“I Am Not My Dad” … and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” T.S. Eliot



Here are the oh-so-relatable poetic responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, who are you, July 4, 2018.  Thank you to Gary W. Bowers, Paul Brookes, Debbie Felio, Kakali Das Ghosh, bogan (Bodhizar Pangelov), Sonja Benskin Mesher and to newcomer Rob Bowes, who steps out of the closet as a poet soul and debutes here today.  Well done all. 

Contributor websites/blogs are added so that you may visit and get to know one another. I hope you do. Some don’t have sites but you can probably catch up with them on Facebook.

Enjoy! … and do join us tomorrow for the next The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are welcome: novice, emerging and pro. 


The Creation

The radiant Sun rises,
Former black, empty shadows,
Reformed. Full. Colourful.
Exploding, popping, intriguing –
Spellbinding to Everyone.
Myself, mystified, bewildered, bemused…As it
Transformed, singular to plural, a whole
Intertwining of emotions,
Heart to heart throbbing, pulsing, pounding
Throughout our minds, bodies and souls.

The portrait of perfection before me;
An artist (unique) skilled to create a
Masterpiece.
By the Hand of God you breathe
The sweet succulent scent of hope and desire,
Humble (curious) as the spring bee I am drawn
Naturally my starving eyes feast.

Feeling of uncertainty and disbelief evaporate as
Real fireworks of emotion form and take over –
Controlling and honing the skies of senses to One;
With which the Moon rises to
Shadows now revealed, open and completely aware.
Alongside the vast peace and utter calm

I stand, wholly joined with

Love, hand in hand, heart to heart with

You.

© 2018, rjbowes (The Bowes Blog, Thinking out loud. Be creative)

Rob & Laura Bowes

ROB BOWES tells us, “I am a farmer and agronomist. I manage farmers crops for them and work in the North East of England, UK. My Grandfather was a published author and lived for writing, travelling and taking photographs, all of which have inspired me to do the exact same. My notepad and camera come with me on all of my travels. My only downside is I never do anything with my photographs or writing so this is the first step in being more open and showing everyone what I’ve got. Hope you like my poem I’ve popped on your comments section, thank you.”


whodunit

i at six
questioned the baskin-robbins ice cream pricing.
they wanted ten cents
for a cone with one scoop,
twenty for a cone with two scoops,
thirty for one with three.
why would anyone buy the three-scooper
when they could get three ones at the same price
and get two extra sugar cones?

i at seventeen
kissed the most splendid creature in the universe.
that was most of my life ago.
only two times since
have i been that happy.
i at twenty-one
crossed the finish line
at the 1984 San Francisco marathon.
my friend waiting there
asked me how i felt.
with my first breath i said,
truthfully,
“i feel terrible!!”
with my second breath i said,
truthfully,
“i feel great!!!”

at thirty-five i saw
the top of my newborn’s head
bookended by my poor then wife’s skull-tightened flesh.

today at sixty-three
I feel accursed by congestion of the nose
and blessed by what the day
promises.

© 2018, Gary W. Bowers (One with Clay, Image and Text)


I Am Not My Dad

“I can’t cope with babies.”
says my Dad.

“Now you’re nine I can talk to you.”
He wants me to play board

or card games, or build
Airfix Golden Hind,

I’d rather read or draw.
He does not know

how to step into my shoes.
My two year old granddaughter

on my knee we sing nursery rhymes.
She makes me a cup of tea

with her wooden cups, saucers,
and teapot. I drink the tea,

munch on her wooden pizza,
toast and tomatoes.

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

Our Identity

is unnecessary. Don’t
haul around the weight
Of what you are.

I am not defined by my roles,
Husband, grandfather, son, brother.

I am not defined by my choices
Whether to help others or not.

I not classified, regulated, defined
In law, financial position or clump

of negative biases. I am not programmed
from birth to contribute.

I am not what I say I am not.

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

Trace back
through father’s asbestos boiler lungs
a glaziers eye,
a solicitors assistant’s discretion
a linen merchants fingers
a hotelier’s welcome
a linen merchants touch
a coal merchants aroma
a farmer’s tread

he walk towards me
short coated in sky blue
a waterman of the River Wytham

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


Self Search

I am not

myself

or the you

you were looking for.

parents with unfinished dreams

pour into new life

their old ones

friends looking for a place

to belong / to rest

seek you in their

desires

lovers needing love

to restore / affirm

embrace a possibility

without attaching

reality

I myself

only have myself

for moments

before transmuting

to another self

contained within

an aging, forgetting

mind and body

forgetting what it knew

where muscle

was held tight

and who

I was

supposed

to be

© 2018, Debbie Felio 


#Rejoinder Of The Mirror #

” Who am I? ”
Sprouting from my mother’s womb
I’m here to you ,
I belong to my parents like you ;
Is it enough for my identity ?

Then why I’m an escaped from hustle of all sounds ?
Then why I’m traversing a lonesome peak
Where the first ray of sun lights my heart ?

Then comes my child -part of my corpus ,
Entangling my all .

Time rotates -he finds out his own world ,
Then that query chases me asking-
“Who are you ?”

Approaching to a mirror my query goes ,
” Who am I ? ”
The mirror replies laughingly –
“you are the one with your own view-own judgement -own love -own passion and own perseverance .
You are not just a body evolving from genetic materials ,
Rather a heart -a spirit laid in the cluster of atoms
Of your own physique ;
Your footsteps on this earth
will fade with you ,
Just colors of your composition would subsist for ages . ” ;
But still I think ,
“Who am I ?”

© 2018, Kakali Das Ghosh


‘Head Above Water: A Swimmer’s Perspective’.

Metaphorically, i have spent much of my life, keeping my head above water.

Dealing with life facts and disappointments, not forgetting the quiet times to help the work along

I lived on the coast, played by the sea

As a child, I floated gently until all became spongey. Now I swim head above water, up and down obsessively counting, hoping all will come clear..

Friends in water talk more, baring much, reflecting their clothing

I am drawn to water, my work reflective. Writing, swimming, painting, drawing.

I collect cuttings of people in water.

“a diary, a personal relationship with the landscape.

“Shoreline would be more an exploration of the concept….shorelines more related to actual examples…..how about that?

Shoreline…..an ever-changing interface……between 2 media…..2
worlds…..can be crossed in both directions, but only temporarily?……but
aren’t we only here because something had the courage to cross
permanently…..something emerging from the sea is such a powerful
image….turtles, ursula andress in dr. no, monsters from the deep…..and
why do we find it such an attractive place to be
xx salty”

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

. i am the pin .

:: a book of pins :: handwritten, copied in a day.

the drawing, the written page.

i am paint and cotton

i am pins and details

codes and reasons

calm and seasons.

i am boxes, charcoal,

fires and birds.

i am hand writing.

i am the old house,

all things considered.

i am the joker, the radio,

the music.

i am four dots.

i am the folded page,

the falling face.

i am the picture, the painting,

i am the mouse, the little bird,

a monstrous woman.

i am a word document, a picture file.

i am the pin.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


The Light Toy-Railway

The light toy-railway is traveling,
with the kids who aren’t anymore.

To Paris, to Brussels is traveling,
to the Black Africa too.
The light toy-railway is grieving,
for the fawn’s steps under Christmas tree,
for the luster in the eyes and
ah, for the toys.
For the Blue Bird, for the white photos,
for the hand that is putting the little star.
For the dream that’s coming true.

The light toy-railway is traveling.
Traveling.

© 2018, Bozhidar Pangelov (bogpan – блог за авторска поезия блог за авторска поезия)


ABOUT

Poet and writer, I was once columnist and associate editor of a regional employment publication. Currently I run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers.

My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,  Compass Rose, Connotation PressThe Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman.

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“After Reading How Poets Often Die …” . . . and other poetic responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

 

c Jamie Dedes

 “Poetry is a life-cherishing force. For poems are not words, after all, but fires for the cold, ropes let down to the lost, something as necessary as bread in the pockets of the hungry.”  Mary Oliver, A Poetry Handbook



Here are the diverse, thought-provoking and engaging responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, the transformation of things, June 27, 2018. As Debbie Felio said in comment to the post, “… sometimes transformation is not a beautiful process, but hard won” … and sometimes transformation doesn’t quite happen.

Thank you to Paul Brookes, Renee Espiru, Debbie Felio, Sheila Jacob, Carol Mikoda, Anne G. Myles, Marta Pombo Sallés, Sonja Benskin Mesher and to newcomers DeWitt Clinton (whose new collection will be out soon), Vageesh Dwivedi (a novice showing much promise), and Taman Tracy Moncur (an activist poet and Brooklyn girl like me, I suspect). The work of these poets certainly enriches the day for all of us.

Contributor websites/blogs are added so that you may visit and get to know one another. I hope you do. Some don’t have sites but you can probably catch up with them on Facebook.

Enjoy! … and do join us tomorrow for the next The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are welcome: novice, emerging and pro. 


After Reading How Poets Often Die, I Do Hesitate to Read
Ou Yang Hsiu’s “Reading the Poems of an Absent Friend”

Some old poet friends are not dead
Yet. One even lives exiled in far
Away Japan. Perhaps I’ll disappear
As I’m too old to be discovered
By any up and coming new
Lit clique. What part of friends
Stays in the sublime end of my
Old mind? Sometimes when I read
They’ve died I’d just as soon
Close the blinds and stay reclined.
Most all stayed up all night
Just to finish their new lines.
Now they’ve got their good books.
I do hate reading what they’ve
Spent their whole lives on
And I hate it that they’re gone.
Sometimes I have not written all
Year and when I do I know it’s
Nothing more than old oatmeal.
It’s incredible how long I’ve
Been drawn to this poetry life
And how often I can’t even
Find a word or two to make
Anew, and wonder, who turned
My brain into yummy worms?
Once I found an old Pole’s
Book of lines, left the day
For nothing else except to turn
More pages all the way to night.
I never am too keen to
Reread some old medieval
Gore but I could pick out
Any poem and think it’s
Something quite new. I wish
I knew what poets do.
Most men wouldn’t be caught
Dead writing with short lines
Would rather count the scores
Of grown men running plays.
I told my wife the other day
How long I’ve been devoted
To this quiet task of digging
Through what I already knew.
So if I could I’d just sit
Right here in our red room
And gaze outside to find
What brings such joy inside.
In fact I’d take my old dead
poet friends, and a few lines
made last night, catch the next
starry ride right out of here.

© 2018, DeWitt Clinton

DeWitt tells us, “This poem is one of 114 I’ve adapted from Kenneth Rexroth’s One Hundred Poems from the Chinese and the entire collection is forthcoming from Michael Dickel’s is a rose press.

DeWitt Clinton

DeWITT CLINTON is Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin–Whitewater, USA.   Recent poems of his have appeared in the Santa Fe Literary Review, Verse-Virtual, Peacock Journal, Ekphrastic Review, Diaphanous Press, Meta/Phor(e)Play, and The Arabesques Review.  He has a new collection forthcoming from Kelsay Books. He lives in Shorewood, Wisconsin.​


Again

With bewitching beauty you walked again,
And the years of temperance, was all in vain.

The whisper’s melody was still the same,
And the longing ears ,were in heaven to acclaim.

Neither tequila nor the weed,
Your addictive eyes quenched the need.

Pattern of your long braided hair was well acquainted,
As if the steps were learned yesterday,that my fingers repeated.

It felt like the time stood still,
Unpacking each and every dimensions of my will.

And then came into play, My futile fate,
Rushing wildly through my window, as if it was in haste.

The breeze was soothing ,but brought the pain,
And my only lifeline was disconnected again,
Still didn’t open my eyes, struggling to connect again…

© 2018, Vageesh Dwivedi (dwivedivageesh)

Vageesh Dwivedi

Vageesh writes, “Currently I’m doing B.tech from mechanical engineering. I like to write and express. I’m from Uttarpradesh, India.”


The Ultimate Transformation

Seniors captured by time
now prisoners in a body
no longer in sync with the mind…
A body transformed
through ages and stages
forming the persona that resides within…
That persona forever in search of new dominions
living out dreams and schemes
reaching heights of happiness
encompassed by depths of despair…

The body grows weary
eyesight becomes dim and bleary
days flee as hearing fades…
The bones no longer dancing
to the rhythm of the heart…
The bones captivated by a falling star
shoot through the galaxy
with a proclamation
announcing a new soul ready
for the ultimate transformation…

© 2018, Tamam Tracy Moncur (Mercer Street Blues)

Tamam Tracy Moncur

TAMAM TRACY MONCUR says, “I enjoy writing. I write for the sheer pleasure of writing. Writing helps me organize my world and express what matters to me at any given moment in time. I’ve been a Civil Rights activist, taught elementary school for twenty-five years, worked with my husband, Grachan Moncur III arranging musical compositions and performing. In 2008 I self-published a book entitled Diary of an Inner City Teacher, a project that was very close to my heart. I am now a retired teacher, a community activist, and a seasoned senior who still loves to write.”


The Gift

A small dark shape on kitchen tile
Stared at by our cat,

Move closer, it is a sparrow bairn,
Chest balloons out as my sigh releases.

Scooped up, as I take it out to the garden
It stands on the scoop.

Over the fence our neighbour stands hunched
in dark tears “My mam won’t be coming out of hospital”

My breath caught.
The sparrow flies away.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

a became a river

One day atta work,
a goes for a skinny dip
in a quiet stream
a knows

Unbeknownst to me stream
were a lad called Whitey or Gain
and he falls for us.

A flits naked from his wattas
an he changes into a fella
an chases atta us.

I ran until am cryin’
an shartin fo help

r boss covers me in a cloud,

but Whitey, waits watches
where ma wet footprints
disappear.

Am so afraid break art
in a cold sweat pouring
off of me a becomes a river.

Whitey changes to watta
an mingles wi us.

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

© 2017, Paul Brookes (Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

Lass Is Stone

Spunk sees Cruel lass from afar
gobsmacked by her looks
he gets smitten hard
and determines she’ll be hooked

Asks her mates for her mobile number,
and all her social media pages,
scours internet for details,
winds himself up in rages.

Gets his message through once
or twice but she mocks him
” Fancy me. You do right. I’m gorgeous”
and promptly blocks him.

Finds her home and knocks
and her Dad answers and says
“She don’t want to know, son.
Thinks your a stalker. Away!”

Writes his first letter and posts
it personally through her door,
it tells her she’s won and he’ll be gone
she can celebrate and more

she can see him lose his life
which is all he has left for her.
Cruel scoffs at this but goes along
for the crack and laughter.

She sees him throw a rope
already knotted around a beam
put his neck in the noose
and let out a scarifying scream.

Then she feels herself harden
stone thoughts
stone mouth
stone neck
stone chest
stone limbs
stone heart

calcified flesh and bone
a statue.

© 2018, Paul Brookes, (Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

Biddy To A Young God

You have planted fresh
delight in these eyes
that sprout visions again
as when I was a young girl.

You have breathed
through my cold embers
and stroked warmth
into this thin skin.

My face has plumpness
and reddens
as your hands find flesh
for my angled skull.

My limbs no longer bare
begin to dress themselves
with buds and colour
for your lustful eyes.

Perhaps these changes
are only in your eyes,
and this puddle reflection
may be false, a false Spring.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)


The Usher

The wind bears no animosity
nor is it fickle
inherently

as appearances
are always in flux

though transformative it will be
ushering in both life
and death

for the Anemoi brings forth
all seasons
in turn

where one day the breadth of it
blows clear the darkest clouds

emanating life giving sun
sweet scented
flowers
erupting

the next morn could bring
a stillness of breath
pollution a miasma
of death

yet still always ushering in
tempests and squalls
a familiar to rain

leaving a swath of destruction
to change yet again
with the softest
of breezes

that seem to settle within
touching, reflecting
life’s gentle
rhythm

Anemoi the gods of wind
are the ushers of change
a transformative
jinn

© 2018, Renee Espriu (Renee Just Turtle Flight and Inspiration, Imagination & Creativity with Wings, Haibun, AR, Haiku & Haiga)


Once Upon a Time

Working with children is what I said I would do
Eight years of higher education said I was ready
Children from poverty, neglect, abuse
I’d create safety to help calm the unsteady

of their worlds where parents weren’t there –
out searching for something to calm their addictions
leaving the young ones abandoned and scared
easy to make that outcome prediction

I’ll work with the children and not the abusers –
the parents, their friends, whoever committed
these horrible acts – I am the accuser
and judge and jury – against them I’m pitted

’til I heard their stories of their own horror
and I realized abused children grow up
without anyone being their restorer
to sanity and filling their self worth cup

imitating was all they could know
trying to be different had no guide
resulting in return to the old ways, though
reassured them of something to hold on inside

so I’ll work with the children and just their families
but I can’t get involved in all the systems
that confuse and contribute their own brutalities
often retraumatizing rather than helping the victims

But who am I kidding when I say I will not
it’s all so related – system, child, family
there’s no way to separate it all out
that is what I’ve come to see

So whoever you are, whatever’s been done
I know there’s much to your history
No one has to go it alone
who can judge your journey – certainly not me.

© 2018, deb y felio


Fern

How would it feel
to be you, green
and generous fern,
spores wind-lifted
last winter, rehomed
in my garden’s earth?

In July’s humid heat
I hanker to slip
from my carapace,
shrink beside ribbons
of grass, mingle with
star-trails of ivy.

Would I sense
my uncoiling,
my spearing upward,
fanning outwards,
filling spaces
of air and light?

Would I hold
race-memory
in my spores, dream
ancient forests where
ferns swayed billions
of years ago,

grew tall, wide,
helped shape
the landscape?
Patterns repeating.
Images imprinting.
Fossils in rock.

Fern, you’ll outlive
my flesh and bone.
I high-five
your nearest frond.
Sun warms
your silent nod.

© 2018, Sheila Jacob

The Shell

Yours was the first corpse I’d seen
though I wince at the word: harsh,

impersonal, which in a way it was
when I stood in the Viewing Room

that midwinter morning, half-afraid
to kiss you, say a final goodbye.

I recognized you at once, pleased
they hadn’t lacquered drifts of white

hair, replaced pink pyjamas and cardi.
But your arctic face chilled my lip

and I knew if I knelt close, pressed
the curl of my ear against your breast

I’d hear no crash of waves trawling
the coral and driftwood of ninety years,

no echoes of a gushing, hushing ocean
scooping your sacred breath in its tide,

turning at the moon’s far rim where
your soul left its shell and took flight.

Published two years ago in Ben Barnyard’s webzine Clear Poetry

© 2016, Sheila Jacob


( transformation )

changes one.

transform metransform me too.jpg

transform me three

transform me four

transform me five

 

transformed

© 2017, Sonja Benskin Mesher

. preparing the way .

 

check the task, ready the mind.

let thoughts mellow and compute

nicely.  we will be all ready on the day.

we have a plan, whilst gratitude guides

us. nothing is necessary, except

collars and socks.

some will understand,

while others will not.

it was a hay loft, converted

now, the upper room.

listen.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


Constant Change

Everything you are made of begins
in a gigantic transition
as universe explodes into being
stardust becomes everything
transformation begets you,
your sister, your cat, the bees,
the tree, stones, water,
so: stop. Cease all striving.
Stop all struggle. Breathe: in, out,
like a butterfly coming and going,
to this flower, that flower.
Rest. Stay in this tender space. Before
you know it, without aid of will or anxiety,
you arrive in a new place
the right place, just the right
place. No harm will come to you
as your divine self
slides gently into that personalized
pocket on the overalls
of The Universe of Now.

Because what can we do but laugh?
Because what can we do but laugh?
Because what can we do?
Because what?
Because?
Be.

© 2018, Carol Mikoda (At the Yellow Table)


The Other World

At eighteen, I stepped into the other world,
the one that sounds fantastical but is not.
Drainage pond at the bottom of a hill on campus,
behind it a small straggle of winter woods,
beyond that, a path towards the sports fields.
Grass still green in the mild mid-Atlantic,
twiggy dried milkweed standing and fallen.
Plain as plain, just hidden, just waste.
An ordinary afternoon, and I felt surfeited with reading;
walking down the hill, I cast away my mind.
At the water’s edge I looked at the surface;
the water looked back at me. The world had eyes:
perceived me as I perceived it, all the same.
The bare treetops in the distance moved in my arms.
I felt the cawing of the crows that rose inside my chest.
But no crows there, no chest here, only that cawing,
that burning and empty annunciation
of how we too are the shine in the tufts of the cracked pods,
falling and lifted in the wind through everything.
All of this I could see, while I rubbed my eyes,
as if to dislodge a film that was not there.
This happened. I was a freshman, with no one to tell.
Why do we seek imagined worlds? We know nothing
of what is real, how wondrous and complete.

© 2018, Anne G. Myles (How public — like a Blog —)


I Danced the Night Ferociously

I danced the night ferociously
before I couldn’t learn to walk.
I heard all winds wanting to talk
but ignored them atrociously.

I cut them all with fearful sword
and showed my ridiculous mask
which was for me an easy task
blind as I was dancing aboard

a ship of horror to instill
my ugly laugh on anyone
who thought my doings were ill-done.
I laughed with my most perverse will

unaware of the coming change
that would lead to a transformation
to be expressed with great devotion
displaying a wonderful range

of what I could never suspect
but just love showing its beauty
colors dancing with their duty
to the rhythm of new effect

© 2018, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)

And so was the dance:

If you are reading this post from an email subscription, it’s likely you’ll have to link through to the site to view the video.

Afloat

Upon the highest cliff something awakes

Below is the turquoise-blue ocean glare

While the sun reflects on its silent waves

A butterfly rises up in thin air

My wings felt the warmth of a cloudless sky

I breathed the air and found pleasure, yet

My heart was afraid of flying too high

A sudden descent and I became wet

I saw myself sinking relentlessly

Into the depths of the darkest ocean

Radiant sun and blue faded callously

As I sank with vertiginous motion

A butterfly turned into a falling rock

Could I possibly change my destiny

Could I ever recover from this shock

Or stay in the dark, its immensity

Direful sinking, the dark blue around

Yet looking up, the sight of turquoise-blue

And sunrays despite a fall, that profound

Spoke of the anchors I could hold on to

My arms and legs started to swim upward

A rapid ascent as its previous fall

Reached the surface of the sea so awkward

And saw myself at peace as I recall

Across the ocean so confidently

I swam and could have even sailed a boat

Looked at the world with some complacency

The butterfly can fly, I am afloat

© 2016, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)



VALUE ADDED

Unlife, a voiced video from Paul Brookes’collection A World Where (2017, Nixes Mate Press).  Painting by Jenn Zed.

If you are reading this post from an email subscription, it’s likely you’ll have to link through to the site to view the video.


ABOUT

Poet and writer, I was once columnist and associate editor of a regional employment publication. Currently I run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers.

My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,Compass Rose, Connotation PressThe Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman.

My poetry was recently read by Northern California actor Richard Lingua for Poetry Woodshed, Belfast Community Radio. I was featured in a lengthy interview on the Creative Nexus Radio Show where I was dubbed “Poetry Champion.”

“That yes” . . and other poems to the Last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“Out of the quarrel with others we make rhetoric; out of the quarrel with ourselves we make poetry.” W.B. Yeats



These responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, in praise of all hallelujah, perfect and fractured, June 20, are painfully wise and honest and moving to the point of tears. Times are hard, no doubt about it. Well done, Bozhidar Pangelov (bogan), Gary W. Bowers, Paul Brooks, Debbie Felio, Carol Mikoda, and Marta Pombo Sallés. Thanks also to artist/poet Sonja Benskin Myers for including her illustration along with one of her poems.

So here is our gift to enrich your day. Please do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.


Hallelujah for the deprived

the church (is) carved
on a steep hill

on broken glass
images
crunched under the footsteps of wild animals
which rarely pass by
pieces of wind and stone slabs
falling from names
(the names go away)

we sold our lives
a hand cuts off the wrist
no live cypress trees
or birds
the past starts
and the shadows do not move into the grave
„poor my Jorik“
you have never been born

those deprived of time
cannot die
they do not know how

the folded pin is the eye

© 2018, bogpan (bogpan – блог за авторска поезия, блог за авторска поезия)


hallelujah unison

arthritic hands clasp and hurt each other
eyes squeeze and phosphenes march
“hallelujah,” she whispers

miles away there is a beheading
“hallelujah!” they shout

miles away a child is born
“hallelujah,” say the three
(one inaudibly)

miles away there is home in the headlights
miles away a bell tower reverberates
miles away a monitor flatlines

and miles away a man sees someone waiting for him under a streetlight
shifting her feet
seeing him
and catching her breath

© 2018, Gary W. Bowers (One With Clay, Image and Text)


Hallelujahs

My steady breath and regular beat of my heart as I wake is a fire goaded from the snuffed out taper
of yesterday.

Welcome shouts and hugs from my family, opens petals of wonder releases sweet fragrance of warmth.

Thankyous from the boss of all my efforts curves into smiles of bairns released into the arms of aggrieved parents.

Hallelujahs out of broken, divorced, stamped out, water logged ashes lick and dance heat and light in eyes renewed.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

That Yes

of your breath as it lets go into the fresher air opportunity offers with open hands,

an apology for pain given from the giver heals the sores and blemishes, some self inflicted, hands

over a cup of tea, coffee or glass of fresh greeting
A wholesome kiss and gleam gladdened eyes

without expectation of return or reparation,
sip down electricity that sparkles your bones.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

How Fragments Make

room for new making
You are the better maker.

Muscle and skin and idea undone
reveal shapes unconsidered.

Pieces of belief disassembled
into nonsense make a different sense.

Necessary chaos you can tangle
Into another order. Praise the entangled.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

No Hallelujahs

without darkness
without questions
without nonsense

No hallelujahs

without failure
without mistakes
without doubt

No hallelujahs

without hard decisions
without dislocation
without recovery

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)


CODA

Blood
Rage
Objectification
Killing
Exclusion
Neglect

How long we wait
Again for righteousness
Lifting up the
Lives of the lost
Echoing the
Longing for
Universal
Justice
And
Honor

© 2018, deb y felio


glory be

a host of horrors greet us each day
multitudes of madnesses
economies of scale sing hymns
ailing rotting-on-the-inside riffraff
make holy homemade videos
that go virulently viral in stupefying style
scores bursting at the seams about to crack

en masse we raise voices
This! Life! is astonishing
life on earth
with its variegations in virtue
imperfections impressive in their number
it is good nevertheless this creation

find a statue or painting of god
that’s not a little bit broken
let alone one of us humans

Rejoice!
ever-morphing clouds
roll across the storm sky
to release, in their fractures,
photon beams
across swarming humanity’s home
until Hallelujah! a stunning sunset show

© 2018, Carol Mikoda


:: numbers ::

:: numbers ::

i limped.

into the cathedral.
my life will be sorted,
if i bought the book @
£1.99, said suffering is
good.

i looked at the boys,
looked at the floor,
read ecclesiastes,
we are as dust,

and limped out.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

men in the village, are older now. the moth returns.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


Dance of Hope

Wrapped in orange dress
of hope is the dance.
Fluttering veil seals
renewed serene bliss.

Fans turn in the air
tasting this new flair
of hope tied in rope,
invisible thread
that beats with the heart.

Bathing in moonlight
of newly found joy
I danced my hope with
a fluttering veil
and turned my fans in
the winds of a change.

© 2018, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)


ERRATUM

Paul’s poem below is from Tuesday, June 19 responses to the Wednesday Writing Prompt, the lesser being of a lesser god, June 13. His poem was posted incorrectly.  You can use the link to read the entire collection, which is quite wonderful.

Gust Is Deaf, Hills Are Blind,

trees can’t walk properly,
Flowers twitch haphazardly.

Grass is mute, rivers are dumb.
Nature is differently abled.

Mountains are too tall,
struggle to talk when they can’t

bend a knee, get down to those smaller
who are in awe when all mountains need

is to speak face to face , dispel their myth.
Same with water that rushes by,

no time to stand and stare, moments pass
before they have time to fully comprehend.

Flux needs a still moment but has to go on.
Still waters wish they could rush.

All hankers after what it Is not,
Cannot accept their place as their lot.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration * History * Imagination)


ABOUT THE POET BY DAY

 

“Scaffold” . . . and other Responses to Wednesday Writing Prompt

“My imagination makes me human and makes me a fool; it gives me all the world and exiles me from it.” Ursula K. Le Guin



These responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, the lesser being of a lesser god, June 13 certainly take us through time and geography, touch lightly or deeply on theme, all while warming our hearts and spinning our minds along the way.  Enjoy! and Thanks! to Paul Brookes, Irene Emanuel, Sonja Benskin Mesher and Marta Pombo Salés. These poets seem always up for a challenge.

Thanks also and a warm welcome to The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt to Debbie Felio, Carol Mikoda and Anne G. Myles, accomplished writers all.  Debbie’s work was featured before on The Poet by Day but not for Wednesday Writing Prompt, so here she is introduced in this context.

Join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are welcome to share their work on theme.


Least of These

I find myself
in losing self
amid the grander
moments in creation

for why would I
settle as the larger
of the lesser
among so little

grant me the serenity
to seek the enormity
of a great God’s creativity

lesser me at the edge
of Grand Canyon’s
cragged colors

lesser me in the depths
and breadths
of roaring oceans

lesser me in the wonders
of rainbows and cloud banks
snowstorms and tornados

lesser me counted
as one of millions
stars and galaxies

never am I so grand
as when the Grandest
includes in His resume
the lesser me.

© 2018, Deb Felio

Debbie Felio

DEBBIE FELIO is a poet/witness living and writing in Boulder, Colorado

 

 


Death’s Immensity

Stand next to one wall, let’s say
the north side, of a massive
building. Look up into the
sky, noticing only a
few puffs of clouds. Sweep your eyes
back down, catching sight of this
wall — gray, smooth, unending — and

recall it.

Instantly, the personal fantasy of
existence disintegrates,
leaving only wisps. Lungs

empty,

breath sucked away.
Only flatness,
a loss of all
color and detail.
Once again,
know Death
and be

paralyzed.

© 2018, Carol Mikoda

Carol Mikoda

CAROL MIKODA teaches writing and new teachers in upstate New York. She lives in the country where she walks in the woods, studies the sky to photograph clouds, and grows vegetables and flowers. She also sings and plays piano, guitar, and bass. Although she enjoys travel, her cat, Zen Li Shou, would rather she stayed home.


*

Scaffold

For Mary Dyer, Quaker martyr, d. 1660

1.

The only woman to be taken to the scaffold twice.

In October, you watched your friends drop,

then they let you go. In May you came back

and the second time it was for real.

Both times they marched you the last mile

flanked by soldiers, drummers, ministers —

the charivari of execution. You said

It is the greatest joy I can enjoy in this world.

 

I hunt online to see what you saw before you,

gaze lifted, sure and unrepentant:

the raw wood architecture of terror

set up on Boston Neck,

a strange delicacy in it perhaps;

its silence, its certainty, full stop.

The light that was the frailest metaphor

pouring through the noose.

2.

Scaffolding, as educators call it,

means how you model or demonstrate

the way to solve a problem,

how you build on students’ experiences

adding support, until in time

they can do it for themselves.

 

When the terror of the present gripped me

I wanted to write your story,

attempt to interweave it with my own,

tell what happened while it was possible.

By the time I reached the end, I hoped

(though I no longer believed what you did

as I’d tried to many years ago

and it almost crushed me)

you would teach me to be brave.

3.

Before they led imaginary

John Proctor to the scaffold,

before he thought better of it,

before he chose the honor of his name,

he bellowed in desire

I want my life!

4.

The poet said in workshop:

The scaffolding of a poem is its skeleton.

Consider the poem as a body;

what’s keeping it upright?

What are the rules that keep it alive,

that build its world?

 

I couldn’t help but smile.

I saw that after all it was this I got:

in middle age as you were,

you helped bring me back to poetry

and left me there, lesser, grateful,

heart pounding with desire

to walk and keep on walking

in my own recovered light.

© 2018, Anne G. Myles

ANNE G. MYLES, originally from the east coast, and now  Associate Professor of English at the University of Northern Iowa, specializing in early American literature. You can find some of my earlier academic thoughts about Mary Dyer in her Wikipedia entry, as I recently learned to my surprise. I have been drawn back to my lost origins in creative writing in the past year or so, and poetry (the form in which I was trained) even more recently, including but not limited to working on a series of Mary Dyer poems. I hope to begin sending work out soon. I have a blog about matters related to my recovering my creative voice at “How public — like a Blog –,” annegolda.blog


*

My god is

Imperfect, a perfect image for me.
Humbled by its mistakes.

My god is a mistake.
A wrong answer,

Differently abled.
Its winters often in spring.

Its summers sometime in autumn.
My god is a fracture, a flaw.

Gender fluid. Defined by its
Inhumanity, it is complete

in its incompleteness. Aspires
not to aspire. My god is contradiction,

counter intuitive. Fresh in its decay.
Its more is always less. Thank god.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration * History * Imagination)

Gust Is Deaf, Hills Are Blind,

 

trees can’t walk properly,
Flowers twitch haphazardly.

Grass is mute, rivers are dumb.
Nature is differently abled.

Mountains are too tall,
struggle to talk when they can’t

bend a knee, get down to those smaller
who are in awe when all mountains need

is to speak face to face , dispel their myth.
Same with water that rushes by,

no time to stand and stare, moments pass
before they have time to fully comprehend.

Flux needs a still moment but has to go on.
Still waters wish they could rush.

All hankers after what it Is not,
Cannot accept their place as their lot.

       ONE NIGHT ON CRADLE MOUNTAIN—-TASMANIA
Never before, nor ever again
will there be such a special night;
the night a possum stopped at my feet
and allowed my touch without fright.
Glancing round the purple-black,
I saw a wondrous sight;
sparkle-threads of countless stars
roped round the Milky Way;
back-dropped moon-beams
filigreed in shining silver ray.
Thrilled beyond coherent thought,
I blended with this dream
and optically imprinted
that empyreal starry scene.
Cradle Mountain calls to me,
with haunting “siren” powers;
“come back and stay,
you’ll be entranced,
your life forever ours.”

© 2018, Irene Emanuel


. the robe.

 

kept in a box, precious.

lifted down for those to see,
that care.

did the understanding come,
the idea that all old things
are wanted, needed for their story.

not discarded on higher ground,
where dust and moth abound.

the lesser garment became prefered,
as the last shall become the first.

we shall look at the photographs.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher (poetry and illustration below)

shot_1399971890954

 

.. bad night dreaming ..

 

dreamed of devastation,           flew miles        low

over concrete .   skeletons,      bones of the thing.

 

all is dust, as dust we have become.                 slow.

 

grey.    nothing moves here no more.          no sighs.

 

they have forgotten us.        we have forgotten them.

 

are we  now the bones of what we were?

 

bad night dreaming.

 

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


 

Llac de Banyoles copy

Confidence

With ebbs and flows
like sea and lake waters
the ground was trembling,
magnificent earthquake
confidence was at stake.
Wanted to do your best
so never felt at rest
you are too self-demanding
so confidence faded.
Too much self-exigency
leave me please, let me be
tell it now.
That parent, sister, brother,
that relative of yours
or that good friend or lover
if not, the teacher you had
someone said: great, keep up
or someone said, instead,
I think you have no talent
you will not earn a living
you are now wasting your time.
Your confidence fluctuating.
Ghosts of self-exigency
ghosts of negative people
let them vanish.
Hateful comparisons,
like storms amid the sea
till everything seems awash,
like strong winds on Earth
till each house looks swept,
mercilessly taken.
What light dwells in your soul
what thoughts in your mind
this is not to be disregarded,
disrespected or dismissed.
From your uniqueness, your creation
comes as a true revelation.
Let the ghosts of comparison
fade away from the sea
from the land you inhabit.
As the sun shines on you
so will confidence.

© 2018, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)


ABOUT THE POET BY DAY