2017 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 2

Yesterday was fun, but we’ve got plenty of poeming left to do this month!

For today’s prompt, write a disguise poem. In our neck of the woods, we just finished celebrating Halloween, which is all about wearing disguising (and begging for candy). But there are also spies, practical jokes, and other reasons to wear disguises. Plus, some people disguise their true selves on their online social media profiles–not to mention all the disguises used by plants, animals, and insects in the natural world.


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Here’s my attempt at a Disguise Poem:

“if i say”

i never cared for you
would you believe me

or would you consider
it another hidden meaning

one word disguised as another
& if i say that i cared for you

but not your actions
would my words seem cloaked

or would you understand
i can feel two ways at once


Robert Lee Brewer

Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of the poetry collection, Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). He edits Poet’s Market and Writer’s Market, in addition to writing a free weekly WritersMarket.com newsletter and a poetry column for Writer’s Digest magazine.

He’s not sure if he disguises his words, but they do often have multiple personalities, which may be the same thing. Completely unrelated, he dressed as Bob Wiley from the early 90s film “What About Bob” for Halloween this year.

Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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263 thoughts on “2017 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 2

  1. Janet Rice Carnahan


    Appearing perhaps to mesmerize
    I found deep calm in his eyes
    His gentle touch, no surprise
    A true love, I’d come to recognize
    Sweet affection no one buys
    In time, though, dreaded lies
    Stripped away, an old disguise
    In time, each tear dries
    I know once more,
    My heart will rise!

  2. MET

    This was fun to write and one of my favorite memories

    Ma’s Big Disguise

    It was a Halloween Party
    At our church… before
    Those things were frowned on
    By those who thought they knew better, but
    It was a country church, and
    We loved each other, and
    It was great fun.
    Ma pulled out of a bag a red wig, and
    From her mouth she said,
    Make me up as a lady of ill repute.
    I struggled to keep a straight face, but
    Ma was Ma, and if she wanted to go as that
    Who was I to tell her what a good respecting
    Woman of substance and good character
    Could disguise herself for one night.
    I found a couple of rhinestone broaches
    To pin on her dress and on her hat…
    A ghastly hat of electric blue
    A feather and a net was on one side
    Where did she have this and the red wig hidden?
    Ma seldom allowed makeup, but
    For her debut as a fallen woman
    She wore the brightest blue eye shadow
    I possessed and lipstick that rubies would envy.
    She stood still as I took her picture, and
    Off we went… Da was a hunchback
    Did a double take of his wife and her unladylike attire, and
    Me… well, I went as a saloon girl…
    We had great fun and everyone laughed at Ma:
    She even won the prize,
    For which she danced some of the Charleston,
    And they clapped at her antics.
    Her faced beamed
    As she showed the pictures,
    But her sisters fussed, and
    Somehow, I got the blame
    For leading Ma astray.

    Me, well I saw that we all
    Can be something we aren’t
    Every now and then,
    As long as the disguise
    Is known to be a disguise,
    And now how we really are.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    November 2, 2017

    1. MET

      missed a word… now in the last line should have been not… dang this brain of mine just does not see things but sees much more than most in other ways…

      1. MET

        thanks and my mother was such a character…and it was wonderful most of the time to be her daughter… but I was the most difficult child she had something she told me the first time she did not recognize me..

  3. seingraham


    She is the epitome of cool,
    in charge, and in control
    Fully able to delegate,
    get things done,
    while maintaining a status quo
    others can only envy.
    And all the while, she stays level-
    headed, kind, and compassionate;
    never raises her voice,
    is understanding and patient.
    But, as measured as her actions
    seem – as calm and even her tone…

    Be careful you don’t study her face
    too closely, especially the too-quick
    too-wide smiles, the ones that
    never reach her eyes.
    Oh – those eyes; try not to peer
    into her eyes – as lovely as they are,
    and they are that—the depths found
    there are bottomless, and will chill
    you in ways that will make you
    infinitely unwarm – your soul
    will shrink back from whatever lives
    there and pray no further contact
    is upcoming.

    You will know the veil has slipped,
    and a well of sadness is about to overflow.
    Depart, depart now.

  4. Valkyri


    Tonight’s the full moon.
    I know which mask
    I will wear tonight…
    the black silk stockings,
    the thigh high boots,
    the long belted coat
    and not much else.
    I will wear this
    mask only for you.
    Who am I tonight?
    Tonight I will be
    yours – the lover archetype.
    The moon knows this –
    my secret masked life.
    When the sun rises
    my mask will be
    back in the nightstand
    (hidden, where it belongs).
    The sun sees only
    the wife, the mother.
    Our next date night?
    The next full moon.
    I love the moon.
    My eyes reflect her.
    She keeps my secrets.
    She keeps them well.

  5. Erbiage

    Can this poem be a window, not a mask?
    Can we bask in that task, 
    Like lions in long grass
    Drink from the flask of lying?
    Or smash that cask at last
    Open this window wider than it’s wall?

  6. Walter J Wojtanik

    Deez Guys

    Deez guys is putrid,
    deez guys is bums,
    deez guys ain’t got no brains dey’s so dumb.

    Deez guys got no class,
    deez guys don’t know nuttin’,
    deez guys ain’t got no lip dey should button.

    Deez guy think dey’s funny,
    deez guys don’t look tough,
    deez guys jus’ don’t know when enuff is enuff.

    Deez guys ain’t got jobs,
    deez guys hang in mobs,
    deez guys is indubitably big fat slobs.

    Deez guy don’t talk good,
    dey’s got made up names.
    Deez guys got the hots for dem lower east side dames.

    Deez guys could dress up
    but a woid to the wise.
    If dey looks any better, it’s just a disguise.

  7. Melanie

    if only you could count
    you’d know there’s an
    imposter in the nest
    it matches every other egg
    in size, colour and speckle
    and when it hatches
    love blinds you and you
    tell yourself it’s yours
    didn’t you have a big boned cousin once
    with a healthy appetite?
    you don’t face up to the cuckoo

  8. robinamelia

    2: Disguise: Greylock Glen

    Midway up the tallest hill in Massachusetts,
    hidden among birches and oaks,
    cloaked in vines and mist, I almost pass

    without noticing something amiss.
    Like the trees that surround, they seem
    to have grown upward towards the sun

    but closer, I see they have never been shorter
    than they are now, always either red or green,
    though once the paint was fresh, not rusted and peeled.

    Not wood at all, these trees, but metal:
    remnants of abandoned ski lifts
    strange statues that let me know I am almost

    back from the hike, having trudged up and down
    on two legs, not sliding or riding:
    the lifts are silent and alone.

  9. Linda Rhinehart Neas


    Wigged, with clothes
    worn to create an illusion
    that surreptitiously allows
    access to the hospital room,
    where a relative
    lies dying,
    she is invisible.

    The risk is great.
    If those who have made
    hate the law,
    recognize her, the least result-
    prison. The most –
    death. Yet, she risks
    for love, for family,
    for all that is right and holy.

    Miraculously, undetected by those
    who have persecuted her people,
    she returns
    to her new home
    in a land across the ocean,
    where Liberty still stands –
    symbol of freedom and hope.

  10. Pat Walsh

    disguised as evening
    by Patrick J. Walsh

    In sorrow
    days arrive confused
    disguised as evening
    even in the shallow
    light of the afternoon

    the night
    masked in black sky
    deceives the autumn
    with a rustle of leaves
    already on the ground

    and we
    carry on abundantly
    dressed still in summer
    to disavow the dark
    until the sun returns

  11. De Jackson

    ’Dis Guise

    ’Dis poem is a tired crumbling
    mask, the last
    attempt at saying something
    that might be worth
    without unveiling
    my whole dark heart.

    She wears a clown nose
    and giant shoes for her un
    -iambic feet. She’s losing
    her marbles
    (aggies, shooters, mibs, all)
    for the call
    of that most madly moon.

    Too soon,
    you’ll see that she has no
    face. It’s been erased by corset
    and cause and the effective
    use of spray paint,

    She’s given up
    thrones and former names.
    She’s watched clouds
    of witnesses storm her gates.
    She’s cloaked and veiled
    screened behind
    one too many blinds.

    This poem is done playing
    dress up. She’s ready for her
    close up. Her own stage. Her time.


  12. thunk2much


    I walk into the warmth
    of this, my older age,
    peeling off the scarf layers
    of protection I’ve worn out
    in the cold.
    I’d forgotten what I look like
    stripped down to naked skin
    and I don’t recall
    choosing those layers
    that never did fit me
    like a glove.

  13. dittman

    The Shame Mask
    “In Walton on Thames, in England, a scold’s bridle, dated 1633, is displayed in the vestry of the church, with the inscription ‘Chester presents Walton with a bridle, To curb women’s tongues that talk too idle.'”

    Imagine the weight even more than the humiliation.
    Gravity’s chafe bites rust into skin;
    the sheer mass presses like an untold secret and
    tears the scalps of witches, gossips, shrews, and scolds.

    The bit gouges the tongue to remind the brave
    that there are things men prefer unsaid
    truths better whispered
    from woman to women, mother to daughter
    than brought, stinking like stale laundry, into the air.

        1. cassandrascurse

          For me, “laundry” veers dramatically from the story you’re telling. Having loved horses, and been as gentle as possible with the bit, that element of control still always bothered me. This captures my misgivings beautifully. For what it’s worth.

  14. MichelleMcEwen

    Prom Queen

    Next Halloween
    gonna be a prom queen

    even though
    I got gray hair


    even though
    I’m hot one minute

    the next

    even though
    I get stuck

    in sukhasana

    even though
    I’m finding it harder

    to recall those things
    that be on the tip

    of my tongue

    even though
    my boobs are not young

    my nipples
    still seventeen though

    my ass
    still seventeen though

    these jeans
    still seventeen though

    my lips
    still seventeen though

    my heart
    feels seventeen though

  15. bartonsmock

    [in me the pristine bearing of her later mark]

    some medicines / don’t work / how lonely

    change diapers

    you invent

    suicide, all those dates I didn’t

    formless herself, she makes an image. animals

    were the end
    of god

  16. candy

    Thin Disguise

    she slips on her disguise –
    it fits her like a silky red chemise
    hiding imperfections
    a disguise so perfect
    no one will see her true self
    the self filled with anxiety
    the self consumed by insecurities
    her smile and tinkling laugh
    hide the darkness

  17. Walter J Wojtanik

    HO, HO, WHO?

    All throughout history
    there’s been no mystery
    because why would one of the nice guys
    go around in such a disguise?

    Who would perpetrate such a ploy
    all for just one special night?
    Wearing a beard that’s long and white
    You’d think it must be…?

    But, you can’t be certain.
    You can’t be blurtin’ out just any name
    for all of the fame I gain in boots and a suit of red!
    I am no ordinary “Fred”. I must be…

    Can I? With this long cap on my head
    that matches this suit of red…
    the one I wear on that special night?
    It’s this beard of white! It’s so darn bright!

    Must be you’ve seen me many time before.
    Still you might know me by my beard, my clothes,
    my cherry nose, this rousing refrain
    of Ho, Ho, Ho’s? Who am I? I’m the guy

    that soon will come your way.
    Riding astride a reindeer sleigh with
    Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen,
    Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen and Sid

    I’m not so well hidden.
    And I am not forbidden to say.
    The clues are there
    for all of you to choose…

    Beard of white.
    Special night.
    Suit of Red.
    Cap on head.

    Cherry nose.
    Ho, Ho, Ho’s.
    Reindeer sleigh.
    On my way!

    Must be… I am Santa Clause

    # Walter J. Wojtanik

      1. cassandrascurse

        Thank you. I was anxious to move along, after seeing the copperhead. Just so my girl wouldn’t track back to me, and find it. Beautiful snakes, splendidly adapted. And slow to aggression, thankfully.

      2. cassandrascurse

        I was anxious to move on, after seeing the copperhead….lest my girl run back to me and find it. Gorgeous snakes, beautifully adapted for autumn leaves. And slow to aggression, thankfully.

    1. dittman

      I really like the way the second and third lines scan, especially in contrast to the fourth and fifth. “in your perfect skin” is an ideal way to capture the beauty of something so menacing (I feel like it would make a great title for a collection as well).

      1. cassandrascurse

        Thank you so much! I’m jealous of your poem. Pretty much the highest praise I have on offer. This is a “free-wheeling” tanka. Third line serves as a “pivot” between the first, and last, two.

    2. MET

      reminds me of copperheads and the one that was in my house about a month ago and I saw my cat playing with it… fortunately it was small and I got it outside to kill it…

  18. Earl Parsons

    The Star of the Show

    Down and out with little to believe in
    The bottom of the barrel his new home
    The weight and guilt from his long life of sin
    He surrendered to the Give-Up-Syndrome

    His life flashed before him; oh, what a ride
    The stages he’d played on around the world
    Band mates so faithfully stuck by his side
    The lights, the money, the fame, and the girls

    Then one long lost memory came to light
    A young strug’ling singer; nowhere to go
    Drunk and strung out, she walked into his life
    She promised he’d be the star of the show

    He traded his soul for a life of fame
    Now she’s back to collect, in Satan’s name

    © 2017 Earl Parsons

  19. KM

    Imagine this: you’re standing at the edge of a mountain lake. All your clothes are at the shore and you step one foot into the water. You’re surprised to feel warmth. Not the shock of cold you were expecting. The water feels like perfect bathwater, a comfort, and it reminds you of something from your childhood you can’t name or explain, but feel ticking at the edge of memory. You wiggle your toes and take another step in, then another, until the water is up to your waist. You feel the smooth rocks beneath your feet and look down to see your legs, your toes, slightly shimmering. You hear a small splash and watch to see what has made the sound. But there is nothing, or nothing that wants to be seen. You crouch down, water to your neck, your long hair begins to float and spread around your head. You continue down, warm water to your lips, your eyes, until your whole self is submerged. Submerged, you think, what a beautiful word — below and with the water. You keep your eyes closed and imagine your skin, translucent. For what is it really except a lifelong disguise? Your whole body becomes clear liquid, until there is no body at all. And as long as you remain still, you do not need to think or breathe. You do not need anything.

    – Kim Mannix

  20. JRSimmang


    When the snow stops,
    can we watch the waters run
    from the mountain to the rivers?

    We’ll sit there alongside the
    Did she just hear the dry twigs snap?

    I’ve often wandered myself
    back through the snow,
    unaware that I am a clue,
    though my ears
    cannot hear the
    silent footfalls of the fox,

    so silent
    that they leave no tracks,
    no trace,
    that the pups
    back in the den
    are silently craving
    and silently clawing
    and silently wishing
    for the winter to bring them
    the dream of fullness,

    if foxes dream of fullness like we do…

    Did she hear the
    felled twig snap?

    Her body is a seed,
    and the snow is her thought.
    How I wish I could become the air around me,

    though still separate enough to be able to feel the air around me,

    though still separate enough to be your breath in front of you,

    did she hear the dry twig snap?

    Her body is white;
    I am not sure if that is a metaphor,

    but when the snows go,
    while we sit on the edge of the Spring River,
    let’s watch for the rabbit and the

    fox who has not eaten
    since winter.

    -JR Simmang

  21. JanetRuth

    To The Mister That Kissed Her With Years…

    The hardest part of you is me
    Grappling with awareness
    Of what will never be

    The gladdest part of me is you
    Whispering the kindness
    Of dreams not come true

  22. Daniel Paicopulos


    In his daily search
    for calm, peace, ease,
    even happiness,
    (though he knows that to be a false goal),
    he disguises himself as a poet,
    a spinner of yarns,
    a writer of maybe’s,
    a frail human with hopes.
    He’s been called charming,
    yet he knows anyone
    can seem like that
    for short public stretches.
    Some people think he’s witty,
    but he knows
    that just comes from good reading.
    A few friends know him as kind,
    and that one he accepts as true,
    failing sometimes in the attempt,
    but always trying.
    Forgetting the frequent façade,
    he simply does his daily work,
    lives his life,
    tries to give good to the world.
    Oh, and he keeps in touch.
    People know that’s keeping it a hundred.
    His friends like that.

  23. Walter J Wojtanik


    When you come disguised as love it seems
    I always fall for your deception.
    And it feels like I get lost in your dreams
    when you come disguised as love. It seems
    your pulse reaches me just like bright moon beams
    (at least that is my perception)
    When you come disguised as love it seems
    I always fall for your deception.

    Next up, the divine De Jackson!

    1. De Jackson

      Hi, Walt! Gauntlet accepted! 🙂


      I always fall for your deception
      (for are not masks what make the man?)
      Perhaps it is my skewed perception,
      but I always fall for your deception.
      It’s like the tumbling of inception,
      even though falling wasn’t part of the plan.
      I always fall for your deception
      (for are not masks what make the man?)

      1. Walter J Wojtanik


        Masks are not what make the man,
        The dapper guy’s the wisest.
        To the nines the best he can,
        masks are not what make the man.
        For flashy men are in demand
        at least that’s the way his disguise is.
        Masks are not what make the man,
        The dapper guy’s the wisest.

        1. De Jackson

          Sharp-dressed Man

          The dapper guy’s the wisest,
          so long as you don’t count his shoes.
          He’s got cumberbunds and ties-es,
          yes, the dapper guy’s the wisest.
          Oh, his wisdom’s got surprises,
          though his suedes have got the blues.
          The dapper guy’s the wisest,
          so long as you don’t count his shoes.

          1. Walter J Wojtanik

            BEST DANCED MAN

            So long as you don’t count his shoes,
            his two left feet will dance all night.
            Any dance that you might choose
            so long as you don’t count his shoes.
            ‘Cause barefoot boy will get the blues
            those two left feet aren’t right,
            So long as you don’t count his shoes,
            His two left feet will dance all night

          2. De Jackson

            Bozo’s Slow Dance

            His two left feet will dance all night
            in giant clown shoes, sliding slow.
            As the moon disguises light,
            his two left feet will dance all night
            and make the stars put up a fight.
            While we’re all watching down below,
            his two left feet will dance all night
            in giant clown shoes, sliding slow.

          3. Walter J Wojtanik


            In giant clown shoes, sliding slow,
            a most cantankerous dance,
            He shuffled off to Buffalo
            in giant clown shoes, sliding slow.
            It was the way to go through snow
            and he had to take that chance,
            In giant clown shoes, sliding slow,
            a most cantnkerous dance.

          4. De Jackson

            Two Faced

            A most cantankerous dance
            begins each time she dons the mask.
            She doesn’t give her self a chance;
            oh, it’s a most cantankerous dance,
            to find her now with just one glance
            is quite impossible a task.
            A most cantankerous dance
            begins each time she dons the mask.

          5. Walter J Wojtanik


            Each time she dons the mask, it begins.
            She has a different face to mark her mood.
            Her countenance disguises all her sins,
            and each time she dons the mask, it begins.
            And despite her varied states she never wins,
            You can’t discern the evil from the good.
            Each time she dons the mask, it begins.
            She has a different face to mark her mood.

  24. Shennon

    “Show yourself!”
    I shriek,
    to divine a shape.
    Shirking shade,
    desirous that Death
    shed his disguise,
    confront me face to face,
    instead of dancing
    as a shapeless devil,
    designed to
    salvage my soul.


  25. JanetRuth


    You’re a willow-whisper
    A cut to the quick
    Soft as a feather
    And hard as brick

    You stun us with wonder
    Though you never change
    The methodic manner
    Of all you estrange

    You are a padlock
    And a door ajar
    The ethereal bedrock
    Of right where we are

    You trick us with kisses
    And kick us with love
    Where your rite dismisses
    The flight you approve

    With your formless fathoms
    You press and relieve
    For, from you, my darling
    There is no reprieve

    You take while you’re giving
    And grant, breath by breath
    A gift to the living
    Its warranty, death

    You are fancy’s fodder
    Of poem and rhyme
    Yet keep law and order
    You are Father Time

    1. JanetRuth

      argh! as soon as I posted I changed my mind on a few words but I trust this family of word-ers understands:)
      last stanza is tweaked to this
      You are fancy’s fodder
      Of poem and rhyme
      Yet author all order
      You are Father Time

      And the title Author Incognito

  26. annell


    mirror, mirror on the wall      the wicked stepmother     began each day>br>

    asking the mirror if she was the fairest    and today      i consult the mirror

    mirror, mirror who am i…    really    am i who i have always been

    are am i someone else    or am i a different me    tall and slim

    young not old    a woman     or still a girl

    who has walked through fire    broken and repaired     dying slowly

    living days     as if they were gifts    wrapped in colorful paper

    tied with a bow    that cannot be bought     a treasure given

    the mirror gestures…     chuckles    it is not a question of importance

    you are who you are    no questions asked    non answered

    do you think you can step out of you     become someone else     after all

    all the someone’s else are taken    you are perfectly you     your wishes granted

    November 2, 2017

  27. ReathaThomasOakley

    Guise du jour

    The apothecary buffet
    spread across
    the dressing table
    pots and potions
    elixirs and expectations
    await my decision.
    Who shall I be today.

  28. Eileen S

    1950s Dance

    I went the 1950s dance and wore the fashion of the day;
    a poodle skirt, a ship and shore blouse, a poodle scarf,
    the cat’s eye glasses and my saddle shoes.
    I even had the faux class ring that belonged to my boyfriend.
    Of course, my hair was styled in a ponytail.
    I enjoyed dancing to the music of Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis,
    Little Richard and all the bands of the day.
    I danced so well that people asked me if I lived in that era.
    The answer is yes but I never went to a sock-hop.
    Instead, I used to watch American Bandstand
    in my playpen and rock to the music in my 1950s onesie!
    No poodle skirt, no ship and shore blouse, no poodle scarf,
    no cat’s eye glasses, no saddle shoes, no ring, no ponytail.
    I do remember holding on to the playpen railing and wiggling
    my chubby toddler body to all the rock and roll greats.
    Little did Dick Clark know, he was my babysitter!

  29. _Kirk_


    My old veil is failing
    my flat chest exhaling breast
    tissue beneath my softened skin

    visible every day more than the last;
    thirty-six years passed by without
    dancing because the body wasn’t mine

    to move, or enjoy, my long boyhood
    suffered ardently, willing myself to be normal
    and brutish, war-fueled and male.

    The mask is cracking, too, going smoother
    and hairless, subcutaneously shifting layers
    to cheekbones and eyes, wider

    and wilder blue, the sadness hiding there
    having been plundered by my second puberty,
    the one I should have had

    if my body and my brain had hit it off better
    when they met, instead of adversarily,
    barely agreeing on the particulars of form.

  30. SarahLeaSales

    An Anti-Ode to the Raisin

    When the worried little grape
    was chewed out of its chocolate shell,
    it realized how much it was loathed
    for masquerading as a chocolate chip.
    Though it was not spat upon,
    it was spat out,
    often buried, picked out
    of mounds of peanuts and M&M’s,
    and tossed in the trash.
    So, it used chocolate coating
    as its collagen,
    but no one with any taste
    could be fooled.

    It was still a damn grape.

    1. Marie Elena

      WOW. As I read each line, I went from smiling at the cuteness and creative take, to seeing the deeper, darker, sadder picture. Not only did you describe this “disguise” creatively, but the very poem itself begins well disguised, turning on itself. Just, WOW. A “wish I’d written it.”

  31. Misky


    if my prose
    speaks in tongues,
    are my words
    disguised, and

    is a trap
    a trap
    when sprung
    without a mouse, or

    a teacup when it’s
    filled with coffee, or
    a clock without
    two hands, and

    is it dawn
    if you can’t sleep,
    and is it fear
    without a fright.

    and is your disguise
    real, or not.

  32. Jezzie


    Fashion is not my main priority:
    comfortable clothes mean much more to me.
    I wear smart outfits that are nice and loose.
    Skin tight trousers or skirts are just no use.

    Most of my life I have tried to disguise
    the fact that I’m nearly twice my right size.
    I cannot lose weight – boy, how I have tried.
    I walk everywhere, hardly ever ride.

    I’ve given up wine and everything nice,
    I eat small portions of pasta or rice,
    I eat fish with just a couple of chips,
    sweets and cream cakes don’t pass my lips.

    I eat lots of veg and have fruit for pud
    and only have foods that I know I should.
    I’ve even reduced the size of my plate.
    What else can I do to reduce my weight?

  33. PowerUnit

    The Great Escape

    Even with convincing clothes
    perfectly forged alter-egos
    language training from natives
    and hand-drawn maps of routes
    most of the participants
    never stood a chance.

    The sandy tunnels, sapped
    no watchers’ fingers rapped
    their bodies mere shadows
    of the men they used to be
    slid from the cage at night
    the only way they could fight.

    Rounded up and dragged
    for burlap body bags
    cooled on bread and water
    their escape had been permitted
    to give the Gestapo the right
    long before that fateful night.

  34. taylor graham


    A small masked frog in search of pond –
    a sudden leap before my eyes,
    from wet mop – like a vagabond
    in search of water. Improvise

    he must, in drought. Contrariwise,
    a small masked frog in search of pond
    is loose in kitchen, exercise
    that’s futile; hopping for a frond

    of water-life he knew, beyond:
    some bulrushes, some mud, some flies.
    A small masked frog in search of pond
    has left the pasture where it lies

    dead-brown. How can we exorcise
    his drought? where is the magic wand
    for prince of wetlands in disguise –
    a small masked frog in search of pond?

  35. rlk67

    Nov. The Second

    If you come in second,
    people forget.
    So close, so frustrating!
    You might feel upset.

    Your greatness comes out,
    You disguise your sad face.
    Be happy for others,
    Now YOU”RE in first place!

  36. tmilleroftexas

    The Eight Point
    by Terry Jude Miller

    he wears the forest
    like a second skin
    sends out does
    and fawns to test
    open air

    he earned his rack
    by virtue of accepting
    the cruelty of this world
    as fact

    learning the art
    of silence and scent
    wrapping himself in the brown
    that he cannot distinguish
    from red

  37. RJ Clarken

    What I’m Really Thinking

    “Speech was given to man to disguise his thoughts.” ~Charles Maurice de Tallyrand

    What I say is not what I’m thinking,
    because I’m far too polite.
    You don’t seem to hear; I disappear
    but maybe I shouldn’t, in hindsight.

    I want to say what is on my mind.
    I would love to be candid.
    I disappear; you don’t seem to hear.
    The result is, I just feel stranded.

    So I speak in quiet, placid tones.
    Don’t want to upset the cart.
    You don’t seem to hear; I disappear
    but deep inside, I take it to heart

    and each discussion ends the same way.
    I feel like I don’t have a choice.
    I disappear; you don’t seem to hear.
    Maybe it’s time that I find my voice.



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