Côtes du Muse* — a poem

image: Charley

“Language is wine upon the lips.” — Virginia Woolf

a small pour, please, in a crystal stem
pull a fresh cork and decant – breathe
it’s not about new but vintage unique
not the bouquet only but the palate
words sucked through the back teeth
the challenge of tastes the first sip
then clink clink clink togetherness

* * *

Another response written as I was falling asleep. Seriously. When I awoke this piece ended with two and a half pages of “ddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd”!


* — Yeah, I know the title is probably nonsense in French. I’ve never learned French. If you call me bad names in French, I won’t be offended.

Spirits Adrift — a poem

A spray of ghosts, mists
of creatures unfortunate;
who met their fortunes
at the bottom — at the bottom.

Winds carry no grief
save the Northerlies.
They howl, they moan
through the riggings
and the sheets, crying.

For you on the land,
you are granted grounding
markers that tell location;
you can come back…
and tears as flowers.

But for us, we fly,
flung up on a crest.

* * *

So, a good friend and I have been tossing poetry prompts back and forth. This image drew me and, as I was slowly ebbing towards sleep — hands on the keys — this is what came out.

Image: https://rachaeltalibart.com/ 
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Watering Whole? — a poem

When I entered
the room, all — predators
and prey — were assembled,

At the periphery, not joining
in, pushing to bring
muzzle to a stilled
surface; but watchful —

The ones that couldn’t,
wouldn’t be tamed
outside, quenching
a wilder thirst.

I quietly stepped
back out, returned
to the safety of my cage.


* * *

A simple visual prompt on The Sunday Muse, one of two. What could possibly go wrong?

Justice in the Cave — a flash fiction

Carrot Ranch

Justice Ranes was lost. Spelunking! he thought. He considered his predicament. “Lost in a fucking cave is what I call it.” His words bounced off rock walls pressing in. He picked a direction. His torch would hold an hour at best. The way seemed familiar.

A turn unremembered. Back track? Determination overcame reason. He pressed on.

Ahead shadows. Switching off his light he detected a faint glow. Stepping forward the light increased. At the mouth he stopped. The sought for entrance was instead a cavern. He was doomed.

Justice was undone by a fallacious bioluminescence lurking beyond the passage.

* * *

A flash fiction challenge at The Carrot Ranch: A flash piece, 99 words (no less, no more — just like the tombstone in… um, Tombstone), where you use “the light at the end of the tunnel.” Without the cliché.

She Shall Be Called Woman — a poem

Mary Pickford

Silent then;
bound by technology
and mores.*

Without a voice
of her own —
tinsel and ornament,
purposed to entertain
to cook, clean, and wean.

It would be decades before she roared.

The struggle,
the progress —
but far to go.

But now where is woman?

bound by decree.
Without a voice,
a name.

Silent, then.



* the fixed morally binding customs of a particular group

* * *

Blame this one upon The Sunday Muse …and politics.

2021 Pudding — a poem

Arthur Edwards/The Sun/PA Archive/PA Images — manipulated

1 egg, large
1 cup sugar
1 cup cocoa
½ cup brandy
2 cups milk

Mix the egg and the sugar (it’s going to require a good egg to get through all this, sugar!). Beat well (we can beat this if we try!). Blend in cocoa (blending in will be of ultimate importance this year!). Begin heating the milk over low heat in a saucepan. (No snarky comment here; just heat the damned milk, okay?) Place the brandy in a glass (any kind of glass… really, you have a snifter? I didn’t think so.), drink to taste.

Keep stirring the milk in the pan.

Keep drinking the brandy.

Pour more brandy (it’s going to be a long year!).

Keep stirring the milk.

Either add the mixture to the milk… or just keep adding brandy.

I mean, you survived 2020 — you deserved to get faced.

Or, you could make the pudding.



Advice to Those Imperiled by the Encroachment of Personal Civilization — a Poem

A lucent thought at the beginning of 2021.

Life in Portofino

jim-harrison Borrowed from the internet somewhere — Dunno.  But this is author/poet Jim Harrison.  The one in front.  The meaner looking one.

Don’t bite the chain.

Be like the wild-wise ones.  Do
what they do — measure
the links, feel when it tenses.

it back — then run
full-bore.  Stop
just at that point.  Make
the chain break
itself.  Don’t settle
for civilizing kibbles.  Range
free, and eat

Be the dog the rancher won’t let near her cattle!

* * *

Written in response to reading Jim Harrison’s poem, “Tethered.” 

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