2011 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 7

We’re already one week deep into this challenge. I hope everyone’s having a great time. Just in case you’re new to this challenge, here are the rules/guidelines.

For today’s prompt, write a “what won’t wait” poem. Only you know what won’t wait. Maybe it’s falling in love or work–or death (one of my favorite Emily Dickinson poems is about this topic). Something else that won’t wait is today’s prompt.

Here is my attempt:

“This Week”

This week rushes in
like the last one–
there’s little I can do.

*****

Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer

While there, be sure to tweet poetic using the #novpad hashtag.

*****

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…by using the 2012 Poet’s Market, edited by Robert Lee Brewer. This book is filled with hundreds of publishing opportunities and articles on writing poems, publishing poems, building an audience for your poetry, and more.

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359 thoughts on “2011 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 7

  1. sidewalkdiva

    A lifetime lost waiting in lines

    while you’re waiting in the grocery line
    or counting ceiling tiles in your backless nighty at the doctor’s office
    or watching for your number to come up at the butcher
    are you waiting for your life to begin?

    Do you make bargains with life?
    That you’ll arrive once the conditions are right?
    Do you wish away your time?
    Your life is here. It simply won’t wait

  2. vsbryant1

    What Won’t Wait

    The world won’t wait while you figure out who you are
    Time will not slow for you to heal the wounds
    The broken pieces of your heart can only be put back together by your hands
    Everyone still walks, while you crawl
    Everyone still smiles, while you cry
    Everyone is seen, while you hide

    The world won’t wait while you figure out who you are
    Time will not slow for you to heal the wounds
    The earth still spins while your trapped in a self-suffocating cocoon

  3. RJ Clarken

    Hang Fire

    “My mother always told me I wouldn’t amount to anything because I always procrastinate. I said, ‘Just wait.’” ~Judy Tenuta

    Hang Fire
    I put off doing things…
    I’m not sure why.

    Hang Fire
    Kinda sorta describes
    getting off-track.

    Hang Fire
    Sounds like a skateboard trick
    but not really.

    Hang Fire
    Is what happens when you…
    Oh look! A squirrel!

    Hang Fire
    Just wait. I’ll think of …what?
    Something to write?

    Hang Fire
    Godot and I both wait…
    Procrastinate.

    ###

    (Note: The form is Triversen Poetry)

  4. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    The Boatman
    by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    When I awoke I discovered
    that my eyes had been sewn shut,
    victim to the disease
    that had been hibernating
    within all those years.
    Like Homer,
    I’d refused to cave at first
    in spite of the obstacles,
    the consequences,
    Reaper be damned.
    But Oscar Wilde once said,
    “No man is rich enough to buy back his past,”
    and now the Boatman has come.
    I’m fresh out of coin,
    my eyes are sewn shut,
    and the river continues to rise.

    © 2011 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  5. Marian O'Brien Paul

    What Wouldn’t Wait

    Baby born healthy
    all five fingers, all five toes
    lusty, wailing boy

    Impatient to grow
    but slow at walking, talking
    playing with his toys

    Sleepless boy awake
    late into nighttime, crying –
    noise upsets father

    Agitated child
    plucks at his eyelids as if
    seeing fierce monsters

    Mother’s soft fingers
    gently massaging child’s back
    patient for hours

    Impatient baby
    now grown a tall, robust man
    yet not all is whole

    Unseen years ago
    insidious beginnings
    of mental illness

    His manhood blighted:
    no wife, no family, no home
    of his own, no life

    No medication
    found effective to treat him
    years multiplying

    Purgatorial
    existence in nursing homes
    is what wouldn’t wait.

  6. PSC in CT

    Not sure how to do italics (or if they are even possible on this site), so… this is the best I can do. :-]

    Winter Won’t Wait

    he wakes before sunrise
    (so much to do), acres of toil,
    but before that, cords of wood,
    but first, animals to feed,
    breakfast to make & eat
    dinner waits ‘til sundown
    (daylight hours are precious)
    come the evening there’ll be mending,
    cleaning, the harvest to put by (“things
    she would have taken care of”, he thinks,
    “if she were here”.) Don’t Think.
    Don’t pause. Don’t hesitate.
    Winter won’t wait.

    1. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

      Italics are easy.

      Select the word or line you wish to italize. We’ll use your title for demonstration, “Winter Won’t Wait.” All you’re going to do is add a snippet of code in front of, as well as at the end of that line or title. Note: when you do this, type the snippet, replace the ( ) with the greater than, and less than marks. The snippet of code will stay invisible if you do it right.

      ok, here’s the code. It is important that you do NOT leave any spaces between the code and your line. Otherwise it won’t work.

      (i)Winter Won’t Wait(/i)

      The typed “i” starts the italics, and the “/i” signals the italics to end there. See? Super simple.

  7. Jay Sizemore

    The perfect moment

    doesn’t want to wait,
    doesn’t have the patience
    to let a wellspring of confidence
    build in the occupants of
    these seconds. It doesn’t announce
    itself, won’t knock on the door,
    won’t illuminate the sky
    with a neon sign,
    won’t suddenly fill the air
    with a crescendo of strings.

    You want to wait
    until the time feels right,
    until all the elements
    of a single event
    come together for a memory
    that will define your lives,
    that golden ring with
    a chunk of the world
    older than gods
    burning a hole in your pocket
    these past three weeks.

    But it’s not perfect,
    it’s raining, when the weather man
    said it would snow. The spot
    where you wanted to do it,
    is now under construction,
    chain-link fences and mounds
    of dirt where there should be
    piles of fallen leaves.

    Here you are anyway,
    standing beneath a green umbrella,
    rain falling down the back
    your neck, kneeling on a sidewalk
    that shimmers with liquid light
    cast from a street lamp,
    holding your heart out
    in your hands
    and asking for a miracle.

    When it starts snowing
    as you’re driving home,
    that ring now on her finger,
    faces flushed with the blood
    rushed excitement of love in the cold,
    you realize there’s no such thing
    as the perfect moment,
    when every moment together
    is its own perfection
    in the memories you create.

  8. KathyintheWallowas

    sonnet for sustainability

    a theory of surprise may turn success –
    let alone competition – on its head.
    so let’s start. before all that, there’s
    the if/then. and if you’re lucky and fail
    grandly, perhaps the gift is in discovery
    of the so what and the then what? smart
    money talks – but you don’t have to hear.

    and maybe – just – complacency will take
    some rich mud in the face, and from it
    will sprout things you never saw before.
    if the purpose of experiment, though, is
    some desired result, you may get lucky
    and discover the one watched pot that
    actually never boils, and all goes awry.

    or is that tweak of expectation the very
    gift we seek? o surprise, and o peace.

  9. Glory

    Day 7 – Courage Won’t Wait

    No matter where you are, how low you feel,
    there comes a time when you reveal
    the pain, the tears that you’ve held close,
    afraid, yes, scared to speak, to oppose.

    Along comes courage, fine and true,
    stands tall, stands straight, at the side of you,
    ‘til between the rising of the morning sun,
    and sooner than the fading crescent moon,

    that ‘won’t wait minute’ suddenly appears
    and brings new life, and with it, no more fears.

  10. annell

    What Won’t Wait
    What is so urgent
    That pokes and needles me
    It is there when I close my eyes
    At the end of the day
    Lay my head
    Upon my pillow

    It is there before I awake
    Urgent
    Requires attention
    I hear it call to me

    Sometimes in dreams
    The answer
    Appears
    I rise
    To test this answer

    The day flies by
    Never enough time
    The work will not wait

  11. writejowrite

    My Baby

    Holding you in my arms that day
    Amazed at the tiny you
    Crying when we took you home
    How would I know what to do?
    I felt a failure at being a mom
    I cried for 3 days straight
    Not realizing it would be okay
    That everything else could wait
    The nights I struggled to comfort you
    My nerves a massive wreck
    You wiggled your way up on my chest
    Burying your face into my neck
    You took a deep breath and inhaled the scent
    Of motherhood and went off to sleep
    The relief was almost too much to bear
    Again I had to weep
    Same time each night, you woke me up
    With cries of hunger and fear
    But easier it became to do this dance
    Without Mommy shedding a tear!

  12. vperson

    Ghost Husband

    In micro moments,
    I catch a glimpse of you:
    At the edge of my dreams,
    ethereal visions dance.
    Between the piano keys,
    your song lingers.
    Beside me on the bed.
    your head creases
    the pillow.
    I feel the tips
    of your fingers
    caress my arm,
    your lips tango
    on mine. And I
    wonder. . .
    when
    will
    you
    be
    real?

  13. Justine Hemmestad

    The truth won’t wait –

    No matter how much TV I’m shown,
    No matter how thick the glass –
    I see through the screen.
    The truth in all its rays of vivid light –
    Tearing through the sky:
    A vacuum of a sky.
    Yielding to none it cannot hide,
    Nor does truth try,
    For what is a locked book,
    Will be pried open,
    To vanquish with a sword.
    for its honor is unsurpassed.

  14. Kim King

    In Season

    She watches the army cargo planes
    descend toward the barracks like geese
    in V formation, flapping wings into dusk,
    black triangles that serpentine,
    heading south or to that desert war
    where boys in camo scan the tan horizon
    but still hear calls of the autumn hunt.

  15. JujYFru1T

    Multitasking

    The words bouncing in my head say
    “Write us now, we need to be free!”
    The piano, sitting patiently, says
    “It’s been a week since you touched my keys…”
    The catch-up, catch-all math course says
    “Forget all that, I’m the most important”
    and dumps a heap of guilt on me
    The problem with loving so many things so fiercely
    is prioritization is a total *BEEEE–*

  16. NomiWrites

    UNIVERSAL TIME

    A smart (read crazy) boss once taught me
    Problems left untouched
    Sometimes just disappear

    The universe is like that
    The universal clock ticks to its own beat
    When I try to force the issue
    It stands still
    ‘til I learn to surrender

  17. Justine Hemmestad

    Redemption won’t wait,
    Remedy of medicine streaming down one’s throat,
    Bidding truth forth, like pedals floating on water,
    Bringing the grace of the revelation,
    That melts into my heart.
    The water’s downstream flow,
    Captures and encircles the flower’s pedals,
    Like the wind carries the truth –
    From house to house
    And door to door.

  18. richard-merlin atwater

    Time
    by Rich Atwater Nov 7, 2011

    Time flies on wings of lightning,
    They say you can not call it back,
    What happens may be frightening,
    But we must move forward on the track.

    Tomorrow will be yesterday in due time,
    But today is what counts for doing things,
    What won’t wait should be done on a dime,
    Then you can let go and fly on eagles wings.

    Poets Note: Obviously among those things that “won’t wait” include doing a poem in time for the prompt word or phrase. I neglected to make it in time so here is my take a day later. Was tied up living LIFE with my college student daughter who was home with me for the weekend. No time for poems when we have a call to ACTION in living life. We can reminisce after the fact. Thus here is my take the NEXT day when tomorrow became yesterday!

  19. Tracy Davidson

    Death didn’t wait
    long enough
    for us to say
    a proper goodbye.

    He swooped in
    and claimed you
    before your suffering
    became too much to bear.

    But even if he hadn’t
    come and gone so fast
    there’s nothing I could have said
    you didn’t already know.

  20. leatherdykeuk

    Jet Lag

    Patience is considered a virtue
    and doubly so in dogs expecting a walk.
    Mine wait, appearing nonchalant
    but a glance in their direction reveals an ear cocked,
    one eye open got the slightest hint
    of brushing my hair or turning off the monitor.
    Then they’re frantic.
    Go now. Go now. Nownownownownow.

    The biggest looks for his toy
    he needs something to fixate upon
    else he will jump and bite in his eagerness to leave.
    “In the kitchen, by the water bowl,” I tell him
    and her dashes off, returns with it
    and I don’t know if he understood
    ot if it was blind chance that’s where he went.

    The smallest cries in case I forget her
    (I never do) and dances upright,
    front paws held in prayer or supplication
    until I slip the lead on her collar.

    Three dogs, three leads, one door, one me.
    There’s always a fight on the step
    about who gets to be in front
    who’s the leader
    who’s the boss.
    And it’s always Jet who wins
    but doesn’t really care about being in front.

    He prefers to lag behind
    and lays his own scent over everybody’s.

  21. Walt Wojtanik

    WALT WAITS

    A well needed maintenance day.
    Mired in muse I couldn’t use,
    and a frustrating bout of irritabily,
    I found the ability to release
    and cease to be nothing but me
    for an afternoon. Thoughts ignited
    and fired a passion for life and
    all that it entails, a soul that sails
    and reaches heights not seen
    in a long time. Distant encouragement;
    an instant pick-me-up to warm me,
    it disarms me and alarms me how
    much I missed it. How needed it became.
    All the same, such heat is a two way street
    and it has a therapy of its own.
    The seeds of life resown and nurtured
    despite the gravity of daily living,
    it has given me cause to cheer being here.
    It has me elevated. I’m glad I waited.

  22. pennylu

    What Won’t Wait

    The day wont wait
    for my life to begin
    living in the moment
    of this mind whim
    found a new energy
    it will not be late
    fight the good fight
    it’s what they call faith?
    in me…the other
    loving today
    it’s what won’t wait

  23. Janet Rice Carnahan

    What can’t wait is posting this poem! It is 4 minutes until tomorrow . . . the moment must be now! Ok . . . now!

    THE RIGHT MOMENT

    Full moon,
    Darkened sky,
    Nearby glowing planet,
    As if in cosmic communication,
    Hints of silver ebbing light,
    On the lake waiting patiently below,
    Ripples from the passing storm,
    Silence in the car while the clarity comes into view!
    “Pull over I have to take this shot!”
    No clear place to park or stop or adequately land,
    Tall swaying grasses block the water,
    Trees shadow the union of lighted objects,
    Phone poles kill the moment’s touch with nature!
    Ice covers the shoulder of the road,
    Oncoming cars careen towards the finally still vehicle,
    The moment quickly passes until only the moon is seen,
    No other reflection offered,
    A slow walk back with the camera turned to off . . .
    That moment couldn’t wait,
    Yet beauty always lies . . .

    In the eyes of the endless beholder!

  24. whatevertheyaint

    Growth In Change

    The leaves have to fade and die
    so green can grow in summer
    and often times we wonder why
    yet next time makes us stronger
    the raven lets out his eery cry
    though songbirds sing in spring
    in every season there’s a reason
    for the changes that it brings.

  25. PKP

    Scrolling through on my to apologize to all and to MYSELF that I cannot read as my eyes are closing cannot comment as my head is burning… I am told that I am posting too quickly and to “slow down” and then shut down. I miss the original PA Street… I miss as I said here earlier the friendly messiness of it all… that let us interact sometimes with the speed of lightening…carrying on banter, chains and just group mentions… I will be back when another project is concluded… but it doesn’t feel as friendly…and I am grateful that I didn’t wait…couldn’t wait back then to begin and return and return throughout the day…. I am grateful that I couldn’t wait and that I didn’t wait…because I would have missed what was….. Goodnight all… There is some absolutely exquisite work here… that jumped out calling to me as I scrolled to the bottom of the page… Happy poeming all:)

  26. gilgallagher

    This Will Wait

    What won’t wait, waits: water welling
    up behind the dam. Damn, when we

    were waiting for Maurice to die we
    got a little wild. We rumpussed; we

    stayed up late, barked at the nude moon,
    wondered when the stars would fall.

    And when he died, the night sky waited
    for another wild cloud to be born.

  27. Shannon Lockard

    Cheap Date

    Addicted to your scent
    even though it was just Dial soap
    and sweat.
    Mind fogged and blurred
    with every whispered word.
    I toppled at your feet.
    I melted from our heat.
    I should have known it was deceit
    when I sold myself too cheap.
    But, you said you couldn’t wait
    and now your someone else’s date.

      1. bluerabbit47

        Well, that would be true, except that the poems she writes for nothing sound much like some very popular songs (not that they are derivative, not at all–they just capture emotions that many young people feel strongly,) It wouldn’t be like she was selling out her talent–just sharing it with people who appreciated it! Buddah, the poems you post here are quite different. If you wrote for that market, to sell, I can understand how you felt. That business can be rough. Still, crumbs are better than nothing. You know what they call professional poets—teachers. Now, I’ve been there.
        don’t ask.

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