“QUIETUS” … and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“If life is not a celebration, why remember it ? If life — mine or that of my fellow man — is not an offering to the other, what are we doing on this earth?”  Open HeartElie Wiesel 

What a treasure of a collection, these serious thoughts this week in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, Riding the Ebb-tides of Eternity, September 5. Touching. Stunning. Thoughtful.

Thanks and a warm welcome to Jim Wardell, new to The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt.  Thanks to Gary W. Bowers, bogpan (Bozhidar Pangelov), Tamam Tracy Moncur, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Carol Mikoda and Susan St. Pierre. Special thanks to Susan and Bozhidar for sharing illustrations.

Read. Enjoy. Be inspired. And do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are encouraged to participate: beginning, emerging, or pro poets.


On this dew soaked morning
gentle sunlight streams between
the dampened boughs of an awakened day.

I think of you and of me
and of the many misted mornings
we laughed and whispered
until we had to part for a time.

Afternoon and evening sped by
but morning always lingered.

We moved at the pace of sleep
slow and without effort
to prepare the day for ourselves
while hustle and bustle and rush and whim
scurried and fretted about us.

Hidden smiles and secret plots contrived in haste
deals brokered in the light of the rising sun
conspiracies bound in blood and love
carried us through the day apart
the time of our unknowing.

Always when evening came
separated paths joined once more
promises of morning were fulfilled
in the drifting dusk.

As this morning of our lives lingers
I sit share laugh cry
etch upon my heart this memory
of hidden smiles and secret plots.

We have not changed
You and I remain bound in blood and love
we have not changed.

Morning ends as it always does
you on your path and I on mine
frightened to be alone.

We now step into the time of our unknowing
confident that when evening falls
the other will await.

© James Wardell (A Day of Wind and Moon)

James Wardell

JAMES WARDELL, a native of Kentucky, is a musician and educator who has made his home in the mountains of southwest Virginia. He plays, writes, teaches and learns at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise. Some days he works.

Previous publications include Jimson Weed Journal, Tipton Poetry Review, Goliath, Snakeskin Magazine, Bitterzoet Magazine and Press, and Voices Literary Journal.


teapots and tempests
some crafted some not
tosspots and destinies
often are wrought
if you behold
you’re beholden eh wot
away rules
and then blossom some more
doorways to wayfaring ferret
chandelier faceting
billboardish asseting
heat-rubbled smoke
the rising signal
A hell it made
not merely of manglecrush forms
but of the simmering magma
of hatred

the bombs we make we
lob into crowds
and they unmake
and we know it is wrong
but it is again a signal
that we are lost

but some of us love
some see seedlings
and keep them for spring

and some beyond us
save all endeavor

a tempest is not endeavor
a teapot is endeavor
thought is endeavor
some thought is divine

and tsftpot
stands for
the society
for the preservation
of thought

oral tradition
was its larva
movable type its nymph
and eons hence
its adult form
will be the very texture
of reality

stars do not die
they become something else
as will you
as will i

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

Supernatural Senses

How do I look at my own demise?
It’s not a surprise because the one thing we all know
Is that one day we too shall die
We will pass from this plane into eternity.
At 73 many people close to me have made
This transition in creation to another place in space.
Twice in my dreams two of my loved ones have appeared
at different times in my life
To free me from fear and doubt
First my grandmother and then years later my son
Each came during a time of hurt
Each came during a time of spiritual pain
Each came during a time of emotional distress
My grandmother and my son
They made that journey from the world beyond
to give me a supernatural hug
A magical hug
A mystical hug
A hug that enveloped me in God’s love
A hug of reassurance strengthening my mind
And my endurance to always walk in faith
Until my ultimate release into peace comes.

© 2018, Tamam Tracy Moncur (The Road of Impossibilities)



along the rivers Maritsa floats the cut head
of Orpheus
– „no,“ he had told the Maenad,
but they did not understand
in this land only in this land
„yes“ is for a return
the legend tells you that in the autumn you can hear
the tender sounds of the Lira, for everything is back –

only on the sounds and on the drops of blood
you can find me

© 2018, bogpan (a.k.a. Bozhidar Pangelov ) (bogpan); illustration,  “The Death of Orpheus (1494) by Durer,” public domain


To be remembered…
Leave footprints in the
Fresh sand of youthful wonder,
And seek wisdom found in
Questions you can’t answer .
Make memories on the
Pristine palette of a baby,
And explore forever with an
Eye on being present.
Eternity belongs to those
<Who stand out in a child’s life>
Etched in time and tradition,
You’ll be remembered.

© 2018, photo and poem, Susan St. Pierre (Silly Frog Susan)

‘smiley smiley’
monkeys smile

as can we, yet i guess
a duck can’t smile, ian.

can snails smile, i know
i smile a lot, learned it
at dance class, whatever
happens, keep it up.

continues now, at work,
they say it cheers you up,
makes your cheeks hurt,

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.my life.

sundays is three things.today may be one.

sometimes it comes easy,sometimes it


it is warm today, just look at all there is


as opposed to elsewhere.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Four Disagreements

The first postcard from hell said, “Don’t you get sick of being honest all the time? Everyone is always checking and making sure. Why not give them something to surprise them?” So I allowed jewels to fall from my mouth along with my impeccable word and flowers and once in a while bolts and washers with no nuts. Everyone was continually surprised.

The second postcard from hell told me I could relax, slough off my usual care and meaningful intention. “It’s so hard when you’re always trying to do your best, isn’t it? You deserve a break!” So I collected up a million of my favorite human beings and tooks us all to a resort where we relaxed in hammocks and beach chairs. All of our beverages included blossoms and little umbrellas. We napped.

The third postcard from hell was direct but a bit strained: “Some of these people? The ones with you at the resort? They look funny or smell funny or eat weird foods or speak funny languages! They don’t match you. Who knows who is lurking in there?” So I walked among those million people, talking, laughing, singing with them, sharing meals, until we all found something in common, like the color of our socks.

The million human beings had to go back to schools, jobs, homes, so I read the fourth postcard from hell all alone sitting in a broken beach chair. “Ha! They left you! Loser! They don’t like you! Go eat worms!” So I invented a machine to rearrange the grains of sand on the beach to send messages to the stars. The message I sent was:

© 2018, Carol Mikoda (At the Yellow Table / We Are Stardust: Change Is What It’s All 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.


“Transformation” … and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.” Galileo Galilei, Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina

A thought provoking response – and rather wide-ranging in terms of focus and perspective – to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, Our Evolving, August 15.  Enjoy! this collection courtesy of newcomer (Brava! and Welcome!) Susan St.Pierre and of Gary W. Bowers, Paul Brookes, Deb y Felio (Debbie Felio), Irma, Frank McMahan, Sonja Benskin Mesher, and Carol Mikoda

I hope you’ll visit and get to know these poets. It’s important for us to support and encourage one another in our art and in our solidarity around our concerns for the social and ethical issues we care about.  I’ve linked in blogs for your convenience. If the poet doesn’t have a blog, it’s likely you can catch up with her/him on Facebook.

Read on and be with us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.

Knots of Time

Evolution insists upon changes
Physically rearranges
All but our memories,
Random threads of finite days
Weave one single maze
A sui generis emerges,


© 2018, Susan St.Pierre (Silly Frog Susan)

Susan St.Pierre

“I’m a ‘nearly’ retired family day care provider. I have invited (often 6) children into my home 5 days a week for approximately 10 hours a day since 1975. It’s been the most enlightening, humbling, and messy experience!

“Meanwhile, my husband and I raised two children and have gained two granddaughters. I have two blogs, which I’ve neglected for a few years, but this Fall will open up my day for much more “me” time. Hopefully, that will include writing time. Besides finding the company of kids and pets inspiring, I also enjoy Nature, painting, drawing and reading. I don’t know how well I’ll do in moments of quiet, though. My best work has always been accomplished among clutter and chaos!”

Evolving Door

In goes a lungfish
And out comes an outcome.
Pop go the measles
And wipe out a tribe.

Lenny heard Zug Nicht
And wandered about some.
Thundering Diesels
Suggest we imbibe.

In goes a notion
And out comes an essay.
Guidelines and labels
Give sojourning ease.

Spit in the ocean
And spite minks and sables.
Laissez-faire less, eh.
And conquer displease.

Tuppence for pleasantries;
Cheese-whizzed parcheesi
Challenges wellsprung
Make Autumn to mold.

If you’re uneasy,
Dear Reader, nor well hung,
Take ye some evolvement
Out doorways to freedom
And bed and break strictures
To push through the membrane;
Grow pairs not of testes
But peregrine wings.

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


evercrash of waves put me
on the untouched shore

I crawl because i don’t know
how to walk this grain.
Now I would say tumbled waves

are fletched like an arrow constantly
turned to ensure its flight straight
and unencumbered by splinters.

Later I staunch blood, remember
the now of the sun then, too bright,
too warm in this comfort blanket.

Now I would say I was slippery
as bladderwrack or between thighs
of a woman heated by want,

and hungry but not for food.
I leave it to the ocean
behind me that flickers

with sounds some of which
i understand but the waters
less and less drag me back,

push me to drygrain land.
I must find leafshelter
in the arms of mothered soil,

in the limbs of the trees,
beneath the coddling leaves,
a fallen tree stump helps

me stand. I break a branch
test it does not break with my weight.
I stand free of the stump. Upright.

Now I would say my skin
lost its sheen, became sticky
as the green blood of plants
that trap food with their leaves.

from The Spermbot Blues (OpPRESS, 2017)

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


upright, you can see further,
and in the sand prints
of your own feet, and others,
smaller, differently shaped,

Now you would say these are scratches
on pages, distinct signs in a forest,
or plain, each holds itself a tell, a map,
of sense and season and root.

smooth your hand over gnarled
stick of then that supports your weight
when you stride forward to follow
the beckoning of others tracks,

inhale the freshness from the waves,
that tastes salty to your tongue,
the sweetness from the inland trees,
and smaller flimsy coloured leaves,

and a bitterness, a stink gets stronger,
as you trace the tracks other
than your own go inland, broken
leaves. How many feet does it have?

Now accused of techno anomie
because you refuse others access to your senses,
your avatar still in the forest, on the plain,
walks without aid beside the everwaves .

from The Spermbot Blues (OpPRESS, 2017)

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

Evidence Against Evolution

women dragged by the hair into the dank rock caverns of the cavemen

women uncounted in records of attendance when miracles performed

women operated on to remove bits of brain believed
to create trouble for men

women unacceptable as witnesses in man’s court

women condemned to death by superstitious men

But now
with more education, enlightenment, progress

women drugged, raped, silenced
– without ever being victims of hate crimes

women questioned and doubted in courts and media
– dismissed by sound bite hash tags and tweets

women humiliated for combining emotional expression
and intelligent thought

– the 1% used as proof glass ceiling is gone, when it is
only windexed

women condemned to death by superstitious men
– for shedding their own blood rather than another’s


Just finer tuned delusion.

© 2018 deb y felio

I Can Do It Myself

said the 2 year old to his mommy
and tripped on the untied shoelaces
falling to the ground and waited
for his mommy to pick him up,
dust him off, and set him right
so he could once again insist,
“I can do it myself!”

© 2018, Deb y Felio

Opposable Thumbs

It sets us apart from other animals

The ability to grasp objects and concepts

To finely manipulate tools and other people

With this simple communication

We can catch a ride or point the way back

We can say Winner or Loser

With a twist of the wrist

For complexity

We now use them like beaks

Pecking letters that make or break relationships

The more it gets used

The faster it gets

Bypassing the higher brain

Thinking only of the print it wants to leave behind

Mayhap, flattened against the button

Signaling the start of the end

Of evolution.


© 2018, Irma (I Do Run, And I do a few other things too …)


A yacht sails in summer, northwards to the Pole.
A slush of gelatinous grey greets its bow
as it makes its ambivalent journey.
On Admiralty charts a woman replaces islands,
sketches new sandbars, reefs marked with buoys,
while their people are moving into legend.

Lines of footprints cover deserts; jackals, bones,
eyeballs. Driven from shelter to shelter, children
ailing and confused, half-filled ditches,
refuse tips: where will the unborn live as
their families take flight?

A gig
was once a party, an impromptu concert
in a corner pub, a mingle of music, sweat
and beers.A world of miasma now,
of beck and call for paupers’ pay, waiting
to be plucked like a lobster from a tank.

Yes, yes, the richest should have more,
more tax-breaks crammed into their maw
until they vomit gold, excrete jewels and mansions,
super yachts and private jets, smearing
earth and airwaves
with their self-obsessed banalities.
In shadowed lobbies, their hired hands work
on dispossession, the cutting of common bonds,
democracy just one more acquisition.

Swallowing the future
Is the corporate plan.

We know enough
To stop and turn and heal
Our poisoned planet.
Are we enough
To gather now together?

© 2018, Frank McMahon


The moon scatters the light it has stolen
out of vanity, cycling round us in
its futile effulgence. Earthworms harvest
the autumn’s leaves, enriching the crust, thin
below the dwindling branches where we sit
and watch the axes hew the trunk and slash.

© 2018, Frank McMahon

.head above water, a swimmers 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

.the query.

.winding wool is mindless

she said, well maybe madam,

yet look at the lovely machine,

all red and cream plastic, that

winds in a way we cannot do

by hand.

look at my work which evolves

while working this and thinking.

i folded her goods tidily, packed in a

nice paper bag, said nothing

except mere politeness and niceties.

then got on with winding.


© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

. day six .

your eyes last night were wide, your body

smaller without the sleep, all that

worry and distress.

it will not end , just change and evolve.

sometimes it takes years, and then it is

never the same.

any more.

maybe you must go back to sleep

a while.

i will keep reading, tell you all

when you wake


© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

There’s much to enjoy in Sonja’s art and you can view much of it on her sites and she shares are generous amount on her Facebook Page. So multitalented.


Systems call out for evolution,
for complexity, development, transformation,
a whole new suit
of cells, mutation of molecules
and microbes replacing themselves
at rapid rates, a constant reminder
that so much of myself
is not myself, but a cocktail party
of bacteria and viruses, which
sounds bad, very noisy gut,
but so efficient; they communicate,
even between different sorts.
Their differences do not
paralyze them. This human
language I am so proud of,
is clunky next to what happens,
the communication of organisms
and systems, inside me.
So many misunderstandings out here
among humans, while inside us,
networks are constantly lit up,
exchanging essential info, proteins
and amino acids, adjusting
and altering, individual evolutions,
on a daily basis, sometimes hourly.
I should listen more, learn something.
But mostly that’s just not how I roll.

© 2018, Carol Mikoda (At the Yellow Table, We are stardust: Change is What It’s All About)






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