Saturday, January 30, 2021


 “For in and out, above, about, below, tis nothing but a magic shadow show played in a box whose candle is the sun, round which we phantom figures come and go”  ~~ Omar Khayyam

I know not my place in time.  Have I traversed the great white void, entered the shadows and emerged into the light where I meet the great I AM   

OR, am I spawned by the light, negotiating my way through the shadows to pristine peace, unencumbered with challenges behind and with contentment ahead?

Either way seems an acceptable destination.  

Thursday, January 28, 2021


 The daily news, dreary weather, and enforced solitude are getting to me.  It is good to have an occasional dream of being wild and free.   If it were to be so, I imagine it might  be something like this space trip.  Submitted to dVerse Meet the Bar- Beginnings  and to Poets & Storytellers United Writers' Pantry  Januiary 2021


          UP UP AND AWAY

Up, up and away to the land of dreams

Where the mind escapes, or so it seems

Last night, for example, was a remarkable ride

And oh the wonderful things I espied

We boarded our space ship, met our pilot, Android

Then sped off in our aluminum asteroid

Among all the glorious and memorable sights

Was our stunning drive-by of the northern lights

The star wranglers were busy arranging display

We rode through it all on the milky way

Ursa major and minor, the large and small dipper

Onward we sped with Android, our skipper

In the corner I noted a golden spittoon

Where they kept the skyhooks for hanging the moon

I saw the moon-jumping cow, the cat and the fiddle

The dish and the spoon singing hey diddle diddle

We encountered turbulence o’er the bounding main

The cloud walkers told us it was a hurricane

The cumulus and nimbus soon parted ways

Revealing the sun’s powerful beams and rays

We wanted our trip to go on and on

As we were enjoying the glorious dawn

It was the very best space trip anyone could take

Til the alarm sounded and I was rudely awake.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021


 Weekly Scribblings #54  and Magaly asks us to consider what "if we knew then what we know now",   which occasioned a lot of self examination....and in the end I waxed philosophical!  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, January 27, 2021 


Truly there is no sanctuary for that from which we run.   Life’s most valuable lesson is perhaps to accept responsibility for our life path.   Whatever egregious happenstance is in our past controls us if we carry it with us like a backpack of angst.  To cast it aside and accept responsibility for what happens next is a goal which brings the satisfaction of achievement.  Some wise one said “No matter where you go, there you are”, and indeed it’s our life choices that determine where we go and who we are when we get there. If I knew then what I know now a decision might have altered the course of my life …. and I don’t think I want to change it, although I might have been gentler and kinder at times!   

Monday, January 25, 2021


It's Quadrille #119 and the word is "way".  Limiting my verbose self to 44 words is always a challenge,  I really must practice being succinct. I may need to explain that the Lone Ranger was a favorite radio show in my childhood.  Submitted to dVerse, January 25, 2021

This way and that way
In and out
Backward and forward
Round about
Befuddled and addled
Struggling to see
Which is the best way
                               To sanity                                  
I once knew the masked man
He was the Lone Ranger
Now I’m confused 
To find he’s a stranger


Sunday, January 24, 2021


A wintry morning in my world with a light dusting of new snow. From my warm spot looking out, I'm reminded of the promise of seasons and the daily blessings in my world. It is good to revisit them in this time of enforced solitude.  Submitted to Writer's Pantry #54  Poets & Storytellers United, 1-24-21 

How I wish I could capture this world that I see
 And relay to others what it says to me 
How it settles me into my comfortable groove 
Warmed by the fireplace, too lazy to move 
That new fallen snow can cast a spell 
A promise of new beginnings and all that ends well 
That sunrise assures me another day 
 To explore and experience what I may 
And rainbows are blessings that follow rain 
To let me know sunshine will come again 
That music transports me to far-away places 
And brings to memory beloved faces 
That birds are feathered miracles sent to remind us 
That faith can help us put sorrow behind us 
And surely as leaves fall and winter winds blow 
Spring will follow with renewed life to show 
How I wish I could capture this world that I see 
And relay to others what it says to me.

Saturday, January 23, 2021


 The Sunday Muse #144 presents dual images with a message we all long for.  I've taken a brief and tongue-in-cheek approach.   Submitted January 23, 2021



It’s a miracle of miracles

Said the owl to the raven

An example of unity

That’s what we’ve been cravin’

Well I’ll be damned

Said the raven, it’s true

It really IS possible

Who gnu?

Thursday, January 21, 2021


Open Link Night #282  at dVerse.  I've  been thinking of good intentions and best laid plans.  While this poem is not autobiographical, I have my own set of best laid plans that never came to fruition.  One of my best intentions is to join in the live exchange.  Perhaps next week.                                              Submitted to dVerse January 21, 2021 



Deep in Appalachia

My daddy used to say

Is the cabin where I was born

I want to go back one day

I want to hear the whippoorwill

See the flash of the red-tailed hawk

I want to hear my mother

In that soft, tender way she talked

I want to see the sun come up

Over the top of Cosgrove’s mountain

And taste the crystal clear water

From  Cardwell’s artesian fountain

I want to be again the barefoot boy

With my home-made fishing pole

And skinny dip with a boyhood friend

In our secret swimming hole

I always thought I’d take him back

To the Appalachia he wanted to see

Somehow there wasn’t time enough

For that trip for Daddy and me. 

And if I had my life to live over

I’d take care to set aside

Some time for me and Daddy

   And we’d take that mountain ride.  


Wednesday, January 20, 2021


For this week’s prompt, we're presented with a few poetic names from Bruce Hamana Sosei’s book, 100 Beautiful Words in The Way of Tea, and asked to pick the English version of one (or more) about which to wrap our own words.  I've chosen "green shadows" and "go search for fireflies".  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United, January 20, 2021'



In the forest, among

the green shadows,

go searching for fireflies

as the leaves of the great

oaks whisper age-old


Here is peace.


Tuesday, January 19, 2021


dVerse Tuesday Poetics, and Merrill has asked us to consider connections in these days of the pandemic.  In the midst of it all we moved to a new community and the clubhouse has been closed to gathering.  I have been able to connect with a small group of women with a kindred interest in recreational writing, and we exchange our writing efforts by e-mail monthly. Elsewise, Merrill has asked us to consider how we’re connecting words, phrases and lines in our poems.  I seem always to think in rhyme, lines tidily complete (I can't seem to conquer enjambment).  Today,  I’ve been inspired to write a Jabberwockian nonsense poem for a little light relief.   Submitted January 19, 2021


Thunderation and dagnabbit

The obfurcator broke

It’s all wonkily awry

What’s more it’s bespoke

To make matters worse

and confabulate the story

There’s an obvious kink

In the confligatory

The trip may be abandoned

For reasons excomplicit

We’ve searched the  profabulary

But can’t seem to fix it

So hail and farewell

We’re stuck-- quarantined

Mayhap we’ll congregate in Valhalla

When we’ve all been vaccined 


Monday, January 18, 2021


Prosery is the challenge today,  and we're to write prosery of 144 words or less using a line from "Spring Azures", a poem by Mary Oliver....Sometimes the great bones of my life feel so weary.   My prosery is based on a true experience a number of years ago.   Submitted January 18, 2021 


 I stand in the clearing of a grove of trees, surrounded by ancient headstones and grave markers. The silence is broken only by a faint breeze in the trees and the lowing of cattle nearby.  After a long genealogical journey I have found this little pioneer cemetery near the banks of the Ohio.  I put my hand on the warm and weathered stone that marks the grave of my fifth great grandmother. Mentally I name the generations from her life to mine…five generations of women, each with a story to tell. Sometimes, the great bones of my life feel so weary, and I’m reminded in their time they each must have felt the same, as the pages of time moved inexorably on.  I was overwhelmed with the sense this is my place in time in the unending spiraling chain of DNA that makes us who we are.  

Sunday, January 17, 2021


Writers' Pantry #53 at Poets & Storytellers United.  Of course I love Bronte, because her poems rhyme, which brings me to a little frivolity in rhyme of my own.  This is based on a true experience. Heaven knows we must learn to laugh at ourselves!   Submitted on January 17, 2021


           THE NAVY SLIP

 T’was at my friend’s daughter’s wedding

I’ve remembered it all this while

I’d taken the arm of my usher

And we’d headed up the aisle.

Under my brand new navy dress

I wore my ancient navy half slip

It’s elastic was weak and weary

But it hung on my ample hip.

I was looking downright regal

For our brief trip, heaven knows

But, soon that dratted half slip

Fell down about my toes.

I hardly missed a forward step

As I bent to pick it up

Gathered it in my fist

And continued on…Hup Hup

My escort looked over at me

With a twinkle in his eye

“It was just my slip”, I whispered

And slid into my seat with a sigh.

When I told it at the reception

We all had a laugh quite hearty

As I sat slipless among good friends

At that well-remembered wedding party.

I’m attending a wedding in a week or two

But I won’t take a chance

I’ll still be downright regal,

But I’ll be wearing pants!

Saturday, January 16, 2021


The Sunday Muse #143 and Shay asks us to lighten up, write to the image or "go off the deep end".  I'm always a little leery of going off the deep end for fear I won't find my way back, so I wrote to the image!  



Looking back can be a dangerous thing 

or a joyous journey.  

Dwelling on the difficult times can lead to 

depression and indulging in what ifs.  

Best not to go there.

Remembering dear ones and good friends

now gone into the what-comes-after can lead

to a direct encounter with one’s own

mortality.   Risky territory.

Taking the joyous journey and revisiting

the happy moments, the good times,  the

victories, battles won and mountains climbed

can lead to a delicious nostalgia.  Highly


Thursday, January 14, 2021


Grace has asked us to consider personification and imagery at Poets Pub this week.  I've chosen to speak for a teddy bear, discarded as his master grew up and away.  Submitted January 14, 2021

Wednesday, January 13, 2021


 At Poets & Storytellers’ Wednesday Scribblings,  Rosemary has asked us to write something using a phrase from Mary Oliver’s beautiful poem “Landscape”.  I was struck by the phrase “the doors to my heart”.  Certainly this past week, the doors to my heart were opened wide --- once in deep sorrow to see the unbelievable happenings in my America, and again in unfathomable joy at the birth of my great granddaughter  It was a day of contrasts.  



On the  East coast, an angry throng gathered at the behest of their leader, who fanned the flames of their discontent with untruths and treasonous rhetoric.  I’ll walk with you”, he said, as he encouraged them to storm the seat of our government and disrupt the process of democracy.  Instead, he retired to a safe room where he watched on television the chaos he had wrought, as the very halls of the Capitol were filled with destructive, ransacking hoodlums, and a nation looked on in horror and dismay.

Meanwhile, in stark contrast, on the West coast a wee tiny baby girl struggled her way into a troubled world.  Downy cap of black hair, bright eyes and button nose, rosebud mouth, ten perfect fingers, ten perfect toes, and tiny ears, delicate and fragile as sea shells in ocean depths, she was born to young parents who looked on her with joy, pride, and immeasurable love, and an extended family who rejoiced with them.

They named her Margo, child of light.  May her light so shine. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

13 Ways of Looking at a Rock

dVerse challenge to feature an object.  I've borrowed a page from Wallace Stevens "13 Ways of Looking at a Blackbird" and applied it to rocks of note through the ages, which I found interesting.  Submitted to dVerse, January 12, 2021.  



This is not just a rock, it's part of history ....

 Phoenician landmark

Pillar of Hercules

Rock of Gibraltar

Aboriginal sacred site

Uluru, red behemoth

in Australia’s outback

Giant head on Easter Island

standing silently in mystery

through the centuries

Endless task of Sisyphus

pushed onto the hilltop

falling again to valley floor

Stone of Blarney

kissed by many

famous bit of Irish lore

Plymouth Rock beside the shore

welcome sight to Pilgrims

arriving to new land

Imposing Devil’s Tower

thrusting upward

from Wyoming’s vast expanse

Signature Rock on westward trail

where steadfast pioneers

left their marks for history

Rosetta stone

that cracked the code

of Egypt’s ancient hieroglyphs

Rushmore’s rock of faces

countenances of history

worn smooth by wind and rain

Part of Stonehenge Circle

holding fast the secrets

of ancient druids

Haystack Rock of Oregon

legacy of ancient lava

sentinel at Pacific shore

Faithful voices raised in chorus

“On Christ, the solid rock I stand

All other ground is sinking sand

All other ground is sinking sand.”

Monday, January 11, 2021


 It's  Quadrille #119 at dVerse, and our challenge word is "dab" to be used in exactly 44 words 

Submitted to dVerse, January 11, 2021 


Hey diddle diddle

I’m fit as a fiddle

And smack dab in the middle too

If I practice abacaDABra

Learn to swim the Niagara

                   Could I forget about this week’s coup                   

I’ll dibble dabble, dagnabbit

Til it becomes habit

Yes, that’s what I’ll dabbledy-do 

Sunday, January 10, 2021


 A couple of story poems came to me during our holiday hiatus, a distraction from the mayhem in Washington,  Submitted to Poets & Storytellers United January 10, 2021,


She was Katie, the farmer’s daughter

The butt of many a joke

But she was not the naïve maiden

Of whom they often spoke

She recognized the city slicker

When he came to call with a plan

To charm the farmer’s daughter

And steal her father’s land

 Katie had her own scheme

Which he could not foresee

I’ll teach the city slicker, she thought,

To try to take advantage of me

Batting her eyelashes, she plied him with liquor

And checked his pockets for stash

While he slept in a drunken stupor

She relieved him of his cash

And when the slicker awakened

Much to his surprise

He learned that the sweet Katie

Was a schemer in disguise

Crestfallen he headed back to the city

He wouldn’t admit his mistake

That he’d been the unwitting victim

Of the farmer’s daughter, Kate.

And the moral of the story

Is don’t let down your guard

If you plan to fool the farmer’s daughter

You’ll be hoist on your own petard.

Saturday, January 9, 2021


The Sunday Muse #142.  Still embroiled in the happenings of the week.  It appears we all are!  

One side of the apple
All shiny and pristine
Is reflected in the mirror
The side that’s to be seen

The other side is hidden
Lest its true self is viewed
Onlookers are quite unaware
The apple is piteously skewed

Politicians are like apples
We often don’t see the other side
And we become the victims
Of what we see and what they hide.

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Sally the Busker

Our challenge as presented by Sarah at dVerse is to choose a poem we've read, and write a poem in response.  My poem is Poe's "Annabel Lee".  I've always been partial to story poems, and enjoy writing them from time to time.  "Sally, the Busker" is one such poem, scribbled in my bedside notebook after a "midnight epiphany" during the past week's hiatus."

Submitted also to Poets & Storyteller's United Wednesday Scribblings, where we were asked to revisit past challenges.  The challenge I have in mind is #8 "Early Birds and Night Owls} for obvious reasons.  The buskers poem is the result of what I call "midnight epiphany".

Sally was a busker on the L Street line

She sang for her supper, and nickels and dimes

She wore a faded shirt and  ragged jeans

Holes in her shoe soles, and pockets full of dreams

She could be somebody, her momma said

Just keep her eye on the prize and don’t lose her head

With her eye on a scholarship and her goal school of law

She determined with hard work she could just show them all

She worked two jobs and slept when she could

She won accolades like momma said she would

Now she has an office and she’s standing tall

A long list of clients, and her diploma on the wall

She’s gained the accoutrements that speak for success

But Sally determined to give back, I guess

She speaks to the children in the old neighborhood

Instilling in them that life can be good

“You can be somebody, just like my momma said

Keep your eye on the prize and don’t lose your head

Just look at me now, I look mighty fine

But I’m still Sally, the busker, from the L Street line”


Monday, January 4, 2021


 Haibun Monday begins our New Year.  I'm thinking how the past year has impacted people of all walks of life, and how we all come together filled with hope for the new year.  Submitted to dVerse, 1-4-2021


The year 2020 brought a dark miasma that affected us all…..the makers of music and dreamers of dreams, givers and takers and people of means, spinners of words and rhymers of rhymes, counters of pennies, nickels and dimes, wanderers and vagabonds, casters of spells, those who suffer their own private hells, men of the soil and singers of songs, some who can’t differ the rights from the wrongs, code talkers, street walkers, saints and sinners, soothsayers, psychics, losers and winners, woman of the cloth and ladies of the night, tellers of tales and bringers of light….all types of people seeking one thing in common, a method to cope, clinging and trusting in the thing called hope.

Characters on stage

Everyone playing their role

Family of man 

Sunday, January 3, 2021


On revisit, the Muse seemed to have more to say.

Submitted January 3, 2021



Speeding forward, encumbered with the extraneous

clap-trap of imagined offenses, missed chances, 

failed adventures, aborted attempts, guilt, blame,  

and denial, lost lovers and freedom just beyond grasp 


Today is the beginning of tomorrow.

Saturday, January 2, 2021


The Sunday Muse #141   Our photo of inspiration serves to remind me of the inexorable passage of time in this journey we call life.  I've borrowed the first line from Omar Khayyam.

“The moving finger writes and, having 
writ, moves on”…. Unaware, we
stumble blithely forward, precious
moments of time unmarked, leaving
only shadows as invisible passengers
on our journey.