem “guessing” what the original poem in Dutch might have been saying: 

Messages in Bottles

Messages they send out to the world in bottles
(those they think up as they stir their morning cups of chocolate)
—beware their dangers.
These messengers have hands that can slap you awake,
then abandon you as they return to the problems of the privileged rich.These parasites, dosed with their vitamin B, ride roughshod over their hosts.They linger in their beautiful dreams of percentages,
profit on the hunger of the poor.
They see not your skeletons when they look in the mirror.
They do not see the hearts they have broken.
Once, surrounded by the stricken, they put their fingers in their ears
and pretended they were evangelists to the poor.
Then, their illusions shattered by going door-to-door, they slammed doors shut again.

And here is the link to the rest of my poem as well as the original poem and its real translation:


Reblogged For NaPoWriMo 2023, Day 6

Dianne Hicks Morrow/ Day 3, NaPoWriMo


My friend Dianne Hicks Morrow is doing the NaPoWriMo challenge this year but doesn’t have a blog, so I asked if I could post her List poem here and she agreed.  Fun.  We were asked to make a list of imaginary “somethings” and then to make a poem of them.

Harlequin Detective Novels—Day 3 NaPoWriMo

Tit for Tat
Smell a Rat
Your Hearta
Must Go On
Swan Song
An Inch, A Mile
A Crooked Smile
A Stricken Heart
A Sickened Tart
She’s Too Smart
For Her Own Good
Life in the ‘Hood
The Purple Snood
The Cost of Rude
No Golden Rule
The Champagne Pool
Make Me Drool
Make Me Droll
Make Me, Doll
Make Me
Then Again Maybe Not

Hard to Teach
Beyond Her Reach
Bongo Beach
The Peach
The Screech
Snorkel Empire
Crossed Whale Lovers
What Angelfish Know
Beware the Stingray

Capsized by Desire
Stoking the Funeral Pyre
Wisdom of the Dolphin
Beyond the Lace Veil
Beneath the Bed
Dust Bunnies on the Easter Rabbit
Single Men Swim Free
Beyond Wrinkles
The Death of Spider Veins
Listless in Seattle

—Dianne Hicks Morrow’s wild mind for 10 minutes this morning
For NaPoWriMo list poem prompt.

Poet Pie: NaPoWriMo 2017, Day 2


Poet Pie

Pick an armful of fresh words from the poet tree.
Trim off dry leaves. Dispose of the ordinary or over-ripe.
Choose words that flower when juxtaposed.
Choose tiny clinging bees that sting.
Choose pollen dusted blossoms that make you sneeze.
Choose fragile leaves that swing when you breathe on them,
staunch stalks that do not budge.
Throw them in a vase so that they go where they want to go,
then rearrange to suit your fancy.

Admire your arrangement
as you bring a stock to boil.
This stock consists of honey and vinegar,
water to float the theme,
lightly peppered with adjectives
and salted with strong verbs.

When the water boils, break nouns from your bouquet.
Tender stalks may be sliced to syllables, but leave the flowers whole.
Do not cook too long lest they be too weak to chew upon.

Scoop with a wire ladle and lay on parchment to drain.
Arrange on a bed of crushed hopes pre-baked with future expectations.
Pile to the plate rim, then sift through and remove most of what you’ve put there.
Fill up to the top and beyond with whipped dreams. Careful, not too sweet.

Put on the shelf to gel.
The crust will grow crustier.
The whipped cream will not fall,
but some of the words will rise to the top and blow away.
Others will sink to the bottom and become so mired in crust
that they will stick to the cheeks and teeth of all who sample your pie,
and this is what you want.

This pie will not be to the taste of all
and there may not be enough of it to satisfy the taste of others,
but it will be a pie that satisfies you,
and others may become addicted enough
to order it now and then
in spite of that shelf
of so many delectable pies.
Perhaps because it is tenacious.
Perhaps because it suits their idiosyncratic taste.
Perhaps because of its placement, front and center,
so it meets the eye.

Whatever the reason, whether to the taste of many or few,
it will be there for so long as the cook holds out
and the poet tree stands and keeps blooming.

Poet Pie.  Special this week.
Comes with a big napkin and no fork
so you’ll need to eat it with you hands
and suck it from your fingers.

It will run down your arms
and cause your elbows to stick to the table,
drip from your chin onto your shirtfront,
adorning you like splatters down the fronts
of old ladies in voile dresses.
It will adorn the beards of the hirsute,
hide the pimples of preteens,
make ruby red the lips
of little girls too young for lipstick,
cause the drying lips of old women
to swell as though Botoxed.

It will cause tongues to wag
and fingers to write poetry of their own
in the air or on paper or perhaps
merely in minds
infected by the addictive
nature of poet pie.
You can both smell and taste it.
Feel on your fingers.  Hear its
tender branches crunch between
your teeth–those parts of the poem
that hold the whole together.

That poem that perhaps holds your life together
for the minutes you consume it
and further moments when you try to wash it from your beard
or fingers or chin or shirtfront,
and fail.  So a part of the poem goes with you.
Some may notice it and try to scrub it from your chin.
Others may not be able to resist,
and in wiping off its sweetness from where it has streaked your arm,
may put their fingers to their mouths to taste it themselves
and may be suffused with a yearning for a piece of their own.

Or, say, perhaps, “Not to my taste”
which leaves more poetry pie for you.

The prompt for NaPoWriMo day 2 was to write a poem about a recipe.

HayNOku: NaPoWriMo Day 27

NaPoWriMo Prompt: Write a A hay(na)ku (a three-line stanza where the first line has one word, the second line has two words, and the third line has three words.)

are the
Tweets of poetry.

bird tweets
three note songs.

don’t write
six word poems.

New World Miracle: NaPoWriMo 2015, Day 9

New World Miracle1
New World Miracle2 New World Miracle3

Today’s prompt is to write a visual poem.  This is one I tried to publish earlier this year when WordPress was not accepting pingbacks, so perhaps not many have seen it, and certainly not in this form, as when I published it, it was all evened out into regular stanzas by the blog formatting.  It occurred to me to save it in jpeg and treat the pages as photographs and that seems to have worked.

NaPoWriMo 2015, Day 5: Spendthrift

Today we were to write a poem inspired by Emily Dickinson.  The first poem below is the one I wrote.  Hers is given last.


I exist in silence­­—
rare life hidden from gross eyes
until an instant ambush
rocks me in surprise.

Pierces all my “shouldn’ts,”
spends my hoarded dimes,
melts my frozen assets
saved for future times.

We dare not look too closely,
lest we see adventure’s end.
If we knew what came of it,
we’d doubtless never spend.

We cannot live for endings
lest the story never start,
For all that lives in memory
is paid for in the heart.

The Prompt: Find an Emily Dickinson poem – preferably one you’ve never previously read – and take out all the dashes and line breaks. Make it just one big block of prose. Now, rebreak the lines. Add words where you want. Take out some words. Make your own poem out of it! (I chose the below poem:)

I know that He exists (365)
by Emily Dickinson

I know that He exists.
Somewhere – in silence –
He has hid his rare life
From our gross eyes.

’Tis an instant’s play –
’Tis a fond Ambush –
Just to make Bliss
Earn her own surprise!

But – should the play
Prove piercing earnest –
Should the glee – glaze –
In Death’s – stiff – stare –

Would not the fun
Look too expensive!
Would not the jest –
Have crawled too far!


NaPoWriMo 2015, Day 1: Following Your No’s

Following Your No’s

It is not fuzzy and is not hot.
(It’s hard describing what it’s not.)
It has no eyeballs but has a mouth.
Cannot go up but prefers south.
When it takes a trip, you go along.
It’s lauded in many a poem and song.
It likes to run but has no feet,
asks no permission to leave its seat.
It has no cheek but is a Tongue.
When it’s a man, it is not young.
It is no planet but is a Moon,
I fear this poem can’t end too soon.
I’m tired of saying what it ain’t.
This negativity makes me faint.
If you don’t know what I’m describing,
it’s a lie that you are not imbibing.
It’s clear that you ‘re not listening–
not noticing that I’m glistening.
How many clues do you need to get?
It’s not just me who is all wet!!

The NaPoWriMo Prompt: A Poem of Negation–Write a poem that involves describing something in terms of what it is not.