Pelicans Pause

25 Jul

Perched upon pilings,
pelicans pause, patiently
primping and preening.

 

 

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We went to Ponce Inlet, FL last Saturday to participate in a poetry reading at Lighthouse Park (I got to read 4 poems, YAY!). Afterwards I wandered around the neighborhood taking photos. Across the street from the park, at the marina, there were a bunch of large pelicans perched on pilings, almost 20 of them. Pelicans are curious birds, and I love to watch them. This group seemed to be waiting for the resident head boats to come back from their morning fishing trips.

Wrote a haiku about them, because lately I have been in a haiku sort of mood.

 

This Idea Must Die (American Sentences)

24 Jul

This idea must die:
The Tao of Twitter
Calming your angry mind.

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A found poem at my local library, culled from the “newly released” bookshelf.

American Sentences are a type of modern haiku invented by Allan Ginsburg. They are Sentences with 17 syllables and can be solo or in groups.

The Armchair Railman

21 Jul

My Dad, he loved trains
he loved the chug of them
the noise and wind
of a full steam scream
the metal and fire and hold on
for  your life, looking
for the next stop
coming round the bend

Standing on platforms
with places to go,
hat in your hands
miles stretched long
stitched across the land
heads hanging out windows
then whooshing past
an abandonded depot
in a town that time forgot

My Dad, he loved trains
never met a station
he didn’t like, and
built railroad altars
throughout his life
to hold those engines
in the palm of his hand
my Dad, he loved trains.

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Well, thanks Bill. This is the type of prompt that I need. Something to help me out of my poetic rut.

Trains are in my blood. They are an Eyde Thing (as are planes, but let that be another poem). My dad loved trains, and he knew all the lines, all the railroads, used to travel to obscure places just to see their train stations. He was famous for saying, “the train used to stop here, in this little place!” with the same tone of nostalgic amazement, every time. Trains brought life, and my dad celebrated that. It fascinated him, much like boats and ports and maritime history fascinates me. Ever since I was a small child he used to buy train sets and built model railroads with my brothers and I. He never stopped, up until he passed away at the age of 71 he built train sets and models. It was his indulgence in his later years.

The photo is of the old train depot in Gettysburg, PA. I took this photo while I was visiting Gettysburg with my mom and one of my daughters. Local legend says that President Lincoln arrived at this station with his train car when he came to deliver the Gettysburg address. Gettysburg is a bit off the beaten track, so it didn’t get much traffic and the train station shut down in the mid 20th century. My Dad went to college at Gettsyburg, and I imagine that he probably got a kick out of the train station there, just a couple of blocks from campus but historically significant because of it’s place in time and history.

The Philosophy of Disposal

19 Jul

so much depends upon
the backseat of a car
a sundress, a boyish grin

so much can happen in
a makeshift time machine
your hands, gentle in my hair

so much depends upon
the urgent silence of
not taking ourselves too seriously

with you, I never felt time
slip so quickly
through my fingers, before

and letting you go
is the bravest thing I’ve ever done
with a smile on my face

but none of this explains why
I feel like I am missing a limb
the ache of which haunts me

Live oak tree limbs.

Live oak tree limbs.

I have been tiptoeing around my thoughts and ideas, looking for something to spark a poem. I have been wanting to write for several weeks, but I have been holding back, knowing that my thoughts are not clear, my feelings too raw. There are things I don’t have words for. There are things I don’t want to put into words, because words are insufficient. Silence can be a good friend.

Last week, Brian posted a prompt over at Dverse, to write a poem about the philosophy of something. The first line of a William Carlos Williams poem immediately came to mind, so I used that as a springboard for this poem. I tried to keep it raw.

Full Tilt

6 May

Like spring
you came on strong
arousing me from a dream
with birds in my ear, mornings
awakening into a cacophony
of call and response, let me tell you
I know how the flowers feel
as they wait for the bees

noon was rising
a sudden, full burn
like summer
that left my head spinning
hazy visions of a future, elusive
the way heat dances above
a stretch of highway
which sems to go on forever

all senses full tilt
I was aware, every nuance
of you, each part of me affecting
you became a harvest
a gorged Indian Summer
and spinning, spinning,
you made the leaves leap
off my branches
like fall.

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Taking a Step Back

18 Apr

I am going to take a step back from writing for a while. I am going to try being a student of poetry instead.

I started this poetry blog two years ago, in April 2013. Since then, 262 people have liked my poems enough to follow my blog! It has been a wonderful thing. I want to take a moment and thank you all for following and liking my poems. I have been very encouraged by your participation in my blog, at a time when I needed it very much.

Of the 200+ poems I wrote during the past two years, I chose to keep about 40 that come straight from my heart. Of the poems that I decided to keep online, most of them were written about people I love, places, and experiences that have moved me. They are all linked on the right hand side of the screen. I hope you enjoy them.

Down with the Sails

5 Apr

Wild nights Wild nights!
Were I with thee
Down would come the sails
Naked in the moonbeams we
As our Wild nights should be
Our secret luxury!

Futile the calling winds
My Heart seduced in your port
Done with the Compass
Done with the Chart!
My Q flag a flying
My wheel lashed up short.

Rowing in a blissful Eden
Ah rocking in time with the Sea!
My heart tugs at the anchor
Open your arms to harbor me
Might I but moor tonight
Dear sir, In thee!

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It’s a poetic arts & crafts project for day five of NaPoWriMo. Today’s prompt is to choose a poem by Emily Dickinson, then deconstruct and reconstruct it. I chose Wild Nights – Wild Nights! (no surprise there). I incorporated a little bit more of the ‘sailboat in port’ metaphors. I was never fully satisfied with her original poem to begin with, so this was a nice chance to doctor it up a bit.

What it is Not

1 Apr

What is it not?
No one ever asks but
it is not five times seven times three
it is not forty degrees north
seventy four degrees west

it is not found
like a penny on the sidewalk
or passed over, or let go altogether
because budget cuts
because the market these days

it isn’t able to be deleted
like a voice mail we didn’t listen to
or muted
like a conversation that bores us
it is not fruitful to ignore

it isn’t about giving leftovers to a stranger
on the corner, with no teeth
it isn’t about saying yes
and meaning no, not really
and it is not your very favorite song

it won’t bite you
nor whine in your ear all night
and you can’t hold it, so
you didn’t expect it
to purr in your hand

and despite your best intentions
to appear nonchalant
it won’t ask you to stay
nor will it give you a choice
either way.

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National Poetry Month is here! The challenge of NaPoWriMo is to write a poem every day for 30 days. There are prompts all over the web to help you accomplish this. I chose to use today’s prompt from NaPoWriMo.net, which was to write a poem of negation. Sounded fun and interesting to me, so I gave it a shot. Hope you like it, and join us this month in writing poems every day.

Click on the button to hear me read this poem out loud:

Con Mucho Tacto / Tactfully

18 Mar

Me tocastes.
Aqui. Y aca.
Me has tocado
por todas partes
en lugares secretos
que nadie mas ha visto
en tiempos pasados
que no quiero borrar
profundamente me tocaste
aunque sin verte, ni oírte
y aveces sin entender
tu silencio.

Pero, yo no soy niña
y para que lo sepas
caigo bien en cuenta
que no eres tu el
que intenta tocarme
sino mas bien soy yo
la que se abre
y se deja tocar
como una flor que vive
fugaz, sin miedo
de marchitarse.

Tactfully

You touched me.
Here. And over here.
You have touched me
everywhere
in secret places
that no one else has seen
in times past
that I don’t wish to erase
you touched me deeply
despite not seeing, or hearing you
and sometimes without understanding
your silence.

But, I am not a young girl
and so that you know
I am well aware that
it is not you who
tries to touch me
instead rather it is I
that opens up
and lets myself be touched
like a flower that lives
fleetingly, without fear
of withering.

Gardenia by Lupe Eyde-Tucker

Look around, there is evidence everywhere.

A shower poem.

Big Picture

2 Dec

I don’t need anything
from your trip across town
though I always rack my brain
thinking of that elusive thing
that might complete the task,
the day, and perhaps my life.

I don’t need anything
from the store, at least nothing
that can be bought or sold
and definitely not another thing
to add to the tower of things
I have filling up my closets now.

I don’t need anything, really
except a moment of your time
to look at this picture of a duck.
It’s not a great picture of a duck,
I admit, but that’s not the point,
because I am the duck, you see.

If you’ll indulge me a moment longer
to look at the duck in a different way
you will see something new in the picture.
It’s actually also a picture of a rabbit.
I am the rabbit; yes, I can be a rabbit, too.
And you know what they say about rabbits.

I don’t need anything, truly nothing
that can be bought or sold, but thanks
for taking time to look at my picture
which is really what I want the most.
But please, don’t get stuck on the rabbit
I am still, and also always will be, the duck.

rabbit and duck

“Kaninchen und Ente” (“Rabbit and Duck”) from the 23 October 1892 issue of Fliegende Blätter. Public Domain.

This is a riff off of Billy Collins’ poem “Duck/Rabbit,” but only because when I heard him read it I couldn’t stop thinking about the idea that once you see the rabbit, you can no longer see the duck. And here’s the thing, to see the big picture you need to will yourself to see both. Once the rabbit is revealed, you have to choose to still see the duck. Please.

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