2014 April PAD Challenge: Day 30

Ack! Today is the final day of the challenge! For people catching up, I’m giving a 5-day buffer between each day’s prompt–so the cut-off will be 11:59 p.m. on May 5 (Atlanta, GA time). Also, I’m going to post on “Next Steps” regarding this challenge tomorrow afternoon that will outline what to expect as far as judging, results, etc.

For today’s prompt, write a “calling it a day” poem. Some people might call this “Miller time,” others may refer to it as “closing time.” Just remember: Don’t call it a day until you put it in a poem.


national_poetry_monthGet the National Poetry Month Kit!

Yes, this has been another great National Poetry Month, and here’s a great kit to celebrate: The Writer’s Digest National Poetry Month Kit, which includes a digital version of The Poetry Dictionary, a couple paperbacks (Creating Poetry and Writing the Life Poetic), a tutorial on building an audience for your poetry, the 2014 Poet’s Market, and more!

Click to continue.


Here’s my attempt at a Calling It a Day poem:


i love you
have always loved you

i’m tired of this cat & mouse
this cleaning house

if you knew
what i wanted to do

& other stuff

w/o you in it
no other way to say
i <3 u

& i’m done cleaning house
be the cat
i’m your mouse


Today’s guest judge is…

Jillian Weise

Jillian Weise

Jillian Weise

Jillian is the author of The Amputee’s Guide to Sex, the novel The Colony, and The Book of Goodbyes, which won the 2013 James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets. Her work has appeared in Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics, The New York Times and Tin House.

After fellowships from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, the Fine Arts Work Center and the Fulbright Program, she joined the faculty at Clemson University.

She identifies as a cyborg.

Learn more here: https://www.boaeditions.org/bookstore/the-book-of-goodbyes.html


PYHO_Small_200x200Poem Your Heart Out

Poems, Prompts & Room to Add Your Own for the 2014 April PAD Challenge!

Words Dance Publishing is offering 20% off pre-orders for the Poem Your Heart Out anthology until May 1st! If you’d like to learn a bit more about our vision for the book, when it will be published, among other details.

Click to continue.


Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems. His favorite Marquez story is “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings,” though he also loves the short novel Chronicle of a Death Foretold. Learn more about Robert here: http://www.robertleebrewer.com/.


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1,171 thoughts on “2014 April PAD Challenge: Day 30

  1. Shennon

    Depending on the hour, l’heure, la hora, l’ora
    One gets off work, le travail, el trabajo, il lavoro
    One might call it a night, une nuit, una noche, una notte
    Or one might call it a day, un jour, un día, un giorno.

    Ça dépend à quelle heure, a qué hora, a che ora
    On quitte le travail, el trabajo, il lavoro, work
    On peut dire que c’est la nuit, la noche, la notte, the night
    Ou on peut dire que c’est le jour, el día, il giorno, the day.

    Según el tiempo, il tempo, the time, le temps
    Es terminado el trabajo, il lavoro, work, le travail
    Se puede decir que es la noche, la notte, the night, la nuit
    O se puede decir que es el día, il giorno, the day, le jour.

    Seconda dell’ora, the hour, l’heure, la hora
    Si lascia il lavoro, work, le travail, el trabajo
    Si può dire che è la notte, night la nuit, la noche
    O si puè dire che è il giorno, day, le jour, el día.


  2. TuLife

    “Calling It a Day”
    By: Tuere Aisha

    So weary waiting for love’s lullaby
    So pale pining for my sweetie pie
    So over hoping that solitude will die
    So sapped solving how dreams go awry

    Think I’ll let time have its way
    Concede to keep my needs at bay
    Resolved to calling it a day

  3. Alaska Christina

    At Days’ End

    The cool, damp dew caresses my neck
    as we lay in a field of sweet clover.
    Long branches stretch across the horizon
    my hand caressing that of my lover.
    The call of the raven echoes the beat of our hearts
    and we’re lulled to sleep as the robin sings.
    White, fluffy clouds dance across the blue skies
    while nymphs of the woods do foresty things.

  4. Emma

    To myself, a reminder to get out when you can

    It’s ok to walk away.
    When things get toxic,
    Leave. Because you cannot quit your own mind.
    Not whilst living anyway.
    Don’t stay surrounded by
    People who feed off the drama of
    Your troubles like parasites
    Yet do not care about your suffering.
    (They will remind you how your
    Body will betray you,
    Undo itself into malignity,
    But will not hold you when it does,
    When you reach out for someone
    Stable to cling to)
    You are flesh and blood but
    Your eyes shine so bright.
    If you do not learn to leave,
    They’ll take your light.
    They’ll suck you dry.

  5. PenConnor

    I’m longing for you;
    my flesh trembles for your touch–
    my mind chases you.
    This hunger interrupts my
    day. I can’t work for wanting.

    This long day is done,
    hastened by such fantasies.
    You’ve been on my mind.
    Come to bed, and find me here.
    I will be waiting for you.

  6. BezBawni

    End of the World

    let’s call it the final day
    when everything is no more
    a minute of no time

    when troubles have gone away
    together with joy, and we
    have stopped and stared in awe

    today we will feel no pain
    no dreams will inspire us
    no treasure will cost a dime

    there will be no friends or foes
    no wars or pointless feuds
    all struggles will cease, all tears

    come, people of Earth, don’t fear
    let’s call it a day, or else
    let’s rather not speak at all
    by Lucretia Amstell

  7. seingraham


    Alright, I get it…the whole “calling it a day” thing
    But, maybe it’s too late, or I’ve tried writing too many poems today
    I’m getting giddy or something but it’s striking me funny
    I don’t want to “call it a day” –
    Maybe I want to call it, “ode to a month of poems”
    Or “verses times thirty” or some other lame thing
    You see what I mean…
    It makes as much sense as “calling it a day”, doesn’t it?
    Or not.
    Maybe I better just hang it up before I get in over my head.
    Whatever that means, she said.

  8. Linda Hatton

    Calling it a Day (For Us)

    The opposing end of this pencil
    lead me to eraser-dusted love
    lettering, emotions too young to travel
    from thought to tongue, resolve
    too weak to roll good with bye,
    tears so familiar they’ve taken
    your place, curled up next to my sobbing
    heart, keeping me comfortable at night
    when earthshakes threaten to steal away
    my asylum, found only in this worn-down nub.

    -Linda G Hatton

    1. Linda Hatton

      Calling it a Day (For Us)

      The opposing end of this pencil
      le(a)d me to eraser-dusted love
      lettering, emotions too young to travel
      from thought to tongue, resolve
      too weak to roll good with bye,
      tears so familiar they’ve taken
      your place, curled up next to my sobbing
      heart, keeping me comfortable at night
      when earthshakes threaten to steal away
      my asylum, found only in this worn-down nub.

      Edited version: Just added some parentheses in there. 😀

  9. Linda Hatton

    I’ve been very resistant to writing this poem, I think because I didn’t want the challenge to end. While I did not have much time for interaction here, which I regret, this has been the best PAD for me as far as my personal growth in various ways. Thank you so much, Robert, for putting it all together and running it!

    (I was going to post my poem, but I’m still not happy with it! Argh!) 🙂

  10. gibbslissy


    the day is over,
    isn’t it though?
    Say it isn’t so

    I didn’t do this or that or twenty other things
    Draw a line and call it quits,
    whatever you do
    you better not go on the fritz.

    Stay calm and don’t forget(s)
    to flip the page
    to tomorrow’s day,
    so you can
    Call it quits

    for real.

    Elissa Gibbons

  11. LeighSpencer

    Calling it a Day

    Thirteen hours
    on my feet

    Dealing with the ridiculous things
    rich people care about

    Like name tags
    table assignments
    and the crunch of the crème brulee

    The Dean got drunk
    slurred speech
    turned all the talking points
    into curves

    Wallets opened anyway
    so, a toast to that!

    I would gladly have traded
    my $100 plate of fish
    (and crunchy crème brulee)
    for cheap pizza and cartoons
    with my non-jet-set
    who don’t care about nametags
    or seating assignments
    except for who gets to sit next to mama
    on the couch

    in bed that night
    I said
    “My god, it feels so good to be back here with you!”

    My husband said he missed me too

    I told him
    “Honey, I love you, but just now?
    I was talking to my pillow.”

  12. Linda.H

    sometimes you call it a day way before evening arrives

    Her Saturday Afternoon Activity

    Upon the flower-patterned sofa,
    wide and well-cushioned,
    she nestles in to nap,
    her aching bones
    slowly sinking
    into the refuge
    of pillows.

  13. Angie5804

    Some say
    Calling it a day
    I give way

    To calling it a year
    I’m done with fear
    Time’s just too dear

    Some say that’s it
    I quit
    But I submit

    It’s time for change
    To rearrange
    Time to exchange

    All things sad
    For all things glad
    In joy be clad

    Angie Bell

  14. LCaramanna

    Day’s End

    Birds chorus a twilight tune
    of tweets and twitters,
    a farewell concert to light of day.
    In harmony with street lamp illumination,
    a good night lullaby lingers
    as twilight wanes.
    With a simple refrain
    of tweets and twitters
    songbirds serenade day’s end.

  15. aphotic soul

    The Drifter – In loving memory of Anne and Joe Ryan
    by Paul Andrew Ryan

    It was cloud stained sky, that mid October day,
    The sun was hot and the air – dry, down amongst the Bodega Bay,
    And that’s where I met him, this drifter per say,
    He had a severed limb, and walked with a sway,
    There he stood, staring off into the sea,
    Carrying a burnt piece of drift wood, a mark of his tragedy,
    And as I gazed at him in his solitary still, he resembled a once great – chopped down tree,
    Broken of all hope and will, and further more I’m sure he’d agree,
    There he continued to stand, the ghost of a guardian specter,
    “Excuse me” I posed while my feet dipped in the scorching hot sand,
    “I don’t mean to bother nor hector…”
    Then he turned to me, his face filled with such a loss and woe,
    Of a torment I could not hope to see, of a loss I would not hope to know,
    My words froze dead in their tracks, and the world held its breath,
    ‘So this is someone for who’s soul he lacks, so this is the true meaning of death…’
    For the man who stood before me, was a man I had never met,
    A face that I can still see, but never know – to my regret,
    The portrait of a man with a unique mind, who took dull objects and made them shine,
    Giving a glimpse of beauty to the blind, while his face and heart did not align,
    “Grandpa Joe..” I sputtered, my voice a raspy chill,
    “Why hello Paul” he muttered, with a bemused smile frozen still,
    He then turned back, staring off into the sea,
    Getting back on track, waiting for his loved one to be free,
    I walked up beside him, amidst the forming chill,
    The sky darkened and the sun went dim, and there he stayed – standing still,
    “You’ve been waiting for her all this time?”, I asked with a queryless question,
    He softly spoke, “She is my sublime, without her there can be no secession,”
    “Are you able to see her out amongst the ocean, or is it the waves at which you glare?”
    “I see it all in slow motion, the past and present in which we always share,
    The smiles on her face, as well as the loneliness in her which I could not spare,
    But soon that will be gone without a trace, and we will again be a pair,
    For forever we will embrace, and past this ocean we will stare,
    Where infinity is stuck in place, and together we will be there,”
    And as if by queue, a young woman came wandering,
    The luminescence again grew, and we both stared at her pondering,
    That’s when it clicked, and Joe’s face broke into a heart warmed smile,
    He rushed to her quick, for it had been quite a while,
    And before my eyes I saw him reform, into that great man he had been,
    I watched the two of them transform, as they dove into the ocean therein,
    And there I stood staring, with my own little bemused grin,
    For I had never met a couple more caring, who could shine so deeply from within,
    I smiled at the ocean and bid my farewell, for with a new journey they begin,
    For death isn’t something wherein we should dwell, for life is not meant to win.

  16. IndiFox

    All I Knew

    Call it an ending
    A so long
    Or a farewell
    Call it what you will
    My mind is too confused
    As I’m trying to find my way
    Back to myself
    Because all I knew – was you

    See the beginning
    Was not like the ending
    You were charming
    Not condescending
    We were happy
    We connected well
    And months went by
    With no trouble at all

    Then small things
    Hidden behind the eyes
    Behaviour changes
    And rules put in place
    But I was too dumb to notice
    Far too in love to take heed
    Of all the warnings
    Given to me

    More months went by
    Problems emerged
    You tighten the leash
    And I just stood by
    Watching my friends
    Getting taken from me
    Turning to you
    For all my company

    Then all of a sudden
    You were sweet again
    So I thought it was a rough patch
    That we passed through
    Little did I know it was just a ruse
    One day we’d be fighting
    The next was talk of marriage
    Still, I held onto you

    By day, I’d defend you to others
    By night, I’d put up with your shit
    Little pains
    Pains I could handle
    Waiting for my prince to emerge
    Out of the soulless bastard that you were
    Not knowing that I was only staying
    Because I was far too afraid to leave

    Then one day everything changed
    You hurt the person
    I love the most in this world
    So I knew it was time to go
    And you can call it what you will
    An ending, a good riddance
    But I’ve found my way back
    When all I knew – was you

  17. Margie Fuston

    First Date

    I didn’t think it would be like this:
    me standing on fake grass,
    watching you aim your ball
    into a tiny cup as a group of kids
    squeal like stuck pigs and run
    around a scratched-up clown head
    one hole in front of us.
    You try to hold my hand as we walk
    from hole to hole, bumping me
    with your pretend 9 iron
    as you point to a yellow-haired girl
    with purple-candy stained lips
    and say: She could be ours one day.
    I resist the urge to puke in hole
    number 6 of an endless course.
    I think we should just call it a day
    before it’s time to call it a night.

  18. Shennon

    It’s time to call it a day
    au revoir
    It’s time to call it a night
    bon soir
    It’s time to call it quits
    c’est fini
    It’s time to have a drink
    du vin ou martini?


  19. Heidi


    Tonight the trees whisper.

    The moon’s silver spray
    dances on you as your feet
    dip into the cool ripples
    of a season’s change.

    Tonight the trees whisper.

    Autumn slips into our lives
    a soft song the crickets sing
    of new beginnings and the
    heartache of years past

    wither and drop from
    limbs of a life now changing.
    Tears wash your feet as this
    door shuts into silence.

    Tonight the trees whisper.

    Heidi R. de Contreras

  20. mshall

    Day 30
    Four minutes to midnight
    Now I lay me down to sleep
    I pray to lord my soul to keep
    Far from my hips the cake I ate

    Three minutes to midnight
    If I should die before I awake
    I pray The Lord my soul to take
    The wrinkles from round my eyes

    Two minutes to midnight
    Now I lay me down, I cannot sleep
    A hunger through my soil runs deep
    As I strive for perfection superficial

    One minute to midnight
    Would I die and not awake
    Peace with my body, my head will make
    I’ll finally have my fitting clothes

    Time marches on with steadiness
    Cares not for mortal restlessness
    Only death can bring a solemn rest
    Ending the worries of the best

  21. PSC in CT

    Vacation, Day 1 Succumbs

    The sun sets westward into the bay,
    moon rising behind, over the ocean.
    Calypso music gambols, glides,
    buoyed on the silky breeze.
    Toes settle into sand.
    You sip, savor a swallow
    of fruity, coconut concoction,
    inhale the salt scents,
    exhale your last care, spent.


  22. LeeAnne Ellyett

    Calling it a Day,

    It’s sad to say,
    It’s the last day,
    Thirty days of prompts,
    What a romp,
    My first go,
    Amongst you pro’s,

    of brilliant prose,
    rhyme, haiku,
    words that grow,

    I’m glad to say,
    I’m not calling it a day,
    Poeming away,
    Imagination on display,
    To bare our souls,
    To make us whole,

    of free verse,
    rhythm, lyric,
    Poetic Curse?

  23. Azma

    I scanned the table
    studded with the beauties on platters
    Finally! some excitement at this party!
    I picked up the plate
    which seemed like the largest serving
    I moved with dainty swiftness
    trying to hide my eagerness
    and started at the masterpiece made with finesse
    I was lost instantly
    in the alluring delicacy
    and got back only when
    the plate was wiped clean
    I went for seconds
    and then for thirds
    each bite more enthralling
    than the last
    At the end of the fourth serving
    I realized
    people noticed
    My gulping down
    had become less lady like
    My tender berry lipstick
    was now fudge
    My mauve lacy gown
    had a loud irritable chocolate drop
    and my insides
    couldn’t take any more sugar
    That’s when i decided
    to call it a day

    -Azma Sheikh

  24. d dyson

    We painted the wall apple green because I liked it.
    We lived on your land because you owned it.
    We met each other in a strange foreign place because fate chose it.
    We wrote letters filled with love because we wanted to believe in it.
    We spent hours talking on the phone because our hearts wanted it.
    We drank each other’s words because we yearned for it.
    We sat for miles in silence because our mouths ordered it.
    We spent more and more time apart because your work insisted on it.
    We decided for me to leave (secretly we both hoped for it).
    We called it a day eventually because our lives depended on it.

  25. FaerieTalePoet

    Closing Time

    It’s not what you see.
    It’s what you don’t see.
    What goes on once the door is locked.
    Cashiers sweep and place products back on shelves.
    The manager collects the drawers,
    wheels them into the back room,
    locks them away,
    to be counted in the morning.
    Computers are turned off.
    Trashcans are emptied into giant dumpsters.
    These are the things you could guess at,
    the procedurals.
    But when the door locks behind the last customer,
    something else happens.
    The workers become people again.
    You hear the laughter of inside jokes,
    the sighs of those who find themselves weary.
    You may even spy the clandestine kiss of cohabitating coworkers.
    You hear stories about people’s kids,
    and about their parents.
    Students talk about what they’re studying in their off hours.
    At closing time stores come to life
    in a way most people would never imagine
    and no that isn’t a joke about mannequins.

    Dana A. Campbell

  26. Nanamaxtwo

    There Is Never Any End to Paris
    A Moveable Feast

    I hold memory of each person
    we met on the streets, in salons
    cafes, wine like a food
    when we were young
    holding my liquor carefully
    a pad of paper and stub
    of pencil writing good work
    as if we would always be young
    poor and very happy
    remembering Paris

  27. Connie Inglis


    I’m calling it a day
    a year
    a lifetime
    with this terminal

    I lie in bed defining
    verbs and nouns, unable to

    “Call it a day,” I whisper
    I state
    I explete;
    my mind refuses

    The linguist responds:
    logolepsy–the awe-full

  28. beachanny

    Commencement’s No Ending

    Your years at school are coming to a close.
    So difficult to leave and say goodbye.
    In your young life, this time was as you chose.
    By concentrating on this stage of life
    you studied courses you should know about.
    You found the friends who satisfied your needs,
    you conquered insecurities and doubt.
    You met those challenges with skill and ease.
    Your path ahead is buried in the mist;
    more choices there will limit what you’ll do.
    For now, depend upon experience,
    and those you love and trust who love you too.

    Accept your future’s the oyster’s pearl.
    You’re meant to be a leader in this world!

    Gay Reiser Cannon

  29. Mustang Sal

    One Yankee’s Prayer

    Lord, if you’re about to call the whole
    ballgame, please give me one more hit.
    Let me tag all the bases.
    Forget all my strikeouts.
    Forgive my errors.
    And then let me
    slide safely

  30. GirlGriot

    every space,
    reminding us
    of childhood rhymes.
    their promised
    apple blossoms,
    and lilacs. Fresh, clear
    of Spring.
    Water calls,
    this season to bloom.

  31. Daniel Paicopulos

    Closing Lines

    Memorial Day is devoted
    to the dead, to those who fell,
    long before their natural closing hour.

    Too many have fallen
    for the sake of the living,
    and for concepts oft forgotten.

    It’s the duty of the living
    to remember the dead,
    to feel blessed by their parting gift.

    We can honor the dead
    by caring for their families,
    and for their comrades, left behind.

    Our most useful, caring duty
    is to never forget,
    even as the nation seeks to heal.

    With war still fresh upon us,
    we can still strive for peace,
    yet never forget the dead, those who fell.

  32. robinamelia

    Call it a Night: a Pantoum

    Let’s call it a night or the end of an era
    We’ve been as fabulous as Fitzgerald legends
    Call it another fragrant dissolution
    We’ll always dream of what’s not done

    We’ve been as fabulous as Fitzgerald legends
    Let’s call it a terabyte of mortality
    We’ll always dream of what’s not done
    Name it our bright forgotten baby

    Let’s call it a terabyte of mortality
    Let the day pass through eternity’s wringer
    Name it our bright forgotten baby
    Entering the wormhole of wet bathing suits

    Let the day pass through eternity’s wringer
    Gripped by paroxysms of paralysis
    Entering the wormhole of wet bathing suits
    Watching cell phone videos of tornadoes

    Gripped by paroxysms of paralysis
    The utter truth made manifest
    Watching cell phone videos of tornadoes
    Confirming it all spins past so fast

    The utter truth made manifest
    Let’s call it a night or the end of an era
    Confirming it all spins past so fast
    Call it another fragrant dissolution

    Let’s call it a night or the end of an era
    We’ve been as fabulous as Fitzgerald legends
    Call it another fragrant dissolution
    We’ll always dream of what’s not done

    Robin Amelia Morris

  33. BDP

    Thank you to everyone for a memorable Poem-a-Day April. And a special warm thanks to Robert for hosting us and for his encouragement. This has been my second year on this site in April, and it’s full of splendid poets. I’m in awe.


    “One More Scrawl”

    Dear Dave: The Stuttgart Expo spotlit homage to a French
    surrealist’s book of poems: signed names on frontispiece,
    indelible black starbursts, penworks on display
    in clear glass case. Miró, Picasso, Ernst, Chagall,

    twelve others who could swing for big bucks off the bench,
    a dead team’s autographs—crabbed hand, looped, swept, neat freak.
    In these thick, quick, light, dotted swipes I saw heyday,
    each signature a lens that widened to a style,

    which segued me to thinking of a scholar’s hunch:
    Napoleon was nuts before his shock and awe defeats.
    The library could sync up dates of ink swords—way
    fried brain, then battles. You’ll see. Tomorrow Schiphol,

    I’m home, will catch you soon. And paint my cursive, please.
    I’d love to know your eye view. Just don’t turn my pairs to threes.

    –Barb Peters

  34. jsmadge

    Thank you, Robert, for 30 days of oppportunity. Thanks to everyone for making me feel less alone in poetry.

    Day’s End

    After the whirring winds down,
    Whether lathe
    Or shop fan
    Or wheels in your head,
    All stretch and walk away.

    As the last bus pulls away
    You sit, temple against glass,
    Eyes watching others watch you.

    The overness of day lies
    On each mouth,
    Worn but sure,
    As if to smirk at death
    Once more, ha-ha singsong, I won.

    Jo Steigerwald


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