Ask, The Answer is Blue Beauty

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Franz Marc, The Tower of Blue Horses,” [Public Domain] Wikepedia Commons

They ask,

and we arm.

 

There, see the blood spraying,

our heaves and screams?

 

But my ache—

I dream blue beauty

 

showing light and life

after all—

 

a why pictured

to shadowed if

 

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Poignant words from the Oracle, who apparently is a Franz Marc fan–

or perhaps Martian sunsets.

Sheep, Perchance to Dream

How to explain the surrealism of my dreams—

the talking sheep—

 

she holds a menu

and politely requests seasoned breads.

 

I’m not confused that she can talk, read

or walk upright—

 

I only regret

that the bread is unavailable,

 

and that the menu should say seasonal

instead of seasoned.

 

I wake laughing,

but later ponder,

 

who knows what talents a sheep has

or what desires?

 

We see the flock, the crowd,

not the individual

 

yearning for something better,

until they take a stand.

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Franz Marc, “Sheep,” [Public Domain] via Wikipedia Commons

This is a late offering for dVerse Open Link night, where Mish has asked us to post one poem on snow or anything else. I went for something else. I’m still catching up with reading others’ posts. I’ll try to catch up before latkes and wine on Sunday!  🙂

 

 

Looking at Fire, Exploring the Cold

 

Leaves crunch underfoot,

above red planet rises–

owl hunts unconcerned

 

Thrusters fire, and a ship lands securely in a sandy crater. Passion burned in the heart of the war god; his namesake is rust-hued, barren, and frigid. But–once water flowed here, and perhaps life flourished, too.

 

We look up, wonder

see fiery stars, and ponder–

elsewhere, sun sets blue

 

117989main_image_feature_347_ys_full  Sunset on Mars

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Texas A&M/Cornell
On May 19, 2005, NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Spirit captured this stunning view as the Sun sank below the rim of Gusev crater on Mars. This Panoramic Camera mosaic was taken around 6:07 in the evening of the rover’s 489th Martian day, or sol.

My poem was inspired by the Mars Insight probe that landed this week. This Haibun is for Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday using synonyms for cold and safe.  And for dVerse, where Victoria asked us to write any type of poem using fire.

 

 

 

 

Waiting–Haibun

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I’m sick, my face is broken-out, and my slender body swells large over a period of nine months. Outside snowflakes fall, but I am cocooned inside where there is no time or seasons. Days of labor, and she finally appears, tiny and bald—the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. We’ve waited nearly ten years to have her. Three years later, we’re back at the same hospital, again in the February cold, again the wait to be surprised, to be exhausted and overjoyed. Now we have two daughters. Some things are worth waiting for.

robin trills in hope–

beauty rises from the snow

snowdrop sprouts and blooms

 

This Haibun is for the dVerse Haibun Monday prompt. Imelda is guest-hosting. She has asked us to write about waiting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Turkeys, Squirrels, and Magic in the Air

Monday Morning Musings:

“So dawn goes down to day.

Nothing gold can stay.”

From Robert Frost, “Nothing Gold Can Stay”

“The sky is already purple; the first few stars have appeared, suddenly, as if someone had thrown a handful of silver across the edge of the world.”

Alice Hoffman, Here on Earth

The leaves strive to stay,

pops of color dot the landscape

brightening the grey

 

but falling, flying, drifting so

as autumn grows colder,

they must go

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Red Bank Battlefield

as does the day

soon the shadows lengthen

silently sliding their way

 

along pavement and ground

above bare branches wave

without a sound.

 

Violet turns midnight blue

and a glimmering filigree of light

dots the sky, like morning dew.

 

Twilight—this magic time

when fairy tales sprout

in the mind—and so I rhyme

 

Once– if tale be told–

my arm up a turkey,

the day frigid cold

 

I shoo away a sniffing cat

look at the bird’s freakishly long neck–

wonder what kind of dinosaur was that?*

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Survival and extinction

I continue the job

I won’t eat it but some

 

will, it’s the family holiday deal

a mixture of traditions and love

along with the holiday meal.

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Our lovely sommelier

And so, we gather together

unmold the cranberry squirrel—to cheers–

bask in weirdness, warmth in the cold weather.

On this night of full beaver moon

we eat, drink, laugh, and talk

though ever present the tune

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of what will be and what was past,

we try to stay in the moment, mindful

that we cannot know what is cast

 

by the auger’s stones

our fate with the stars

unknown, until felt in our bones.

 

We eat leftovers for days–

and drink more wine

walk and sleep in holiday haze,

 

then we sleep and dream

of a million things

forgotten at dawn, the theme

 

who knows? I hear the birds sing

amidst November gloom–

a little winged thing

 

can achieve wonders, I think,

cat on a lap, a book, a cup of tea—

yes, back to food and drink.

 

In sunny weather, we go to see

a Swedish film, not comedy,

a fairy tale, of sorts, it seems to me

 

border can be taken in many ways

as can gender and eye of the beholder

much in the world and nature may amaze

 

a fable may hold truth—

no matter about who or what is told

shy or bold, cultured, or uncouth

 

Magic all around us

in glowing leaves and laughing speech

known and unknown worlds, ever thus–

And so, we talk

drink our coffee and catch our train,

then our shadows take a walk—

and soon we’re home again

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to sleep under the silvered sky,

to dream of wondrous, magic things,

to ask without answers all the whys,

to hear the stars sing and to them fly.

 

Thanksgiving 2018

*I read this article on Thanksgiving.

 

We celebrated Thanksgiving with family (missing older daughter and her wife) and friends. For those who are new, our cranberry squirrel is a beloved family tradition. The unmolding of it is part of the tradition, and this year my sister made a very funny recording of the event. We saw the Swedish movie, Border. Trailer here. As the trailer says, unlike anything you’ve ever seen. It is definitely unusual, but my husband and I liked it. Coincidentally, I’m reading a book that is also a sort of fairy tale but that is set in the area of the world where my ancestors came from. Perhaps more about that in a future post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Language of a Thousand Loves

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Above, Moon sings

of honeyed times

 

her music rose-gowned

in sweet summer winds

 

sifting shadows

over the sea.

 

And we watch—

asking why of water-pounded rocks

 

as the sun

drives mist away–

 

there still sleeping –

 

the language of

a thousand loves with you.

 

I’m not quite sure I understand what the Oracle is saying, but I like the poem she gave me.

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Constant the Sea

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Guillermo Gómez Gil, “Moonrise,” [Public Domain], Wikipedia Commons

And did you see my lover fly

as sun set and the stars did rise?

Bound to go, but I wondered why.

Hands clasped fast, we said our good-byes,

now the leaves rustle, the moon sighs.

 

The sea whispers, and he would go,

his family calls from ocean deep.

Before the cold of winter snow,

he would go, his promise to keep.

Sleep, my love, he said, dream and sleep.

 

Summer leaves wither and then fall

but my belly swells, what will be?

I wonder if he’ll hear my call

return again for child or me?

Tides ebb and flow, constant, the sea.

 

And did you hear a love-felt cry

as sun set and the stars did rise?

Hearts torn twixt, under midnight sky?

Hands clasped fast, we said our good-byes,

now the leaves rustle, the moon sighs.

 

Grace has asked us to write a Quintain for dVerse. Mine uses the English rhyme scheme, but perhaps it is a cross between English and Spanish. I was in the mood for a ballad– it was only after I started writing it, that I realized it was about a Selkie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gatherings

Count the place settings,

fifteen gather for dinner

on Thanksgiving night,

ghosts sit amongst us—hear them?

They are welcome, too.

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Franz Marc, “Deer,” {Public Domain], Wikipedia Commons

 

This is an untraditional tanka for Frank’s Haikai challenge, using the prompt Thanksgiving, and Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday challenge using synonyms for celebrate and number. I’ve been busy with work and Thanksgiving prep, and I’m behind on reading posts. I’ll catch-up over the weekend. Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate the holiday, and happy Thursday to everyone else.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Owl

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Caspar David Friedrich, “Owl on a Tree,” [Public domain] Wikipedia Commons

Gloaming—a hoot

and then she soars

 

silently, in pursuit

of prey, explores

 

the land–still unspoiled—

glides with serrated wings

 

over territory still unsoiled

by the sighs and zings

 

of manmade things

seeking oil or gold.

 

But tonight–

only silent wings in flight.

 

This is for dVerse where Lillian has asked us to write a quadrille using some form of the word “spoil.” She mentions movies, so I’ll say—and this is not a spoiler—that there is a prospector and an owl in one of the “chapters” in the movie The Ballad of Buster Scruggs. 

 

 

Cold and Burning

Monday Morning Musings:

 “Listen. .

With faint dry sound,

Like steps of passing ghosts,

The leaves, frost-crisp’d, break from the trees

And fall.”

Adelaide Crapsey, “November Night”

 

“In the burned house I am eating breakfast.

You understand: there is no house, there is no breakfast,

yet here I am.”

From Margaret Atwood, “Morning in the Burned House”

 

The sun sleeps

in shadow now

the ground prepares

to slumber, too

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covered in brown

then sprinkled with white

golden-leaved boughs

glowing bright

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in defiant display—

this they say—

remember this day–

we will return

 

when the sun burns

the frost away.

 

So, we stay inside

watch a movie of sly wit and song,

there death seems to come along,

a bit of jokester, it seems

for which we’re never prepared,

still we turn the pages in a book,

hoping for a happy ending

Movie Cat

He is fascinated, watching The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.

And in the night

I dream of petting a sloth

(in a park)

 

then accompanying a pretentious hipster

dressed all in black, dark

like the restaurant where no food is consumed

 

but I outwit him and his friends

and wake laughing at the dream’s end.

 

Score one for the old lady

there’s life here still–

and more to be penned.

 

We venture out to see another film

unfolding tension

(a few jumps in my chair)

 

metaphors and

things that are not there—

 

a tangerine,

perhaps a cat—

 

and there is burning—

of various kinds—

 

and yearning–

what is in their minds?

 

What do they feel,

 

the young woman,

the would-be writer,

and the mystery Gatsby-rich man?

 

What is real?

 

We walk and talk

buy spices

to simmer in the cold,

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then in the chilly day

creeping into shadowed night

savor the warmth of wine

consumed in cozy light

life enjoyed despite what may

transpire, gloom kept at bay

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undesired here and now

and our fate unknown anyhow

 

so, we gather rosebuds—or drink

fruit of the wine, laugh and think

 

but not too long about the future

instead we nurture

 

ourselves and one another

 

cuddle with cats, dream of the moon

enjoy one snowfall, but wait for June

 

still we prepare soon

with family to gather

 

as the seasons turn

burn only candles

 

yet, seek the light

in every room.

 

We watched The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, a Western, Coen Brothers style, in theaters and on Netflix. We also saw Burning, Korean movie, a psychological thriller. We liked both movies very much. Wonderful acting in both of them.