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


July 7thThis day, we’re building castles in the sand. A “castle in the sand” is a euphemism for a big dream. On a day like today, a daydream about a big ambition may just be the thing you need to escape your bonds. Or you can just write about a sandcastle. Describe it in detail.



July 6 – Lifeguard

July 5 – In The Swim

July 4 – Fireworks on the Lake

July 3 – A Day at the Beach (Abstract Poem)

July 2 – A Deserted Beach

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101 thoughts on “LIFE IS A BEACH – SANDCASTLES


    Shovel and pail in hand,
    you stand in the wet sand
    admiring your creation, a station
    where your are king and you sing
    with the fiddler crabs.
    Your domain is laced with
    sculpted turrets and a lake water moat.
    The shells you find become
    the armor to protect all inside.
    And you stand astride, a giant
    guarding the castle, keeping it safe.
    as the tide rises, the walls weaken
    and you vow to rebuild when next
    you reach the beach. Until then,
    your dreams will remain unstained.

  2. Building

    We build with straw
    All falls down
    We build with sticks
    All falls down
    We build with mud
    All falls down
    We build with bricks
    All falls down
    We build with Christ
    All stays put

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  3. William Preston on said:


    My ice-cream castle in the air
    is still aloft; it’s gleaming there
    although enclosed by alien land
    and gazing on the barren sand.

    I wish that I resided where
    my ice-cream castle in the air
    communes with bluebirds passing by
    and foists my foibles on the sky,

    but all my failures follow me
    and so that castle cannot be;
    my ice-cream castle in the air
    seems but a structure of despair

    for I live in this alien land
    of castles built with only sand.
    In dreams, therefore, I must prepare
    my ice-cream castle in the air.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

    • Wow…William…you’d think that I’d read you first…our castles hold a similar element of reality that you mentioned…love that you used alien and I used foreign…sorry to compare, hope you don’t mind. 🙂

      • William Preston on said:

        Not at all. I’m honored to be compared at all with your work, which I think is unceasingly superb.

        I should note that my ice-cream castle comes from the song, Both Sides Now, which alludes to illusions.

    • Oh, goodness!! Thank you, so much, William.

      I just looked up this song…def. knew what one you meant and I’m glad for the listen…a Joni Mitchell version from the Johnny Carson Show. 🙂

      On re-reading… I love the line, “foists my foibles on the sky…” holds that same giving over feeling that I tried to capture in my new ending.

      Great write!

    • Nice work here, and I’m looking forward to reading Hannah’s when I reach it.

      Marie Elena

    • William, this is wonderful. I am going to see ice cream castles in my dreams tonight.

  4. William Preston on said:


    For want of a bucket the shovel was lost;
    for want of a shovel the digging was lost;
    for want of the digging the sand pile was lost;
    for want of a sand pile the builder was lost;
    for want of a builder the castle was lost,
    and all for the want of a little sand bucket.

    no point of a copyright here…..

  5. janeshlensky on said:


    Baby girl toddles to water’s edge
    where foam hisses and fades away.
    She squeals at waves that hit her feet,
    while Daddy lifts her out of spray.

    She flings her tiny hands out wide
    and tightly clings to his strong arms,
    for he protects her from the deep,
    from claws and teeth, all kinds of harms.

    There under sunlight on a beach,
    he lifts his baby as she beams,
    imagining that he can save her
    from all waves that scuttle dreams,

    that fatherhood has super-powers
    fit to keep her healthy, safe.
    His heart is full of sand castles;
    his head is full of wind and wave.

  6. Shanties

    as a dad,
    “castles in the sky”
    are grounded
    and simple,
    kid-focused, and look more like
    shanties on the beach

  7. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    Lovely prompt…

  8. What I Learned From the Three Little Pigs

    It was that same summer that
    my father painted layers
    of cobalt blue on his stretched
    canvas, that I took
    to building castles. The first
    one was sand, and was reclaimed
    by the beach. The second one
    I build with surf-polished
    rocks, beyond the reach of waves.

    Fooled once – shame on you.
    Fooled twice – shame on me.

  9. Pingback: Beach Poems: Fireworks and Sand Castles | The Chalk Hills Journal

  10. William Preston on said:


    There once was a kid who built castles
    of sand, but he didn’t want hassles
    from grown-ups who brayed
    about how they were made,
    so he built all his castles in passels.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  11. “Dream Builder”

    I turned my bucket, red and yellow, up-
    side down. Full, delicate, Daytona sand
    like ice cream, any child could play and sup.
    So virgin, it emerged from out my can.

    I pulled, so carefully, my bucket slid;
    a magic mountain made of walls so shear.
    Then turret and a castle moat I bid
    before some devil from the sea appeared.

    My hands; a baby dribbler from the sea,
    made grander than a thousand, sandy dreams.
    I formed my new abode; my home-to-be
    much brighter than a thousand, sunny beams.

    She sparkled and I clapped my hands in glee
    as soon the monster rushed her out to sea!

  12. Sandy Shanty
    I’ve gathered the doors-
    purple tinted muscle shells,
    the windows-
    circular sand dollars;
    I’ll gaze seaward
    from ivory towers-divine.
    Every various size and shape,
    yes, these will do;
    some are still attached
    with the flesh of salty sinew.
    A feather-
    brilliant white,
    the tallest of its kind,
    this will be perfect-
    a flag for my fortress.
    I picked the finest seaweed-
    round and ripe with briny water,
    pretty olive-pods shining in the sun-
    these, to string on outer walls,
    a green-garland like climbing-vines.
    I have the special dune straws-
    hay-colored and hollow
    to plunge into the four corners of my citadels,
    proudly claiming the name of royalty within.
    Hmm…something’s awry.
    Yes, something’s certainly amiss.
    Don’t normal people construct their castles first,
    then adorn their dream palaces
    with all the best the beach has to offer?
    I have all the pieces here,
    all the makings and magic of good fortune
    but no sandy mansion
    to affix the beautiful bits to.
    Truth is
    success has never felt real,
    like something I could call my own.
    The attainment of true adult triumph
    is a foreign concept,
    living far-off on a distant forlorn shore
    on an almost forgotten island
    near the heated equator of my mind.
    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013

    • William Preston on said:

      This gives me a feeling of beauty abounding till reality intrudes. The imagery is vivid. Lovely work.

    • This is the new ending for my poem above…nice to be truthful but also I like to leave things on a hopeful note and that one def. doesn’t hold that element. 🙂
      Suddenly a great crashing wave
      gratefully gathers with its awesome mouth
      all these carefully picked pieces,
      pulls them into a watery glistening cave
      and I’m a slave no longer-
      relieved of this lifetime of preconceived ideas.
      I lie down with my back flat on the earth
      feeling my worth
      simply, my weight on the ground-
      just being.
      As the sea creeps beneath my body,
      I’m kissed of the calling tide,
      I’m blessed with a new notion…
      cares ride out, ocean-bound;
      heart’s at home,
      ready to go with the Flow.
      Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013


    The night I got pregnant with our son
    I had a vision of lifting
    a young boy into the air
    in your mother’s entryway.
    In this vision
    you had died
    while I carried on.
    The summer our boy
    was sixteen I realized
    the premonition was true –
    in a metaphorical way.

    I was standing by the window
    drinking homemade lemonade.
    I crushed a seed between my teeth
    craving something bitter.

  14. DREAM ON

    My life’s ambition has always been
    to leave the world better than I found it.
    I have always wanted to be an asset
    to the earth and the people who live here.

    For most of my life I have been engaged
    in caring for myself and those I hold dear.
    It has made our small world a better place
    but has not improved the world at large.

    Am I too old to make a difference?
    Am I too weak to make a change?
    Was I too ambitious in my goal?
    Or am I just to lazy to strive for it?

    Now I know that I have changed the world,
    In small ways certainly, but in good ones.
    I have made life better for some by kindness
    And raised my children to do the same.

    It is a fine dream to change the world.
    It is a grand achievement to do so.
    It is a revelation to recognize truly
    that what you do really matters.

  15. Pingback: SELF, FULFILLING PROPHECY | makeshiftheaddress

  16. Sandy Solidarity

    Pile sand, wet sand
    Pat, pat, pat
    One piles and pats.
    One runs to water’s edge
    back and forth with pail.
    Pile, pile, pile
    Pat, pat, pat
    Toothpick-pierced paper scrap
    serves well as flag.
    Time to tunnel.
    We dig.
    One on one side
    One on the other
    We scoop with spoons or small shovels.
    Carefully we keep it from crumbling.
    We dig, pat, smooth over cracks.
    Then at last,
    we grab each other’s gritty hand.
    We succeed.
    We smash. We laugh.
    We do it all again.
    I wish we’d work together
    on all our castles in the sand.

  17. Pingback: Casting Sand | Whimsygizmo's Blog

  18. Casting Sand

                                The sea’s fairy dust
                                                           molds, if
                                             you shape it
                                                   just right, holds
                                     quiet beams
                                               and dreams of
                                         flight. Blow it loose
                                                  and let the breeze
                                      shape its sway,
                                                       wave from the shore
                                                     as it
                                                                   flows away.

  19. DebiSwim on said:

    Just in from church and heading out for the day. Wish I’d had more time to work on this but here it is anyway – I’ll revise later.

    Youth was a sand castle
    built on shifting sand
    fragile, flimsy dreams
    in a shadow land.
    Dawn, then noon,
    now twilight comes
    I’ve seen my castles
    crumble, blow away
    but the real, the true
    is gold and stays.

  20. Pingback: Sandy Shanty | Metaphors and Smiles

  21. Today’s castle is gone tomorrow.
    Would that I never settle
    For yesterday’s manna.

  22. Just Right

    She made a wee castle
    surrounded by rocks
    and on each rounded turret
    were bits of lake weed and rocks.
    The highest turret
    was crowned with a black snail shell.

    Her castle was small and cozy,
    perfect for a wee lass
    and her family…
    imagination reflected in the sands…
    she made a wee castle.

  23. Seashells On The Shore

    Like seashells scattered on the shore, my dreams
    Are endless forms: some half-fulfilled, some broke
    In two, and others lost, or so it seems,
    Under the sea, some are just not yet woke;

    I’ve built up castles in the sand, and some
    Of these have lasted quite a while, but all
    Eventually are swept away and from
    The sea where they now dwell, I hear their call

    Like some far-distant echo of the past
    That won’t take form again, except in dreams
    Where memories are stirred and where, at last,
    I see the weakness of my plans and schemes;

    But any hopes I’ve founded on His word,
    Have taken shape and soared on wings of birds.

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013

  24. Building Sand Dreams

    Blue collar man sits on sand
    with his two children. “Hand me
    that scoop – no, the bigger one.”
    His daughter passes a large red
    scoop. His son, given instructions,
    packs each floor of the four-tiered
    castle tightly. They labor under
    a hot sun, father fierce in his
    endeavor, children admiring,
    but tiring. Two hour later,
    father, baked to crispy red, adds
    small flags on the top, and floats
    plastic monsters in the moat.
    He grins, wiping perspiring
    face with a striped beach towel.
    “See kids? One day we will live
    in a castle just like this one.”

  25. Mansions

    Why do we toil just to leave it all behind
    We build and we build then abandon it all
    Our earthly treasures will soon not be ours
    Survivors and government will divvy it up
    Yet we toil and we build
    For as long as we live
    An attempt at happiness
    Although temporary
    All in vain in the end
    We can’t take it with us

    But all that we had
    All that we built
    All that we collected
    All that we cherished
    All left behind will
    Pale in comparison
    When we see the mansion
    Jesus built for us
    In Heaven on high

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  26. Writer’s bloc yesterday. Cinquain challenge today:


    By noon
    the sandcastle
    we had built together
    had been washed away. Foolish men,
    Use rock.

  27. Pingback: Sandcastle Senryu | echoes from the silence

  28. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    Sandcastles in the Sky

    I want to know
    if you can fly
    A big sandcastle
    in the sky

    Like a kite
    with rainbow trailings
    Turret flaggings
    colorfully veiling

    Internal sadness,
    thoughts prevailing…

    And, if you can’t,
    What’s that I see
    in those clouds
    following me?

  29. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    (Sara, William, I heard two songs after your poem/comment–Love them both)!!

    Ice-cream Castles in the Air

    For the sandman builds
    my sandcastles,
    in the day,
    in the night.

    “A candy-colored clown they call the sandman, tiptoes to my room every night. Just to sprinkle stardust and to whisper: “Go to sleep, everything is alright…” IN DREAMS, Roy Orbison

  30. Marjory MT on said:

    Rondel ABbaabBAabbaA)

    Bucket list of dreams
    sifted from the sand.
    Gathered up by hand
    as castle’s light beams.
    Hope in my heart teems
    while I prob the land
    sifted from the sand
    Bucket full of dreams
    ‘til wave sweeps and cleans,
    wasting what I’d planned.
    Uncertain I stand
    holding fast the beams,
    bucket full of dreams.

    • Marjory MT on said:

      (Rondel ABbaabBAabbaA) Need to correct to be iambic….

      My bucket list is full of dreams
      that I keep sifting from the sand,
      then gather carefully by hand.

      While castle building ‘neath moon beams,
      I wait as hope in my heart teems,
      and steadily probing a plan
      that I keep sifting from the sand.

      My bucket list is full of dreams,
      upset by wave that sweeps and cleans,
      to waste away my castle plan.

      ‘Til, uncertain alone I stand
      holding fast the flickering beams,
      my bucket list is full of dreams.

      • Marjory MT on said:

        10 SANDCASTLE

        by Marjory M Thompson – LucBat Form

        Sandcastle by the sea,
        Built there by you and me today
        as at the beach we play,
        to while the hours away, in fun
        beneath the summer sun.
        Feeling to be as one with tide
        on it’s relentless glide,
        We watch to see it slide the beach
        ‘til it our castle reach.
        Slowly, it starts to breach a place
        along our castle’s face.
        Sandcastle spreads like lace to fade
        away as if not made.
        So hand in hand, we strayed, musing
        while driftwood gathering
        for us to use building a fire
        to rest by when we tier,
        and warm up our desire as moon-
        light heartens you, to croon
        a soft romantic tune of love.
        and stars watch from above
        to note my growing love for thee,
        Man-castle by the sea.

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