To Be a Poet. . . and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“. . . when a good poet is confronted with difficult facts that he knows to be true but also are inimical to poetry, he has no choice but to flee to the margins; it was . . . this very retreat that allowed him to hear the hidden music that is the source of all art.”  Orhan Pamuk, Snow

And this being Tuesday, here are the responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, I Am the Poem, October 9., which involved process. The poems which form today’s collection include two from newcomers who are warmly welcomed here: midnight sky’s poet and Erik Nicholson.  The other are from our stalwart participants: Gary W. Bowers, Olive Branch, mm brazfield, Paul Brookes, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Frank McMahon, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Ben Naga, Clarissa Simmens, Leela Soma, and Mike Stone

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.

To Be a Poet

To be a poet
is to sit behind the throne,but put
pen on paper and rule the kingdom.
To be a poet
is to cry and be broken,but put
pen on paper and create a smile for somebody else.
To be a poet
is to fail and lose your faith,but put
pen on paper and give hope to the world.
To be a poet
is to look into his eyes and stammer,but put
pen on paper and win a handful of hearts.
To be a poet,
is to be only human,but put
pen on paper and build a castle on the moon.

© 2019, midnight sky’s poet

Wecome, midnight sky’s poet!
midnight sky’s poet has a passion for all things literary, especially poetry and is new to blogging and to The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt.  Link HERE to visit and encourage.

I am not a poem
written from the other side

a hundred poems remained unwritten
when you were alive
and now
the letters blur and drop
out of sight
in a fugitive dance of black
and white

this unwritten poem hears your whispers
from the other side
and wishes to
lie alongside the annotations you made in pencil
when it could
be fixed if only your annotations
were collected up
and rearranged in dark lines
along side
a rejected passage
filial fellowship

but this
unwritten poem cannot
set in ink the past’s lack.

© 2019, Eric Nicholson

Welcome, Eric Nicholson (Erik Leo, All Things Creative)
I am retired and live in England. I try and keep active and interested and involved in a variety of activities: yoga, singing, walking and writing, to name a few. I am a volunteer in the nearby countryside and help to monitor the activities of the iconic red kites. My reading includes poetry, fiction, philosophy and other non-fiction. My writing reflects my interests, as you can see. I have many poems and articles published online.

you are in there somewhere

michelangelo moved on
but left behind the notion
that what sculptors did was free
imprisoned beauty
or trapped wiadom
from an embedded limbo

every slab of marble is a jail cell
and the sculptor has
the chiselmallet keys

and so you o secret net of words
o conveyance of transcendance
you are tangled
you are caught
but my chisel is discernment
my mallet insistence
and in three more words
you are free

© 2019, Gary W. Bowers

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


It began at an ending
and at the forefront of
an attempt to decipher the darkness
and sift through the tensions of
As dilemmas grew, the need was to
reconcile the tension and
provide catharsis to emotion.

At times the natural world brought beauty
and balm and later
there was more of trying to
grasp that reality.

Much of what is now present seems
inconsequential, and
the belief this endeavor brings to the table
something less than a glass full, to most
it is possibly nearly
perhaps the result of
neglect, time and weariness of
left unsolved.

© 2019, Olive Branch


window at dusk
clove cigarette
clings between wet lips
diet coke
dangerously close to keyboard
sad tired eyes
the color of gypsy moss
blood trickles
from her nose
at times
thoughts bounce
like dandelion pappi
blown from the tiny lips of babes
and at times
an invisible pang
slightly electrically melancholic
in the middle of the chest
looking down to see
how people such as we
just all wander
on Spring street
she thinks with slightly damaged brain
do they see as i see
she feels the wounds of the mistaken
and soothes the misguided vigor of the innocent
the sweet sweat of gardenias
distract the ghost
locked in her heart
life becomes less ordinary
and so she sits to write
out the fabric of her soul

© 2019, mm brazfield

mm’s site is: Words Less Spoken

A World Where

I can’t recognise this pattern of words,
the timetables at work. I can’t make

a pattern is a world without form,
without substance, an out of focus

pictures in which there maybe more
than one of me. I don’t orientate

without signposts or landmarks or signatures.
All is blur. Meaning elusive.

If I make it could be false. There is grief
at a loss of shape, of pattern.

A gallery of random words and pictures
I can reshuffle so every time a picture

has different words, words you can apply
to any other picture. The application of shape

more meaningful perhaps. As we can’t say
when someone close will leave this earth.

Port of Souls is found landlocked sometimes.
Like marrow locked inside a bone, at other

Times it is a small island surrounded
by a repetition of water. Occasionally after

so many have passed into memory,
a port of souls occupies our inside.

From Paul Brookes and Marcel Herms A Port Of Souls (Alien Buddha Press, 2018)

© 2018, Paul Brookes

The Bestiary

You sit cross legged cradle its bairn
as Imagination with its feet on the ground
talks to the fish who hangs in the air.

The fish speaks of the tides of the gusts,
fronds of the trees and breaking crests
of the crash of clouds.

Those images are so lame Imagination replies,
So already done. Exercise your fish brain,
More you train larger it gets.

You recognise the bairn’s bawl
so settle it under imaginations udders..
Gently place its mouth around a teat.

It sucks contentedly as the fish speaks
of the lotic waters of the clouds,
upended deltas of trees and turbid air.

Imagination smiles as her bairn sups,
winces at the backward leap of the fish
Into obscure words to deepen what’s said.

Forthcoming in Skyfish (Alien Buddha Press)

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Yon Gob Agape

A neet starstruck,
rocks kal in dialect.
Spoutin’ foreign.

Oyle in rock
is a wobbly gob.
Tha spies stars in spate.

Can’t dip thee hand in
and grab a mite
o’ clear blue and sparkle.

Stars are sparking
molten steel,
creation unmaking,
remaking themsens

in words wi a different roll
off of the tongue,
that touches a new
combination of truths.

An almost oxbow and meander
frames itsen agog
at leet streamin’ into this cave.
Spouts another lingo.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

O, Lady Of The Breath (Six Vacanas)

1. You Rise

from my forest and leave
out of the gob and earth falls.

It shivers renewed,

welcomes a similar you
into my gob.

You excite my spring buds,
allow the earth to rise, again.

2. Can’t Let

you stay long in the dark,
or the earth will rot.

I can’t let you out for long,
or the earth will rot.

Let’s follow this pattern.
I’ll briefly allow you into my dark wood,

But please don’t take woodsmoke, car fumes,
coal dust, iron filings, water in with you,

else I’ll hack you out. These companions
quicken the rot.

3. Help With The

tasting snake in my cave
form the words I need to say.

Take my words out into air
loud enough for others to hear.

Please don’t say you are weak
and can’t carry such a weight.

Please don’t say I failed to welcome
enough of you into the forest.

4. My Dad Let You

in with pungent watercolours on his back,
stink of Clwyd cowpats and fresh mountain air,

but when he scraped boilers you secretly
took into his forest asbestosis strands

that speed his rot and ruin. I can’t understand
your thought in all of this

5. My Sister Threw You

out over her steering wheel,
her forest crushed by molded plastic.

She tried to welcome you back
but the wood was gone,

so you gust over her grave
under an overseeing tree.

O, my lady of the breath.
I welcome your coming and going.

6. Your Cheyne Stokes

delay before my unconscious Nanna
let you in.

I waited a minute, a 10-20
second episode of
stopped breath

suddenly her welcome
let you in

deeper and again
deeper in and out.

then delay

then delay

then delay

her welcome of you
and delay I watched seven days

until she refused your entry for good.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

This Mop And Bucket

are poetry to me.
My pen is a mop

I stick in a bucket
of disinfectant floor cleaner

pull out mop sodden
with words and splash

them backwards and forwards
slop lines one after the other

until the floor fair shines.
My mop is dry, needs another dip.

I squeeze out the gunk
back into the bucket.

More the floor shines,
dirtier the bucketful gets.

A good poem is a clean floor.

From Please Take Change (, 2018)

© 2018, Paul Brookes


and brush are poetry.
Brush is my pen

sweeps all the words
dust, ripped plastic packaging,

used sucked lollipop sticks,
shop receipts, religious pamphlets

sausage roll pastry, used product
labels into a neat pile,

position the dustpan to receive
the words. Carefully flick

the words towards a dustpan page.
Inevitably, some words are swept

under the page. I have to rescue those.
Sometimes the page is the floor.

Sometimes the pen cleans away
a chaos of words to leave a poem.

From Please Take Change (, 2018)

© 2018, Paul Brookes

Poem as Competent Nineteenth Century Merchant Mariner

This poem is able
to Chock a Block,
make a mat
or splice a rope.

This poem is
a rope block heaved to its full extent.
Full up, no room for any more.
When the two blocks
of this poem’s tackle meet
it will prevent any more
purchase being gained
Keep cargo from a shift
in the dark hold

This poem is
a rope yarn mat used to fasten
upon outside of exposed parts
of standing rigging exposed
to friction of yards, bolt-ropes of sails,
or other ropes.

This poem splices rope
twists words wrapped
into sentences that strengthen
when tautened by meaning.

This poem is
carefully rigged
for cargo
into your imagination.

© 2019, 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

By Grace

A sensation invisible awakens in the soul
stirs the spirit into restlessness , cold
warmth engulfs the soul, it is love being

desire tender like a rosebud, soft like
the kiss of a butterfly, caressing deep inner
recesses, yearning to emerge, take shape and
create a revelation.

O heart show me the way.
I will, just touch me when you transform
in petals soft , layered in magical encasements
to emanate , manifest, a colorful coronet.

O Intellect add thy wisdom complete the process
Bless me with language to mold the thought
meaningful that aspires to be known , to reach the
realms of the printed universe!

The Pen Moves tracing patterns on paper
word by word line by line, this is it, a poem
it is by grace, a blessing, an act of The Divine.

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

A Brief Comparison First

poetry comes in all shapes and sizes
so does knitting in moods ‘ere one realizes
poetry instructs as well as delights
knitting covers the shivers, fevers and ‘frights’
poetry supports all living things
felines frogs to human beings
if not poetry its knitting mittens
no wonder the first poem was, “three little kittens”
for long paper or words may stare
hunt for rhymes or synonyms spare
blog page if you dare, only one ounce ?
watch out, needle, ready is poem, to bounce, er.. pounce…
poetry is beauty if you may think
write, whatever you see in a blink
rhyme or not, blank open or run-on
which is easy, to knit? or ‘ poetry’ with skill n wit’

© 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

Down a Dark Hall

I wander down a dark hall
Peeking in this room
Throwing wide the doors in another
This door is locked
That door I quickly shut
One door leads me down a corridor that takes me a few hours to get through and back to where I was before
Now, I have to walk quickly
The light from my phone
Illuminating the way
I find a door and pull it
But it’s stuck
I jiggle it
I lean into it
I hip check it
I take a running start and slam into it
I slide down and sit
My back against it
It opens
And there sits my Muse
She says, “Hello, Poet!”

© 2019, Irma Do

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


We shuttle, like spiders,
between the fractured, anguished days
and the leap of the heart
in a transcendental moment,
weaving our threads in the sway
of wind and rain, patient
for the time when the light
will play on the captured dew
and the passer-by will pause
as we wait behind the curling leaf.

© 2019, Frank McMahon

.. my writing ..

have spent three days

handwriting, neatly. it gets

on my nerves that it is so

tidy, repetetive, that i never

did achieve the badge at school

for such a skill.

words a bother too,

always gentle, no grit

really, no filth, or dastardly


i spent three days writing,

one eye closed, storm building.

you never know what goes on

behind the scenes.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:

The Love of My Life

She watches the idiot boy tinkering.
Muttering, mumbling, worrying at the cud,
stuttering through the fog, clutching at limp scraps,
floundering in discarded redundancies.

She recalls that piece of paper on which he
scrawled “Words are the pegs on which experience
is hung out to dry.” Inconsistent or what?
The image bristles with frustration, contempt.

Is he completely disenchanted by words?
Yet it was words neatly condemning themselves
satisfied him so deeply as he wrote them.
He loves paradox, adores ambivalence.

They’re like two long wedded lovers, him and words.
A profound affection for one another,
but also resenting the chains of habit
and codependence that tie them together.

She is happy to be his occult bedmate;
mistress also of that realm where sounds are born,
she knows how to set them coursing through his veins:
a great deluge; a mighty niagara.

Essence of being and experiencing
thunders through the flume, sparks flecks of vocal spume.
Words once again stand agape, untongued, dumbstruck.
For this is the mistress of his heart, true

love of his life.


The relationships between the poet, his wife (words) and his mistress (the Muse – gateway to the Essence).

© 2019, Ben Naga

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

Pandora’s More Fortunate Daughter

All the usuals
All the emotions
The real me
Kept boxed up
Until one day

What to do?
Collection of boxes
Containing nothing but
Sparkly dust
Poured a bit into my palm
A sonnet appeared
Oh, sure, not Shakespeare-worthy
But each day it grew
Until there were twenty-two
One for each symbol
Of the Major Arcana
Then there were twelve
Terza Rima
For each Zodiac sign

And each box
Had its own lines
Until there was a
Rima Royale of birds
And a tiny box of Haiku
Slightly larger box of Tanka

But in a special box
Of the loveliest cloisonne
Shone silver Moon dust
Mixed with golden Sunlight
And Stars of blue and every hue
They whirled above me
Then gently drizzled down
Covering my head, lips, shoulders

And as I grew older
I became bolder
Free at last
Poetry that had no use for rhyme
Gutter talk
A touch of erotica
Words made up
Words spilling from a box
Filling ten books
Of words hidden inside
For decades
The real me

Then one day
Those magical boxes
Were empty
I’d open the lids
In the three a.m. shadows
Whispering, “Where’d you go?”

So, I bought more boxes
My collection growing
And one cloudy morning
Something sang out
From a new box
And there
As I hastily opened the lock
Was a different dust
Sparkling? Not quite
Like electricity
And poetry melded
With musical chords
And songs were born
Euterpe with her magic flute
Pushed open the lids
Danced with her sister

And I wrote
And strummed
And sang
And hummed

But I see
The magical dust
In my box collection
Is once again disappearing
And so I say
Today is the day
I shop for a new box
And begin an unknown

© 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.

Blank Page

Virgin white page, finger poised,
words falter,
ink dries.

Great plops of rain, purple-blue splatters on
colourless glass,
forms patterns.

My mind engages the diary of the soul
silver memories,
the rhythm opens.

Begin the beginning.

© 2019, Leela Soma

Leela site is:

Ode to a Poem

Raanana, July 17, 2015

The first time I saw her,
Her flowered dress hanging loosely
From her slender body,
Her boyish haircut belying her doll-like face,
Her dactyl fingers holding
The frail unfolded page she recited from
Trembling but heroic in her hexameter,
Lips touching the microphone in a whisper,
I knew she was a poem
And not a real person like me.
I saw her once again in a city park
With her small daughter
Who is also a poem,
A haiku full of frogs and butterflies,
Ponds with bridges and lanterns,
And crayon buddhas
Dancing in her dreams of childhood,
Tucked in by her mother’s watchful love
But not a real person like my child.
My mother was a poem
A southern antebellum belle,
Sitting on the floor,
Her generous skirts flowing out from her,
Her freeform youth and beckoning beauty
To all who admired her poetry,
The only language she could speak and sigh,
She knew to be a poem you had to die,
Not a real person like me.
Me, I don’t rhyme, I scarcely scan,
My iambs died from anapestilence,
I go to work and come back home,
I watch the news and worry some,
My wife and I go to movies when there’s a good one,
I walk my dog and deal with encroaching silence,
And this man in mirrored parody
Becomes increasingly estranged to me,
But it’s a life I’d feign give up.
Still and yet at times I wish
I were a poem too.

(c) 2015, Mike Stone

On Poetry

Raanana, July 3, 2015

It’s been said by poets who should know
That it’s a sin to write a poem about a po-
Em, probably because it’s hard
To find a word that rhymes with poem
But, if I could, that sure would show ’em.
All of my life I’ve been thinking of poems,
From day break to night fall, from five until three,
Why can’t they just once be thinking of me?
I may not be in possession of beauty but
I can rhyme truly in dactyl tetrameter,
Though most of my rhythm is sprung into free verse,
That’s no excuse, n’est-ce pas, for not thinking
Of me.

© 2015, Mike Stone

“A Poem Unwritten”

Raanana, March 9, 2012

No one has ever written a poem about a poem unwritten
Of the many virtues of such a poem
The perfect meter of noambic nometer
The clarity and minimalism leave
Even haiku silent with envy.
The language of silence is universal
Requiring no translation.
It will be unread by billions!
It’s amazing that no one has thought of it,
No one and I.

© 2019, Mike Stone

Want Ad

Raanana, June 5, 2009

Wanted muse to pose for poet
Work challenging but not too strenuous
(Just need to exist)
References desirable previous poets
Preferably Romantic though
Classic also accepted
Exquisite beauty and grace not required
Please reply in fourteen lines or less

© 2009, Mike Stone

Like Ghosts

Raanana, August 25, 2006

Poems are like ghosts,
Not everyone can see them,
Floating behind the rocks and distant pines.
But when you finally do see one
Your eyes open wide
In wonder full of surprise
Like someone I knew once
Who is herself a ghost now.

They are so powerless,
They can’t even open a door by themselves
But must wait for someone real to walk through.

Poems can’t be forced,
They’re like a talking horse
That only speaks when
Others are not about.

Poems can’t be heard by everyone.
They are much like silence
And there’s no knob to turn the volume up
There’s just

Poems have a sense in which they’re right
That can’t be understood by everyone
Within the bounds of normalcy
Like dreams and madness.

Yet I believe in them
Having heard one once myself,
But never more.

© 2006, Mike Stone

No Words

Raanana, June 25, 2005

Can a white man dream
a black man’s dreams?
Can a man think
a woman’s thoughts?

If I use words to tell you how I feel,
You won’t understand me,
Nor I you.
What use are words?

They’re only good for lies and prayers
and stirring winds of war,
not for poems
or for poets sick of them.

Find another occupation:

© 2005,  Mike Stone

I Ink Therefore Iamb

Raanana, December 22, 2004

A few things I’ve learned about poetry:
Never write a poem about poetry,
And the more emotion you put into a poem
The less you get out of it,
And rhyme is less important than reason,
And a poem not read is as sad
As a poem not written.

© 2004, Mike Stone

Little Jack Horner

Raanana, March 3, 2003

Little Jack Horner
Sat in a corner
Eating his humble pie;
He plunged in a dagger
Pulled out his heart
And said what a good poet am I.

© 2003, Mike Stone

Mike’s website is HERE.

Call of the Whippoorwill is Mike Stone’s fourth book of poetry, 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.


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, 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 for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

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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

… 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.


and on that day of sun
the leaves of the chestnut
like arms are shielding
the gleeds
and I see through the dream
like through some mirrors
the garden with some boats
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


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


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.


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.


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

.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
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.
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

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


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, 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 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

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

Ornamental cabbage with a splat of paint from outside – believe it or not – Old Navy.

“Put your mouthful of words away
and come with me to watch
the lilies open in such a field,
growing there like yachts,
slowly steering their petals
without nurses or clocks.”
Anne Sexton, The Complete Poems

These are all well-considered, well-formulated responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, Mrs. Goldberg, June 12.  From Gary’s homage to Fred Astaire through Sonja’s .gargage., this is a stimulating read.

Thanks to Gary W. Bowers, Paul Brooks, Anjum Wasim Dar, Irma Do, Jen Goldie, Shiela Jacob, and Sonja Benskin Mesher for sharing their work and ideas with us today.

Enjoy! this collection and do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are encouraged to participate.


what ho daddy longlegs
buzzing down to rio
kinesthetic mastermind
champagne-frothing brio

doodling with a hatrack
swinging rita hayworth
tyranting ungingerly
twenty-hour-day’s worth

softshoe tap and ballroom
jazzy or balletic
conman charmer fashion plate
sculpting an aesthetic

© 2019, Gary W. Bowers (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.

My Mam Is

nothing if, not thorough.
Victorian reminder on a wall
full of telling aphorisms:

What will the neighbours say?
Our home shows us how
we treat ourselves.
Buff away grey clouds,

bring out the blue, make every
wood bell, crocus, daffodil
open their flowers today,
place a spruced up nest

for every chaffinch, green
and goldfinch, blackbird, dove.
Open all windows to “freshen”.
Clean outside and in,

see yourself without smears.
Tidy the memory home.
If you can see a job needs doing,
then do it. Why leave till tomorrow,

something that needs doing today?
Empty every drawer,
cupboard, wardrobe, surface,
scrub them clean, let spiders scurry off.

Launder, dry on the line winter’s
sombre deep cottons and woollens,
neatly fold away, in freshly
lavendered drawers.

It shows you respect yourself.
Rinse every item
of crockery, cutlery,
some unused for years.

Return them to scoured drawers.
Burnish copper ornaments,
delicately brush capodimonte

figures, feather dust top of doors,
skirting boards, deweb high corners,
Shine gas fire with Brasso. Polish
tables and furniture with Rosewood

or Lavender Pledge, all furniture pushed
into centre of rooms, to vacuum.
A person is what they do,
not what they say they will do.

Decant bookshelves,
every book cover cleaned.
Roll up, sling over washing line,
slap and beat dust out of all

rugs and doormats. Strip beds,
turn mattresses, air sheets.
It’s a warm spring day.
A clean home is a clean soul.

Bleach bath, sinks.
Glister chrome taps. Blue toilet.
Fragrance bathroom with Lemon.
Defrost fridge, full milk

bottles in a sink of cold water.
Unload and brush out garage,
vacuum Datsun Estate outside and in.
Weed patio and border, cut

straggly grass for first time this year.
Black bag food beyond sell by dates,
or out of fashion.
Likewise, shine your shoes,

pick bits off clothes,
straighten your skirt, tie,
tighten your belt.
A smart person is a smart mind

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Borrowed Eyes

” Please can I borrow your eyes?”
Asks the blind nightingale
of the excellent eyed blindworm
” I’ve been invited to faerie wedding,
and don’t want to look foolish.”

After the nightingale sees bright
colours, red, green and gold
of the faerie occasion, he tells
blindworm, “I cannot return
these worlds of light, but will
sing to you, my friend, night and day.”

© 2019, Paul Brookes

A New Feather

The writer searches for the perfect quill
to make him an author of genius,
his work lauded,
taught in schools
only possession
of this object
will make
the work great.

The carpenter wants a fine pillow
Stuffed with the softest
Gentlest down
To complete
His fabulous carved bed
Made of the rarest wood.

The comedian wants the funniest
feather to tickle his audience
into laughter
that will last
long after
he dies.

The cat wants the meat under
The feather, warm
And tender,
In its jaws.

The dog wants his master
To have the bird
He retrieves,
For his master to be happy
And give him treats,
Maybe even a cooked morsel,
Once the bird is plucked
And cooked.

The bird waits for his new feathers
After his moult
To flatter a female,
Make him handsome,
Nudge her with his display
So she will bear
His children.

© 2019, Paul Brookes

Paul’s website is HERE.

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

What She Never Really Wanted

She never really wanted to be
the best, but somehow stood out
among the rest,

In school in class,eagerly took
part in collecting notebooks,
polishing desks with wax and rags,
laughing joking,arms never tiring,
inking the large board black, no
whiteboards then,

meant hard work with joy as the
reward, being close to the teacher
noting the piano chord, humming
volleyball service hits swelled her
wrists,she still wears the support
band and smiles as memories flood
in, the final win and the final fall
was the most memorable of all-

A role on the stage in Shakespeare’s
plays, not a Mid Summer Night’s Dream
but real school life she took as high order
to en wrap and enfold learning time gold
capture every moment each story told-
ten years flashed full of wisdom and fun
peaceful it was all, no guard bullet or gun

© 2019, Anjum Wasim Dar

Life with a Perfectionist

Every night she would hear the blame
The kitchen floor is dirty it means one
who works here is the same,
better keep it clean,wash it every night
wipe it dry then you may think of rest or sleep’

soon such instructions felt like insults-
was she dirty lazy careless incapable one
or a free forsaken donated handed over,given
for good, home and house worker, cleaning woman-
why life’s meaning sank so low,was it just common?

soon these thoughts would slip from the mind
as a new day dawned, acceptance quickly sank in
‘ he has a mania for cleanliness’ ‘ hunger for food
crazy love for movies’ values of life die in a dust bin’
line between love care, and sharing is so thin’

more is revealed as cushions lineup on the sofa
spoons forks knives must be separate in the holder
no dust on any table chair desk shelf or cupboard
car, shoes polished, clothes ironed, crease less
bed covers, slippers joined,glasses placed with pens

wrist watch, now mobile phone,must be untouched
three dishes at meals three kinds of fruit at least
tea pink and salty is must, puffs from the Only Old
bakery in the old inner city narrow street shop
dinner time seven thirty, no tea at that hour allowed

for all, to be dressed spic and span hair cut and set
no extra talk or questions,driving speed at will by choice
other person to give way, no traffic police should this way
even look, all ways are my ways’,books for show, display
no row in disarray, set all with pain or be ready never to

see your book again- and so perfection came in way
of ‘good enough’ and peace’ -how to be artistic, who
could be original, perfection may be excellence ‘ but
would you rather have something, ‘okay’ than nothing’
that is all perfect’

© 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

Lola’s Magic – A Gazel

When Lola arrives, it’s hard to deny there’s magic
The children happily sigh, “It’s magic!”
My tween can whisper secrets in her ear
Lola – my spy who can pry – hush magic!
My sweet girl’s dollies all need a cuddle
Lola’s arms wide like the sky – hug magic
Train engineer boy with curious spark
Lola answers all the why’s – smart magic
The toddler is whining, “No” is his word
Lola’s sweet talks – he complies – bribe magic!
Then quiet, they gather around her chair
Lola gives sweets on the sly – bad magic!
Homemade dinner, there’s so much to clean up
Lola’s sink is spotless, dry – clean magic
I’m exhausted, drained, this job is so hard
Lola’s shoulder, allows me to cry – mom magic

FYI – Lola means Grandmother is Filipino/Tagalog

© 2019, Irma Do


Distances are much shorter now,
Time flies on wings aloof
Tall isn’t tall anymore
What happened to my youth?

Young means twenty minutes is forever,
A mile is around the world and back
Tall is Dad at five foot eight
How did I miss the attack?

Something came and stole my youth
Time and distance is the proof
Maybe when my time runs out
I’ll know just what it’s all about.

© 2019, Jen Goldie 


It must be fun, to own a goat,
To buy a boat, to stay afloat,
To see a tree, walk on its knees!
But Oh! My golly! Oh!
To see a tree, walk on its knees?

It must be great to stay up late,
To watch a monkey roller skate,
To see a book, get up and look?
But Oh! My golly! Oh!
To see a book, get up and look?

It would be nice to have a castle
To own a tall giraffe named Basil
To see a deer playing bongos!
But Oh! My golly! Oh!
To see a deer, playing bongos?

It must be nice to have a car
To make the distances less far,
It would be fun to know tomorrow
From a crystal ball you borrow,

It’s just the images we create
To give us patience
To sit and wait……….

© 2019, Jen Goldie


Now, here you go
she’d smile with a wink,
as she handed out
apples she’d cleaned
In the sink,
A comforting hand
A heart warming hug
and gramma would smile
and glint with a shrug
A scrape on the knee?
oh dear, let me see
with the warmth in her eyes
and the love in her touch
the scrape that you got
didn’t hurt very much.
Run along she would say
It’s a great day to play,
but don’t go too far!
There’s buns in the oven
and cookies in jars, then,
with a warm loving hug
and comforting smile,
she’d send you outside
to play for awhile.

© 2019, Jen Goldie

Jen’s sites are:

With the Woman

There’s a chiming hel-looo
as she opens the front door,
drops her travel bag
and encircles us
in her warmth.

Our luscious, dazzling daughter
with strawberry-kissed smile,
double-cream cheeks
and honey-bee eyes
to match her lustrous hair.

She kicks off scarlet pumps
and curls, latte-limbed,
on the sofa; sips black tea
and texts a message home,
relays love to our grandchildren.

I admire old and new tattoos:
butterflies, stars, swallows
and, where a sleeve might fit,
a crimson heart emblazoned
fod yn ddewr.

Do her ladies ask what it means?
“Yes,” she laughs, “very often.”
I hold her hands in mine.
They’re small but strong:
first cradle for a baby’s

blood-stained head
when she wears regulation blue,
echoes the motto
on her arm and urges
“Be brave. One last push.”

© 2019, Sheila Jacob

.balfour beattie.

power and beauty
stone and steel.
rise above
mud and wood.
swarmed by
worker ants.
world without end.

wyn is a poet.

a visionary.
monkeys and tigers
stalk welsh hills
satanic mills
of his imagination.

he is the blake
of the a470.

did he once see
angels on peckham rye

i expect he did, i expect.

we will not know
unless i ask him.

he will tell.

yet not when
his colleagues
are listening.

he may be shy.

balfour beatty.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher


we will not have blankets,

if there are none, take the old

rags, layer , stitch and stitch

by hand till fingers bleed.

work along the coast

with thread and diligence.

gather wools, layer carefully,

we shall have warmth this winter.

we will have quilts to share.

© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher


i do not wait for the alarm,

just the red bar on my gauge.

it is a quiet village, a name

i can’t pronounce. so i stopped

for fuel.

how nice, an attendant, probably

owner/mechanic came, took my

keys and did it all for me.

whilst chatting about the day, how

the nights draw in, and i felt cosy.

a softer voice than some, his clothes

hard working.

i asked for twenty quid’s worth

to see me home, and a chomp

at 25p.

i shall stop there next time.


© 2019, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


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

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

.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
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
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

© 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


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


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
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
but the pulsating Insight.,

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


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