Say all the Words, NaPoWriMo, Day 20

When they ban the books

and suppress the press–

whisper the words

lest you forget.

Pen the poems

(though they’re not read)

and sing the songs

(even if they’re in your head).

Frame the facts with veracity

despite the dire mendacity

of those who strut to power–

then, remember the flower

that blooms again each spring,

and let truth ring.

Share it with the old and youth,

bind them now with this enlightened thread–

love is love,

the earth’s not flat,

nevermore this, but only that,

and no matter what they say–

let hope stay.

Say all the words of knowledge and beauty,

it’s your duty

to resist, rebel–

to kiss and tell–

(these words you’ve said inside your head),

so, set the fires, beat the drums,

shout the call with rhymes and prose,

and like the rose,

your words will bloom unadorned,

fragrant, alluring—but jaggedly thorned.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mary Vaux Walcott [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt asked us to write about rebellion.

 

 

Coloring Spring, Haibun, NaPoWriMo, Day 19

Today’s [optional prompt] for NaPoWriMo, Day 19: “to write a paragraph that briefly recounts a story, describes the scene outside your window, or even gives directions from your house to the grocery store. Now try erasing words from this paragraph to create a poem or, alternatively, use the words of your paragraph to build a new poem.”

Process:

So, early this morning, I wrote the paragraph below, which described what I saw while sitting in my usual kitchen spot. I didn’t change it, except to add the last line—because the sun did come out—briefly. This became the paragraph part of the haibun. Then I used Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday prompt words for the haiku. I used “accruing” for gather and “feathery” for soft. This was to give me new words, so I was not simply revising.

Finally, I took words from both parts of the haibun to create a new poem. Works in progress!

Poems:

Outside the world is grey with mist, and yet the green of evergreens and new spring growth provides color in the gloom. A red-breasted finch sits in the bird feeder at the window. The cats take their morning naps, one on my lap, the other in the basket in front of the window. Soon, children will walk out their doors to go to school. But now, I see the sun breaking from the clouds.

pale sun shines through

turning feathery clouds gold

accruing spring light

 

Grey and green

the world from my window,

feathery, the mist, drifting between trees.

But what colors does the red-breasted finch see?

Greyer greys and emerald greens,

vivid hues–

to me unseen?

I hear him sing—

such heartfelt joy–

as the pale sun caresses,

draping his shadowed shape with light,

turning his chest to fire,

to ring in the colors of spring

 

Isn’t this document box with finch exquisite?

Document Box, Philadelphia Museum of Art

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And I’m going to link this to dVerse Open link night, too, where Grace is poet bar tending. Because, why not?  🙂

 

 

As Linnets Take Wing, NaPoWriMo, Day 18

“There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,

And evening full of the linnet’s wings.”

–W.B. Yeats, “The Lake Isle of Innisfree”

 

Around the glimmering lake, where birds still sing,

though you’ve been gone for many a year,

I stayed and watched as linnets take wing.

 

Once I longed to wear your ring–

before things changed, I sought you here,

around the glimmering lake, where birds still sing,

 

You promised the sun, the moon, and everything.

before the bad times came and settled near,

I stayed and watched the linnets take wing.

 

I realize now, I was just a fling

though I thought you loved and held me dear

around the glimmering lake, the birds still sing

 

Here at my side, our baby did cling

without a father. She brought me untold joy and cheer–

I stayed and watched the linnets take wing.

 

I dreamt I was a queen and you my king,

before you sailed far from my pier

around the glimmering lake, where birds still sing,

I stayed and watched the linnets take wing.

 

Faye Collins, “Pine and Fog at Thirlmer”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Somewhat related to today’s NaPoWriMo prompt, I’ve stolen Jane Dougherty’s idea, so it only seemed right to base my villanelle on her beloved Yeats. In the spirit of the prompt, this one probably needs a lot of revision! 🙂

I’m also linking this to dVerse, where Sarah is hosting for the first time. She’s asked us to write an ekphrastic poem (which I’m not sure that this is)  based on the work of artist Faye Collins.

By the Sea We Gather, NaPoWriMo, Day 16

Monday Morning Musings:

“My soul is full of longing
for the secret of the sea,
and the heart of the great ocean
sends a thrilling pulse through me.”

–Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “The Secret of the Sea”

“Look at that sea, girls–all silver and shadow and vision of things not seen. We couldn’t enjoy its loveliness any more if we had millions of dollars and ropes of diamonds.”

–L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

 

By the sea, we gather, we four

full of longing to share our secrets–

no special sequences–

but in the way of friends

they flow like waves, rolling to the shore

tumbling, one after another

silvery shadows and thrilling pulses

visions of things almost seen

things that are and things that might be

 

We embrace and sit in this lovely space

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

this place in which my friend has found welcome shelter

a temporary place for body, if not heart,

a house between homes,

a loan

where she and her husband have lived

between and around unexpected circumstances—

well, life is chances,

no smooth sailing on this ocean–

sometimes we turn about

sometimes we tack into the wind

begin again,

navigate through a choppy sea

till we are free

to sail calmly and be

 

So, we

sit in this interim home

where we can hear the water play

(come this way, stay)

and seagulls laugh as they fly about

black-tipped white wings sing in the sky

with the sun glowing warm and high

and the wind sighs from sea and land

spindrift covers windows, cars, my hand. . .

 

is held out to my friends

we gently hold each other’s hearts

apart too often to know the everyday annoyances

of ailing mothers and troubled kids,

roosted egos, wandering ids–

we talk of husbands and silly cats,

all of the this and all of the that

and move from living room to kitchen

pitch in

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(though it is all prepared)

take our chairs

and over quiche

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

we relax some more, release

and feel a bit at peace. . .

 

to venture out to see some history of place and space

a concrete ship, a lighthouse, a bunker, the beach,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

where we walk a bit and feel

the sand beneath our feet–

in this moment, life is sweet,

away from troubles and toxic tweets,

this faux-summer day

holds us in its sway

I am mesmerized by the tumbling waves

the ocean takes, the ocean saves,

(à bientôt, inside, I say)

as we turn and walk away

 

back to the not-vacation house

where my friend offers us food and drink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and we sink

into a relaxed state,

where troubles abate,

as we talk and drift

(eyes open, close, open again)

the golden sun beats down through window panes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and slowly in a ball of fire, sinks

extinguished in the sea

 

we see it after we’ve walked

(ten miles one friend exclaims)

heading for a restaurant, but too long a wait,

no debate

and none of us that hungry anyway

no need to stay

so over pizza we watch Letterman, Seinfeld, and Obama

wishing we could get rid of the current nightmare, drama

and farce, in every moment, tweets and cheats–

the outside world, outside this place–

but even here the temperature drops

and the sun hides the next day, stops

her summer-teasing ways,

and in the morning, we watch branches sway

and the tom-catting chairs dance and prance

out on the deck

and the windows are specked

with salt and rain

we hear the sea

calling. . .

but let it be

 

to breakfast or brunch

(perhaps call it lunch)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and linger around the table,

unable,

unwilling to part

our lives and thoughts

tumbled like my friend’s sea glass

smoothed and polished by laughter and tears,

friends together,

friends apart

friends in joy, in troubles,

friends for years

we’ve shared our secrets here by the sea

now it’s back to reality,

(we sigh)

we must do this again

spend

time together,

let’s do this, friends–

time flows and bends,

(an arc)

and ripples like the sea

and on it our friendship sails

(an ark)

so, we’ll journey together, and then—

well, we’ll see.

 

 

 

I’m off prompt for Day 16, NaPoWriMo.

Unusual formatting due to WP gremlins and a cat sitting on my keyboard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.napowrimo.net/day-sixteen-5/

A Dream Whispers, NaPoWriMo, Day 14

For my friends

A dream whispers over my head,

a chant,

it is time–

with friends,

smell roses and cool water spray,

let sweet shadows ache

as sun lives through summer storms—

we do and have and will

love the beauty of these days

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Year’s Eve, 2016
We are linked, heading into 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Off prompt for NaPoWriMo because I have a busy weekend with friends. The Oracle knows!

 

Counting Chickens, NaPoWriMo, Day 13

Count it all–

their accounts

of no account

when actions speak

much louder than bombastic words–

reactions to polls and money–

but the interest accrues

while we are bruised.

Then come choices

so, choose—

or believe fake news.

Ready?

Set.

Go–

put on your boots,

there’s muck to rake,

and much at stake,

and much to count,

a HUGE amount.

So, raise your feet,

slop through the fetid tweets.

Where does it end–

well, how much does truth bend?

Or, is truth a sword?

Then thrust and parry, stab and swoop,

count all the chickens in the coop

and when you truly know their number,

then at last,

you can slumber.

 

José Maria Sousa de Moura Girão (1840/1916), “My First Egg,” [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I wasn’t sure what to do with today’s NaPoWriMo prompt, “to write a poem in which the words or meaning of a familiar phrase get up-ended,” so, I just started, and this is what happened.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is Home: Haibun, NaPoWriMo, Day 12

Here, are two, then three, then four, then two again. Here, atop a settling foundation and slightly slanting floors, are family dinners, friends, love, and tears. Here, the venerable oak tree stands tall, shading and shadowing, though the swing set that stood beside it is long gone–and here, decades-old daffodil bulbs still bloom. Generations of mockingbirds have sung through summer nights perched on the new greenery of aged trees. Here is home, where amidst clutter and dreams, cats gaze from windows–then look within.

 

blooms and snowflakes fall

drift through Earth’s revolutions–

ghosts sing to living

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s NaPoWriMo  prompt was to write a haibun “that takes in the natural landscape of the place you live.”