POETIC BLOOMINGS is a Phoenix Rising Poetry Guild site established in May 2011 to nurture and inspire the creative spirit.


Sorry for another late start. Situations dictate my connectivity! I’m still looking for a break and realizing something’s got to give soon. So using that as your inspiration, write a “something’s got to give” poem.


Another attempt at the Rispetto!

A Rispetto, an Italian form of poetry, (Italian:: “respect,” – plural rispetti, a Tuscan folk verse form) is a complete poem of two rhyme quatrains. The meter is usually iambic tetrameter with a rhyme scheme of abab ccdd. A Heroic Rispetto is written in Iambic pentameter, usually featuring the same rhyme scheme.

A variation of the RISPETTO is a poem (or song) comprised of 8 hendecasyllabic (11-syllable) lines–usually one stanza.

WALT’S RISPETTO VARIATION: (from our original look at the form in 2014)


The love in his heart was a treasure most sought,
and he thought that maybe he could store it up
and save it for a rainy day. There’s no way
he would give away the “wealth” he had amassed.
But alas, love hidden away would decay.
And to this day he pays for not sharing it.
He will die a lonely man, his love will fade,
there in his lifeless “grave” where his heart once lived.

© Copyright 2014 – Walter J Wojtanik

Will post a new poem in the comments section!



My wife and I have found ourselves reminiscing a lot lately. Different situations between us and our daughters; of younger versions of us and our siblings/parents. Memories of home come pouring our. Today, we ask you to go back into your old room from your youth. How special was it? What memories do you have (if you have any at all)? Take us back with you and bring it all back to life in your poem.

As a wild card, if the first suggestion is a bit…painful, write about something you liked to do or a club/organization that was influential in your development! Either way, we’re taking you back



My room was ours.
My sister and I shared,
sleeping on iron
framed beds. One slid
under the other, until they were
detached to form an “L” shape.
We fought over boundaries
with imaginary lines. Times she wanted
her friends in, I wanted mine.

Mostly we were glad to have
company–giggling at night,
pleading with Mom not to turn
off the light. Neither of us outgrew
that little phobia.

When we were ill,
we would stay in our beds,
dreading sound of doctor’s
footsteps. We did not suffer
needles well, but loved
having tray tables set up,
knowing we would have
tomato soup and Ritz for lunch
I know now how lucky we were.



My grandfather, a naturalized citizen through proper channels, occupied the two back rooms of our house. Technically we occupied the front part of his house! But at this stage two rooms was all her needed. With four of us boys (and two sister siblings) we were strapped for space. To alleviate the congestion, a suggestion was made for one of us to “live” with “Dziadziu” (pronounced Ja-Ju – Polish for grandfather). I had gladly pulled that straw. A man of the world and many situations, both good and bad, had come to be a mentor and my moral compass. I had spent much of my free time in his company watching Hitchcock and Sullivan, talking about life and family, me in my naivety and he in his broken english. We shared two rooms and that had given me a life!

Wisdom sequestered
within eight walls of two rooms
lessons taught and learned

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016


The monotetra is a newer poetic form developed by Michael Walker. It is comprised of stanzas that contain four lines in monorhyme. Each line is in tetrameter (four metrical feet) for a total of eight syllables. The last line contains two metrical feet, repeated. It can have as few as one or two stanzas, or as many as desired.

Stanza Structure:

Line 1: 8 syllables; A1
Line 2: 8 syllables; A2
Line 3: 8 syllables; A3
Line 4: 4 syllables, repeated; A4, A4



The tube has reached an all-time low
A slew of stupid sit-com shows,
and inept dramas without flow.
We need mojo, we need mojo.

Where did all the good writers go?
Did they get offers of more dough?
Someone give me a blow-by-blow,
or I’ll forego, or I’ll forego



I’ve always had a way with words
from thoughts profound, to quite absurd,
my parody is for the birds,
a poet nerd, a poet nerd.

I’ve written love songs for my spouse,
I’ll sing them all throughout the house,
the neighbors think that I’m a louse
when I get soused, when I get soused!

Expression is the thing I do,
these poems, prose, I do that too!
The things I write are mostly true,
the lies are few, the lies are few.

(C) Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016


We’ve all been watching the stories of the devastation of Hurricane Matthew this past week. There is a definite force in nature which can precipitate changes or sculpt the elements around them. We’ve seen forest fires, torrential rains, snow storms and tornados, earthquakes and volcano eruptions. Today, write about the forces of  nature. And remember, not all forces need to be bad things.



Earth nourishes us. We plant
and farm. Trees rise, flowers
bloom, providing shade,
and beauty to gaze upon.
Earth can also quake,
and open craters in our midst,
causing destruction and death.

Water is life’s elixir. We use
it to drink, bathe, and nurture
plants.  Oceans, lakes, and creeks
are water’s home. If no rain
falls, drought will devour earth.
When a lifeline turns, spurns
us with hurricanes, tornadoes,
and floods, disaster ensues.

We breathe in air to survive.
Yet, we take air for granted,
polluting it with chemicals
and fuels. If air becomes unhealthy,
what can we use as a substitute?

We depend on fire for warmth,
cooking our food, and lighting
our hearths to glow and dance.
Chances are taken by careless
people. They drop lit cigarettes.
One person can start a wildfire
that decimate homes,
taking lives along the way.

Be kind. Mind Mother Nature’s
elements. Without warning,
she can exact revenge.
We do not have control
of every aspect comprising
the elements, but we can
all do our part for life.

(C) Sara McNulty – 2016




I listen to the rumble. Such intensity in the city. Rains in buckets and sheets spill, the streets in rivulets streaming.Watching from my window shadows form, silhouettes bathed in every bolt of electric mayhem striking in the distance and nearer. The fear is that the power would surge and crackle and leave all in darkness. It hearkens back to the womb. Damp and dark, murmurs and gurgles amplify. The cascade filling gulleys and valleys, awash with nature’s fury. If you hurry, you can step out of the confluence before it ruins your shoes.

Hard and intense,
the rain falls in the distance.
In its wake, the calm.

(C) Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016


* Shinotskuame is the Japanese word for intense rain.



The ballade is a verse form typically consisting of three eight-line stanzas, each with a consistent metre and a particular rhyme scheme. The last line in the stanza is a refrain, and a four-line concluding stanza (an envoi) usually addressed to a prince (in lieu of a prince, for whom ever the inspiration for the poem may come)  follows the stanzas. (The ballade should not be confused with the ballad.) The rhyme scheme is therefore usually ‘ababbcbC ababbcbC ababbcbC bcbC’, where the capital ‘C’ is a refrain.

There are many variations to the ballade, and it is in many ways similar to the ode and chant royal. There are instances of a double ballade and double-refrain ballade. Some ballades have five stanzas; a ballade supreme has ten-line stanzas rhyming ababbccdcD, with the envoi ccdcD or ccdccD. A seven-line ballade, or ballade royal, consists of four stanzas of rhyme royal, all using the same three rhymes, all ending in a refrain, without an envoi.



He fell deeply in love at first glance,
a woman with eyes like jade moons
that smoldered, saying let’s take a chance.
She floated in amber and jasmine perfume.
Bewitched, he yearned to consume
her, although he knew he was not free.
Obsessed, he quickly pursued her.
Lust burns at high degrees

He lived for those stolen moments,
without her, a painting unfinished.
In his head, a voice cried, atonement,
but his passion did not diminish.
A year passed. He was feeling skittish
as they spoke only of ‘we.’
Thoughts of divorce made him wince.
Lust burns at high degrees

She pressed him to devise a plan
that allowed them to live together.
As doubts mounted, he began
to feel like a lesser man.
Nerves pushed him to end of his tether.
Under pressure, he could not leave.
Ten years later, he wonders whether . . .
Lust burns at high degrees

© Sara McNulty – 2016



In contemplation, sat she did,
to think of futures yet unknown,
despite the sad farewells she’ll bid,
and “braverisms” that she’s shown.
Her daughters, yes, are fully grown
to carry on her beauty bright,
And so to right the love I’ve shown,
I’ll stand beside her in her fight.

Lament the battered heart and head,
such maladies should not be hers.
I’d take them on myself instead
to suffer all that it incurs.
So as for now if it gets worse
I’ll keep my precious well in sight,
and pray that nothing more occurs,
I’ll stand beside her in her fight.

My sad intent comes at a price
through indiscretions wrought, it seems.
Forgiveness given must suffice,
as life dismantles all our dreams.
Yet through it all, her smile still beams,
a beacon through this dreary night,
emotions flow from both extremes,
I’ll stand beside her in her fight.

My princess, queen – my love so true,
I’ll hold you close with all my might,
and give you all that you are due,
I’ll stand beside you in your fight.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016


Apologies for the late start. And apologies to Sara for leaving her hanging. We tap Ecclesiastes for today’s prompt. I have been obsessed with time of late and the fleeting nature of life and such.

My delay is due to some serious health concerns on the home front. Poetry didn’t seem important at the moment. And so I have been focused on time. There is indeed a time for everything. A time to laugh and cry, a time to live and die… a time for every purpose under heaven. So this week, we’re writing about “time”. There’s pumpkin time, harvest time, Halloween time… as the days grow shorter we notice time’s part in our living. It’s about time we write something about time!




She makes time
for the time she has,
should she run out
she’ll wind herself up,
minute by minute!


How many faces can she see?
How much time will she need?
It isn’t continuum greed!
The lady loves clocks.
They knock her socks off!


Digital is all I command.
I can’t stand analog any longer.
The time is stronger in the dark.


Three in the bedroom,
five in the kitchen,
three in the living room,
and my daughter’s room,
and the computer room.
The bathroom has one
in the shape of a toilet seat.
A shower gift from an aunt.
She doesn’t have the heart
to part with it!


Her internal clock
keeps me awake at night.
Right when I think
I’m on the brink of slumber,
she wakes up alarmed.
I sleep with one eye open.
I know it’s coming!


Does anybody really know what time it is?
Does anybody really care?
~ Chicago

She cares about time.
Rarely ever late.
Great at punctuality.
Even with the fragility of life,
my wife is rarely late.
But, one day we will all be!


Every hour on the hour,
our hours are ours.
Every waking minute
I’m taking stock in our
continuous clock.


Time is fleeting,
it is eating away our days.
If it stays in sync
I think we’ll be okay!


Passing the time
in her company,
I’m finding my peace
in every numbered face I see.
Is it me or is number seventeen
running a bit slow?


I make time
for the time she has,
should she run out
I’ll fall apart,
minute by minute!
There’s no disgrace
in losing face!

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016


We are exploring the Rubai this week (also known as the interlocking rubaiyat)

I’m sure you have some familiarity with the 12th-century Persian work, The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. It uses the Rubai. Another surprising usage of the rubai, is highlighted by one of Robert Frost’s well known poems (“Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”.)


The rules of the (rubai) interlocking rubaiyat:

  • The poem is consits of quatrains following an aaba rhyme pattern.
  • The succeeding quatrain picks up the unrhymed line from the previous stanza as the rhyme for the new quatrain. A three-stanza rubaiyat might rhyme so: aaba/bbcb/ccdc. Sometimes the final stanza rhymes all four lines.
  • Lines are usually tetrameter and pentameter.



Alone, this beach deserted now
for winter’s taken its first bow,
omen for geese to begin flight.
Alluring without sounds of crowds.

Wind whips sand, and lone kite;
my eyes watch route ‘til out of sight.
A sting of salt assaults my lips.
Ocean sparkles in brilliant light.

A mist drifts ‘cross my fingertips,
today my toes will not be dipped.
I can throw my ams in the air,
and shout to every gull and ship.

A freeness overtakes me here.
My mind empties of all life’s cares.
Expanse of vastness humbles me,
a brush stroke in this art we share.




There she stood in the shadow of night
where the moon was big and roundly bright,
and there she was wishing on a star,
a reflection of the evening’s light.

It was seven years beyond the bar,
she traveled long and she traveled far,
her journey began within her heart
but the pain of leaving left a scar.

And so she dreamed of a fresh new start,
she couldn’t stand to remain apart,
but reality comes not from dreams,
her wish in sadness did impart.

So in the shadows the moonlight beams,
a love once bursting at the seams
was not the love that lived in dreams,
was not the love that lived in dreams!

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016



The song of the same name by Bryan Hyland has a lyric, “I don’t want to say goodbye  for the summer…” And during this past week, we did just that. We’ve entered the Autumnal Equinox and are free to embrace the fall season. But it does come with a tinge of sadness. Saying goodbye will do that! So, confront those feelings and write  a “Saying Goodbye to_______” poem. Maybe it will provide a bit of comfort. 



Inside my head, dwells
a young woman–impatient,
rebellious, sexual. In dreams,
this same woman appears,
parents alive and well, life
chaotic, never quite finding
her way. Spend a period
of time in my imagination.
View world through a kaleidoscope,
hear a calliope, become
a cartoon character. How do
I reconcile what I am to what I see
when I look at me? Inside my head
anything is possible; everything is fun.




No one wants to say goodbye.
We cry and forget any stiff upper lip.
Searching for a sliver of expectation
that a sad situation can be averted.
It has been asserted that eventuality
is on course, but some choose to divorce
themselves from that inherent reality.
Hope may spring eternal, but living forever
is not an offered option. You are cursed
if you expect the best and hope
the worst is a vicious lie, when the best is just
an extended suffering. The only buffering
between birth and death is life itself.
Our times will all come, some sooner
than the rest. The best thing to do
is face it with courage and love.
You can’t live on false hope.
It’s best to live fully by duly coping
with our inevitability without fear.
(C) Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016


We’re having another go with the poetic form NAANI.

The NAANI is one of India’s most popular Telugu forms introduced by poet Dr. N. Gopi,  and the last time I checked, Naani still means “expression of one and all.”  It consists of 4 lines, totalling 20 to 25 syllables. It is generally untitled, although the subject may be inferred in the first line. The poem is not bound to a particular subject, but is often about human relations. 


Many people walk on tiptoe, skirting
around words they long to say,
missing opportunities



We offer love
expressing our hearts
to each other. We offer our hearts
expressing the love they bear!

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016

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