My Words

I’m stripped soul-naked standing bare
To a universe made of blank paper
Its mocking nakedness haunts me
Seductively taunts me with its vapor

I see my words as pieces of my deepest soul
Shattered apart in my passions throes
Then brought together in a multi-hued mosaic
A stained glass window, if you will, of prose

My words reaching through time with voices of one from long ago
My words reaching for the vernacular of the street griot, ya kno’

Words lose me in the folds of its scripts
And lets me discover myself yet again
Words listen to me when no one else wants to
Words speaks to me in a way no one else can

Sometimes my words scroll across my monitor
To let me say what I want to say
Sometimes I resort to pen and paper,
To express my words in some other way

It sometimes scares me to the core, being so beholden to such
I’m scared of being pushed away, I care for my words so much

Yes, I cater to word’s selfish lusts
It’s a call I’ll always heed
Words give off a satisfaction
That’s almost carnal in need

But lately my words are not happy
With the scratch of the mighty pen
There’s this new desire to be heard
And it’s a most frightening yen

Paper no longer holds them, my words have something to say
But in the excitement to be heard, my words get in their own way

I risk the bleat of my vocals failing
Changing the meanings I devise
Yes, my words on paper are lovely
My words from my voice are otherwise

But words have trusted me all this time
In the handling of its care
Spoken word is the natural evolution
If only I take up the dare

So, I put my trust in my words, as it puts in me alike
I take a prayer and a breath and step up to this mic


dVerse Poets Pub graphic


dVerse Poets Pub | Poetics: Take a risk!

Tricia at dVerse challenges us to explore the theme of risk. Whether it is tackling difficult subjects or laying bare a personal struggle in vivid detail, exploring a new writing form that you may find “risky” or unconventional; perhaps the risk we take falling in love.

Write on any topic as long the word “risk” is used,

In Flagrante Delicto

Secret lovers

Whispering
Sweet nothings

That scream
Bitter everything
To wound the one
Who bears witness
To now erstwhile secret

For no armor can protect
The heart wound in love
From the cruelty
Of that which it loves

But loves it not in return


dVerse Poets Pub graphic

dVerse Poets Pub | Quadrille #128: What’s in a word?

At dVerse, Lillian tends bar and wants to know What’s in a word? And what’s the word for this challenge: wound. She makes our Quadrille poem a bit tougher by challenging us to include the word twice – using both meanings / pronunciations of the homographic pair.

Whether we use the word once or twice in the body of the poem, the poem must be exactly 44 words in length – not including the title.

The Beginning of The End

She sat among her own.

Around her were other historians of the old, the ancient, in spoken word alone. Some old, some young, all in awe of the hoarfrost woman, the eldest of the griots.

Eyes of stone that easily flashed in compliments or condemnations, were a study in consternation as she gazed among those gathered. Especially the young who dared challenge their way.

“Only mouths are we who sings the distant heart which safely exists in the center of all things!”

Bent and cane dependent, she moved boldly nonetheless to the youngest among them and held out a gnarled, aged hand.  He had tried to hide the offending item he carried, but as always, she knew.  

He handed her the scroll. Their history on vellum.

He saw it as the beginning.

She knew it for what it was: the beginning…

…of their end.


dVerse Poets Pub graphic

dVerse Poets Pub | Prosery: Here’s the thing about existing

At dVerse Sanaa tends bar and welcomes us to another round of Prosery where we are asked to write a very short piece of prose that tells a story, with a beginning, a middle and an end, in any genre of our choice.

Since it is a kind of Flash Fiction, there is a limit of 144 words. It must include a complete line from a poem in the story, within the word limit.

Punctuation can be changed, but it is not allowed to subract or insert words in between parts of the original quotation.

This week’s quote:

“Only mouths are we. Who sings the distant heart which safely exists in the center of all things?” – from Rainer Maria Rilke, “Heartbeat.”

The Castle Keep

My steed rides roughly through the loam
We’ve traveled very wide and far
Battle weary but still on par
For all the road I’ve yet to roam
The longest road the first step home

The portion to right unjust wrong
The cost to our men’s lives was steep
The pride we sow we humbly reap
The battle fought was hard and long
Tales that become folklore and song

Glad it’s all done should truth be told
I contemplate my latest scar
Hopeful my queen forgives the mar
Small price to pay her gentle scold
To see the face I long to hold

A winter’s storm slows our advance
All far travels have their own cost
As we lose more men to the frost
My men look to me for guidance
I cannot waver in my stance

Though my own mood be very drear
It’s I alone who holds their hope
It’s by my lead I know they cope
The last goal twixt what we hold dear
My men let loose a hearty cheer

I may yet enter in a tome
The sight of the valley’s green sweep
And just ahead the Castle Keep
The wind becomes our wild mane’s comb
The shortest road the last step home


dVerse Poets Pub graphic

dVerse Poets Pub | Poetics: Exploring the Narrative Voice

Ingrid tends the bar at dVerse Poets and challenges us to write a poem in the voice of a fictional character. It can be any character. One can introduce the character in one’s own voice, but the main body of the poem must be in the voice of the character. It can be a dramatic monologue, or create a spirit voice through whom the poem speaks. The challenge is to experiment with fictional storytelling in the poem.

I’ve gone all medieval king returning home at the end of a battle.

She Tells Him

Standing there by the old fence
She sure is a pretty sight
He forgot just how her eyes do shine
Under the bright sun light
He ain’t seen her in over month
Truth be told not since that night
And he knows the call bringing him here
Can’t be for something right

She tells him the baby is yours
And he knows she ain’t lying
Inside her a life slowly grows
But inside him he’s slowly dying
Being a dad at seventeen
Wasn’t part of his plan
A baby makes him a father
But it don’t make him a man

She leans against the old fence
Not enjoying the cooling breeze
The silence between them is deafening
It’s not meant for times like these
She remembers how he held her close that night
How he made her weak in the knees
Not this distance she feels now standing next to him
Like she’s got some kind of disease

She tells him the baby is yours
And he knows she ain’t lying
She should be happy about this life that grows
But she’s on the verge of crying
Being a mom at sixteen
Wasn’t part of her plan
A baby makes her a mother
But it don’t make her a woman

He’s thinking how two together
Can sometimes add another one
She’s thinking she can’t raise herself
Let alone a daughter or a son
Both want to stand their own ground
Both of them want to run
And neither wants to dare to think
What the other thinks should be done

If he offers his hand would she be his wife
And somehow together maybe make a life
Or let it be something that they just let go
The distant dreams only the two of them will know
She tells him the baby is yours
And he knows she ain’t lying
No matter what they decide
Its knot that’s never untying

Having a child in their teens
Wasn’t part of their plan
A baby makes them parents
But she’s a long way from a woman,
And he’s a long way from a man


dVerse Poets Pub | Open Link Night #291

Today Mish tends the bar for Open Link Night at dVerse Poets where there are no prompts. Post the poem you want.

National Poetry Month Day 29 in a narrative mood.

Could Not Conceive Such

Tears flow with delight
Forgiven are the pains of labor
From the tender life so sweet
Of the new born in her arms
A baby she never thought
One like her would ever greet

~ Because they could not conceive such ~

A time in which the sunlight
He used to once savor
Would ever be forgotten
Living for centuries with such qualms
A creature of the dark sought
The warm rays of dawn now verboten


dVerse Poets Pub | Poetics: Build a Bridge

Tonight at dVerse Merrill asks us to build a bridge of sorts with the Puente form or to write a poem about bridges.

The Puente

In a Puente (Spanish for bridge), the first and third stanzas must have the same number of lines, but there is no set number of lines, as long as the two stanzas match. They can be rhymed or unrhymed. The bridge line is one single line connecting the first and third stanzas. The last line of the first stanza and the bridge line are a couplet, and the bridge line and the first line of the third stanza are a couplet. The bridge line then often connects stanzas written from different points of view or about different ideas.
It sounds more complicated than it is, but it really is not. Two stanzas with a middle line that connects them.

I bridge rhyming Puente of a woman celebrating the birth of her newborn with a vampire longing for the dawn.

National Poetry Month for 2021 Day 28

Some Shade of Blue

I would need some time, to give it its due,
It’s a daunting thing you ask of me.
The seas are more than just some shade of blue

Oh, how would I render such a vibrant hue,
When seas reach the shore at dawn? At three?
I’d need some time, to give it its due.

In colors cleaved only with God’s imbue, 
This palette of mine must try to decree.
The seas are more than just some shade of blue.

There are whitecapped curls of waves to construe 
As they crash against the rocks prettily.
I’d need some time, to give it its due.

Certainly more time than you’d think it’s true. 
Shades vaster than the horizons to see.
Yes, I’d need some time, to give it it’s due.
The seas are more than just some shade of blue.


dVerse Poets Pub graphic
dVerse Poets Pub | Open Link Night

dVerse Poets Pub | Open Link Night

Today Lillian remodels as she tends the bar for Open Link Night at dVerse Poets.

Open Link Night where there are no prompts. Everyone can post ONE poem of their choosing. No particular format, topic, etc.. Post the poem you want.

Tonight I offer a Villanelle

Doorbell

Doorbell ~ Raivenne

She greets me with each new dawn
Much like my doorbell loud to sing
We pick a cardinal point to walk
See the morn – for noon will bring
reminders that in this masked new world
the year passes in its usual swing
I sit until dusk – no points met
For a silenced doorbell cannot ring

Flood ~ T’ao  Chien

The lingering clouds, rolling, rolling,
And the settled rain, dripping, dripping,
In the Eight Directions—the same dusk.
The level lands—one great river.
Wine I have, wine I have:
Idly I drink at the eastern window.
Longingly—I think of my friends,
But neither boat nor carriage comes.


Tonight, at dVerse Poets Laura tends bar and reminds us that today, April 20th, is UN Chinese Language Day. Thus, we are challenged to re-interpret an original Chinese (translated) poem in our own style and try not to use too much of the original poem’s wording. I chose “Flood” by Tao Chien, whose ending lines of longing for friends brought to mind those missing friends and family lost this past year due to the pandemic.

In addition, I chose to re-interpret the poem in the Chinese LUSHI style:

  • eight lines long of couplets – The first couplet should set-up the poem; the middle two couplets develop the theme, the final couple is conclusion
  • each line must have the same number of words, either 5,6, or 7.
  • a mono-rhyme is on every even numbered line
  • Caesura (a pause) should separate clauses.

Our Joy

It was not
a thing planned
bring forth a child
Then raise to adult

Our young lives
No longer ours
Alone anymore
To live or to squander

We know
Being parents
Is not easy and
While sometimes a bother
You’ll always be our Joy


Tonight at dVerse Whimsygizmo, with an assist at the from Sanaa, asks us to Come “bother” up a poem in the form of a Quadrille, a poem of precisely 44 words, not including the title, and including some form of the word BOTHER.

National Poetry Month Day 19

Opposites Detract

Sympathy
accord, rapport
caring, recognizing, supporting
compassion, benevolence, singlemindedness, distant
ignoring, unseeing, uncaring
insensitive, blind
Apathy


dVerse Poets Pub graphic
.
.
.

dVerse Poets Pub — Poetics | Flipping Meanings

Tonight at dVerse Lisa challenges us to play ‘The Opposite Game’ and Flip the Meanings of poems.

I chose to create a poem using the Diamante form which goes as follows:

Line 1: Noun or subject
Line 2: Two Adjectives describing the first noun/subject
Line 3: Three -ing words describing the first noun/subject
Line 4: Four words: two about the first noun/subject, two about the antonym/synonym
Line 5: Three -ing words about the antonym/synonym
Line 6: Two adjectives describing the antonym/synonym
Line 7: Antonym/synonym for the subject

As its name suggests, a Diamante forms a diamond shape when done.