2011 April PAD Challenge: Day 8

For today’s prompt, write a ready to celebrate poem.  You could chronicle the actual celebration or even write about the anticipation of one.  As many of you know, I am in Austin, Texas this weekend celebrating poetry myself, but I’m also checking in regularly here to enjoy the celebration on Poetic Asides. 


Here is my attempt:

“The Helicopters”

Fly in groups of three.
Then, the sirens pass,
and the searchlights search
while the children dance
to songs their parents
sing them to soothe them
and keep the clouds out
of their little heads.

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0 thoughts on “2011 April PAD Challenge: Day 8

  1. Laura Kayne

    The End

    The End, when it came,
    Seemed sudden to many,
    Took time to sink in,
    For joy to replace terror,
    Life to replace death.
    Cheers sounded through the streets,
    Where just days before had been guns,
    Shouting, screaming in fear,
    Now all was quiet.
    Slowly people found their voices,
    Rejoiced and sang and talked and laughed.
    Children played again,
    Running through streets once deserted,
    But for the soldiers.
    And a land celebrated.

  2. Mariel Dumas

    À Tout à l’heure

    The ropes will be untied soon
    On this boat I’m on with cement shoes
    I’ll kiss the shore
    Bend my knees;
    I’ll see you there
    Roasted pig and all
    Creatures with dark silk hair
    Pixie dust and feather hats;
    Amorphous things that kiss my hands
    With pretty song-voice chant:

    Mariel Dumas

  3. Mariel Dumas

    À Tout à l’heure

    The ropes will be untied soon
    On this boat I’m on with cement shoes
    I’ll kiss the shore
    Bend my knees;
    I’ll see you there
    Roasted pig and all
    Creatures with dark silk hair
    Pixie dust and feather hats;
    Amorphous things that kiss my hands
    With pretty song-voice chant:

    Mariel Dumas

  4. Nancy J

    Oh, so very late. A three day conference is no excuse. I wrote this Sunday afternoon while watching the Cubs game (they lost, of course.)

    Celebrate the Season

    I celebrate this rite of spring,
    my hope renewed in everything.
    My team is back, it’s strong and tough.
    The pitchers all have brought their stuff.
    Fresh coaches, trainers, bat boys too,
    both strategy and line up new.
    That rookie phenom from the trade,
    I’m confident he’ll make the grade.
    My favorite batters at the plate,
    I love it all. I just can’t wait.
    The double plays, the base on balls,
    the bunts, the flies, the lousy calls.
    The players practiced every day.
    With any luck, they’ve found their way.
    Each game I cheer, one thing I pray.
    Please let them make post season play.

  5. PKP aka Pearl Ketover Prilik

    Oh Barbara….what a lovely tribute to Carolyn and her debut..in her new book….just lovely….BTW this little series of catch up poems are I believe the freest and best I’ve ever read by you! Bravo!

  6. Barbara Ehrentreu

    Again, late, but here is my attempt.

    September Celebration

    On the trumpeted day
    my words will fly across
    the internet on their own
    merit strong at last after
    so many months spent honing
    them and polishing until all
    were as they should be
    Alighting with their gemstone
    brilliance upon websites to sit
    and wait for eager readers –
    Some fans have been there at the
    gate cheering the fledgling
    as she shed her unnecessary
    baggage and prepared to move
    Into the world in her awesome
    cover dressed for success.

  7. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    a sunroom toast
    by juanita lewison-snyder

    today we toast
    the new sunroom addition
    with coffee and strudel
    atop a quilt-covered futon,
    quietly soaking in
    the warm colors of sunrise
    streaming through large
    picturesque windows.

    in the weeks to follow,
    deer will grace that
    same stretched frame of
    rustic glass and stained fir
    looking for fallen apples
    in the fresh snow,
    while small birds will flit
    merrily between sprigs of
    cherry blossoms come spring.

    storms will lash out with
    harsh winds and pelting rain,
    then rattle the new framework
    with lightning and thunder
    so impressive it attracts ghosts.
    coffee will give rise to eggnog
    and soft twinkling lights,
    while popcorn and noble fir
    keeps us nostalgic.

    but for today we’ll settle
    with coffee and strudel
    atop a quilt-covered futon,
    quietly soaking in
    the warm colors of sunrise
    streaming through large
    picturesque windows of
    rustic glass and stained fir.

    © 2011 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  8. Sara V

    It’s All Good

    “Good Morning,” we greet
    The fellow dog-walker
    White frizzled hair flops
    With each step, and he wears
    The smile of the well-contented
    “How are you?” he asks
    Giddy from breathing fresh ocean air
    We say, “Great!”
    “How about you?”
    He chuckles. “My feet hit the floor this morning.”
    We share the laugh, and keep on walking.
    The sun toasts our arms and legs
    We are free to do as we choose
    It’s all good

  9. Mike Barzacchini

    When I was a boy, my father told me that I could catch a bird by sneaking up behind it and sprinkling salt on its tail. Of course, I believed him. And of course, I could never get close enough.

    This spring, my great niece Elliana really wants to catch a robin. I suggested the salt technique. She’s been trying her hardest since, but no success yet. This "ready to celebrate" poem is for her.


    Stalking robins
    with a shaker
    of salt.

    Try to catch one
    by sprinkling
    a few grains
    on its tail.

    Three years old,
    every day of spring
    a celebration.

  10. Doug

    A wake

    spring is crying
    over the crystal bones
    of winter

    they filigree the lawn,
    the dark niches

    misshaped remnants
    carved by the heat
    growing in the year

    these are the shape
    of death:
    ridges, tips, knobs

    defiant reminders

    nested in the curl
    of shoot and green

    these do not smile,
    but reach for today
    long for the bait of tomorrow

    a wake, but they do not mourn
    innocent bystanders while
    spring is crying
    over the crystal bones
    of winter

    ©DPugh April MMXI

  11. Marie Elena

    Catherine: Be still, my heart.

    De Jackson: Informal Affair … wow …

    Salvatore: Your faith continually builds mine. Grazie, fratello.

    RJ: Happy birthday, Dad. I’m right there with you … so thankful my dad is still around. =)

    Linda’s Little Things: AMEN!

    Rachel: Dancing Alone touched me. Reality, for sure. Never quit dreaming, kiddo.

    Other faves today: Daniel Ari, Daniel Pai, Rob, MB, Misk, Earl (ditto what I said to Sal), Connie (wow!), Andrew, Katrelya (Beautiful! Amen!), The Doctor, My Sweet Hannah, and, as always, Walt … my partner/mentor/friend.

    BTW, just FYI: the plural of y’all is all y’all. 😉

  12. Marie Elena

    Sophia Rose

    Your first cry of life.
    Your great-grandparents’ joy.
    The intense way you look into our eyes.
    Your obvious love for your momma and daddy,
    And theirs for you.
    Your comical little mealtime sounds.
    Each softly snoring nap.
    Your first “real” smile.
    The smiles your presence returned to family members,
    Too recently stripped by great loss.
    Every breath, every movement, every reaction —
    All the little things … none of which are little.

  13. Corinne

    The spark of each and every person
    and connection that befell, arrived in
    or otherwise graced my life. Ignition
    by karmic collision, untold beauties,
    all of it, every gut-wrenching, stupefying
    soul-beckoning second. No telling what
    was necessary or redundant in the alchemy,
    so I celebrate it all.

  14. Deb Brunell

    Looking forward to

    One semester till the first 8th grade graduation
    Sweet 16’s on the horizon
    Cars and graduating high school
    Hope the celebrations never end

    Special Evening

    Butterflies in my stomach
    Anticipation in my fingertips
    Watching the long minutes
    Slowly tick the hours by
    My mind is racing
    I laid out my dress
    My jewelry and shoes
    Prepped my smaller purse
    One thing not worked out
    As I mentally see styles of my hair
    Maybe I should not wear mascara
    What if I cry
    Remembering what led to this
    Happy tears could downpour
    and run
    Did I check my stockings
    After a while my head swims
    While the room spins
    Everyone is happy and dancing
    Getting tired
    My feet will ache
    I won’t want the night to end
    But first
    I must finish the work on my desk
    1 hour till I leave
    4 hours till I arrive

  15. Kyhaara

    Mother’s Day:
    I am grateful for your unconditional love:
    Life gave me a great blessing: you.
    Only you will ever be “Mum.”
    Vivaciously raising my brother and I,
    Even when we climbed bookshelves and
    Yelled and screamed and ran in opposite directions.
    Often, I think of your smile, of how it always
    Uplifts those who see it, and your soft hugs.
    Mothers never get to hear this
    Often enough, so don’t forget that.
    Mum, I love you.

  16. Genevieve Fitzgerald

    Each four-petaled bloom of white hearts
    Stitched together at the center
    With a green-gold tufted
    Promise for next year
    Is a perfect
    Of dogwood

  17. Karla Okala

    The Anniversary
    It’s almost here
    the day many years ago
    I promised to love you
    in all circumstances
    and you spoke pretty-sounding words
    that were soon forgotten.
    In the midst of these circumstances,
    raising our four babies alone,
    struggling to pay the bills,
    fighting against despair and fear
    I wish that we had never met,
    that behind the charming mask
    I could have seen the man
    that would take everything I had
    and then abandon me.
    What if I had known?
    But when my baby smiles at me
    with your eyes I know
    that what I have left of you
    in my life is good, whole , and pure.

  18. mallora

    Today I feel bouncy
    I can’t sit still
    I bounced off my bed
    To the window sill

    From there I bounced off
    The ceiling with springs
    Then hip hopped along
    To all kinds of new things!

    Mom told me to stop
    And dad told me too
    But I just couldn’t quit
    What else could I do?

    I bounced through my toys
    And the big jars of paint
    I bounced through mom’s drawers
    (I thought she might faint)

    From there I bounced on
    To the big outside door
    I bounced through the yard
    Then I bounced on some more!

    I bounced to the river
    Then bounced off a tree
    I bounced through the park
    To the wide open seas

    I bounced and I bounced
    Till the whole day was done
    And I bounced back to bed
    From where I’d begun!

  19. Sarah Joyce Bryant

    Celebrating Me

    Opened to the Table of Contents I run
    my finger down the shiny page stopping
    at my name. Across to the page number I turn
    and see the title that came to me in a dream
    and below the words arranged as my broken
    heart and faltering hand had laid them across
    a blank page a year ago today.

  20. Mike Bayles

    On the Celebration of May Day

    Families gather on the first Sunday
    of May. They celebrate the day
    and the promise of what’s to come.
    Spring is of their liking, the sun
    over seed, to grow a season.
    Spreads of food bring them
    to the table to partake
    and for eager conversation,
    acquaintances and friends,
    getting to know each other

  21. Iain D. Kemp

    Dear Moosehead,
    Yeah baby! That’s the way to
    finish the series. And the way to move
    into the Sox grudge matches. Those crazy
    women are celebrating too cos I spilled
    some cash to hit the shops as make-up for
    us going to Bean Town. I must be going soft.
    But at least the footwear has stopped flying
    in my direction. None-the-less I can’t wait to
    get away from them for a while. Still thinking
    they may be Atlanta bound. I’ll pick ya at 8
    sharp brother – we are Boston bound.
    Sox stuffing time!!

    Yours amazingly calm
    Ringo the Howler

  22. Iain D. Kemp

    Happy Friday

    The week ploughed on
    like oxen through sludge
    like stirring porridge with a straw

    The bad news filled my heart and soul and mind
    fogging the senses
    clouding the vision
    numbing me to the joys of spring

    The high winds shook my vehicle
    side to side
    shook my nerves
    shook me back to reality
    and back to hope

    Finally the working week comes to a close
    no party
    no fireworks
    just relief and time to relax and enjoy
    poetry, music and friends

    It’s been a long hard week
    a long hard slog
    but it’s Poets day again
    and it’s time to kick back
    Happy Friday!


  23. Iain D. Kemp

    Happy Friday

    The week ploughed on
    like oxen through sludge
    like stirring porridge with a straw

    The bad news filled my heart and soul and mind
    fogging the senses
    clouding the vision
    numbing me to the joys of spring

    The high winds shook my vehicle
    side to side
    shook my nerves
    shook me back to reality
    and back to hope

    Finally the working week comes to a close
    no party
    no fireworks
    just relief and time to relax and enjoy
    poetry, music and friends

    It’s been a long hard week
    a long hard slog
    but it’s Poets day again
    and it’s time to kick back
    Happy Friday!


  24. Taylor Graham


    We celebrate the day with bread
    freshly baked, and blessed, and broken
    at table among family, friends.
    This bread that snatches live spoor

    out of thin air. However poor
    at table among family, friends –
    freshly baked, and blessed, and broken
    we celebrate the day with bread.

  25. Katrin Talbot


    At the end of the day I grew wings,
    I realized I didn’t need them
    Yet the minute I felt the tingling and
    watched the crispness of the lining up,
    I succumbed to a bliss of movement,
    of song and senses,
    A joy that spun me
    like a steamy tango partner,
    a joy that threw me into the sky,
    just above the trampoline,
    crystallizing the ecstatic moment before
    gravity’s disappointing embrace

    And after spending
    most of the afternoon in an
    exercise of vanity, admiring
    colour, design, structure,
    I let my feathers fall off at
    dusk’s pewter farewell,
    and gathered them into a
    woven memory basket.

    I’ll make a pillow some day,
    and embroider it with equations
    of gravity and

  26. Sam Nielson

    Who We Are

    In a town like this you
    Want to celebrate a holiday.
    You can chew on the air
    Of expectation and can
    Hold your breath waiting
    For the fireworks.

    A sweet town no bigger
    Than its size, nor
    Wants a bigger size,
    Good enough for the four
    Black walnut trees
    On it’s edge.

    A town small where each
    Knows the others and
    Nods in fair greeting
    On the Street, where
    Neighbors outnumber
    Their secrets.

    Where the town newspaper
    Writes Johnny-come-lately
    About births, of accidents,
    Hobbies, deaths, visitors,
    Politics, grasshoppers
    And careful rain.

  27. Benjamin Thomas

    Late Entry number two

    "Let the children dance"

    O’ the emancipation of exultation
    O’ the joy and energy of happiness
    Simply beside myself in rich elation
    Come and join the celebration
    In the merriment of jubilation
    I desperately beckon
    For the children to come
    To come and dance, run and play
    To sing, rejoice, to get away

    Let my voice bellow to every fellow
    As I called my love to let her hear
    Let the children dance!

  28. Cresta McGowan


    The hopes of celebration
    to remove from devastation
    a political aggravation
    a day of jubilation
    where we hope to find salvation
    in a new expectation
    of pragmatic inhalations
    to be assumed with no "delaytions"
    A tirade of palpitations
    political assassinations
    public annihilations
    teeming degradation
    waiting for the day when
    our vote will change the nation.

  29. Yoly


    In a time when buffalo,
    sparrow and widows
    gathered in another’s yard,

    flaxen weavers flew in
    to lease my antumbra,
    attention and avocado tree.

    They whistled for seed and sang to their whisperer.

  30. Laurie Granieri

    You will not wear white.
    He will refuse
    the carnation.
    The first dance
    will be more like
    a sway,
    hands squeezed,
    forehead pressed
    to forehead
    until your timid throat bursts

  31. Marian Veverka

    Last minute praise for some of the laster entries

    Vivienne – cheer for the return of the sun
    Annie McWilliamss -Nice summery of governmental affairs
    Bruce – you had a couple of good ones in there
    Kim King The Cake – some lovely images

    and more, but can’t read my handwriting on my notes…..


  32. Margot Suydam

    Celebrating April

    There is a hole in me
    that leaks when I read

    poetry: what shimmers
    remains disquiet, rockets

    down an empty hallway,
    like an ousted child,

    jettisoned to the principal’s
    door with promises to confide

    some unacceptable act,
    thoughts that won’t perish

    when backs are turned.
    And then that hole in me

    shrinks when I watch
    all-night television; what

    shimmers abides the rules,
    arranges flowers, mops up

    the messy, sits quietly
    in stop-and-go traffic

    because there’s nothing
    left to do.

  33. Marie Elena

    Hi all. I’m sick (again — under-medicated, and now it’s back with a vengeance). I’m hoping to feel enough better later to read/write. I don’t like being behind.

    But before I head back to bed, BANANA my dear, you humble me greatly. Wow. That just leaves me utterly speechless. "Thank you" doesn’t do it. Non-infectious cyberhugs to you!

  34. PKP aka Pearl Ketover Prilik

    First off…. I know it has been said but such cheer talent, energy and a kind of communal love here…that the feeling is almost beyond an attempt at articulation…so of course here I go…

    Poetry is image the April Challenge is a coalescence of sparkling, moving, joyous, all sorts of images from the entire spectrum of human thought, action and emotion, in itself a daily collection that is awe inspiring….I believe the difference here is that each poet peeks out behind the image and waves! Something truly to celebrate! Ready?

    Walt, so happy I skimmed back, if not I would have missed your powerful comment, glue and clamp….very touching…

    Nikki your poem about skimming the paper the baby that would have been half yours! Oh Nikki!

    Rinkly rhymes… Your roo delightful as always…
    Still beat from my big day in the Big Apple….I am so moved by the way we all…on the road..off to work…wherever and doing whatever are drawn here each day…there is something so hopeful about such loving commitment….

    Didn t get to comment on all…but all dance within

    As De advises in her boy jigging to his seat….sometimes it is time to celebrate oneself…..to all!!

  35. vivienne blake

    Celebrate weather

    Spring makes us spring into action:
    first warm sunshine, and I’m out there,
    weeding and sowing and planting
    kneeling and groaning and panting,
    unfit from the stasis of winter.

    Celebrate storms in their glory:
    the shapes of trees wildly windswept,
    the flash across sky and the counting
    ‘til thunderclap banging and rattling
    announces the distance from here.

    Celebrate growth in the garden,
    spurt of summer, first fruit and first rose,
    first barbecue invitation,
    first shivery swim in the sea.
    Long days incite exultation,
    incline us to shout out in glee!

    Sultry heat merits no celebration –
    torpor the most I achieve.
    Celebrate first whiff of Autumn:
    the colour, the woodsmoke, the leaves
    falling, clogging the gutter
    in advance of first downpour of rain.

    Celebrate long winter evenings
    by the fire, comfy chair, comfort food.
    In the lead-in to Christmas,
    celebrations galore
    lift the mood in anticipation of snow –
    not too much, just a few days of joy
    for the children, then celebrate thaw
    and the welcome return of the sun.

  36. Penny Henderson


    I heard the noise two streets away–
    some kind of parade or something.
    I ran to look–of course I did–
    The only thing curiouser
    than a cat is a ten year old,
    or so my Daddy always said.
    Some guy was was riding a donkey
    and folks were throwing their jackets
    down in the road for the donkey
    to walk on. Ma wouldn’t like that,
    I knew, but it looked like good fun,
    so I stripped off a big palm branch
    and ran along waving it,
    like he was a king or something.
    Other kids caught on real quick,
    ’til there was a whole bunch of us.
    Then I looked up and saw his eyes-
    not mad, but not laughing either,
    and somehow now the fun was gone.
    I threw down the branch and went back
    to my same old Thursday chores.

  37. PKP aka Pearl Ketover Prilik

    Reading from bottom up got in a few….
    Amy click, click, click, ….good to hear you walking on the street
    Buddah…lovely sense of wrapped penitent safety expressed in the poem itself which wrapped around
    Gretchen…no 65 th ,,, a string of vivid images, the dry martini and yes that chocolate cake under the bed!
    Walt…you’ve brought me there…lovely joining to the image of the " fat lady"
    Jo… Deeply beautiful sentiment expressed as delicately and gracefully as the flowers of which you speak

    SARA M…..I can see how tired I was last night THANK YO.u for your mention….always enjoy your voice!…looking for you now!…. Ah there you were hurray for that little one…can t get closer to pure celebration than getting delightfully muddy!

    Michael….aw sleeping in her party dress
    Hannah…Tiny Dancer from title onward still spinning vivid as
    Kim…" folded as pressed cheeks" delicious on grandmother’s limoge

    Wanting to read more… I need more sleep…in celebration of all of you and this Saturday when I can.a little more sleep…. Tiny dancer, chocolate cake under the bed, sticks of butter, little one in mud, Linda’s balloons!…Bruce on top of that hill and more come with me…. Wonderful celebrations!

  38. annie mcwilliams

    Praise the Kings of Cross-My-Palms

    “The Government–I heard about the Government and
    I went out to find it. I said I would look closely at
    it when I saw it.” Carl Sandburg

    praise for the averted shutdown, for another week
    praise for the good-lookin-out for business
    praise for living at the expense of everybody else
    praise for the best system of democracy on earth

    praise the strength, the character, the intelligence
    praise the experience, the patriotism, the idealism
    praise the compassion, the sense of brotherhood

    praise for the people smarter than most,
    the better educated, the well connected
    praise for the rich and powerful
    who make decisions in government
    in business, in finance
    and praise our poorer neighbors
    who must depend on these decisions
    to alleviate the problems
    caused by their lack of power and influence

    let us not be too particular
    praise organized hypocrisy
    praise the special powers of Congress
    praise the indigenous, the huddled masses,
    the poor slob union workers
    the front line soldiers

    praise the dignity, the prestige
    and influence of the United States
    praise our peace and safety,
    our friendly power
    our earnest spirit

    praise the appropriations
    the revolutionary course to triumph
    the preservation of property
    praise the not-to-be-subject-
    to-the inconstant, unknown, arbitrary
    will of another man

    praise freedom of choice
    praise the averted occurrence
    of another definition of what “is” is


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