Editors Blog

2013 April PAD Challenge: Day 30

Today is the final day. We made it! Tomorrow, we’ll revert back to our Wednesday Poetry Prompts, though I won’t be surprised if quite a few poets take a breather. I’m also hoping to post the wrap-up post tomorrow. So watch for it.

For today’s prompt, which is a Two-for-Tuesday prompt, pick one (or both):

  • Write a finished poem.
  • Write a never finished poem.

Here’s my attempt:


she closes it
sets in on the window still
& looks outside

the sun’s brightness
frightens her
away from the door

& toward another


Workshop Your Poetry!

Writing poetry is exciting, but the hard work of poeming is working through the revision process. The best way to work through this process is to workshop the poems with other poets, and that can be done with the Writer’s Digest 6-week course, Advanced Poetry Writing.


Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer


Quick note on commenting: Please always save a copy on your computer. There have been moments in the past in which comments have disappeared, and I don’t want anyone to lose their work. Heck, I’ve lost some of my work here in the past, and it’s not a great feeling. That said, commenting here is a lot of fun, especially in April. If you’re completely new to the site, you’ll be asked to register (don’t worry, it’s free), and your comments might not appear initially until I manually accept them. However, after that initial phase, your comments should appear without my help.

Want some more poeming fun? Check out these previous Poetic Asides posts:

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275 thoughts on “2013 April PAD Challenge: Day 30

  1. PKP

    At the line finished
    Pounding in ever-more pulse
    The race continues



  2. tunesmiff

    When it comes to loving me,
    Her every note’s in the right key,
    And our hearts beat together
    In perfect time.
    Sometimes we share the melody,
    But we’re always together, in harmony,
    And we both know
    Each other’s lines…
    So the song plays on,
    The song plays on,
    Our whole lives long;
    The song plays on.

  3. omavi


    we never said goodbye
    no hug or kiss
    no wave of hands
    no parting quip
    only sign of our parting
    was tears silently shed as time flowed
    never knowing the reason
    why this love refused to work
    never have the completion
    that so many blinded soul seeks
    just left with a nagging voice
    always dwelling beyond hearing

    “why did it come to this?”

  4. Glory


    Cold bones
    chilled to the marrow
    and silence.
    Ears aching for sound
    to penetrate
    where only blackness rules.
    And the pungent smell
    of rancid earth
    half remembered
    in endless darkness.
    An eternity of nothingness
    awaits me, here…

    in this grave.

  5. alana sherman

    More than 30 poems in 30 days!! A chance to look at work and polish rough drafts, take a challenge. What a pleasure to read everyone’s work and get inspiration from you all.This has been anj exciting month. April not cruel at all because of PAD. Thanks especially to Robert.

    1. Finished Poem

    What’s Left After The Wine Is Swallowed

    I miss my father—
    a 200 pound encumbrance.
    When he was alive we couldn’t
    arrive at any understanding.
    My mother could be an albatoss—
    “Every person needs a little polish,”
    she used to say. Still I look for her everyday.
    And, “Oh how like a serpent’s tooth…”
    All those absent cousins, aunts, uncles
    grandparents making demands on my time.
    Now when they are gone for good
    the whole world is like a cupboard
    in which I can’t find a decent snack.

    2. A ditty


    Some people enjoy going fast
    I’m someone who likes slow
    When I walk I look around
    and dawdle as I go.

    While I run or walk or swim
    I never want to race.
    It doesn’t bother me at all
    I’m cheerful with my pace.

    Some friends are speedy rabbits
    I’m an unhurried snail
    You might think I’ve lost my chance
    But I never fail.

    Everyone may pass me by—
    my joy does not diminish
    I do not care if others win
    I’m happy when I finish.

    3. Unfinished

    Philosophy: Everything That Ends, Doesn’t

    You think you’re done for—finished
    can’t write one more line
    can’t plant one more seed
    can’t take one more step
    and so much remains
    the unfinished undoes you

    so you go to sleep
    and in the morning it starts
    all over again


  6. happys

    Thank you Robert for the great opportunity and unforgettable experience!
    Thanks to new friends for wonderful comments and kind encouragement!
    All the best : )!

    ~A Never Finished Venture~

    Life is beautiful
    Make it meaningful

    Stay happy
    Stay healthy

    Be pretty
    Be funny

    Keep smiling
    Keep learning

    Life is an adventure
    A never finished venture

  7. THEGingerSass

    Education lap

    I actually wrote
    “Changing and saving lives
    is what motivates me
    to be the best educator that I can be”
    on my final teaching philosophy
    because I believe it to be true.
    But nobody ever talks about
    how your biggest motivation
    to pursue the most worthwhile of dreams
    disappears into the 3am sky
    when you’ve been writing
    professional development plans,
    and unit plans
    for non-existent students
    for hours upon end
    and the finish line
    is within your sight
    if you can just find some way
    to stop time
    so you can battle the procrastination
    standing between you
    and a triumphant victory.
    The race has only just begun.

  8. taylor graham


    The playwright was weighing
    possibilities. Last night he dreamed
    of the Kubla-Dome, monolithic
    granite palace – had it
    a damsel with a dulcimer? No,
    for the mayor of Kubla had decreed
    the dome be not chameleon-
    color-shifting, but asphalt-black
    with a double yellow center-
    line to attract tourists.
    Mercy, thought the playwright,
    I know why Coleridge never
    could remember the rest
    of his dream. His unfinished poem.

  9. Iain Douglas Kemp

    A huge thanks to RLB as ever, my sixth April PAD here has been great fun. Thank you so much to ALL the poets for their part in this extravaganza. A special thanks to those who both read & commented on my poems. I apologise, as I must always do, for not commenting much – my schedule is hectic and with the time difference I only have a short time to read before bedtime each day.

    I will be back (along with my Brooklyn pal) on Wednesdays, as my musical committments are now greatly reduced and I have much more of my limited time for poetry.

    Best to all – WELL DONE!!


  10. PuffofSmokePoems

    The Moon’s Report

    She writes:
    You asked about humans.They are easy to describe, since I see everything in my light—with some small help from the Sun. I’ve watched and I know. I can tell You all about humans. As You hoped, they are very wise.

    But, really, how could they not be filled with wisdom? You handed them understanding on a silver moonlit platter. Honestly, not that it’s my place to criticize, but their world is a little too obvious. Look at the hints You gave—on their round home, with their round heads and round babies, they couldn’t possibly miss the point. Then, all those wheels and spirals everywhere—seashells, seasons, nests, rings buried in tree trunks. And besides that, all the going and returning—tides, of course, but flowers, blizzards, leaves…oh, the list goes on and on.

    How lovely it is for them, how clear. My advice: It would have been more interesting to give them a challenge, or at least a tiny puzzle. A static world, or one where all movement was linear. It would have given them something to figure out, instead of surrounding them with answers.

    Look how they dance, how they gather together for births and weddings and deaths, living their circled lives on their round planet, calm and joyful, with so much evidence to show them the difference between finished and unfinished.

  11. drwasy


    Water beckons blue
    never-ending—hills soften
    into sky endless

    Thanks for another great year of poeming in April. A real challenge for me this year, as I have had some challenges in my family. But getting the words down every day, even those words I wanted to throw into a trash bucket, served as a sort of prayer, an anchor. As did reading the fine poems written by all. Peace…

  12. PowerUnit

    Dang, I never finished this competetion
    On time

    But, I have a good excuse
    I think

    I began a new career yesterday
    New job

    Standing in front of twenty seven young people
    to teach

    Standing up and speaking to people
    I shook

    The lyrical, mystical words
    They hid

  13. finallyhereiam

    A Never Finished Poem

    Every morn you pick a line,
    And leave a page to read,
    For every day, Life holds, a new possibility,
    A story or song,
    That goes on so long,
    Until you your enthusiasm last
    It is called Life’s evergreen side,
    Hope for some, and keeps you going,
    From day to day, and yet another morn,
    When you pick a line, to leave a page

  14. Alphabet Architect

    Had a busy day, so I wrote this in a rush. For some reason I felt the need to finish…


    You might wonder, with so much to do,
    Why I take time for the daily Sudoku.
    Perhaps you’re thinking it improves math skills
    Makes me sharp, multiplies brain cells;
    Or maybe you consider it puzzle therapy,
    A way to unwind- un-grump my grumpy.
    But here I shall most humbly confess
    The real motivation is much, much less.
    I do Sudoku simply so I can say,
    “Look what I did; I finished something today!”

  15. nessajay

    no sad goodbyes

    I like it when the door slams
    and I crawl out the window
    it’s 3 a.m.
    no godly person should set foot on the streets
    but i know kung fu
    and i have a fire in me
    that will get me to the other side

  16. Alpha1

    Unfinished Business

    Your late-night antics
    we used to share
    for sure
    but since you not here
    I don’t care
    don’t even know who
    why what when or
    where anymore
    so here
    take back your love

    1. Alpha1


  17. vsbryant1

    Another Moment Finished

    This road has been long, but our journey has never been this strong
    Every step made together, every inch changed me
    You held my hand and guided my pen
    You helped me stand, you helped me win
    Though this journey was sometimes hard, with you I shared many scars
    You wrapped you magic around me, when I needed you the most
    Whispering encouragement in my ear, feeding me with dedication never leaving you post
    I never know where you go when your gone, but love when you return
    You are my muse, my lover, my friend; it has always been you that makes my heart burn
    You and I; me and you; perfect harmony, perfection simple and true
    And now this affair most once again come to an end, our time is over the passion is spent
    With that I bid you goodbye until next time we lock eye
    I will be waiting patiently for April 1st 2014; I’ll be the one in blue, with the silver fountain pen.

  18. Marie Elena

    An April Moon

    The final April moon will soon take leave.
    Contentedly, he navigates the sky.
    He knows not that his passing makes us grieve,
    Nor hears the tone of our collective sigh.

    For thirty eves, the moon has cast his spell
    Releasing inspiration from his core
    Yet, now has come the time to say farewell,
    As April’s moon will strum our hearts no more.

    No gathering beneath his fetching smile,
    Nor once-upon-a-timing ‘neath his glow.
    Though next year, he will once again beguile;
    Inspiring prose and verse to daily flow.

    Our melancholy hearts will melt away
    For there will be a new moon come what May.

    (For all of you … as written on April 30, 2010)

    1. PressOn

      The last line caught me flat-footed! Wonderful! I was lulled along, then zap! As I commented about another piece a few days ago, this sort of thing reminds me of a phrase used to describe a pitcher who mainly relies on slow stuff, but every now and then throws a harder pitch: “sneaky fast.”

  19. Marie Elena

    Wonderful poets, familiar and new:

    I have not participated/read/commented as much as I’d like. But oh, how I want you ALL to know how much I admire your efforts here. It takes a certain bravery to put our words out there, doesn’t it?

    If any of you are looking for more outlets for poetry and poetic support, you are more than welcome to participate in Walt Wojtanik’s and my Poetic Bloomings at poeticbloomings.com. Here is a link to our “Welcome,” which will tell you what we’re all about: http://poeticbloomings.com/welcome-to-poetic-bloomings/.

    Another April PAD in the books. AMAZING, eh?


  20. shethra77

    Write a finished poem.
    Write a never finished poem.


    All things come to this—the point in the plane
    far off the horizon
    the note is the same– vibration
    fails and sound diminishes in
    fifths and thirds
    and words that should be there spoken
    by the people who should be there.
    Where are the companions of our youth?
    Where are the dear ancestors?
    Gone, as we shall be.
    Come sing a song of Ragnarok
    a pocketful of
    ashes, ashes
    we fall
    ashes, ashes
    drop into the dust.
    Stardust and moonshine.
    For a little while our sparks light the universe.
    Time is short to glow.


    That first word ever spoken in the vastness and the deep,
    when silence first was broken and the need was made for sleep,
    reverberates, resounds, has never died nor gone away–
    those bits of us aligned with this are what is meant to stay.

  21. LCaramanna

    I NEVER leave

    I NEVER leave the concert
    until the roadies have packed up
    all the equipment
    a security guard approaches
    says, “Hey, Lady, you can’t be in here”
    escorts me to the exit.

    I NEVER leave the theater
    until the orchestra in the pit
    has played the final note
    an usher taps me on the shoulder
    says, “Excuse me, Ma’am, but the
    theater is now closed”
    indicates the door.

    I NEVER leave the movies
    until every last credit
    has rolled off the screen,
    the music has silenced
    the lights have come on
    the attendant sweeping up
    the spilled popcorn
    says, “Sorry, you have to leave before the next show”
    points the way out.

    I NEVER leave
    I NEVER want the fantasy to end.

    Lorraine Caramanna

    1. LCaramanna

      Thank you, Robert, for hosting the party. Thank you, poets, for all the wonderful poems. Thank you for reading my poetic attempt. I am going to be sorry in the morning I stayed up so late poeming – but I NEVER want to leave!!!

    2. PressOn

      I understand. Wish everybody did, or at least respected those who do. One of my pet peeves is parents who leave student concerts after their kids have performed, not staying to watch the other kids.

  22. burrhead

    pen a poem a day
    not finished perfect poems
    just poetry
    just a flow of words
    no polish or perfect rhythm
    unless that’s how they come out naturally
    thanks to Robert Lee Brewer
    I have thirty poems to finish
    which is a lot more than none
    thanks to the poets that submitted
    their lines
    I got inspired
    to go over my thirty and see
    if I can improve
    on my spur of the moment words
    maybe turn one or two into poetry

  23. De Jackson


    It’s done
    and she’s won
    nothing but a restless heart
    and breathless gills that still
    don’t quite fit. That’s it. Straw
    and camel and stepped-on
    crack. Her back aches and it
    takes all she has just to smile.
    She still does; all the while,
    she’s exhausted, a stranger
    to her own skin. She squelches
    her heart and washes her hands,
    comes clean.



  24. P.A. Beyer

    Thank you Robert for another great April!

    The Blank Page

    some folks need closure –
    a beginning, middle and end
    others appreciate the journey
    they make it to the top
    head down and climb back up again
    but I, I crave the blank page
    a space to explore thoughts
    to feel, truly feel humanity’s best and worst qualities
    or to evolve beyond any known reality
    a realm of potential in a loose leaf
    where will this journey take me – that’s uncertain
    but it all begins at the tip of my pen…

  25. Sara McNulty


    He knows he will never see
    his love again. She, who made
    him laugh, touched his tightly
    clutched core of correctness,
    urged him to be reckless
    as a child who never thinks
    harm will befall him. They entered
    rooms, their desire burning
    bright, no need for artificial light.
    Wallpaper peeled from slick sweat
    of sex. The scent of her perfume
    still permeates his head. But she
    is gone forever, her life severed
    by a bomb blasting hatred.

    No Resolution

    Some quarrels never end,
    no one bends.
    In midair
    words hang like heavy odors
    until next battle is fought.

    Poetic Asides
    April Challenge – Day 30

    Robert, thanks so much for this wonderful challenge. Hope to read everyone’s work in the coming weeks.

  26. Angie5804


    My daddy always said
    All good things must come to an end.
    Then he would get up, stretch,
    And proceed to turn out the lights.
    So I keep this in mind
    As I plan to turn the lights out,
    And go into another room.

  27. taylor graham


    walked right in. What a dump, she said. Papers
    all over the place. This, I suppose, was going
    to be a poem. She balled it in her fist and lobbed
    a shot at the wastebasket. Where are the trees
    of your childhood? Yours, on loan. Gone forever.
    Scratch paper. Such things aren’t for keeping,
    no more than dreams of sailing to Greece.
    Or even San Francisco. Too much baggage. Why
    don’t you just take a walk – no, put that pencil
    down! Nothing in your pocket. Turn over a rock,
    look underneath. Whoosh of wind. What
    tribe of tree whispers to you its unrecordable
    history, its self out of metaphor, its name?
    Before you’re back, I’ll have these heaps of paper
    sacked for recycling. The whole place humming
    like an empty hive. Pure air, pure possibility.
    Not a written word.

  28. BDP

    I first posted my day’s poem in the wrong spot, namely, in a thread thanking PressOn for his comments, his support and his poems. A much deserved thread. I wholeheartedly agree with the posters there. Sorry for interrupting their comments with my misplaced post. I’m blaming my twitchy fingers for hitting the wrong keys–that, or gremlins.

    Now on to the poem and the prompt. NaPoWriMo suggested that we “find a shortish poem that you like, and rewrite each line, replacing each word (or as many words as you can) with words that mean the opposite.” I started thinking that gardens are never finished (our prompt), so when I decided to use WCW’s “The Dance” (I’ve added it behind mine), I thought I’d “translate” his poem into how people might feel in a garden, in this case, a botanical garden by my house. I didn’t do what NaPoWriMo suggested, but rather I tried to conjure up the Williams poem a bit.

    “In Olbrich Gardens”

    “The dancers go round they go round and
    around,” the poet spins words in his “Dance.”
    And that’s what we’re sensing when strolling
    the section where flowers are butterflies
    swirling the wind, the whirling of stems
    filled with butterfly petals, soft twirlers
    of flora’s realm, courting the brush-tailed
    wind, a bugle of sun filled with butterfly
    petals, we do-si-do polka with green fountain
    grass in blue wind, cheer white inflorescence
    that dances impromptu, we’re swinging about
    as in Brueghel’s great picture, The Kermess.

    “The Dance,” William Carlos Williams

    In Brueghel’s great picture, The Kermess,
    the dancers go round, they go round and
    around, the squeal and the blare and the
    tweedle of bagpipes, a bugle and fiddles
    tipping their bellies (round as the thick-
    sided glasses whose wash they impound)
    their hips and their bellies off balance
    to turn them. Kicking and rolling about
    the Fair Grounds, swinging their butts, those
    shanks must be sound to bear up under such
    rollicking measures, prance as they dance
    in Brueghel’s great picture, The Kermess.

    Thanks for the educational and fun month, all you wonderful poets out there!

    B Peters

  29. carolecole66

    Thank you to all of you who read and wrote and shared and to Robert who made it happen. This has been a wonderful experience and I look forward to hearing from all of you next year.

  30. carolecole66

    A Work in Progress

    When I was ten, my mother sent me to finishing school
    because I was undone and she was becoming undone
    trying to polish me like a cherry-wood end table
    against a white couch. We walked with phone books
    on our heads, awkward children, frightened by too many rules.
    I was told to cross my legs and fold my dainty white hands
    in my lap, laugh quietly into my handkerchief, speak in a low
    and pleasing voice so I would never take up much space.
    The world was not mine, it was implied, and it would serve me well
    to remember that I might not be invited in. We served tea
    to each other trying not to spill, ate fried chicken wearing gloves,
    learned a stocking seam spoke volumes of our character.
    I could not help it that my slip drooped beneath the hem
    of my gathered skirt or my undershirt sleeve hung down my arm.
    But they were strong arms, strong enough to throw
    a touchdown pass in the games we played out in the street.
    My voice was shrill as I screamed home a run. I ran too fast
    to keep a phone book on my head. I am, I’ve heard, a diamond
    in the rough, an unpolished gem with buried charm. My mother’s
    still not proud.

  31. cstewart

    Floating Paradigm

    The wind speaks; says: it is done.
    It is forlorn, forgotten, foreclosed upon,
    Door shut, windows shuttered.
    Eyes open. Take note.

    The ancient race of bone calculators
    Upon whose thrones we threw our
    Perfect bodies in order to save our
    Lives at all ever through time.

    The moons have risen full force.
    We shall see if the paradigm is able
    To be guided to the place which will be
    Prosperous for the ever/all now people.
    Faces up, feet standing, darling hearts:
    Counselors of night’s sparkling vision

    1. PressOn

      I’d forgotten the Latin, and had to look it up. I love this little cycle, or so it seems to me. The Latin also reminded me of a teacher who taught it in high school. She looked dour, but thought funny. Once she asked us to read the following, not translating it but just pronouncing it correctly in Latin: Navigatum jubet vicissim.

  32. Mr. Walker


    Happiness isn’t finished
    She just flashed me a smile

    Humor isn’t finished either
    I’m still laughing at that last joke

    Love isn’t finished
    A first kiss is happening right now

    Hope isn’t finished either
    Perching in someone’s soul

    Grief and despair and regret
    aren’t finished either

    But I’m not talking
    about them today

    Justice isn’t finished
    Walking from courtrooms to boardrooms

    Compassion isn’t finished
    That’s what open hands are for

    Time isn’t finished yet
    And neither is Poetry

  33. Ber

    Burnt Out

    Feeling like a burning candle
    blowing in the wind
    nothing left to give
    mind is like a sieve

    Eyes that ponder every word
    wishfully hoping they will stick
    reading nothing amusing
    body is feeling sick

    Suddenly interesting images
    spring to mind
    information fills
    the sight that was once blind

    Breath of air
    watch your step
    take care
    soak it up
    don’t let go

    Keep going
    will be worth it
    no one to discourage
    silence turning a smile
    something well written
    emotions inside
    now were all smitten

  34. De Jackson

    Whew. Congratulations to a fabulous (and probably flustered) group of poets. I haven’t had as much time as I wanted to read and comment this year, but I just wanted to say THANK YOU for sharing your words here. If this was your first year, you did it! Are you addicted yet? Robert does a great prompt every Wednesday. Stick around! This is my 5th April Challenge, and I’m so blessed to be among old friends, new faces, and some fine, fine words.

    April might be over, but we’re never finished poeming…

    Blank Pages

    The white will always beckon.
    Never stop pressing your heart
    to it; never don’t spill those
    inky veins. Offer your words
    to a world that needs them,
    even when it feels like no one
    sees them. Tuck them into
    pockets; scribe them on the
    sky. Words help, and heal
    and answer the why we
    scream into closets dusty
    with old bones. These ebony
    thrones are waiting, letters
    held high and begging to be
    loosed. Free them, one and
    all. Your story’s still
    unfolding. Keep writing
    until the last breath


    1. tonijoell

      De, this is beautiful. This was my first year and I do feel a little proud to have joined in. I am addicted. I will be back. And your words are among those I feel honored to have read this month that will sing on iand on n my heart, so thank you.

      1. De Jackson

        toni, you should feel a LOT proud. I’ve enjoyed your work, and hope to have time in the coming weeks to go back and read all I can of everybody’s amazing poems. Thank you for your kind words. I can’t wait to see you on Wednesdays, which are a little easier to handle. ;)

  35. julie e.


    Broken down and broken up
    she tries to be inspired
    to do the things that she’s been told
    will push her mood up higher
    And on some days she thinks it works
    but on some days it don’t
    She wishes it was simpler
    to fix it but it won’t
    listen to the words she speaks
    it’s listening instead
    to the voices yakking on
    up inside her head
    And on some days she thinks it works
    but on some days it don’t
    She wishes it would all be done
    but it sure seems it won’t.

  36. Julieann

    Never Finished

    The poem is finished
    The pencil is laid aside
    The rhyme is lyrical
    The meter is perfect
    The wording is magical
    It is time for bed

    One last look, what?
    What is that word?
    There is a better one
    That was not what I meant
    The new word, the better
    Word, does not rhyme

    Lay it aside until tomorrow
    Off to bed for the night
    Tossing and turning
    Dreams made of words
    Meter, rhyme, rhythm out of sync
    A poem is never truly finished

    1. Julieann

      I forgot to say – Congratulations to everyone for all the hard work this year; and a personal congratulation to me, I finished each day’s poem that day. I did not get behind. I look forward more and better in the future. Until next year – or is November?

        1. Julieann

          Thank you to everyone!! My heartfelt gratitude to all who read my offerings and especially to those who commented. We are all now heading on to new horizons.

  37. Deri

    Welp, I did it. This is the first year I’ve managed to finish NaPoWriMo with a poem written for every single day. And this with my job, my final semester of undergrad, various and sundry extracurricular poem and writing projects…and an insane puppy to boot. Not all my poems were stellar, but I wrote quite a few I’m proud of. I will take a rare moment to boast and say “go me.”

    Word Worker

    The last page
    is there somewhere
    in the creak of the chair
    and her crunching bones.
    Her blood has pulsed
    only for this,
    all for this.
    She has waited
    for the moment
    to arrive,
    in trumpets and fanfare.
    Now, she fights with it –
    just for a moment –
    for it refuses to
    and she is heaving now,
    a push and pull,
    a final birth,
    drawing a crimson
    welt across her
    core. Then with a
    it is done.
    And there is

    The cheering is
    all in her head.

  38. ValerieO


    When there’s nothing
    Left to say
    No more tears to stream
    Tension crowds a space
    Meant for eternal happiness
    Numbness replaces hope
    Petals wilt
    Be silent

  39. Nancy Posey


    He wanted his obituary written early,
    while he lived, so he could read it,
    suggest revisions perhaps, assess
    the way those who loved him most
    viewed his life. He was curious to see
    what they’d leave in and leave out.
    Would his children value his childhood,
    honor his work, remember his pastimes?
    He couldn’t wait to read the stories
    they would share, to see which tales rose
    to the top through all their years listening
    to him rattle on, repeating himself, he knew,
    although he couldn’t stop himself.
    He hinted first, then asked outright,
    assigning the task to the one he knew
    would care enough to get it right.
    But she declined the task, asking,
    How can I write about your life,
    if you aren’t finished living it yet?

  40. Bruce Niedt

    Made it! Thirty-nine poems in thirty days – not bad. Here’s my last one of April:


    A poem is never finished, only abandoned.
    – Paul Valery

    The poem sits in a meadow,
    rusting in spring rain. Once
    it carried me to delightful destinations,
    but it wasn’t perfect. I tried tinkering
    with it – new engine, transmission,
    a different rhyme scheme,
    tightening the meter,
    a fresh coat of metaphoric paint.
    Then just when I thought
    I fixed it up the way it should be,
    someone would walk by and say,
    Do you have the right tires? or
    Those door handles look clumsy,
    or, I don’t understand your imagery.
    Eventually, it ended up in a drawer,
    and later moved to this field.
    Today I found it again, a corroded shell
    of what it once was. I sat down
    in the April drizzle and begin to write
    a poem about an old abandoned car.

  41. De Jackson

    Through with You
    (a Preposition Proposition)

    Howz about
    it’s over?
    I under
    -stand how you could try to just move along,
    be strong, but just between
    us two, I’m fed up
    with this after
    -math and all the down
    days it brings. As
    I run out
    of patience and tolerance for in
    -sanity and tight strings, and despite
    the harsh realities of following
    my own star, I’m onto
    you, and I’m done, by far. I really need to
    forget the past,
    find something that might last, before
    this long life is through.

    Oh, please don’t. Begging is beneath
    you. Bottom line: from
    now on, concerning
    us, minus
    you’s a plus. Regarding
    the great beyond:
    it’s true, I’d rather me without



  42. bxpoetlover

    Is there an answer?

    When is a poem finished?
    Should the poet wait until its words stop swimming around her head
    or when her writing group has finished its nitpicking?

    When is a poet finished?
    How many rejection letters does it take?

  43. identity

    With, at last, his days near done,
    His Book of Life’s last page near penned,
    He thanks God for every one
    And thanks Him most that they will end.

    Through a tunnel toward the light,
    He moves with unexpected pain;
    Now surveying his new plight,
    He cries to God, not THIS again.

    This isn’t personal philosophy. It’s just what came to mind with “finished” and “never finished.”

  44. Yolee

    Never Quite Finished

    We’ve come a ways since rising out of rock bottom indifference
    when I craved for poetry to knock me out more than I wanted to
    work at bringing us back, or much less ego ambitious, meeting
    you at some glasshouse. I thought something good had to come
    out of bedlam. And if a poem or two hooting like owls on
    a high branch, well then… Who was I kidding?
    I would have settled for one to flit like a monarch taking
    cover from rain on the window sill. Marriage has a way of showing
    you who you thought you’d never be. For a while we took on
    personalities meant for unadjusted bones. I wanted sonnets
    to work hard for the easy pay of time, couplets to tell me
    what to do. Conceding and denying were capricious weather
    fronts. It was hard to tell when thin or thick skin
    was required. And yet love never forgot its pact with us.

  45. Linda Rhinehart Neas

    Unfinished Business

    Like dirty clothes and the sink full of dishes
    there is always more to do –
    more hands to hold
    more stories to tell
    more songs to sing
    more love to give –
    endlessly…over and over

    All Over

    The pain has left.
    The wounds have healed.
    What once was,
    is finished,
    leaving room for
    new growth,
    new hope,
    new love.

    Yeah! We made it through another PAD challenge. Thank you, thank you, Robert for facilitating this wonderful venue. Thank you, fellow poets, for comments and support. Blessings to all!

  46. Rhae

    ‘Finish Lines’

    words plan
    honesty – truth
    rooted damn near to tooth,
    get it
    this quitting
    certainly okay
    all is done,

    you’re excused
    to go away


  47. JRSimmang

    Broca, Area 44

    Part 1
    He sighed and dropped his pencil
    and rubbed his eyes
    clockwise, then counter-clockwise.

    To be a circle,
    drifting in endless loops.

    Part 2
    The dawn had just broken
    before the pot of coffee was ready,
    time just right to allow the sunlight
    to refract inside the urn and then
    muddle with the steamy, black coffee.

    He picked up his pencil and transcribed:
    He put his pencil beside his breakfast and
    rubbed his temples
    clockwise, then counter-clockwise.

    To be a circle, transcribed in another circle,
    drifting in endless loops.

    Part 3
    His desk is farther from the door here
    than it is at home.
    It must be by design.
    The same comforts of home can’t be
    afforded to the
    workplace. Otherwise, the drive to home
    wouldn’t be filled with relief and wine.
    It would be filled with other emotions
    he has yet to grasp.

    The chalkboards-turned-whiteboard are
    his poetry.
    He has long forgotten how to use a calculator.
    These numbers, both
    real and
    are his constant bed partners
    varying nightly,
    coaxing him to sleep and
    stroking his hair like his mother used to do,
    like his wife used to do…

    He sighed and put his pencil next to his
    thin tin of paper clips before he opened his mouth
    to a new
    “To be a circle,
    transcribed in another circle,
    tangential to the vertex of a triangle…”
    tangential to my daily cup of coffee.
    He rubbed his anxiety/frustration/anger/uncertainty/happiness
    clockwise, then counter-clockwise.

    an endless number, content with itself.

    Part 4
    the coffee pot beat the sunrise,
    siphoning the night into its crystalline base.
    He stood, swimming in the predawn shadows,
    as his wall clock reminded him that
    as he approached the speed of light
    he is still spinning

      1. PressOn

        I love this, including your complaint about HTML. Can’t help thinking about the little “piku” form I just learned about, though:

        Pi speeds on

        1. JRSimmang

          Thank you, William (though I don’t know you, I feel as though I should). You truly have been a force of positivity, in both criticism and poetry. I have enjoyed reading your poems (and your comments) immensely.

  48. Raina Masters

    Buried in folders, under files

    I finished a poem.
    It is in here somewhere
    but this machine swallowed it,
    threw it back up and projectile
    vomited it across folders, into
    some oblivion I’m not allowed
    to access without permission.
    Now the landscapers next door
    are distracting me from my nap,
    distracting me from finding it.
    It could have been the best thing
    I’ve ever written.
    It could have won awards, put me
    on the cover of some pretentious
    writing magazine reserved for the
    most elite of literati.
    Now I will have to stay up until
    midnight trying to dig up words
    while pulling on my hair, the long
    brown strands screaming for me to
    stop, to finish this month out.

  49. Jezzie

    April is finished and I feel a bit sad.
    Weatherwise, it’s been good, but sometimes bad,
    but whatever the weather, I’m so glad
    I’ve read others’ poems, some poignant, some mad,
    all different themes from the prompts we’ve had,
    written for the challenge of April PAD.

    I’ve learned some new styles, some I have relished,
    most comments and verses will be cherished.
    but my own poems will never be finished.
    Each time I read them again I have wished
    I’d used a phrase a bit more accomplished
    before my potty poem I relinquished.

    I’ll look forward to Wednesdays from now on,
    usually by midweek my muse has long gone,
    and I’ll try to still pen a poem a day
    but I doubt that will last long into May.

    1. PressOn

      I love all your monorhymes. I also love the phrase, “potty poem”; I’ve never heard it before. Of course, I can’t leave it alone:


      Little Lizzie was learning her toilet:
      encouraged to sit and not spoil it,
      she tried very hard
      all her waste to discard
      but too often, her urges would soil it.

  50. cstewart

    Cause It is Still Here

    Will I never be finished with you,
    Or will the keyboard fall from my hands
    Still with reverberations of you and
    Imaginations of my most sincere
    Kalidescopic dreams of future immanations.

    First to be smiling and seeing the
    Translucent white of your teeth –
    In your smiling eyes, your blank
    Abdication of the obvious denials
    Of my cultural experience.

    Your negation and consequent elation,
    That others may be on the wrong track.
    The hook that keeps you from death.
    Promising you that you are right
    Keeping it unreal in the updraft of you.

    You are sliding off your perch
    The one upon which you sit to view
    Your rise to success and killing of
    All who threaten your termination,
    In your syllabus of daylight calculations.

    C. Stewart

  51. Domino

    Sent to the
    finest finishing
    schools, taught
    by refined,
    capable instructors, she
    should have been genteel.

    But, truth was,
    she loved rebellion
    more than not,
    and so she,
    admittedly, will never
    quite be a “lady.”

    1. nessajay

      I like this straightforward poem. It reminds me of when my mom used to correct me for calling people ladies instead of women by telling me that was a class-based term.

  52. Jane Shlensky

    Thanks to Robert for hosting the party and for the wonderful prompts and “attempts” that are spot-on. Thanks to all you poets, known and new, who have fed me all month. Don’t be strangers. Hope to see you on Wednesdays…until we can accept the November challenge. This is it for me this month. Godspeed, friends! You’ve been a joy.

    Finished/ Unfinished

    I wait for you
    each day, each night;
    creatures of light
    love darkness too.

    A hazy moon in velvet sky,
    the lonely hooting of an owl—
    were I a wolf, you’d hear my howl
    calling but you will not draw nigh.

    I’m on my own; each day is new
    enough to challenge me to be
    someone that I can love and free,
    but in the night, I wait for you.

  53. Jane Shlensky

    Us in April

    They come each day and leave a verse
    they’ve fashioned into round bouquets—
    something that I can carry, sniff,
    remind myself of people, days
    long past or just occurring now,
    faces I love or just now see,
    a space that houses family
    of caring strangers’ buoying words.

    An aging fool is still a fool,
    my brother says, and he should know.
    Digital voices are not real,
    he says, so I can pity him.
    We find our people everywhere
    we look, on streets, in pews, in books.
    We love them mindlessly, still clear,
    that we won’t know them by their looks,

    but by their words, the sense they’ve made
    of what their life has been and is,
    the way they chuckle, kindle—pain,
    a tool they use to keep them sane.
    These are my people, some whose names
    I’ll never know and never ask.
    They come unfinished, just like me,
    and share the visions they can see.
    I know their hearts borne on their words
    and that’s enough (almost) for me.

  54. Marian O'Brien Paul

    Here is a “finished” poem, taking a short poem by Wallace Stevens “Anecdote of the Jar” and rewriting each line, replacing words, but not using opposite words, just different words for a different context.

    first is Steven’s poem. Mine follows.

    Anecdote of the Jar by Wallace Stevens

    I placed a jar in Tennessee,
    And round it was, upon a hill.
    It made the slovenly wilderness
    Surround that hill.

    The wilderness rose up to it,
    And sprawled around, no longer wild.
    The jar was round upon the ground
    And tall and of a port in air.

    It took dominion everywhere.
    The jar was gray and bare.
    It did not give of bird or bush,
    Like nothing else in Tennessee.

    Now mine.

    A Box Tale by Marian O’Brien Paul

    I placed a box in Missouri,
    Rectangular, within the ground.
    It made the decorous ranks of rows
    Gather around.

    The silent dead bestirred themselves.
    Parents, grandparents no more napped.
    Four cornered box, an infant’s bed,
    Soft cushions blanketed with earth.

    It took precedence in that place,
    Small box in its new space.
    It spoke of joy and love and grief
    Like nothing else in Missouri.

  55. dr todd harris

    Approaching 30

    endings make

    short questions’
    share elegant emotions’

    over-brushed watercolors
    erasures’ seam

    baked muffins’ crisping
    teflon’s final yeasted steam

    Pacific moon’s
    even-time silver mine
    sunset’s cerulean phases

    footnote’s quiet space
    hosting poems’
    final phrases

  56. Michelle Hed

    Never Forget (A Wish to be Remembered)

    Remember me
    for the loving embrace over a skinned knee –
    Remember me
    for the tears I wiped –
    Remember me
    for the laughter shared –
    Remember me
    for the tickle fights –
    Remember me
    for the dances in the kitchen –
    Remember me
    for the words I sprinkled –
    Remember me
    for the mistakes I made –
    Remember me
    for the pictures taken –
    Remember me
    for I’m just a tiny drop in the sea –
    Remember me
    for I’ll always remember you –
    Remember me

    1. PressOn

      MIchelle, this is beautifully touching. With your permission, I’d like to copy it and give it to my wife and stepdaughters, all of whom are mothers. I’ll credit you, of course.

  57. Michelle Hed

    The End ( A Wee Fibonacci)

    the end,
    we are done.
    There is no more, where
    that came from.
    This is

    But Wait (A Continuation of a Wee Fibonacci)

    There’s more.
    Same time next
    year, exactly like
    before. We will meet again here
    and let our muses
    dance as we
    let the

    One Last Thing (Last bit of a Wee Fibonacci)

    you can’t
    wait till then,
    come around midweek
    when some of us can be found with
    our pens behind our ears and bubble gum in our cheeks,
    typing out our rhymes and verses,
    humming to the beat
    of life here
    down on

    Thanks for six fun years Robert!

  58. DanielAri

    I cast a spell of seventeen.
    I seal the time capsule in ink.
    I enshrine the spaces between,
    all the phases I count and think
    vanish, reflections in speeding

    windows passing past a great ankh
    spraypainted over Oakland bricks.
    To Isis in Egypt give thanks.
    The morning blurred commuted quick—
    The week, the month, the infant seed.

    People drowse. Tunnel lights flicker.
    Time sings its contrapuntal gasp,
    orchestral hiss, ancestral click—
    a marching band rocketing past
    sand buildings on a river bank.

    “What was that?” It can’t hurt to ask
    as you get used to these flashes.


    Finish line party! Pop the champagne!

  59. Andrew Kreider

    Much appreciation for all the fine writing of this month – from old friends and new. This PAD coincided with an big computer meltdown at my place, so I was not as present as I would have liked. Congratulations and love to all!

    Last day of April
    Computer finally fixed
    I did write – honest!

  60. dextrousdigits

    Let me start with thanks to Robert who challenges in so many ways.
    Thanks for all the amazing talent, word masters, jugglers, painters and word musicians who have made me smile, think, cry, learn and grow.

    Thoroughbreds At Their Finest

    Sun Rises, Poetry month has begun
    Eager eyes wait the first prompt
    Excited Stallions raring to go
    Nostrils flare, ears open,
    mains and tails raise
    ready to charge
    each daily
    some days,
    the words halt
    in our throats as
    we struggle to express
    other days, words raise their hands
    shouting “pick me, pick me, I’d be great”
    so keen to be alive, they rush forward to be born
    Today the finish line waits for all Stallions to cross.

  61. Marie Elena

    Endless Thanks

    To all of you, please lend an ear:
    There’s one among the poets here
    Who’s new to us, and makes it clear
    This one’s a poet to revere.

    Encourager to great extent,
    Besides the gift that’s evident.
    This one uplifts from dawn to dawn,
    And so I say: press on, Press On!

    (Couldn’t resist this quick one on my late lunch break. Sincerely, “Press On,” you have been a joy to read this month, and such a fabulous encourager. Thank you so very much!)

    1. PressOn

      Omigosh! Or, as my aunt used to say, “blow me down and pick me up!” What a wonderful, generous thing to do. Thank you very much. I am indeed new to this: I barely knew what a “blog” was till a friend pointed out this one to me. (Actually, I still don’t know what one is, but that’s another matter.) The main thing for me is, this has been a wonderful experience, reading so much good work from so many good people who are good poets. I’ve learned a lot, including several new forms I knew nothing about. Mainly, though, I’ve learned much about new and clever and graceful ways to use words, and look forward to learning a lot more. So thank you again, Marie Elena (what a musical name), for your verse, and thanks to all of you for this little world of wonder. Peace, William Preston.

      1. BDP

        Oh, Preston! Not only is PressOn a nice play on your last name, as a moniker it’s uplifting (don’t stop, keep going, never give in), just as your posts were encouraging to read. Thanks, Press On.

      1. BDP

        NaPoWriMo suggested that we “find a shortish poem that you like, and rewrite each line, replacing each word (or as many words as you can) with words that mean the opposite.” I started thinking that gardens are never finished (our prompt), so when I decided to use WCW’s “The Dance” (I’ve added it behind mine), I thought I’d “translate” his poem into how people might feel in a garden, in this case, a botanical garden by my house. I didn’t do what NaPoWriMo suggested, but rather I tried to conjure up the Williams poem a bit.

        “In Olbrich Gardens”

        “The dancers go round they go round and
        around,” the poet spins words in his “Dance.”
        And that’s what we’re sensing when strolling
        the section where flowers are butterflies
        swirling the wind, the whirling of stems
        filled with butterfly petals, soft twirlers
        of flora’s realm, courting the brush-tailed
        wind, a bugle of sun filled with butterfly
        petals, we do-si-do polka with green fountain
        grass in blue wind, cheer white inflorescence
        that dances impromptu, we’re swinging about
        as in Brueghel’s great picture, The Kermess.

        “The Dance,” William Carlos Williams

        In Brueghel’s great picture, The Kermess,
        the dancers go round, they go round and
        around, the squeal and the blare and the
        tweedle of bagpipes, a bugle and fiddles
        tipping their bellies (round as the thick-
        sided glasses whose wash they impound)
        their hips and their bellies off balance
        to turn them. Kicking and rolling about
        the Fair Grounds, swinging their butts, those
        shanks must be sound to bear up under such
        rollicking measures, prance as they dance
        in Brueghel’s great picture, The Kermess.

        B Peters

        1. BDP

          The post ABOVE–obviously even after a month the bad posting bug is still with me. No matter where this post lands, I’m quitting this thread and moving on to the correct spot.

    2. Ann Graham Price

      Absolutely agree! Very much looking forward to seeing more from Mr. William Preston. Please, sir, start a blog so that I may follow you.

      Actually, it has been a joy “meeting” all of you here. It’s been humbling and inspiring to read your work.

  62. Jezzie

    The first poem will be very hard for me
    because I never finish anything I start, you see!
    But the second poem should be quite easy,
    if I can finish it before my dog and me
    go out for our walk before we have our tea.

  63. JRSimmang

    I’ve been at this now for over two years,
    and the truth of it is that it doesn’t get any easier.
    I can see it still, plain as day, though I would much rather stay awake
    than have to relive the moment the sun devoured the Earth.
    Some have said their nightmares give them the rest they need so
    as to not have to face the grey skies and black hearts.

    We won’t know what happened. All we know now is the rubble.

    People turn into animals. Wait. To say they turn into animals would
    imply that they live under some carnal instinct and natural code.
    Even in the wild, animals don’t eat the dying.
    Of course, the scavengers do. The buzzards and the vultures, the hyenas,

    We didn’t want to. But we did anyway.

    I wander the roads, myself, without the dependence of another.
    They tell me I’m walking a death sentence…
    and I’m waiting for the period I can put to my story.
    But, the truth is, I’m walking on my own feet,
    propelled by my own legs. My fingers wrap around my bag,
    hidden with my memories of the days that I would
    walk along the beach hand in hand with the people
    I would love to walk next to now.
    I’m not walking a death sentence.
    I’m walking to reawaken.

  64. PressOn


    The last of April stops to say,
    “Fear not! I bring you merrie May.
    No more must you endure my chill
    nor burn your dwindling wood until
    there’s little left at last of day.”

    I must admit, I feel quite gay
    to see that cruel month go away,
    and yet I bear it no ill will:
    the last of April

    brings to an end the interplay
    of junco, chickadee, and jay;
    the feeders here are hanging still.
    But listen! Springtime bids us fill
    our hearts with promises held at bay
    till last of April.

  65. Lindy

    Music Box Dancer

    A love for words,
    the songstress heard,
    in flow and rhyme
    and rhythm stirred.

    The lady kept,
    as she had slept,
    her longings with
    the tears she’d wept.

    Pulp art design,
    like writing wine,
    with grapes of wrath –
    the fullest vine.

    A poem is
    finished never,
    just abandoned
    to forever…

    * “A poem is never finished, only abandoned.” ~ Paul Valéry

  66. finallyhereiam

    While I will post my poem for today here later today.. here is a BIG vote of thanks to you Robert!
    It was a great experience to participate in the challenge…
    Will look forward to your wrap up post from tomorrow..and Wednesdays from thereon!

    Here’s to all the writers, authors, poets who posted for the entire month!

    GOD Speed.

  67. EbenAt

    11 Years After

    the years.

    Do we hear?

    Senseless violence squared
    equals nothing.

    This is not
    a carillon
    to war.

    Just Right

    When encouraged
    to work on poetry,
    I thought,
    what work?

    Plunk down some words
    and you’re done.

    I plunked ‘em down,
    took a look,
    and thought

    Ohhhhhh, now
    I get it;
    they’re probably
    never done.

    Thanks, RLB, really a pleasure!

  68. PoM

    Now that it’s finished
    An apology I’ll give
    I commented not
    On any ones poetry
    There’s a method
    To my ignorance
    and madness you see
    I didn’t wish
    to be influenced
    By any ones poetry
    Forgive me please

    But now that PAD’s finished
    I’ll go back and read
    And enjoy everyone’s poetry
    Comment I may
    Comment I might
    Be not offended
    If you’re of the May
    Or even the might

    I shall read each April day
    In the month of May
    Thank you all
    And have a nice day

  69. IrisD

    It is Finished

    Open closet door and begin to clean
    Accumulation of years is seen
    Boxes here, piles over there
    Half- finished quilt on chair
    Walk-in closet is misnamed
    Shelf and floor are all framed
    Boxes, bags, baskets, hats
    Hangers, clothes, ball and bats
    Mess now all over the room
    Time to go so grab the broom
    Throw everything back inside
    Push the door shut and hide
    Must sweep the bedroom floor
    Do not disturb sign on closet door

    1. DanielAri

      Ooh, I like this. “Three are days when / nights get hungry”
      And love the end on an em-dash.
      It does make me feel the poem as a prelude to something longer.

  70. Jane Shlensky

    Fully Empty

    When Elke gave them to me, dried,
    the gourds looked moldy, mildewed, grim,
    but fat and round, roomy inside;
    their seeds rattle like dice in them.

    Bird house—that was my early thought—
    I’d paint and carve their sanded pates,
    hang them from tree limbs, watch them sought
    by songbirds cruising real estate.

    They do that—bluebirds especially—
    go door to door, to open house.
    Each hops inside, imagines, tweets,
    then holds discussions with the spouse.

    My gourds, unsanded, bereft of paint,
    await my vision and my skill
    to become something lovely, quaint:
    a lidded bowl or home on hill.

    I let imagination play
    inside me, pushing gourds aside,
    do nothing for another day,
    my will to change them, withered, dried.

    I think I hear a rattling
    in my own heart, in my own head,
    Self seeds unstoried, tattling,
    their whispered hopes unpenned, unread.

    So, like canvas or empty page,
    one gourd must stay pristine and free.
    A person needs both door and cage
    to understand what she can be.

  71. Earl Parsons

    Another Challenge Finished

    Another challenge finished
    Another thirty days
    Another thirty written
    Now April’s gone away

    Some days it was easy
    Some days complicated
    Some prompts were fantastic
    Others overrated

    So, thank you Mr. Brewer
    Thank you for your time
    Thank you for the prompts
    The prose and the rhyme

    Now we’re back to Wednesdays
    Working t’ward November
    Have you ever thought about
    A Poem-A-Day September?

  72. Beth Rodgers


    Hastening to put finishing touches on
    A newly ready life.

    Many would say it is a willing fault
    To get ready too soon
    To be over-prepared.

    The fact remains that life is never finished
    But rather a constant stream of idiosyncrasies
    That oversee a fluid motion of first, second, third
    Impressions made by people, places, and things

  73. Earl Parsons

    The Finish Line

    We are all born with a purpose
    A predestined purpose
    Assigned to us by a higher power
    Ours to accept or reject
    Ours to pick up and run with
    Or ours to run away from
    It’s that free will thing
    And ultimately our choice

    In life there is a starting line
    That we all cross when we
    Are pushed into this world
    Then there is the finish line
    That so many never cross
    So many never even see
    Because they’ve spent their life
    Running in the wrong direction

  74. RobHalpin

    Finished, Yet Not

    puts words
    to page, the
    flow may be a wee
    trickle or a mighty gusher.
    It may take minutes or days, or longer still, before
    the author is happy enough
    to share the work, while
    knowing it’s

    1. PressOn

      Once again, this breaks me up. Your stuff reminds me of a picture I saw once: a lady laughing heartily, and the caption read, “Blessed with a sense of humor and the knowledge that the world is mad.”

  75. Connie Peters

    Stories Are Never Finished

    My son was in the second grade.
    He could read by himself,
    but still liked to be read to.

    We read about a big, fluffy, funny dog—
    very charming, but at the end,
    he died.

    I could not hide my disappointment.
    “Awww, he died!” The sadness hit
    as if I lost my own pet.

    “Don’t worry, Mom,” my sensible son said,
    “Just go back to the beginning,
    and he’ll be alive again.”

  76. geezergirl


    Release Worry’s nag
    Hinge joy to rising moments
    Give your light away

    Release Grief’s shudder
    Quiver loss to open sky
    Arms wide heart open

    Release Silence past
    Crawl, run, squeeze, sob, rip, fly, write
    Face the aching heart

  77. annell

    I haven’t been as faithful as I wanted to me. This month has brought so many interruptions. And I find sometimes it seems impossible to write a poem.

    A Simple Thing
    The loss of a friend
    A simple thing
    One of the saddest
    That can
    Happen to a human heart
    Breaks it in two

    Sure death is bad
    Really sad
    Aw… but the loss of a friend
    Who enriched your life
    Leaves a hole
    That cannot be filled
    All the way to China

    The loss a deep regret
    I couldn’t be
    The one you called friend
    I’ll keep your memory
    Miss you to the end of time

    One of the saddest
    Things that can
    Happen to a human

    Note: It’s happened to me, maybe happened to everyone, thought I would just write about it. One you liked…loved and called your friend, has changed their mind. Doesn’t want to be your friend anymore, for whatever reason. Causes a heartbreak that cannot be fixed, another sadness, you will carry, cannot forget. We might ask, “Why do you want this friend, who does not want you?” There is no answer, only sadnes

    1. Jane Shlensky

      I suspect most of us have had this sadness. The best I could do with it is entertain forgiveness in some really creative ways. Also, I find that cussing helps–done in car and the privacy of my home ;). I have to say that your message above, beginning with “I haven’t been as faithful as…”
      is the beginning of another poem. I almost stole it myself. BDP is right. After the hurt subsides, you’ll remember the friend from the heart of your own definition of friendship. That can’t be taken from you.

  78. Rosemary Nissen-Wade

    Finished / Unfinished

    It is the end of the day
    again, and I find myself
    reluctant again to lie down
    in a bed where I stretch out
    with so much room — so empty
    of you. Though as to that,
    full, too, of remembered you.

    Sooner or later I must finish
    the dishes, the day’s writing,
    the interactions on facebook.
    As I do every night, over
    and over again, I must
    leave the day behind, go on
    to the next day, all of them
    taking me further from you.

    It will never be finished,
    this grief, only dealt with
    day by day for always,
    all the days. I walk the days
    like steps on a path
    at the end of which I’ll arrive
    at last, at that which is endless.

    1. julie e.

      “As I do every night, over/ and over again,/ I must/ leave the day behind, go on/ to the next day, all of them/ taking me further from you” That is the neverending truth of loss, you’ve put so much of grieving into words that fit my experiences with it and surely the experiences of others. I’ve really treasured reading them this month.

  79. Benjamin Thomas

    Unfinished Business

    Poetry is always unfinished business
    Its a word that must be heard
    Dancing jigs, serenading stanzas
    Brilliance and prancing prose

    Sweet n’ sexy shadormas
    Penned pleasures
    Hailed haikus striking pose

  80. Nancy Posey

    English Teacher’s Plight: Never Finished

    Just after midnight, my stack of essays ran out
    before my red pen did, and just to make my day
    smoother, I alphabetized the pile, recorded grades
    in the old blue Squibb’s Class Record Book,
    postponing their transfer to the online chart,
    unwilling to show them their A’s and B’s and D’s
    and incompletes before they had papers in hand.
    Crawling in bed, I breathed a prayer for gratitude
    for fortitude and stamina, for the chance at least
    for a few hours to feel caught up, brief respite
    from the paper load, my metaphor for guilt.
    Awakened by the alarm, radio just off station,
    static scrubbing the mountain music, I jump up,
    dress, pack the papers, eager to return them
    to their rightful owners, to return home once
    empty-handed, the promise of time with a book
    and perhaps a glass or two of wine. Tomorrow
    they begin again, one more assignment—five
    to seven pages, double spaced, one-inch margins
    at least five credible sources cited using MLA.
    And in my 11:00 Monday-Wednesday-Friday,
    I’ll collect 20 more to grade. But tomorrow,
    as Miss Scarlet reminds me, is another day.

    1. Jane Shlensky

      Better you than me, girlfriend. The paper grading really is the deal breaker. I so loved that little lift when the stacks were graded and I could ignore the fact that more were coming in. Yes, two glasses of wine for you, and I’m lifting my glass in your direction.

  81. PressOn


    At a Polish wedding in Buffalo
    I saw the strangest hat;
    upon it, fruit swayed to and fro
    although the hat was flat.

    The fellow wearing it, wore red
    and seemed to be at loss
    for words, although the chorus said
    that he would be the boss.

    His bride was dressed in usual white
    and glowed through claps and cheers,
    but still, I saw the strangest sight:
    they both had flowing tears.

    The two of them, no longer young,
    had waited hard and long,
    afraid that never would be sung
    for them, a wedding song,

    and that would mean life incomplete:
    a still-unfinished story,
    much like a tune without a beat
    or grace bereft of glory.

    But when they met, they knew the glow
    of love, right off the bat,
    and so, that day in Buffalo,
    I saw the strangest hat.

    1. Jane Shlensky

      What a lovely reminder that it’s never too late to aim for completion. I especially like the next to last stanza, “grace bereft of glory”. You’ve written some great stuff this month, William.

          1. PressOn

            Well, whaddya know! It looks much like I remember. It was a long time ago, but that hat was unforgettable. I can’t be sure of what church it was, but I think Our Lady of Czestochowa. The hat, of course, was at the reception elsewhere. I live near Rochester, by the way, and as I recall, nobody from Buffalo pronounced Buffalo that way; it always came out “Bufflo.”

    2. De Jackson

      Love, love, LOVE this, PressOn. I have so enjoyed your work this month, and I hope you’ll stick around for Wednesday prompts all year round! You’ve got such a great poetic voice. And your comments, both on my poems and those of others, have made me nod, laugh, sigh, and sing. Just wonderful. So awesome to have you here.

      1. PressOn

        Thanks so much for your kind words. Your writings have given me new ways to think about poems, and I appreciate that. I do plan to check in for the Wednesday offerings; this whole experience has been superb.

    3. Marie Elena

      Ohmigosh. That Polish title caught my eye, and I thought my poetic partner, Walter Wojtanik of Buffalo, had dropped in to grace us with a poem. And you know what? I KNOW that hat, because of Walt!!

      Two things, William. 1. Are you on facebook? 2. If you are looking for another poetic playground, please consider Walt’s and my “Poetic Bloomings” (poeticbloomings.com).


      1. PressOn

        Buffalo, eh? My poem was inspired by a wedding there many years ago (actually, in Cheektowaga). I can still see the hat, and the tears. No, I’m not on facebook, but I will check out your Poetic Bloomings site. Thanks for the invitation. Thanks also for your work; I’ve enjoyed it very much, and have learned from it.

    4. pmwanken

      Stanzas 4 & 5…I can relate to the still-unfinished story. Well captured emotion.

      (And…I’ll agree with the lot of them…you’ve been an incredible encouragement to many this month…through your own poems, and the kind words beneath the poems of others. Thank you.)

  82. PoM

    Three cheers for we and WD
    we’ve finished the marathon P.A. D.

    With patience and Fortitude
    We’ve trudged the roads
    Over the hills into the valleys
    Where the stanzas refused to flow

    We’ve walked the bottom
    Of doggerel seas
    Seeking to find
    Some balladry

    From Arrival to finishing
    And everything in-between
    Two for Tuesdays Bright and dark
    Both hunters and hunted
    We’ve played the part

    Some were impossible
    Others were not
    We’ve written of love
    And anti love

    Mechanical and beyond
    Burns I am’s
    Complex and auto
    Shadorma sevenlings

    We’ve cast our poems
    Everyone sheered
    Their passionate flames
    of poetry and burn it did
    How it did burn

    We did our best
    Tried to express
    Our infested poems
    That was in our heads

    Some broken comparisons
    We’ve wrote sonnets
    Suffered In case’s of
    But all remained Instructional
    Till the posting was done

    These were the marathon themes
    We’ve just run
    We’ve finished the race
    April PAD marathon is finally done
    I myself had a tons of fun

    Lets hear Three cheers
    For the WD
    For Hosting this PAD
    Now it is finished
    It’s the final scene
    I wish you all well
    With your poetry

  83. RJ Clarken

    The Finish Line

    “Doctors and scientists said that breaking the four-minute mile was impossible, that one would die in the attempt. Thus, when I got up from the track after collapsing at the finish line, I figured I was dead.”~Roger Bannister

    In spite of all those prickly odds,
    in spite of feeling, ‘out of print,’
    in spite of ‘not,’ I ran my sprint
    despite the process and the plods.

    That is the message of the gods.
    By hard work, and/or else by dint,
    in spite of ‘not,’ I ran my sprint.
    In spite of all those prickly odds,

    I penned my words with shakes and nods.
    And with each word my pen would mint
    I saw a light; I saw a glint.
    No more for me those vague fantods…
    in spite of all those prickly odds,


    * Fantods: an ill-defined state of irritability and distress.

  84. Marie Elena

    “Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” ~ Mother Teresa of Calcutta

    Acts of kindness
    Once begun
    Can’t reverse,
    Nor be undone.
    Vilest acts,
    With kindness nursed
    May be overturned,

  85. PressOn


    Some say Earth will end in fire;
    others say, in ice.
    In either case, it will be dire
    and either will suffice.

    But nonetheless, when Earth is done,
    remember her as a pal:
    the old grey mare; the faithful one;
    a regular Frivolous Sal.

  86. RJ Clarken

    This and That: Quantum Theory is an Unfinished Business

    “Somewhere around the place I’ve got an unfinished short story about Schrodinger’s Dog; it was mostly moaning about all the attention the cat was getting”~Terry Pratchett

    The chance is fifty-fifty that
    the dog will thank the cat for this.
    If he does not, he’ll be remiss,
    or will he? It’s up to the cat.

    It’s yes or no. A caveat:
    Unfinished business is abyss.
    The dog will thank the cat for this.
    The chance is fifty-fifty that

    the answer one might enter at
    could be a real hypothesis
    or not. It’s all elusiveness,
    about attention. Tit for tat.
    The chance is fifty-fifty. That.


  87. Iain Douglas Kemp

    The End of the Line

    Your train slides into the Terminus,
    time to disembark,
    a moment to reflect,
    to cast an eye over your shoulder,
    look back:
    in anger?
    in peace?
    with regrets?
    with fond memories?
    Your choice was made long ago,
    far back along the line,
    all you can do now is accept,
    take things as they are and face what now lies ahead:
    the great unknown.


    1. Iain Douglas Kemp

      PressOn, Jane & LC – thank you – I’ve had fun this month actually I’ve been having fun since I got back into poeming in January. My musical committments are much reduced now so I hope to keep going on Wednesdays and of course over at poetic Bloomings.

  88. Iain Douglas Kemp

    Dear Moosehead,
    What a disaster and after a sweep too! Knocked into
    orbit by the Astros – not good. Well buddy, it’s been
    a time of revelation. We need our DL fit and well for a start.
    As for you, as ever you have proved yourself to be a half-wit.
    So I made a smart-ass remark when we were in 10th grade.
    Big Whoop! You should know me better, pal o’ mine.
    I always stand up for the working stiff, no matter what they do.
    You got a steady job and I ain’t gonna knock a guy for that.
    Although I’m not sure you can call what you do driving!
    Anyway, I still love ya you big lummox! Life goes on as ever.
    as for the Yanks, it’s still early days. It ain’t over ‘til it’s over
    – and that means post season. The Yankees story is full
    of ups and downs but it ain’t finished by a long ways.
    Pick me up at 6. I’ll get the dogs & beer.

    Yours in never-ending support of my team and my friends, ok, friend,

    Ringo the Howler

    1. LCaramanna

      See ya in October when your boys of summer sweep the series!! I never make it through a day without some Yankee-related comment/news article/game score – and I always wonder what Ringo the Howler will be writing!

  89. PoM


    Free written prose
    Let the sifting begin
    Must make a poem

    For this finishing
    April PAD day
    What will stand

    In the final revision


    Poetic voices in my head
    While I lay awake a-bed….

  90. Never2L8


    I visited you today
    With flowers and stories
    About what’s been going on
    Since you’ve been gone.
    Same old, same old…
    School, work,
    Braces for Billy,
    Aunt Millie in nursing home,
    Ellen had a girl.
    Oh, Stan died, heart attack.
    But maybe you knew that already?
    Endless cycle of
    Life and death…

  91. mlcastejon

    Congratulations everybody, we made it! (Although some days I’ve needed to catch up). It has been a positive experience.

    Have a nice day,

    Unfinished poem

    On an endless stairs
    My way up looks titanic
    I’ve still got some time.