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


July 22ndSadly, sometimes the shoreline is pocked with dead fish or gulls stinking up the joint. Give them back their lives and write about any aquatic creature that could be seen/found in these waters. Write about the one that got away… or the one you threw back! Go on an underwater adventure aboard your Yellow Submarine and visit an Octopus’ Garden. (We are POETIC BLOOMINGS after all!)

There may be well over a million fish in the sea, but today we celebrate a one-in-a-million poet, Jane Shlensky and offer a glimpse of her Memoir Chapbook, OLD MULES AND PLOWED GROUND. So, after you complete Day 22’s prompt and post your poem, click on the link and enjoy some of Jane’s Finest poetry.

Old Mules and Plowed Ground by Jane Shlensky



July 21 – Muscle Beach/Bikini Beach

July 20 – Just Another Day In Paradise

July 19 – Waves

July 18 – Children

July 17 – Put Into Words (Ekphrasis)

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  1. William Preston on said:


    They sweep the sky like scimitars;
    they turn and dive toward the sea.
    Their cut of jib too clean to parse,
    they sweep the sky; like scimitars,
    their wings might be the blades of Mars
    but yet their beats preach peace to me.
    They sweep the sky. Like scimitars,
    they turn and dive toward the sea.

    copyright 2013; William Preston

    Note: I consider terns “aquatic” creatures because most species are marine and none, as far as I know, come inland as gulls do; at least, I’ve never seen a tern in a parking lot.

  2. DebiSwim on said:

    Darn You “Jaws”

    The ocean looks calm and serene
    as I lay on the sand sun screened
    no swimming for me
    there’s sharks in the sea
    that are hungry eating machines.

  3. DebiSwim on said:

    Music of the Deep

    of the sea.
    Sing your strange song
    marvelous virtuoso of the sea.


  5. Reap the Wild Wind!

    My first encounter with an octopus
    was watching ‘Reap the Wild Wind’ by the sea
    as Wayne and Goddard battled on the brig;
    as profiteers did battle in the Keyes.

    Drusilla was a beauty; fell in love
    with Dan, the dastardly, a pirate’s man
    and stowaway to see her love she sailed
    upon the fated ship, the Southern Cross!

    The Southern Cross was scuttled in a storm
    Drusilla and her cargo doomed to sigh
    below, in hoary depth’s beneath the sea
    where Octopus’s tentacles do lie!

    Bold eyes see horror from their diving gear
    As Wayne brings up the scarf Drusilla wore
    a red and yellow filmy fring`ed proof
    that eerily is swirling out dark fear!

    But next! the best and last scene of them all;
    our hero battles all those tentacles!
    Oh, never was an octopus’s scene
    displayed so cleverly upon the screen!

    (Who remembers this old movie? I think above is called ‘blank verse’ but since it is my first attempt will let others tell me if I have failed or not. I know BLANK VERSE is written in iambic pentameter and it CAN rhyme; but need not. I am so used to writing sonnets that I had trouble with that.)

  6. You

    A million fish in the sea
    but you’re the one for me!
    I tried out a few:
    One was too grasping,
    one was too old,
    one was a jerk,
    one was too bold!
    Then I found you
    and our story
    started to unfold,
    a continuing saga,
    till we are very old.
    A million fish in the sea
    but you’re the one for me.

  7. Marjory MT on said:

    Tropic sun shines o’er sand and bay
    Encouraging children at play
    As sea birds swoop through water spray
    and moms find shady place to lay.
    Dads’ out fishing tuna today,
    Hoping not to meet a sting-ray.

  8. They’re Wild And Free

    A flash of silver in the sea,
    Shimmering scales and darker gray,
    They’re dancing there, right under me,
    A flash of silver; in the sea,
    The fish are alive, wild and free,
    Forget the beached ones yesterday;
    A flash of silver in the sea,
    Shimmering scales and darker gray.

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013

  9. janeshlensky on said:


    A school of jumping fish
    ruffle the low tide
    their leaps calling
    bellies of the air and sea
    to dine.

    Spades of pelicans fall from air
    paddle and dive
    terns, sea hawks, and gulls hover
    competing with sand sharks
    and larger fish
    for a mouthful of silver.

    Cowboy porpoises and dolphins
    arch and dip, herding
    the small fish into
    a communal pot.
    Above, below
    it’s dusk.

  10. janeshlensky on said:

    I don’t know if the format will show for this. If not, imagine that the poem is V shaped, like flocks of pelicans, sort of ziggy and zaggy.

    Pelican Watch

    Angular bone and beak,
    knobs and slopes turn
    buoyed in air.

    Tuck chin and reach across wind flow
    coil feet, muscle wing
    and glide.

    Solitary beauty is beauty still.
    But multiplied by seven, sunsetted,
    in formations of zig and zag,
    skimming waves approaching
    crest and break–


  11. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine!” (Rick Blaine, Casablanca)

    Treading Water

    times it
    took every-
    thing to stay a-

  12. Pingback: Flight Of Fancy | echoes from the silence

  13. Crabs in a Tidal Pool

    Cups of life
    in tidal pools
    warmed in midday sun

    Waves stretch long
    refreshed and cool
    wait for next high tide

    Tiny crabs
    under rocks appear
    greeting the rising moon

  14. William Preston on said:


    Three little fish in school are we,
    silver and awfully slippery,
    cruising the bar to nip at knee;
    three little fish in school

    Daily we swim in the ocean green.
    dodging the fish who would pick us clean.
    eating the rest just because we’re mean;
    three little fish in school

    If you would see us, drop a line,
    bait it with brilliant lantern-shine
    so you can hoist from the scholarly brine
    three little fish in school.
    Three little fish in school.

  15. Pingback: A Poem for Crabs in Tidal Pools | The Chalk Hills Journal

  16. janeshlensky on said:

    I started on an 8-legged poem about octopi and landed on seahorses. Giddyup!


    They don’t gallop
    but kingly glide
    beneath the waves;
    they’re occupied
    with orchestrating
    pony rides
    for their offspring
    while their wives hide.
    I like that in a fellow.

    Their tails are curled;
    their heads are crowned;
    their bodies’ spines
    richly abound;
    their googly eyes
    can whirl around.
    And if they whinny,
    there’s no sound.
    I like that in a fellow.


    Exploring the ocean floor,
    learning and yearning to
    reach new depths. An aquatic
    swarm warming to the idea, thinking
    swimming was better a than sinking..

  18. If you want to see a pic it’s on enthusiasticsoul.blogspot.com


    From the side and top views,
    he looks more like a fish,
    but head-on resembles
    Ziggy’s head on a dish.

    Looks melted and flabby
    Miserable and sulky
    A gelatinous mass
    Fat head that’s quite bulky

    Beady eyes and big nose
    An unquenchable frown
    A real bottom-feeder
    on what’s floating around.

    He’s becoming extinct.
    He’s as pale as a ghost.
    He is so seldom seen
    off Tasmanian coast.

    He’s as inedible
    as an old rubber boot.
    No muscles and lazy,
    so butt ugly he’s cute.

  19. Pingback: Stony Fingers Unite | Metaphors and Smiles

  20. Stony Fingers Unite
    We rise with calcified tendrils
    planted firmly on this seamount.
    We’re home to so many creatures
    fish, mollusks, worms and crustaceans,
    echinoderms, sponges and tunicates.
    We’re a living puzzle as we thrive
    surviving in water with very little nutrients,
    yet, we flourish richly still, until-
    blindly, boats plot across these waters
    knowing only the direction of their compasses.
    Do they consider the life beneath their hull?
    Have these people species thought about us?
    Each year the water feels hotter,
    every passing cycle the algae seems thicker.
    We’re growing sicker from your careless ways,
    the rain-forest of the sea is being depleted.
    Do you hear us wholly, our ancient altogether plea?
    Stony fingers rise from beneath this watery horizon,
    buried braille of brain coral below
    is begging your attention, asking:
    In a completely new and thoughtful way
    will you attempt radical transformation?
    Will you stop this global degradation?
    Please, will you…for me?
    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013

  21. Once There Were Gold Fish

    The little girl stared in wonder
    at an old frayed photograph
    in which a green sea met
    a blue sky. A sailboat
    went floating by, and jumping
    fish frolicked. She asked
    where this place was,
    what creatures were these,
    and how could she find colors
    that nearly hurt her eyes
    with beauty. Her grandfather
    told her that seas were not
    always black, oily, with no
    life. There were once waters
    like transparent emeralds,
    skies so vibrant, you could see
    white clouds floating in them.
    Why did it all change, she asked.
    Her grandfather looked at his
    grand-daughter’s sallow skin,
    and colorless eyes. Maybe
    it was time for no more lies.

  22. A while back, Across the Lake, I was complaining about how the ocean gets all the fun creatures, while Lake Erie gets squat. Deciding “squat” sounds rather sea-creature-ish (stretch your imagination), there’s this:


    Seen only by folks named Marie
    are squats swimming gleefully free
    in Lake Erie’s muck
    with the carp and woodchuck,
    all skillfully dodging debris.

    © Copyright Marie Elena Good – 2010

  23. Pingback: One | Whimsygizmo's Blog

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