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


We’ve come out of hiding and exposed our favorite hang-out spots. And the places are as varied as are our poets. Another week of extraordinary works. We’re chugging along to our ultimate goal – to tell our stories in verse. It could be worse. We could tell our stories in Esperanto! But, the BLOOMS…


When Walt gave me this prompt, there were a few “places” I believed would make their way here:  dreams and books being two of them.  They made their way alright – and brilliantly.  My personal favorite is Jane Shlensky’s Imaginable Friends.  How many of us can relate to the feeling of knowing the characters in our favorite books, and being absorbed in their world.  Jane’s skillful style draws me in, and holds me just as spellbound as the books she describes – right to her brilliant ending.  Jane, I offer you my BEAUTIFUL BLOOM.

Imaginable Friends by Jane Shlensky

With our nearest neighbor woods away
and my school chums, siblings, and pets
at best unpredictable fun,
I found some perfect friends to hang with
that even my mother recommended,
friends who had escaped parents
on rafts or were ship-wrecked on islands,
friends who wrote great stories or stood
and quoted long poems, budding teachers.

I rode dark horses and solved crimes,
survived wars, diseases, failures,
suffered but became a fully realized self
worried about girls intent on marriage
to wealthy men and the ones damned
if they’d sell themselves for a country estate.

My buddies were often poor but smart,
abused but kind-hearted, loving, brave,
amusing with basically good morals,
and darned good company, as we climbed
Into the big maple with the outstretched arm
or stretched atop sunny rocks by the creek.

Since I was shy, I let them do all the talking,
all the time traveling, all the seeking and finding
after long travail, exercising both our imaginations.
Every night was a pajama party, tucked in
with Anne of Green Gables, Jane Eyre, the March girls—
Huck, Jim, Oliver, Robinson,
and the boys camped out by the pond.

Growing up on a farm myself, I worked that red clay
and imagined stowing away, changing my identity,
seeing the world and becoming…something fine,
weeping for my friends’ losses
and triumphing In their small victories,
both of us giving the other life,
clear that happy is
for endings.


The place depicted in this poem seems what a good hide should be – idyllic. Expressed simply, it brings us to that secret place and give us access to something rather special. Michelle Hed offers her vision in The Hill, which has me offering my BEAUTIFUL BLOOM:

The Hill by Michelle Hed

Behind the house,
pass bittersweet
and sandy mounds,
milkweed pods
and trampled grounds.

Up to the crest
and a little beyond
where the birch groves stand
and sumac rest –
I could be found.

I’d bring a book
or just sit and think
caressed by the sun
which made my eyelids blink –
I would snuggle down.

Late in the day
the deer would come
or the fox would play
and I would watch –
now I wish for that day.

In the trees
letters were carved
tears were shed
but time moved on
the years have fled.

The hill remains
and in my memory glows
the warmth and love
of time shared with the land
on the hill above.

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14 thoughts on “BEAUTIFUL BLOOMS – PROMPT #79

  1. gorgeous blooms – I can relate to both of them equally. All my life I have never been seen without a book, and I was a hideaway in the open child to read them.

  2. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    Loved both, tho I just read Michelle’s for the first time this morning!! Congrats Jane and Michelle!!

  3. Congratulation Jane and Michelle. I loved them both. Happy PAD and NaNo writing!

  4. Congrats Jane and Michelle!!!

  5. Such fitting blooms!! Both of these resonate in such a lovely way. Congratulations Jane and Michelle for once again writing superb poems!!

  6. What a lovely surprise! Thank you Walt for selecting my poem as your bloom! Thank you everyone for the comments! I’ve always had a connection with the outdoors, even at a young age. Jane your poem is wonderful! I can so relate. Being shy and quiet, I often found the best friends were the ones found between the pages. Thanks Again!

  7. Congrats Walt and Marie Elena – you’ve done it again! Picked two really great poems to award beautiful blooms… if I’d had my right mind thinking cap on Jane, I would have remembered that books are exactly my refuge also and have always been – you have captured the essence of their magic in your poem perfectly. And Michelle, didn’t we all long for a hill such as yours? (some of us still do, I’m sure.) -A well penned poem of where you hung out. Kudos ladies – well-deserved bouquets to you both.

  8. I remember Jane’s as one of my favorites, and I enjoyed reading Michelle’s poem, too. Great choices.

  9. Kirstin on said:

    Lovely poem Aunt Michelle!!

  10. Truly beautiful blooms! Both of them touch upon experiences that I, too, hold very dear! I miss the quiet of an afternoon spent in my grandmother’s garden in the company of one book or another when I was still a child … Thank you, Jane and Michelle, for sharing these wonderful memories 🙂

  11. Congratulations to Jane & MIchelle for blooms well deserved.

  12. Congratulations Jane and Michelle! Loved both of them, and Michelle’s I could easily picture myself on that hill as well 🙂

  13. Thanks to all of you for your kind comments and to Marie for helping me bloom. Sorry I’m late in acknowledging these sweet thoughts. Michelle, I loved your poem!

  14. benjamin anabaraonye on said:

    Hi, This is just to invite you to visit my new inspirational blog  www.benjypoetry.blogspot.com. Let the light shine…CHEERS!!!

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