BRILLIANT BLOOMS PROMPT #158 AND PUENTE

Once again, it’s been my pleasure to work with a poetic talent who’s encouraging words and support have made a world of difference. Damon Dean, thank you for your wonderful work here this week at Creative Bloomings. Your contributions are appreciated.

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This week, we were “sent to our rooms” to write a memory in detail. And without fail, our poets have responded with their usual passion and flair. Who earned the blooms? Let’s find out:

WALT’S SELECTIONS:

I’m happy to see the return of some familiar names with Janice Sheridan and Nancy Posey back in the fold. And it’s good to see new faces too. Marie is it? Welcome and…what Damon? She used to… We were… never met? Anyway…

My very first read this week stayed with me straight through and for many reasons. First and foremost, it is an expressive poem. And I asked for “total recall”, but… 70 years worth? Vivienne Blake rose to the top for the bloom with her poem, “Total Recall 70 Years On”.

TOTAL RECALL 70 YEARS ON by Vivienne Blake

Beside Chris’s house – my friend who’s a boy,
not boyfriend – a nice distinction –
we had a den, a place safe from adults
where we could be free to live the real life
of our imaginations.

Between high garage and brown plank fence,
we stole the gap under the eaves.
We closed off the chicken run end
with boards, against the smell.
The other end we made a door
of scrap wood and chicken wire –
our entrance to another world.
A shelf to hold our treasures,
piles of bricks made seats
at a tatty thrown-out table
our only furniture.

A sleeping platform, which nowadays
would be called a mezzanine,
cantilevered above the door,
supported on a sturdy post.
A rickety ladder propped against it for stairway.
A pile of new mown grass cuttings our mattress,
fragrant when laid, stinky after a week.

We cooked outside,
behind the hedge by the compost heap,
our fire a secret, so we thought:
dampers of flour and water with a stick poked through
burned on the outside, raw in the middle.
No matter, we spread them with jam
sneaked from the house,
and feasted.

(C) Vivienne Blake, 2014

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INFORM PUENTE:

This form was a pleasure to write. The concept of the “bridge” was great crossing over from one aspect of a thought to another. And it seems our poets agreed with the quality of work reaching new heights every successive week. For my bloom selection, I love the misted morning gentleness in the getaway written by Henrietta Chopin, It’s for mornings like this that poems are custom made!

MORNING TRANSITION by Henrietta Chopin

Water poured, coffee fragrant
Tiny carafe, enough for two
Steamy warmth, Old Spice wafted
Dizzying through, our cozy room

~ Misty drizzle, gone by noon

Sandwiched in, aromatic loaf
Cheeses, a salad, yummy both
Sun tea fresh, enough for two
Breezing through, our afternoon.

(C) Henrietta Chopin, 2014

***

DAMON’S CHOICES:

I am so grateful to have been a guest host for this prompt.  Wow. Your memories took me places…to Earl’s idlyllic spaces of youthful freedom, through David’s rampant barn-loft adventures, into Paula’s dark-shadowed retreat clinging to dim moon-lit hopes.  So many places, I’ve felt like I’ve been on a tour of your souls. I’ve seen mischief, worry, kindness, longing, joy and fear, but mostly endearment.

This tour was so worth the exacting price of having to choose a bloom among them all.  In the end, I chose deep longing embraced in paper-thinness.  Childhood three-dimensional spaces sometimes seem two dimensional now, except for our emotions for them.  So this poet’s interpretation won me over.  I’ve read it time and time and time again since she posted it.  Marie’s  “THERE” took me to a place that expanded, even beyond the space she was in.  Stanza by stanza I relished the wonder, surprised to arrive in the present, but awed at the reality of the dream.

THERE by Marie Elena Good

Right there
All alone on the swing
Or cross-legged on the steps
Of the front porch –
The gateway of the inviting country home
With the never-entered door.

Right there
Stretched out comfortably in the grass
Contemplating the blue sky
Billowing clouds
And cool grass tickling my bare legs
On the softly rolling green hills
Gracing the inviting country home
With the never-entered door.

Right there
Wandering the wheat fields
Skipping along the narrow, bubbling stream, leading
To the weather-vaned horse barn
Acres from the inviting country home
With the never-entered door.

Right there
Listening to birds singing softly,
Songs wafting from weeping willows
Reading beneath them
To heart’s content
Yards from the inviting country home
With the never-entered door.

Right there
A beckoning door
To an inviting country home
In a watercolor scene
Papered on our dining room wall,
Right there.

© Marie Elena Good, 2014

(…and if Damon didn’t, I would have! 😉

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InForm – Puente

Okay…the bridges all of you illustrated in this form were of all types–emotional, mental, circumstantial, visual—and I was awed at your talent.  As many other guest hosts have realized by now, choosing a favorite bloom is not easy.  Priti’s folded-away longing, Henrietta’s soft misty morning, the faith-full leap of Hannah’s vines, and all of the variations above were transitions that made me think and smile and sigh.

In the end, a child’s view caught my eye and heart.  Sara (purpleinportland) penned a Puente that rang a bell for me, since I’ve worked with kids so long as an teacher, uncle, father, and grandfather. I’ve observed this flip of attitude and mindset so many times I almost could have predicted the outcome.  But that last line clenched it with the expedient lick.  I chose Sara’s “Weighing the Pros and Cons.”

WEIGHING THE PROS AND CONS by Sara McNulty

Her parents said she was being punished.
She pouted, shouted, to no avail,
then sat curled up on a chair, determined
not to cry, not to care

~The ice cream truck’s bell rang as it headed down the block~

The state of being punished began to bother her,
leading to a tearful apology. She reversed
her psychology, promising to be obedient,
and oh, the expedience with which she licked her cone.

 (C) Sara McNulty, 2014

Congratulations Vivienne, Henrietta, Marie Elena and Sara on your Blooms

INFORM POETS – PUENTE

The Puente, a poem for created by James Rasmusson, and is somewhat similar to the Diamante. Like the Diamante, you start with one aspect of a topic or issue and then, line by line, work toward another aspect. In the center is a line that bridges the two aspects together. The Spanish word for bridge is “puente”.

The form has three stanzas with the first and third having an equal number of lines and the middle stanza having only one line which acts as a bridge (puente) between the first and third stanza. The first and third stanzas convey a related but different element or feeling, as though they were two adjacent territories.
The number of lines in the first and third stanza is the writer’s choice as is the choice of whether to write it in free verse or rhyme.

The center line is delineated by a tilde (~) and has ‘double duty’. It functions as the ending for the last line of the first stanza AND as the beginning for the first line of the third stanza. It shares ownership with these two lines and consequently bridges the first and third stanzas.

WALT’S PUENTE:

LOOKING FOR MR. WRITE

A muse is a terrible thing,
to waste it would bring a pang
as if someone sang a dirge
so sad and consuming. You’d be presuming
you would find the words to express

~you never used to stress about such trivial things!

To find your core meaning
is to find the thing that does amuse
you. Sounding lyrical and lilting
it’s a miracle that words return.
You’ve always yearned to find your voice.

(C) Copyright Walter J Wojtanik

***

DAMON’S PUENTE:

SUMMER BREAK

“Read these,” she asks.
Three story books of wintertime and snow.
“Why these?” I want to know. “It’s summer, dear!”
She rolls her eyes, then plants her hands on tilted hips.
“Poppi,” she says and throws her arms up shocked at my dull wit, “we need a break!”
I sigh, then see a tear, and quivering lip

~and though dull-witted I relent~

and with her in my lap I read aloud
of snow and ice,
freed, for a time, from time,
freed from relentless summer’s vice of sultry heat.
The boundaries of seasons are dissolved.
I read to hold her tight.

© 2014, Damon Dean

KISS THE SUMMER HELLO!

IT’S FAST APPROACHING AND WE’LL BE READY FOR IT!

Last Summer, we had a month of fun at the beach with our  July “Life is a Beach” P.A.D. So much fun that we are planning our next “Vacation”. The destination will be revealed soon, and it will be someplace about which to write home!  Think of any Summer activity under the stars , but don’t let it get too intense. You may not like the idea at first, but by the end of it, you will not want to leave. Spread the word… Tell your friends… Creative Bloomings is going on vacation, and they’re all invited this July. More at the end of next week! Stay connected!

PROMPT #158 – “TOTAL RECALL”: GUEST HOST – DAMON DEAN

The next Guest Host to join the ranks bears the screen name “sevenarcesky”. This is in fact a guy whose poetry is very visual and expressive and has been enjoyed here regularly. When asked to host this week, Damon Dean didn’t think he had done enough to have earned the honor. But he was wrong. He’s done plenty.

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POET DAMON DEAN

POET DAMON DEAN

“I have always enjoyed my writing journey for various reasons. It keeps my heart open to wonder. It keeps my mind poised to imagine. It brings to my soul the satisfaction of amazing discoveries about nature, people, and myself. But my greatest delight in writing is to share those excursions of heart, mind, and soul with others. Poetic Bloomings has been the first venue outside of friends and family that I’ve really had a chance to enjoy that delight.
“Alongside my passion to write for children, poetry fits nicely into my endeavors. My wife and I are retired educators living in southeast Arkansas. A five-year old granddaughter adds inspiration to my writing pursuits. I enjoy the encouragement that comes from networking with writers in forums and groups like Poetic Bloomings. You can find more about my writing journey at my WordPress blog, http://sevenacresky.wordpress.com .”

 

PROMPT #158 – “TOTAL RECALL” – Think back to your younger days. Write about your old room, or a room in your house, apartment, etc. It could be an alcove where you found solace. Use as much detail: paint color, size,shared or single, photos, posters, anything that takes you back.


WALT’S MEMORY:

THE PAD

The corner of the basement
made this cellar dweller a happy fellow.
A couch and a TV kept me entertained,
I remained sequestered – not a cell
just a well appointed joint
concrete walls and all the room
I could claim. Bamboo curtains
became dividers. Hot summer nights
were alright; it stayed cool below.
Pages torn from sports magazines
papered the walls,
all I needed to flee to a quiet spot,
I got a lot of peace to go with it.
A record player and my LPs;
all the music to please.
Books stuffed in every nook,
it took half the summer to read them all.
A green and serene place,
a guy needed some space of his own.
My sanctuary, my library, left alone
with my thoughts and ambitions.
Now that I’m grown I remember
the best pad I ever had back home.

(C) Copyright Walter J Wojtanik

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DAMON’S RECOLLECTION:

The Room On West Main

One small bedroom,
shared by two.
Two boys
pubescent, stinky, raw.
The room too small, perhaps.
But on the wall where other boys my age
had posters of the latest rage
(i.e. the Fab, or Hendrix)
I had a larger-than-life Einstein, who
propounded words so profound
I thought that they were new.

And swinging from the ceiling
on fine fishing-lines,
three Revel models,
F-4 Phantoms, flew
like those I saw and knew had dropped the bombs
on evening news.
A cousin over there, I knew, in Nam
had probably heard them, heard them zip through air
and felt them bust the jungles open wide.

Upon the other wall were Navy ships—
destroyers, carriers, and subs—
bought at the five-and-dime with aromatic glue
and enamel paints in colors suggested on the box.
Grey plastic crafts that sailed upon an upright sea.

Our bunk beds were too short, but I gave
tops to my young brother. In the cave below
I relished my advent toward bold manhood
with dreams based on words on the wall.
I know—and on hormones that flowed like tides.
I’d never seen the ocean. Or the sea.
Or been upon a beach, in Alabama or in Nam.

Our window to the front yard, it was small.
Breezes of summer heat flopped a vinyl shade,
and teased a sheer valance.
Our door led only to a long, long hall between
our bath and bedrooms and the closet at the end.

The room was small. I left it soon.
Excited that my Nixon gave the vote to me,
I became a Young Republican.
That year, my birthdate drew a number in the draft.
One-hundred sixty-three.
The Clarion-Ledger clipping,
faded, but never laminated,
still lies deep in my billfold.
It reminds me, now,
how small a room
can be.

(C) Copyright Damon Dean

BRILLIANT BLOOMS PROMPT #157 AND QUINTELLA

Another week under our belts and another guest host left pulling out her hair trying to choose only one recipient for the Bloom. That’s no lie! Thanks to Linda Hofke for her help and follicular sacrifice this week! And since we’re writing about lies, that contradiction leads us into the awards:

WALT’S CHOICES:

I read through this week’s work, and when I came to this poet’s piece, I heard Billy Joel’s “The Stranger” play in my head. Sometimes people do all they can to alter their look, wearing a mask to fool others. And themselves. And as Poe wrote and Laurie Kolp confirms, the heart is tell-tale. Laurie earns this Bloom for “Heart, Capsulized”.

HEART CAPSULIZED by Lauirie Kolp

you can change
how fast you age
with bleached white teeth

and pumped up lips
permanently painted
hot pink or red

how your
skin appears
with fake tans

not to mention
hair dyed to hide
unwanted gray

but there’s nothing,
not a pill, that will
ever change your
thoughtless heart

© Copyright Laurie Kolp – 2014

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And as is my prerogative, I have decided to award a second Bloom to Caludette J. Young for the innovative and well received ne form which rightfully bears the name, the Claudelle, demonstrated in her piece,

THERE’S ALWAYS TOMORROW by Claudette J Young

Today begins with agenda filled
with have-to’s and musts
all lined up, threatening to spill
over into midnight’s thrusts
onto tomorrow’s threshold.

Time flies from window’s sill
to circle the sky’s limits for
accomplishing more still,
emergency tasks that bore
down on my unexpectedly.

Items pushed back to simmer
on a stove boiling over with work
inch forward, each a small glimmer
of hope for one sitting in agenda’s murk,
who know not enough hours exist,

and at trail’s end of day
there’s always tomorrow
come what may.

© Claudette J. Young 2014

I hope Claudette will allow us to use her form some Wednesday. (hint, hint)

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INFORM POETS:

For the Quintella, I found the piece by Connie Peters very entertaining as it describes in very visual terms the movements of alpacas in a “dance” . The last line in the stanzas ties the poem together nicely.

 

THE ALPACA DANCE

Your partners are all set to prance.
Long legs, big eyes, thick fur. And hums.
You’ll brush them now from neck to bums.
If you’re willing to take the chance.
Let’s all do the alpaca dance.

So listen here, I’ll teach the stance.
Right arm blocks head, avoid the spit.
Left brushes high and low a bit.
Watch out, they’ll look at you askance.
Let’s all do the alpaca dance.

I’ll warn you now in great advance.
To kick at you, it’s spiteful goal.
Push bum and scoot around the pole.
Brush fast while it holds still perchance.
Let’s all do the alpaca dance.

The fiber grows your friend’s finance.
Remove the sticks, the hay, the burrs.
Then time to shear. The cries! The whirs!
They look like deer now, at first glance.
Let’s all do the alpaca dance.

I’ll tell you now, it’s not romance.
Watch where you step, it’s all not hay.
Yes, you have earned your meal today.
Now, watch them run in the expanse.
Let’s all do the alpaca dance.

© Copyright Connie L. Peters – 2014

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LINDA’S DECISIONS:

Who knew a prompt about lies would produce so much variation? I enjoyed all of them, but (after much deliberation) narrowed it down to two poems. Then I kept swinging back and forth between the two–this one, no that one, no this one–like a pendulum. How appropriate that in the end I decided on a poem full of time references. My first Bloom goes to Salvatore Buttaci for his poem “The Lie of the Spin”.

THE LIE OF THE SPIN

ignore or stare down
the clock’s three hands
Waving full circles
while we spin
obliviously like
the vitruvian man
plastered against the wheel

we mourn those
whose clocks stopped
but lie how life goes on
as if we survivors
are immune to that death
cruelly claiming others
while we go on living

we kid ourselves thinking
our days are not numbered
the mirror lies to us
says we’re young as we feel
Says the glint in our eye’s still there
Says there’s snow on the rooftop
but the furnace burns bright

so we go on spinning
breezing through a lifetime
fooled by the clock’s slow hands
flying by unscathed by truth
then at the end we look back
and all those lies return
in an inescapable deathbed vertigo

© Copyright – Salvatore Buttaci – 2014

***

The quintella form poems, with their rhyme and meter, were so fun to read. Read aloud the words roll gently off the tongue and flow into the air like song. Very early on I had a favorite but after going back to read all the poems once again, one blew me away with how the meter worked beautifully. There is a steady beat like footsteps and then a stumble of that beat at the end which matches perfectly with the story. My beautiful in-form Bloom goes to Sara McNulty for “The Adventurous Hat”.

THE ADVENTUROUS HAT by Sara McNulty

You raced far down a street to seek
my tan suede hat from which I peeked
with just a fringe of hair that showed
from underneath a brim that bowed.
Until a gust of wind did streak

beneath the hat, and off it sailed.
You were determined to prevail,
so chased that hat, and grabbed the edge.
Just then it touched down on a ledge.
I watched you skid – oh no, a nail!

© Copyright Sara McNulty – 2014

CONGRATULATIONS Laurie, Claudette, Connie, Salvatore, and Sara on your Blooms.

Great work everyone!

 

INFORM POETS – QUINTELLA

This is a Spanish form of five eight syllable (Iambic Tetrameter) lines. The rhyming scheme can vary in presentation ie a.a.b.b.a, a.b.b.a.a. etc but only two consecutive lines may have the same rhyme scheme.

WALT’S EXAMPLE:

 

LAKE ESCAPE

I come to stand upon the shore
the way I’ve done some times before.
At night I’ll sit upon the sand,
and write my verse with pen in hand
beneath the moon and stars galore.

And in the misted sky I take
a glimpse at glints upon the lake,
these stolen moments that we dare
upon this blanket where we share
the passion of the love we make.

(C) Copyright Walter J Wojtanik – 2014

 

LINDA’S QUINTELLA:

 

CALCULATIONS

 

You go about collecting clues,
assuming one plus one makes two,
but sometimes they add up to four
and since you neglect to explore
this possibility you do
not ever learn the truth. Instead,
you just believe what’s in your head,
because you say the pieces fit.
I can no longer look at it
that way because my heart has bled
from that line of thinking. Recall
long ago days when as a small
child you carefully attached
two puzzle pieces you thought matched.
The two fit snug and all in all
looked good but, in the end, weren’t right.
Remember those times and you might
be more careful what you believe.
It is easy to misconceive;
thing are not always black and white.
(C) Copyright Linda Hofke – 2014

 

 

PROMPT #157 – “BOLD FACE LIE”: GUEST HOST – LINDA HOFKE

This week we venture back across the big pond and are helped by a woman who contributes her poetry from Germany. I am pleased to say it’s Linda Hofke’s turn to share the spot light! Welcome Linda!

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POET LINDA HOFKE

POET and PHOTOGRAPHER LINDA HOFKE

Linda Hofke, a native Pennsylvanian, lives in Germany where she writes, takes photographs and puts her lead foot to use on the Autobahn. You can find her work at Curio Poetry, Mirow, Bolts of Silk, Jellyfish Whispers, The Fib Review, The Poetic Pinup Revue, and other online and print journals. She’s a lazy blogger who posts sporadically at http://lind-guistics.blogspot.de/ and http://lindas-life-otos.blogspot.de/. She is currently busy working on writing a very silly picture book.

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PROMPT #156 – “BOLD FACE LIE” – Think of some reasons we wouldn’t be totally truthful to someone. Choose one and write a poem debunking one of that reason.

WALT’S RATIONALE:

FOR YOUR PROTECTION

it
was
just a
little fib.
it was to save you
from getting hurt in the process.
protect me? my behind! i find
you are covering
your own ass.
no class!
fibs?
lies!

© Copyright Walter J Wojtanik – 2014

 

LINDA’S REASONING:

Though I don’t do it, women tend to lie about their age more than men. Some lie with words. Others lie through the use of skillfully-applied make-up, retouching photos, or even plastic surgery. However, age catches up with everyone eventually and none of these methods work anymore. I wrote a few lines on this, scratched and erased, added and deleted, and never achieved the right wording I wanted. Then I decided to let the child in me come out and have a bit of fun with this. I know it’s not journal quality writing but I hope you don’t mind. In keeping with the theme of aging, I’ve read that laughter helps keep us youthful and happy.  So this one is for your health.

 OLD-AGED

I can lie about my age
but age will give me away—
streaks of grey framing my face
and wrinkles on display.
 
My chin and breasts recite together
the law of gravity
while racing against the other
to reach my abdominal cavity.
 
My knees? They’re old and fussy,
with every step they crack
and they’ll probably crumble from
the eventual chin-and-boob attack.
 
If it all stretches down to my feet
I guess I’ll tuck it between toes
and roll myself into a ball,
chin to toes and feet to nose.
 
You might think I’m exaggerating
but you simply have no clue.
You could only understand  if you
were also one hundred-eighty two.

© Copyright Linda Evans Hofke – 2014