2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 16

(Thanks to Anders Bylund for pointing out that today’s prompt was not categorized–and not appearing on the Poetic Asides blog! Once again, Anders is a life saver.)

For today’s prompt, write a mixed up poem. I guess there are a few ways to come at this poem. Your narrator could have mixed feelings about something. Or a character could get “mixed up” in something. Or the poem could be about mixing up a drink. Or a mixtape. Or however you wish to mix this prompt/poem up.

Here’s my mixed up attempt:

“Following the road”

Or the path or the sidewalk or the river
along the bank or the shore or the rocks
worn around the edges or the collar or a ring
aournd the collar or a dog (or cat) collar
or a criminal is collared or we’re eating
collard greens or lettuce or soup or stew or
we’re not eating anything because we’re sitting
and talking or discussing or arguing or maybe
we are just following the road and we come upon
a festival and people are dancing in the street
and selling artwork and ice cream and cupcakes
or just ice cream but it’s good to be there with you
and to have nowhere else we could possibly be.



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360 thoughts on “2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 16

  1. Rosangela

    Lovers’ Disaster Potion

    01. Mix up, carelessly:
    A few years of a boring, but lovely marriage
    A few weeks of Exciting New Perspective – Rapid Yeast

    02. Stir in the emotions and bring it to high heat.
    Add some confusion, bold feelings, and curiosity.

    03.Sprinkle fun, laughter and cool childish moments. Knead well. Let it raise, covered.

    04. While the potion rests and takes form, prepare the sauce:

    05. Mix together the hot spices: lust, adventure, danger, doubts, secrecy, and lots of passion, with natural juices. Let it boil and confuse your senses. Stir and keep it over high heat until it gets thick.

    06. Now, roll out that dough (item 4). It must be elastic and nice to the touch.

    07. Cut it in two heart shapes. Bring one to the fridge and let it rest. In the center of the other heart, drop the hot sauce of item 5.

    08. Oh, No! The sauce spread all over. The secrecy is out! Danger is taking over! The adventure and passion was discovered by an undercover cup! It was a big mess! A huge disaster. I lost the dough and the sauce. All down the drain!

    09. Except… for the other part….the second heart shape… the one without the spicy sauce. The one resting in the fridge. That dough became crunchy, fresh, new. Didn’t even know what was going on! Just as well. Just stayed there… keeping cool!

    10. All I have to do now is develop a taste for that. This is what I have today, but tomorrow is another day! I may mix a better Potion!

    Bon Appetit!

  2. alotus_poetry

    i shook myself awake this morning (found poem)

    i shook myself awake this morning
    to find plum-colored clusters of asters sagging
    in the gray sky on branches that are frailer
    than level thought. they shaped themselves
    to the wind echoing one another in their sameness
    of lifting their skirts and shaking off beads
    of raindrops collected at their stems.
    a tiny honeysuckle-colored butterfly slips
    through those skirts and folds itself neatly
    like a dog-eared page of a william carlos wiliams
    book. but this morning, the heaviness
    of things settled on the edges of my heart
    were like those sagging sighing clouds.
    there were too many muted lips chattering
    into handheld screens on the drive to school.
    if only i had flowered myself with those asters
    and wished for a day off, i too would fly
    and become a thirsty vessel of pollinated words.

    For information on selected lines, please see link here: http://alotus-poetry.livejournal.com/138699.html
    For me, a mixed-up poem, why not a found poem? 😉

  3. Mary Mansfield

    Tequila Sun

    The sun’s intrusion through my bedroom window
    Pushes back the Patron-induced fog.
    Tequila’s evil tricks swirl in my head,
    Last night’s events only a hazy blur.

    Angry words ricocheted around the room:
    You’ve changed…
    Why do I even waste my time?
    I need someone younger…richer…
    More energy…more flexible…
    Then after our dramatic exchange, the bar…
    Shot after shot of smooth agave blend
    Stoking vengeful flames…
    Attitudes soften, igniting a different fire…

    And now, with daylight rudely insisting
    I return to coherent consciousness,
    I feel his hand splayed across my hip,
    Forceful and possessive,
    His hot breath on my bare shoulder.
    I cast a sleepy glance
    Toward his sweet brown eyes and whisper,

    “What was your name again?”

  4. cam45237

    The KitchenAid
    Is unafraid
    Of the thickess of the batter
    It paddles fast
    To a point past
    Which you’d think the bowl would shatter

    My arms are weak
    I cant compete
    So i will beg for quarter
    the mixer wins
    and still it spins
    and makes a mocking clatter

    But I can hide
    the stand inside
    The freezer or the oven
    and place the cake
    upon a plate
    Before my trusting husband

    The moral of the story is
    the KitchenAid’s a tool.
    you dont need turbo power.
    In the kitchen smart cooks rule.

  5. Marcia Gaye

    Fareie Tails

    Twice upon a time
    there were a homely princess
    who longed for nothing more
    Than to wear an homely dresses.
    She spun upon a spinning wheel
    In a turret in a garret
    She dropped a needle on her foot,
    A drop of blood fell where it
    Grew into an apple tree,
    and ever after she munched quite happily.
    Until an evil step-fairy-aunt
    Cast an evil apple spell,
    And our dear homely princess
    Into a deep sleep fell.

    Her dreams were filled with sugar plums,
    Dancing in her homely head,
    She dreamt she floated softly
    In a cotton candy bed.
    But a gangly prince decided
    To end her happy slumber
    And he crafted a tall, tall ladder
    From leftover reclaimed lumber.
    He whistled as he worked
    Wielding axe and hammer,
    And the friendly mice and bluebirds
    Wondered at the clamor.
    His lanky legs made quick work
    as he climbed to the turret garret
    where he placed a sloppy kiss
    on her forehead, where it
    blossomed into a red red rose
    and our homely princess did arose.

    Therefore evermore happily after
    They ate sweet apples and sewed dresses
    And whistled with the mice and bluebirds
    And braided the princess’s long golden tresses.
    The evil step-fairy-aunt they commanded
    To clean up their apple core strewn messes.

    The magic apple seeds they kept
    In a magic box and the princess slept
    In her cotton candy pillowed bed,
    With it underneath her homely head
    With her long golden hair wrapped around it.
    Where the evil step-fairy-aunt never found it.

    This is the happiest tale
    Just as it was told to me.
    And if you catch a singing mice
    Or a friendly blue birdie
    And sprinkle salt upon their tails
    And toss them over your left ear,
    They’ll live to tell the happy tale
    Just as I told it here.

  6. LCaramanna

    Mixed Berry Pie

    Strawberries, blueberries,
    raspberries, blackberries,
    all hand-picked with care
    when it was summer out there.
    Iced in the freezer ‘til the moment was right
    to bake a mixed berry pie, that delicious delight.
    A gathering of friends is just the occasion
    to retrieve Grandma’s recipe and follow her equation.
    The end result – a berry-licious treat,
    served a la mode, it’s especially sweet.
    Strawberries, blueberries,
    raspberries, blackberries –
    sweet taste of summer, my
    mixed berry pie.

  7. Brian Slusher


    She smiles and sidles up
    to me, begins to speak
    as though we’ve kissed,
    and I nod along, trying
    to guess at who she is,
    but then she spasms
    as though stabbed,
    realizes I’m not him,
    (whoever he might be)
    and stammers an apology,
    flees without glancing back.

    Now I am stuck with what
    I’m not, wondering who
    could make that woman
    beam with such abandon,
    and I long to know his brand
    of cologne, the verbs
    he pitches. I try being him,
    raise my turquoise eyes
    so they catch the light,
    but the jut of his stubbled jaw
    blots the sun.

  8. PassionateQuill

    (mixed hues)

    on knees and palms she hovered with pastels in hand
    filling the spaces between the sidewalk cracks
    with periwinkle skies and rolling jade hills
    careful strokes outlined the silhouette of a tree
    just before the first cloud rolled over
    sending drops racing down the scene
    coalescing hues into a vibrant waterfall

  9. Linda Voit

    My Big Fat Greek Salad

    Rub a cut clove of garlic
    around the inside
    of a glass bowl.
    Rip romaine lettuce
    into bite-sized pieces
    and mix them
    with chunks of seeded
    tomatoes, cucumbers,
    green and red peppers,
    and red onions sliced
    Toss in chunks of white feta
    fresh Italian parsley
    if you have it
    and kalamata olives.
    Mix it all up with
    red wine vinegar or the juice
    of a lemon and some olive oil
    dried oregano, pepper
    and salt of the sea.
    It’s best to have
    warm pita bread

    Linda Voit

  10. Shawna McAllister


    She wears her heart on her foot,
    puts her foot in her shoe.
    She hides her heart in her pen,
    puts her pen in her shoe.
    She holds her pen on the left—
    with what’s left of her ink,
    she draws a line from her foot
    straight up to her knee.
    Round and round
    and straight
    she goes—
    she goes on
    to the right
    She writes
    on the right side
    of the page.
    She turns away from the page—
    makes a page of her belly,
    makes a page of her back.
    Lies back.
    Lies back and takes a nap
    with her shoes


  11. Walt Wojtanik


    The cute young nurse made her rounds,
    patient-to-patient, room-to-room.
    Helping the sickly on with their gowns

    Medication in syrups or pills
    offering comfort and compassion,
    easing the suffering from their ills.

    She was putting many steps on her orthopedic shoe,
    But her latest faux pax spelled her doom.
    Behind with her charts, she in her rush made a mistake she would rue.

    Taking the temp of Mr. Martinez, thermometer positioned in haste,
    when he asked poor Nurse Jones if ’twas oral or anal,
    she asked, “How can you tell?” He said, “The taste!”

  12. amelia louise

    The Way Home

    I drive up to the school and find
    my place in the pick up line.
    Why is it so hot I query.
    I sit and wait and wait.
    When will the kids finally appear?
    I see them begin to trickle out.
    Now I just need to find mine.
    Where, oh where, are my kids I ponder.
    Not here, not there not anywhere.
    As my heart begins to race,
    I brood over their perceived fate.
    A teacher leans in to ask
    whose class they should search
    to find my lost children.
    I answer, and before they can
    send the troops to find,
    I remember why they haven’t shown.
    Today they insisted
    on their feet getting them home.

  13. Jane Shlensky

    Mill Day

    At four, I loved to go milling
    with my dad when it was
    silage grinding time,
    all the corn and grains
    of summer rendered food
    for cows and horses.

    The whole place was
    warm and oaty, dusty
    but smelling of seeds
    and ferment, molasses,
    rotting sawdust and mulch,
    and lawn-mower oil.

    The farmer’s mix would
    be spilled into the hopper,
    men with wide brooms
    sweeping in stray grains,
    the components of the feed
    adjusted for each farm’s

    needs, then the great grinder
    would swirl, mix, and grind,
    as I stood against my father’s orders,
    my toes hooked over the edge,
    looking down into that mealy
    tornado, transfixed, drawn

    by the dark mixing of it,
    coiling in on itself, all
    sound beyond obliterated.
    My father once quietly
    walked behind and grabbed
    me away from the edge,

    spanked me, and cried himself,
    we both crying for different
    reasons. The other men came
    by to lay hands on his shoulders
    and mumble words I did not
    understand, about getting mixed

    up in that great vat being horrible.
    They petted me some then,
    talking of their own children and
    smoking, while I was sent
    behind the mill to pick wild
    strawberries, small but sweet.

    1. deedeekm

      this hints at grown-up stories too horrible to put to words and a father thinking about what might have happened. You took up right there with the smells and the sights. Wonderful memory piece 🙂

  14. pmwanken


    ~ 1 ~
    she stands near the box
    that holds her
    newborn babe;
    lifting lid to say goodbye,
    she hears baby’s cry

    best friends crash:
    one dies, one survives;
    don’t know they’re crying over
    the other’s daughter

    P. Wanken

    Written for Poetic Asides 2012 PAD Challenge Day 16: write a “Mixed Up” poem, and in response to actual stories reported in the news.

  15. Michael Grove

    A Sturdy Cocoon

    A butterfly built a sturdy cocoon.
    We stayed up all night and slept in past noon.
    The sky turned green and the grass was blue.
    You cared for me more than I cared for you.

    I had great hair and was not going bald.
    You answered the phone each time I called.
    My debtors all paid me the money they owed.
    We shared an address and a common zip code.

    The cat kept barking while the dog went meow.
    We shared a dream which was more than a vow.
    You drank the water and I drank the wine.
    We looked in the mirror and knew things were fine.

    By Michael Grove

  16. deedeekm

    Mass Confusion

    take a thought and pull
    a dream out of
    the air and stir them up
    and mostly you will
    jumble up the muddle
    of our middling ways we
    want to try to
    strive for clarity but
    all the mystery is that the
    more we try and cry and fry
    our brain cells brain swells
    big heads nod with
    understanding wisdom
    of the ages fill the pages
    and we read and meditate
    on all the information
    but it causes conflagration
    smelling smoke now
    something’s broke now
    take a poke and how
    we think we have the answer
    but the truth the deeper meaning
    pundits preening it escapes
    from under noses striking poses
    knowing all but seeing nothing
    fluff and stuffing just a bear
    a silly bear would share his honey
    and a hug you might as well
    I’m here to tell you
    It’s a mess and bless
    your heart you think you’re smart
    but part of you is like that bear
    just silly willy nilly
    take a breath or hold it in
    you scold me but
    I do not care and will not share
    get on the bus and do not fuss
    we’re all the same just in the game
    and hope the driver knows the way
    we bought our tickets
    have to ride so hide the button
    the inner spinner it’s your turn
    feel the burn and realize
    there is no prize
    just keep on trying
    stop the crying
    take a peek and make your move
    and try to prove
    it’s not mixed up
    we lost the rule book eight ball
    all shook and the message
    of the day is not today
    tomorrow not too likely either

    1. Marie Elena

      “… we try and cry and fry
      our brain cells brain swells…”

      “we lost the rule book eight ball
      all shook and the message
      of the day is not today
      tomorrow not too likely either”

      Clever stuff, this!

  17. Marie Elena

    Lost in Translation

    “Dear Department Head,” he said,
    “You are valueless,” instead
    of saying what he really meant,
    mucking up his true intent.

    (A word of advice: “value” and “price” in exchange for each other won’t always suffice.)

      1. Marie Elena

        Heehee! And this is actually based a true story. One of our Chinese students was very thankful for a recommendation letter written by the chairman of our department. The student told him, “Dr. Freimer, you’re valueless!” We just about died trying to hold in the laughter!

          1. Marie Elena

            Oh believe me, it would not have been in our best interest to laugh at that point. Dr. Freimer was not nearly as amused as we were, and our laughter would have brought out the side of him we tried our darndest to avoid. 😉

            Not a Roger Rabbit fan … can you ‘splain?

  18. Walt Wojtanik


    I touch my iTouch in a sensual way
    to coax every ditty in consecutive play,

    I don’t jump around to hear random songs,
    to pick and to choose is most certainly wrong.

    Here in the “Queen City” I choose not that function,
    they play as they lay, that’s my personal compunction.

    So, you’ll hear A to Z the songs on my “pod”,
    Shuffle’s off in Buffalo, please don’t think me as odd.

  19. Jamal Abboud

    A Portrait In love

    You’re prettier than a tree
    Nonchalant beauty alone
    Up the bare hill
    Reposes in the golden Beams
    lightly warm and free
    to placate the moody wind
    in the abode of leams
    far from the thirsty rill
    and the doggedly crow
    and all of it I can see
    From my dormer window
    From a house I imagine to own
    Far in the abandoned land
    Beyond that bare hill
    Where a lake mimics tranquility
    A womb of life laden and still
    Mirrors as your calm beauty
    And all of it I can see
    From my dormer window
    From a portrait of me
    A sketch unframed, unfinished
    On an easel, fancifully colored
    Waits frailly thy brush and hand
    To accomplish my metamorphosis
    To achieve thy miraculous guesses
    Of the unity of pure whiteness
    And colors of passionate kisses.

  20. Walt Wojtanik


    The winsome lass she stood there each night;
    fetching, catching every male suitor’s eye.
    But try as she might, they did not bite,
    it’s for sure they did not even try.

    But I was taken by this girlish beauty
    who stood outside the reading center
    her placard offering her service, this cutie
    “I can help with SEXDAILY”. I meant

    to keep composure, but I was sure taken
    by her wiles, her smile, her voluptuous… teeth,
    and I was horny, there was no mistaking,
    with her standing there quite replete

    with the offer, “SEXDAILY” which flashed in my head.
    I smiled and approached her; she was rather perky.
    And I hemmed and hawed and stammered instead,
    despite her compassion I was acting quite jerky.

    I pointed to her signage, gave a nod and a wink,
    but she blushed extremely embarrassed,
    when I misconstrued her “SEXDAILY” I think
    she believed she was sexually harassed.

    Her slap ‘cross my cheek would confound and perplex ya
    in her innocence I did unnerve her.
    I had read the sign wrong, “I can help with DYSLEXIA”;
    you can see why this old man perturbed her.

  21. RJ Clarken

    Mixed Veggies

    Mixed veggies seem to get along.
    The carrot/pea thing’s really strong.
    Just buy a bag and you will see,
    that veggies get it. Why don’t we?

    Green peppers dote on onions. Why?
    They make ‘em laugh until they cry.
    No matter vine or branch of tree:
    mixed veggies get it. Why don’t we?

    Yes, cauliflower and lima beans
    play poker with the collard greens.
    And succotash digs broccoli.
    Mixed veggies get it. Why don’t we?

    They’re frozen, fresh or from a can.
    They hail from Italy, Japan,
    the US, even Hungary.
    Mixed veggies get it. Why don’t we?


  22. Andrea B


    Once upon an early morning, while listening to my MP3 player droning
    Over many songs that were a bore I came across some forgotten lore
    While before nearly napping, I began to sway and then toe-tapping
    As if some one was gently rappin’, rappin’ some poetic score
    ‘ ‘Tis some maniac,” I muttered, ‘rappin’ poetry in gore-
    Only this, and nothing more.’

    Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the late November,
    And each stanza had me dancing with your ghost about the floor
    How I wished there was no morrow; – vainly I had sought to borrow
    You from your grave and instigate you ravin’, Edgar Allan Poe
    For the grim and gloomy poet whom we know as Edgar Allan Poe
    Your name dwells on my MP3 player forever more.

  23. omavi

    On the Razor’s Edge

    Reigning unfettered as
    Rain falling unbidden
    Not welcomed but
    With the torrent comes a brief reprieve
    Distracting from without
    Turmoil blooming from within
    Weather changing as
    The mood flowing from
    Negatively to positive
    Then sinking to depths
    Where no joy lives
    Sanity a boom needed
    But insanity sometimes
    A beautiful thing

  24. hurtin-heart

               What is love
    What is love? I don’t know!
    Yes i do! No, i don’t!
    Is it pain that brings rain
    Or is it happiness that brings sunshine?
    Is love just a word
    Or does love have meaning?
    People say it but do they really mean it?
    How do i know if you speak the truth?
    When u say to me, “I love you”.
    “Oh dear”,what do i do?
    This word love sure has me confused.
    Samantha Tinney

  25. Sara McNulty

    April 16, 2012 – Day 16
    Write a mixed up poem

    Unbalanced Mixtures

    Two children die
    their parents,
    natural order
    of seeds sewn
    first, flowers
    flourishing next.

    Deleterious effects
    of dysfunctional
    families where child-
    hood is curtailed,
    due to parents unable
    or unwilling to step
    up, raise their children,
    and sacrifice their
    streak of selfishness,
    results in children bred
    to function as caretakers.

    Some cocktails measure
    out in proportional
    perfection, while others
    burn throats, their individual
    tastes and subtleties lost
    in a muddled mess.

  26. seingraham

    When No Sense is Nonsense

    The taste of morning is honest
    And fine – and drips off your toes
    Like the juice of a blood orange
    Noon’s scent is all frayed edges and
    Swamps gone dry on top and crackling
    Late afternoon; you can feel it settle
    Like three hundred thread count silk
    On your thighs just before it slips off
    Into early evening, that sleight of hand
    Time when your eyes do deceive you
    And the sun setting sounds like death.

  27. Iain Douglas Kemp

    Dear Moosehead,
    Yes sirree!!! That’s what I’m talking
    ´bout! 11 – 4! way to go Mr Jeter, a homer
    batting in 3! And wasn’t it great to see so many
    wearing a Nº 42 jersey? Don’t get me wrong, I
    am very happy that the gudfernuffin Dodgers
    scampered out of Brooklyn and headed west,
    but that man Jackie Robinson made this a mixed
    game for the first time and we should all be
    proud of that. Now we have a week of home
    games – the Twins coming to their “House of Horrors”
    to get mixed up good. Then we have a road trip
    to Boston to take care of those darned Sox.
    Harpies are back a week today, so let’s enjoy
    it while we can! pick ya up at 7 – I’ll get the
    goodies in.

    Yours with no mixed emotions,

    Ringo the Howler

  28. currencem

    Easter Friends

    the four of us grab hands
    and Twirl! Twirl! Twirl!
    our skirts bellow,
    our white loafers squeak on the dewy grass,
    and the parents and brothers
    and aunts and uncles turn into streaks
    of greens, and yellows and blues
    but our faces stay constant
    as we pass glances back and forth,
    catching each other’s eye
    and giggling and squealing and leaning
    back to see the spinning sky above
    just long enough to believe
    this is our world now
    and joy of the dizzying rush
    will never, never end.

  29. Iain Douglas Kemp

    Crazy Little Thing Called Luff

    Everything’s by the board,
    when we’re three sheets to the wind
    and it’s cold enough
    to freeze the balls of a brass monkey.
    So, don’t be taken aback,
    when you’re being had over a barrel,
    stick with us till the bitter end
    and when you’ve had your chips,
    it’s time to cut and run.
    So, don’t waste time flogging dead horse,
    just get on the fiddle,
    or you’ll be left high and dry.
    So, if you scratch my back,
    I’ll scratch yours
    and we can push the boat out,
    luff the wind
    and beat a hasty retreat
    before we are hoisted by our own petards!

    (These are all naval idioms except for the last two which are army…hmmm…seems I mixed them up!)


  30. K. McGee

    Metaphorically Mixed & Matched

    Your image fades with time,
    darkness creeps in at the corners,
    like a photo caught by the flame,
    dreams curled under the heat, forever gone,
    cast out to sea in a bottle,
    with the cork left on the shore.

  31. Michele Brenton

    It’s in the mix.

    The maiden, the whore
    the wise old hag
    all mixed together
    to create this bag
    of contradictions
    truths and fictions
    part of silk, part oily rag.
    For in amongst the feminine
    is added something else of mine
    a certain masculinity
    which truth to say bewildered me
    until I came to recognise
    what makes life fun is the surprise!
    There is no person on the world
    who knows the secrets yet unfurled
    hid deep in hearts and minds and souls
    and every scrap makes up the whole.

  32. Janet Rice Carnahan

    Loving the creative twist and fun of these last two prompts, Robert! The muse is happy! 🙂


    Brought a wrath,
    Of grapes that were raisin,
    In the sun,
    The hot, hot sun,
    In the desert,
    Now deserted,
    Gone to look,
    For dessert,
    Like ice cream,
    We scream, we all scream,
    For ice cream,
    It would seem,
    Or seamlessly,
    We fall apart,
    To pieces,
    Not my nieces,
    Who stand strong,
    All day long,
    Until the boys,
    Come along,
    Then girls hum a different song,
    I warn there might be pain,
    Can’t refrain,
    Little advance, no gain,
    But I digress,
    Dance around the mess,
    Avoid the stress,
    Prefer much less,
    Or I eat chocolate . . .

    I confess!

  33. PSC in CT

    Two haikus today — about mixing &mingling. They read better with the pics I’ve included on my blog. 😉

    violets mingle
    among cinquefoil, bluets,
    mixing spring magic

    – – – – – – –

    Seasons comingling
    spring nestles in winter’s sand,
    remnants of autumn

    – – – – – – –

  34. Buddah Moskowitz

    Playlist: Id

    The beach is a place
    where a man can feel
    he’s the only soul in the world
    that’s real,
    here’s the thing:
    we started off friends,
    you say
    I only hear what I want to,
    how do you cool your lips
    after a summer’s kiss?
    I was born from love
    and my poor mother worked the mines,
    there’s nothing you can do
    to turn me away,
    broken lives, broken strings
    broken threads, broken springs
    welcome back,
    your dreams were your ticket out,
    I’ve been searching a long time
    for someone exactly like you.

    Come on everybody
    open up your windows
    turn on the music!
    I’ve got to say it
    and it’s hard for me,
    last night I didn’t get to sleep
    at all,
    add a little sugar, honeysuckle
    and a great big expression of
    Who’s the black private dick
    that’s a sex machine
    to all the chicks?
    I’m coming straight for your love baby
    Like a rocket, girl,
    in the end you’ll still be you.

    Oh I say the damnest things,
    superhighways coast to coast
    easy to get anywhere,
    you just could not know
    how long we tried
    to see how this building
    looks inside,
    Late night flight, LAX
    limousine and you’re all set
    for Sunset,
    now if there’s a smile on my face
    it’s only there trying to fool
    the public,
    life is a song worth singing,
    I can hear you sighing,
    another morning,
    you are on my mind,
    you can tell the truth,
    you can tell a lie,
    baby, lift your head up,
    they tell me you’re shy, but
    I love you just the same,
    been around the world
    and I can’t find my baby,
    I’m writing letters
    and your candle’s burning,
    my heart starts breaking
    when I think of making
    a plan to let you go.

    I’ve been walking in
    the same way as I did,
    when I say I’m in love
    you best believe
    I’m in love, L-U-V!
    As I was lying in a hospital bed
    a rock and roll nurse
    going to my head,
    forgot my six-string razor
    and hit the sky,
    he was a boy
    she was a girl
    can I make it any more

    It doesn’t matter what I say
    as long as I sing with
    I don’t think I can handle this
    another day in Metropolis,
    I met you on somebody’s island,
    I have had my eyes on you
    from the day I learned to laugh at myself,
    caught you laughing too.

    Hey, don’t worry
    I’ve been lied to.

    [Note: these are the first lines of the songs in my current Rhapsody playlist. Whoever guesses the most of them correctly, wins a free copy of my latest e-book!]

  35. Walt Wojtanik


    ‘Twas tyme, and the writpaged tomes
    surely taught and matched in the word;
    All walloet were in bookhomes,
    And the rants, such outrage heard.

    “Heed caution to the Jabberwall, dear boy!
    devoured, scratched by the talons what grip it!
    Caution too the cuckoo bird, such a ploy
    the frurious Bastard scratch and whip it!”

    He wrought his mighty pen a verbal swatch:
    e’er rhyme the manpome penned as he ought—
    an’ forty winks ‘neath poet tree catch,
    And snores, erstwhile it ever sought.

    And surely iam pented up he stood,
    the Jabberwall, with poetpyres inflamed,
    came to shill gladly his famtome WOOD,
    And gurgled giddily just the bloody same!

    One, one! One, won! And done and done
    the verbal quill went scritch-scratch!
    No write in his head, and no thoughts come
    he went unwrit then, there and back.

    “And hast thou read what Jabberwall doth say?
    Come, my worded charms, this squeamish boy!
    O bitchinboss day! Haiku! Villonette!”
    He wrought in form inspite his joy.

    ‘Twas tyme, and the writpaged tomes
    surely taught and matched in the word;
    all walloet were in bookhomes,
    and the rants, such outrage heard.

  36. uneven steven

    I remember teaching you

    how to make
    pancakes from scratch,
    white flour on your blue shirt,
    pants, the counter, the stairs,
    go for it, I say
    and white dot
    the tip
    of your nose,
    scrambled eggs,
    a bit crunchy, of course,
    you had to try it
    one handed,
    just like
    your father.
    We pack as much as we can,
    you searching the house for
    whatever it is you feel
    you’re leaving behind.
    It’s only 2 hours, I say, and
    you’ll visit on weekends,
    and you have friends
    there too.
    I remember you
    walking away from the car –
    I guess you forgot the hug,
    how we used to cook breakfast together,
    you were probably just
    all excited
    about school and
    whatever else
    you expect
    to get mixed up in.

  37. Hannah

    ————————————————————————-I surrender
    —————————————————————————my soul
    —————————————————————————-to the
    ————————————————————————–shrill call;
    ————————————————————————-my depths,
    ————————————————————————-my senses
    ————————————————————————-my heart,
    ———————————————————————-blood pooling
    ———————————————————————in swift bunches,
    ______________________________________bringing me back
    _____________________________________to dock lying days;
    _____________________________________soak, sipping sun
    ______________________________________with fresh skin,
    ______________________________________salt encrusted
    ______________________________________and creeping
    ____________________________________drying completely.
    ____________________________________Closed eyes invert
    ___________________________________submerged in the glow,
    ___________________________________this pink/reddened burst
    _________________________________resembles the inside of womb.
    ________________________________In this very room behind my eyes
    _______________________________I drink in fully, with all of my faculties,
    ______________________________the truth message held here, this magic
    _____________________________I allow to mix with my being and the freeing,
    ____________________________falling feeling of sinking into porous, aromatic
    ___________________________smell of wood that is lapped, rocked ever gently
    ___________________________by the bay of those days, so crisp on my memory,
    ___________________________brought back with the call, voice brightly shrieking,
    ___________________________an osprey soaring overhead; immediately it grasps
    ___________________________innards and brings me hunger for the taste of home.
    ______________________________Planted, intertwined with rich aroma of pine
    ________________________________the thick smell of loam, that flat stone
    ____________________________________I gathered while roaming;
    ________________________________________all interspersed
    __________________________________________a blessed
    ____________________________________________a part

    ______________________________________© H.G. @ P.A. 4/16/12

      1. Walt Wojtanik

        That’s a great attempt, Smiles!

        To reiterate, the code for INSERTING spaces is ALT+0160. Key that for each space needed and it will allow your figure to stand freely without the “umbilicals”. Keep trying.

  38. Miss R.


    The words are twisted
    As era after era we think
    We are the only ones
    Who know what it feels like –
    To be human, to love like this,
    To know God – and we rarely
    Even realize our presumption,
    As I declare hypocritically
    That I know They thought This.

  39. gtabasso

    The Mixup

    A child sad outside the school for hours
    while he waited to be picked up.
    No one came. No one called.
    The school tried four emergency contact numbers.
    Three were disconnected.
    One reached a woman who just got a new cell phone.
    She explained that people are calling her
    in the middle of the night
    asking if she has the money and is coming over;
    she gets texts about partying;
    men call her “angel”;
    utility companies say
    the power is being shut off.
    Everyone wants to take that child home.
    No one wants to take him to his home.

  40. Nancy Posey

    Freshman Mixer

    Take several dozen boys and girls,
    mere weeks removed from high school,
    new to campus and barely settled
    in the dorm, feeling grown—and scared.

    Pack them on the intermural field
    for a night of fun and games—corny
    get-to-know you ice breakers, same
    ones every year—streets and alleys,
    find your shoes in the pile, name that tune.

    Sit back and watch the magic as quickly
    they are drawn to their own, jocks to jocks,
    nerds to nerds, beautiful really, in a way
    that never worked in high school

    where the chess team never made
    for lack of participation and where,
    after years on the cheerleading squad,
    everyone knew the rumors whispered.

    Despite the attempt, for public relations’
    sake, to recreate the melting pot, they move
    like metal to magnet, relishing the chance
    to start in a fresh pool, with a clean slate.

    A year from now, they’ll have started mixing
    on their own as group projects, randomly
    assigned, put the clean cut with the pierced,
    cowboys with rockers, north pole to south.

    This first week, replete with rude awakenings
    and total shocks, they’re content, even giddy
    to land—finally—and mix with others
    who are the same kind of different.

  41. Earl Parsons

    Tom-Tom Blues

    You say “Stay Left”
    I turn right
    You say “Turn around
    At the next light”
    “Right turn ahead”
    You declare to me
    Wrong lane again
    How can this be
    This trip was only
    Fifty miles long
    I’ve driven eighty
    Something’s wrong
    Right is left
    And left is right
    Dyslexia is
    Such a fright

  42. uneven steven

    A way with words

    Speaking with you I am often
    at a loss for it,
    the quick flint strike of
    cogitation never quite
    catching until after the fact
    has fled ‐
    my spark burning down
    the trees holding the nests
    of your thoughts
    and oh, how I long for those just
    right conversations after you leave
    and I am sitting alone in the dark
    the almost eskimo kiss
    of foreheads,
    the buhdda-like
    eye slit smiling
    hands clutching navels
    as if our laughter
    might spill out too much
    of whatever it is in there
    that we came from.

  43. Mystical-Poet

    Mixed Up/Confused

    need to repair pipe?
    high tech connection system
    sharkbite solution

    instant push-fit bond
    hydronic distribution
    zero soldering

    ~ Randy Bell ~

  44. wolfbolz

    The Quest

    I seek the alchemist most skilled.
    I’ve paid his price before.
    On painful Monday mornings
    when I crawled along the floor.

    Many claim the knowledge
    that I know my wizard owns,
    mixing up that magic brew
    that limbers up my bones

    I will see him standing in the dark
    with flasks held in his hands,
    as magic liquids are dispersed
    till here my potion stands.

    It will glow a deep rose amber,
    with a cherry for an eye,
    with sweet vermouth and bitters,
    and the finest pale brown rye.

    Here will sit my fine Manhattan,
    that the master made for me,
    I only hope to stop at two,
    or maybe even three.

  45. Margot Suydam

    Hole Way

    There is a hole in me that leaks, remains
    disquiet, rockets down an empty hallway

    like an ousted child jettisoned to principal
    doors with promises to confide unacceptable

    acts, thoughts that won’t perish when backs turn.
    Still that hole shrinks when I watch all-night TV

    what abides the rules, arranges flowers, mops up
    the messy, sits quietly with nothing left to do.

  46. JRSimmang

    Simple hand hold I a symbol.
    Resting long without the is day it
    Throbbing, warm hand in my
    Arms sleeps sleeveless it my upon
    You to I now offer and it
    It take, it is yours.
    No can longer symbol the I bear
    shaking, shackled to me at me the foundation
    into twisting me a recollection faint.
    You smile, institution a burning,
    from radiating face, your glorious face,
    and I smile.
    Easily these words come do not, but for me.
    Sat alone have I in wonder upon your gracious thighs
    supple bosom, apple cheeks
    and flirtatious hands dancing in my taste.
    Your name an everpresent warning on my lips.
    And yet, I cannot bear to say it.
    My love,
    you are.

  47. barbara_y

    She was a good-hearted old book but not very 
    Her illuminated pages were imposed
    sexagesimo but she went off on a journey:
    tanning her own leather, sizing feather letters
    with gold, making paper (and its predecessors, 
    skins and stones).  Mastering the alchemy of ink,
    she fell in with gatherer-farmers 
    and learned the seasons of pokeberrry
    oak gall and woad and how to swim in springwater
    mordanted with salt and vinegar,
    to best preserve herself with poems of good times
    (recto) and bad (notso).
    Nearsighted as well as presbyopic she could
    only read her forearms belly hands and thighs
    [when she could find binoculars, the tops of her toes
    could be seen to contain pages 5(^) and  the
    difficult-to-read-upside-down 42(v).]
    By the time she found her way back,
    from digression,
    her creases had grown to contradict
    the lines intended for folds, and she surrendered
    into quarto pages, a piebald curiosity
    of ups and downs and no apparent order.

  48. maggzee

    The Neighbor

    He yearned outside her kitchen window
    He thought of his wife
    Bent, maybe broken
    The love of his life

    But she, she wise and graceful
    Soothing and easy
    A baker of bread
    Earthy, yeasty

    The window glass steamed, yellow light
    Go to her, taste
    The bones of his marriage
    Laid sadly to waste

    Evening shadows gather coolness
    Seeds left unsown
    He turns, makes his
    Long way back home

  49. drwasy

    A Memorial in Ten Parts

    I have driven hours now
    down roads wending
    through wood and field.
    All slows to childhood:
    endless red clay, the kudzu’s
    slow creep, the pitch of pine,
    the sky opening to sea.

    Cormorants dive-bomb
    skimming up blues and other
    chum churned in the ferry’s wake
    ahead the island
    where we slept amidst sea oats
    singing at higher pitch
    than the gulls’ keen

    The sun burns a hole
    through blue sky,
    waves churn grey-cold, a wintry coffin.
    By the time we gather one mile
    past the ramp, the sea mirrors

    The wind lifts
    sifts you fine between our fingers;
    you want to leave.

    With hands lent-like
    we walk our paths
    salt spray on our cheeks,
    hearts to burst, we scatter
    you, a final wish.

    But I cannot let go.
    I have regrets.
    I have memories.

    I remember we walked into sky,
    coral colored, sure of the night
    and the next, and I wondered
    while I crushed morphine tablets
    with Ativans in the marble mortar
    you gave me when I became a healer
    whether you regretted going
    the extra mile for science

    If I had known
    the trip to the hospital
    was the last time
    you would ever be outside
    I would not have rushed
    you through the rain.

    We left milepost 33.
    The sun burned holes again.
    The light pained us
    and pains us still

    I am not sure why I favor
    forgotten detritus from
    God’s great tumbler: the cracked
    scallop, the lusterless
    oyster, the conch which
    sounds a half-sea.

    But tonight the moon pounds
    the ocean full and unabated,
    the engine thrums
    deep through my soles
    constant with the sea,
    your pulse, a memory ago.

    This poem derives from 5 other poems, all written during past PADs and all concerning the slow death of my father from cancer and the aftermath. This month he would have been 75–he is in my mind and my heart these days. Peace, LindaS-W


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