Quadrille Monday – Shimmer

Today Victoria is giving us the prompt word for Quadrille Monday.  We are to write a poem of exactly 44 words (not including the title).  Our word is “shimmer”.  Isn’t that a wonderful word?  Come visit us at dVerse Poets Pub and read the Quadrilles for “shimmer”.  Because the poems are only 44 words, it won’t take you long to read and enjoy.  I am using one of my favorite Japanese season words (kigo) – Amanogawa – the Japanese word for the Milky Way  – the River of Heaven. dVerse Link for Quadrille #6 http://dversepoets.com/2016/04/04/quadrille-6/

The Eternal River
The river of heaven shimmers in the night sky.
its shape seems to be asking eternal questions
or flowing to the answers.
when I look up at night,
seeking or finding –
I am the impermanence,
the one who changes.
The river flows – eternal.

free public domain image

free public domain image Milky Way

 

dVerse Poetics: Listen to the Mockingbird

Today at dVerse, Kelly is our bartender and is giving the prompt for our poems. We are to write a narrative poem using Mockingbird as the theme. Come join us for this varied and natural musical prompt for our poems. http://dversepoets.com/2016/02/23/poetics-listen-to-the-mockingbird/


Friends

The brown thrasher and the mockingbird
have been friends for several years.
Both are loners with no mates.
I think of them as two bachelor buddy buskers
sitting on the wire or in the bushes
serenading us with their songs,
happy for any food tossed as their fee.
The thrasher is a bit OCD as he has to imitate
every sound twice before going on to the next sound.
the mockingbird is a bit of a free spirit
singing at will but many times
they end up singing in harmony –
sometimes a wandering duet
and sometimes an operatic solo.
I have spent several years teaching them
the first six notes of the musical theme
for the XFiles.
Sometimes they oblige, sometimes they
listen as I whistle my human best.
But all the birds know:
the bluebirds, goldfinches, cardinals,
blue jays, the several nut thatches that
come and perch on my shoulder or on the
chair across from me and peck bits
from my outheld hand.
When they all hear those notes,
They gather.
They know:
The food is out there.

Celestial Dance Club

public domain artist rendering of 2016 alignment

public domain artist rendering of 2016 alignment

Another entry for dVerse’s NEW poetry challenge:  Quadrille.  A poem using exactly 44 words and the prompt word – dance.  I cannot resist another.  January 20 – February 20, a rare alignment of five planets: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn.  An incredible dance, well worth staying up or getting up for.  Come visit us at d’Verse -http://dversepoets.com/2016/01/18/quadrille-1/

Across space
Planets align – rare event –
an impromptu space dance begins
the planetary jukebox
Blasts out music from the years
And the planets rock in
Celestial line dances –
the Hustle, Madison, and Stroll
Boot Scootin’ Boogie, Electric Slide.
Yes! We’re dancin’ on the ceiling.


 

 

 

A Long Time Ago in a Walmart Far, Far, away…

Today on dVerse Poetics, Grace has introduced us to Canadian Poet David McFadden. He is the “darling of the avant-garde” and yet, is readable and at home with supernatural events, meaning, he finds something extraordinary in every day ordinary events – like psychic bus stops. Grace wants us to write about things outside the ordinary of our daily life but still part of our ordinary life – like waiting for a bus. I hope you all will come visit us and read about this incredible and unstuffy, unpretentious poet (see, we DO exist!). Below is my submission which personally, I think is kind of fun and really really happened just last week…http://dversepoets.com/2015/12/01/poetics-secrets-of-the-universe/

free public domain image

free public domain image

 

A Long Time Ago in a Walmart Far, Far, away…
Christmas was coming.
My husband said, I want an Amazon gift card
And a light saber. He gave me both last year.
Technology has come far.   For the paltry sum of $34.99 he gave me
the Luke Skywalker light saber sold at Walmart.
When turned on the saber turned a bright blue and
Went – whoosh – from the bottom to the top and
made the wonderful whumming sound and when banged against
something went crackclang just like in the movies.
When cut off, the blue whooshed down to the bottom
– Just like the REAL light sabers.
However, I was not able to slice through objects
or persons…bah.

Christmas was coming.
I fortified myself for going into the shopping universe
by playing Halo for a bit, and doing a load of laundry,
And loading the dishwasher…

At THE toy aisle of the Death Star
I found what I wanted.
I heard it a few aisles before I arrived.
The telltale whoosh, whummmmm, clang, whooshwhoosh….

Thin, blonde…10 years old swinging the light saber as if his life depended on it.
Closer, I grabbed it with my hand stopping him in mid-swing.
…It is good Padawan I have my life shimmer activated or you
Would have cut off my fingers.
He looked me almost in the eye and blinked – slowly.
…I asked him how long had he been training?
This time he grinned.
I took a another saber from the shelf, turned it on
And going into “the stance” told him most solemnly
how to better hold it, and gave a slow swing and graceful pivot.
With huge eyes, he imitated.
A few more swings and he chirps,  Jedi Knight, will you show me more?
And I did.
His harried mother came up and stopped – her son being taught a fighting form
by a too short woman with long white braid.
She watched as the woman swung the saber over her head
and then gently disarmed the young boy and bowed to him.
He saw his mother and became awkward.
…Young Padawan, you have the making of a most
Audacious and dangerous Jedi.
Practice hard and listen to your parents
And study hard. The Rebel forces need such as you
when you have completed your training.

We bowed to each other and he scampered off
babbling at a thousand parsecs per second.
I took the light saber he had carefully placed back on the shelf.
I had found the perfect one for my husband.
I would let him know he had much work to do to catch up
to the young Padawan.

kuroi akumu: black nightmare

Today Claudia, one of the founding members of the dVerse community, is prompting us to write about our emotions, about how we feel – not the feelings of the world, other people – but how we feel and to avoid using generalities. Metaphors might also be used. Come visit us at d’Verse Poetics. I have a feeling you may be amazed.  Linked to:  http://dversepoets.com/2015/11/24/poetry-as-a-vehicle-to-transport-emotions/

kuroi akumu
I move through the days like our local
weather report. Sunny and cold
and on the inside a storm is raging
threatening to obliterate me and
like many of those storms in dreams it
cannot be escaped – it rears on the horizon and
then it is there on top of you sucking the breath
from your lungs.

A restaurant.
They specialize in rare natural foods.
A friend and I go – we have been friends
since 1975 –
in the middle of the room dividing the eating areas
a huge fish tank with
fish like flashing jewels.
and then,
and then…
there are creatures in the water
like hairless black cats or small dogs
being held in the water with wires
as they shake and jerk
trying to escape and
waiters stand on ladders and with long tongs
extract long sprouts growing from seeds
embedded in their flesh – and the animals are
almost but not quite dead because they continue
to jerk and jerk and jerk and the water
slops over the side of the tank
wetting the tiled floor with water
stained with black and red.
In horror I scream why is this?
Why doesn’t someone care?
Why doesn’t someone stop this?
How can we eat this food pulled from
the flesh of dead and dying animals?
I turn to my friend – an animal rights activist
and I grab her and scream into her face
and she says but it is delicacy here.
And I stand and scream and no one cares
and the animals on their wires jerk and jerk
like tortured puppets and no.one.cares.

My husband awakens me and holds me but
still I shudder – no.one.cares.

akai aki – red autumn

copyright kanzensakura

copyright kanzensakura

leaves like fallen flags –
tattered banners sodden by
all day rain stick to
the asphalt – shades of brown and
dull gold – dreams of red still
clinging to branches – a cold
fire burning away gray day.

three haiku

O. Koson 1931

O. Koson 1931

I.
small chrysanthemums
white and yellow gaze at clouds
in blue autumn sky

II.
aki no kumo**
Chase each other across fall
Sky – children playing

**autumn clouds

III.
Hawk flies between sky
And pond – shadow on water
Only frogs can see.

will link to Poets United, Poetry Pantry  http://poetryblogroll.blogspot.com/2015/10/poetry-pantry-275.html

Ashes in the Wine

free public domain image

free public domain image

Ashes in the wine
“There’s ashes in the glass of wine from the fire in Malibu canyon”.   XFiles 2nd Season Episode title “3”

The blood moon in the night sky
Shone like wine in a goblet held to a candle.
Naysayers, sidewalk prophets, crazed preachers say:
This means the end of the world. When there’s blood on the moon
the world will end.

So many centuries later
we still cower in fear during an eclipse
and huddle listening in fear to hysterical rants..

And was there blood on the moon when my father died (and my world ended)?
And was there blood on the moon when terrorists flew planes into the Twin Towers? (and worlds exploded)
And was there blood on the moon when a woman, child, man was raped and then discarded
(like that wrapper from McDonald’s)?

It was cloudy  then it rained last night
And I couldn’t see all of the eclipse of the moon –
The Super Moon
As it came so close to the earth.

You sipped your wine and sat beside me, bored beyond belief
as I patiently watched then you swallowed down the last sip of wine –
You said, It’s over. I want out.

The rain stopped and the full blood moon came out from behind the clouds.

 

This is being posted for d’Verse Poets Open Link Night.  OLN is an unprompted poetry activity where we post whatever poem we wish.  Come join us for all the talent linked up.  This is linked to d’Verse Poet’s.

d’Verse Poetics – Gender Bender Poetry

Kelly is our guest pubtender today. She wants us to do a poem that is a gender bender – for the women to write from the male perspective and the men to write from the female. A couple of years ago, I created a fictional character, a Samurai – Mashashi Kenata. This is a poem about the first anniversary of his marriage to Hoshiko (child of the star). Please come and join us for this very interesting and intriguing prompt.

Onnabugeisha - free wiki image

Onnabugeisha – free wiki image

One Sharp Sword
One year.
The first year.
Masashi had not wanted to marry but he had to.
It was arranged.
The youngest daughter of four,
her father the shogun of the prefecture.
His father had made an excellent bargain for his second son.
Masashi was the second son of the shogun’s number one Samurai –
a perfect merging of class and bloodline.
He remembered the first time he saw her on their wedding day
and how relieved he was at her loveliness.
Her gentle demeanor disguised her true self.
Her quick intelligence – sometimes bawdy humor and
her education, actually better than his.
In their marriage bed she was aggressive and left him
shaken to his core.
He was not surprised when she told him she was carrying
their first child.
He was frightened at first and then proud.
Her loveliness on their wedding day was nothing
to her loveliness now.
She was as glowing and beautiful as the reflection of the moon
on dark still water.
But he was never as surprised when, large with the baby inside her
she told him he would never equal his father in prowess with a sword,
that he was clumsy and flat footed and swung his sword
as if he was swinging a scythe and harvesting rice.
But then, she takes the katana from him
and begins to go through the fighting forms –
light on her feet, strong in her swing,
and quick despite her heaviness.
But when she swung his katana at him and he felt his
kimono belt drift to the floor,
he was most surprised.
She laughed and resheathed the katana in his shi.
Close your mouth husband or you will swallow a fly.

autumn robins – tanka

autumn robins on
their trip farther down south stop
for a snack at the
convenience store of my front
yard – crickets the special for
the day – free to all

"Robins" free illustration by John Burroughs, 1876

“Robins” free illustration by John Burroughs, 1876

Heart Rains – tanka

free public image

free public image

Heart rains

dry hot summer ends –
soft rain taps on leaves like sad
tears falling from the
grey sky – I lift my face and
whisper your name – can you hear
me – do you know my heart rains?

Tanka are poems with line syllables of 5-7-5-7-7. There is an extra line of 7 syllables making this form Bussoku-sekika – footprint of Buddha, a rare form of poetry, an early form of waka. It is written for my friend Peggie – Huntmode on wordpress, who died this past May.  I am linking to Poetry Pantry today for the first time:  http://poetryblogroll.blogspot.se/2015/09/poetry-pantry-271.html

 

 

Mujō – Change: Tanka set

Tuesday, I am privileged to be the Pubtender and Prompter for the Tuesday Poetics at d’Verse Poetics Pub.  It is getting to be (in spite of the heat!) autumn.  Subtle signs but there if you take the time to notice.  My prompt for today for our community and those who want to join us, is to, in 24 lines or fewer, write about change.  The Japanese word Mujō 無常 means “impermanence”.  It is one of the major aesthetics of the Japanese culture that all things change, nothing is permanent, and to embrace that idea.

I think this quote from Alan Watts says it all – about the culture of change, embracing it, and joining in the dance of change in our world:  “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”  Please come and visit us to read the discussion about changes, to join in, to enjoy the poems that will be linked with all the different takes on the prompt and to please, add your own if you feel inspired.  A video from my favorite group World Order is included on the post.  The slideshow illustrates changes in the lane and woods by my home – summer and autumn.  My poem is linked to d’Verse:  http://dversepoets.com/2015/09/15/poetics-ch-ch-changes

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

Three Autumn Tanka
I.
autumn knocks softly –
a long absent friend unsure
of being welcomed –
gold leaf against green back drop
summer smiling beckons in.

II.
red carp scale clouds hang
in cool morning sky – heavy
dew pearls on thin web –
garden spider curled dead in
corner of its final web.

III.
chill of soundless night –
faint light of crescent moon – time
has no meaning as
one gold leaf drifts down to the
edge of sleeping country road

 

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