Tag Archives: Poems

Lush Night (Erasure Poem for dVerse Poets)

 

Lush Night

That delicious
middle
of the gravel road.
Safe sun coming up.
The first time
pleasures
of a night owl—
finding time
everyone else was wasting
on dreams.

An aficionado of night
ever since.
Poems written
in the dark
while cities slept.

Time for yourself
with magic happening.
Ever afterwards,
you have survived
on as little sleep as possible.

Party years,
dancing and drinking until three,
then breakfast with the single crowd
and driving straight to school at six.
Invulnerable.

Even married,
sneaking out of bed
to your basement studio
all night long,
back to bed before he awakened,
feeling that little terror,
like a vampire caught by light.

At 54, with no more husband,
above ground,
no longer hidden,
watching light go out
as you sat piecing art—
until suddenly,
impossibly,
light after light went on again
so you were going to bed
as your neighbor was arising
to start his day.

Romance at 62
entered your midnight afterworld.
Serenaded by a night-addicted lover bard,
Skype your love letters
and your trysting spot.
Night that intimate invisible union
through the magic
which now joins you
in that single space
within you
you keep separate
from the world.

At night,
you know exactly
what it is you want
and live it
with no world
to lead you elsewhere.

This poem was written to a prompt by dVerse Poets. The idea is to take a found poem and to erase parts to create a new poem.  I used my own poem, Lush Night. This is what it looked like before the erasures:

Lush Night

Remember that delicious
walking, arms linked,
down the middle
of the gravel road
in your pajamas
at five in the morning
when you were twelve?
That first slumber party
in your safe small town
when you all stayed up all night
for the first time in your lives?
That eerie first sight
of the sun coming up
when your head had never hit a pillow
since it went down?

And then you knew for the first time
the pleasures
of being a night owl—
of finding time
that everyone else was wasting
through dreams.

And you have been
an aficionado of night
ever since.
All of your term papers
and exams studied for
at the last minute,
all night long.
Books written, poems written
mostly in the dark
while towns and cities around you slept.
That power of having all of your time for yourself
with not a chance of phones ringing.
Some magic happening
once you had the world to yourself
so ever afterwards
you have survived
on as little sleep as possible.

During your party years,
dancing and drinking till three,
then going for breakfast with the single crowd
and driving straight to school at six.
You were invulnerable.

Even married,
sneaking out of bed once he’d fallen asleep
and working in your basement studio all night long,
sometimes sneaking back to bed before he awakened,
at other times caught.
“It’s nine in the morning! Have you been up all night again?”
Feeling that little terror, like a vampire caught by light.

Then at 54, with no more husband,
no more job necessary,
with a new country and a new studio
above ground,
guilty pleasures no longer needed to be hidden—
watching light after light go out
as you sat piecing art together
in your studio—until suddenly,
impossibly,
light after light went on again
so you were going to bed
as your neighbor was arising
to start his day.

Then, improbably, at 62, internet romance
entered your midnight-and-after world.
Every night serenaded to sleep
from 1500 miles away
by an equally night-addicted lover bard
at two or three or four a.m.—
or whenever pillow talk led to it.

Skype became your love letters
and your trysting spot
now and then all day long;
but still, night better swaddled
that intimate invisible union
through the dark air
that has always been magic for you,
but which now joins instead of
sending you into the single space
where you unite with that within you
which you keep separate from the world.

At night, united or alone,
you know exactly what it is you want
and live it,
with no world
to lead you elsewhere.

 

 

Genius

 

The Genius of Choice

I do not crave a sylphlike form.
Mere gorgeousness is not the norm
If I seek to build my ego up,
I do not need a 4D cup—
the back strain nor the stares and gawking.
The genius of a Stephen Hawking?
I do not want it, seek it not;
and I would not wish to be caught
inside a Porsche or Aston Martin.
Joy’s not packaged in a carton
large nor small. No jewels seek I.
No diamonds sparkle in my mind’s eye.
I do not envy your honor student.
Your sex life I just find imprudent.
I covet not thy ox nor ass,
thy husband nor thy backstage pass.
There’s just one thing I’m thirsting for.
If I had it, I’d need no more.
I guess I’ll tell the truth, y’all.
What do I want? I want it ALL!!!!

 

The prompt today was genius. (This is an edited version of a poem formerly published in 2014 under a different name.)

Disappointing Petrarch (Three Shakespearean Sonnets for dVerse Poets)

Three Wan Dogs before Their Feeding

Our mistress lies upon her bed too long,
her favorite silver thing upon her lap.
That she should put our feeding off is wrong.
We sit and stare at her through her door’s gap.

She taps upon her thing and taps and taps.
Sometimes she chortles, but we don’t know why.
Where formerly her bed was used for naps,
a favorite dog cuddled against her thigh,

she now spends all  her time there with that thing
as we sit hungry, waiting to be fed.
She seeks the nourishment that words can bring,
for she is sure that if she leaves her bed

before she finishes her sonnet, then
her muse will not agree to come again.


Three  Hungry Dogs Intent Upon Their Feeding

At last at last she opens up her door
and feeds our sister first, lest we devour
her food ourselves and then not leave the poor
dear girl with any sustenance to power

her barking at the other dogs who pass.
But now our mother fills our bowls as well––
each portion measured by a measuring glass.
Each second  we must wait becomes a Hell.

She scoops out first the dry and then the wet––
more for the big dog and less for the small.
We worry over how much food we’ll get,
remembering times when we had none at all.

But finally, our portions, too, are dished
(although not quite so full as we’d have wished.)


Three Patient Dogs after Their Feeding

Now see our dishes cleaned and neatly stacked?
Our human lolls once more upon her bed.
to write more stanzas that she formerly lacked
and free herself of rhymes that fill her head.

The small dog leaps upon her bed to lie
and garner a small scratching now and then.
We larger dogs lie watching from close by,
kept from our human in her iron pen.

See her now, look quizzical and rapt?
We know not what she thinks there on her back.
Where formerly she read or watched or napped,
she stews about just what her poems might lack.

For Shakespeare she is not, the silly goose.
Her talents? More in line with Dr. Seuss!!!

(Click on the first photo below to enlarge photos and read captions–also written in couplet form.)  Good grief. It’s my muse’s fault. The girl can’t help it!!)

 

A sonnet for dVerse Poets (Sorry, Petrarch.  These are Shakespearean!)

Revelation in Twilight: 19 Studies of the Moon

Revelation in Twilight

This morning I woke early—an hour before light
obscured my vision of the moon, hanging like a kite
in the night-stained sky, there through my window bars.
suspended high up in a sky devoid of clouds or stars.

Just a minute later, it moved along with me
to float the pool’s surface that only I could see.
Too soon the sun would come, its golden light to douse.
But for now, it followed me as I walked through my house.

Friendly moon to loiter in my company.
It seemed this early morning that both of us were free
to spend a few rare moments quietly alone.
Both of us free-floating in the twilight zone.

(Please click on first photo to enlarge all.)

 

 

 

The prompt today was revelation. All photos by jdb.

In the Pink: Mismatch

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Mismatch

When a certain fella has had a drink
or two or three, he’s bound to wink
at the little lady dressed in pink.
Her drink’s cubes give a subtle clink
as she decides what she might think.
Is he a stud or just a fink?
His clothes are sort of rinky-dink,

yet her long lashes, swathed in ink,
flutter in a come-on blink.
One fingernail is seen to sink
into her glass. He’s at the brink
of coming over to seal the link.
She checks her breath.  It doesn’t stink.
She reaches down and dons her mink.
But then he stops and seems to shrink.
In this sure deal there seems a chink.
It’s clear that when she deigned to flirt,
she missed the writing on his shirt.
“Be kind to animals,” it said,
“Who’d be caught wearing something dead?”

The prompt word today is “pink.”

The Juice of Human Kindness

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I am making guacamole for the play date I’m having with two other collage artists tomorrow.  I am shocked when I see the time is 11:45 p.m. shortly after I’ve also discovered I’m out of limes.  Lack of sleep and the later hour have made me forget what I know well–that guacamole won’t darken if you bury the pit in it. I can only think that an hour’s work disinfecting and chopping onions, cilantro, garlic, tomatoes and four giant avocados will be for naught unless I locate a limón (key lime–Mexico’s answer to limes) or two. Dozens of bars and restaurants on my street—and little markets—all closed. Except for one restaurant with tables in the square that pops up every evening and disappears at closing time. Luckily, since they have to put away all the chairs and tables each night, they were just locking up.  I asked if I could buy a lime, and the cook took me into the kitchen, which she was just getting ready to lock up, and said they only had a few left but to take what I needed from the grocery bag that contained seven tiny limóns.  I took three and asked how much.  She wouldn’t take money, so I gave her a hug.  I love Mexico.

“Girls” Night Out

Click on any photo to enlarge and view all as gallery.

“Girls” Night Out

Mary Tyler Moore, Working Girl and I Love Lucy—
 film nights with the ladies are usually juicy.
Although we’re staying in, all that’s tucked in must be outed.
All those mumbled gripes now brought to light and shouted.
Pulling out the bobby pins to let the chignons flow.
Kicking off the heels to wiggle arch and toe.
Slipping off the panty hose, loosening top buttons.
Gorging on potato chips and dip like teenage gluttons.
Drinking margaritas, martinis and mojitos.
Pepperidge Farm and popcorn, ice cream and Doritos.
When old dames get together, pull out all the stops.
Banish all the dust cloths. Lock up all the mops.
Rip up all the lists and turn them to confetti.
Break out the lasagne. Break out the spaghetti.
Fill the crystal bowls with M&Ms and truffles.
Ban antimacassars, doilies, tucks and ruffles.
Bring out your old 8-tracks and your 45’s.
Forget that you are mothers, grandmothers and wives.
Better shake your booties while they still can shake.
Better come alive while still able to wake.
Time enough for normalcy when you’re ninety-six.
When you’re only seventy, you’ve still got some kicks.
Leave your spouses home staring at their football games—
vicariously living while you’re out being dames.
It’s your secret life, for no one needs to know
everything you do and everywhere you go.
Let the whole world think you’re in there playing bridge
while you are jitterbugging and emptying out the fridge.
It’s more fun when it’s secret, so promise not to tell
when old girls get together and raise a little Hell!!!!

The prompt today was juicy.