Category Archives: Poem

Accidental Excuses

Accidental Excuses

Pointing at the calendar, you voice a guttural moan,
regretting a notation for which you must atone.
It’s time to trim the ivy from the window frames and gutters,
but your reluctance to do so, I can tell from your low mutters.

When our decorous window boxes needed a small touch-up,
you erased the reminder and smugly held your crutch up.
Of course I did the job for you, for it would be abuse
not to take a broken leg as adequate excuse.

But now that you have healed, my dear, it clearly is your turn
to cut back the ivy and to trim the Boston fern.
In spite of your pleading eyes and all your manly charm,
you’ll only avoid this chore if you fall and break an arm!

Prompt words today are guttural, calendar, ivy, decorous and point.
Image by Debb D on Unsplash.

Overstatement

Overstatement

Though her smile was impressively perfect and bright,
I found it vacuous—joyless and tight.
To gainsay her fashion sense, I must express
that  jewelry was often worn in excess.

Rings on her fingers and earrings and more:
necklaces, scarves and bracelets galore.
Such foolish things as ruffles and puffs,
pleatings and laces, umbrellas and muffs

completed her outfits, almost, for two more
accoutrements finished her body’s decor.
Her makeup layered on, then there was just one.
She dumped on perfume, and then she was done!

 

Prompts today are foolish things, vacuous, impressive, gainsay and dump.

Puddle-Jumping


Puddle-Jumping

Raindrops fall and splat and skitter,
bringing sheen and gloss and glitter.
In my dreams I hear them falling,
try to wake to heed their calling.
When exactly do I know
it’s time to leave my bed and go
outside to splash in rain-filled gutters,
ignoring Grandpa’s warning mutters
that I’ll catch a cold today
if I go outside to play?

He says it’s raining cats and dogs,
but all I find outside are frogs,
proving his idiom a lie
as nothing’s falling from the sky
but rain and blossoms from the tree
that stretches its limbs over me.
I make my way, laborious,
through mud and goo most glorious,
then reach the ditch and wash feet off
in the rushing water trough.

I see Grandpa watching me,
warm and dry and splatter-free.
But then he’s gone, no doubt to see
what’s playing now on the TV.
But, just as it begins to pour,
there’s Grandpa coming out the door!
Barefooted, he jumps in my puddle,
gives my shoulders a warm cuddle,
then repeats the old refrain
that this day is “Right as rain!”


Prompt words today are rain, idiom, skitter, exact, dreams.
Images by Amy Reed and Nicholas Bartos on Unsplash. Used with permission.

A Woman Alone: for the Sunday Writing Prompt

 

A Woman Alone

I am airborne in the hammock,
the small dog on my stomach,
but patting the bigger dog
on the ground below us
to assuage his jealousy.

I watch this week’s brand of butterflies
popping like popcorn
above the audacious flowers
of the tabachine bush,
and that confused hummingbird
that has mistaken the Soleri bell for a flower.

I eat pizza at midnight
and swim naked in the pool at 2 am.
My cats know my sins
and like me better for them.

When I talk to the air,
it is unclear whether I talk to the cats
or to myself.
Who might the neighbors think I am talking to?
Some new lover?
Most probably not.

Those of us who live alone
are never really quite alone in Mexico,
where private lives
are so easily shared
in spite of walls.
It is as though
sounds echo more easily
in the high mountain air,
and we become one large family,
putting up with each other’s secrets.

But, no responsibility
for husband or children or roommates,
we sink into the luxury of selfishness.
Sleeping at odd hours,
wearing our pajamas from bedtime
to wake-up
to next bedtime,
calling out to the gardener from behind curtains,
accustoming the housekeeper to our sleepless nights
and long mornings of slumber.

No one to explain the junk drawer to,
or the large accumulation of toilet paper rolls,
for which you have a definite purpose
that you never quite get around to.

The luxury of a nude body
no one else short of the doctor
will ever see.
The back of your head
where snarls can exist
unchallenged
until the next trip to town.

The Petit Ecole cookies
you need not share
with anyone.
The unmade bed uncensored.
The best hammock always your own.
An internet band unshared.

Only your toothbrush in the glass beside the sink.
Every leftover cup of coffee
sitting on surfaces around the house
one you can sip out of
with no fear of any disease
other than the ones you already harbor.

Alone.
What you always feared.
That fear now behind you.
You were so wrong.

 

For Sunday Writing Prompt: The Quiet One

Cracked

Cracked

My thoughts are arabesques that curl—now looser and now tight.
They coalesce, then part again to let in needed light.
When ponderings go underground, they tend to matte and cloy,
but when they leave some room within, they seem to invite joy.
So in between colloquial thoughts, I wedge out open spaces
where I can  I leave some fractures, inviting fresh new traces
of innovative modes of thought and bright new points of view
so bit by bit, over the years my attitudes accrue.

Prompt words for the day are coalesce, colloquial, fractures, cloy and underground.

Workaholic

Workaholic

Be it cleaning out the closets or the pantry or garage,
I do not mind the grunt work nor the labor or barrage
of details that may add to the hours of my work.
I do not seek avoidance and make no attempts to shirk.

When I’m on a roll and in the spell of my creation,
the only way to curb me is probably sedation.
for when I’m in the throes of work is when I’m most sublime.
I’m an expatriate from worry. I come unfixed in time.

I do not ask for recess and I only take a break
for water or the potty. These are all the rests I take.
I make no excuses to quit and come back later,
because for me these marathons are a mood-elevator.

I don’t regard the task-at-hand as drudgery or working,
so I make no attempts at avoidance or at shirking. 
Be it working in the studio, arranging, cutting, gluing,
or cleaning out friends’ clutter, I’m happiest when doing!

 

Prompts today are break, sedate, expatriate, regard and elevator.
Image by Neonbrand on Unsplash. Used with permission.

 

Swingers

Swingers

Romance is better on the swings
for it’s true Cupid has wings
and if he inspires a kiss,
it’s clear that you don’t want to miss
that moment on your mutual ride
where your lips might coincide,
and on the teeter-totter or slide
it’s harder to go side-by-side.

 

For the Weekly Prompts Weekend Challenge: Side-by-Side
Image by Brandon Couch on Unsplash.

What Goes Around Comes Around


What Goes Around Comes Around

The facts at your disposal are ones you should review,
because truth may vitiate the strength of what you choose to spew.
Your toxic comments are perhaps ones that you may rue,
for like a brick thrown in a whirlwind, they may come back at you.

 

Prompt words today are whirlwind, brick, disposal, vitiate and toxic. Image from Unsplash.

Drop-ins Not Advised

https://vinnews.com/2019/07/12/new-york-hey-brooklyn-wanna-live-longer-move-to-borough-park-a-new-report-says/

Drop-ins Not Advised

“Don’t be a stranger” said the pair
when I met them at an affair.
Nobody knew this introduction
would give rise to such a ruction.
When I strolled into their borough,
inquiries were swift and thorough.
Was I peddling pot or meth?
How did I say shibboleth?
I passed the pat-down, said the word,
then joined the swirling passing herd.
Clearly, it is not a lark
to try to enter Borough Park!

Prompt words today are Shibboleth, thorough, nobody, ruction and introduction.

Two of the prompt words today were a bit tricky, giving rise to this strange little poem.
If you, don’t know what “Shibboleth” means (as I didn’t)  HERE is a link to its explanation.
Borough Park is a largely Orthodox Jewish section of New York City and a ruction is a disturbance, quarrel, or row.

 

 

Playing with Fire

Playing with Fire

In the circles she lives in, she’s queen of the realm.
Wherever she goes, she must be at the helm.
They call her the Admiral, head of the fleet.
She’ll hear no debate and she’ll bear no defeat.

When she is challenged, she’s ready to fight.
Incadescent with anger, she’ll insist that she’s right.
Once her rage is incited, she could drive you to drink.
Your role is to follow. Her role is to think.

When you rub her together with one of her kind,
they’re bound to express a difference of mind,
and since neither can bear an opposing notion,
it’s bound to lead to explosive emotion.

Rub them together and they’re sure to fight.
Like sulphur on sandpaper, they will ignite.
So keep them apart, these glorious dames,
or one or the other will go up in flames.

 

 

Prompts today are in the circle, realm, incadescent, fleet and drink.
Image by Olga Bast on Unsplash.