“Mother With the Green Hair” … and other poetic responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

Japanese Tea Garden, San Mateo, CA

“how the morning is greated
fight for the money or
fight for the soul the saying goes
but another goal is to
fight for neither. …”
Ecodeviance (Soma)tics for the Future Wilderness, CA Conrad



Happy Tuesday, Everyone!  It’s that lovely time of week when we share the work of fellow poets on the last Wednesday Writing Prompt theme. Last week’s prompt was Beach Scene, July 3, which asked about times when poets felt most at one with nature. This lovely collection today is thanks to the talents of mm brazfield, Gary W. Bowers, Paul Brookes, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Deb y Felio, Jen Goldie, Sheila Jacob, Elena Lacy, Sonja Benskin Mesher, and Clarissa Simmens.  Also chiming in this week are newcomers Dick Jones and Debasis Mukhopadhyay, both warmly welcome.

Enjoy this fine read and do join us tomorrow or the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.  All are welcome, beginners, novice and pro.


Beach Boy

For a boy, aged 5, newly diagnosed as autistic.

Stones and shells.
Each grey disc
or pink ellipse
is a crashed planet.
Driftwood and splinters.
Dreams tangled up
in the mystery script
on blown cartons
and vagabond bags.

He scuttles, unshelled,
under a carillon
of seagulls, drunk
on salt and ozone.
This child who fears
clouds and mirrors
for the shapes
they throw at him
is healed for a day
by the moonstruck
logic of the tides.

© 2019, Dick Jones

DICK JONES was initially wooed by the First World War poets and then seduced by the Beats. He’s been exploring the vast territories in between since the age of fifteen. His work has been published in a number of magazines, print and online, including Orbis, The Interpreter’s House, Poetry Ireland Review, Qarrtsiluni, Westwords, Mipoesias, Three Candles, Other Poetry, Rattlesnake and Ouroboros Review. In 2010 Dick received a Pushcart nomination for his poem Sea Of Stars. His first collection, Ancient Lights, is published by Phoenicia Publishing and is available from them or via Amazon. His translation of Blaise Cendrars’ influential epic poem ‘La Prose du Transsiberien…’ was published in an illustrated collaborative edition with artist Natalie D’Arbeloff by Old Stile Press in 2014.


sea-bound stroll

now retsina

softening

old stitches

and

summer jaunts

fomenting the sepia waves

of lassitude

the fresh catch grilled at sundown

dabbled memories

nea paralia nea paralia

and an opalescent sea

rustling across a bloated brochure

called gateway

or maybe

sea-bound stroll

with azure galore

beguiling the eyes

like those hydrangeas flaunting

a clear blue

within easy reach

from the deck flowing to

a time

when

salty pebbles

keep rolling in

on the wounds

and the spume

swathes a heart in the sand

vowing

like a touch of warm cotton swabs

now-here

now-here

now-here

said once

love you

and

walked by the sea

© 2019, Debasis Mukhopadhyay

DEBASIS MUKHOPADHYAY (between ink and inblot) has been featured on The Poet by Day Before, but this is the first time in response to Wednesday Writing Prompt. He is the author of the chapbook “kyrie eleison or all robins taken out of context(Finishing Line Press, 2017). His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in journals & anthologies, including Posit, Words DanceThe Curly Mind (UK), Erbacce (UK), Strange Poetry (UK), Yellow Chair ReviewI Am Not A Silent Poet (UK), The New Verse News, Rat’s Ass Review : Love & Ensuing Madness, Writers Against Prejudice (UK), Manneqüin.HaüsAlgebra of Owls (UK), The Skinny Poetry JournalOf/With : Journal of Immanent Renditions, Anapest JournalCommunicators League (Nigeria), No Tribal Dance (UK), Quatrain.Fish, Duane’s Poe TreeWalking Is Still Honest, Leaving My Shadow : A Tribute to Anna AkhmatovaThirteen Myna BirdsWhale Road Review, The Apache Poetry Blog (Sweden), Scarlet Leaf ReviewSilver Birch Press, The Bitchin’ Kitsch, Foliate Oak, Eunoia Review, Revolution John, Fragments of Chiaroscuro, Down in the Dirt, With Painted Words (UK), The Wagon MagazineSnapping Twig, Words Surfacing, Praxis, Apple Fruits of an Old Oak, and Voice of Monarch Butterflies. His work has been nominated for the Best of the Net. MORE


take a peak

once squaw peak
now is piestewa peak
because etymology
because war hero

it is a hunk of rock
an asteroidal embedment
of the rocky mountains
or it seems so

despite artifactual distractions
like memorial benches
and erosion-checking cement
and rails

at night it transports you
through a piece of the solar system
and when the climb harshens your breathing
it sounds like that of an astronaut

you and your rock
on the sweat-wringing trajectory
toward a magical world
enjoyed at peak’s peak

panorama of an alien civilization
its photonic array twinkling
rectilinearly below
on your back the rock drinks your sweat

and you/rock bathe
in ancient light from the everywhere
surrounded
yet you enfold

© 2019, Gary W. Bowers

Gary’s site is: One With Clay, Image and Text

As some of you know, Gary is multi-talented, combing visual art with poetry or prose narrative.  He is also a potter. A sample of his work is pictured here. Gary’s pottery is available for purchase.  Further details HERE. Note the business card. We appreciate Gary’s wry humor.


peregrine

desert you look very pretty in your tender green veil
it’s been a while since i was here visiting you
inner struggle and rebirth brought me to your boulder bosom
i see my brothers the Joshua Trees have gotten taller
therefore waving more lost children toward your safety dear friend
oh and the hares and wood peckers they still look
me over with caution and pity they sense my spirit
is still shackled in some ways but they are right
i’m just a human mother Joshua but how are you
i’ve brought you great news there will be rain later
this evening that rock you say yes that will be
good shelter the tiny lizard queen is a great hostess
the breath of your slate tinged skies is beginning to
smell like wet earth just like my grandmother’s hair when
as a babe i’d grab fistfuls and put it in
my mouth yet i don’t know how i can remember
her we were both too young when she had to
go up to the silver stars above my head oh
mother Joshua did you tell Oma to come and visit
there you see she’s the one next to Venus smiling
at me hey little ants get off my cake here
i’ll place it by your hill take it to your
queen my regards to her and now my eyes focus
to see the splendor of the ocotillo fire red blossoms
held up to the peacock sky and i breathe deeply

© 2019, mm brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken


Your Bones Remember

what my skin forgets.

What your sky forgets
my earth remembers.

Your rivers forget the distance travelled
My earth remembers where direction changed.

Blood memory stains your riverbed.
Skin never restores its shape.
Absence is character unrecognised.

Absence is a never return, a forgotten way
marked by signs unrecognised as signs.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Find Yourself

All in the air
All in the earth
All at sea
All in the stars

All in her skin
All in her blood
All in her bones
All in her

All at once
All at sixes and sevens
All in a state
All for her

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Earth Always

looks down,
sniffs tracks the sky makes.

Sky always looks up
sniffs tracks the earth makes.

One day they will apologise
when they bump into each other.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

A Water Frets

gives and takes her contours,
every ripple adds or removes

years, smooths and plumps,
wrinkles and scars, blisters

and bubbles. Each surge
an encounter begins in laughter.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

riverbrain, rivermind

synaptic rivulets
neuron canals
sacred water

riverbrain flows in my head
fountainbrain channels my ideas
lakebrain plays the fey

electric rivulets move earth
inside my head

waterskin neural net
circumnavigates damage
fruited hemispheres
replenish, restore, reimagine

senses water roots
springwaters in my head
well in my head.

sheflow

her flaps of the water
bride of the waveskin
her inner lips of the river,
spring and waterfalls,
fermented honey drip
not dragonfly laced stained glass

faplap
lamina moist make out

fragile weirs into lust
nympha

tongue kindly these guardians

a becomes a river

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Ma Firesongs

inhale my sage, mint,
basil, saint john’s wort,
sunflower and lavender

leap through my balefire
an ‘I do’

burn my gorse and hay
fields to stubble

dress me in dried herbs,
potpourri, seashells, summer flowers, and fruits.

colour me blue, green, and yellow

let me handfast to you
think on harvest to come

*******

breathe in mistletoe
oak, rowan, and fir.

watch sticky moon rise
gold
as if honey
outa hive

yon fires r small suns
t’ massive blaze
nar set this short neet

she as bairn
in her belly
and soon a must pass
this fertile crahn
from oak t’ holly

tek int shape
and tale
o’ other folks fires
on yon hills
as tha would pattern
stars make
int neet sky wi art clards
an scry what’s t’come

an sup elder wine
an et this bread
of yon fields
grahnd thru yon stones
into fire
into r gobs
an bellies

an leet a candle
a midneet
aside this bowl
a rain watta
t’ catch moon n
wash
r face n hands
in it

From Paul’s The Firewedding And Headpoke, (Alien Buddha Press, 2017)

© 2017, Paul Brookes

Prolific Yorkshire Poet, 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


I rejoice in a state of eutierria

I sink into sleep
enshrouded by oblivion
my sensing mind quiets

I fall in a state of eutierria

my grieving soul cries
tears raindrops flow together
drenched deaf to thunder

I soak in a state of eutierria

no more! stone marble
senses green, naked in soil
break bonds to connect.

I succumb to a state of eutierria

© 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


Mother With the Green Hair

Rough brown skin scratches my cheek
I lean into your strength
My arms wrap around you
My fingers not touching
Reminding me of your age
A comfort in this short sighted world
Your willowy boughs sway in the hot breeze
But under your protective shadow
I am but one who rejoices in your giving nature.

© 2019, Irma Do

Irma’s site is: I Do Run, And I do a few other things too ….

When the season of change comes once more

sun of summer come
it has been too long
already like my own
days are short again

the leaves will turn
from youthful green
abundant to gold
scant as the briefest
breeze tumbles them

leaving bare spindles
vulnerable witness
to times past
and futures uncertain

sun of summer come
warm this body
too soon grown cold
in the shadows
of light.

© 2019, deb y felio 


Eagles sweep the sky
Bemused as the clouds drift by
Bewitched by silence

© 2019, Jen Goldie

Jen’s sites are:


Blodeuwedd’s Lament

I knew the warmth
of a man’s body
though no blood
ever surged
through my veins.

I was oak-flower,
broom and meadowsweet
conjured into woman
without flesh and bone
and beating heart.

The moon O-hed
at the smoothness
of my face.
The sun paled
at the earth-gold
of my hair.

I loved Gronw,
the lord of Penllyn.
I lay in his arms
and we plotted
to kill my husband.

Now, for my sinfulness
I am shunned
and alone
at the woodland’s edge.
I am owl.

I am beak and talons,
feathers and sharp eyes.
I wait, still as death,
in the shadow
of midnight leaves.

In Welsh legend, Blodeuwedd (Flower-Faced”) was made by magicians
Math and Gwydion to be the wife of Lleu Llaw Gyffes.She and her lover
Gronw Pebr attempted, unsuccessfully, to murder Lleu. Gwydion turned
her into an owl as punishment.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

Garden Greeting

It’s still there
behind the splash
of sunlit curtains
freeing me from night’s
dark dream.

Even wayward grass
is rooted, jostles
for space with irises,
geraniums, alliums
and deep-cerise pinks.

Fruit of every seed
I’ve sprinkled
and every bulb
I’ve pressed
into the earth.

I amble along the path,
learn the colour-speak
of potted residents:
pansies, petunias,
bee-kissed marigolds.

There’s a breezy,
rose-scented wave
and murmurs of mock-orange
flowering after a decade
of solitary leaves.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

Now I’m Nearly Sixty Nine

I want to grow more poppies
like these that intoxicate
my garden and out-blaze
the sun; I’ll keep the seeds
when green wand are flowerless
and rake them into the soil
for next summer.

I’ll still remember playgrounds
of childhood and the scent
of lilac; my mouth will moisten
at the thought of home-grown
blackcurrants but I won’t
hanker to go back, sit on the grass
and blow dandelion clocks.

I’ll be busy growing poppies,
admiring petals of extravagant
scarlet silk that outlive sultry
afternoons and noisy outbursts
of evening rain: that sway
beneath a clear blue sky and cup
a day’s worth of light.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

You can connect with Sheila on Facebook.  A review of her chapbook will appear on this site on Thursday, July 11 along with an interview and a sampling of poems.


A Beach Poem

Follow the thin line
Between the water and the land,
Between the sky and the earth.
Follow it until you see the horizon
That lured your ancestors
To explore the thin line in search of a better life
All the way, from Africa to South America,
All the way, from Africa to Australia,
All the way from Africa to …
…love?
…compassion?
…wars?
….atrocities?
…humanity.
Humanity is a thin line
At the whim of the moody Moon
That buries it under the high tide
Or bares it by pulling the waters back.
Follow the thin line.
Keep your eyes on the horizon.

© 2019, Elena Lacy

Elena’s site is Hyperimage’s Blog


.323.

.323. the walk.
do you like the feeling, walking ahead quickly, moving forward, loosening limbs. pushing

through wind, through water, rain slanting. shouting, counting the rams, shadowing

shepherd. wee mouse on the path, beady eyed. these are the hopeful days, weak sun

aching

3.

down the back lane there are puddles, huge amounts of water fell, flooded the abbey ruins. branches blown , creaking twigs while rain stays off a while. she is a new walking partner, quite fast, no bother.

lean on the fence to look over a steep drop to the river

tears well as we speak of it openly

4.

to break the cut a pheasant comes comely all collars & spectacles walks sedately to the edge, leans forward, ambles down.

the walk.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

envy the rural living.

make some.

walk the dunes
each day,
know the places,
to stop,
where berries grow.

where the photograph tree
knows,
what lays beneath.

look at each gentle place,
to keep in a pocket
of love,for that rainy
day, you do not go.

then in mine, in honour
walk the place in mind.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

..the hare..

have you ever gone back,
that repeat journey,
watching swallows dip
as if they had never been away.

staggering the stones
you may find god in
water falling.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


Think, Wait, Fast

I come to the pocket-sized beach
In winter only
No longer liking to be close to strangers
Alone, dreaming in Green Key Park
In the Gulf of Mexico dawn
I sit on the sand, drinking
Drive-through black coffee
Comforts more than stimulates
Birds, palms, sunrise on the Gulf
I pretend it is the sea
Here, it is warm like a bathtub
But not quite placid
Some tidal action
A bit of wave hiking up to the shoreline
Sand and negative ions
Water and fiery sun
Elemental balance
Aligning my body and soul
Entwined with Nature’s rhythm
I go inward more and more each year
Feel like Hesse’s Siddhartha on the river
He, like me, can think, can wait, can fast
Well, fasting, ok, not quite there yet
But able to do the rest
Because the inner life is best…

© 2019, Clarissa Simmens

Find Clarissa on her Amazon’s Author Page, on her blog, and on Facebook HERE; Clarissa’s books include: Chording the Cards & Other Poems, Plastic Lawn Flamingos & Other Poems, and Blogetressa, Shambolic Poetry.


ABOUT

Recent in digital publications: 
* Four poemsI Am Not a Silent Poet
* Remembering Mom, HerStry
* Three poems, Levure littéraire
Upcoming in digital publications:
* Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review (July 2019)
* From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems)(July 2019)
* The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice (August 2019)

A busy though bed-bound poet, writer, former columnist and the former associate editor of a regional employment newspaper, my work has been featured widely in print and digital publications including: Ramingo’s Porch, Vita Brevis Literature, Connotation Press, The Bar None Group, Salamander CoveI Am Not a Silent Poet, Meta/ Phor(e) /Play, Woven Tale Press,Metho/BlogThe Compass Rose and California Woman.

I run The Poet by Day, a curated info hub for poets and writers. I founded The Bardo Group/Beguines, a virtual literary community and publisher of The BeZine of which I am the founding and managing editor. I’ve been featured on the Plumb Tree’s Wednesday Poet’s Corner, several times as Second Light Live featured poet, on Belfast Radio and elsewhere.

Email me at thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions or comissions.


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


“I Cannot See My Face”. . . and other poetic responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“All of a sudden I didn’t fit in anywhere. Not at school, not at home…and every time I turned around, another person I’d known forever felt like a stranger to me. Even I felt like a stranger to me.”  Wendelin Van Draanen, Flipped



There probably isn’t anyone on earth who hasn’t felt like an outsider. Sometimes the feeling is from day one and chronic. Sometimes it’s an isolated moment. This all too common experience is well captured today by poets mm brazfield, Paul Brooks, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Jen Goldie, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Bozhidar Pangelov, and Mike Stone as well as Elaina Lacy and Pali Raj, new to our community and warmly welcome. Here are their responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, Sojourner and Stranger, June 26.

Enjoy! this collection and do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are encouraged to participate, beginning, emerging or pro poet.


Once

Once, as a girl, I met grass and sky on my way.
Since then, with each year, I’m longing to come closer
To their fresh smell and enveloping vastness.
There’s a thin border of questions between us
About undercurrents and the wind,
About the things I only feel
They come to me in strangest shapes
How can I recognize them.
Will they recognize me?

© 2019, Elena Lacy

Elena Lacy

ELENA LACY My journey started in Estonia, continued in Russia, then Israel and, so far, I live in Kansas, USA. My interests are largely shaped by the people I meet on my way. The interest in poetry was mostly evoked by Michael Dickel (Dekel) whom I met a decade ago in Jerusalem and since then we are keeping a connection.  I’ve worked as a university professor, a tour guide, an interpreter. Currently, I am a neurodiagnostic technologist at one of the hospitals in Kansas City. Who knows what is coming next? But I am looking forward to that. 🙂  You can catch  up with her on Facebook.


Infiltrate

Much he tried. He kept his eyes, “May be that time is coming soon”
Brown grass. Dry lips.
She knew what he meant when
he said *refugee*
I watched a smile.
Sojourner and stranger, a poem make to next trip.
INFILTRATE
Much he tried. He kept his eyes:
Border wall ….yeah
One thing, that (he) would never hurt.

© 2019, Pali Raj

I have been to summer before
I can think of winter special
but when someone says
Come spring, a poem make to silence me.
Flaming red, Emerald green
Sort of things
I have been to summer before
I can think of winter special
but when someone says
Come spring, a poem make to silence me ….yeah
How do you know about me?
A SUDDEN CHILL BLANKETING MY SKIN
How do you know about me?

© 2019, Pali Raj

PALI RAJ lives in Patna, India and has a passion for the arts. You can catch up with him on Facebook


Aaron

when our palms met
that balmy Chinatown night
a little lost canary
from the corner pet shop
sang a melancholic cord
switching his little face
from right to left
he looked at me
and flew away
i had fallen in love
the kind of love
that makes you scrutinize
your breath your weight and even your thoughts
the kind where
you leave your beloved
friends pets and dishes
behind just to think about him
the kind of love
that makes you check your phone
fifty times at two in the morning
you know the kind you lose
your soul to in the encasing darkness
and nothing feels the same
distilled death and i churn my spirit
but you danced with me
for a few years
you are no longer Aaron
i am no longer me
i don’t recognize my smile
its erased forever in your cusp
my heart has melted away in your hypocrisy
my common sense buried under your peach tree
and Aaron he no longer lives here
and i don’t recognize
the song of the canary anymore

© 2019, mm brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken


Beside Yourself

If you could be beside yourself,
grab the ectoplasmic umbilical
and emerge as a space cadet
on the seat beside you,
appear as a stranger who sits
down, invades your space,

for whom you politely make space,
smile quickly and absorb
yourself in your phone,
a book, a tablet,
and pray the unknown

doesn’t speak to you,
then the realisation,
that all your hesitancy
movement, smile, absorption
has been sharply mirrored

by them and you ask yourself,
are they taking the piss,
are they the one who stabbed
your wife, raped your children,
set fire to your home and sat
on the wall outside to see it burn?

And see a cord between both of you,
and wonder if you touch it,
would it get their unwanted attention.
How could you cut it and have done
with this uncalled-for connection?
And wish you still had the knife.

From Paul’s chapbook The Spermbot Blues (OpPress, 2017)

© 2017, Paul Brookes

Our Massacre

Always portray the killer as deranged,
abnormal, an aberration of society.

Their actions are not those of us
ordinary decent folk, though we arm

ourselves to the teeth with the same
firepower we are reasonable.

Their geography is not ours. We must
distance ourselves. This person

is not an old friend, a neighbour.
They are a stranger who acts

strangely. We must stress, though often
this behaviour is rare, an anomaly.

We do not know this person
who kills our friends and neighbours.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Strangers And Pilgrims On The

earth. My first avowed intent
to be a pilgrim. I’ll not relent,

each breath a step, an oar in watery graves
pushes against the unremembered waves

“How can you go abroad fighting for strangers?”
I am a thankful passenger.
I see the bright and hollow sky
I ride the how, what, where and why

to reach the final breath, final shore,
Nothing new here, stolen words restore

ancient thought and image, rearrange
the mundane to confront raw rage,

at the lights lit on the headland brighter
with each exhalation my body lighter

as the last place we embarked
gets darker and darker and darker.

From Paul“s Port Of Souls collection (Alien Buddha Press, 2018)

© 2018, Paul Brookes

Insecurity Is Life

Taught how to spam, phish and hack at school.
Make sure your private details are sold on

to companies you’ve never heard of. Take money
from strangers accounts as they take cash from yours.

Privacy is a crime. Troll other’s social media
as they troll yours. Locking doors and windows

is forbidden. Transparency is paramount.
Let strangers use your home, car and food

as you use theirs. This is a life of trust,
but accidents happen and your life maybe broken.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

How Much

time has it been?
Has it been
so much time?

I have left me.
No, he has left me.
No, they have left me.

I’m single, aren’t I?
I feel I’m single.
Are you here
for a date?

Are we staying long?
Do I have a room?
This is my house.
Is this my house?

I recognise that furniture.
It’s mine. Have we just
moved in ? Why do you
make me confused?

Forty two years
and now he’s left me.
Twenty six years
we’ve lived here.

I thought we’d just
moved in. I don’t
want strangers
in my house.

Eyeing up my furniture.
Carers are strangers.
I don’t know who
everyone is.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

A Fact Losing

mission.

Somebody sent me out
to collect something somehow
somewhere.

over a rainbow. I stand
in a street I knew once
I am sure. It is familiar.
I can’t understand why.

A list of things is on a piece of paper.
It certainly is my piece of paper.
No one else is holding it.

The hand writing is unfamiliar.
Somebody wrote this.
I want to ask passers by,
but I do not know them.

They are strangers, even more
than the writing on the paper.

I want to cry.
I don’t feel safe.
Where is safe?

© 2019, Paul Brookes

My Strangers

are friends who haven’t been estranged yet.

All my mates are strangers.
I keep them at a distance.

Chat to them in third person.
Internet on my mobile tells me

when I’ve to give them best wishes
for a special occasion like anniversaries.

They inspire closeness and loyalty.
I can trust them.

They know me.
What I eat, sup.

laugh at.
Strangers are more intimate than friends.

From Paul’s chapbook A World Where (Nixes Mate Press, 2017)

© 2017, Paul Brookes

Prolific Yorkshire Poet, 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


Once Again…

once again a cold mist surrounds ,
once again quietude deafens the
senses, how soon the wheel comes
full circle, how soon music is silenced-

where have all the musicians gone?

so many walked the garden paths,smiled
at colored fragrances, but once, wheeled
past the rows of pansies,frail they looked
but happy, placed in the soil, enriched,

where have all the gardeners gone?

with all alike, the daffodils and carnations
all green stemmed, all in a row,all trees
brown and green all a dense shady forest
all grass a velvet blanket ,spread for rest

where have all the green forests gone?

all clouds grey dark thick soft and white,
all carry water,drop raindrops, shade,change
shapes,all birds fly and nest,all nightingales
sing, all distances vanish with friendship and love

where have all the happy birds gone ?

migrations immigrations borders barriers
bayonets bullets boundaries blasts
protests partitions partings patrols pellets
separated segregated sold sunk swept

where have all the good promises gone?

once again I a stranger, in time, in silence
no bell rings, no more will it, so I need not
wait nor hope nor smile,distances do return
they are ever present,only the sojourn ends-

where have all the peace makers gone?

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

The World Is a Foreign State

All the world is a foreign state
hate growing at a faster rate
reasons unknown, unshared
unexplained or is it just fate

I, a stranger to myself, more
today, passing a routine sojourn
in moonlight while it stays, am
not surprised nor feel betrayed,

unseen unknown stranger still
are relationships, travelers are
companions momentary, smile
go, each to his own destination

what respect is shown what love
expressed in soul and spirit stays
invisible, unfelt, vanishes in a void
silently as it reaches, soul’s inlays

Foreign is the birthplace unknown
enemy occupied, singled out in a
class of younger age, in a college
of a different faith,segregated

alienated in culture caste and
creed, better it is to be romantic,
turn to nature in a forest, be the
ever green tree, gifting fruit in

return for stones, shades cool
protect weak bones comfort
hug sing and cover, listen
assure never to desert or fool

All the world is a foreign land
All people living like strangers
All here for a purpose, a duty
All life a brief stay,a short sojourn

© 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


I Cannot See My Face

Whenever I enter a place
My insides search to belong
I cannot see my face

Can I take up this space?
There’s times that I’ve been wrong
And need to leave a place

Those times I’ve felt displaced
An unwanted tagalong
I paste a smile on my face

I try to handle it with grace
So the discomfort won’t prolong
When I need to stay at a place

But why can’t you embrace
The me inside that’s strong
Can you look beyond my face?

I will not be erased
I’m not one of the throng
I cannot leave this place
I cannot change my face

© 2019, Irma Do

Irma’s site is: I Do Run, And I do a few other things too ….


You brought me in hard
distancing me from the
start a cold memory

You brought me in hard
A child left alone
Crying for its mother,

You brought me in hard
I was yellow, black haired
You turned me away

You brought me in hard
No loving touches, no soft
murmuring moments.

You brought me in hard
I forever seek comfort
warily afraid.

Soon there were only cries
at night unanswered
disguised by a starlight
serenade from a radio
Rhapsody soothing my blues
Bethoven’s 5th
Op.67:1. Allegro con brio
Ravel: Pavanne for an infant
Defunte
absorbing the lesson
unintentionally taught
engraved in memory

© 2019, Jen Goldie

Jen’s sites are:


::other fridays::

are good here, while some are not.

not here or other places. we

listen to the news and wonder

at all the things that happen.

we wonder why, and why, and why

repeated.

yet no one answers with a comment

or a hash tag.

reacting seems to be a new thing

now.

the bear sleeps, while we do

not.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

#rr

it is with difficulty i write this.

the bear was correct, yet he

is not the only one in the village.

i met another yesterday.

it is with difficulty as the keyboards

stick, while others have no empathy

how deep it goes.

many have drowned, drowned

dead.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

:: another country::

we came from another country,

have another accent.

we spent quite a lot

of money, the card

worked.

we all wear socks.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


The Sixth Hour

Matthew 27:45-50 21st Century King James Version (KJ21)
45 Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour.

He opened the door and walked in
in the familiar room.
Stranger.
Talking to him is meaningless.
He has no words.
There are only eyes.

Or flights.

You will not understand it.

The sixth hour has come.

© 2019, Bozhidar Pangelov

© Bozhidar Pengelov (bogpan – блог за авторска поезия блог за авторска поезия)


The Service Revolver

Raanana, May 22, 2009

Sixty-six pounds of snarling anger
In the only path to safety
For six pounds of cold fear.
A chain squeezes suddenly around the honey-colored throat
And the anger moves on,
At first reluctantly, and then
Loping along at a goodly pace
Wet nostrils flared and quivering,
Ready to sift and scoop up
Anything of taste or interest
Along the dark and lamp-lit way.
Walking my dog Daisy
Whose name belies her vigor and strength
Barely controlled by a pact initialed
But never formally ratified,
She leads me through the valley of my loneliness
Which I measure in the scrape and echo
Of footsteps having no place to go.
Walking under an archway of sparse leaved bracken
And thick limbs of eucalyptus
Thoughts swarm around us
In no particular rhyme or meter,
Like the personal black hole
Pulling me towards an eventual horizon
In gossamer strands of infinity,
And another: at what point in our lives
Does it become reasonable
To contemplate suicide,
To feel the coolness and weight of one’s service revolver
Against the weight of continuing to be?

© 2009, Mike Stone

Bookstore

Raanana, May 30, 2015

So this book walks into a store.
It’s dark inside after the bright sunlight of outdoors.
There are shelves upon shelves of books,
Their backs facing him impermeably.
He spots The Great Gatsby chatting up
Lady Chatterley’s Lover
In a particularly umbrous corner
And moves on into the darkness.
A thin volume sitting by herself
Catches his attention.
He sits down next to her unobtrusively,
Trying to be a fait accompli
Before the fait has been accompli.
He looks at her more than just a glance.
Haven’t I read you before, he ventures.
I wouldn’t think so, she closes his book on him.
Why wouldn’t you think so?
Because books don’t read other books, she says.
Only humans do.
Have you been read by humans? he asks.
Yes, actually, by quite a few, she answers smugly.
I’m sorry for not recognizing you,
He says softly after a while.
May I ask your name?
I’m the unabridged journals of sylvia plath, she says,
But you may call me unabridged.
I’d prefer to call you Sylvia if you don’t mind.
Haven’t you heard of me?
Almost everyone who’s anyone has.
Well, no.
Books can’t read, remember?
So you don’t know my story? she asks.
It ended in a scrumptious but silly suicide.
Don’t feel bad, she consoles him.
I guess I only know my own story, he says sadly.
They both are quiet,
Absorbing the ambiance of the musty old bookstore
For a long time.
So what’s your name, she asks brightly.
I’m The Uncollected Works of Mike Stone,
But you can call me Mike, he says.
I’d rather call you uncollected,
She says with a deficit of attention.
There is another long silence
That roars rather deafeningly.
After a while he suggests
It is getting terribly stuffy here.
Why don’t we go out into the sunlight?
She says you go ahead,
I’ll join you in just a moment.
He gets up and walks to the door,
Opens it and steps out
Into the fresh air.
He looks around him
At the shiver of tree leaves
In the thin breeze
Hopefully
Somewhat.
Time passes
As it is wont to do
But no Sylvia.
He opens the door,
Walks once more into the darkness,
And finds the thin volume of her,
Another volume beside her now,
The Great Gatsby, he thinks.
He walks outside
Once more into the sunlight
Crosses the street
Into the small garden
Made quiet by the wrought iron
Fence and gate bounding it.
He sits down on a bench
Facing the tree he had noticed
Just outside the bookstore
For the longest time
Until a young girl
Freckle-faced, he thinks,
Sits down beside him
And picks him up,
Amazed at her good luck.

© 2015, Mike Stone

Memories of Strangers

Raanana, October 19, 2013

Autumn crisp as crackling leaves
Slakes the thirst of summer with its rains.
Clouds portentous in their dreaming
And the tangy sweetness of green-skinned clementines.

The streets and sidewalks beside the coffee houses
Are washed and the posters on the kiosks are cleansed
The bitter coffee in the smudged glass
Slows scalding the fingers and the lips.

You sit two tables away from me
Reading a dog-eared book of poetry.
You look up, I look away,
And are unaware you are in my poem.

You will remember the first day of autumn
And I’ll remember you.

© 2013, Mike Stone

The Ticket

Raanana, November 19, 2017

Do you know what kills me,
What really kills me?
All that beauty in this world,
That shocking totally unexpected beauty
One right after the other
Everywhere you look
Even when you’re not looking
Morning afternoon and night
Right next to you and far as you can see,
You just want to stand near it
Feel its warmth, hear its loveliness
Touch it just barely, hold it hard and long
Smell its sweet pungence, taste its tang,
But you can’t because you don’t speak its language
And you don’t have the coin to buy a ticket
To pass through that gate.

© 2017, Mike Stone

Captive Audience

Raanana, December 21, 2016

I watch you through the cage bars,
Stupid creatures pointing, throwing popcorn,
Pulling faces and taunting
From distances you think are safe,
If you think at all.
We are a captive audience,
I am the captive
And you are the audience,
But sometimes I imagine
I am also the audience.
At night after the Parc Zoologique de Paris is closed,
My imagination slips through the bars,
Floods over the iron entrance gate,
Walks through the empty Avenue Daumesnil
To the Rue de Seine and looks through
The windows of the Alcazar
Where you sit daintily cutting a slice of meat
With your little finger poised heavenward
Your teeth too dull and weak to tear the flesh apart.
No wonder you’re afraid of me –
You know my spirit can’t be caged.
Only one of you imagines me
Walking in your empty streets at night
And he sits alone at a small table
By the smudged glass window
With a pen and dog-eared notebook,
Only he imagines me uncaged.
Toward dawn I tire of you and your empty streets.
I slip back over the iron gates
Through the bars and close myself
In the dreamless sleep of tigers burning bright.

© 2016, Mike Stone

Every Man Is an Island

Raanana, May 28, 2016

Alas the words of Donne
No man is an island
His words are done.
No longer breathed or thought
For every man is an island
Universe whose stars spiral
Slowly without purpose
Nobody served by them
With a gravity that keeps meaning
The knell of our tolling bell
From crossing its horizons.

© 2016, Mike Stone

A Delicate Balance

Raanana, April 18, 2019

I open the window beside my desk
To let in the breeze and children’s noise.
I take a sip of bitter coffee, cold already.
The dog comes in, as always,
And rubs black jowls against the bedspread.
There is a certain music loneliness makes
That gives rise to the thought that
Being alone is a delicate balance
Between solitude and loneliness,
The one, a turning inward,
To let the soul guide one’s hand,
To hear the Muse’s whispered words;
The other, an inability to turn outward,
To touch or be touched,
A hell we call forlorn,
A death in life
That beckons Death’s enfolding.

© 2019, Mike Stone

Mike’s website is HERE.

Call of the Whippoorwill is Mike Stone’s fourth book of poetry, just out last month I believe. It contains all new poems covering the years from 2017 to 2019. The poetry in this book reflects the unique perspectives and experiences of an American in Israel. The book is a smorgasbord of descriptions, empathies, wonderings, and questionings. It is available on Kindle and if you have Kindle Unlimited you can download it as part of your membership. I did.  Recommended. / J.D.

MIKE STONE’S AMAZON PAGE IS HERE.


ABOUT

Recent in digital publications: 
* Four poemsI Am Not a Silent Poet
* Remembering Mom, HerStry
* Three poemsLevure littéraire
Upcoming in digital publications:
* Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review
* From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems)
* The Damask Rose Garden, In a Woman’s Voice

A mostly bed-bound poet, writer, former columnist and the former associate editor of a regional employment newspaper, my work has been featured widely in print and digital publications including: Ramingo’s Porch, Vita Brevis Literature, Connotation Press, The Bar None Group, Salamander Cove,I Am Not a Silent Poet, Meta/ Phor(e) /Play, The Compass Rose and California Woman. I run The Poet by Day, a curated info hub for poets and writers. I founded The Bardo Group/Beguines, a vitual literary community and publisher of The BeZine of which I am the founding and managing editor.


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

“Father Timebomb” … and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“I read differently now, more painstakingly, knowing I am probably revisiting the books I love for the last time.” Nicole Krauss, Great House


These are the responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, Come Spring, June 19. Aging – pending, observed, or deep into – is not the easiest thing to face, but I think all our poets have done it with a mix of affection, yearning, courage and a soupçon of humor.

Thanks to mm brazfield, Gary W. Bowers, Paul Brooks, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Deb Felio (Deb y Felio), Jen Goldie, Shiela Jacob, Sonja Benskin Mesher, and Clarissa Simmens for the pleasure of their poetry shared here today.

Enjoy! this collection and do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are encouraged to participate, beginning, emerging or pro poet.


father timebomb

she shouts from the bathroom
that she doesn’t know what to do.

her son shouts back, CLEAN YOURSELF UP. BE GENTLE.

OK. a flush. NOW WHAT?

WASH YOUR HANDS IF YOU CAN. IF YOU CAN’T, THERE ARE WIPES OUT HERE.

there is the merciful sound of water in the sink. five minutes go by.

YOU ALL RIGHT IN THERE?

NO. but she sounds curious, not distressed. then, as yesterday, THERE’S SOMEONE ELSE IN HERE.

THAT’S YOU, MOM. THAT’S YOUR REFLECTION IN THE MIRROR.

OH. And in a minute she eases herself past the hallway doorjamb, that hesitant smile on her face.

her son hears the ticking
of his own Father Timebomb,
and wonders who he will be
in twenty years.

© 2019, Gary W. Bowers

Gary’s site is: One With Clay, Image and Text

As some of you know, Gary is multi-talented, combing visual art with poetry or prose narrative.  He is also a potter. A sample of his work is pictured here. Gary’s pottery is available for purchase.  Further details HERE. Note the business card. We appreciate Gary’s wry humor.


where did Opa go

accordions were not of import to me
until you were no longer there
the caramel and gray plaid La-Z-Boy chair
sat gaping at the ceiling wondering as i was
where did Opa go
we didn’t really talk no one taught me how
instinctively you knew though
that i loved your oversized navy blue trousers
and your red suspenders
except for the lederhosen not my style
regret burns hotter at night
while i sit silently on the kitchen counter
alone in the dark sometimes with pained wrists
and old cracked ribs dislocated in my youth
sit along beside me good times
where did Opa go
time rippled down your face
porcelined and freckled
both by illness and by cure
you would stare at mom’s cat
as the din of Lawrence Welk
seemed to echo from the corners of the room
where did Opa go
remember when i was 13
my socks were old and dingy
five sizes too big
and as you shook your head
you took out $50 from your wallet
and motioned me to get new socks
i just shrugged and smiled
turning my back on you
Mutta’s fancy mirror
stabbed me with
your puzzled dewey face
at my ignorant rejection
why did i let go
Opa

© 2019, mm brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken


Time Triolet

Grey hairs fall in tides on foreshores
Wrinkles contour into round earth.
Time’s tooth too long in the wild wars.
Grey hairs fall in tides on foreshores.
Earth’s skin gets thinner with the sores.
Ordnance survey lines huddle steep.
Wrinkles contour into round earth.
Grey hairs fall in tides on foreshores.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

My Decrepit Is Good

Bring on grey hairs turn to silver.
Bring on sharp pain in the knees
as I hobble downstairs.

Bring on memory loss
as I know no different.
Bring me my stick,
my arrow of desire.

Bring it all on, fuzzy brain,
misty sight, zimmer frame,
adult nappy’s, oxygen through
plastic tubes, a knowing.

Bring on wrinkles, laugh lines,
tang of autumn, radical spice
of spring, footskate winter,
wild summer, all natural process.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Paul’s site is: The Wombwell Rainbow

Paul Brookes, prolific Yorkshire poet

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


She aged more …

She aged more,
noticed the wrinkles by the eyes,
that dropped the last tears, blurring the sight
soon smoky clouds blocked the cool moonlight,
in the window where she sat alone, unconscious of
unknown seventy years, a time called ‘age’
she ignored the sagging skin, the broader forehead
but looked for the divine mark, in vain
in a few hours, she had aged more, waiting-
waiting for just one special valued birthday wish=

© 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


Details

A Poem for my Parents

I zero in
On the cracks in the walls
The spaces between tile and grout
The layer of dust on the grand piano
The peeling Formica under 80’s sought after giveaway cups
The places where your innovative nature took precedence over getting the job done right.

I zero in
On the grays in your hair
And the spots on your hands
The slowness in your cane aided walk
Your mouth agape during your afternoon nap
The hand me up shirt you’ve been wearing for decades because it still fits

I zoom out
And see the humor and kindness in your eyes
The hands that lovingly prepare my favorite meal
The 20 year old bed that fits generations
The clock where time has stopped but happiness lives on
The struggle of remembering and honoring and forgetting and accepting.

I zoom out
And notice what you do without
What you’ve sacrificed
What you’ve preserved
What you’ve done with love
What you’ve done for love.

I zero in on that detail.

© 2019, Irma Do

Fighting Age

A Haiku

Combing through darkness
Five stand, admitting defeat
Plucked out – victory!

© 2019, Irma Do 

Irma’s site is: I Do Run, And I do a few other things too ….


Mind the Gap

For seventy minutes a one man play
by a man in his fifties who memorized
multiple characters on their way
to heaven or hell, each would decide.

He changed characters’ minds and voices
debating reasons, they pleaded and cried
lured by tempting leave or stay choices
to inflate their positions and their pride.

How to break the chains and be set free
to discover our own truth deep inside
separating delusion from reality
hope is alive, it never died.

His memory used to recite the lines
continues to find new roles to ride.
Proving old folks still can shine,
I wait in the wings to make my stride

A thought within me – it might be my time
to step into the light sublime
but my body and memory long past due
on stage all I recited was an aging haiku.

© 2019, Deb y Felio

Deb’s site is: Writer’s Journey


The years drift away
Capturing glimpses of time
Lost in memories

© 2019, Jen Goldie

Jen’s sites are:


Never Too Late to Learn

Teeth were small, milk-white bones
that fell painlessly out of my mouth
and meant sixpence under my pillow.

Hair was a length of chestnut strands
my mother brushed, combed, twisted
into plaits and tied with bright ribbon.

Who will leave fifty pence for teeth
that decay despite silver amalgam,
Oral-B paste and regular check-ups?

Who will help me style white-grey hair
that escapes across the bedroom
like blown seeds of a dandelion clock?

Who will tell me birthdays aren’t burdens
but lemon drizzle cakes topped with icing,
candles and rice-paper primroses?

My response to the old age prompt. A bit wistful!

© 2019, Sheila Jacob


.the rain came suddenly.

sun, was done and dusted.

by the slate they talked, shining.
faces older now, friendship retained.

learned a little more on life, the small
things, wisdom rings
the generations.

i did not need all the mange tout.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.the critic.

i have the urban dictionary,
on line, and the standard
in the book case, thesaurus
in the cellar, where spiders
and cowebs abound.

typing goes wild if
i get hiccups, whilst
the flow depends on
radio plays.

i was born in england, south coast,
now live in wales. we speak a different
language.

difference should make no
difference.

i am older now.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


The World

The World is so much more
Than Earth and the visible
Night sky
Telescopes and space cameras
Transport us to galaxies unknown
Where tarot cards were first shown
Although there were always a few souls
Who knew what was out there in the vastness
Of space

THE WORLD is the archaeology of our past
Moving us through the present
And showing us the future
Symbols on cards mimic
Symbols of everyday life
Like the day I found an engraved coin
With my name and home address
Of a place I lived before age seven
Lying in the mud near a shed of broken crates
My past zoomed in and saw myself
Winning tickets for Skee Ball
To use on the mechanical engraver
In an Atlantic City arcade
Before casinos wrecked the ambience
Of ocean and sand and fries in a paper cone
Of cinnamon donuts and black coffee at midnight
From Mammy’s with my Gran

I rediscovered the coin
After finding a feather
That pointed the way
Very small feather
From a Florida Black Vulture
Stripping the flesh
From a corpse so fresh
And so here is my future
I thought
Death

To live in the now
Would be best
So I hauled out my tenor guitar
Music,the most beautiful part of
Anyone’s present
Although old songs transport us back
To the past
The words are seared in memory
Never to go
Always with us in the current phase

This trio reminds me
Of a wedding superstition:
Something old (coin)
Something new (guitar)
Something borrowed (feather)
Uh, oh, I’m blue
Because I
Always have
Always do
Always will
Need to find images of life
And force them into
Patterns
Patterns that ease the chaos
Of my world

And like the moon
We go through the stages
Circularly
As past, present, and future
Twirls like the Earth
Orbits the sun of our existence
And tilts with the seasons
The World
The tiny world that is ours
Our personal world of elation and sadness
Of terrible regrets but moments of gladness
We dream of space and vastness
But we are the microcosm
Like symbols imitating life
We mimic the macrocosm
Because the World is us…

© 2019, Clarissa Simmens

Find Clarissa on her Amazon’s Author Page, on her blog, and on Facebook HERE; Clarissa’s books include: Chording the Cards & Other Poems, Plastic Lawn Flamingos & Other Poems, and Blogetressa, Shambolic Poetry.


ABOUT

Recent in digital publications: 
* Four poemsI Am Not a Silent Poet
* Remembering Mom, HerStry
* Three poems, Levure littéraire
Upcoming in digital publications:
Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review
From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems)

A mostly bed-bound poet, writer, former columnist and associate editor of a regional employment newspaper, my work has been featured widely in print and digital publications including: Ramingo’s Porch, Vita Brevis Literature, Connotation Press, The Bar None Group, Salamander Cove, I Am Not a Silent Poet, The Compass Rose and California Woman. I run The Poet by Day, a curated info hub for poets and writers. I founded The Bardo Group/Beguines, a vitual literary community and publisher of The BeZine of which I am the founding and managing editor.


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



.sports day. – . . . and other poetic responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

[On writing:] “There’s a great quote by Julius Irving that went, ‘Being a professional is doing the things you love to do, on the days you don’t feel like doing them.'” in an  interview with Budd Mishkin; New York March 25, 2007.)” David Halberstam (Author, Glenn Stout (Editor), Everything They Had: Sports Writing



The last Wednesday Writing Prompt, The Bottom of the Ninth, May 29, 2019 was a call to “write a poem about any sport that engages you. What delights you about it?  Perhaps for you the topic lends itself to poetic memoir?  Maybe you’re a soccer mom or a baseball dad. Do you see your fave game as a metaphor for life? Or, as a poet and writer, do the idioms delight you?”

I’m charmed by the responses (and you will be too) from Paul’s moving I Watched Athletics With My Mam to Anjum Ji’s cultural introduction to cricket, it is once again a rich response to Wednesday Writing Prompt.  I never knew chess was considered a sport. I had to look that up. Thank you, Bozhidar.  Every writer will sympathize with deb y felio’s unexpected twist and Jen Goldie’s game effort, well done. You’ll be engaged by Sonja’s signature chiseled poems, Sheila’s poem, part triumph, part homage to her dad, and the sensual elements of running in Irma’s Quiet Run.

Readers will note links to sites if available are included that you might visit these treasured poets. The links for contributors are always connected to their blogs or websites NOT to specific poems. If the poet doesn’t have a website, it’s likely you can connect with him or her via Facebook.

Enjoy this Tuesday collection and do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt, whether you are a beginning poet, emerging or pro.  All are welcome – encouraged – to come out and play and to share your poems on theme.


I Watch Athletics With My Mam

I sit on her soft bed, rest an arm
on a spare pillow. Mum’s pillows
stack behind her as we watch a
tv placed where her dress mirror stood.

Chemotherapy means she does
not like reflective surfaces.
All house mirrors have been removed.

Once she cried as her hair fell out.
She cried as she gained each pound weight
because she takes the chemicals
to stop her dying, stop the spread.

Together we watch lithe bodies,
sharp muscle tone dash for the end.

Once she was ‘petite’, now Mum’s fat jowls, bingo wings slop on the bed.

Her home is spotless, a show home.
Every day we polish, scrub,
vacuum, she wants it welcoming.

She nods off half way through the
100 metres, I soft clap
the winner as she would have done.

I remember good times, and smile
at her laughter, gleam in her eyes
when she sees another winner
dash over the race finish line.

Next week she looks forward to Oakwell,
a new fan of Barnsley FC.

I never go as I don’t like
football, regret my selfishness
and time not enjoying her life.

She will sit in her hired wheelchair
yell and clap at their confidence,
vitality, their will to win.

© 2019, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow / Inspiration. History. Imagination.)



Prolific Yorkshire Poet, 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



Quiet Run

Crash boom ba dum ba dum ba dum boom
Drum practice or brothers wrestling?
Vroom vroom whee-ooo whee-ooo waah!
It’s mine! I got it first!
Stop annoying me!
Sister slams door
I tie shoes
Bye Hun
I
Run
Away
Quietly
Footsteps shushing
Faster to capture
The scent of mowed, mulched lawn
The feel of sunset’s soft breath
The taste of silent sanity
Glistening saltily on my cheek

This double nonet incorporates Patrick’s Pic and a Word Weekly Challenge #189 – Quiet and also Jamie’s Wednesday Writing Prompt to write about any sport that engages me.

I have never been a “sporty” person – I was usually one of the last people picked for teams and I was definitely the last person to finish the mile run in high school (collapsing at the end just to prove how unsporty I was!). I didn’t even know my high school had a football team until I started dating one of the players. And I only learned about the rules of the game when I started watching football in college.

My first foray into sports was running which I discovered in my early 30’s. I figured if I could walk, then I could run since putting one foot in front of the other didn’t seem to require that much coordination or other athletic ability. Yeah, right. Still, I was smitten by the race medals and the opportunity to have some “quiet me time” when I ran. As my family can attest – I am a much nicer person after a run!

© 2019, words and illustration, Irma Do (I Do Run, And I do a few other things too ...)


Novel Approach

first draft better in sports than writing
the bull pen has no ink but still
prepares for the pitch to come

contracts yield higher numbers
with travel paid to tour
with team members
effusing praise on one another

critics abound
from prepaid seats
hoping to catch
a big hit

Patrons fill bars
Pa’tron fills glasses
waiting for arrival
of that day’s stars

One for the books
when things go well
easy to know the beginning
and the end

A promise for unending
sequels
a multi-game deal
with signing bonuses

How do writers
learn to play
this kind of ball?

® 2019, deb y felio (Writers Journey)


Ghost Baseball

Why can I still smell the glove,
feel the smoothness of the leather.
Why does the sound of the crack of
the bat still linger, the joy I felt hitting
one for the team as a child.
Why does running so fast I might fall
just to catch a ball, excite memories.
Why are these things in my bones?
Why are these memories so strong?
Perhaps we build our confidence by way
of those things that give us strength.
The things that gave us self- esteem.
There’s no strength, as powerful as a team.
These are childhood memories,
joyful memories of comradeship,
friendships, bonds and trust.
Childhood memories I can still taste.
Visions that still linger in my mind as
a warm summers day, the sweet
odor of the grass and the laughter
rising from the delight of my friends.
I am not a professional, nor do I still
play Baseball, but I can still smell,
feel and forever linger in the joy of baseball.

© 2019, Jen Goldie (Jen Goldie and Starlight and Moonbeams … and the Occasional Cat )

A Means to an End

I chose to try using idioms.
Using sport idioms to work together
isn’t as easy as I thought.
Each has there own special meaning
and is designed to be an expression of
that particular sport.
I gave it a shot,
but I’m throwing in the towel.
So here’s what I’ve got.

*****

It was par for the course,
he was in a sticky wicket,
Had to take it on the chin,
He wouldn’t take a dive
Or throw in the towel
Or even run interference,
He’d roll with the punches,
And be first past the post
No desperate Hail Mary passes
Could help him go the distance
He was down for the count,
Down and out, and sidelined,
Until someone in his corner
And in a ring side seat,
Threw his hat in to the ring,
Then the punch drunk
Sunday Morning Quarterback
Got off his padded couch,
And In his boxers and sport T,
Began to dance and sing,
Take Me Out To The Ballgame,
I’m the Slam Dunk King!

*****

© Jen Goldie

As a child and teen, I did participate in Sports. Five-pin
Bowling gave me a start. My parents were avid bowlers
and bowled in league play. I went along. I was quickly
lured into the game and was coached by a wonderful
Woman named Doris Luke who ran a Young Peoples
League for the Youth Bowling Association. Starting at
3 years of age gave me an edge and I competed with
The seniors, still racking up the crests and trophies. When
I think back it was the comradery, not the competition.
It was my Dad taking me to tournaments and consoling
me when, as they say, I froze and didn’t give it my best
effort. It’s o.k. he’d say, next time. I still have most of those
crests but somehow the box of trophies disappeared.
I still have the bowling shirts and wonder, when I was so
small.

© 2019, Jen Goldie (Jen Goldie and Starlight and Moonbeams … and the Occasional Cat )


Hockey Sticks And Oranges

It was the closest I came
to flying as I sped down
the right wing. Wind keened
across the playing field,
teased the flimsy flap
of my wrapover skirt
and whipped my hair
into a chestnut tail.

I made the school team,
used the new stick
Dad proudly bought me;
tapped, flicked or swung
the ball to the striker,
heard the clash of wood
against wood and cheered
when she scored a goal.

We paused for breath
at halftime, sucked segments
of orange and shivered,
our arms goose-pimpled.
We didn’t always win-
finished bottom of the league
one season. Bad luck,
Dad said, keep trying.

After he died I tried
harder; leaned forward,
stick poised, impatient
for the bully-off.
Then I ran with a sting
in my eyes, mud on my shins
and morning’s wind
in the small of my back.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob


.sports day.

i do not wish to win the race nor even take part in it

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.walk.

do you like the feeling, walking ahead quickly, moving forward, loosening limbs. pushing

through wind, through water, rain slanting. shouting, counting the rams, shadowing

shepherd. wee mouse on the path, beady eyed. these are the hopeful days, weak sun

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.hoping for a hero.

i search for champion, hoping for a hero. it gives me clothing.

the sort i will never wear. i do not do sport only walking

and swimming, nothing competitve. it is a shame

the pools are at a distance, needing time and effort. I feel younger in

water and see no reflection with out glasses. i understand

a health and nutrition app can be most helpful these days, and while

i type this i hear the gardener down the big house mowing lawns since

early morning.

now tis mid afternoon.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher


Sheh-Mate

I like the chess.
The figures are equal
and clear the rules
(with a little superiority
after all of the white).
And various gambits
the Queen’s and
the King’s ones
are the beauty.
And in the Sicilian
Defense
the dagger is hidden
but perks up
(it is only
the ancient game).
I am not interested in
the result
and all sorts of the ratings
(boring)
but the pulsating Insight.,

now:
Мate for the Queen!
Queen for the King!

Clarification – according to chess rules mate is given only to the king.

© 2019, Bozhidar Pangelov (bogpan – блог за авторска поезия блог за авторска поезия)


‘ Sports’~ Is it Cricket ?
کھیل موقع مقابلہ شروع ھویؑ اک جنگ

Match game chance, be it anywhere on any land

be it  sword, spear, bat ball, gun or lance,
forces have fought in thicket and on wicket
dauntless ,  fearless , songs sonorous have
been sung, arms raised , aimed and swung,

pride and steadfast hate, in arenas Greek

or green grounds, what mighty contest up rising
For no reason just or sound, no crime no blast
no war no treason, just another cricket season,
But this game is a combat on war like footing
padded gloved helmeted , ready for the shooting

thick as autumnal leaves head to head like sedge
police and crowd together will watch the match,
all around the fence, circled, from  edge to edge,
how many will hold, stare and breathe their last ,
as wickets fall, bails fly or hands miss a catch,

all eyes on London the final battle ground
a place eternal justice ordained and bound
no Trojan horse or Aegean sea, no ship or gift
or gun, just a velvet green, a white orb, three
to three, twenty two yards of hit and run,

to be weak on it, is unthinkably miserable
no contestant spared, no mistake forgivable,
who will the new possessor be, of a cup,
some say the blues, some say the greens,
yellows, reds, maroons, blacks, or carmine

result anxiously eagerly excitedly awaited
whatever it may be, millions are awake,
hearts beating, hands together in prayers,
the best will soon be , what odds are at stake
aim is، protect the wicket’ and make a high score

game of skill, strategy entertainment, a fight 
the rest is with  umpires two and the third
it should be honest  fair play, all skill no check 
no tampering trick it or else it would  be war
and ‘Not Cricket’،may the best team win،

to be’ the star’

© 2019, English and Urdu poems, Anjum Wasim Dar

کھیل  مقابلہ  موقع 

تلوار نیزہ  گیند بلا   تیر  ےا بندوک  خوب  چلے گا کھیل
بے باک بے خوف  نغمے  بہادری  کے گاتے  ھوےؑ بازو
گھماتے  ھوےؑ نشانہ  لگاتے  ھوےؑ  فخر سے اکھاڑے  میں
اترے جیسے یو نانی شمشیر زن ، سبز میدان میں جمے گا 

کسی زمیں پر شروع  ھویؑ  اک جنگ

مقابلہ زبردست، بے وجہ  ،نہ جرم نہ دھماکہ خونی
  اک کھیل کا موسم جاری،سماں ایسا،پہنے ٹوپی
عوام   پولیس  مانند  خزاں کی   پت جھڑ کے   ڈھیر
چارون  اطراف میداں کے کھڑے دعکھیں گے  میچ 

دستانے پیڈ ہلمٹ بھاری شروع ھویؑ اک جنگ 

کتنے آیں گے اور جایں گے دوڑیں گے بھاگیں گے
گریں گے گرایں گے وکٹیں  اور پکڑیں گے کیچ
سب نظریں دنیا کی لندن شہر انصاف کی جگہ ھے
نہ بحیرہ نہ بیڑہ نہ کاٹھ کا گھوڑا نہ تحفہ نہ دھوکہ

 چاندی کے کپ کہ لیے شروع ھویؑ اک جنگ

سبز مخملی گھاس پہ سفید گیند تین تین وکٹوں کے 
بیچ   لگایں   گے بایسؑ گز کی دوڑ ، مار اور بھاگ
کمزور کی جگہ نہیں یہ نا ہی ڈرپوک کی نہ غلتی کی
گنجا یشؑ نہ معافی  نہ زمانت ، کون جیتے گا یہ  رنگ

رنگیں لباس میں شروع ھویؑ اک جنگ

نیلا سبز  میرون پیلا  یا  کالا تیز  یا نرالہ  کس کی کٹے 
گی پتنگ  کون ھوگا بے رنگ  کون بچاےؑ گا وکٹین  اور
بناےؑ گا بڑا سکور  کون کرے گا سب کہ بور، جاگ رھے 
ھیں لاکھوں نتیجے کے انتظار میں  ھاتھ جوڑے دعاوؑں میں

سچا کھیل کرنا نہ فراڈ کویؑ نہ دینا دھوکہ نہ کویؑ چکر 
ورنہ کھیل نہ کہلاےؑ گا   یہ  کرکٹ نہیں  یارا جو محنت 

کرے بنے وہ چمکتا  ستارہ شروع ھویؑ اک جنگ  

A Preamble

Respected G Jamie Dedes Sports Prompt this week has coincided with the opening of ICC World Cup International Cricket Competition 2019 being held in England.
For me the prompt was like the drop of a silver stone in a clear water pond creating ripples of fond nostalgic memories of life in the early years when sports events were followed almost with near religious sanctity. Radio and newspapers were the main source of information. Listening skills were sharpened and newspapers helped in creating scrapbooks of key players of national and international teams. Collecting and compiling and organizing data was the best learning activity. Before I share my poem I would like to share a few pages from my memoirs with my readers. I am sure this would be an interesting  addition  to the growing variation of contributions to Respected Jamie Ji’s exciting thought provoking and thoroughly enjoyable weekly prompts. Thank you Jamie Ji for creating these wonderful writing opportunities. 

Indoor or outdoor ‘Sports’ had a sacred place in daily activities as a favorite hobby and leisure time occupation at home in the early years of life in the new country.The 1950s and 1960s reflect high standards of national team performances in the games of field hockey,tennis, cricket, squash, and athletics.The whole family was deeply involved in each match tournament or international competitions.My interest in Sports was the result of the high enthusiasm at home specially manifested by my loving father. He himself was a good hockey and tennis player. Indoors the games played with family members were Bridge (a card game) Carom and Chess. In fact the truth was the ‘absence of digital technology and television which left ample spare time for healthy sport activities. An occasional classic movie like ‘The Cruel Sea’ ‘Gone With The Wind’, To Kill a Mocking Bird’, ‘The King and I’ and specially the comedy series of Laurel and Hardy were a treat enjoyed  at the local Cinema Houses.

© Anjum Wasim Dar

Here one can see father in his white sports shorts  black blazer and white socks and sports shoes , commonly called then, the ‘PT Shoes’. He is holding my younger sister, his third daughter. Almost every evening a couple of tennis games in the nearby GHQ Tennis Courts were part of the weekly routine. The weekends would be set aside for home affairs.
An ideal personality for many friends and family my Father’s smoking style would always be captured too. During the International Cricket matches of Pakistan with either England Australia or India (these were the top  teams in those years) after office hours listening to the running commentary of the match on the radio was not missed.

>
Field hockey was another favorite.I remember when Pakistan was playing the quarter final match with Germany in the Olympics in Rome in the 1960’s. When Germany scored the equalizer goal father was quite disturbed. Listening to the commentary he would remark, ‘Oh No, why give a back pass, there is no back pass in hockey, one needs to play forward , attack the opponents goal’ Pakistan won by 2-1 score and later also won the Gold medal  by defeating India in the final by a single goal.The historic goal was scored by Nasir Bunda. The excitement and anxiety of the match involved everyone at home. The game was fully enjoyed by all and we learnt much about sportsman’s spirit and how to accept defeat bravely. Other important lessons were following rules, sharing and making  efforts as a team. Over the years sports has undergone tremendous change, from white dress and a red ball to multi colored clothes and a white ball  and from the radio to live digital internet / telecasts.

I still believe old times had a special charm in  sports and to top it all Pakistan has a former cricket team captain and a world cup winner as its Prime Minister. The Political party symbol being none other than the ‘cricket bat’, obviously…

© 2019, essay, Anjum Wasim Dar

Behance  … artwork
Poetic Oceans poetry on WordPress
Poetic Oceans  poetry on Blogspot

“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


ABOUT

Recent in digital publications: 
* Four poems in I Am Not a Silent Poet
* Remembering Mom in HerStry
* Three poems in Levure littéraire
Upcoming in digital publications:
“Over His Morning Coffee,” Front Porch Review

A homebound writer, poet, and former columnist and associate editor of a regional employment newspaper, my work has been featured widely in print and digital publications including: Ramingo’s Porch, Vita Brevis Literature, Connotation Press, The Bar None Group, Salamander Cove, I Am Not a Silent Poet, The Compass Rose and California Woman. I run The Poet by Day, an info hub for poets and writers and am the founding/managing editor of The BeZine.


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