Haibun: Erasmus

A longish poem for me and ended with an American Sentence, a departure from the usual ending for a haibun.

“And the passing comet, we wish-would cleanse our earth.” ― Danikelii

C2020 or, the Comet Erasmus, was last seen 2000 years ago. I stood outside for three nights in a row, watching the smudge of it in the early pre-dawn. Since my husband died almost a year ago, I have slept badly, I usually go to sleep around 7:a.m. and awaken about 9:00 a.m. I frequently go outside all times of the year to watch the stars. I read about the comet Erasmus and realized, it was coming to make its presence known, just for me.

I stood outside and watched with my binoculars. I used Venus as the marker to sight my way to this elusive comet. Two thousand years ago! Who knows if the earth will be here when it makes its next pass. The pearly grey sky with the slight tinge of pink at the horizon, barely showing between the trees. An owl hoolted before going to sleep. I was humbled by the comet. I felt so small, so pitiful in my humaness. But we all of us wear comet dust in our hair. We are all of us made of these trailing miracles.

I remember thinking when I was 10 and watching the stars from the roof of our house, gazing at the stars and occasional comet. A comet is just like a cat. They both have tails and do as they wish. –

Traveling light without a sound; we are stardust.

In Times Like This

For Merril’s quadrille on dVerse Poets Pub and for my in-person Creator’s Studio


In Times Like This

“These roads are haunted now.” Salem’s Lot, Stephen King


Thin yellow sun blankets the roads.

I travel these roads without you now.

A frisson of loneliness runs down my spine

I am temporarily blinded by tears.

I swerve to avoid a squirrel zipping across the road,

granting it emporrary life.

A hawk searches above,


December 22, 2019

For De’s quadrille prompt at dVerse Poets Pub. Today the prompt word is sky.

December 22, 2019
“My witness is the empty sky.” Jack Kerouac

I watched the sun slowly setting
in your beautiful sky blue eyes,
holding you close feeling your
breath go lighter until…
it stopped.
I peered into your eyes –
the sky was empty.
outside it was sleeting.
I closed those beautifu sky blue eyes

The Wind is Eavesdropping

for Kim’s prompt at dVerse Poets Pub https://dversepoets.com/2020/09/07/quadrille-111-whats-that-rustling-in-the-eaves/.  We are to write a quadrille today – a poem of exactly 44 words, excluding the title and using the word given for the day – eavesdropping.  It jas been a long while since I have visited my old friends at dVerse as I have been grieving the death of my husband.  I have been writiing but not positing.  Today, this word was a sign – I have been working on a short poem with the word in it.  Hello fellow poets!  It is good to visit again.

The Wind is Eavesdropping
“The morning had dawned clear and cold, with a crispness that hinted at the end of summer.” George R.R. Martin

The wind is eavesdropping on the trees
and the woodland creatures.
It listens as the squirrels
skitter and scamper
and prepare for fall.
Cold this twilight with
Venus burning bright.
The sun explodes in a pre-autumn
blue sky as the geese fly quickly southward.



The Real Revolution

For dVerse Poets Pub, https://dversepoets.com/2020/07/21/poetics-revolution/   Merrill is prompting us to write of revolution – societal, spacial, whatever.  When I think of revolution, I think: 35 million people in the U.S. are hungry or don’t know where their next meal is coming from, and 13 million of them are children. …

The Real Revolution
“There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

Have you ever been hungry?
I don’t mean, skip a meal hungry,
diet hungry,
need a snack hungry,
do a day’s work hungry,

I mean:
a smell makes you salivate
because you haven’t had a meal in several days hungry,
making that 66 cent loaf of bread last a week hungry
because that is all you have for the week,
I mean splitting the can of soup six ways
to feed your family hungry,
I mean, giving the last bit of beans
to your child hungry,
I mean, not knowing where your next meal
is coming from hungry,
I mean looking at people eating
with our heart in your mouth hungry
and you haven’t had food in three days.
I mean living off water hungry.

The real revolution will be
when no no one or no thing goes to
bed hungry.


This is for the 8th Anniversary of dVerse Poets Pub and also for a prompt by Brian Millers, one of the founders of this pub.  He asks us to write about a particular moment in our lives.  I have notbeen writing much lately as I have been gieving.  I hope this will get me to writing again.. Thank you Brian and thank you to all the poets through the years at dVerse.  May there be another 8 years!


“The first kiss is the deepest. The last breath is the hardest.” Nadège Richards, 5 Miles

I had been sitting by your bed
that grey sleeting Sunday.
watching as your breath grew more shallow.
At the last I pulled you into my arms
And held you while you drew your last breath.
I watched the light fade from your summer blue eyes.
I pulled you closer and wept.
I held you for 30 more minutes and
then I laid you gently back onto the pillow.
I walked up to the nurses’ station and said,
My husband has just died.

The American Sentence

For Prompted Positive Poetry   Hello everyone. It is good to see you all. You realize of course you do not have to do the prompt; however, this is one of my favorite poetic forms. You will discover that I prefer brief, uncomplicated forms. I was taught how to write haiku when I was 11 by a professor of Asian studies at Duke University. I quickly became addicted to the brief Japanese forms and have been writing them for 50 years. In 1963, Allen Ginsberg created a take on the classic haiku: The American Sentence. The rules are simple: Exactly 17 syllables in a complete sentence form. And one sentence, not a multiple of them. That is it. Somehow Ginsberg could not follow the rules for classic haiku – always the rebel! Like me, Ginsberg was a great admirer of Ezra Pound who wrote the iconic:
In the Station of the Metro
The apparition of these faces in the crowd;
Petals on a wet, black bough.

I love the American Sentence. It is like distilling the essence of a thought. Cutting down the scene, thought, image to the barest of words. However the sentence can bring you joy, break your heart, give you a new vision of nature, make you laugh out loud. I often work harder on an AS to get the right words that I ever do one of my longer poems. After all, it is exactly 17 syllables. You have to edit and be careful to give the exact meaning to my words. I hope you will try this form! Below are some samples of my American Sentences and of Allen Ginsberg.

Spring returns with a canopy of blue overhead – the vernal sky.
Even after death, you are still my anchor in sad stormy weather.
In the summer sky, bits of sand light the night sky.
The mockingbird sings at night to the music of the honeysuckle.

Allen Ginsberg:
Crescent moon, girls chatter at twilight on the bus ride to Ankara.
Taxi ghosts at dusk pass Monoprix in Paris 20 years ago.
That grey-haired man in business suit and black turtleneck thinks he’s still young.

My Anchor

An American Sentence for Posted Positive Poetry. the American Sentence was created by Allen Ginsberg because he couldn’t follow the rules for proper classic haiku. It must be a complete sentence and exactly 17 syllables.

My Anchor

“When someone you love becomes a memory…that memory becomes a treasure.” — Unknown

Even after death, you are still my anchor in sad stormy weather.

Sevenling: This Amazing Man

A sevenling for Frank’s prompt – write a poem of seven lines.  I wrote a Sevenling poem.  A Sevenling poem form is simple – yet complicated. Lines one to three should contain three connected or contrasting statements, or a list of three details, names or possibilities. This can take up all of the three lines or be contained anywhere within them. Lines four to six should similarly have three elements (statements, details, names, or possibilities) connected directly or indirectly or not at all. The seventh line should act as a narrative summary or punchline or an unusual juxtaposition.


Sevenling:  This Amazing Man
“God gave us memory that we might have roses in December.” – J. M. Barrie

He disliked three things:
People who were cruel to children and animals,
People who were wealthy and did not share it to feed the hungry,
and people with no sense of humor.

He loved hybrid tea roses,
his stinky basset hound Chester,
and the smell of rain on newly cut grass.

This amazing man asked me to marry him and I said yes.





Not Closed

For De’s Quadrille Prompt over at dVerse Poets Pub and for Positive Prompted Poetry.  The word for today is “closed”.


Not Closed
“The first blooms of spring always make my heart sing.” — S. Brown

small business and restaurants
are closed – as is schools
government offices.
I walk around the neighborhood
and smile.
Not closed is the blue sky over head
and the dogwood trees,
the birds singing,
small yellow butterflies
hovering over dandelions.
lilacs bloom –
Spring is open!


For Carrie’s 100th Sunday Muse BlogSpot. whoo hoo! 100! I am having trouble with my ancient computer and so I cannot post the pic of a teal door.  I ended the poem with an American sentence.  Congrats Carrie and thank you so much for the prompts!  Here’s to 100 more.

“Everyone is battling something emotional behind closed doors – that’s life.” Caroline Flack

Behind the door I spend my days alone.
I fix meals for one,
sleep alone,
don’t talk to anyone.
I have become the ultimate introvert.
Outside my door –
spring arrives.
the lawn is full of tiny blue
dainty blue Johnny jump ups,
countless purple muscari hyacinths.
green flushes the branches of trees
and the blue sky covers all.
I don’t feel alone when I am outside.
I walk around and remember.
then I go back inside.
The alone starts again.

Spring returns with a canopy of blue overhead – the vernal sky.

Haibun: Shaken, not stirred

For De’s Prompt on dVerse Poets Pub. I haven’t followed any rules this go around.

Haibun: Shaken, not stirred
“A martini. Shaken, not stirred.” Bond, James Bond

My husband was a James Bond aficionado. He knew everything about him. When he was in hospital dying, his only regret: he would miss the new movie.

He will be watching from heaven when I go – I will be stirred without him by my side.


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