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2012 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 24

Today’s prompt comes from Beth Cato.

Here’s Beth’s prompt: Take the phrase “The Truth About (blank),” replace the blank with a new word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write the poem.

Robert’s attempt at a The Truth About Blank Poem:

“The Truth About Poetry”

There ain’t no right way or wrong way. Self-taught
or MFA. Free verse or sonnet. Slamming an open mic
is just as good as writing about flowers in a leather-bound
journal that nothing and nobody will ever see, save your socks.
The truth is that it’s all a searching, a way to communicate, whether
with a wider audience or that voice that never turns off in our heads when
we wish it would. Whether it’s therapy or testimony, entertainment or expression,
poetry is whatever it needs to be whenever it needs to be for whoever happens to need it.

*****

Thank you, Beth, for the fine prompt. Click here to learn more about Beth Cato.

Click here to share your poems on the WD Forum.

*****

Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer

*****

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82 thoughts on “2012 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 24

  1. JRSimmang

    The Truth About the End
    is never truly the truth
    because the truth can so easily bend.

    We can sit and talk
    for hours at a time
    but the truth will wind and wend.

    For what is there,
    truly,
    that can truly begin

    before the beginning,
    truly,
    of the end.

    We worry so,
    we fret about,
    but what we cannot pretend

    to know is
    that what awaits us
    we cannot defend

    against. And, why
    would we want to do
    that anyway. The end

    is almost always
    just a fancy way
    of saying hello.

  2. Karen H. Phillips

    Day 24
    Prompt: Entitle poem “The Truth about Blank” and write about that title.

    The Truth about the Moon Tonight

    is that it means something new, just as precious,
    as when I gazed at it last night
    or last month.

    The moon has changed in some ways,
    and so have I.
    In others, we’re the same as we were.

    The moon keeps spinning round the earth,
    the earth around the sun,
    and I live the cycle of my days,
    constant, yet constantly evolving.

    One day, when I see the Maker of the Moon,
    I’ll be transformed.
    I’ll see Him as He is,
    and I’ll be like Him in a way I’ve never been.
    Full circle, complete,
    the way the moon is tonight.

  3. Linda Hatton

    The Truth About Blank

    The truth about
    blank is that it
    can be anything
    you want, no risk
    of rejection when
    options are unlimited,
    no risk for failure
    when you set the limits.
    Blank is fresh, ready
    to fill with anything
    you desire. Blank can be
    clear or confused,
    you choose.

  4. foodpoet

    The truth about lies

    Truth is a lie
    Holding a smile
    Even when it hurts

    Truth is a lie
    Reclaiming a life fallacy.
    Under clouds faking light.
    Truth is a lie.
    Hands more hands holding out

    Another day
    Building the lie of nothing wrong.
    Only it no longer works.
    Under memory loss,
    Truth is a lie.

    Lies, we are fine,
    I say
    Every evening walking again into
    Shadow thought.

  5. PSC in CT

    The Truth About the Truth

    You can bend it, stretch it, wring it,
    twist it, state it, swear it, shout it out
    but, the truth is: the truth is (still & all)
    a matter of perception. Sure as shootin’,
    there’s a tiny lie in every sooth
    (and vice versa).
    Lines become idioms
    become clichés (because there’s
    more truth than un- inside ‘em). But
    (no matter what) you may rest assured:
    what you sow (& what you reap) is all
    (in the end) nothing (more nor less)
    than a twinkle in the eye
    of the beholder.

  6. po

    The Truth About Cats

    Cats are funny
    
but they have their serious side.

    They don’t care
    
for the rain unless they are being
    
little furry philosophers 

    from their inside window seats.



    Don’t worry
    the house doesn’t belong to you.

    You are only
    allowed to pay for it and keep
    it up to 
their superb kitty standards.



    The truth about
    cats is they have learned to tolerate

    you and your

    bizarre human ways. But don’t
    expect their
    gratitude because they are,
    after all,

    superior and in charge.

  7. julie e.

    THE TRUTH ABOUT TEXTING

    I delete those conversations
    that have clearly run amok
    for when they are all over
    I don’t give a flying f-
    igs can give diarrhea
    and I’ve had it of the mouth
    but when those times are over
    and my patience has flown south
    I delete those conversations
    those things that give me pain
    when I’ve been hurt by things texted
    that leave me feeling maimed
    I find the little button
    and I hold my finger high
    so when I’m quite finished with you
    I’m done. DElete. Bye bye!!

  8. julie e.

    THE TRUTH ABOUT PIE.

    If it’s there I will eat it.
    If I make it, it will call.
    If it’s in the fridge, I want it.
    So I made less.
    And it’s gone.
    And I wish
    I’d made more.
    BUT
    If it’s there I will eat it.
    If I make it, it will call.
    If it’s in the fridge, I want it.
    So I make less.
    Then it’s gone.
    BUT
    Christmas is coming.

  9. Bruce Niedt

    The Truth About Writer’s Block

    1. There is no way to stop it.
    1. It is permanent.
    2. It is incurable.
    3. It will terminate your writing career.
    4. It will crash your computer.
    5. It will steal your wife/husband/significant other.
    6. It is carnivorous.
    7. It is from another planet.
    8. It has been spotted with Bigfoot.
    9. It has been spotted holding hands with Justin Bieber.
    10. It lost 200 pounds in just three weeks.
    11. It won the Nobel Peace Prize.
    12. It causes cancer.
    13. It found a cure for cancer.
    14. It had George Clooney’s love child.
    15. It is part of a nutritious breakfast.
    16. Its mileage may vary.
    17. It comes with a money-back guarantee.
    18. Its operators are waiting to take your calls.
    19. Its check is in the mail.
    20. All of the above statements are false.

  10. Michelle Hed

    The Truth About Life

    Sometimes life throws you a curve ball
    and sometimes you hit a homerun;
    Many times you will cross the home plate
    and sometimes you will be benched;
    And when the season is over,
    you will have come full circle;
    Better for your strikes,
    wiser for bases reached,
    and ready to go home.

  11. DanielAri

    “The truth about my novel”

    Nobody’s going to read it, not even
    my wife. It’s not something I’d put her through.
    First, I wrote the whole thing this November,
    so it’s hasty-rough and raw-bitter, too,
    with zero chance of fetching revenue

    without heavy revision and review.
    Second, it’s autobiographical,
    too real to life, and also, I feel, skewed
    too close to my bias. It’s personal—
    and sock-drawer bound ‘til the twelfth of never.

    It’s been a healing to write the novel.
    That’s really why I undertook the task.
    Some adventures one should be fictional
    to undertake—when there’s corporal risk
    or something unpleasant you have to do.

    Now I have a 50,000-word mask.
    What’s the novel about? Please, don’t ask.

  12. sonja j

    The Truth about Fences

    They only hold in those who
    are willing to be held. Horses
    prove it all the time, unlatching
    gates in their idle moments. I once
    saw a cornered ewe leap a six foot
    buck fence because she didn’t feel
    like going where the border collie wanted
    her to go. She wasn’t even afraid.

    I remember taking my children to
    the state animal farm. Every animal
    had become too used to humans,
    from the begging raven to the trained
    bears. Best of all was the cow moose.
    We all gaped as she browsed in a swale
    behind the tissue paper of some hurricane
    fencing. The game warden explained
    it wasn’t so much that they kept her
    as that she didn’t mind staying.

  13. Rorybore

    The Truth About Bubble Baths

    steamy hot and scented
    with bubbles to your chin
    grab a good and smutty book
    and slide yourself on in

    watch candle light flickering
    on the cold tile walls
    lean your head way back
    ignore those “Mommy!” calls

    Let all the heat soak in
    let all the troubles melt away
    lose yourself in another world
    escape the pressures of today

    but, there’s knocking on the door
    and running down the halls
    someones’ telling on someone
    now who’s climbing the walls?

    As soon as mommy is busy
    it’s true, it never fails
    through book and bubble may beckon
    they’ll not drown out childrens’ wails.

    Truth.

  14. Walt Wojtanik

    THE TROUBLE WITH CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

    Blinking, blinking, blinking,
    these stinking bulblets have got me
    flipping. I keep ripping them from the string
    to find the one that is causing me duress.
    I press it back and still no luminance,
    if I had the change I’d toss them out
    but I will not be defeated. Two more
    sets and the task is completed.
    But this little fact give me fits,
    “If one goes out, the rest stay lit”.
    Yet I can attest, without a doubt,
    if one goes out, they ALL go out!

  15. Walt Wojtanik

    THE TRUTH ABOUT NAUGHTY OR NICE

    I’ve made a list and checked it twice,
    some were naughty and some were nice.
    Naughty ones could get a reprieve
    depends how strongly they believe.
    I think one more glance should suffice.

    Here in the land of snow and ice,
    the tally kept should be precise,
    I have no reason to deceive –
    I’ve made a list!

    The nice ones never pay the price;
    and the naughty never think twice.
    Excuse me if I sound naive –
    I am Santa Claus; I believe!
    so listen all to my advice:
    “I’ve made a list”!

  16. shellaysm

    “The Truth ‘Bout Questions”
    (Tanka)

    The truth ’bout questions
    is we never get enough
    answers in the end–
    just more questions. And then
    again, maybe that’s the point!

  17. zevd2001

    THE TRUTH ABOUT LITTLE CRITTERS
    The wilder, the smaller, the where they came from, how
    they reached you. Remember, before they were free
    nobody told them where to go, or where to be
    even at the pet shop, confined, albeit, they grow
    as they might have been if nobody had grabbed them up
    offering them for sale, homeless, bereft, fitting
    for people that need something that’s small sitting
    in a cage where they follow them, and interrupt

    them, at times, talking pouring affection and love,
    learning about their ways, how they never have changed
    since they were created, yes . . . being a little fauna, arranged
    in domesticated circumstances, shoved
    in a corner, a place to play with food and drink.
    If only they asked, if only they looked inside
    each individual, how clever, full of pride.

    I once knew two love birds that conspired to elope
    picked at the wires that held them in and flew
    as if the air space of the flat was theirs, to show
    us who was boss. The windows closed, so we roped
    them in, back from where they came out, made sure
    they’d remain to sing their happy tunes, the clear
    sultry tones of aviary beings, looking at us how we’re
    concerned for their welfare, their habitat a poor

    excuse for a someone that was born with a wing.
    Why them, why us, why hamsters, gerbils that roam
    in forests come to join us in our residences, a home . . .
    and then again, you never know it is a curious thing
    creatures created where we have never been
    that live a life apart from us, speak, curl
    and perch upon us, another dimension, a whirl
    on a carousel revealing stuff that is yet unseen

    Zev Davis

  18. posmic

    The Truth About Ice Skating

    Once you lose your nerve, it’s over.
    You might stay on your feet, thanks to
    the laces you tightened until your fingers
    could take no more. But you won’t enjoy it,
    not when you’re thinking so much about every
    wobble, whether your legs will slide out from
    under you, like Bambi’s, and when every chunk
    in the ice could be the one that brings you down,
    and the only question is whether you will fall
    forward or back, and if forward, which part
    of your face will hit first, and whether
    anything—glasses, teeth, skin—will
    be broken, and also whether
    anyone will skate over
    your hands,

    splayed in front of you as if in
    supplication or defeat. It is a
    shame, not to be in love
    anymore, when the
    moon is out, cold
    and close as
    the ice.

  19. taylor graham

    THE TRUTH ABOUT AN OLD DOG

    He knows every inch of this path
    that cuts down from oak-hill to the verge
    of creek. In his head, a lifetime of scent-trails
    woven like spider silk, a web so complex

    it maps his world as he unravels it. But today,
    his quarry turned left and he goes straight
    ahead, as if lost in reminiscence of trails past.
    Forgetfulness? He pauses, sniffs, circles,

    and squats, giving back to nature
    what is nature’s; enriching next spring’s
    tenacious, frenzied growth. Now he
    tests the wind. Scent, an old dog’s elixir.

    Echoes, dreams. He resumes his trail,
    as I resume the tale I’ll tell in his training-log.
    It’s true as it may be false, twisted
    as words following in an old dog’s wake.

  20. Sara McNulty

    Poetic Asides November Challenge – Day 24
    The truth about _________

    The Truth About Lies

    White lies blanket
    harmful truths, as snow
    covers grimy grounds.
    Pathological liars lie purely
    by compulsion. Their masked
    truths may harm, disarm,
    or charm a recipient. Deliberate
    falsities spoken to hide
    bad behavior do not stem
    tide of tears when uncovered.
    They reveal hidden fears
    or doubts that have been
    knotting up in victim’s gut.
    Now distraught and feeling
    the fool, perhaps they have
    been taught a golden rule,
    trust your gut; it speaks truth.

  21. Mike Bayles

    The Truth about the Weather Today

    The gray sky is gray,
    and it isn’t waiting
    for winter or snow,
    or for any kind of weather, it doesn’t know.
    The gray sky doesn’t hide Heaven,
    just as the ground below me
    doesn’t hide Hell,
    although I stand somewhere in between.
    The gray sky doesn’t know
    tomorrow, or what tomorrow might bring,
    and it doesn’t know time
    while it lingers in front of my eyes.
    I could say the cloudy sky
    longs for another day,
    but that’s just a metaphor
    that I use to describe
    the times when I am alone
    on a cloudy day.

  22. Jane Shlensky

    The Truth about Sunrise and Sunset

    Each part of day has attributes,
    its slant of light when sunbeams
    play across a lawn or on a lake,
    when nothing else can slake
    our thirst for watching,
    no substitute for dusk or noon
    though, if you ask me,
    sunrise comes too soon,
    winking pink and purple
    orange and gold-splintered
    cheerful light lasting a minute
    then it’s gone. No reasoning
    left in it to waylay day.

    I wait for sunset, for drama
    and pluck, when my eyes blur,
    day’s knuckles battering my mind,
    then I want light with fight,
    the sky a scene intense
    with thunder gray streaks
    shot through with blood
    and wine, gold and flame,
    the purple pomp of conflict,
    a battle that darkness wins
    in slow degrees, a rose
    like heart-break tinged
    with grace. Day stays
    until the king retreats
    and then it backs away,
    naps, restores itself
    to face another day.

    Perhaps age draws me
    to my own mythology,
    to my own close, to see
    the futile resistance
    to failing light. Perhaps
    I need another hour of sleep
    at dawn, nocturnal as I am.
    Perhaps desire to rise
    for new-lit skies has been
    replaced, as I embrace
    the beauty of fading
    from vividness into night
    and sip my daily wine of grace.

  23. Jacqueline Hallenbeck

    The Truth About Santa

    It doesn’t matter if you’re nice or naughty,
    Santa is NOT discriminatory.
    You’ll find your present underneath the tree
    come Christmas morning, just wait and see.
    Whether you’re poor or a CEO,
    Santa will always go HO! HO! HO!
    At sea, on land or in midair,
    Santa will find you anywhere.
    So don’t you fret, child, please get a grip.
    Climb on to bed and just go to sleep.

  24. Sally Jadlow

    The Truth About Seventy

    I’ve decided seventy is the new forty;
    that it’s just a number.

    That at seventy I’m that much closer to heaven
    than ten years ago.

    That at seventy, a life well-lived
    is a place to pause along the climb for a moment
    to see how far I’ve come before continuing
    the rest of the journey.

    That seventy is an opportunity
    to call to those behind and say,
    “Come on up! The view is great from here.”

    Can you guess? Today I’m 70!

  25. RASlater

    The Truth About Winter

    Winter is harsh and unyielding
    With its cold snaps and January thaw
    Wind howling at the eaves
    Snow flying, covering everything
    Ice encasing freezes lasting for weeks
    Yet in its own way
    It brings a breath of fresh air to life
    Resting and renewing the spirit within
    Preparing for the spring growth
    Storing up energy for the green rush
    So that the cycle can persist

  26. Eleanore D. Trupkiewicz

    The Truth About Pain

    Here’s the thing:
    it’s all relative,
    especially that
    feeling, or that
    tendency, what-
    ever you want
    to call it, toward
    pain—it isn’t so
    much an ability
    to answer the
    question, “Does
    it hurt?” as it is
    the realization
    that whatever
    might be painful
    now is actually
    less painful than,
    more painful than,
    or equally painful
    as something else
    that you’ve already
    experienced at
    some previous
    point in your life.

  27. Domino

    The Truth About Black Friday

    I have a theory
    that all of those folks
    who participate (willingly)
    in the Black Friday
    festivities
    are actually quite aware
    of what may or may not happen
    regardless of the wide-eyed
    expressions of horror
    and dismay.

    I believe they know
    exactly
    what they are getting into,
    much like those who choose
    to run with the bulls
    at Pamplona,
    and those who dive off cliffs
    and race fast cars,
    they know they might be
    trampled,
    bloodied,
    bruised,
    or may even be
    arrested.

    It’s all part of the sport.

    Diana Terrill Clark

  28. Domino

    The Truth About TV

    Yes, if you have a cable
    or Dish package
    (or even basic cable, to be honest),
    there is always something
    for everyone
    at any time of the day or night.
    TV has a huge
    variety
    of network and cable shows
    and one could spend
    twenty-four hours a day,
    seven days a week,
    finding something
    they enjoy at least a little.

    But the truth is,
    it all depends on
    who holds the remote.

  29. Miss R.

    The Truth About Truth

    No qualifiers needed:
    Objective,
    Subjective,
    Absolute,
    What’s the point?
    If it’s true, it’s true
    For me and you.
    My truth,
    Your truth,
    Their truth,
    What does it even mean?
    If it’s true, it’s true
    And there’s nothing
    You can do about it.
    It’s universal;
    You can’t
    Escape it,
    Reshape it,
    Avoid it . . .
    Just accept it.
    We all have to face it,
    And that’s the truth.

  30. bluerabbit47

    The Truth About Art

    It is a field
    without a road
    a forest
    without a path
    the vastness
    of a rolling
    sea. Though
    many have gone
    this way before,
    none has passed
    this particular
    way. Though
    many can help
    with packing
    and advice
    none can come
    along all
    the way.
    It is a journey
    without an
    end, a quest
    for a cup
    that can never
    be held
    in a hand.

  31. Marianv

    The Truth About Poetry

    Some may say that writing poetry
    is but a stepping stone
    A bit like a first grade primer that
    Once mastered will lead us right
    Along to greater, classic works.
    Master the poetic line and then
    It’s off to short stories, memoirs
    Novels –all kinds of works that pay.

    Those of us who believe that words
    Written down and arranged to evoke
    Wonder and all kinds of passion contain
    Wisdom and beauty for their own sake.
    Even a mere line or two might satisfy
    some restless dream of what may lie
    On the road ahead, or what has passed us by.

  32. Nevada Benton

    Day 24
    The truth about us

    Living in another country
    trying to figure out the word for peach
    he swung from the dorm stairwells
    grunting like an ape
    trying to change the tense
    someone else let him in
    looking over my shoulder
    he always had the answer
    ducking the crackling fireworks, afraid
    I kissed someone else
    the pinch in my gripped shoulder told me
    it didn’t work
    the truth about us
    our panicked parakeet with freshly clipped wings

  33. Connie Peters

    The Truth about Putting up a Christmas Tree

    I often wonder why I drag out
    boxes of decorations
    from year to year,
    knowing that in a few weeks
    I’ll be dragging them back.

    But the truth is, I enjoy it.
    With two childlike adults
    in the home, the excitement
    and anticipation of Christmas
    stays fresh from year to year.

    And there’s the ornaments
    from when our kids were small,
    some monstrosities like the
    yarn entangled pinecone
    looking like a porcupine
    trying to escape its bonds.

    And then there’s our client’s
    infamous black Santa,
    a fence-like construction
    made of tongue depressors.

    And now, they hang among
    ones from various places
    from vacations we can take
    since our own kids our grown.

    Some day if our nest truly empties,
    I may not put up the Christmas tree,
    but I’ll make myself a cup of tea,
    take out the boxes of ornaments,
    gaze at each one and remember.

  34. rustydude

    November 24, 2012 – 2

    Strange funk today:
    Today is my birthday, reminiscing childhood quite a bit.
    Plus four days of cold medication does strange things to my brain.

    Truth about Bear

    He sits on the shelf
    Totally stealth
    Watching all without care

    Stitches for an eye
    The other gone shy
    Shed of most his hair

    A little boy’s fun
    All over they’d run
    Racing up/down each stair

    (52) Years have past
    We’re not quite as fast
    And both wish for more hair

    The truth be told
    I was one year old
    The day I got that bear

  35. Glory

    The Truth About Love
    (Day 24)

    He was a kind man

    thinking always of others,
    loved his children
    especially Janine,
    his only daughter.

    Sorry to say, Janine
    did not give back
    what she had in abundance,
    no she did not give back

    instead she took, and took,
    until left with nothing,
    she took that too,
    and broke his heart.

  36. Ber

    The Truth about Love

    Love clings to us
    we cling to it
    we can’t let go
    we can keep hold

    Treasure the moments
    with the ones
    who you love
    Treasure your sand in
    your hour glass
    before its gone

    Words that come
    words that go
    words that slip from lips
    words that his the hearts arrow tips

    Butterflies flutter
    inside when you see
    the one who is meant for you
    your future maybe?

    L-look
    o-on
    v-virtual
    e-emotions

    Live those feeling
    learn from also
    feel them within you
    let them guide you

  37. DAHutchison

    The Truth About Rock and Roll

    He told me my music, all sounded the same,
    “Guitars and four – four rhythm”, I said.
    Unhappy to have all my music defamed,
    I searched my collection from Wilco to Led,

    It’s not like it’s rap, all that pounding and bass,
    Degrading of women and cap busting tales.
    It’s not like it’s country—about some hard case,
    Who lost his best girl cuz his dogs got no tail.

    So I searched his albums and here’s what I found,
    Some Enya, some Outkast and classical too,
    Some crooners, some criers some white and some brown,
    Some ragtime and jazz, and some rhythm and blues,

    It was all four – four rhythm, but not all guitars,
    Pianos and flutes, but I think they’re all fools,
    His songs were more varied, but fell short by far,
    Cuz crap comes in flavors and rock n’ roll rules.

  38. JWLaviguer

    The Truth About Black Friday

    Have to work on turkey day
    what is this world coming to
    when Walmart ruins my holiday
    making me leave my family for a few hours

    We sit together holding hands
    giving thanks for this bounty
    we lost two more yesterday
    from a roadside bomb

    I can’t believe this traffic
    this is the worst way to spend Thanksgiving
    we make so many sacrifices
    to be with loved ones

    A mortar hit on the way to chow
    and they have to feed him through a tube
    he’ll never walk again
    at least he’ll be going home

    I’m so stuffed
    I ate too much pie
    I don’t want to clean the kitchen
    I’m trying to drink beer and watch football

    Sirens blaring, bullets flying
    giving thanks for my training
    I just want to get home in one piece
    enjoy a beer and watch some football.

    Please take a moment this holiday season and really think about who is making the larger sacrifice.

  39. Misky

    THE TRUTH ABOUT: THE AFTERMATH

    She walked through all those citric years,
    those chromed vestiges of vinegar tears –
    tantalised and taunted by his pithy jeers.

    And now she stands straight with trees,
    greens that she’s never seen before, forests
    hiding Styx from view. She begs to breathe,

    a need for astringent scents to clean
    her head, her soul, swimming thick
    in pined woods a while. But too many times

    she’s drowned in his clouds, so that now,
    alone, perplexed; she is utterly lost in green,
    now that those soured clouds are gone.

  40. rustydude

    November 24, 2012

    The Truth About Sadie

    Once knew a lady
    Her name was Sadie
    She drove a pink Cadillac

    A truth be told
    She never grew old
    Her years fully lost track

    She cruised the streets
    Handing out treats
    Asking for nothing back

    When she was done
    Always great fun
    Finding her purse all black

    Who found the prize
    Took to the skies
    Winging her pink Cadillac

    You traveled to Rome
    Flew over Gnome
    Then she would fly you back

  41. RJ Clarken

    The Truth About Thesauri

    Thesauri (or thesauruses?)
    can find a synonym. It is
    compendium, collection, group.
    It gets you words in one fell swoop.

    Lexicon, a dictionary…
    Wait – there’s more, so don’t you worry.
    A glossary. Now got the scoop?
    It gets you words in one fell swoop.

    Reference or equivalent terms.
    Just look it up. This book confirms
    vocabulary. Language soup.
    It gets you words in one fell swoop.

    Articulation, eloquence,
    phraseology – it does dispense
    the words, yes, words. A liripoop!*
    It gets you words in one fell swoop.

    ###

    * Note: Liripoop means: Acuteness; smartness; a smart trick or stratagem. It can also mean a scarf worn by learned men – and it can also mean a stupid person.

  42. Andrew Kreider

    The truth about

    …telling the truth is that we rarely do,
    sitting with our hands entwined, pledging love
    or, later, when we have stopped pretending
    we are something we can’t be, swearing hate.
    And if we are poets, we compose words

    to justify ourselves, churning them out
    like some diarrheic conveyor belt,
    only to have them bashed over the head
    by a baleful inner critic, who stands
    at the warehouse door to protect the truth.

  43. Nancy Posey

    We’re hoping our internet provider is open today so we can get back on line officially. In the meantime, we’ve found a neighbor’s wireless connection. I just can’t write poetry on my cellphone. Robert, that I love yours today.

    The Truth about Football

    Something you need to know: In Alabama,
    we are serious about our college football.
    On the Saturday after the fourth Thursday,
    even family ties diminish. The harmony
    seated around the common table sharing
    turkey and dressing and sweet potato pie
    goes on hiatus when one side arrives
    wearing crimson and hounds’ tooth
    and the other donning orange and blue.
    Though tigers, eagles and elephants
    may not be common predators or prey,
    they cannot coexist in any small corner
    of this state. We know the coaches’
    birthdays; when they pass, we mark
    their graves as faithfully as Mama’s.
    When they’re winning we love them.
    When they’re losing, we love them but—
    just like family. We reserve the right
    to say what we want to about them,
    but outsiders and sportscaster better
    bite their tongues. Fans, meeting
    far from home, sharing team colors,
    are not strangers but kin, hugging
    on game days, high-fiving victories.
    Fight songs and chants—rammer
    jammer yellow hammer—resonate
    like prayers at Thanksgiving table.

    1. Andrew Kreider

      Oh, Nancy. I love this. Truly a poem for the insider – if you have to ask, you will never understand! But to call it family, yes – maybe a non-believer can at least understand your analogy. And to end with the fight songs ascending like prayers at Thanksgiving…. Perfect. I’m writing this watching my own brand of Football (soccer), doing all my supporter’s rituals, but also already getting ready for Notre Dame to win tonight!

  44. JanetRuth

    The Truth about Women

    We were supposed to be watching
    Shop around the Corner
    But suddenly I saw her
    In my peripheral view
    As she watched the movie
    Twixt chatter and knitting
    Suddenly it hit me
    She is growing up too

    For one wink a girl
    Then forever a woman
    I study her profile
    Her nose, her chin
    Somewhere between breakfast
    And warm hugs at bedtime
    Suddenly I wonder
    When did it begin?

    She turns to look at me
    The woman inside her
    Is restless and eagerly
    Waiting to bloom
    She does not know
    Of the urge rushing through me
    To hold back the moments
    The hours consume

    Inside every girl
    Is the bud of a woman
    Time will unfold
    Its intent willingly
    Inside every woman
    In spite of the ages
    Is part of the girl
    That she used to be

    1. Linda Rhinehart Neas

      Oh, Janet! This is just spot on! As the mother of 4 daughters and 4 granddaughters, I have been the speaker of this poem often! I love the lines,”Somewhere between breakfast/And warm hugs at bedtime” The change does seem to be that quick!

      Thanks for your comment…I am enjoying reading your poems, also.

  45. Linda Rhinehart Neas

    The Truth About Language

    Words are nothing more than letters
    strung together to create a certain sound
    that represents something –
    like clothes on the line, words strung together
    form a sentence if the pattern is right –
    knowing when to mix the solids with the prints,
    the blacks with the whites,
    the colors that accent, rather than detract –
    can be tricky business, for sure!

    Sentences when piled high on a sheet
    become paragraphs that form the foundations
    for things like stories, poems, songs, books!
    But like foundations, make them weak with sandy words
    that crumble when you speak and they will not hold –
    but, build with sentences strong as Portland cement
    or those amazing granite cubes that hold up most
    of New England, then you’ll go places with your writing.

    The truth is all language is a way to paint pictures
    with words so that we can share the beauty, the pain
    the questions, the discoveries, the lies, the truth, the simple
    day-to-day experiences of our lives with another.
    Language is the canvas – words the paint – its up to us
    to create a masterpiece…
    or a mess.

  46. RJ Clarken

    The Truth about Insomniacs

    Sleep, some say is overrated.
    I don’t know. I’m never sated:
    I don’t sleep well, don’t get enough.
    But lack of sleep sure makes me gruff.

    To sleep, perchance to dream? Yeah, right.
    No matter what I do each night
    like snuggly blankets, comfy stuff…
    this lack of sleep sure makes me gruff.

    I know insomniacs create
    some brilliant works while up too late.
    But me? No diamonds in the rough.
    This lack of sleep sure makes me gruff.

    My evening alphabet lacks Z(zzzzzz.)
    I am the princess with no pea.
    Those forty winks just mean rebuff.
    This lack of sleep sure makes me gruff.

    ###

  47. RJ Clarken

    The Truth about Suspending Disbelief

    In 1817, the term
    was coined by Coleridge, ‘midst sturm
    und drang, regarding what one reads.
    Believe in something: it succeeds.

    Even Shakespeare (it’s no myth)
    used this ploy with Henry the Fifth.
    The Prologue’s wording plants the seeds.
    Believe in something: it succeeds.

    In modern culture, TV shows
    and other media impose
    preposterous tales, thoughts and deeds.
    Believe in something: it succeeds.

    If you write with self-assurance,
    even half-truths have endurance.
    On this point, expectation feeds:
    Believe in something: it succeeds.

    ###

  48. barbara_y

    Woke up with this mad idea.

    The Truth About Starflight

    We had a roof over our head
    to be thankful of. And water, so the toilet flushed.
    And mattresses for everybody, but no lights. You’re
    thinking that’s a long way
    from starflight, and that’s the truth. You can’t
    get to the stars with a couple nights’ talk
    over box wine boosted from the restaurant
    and wild reefer picked green and dried on the vent
    at the laundromat. (not, whatever the tabloids say,
    Jimson Weed.) No. It was hard, breaking
    Earth’s orbit with nothing but our hands.

    Months of picking cigarette butts from the gutters
    near intersections and at the borders
    of no-smoking zones, teasing the papers off,
    building long sheets out of them, glued
    together with the tar soaked out of filter tips. And then
    with spindles made from dried fried chicken bones
    we turned the filters to core for the rope. From
    picking to spinning it was a foul job. Our fingers

    turned brown and we were all sores and sick
    to vomiting. But we’d wash our hands and faces
    under the cold tap and start back up. When
    we had rolls of rope coiled to the ceiling of every
    room, and everyone had built up strength enough
    to feed rope to Cowboy spinning the lasso, we signed
    for our You Haul, tied it to the end, and started
    building the loop, long and slow and gradually bigger.

    So many things could have happened: Rain. Helicopters,
    heavy with victims from a pile-up. Crows. Low orbit
    satellites might have sliced our filter tip rope down, but
    no. We climbed out on the roof and took sight, latched
    onto a star fleck, and put a dozen light years on that truck
    without the axle spinning more than the first feet. The universe
    we skimmed with the sway of a cigarette rope
    is a heap of strange and wonderful, sweet and fell as
    the scent of our hands. Such a load of things
    we saw and held. Someday we’ll pick still more paper,
    and fill a book with what’s between the stars.

    1. sonja j

      This is your Kubla Khan! How very, very wonderful! I am going to keep fighting with the pisting gremlins until this gets through, because I really want to tell you how fantastic it is! (currently, gremlins 6, Sonja – 0, but I will persist…)

  49. uneven steven

    Morning all – didn’t intentionally copy Mr. Brewer’s title- and not in any way a response etc to his fine poem:-)

    The truth about poetry

    While watching a 1979 horror flick,
    it occurred to me
    it might be important
    to actually write poetry
    that means something
    and not just pretty words
    with a pleasing sound
    clamoring
    like a restless
    zombie
    horde
    in a small town
    square –
    mundane truisms
    massing
    as absurd and as arrogant
    as the inevitable
    hands of a clock
    making you uneasy
    in an infinite
    universe.
    The trick is to make
    the truth reveal itself
    to the reader
    as if they were inventing it
    for themselves –
    for example,
    something something
    zombie horde attacking,
    something something,
    you fill in the blank here
    and by zombies, I mean words,
    by horde, I mean a poem,
    and by you, I mean
    your heart, your brains
    and the delicate shiver of pleasure
    as my minions slurp up
    and down
    your
    spinal cord

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