“Hope Spoke” . . . and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –
I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
Emily Dickinson

This week we bring you poems of hope in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, At a Peace Reading, October 30. As always, all poets have come through beautifully for us, examining hope from several angles. Further some have gifted us with sorely needed salve for these days bad news, unrelieved.

Thanks and a warm welcome to two new-to-us poets, Shannon Browne and Oz Forester and thanks to our stalwart poet-heros: Paul Brookes, Anjum Wasim Dar, Frank McMahon, Urmilia Mahajan, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Tamam Tracy Moncur, Ben Naga, and Bishnu Charan Parida.

Enjoy! and do join us tomorrow for the Wednesday Writing Prompt (something a bit different this week). All are welcome to join in: novice, emerging, or pro.

Hope is the way …

Hope is in the way we play
Not just in the words we say
Its through our actions
aspirations and dreams
desires, good fortunes
utopian schemes.
In a world so empty
Anger finds its mark
Matched by sister courage
Intertwined from the start
One without the other

Shannon and her son fighting a cold keeping spirits high

May be pure bliss
What fun would life be
With no manipulation by sis.

© 2019, Shannon Browne

SHANNON BROWNE ((Letters2Mom, Give it a rest) is a wife, and mother of three with an Elementary School teaching degree. Thriving and surviving are her main games at this point in life.  Shannon lost her  grandmother recently and mother some time ago and has been using writing as her outlet.  Finally started blogging and trying to have some fun with her “corky old nature” in a world that’s so unsure.

Hope spoke

Find me, hope said
where headwaters unfurl
and roll across eons of rocks
polished by the playful tumble
of a rumbling stream. I stir belief
in the faintest trace I leave
under layers of a forest bed
the faint murmur of a mountain spring
where the ascent of a desert trail
is more than water
and the curl of a wool blanket
around the thumb of a sleeping child
is more than warmth.

Find me
where daydreams break
and flood the order of days
bridged by that narrow crossing
between duty and yearning. I destroy walls
from the rigid constructs I emerge
from labyrinths of complex reasons
the unwanted changes and the changing wants
where the hunger on the abundant earth
is a promise made
and the bend of the searching sun
under the months of winter snow
is a promise kept.

Find me
where smoke rises
and lifts the ghosts of mourning
entrapped by a constant churn
of candle stubs. I unite breath
under melting symbols I bow
to the church of the desperate fate
the humble faith in the big mistake
where a vow of strange forgiveness
is more than peace
and the prayer for a shamash flame
or the chant to an endless knot
is more than peace.

© 2019, Oz Forestor

OZ FORESTOR is a former journalist. He began writing short fiction, poetry, and essays when he realized the topics that don’t make news are more interesting than news: class struggle, un-planet Pluto, geriatric romance, power psychology, migratory birds, Nazi-era art suppression, trees.  Forestor’s nature-themed poetry chapbook sold out–all three copies- when he was nine. He enjoys hiking, travel, is prone to getting lost, and does not believe in GPS technology.

Reverse Rumi

Always live in regret.
The past is ever present.

There are no new days; you are the same person you were before.

Believe that today will be no better than yesterday. It’s about looking down with despair

and looking backward.

Don’t Look for new opportunities
that the Almighty has planned for you.

Hardship disheartens,
and does not pass away.
All hope is followed by despair;
all sunshine is followed by darkness.

People want you to be sad.
Serve them your pain!
Don’t untie your wings
bind your soul with jealousy,
You and everyone around you
can’t fly like doves.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Hopelessness Is Life

Only the hopeless live.
Only hopelessness makes you smile.

When all hopelessness is gone
then you will grieve at the loss.

There are three streets we can go down,
Faithlessness, Hopelessness and Selfishness

Without one of these the others cannot exist.
There must always be hopelessness

in the best of times. It reminds us of an edge
to life. Surrender to hopelessness

and all will be well. It is the force that drives
all that is worthwhile and good.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

FYI: Paul Brookes, a stalwart participant in The Poet by Day Wednesday Writing Prompt, is running an ongoing series on poets, Wombwell Rainbow Interviews. Connect with Paul if you’d like to be considered for an interview. Visit him, enjoy the interviews, get introduced to some poets who may be new to you, and learn a few things.

The Wombwell Rainbow Interviews: Jamie Dedes

  • Paul’s Amazon Page U.S. HERE
  • Paul’s Amazon Page U.K. HERE

More poems by Paul at Michael Dickel’s Meta/ Phore(e) /Play

Hope Flying for Peaceful Eternity

After Emily Dickenson

Flying lightly all over
feathers of hope hover
linger, alive, tingle the soul
stay without burden,cover
the spirit, awakening the heart
from time to time, warding away
danger depression sadness cold
storms in the turbulent seas, not
harming even a bird or a gull
but keeping the lull,cajoling Poseidon
for softness soothing mercy, nothing
ever from me asking or the entire humanity
but flying closer to all flying for peaceful eternity

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

Anjum-ji’s sites are:

“POETRY PEACE and REFORM Go Together -Let Us All Strive for PEACE on EARTH for ALL -Let Us Make a Better World -WRITE To Make PEACE PREVAIL.” Anjum Wasim Dar


He thought it would be great to be
a manic comic, soaring
on dope and steroids, his wit
an acid-tipped stiletto.
But then he knew he couldn’t stand
his own dark hand ripping the heart
out of hope, his veins flooding
with the world’s insanities and evils
and nothing there to pump them out.

© 2019, Frank McMahon

Obituary – Shivpuri September 2019

Far from it that we skip the
stony ground of reality
and shroud unpalatable
truth under precarious wings
for two unprivileged children
who lost out through no fault of
their own
like countless others
whose flag is a small white bird of
hope singing from here to eternity

© 2019, Urmila Mahajan

Urmila’s site is: Drops of Dew

.a place of hope.

we find it when the rain stops,

light comes through. yesterday morning

looked nice.

find it in the leaves scattered in piles witing for the wind

to scatter

hope in the plane flying over

run out to see

i found hope in the mountains here

a home, a refuge plain

and simple things, the ordinary

become as sacred in our life

and brings a sort of hope

we can hold onto

cherish inside of us


there may be


small birds sing

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher


i found you stranded.

held you , hugged you.

felt the weight of your body.

felt your fin.


i took you to the water

and lay there with you

hoping it would save your life.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:

The Desert of Existence

Hope rises every morning coloring the sky with messages of love declaring peace despite the ratta-tat-tat of gun violence violating innocence.

Hope stands strong in vast rock mountains symbolizing strength…the strength to continue on along this narrow nebulous pathway into the future.

Hope is spring summer fall winter blanketing earth’s atmosphere in splendor…rain washing away tears…the sun shining away fears…falling leaves capturing pain…the snow white in its purity covering shame.

Hope rides on the waves of the ocean in glory and power diving into unfathomable depths seeking fellowship in the dark murky waters.

Hope flies through forests over rolling green hills across rivers into the desert of existence…the highs…the lows…the joy…the heartache…the caring…the callous.…the sharing…the selfish.

Hope unites hearts in just causes lighting fires of indignation flames ablaze burning up hate… subjugation…racism… fanaticism…exploitation…sending sparks of the evidence of faith into the heavens.

Hope internalized is belief in “Somebody Bigger than You and I”

© 2019, Tamam Tracy Moncur

Tamam Tracy Moncur probes  the reality of teaching in our inner city school systems as seen from the front line in her book, Diary of an Inner City Teacher. Over two decades in the trenches, Tamam exposes through her personal journal the plights, the highlights, the sadness, and the joys she has experienced as a teacher. Our children’s very existence is at stake! Laugh, cry, and become informed as you embrace the accounts of an inner city teacher.

She Seats Herself to Write

She seats herself to write

Half fearing her writing
Will drive her mad while
Half hopes it will cure her

In two minds – Ah, if only
Thinks were so simple
Turmoil turmoil turmoil

Enough! Dismisses them all
And seats herself to write

© 2019, Ben Naga

Ben Naga’s site is: Ben Naga, Gifts from the Musey Lady and Me. “Laissez-moi vous recanter ma vraie histoire.”


Hope is that flickering light,
Showing us the path
All throughout a darkened tunnel

Hope is in the little stars
Twinkling in a moonless sky,
As we watch them smiling

When a deadly night ends,
With sun rays dispelling the darkness
Hope wakes up in us, consoling

When for us everything is lost
As we bemoan, hope pats on our back,

For beggars on the street
With no food, no shelter
Hope lies straight as a road to walk over, on and on, ahead

© 2019, Bishnu Charan Parida

Bishnu-ji’s site is: Bishnu’s Universe Bishnu is just getting his blog started. We wish him much joy in this creative effort.

“Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” Shel Silverstein

Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights and encourages activist poetry.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook / Medium

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019

“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

Taking a Stand: Join with “The BeZine” team this weekend (August 11 & 12) and Unite with Might, to promote hope, love [respect], and inclusion

Passionflower courtesy of Niek Sprakel, Public Domain Photograph

“Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illuminates it.” Martin Luther King Jr., A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches

Rev. Terri Stewart, Associate Pastor at Riverton Park United Methodist Church

From the desk if Terri Stewart:

It is tempting to fall into silence when confronted with people whose attitudes and choices are so much different than your own.  For example, we know that Richard Spencer and Jason Kessler, leaders of the alt-right movement, are planning to have another rally and march, similar to the one they had at Charlottesville where Heather Heyer was killed.  We decided to do something about it and I hope you will join us.

Unite with Might

We are uniting together to stand against hate and to promote hope, love, and inclusion for all of our neighbors.

Sometimes it seems that there is so much hatred in the world that it is impossible to know what to do next.  But changing hate to hope, loneliness to love, paranoia to peace, isolation to inclusion, starts with us.  The beloved community.  We are mighty when united for causes that uplift the values of hope, love, and inclusion.  Hence the name, Unite with Might.

On August 11 and 12, Richard Spencer and Jason Kessler, leaders of the alt-right movement (Unite the Right) that marched in Charlottesville, VA, are having a rally in Washington, D.C. and hope to also rally again in Charlottesville, VA, where a young woman, Heather Heyer, was killed by alt-right marchers.

Washington, D.C., National Parks Service has approved the alt-right’s permit to gather.

In my faith tradition, the table is where everyone is welcome, included, and finds connection to the ineffable mystery beyond our understanding.  And so we propose gathering around food.  This is a different kind of gathering.  A gathering in each of our communities and each of our homes that opens our doors and hearts to everyone.

Bloggers!  Let’s splash the world with a voice that proclaims that this is a new day!

Make a public stand that the alt-right will not win the day.  Love always wins.

We will be hosting a party online at our Facebook event, and everywhere in the world that unity and diversity is declared to be an important value.

Please join us this weekend and link your blog post at the Facebook event or write directly into it.  Tweet using the hashtag #UniteWithMight .  Instagram with the hashtag #UniteWithMight.  Let the world of love declare that hate cannot win.


Rev. Terri Jane Stewart

#UniteWithMight #LoveYourNeighbor #TheTableIsOpen #AllAreWelcome







Poet and writer, I was once columnist and associate editor of a regional employment publication. I currently run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers. My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,Compass Rose, Connotation PressThe Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman. My poetry was recently read by Northern California actor Richard Lingua for Poetry Woodshed, Belfast Community Radio. I was featured in a lengthy interview on the Creative Nexus Radio Show where I was dubbed “Poetry Champion.”


"And the needy shall have hope ..." Job 5:16
“And the needy shall have hope …” Job 5:16


I am open and I am willing
To be hopeless would seem so strange
It dishonors those who go before us
So lift me up to the light of change

There is hurting in my family
There is sorrow in my town
There is panic in the nation
There is wailing the whole world round

May the children see more clearly
May the elders be more wise
May the winds of change caress us
Even though it burns our eyes

© Holly Near, Singer and Songwriter

“Eastward and westward storms are breaking,–great, ugly whirlwinds of hatred and blood and cruelty. I will not believe them inevitable.”  W.E.B. Du Bois, The Wisdom of W.E.B. DuBois

With a nod to Unitarian Minister Ben Meyer and Congregational Minister Penny Nixon in gratitude for a healing evening of songs, prayers and meditation. Dedicated with hope and with faith in the ultimate goodness of humankind: for J.A. and his grandson born on November 9, 2016

For the Girls, a poem

girlThey come like thistle and thorn,
and write their rage upon my body.
They come like locusts and
feed on the fields of my soul.
Like the angry storm, they drown me.
Like the desert sands, they suffocate me.
They see me, a little person
of little consequence …
a girl
Just a trinket, a toy, a receptacle,
something to sell, buy, trade or
marry-off prematurely,
without my say.
But hear me, I am the answer.
I am the calm after the storm.
I am the antidote to
stone hearts and desiccated souls.
I am the future and the past.
I am the hope, the dream, the reality.
I am real.
I am human.
I am the answer.

“Women are half the society. You cannot have a revolution without women. You cannot have democracy without women. You cannot have equality without women. You can’t have anything without women” Nawal El Saadawi (b. 1931), Egyption feminist writer and physician


Girls Not Brides

Lifting the Veil: Artists in Support of the Tahirih Justice Center:

The Tahirih Justice Center stands alone as the only national, multi-city organization providing a broad range of direct legal services, policy advocacy, and training and education to protect immigrant women and girls fleeing violence. Come out and support some of New York’s most powerful artists as they perform to raise money for a worth cause. $10 suggested donation all going to the center. Thanks to Terri Muuss for sharing this with us. Lifting the Veil Facebook Page is HERE.

August 7 at 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. EDT at BrickHouse Bewery & Restaurant 67 W. Main Street, Patchogue, New York 11772.


There is no place for child marriage in a world where empowered girls lead the way into a better future for everyone everywhere!

©2010,poem and photograph, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved