2018 April PAD Challenge: Day 7

For today’s prompt, write a senses poem. That is, write a poem that uses one or more of your senses. Smell, taste, touch, sound, sight, or even a sixth sense. Focus in on one of them or try to incorporate them all.

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Here’s my attempt at a Senses Poem:

“end times”

just because a song is long
doesn’t mean it’s good
it’s the three-minute ditties
that get stuck in my head

it was a saturday night
when i saw her standing there
with her blue eyes and bluer hair
that smelled of smoke and alcohol

and true her kisses tasted the same
but she felt like heaven
as we danced fast through the night
until we heard prince’s “purple rain”

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Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). He loves listening to 80s music.

Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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353 thoughts on “2018 April PAD Challenge: Day 7

  1. BDP

    “Walnuts, Crows, Cat”

    A littering on drive and walk—
    my car a four-wheel saw.
    Tough walnuts halved, then cut to halves,
    the insides mushy, raw.

    Two birds strut paths across the dew,
    a pair of lanes on grass.
    Third crow—a thigh-height sentry wall
    its post: Ye shall not pass!

    A portrait, but with roving eyes,
    the watcher peers abroad
    and close—the diners heed no thought
    to fear. But then, slunk head,

    a cat creeps up, tail twitching cautious,
    less like “spare a crumb?”
    than “you’ll look good without your feathers.”
    Fierce caws chase him home!

    The gusty wind an ocean,
    like waves, each cloud a seam.
    Three satiated crows at noon
    lift off and plashless swim.

    —B Peters

    Endwords from Emily Dickinson, “A Bird Came Down a Walk”

  2. Angie5804

    Daydreaming

    I don’t know what it is about sitting on the back porch
    But I love to hear the distant traffic
    A gentle whirr of tires on the road
    An occasional gun of an engine
    The far-off drone of a plane
    And then the train comes
    So loud I feel I can reach out and touch it
    And I know it’s just a freight train
    But I dream of traveling the rails
    Looking out the window at the lands
    I’ve only read about
    Disembarking in a new place
    Exploring and soaking up a life
    I’ve never known

  3. DaveIst

    It wasn’t
    the lingering Smell
    . of cinnamon musk;
    the black depths
    . of penetrating Eyes;
    the salty roughness
    . of French lips;
    the harmonies
    . of angelic choirs;
    the smoothness
    . of roaming caresses,
    But
    the sixth sense
    of
    . je ne sais quoi ….

  4. Michelle Hed

    Overly Sensitive Smell

    Smell is sensitive
    she can’t stand to be overpowered,
    preferring to just tickle the senses into awareness

    Sight is sharp
    and bright like a laser,
    always looking right through you.
    Taste is laughing
    because every bite either brings him pleasure
    or causes him to make weird and unusual faces.

    Touch is sensual
    whether he’s trying to be or not.
    He just can’t help the sounds that his touch produces.

    Sound is profound
    evoking thoughts and emotions
    rioting for position within the confines of her mind.

  5. Aileane

    Sea

    As I look and see
    The vast ocean and deep within
    I felt the darkness down and under
    The buried world beyond the waters
    And hearing the waves approach the shore
    Like sweet hellos and kisses of goodbye
    All at the same time
    The piercing breeze numbs my soul
    The cold, freezing wind and all
    Reminds me of the taste
    Of broken hearts and sorrows

  6. Gigglette

    I’d forgotten having been cooped up all winter how every spring everything seems so new.
    Vibrant greens, yellow, pink , purple, red and blue.
    So many colors of every shade and hue.
    Butter soft petals with curly ruffled edges ,
    shoot forth and spread all along the early greening hedges.
    Twists and twirls, dark green and yellow lime,
    Leaves sprout out here and there on a climbing vine.
    Soft mushy rich brown ground,
    water soaked from rain that saturates and doesnt miss a thing.
    I enjoy all the sights , sounds, and aromas that tickle all your sences from this season we call Spring.

  7. Jrentler

    yoke of gravity

    i’m too old
    for child’s pose

    can’t hold a chair
    & my table top’s warped

    when told to breathe
    be a man, be a tree

    my knees-lock
    uprooting & i crack

    tumbling down
    ward past the mat

    floors, sewer to sea
    more corpse than baby

    on my back, mouth
    open as the sky

  8. seingraham

    SAY YOU WEREN’T BIPOLAR

    Would apples smell like autumn still?
    Would grenadine still be your favorite flavor?
    Say you slept like a normal person?
    What do they get – seven hours per night?
    Maybe the sky wouldn’t be plain blue then;
    maybe it would start to appear azure, or, cerulean
    When you vacillate between getting three
    and fifteen hours –the sky changes –
    it’s sometimes a faded baby blue but more often
    a pale non-descript cream, a color best left unobserved
    Say you were level most of the time – maybe your
    appetite would be more even also; you would enjoy
    food, the taste of things especially
    Instead, when you’re manic – you don’t care
    if you ever eat (nor sleep come to think of it)
    And once you crash and go spiralling down that hole –
    you stuff yourself with sugary things
    And can’t stay awake – literally, you fall asleep
    every time you sit down and stay that way sometimes
    for days – no exaggeration, although you do usually
    get yourself into bed
    But, would music still sound as magnificent
    if you were sane?
    You like to tell yourself it won’t, but you know that’s
    just an excuse to stay manic
    You begin to learn to drum when you’re medicated,
    and can feel the beat throughout your body; it helps you
    feel all music again and you become reconciled to being sane
    You know you will always have bipolar disorder,
    but it doesn’t have to define you.

  9. robinamelia

    This is rough, and late, and the poem explains why!

    Orthodox Pascha

    A full lo-tech multisensory experience
    multimedia from back when tools included only fire, voice,
    incense, bodies—hungry bodies, tired bodies, praying bodies

    processing with candles around the church,
    sinking in some mud, glad we are not freezing
    as the censor swings, the voice proclaims.

    Processing back in with banners, sprinkling water,
    blessed baskets, blessed people,
    a loaf of bread that has risen, like someone else

    whose invisible shape the movement
    and candles and hymns outline, color in.
    Doors kept shut all year long flung open:

    behind them men in shining vestments, standing
    for hours, shattering the silence with shouts:
    “He is Risen.” (Is, is, always is, never was: this did not happen

    once, then: it is happening now and always). Indeed!
    The final miracle: people drive at high speed
    and make it safely to beds and sleep at four a.m.

  10. madeline40

    Miracle Cure?

    For seventy-seven I’m pretty healthy.
    I work out every day, and I act
    as a care giver
    when husband is ailing.
    But I have two maladies.
    I have dry eye that interferes
    with my eye sight – especially at night –
    when the headlights from
    oncoming cars almost blind me.
    During the day I see fine
    and always marvel, especially now
    as I sit and write at my family room table,
    at the greenery of the giant birds
    outside the window. One side of the leaves
    are smooth; the other side has deep cuts in them.
    No matter. They are still beautiful to me.
    My other malady is my hearing.
    Right now I hear a low roaring noise
    in my head. Other times I have no idea
    what someone says to me
    when my hearing aids aren’t in.
    Like this morning. I was passing Dave
    as he was leaving the gym and I was going in,
    and he said something to me
    with a big smile on his face.
    All I could do was smile back.
    At least I looked like I heard him.
    My husband gets annoyed
    when I ask him to repeat something
    he said – mostly when he says it
    from another room.
    Well, he asks for repeats too
    even though he isn’t hard of hearing like me.
    To keep the peace,
    I put my hearing aids in earlier and earlier
    everyday. Unfortunately, they aren’t
    the miracle they were meant to be.

  11. MargoL

    The senses of Autumn

    Eyes squinting in the sun
    taking in the beauty,
    yellow, orange and green,
    fall colours glittering,
    absolutely Stunning –

    The scent of crisp, cool air
    with a hint of apples
    and fragrant leaves crunching
    under my feet. I drink
    in the moment. Yielding –

    Wrapping myself in a
    big, cozy wool sweater
    feeling it against my
    skin. Nature standing still
    a glimpse in time, Holding –

    Cherishing the moment
    Being still. Listening –

    © Margo LeBlanc, April 2018

  12. azkbc

    Spring Planting

    In years gone by
    we’d plant roses in the spring.
    Dig the earth with a shovel
    and break up warm clumps
    with our fingers. The rich smell
    of the earth nourished
    by coffee grounds
    and banana peels
    buried during the fall
    and early winter.

    We’d hear the sounds
    of children laughing,
    playing hide and seek
    on spring days
    and see them
    race down the street.
    Shouts from their parents
    wrapping them as if in safety.

    They are a memory now,
    the roses.
    How did they fare during the winter?
    They will live on
    and bloom in our minds.

  13. cobanionsmith

    At the Poetry Reading

    crimson lungs
    taste poems
    with quasar precision
    breathe stars
    smell patterns of the oceans
    in the irises if their eyes
    neon neurons touch
    divining tongues
    caress galaxies
    of skin as big bangs
    fill ears to overflowing
    with vin diagrams
    overlapping with metaphors
    of their electric hearts
    who listen at all
    the open doors
    and caress the sails
    of stained-glass windows

    Courtney O’Banion Smith
    @cobanionsmith
    @aipf

  14. David

    Melody of my Fair Maiden

    Ocean’s salt infused breeze
    tickles my memories
    of our love so pure, so peaceful
    Heart flutters with every beat of you
    carrying my body peacefully across this pearl
    glistened sand reflecting the warmth
    of the sun’s auburn rays
    Where the sand dies
    born is the soft, silent meadows
    meadows that flow endlessly
    blanketed by the wildflowers in bloom
    sweet is the air, infused with the Gaillardia’s
    that dwell clustered around the spots
    where the sun’s love touches

  15. hohlwein

    Begin by not moving

    Because moving is a hive
    – all senses in play, and the room and the air and your youth (when was that?) and your day yesterday and intention to and failure to and a joy, – what?
    no
    stop

    close your eyes.
    .attend.

    there is a new, not new really, ringing in the ears
    like you are underwater
    you can hear the dolphins calling out in the shallows of Nova Scotia

    there is that

    there is the bright light of the screen
    filling your awareness when you close your eyes
    like the platonic idea of illumination
    the zeitgeist of the vision made possible by the digital age

    there within your mind

    why am I up so early?

    in that brightness
    I see nothing,
    I hear the highest pitch wavelength
    illuminated
    and then feel my fingers
    on the keyboard

    what is that temperature below them?
    it is perfection

    the keys feel like a lover’s skin
    but not enough to make my mind wander

    how ready I am
    for inspiration
    for an idea

    It is five-thirty in the morning
    I am here
    open open

    and I still have no sense
    what my novel should be about

  16. cello

    Summer Glaze

    For 50 miles
    the storm chases me—
    through backwater towns
    and Kansas cornfields,
    I’m tired of running.

    I seek shelter
    in a donut shop
    whose red neon sign
    neither warns nor
    welcomes me…

    I shouldn’t be here.

    First the lightning,
    then the thunder—
    my ears are still ringing
    when the hail starts to fall.

    The sound is sudden
    like a child who gleefully
    tips over a bucket
    of marbles

    and watches them
    ping down the steps.

    Laughter
    has no fear
    of the storms
    around it.

    The hail stops
    as quickly as it began.
    Dark skies turn
    into midday sunshine.
    A double rainbow appears.

    I buy two donuts that
    remind me of sticky,
    wet streets.

    Everything
    wears the glaze
    of a late, July morning.

    I savor this moment
    as if I’m at home—
    the skies are blue
    and nothing else matters.

  17. taylor graham

    WHAT DOES YELLOW SMELL LIKE?

    The old familiar turn onto Greenstone Road,
    impoverished landscape of poor soil –
    green-silver serpentine where only ghost-pine
    thrives. But this cloudy April day, the hem
    of cut-bank blazes vivid yellow.

    Monkeyflower. I pull off to snap a photo.
    Blooms brilliant color-of-sun should be
    captured on an almost-rainy day. But not
    monkeyflower – tiny daisies the exact yellow

    of buttercups, but with poufy centers. I click
    then see, off to my right, monkeyflower.
    photo. Do these so-different yellow

    blossoms smell alike? And look, a little farther
    right, yet another bright yellow,

    like rangers buttons shrunk and dyed yellow –

    And farther still is a bunch of little yellow

    daisy-likes without the pompon centers.
    All this isn’t helping me find these yellow

    flowers in my field guide – book that breaks
    blossoms down by color: white, pink/red,
    violet/blue, brown/green, yellow….

    My dog would identify bloom by smell. A bee
    or sheep could distinguish by taste. A seraphim’s
    ear might know each flower’s song. And what
    is the sunny touch of yellow?

    I’ve just got my photos and my human
    eyes, my brain oriented to the color yellow.

  18. headintheclouds87

    Night Vibes

    I live for the roaring guitars,
    Smoky and scratchy voices
    Echo in a boozy haze
    As my lips feel the sweet taste
    Of hard and earthy whisky.
    I look at the enraptured crowd
    Lost in music’s grasp like me,
    Escaping from the flat rhythm of reality,
    I then inadvertently touch flesh
    With a fellow dancer of the night,
    Our eyes lock, we laugh,
    Attempt to shout greetings,
    Or clumsy flirtations, who can tell,
    But unmistakable is the smell
    Of a certain relaxing concoction
    In their ravaged and raspy breath.
    I manage to ask if I might share,
    And imbibe with a perfect stranger
    In the vain and heady hope
    Of staying in the weekend forever.

  19. sincerescribe

    Hearing Acrostic

    Hey! Do you hear what I hear—
    Echoes of musical cheer?
    Angels singing with voices shrill,
    Reaching ears with Heaven’s fill.
    Inspiring worship and praise,
    Notes of beauty form each phrase.
    Grace at its finest displays.

  20. Linda Hatton

    Memorial

    On Thursday, she wore a violet
    dress, plucked a jasper stone
    from the dish upon her desk,
    wandered to her garden
    where the scent of rosemary
    and thyme awakened her
    taste buds to flavors
    she savored
    at their last supper.

    She burrowed her hands down
    into red clay and dirt,
    trying to feel her existence,
    trying to find her worth.
    She wondered what it’s like
    to sleep and never wake.

    Would there be peace
    beneath the surface or would
    all memory of her ex-
             istence
    disintegrate?

  21. pipersfancy

    Shock Waves

    They say hearing is the first sense to develop
    and I wonder if you remember your father’s voice?

    Sometimes when you laugh, you sound like him
    and it startles me for a second. Sometimes, I still need
    to remind myself that he’s not here,
    because this is my house
    and he has never been here.

    When you were young, loud noises frightened you.
    Too many people at the mall, all of them speaking at once,
    would cause public meltdowns. Fourth of July fireworks
    were unbearable even with my hands gently covering
    your ears.

    And your father’s temper sent you rushing to your room
    to hide in the closet until it was all over, until the final
    shouts had stopped resonating down the hallway, until
    the front door had been slammed and the truck’s engine
    had roared down the driveway,
    receding in the distance like
    a spent summer storm.

    And then, I’d come quietly into your room, whispering
    your name with a swollen lip or freshly blackened eye
    to find you.

  22. Jane Shlensky

    Sweet Stranger

    The place is bits and pieces, paint
    stripped from old boards, most tinged
    with moss or weathered gray as bones,
    the tin roof rusted brown in long streaks.

    The porch slants down toward the steps
    and leans right, where a swing screeches
    on its chain. The clothesline holds
    one towel, hanging like a flag of surrender.
    Someone lives in black and white here,

    except for gallon fruit cans alive
    with blooms—marigolds and petunias,
    zinnias and nasturtiums, proof
    that someone cares enough to paint
    with petals a perfect place to rest
    after a long walk through dense woods.

    When we knock to ask for water,
    she opens the door wide, pointing
    to an outdoor spigot with a hose,
    a glorious bread smell wafting
    from behind this fierce-faced woman.

    “Wash up and sit you down,” she says
    matter-of-factly. “We having beans–”
    “–and cornbread,” we say to warm air.
    She nods once, wiping her hands on her apron.
    “You can say grace, if you’re of a mind.”

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