When  a single Poetic Bloomings prompt gleans more than 360 comments, it means two obvious things:  1) It sparked inspiration, and 2) We have the most encouraging, supportive, interconnected poets on the planet.  You folks warm my heart.


Whenever I select one of De Miller Jackson‘s poems, I feel at a loss to effectively explain why.  Perhaps because explaining brilliance falls far short of experiencing it for oneself.  If you haven’t read De’s Rearview Mirrors, I suggest you do … experience for yourself the wealth of life’s wisdom, well-chosen words, appealing assonance and alliteration, connotation and use of enjambment, brilliant wordplay … all in three short stanzas.  Awe-mazing.

Rearview Mirrors (by De Miller Jackson)

Look too long,
and your song
will be stilted,
wilted by wish
and wonder
and why. Just fly
forward, cherish
those rough road
-rash places where
wrong turns event
-ually meant
something raw
and rare
and real.

the scars
that got you

Make room for
that old hitchhiker,
and other objects
closer than they


After the usual struggle with so many good poems, I selected Michael Grove‘s work for several reasons. The first lines are compelling and captivating. The three stanzas have successive functions in carrying the story along: setting the stage; transition, and a satisfying resolution. The rhyming is gentle, apt, and not obtrusive. The structure aids the whole, in my opinion, and the little pauses (the “ors”) in each stanza remind the reader that choices are being made all the time, and one has the ability to choose to “live for this new dream.” I thought the whole effort was simply magnificent.


 He turned around
and watched himself out wandering.
He stood his ground
and spent so much time wondering
who he really is
who he’s meant to be.
He turned his head again.
Now, He can finally see.
There was a vision
of the future in the past.
Then a decision
which was surely meant to last.
It was time to change
He’d be left behind.
So he got packing
to search and seek and find.
There will be no tears
over spilt milk or burnt toast.
No dwelling on the fears
that can bind him up the most.
Live for this new dream
reach for distant stars.
Don’t be focused on
old wounds with fading scars.



Once again, it was incredibly difficult to pick just one bloom from the many incredible, heartfelt poem responses which were posted. So many touched me and resonated with meaning and emotion. As I posted earlier in the week, I wish those poems never had to be written at all, but sadly, that’s not the reality.

So, I went back and forth a number of times. Because I can only choose one bloom, here’s my pick:

Ellen Knight’s ‘The Lesson’ (first version.) It is so powerful, that the language of her poem seemed to take on a life of its own. In fact, Ellen’s last three lines wholly blew me away. I think it’s a testament to Ellen’s skill as a poet that she could make her case so profoundly. So let us hope that ‘hatred bound’ never again can become something ‘hatred reaches.’

The Lesson (by Ellen Knight)

Alone we find it hard to stand
And balance what we can’t remember.
How much greater the demand
What happened in that fell September.
Together, when we stand as one,
Collective memory beseeches,
That we all learn what can be done
When hatred bound in hatred reaches.

Congratulations, De, Mike, and Ellen!