2011 April PAD Challenge: Day 28

We’re only 3 days from the finish line–actually 2 days after you finish today’s prompt. Yay!

For today’s prompt, write a “the world without something else” poem. If you remember on Day 3, I had everyone write a “the world without me” poem. This prompt imagines the world without something else, whether a person, place, thing, etc.

Here’s my attempt:

“Strep Throat”

No one would miss you;
I know I wouldn’t.


Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer

Tweet about your April Poem-A-Day progress on Twitter by using the #aprpad hashtag.


And yes, I’m still very sick, but I’ve discovered I’m suffering from a severe case of strep throat, not the flu or a cold. I’ve actually slept 26 of the past 32 hours, so needless to say, my poem today was hard to pull out–even at two lines. I did get a shot and some pills yesterday, so hopefully I’ll start feeling better soon and can finish the month strong with everyone else.

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377 thoughts on “2011 April PAD Challenge: Day 28

  1. Dennis Wright

    The World Without The Pious

    My next door neighbor will be here
    so will the guy down the block.
    The meter reader will read my gauge
    and I’ll have a mortgage on my lot.

    My congressman will still be here
    even though he thinks he will be gone.
    Of course the Post Office will still
    bring notices that I am over drawn.

    And I will be here amoung them all
    I could never learn enough piety.
    I’ll stay here and walk my dog
    then write some more new poetry.

  2. Dennis Wright

    Walt – might that be "A World Without Joe"? Then there might be a play on the nickname "Jolting Joe" and his role as Mr. Coffee. At any rate, I like the homeage to Simon and Garfunkel. The line "Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you" seems most expressive.

  3. A~Lotus

    Without Paper…

    Where would my thoughts be captured?
    Where would I find my voice?
    Where would I see the colors of my soul
    or the dreams of my heart?
    I would peel the bark of a birch tree
    or write everything in sand or with chalk
    on cement letting the waves, the rain,
    or the wind erase my words again
    and again, then plant a kiss on my cheek–
    the smell or taste of salt that preserves
    every joy and cleanses every pain
    with every stroke of song between these lines.

  4. A~Lotus

    Without It All

    We dream of a world without pain and suffering,
    diseases and illnesses, war and terror. We dream
    of a Savior to come and take all of it away. But
    without all of this, would we learn appreciation
    or humility, faith and love? Would we lose
    hope and see our souls filled with nothing
    but rocks and feathers? Would we grow up
    or would we all be the same, two dimensional
    talking heads? Does it all matter? Is there
    any purpose or direction? All of these questions
    and still no answers even from the world’s geniuses.
    Yet when we see a space shuttle in orbit in a spiral
    of stars or around the rings of Saturn, we tuck ourselves
    in at night, in our turtle shells and dream up of
    ways to escape from each other, even the disgust
    of ourselves.

  5. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    a world without guilt
    by juanita lewison-snyder

    if it weren’t for the ghosts that haunt us,
    nothing would ever get done.
    promises would never be made
    bridges would never get built
    people would never get together
    children would never be born
    war would never be waged
    apologies would suffer casualties
    sin would simply run rampant
    morality would become a commodity
    to be juried then auctioned off.
    and fear would become so ingrained
    in our daily lives that
    we’d all be eating cockroach
    on rye for lunch.

    © 2011 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  6. Susan M. Bell

    "Life Without Pain?"

    Would we have much real joy
    if there was no heartache to match?

    Would we appreciate the happy times
    if we weren’t once in a while sad?

    Would we understand true love
    if it wasn’t tested sometimes?

    Would we accept our faults
    if we didn’t know no one is perfect?

  7. K Kerns

    28 April The World Without “ “

    He died on his feet
    At the tender (but ripening)
    Age of 57 years, 1 month and 1 day

    He was a man of his word
    And was gifted with humor
    Even laughing at his own self

    He smoked three packs a day
    And cursed like the sailor he never was
    So he was a flawed man

    He worked with his hands
    And even in his idle hours
    Was rarely idle

    My kids never knew him
    (damn cigarettes)
    And I miss him still

    It’s kinda quiet in my world
    Without my dad ~

  8. MaryAnn McCarra-Fitzpatrick

    Empty Bowl

    the empty bowl, already scraped
    clean of the few grains that were

    left, the sheen of the groats, the
    oats, a dampness on the crockery,

    and how am to live without you by my side,
    arms and belly empty, a

    scarecrow scratching at the
    windowpane, counting the bowls

    stacked upon the dresser?

  9. Scott Mesrobian

    World Without Pain

    If absent from pain in the heart and mind,
    how would people behave to one another?
    I see a world with less hate and less strife;
    And a man might be less inclined to harm
    his fellow man – for isn’t it pain that
    causes fear, which brings forth anger and it
    is anger that begets the twin demons of
    Envy and hate. Without pain, I see a
    world of peace and love and understanding.
    In a world without pain, there is freedom
    to live, to choose, to reach, to work, and to
    find joy in the success of each new day.

  10. Yoly

    Without His Grace

    You grow laterally. Companies inside you
    shut down little by little. Ashes
    mount up before windows.

    You climb sills,
    sit and peer
    through the interrupted glass.

    When love appears, you slip it in your heart’s purse like a receipt.

  11. shann palmer

    Day 28

    On the Twentieth Century

    It was half my life (or more) tumbling
    out of hand and I can’t get it back.
    I tell what I remember, regret a little.
    The trick seems to be how to write spare
    while revealing the grand particulars.

    I bought bedspreads before I had a bed,
    gave in too quickly to a simple life,
    hid under quilts and skipped work
    with likely stories, afraid the world
    was too much with everyone else.

    My family drifts away and I let them,
    curse my children with guilt, I am
    afraid to die alone while closing doors
    behind me, I hoard words on paper
    no one will catalog when I am gone.

    This is the fate of all time travelers
    climbing over century marks, we age
    badly, unsure of the math. We give up,
    in, knowing there are no songs like those
    when we were young left to sing.

  12. Caren E. Salas

    The World Without…

    One more bad attitude
    One more harsh word
    Too much lost patience
    Emotions not heard.

    We could live without it
    Take a breath, count to ten
    Forgive and forget
    Try and smile once again.

    One more good outlook
    One more kind touch
    A little more patience
    Might just mean so much.

  13. Margot Suydam

    Without Coffee

    The world
    would sleep
    head in hand,
    perched always
    on an elbow
    or flat out
    face down
    on a table.
    Snores would
    be the only
    chatter, hearts
    pumping slow
    pace, jitters
    gone quiet,
    morning blahs
    would remain
    all day. Art,
    work, no charge.

  14. Sara McNulty

    If anyone stops back here, I have finally finished some reading. Thanks to Andrew and Pearl.

    Some goodies:

    de – Bumble "hair sprayed our world into submission" – great line; also, I loved "Lets"
    Bruce – Very clever list without the poor maligned brussels sprouts
    Idermyer – Gripers -"not color but character should shape our place" – perfect
    Benjamin – Dogless World – "more homeless fleas"
    Salvatore – WOW! "spoken words lost in timeless winds" – stunning
    m.b. schied – "Whineless World – "winged ambassadors of pain and pestilence"
    Jo Lightfoot – Without Due Consideration – Good use of prompt – great poem
    Stephen W. – World Without Gender
    Jay S. – Starless Sky – "moon a dead white eye that slowly closes like a coffin on a lid" – so chilling
    Walt – World Without Romance
    Jerry – World Without Dandelions
    Elizabeth J. – Without Storms
    Autumn H. – Without Sleep
    Bruce – Without tornadoes
    Gil – Without Sky

  15. Chuck Puckett

    (trying to catch up after tornados and such here in Alabama, although I have evacuated to Florida panhandle for a few days)

    Le Monde Sans Pity

    Don’t want you to remember what I was.
    I was stronger, I was braver, I was sure.
    But not like this, no not ever, not like this:
    Pieces broken, spirit dragging, watchful eyes.
    Life is merciless, it drags you through the mud
    It has a price, it takes a toll: all you have.
    I could have chosen to ignore the vital signs
    And kept it safe, taken nothing, never played.

    Pity plays a paltry part in the grand design
    It’s a crippler, an enabler, its own crutch.
    Memory takes a back seat to what transpires,
    Gives its comments, it makes excuses, redefines.
    There’s only what has truly happened that matters now:
    Etches meaning, outlines purpose, lends intent.
    I could deny the past, pretend the past was dead.
    But things live on, and on and on, no escape.

    Don’t want you to remember what comes next:
    The failing eyesight, the weakened will, dimming light.
    The law of entropy’s an arrow, unswerving force
    Eroded canyons carry continents away
    Eroded minds have no capacity to save
    Hearts of ashes; souls are vanquished, pity cries.
    The world is better by an unimagined clearness:
    Stand in mirrors, decipher truth, live unbowed.

    © 2011 Chuck Puckett

  16. Kris K

    The World Without Tears
    Can you imagine
    a world without tears?
    a world where pain cannot be cleansed?
    a world where emotional expression is void?
    Can you imagine
    a world where stoicism is the emotion?
    a world where the worst brought forth no feelings?
    a world that is flat?

    Welcome to my world.
    I knew no tears
    Tolerated no one else’s
    Berated anyone with that freedom

    Did I say freedom?
    Tears are freedom?
    I now know tears
    I don’t know freedom, yet
    I can’t imagine a world without tears
    I can’t imagine a day without tears
    Right now, I can’t imagine an hour without tears
    I hope I know freedom, soon

  17. Kris K

    The World Without Tears
    Can you imagine
    a world without tears?
    a world where pain cannot be cleansed?
    a world where emotional expression is void?
    Can you imagine
    a world where stoicism is the emotion?
    a world where the worst brought forth no feelings?
    a world that is flat?

    Welcome to my world.
    I knew no tears
    Tolerated no one else’s
    Berated anyone with that freedom

    Did I say freedom?
    Tears are freedom?
    I now know tears
    I don’t know freedom, yet
    I can’t imagine a world without tears
    I can’t imagine a day without tears
    Right now, I can’t imagine an hour without tears
    I hope I know freedom, soon

  18. Jo Lightfoot

    Daniel Paicopulos: Poems (at least mine) often take off in unexpected ways. I started mine with the Great Depression era saying, "Take what you have and make what you want." I find that quote very powerful and uplifting. By the time I worked out a few lines that rhymed with "want," the mood of the poem had shifted toward self-righteousness and lecturing (and I ended up dropping the initial inspirational lines). I trust poets to know about the power and limitation of words and I often value playfulness, craftsmanship and inventiveness over literal content.

    Benjamin Thomas: Not to mention, Austin. …oh, and thanks for the comments I’ve just now encountered.

  19. Zeb

    Mike Bayles – I hit the wrong day and I’m glad I did – I thought of dandelions all day yesterday and here you have written the most beautiful poem – I read it as very taoist, I hope that is not presumptious of me.

    Thanks for the mentions Elizabeth and Andrew and Pearl, what a piece of work was that! Zeb

  20. Mike Bayles

    World without Dandelions

    Lawns without yellow bloom,
    greenery without reflections of sun,
    deny a child’s play,
    an imaginary bouquet
    picked by eager hands
    given to a grateful mother.
    Gone are the stems,
    milk-white apparitions laid bare,
    the scattering of seeds
    to summer winds.
    Gone are the dandelions,
    blooms and stem.
    Gone is the death,
    deprived of a life,
    you can’t have one
    without the other.

  21. Diane


    I often long for days of calm
    in rich green meadows
    with scattered wildflowers–
    the buzz of honey bees over blossoms
    and the dance of butterflies gathering nectar.

    A quiet day all day.

    I know it happens somewhere
    but seldom here.

    Here I can only imagine
    the world without

  22. Claudia Radmore

    without this morning light

    ears ringing from the quiet of
    an early brilliant dawn i believe
    that without this morning light
    falling across the road in webs
    our tsunami earthquake world
    would be utterly unbearable

    even without the rest of the story…

    a torn, found poem

    Dear Abby; Last week I
    my daughter saw me d
    were violent when the
    and I swore I would n
    it happened
    Abby is my
    mistakes or are the
    repeating this vio
    tion to generation
    I get proper help
    my children fro
    and our parent

    Dear Sorry: Mo
    “doomed.” The
    to manage th
    Tell your da
    hit her fath
    plain that
    sellor an
    ways to


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