Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 410

Believe it or not, I set this week’s prompt a few weeks ago–not realizing that my baby brother would set himself on the Keys for Hurricane Irma or that Tropical Storm Irma would knock out our power here at Brewer Manor in the Atlanta area. But sometimes, that’s how it works out.

For today’s prompt, write a weather poem. Good weather, bad weather, talking about the weather–you decide how to take today’s prompt. Make the weather a secondary character in a poem about something else entirely; whatever gets you writing.

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Here’s my attempt at a Weather Poem:

“Whether We Weather the Weather”

Or not, I know this the moment
we move this way or that. The wind
attacks the trees outside, but we
can move this way or that, and you
crack a joke, letting me know where
to build the next bridge, so we can
cross it together when the rain
has left us only with rainbows.

*****

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 prefers building bridges to burning them.

Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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137 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 410

  1. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Hurricane Irma 2017
    by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Outside the wind has increased
    and rain now comes with power lines attached.

    Storm surge isn’t far behind, pushing saltwater
    debris onto land and around cars, buildings
    like a large storeroom push broom.

    Inland, yachts forego nav plans/harbor master
    and sail unmanned and unencumbered,
    ready to join the new world order of glamping.

    Between sandwich bites, we tune into NOAA Weather Radio
    and listen carefully for any advisories
    or specific instructions from local officials.

    My shelves are stocked,
    my hatches batten down, Baby.
    I’m ready, Irma ~
    so lift your skirts and show me what’cha got!

    © 2017 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  2. Jane Shlensky

    Weather Semantics

    She always asks the same dumb thing
    To see me wince and count to ten:
    “Will we have weather, Weather Man?”

    Do bears have fur? Do currents move?
    She blinks and then she asks again,
    “Will we have weather, Weather Man?”

    Unbidden, Grandma comes to mind,
    Her admonition all the time,
    “Behave yourself” or just “be have,”

    Sometimes as one word, sometimes two.
    “I cannot NOT behave,” I say.
    “Sometimes quite well, sometimes quite ill.”

    “Don’t be a smarty pants,” she’d chide,
    And off I’d go, screaming inside,
    As I do now, wearing a smile.
    “Yes, we’ll have weather. Yes, indeed.”

    1. ppfautsch24

      Colorful loneliness rustles in the trees, hushed sounds of lavished hues of fall gleams.
      Day’s light grows shorter as the first walk of fall welcomes you with a golden kiss on your cheek.
      Heated anticipation of scarf wrapped outings under a canopy of vibrant colors beam.
      Your breathe taken away by the syncopated beat of your heart when you renew your vows of an autumn love affair is piqued.
      By Pamelap

  3. taylor graham

    A SIERRA TALE

    The phone rang, another missing creature.
    Our target this time, an Afghan
    tortoise. We loaded our search dog, drove across
    the North Fork; found the address
    under a canopy of oaks shedding their leaves.
    A languid fall afternoon, breeze calm,
    but the nights turned chilly. The tortoise’s
    best friend, a schoolboy, was handling his loss
    with a chocolate donut. We scented
    our dog, who nosed around the back steps
    then headed for a shed propped
    against collapse. She began to grovel under
    the far corner. She wouldn’t leave
    the spot. Our best guess, the Afghan tortoise
    had found its Sierra hibernation.

  4. cobanionsmith

    The Mosquitoes

    in Houston have been having
    a heyday since Harvey,
    so military planes crop dust the city
    pumping clouds of Dibrom
    over neighborhoods at sunset–
    self-imposed post-flood fallout.
    Butterflies, bees, and babies be damned:
    acceptable losses
    because the evil we know
    just might save lives.

    Courtney O’Banion Smith
    @cobanionsmith

  5. Bushkill

    410 Weather Poem
    taking a different direction on weather here. Been on a quest to find “voice” so exploring some of my inner options.

    The storm clouds rise
    In her sea-green eyes.

    And before her gaze,
    The fury unfolding,
    I ponder my plight.

    – Was it me –

    Who turned this
    Angel of love
    Into a storm-tossed soul?

    The angry gray clouds
    Purple and pregnant
    With unspent rage.

    Will the storm burst
    Transferring rage
    Into a flood-driven
    River of tears?

    I enfold her in my embrace
    Whispering words of comfort
    Like a soft breeze.

    I hope for such gentleness.

    When the storm breaks
    I can feel my heart’s
    Shatter-sound rumble
    In response.

    In turbulence’s wake,
    Storm-lashed sentience dawns
    And she whispers back,

    “Thank you”

      1. Bushkill

        Thank you.
        I suppose our journeys in searching for who we are and how we represent our thoughts are life long quests. Still, I tend to aspire to a brevity of words so it is good to know that those chosen are doing the task to which i set them.

  6. Uma

    Grief-laden clouds cast an eerie gloom
    seemingly stolen from my unfulfilled soul

    the air is restless, harried chirping of birds
    giving a frantic voice to my unsaid woes

    A storm is about to tear the evening apart
    the temporary stillness lies uneasy on my skin

    The leaves rustle a warning, heat from the dirt
    traps my feet in an inescapable lethargy

    Heavens unleash their tears into my eyes
    the rain trails a warning on my upturned face

    The wrath of the skies demands its due
    Willingly, I offer myself up

    It won’t even be a sacrifice, for
    my escape lies in being consumed

  7. writinglife16

    LOOKING TO THE FUTURE

    Winter ice seemed to
    coat the nooks and crannies of
    my cold, broken heart.
    Thawing out would take some time
    until then, I’m gonna dance.

  8. Eileen S

    Lament of the Earth
    There’s never a still weather moment
    in the ecosystem.
    A drought bakes the clay soil in the west
    making water tables go down,
    drying up vibrant lakes.
    Several feet of snow dumped on the south,
    annoy unprepared commuters
    but alleviate earth’s thirst.
    Blinding ice storms
    that neither man nor animal can survive
    knock down bare tree branches
    in the frigid north.
    Carefully manicured coastlines
    all over the globe are
    whittled away by
    pounding surf, brutal sun
    hurricanes and tsunamis.
    The ozone layer no longer protects
    the beasts of nature nor
    sun worshipers slathered
    in sun screen from
    from head to toe.
    If only we could control the weather
    so that it wouldn’t control us.

  9. grcran

    the wind beneath her buzzings

    after disaster bad blaster mad storm
    mean buzzardy buzzers mosquitoes do swarm
    sometimes in the night one buzzes won’t land
    i slap my own face trying to guess at her plan
    can’t bite while in flight fighting gravity’s pull
    is she loving or frightened or maybe just full

    gpr crane

  10. Connie Peters

    Autumn Cold

    Jackets line up on the back of the couch.
    Cover up the AC, turn up the heat.
    Leaves are turning golden yellow.
    Autumn weather can’t be beat.

    But soon the snow will be falling
    And the streets will be of ice.
    Let’s stay in where it’s cozy.
    Being with you will suffice.

  11. mayboy

    Mother Nature

    Every morning begins with question,
    how the forecast will reveal direction,
    right or wrong, it’s not the reflexion, I
    want to bend with feelings which never
    end; it could be the sunshine, snow or rain,
    The weather affects our mood wherever
    lands, we all suffer the climate change,
    let’s work on it and pray that The Mother
    Nature, still in play, won’t get out of our way.

  12. James Von Hendy

    Smoky Weather

    A boy’s careless toss
    of fireworks
    and our plans go up
    in smoke.
    It’s raining salt and pepper
    ash in Portland,
    and no one’s on the river.
    We’re passing
    under bridges beautiful
    and ugly
    and if we didn’t smell it
    we’d think the haze
    was fog, some romantic
    dream. I think
    about the boy, the enormity
    of carelessness,
    some prank to impress a girl
    gone terribly,
    wrong too small a word,
    how he must feel.

  13. Karen

    Forces beyond our control
    creates chaos and courage
    is the way humanity rolls
    Forces beyond our control
    Harvey and Irma blow
    high winds and flood damage
    forces beyond our control
    creates chaos and courage

  14. candy

    Rainy Day

    it’s raining toads and frogs
    and pink spotted hogs
    I’m jumping in puddles
    of pudding with sprinkles
    when clouds of horses gallop
    overhead and I grab the reins
    and ride to the kingdom of
    Bumbershoot where the Queen
    of Wellies and the King of
    Macintosh reign and
    old men snore

  15. candy

    Praying for Rain

    I pray for rain – a fervent
    supplication for
    heavy, driving rain to wash
    away my tears
    I pray for clouds to reign
    in the sky – blotting out
    all traces of the sparkling sun
    a grayness covering the memory
    of your smile
    I pray for thunder that rumbles
    rattling windows and shaking
    my soul until it becomes numb
    and I can trudge onward
    I pray for winds to whip and toss
    my sorrow into tatters – small
    pieces that can be endured
    one at a time
    I pray for the calm that follows
    a storm where my grief can
    learn to live

  16. grcran

    Climate Change of Fear

    We slather our lovers with slobber.
    Slosh all over others with tears.
    And finding we ain’t in control of the weather,
    we’d rather blame it. For our fears.
    If I had my druthers dear mother,
    I’d drive those poor guv’nors away.
    Go chortling and hurtling from now to forever.
    No more blither blather dismay.

    gpr crane

  17. kevinwiatrowski

    Riding out the Storm
    The waiting is the worst
    Part – panicky anticipation:
    The pre-storm surge the empties
    Stores of water, gas, and sheets of plywood,
    The daily play-by-play that sprays
    The map with spaghetti strands — pressure
    Rising as the pressure falls, the cartoon
    Sawblade spinning in the Caribbean
    A reminder that satellites and airplanes
    Are fingers in the wind that
    Tell us something is coming but can do
    Nothing to stop it.
    When it comes,
    It begins with gentle breezes and
    Puffy clouds that chase each other
    Across a humid blue summer sky.
    We use old words like “batten”
    And “hunker” as the winds quicken
    And the clouds mound darkly.
    The first drops fall, their gentle descent
    Slowly growing to a slashing rain
    That whips the windows while the wind
    Beats like a beast on the doors and
    Howls through the seams of the house.
    In the heart of the gyre, the machinery
    Holds – the lights flicker but do not fail.
    Others aren’t so lucky as the swirling
    Chaos shifts its course,
    Starving, burning out
    Against the rough surface of suburbia
    Until, eventually, exhaustion
    Claims us both.

  18. Sara McNulty

    Effects

    Now more than
    ever, no one can
    predict with
    certainty
    the weather of a region
    to follow old rules.

    Warm weather
    areas turn cool.
    Cold climates
    have now warmed.
    Day will dawn, with it–weather.
    Will you be surprised?

  19. Bobabob

    Weather

    The pitter patter of rain drops splatter
    The puddles form what does it matter
    A warm summer breeze
    Moves the clouds with ease

    A howling winter blow
    That causes drifts of snow
    Blessed by its grace
    Of sunshine on your face

    These things come and go
    It does not think, it does not know
    Weather just is

  20. Daniel Paicopulos

    Why yes, I am just fine,
    no I haven’t lost my mind,
    and this morning’s time will bide,
    dry and comfy here inside.

    For months we’ve been imploring
    for rain, please God, let it be pouring,
    when in my living room’s safe mooring
    I can be reading, writing, snoring.

    We live in the nation’s Finest City,
    so it’s really quite a pity,
    that to our couch we tether
    when we get a little weather.

    Nonetheless, it would be nice
    to have some droplets (never ice).
    Understand, I’m not complaining,
    I’d just prefer it to be raining.

  21. Eileen S

    Brutal Harvey

    Brutal Harvey took away everything a family owns.
    The car sits underwater; the house is reduced to rubble and
    broken toys that can’t be played with, litter the ground.
    Brutal Harvey took away everything a family owns.
    They stand outside with the clothes on their backs,
    thankful to be alive and relieved that the storm has passed.
    Brutal Harvey took away everything a family owns.
    They accept benevolence from strangers and charity.
    For now, they resign themselves, to life in a shelter
    Brutal Harvey took away everything a family owns.
    Life as the family knew it will not be the same.
    However, they are still a family and will remain so.
    Brutal Harvey took almost everything away.

  22. deringer1

    INDIANA COLD

    This is unbelievable
    I said to my friends
    as we walked to
    class at 7 AM

    I’ve never been so cold!
    But you’re from Canada
    they offered, aren’t you
    used to cold weather?

    I’m not from THAT
    part of Canada, I said.
    It’s invigorating
    they insisted.

    I am not invigorated
    I groused, and I
    hope I’ll never be
    this cold again.

  23. Walter J Wojtanik

    SNOWBIRD IN FLIGHT

    The svelte owl flew upwind, it didn’t want to squander
    the chance to wander above the generator for warmth.
    Trying to abscond with bits of straw buried,
    a harried attempt to begin nesting. A miraculous
    skill of survival readying for the arrival of winter’s
    biting breath. Squinting one eye into the bluster,
    a feathered Cyclops circling the willowy branches
    left barren; exposed to the world. The wisest of birds
    mercurial, a nonpareil in avian wonder. Under
    the rodomontade that December’s artillery could be
    buffeted with a curled wing. Elusive and unobtrusive,
    twice observed and followed, never allowed to land
    all the sand, snow covered hiding his blankness;
    a ghost bird, wings stroking the wind and its
    ego, usurping cheese for a salty seaweed
    and a truffle with quahog salad.
    A bunch of clove evergreens, the hide-away
    for the bilious dunderhead hawks stalking and preying;
    vespers for the vultures. Cowbird eggs left to fester,
    trenched and guttered, fluttered and fine.
    Winter approaches to encroach on her flight.

  24. rlk67

    NO GUARANTEES

    Weather! Yo! It’s time to chill,
    Sometimes you soothe, sometimes you kill.
    Texas sun, then Harvey swirled…
    A metro sinks, a waterworld.
    Oklahoma, calm and clear.
    An F5 pops, homes disappear.
    New York’s safe, so come, let’s hurry!
    Ok, STOP! The snow did bury.
    We pray for those who find your wrath,
    ‘Cause next time it might be OUR path.

  25. JRSimmang

    DO WE LISTEN ANYMORE?

    Our shadows play upon the ground
    and drop their darkling skin.
    I marvel at their silly games, and.
    Count the ways in which we spin.

    They stretch and purr, ink’d mesomorphs,
    chasing sunlight, chasing tin,
    changing with the season’s chill.
    Count the ways in which we spin.

    They dance within the stormy centers,
    hiding in our dreams and sin.
    They never stop to ponder nor
    count the ways in which we spin.

    Faceless, nameless, but attached
    to foot and knee and hips and chin,
    their lies a smoky, mirrored truth:
    Count the ways in which we spin.

    Do we ever stop to wonder why
    the “will be” certainly is “has been?”
    Do we accept the shadow’s hand, or say
    “Count the ways in which we spin.”

    Ahead, we see the world unfold,
    behind us lonely past within.
    A turn, a turn, a turn and then,
    count the ways in which we spin.

    A shadow’s face will remain always
    carved into the ground’s cold skin.
    Never able to look in front, nor to
    count the ways in which we spin.

    Meet my eyes, my brethren, my kin.
    Count the ways in which we spin.

    -JR Simmang

  26. Anthony94

    Weathering Made Easier

    Heavy headed sedums sprawl
    in a perfect circle, splayed on
    thick green stems, butterflies
    riding starry blossoms. Perfect
    weather for broom, mound
    after rolling mound daubed on
    every pasture by some stippling
    impressionist painter whose palette
    holds only lemon yellow.

    In the ditches darker goldenrod waves
    beside the last of the white guara gone
    pink in mid-day heat, the ivory of fading
    boneset shrinking into thick haloes of
    fuzzy leaves yielding to frenzied
    cascades of wild asters.

    Dry and warm after a historically
    rainy August this is weather in
    which to cadge memories
    before the palette is erased
    into the stark black lines of
    bare trees, the sear brown of broken
    stalk, the crystalline white that will
    make us look inward to recall
    the orange pumpkin on the stoop,

    green tomatoes picked before frost,
    the last of the shiny black eggplant
    beneath their elfin caps. Weathering
    those dull days to come all the
    brighter for remembering these.

  27. Anthony94

    Weathering Made Easier

    Heavy headed sedums sprawl
    in a perfect circle, splayed on
    thick green stems, butterflies
    riding starry blossoms. Perfect
    weather for broom, mound
    after rolling mound daubed on
    every pasture by some stippling
    impressionist painter whose palette
    holds only lemon yellow.

    In the ditches darker goldenrod waves
    beside the last of the white guara gone
    pink in mid-day heat, the ivory of fading
    boneset shrinking into thick haloes of
    fuzzy leaves yielding to frenzied
    cascades of wild asters.

    Dry and warm after a historically
    rainy August this is weather in
    which to cadge memories
    before the palette is erased
    into the stark black lines of
    bare trees, the sear brown of broken
    stalk, the crystalline white that will
    make us look inward to recall
    the orange pumpkin on the stoop,

    green tomatoes picked before frost,
    the last of the shiny black eggplant
    beneath their elfin caps. Weathering
    those dull days to come all the
    brighter for remembering these.

  28. taylor graham

    SO MUCH HIDDEN

    It was a temptation to just start pulling t-shirts,
    blankets, a pot-holder, broken doll
    off the heap of stuff in the living-room.
    The place was a mess. But that wasn’t my job.
    Not my job to bring in my dog, unclip
    the leash, tell her “search!” She could find one
    small girl among all the human-scented
    objects in that cabin; my dog and I earn kudos
    and our midnight mission would be over –
    assuming the child was hiding in the house.
    But it was October, a chilly night, storm
    on the way, and acres of woods on every side.
    Our job was to search the woods –
    my dog ranging thickets of manzanita,
    buckbrush, chamise while I groped my way
    on hands and knees, trying to keep
    my bearings. Trying not to remember other
    searches – crawling through manzanita
    in a freezing rain, looking for a Christmas-tree
    cutter who, it turned out, had caught
    a ride back to town. Finally, they called us back,
    search over. No debriefing. I never learned
    what happened to that little girl.

  29. De Jackson

    storm fairy

    so, listen:
    you’re either well
    -weathered wit(her),
    or you’re not. if you’ve
    caught her
           (net, pocket, palm)
    you know the moment
    -airy calm she brings
    be
    fore. her satin ribbon
    hair’s a syllabic squall
    wibble-wobbly woven through
    this sky. she’ll balmy
    you a up a cloud-scrum
    or two if you raindance chance
    a certain flicker in her eye.

    she surges, swells
    and tells a fine strung tale,
    red sky by morning,
    slush-shush,
    tut-tut, it looks like rain.

    ::

    1. De Jackson

      Found a typo, and the OCD in me won’t let me leave it. Excuse the repost:

      storm fairy

      so, listen:
      you’re either well
      -weathered wit(her),
      or you’re not. if you’ve
      caught her
             (net, pocket, palm)
      you know the moment
      -airy calm she brings
      be
      fore. her satin ribbon
      hair’s a syllabic squall
      wibble-wobbly woven through
      this sky. she’ll balmy
      you up a cloud-scrum
      or two if you raindance chance
      a certain flicker in her eye.

      she surges, swells
      and tells a fine strung tale,
      red sky by morning,
      slush-shush,
      tut-tut, it looks like rain.

      ::

  30. headintheclouds87

    The Harshness of Sunlight

    They always say it’s the rain
    That makes for lonely days
    And long melancholy nights,
    But the sun too can cause strain
    On fragile and fretful brains.
    Minds wrapped with guilt
    As light enters the window
    Bodies frozen under a quilt,
    Dreading a need to move,
    But aching to go outside
    And embrace the summer warmth.
    That is the wretched paradox
    Which the weather can cause
    In the heads and hearts of those
    Now long weary and worn
    From battling their own inner storm.

  31. De Jackson

    Irony is the skin on a smallish dragon

    Or slate. Or steely gray. Yes? Perhaps no.

    Perhaps know
    her name before you define
    her, or the state of her skin.
    Maybe get to know a girl
    before you claim she breathes
    fire.

    Ay, me, but you’ve a way of
    swaying the sky left of center.
    Not quite right. Cloudy with
    a chance of be
    -wilderment. Don’t hold back
    now, state your mind. Find

    youself. Kind of strange, the way these
    storms become a stranded place
    with
    too
    thick
    skin.

    ::

  32. Bushkill

    The Breath of Life

    Reveling in your brash
    Rustling flora fills me
    With the coolness present
    In your rushing nature.

    Sometimes you languish
    Still and less loquacious
    Leaving little more than a sigh
    As you listlessly loll past.

    Still others, frightful,
    As your fury unfurls
    Fiercely and in flagellant bursts
    That forestall my best laid plans.

    And yet, conspiring in your presence
    I continually appreciate your calm
    And curl composed
    In the palm of your caress.

  33. barbara_y

    September With a Winter Sky

    The gray is almost uniform.
    The lucence is near that of a pearl–
    nearest the cup of a weathered shell.
    To that, I am less than a dust of sand.

    The sky seems too wrung out
    for creation and I
    am too small.

    1. Bushkill

      I’m gonna tag along with the two masters above. I liked the first line in the last stanza. I love it’s motif of a tired overworked sky. Too much wind. Too much rain. Too much hassle to do any more. Very much like when emotions are too far spent to go further.

  34. Bruce Niedt

    Killing two birds with one stone – this is also a Roundelay Challenge entry:

    Category 5

    The weather radar shows its core,
    a cold, dead eye amidst a brew
    of wind and storms and rains that pour,
    a buzzsaw set to tear and chew.
    Some day it will blow in your door.
    The red wheel spins, it spins for you.

    The wind, the storms, the rains thatl pour,
    the buzzsaw set to tear and chew –
    this maelstrom’s one you can’t ignore;
    this time you may not ride it through.
    Some day it will blow in our door.
    The red wheel spins, it spins for you.

    This maelstrom’s one you can’t ignore,
    this time you may not ride it through.
    You watch the boat torn off its moor,
    your roof ripped out, you house askew.
    Today it has blown in your door.
    The red wheel spins, it spins for you.

    You watch the boat torn off its moor,
    your roof ripped out, your house askew.
    But then the winds are calm once more;
    the rains let up, the sky turns blue.
    Today it has blown in your door,
    but that red wheel’s not taken you.

  35. serenevannoy

    It’s getting warm, now,
    the way they told us —
    ice floes shrinking, water rising,
    and the odd funnel cloud
    where it shouldn’t be,
    never was.

    A meteor killed the dinosaurs,
    but not in a day. It took
    thousands of years,
    encroaching darkness,
    scarce food,
    fear,
    maybe.

    The steady thrum of progress around us,
    machinery, smokestacks billowing,
    all descended fro that first assembly line,
    that first inkling that we can throw fuel into a machine
    and make it churn out cars
    or toys
    or plastic doo-dads,
    tell me —
    is that our meteor?

  36. PowerUnit

    Get out of your deep sleep, you old bloated friend, and let’s get to work.
    We have a world to conquer, civilizations to upend;
    we have money to make and warnings to send.

    You’re full of hot air, you old short-sighted goat,
    the same old tune with no new wrinkles.
    I can no more walk with you than you can have a tinkle.

    Friends and foes, caught in their own magnetic swirls, but
    when their independence mingles and the steam of battle blinds,
    the roar enough to blow off shingles.

  37. tripoet

    I Blame the Poets’

    neglect to find different words
    to frame the dialogue. Instead,
    trapped in the gravitational pull
    of politicians, they fail to inspire
    people towards climate
    change.

  38. PressOn

    A MEMORY OF ROCHESTER WINTERS

    I was able to tolerate levelling winds
    or salty spray blocking my view;
    but I gritted my teeth whenever I spied
    the pothole patching crew

    or did so, that is, if teeth I had left
    after driving the obstacle course
    of craters and ice-floes and syrupy slush:
    the slop of winter’s force.

    The lake-effect snow and the ice on the trees,
    even frostbite that shredded my craw,
    were more welcome by far than the roads victimized
    by endless freeze and thaw.

    1. Bushkill

      I fear we are about to enter that milieu yet again. That dreary cold and nature’s coat that hides the true surface of the road from view.
      nice rhyme and meter to your piece.

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