This is Enough

Cloud Reflections on the Delaware River at West Deptford, NJ ©️Merril D. Smith 2020

Trees and birds kiss the sky
in blue-on-blue reflection

and today, I’ll sky the world with you
without pause or hesitation.

In mirrored lands we’ll float
on dreams, the clouds our boat

watching the heron squawk, soar–
this is enough, I need nothing more.

Heron flying over the Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield

A quadrille for dVerse, where De has asked us to use the word, sky. I think the rhythm of this one is more soothing than my previous post this morning. I don’t know why I’m stuck on couplets and rhyme though today.

Who’s Listening

In early America, neighbors eavesdropped
from other rooms, behind the shed, from a bed.

Now, the surveillance is also electronic
from devices, lovers (or friends platonic),
scammers and crooks hear what you say—
the powers-that-be, also may—

hear all. Who knows
where conversations go?

Kim is hosting dVerse, and she has asked us to use the word eavesdrop in a quadrille. My dissertation/first book was on marital discord in eighteenth and early nineteenth-century Pennsylvania. Court papers and divorce depositions often included the testimony of neighbors or people living in or visiting the household. And yes, sometimes listening to a sexual encounter while lying in the same bed.

Flowers Again and Again

In guarded gardens, flowers grow

ordered, only the fittest fit–

 

tethered and trellis-trained

conserved, cared for, chromatic beauties

 

we pay to see

this oasis between highway deserts.

 

Yet, the unguarded blooms, guileless,

persistent, propagating

 

through buzzed bees and birds’ peck,

specks drop, imbed, again.

 

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Wildflowers and plants, West Deptford, NJ

For dVerse,where Victoria asks us to write about gardens in a quadrille. Top photos are of a trip to Longwood Gardens one February about 10 years ago on my husband’s birthday. We had a freak warm spell with temperatures in the 70s F by the afternoon. It snowed the next day.

I’ve been doing lots of walking, and I often take pictures of the wildflowers growing all around my part of the world.

 

 

 

 

Blue

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Portrait in Blue Goose on the Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield, July 2020 ©️Merril D. Smith

 

Blue where water meets the sky,

beyond the space where spirits fly

to dance upon a snowy crest

of waves, indigo and azure dressed–

and there the seabirds drift, serene,

and there I watch—for past has been—

strangely content to view this blue.

 

A quadrille for dVerse, where Kim asked us to use the word blue. This day started as a blue Monday with a poetry rejection in my in-box, but then I went for a walk in the beautiful morning, which cheered me up. I already wrote my Monday Morning Musings and used the same photo above. BUT–it’s just too perfect not to use again. So, I’m posting twice today, and with the same photo.

A quadrille is a dVerse form of exactly 44 words in any style. I chose to rhyme today.

Transfixed, Transformed

In the play—that scene—

falling rain, a soft drumming on the stage,

two women in white nightgowns, dance and kiss

glorious, not indecent—

 

later, in the Lodz ghetto,

they perform again–

the drumming of jackboots looms–

 

the play’s not indecent, their reality is.

 

 

Paula Vogel’s play, Indecent, is a play about a play Sholem Asch’s 1903 drama God of Vengeance, which was performed in Yiddish in Europe, then in Yiddish theaters in the U.S. When it was translated into English and performed on Broadway it triggered an obscenity trial in 1923. The play was performed in the Lodz ghetto with a diminishing cast and audience. This sounds very depressing, but I love this play, and there is humor and joy in it, too. And that rain dance scene. (If you’re a PBS member and have Passport you may be able to see the play on Great Performances online.)

This is a quadrille for Mish’s dVerse prompt using the word, “drum,” and it also addresses Anmol’s Pride Month prompt  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Artist Says: NaPoWriMo2020, Day 6

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Bosch, The Garden of Earthly Delights

 

I paint what I see—

the tree-man’s visions,

 

pictures of what was,

of what might be,

 

wondering if once opened,

my mind-doors can be closed–

 

I have no answers,

this may be a chimera, after all–

 

but do take a strawberry,

they’re delicious, yes?

 

Day 6 of NaPoWriMois an ekphrastic prompt:

a poem from the point of view of one person/animal/thing from Hieronymous Bosch’s famous (and famously bizarre) triptych The Garden of Earthly Delights. Whether you take the position of a twelve-legged clam, a narwhal with a cocktail olive speared on its horn, a man using an owl as a pool toy, or a backgammon board being carried through a crowd by a fish wearing a tambourine on its head, I hope that you find the experience deliriously amusing. And if the thought of speaking in the voice of a porcupine-as-painted-by-a-man-who-never-saw-one leaves you cold, perhaps you might write from the viewpoint of Bosch himself? Very little is known about him, so there’s plenty of room for invention, embroidery, and imagination.

I’ve combined this prompt with the  dVerse  prompt, where De has asked us to write a quadrille(a poem of 44 words) using the word “close,” or some form of the word.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Magic

 

I know the science of sun and rain

that wakes the world to spring–

 

brings a languorous glow,

that rings the day

 

and stays,

till the moon

 

hums it away.

 

But I believe in magic–

overnight blooms

 

and birds winging, singing

through morning dew.

 

 

A quadrille for dVerse, where Linda has asked us to use the word “magic.”

(A quadrille, besides being a dance, is a dVerse form. It’s a poem of 44 words—any type.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tilting

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Photo of the Earth taken from Apollo 8, called Earthrise (1968).

 

I see the morning moon

dream-full of spring songs—

of sap, worms, crows

 

(a murder gathers, cawing)

 

Now she hums fiercely through the clouds,

stirring my senses—

 

my mother’s alive, the call a mistake,

but my tire’s flat

on an earth that tilts, revolving.

 

This a quadrille for dVerse. De has asked us to use some form of the word “stir.” Yesterday, my sister got a call that my mom was “unresponsive.” It turns out the facility called the wrong person, and my mother was fine. However, I pulled out of my driveway and discovered my tire was flat. Fortunately, that didn’t happen when we were driving on the expressway.

They Sing and Dance Across the Sky

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Vincent Van Gogh, Starry Night

 

The stars fill the sky

even when we can’t see them

they shine and sing—

 

a glowing, tumbling wing

of feathered sounds that swing

across their incandescent surfaces–

 

this sound, a lover’s soft sigh,

a parent’s croon,

a celestial lullaby

 

of wonder and why.

 

This is for dVerse,where De asked us to use the word fill in a quadrille, a poem of exactly 44 words. My first lines came from Jane wondering a few days ago what it would be like to see the stars during the day. I suspect Vincent could hear their songs.