dVerse Poetics: Chinese New Year

Today over at dVerse Poets Pub, I am doing the poetics prompt for today. Since we are starting the Chinese New Year, I thought it would be fun to not only have some information about that wonderful festival, but also to use fortune strips from Fortune Cookies. There are four fortunes – the idea is to pick a fortune and write a poem about it and to give as a quote, the fortune. So, below is the fortune strip I chose. Come visit us, find out about the Chinese New Year and read some good poems. And….Since today is Mardis Gras (Fat Tuesday), I have to say “Laissez bon temps rollez!

public domain photo

public domain photo

Your Shoes Will Make You Happy Today
“Your shoes will make you happy today” Chinese fortune cookie strip

My favorite shoes make me happy everyday.
Hot pink with sparkles and images
of koi and geisha
peeping from the bottom of my jeans
or the black dress slacks I wear to church
or in the summer when they take me down
to the creek or across the way to the meadow
or the daily walk in the woods.

Size 5… koi… geishas
hot pink and sparkles
or the second favorite pair which is turquoise…
sparkles, samurai, koi…

Both pair of shoes always make me smile.
They made a little girl happy in Little Tokyo store
today. She saw me and then my shoes and
began pointing – Annie May! Annie May!
Tiny little Cambodian girl nestled in her father’s arms.
Annie May! he tried to shush her
but no. She pointed at me and
then my shoes.
I smiled at her hugely.
Her father explained he was a big fan of
the Bleach Anime’ series and that I had
the white hair of the series Character.
And I had such magic shoes.
He put the little mite of a child down
and she came over and hunkered down
patting my shoes approvingly.

Seems fortunes do come true sometimes.
My shoes made me very happy today.
When he left, she was waving over his shoulder –
bye bye Annie May
bye bye shoes!

I waved and called after her:
*bratan pr dl anak!

*Khmer for “bless you”.


public domain image

public domain image


Quadrille #2 – Sleepy Afternoon

Today, the magic word at dVerse Quadrille prompt is: lull. Come join us and submit your own 44 word poem containing “lull”. This is a new feature prompt at the dVerse Poets Pub. Come join in and also see the lovely video Bjorn took of his wife skating. http://dversepoets.com/2016/02/08/11556/

a warm summer day
lazing in a hammock
stretched between two
trees – drowsy drone of bees
and scent of honeysuckle and clover
can lull even the busiest of minds
into fragrant repose.
A distant lawnmower says
Get Busy!
I gnore. I am lulled.

public domain book illustration

public domain book illustration

Open Link Night 165: Pine Barrens

This is for dVerse Open Link – poems of all forms and subjects can be linked today.  I am submitting a portion from a long cyle in progress:  Pine Barrens.  It is in the style of the imagists.  Eventually, there may be haiku or tanka as part of this cycle.  This is an area that has intrigued me since I first visited thirty years ago.  Come visit us for other poems or submit you own at: http://dversepoets.com/2016/02/04/openlinknight-165/
An alien land
Sugar sand
Scrub pines
Tall pines
Cedars –
Water – serene streams
Calm rivers
Blue hole – bright blue
Fathomless depths
Unfreezing in coldest winter
People disappear in its depths

A haunted land
Ghosts of long dead buildings
Long gone families
Crumbling brick skeletons
the pine barrens slowly
obliterate traces of civilization
unwelcome in this place
people disappear in its depths

Only the trees remain
Only the animals remain
Only the water remains
only the sky remains
only the silence remains

We are merely visitors there
Welcome as long as we leave quickly
and without a trace behind
People disappear in its depths

Pinelands Preservation Alliance photo

Pinelands Preservation Alliance photo



No Return

Today Ahbra is in charge of Poetics at dVerse. He wants us to write about returning – perhaps. I feel you have memories, good or bad but you can neither go back nor come back. Come join us for this interesting prompt and all the takes on “What would I be if I could come back” or going back to a time or place. I’m in a cynical mood today! http://dversepoets.com/2016/02/02/poetics-coming-back/   The poetic form is the Bussokuseki. –

public domain of old southern home

public domain of old southern home

No Return
streets are smaller and
trees are fewer – someone else
lives in the homeplace –
all is faded into mists –
the past has passed no return –
look forward angel to now –

Spring Bridge

Today is Haibun Monday at dVerse Poets Pub. Gabriella has given us four of her photos. We are to choose one and write a haibun to it. Please come and visit us! Four photos + great poets = endless possibilities! http://dversepoets.com/2016/02/01/haibun-monday-6/

Spring Bridge
After two years, we both had time to take a trip together.  Without any debate, we decided on England and then to your home of Hakone in Japan.  I had places to share with you in England, you had places to share there as well including Oxford Town and University.  I wanted to explore their school of Anthropology and you wanted to show me where you had boarded and studied as a medical student.

April in England is beautiful but April in England shared by two lovers is magic.  We drove from Heathrow – you a careful and precise driver, me giving you a hard time about being a Crazy Asian Driver.  You laughed and when it was safe, would lean over to give me a kiss or make the car swerve in its lane while you sang alternating between “Call Me” and “I May Be Crazy”.  No surprise, it began to rain.  We timed our singing to the windshield wipers and I played the console like bongo drums.  By the time we rolled into Oxford, we were hoarse and sedate.  After checking into our hotel, we ate dinner in the hotel restaurant and went upstairs to bed.  We sang again and did a small dance in the shower until soap got into my eyes….”When your heart’s on fire, you must realize, soap gets in your eyes…” you crooned as you washed my eyes clear of the soap.

The next day after breakfast we went exploring.  We rented bicycles and rode all around the university.  You pointing the various buildings to me, and reverently, we went into the Bodlean Library.  I wanted to clap with delight but respected the ancient silence.  From there we went to the Cairns Library where you came across a former professor who was delighted to see you again.  He took us to lunch and the two of you talked while I respectfully listened.  I loved the glow in your eyes and the respect the professor had for you.  A Ploughman’s Lunch with a malty ale – and heaven help us, a wonderful dessert with a horrible name – Spotted Dick.

A sudden April torrent began making rivers of the gutters; people continuing on their business under big black brollies.  We went back inside to drink coffee and talk and as quickly as it began, the rain ended.  We walked our bikes back to the hotel and crossing over a stone bridge, the usually sedate stream now raucously bubbling and running under the bridge to who-knows-where.  We stood in the middle of the bridge looking down at the water.  You leaned across the bikes to tip my face up to yours.  “Make a wish.  If you make it in Japanese, it will come true.”  I had to think a bit. My mind swirled like the water beneath us until finally I said, “Itsumademo issho ni itai.”  The silence between us deepened – sound of the water, birds chirping, bells from the University, distant traffic.  You took my face in hands and put your forehead on top of my head.  “itsumademo issho ni itai.”  you repeated.

But I must have said it wrong. Or maybe the rain washed away the wish.   For years now, we have been apart – you back in Japan, me back in my deep South.  “I want to be with you forever.”  Words folded like an origami boat, rocking on the water of a stream until it capsizes and sinks.

spring rain in torrents
beating down new spring grass
and drowning white blooms.


Photo credit: Gabriella

Photo credit: Gabriella


Another entry for the Imagist Poetry prompt over at dVerse. http://dversepoets.com/2016/01/28/image-ine-dverse-meeting-the-bar/ Even if you say you don’t care for poetry, I think you will like these linked poems.  No photo for this.  The poem is the image.

Lazy creek lined on both sides
by thick cedars – water the ancient color
of burnt sienna dyed by cedar tannins.
The marshland is silent.
The couple in the slowly floating canoe is silent.
A heron standing one legged in the creek
watches them pass.
He dips his beak in the water
before lifting himself to the sky.

White Roses

Today at dVerse Poets Pub, Victoria is handling the prompt to Meet the Bar.  We are to write a poem in the style of the Imagists – namely, William Carlos Williams.  A wonderful poetic style where less is truly more.  For more about Williams and the Imagist movement, here is a link:  http://www.poemhunter.com/william-carlos-williams/  My favorite poem by him is the wonderful and whimsical Plum.  Read it and find out why it has been on my refrigerator door for years.   Visit us at dVerse for different takes on Imagist poems in this style.  Below is mine.  I hope I did this amazing poet justice and met the bar.  http://dversepoets.com/2016/01/28/image-ine-dverse-meeting-the-bar/

White Roses
The bouquet of white roses from my husband
has begun to fade,
petals dropping on the table.
The first snow begins.

White Roses in a Vase - Henri Fantin-Latour

White Roses in a Vase – Henri Fantin-Latour

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