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


July 11 –  You get your gender specific camp assignment and there’s been a big mistake. You were send to the wrong camp. Write a poem where you assimilate into your new surroundings. Or tell of what you’d do to get send across the lake where you belong. Make a good case and give good reasons to go/stay.


July 10 – CAMPFIRE


July 8 – POET CAMP




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  1. Marjory MT on said:

    Summer Camp – Fifth Grader….

    There has been a big mistake.
    You and I are not the same.
    There has been a BIG MISTAKE,
    I belong across the lake
    You have got the wrong name,
    If I stay I’ll go insane.

    Marjory M Thompson 2014

  2. WmPreston on said:


    There was once a teen-ager named Earle
    who was lying there, whittling a burl.
    Though to lazy to sit up,
    his eyes snapped and lit up
    when he learned his tent-mate was a girl.

    copyright 2014, William Preston

  3. Difficult prompt this for a Brit. We don’t have that kind of camp in UK (though they do in France, but I’ve no experience of them). Camping in UK can be individual, family or groups of friends, but we aren’t ‘sent’ or allocated in any way. I might try and write a bit of fiction!

  4. connielpeters on said:


    These rough and tumble boys,
    To me, are a lot more fun
    They’re keen on climbing trees
    They’re always on the run

    I’m not big on flowers
    Or chatting by the lake
    And girls go on for hours
    And most of them are fake

    I’d rather catch a frog
    Than sit and do my nails
    And slosh through a bog
    Than tell those shopping tales

    So Mr. Counselor,
    Let me give boys’ camp a whirl
    I’d rather stay right here
    Even though I am a girl

  5. flashpoetguy on said:


    Someone’s made a huge mistake.
    I’m the only boy in Camp Toledo
    and though the girls think I am neato,
    this is more than I can take.

    Until they iron out the error
    and send me off to Wattcha Dewin,
    I’ll make the best instead of stewing.
    Frannie’s hoping that they’ll never

    send me off to where the boys are.
    For now I’ll have to bide my time.
    What good is it to sit and whine?
    In this girls’ camp this boy’s a star.

    Today I learned to bake a pie
    and ballet way up on my toes.
    How I got here no one knows.
    Frannie says the reason why

    has to do with love’s great power,
    plain as noses on our faces.
    Sometimes we end up in places
    where we spend some happy hours

    walking on clouds, hearts beating,
    Frannie’s telling all her friends: Ain’t love grand!
    And she’s trying hard to hold my hand.
    The situation’s overheating.

    Thank God Van Camp has come to save me.
    He’ll drive me to Wattcha Dewin
    Far from Frannie’s constant wooing,
    wave goodbye to Lovey Dovey…maybe.


  6. ejparsons on said:

    I Like My Cabin Mates

    I know they made a big mistake
    But I really like my cabin mates
    This teenage boy is feeling great

    This teenage boy is feeling fine
    This cabin smells like soft sunshine
    Please, oh, please, don’t reassign

    Please, oh, please, leave me alone
    If I stay here, I won’t miss home
    This situation needs a poem

    This situation needs my care
    Experiment with me; that’s fair
    Now can I quit this gawking stare

    Now can I quit bugging my eyes
    Wipe from my face this big surprise
    Don’t move me out or I might cry

    Don’t move me back across the lake
    Why not just admit your mistake
    And leave me here, for goodness sake

    This would be the best camp ever

    © 2014 Earl Parsons

  7. Am I Me?

    We got on the bus together
    at a ridiculous early hour,
    so I stuffed my hair in a baseball hat
    and promptly went to sleep.

    When I awoke
    everyone was getting off the bus,
    so I joined the ranks.
    They counted us off 1, 2, 3, 4…
    and pointed each number in a direction

    Like a sheep,
    I followed the herd
    to the number 4 cabin
    and set my stuff on a lower bunk.

    An announcement came over the speakers
    that once we were checked in at our cabin
    we had free time until dinner ~
    I heard someone say “swimming”.

    Through my foggy brain
    I thought a swim would be just the thing.
    So I took my hat off, shook my hair
    and pulled my sweatshirt off…

    and that’s when I heard…complete silence.
    I turned around and found the surprised faces
    of nine teenage boys,
    in various stages of undress
    all staring at me.

    Me…the only girl in the cabin.

  8. Here’s a quicky–reflects how I would have been as a teen in this situation. Just a rough draft. No time for precision. Enjoy.

    Beginning with a Typo

    “But you’re not ours,”
    he said with a sneer.
    “I must be. I’m here.”
    “But you’re a girl!”
    I smile and count the hours
    ‘til pandemonium swirls.

    “We must remedy this,”
    He said, his work disarrayed.
    “My parents have already paid.
    Just assign me a bunk.”
    “But you’re a girl, Miss!”
    “And you’re a gorgeous hunk.”

    I sized him up and as counselors go
    He hadn’t much on the uptake
    But it hadn’t been his mistake
    That their app had too few spaces
    For a girl’s full name, and so
    I got thrown into male spaces.

    “Look,” I said, reasonable,
    “Just give me a tent for sleep,
    Bathroom privileges like a veep,
    And I’ll play by your boys’ rules.
    I am good at being amiable,
    I’m sure your leaders are not fools.”

  9. Campcide Tales, Day 11: Sweetcide


    We called him Jack Hornpipe, and there was
    a glamour, a romance about him for us girls.
    We was tanned, wore white shorts and a t-shirt,

    and he smelled of cocoa, slicked with its sun-
    melted fat. I often fought the urge to lick him;
    I’d kill for chocolate when I was 12. Still could.

    Jack did mysterious stuff, like ‘shinning up
    the ratlin to reef or bail-up or splicing
    the mainbrace’. Jack taught us to sail.

    He taught them to sail, too; the boys who
    camped across the lake. Jack Hornpipe
    slept in a small boat moored at their dock.

    I can’t remember why we called him Jack
    Hornpipe. Wish I could but it’s beyond my
    memory. But not the smell of that cocoa.

    Jack Hornpipe: the sweetcide of camping.

  10. RJ Clarken on said:


    “I love to be individual, to step beyond gender.” ~Annie Lenox

    My name is gender-neutral, see?
    I like that: it’s all right by me.
    But schools and camps and most kid-zones
    have trouble with this. Sex? Unknowns.
    This sometimes makes for comedy.

    Once, in summer, I attended
    sleep-away camp, gender-blended,
    ‘cept for cabins where we’d sleep.
    (At night, the ‘issues’ were too steep.)
    But something happened which was splendid:

    Although a bit roman a clef,
    and even ‘though my folks checked ‘F’,
    I got placed in a teen boys’ bunk
    where I could sleep beneath a hunk!
    (My bunk assignment, I thought deft.)

    And actually, the guys all said,
    they didn’t care if I did bed
    with them. They saw no foul, no harm.
    Besides, I had a pitching arm
    that was the best. The league, I led.

    And so when we played ball, we won.
    (Our team was mixed re daughter/son.)
    Because of this no one cried foul
    if they knew dudes bunked with this gal.
    I liked this set-up. It was fun.

    So yeah, it worked. In the long run
    the guys were cool – yep, everyone.
    The girls just didn’t notice I
    was not with them. No questions why.
    All too darned pooped when day was done.

    However, my assignment was
    against the rules. There was a clause
    that said that girls could not reside
    within the boys’ bunk. Rules implied
    that this arrangement had some ‘flaws.’

    It took some time for staff to learn
    that I ‘crossed over.’ They were stern,
    and said that I must move tout de suite,
    pack up my blanket and my sheet
    and all my gear. I’d caused concern.

    By then, the news had spread through camp.
    Surprisingly, no one called, “Tramp!”
    Although…some girls were jealous of
    my bunk assignment. Where’s the love?
    But mostly, kids thought me a champ.

    The moral: I don’t think I get
    why grown-ups must get so upset.
    But since we’re teens, I guess they must
    since hormones rage. They do not trust.
    If they were young, they’d try, I bet.

    Well, anyway, I’m filled with cheer
    for such a name. It would appear
    that more mistakes re gender might
    give me a cabin spot green light –
    when I go back to camp next year.


  11. William Preston on said:


    When I signed up for baseball camp,
    I wanted to play ball like a champ
    and run the bases like a scamp,

    but I got off on the wrong ramp
    and when I finished my long tramp
    I found myself in poets’ camp.

    What am I going to do now?

    copyright 2014, William Preston

  12. (Poem w/image: http://lettheballoonssailmeaway.wordpress.com)


    “Henri?” Charming French counselor
    sang quizzically.
    Yes…it seems you mistake me
    For one of those barefooted-monster
    Send you back across, maybe?
    Yes! Please, hurry!

  13. This Stinks

    I wouldn’t mind staying here cause
    I’m always picked first for the teams
    I can pitch no hitters and steal bases like a pro
    and run a mile in under ten – that’s no idle crow
    my archery skills are just superb
    and in a game of dare I’ve got nerve
    the guys don’t mind me staying here
    but I’m afraid I’ve got to go.
    I’ve been here three days so far
    and I just can’t cope
    none of the fellow here at all
    have opened a bar of soap.

  14. Priti on said:

    Get Me Out, Please!
    To err is human they say
    but this is really inhumane!!
    Just because you couldn’t tell
    my name and its unusual dwell !
    Now you say that I am stuck
    to make the most of this dumb luck!
    I cannot stay a second more
    this was not what I came here for
    I thought I’d meet some cool tough lads
    across the lake from lily pads
    But these– they’re worse than girls that gag !

    So, please please please, I beg of you!
    I’ll sign whatever you want me to
    even fly to –Katmandu
    Just get me out of this crazy zoo!!!

  15. Darlene Franklin on said:


    I made a choice and risked my plan
    If Mulan could do it, why can’t I
    A few keystrokes fool my folks
    Deceiving campers should be easy
    Since I’m not a “woman” yet, to Mom’s regret
    In T-shirts and jeans, my hair cut short,
    Hope Franklin turns into Frankie Hope
    My tent mate is Michael, red-haired and blue-eyed
    Partners all day, we score the winning goal
    Charring hot dogs and telling tall tales
    Sent off to sleep on camp cots
    We talk and talk until we can’t
    My heartbeat slows, to match his breath
    A mistake!
    I am a girl, after all
    And Michael can’t know


    I come in solidarity
    a misplaced face
    in this girls world.
    Lest I be the brunt
    of vitriol when the moon
    rides in on its cycle, know this:
    I cramp a lot,
    I’ve got perky moobs,
    I retain water, and
    have a weak bladder.
    I get mad as a hatter
    when the things I bought
    last week, go on sale this week.
    But the solution is easy
    I’ve come “Double Stuft”.
    “Oreos, Ladies?”

  17. Camp Confusion B and G

    I arrive with my canvas camp bag,
    tagged “Rory.” All my clothes
    have name labels sewn inside.
    Camp Confusion B is not what
    I imagined No girl in sight,
    I wonder if I might be the only one.
    With short cut hair under my baseball
    cap, I am slapped on the back
    by counselors, and a group
    of boys asking me to join
    a basketball game–my favorite
    sport. Tall and wiry, I play
    on a girl’s team at school.
    I keep my cool for a while,
    shooting baskets, playing softball,
    but then, our counselors tell us
    to go in and change for a swim
    in the lake. Now I will have
    to tell them that I am here
    by mistake. It was the best
    day I ever had in camp.
    When they shipped me across the lake
    to Camp Confusion G, it sucked.

  18. Pingback: Under One Sky | Metaphors and Smiles

  19. Under One Sky

    In the wild there aren’t any malls – no Tonka trucks or Barbie dolls
    we aren’t given black bow ties or purple hair ribbons
    it doesn’t matter that you have a crew cut and that I wear mine long…
    the songbirds of the forest sound the very same to each of us,
    the excitement found in a fresh caught fish is a shared joy –
    here’s where we can be more than just a girl and just a boy,

    in nature there’re no gender specific trivialities.

    Here the wind whispers its hush-hush lullaby to ears alike,
    the entire wood is wrapped in its consuming embrace
    and in this place the trees leaves tremble their response easily.
    Here we count the comets together and trace constellations,
    under this silver moon there isn’t any pink and there’s no blue –
    beneath this star-speckled heavens there’s only me and only you.

    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2014

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