Friday, December 24, 2021


Good tidings to all, and a short rhyme.  Submitted to Poets and Storytellers United, 12-23-21.



Strange things befell me on the

way to Christmas.  Seems I slipped a 

cog along the way.  

Had an “absence” spell and hospital

visit just when I had planned no life delay.

.Learned again to take no day for granted.

Each is a gift to treasure, come what may.

Here I am to say happy holidays.  I’ve come

to rhyme another day

Wednesday, December 8, 2021


 Poetics Tuesday, and Merril has challenged us to consider "passions stamped on lifeless things". Since the beginning of time, men have attempted to leave their stories for those yet to come, and many of those stories have remained undiscernible and objects of intense study.  Submitted to dVerse, 12/8/21.

Beyond the dark of night and above the clouds, where brave men rode their man-made
steeds across the Milky Way to leave their footprints on our shining harvest moon, 
lies a vast nothingness that has captured man's curiosity for eons upon eons.  Ancient
hieroglyphs in distant caves speak of space beings and flying objects and a strange
menagerie called Nazca lines scripted in the sands of some distant land , discernible
only from high above, keep their purpose secret, ever eluding us.

In caves and buried cities,  cliff dwellings and civilizations beneath our oceans,
vanished men have left messages in pictographs, mystic marks and hieryglyphs, 
the penmanship of their time.  There are those who spend their lives attempting to
decipher those stories yet to be revealed.

Likewise, we write the stories of our time for some distant progeny to
attempt to decipher.  

Saturday, December 4, 2021


Ah, secondary characters!  None more put-upon than Mrs. Claus.  Santa gets all the accolades, and she's left to handle details.  This occasioned me to reprise an old poem I wrote some time ago.  Like the original, I like to think it's worth the read every Christmastime. Ir's a little risque, so I hope I don't offend anyone!  Here's Mrs. Claus' story. Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, Deember 4, 2021.



‘Tis the night before Christmas, I’ve just cleaned the house

Now I find Santa’s been drinking, the louse

He’s been into that bottle of Christmas cheer

I’ve been using for cooking since some time last year.

So, now the sleigh’s loaded (and so is he)

There’s nobody left to drive but me

There’s no place to sit except on his lap

And he’s probably lost the blasted map.

Well, giddyup Prancer, and Blitzen too

We’ve got an important job to do.

Just fly high and fast as in days of yore

We’ll go really fast, so they don’t hear him snore.

We’ll deliver these toys with all possible class

In spite of this tanked-up irresponsible ass.

Who’d have thought when I married my handsome prince

He’d turn into the bum I’ve been living with since.

Rudolph, I thought I could count on you

But I see by your nose you’ve been hitting the brew

Oh, how will I travel this highway of stars

When even NASA can’t find Planet Mars.

I’ m only one woman, but can’t you see

All the boys and girls are counting on me?

Well, here we go fellas, it’s a leap of faith

Pretend you’re up and it’s the last of the eighth.

I knew we could do it, I just love you guys

In spite of our troubles, you were wonderfully wise

The toys are delivered, we’re almost back

With this besotted tippler, and an empty sack.


We rose to the occasion and we did it all right.

He’s beginning to wake up….Oh you lecherous rake!

Not tonight, Santa, I have a headache.

Monday, November 22, 2021


 It's Haibun Monday at dVerse, and Frank has asked us to consider in these troubled times those things for which we are grateful.  Submitted to dVerse, November 22, 2021.

My grandfather was a man of small stature, usually wearing  bib overalls.  His forbears founded the first Methodist church in the settlement just north of the Ohio not many years after the Revolution.  Each succeeding generation lived simply, working hard to scrape a living from the land.  Grandpa bowed his head each day at supper, and thanked his God for simple things -- food for sustenance, weather for his crops, the roof over his head, and his family.  I’m grateful I learned from him that these simple things are truly the necessities of life.  All the rest is detritus, the miscellaneous claptrap we think we need today, the embellishments of the necessities.  

grandpa had it right

we just need the basic stuff

giving thanks for enough

Sunday, November 21, 2021




behind the façade of rust and peeling paint
chicanery and debauchery 
gambol with evil 


for those who would open the door

Friday, November 19, 2021


FRIDAY WRITINGS~~ The following prose reflects my thoughts at the funeral service of my niece's husband in a neighboring state. Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, November 19, 2021. ********************

He grew up in a small town in a family of ordinary means.  He and his two brothers fished, played ball, and  honored their parents.  After school, he joined the Marines and served for four years.  He returned to his small town, and made his living as a carpenter, known for his skill in cabinetry.  He married and he and his wife settled at the edge of a small town where they raised two sons, of whom, he was extremely proud.  He was a kind man with many friends in his small town, always willing to lend a helping hand.   He led his life in an ordinary way, and when the years settled upon him, he became a beloved grandfather, taking great joy in time spent with his grandchildren.  

When his time came, he fought cancer to the end, and lost his battle at home with those he loved around him.  At his funeral service, a stream of family and acquaintances paid respect, most having a story of some kindness he had extended  them.  He’ll lie at rest in the cemetery on the hill overlooking a bend of little Rook’s Creek, where the cold November wind scatters the golden leaves of the aspen planted on my brother’s grave long ago. far from a city of any size, far from busy highways and high rises. 

 An ordinary man. Well loved.  A life well lived.  

Monday, November 15, 2021


Quadrille 140 and we're given the word "fair" for our poem of exactly 44 words.   Submitted to dVerse, November 15, 2021. 


To be or not to be
In words of the bard
We find  the being
     Is inordinately hard     

We give our best 
All we can bear 
But obstacles appear
      It doesn’t seem fair       

All’s fair in love and war
Says the bard, what’s more

Wednesday, November 10, 2021


POETICS TUESDAY  and Laura asks us to take a page from our memory as basis for our poem.  I could not seem to get my memory in poem form, so I offer it in prose, still so vivid in my memory.  Submitted to dVerse 11/10-21.


Prominent in my memory is the console 

radio that sat by my father’s rocking chair. 

I remember December, 1941, when it brought

somber news of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

I remember the voice of Gabriel Heater as he

reported each evening on the battles “of our

boys” as World War II progressed.  I sat beside  

it, an old blackboard across the arms of

father’s chair for my desk as I did homework

and listened to the soap operas of the day. such as

“Our Gal Sunday”, a little girl from a mining town

in the West who tried to find happiness married to a 

wealthy and titled Englishman”. That radio is

part of the fabric of my memories growing up

during World War ii.

Monday, November 8, 2021


 PROSERY MONDAY,   Merril has issued the challenge to write our prosery of EXACTLY 144 words to include the following line from Adrienne Rich's poem "Planetarium" -- "I am bombarded  yet I stand".  Since software changes are afoot, I've issued a warning prosery.. Submitted to dVerse, Nocember 8, 2021.



Recently I read  Windows 11 is about to be released upon us. Simultaneously,  Yahoo e-mail is giving me a daily “Update Now”.  This means somewhere in some techno-den  the geeks lurk, busily planning to make changes proving they are worth their exorbitant salaries, and it is about to happen in a double dose.--one from Microsoft and one from Yahoo. In my experience these changes are thrust upon us,  the unwitting trouble-shooters,  to help them sort out the kinks. “I am bombarded, yet I stand” to the very last minute with my Windows 10 and my current Yahoo e-mail.  I’ve already seen their nasty little footprints when my mouse suddenly converted itself from single-click to double-click and began to respond tantamount to rollerskating in peanut butter. After a couple of weeks this seems to have mysteriously corrected itself.  Don your flak trousers, friends, change is coming.  

Saturday, November 6, 2021




broken glass, broken vows, broken heart
some things are cursed from the start
like translucent wing of dragonfly
speeding unknowing into hurricane sky
delicate particles cast asunder
lost in lightning, wind and thunder
like the shattered glass, translucent
crystalline, colorless, pallucid.
clear the shambles, exorcise
and vow, like Phoenix, again to rise 

Friday, November 5, 2021



When I think of food, I think of my grandmother’s chicken and dumplings.  On our visits, I enjoyed the entire process.  First a fat hen into the pot, simmering away and smelling wonderful.  Then putting flour on the great round table, and adding the richest of the juices from the pot until a dough formed.  I see her now, rolling pin in hand, rolling out the rich dough, then cutting it into squares which became pillows of delight along with the deboned chicken bits that had been returned to the pot.  Then, seated around the great round table, grandpa would say the grace that I recorded in the following poem.  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, November 5, 2021


I remember grandma’s kitchen

from those days of long ago

for never king no president 

saw such a wondrous show

The smell of grandma’s dumplings

I remember to this day,

and just as surely I recall

Grandpa saying “Let us pray”.

Then, gathered around the table

each seated in our place

large and small we’d bow our heads

as Grandpa said the grace.

“The corn”, he’d say, “is might dry.

Lord we pray you see fit for rain,

and Neighbor Brown is poorly, Lord

We pray you ease his pain”.

And the trails of steam grew shorter

over Grandma’s wondrous bounty

as Grandpa brought before the Lord

each sinner in the county.

He’s finished, surely, I would think.

there is no more to ask…

only to hear to my dismay

Grandpa warming to his task.

“We pray, oh Lord, for wisdom

for the leaders of our land

that they may steer this country

with a sure and steady hand.”.

His burdens laid upon the Lord

Grandpa would finally reach amen.

When heads were raised, forks were poised

all ready to dig in.

Now I know Grandpa’s in heaven

for it is his rightful place

but when God’s hungry, I’ll bet he says

“You set the table, Fred, I’ll say the grace.”


I see them now, the beloved faces at that table.  All passed now into the Great What Comes After, but living still in the memory of those of us privileged to have had a seat at Grandma’s table.

Thursday, November 4, 2021


 MEET THE BAR:  Our challenge is to consider the concept of conceit, and  Bjorn has given us excellent examples. Even so, I am not sure I'm smart enough to grasp the interpretation of this challenge.  Submitted to dVerse, November 4, 2021

Yesterday’s lush green grass is today white with frost

and the air is refreshingly clear and sparkling to inhale.

Leaves,  seemingly turned overnight to spun honey

release their tenuous hold  and denude tree limbs,

spiraling downward in crazy-quilt fashion, 

likening themselves to a golden snowfall.

Yesterday’s pumpkins look on in dismay

accepting that their days are numbered.

Autumn is bidding farewell to the heartland.

Tuesday, November 2, 2021



We’re to write  a poem using only concrete nouns. We may not use the following words which are banned:  soul, love, lust, dreams sorrow, suffering, wonder, heartache, etc.    (As an aside, it would be refreshing if we could ban the word vaccination from our newscasts.  It would no doubt leave the newscasters speechless!)  My woeful effort is submitted to dVerse on November 2, 2021.



I stop on my walk at the oak by the path

to pick up a perfect flaming leaf.

Only yesterday, it seems, it was the color of jade

yet today it’s stunningly ruby

How convenient it would be if we could

just as quickly adjust to resplendent, perhaps 

on the day we turn back the clocks.  Yes,

I'll think about that as I continiue my walk.

Morning News

 Monday Quadrille.  Our given word for our 44 word quadrille is "careen".   Submitted to dVerse, November 2, 3021


stay home son

don’t take the gun

a mother pleads

be careful, son

with your uniform on

another mother worries

a car careens

gunshots ring out

              sirens scream in the night            

morning news

another death

             a mother cries             

another mother

another son

another gun 

Sunday, October 31, 2021


FINAL WRITERS' PANTRY #84.  My muse dropped by the other midnight and left me a Halloween story poem.  We all know how I love a story poem!  Submitted 10/31/21 at Poets & Storytellers United.


Hannah is a small witch
A bit timid,  you might say
Casting good spells
.   In her mild-mannered way
All the other witches
Complained and cast aspersion
Shaking their brooms
Employing threats and coercion
“If we don’t get that witch
Out of the witchcrafting game
Sure as we stir here“, they said
“She’ll give us a good name”
But Hannah just continued
Her work with a smile
They’ll not be changing
Her witchcrafting style
She keeps a tidy witch house
And casts her spells with care
When Hannah stirs her cauldron
It spreads happy everywhere

Saturday, October 30, 2021


 The Sunday Muse #184   Of course the song "The Old Lamplighter" came immediately to mind.  I tried to add the You Tube link, but was unsuccessful for some obscure reason.  The image put me in quite a melancholic mood.

The year was 1946, and the mellow tones

of Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye sang of “The

old lamplighter of long, long ago“..

They’re gone now, Danny Kaye and Bing Crosby,

the scandalous bikini went on sale in Paris that year

and Tupperware was introduced to the market.

Rosie the Riveter was giving up her factory job

The war had ended and “the boys” were coming home

Now the Old Lamplighter is even longer ago.

We need someone to carry the light, to show

us an end to divisiveness and racism 

and this infernal pandemic, someone

to restore pride in the red, white and blue,

faith in our national leaders, and respect for 

our neighbors no matter their color or race.  

Come back, Old Lamplighter, WE NEED YOU!

Thursday, October 28, 2021


OPEN LINK #303   When we post the poem of our choice.  I’m a hopeless wordaholic, and I love to examine words. I’ve indulged in that today, and taken a crack at the word crack!  Submitted to dVerse, October 28, 2021


I engage in word forensics

Exploring the many uses of a word

It’s often the way I go to sleep 

(I got bored with counting sheep)

Let’s examine the common word crack

According to Webster a split in two parts

But what of the loud crack in the night

Someone trying to be a crack shot?

Consider the foiled attempt

That’s not what it’s cracked up to be

Some bloke free-basing crack cocaine

Or the fellow who tries to lighten the mood

Who’s sure to crack a joke

Or the quiet guy, man of few words

Who surprises us with a wisecrack

Crack the eggs and scramble them

I’m hungry….It must be the crack of dawn

And I do believe I’m getting sleepy ….Zzzz

Wednesday, October 27, 2021


FINAL WEEKLY SCRIBBLING #93  We're asked to write of a special childhood activity, something we especially enjoyed.  Many things came to mind, but evening bicycle rides clung to my memory.  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, October 27, 2021



In my childhood world, the vast agrarian space of central Illinois was divided in exact mile squares, each comprising 640 acres of  rich black soil, and divided into tidy little homesteads, each with a house, a barn, a corn crib and perhaps a small shed for chickens.  There were only five such homes along the roadside of our mile square, and between them just the vastness of Illinois prairie.   One of my favorite pastimes was a bicycle ride around our square mile just at dusk.  The only sound was that of my bicycle wheels on the gravel road, and the occasional trill of a meadowlark or red-winged blackbird in the fencerows.  The most perfect rides were just after the alfalfa and sweet clover had been cut to dry and be baled for feed for livestock during winter.  The scent of new mown hay is intoxicating and unparalleled.  No perfumer has ever been able to recreate it.  I dreamed great things on those solitary rides in the innocence of my childhood.  How I wish I could reproduce those magic rides.  


Tuesday, October 26, 2021


Tuesday Poetics, and we're asked to write " a poem speaking to a human attribute that is particularly irritating to you — and it must have a Halloween or Samhain theme to it"  A duodora form was offered, but I respectfully decline and fall back on my rhyme.  



doomsayers, naysayers
prophets of doom
sure to be noticed
when they enter a room
a party in progress
and everyone glad
until they come along
with their bucket of sad
no small wonder
they’ve dressed like a witch
even sans their mask
you can’t tell which is witch
it must be depressing
to live in their head
and carry their inevitable
backpack of dread
call me goody two-shoes
and incredibly naïve
if they come to the party
I’ll just have to leave.

Monday, October 25, 2021


Writer's Pantry # 93  and I indulge in a small pity party, most likely the result of a series of four gloomy, chilly, rainy days.  I'm ordinarily not one for pity parties, but one seemed to present itself this morning.  Submitted to Poets and Storytellers United, October 28, 2021


"The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on, nor all thy piety nor wit shall lure it back to cancel half a line, nor all they tears wash out a word of it",   ~Omar Khayyam  



Time teaches humility … and reality

in gradually insidious painful lessons

So much to be learned as we progress through life

I thought I’d always be a capable multitasker.

Though I can still drive .. I cannot lift my walker

into the car, so where will I go? and what will I do

after I get there?

I loved grocery shopping, and reading the

gossip sheets while I stood in line

Now I order my groceries on line,,,

and have them delivered.

We used to be a monthly eight for lunch,

dear friends and I.  Now we are two,

...and can’t get there.without help.

Monthly art meetings were a source of inspiration.

No meetings now, and art projects grow fewer and fewer.

I always prided myself on being positive

Now positivity is  a chore... and frequent façade

Criteria for planning outings:  Are there stairs?  

Is parking close?  Is seating immediate?  Is the

restroom easily available!

Adjustments to be made, and blessings to

be counted…and I find there are still plenty

of those.

Time to enjoy the beauty around me.  Time

to observe lives of  those I hold dear, and 

let them know they are loved.

Time to be revered.  

Saturday, October 23, 2021


 The Sunday Muse #183


“Ponder the image and the meaning of life

Link, share and visit others”

Keep it in mind as you walk down the street

All are your sisters and brothers

Remind yourself you’re no better than they

Each their own challenges to meet

Some dealing with victory, some with grief

But all walking  the same cobbled street

Practice kindness, humility and a ready smile

They’ll remember it well if you ask

One day they’ll truly appreciate the smile

When it’s not behind a mask! 


Thursday, October 21, 2021


THURSDAY POETICS, and the challenge is to write a compound word poem with set rhyme and meter given as aab and 883 in each of 5 3-line stanzas.  Submitted to dVerse October 21, 2021.


Our encounter was meant to be
though likely we did not foresee
it coming.

In spite of the stormy forecast
we felt certain it would last
a long time.

Cluelessly we chose to forego
troubles that continued to show
us red flags

Enjoying passionate foreplay
we continued to seize the day
and savor it

'Til something we could not foretell
ended in our passion's death knell
it's all done.

Wednesday, October 20, 2021


WEEKLY SCRIBBLINGS  Moving forward to a new format, we're asked to write something on the theme of forward movement.  I took a look back at all the poetic terminology I've encountered here, and I'm looking forward to learning more!  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, October 20, 2021



Assonance dissonance, volta and rhyme
Seguidilla,,sasparilla, lemon and lime
Stanzaic, syllabic, and skip to milieu
Slant rhyme, unrhyme, haibun and haiku
Such are the concerns of an aspiring poet
One thing to hear it, another to know it
While looking back at challenges met
Moving forward seems timely
There’s much to learn yet!.

Sunday, October 17, 2021


WRITER'S PANTRY #82   It's the time of year I wish I were young enough to go on an old-fashioned hayride, if I could find one.   I'll just settle for fond memories.  Submitted to Poets and Storytellers United, October 17, 2021.


Once upon a long time ago in the times that used to be, October was not complete without a hayride and weiner roast in the woods.  Mode of transportation was a hayrack pulled by a tractor.  A hayrack was a flat bed wagon used for hauling baled hay from field to barn--large enough for a group of friends.  A bumpy ride through the woods led to a clearing, and an awaiting campfire surrounded with bales of hay or straw for seating.  Delicious roasted weiners were followed by s’mores--a sandwich made of graham crackers, a chunk of Hershey chocolate and a roasted marshmallow to melt it all together.  YUM!  By now the sky was a carpet of stars, the air crisp,  and the campfire popping and sending sparks skyward. Time for the traditional ghost stories and campfire songs while the campfire does its magic. After a time, the fire banked, we reluctantly head back out of the woods, carrying with us a happy memory that will last a lifetime.  

Saturday, October 16, 2021




If you drive at night on Cemetery Road
Especially if you’re driving slow
They say she’ll be sitting on the bench
Captured in the pale moon glow

Mother sent her to wait for the bus
Or so the story goes
The fact is she never arrived
What happened no one knows

Her fate is wrapped in mystery
Her mother’s grief is endless
People say you’ll see her there
On nights dark and windless

Dressed in schoolday best,
A red bow in her hair
They searched for her all around for days
But found no sign of her anywhere

Years have passed since that fateful day
And still the story is told
People say they see her still
On the bench on Cemetery Road

Wednesday, October 13, 2021


WEEKLY SCRIBBLINGS and we're to feature a symbol or object of importance to us.  My mind went to my fascination for old barns and abandoned houses.  Many years ago I took some oil painting lessons, and naturally I painted old barns!  One such is depicted below.  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, October 13, 2021

I wonder why I’m drawn to abandoned houses

and falling down old barns

and why it is my mind wanders to 

how life must have been, 

who was the last person who lived there

and why did they leave.

Am I an old soul, wandering aimlessly

in this generation, as if transported

by some mysterious time machine

taking with me the memories

of that time and place in the pages of time.

What does it mean to be an old soul

and is there such a thing as reincarnation.

Karma seems to make sense

when I wonder why bad things happen

to good people, and if they are

paying back big time for wrongs in some past life.

 If we are to learn a lesson in each lifetime

 what am I to learn in this one.

Have I learned it or will I have to

do this all again.

Sunday, October 10, 2021


 The Sunday Musse #181


Drucilla wanted to be queen

but alas she was only a pawn

she listened to the bishop and rook

until the knight was gone


 Writers' Pantry @91 where we "let our imagination run wild".  I'm having a flashback.  I saw his name in the obituraries, the man with laughing eyes.  I hope he found what he was seeking.  He left an indelible  smudge on my outlook on life.  So, here's a poem for him.


I once knew a man with laughing eyes

who caused my heart to dance

who made me believe in love again

and, trusting, I took a chance.

I loved the man with laughing eyes

and oh, love was so sweet

I believed no challenge could be so great

that together we could not meet.

Sometimes we loved by firelight,

sometimes we loved by day

....then one day the man with laughing eyes

seemed to have gone away.

I said to the man with laughing eyes

"You seem to have built a wall.

I've tried to scale it but I cannot,

it's really much too tall".

And so went the man with laughing eyes

away from my life for good.

I guess I knew it could never last,

but, oh, how I wished it would.

For a moment we had it, my laughing eyes

but alas it was just for a day

and quickly as snowflakes disappear

our bright tomorrows slipped away.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021


WEEKLY SCRIBBLINGS #90.   Rommy recalls an Anne of Green Gables quote "I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers!"   Me too!  The very word evokes so many happy memories.  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, October 6, 2021.


Words come tumbling to describe sights,

sounds and memories from the 

pages of my life. 

 Hayrides.  Bonfires.  Weiner roasts. 

S’mores.  Pumpkins.  Gourds. 

Chrysanthemums. Migrating geese.  

Flocking birds.  Cobalt skies. 

Burning leaves. Flaming maples.

Russet oaks. Golden aspens.  

Misty mornings.  First frost. 

 Scarecrows. Sweaters.  Crisp air.  

Harvest time.  Football games.  

Marching bands. Pumpkin pie. Taffy apples.  

Little Pigeon River.  Great Smoky Mountains.  

For each word a story to be told.   


Tuesday, October 5, 2021


Poetics Tuesday, and Sanza has given us lengthy and explicit instructions in the art of  panegyric poetry.  I've chosen to depict my dream candidate in our next presidential election.  Call it fantasy if you wish!  Submitted to dVerse, October 5, 2021


                    THE CANDIDATE

Your youthful vigor has been ever directed

toward the goal of service to this country

you love  Since early years, you have conducted

yourself with integrity, treating others with respect,

but never veering from your goal.  You are the

epitomy of an honorable man,  humble and

God-fearing, yet courageous when need be.  

There are no questionable issues in your past 

to be divulged to demean you. You have accrued 

no debts or favors to dissuade your goals.  You are

my candidate.  You have my vote.

Monday, October 4, 2021


 QUADRILLE #137  where we are required to "throw stone poems" using the word stone. 

Like Sisyphus 
I pushed the stone
slowly to the mountaintop…
my obsidian
bitterness and anger
               acknowledged yet again


I began to see it
as a strong foundation.
Set free at last
             I built my house upon it
Here I stand
Home at last 

Sunday, October 3, 2021


Writer's Pantry #90   Methinks my interpretation of Miss Rosemary's Weekly Scribbling challenge for realism fell short, so here's another effort at realism.  The photo is of a street in our community, the description is of a daytime view from my window.


                                            The late summer sky is a cloudless cobalt.

                                            A new home is being built across the street,

                                            and today the roofers are busy. They walk

                                            effortlessly on the steep pitch of the roof as

                                            they go about their work. At noon, they

                                            stop and sit on the cement slab that will be

                                            the front porch, and share their sack lunches

                                            and  daily gossip, no doubt, grateful their

                                            outside work relieves them of the necessity 

                                            of wearing masks.  Activity is interspersed    

                                            by the daily parade of dog-walkers, who

                                            amuse me daily by their endless array of 

                                            four-legged companions.  Soon the house

                                            will be complete, new neighbors moved  in,

                                            and life will go on comfortably in our

                                            over-55 community. 


Saturday, October 2, 2021


The Sunday Muse #180

                                                            My lips are sealed.’

                                                            I am the keeper of

                                                            dark secrets passed 

                                                            to me by those

                                                            who came before

                                                            I do not speak of the

                                                            tortured souls they

                                                            left behind,. My eye

                                                           is ever open, seeking

                                                            respite from the

                                                            burden I bear

Wednesday, September 29, 2021


WEEKLY SCRIBBLINGS #89  Rosemary asks us to consider realism.  I offer a series of vignettes that might be called maverick limericks in that they are a line short and have a different rhyming scheme.  The first indulges in realism, the next three consider the realist.  Submitted to Poets and Storytellers United, September 29, 2021

There once was a dog named Sport
Daily he walked with Sam
When asked who’s in charge
The dog would answer “I am!”

There once was a girl named Rosie
A pragmatic realist, cute and hip
“Nay, I’m a realistic pragmatist“, said Rosie
“I practice shooting from the lip.”
There once was a fellow named Nate
Who practiced the art of realism
Nate always had just one answer
With no possibility of schism.
There once was a fellow named Arthur
Practicing realism with a rowdy shout
His answer was sure to be loud and blunt
With him there was never a doubt.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021


 It's Tuesday Poetics, and Lillian has given us a site that lists the #1 hits in the year of our birth, and challenges us to use that title in our poem.  I'm not sure whether to be insulted, to weep or laugh.  I am apparently so old the calendar at the site begins in l940 when I was 6 years old!  I had to look elsewhere to discover #1 in my birth year was "Moon Glow" by.Benny Goodman.  But along the way I wondered why we consider the moon to be masculine.  Submitted to dVerse, 9/20/21


Why do we say man in the moon

Why not lady of midnight

Could the moon cast her moonglow

On objects below 

Could she send her magic moonlight

Moonbeaming lovers in the dark

Who says that's not right

Being the queen of romance

and star-studded dance

Could we just for once say

The lady shines tonight? 

Monday, September 27, 2021


Haibun/Haiku and Frank asks us to overcome writers' block for our haibun this early autumn day.  Having made a quick (?) stop at the grocery, I had no trouble with block at all!  Submitted to dVerse 9/27/21


                                      GROCER MIGRAINE

In the Stone Age, when I was a child, the grocer in our little town had shelves stocked with everything from crackers to bag balm.  It was a folksy little place where the local farmers gathered to visit a bit before going home to do the chores, and kids could get a towering ice cream cone for a dime.  I was thinking of it this week while bumbling about my ex-favorite grocery trying to find the items on my list.  The store is being converted to one of those mega-nightmares where I need a golf cart to get from produce to paper products.  Nothing is where it used to be, and the layout, I’m sure, was created by a demented chimp on speed.  A pound of coffee used to be 16 ounces, and picking up a box of crackers used to be a simple thing once upon a long ago.  Now crackers gives me a headache.  Low fat or no fat?  Extra thin and crispy?  Do I want regular, salt-free or low salt, cheddar flavor, ranch or barbeque, baked or traditional?  It’s enough to leave hapless shoppers in a corner in the fetal position.   My friends and I are in our senior years.  We wear out quickly.  We have decided to lobby for a first-aid station somewhre mid--store!

Grocer marathon

Requires time and stamina

No more quick pick-ups

Sunday, September 26, 2021


 Writer's Pantrv #89, and I've indulged in a bit of word play.  Heaven knows the English language provides enough fodder for the mill when it comes to word play.  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United,  September 26, 2021.


                WHAT'S UP?

The English language has lots of idiosyncrasies,

 not the least of which is  the little word up.  

Attempting to explain it to someone learning 

English is a lesson in frustration.  Give up, 

for example, is to concede, hold up is to rob;

and a tossup is equally divided.  While makeup 

 means cosmetics applied to one’s face, to make up 

is to mend a  fractured relationship.  Put up 

implies to restore to proper place; but undesired 

people are someone you won’t put up with.  

To begin is to start up, but an impertinent 

person is an upstart.  A person over-impressed 

with themselves is said to be stuck up (or uppity), but to 

rob at gunpoint is a stickup. There are numerous

more uses,  but it’s best to simply avoid  the word 

up when helping someone learn English,  It just 

leaves guessed it...all mixed up.  It’s no 

surprise a common greeting is WHAT’S UP?

Wednesday, September 22, 2021


 WEEKLY SCRIBBLINGS   Autumnal Equinox, and Magaly has given us a choice of phrases to include in our poem.  I've chosen "I see you". Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, 9/22/21

Autumn enters on sodden feet--

the kind of rain that leaves us

searching for a fleece jacket

and thinking of bonfires

The last roses of summer bloom

bright and stubborn,

rebuffing the chill distraction, 

the burning bushes have yet

to don their coats of scarlet 

and the hills are still green.
refusing to bow to the

first days of autumn.  Here 

in my world we anticipate

those golden days we call

Indian summer, when the

scarecrows say “I see you”, and

gorgeous fall displays appear 

everywhere--pumpkins, gourds, 

chrysanthemums, straw bales

and joy---and  we know at last

autumn has truly arrived.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021


 POETICS TUESDAY.  Mish's challenge has us considering the marvelous fruits of autumn.  Autumn trips to the apple orchard were part of my childhood.  Submited to dVerse 9/21/2021.

                                                It was autumn tradition -- apple orchard day!

                                                A country drive down sun kissed roads,

                                                painted leaves skittering across the road,

                                                the sky a clear and cloudless cobalt blue.

                                                At last, the familiar apple barn!

                                                Savoring its heady. sweet smell

                                                we’re offered cups of spiced cider

                                                while mother chooses her familiar

                                                --red delicious, jonathans, 

                                                  Grimes goldens--every year exactly

                                                 4 1/2 bushels--we eye the caramel

                                                 apples that will be take-home treats..

                                                 With a trunk full of apples, off we go.

                                                munching our crisp, juicy apples.

                                                 Within two weeks, the shelves in

                                                Mother’s larder are lined with

                                                sparkling jars of apple butter, apple sauce,

                                                apple jelly, and sliced apples for pies; 

                                                the rest in cool storage bins for school day

                                                snacks and the winter traditional Sunday 

                                                supper of popcorn and crisp apples.

                                                Another year, another apple orchard day.

                                                Ah, bliss!.

Monday, September 20, 2021


 QUADRILLE  #136   Linda asks that we use the word "linger" in our 44 word quadrille.  Submitted to dVerse, September 20, 2021


Gone so many years

yet your memory lingers

sometimes I feel your touch

hear your voice

smell your after shave

remember thoughts shared

and plans made

gentle loving nights

and for a moment,

just for a fleeting moment,

I don't feel alone

Sunday, September 19, 2021


 Writers' Pantry #87  Summer is winding down in my world.  I've written an homage to country summers as I recall them.  I really think they haven't changed a good deal over the years!  Submitted to Poets & Stoytellers United, September 19, 2021.


                                                            Unforgiving heat and humidity

                                                            steals your breath and

                                                            leaves you without energy

                                                            like an inert dryad 

                                                            clinging to an autumn leaf

                                                            Ears hang heavy on the cornstalks

                                                            tomatoes, plump and red in the garden

                                                            magenta grapes cluster on the vine

                                                            pumpkins destined for jack-o-lanterns

                                                            dot fields awaiting hopeful children.

                                                             Cattle group under shade trees

                                                            or stand in streams for relief

                                                            birds begin to gather for migration

                                                            in obsidian rows on phone lines, or

                                                            flying in undulating formations

                                                            Farmers prepare for harvest

                                                            their tractors join country traffic

                                                            and roads become a parade

                                                            in familiar processions accepted

                                                             by summer travelers

                                                            Thunderstorms and lightning

                                                            make way for picnics and watermelon

                                                            county fairs and festivals

                                                            family reunions and church suppers

                                                            It’s summer in the country