Soul Food . . . and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.”  Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar



Here are this week’s responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, A Beautiful Place for Mortal Beings, October 2. After September’s justified global focus on climate change and climate action, we turn our attention to the beauty and peace that is still available and to our deeply sensed connection with the source of our being through nature.

The many gifts bequeathed to us by Nature are celebrated today with poems from John Anstie, mm brazfield, Paul Brookes, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Sheila Jacob, and Sonja Benskin Mesher. We welcome, Ben Naga, new to our pages but a stellar poet with a considerable body of fine work available to sample via his blog.

Enjoy! and do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt, which will post tomorrow morning. All are welcome to come out and play, no matter the stage of your career: beginning, emerging, or pro.


Soul Food

Planted splat firm atop this green hill
Taking time to return to the source
A cloud or two, the occasional bird
Higher peaks a shadowed backdrop
Thankful miles from the muscle bustle

(Raw cells, fibres dancing a frenzied jig
Cringing under the whip of urgency
Mad underlying insistence on arrival
At all cost – lest the unthinkable …
Their journey demoted to annoyance)

Breathing, inhaling the plenitude
Mere presence the sole attainment
Destination attained and time to
Inhale … relax … exhale …
Enjoy the sumptuous display

© 2019, Ben Naga

Welcome, Ben Naga!
Ben’s site is: Ben Naga, Gifts from the Musey Lady and Me. “Laissez-moi vous recanter ma vraie histoire.” Read his ABOUT. It is delivered in a poem and well worth your time to visit.


Unlike the rose, whose life
is all too short;
whose beauty, transient,
strikes the heart
olfactory refrain,
melancholic pang,
intoxicating ache,
caressing right brain

you … you resist the tides,
whose rhythms try to change,
but never seem to wear you down;
you bear them easily.
The temporal perspective
that measures your sojourn
belittles our lives
to appear as nought.

You draw out the time
to more than long,
so barnacles and limpets
can confidently cling
to your immense foundation;
testament to your solidity;
our permanence is relative
as it sits beside you, Rock.

But how significant are we
considering the Universe?
By how much mega-time is
it’s longevity, beside ours?
And yet neither you, Rock
nor Universe can judge,

because

there is no poetry
in the cosmos
without a human soul.

© 2011, John Anstie

John . . .


Ryan Mountain

a young girl i was
when i drove to the desert
i took what Allen dropped
when he was young
like i was
the Joshua Trees
imperial yes they were
tall a strong dark green
some with arms bent up at the sky
which by the way Sky did rain on me
a supple velvety soothing rain
i slipped a little higher
the rocks they opened their slate stained eyes
and the he snake slithered from their underneath
the rain she smelled like new born clay
the vitality of her holy droplets
caused the birds and lizards to come alive
in a jubilant resurrection
at which time i had ten hands
but i could still see my cut up shirt
doused in the liquid of the day
me thinks Dylan Thomas and i could have made love
in dream of mercy a girl laughing with the crimson ants
and the ashy grasshoppers orchestrated with their legs
auditory melodious delight
the horizon a throne
golden
filled with blue angels
as i tilted my face toward the west
the Queen Sun released me into sedation

© m m brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken: Gen X’er chronicles the art form of living in the Angelino metropolitan environment through poetry, creative writing, art, photography, and culture.


A Dawn Chorus (Vacana 11)

O, Lady of the Breath.
how to arc in your air?

A dozen or more tiny caves
sing you into the world

from the trillbudded barkskin
volume and delivery

a root that connects with
its origin tree,

broadcasts to my ears,
territory songs,

and chat up lines, a Saturday
night on the town played out

on a morning before the wormshop,
home repair, teach bairns how to fly

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Inhale Dappled, A Perfumed Air

step through cast
illuminated windows
of tree crowns,

birdsong lilts blossom fall.
Key all senses keener.
See claw hunt feather.

Feathered mams rescue bairns
from hungry talons. Bigger birds
snatch fluffy kids from nests

to feed their young. Beetles battle
over territory. All fend, forage
in this vision of quiet.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

NEWS TODAY! –  There’s a lovely photo of Paul HERE for Wombwell’s Pride of Place Project and HERE is a link to a poetry reading Paul did that was recorded and posted on YouTube.

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.

Prolific Yorkshire Poet, Paul Brookes

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


A beautiful place for  mortal beings would be
the forests, let us for a while be nemophilists
and haunt the woods, step on pine needles,
hear nature’s soft rustling crunch  of love

let the sunshine seep down from entwined
embracing eternal friends of the verdant sea
rooted to the inner essences of fertile Mother
Earth’s endless riches of black gold firm holds’

at the foliage edge, divinity reveals the unseen
dome, its twinkling silver studded umbrella,epic
unmoved  whirling,unnoticed dissolving darkness-
Komorebi  awakens ferns to whisper prayers

so mortal brings can walk through a rainbow
with  feet on velvet green, breathe freshness
feed on fruit,hear  soft soothing sithurisms
no hate or conflict or curfew or cutting bonds

our mortal life  is love and beauty mystified
infirmity overtakes desire, our werifesteria
goes unsolved but in spirit we exist,witness
miracles, alive in soul we succumb to eternity

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

Anjum’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


The Maple at the End of My Street

The setting sun filters
Through your leaves
Highlighting the new
Yellows and oranges and reds
I see you
As I drive away
Every morning going
Through the motions
That life is ok
Even when it’s not
You filter the beauty
Back in my life
© 2019, Irma Do
.

Church Window In Trefriw

We’ve heard the Crafnant
since daybreak.
It’s chimed across pebbles,
gurgled under the bridge
beside the Woollen Mill
and now, it won’t leave us.

We’re learning its tune,
transcribing it to memory
while we explore
beneath wooden rafters:
stand in sudden stillness,
before a small window.

A small window
stained with poppy red
and summer-sky blue,
its figures so graceful,
and translucent
we wonder

if water rose up
from the nearby river,
held Mary and her Child
in its flowing mantle
and set them, smiling,
into their warm stone niche.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

To purchase Sheila’s little gem of a volume, Through My Father’s Eyes (review, interview, and a sampling of poems HERE), contact Sheila directly at she1jac@yahoo.com


..no word..

that feeling, that

arrives unexpected from darkness, some winters’ mornings,

opening the door to the sound of one black bran bird calling.

track four repeated. that

comes on waking finding peace and comfort bound in clean
linen.

arises with perfume, an uncertain memory.

it may be chemicals, peptides in the brain as love, what
ever the germ or warfare

I find no word to describe, no random feather nor dust on
my plate. pass a finger.

that feeling of trimmed nails upon the keys pounding
words and silences.

while music plays. that feeling. that.

syrup stings my tongue.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

..wonder..

rhythms of black birds ; black jack ; flap jack stream of consciousness

these recollections ; another time eighteen hundred eighteen hundred …

i wish i wrote like others with words of wonder full syllables, bells ringing, you know.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZineand 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.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook

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

Those Washday Mondays . . . and other responses to your last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“A good poem is a contribution to reality. The world is never the same once a good poem has been added to it. A good poem helps to change the shape of the universe, helps to extend everyone’s knowledge of himself and the world around him.”  Dylan Thomas



Here we are at Tuesday again, the wonderful day when we share poems submitted by diverse writers in response the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, January is on the Wane, September 25, which asked our poets to write a poem inspired by one written by another poet. I think you’ll agree they’ve done beautifully and created a smart little collection here.

This worthy collection is courtesy of Paul Brookes, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Sheila Jacob, and Sonja Benskin Mesher.

Enjoy! and do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt, which will post tomorrow morning. All are welcome to come out and play, no matter the stage of our career: beginning, emerging, or pro.


Bartholomew Street

after Ian McMillian’s Tempest Avenue

Harry half way down collects wood
for his fire, leave it out front
Leave out anything metal Gypsies at top have sharp eyes,

Stan, two doors down
wants his radiator gone.

Dave next door holds ladder
while I look at roof tiles
and shares homemade ale after.

Our roofers knew man who murdered
a man
at bottom.

I thought someone murdered
at top but our lass swears
he was only badly beaten.

Old microwave I put in our entryway has gone.
Gypsies know a good thing.

Old gent Tommy three doors down
quiet when his wife died last Summer.

Put thumbs up when I cleared
his path of Snow last Winter.

Pear tree in back garden bagged
up by them all when ripe
as too much for our lass and me.

From Paul’s new eBook As Folk Over Yonder (Afterworld Books, 2019)

© 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.

Prolific Yorkshire Poet, Paul Brookes

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


O’ Beautiful Rose

after Jamie Dedes’ January Is On the Wane

O’ Beautiful Rose
O’ Dear Flower,
folded in invisible scents
tender covers softly protecting
the unknown,wrapped in curves
like hands,a praying pair
patiently serving in quietude.

O Dear Flower, resting
in a book, placed by love
making the page sacred to the touch,
words that rest,forever silent, till they meet
the eyes,of an unknown, bear the flaps and
caresses, of moving finger tips, as the covers flip,

O Dear Flower, you are a rose of many colors
budding, blooming, on bush and bowers
in sunshine rain or cool summer showers
spread on shrouds, taken to high towers

O’ Dear Flower’ how long can you stay
the fragrance radiate, the presence, comfort
the love share, If only you could, for ever be
and like the words on the page lay for me to see

Life is but a short sweet fragrant dream, the page
is turned, new words appear , new buds yearning to bloom

The Besieged People of Occupied Kashmir.
Chinar Leaves Have Withered

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

Chinar leaves have withered

after Jamie Dedes’ The Doves Have Flown

chinar leaves have withered,
willows weeping, bend low with grief, still are the ripples in the Dal Lake, silent deserted citadels, not a tiptoe on the wooden floors- how many are alive inside, maybe none-

chinar leaves have withered

rustic orange clusters merging with green foliage, quivering with joy,sensing the cool caresses of approaching fall, but not this year,they descend one by one, remain soaked in blood of young and old,

chinar leaves have withered

who is blinded today? whose body draped in green and white, dumped in the ugly pit, ‘what is the cry ‘freedom ‘ for, freedom from death, to death’ ?locked in a living grave

chinar leaves have withered

silence of terror, on snow peaks frozen, empty streets filled with fear armed, prisoners
in perils of forced captivity, what horror humans can do with humans.

chinar leaves have withered

helpless am I in fetters, in action enchained , in emotions pained, I weep like the willows
in spiritual agony grieve , for mercy I pray , I die with each passing day…

as hope with each falling leaf, glissers.

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

Anjum’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


The Best Foreplay for Husbands

after the poem on pg. 71 of Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

you wrap your fingers
around the sponge
scrubbing
until the sink is empty
this
is how you make
me change into my lace thong

you brush his teeth
and read his favorite bedtime story
twice
while making the voices of the characters
this
is how you make
me light the scented candles

you quiz her in spelling
and listen to how another girl stole her idea for her science project
you come up with a better science project idea
and promise to help her with it on the weekend
this
is how you make
me lie in bed
skin puckered
in love
in anticipation
thinking i am the luckiest woman in the world

© 2019, Irma Do

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


Those Washday Mondays

after Robert Hayden’s Those Winter Sundays

By the time I came downstairs
Dad’s shirts were washed
and pegged on the garden line.
Mum lifted the boiler lid.
Steam rose from a hissing cauldron
and she grabbed scalding sheets
with a pair of wooden tongs.

Her hands were red and damp
and sweat darkened her armpits
as she passed me my breakfast.
I closed the kitchen door and ate
in the front room but still heard
the mangle’s cranky wheel
and squeak of its rubber rollers.

Mum wouldn’t buy a spin dryer
even on monthly instalments.
I turned up the music on my radio
and finished my bacon sandwiches.
What did I know about scrimping
and denying; about the sacrifices
she’d made in love’s unsung name?

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

To purchase Sheila’s little gem of a volume, Through My Father’s Eyes (review, interview, and a sampling of poems HERE), contact Sheila directly at she1jac@yahoo.com


..neutered..

after Thomas Hardy’s Neutral Tones

oil pond mirrors the darkness the november

day. sun draws white against the grey

this leaf lays on earth

there is no god

not hungry nor otherwise

you look at me straight and ask the past

and briefly I say & say there is no god

you did not smile nor shout you are the deadest thing

dead down . no smiling despite birds gone by

on greasy wings .i remember your look

your face

drawn grey as the mourning dove

that remind

for me there is no god

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


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.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook

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

“you buy we fry” . . . and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt; Roald Dahl and His Writing Hut

Newstand Chapbook illustration by J.C. Leyendecker circa 1899

The women and men at their devices …
In fine Whitmanesque publishing tradition
Put out newfangled electronic edition
A word symphonic record to leave behind
Carefully tweaked, tempered and timed
Baring witness to love, history, and crime
All good-natured, well-reasoned, and rhymed
© 2016, Jamie Dedes



And the week flies by and we find ourselves at Tuesday again, the wonderful day when we share poems submitted by diverse writers in response the last Wednesday Writing Prompt. Everyone Should Have a Chair, September 11, a peaceful suggestion this time around asking poets to tell us about their favorite spot in which to write. A modest collection today courtesy of Jason Muckley, Paul Brookes, mm brazfield, Sheila Jacob, Urmila Mahajan, Sonja Benskin Mesher, and Pali Raj.  Along the same theme, I’ve added a short seven minute documentary featuring Roald Dahl and his writing hut.

Enjoy! and do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt, which will post tomorrow morning.


The Mountain

The mountain calls
Draws me to her slopes
Overlooking the world below
Above, my perspective changed
The solitude is freedom
A peace and rest
To forgive
Begin again
Mind clear of every expectation
My thoughts flow
Responding to the mountain

© 2019, Jason A. Muckley 

Jason’s site is Poems for Warriors

JASON MUCKLEY: I have been writing since childhood and I self-published my first collection of poetry in July 2018. Writing is both a hobby and a way to express myself that I don’t find in any other facet of life. It is something I truly love but also I feel like the more I write, the more I have to write.

My first self-published book is called “Poems for Warriors,” and it is available on Amazon, Kobo, and Barnes & Noble.

When I am not writing, I work full-time as a Project Manager. I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering. I am also a father of three.

Jason says of his poetry collection: “We are at war. Life is a battle. Every day we fight for joy, peace… love. This is correspondence from the frontlines. Exploring themes of the struggle, love, and change, this book of poetry will take the reader through the ups and downs of life. The reader will journey through the exhilaration and challenges of being in love, of working through difficulty in a relationship, and reflecting on what you have and what it costs. The reader will descend into the pain and trials faced day in and day out. The reader will see the clouds breaking as the morning dawns and everything begins to change. This book is the story of one man’s life, similar to a life lived by millions as he tries to make sense of the constant battle that surrounds him.”


we buy you fry

my favorite chair
are the sidewalks
those in the 20’s and 30’s
edge of downtown streets
a mix of rustic houses
shacks and alley ways
some with flowers
some with trash
my favorite chair
is not comforting at first
it affords me front row view
to the less palatable aspects
of genteel society
exposed vaginas cocks
twisted tongues
defecation out of
hundreds of orifices
then there’s the strip mall chair
with the upright and honest
vendor my favorite one
is Donicio from Panama
he has a way of telling
funny stories
across from there
is another chair
‘you buy, we fry’
it’s mostly busy
on the sabbath
my eyes their
veils of formal education
lifted and the life of life
exposed to all my senses
there is something thrilling
about hopscotching through
dog shit in a city
that treats us all the same
my favorite chair
in the bars of the people
although people aren’t
what they used to be
my amiga Casimira
has the latest I Phone
when i want to look in to
her deep brown eyes
and have her Oaxacan accent
transport me to another land
especially on jury duty day
to no avail
i lost my friend
to the latest pop up store
at the end of most days
when the journey’s done
i go home to my derelict
dog and two jaded kitties
with caffeine in one hand
Phoebe Ann the cat on my lap
the memories of my rest stops
deposited silently
in the removable data bank

© 2019, mm brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken


Everywhere is my favourite place to sit and write.

Every weather notes made in the pad of my brain.

Sat on metal forms in cemeteries gusted by autumn, deep in leaf litter.

Sat on metal forms in towns while Dippers dip around, and shoppers hustle their lists into bags.

Sat in my garden as the pears blush with the last few days of rain,
ready for the fall and separation from their mam.

Sat at home in the leather armchair my muse curls up in my lap after a good scratch, her small heart taps and purrs a rhythm on my thigh.

© 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.

Prolific Yorkshire Poet, Paul Brookes

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


A Strawberry-Red Sofa

Give me the warmth
of a padded sofa
where I can cat-curl
with pen and notebook.

I could ink my poems
at a mahogany bureau:
a gift from Mum and Dad
when I passed my 11-plus.

A place to read books
and write essays
for English homework.
The Haunted House.

A Rainy Night
and later, A-level critiques
of The Windhover
and The Wasteland.

I could replace
the bureau’s worn hinges
and search old words
locked in wood-memory.

But give me comfort
and today’s open page.
A family living room
with deep-pile rugs.

A strawberry-red sofa
with three plump cushions,
wide windows
onto my garden

and a view of treetops,
T.V. aerials, satellite dishes
and cotton-wool clouds
dreaming across the sky.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

To purchase Sheila’s little gem of a volume, Through My Father’s Eyes (review, interview, and a sampling of poems HERE), contact Sheila directly at she1jac@yahoo.com


The Rocking Chair

It gleams
genuine teakwood I’m told

so smooth

ideal for dreaming through a tv show
contemplating voices in my head
staring at finely worked saptaparni
leaves past a money plant
frothing the window ledge and
a white metal flash of car roof
reflected in the pumpkin soup
in my white ceramic spoon

and carved too

ideal for leaning into the pillowed
back, cancelling muscles and
joints completely

heavy-set

rocks gently
not the best place to work alert
at anything remotely productive
and yet it can be

durable

for I carry its numbing ease
through the day
enduring between thoughts
that flow between the glazed
slats imprinted on my mind

so durable

one day it’ll carry mine
without me

© 2019, Urmila Mahajan

Urmila’s site is: Drops of Dew


13 years ago I wrote….

“Don’t be scared of the empty chair.

Sit on it.

Don’t be scared of the empty chair.

Stand on it.

Don’t be scared of the empty chair.

Draw it”.

this chair has since been in exhibition; now one of my favourite chairs…..

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


Old, young, he or she
Everyone shouts after me 😀
because everybody likes
happy to be
While you are human being so
Everyone should have a chair, a poem requests
Old, young, he or she
Everyone shouts after me 😀
We are human beings 😊

© 2019,, Pali Raj


ABOUT 

Jamie Dedes. I’m a Lebanese-American freelance writer, poet, content editor, blogger and the mother of a world-class actor and mother-in-law of a stellar writer/photographer. No grandchildren, but my grandkitty, Dahlia, rocks big time. I am hopelessly in love with nature and all her creatures. In another lifetime, I was a columnist, a publicist, and an associate editor to a regional employment publication. I’ve had to reinvent myself to accommodate scarred lungs, pulmonary hypertension, right-sided heart failure, connective tissue disease, and a rare managed but incurable blood cancer. The gift in this is time for my primary love: literature. I study/read/write from a comfy bed where I’ve carved out a busy life writing feature articles, short stories, and poetry and managing 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.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! , September * 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

… the story of my life . . . and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

FromMother’s Day: Flowers and Native American soapstone bear

My Life Is Not Mine—
Give wanting what other people have.
That way you’re safe.
“Where, where can I be safe?” you ask.
This is not a day for asking questions,
Not a day on any calendar.
This day is conscious of itself.
This day is a lover, bread, and gentleness,
More manifest than saying can say.
Thoughts take form with words,
But this daylight is beyond and before
Thinking and imagining.

Excerpt from The Essential Rumi, Colman Barks



Well, it’s rather late Tuesday here, but still Tuesday, and apologies for the delay in publishing this post and for some of the confusions in correspondence with poets. The past week has been complicated by low oxygen saturation and if you understand oxygen hunger, you know it’s disorienting and exhausting. Thanks for understanding and patience.

We have a profoundly moving collection today with responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt. Silent Life, September 4, which asked poets to write about their lives.  This is another collection where you might want to keep a box of tissues handy. There are a few that will touch your heart. Some others will make you nod your head because they present experiences that you’ve had as well.

This fine collection is courtesy of  bogpan (Bozhidar Pangelov), mm brazfield, Paul Brookes, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Sheila Jacob, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Tamam Tracy Moncur, and Pali Raj.

Enjoy! and do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt, which will post tomorrow morning.


Silence

and on that day of sun
the leaves of the chestnut
like arms are shielding
by
the gleeds
and I see through the dream
like through some mirrors
the garden with some boats
cranes
and
tones
far steps of the see
and beauty
that is killing me

© 2019, bogpan (Bozhidar Pangelov)

bogpan’s site is bogpan – блог за авторска поезия  блог за авторска поезия


happy

sometimes in the middle of the night
i take the train from one part of town
and then back to the other side
i can’t sleep so i face my curiosity
tipping into the cleavage of the city
and her girlfriend moon
outside of the rolling cab my eyes
they register that it’s dirty
i swear i can see the car exhaust
black sooty pungent belching vulgarity
in the lungs of LA
behold the automotive crack pipe
then my attention flutters to the men
velvet skin plastic smiles and silver tongues
selling me a piece of Jesus and His hotrod
Hollywood Boulevard how much to eat me tonight
i burrow my alien feelings into the tunnels
And the cocky rail rides me to the platform
where humanity scrambles at the truth
of how small we must be to the Bitchgoddess
of everything all poets in history
have lamented about
to chase and purr on the formidable
lies that we are fed
only to show who kindness i wonder
i’m too old and out of time
to place gender or definition on my pleasures
the time to gamble with the rules and regulations
is quickly ending
at dawn pink and gray
with the smell of the city and
her beautifully cruel courtesans
on my hands and lips
i stagger up 7th street
and bum a cigarette from the Meals on Wheels guy
chat up Bang Me Billy and ask about his truck
we stroll to the rich folk Starbucks
he waltzes me up to the lines
we both feel very alive again
and smile at the young savvy people
when they turn up their nose

© 2019, mm brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken


One

It is a day of discovery,
a loft of belonging,
her mid sentences with
no beginning or end.

Empty cases and rucksacks,
hide paintings he did in the fifties,
a still life framed in dark brown wood
a delicate vase sprouts colour,
another Mold Memorial day.

Two

No time to stop and stare
the memory house, its corners,
its edges must be made bare.

We have no time to contemplate
every memory we find, ancient letter,
we have our own homes to decorate

with memories of our own, employment
pays for us to accumulate
thoughts in physical enjoyment

for our sons and daughters to sort
once we can no longer recall
what recollection we bought.

Three

We clear dads loft
walk over asbestos,
lift objects out of the fluff,
I say we ought to wear masks

as dad died of industrial disease,
could not walk, his thoughts
Asbestos clouds struggled
like loose strands out of his mouth.

© 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.

Prolific Yorkshire Poet, Paul Brookes

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


Life Yesterday-Life Today

My Life began in a state of war and fear, so I was told
I was too young to understand or remember the operation
after my birth, our life was threatened by the enemy,cold
and to safety was no way, but a journey of urgent migration

Life After Crossing the Barbed Wire Border

On awakening I found life full of family and love, picnics
in the hilly forest with fresh water springs,cherries apples
tinned fruit, Hollands condensed milk, England’s Lipton’s tea,
Marie Biscuits Danish Butter cookies, jujubes,n home made ice cream

I learned to ride a bicycle and how to drive a jeep
I loved the illustrated dictionary story books to peep
played hopscotch, enjoyed the swing, and loved school
school life was a treasure, in memories buried deep

Come September as college began, when war returned
sudden attacks by tanks and artillery blackouts all were in-
fear returned as Father left, to tend the wounded soldiers
no one really wins a war’ lives lost, all is over but the din

Oh dear life began anew with strangers all around, unknown
many a ground, five years ago life was full of reading books
so soon life takes a turn,as one is taken and given away to
a strange world of changing dresses and preparing looks’

Life was all in young motherhood, pain and pressure
care and concern, away from home life put me in a home
and I as a mother also became a cook and a cleaner
where did love go I wonder’ the world seemed a lot meaner

we changed cities, houses, bought a blue Volkswagen
bought a five band Sanyo transistor and a 20inch TV
life was kind to us as a family, books returned as school
began and I found real love in kids in nature as a rule.

Life never seemed silent for more than a few hours
color music laughter and fun, filled the atmosphere, then
separations gradually seeped in as one by one, death
started catching up, now and when, who next will lose breath?

War Returns

fear returned, life had books but no school fun, as day by day
terror warnings halted life, my day uncertain, will I be back home?
yes, I would but with numerous stoppings at armed barricades
am I back in enemy territory, or am I in a war story movie?

Life became a bit peaceful with a mini migration from city to city
all was quiet in a small town,simple people,seemingly content
sipping tea in their roadside shops, and I would see through the
window, simple life in a village is better and I silently joined the party

nature blessed me with family to care,spent the day in cooking and
knitting, a bit of teaching but a lot more of writing reading and poetry
life is a dichotomy of war and peace of love and hate, of good and
bad, my life today has more than before, I think I don’t need any more

Life Now

Now I am again on my own,each day with my pencils and books
I make my own breakfast mug of tea, toast with jam or honey
I wash my own clothes and cook too but dishes I leave for my
partner to do, he loves to clean so i am free to leave aside the broom.

there is no garden nearby where I could enjoy flowers or walk
my partner avoids conversation and ‘talk’ so that leaves me with
my unseen friends, to text talk share and chat’,till its summer the
sounds I hear are the perpetual whirring of ceiling fans or muezzins call

I am grateful to be alive to be able to understand the purpose of life
to be a giver’ a helper’ to spread love and kindness and be silent’
If one has a silent life one hears the love and kindness of the divine
I was given a life and time, I must give too for ‘nothing was nor is’ all mine

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

From the Redness of Dawn to the Golden Grandeur of Dusk

Who is it ? Ah, it wakes me again, in silence, with half opened eyes,
I half rise shaken from oblivion, turn again, sit up, sense the darkness,
The unseen power has put life back in me, I am fortunate but let me be
not proud, I could be asleep for long,to miss the obligation, and be a sinner’
but no, the power gives me time, ‘Away Away O Sloth, tempt me not in dreams
pleasurable,in sleep drugged,for my life has a purpose,to fulfill, I must achieve.

Express gratitude O ungrateful soul, you have wasted enough time,the sky is still
dark,a few stars show hope,I have hope I will always have hope, I have seen
the golden orb smile with changing colors, I will see it again,forget the mug of tea
the sweetness of mixed fruit jam, the faint burnt aroma of toast, stand straight,bow
and bow again,as rightly as you can, soon the birds will stat to chirp their prayer, are
they better in faith and manner? they are, and how regular and disciplined, alas’ but

I am not a bird, my nest is empty though, no giggles or laughter do I hear,no steps
no songs,loneliness hovers around-Ah light appears behind the curtains,dawn breaks
I have the gift of day, tea tastes good with honey,sip it slowly,eat a bit for just energy
two pills now, one for hypertension,the other a blood thinner,life depends on the tiny
red and white tablets, panic strikes when I misplace the medicine pouch, forgetful me
now where are the reading glasses, again? well, I guess its normal at the platinum edge

kitchen table displays the bowl of vegetables, cut and washed, awaiting my attention,
must I cook? wish we had not lost the ‘mann o salwa’ , it’s past eleven, half the day
slipped away,let me check the mailbox,perhaps someone remembers me there’ -nothing
elsewhere in the world, killing, more killing,innocent killing,quarreling,arguing,commenting
impatience,intolerance,the planet has gone crazy,am I contributing to all the chaos? Yes?
the muezzin calls, Come to Prayer Come to Success’ so I must turn’ I must be on the right

afternoon,a bit of lunch and again drowsiness takes over, what did I do ten years ago
I would smile at the flowers,hug the kids and trees,listen to songs and skip a little too
Oh I see my children coming in the room smiling Mama Mama ‘ but what’s this, no one around
a short vision, curtains aside show the hillside green, a small house, wonder who lives
there? alone or with family? light clouds cover the sky, its all grey now- cries I hear of
people in captivity,without food water and medicine ‘freedom we want freedom’ Oh my heart

trembles and I move away from the window’ what tyrants are still ruling and roaming on
this planet, dinosaurs long gone instinct, big though were less harmful, Oh mankind what
greed ails thee what hunger for power makes thee mad? evening draws near,thoughts filled
with fear,nothing concrete have I done today’ news of deaths has droned all day, where is
peace where is joy, then Oh a beep a tingle of joy’ a friend far away, a spirit which cares
remembers with all the suffering in her share’ Ah now my day is made I thank the Almighty

He is present He cares and sends comfort in His own special way’
Hoping for the darkness to be light,praying for another peaceful day’
Hoping to make it worthwhile while I can while,here my spirit stays.

© 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


Forty-four words is not enough…

In the nick of time
My motto, my nemesis
My days overfilled with
Kids needing
Husband wanting
Daughterly obligations
School “volunteering”
Catholic guilt
Running miles – Ha! No
Running behind – yes
Secretary, chef, driver
Driving myself crazy
Oh look something else to sign up for!

© 2019, Irma Do

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


Coming Up Roses And Daffodils

“So how are you guys?” our kids text
and we try not to bore or alarm them
with a litany of aches and pains
and murmurs of our mortality.
We’re fine, we reply, and so we are
when we itemise each blessing,
tell how we’ve painted the kitchen
in a colour called lemon sorbet,
ordered some new roller blinds
to co-ordinate and plan a shade
of powder blue for the bathroom.
Our roses have spread from a single,
stringy bush we bought years ago
into an ebullience of sugar pink
clustering that empty corner space
we thought nothing would fill.
We’re pulling up stubborn weeds
pruning deadwood, filling tubs
with fresh compost for winter pansies:
might buy more daffodil bulbs
though there’s a crowdful underground
slumbering until next spring.

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

To purchase Sheila’s little gem of a volume, Through My Father’s Eyes (review, interview, and a sampling of poems HERE), contact Sheila directly at she1jac@yahoo.com


.the story of my life.

i could write the story of my life remembering all that was,
forgetting the things i forget. i could start at the beginning,
work through to the end when it comes. it could be that way.
may be, i have already written much of it in bits and scraps
here and there. such is the way of it. some things come random.
not as you expected. i was to tell my story, you said.
i cannot be
bothered. there is no interest.
if there is, it can be googled, gathered, stitched quilt like into some
image.
i cannot remember my granpa fondly, for he was dead a while before.
you told me your tale, silked tongue, the things you wished me to know.
not
impressed.
no need to impress. cat piss leaves on skin leave black marks. remember?
recall the…

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


My Silent Thoughts

Silent thoughts ride through a cloud of memories scattered freely into the bay of time that resides in the mind…alas a constant reminder of dreams and aspirations still to pursue and undone goals left to do in a future stretched out in a haze and a maze of aging and uncertainty.

Silent thoughts…private thoughts tiptoe tentatively along the path of restoration seeking new musical sounds to bring to fruition amid creation…singing abstract harmonies that dance in between the syncopated rhythms of eighth notes gliding into victory.

Silent thoughts perch on the branches of tree lined streets observing cars neatly parked along curbs of hospitality and in driveways of ownership waiting patiently for drivers to take possession and drive off into their respective realities and obsessions.

Silent thoughts cringe at a world obsessed with violence…violence in defense of ideologies piercing the fibers of sensitivity refusing to embrace diversity…violence in defense of the dollar sign raping the economies…raping the environment…raping the positive use of technology.

Silent thoughts search the heart for inspiration…for courage…for creativity to permeate the USA in these dark days of insanity to persuade minds to incorporate once again democracy and justice for all…to stand tall on the legacy upon which this country was built.

Silent thoughts seek to “reach out and touch” and captivate the minds of the angry, the lost, the weary…to replace hate with tolerance…to replace dope with hope…to replace anger with a peace of mind that comes from on high… that comes from “something bigger than you and I”.

Silent thoughts escape from under the weight of oppression into the setting sun colored by deepening orange hues blended with shades of pink coloring the sky with magnificence and brilliance inspiring a myriad of poetic words to send messages of love through out the universe.

© 2019, Tamam Tracy Moncur

Diary of an Inner City Teacher is a probe into the reality of teaching in our inner city school systems as seen from the front line. Over two decades in the trenches, educator Tamam Tracy Moncurexposes through her personal journal the plights, the highlights, the sadness, and the joys she has experienced as a teacher. Come to understand why the United States Department of Education and the various state departments of education must realize the teaching of academics cannot be divorced from the social issues that confront the students. Let s be innovative together and design new millennium schools that address the educational needs of the inner city students before it s too late! Our children s very existence is at stake! Laugh, cry, and become informed as you embrace the accounts of an inner city teacher.


Calm down today, but how
Our house is bigger ….yeah,
Today, we loud ever
Allah-Hu-Akbar, or
Jai Shree Ram,

or make prayer?
Silent life, a poem wish to live
LIFE GOES ON

Live it wow
Live it up ….yeah,
What can live up to this amount of pressure?

Silent life, a poem wish to live.
Today, I wish to live.
Today, I wish to work.

© 2019, Pali Raj


ABOUT 

Jamie Dedes. I’m a Lebanese-American freelance writer, poet, content editor, blogger and the mother of a world-class actor and mother-in-law of a stellar writer/photographer. No grandchildren, but my grandkitty, Dahlia, rocks big time. I am hopelessly in love with nature and all her creatures. In another lifetime, I was a columnist, a publicist, and an associate editor to a regional employment publication. I’ve had to reinvent myself to accommodate scarred lungs, pulmonary hypertension, right-sided heart failure, connective tissue disease, and a rare managed but incurable blood cancer. The gift in this is time for my primary love: literature. I study/read/write from a comfy bed where I’ve carved out a busy life writing feature articles, short stories, and poetry and managing 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.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

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Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! , September * 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