In the Quietness of Everything

This is for dVerse. Björn asked us to be conscious of how we punctuate the silence in this poem. I normally do use commas and dashes and sometimes periods for full stops, but I did try to be extra aware of pauses here.

 

in the blue-white of a snowy morning

silence reigns. . .

 

winds brush all with feathered wings,

but hush the birds, who do not sing

as they huddle in their nests and wait. . .

 

and I, with cup in hand, sit still,

wonder if it ever will

get warm again. . .

 

by window side, there I bide,

I look outside on winter white,

the whipping flakes diffusing light,

I gaze, listening to the out and in,

and the quietness of everything

 

 

 

 

 

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New Year’s Doorways: Haibun Quadrille

This 44-word Haibun is for Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge, where the challenge was to use synonyms for ambition and change, and it is also a quadrille for dVerse, where Grace asked us to use the word leap.

 

In the past, I leaped into the new year with aspirations. Now I glide on the slipstream of ghosts. Past, future merge in star songs. I wonder if doorways are opening or closing?

 

Pirouetting stars–

old year leaps into the new

embraced by moonlight  

 

 

Embed from Getty Images

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grace in the Moon

This is for the dVerse prompt, “Grace.” Things were off for my New Year’s Eve and New Year’s, but I was struck by the brilliant moon. I felt there was a message there, if only I could hear it.

 

The moon hums with a fierce light

glowing

throwing

pale white heat

we do not hear or feel it,

the insistent beat

on rural roads or city streets,

though she hums aloud

we’re lost in darkness

lost, frozen, under this

tenebrous cloud

 

but if we stop,

listen for a space

(pause)

here in this unknown place

look upon a well-loved face

find here, see, a bit of grace

in love constant, shining like the moon

like her humming tune,

hear the whisper in the wind,

hope is coming, listen, soon

 

 

Past and Future: Tanka

Well, it’s been a strange and not wonderful start to the New Year. My mom is in the hospital. Our Internet has been down for about a day and a half. I am trying to catch up now with e-mails, posts, and work. No Monday Morning Musings this week.

This tanka is for Frank Tassone’s New Year Challenge. I wrote it a few days ago, but this is the first chance I’ve had to post it.

 

calendar page turns

on cusp of past and future

time unchecked flows on

 

streams of shimmering light beams

paused in prismed memories

 

The_Future_Began_Here

“The future began here.” This week’s picture was taken by ESO Photo Ambassador Babak Tafreshi at ESO’s La Silla Observatory. The bright lane of the Milky Way can be seen streaking across the skies above the Chilean Atacama Desert, beneath which sits the New Technology Telescope (NTT), one of the ten active telescopes located at the observatory. . .Wikipedia Commons

 

 

 

 

Song of Midnight Light

It’s still a bit of vacation week. I was going to take a nap, but I wrote this pantoum instead. This is  for Secret Keeper’s Weekly Writing Prompt. The prompt words are:

Circle/Dream/Time/Arm/Phase

 

From birth to death and round again

through time and space, water and air

seeds to flowers, mice and men

cycles of love and those of despair

 

Through time and space, water and air

the moon journeys through the night

cycles of love and those of despair

she hums the song of midnight light

 

The moon journeys through the night

drifting, shimmering on a star-crossed slope

she hums the song of midnight light

dreamtime messages of floating hope

 

Drifting, shimmering on a star-crossed slope

beyond outstretched arms in shadowed phases

dreamtime messages of floating hope

rising high these prayerful phrases

 

until perhaps we cease to be

seeds to flowers, mice and men

human creatures, such as we

(circling) from birth to death and round again

 

Johan_Barthold_Jongkind_-_View_on_Overschie_in_Moonlight_-_Google_Art_Project

Johan Jongkind, “View on Overschie in Moonlight,” [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 

 

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The Christmas tree is up, but something is missing. There are no gifts under it, and I need your help to put that right.

#charity #appeal #christmastree #christmas

For this year’s Christmas charity appeal, I’m asking you to help me raise up to £365 for The Dogs Trust.

The Dogs Trust, formerly known as the National Canine Defence League, is an animal welfare charity and humane society in the United Kingdom which specialises in the well-being of dogs. Click here to go to their website.

Want to get involved? Here’s what you need to do.

  1. In the comments section of this post, leave the name of your blog and a link to it. This can be a link to your ‘about me’ page, a favourite blog post you’ve published, or the home page of your blog.
  2. If you’re an author, you’re also welcome to leave me a link to any books you have published. So, for…

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Anticipation: Tanka

This tanka is for Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday, using synonyms for the words experience and new.

 

Anticipation—

through space and time I travel

novel paths explored

 

treasures buried in a phrase

discovered, they haunt my dreams

 

I went to West Deptford Township Public Library yesterday to return my books and renew one. Of course, I left with a new stack, even though I have books piled by my bed and a long list on my Kindle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sweet Stars of Christmas: Haibun

Monday Morning Musings:

“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!”

–Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

 

On Christmas, I see the past, present, and future appear. Perhaps not as actual ghosts, but as memories, experiences, and wishes. As we decorate Christmas cookies, I think of all the times I did this with our daughters. My husband declares this is the first time he has ever frosted the cookies. Perhaps it’s true. My sugar cookies have stars with five points and stars with six points. They’re all equally sweet and delicious. The Hanukkah candles and the Christmas lights both glow in the winter darkness, symbolizing miracles and bringing hope. This year, I give one daughter Hanukkah presents with a Hello Kitty! Christmas card on Christmas Eve day, when we gather with my niece and her family. In the background, Christmas songs written by Jewish men softly play. We sit around a table in a room decorated for Christmas and discuss ancestors in Belarus and Ukraine, people who never celebrated this holiday.

How did they get here, my niece asks? How did they have the means to leave? When she was a girl, my father’s mother hid in a barn during a pogrom. Somehow, they—some of them–found the means to leave, and to come to a country where they were not persecuted for their religious beliefs and culture. Their ghosts appear briefly and stand around us. Perhaps they would not approve of these goyische celebrations, but I hope they’d sense the love. Here and now we eat and laugh together, even as we miss those no longer with us. We will miss our daughters on Christmas, and I will miss being awakened by hearing them sing “Christmas Time is Here” early in morning. But now on Christmas Eve, my husband and I drink mulled wine and watch It’s a Wonderful Life, and I think yes, it is.

 

ancient stars shimmer,

ghost light of winter’s hope

this scintillation

I’m linking this Monday Morning Musings to Frank Tassone’s Christmas Haiku challenge.

Wishing all of you a joyous holiday season filled with peace, hope, love, and laughter!

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Winter Solstice Dreams: Haibun

Here’s another winter solstice poem. This Haibun is for Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday. She asked us to use synonyms for the words cover and precipitation.

 

I’m tucked under the blankets. My big-eyed, grey-striped cat is cuddled against me. Our white cat has closed both his blue eye and his yellow eye on the pillow beside me. My husband, wrapped in a green-bordered patchwork quilt, has fallen asleep downstairs in his recliner. We all dream. Our dreams are shape-shifting creatures that fly high to dance together amongst the stars. I dream of winter snow melting in spring sunshine.  In my dream, there are green fields and blue horses in a silver mist. There is a building, where inside a dark room a woman slowly chews and swallows some strips of paper. She smiles because now she holds all the secrets–buried inside her like a seed. But someday they will sprout in light, blooming flowers of truth and beauty.

 

Dreams reign solstice night

soothed by moon’s lullabies,

slowly, the sun wakes

 

1024px-Marc_-_Der_Traum_1912

Franz Marc, “The Dream,” [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Winter Solstice: Tanka

This is a tanka for Frank Tassone’s Haiku Challenge. The prompt is winter solstice, which takes place this Thursday. Though we had snow on Friday, it’s now actually unseasonably warm here in south Jersey.

 

 

Violet skies roost

over white snow shadow-kissed–

this, the longest night

 

buries colors like secrets

rediscovered in the spring