Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 189

For today’s prompt, write a discovery poem. That is, write a poem in which you (or your narrator or a character in your poem) discover something. Maybe it’s a box of kittens or a freshly baked pie or something more abstract. Whatever it is, I can’t wait to see what everyone will discover together this week.

Here’s my attempt at a discovery poem:

“Always the Same Thing”

Once again, we arrive at the park
just before dark, and the kids are
ready to burn energy on the play
ground until Tammy and I say
it’s time to walk around the paths
which causes exasperated gasps
because “it’s always the same thing,
just a lot of walking and talking”
and that’s true, but we start to walk
anyway and see a squirrel knock
nuts from a tree (nothing new, see)
and some rabbits (the same three)
but on the final hill we spot a dragon
shaped cloud covered in fire from
the setting sun and everyone feels
our walk was a super good deal.

*****

Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer

*****

Get the new Poet’s Market!

The new 2013 Poet’s Market, edited by moi, has now landed. It’s filled with updated listings, great new articles, and 20 brand new poems (some from Poetic Asides regulars).

Click to continue.

 

You might also like:

  • No Related Posts

81 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 189

  1. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    (excerpt from BBC news: A critically endangered species of whale in the North Pacific, Grays are thought extinct in the North Atlantic. However on May 8, 2010, sighting of a lone gray was confirmed off the coast of Israel in the Mediterranean Sea, leading to speculation of their pending return to old ancient breeding grounds not used for centuries.)

    On the Eve of Extinction
    by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    The Grays have returned
    after three centuries of retribution
    by way of absenteeism,
    coaxed back now by the laughter
    of monk seals and porpoises swimming
    harmoniously next to their broad flukes,
    12 feet across in diameter,
    deeply notched at the center
    with tapered edges, the shadows of which
    slice through topaz open waters
    just past the shores of Tel Aviv.

    Forty ton baleens descended from
    thirty million year old bloodstock,
    the threesome is weary from travel and
    encrusted with barnacles and whale lice,
    gray patches and white mottling on dark skin
    (scars left by parasites that have dropped off
    in former artic feeding grounds).
    One male spanning fifty feet
    scoops up shrimp-like krill with long
    broom-like mouth plates made of keratin,
    unaware of its once use in the manufacture
    of corsets, umbrellas, and riding crops.
    Still, here they are greeted like biblical
    Kings returning to the Holy Land.

    Hunted to extinction on the Atlantic side
    during the 18th century, news of the
    pod’s recent arrival spreads like wildfire.
    Was this a splinter group from their
    Pacific cousins braving the northwest
    passage under diminishing Artic ice
    traveling thousands of “what if” miles
    just to see what was on the other side
    of the World? Or, was this simply
    a relic pod tired of hiding,
    returning home to face together
    the impending melting polar icecaps,
    reverse global polarity certainty,
    inevitable end of the Mayan calendar?

    But for now, amid cameras and speculation
    the Grays happily breach and spyhop,
    the top half of their massive bodies
    thrusting momentarily out of the water, then
    affectionately onto their backs before disappearing
    into a quilt of white caps and sea foam.

    It is said, during a lifetime, Grays will
    migrate the distance of a return trip to the moon.

    For now however, the Kings are simply
    relishing what it means to be home.

    © 2012 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  2. tunesmiff

    THERE YOU HAVE IT

    You,
    Think you know so much,
    But we hardly talk,
    And we never touch.
    You,
    Think the worst of me,
    For reasons I
    Just cannot see.

    I,
    Know I’ve made mistakes;
    How do I show you
    How much my heart aches?
    I,
    Don’t know what to say,
    But I long for you
    Every night and day.

    Then I heard
    You
    Whisper
    His name in your sleep;
    And it’s a secret
    Now that
    We both have to keep.

    There you have it,
    There you go;
    Something else I wish I
    Didn’t have to know.
    There you have it;
    There it is;
    I don’t know how we’re ever,
    Gonna get beyond this.
    There you have it;
    There you go.

    We,
    Were happy from the start,
    How did he come between us?
    How did he take your heart?
    We,
    Are alone here side by side,
    The feelings that we used to share,
    We’ve packed away to hide,
    Don’t tell me that they’ve died,
    Can’t you see the tears I’ve cried…

    So…
    There you have it,
    There you go;
    Something else I wish I
    Didn’t have to know.
    There you have it;
    There it is;
    I don’t know how we’re ever,
    Gonna get beyond this.
    There you have it;
    There you go.

    There you have it;
    Please don’t go.

  3. tunesmiff

    THE SHADOWS OF MY HEART

    I must’ve run a million miles,
    Trying to leave your memory behind;
    Climbed ten thousand hillsides,
    But at every turn I find,
    You’re waiting at the sunrise,
    Sleeping in the dark;
    Smiling from the shadows of my heart,
    Smiling from the shadows of my heart.

    I must’ve tossed a thousand sleepless nights,
    Afraid to dream alone,
    Watched a hundred days of rain,
    Sitting on my own.
    Waiting for you at the sunrise,
    Reaching for you in the dark;
    Seeing you smile from the shadows of my heart,
    Seeing you smile from the shadows of my heart.

    And yet the distance,
    Between us,
    Is less than we may want to know,
    Could it be,
    You and me,
    Are connected by our souls?
    We’re connected by our souls.

    I could give a dozen reasons,
    Why none of this is true,
    But there’s only one that proves it’s so:
    I’m still in love with you.
    With you waiting for the sunrise,
    Holding you in the dark,
    Your smile lighting the shadows of my heart,
    Your smile lighting the shadows of my heart.

  4. SharoninDallas

    DISCOVERY: ME
    Would they know? Would they see? How shy I could really be?
    Such a long ago me. Someone passing by. I couldn’t meet their eye.
    In the lunch room, walk across the floor, where to sit always a chore.
    Was He real? Was He true? Could He do what He said He would do?
    Would I change? Would I see? Would I become a new me?
    See how the others want you to see
    Them, in the center in the big spotlight.
    Actually people like it. It’s really all right.
    Actually, so do I. There’s nothing to hide.
    Yes, I see. Hello, me!
    Walk across the floor, afraid no more.

  5. rainmaker66

    A Surprise
    When I was quite young
    I thought contentedly
    We all knew where we were from
    Grown-ups knew everything
    History books laid it out in places, time and events
    All that had gone before
    Followed on through generation to generation
    A tidy continuum
    Then one day a teacher said
    “We don’t know”….
    I sat up straight
    Blinked as in bright search lights
    “what do you mean don’t know”!
    Suddenly not quite knowing where we are from
    How things were built
    How people behaved
    How nature held tight secrets
    Like striking a gong
    Life changed forever more
    The mystical unravelling began
    Volumes of words spilled out from books and voice
    As I grew to know the more there was to learn on into infinity
    Now I sit here today
    To reflect on this long journey
    Of things I’ll never know
    But glad to have been part of the mystery

  6. taylor graham

    BRIGHT EYES

    I see my dog, eyes a-light as if
    she caught a human scent. But there’s no one here.

    All I see is empty, barren desert landscape
    with a single dusty sagebrush,

    which my dog’s inspecting with her nose.
    Looking closer, I see I’m wrong:

    here’s a sage-green sweater
    tucked carefully under sagebrush leaves.

    I don’t need to sniff green wool
    to figure it smells of whoever once wore it,

    hours or days gone by.
    I see, again, my dog knows more than I.

  7. Lisa PK

    An Epiphany

    I set out no a journey to discover something new.
    I was tired of the same old thing, same old me, same old you.
    I drove until the sun set and the stars had filled the sky.
    I sat there for a moment just trying not to cry.
    I got a cheap hotel room and after showering I prayed.
    I asked God what I’m missing then began to write a stave.
    I got your text there in the gloom of that lonely, old hotel.
    “Just thinking of you, good night my love, I hope you are doing well.”
    Again my eyes filled with tears as I remembered all the times
    You held my hand or made me smile, or gently dried my eyes.
    You fool, I thought and shook my head, how had I been so dumb?
    You may not be the perfect man but you certainly are the one
    Who held it all together over all these boring years.
    I forgot my quest for something new and got my act in gear
    For the happiness I thought to find had always been right here.

  8. tunesmiff

    ONE SMALL STEP

    Christopher Columbus didn’t have a GPS,
    He just loaded up his three small ships and sailed off to the west.
    Did he have a clue about what do? Was it an educated guess?
    Or did he just weigh up his options and then do what he thought best?

    Lewis said to Clark, “What’s on the far side of that hill?”
    If they hadn’t stopped to look around, they’d be wand’ring out there still.
    It took a little knowledge, a bit of luck and a lot skill,
    I don’t know how they mixed ’em up, I don’t think we ever will.

    And it’s funny what you find if you go looking,
    Something new is always ’round the bend;
    It may be love, or a new-found long lost friend,
    But it’s that one small step on the journey without end.
    It’s one small step on the journey with no end.

    And so now you have to ask yourself, do you want to take a chance?
    Do you want to sit there looking cute, or come out here and dance?
    I know you’re thinking ’bout it; I saw your second glance.
    C’mon and take that one small step in this world of new romance,

    And it’s funny what you find if you go looking,
    Something new is always ’round the bend;
    It may be love, or a new-found long lost friend,
    But it’s that one small step on the journey without end.
    It’s that one small step;
    That one small step;
    That one giant leap, on the journey with no end;
    That one giant leap,
    On the journey with no end.

  9. Sara McNulty

    Robert, I hope you are well.

    This is a wonderful discovery we made while in Newport, Oregon. Just home, so will comments when I can.

    Corner Café (a shadorma series)

    On beach vacation
    one evening,
    we spotted
    a corner café. Sign said,
    Italian Homestyle

    Cooking, and Book Shop.
    `Cross threshold,
    guitarist
    sat, strumming acoustic songs.
    Wooden shelves stocked books.

    Tablecloth designed
    with bunches
    of grapevines.
    Drank Chianti, ate pasta,
    and garlic bread squares.

    Post cappuccinos,
    we scoured books,
    used, half price.
    With stomachs sated, we left,
    arms filled with new tales.

  10. zevd2001

    EXHAUSTIVE
    They told me to look into this book
    and report what I have gleaned from all
    the words I read, once and again, I fall
    to sleep, repeating chapter, verse, the hook.
    the real meaning of the pages, between
    the lines, to take the letters apart, to place
    each image for itself, weave into a lace
    I spread before you what you have never seen

    before. The very volume that you showed
    me, takes off in directions I least expect.
    You ask me where I found that. The text,
    the text itself, the combinations flowed
    from my mouth into my consciousness
    all the memories, all the dreams appeared
    as if I was Ali Baba, and I feared,
    like him, that the thieves had arrived, and guess

    someone had intruded into their lair to take
    the treasure they had accumulated there
    yet it looked so orderly, free and fair
    like the lists of things. Make no mistake
    the work I held was a garden for a fertile mind.
    It could have been nothing at all, but lists of things,
    or pictures, or dot on lines that sing, that brings
    me, and you, and everyone, so much to find.

    Zev Davis

  11. julie e.

    SO many great poems! Here’s my belated offering:

    DISCOVERING SIGHT.

    but as she walked quietly
    as fast as her sandals would take her
    trying to blow off hours
    and days and decades of frustration
    breathing hard
    checking her heart rate
    thinking “how many more minutes
    will this take”
    burning calories
    burning emotions
    burning blisters
    into her feet
    she glanced up
    shading her eyes against the
    setting sun
    and

    saw

    burning light
    burning bloom
    pink petals radiant
    as though on fire
    as it leans into day’s
    final evening rays
    and

    she

    S
    A
    W.

  12. Andrew Kreider

    … it probably is

    Turns out that Cabrera and Colon were
    on the juice, and Armstrong probably was
    too, although he’ll take that one to the grave,

    the Saints were pressing bounties on the heads
    of their opponents (they were not alone)
    Indian fast bowlers were on the take

    a fencing star rigged the scoring machine,
    an East German athlete became a man
    and soccer players can’t stay on their feet.

    Even Scrabble has its villains – look at
    the fuss at the National Championships
    when a kid was caught hiding the blank tiles.

    I think it was probably always so –
    rigged jousting, gladiators with trick swords,
    Pheidippides taking a short cut home*

    Perhaps every laurel wreath is tainted,
    Perhaps that’s the point – sport reflects our life,
    And if something seems too good to be true…

    (*actually he was probably clean)

  13. PowerUnit

    Blank paper, empty mind, and a quiet room
    Where does it come from, this creativity?
    Where are the stimulators and motivators?
    It’s quiet in here, nothing but the hum of a computer fan

    I have no company, no botherers, no interrupters
    Nothing but three sleeping cats and five hundred musty books
    How do I fill this page with story?
    Where do I find my first word, first sentence, first idea?

    I turn my chair and look for inspiration.
    Mr. Hemmingway’s name stares back at me
    Mr. Richler’s Barney waves and Ms. Austen’s Marianne
    A stern Mr. Steinbeck between them

    Isaac laughs and Frank looks up
    Both Orson’s clap, and Twain starts collecting bets
    Will a fight break out? Who will win?
    Ray Bradbury begins to sing and dance.

    I always worked better in a loud room
    A noisy hall is less distracting
    Than a silent study hall
    Words are discovering the page

  14. JRSimmang

    We can never be certain,
    can we?
    We look into this box,
    the shadowed corners
    menacing and intangible,
    and think to ourselves,
    if we could ever touch the night
    perhaps the days wouldn’t be so long.
    But that’s the thing with shadows,
    isn’t it?
    The closer you get to touching them
    the further they chase away.
    How can they harbor so much?
    Our eyelids bath our eyes in
    a blackened wash.
    The night carries us on into the morning,
    and yet,
    it’s there,
    lurking,
    balking,
    and never rearing its head.
    It sits and waits
    as we endeavor to spill upon its doorstep.

  15. Nancy Posey

    Discoverers

    How do they do it, the inventors,
    discoverers, pioneers?
    Solutions arrive in dreams,
    interlocking serpents
    into sewing machine needles.
    Without microscopes,
    they built theories
    as others scoffed
    as they must have at Noah—
    You’re building a boat?
    On dry land?
    These tiny little things,
    invisible and yet they make us ill?
    They fail, then patent the results,
    and voila! Post-it notes, Superglue.

    Meanwhile, I lose my keys,
    my phone, my to-do list.
    My dreams at night repeat
    like sitcoms in syndication,
    nothing new, no discoveries.
    I worry over problems,
    choosing to ignore the solutions,
    the hints, the clues
    right under my nose—
    which I have stuck inside a book,
    vicariously playing the detective
    in other lives, solving mysteries
    not my own.

  16. addi22

    Rediscovering myself

    I’m hiding from myself in illusions
    built by myself in memories and thoughts,
    And I’m trying to discover
    a stronger me.
    But my conscience stops me, saying:
    “Take out your mask!
    Accept your condition!
    This is who you’re supposed to be!”
    And I rediscover myself
    And start living, not just be.

    This prompt was just great. I’m just sorry my internet connection didn’t allow to post my poem earlier.
    Adriana Dascalu

  17. Miss R.

    Lost Connection

    I put my fingers to the keyboard,
    Prepared for the hurricane of thoughts
    Stirring in my mind
    To come rushing out my fingertips,
    But then I discovered
    The connection was severed.

  18. deringer1

    there it was
    in the middle of a fluster of papers,
    saved so long in closets
    and ignored as though unimportant.

    a little booklet
    signed with my mother’s name,
    and holding her poetry,
    her thoughts, her dreams,
    her sadness and her joy.

    I had thought it lost
    but now as I sat and held it in my hand
    I felt that connection, the tenuous
    hold one generation has upon the next.

  19. seingraham

    Climbing the Forked One

    During a storm last night
    there were over three thousand
    lightning strikes
    I climbed the four hundred and fourth
    forked one
    Just before it touched the steeple
    of that old Zoroastrian church down near the river
    And swung up into the thick
    of the greyest clouds I’ve ever seen
    Things get fuzzy after that … and stay that way
    until early this morning when
    I woke up on the bank of the river
    Where I discovered my clothes had burned off
    And I was a shivering, chilled mess
    Some sweet homeless man
    Gave me his coat
    And an understanding cop
    Drove me home and not to the loony bin
    Which was his best idea
    I discovered not all lightning is meant
    to be climbed.

    S.E.Ingraham©

  20. Ber

    Magic in a Bottle

    Sailing on the seas
    Was a bottle on its own
    I looked out to it
    It was clear and had a tone

    As I watched through my binoculars
    Not thinking any more
    Out pops a head
    Looking at me on the sea shore

    I was shocked
    Not expecting to see
    Someone from a bottle staring back at me
    I dropped them with shock

    Stuck for words
    Thinking how can this be
    A tiny little person
    Staring at me

    I picked them up
    To have another look
    Now there was more than one
    I could not believe my eyes
    This scared me I was shook

    I was only seven
    How could my imagination
    Imagine them
    Could this be

    As I looked on
    A ship was in the bottle
    In between
    Seen it so clearly

    This did frighten me
    As I tried to turn away
    Something made me look back
    Eyes were on me

    Suddenly out of no where
    Came hot balloons every where
    These little people wanted me to see
    All of the beauty that surrounded me

    As they came closer
    They asked me to sail
    Along with them
    On their wonder trail

    I asked them who what where how
    They laughed at me
    No time for questions now
    We must move on

    Before I could answer back
    They had me along with them
    But I was no longer my own size
    Looking around everything
    Was large to my eyes

    How did I grow small
    What is happening
    Just come on this journey
    And you will not regret it you see

    As we flowed up chocolate rivers
    And down rainbow lollipops
    Waving at candy floss
    Pink bunny doing hops

    Sailing along throw crystal ice
    That was sweet and nice
    Underneath a sky of beautiful paradise
    Mountains of sugar sprinkles of colour
    If I eat any more I will surely be fuller

    As they brought me back
    From this wonderful day at sea
    I thanked them so much
    For letting me be me
    This is the lesson
    We wanted to show you
    Be your own rainbow
    Just be you

  21. Ber

    Forest of Pleasure

    With waterfalls of imagination
    Running through her thoughts
    She wanted him underneath them
    Shifting her silky worn cloth

    As rocks gave them a seat
    To rest their love
    Staring into each other’s eyes
    Lovingly she wore her gloves

    Taking them off one at a time
    As he held her close
    Their lives combined
    Touching her lips
    With his soft subtle kiss

    She pushed herself closer
    Wanting even more
    Throwing her hair back
    He could not ignore

    Dipping his foot into the water
    He pulled her in along with him
    Their bodies wet
    Longing for what was coming
    But had not happened yet

    Holding her closely even more now
    Sharing how he felt
    Someway somehow
    Her eyes looked up to the sky above
    His were closed
    As he really felt their love

    Not wanting this moment to ever end
    His wondering hands
    Drove her wild
    He smiled

    Knowing that he had giving her
    Some of his pleasure
    As they lay on the edge of
    The forest of treasure

  22. Samard

    All my life I had wandered the rocky shores,
    of the lake I had loved since I was a small child.
    It’s whims and it’s whimsy I knew very well,
    In its very nature , a chance it would go wild.

    But on sunny days the water sparkled in the sunshine,
    Bewitched by the icy diamonds I dove,
    When thunder shook the sky and the waves boiled,
    I would wait tucked away in a cove.

    Over many years I became close to the lake,
    The shallows and depths, the islands and bays,
    Every point took a share of my soul,
    I became trustful, I knew the lake’s ways.

    How can water , which slips through your fingers,
    Reach into your heart and take hold?
    With the hours I spent getting close to it,
    One day I became too bold.

    Its mood was stormy,
    the waves black and capped white,
    I had learned not to fear it,
    And let the shore out of sight.

    I knew I’d made a grave mistake,
    I saw the wildness I had not learned to fear.
    No forgiveness would come from this lake.
    No apology would the lake ever hear.

    The boat capsized and I choked with regret,
    At my foolishness in trusting something wild.
    Never a day passed again without my,
    Walking the shores as I had since I was a child.

  23. Jane Shlensky

    Walt and Marie got me monorhyming today, but this one was also a self-rant about discovery. Two birds?

    Retirement Reminders

    Find a day in every week
    to look for what you do not seek
    on a regular basis: a muttering creek,
    a colored stone or minnow sleek
    and magnified in water so deep
    and cold, it numbs your fingers while you peek
    through swirls of cascading worlds antique
    on the earth—moreso than you—your cheek
    sun-warmed, as your cupping hands leak
    cold water down your chin, as your breath eeks
    electric in your happy throat, your physique
    stirred by something so simple, so meek,
    so taken-for-granted as water that seeps
    from springs, that swells and sweeps
    a path across the ground, majestic, seldom bleek.

    Just look at all the animals that slink
    past predators to bath and drink, weak
    with thirst, fear, anticipation of pleasure unique
    to all life—not just you, free after a lifetime of weeks
    measured by working, by family, by eyes weak
    from unseeing, heart stiff from years of unbeat,
    your soul’s voice little more resonant than a mouse’s squeak.

    Make time for feeling, for finding words that streak
    like stars across a clear night sky. Parse birds’ beaks,
    snails’ shells, trees’ leaves, clouds’ hues, all freaks
    of nature, kindred now that you have time to tweak
    your life-long questions to simplicity, to peek
    beyond the confines of your old self’s highest peak,
    to find strength in discovering what you do not seek,
    to find joy so crystalline that you shine, reek
    with happiness and humility, finally yourself, unique
    after all these years. Take heart, find voice, and Speak!

  24. taylor graham

    WHERE AM I?

    My dog has led me to a useless place.
    Deserted street of houses; bungalow
    with peeling paint, front yard a disgrace
    of weedy lawn. My dog goes sniffing, slow
    and thoughtful, as if anything could grow

    here. Side gate’s hanging by a hinge, the fence
    leans to block a passage; now childhood-bright
    with honeysuckle, mint, remembered scents
    from – where? My dog still leads me, eyes a-light
    with seeking. Memory is a second sight.

  25. Mike Bayles

    Early Thaw

    During a warm spell
    a walk through the parking lot
    reveals a doll’s head
    poking out of the slush
    as well as a towel and clothes
    yards away from the dumpster,
    remnants of a family’s life,
    littering my sight.
    When an early melting hints spring,
    I ponder what must be left behind
    before a new life can begin.

  26. J.lynn Sheridan

    “Erosion”

    Today
    a phone
    call taught
    me that I am
    now at the age
    to give orders to
    my parents because
    our roles are now in a
    slow gear shift into reverse
    from child to parent and parent
    to child
    and
    I am
    mom
    to both.

  27. Michelle Hed

    Dance

    She places her gloved hand into his
    as his other hand encircles her waist –
    they begin to waltz around the room
    gazing without speaking,
    wondering what thoughts
    flit behind the other’s gaze.

    They waltz right through the open doors
    and out onto the shadowed balcony
    where his lips briefly touch hers
    and they both looked relieved
    to discover there is no spark
    between them,
    not one.

  28. Michelle Hed

    Gift

    Walking through the field of long grass
    waiting to be hayed,
    I part the grass with my hands
    ready to take a step
    but find my footstep already taken
    by a small fawn, curled within itself
    sleeping in the summer sunshine;
    Inhaling the warmth from new life,
    I soak up the gift I’ve been given
    with my eyes
    before quietly backing away.

  29. Matt Knaack

    We come upon a man dismantling
    his home brick by brick. A few words
    with him and we are asked to enter,
    allowed to take what we want–he tells
    us that he is dying.

    I sit in a chair where I am told by my
    companion and best friend about a
    powerful V that was reported to be in
    this house.

    He goes behind the chair he is resting in
    and returns with a plaque.
    Perhaps, this is the legendary V.

    No. I feel it, at this moment, tucked underneath
    the arm of the chair I have set on. I retrieve it
    from beneath my right armrest, showing it in all
    its gilded and seriffed glory to my friend.

    We relish in the fact that I have found it.

    Beneath the other arm of my chair, I discover
    two lavish necklaces. Both are encrusted with
    rare gemstones. I ask my mother–who has suddenly
    appeared–if she can authenticate a real amethyst.
    She responds in the affirmative and tells me that
    the two necklaces will be more than enough to
    repay every bit of my student loans.

    I am elated.

    One of the necklaces also bears a set of stones:
    tiny skulls carved from rounded beads of jade.

    I know that both necklaces are cursed but I take them anyways.

    We leave the half-dismantled home on foot, abandoning
    the man that was so generous to us. I look back and see
    him. He is standing upright, without any struggle. It seems
    like he is no longer dying. He begins rebuilding his life and his home.

    Suddenly, we are in a van traveling in the
    middle of the country. It must be Kansas.
    Certainly, this city we are approaching is Topeka.
    The sky is dark and ready to burst. Colliding with
    the ground, a spiral of smoke and dirt. My heart
    sinks into my stomach but my friend decides
    to power through the city in an attempt to avoid
    the treacherous beast which has just shown
    its shrouded face. The road is wide–eight lanes
    on each side. An explosion of red beckons to our
    eyes, countless families trapped in countless
    cars in front of us braking. Like a herd of frightened
    horses, they whinny and buck, contorting their bodies
    away from the oncoming destruction.

    The wall of vehicles part like the Red Sea.

    Knife-like winds have cut through, pierced the armor
    that was protecting us and the cursed jewelry. Our van
    is lifted, remaining rather parallel to the road beneath us.
    Thrown about crashing into solid object after solid object
    after solid object. Somehow, my body recognizes this feeling
    of repetitive impact, remembers it from some incident I cannot
    recall.

    I end the journey by opening my eyes and worrying about where my priorities have landed.
    Is my mom okay? Is my friend okay? Where are the precious luxuries I had planned on liquidating so that I could have my peace of mind returned to its former glory?

    1. seingraham

      Man, I was jealous when I first heard about your workshop with her Bruce – I mean Piercy AND Cape Cod … how surreal is that? And now she is touting you as one of the next best things? Deservedly so but still … meow, meow.

  30. Bruce Niedt

    Cheating a little here – I just wrote a poem yesterday that fits the prompt perfectly.

    Shard

    Sweeping out a forgotten corner
    in the kitchen, my broom finds something
    little and glittering in the dust: a bit of glass,
    about the size of my smallest fingernail.

    At first I can’t imagine where it came from,
    then I remember three weeks ago, when I dropped
    a drinking glass on the ceramic floor
    and it exploded into a hundred jagged diamonds.

    I thought I’d cleaned it all up,
    but here was a leftover piece of shiny shrapnel
    from the wilderness behind the fridge, ten feet
    from where the accident occurred.

    It’s a clear reminder of the day
    when my concentration slipped, as smoothly as
    the hard cold surface of the glass through my fingers.

    If it hadn’t hidden for weeks, it might easily
    have been a sharper, crueler memento, slipping
    under the skin of my naked sole and drawing blood.

  31. Andrew Kreider

    high chair

    food
    falls
    downwards
    every time
    you let go of it.
    She waves at me, triumphantly,
    having proved the world is completely predictable.
    I smile. Soon enough she will learn
    sometimes we let go
    not knowing
    how things
    will
    end..

    1. Marie Elena

      Great title and use thereof – tells so much in and of itself. PERFECT use of the fib – in form and word choices, as well as theory. Makes my lips smile, my nod in agreement, and my heart anxious, all at once.

      This is one heck of a little poem, Andrew. One heck of a little poem.

  32. Ann M

    This Summer

    I discovered your smile will part
    the darkest clouds.
    I discovered you can stay up all night
    and not make any noise.
    I discovered there is a wall in town
    where you wrote your friend’s name.
    I discovered you rode every
    rollercoaster at Six Flags until closing time.
    I discovered you eat cheap steak twice a day.
    I discovered you take hallucinogenic drugs.
    I discovered you cut your hair so often
    there is a bare patch in the back.
    I discovered you’re a Buddhist
    only not totally.
    I discovered your back is so hard
    it could easily break.
    I discovered you drive with one hand
    on the wheel.
    I discovered you can’t wake up before noon.
    I discovered you need a job.
    I discovered you play the guitar when no one is in the room.
    I discovered you need to wake up before noon.
    I discovered that you, not I, will have to find
    whatever it is that you need.

  33. Marianv

    Another Family

    In the empty kitchen, the old stove sat, dreaming
    Of long gone days when it was the star
    Of a family’s morning, filled with fire
    spreading warmth to a crowded home.
    A teakettle whistling “Breakfast time”
    The men and boys opening its door
    And stuffing comfort to all within its reach.

    Long ago days, but still its sturdy build
    A metal that could be sanded of any rust
    And polished until it gleamed and once more trust
    to keep a family safe from winter’s cold.

    So we approached the old-time stove
    To send it to a neighbor’s barn which
    Needed heat for all the animals inside
    We opened up the door and heard a squeak—

    Two tiny eyes stared out at us. And wriggly tails
    That did not turn
    To see who interrupted their breakfast meal
    Deciding that their mother would concern
    this unwanted invasion from those two-legged giants
    Who wouldn’t let a mouse family eat in peace!

    Fortunately no dogs or cats were close.
    A basket was provided for their moving day
    No one had the heart to send away
    This small and trusting tiny group
    The boys made some room on the old
    Storage shed where chickens once had lived
    And now once more would host a family.

  34. Connie Peters

    A Walk Down a Dirt Road

    I set my timer twenty minutes
    and walk, then walk back.

    I walked to the end of second street.
    I thought it was a dead end,
    but discovered it continued as a dirt road.
    I had eight minutes left, so I kept walking,
    the uneven road reminding me
    of hiking country paths as a child.

    But here in the west–sage brush
    bright blue sky with Mesa Verde to the south
    (Table Green—the name was fitting
    but for a lot of brown ridges
    looking like a long row of teepees) and
    to the north two blocks a busy highway.

    It didn’t take long down that isolated road
    before I realized I was walking in the home
    of the homeless. Remains of campfires,
    empty beer bottles, a discarded shoe box.

    All I had with me was a timer. I continued to walk
    and saw some of the residents returning.
    I told myself they were harmless.
    When the timer went off,
    I turned around and headed back.

    Knowing the men were behind me,
    I prayed for protection and noted escape routes,
    sad that this could have been a lovely walk
    if it wasn’t for my fear.

  35. Domino

    Discovery

    A discrepancy in a bill.
    I call and call again.
    I speak to people from
    other countries,
    repeatedly,
    and try to remember
    their names.

    I keep notes.
    One said he was named
    Jack Dawson.
    In a fit of sarcasm, I said,
    “Oh really? You survived
    the Titanic after all,
    Jack?”
    (The joke went over his head.)

    And on hold
    again.
    I wonder if one can get
    cauliflower ear
    from being on a telephone.

    I remember the days
    before 800 numbers
    and online help desks
    and internet accounts
    and I remember
    letter writing campaigns,
    which somehow, though
    just as frustrating,
    were more satisfying
    and probably took
    about the same amount of time
    to get resolution.

    Diana Terrill Clark

  36. barbara_y

    Be well.

    Circumnavigation

    She misplaced things now.
    Nothing was lost
    (perhaps the milk,
    discovered warm,
    beside the Raisin Bran,
    and no longer worth
    spilled tears)
    though she said:
    I would lose my head
    if it wasn’t tacked on to my shoulders.
    The thought of loss
    disturbed her peace:
    when she was young she lost her innocence,
    gladly. Now she wonders
    if it might not be rediscovered

  37. De Jackson

    Discovery Phase

    Let the record show
    that we
    (party of the first part,
    party of the second part,
    partly partied out)
    have finally
    put all the cards on the
    (broken
    – remember? You got mad
    and it got split; better it,
    I suppose, than my lip)
    table. The evidence is clear,
    though willing witnesses
    are few
    and you
    still claim some kind of
    ignorant innocence.
    I have
    notes in your handwriting
    to not me. I have
    tickets to movies
    I did not see. I have
    all nighters
    at that hole in the wall
    and the holes in the wall to prove it.
    And I
    (solemnly swear)
    I have this certainty
    in my bones that says
    (to tell the truth)
    that you haven’t given
    (the whole truth)
    this the slightest chance in
    Hell (and nothing
    but the truth.)

    Oh, well.

    So:
    help me, God.

    .

  38. PKP

    One Heart

    There long ago
    Kindergarten graduation 
    Eve
    Summer sun gloaming
    I watched
    From a high window
    Sparks shooting
    From two wheeled 
    Spokes ridden by
    Deep dimpled delight
    And
    Found the wind 
    In my hair
    His laugh in
    My heart
    As he rode
    Away from
    And with me

  39. Imaginalchemy

    That was a really sweet poem, Robert…loved the image of the dragon-shaped cloud.

    I’m kind of cheating and posting a poem I wrote a couple weeks ago…but I think it fits the theme.

    “Pocket”

    I discovered a ball of courage in the pocket
    Of a jacket at a thrift store on J Parkway.
    It was like moss, but more—less—comforting,
    Like something you want until you have it.
    So I bought it for 50 cents,
    But then found as I carried it with me
    It kept mixing the wind in my lungs,
    The electricity in my flesh,
    The flood in my veins,
    Making me desire to seek out the wild things
    That would immortalize me,
    Make me an idol for some
    And a nemesis for others,
    And as I palmed the flaky wad of bravery
    In my pocket
    I thought about tearing down oppression,
    Combating injustice,
    Standing up against The Fear Mongers and Deceit Sellers,
    Finding it imperative that I save everyone.
    But there are differences
    Between heroism and folly,
    So I tuck that ball of courage deeper,
    Deeper,
    Deeper,
    Into my pocket,
    Where it keeps festering and growing,
    And one of these days it may burst
    Or it may wither away, if I don’t use it.
    All I know is
    I don’t think such things should be considered worth
    So little,
    Because courage can end up costing the owner
    So much more.
    And yet, the world would cease to be without it.

    …So, if you think you need a little courage,
    Start checking your pockets.

        1. seingraham

          just read over that last comment and realized what a dip-stick I sound like so … I love both poems … obviously I was VERY taken with Imagine’s poem; there’s no way around that …

          But, that’s not to say I didn’t like yours also Robert – it’s very sweet … am I just stepping in it worse? Probably. I hope you’re feeling better.

COMMENT