Wednesday, December 14, 2011


The heart quietly breaks
Then comes roaring back for more

Friday, April 22, 2011

Day 22

For Ed P.

Strange kid
With your hands in your pants
Nobody understood you
Not like I did
Or was sure I would
If we ever talked.

You had such pretty eyes
And thick hair I wanted to run my fingers through
But I was biding my time,
Waiting for the difference in our ages to be less creepy.
Only five years
In our teens an eternity
In our twenties only a trifle
In our thirties nothing at all.

I arrived at thirty bursting with life
But you were not so lucky
Your time ended at nineteen.
I hope it was a painless and happy moment
Or that it helped you find peace
Or that your final destination was a room
Filled with other sweet kids
Who didn't fit in
Who couldn't keep their hands out of their pants
Who loved you for your weirdness
Just like me.

Day 21

Then the terrible thing happened
That I, just ten, became the mystery of.
Green trousers and purple velour sleeves
And a refrigerator wrapped in duct tape lying
The places cats won't go. The climbing out onto the banks. The naked man.
What he needed from me I have no idea.

Something offensive: a revolver.
Let silence drill its hole.

Now I am safe in the deep V of a weekday
In the glaring white gap
Sleepily indifferent.
The chill of closed eyelids
In a carousel-sweet dress
How fibrous and incidental it seems.

Someone stands and weeps in the glass telephone theatre

Today, I bring you a special poetry prompt. Poet Danielle Pafunda, who has been posting her NaPoems over at the Bloof Books website, has organized a cento contest. What’s a cento? It’s a poem composed entirely of lines from other poems.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Day 19

Two red exes
Through smiling yearbook faces
523 to go.

Today’s challenge is to write a poem inspired by something you’ve overheard.

Heard over my cube wall: "They've both got red exes on them"
Hey, it's almost a haiku!

Day 18

Her blazing red face
The hand-me-down dress, red
Too big on top
Slips down over reddening shoulders

Her wrist a red band
Circled with fire-red carnations
Matching her date's slippery red cummerbund
His ruddy cheeks stretched into a smug, hateful grin

A horseshoe of classmates
Red mouths agape with taunting guffaws
As fury, red, dark and deep
Fills and fills an unseen well

Carefully-painted red fingertips
Curl into a righteous fist
Meet their mark with the force of red rage
Red blood slides down the impostor's upper lip

Our heroine exits, cradling swollen red knuckles.

Today’s prompt is an incantatory color poem.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day 17

Lovely, humble and proud woman
Heart of marshmallow fluff
Encased in steel
With a layer of barbed wire thrown in
Independence is your watchword
Self-reliance your creed
But in your eyes, a longing unfolds

Today’s prompt calls for you to write a portrait poem.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Day 16

Sparks erupting
From the caldera
Make a fast course
To my face, my hands
Yellow fire
Flying down my sleeve
Consuming the surface
Roaring, rumbling, grinding the flesh
My body dragged,
Pitched, pulled apart
Skin and hair reduced to ash
In an instant the fire subsides
A glorious end
Finally, nothing is required

Your mission is to create a poem, either by erasing words from the paragraph, or recombining the words that are already there.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Day 15

O pale sheath!
A stalwart warrior
Arching over the vast crimson battlefield
Attempting to mask the pain beneath
Your borders too shallow, your spine too weak
Opposing forces trickle in
And rape the land
And leave it burning, crying out for relief
At essence, a failure
Something must be done.
Unseated by a hand exacting
You drift down
To find another occupation
Or maybe, finally, peace.

Write a poem in the form of a complaint about something that is good or you like, or in the form of a hymn to something that is bad or that you dislike.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Day 14

What can be gained from quietude?
Lips and eyes closed to the world
No sound but the rush and pulse of a heart
The steady draw of respiration, observed
As body stops, mind spins into action
Filling the nascent gaps with images and words
Pregnant scenes from a life long-forgotten
Refusing to part from its solemnly sworn duty
To process, process, process it all
And manufacture sense into meaning
A task that's designed to get in our way
For meaning is styrofoam obscuring the prize:
A nugget of unshakable truth buried deep down
Beneath the thick, fluffy layers of everything we tell ourselves.

Today’s prompt honors the sonnet – that hoary 14-lined favorite of English verse. So your challenge is to write a sonnet.