In honor of the final day of NaPoWriMo 2017

J Lyman Birdflight

photo by J. Lyman

This is the final stop;
you must disembark.
The bus won’t go…
The plane doesn’t connect…
The ship can’t sail…

A last breath.
The final hurrah.
Today is the day.

Ensure the lamps you douse
when you discover
you are the last to leave.

The Great Blue eyeing
our sad, drying pond, sighs.
He spreads his wings, gives
a hoarse squawk, lifts
off for a better lake to fish.

April, making a curtsy, hoists
her skirts and makes for stage left.

And poets across the world
are left to flounder –

…as poets so often do.

Day 30 of NaPoWriMo 2017:  I felt the need… the unction to lay this month to rest.  There are many directions I could have gone; so many prompts strewn about the internet.  This just called my name, winked at me from a dark corner, and — well, you’ll just have to fill in the rest for yourself.

Midnight Drear


photo by Charley

Over me cast.
Dimness dreaded.
Ghost shape drawn.
Spirit black dreamt.
Darkness spread.
Shape drawn.
Cast shade.

Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt is “…take one of your favorite poems and find a very specific, concrete noun in it….  After you’ve chosen your word, put the original poem away and spend five minutes free-writing associations – other nouns, adjectives, etc.  Then use your original word and the results of your free-writing as the building blocks for a new poem.”  I took shadow from The Raven.  Not necessarily my all-time favorite poem.  Honestly, I don’t know that I have one favorite poem.

The Limerick Twist

four-leaf clover

One2One Network

I heard of a loan shark named Lars
who worked in the seediest bars.
Thirty percent per day,
and if you didn’t pay,
He’d shoot off your kneecaps, of carse!

So, tonight at dVerse Poets Pub, the innkeeper is serving up glasses of Irish and pints of our favorite brew.  In my case that would be Murphy’s; although I acknowledge the preference of many to that other purveyor of stout.  Anyway, in payment we are being cajoled into sharing a limerick or two.  Here’s mine.



Inside the Dipper and the Inch to Polaris


On a carpet of tall grass floating
I extend my arm and measure
the minute intervals with finger-span
and am amazed at the size of the Earth,
how gigantic I am in this compact universe.
The night sky constricts like last year’s tee shirt.

Next month I’ll have chocolate cake,
turn five,
and start Kindergarten.

The NaPoWriMo prompt for today is space.  Specifically, a small space.

Stolen Moment

Ty Cobb Sliding into Third Base

Charles M. Conlon / Sporting News Archive via Getty Images


the great
Cobb steals
third evermore
the baseline
judge blurs
focused as he is on the call
stasis forever
dynamic explosive
still that haunts
dramatic moment
that breathes
still we are
too colorized
to relive the moment that lives
meditate on it hold

Faced with two challenges — NaPoWriMo wanted us to write a poem of ekphrasis (I’m leaving out the medieval marginal stuff, but, you know…), and the barkeep at dVerse Poets Pub gives us the Quadrille, using the word still.

Quadrille #31

Leaves Me Wanting


photo by Charley

Voluminous read
Between my hands
Why not more concise?

Greedy excess
The book store
Can’t make a choice

 It is a horrible addiction.  You cannot sympathize if you don’t have the habit.  Fortunately, I am one of the few who actually read (most of) the books I buy.  At least… the ones that don’t lose my interest about two thirds of the way through.

This is my double Elevenie for NaPoWriMo 2017.


Great Blue

Photo by Charley

Furrows grow
along the hillside
in layers horizontal.
They will hold
the rain, the soil.

Our garden is set to feed
the family and friends that gather.

The she-wolf only takes
what she requires for her and her cubs.
Never have rabbits… nor eagles
biggie-sized their meals.

Squirrels disdain cling-wrap.

While legions strive
the virtues and evils
surrounding oil transport
over and against
lithium strip-mining,
we ride our bikes out
into the countryside to enjoy
the rejuvenation that comes
from rubbing shoulders with the dwindling….

For Earth Day and NaPoWriMo 2017.

A Bop Till You Drop


The sun is setting;
all too soon setting.
I don’t want to lose
another day to feeling
like all I do is work;
that life is only this.
God be merciful and send me a time of wool-gathering sloth!

My work is trying.
Sixth graders I discipline.
Okay, well, I refer
them to in-school suspension,
out-of-school suspension.
I only labor when they misbehave.
When was the last time you were around sixth graders?
They misbehave as if it’s mandatory!
God be merciful and send me a time of wool-gathering sloth!

Each morning I arrive
early, hoping to ruminate and write.
The paperwork towers,
the email glowers,
the stomach acid flowers,
my eyes shedding April showers!
God be merciful and send me a time of wool-gathering sloth!

In response to the NaPoWriMo prompt, I wrote a Bop: 6 lines and a refrain, 8 lines and a refrain, and 6 lines and a refrain.  Somehow, in some strange, slightly twisted sort of way, it reminds me of church… high church.


A Portrait of the Travelling Poet, Charley, As He Fakes a Quadrille-Lateral Pass

A onesie, a twosie!
Sportin’ my blue suede Addidas Shoesies.
Hedden shoulders, blow yer nose.
Thrust out tushie, grab yer toes.
Drizzle!  Mention Drizzle!


A day at work in middle school
is like orange juice without sunshine.
We all are beasts of burden.


Something happens when I write for dVerse Poets Pub.  Tonight the prompt is write a quadrille (a poem of 44 words) including the word drizzle.  Then there’s the NaPoWriMo prompts… something about a portrait poem and a traveling poem.  So, too much stress?  I don’t know.  It is what it is… whatever it is.