Sonnet by 2 (completed)

Beneath the bed a garden sits and waits
Smooth the sheets, my head upon the pillow
Asleep am I until the chaos breaks
Carrots clawed by digging armadillo Nightmare screams from radishes upended
Oh, Stevenson! Upon this counterpane,
Your childhood verses here would be splendid, As in “great thoughts [thrill] vaguely through my brain.” A look from window pane reveals a flash Of spotted fur and flying ears and teeth. Our Border Collie pup doth make a dash. With bark she chases off the armored thief. So poetry a harried heart may calm. And angels bear you to the land of balm.

A sneak peak at the July Challenge that Jilly is instigating.  She wrote the first half of a Sonnet (7 lines) and bid me — he who is iambic-challenged — to write the second half.

That would be the part in green.

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The ‘I Ain’t Dancin’ to All Your Negativity’ Rag

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Slap down the people with the negative tone
Offer them gum so their mouths have something to do
Tell them to leave your happiness alone
Reply that that hatefulness rag doesn’t do it for you

Offer them gum so their mouths have something to do
Point their compasses toward the trees and the flowers
Reply that that hatefulness rag doesn’t do it for you
Whistle, warble, caw and guffaw to the birds perched in the bowers

Point their compasses toward the trees and the flowers
Explain that life’s too short to hang with that negativity crap
Whistle, warble, caw and guffaw to the birds perched in the bowers
Escape as soon as you can from the haters and their hating trap

Explain that life’s too short to hang with that negativity crap
Tell them to leave your happiness alone
Escape as soon as you can from the haters and their hating trap
Slap down the people with the negative tone

The form is a pantoum.  The inspiration is the pandemic negativity that has seeped into almost every aspect of communication and entertainment.  The cause is something I’ve coined “rectocornea” or “rectocornealmoutharrhea,” where one’s vision is connected to one’s posterior, providing the patient with a… bad outlook on life.  The cure begins when one admits to having a problem.  “Hi!  I’m Bill and I’m addicted to constant trash-talk.”  “Hi, Bill!”  Too often, however, the patient seats (if you’ll pardon the expression) the cause somewhere else.  More specifically, with someone else… mother, father, sibling, religious figure, politician… the person who sold them the lemon of a car they are driving, etc.  The truth is, no one can make you or me act, think, speak or write miserably; it’s all on the individual.  I’ve decided I’m tired of hearing it all, reading it all, being asked to stomach it all.  Life is just too short to put up with other people’s crappy attitudes!  Feel free to disagree.

Posted on Open Link Night at dVerse Poets Pub.

A Blessing for You and All Others, too!

May you have a quiet evening
and gentle waking when you rise.

May your dreams bring a smile
and the refreshment of dew upon your eyes.

May you have a strong stout place
to keep you from wind and rain.

May you have a good strong life
for your work, and without pain.

May you have provision in your pantry,
and a cook’s necessities upon your shelf.

May you be blessed with great wisdom
and have the good grace to keep it to yourself!

Bless you, ’tis another glorious night of poetry at dVerse Poets Pub, and the man behind the bar, Paul himself, bids “…let us put pen to paper tonight and write a Blessing Poem. May our words create ripples of light and hope in the pond of the world.”  So gather near the fire, light up your pipe if you’ve a mind, lift a pint (or what have you), and prepare to bless and be blessed.

Summer Haibun

Summer Rain

We started into spring with a full-blown drought.  As we neared the end of the school year I think we were something like nine inches shy of what’s considered normal here.  A couple of our mainline roads from the East coast to Orlando were often closed because of dangerously low visibility due to smoke.  But Florida is a funny beast.  Our rainy season generally begins around May 21st.  True to form this year, the rain rolled in… exactly on May 21st… and has only ceased for a few glorious days thus far.  As teachers, we look forward to summer.  If for no other reason than it’s when we get to turn our sprinkler system off.  This afternoon we have faced brooding skies, frog-drowning showers, and – in the near distance – the basso profundo of Thor’s hammer.

Disconcerting flash
Counting out to the rumble
Why aren’t birds hiding?

 

It’s Haibun Monday at dVerse Poets Pub and Grace, behind the bar, has requested we write about summer.  As always, I’m certain I missed the prompt… by this much… but come join us for a summer write on a summer night!

Signify If You Will

Through a Glass Darkly

image from Through a Glass Darkly (1961)

If you can imagine!
If you can image.

We walked through the art museum scrutinizing
exhibits.  They spoke in barks, gurgled
unintelligibly, or wisely kept their peace.
The copper shaman danced too slowly
for me to catch the rhythm.
How unlike the world outside
these snippets, these gimcracks that festered
inside studios of inward turning.

What would emerge if the paint was scraped
from the windows, if the curtains were thrown
aside, if the blinds were raised
to the sun, to the contrary Northern Mocking-
bird?

Imagine the artist cast
adrift amongst the mess
of neighbors –
what would it signify?

Is art escape or turmoil?

Pesto Amore

Tomato-Basil Pesto Pasta

Sun-dried tomato / basil pesto pasta

Sun-dried they wait
tomatoes to be snipped
into the bath to soak
balsamic and water
one part to one part

Basil leaves
in the morning snipped
on a paper towel blanket
for the day left to rest

Olive oil a splash
Pinot Noir a dash
olives green finely chopped
Kalamata treated the same

Into the food prep
with brine a touch
garlic clove roasted
into a paste whipped

Meanwhile pasta cooks
vegetables simmer
two sets of hands ablur
heady aroma allure

Cuisine-sex-love
yes to all of the above

Weather the Storm — a villanelle

Weather the storm no matter how you are tossed
Beat by striving the tempest-churned sea
Save your soul no matter the cost

Stay at the tiller or all is lost
Defeat despair till sunshine you see
Weather the storm no matter how you are tossed

Dismay not though the waves accost
Man your post faithfully until set free
Save your soul no matter the cost

Determine that this rough piece shall be crossed
Dispel all doubts that this will be
Weather the storm no matter how you are tossed

Keep at it no matter how your efforts exhaust
Renew with shouts and songs of glee
Save your soul no matter the cost

Beat the storm whether tropic hot or with frost
Persist, persist!  The tempest soon shall flee
Weather the storm no matter how you are tossed
Save your soul no matter the cost

Join the poetic bunch at dVerse Poets Pub tonight, where the challenge is the form known as the Villanelle.