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and then we . . .

April 18, 2018 Leave a comment

And then we said, “Put ze candle beck!”
And then we had cinnamon rolls and iced tea, sitting on the pickup’s tailgate at the edge of the field
And then we rode the chairlift back up the mountain, dangling our snowshoes
And then we brought our newly-adopted cat out of the shelter, and tried to find space for her in the car packed full of our last few things
And then we agreed, “It’s an outrage!”, laughing
And then we listened to the dogs’ breath and the sled runners’ hiss, in the harshly cold moonlight
And then we took Russian nicknames, and tasted borscht
And then we learned you really should downshift on the long uphills
And then we said yet again, “We should live here!”
And then we woke early, to feed the calves from a bucket of warm formula
And then we descended the spiral staircase to the chamber of the Pattern
And then we consulted the floor whisperer
And then we sawed through the couch’s frame, and bent it to fit through the door of the basement apartment
And then we watched the weather radar’s hurricane track, just not from the same place
And then we witnessed two golden retrievers become a single roly-poly ball with eight legs, two tails, but no head
And then we put on a puppet show in the chemistry department
And then we planted three aspen trees

an autobiographical list poem, inspired by this week’s Wordgrove pre-written prompt, “And then we . . .”,  which reminded me of just a few of the many “we”s I’ve been part of.

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rain

March 2, 2018 Leave a comment

(rain)

The sun-loving puppy
sits at the open door looking out
at the back yard,
the falling rain,
and her wet toys lying in puddles.
She needs to go out at some point,
but not yet, not yet.

She looks up and asks with her eyes,
“Can I have my treat now anyway?”
“Of course” I say, close the door,
and we both go back to the couch.

inspired by this week’s Wordgrove impromptu prompt, “rain”, and you know, living with a dog in Portland in the winter :-)

If you’d like to see what the other writers made of this prompt, you can check out the weekly Wordgrove Post and Review newsletter for March 4 2018.

what did i miss?

March 1, 2018 Leave a comment

A new poem:

Deep in a mountainside forest, at one bank of a wild, snowmelt-swollen stream, there is a large boulder that shelters behind itself a calm side pool, where the roar of the nearby rapids is muted by the mass of the rock. One of last year’s fallen leaves lies on the ground at the edge of the pool, half in the water. Disturbed by a slight ripple, it falls fully onto the water and begins to drift slowly in the shallow pool’s weak current. The leaf floats around the pool, sometimes near the center but usually closer to the edge, while also spinning slowly, and it trembles slightly each time it passes near the turbulent edge of the main stream. The leaf continues to circle the pool slowly, under the dappled morning light. A few times it nearly becomes grounded again. Once, it touches another leaf lying at the edge of the pool. The two cling together only briefly, and separate before the second can be pulled into the water. Seventy nine times the leaf loops slowly around the pool, as the morning becomes afternoon. Just as the leaf  passes close to the main stream for the eightieth time, a small sudden wave pulls it out of the pool and it swiftly disappears into the rapids downstream, moments before a hiker walking up the stream-side trail passes by and glances briefly at the pool without stopping.

Or in haiku form:

quiet pool by a loud stream –
what did I miss,
just before I looked?

inspired by this week’s Wordgrove prewritten prompt: “loop” and “spring”

that’ll do nicely

November 5, 2012 Leave a comment

Tom to me (via Twitter): Could you send some daylight back this way?

Me to Tom (via Twitter): Can’t send that, but will this help? http://writersalmanac.publicradio.org/index.php?date=2012/11/03

Tom: That’ll do nicely!

Here’s the actual poem, The Fall Almost Nobody Sees, by David Budbill. Click the link to hear it read by Garrison Keillor.

Everybody’s gone away.
They think there’s nothing left to see.
The garish colors’ flashy show is over.
Now those of us who stay
hunker down in sweet silence,
blessed emptiness among

red-orange shadblow
purple-red blueberry
copper-brown beech
gold tamarack, a few
remaining pale yellow
popple leaves,
sedge and fern in shades
from beige to darkening red
to brown to almost black,
and all this in front of, below,
among blue-green spruce and fir
and white pine,

all of it under gray skies,
chill air, all of us waiting
in the somber dank and rain,
waiting here in quiet, chill
November,
waiting for the snow.

poem: pondering

October 18, 2012 Leave a comment

old dog
pondering
the first fallen leaf…

the quiet world

September 24, 2012 Leave a comment

I was playing around with the Poetry Foundation‘s smartphone app, where you can search for poems by subject or mood, or even use a roulette-wheel style randomizer, and I found this lovely poem that seems very relevant to our Twitter-oriented culture. (Even though it predates Twitter by 8 years.)

I agree with Nancy’s observation that this poem reminds her of when she and I were first dating long-distance :-).

The Quiet World by Jeffrey McDaniel (1998)

In an effort to get people to look
into each other’s eyes more,
and also to appease the mutes,
the government has decided
to allot each person exactly one hundred
and sixty-seven words, per day.

When the phone rings, I put it to my ear
without saying hello. In the restaurant
I point at chicken noodle soup.
I am adjusting well to the new way.

Late at night, I call my long distance lover,
proudly say I only used fifty-nine today.
I saved the rest for you.

When she doesn’t respond,
I know she’s used up all her words,
so I slowly whisper I love you
thirty-two and a third times.
After that, we just sit on the line
and listen to each other breathe.

poem: still gets me home

April 27, 2012 Leave a comment

walking home
by the ugliest way
still gets me home