Tag Archives: poem about freedom

Free

Free

The lady was omnilegent (which means she was well-read.)
She read while doing dishes, after her kids were fed.
A book propped in the laundry, another on the tub,
balanced there precariously as she had her scrub.
The draconian measures her spouse took to confine her
were fruitless for she did not choose his attempts to define her.

Reading was her gateway to a wider world
and all those intense pleasures waiting to be unfurled.
She held fast to a firm resolve that one day she’d be free.
Her husband could not curtail her mental liberty.
One day when the kids were raised, she’d leave this sunless hollow.
All the words she’d read for years like breadcrumbs she would follow.

Prompt words for today are draconian, uncertain, omnilegent, intense and gateway.

Not A Creature of Habit

jdb photo/do not replicate without permission.

Not A Creature of Habit

Fortitude’s cool, but frazzled’s more fun.
I’d rather be scattered and out on the run
than to be stoically still like a nun.

Out in the village, I’ll use my fine wit,
but identical nuns would have none of it,
Me as a nun? I just wouldn’t fit.

Even clothes are a habit when cloistered in place.
A nun has no moxie, no sass in her face.
They’re out of the mainstream and out of the race.

So hand me no wimple, no habit, no veil.
Confined in such clothes, I could barely exhale.
This bird needs her freedom, not salt on her tail.

 

The word prompts today are frazzled, fortitude, wit, identical and village.

Note: I know there are many nuns who do not fit this stereotype. I claim poetic license to make use of hyperbole!!

Aunt Lou’s Underground Railroad Tomato (For Black History Month)

Aunt Lou’s Underground Railroad Tomato

IMG_4994

Reading through a heritage seed catalogue can be a bit like reading a Reader’s Digest of adventure and human interest stories. Take, for instance, the abbreviated tale of how one tomato variety came to be saved and how it got its name. Above is an excerpt from the Southern Exposure Seed Exchange catalogue that tells this tale. Below is the poem I wrote, prompted by this entry.

Aunt Lou’s Underground Railroad Tomato

So many acts of bravery lost
to history, but at what cost?
We concentrate on acts of war
in spite of what we fight them for.
Patriotism is what we say
we’re fighting for, while day by day
young men die for corporations
and win postmortem decorations,
their sacrifice of life much praised
so profit margins may be raised.

Consider, then, the other hero
whose decorations number zero.
This hero’s grave we’re loath to mark.
The soil above his grave is stark.
His collar bore no decoration,
his passing earned him no oration.
Unnamed, unlauded, he took a train
his life and freedom to regain––
pushed up from darkness like seeds to light,
by those engaged in a selfless fight
for fairness and equality.
One more man saved. One more man free.

Those who aided him also lost––
their names like ashes lightly tossed
to fertilize the soil wherein
small shafts push up where seeds have been.
Those seeds he carried his only fare,
passed to a woman who helped him there.

The fleshy meat––tangy and pink,
its juices running down the sink
a child stands over while eating it––
teeth tearing flesh, his face well lit
by sunlight streaming in the glass
where once a hand was seen to pass
a pocketful of tomato seed––
a humble gift born out of need
to somehow give a small bit back.
Those seeds he’d carried in his pack
saved now for posterity
by one man peacefully set free.

This is a poem I wrote four years ago, reprinted for dVerse Poets Black History Month.

To see the prompt,,.. go HERE.

Open Hand

jdbphoto2015

Open Hand

Wings held lightly without crushing
survive to join the world’s wild rushing,
while love held by a tight-clenched fist
quells half our reason to exist.

Some laud passions most rapacious—
grasping, volatile, tenacious;
but this is not the love I feel.
I do not seek to swoon or reel.

The tenacity of a skin tight glove
might stay my soaring to heights above.
I need your love like an open hand.
Not for me the wedding band.

The bond I seek from you, my dear,
is not the gauntlet that I fear
but rather, fingers whose sensations
are left free to life’s elations.

Butterflies kept in a jar
lose that beauty seen from afar.
That grace of movement caught on air
is what makes their beauty rare.

I love it when your arms enfold,
but if you love me, loose your hold.
The measure of my tenacity
is that I’ll come back to thee.

jdbphoto

The prompt word today was tenacious.

Life is More Wonderful

photobyokcforgottenman

Life is More Wonderful

Concentrate on daily things—
the scent of toast perfectly browned,
new sheets gathered from the line,
this morning’s treasures spread on the ground:

a robin’s egg, inventing blue,
left on your doorstep, as though for you.
Seed of sycamore spinning down
to land with precision on your shoe.

Life is more wonderful with what
can come through serendipity;
and once we’re clothed and fed and sheltered,
what’s most valuable is free:

A child’s questing hopeful look
as he searches worlds within a book.
Heartfelt laughter dispelling pain
and friends who will return again.

Pity those for whom success
means piling gold in offshore banks;
whose quest for more will sacrifice

the health of children to buy more tanks.

They’ve gone too far to ever know
how much pain and how much woe
is occasioned by their status quo—
how much unhappiness they’ll sow.

Acceptance of their ignorant greed
will lead us down the path they’ve worn.
They’ll leave our world stripped and bereft,
her wondrous freedoms raped and shorn.

So as they pillage, ruin, and rape
an environment that can’t escape,
be glad that stubborn others insist
that we drive these bullies from our midst.

 

We know too much of the world’s ills
to ever fully feel at peace,
for that safe world that we have known
can not be lived without surcease.

Enjoy your happiness in each thing
that luck or your hard work might bring,
but share these things with everyone
lest all we stand for comes undone.

There is much in life that we
must learn to live with and accept;
but other things that we can change,
and leaders who are more adept

at giving us the basics for our health and happiness:
clean water, schools and health care. Never accept less.
If our quest for fool’s gold destroys what it can’t buy,
we’re simply fools caught building dream castles in the sky.

In times that are distressing,
millions of voices shout,
“To preserve simple pleasures,
drive these carpetbaggers out!”

The prompt today was acceptance. (Not.) The rather unusual use of two rhyme schemes in one poem came about naturally at first, as though some part of me rebelled against even the strictures of the poetic form.  Then it seemed natural to vary the justification as well.  Yes, we need justification, but it need not follow the rules we do not agree with.  So, both center and left justification and next line and alternate line rhyme.  Seemed right for this poem. 

Bird’s Eye View

Bird’s Eye View 

You crane your necks and stand and gawk
as you stroll past on your morning walk.
What do you look at, what do you see
as you strain to get a look at me?

Do you fear my beak and dread my claws?
Have you ever wondered as you pause,
what I might do without these bars
that stripe my view of sun, moon, stars?

Might I fly at you and score
an easy target before I soar
over this cage, rooftops and trees––
once more a part of a gusting breeze?

I am a prisoner, yet dreams go far
beyond each lock and screen and bar.
The wildness that you think you see
cannot be purchased for a fee.

If you cast a curious eye
but do not see me soar and fly,
You view the least that I can be,
but not my spirit.  My spirit’s free.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/stroll/

Flip Flop

th
flip flop

the sound  of ease
and summer

not much to slip into
or out of

sand between toes
and other cracks

released in sleep
to gritty sheets

grinding our sleep
and clogging up washing machines

long gone the days of high button shoes
and the shoe horns that went with them.

Waist cinchers
give way to bikinis

and bikinis
to nude beaches

half of the world
flip flopping

rubber soles
and swinging breasts.

flip flops
taking the place

of gasps
as stays are tightened

the other half
burqas and Jimmy Choo

these differences
in freedom found

and freedom
found too slowly

find release in
collapsing towers

conceal, reveal.
flip flop.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/flip-flop/

Lightning in a Bottle

This was my response to a message sent to me on a social networking site.  Since there seem to be very few divisions in our cyber world anymore, why not print it here?

We will all go
to lightning in a bottle
too soon too soon
ashes on a shelf
so for today
let’s be words
art
one foot down
another in the air
moving
on sand or in the mind
lightning
that in its freedom
is continually seeking
ground.

 

P.S. As soon as someone sends me the name of a book and its opening and closing sentence, I can get started on Chapter Three.  (See my earlier post today for an explanation.) No suggestions, no further chapters.  Please come be my muse.