The Shadow Sonnet was created by Amera M. Andersen, and may be written in any sonnet style. The Shadow takes place at the beginning and ending of each line as the words are identical or homophonic. Since all poetry was originally meant to be sung or recited out loud, homophonic words are acceptable, these are words that sound alike such as “see and sea”, “there, their, and they’re”…  (Rules: 14 lines, 9 or 10 syllables per line.  Iambic pentameter is not necessary.)



We come to gather together and we
all bring something to the table, we all
give a piece of ourselves to those who give
us much to augment these lives given to us.

Why wait ’til it’s too late? Why wonder why?
Go forth now, do your best for those who go
out of their way to help others out.
There’s no doubt that time will work against their

best plans. But, It stands to reason that the best
part of my season should become a part
of your mind set, too. Get used to giving of
your heart and start to feel the goodwill your

giving will cause. I’m all about giving.
I am Santa Claus. It’s time that I am!

(C) Walter J Wojtanik, 2014


For those who may have missed Marie Elena’s interview with the remarkable Benjamin Thomas, I encourage you to do so. Find it at this link:




    Still, after all these years, when I sit still,
    you come to mind––your smile, voice, all you
    will always be to me! It takes strong will
    to keep away those sad memories, to
    not see you dying there in bed, to not
    recall the last time we met. A recall––
    what is still sad to me. Sister, friend, what
    fall of dying things can compare? I fall
    asleep some nights and dream you fell asleep,
    never really died, that you would never
    keep yourself so far away, so I keep
    ever strong this love for you, and ever
    true. Anna, you passed, but this much is true:
    a new life gained through God’s grace. You live anew!


  2. Shadows of Ourselves

    You never saw a doctor as you
    never saw the need but then never
    cannot last forever and you cannot
    forever dodge disease. To find forever

    is all we can do; mortality is
    our great weapon forged deep within our
    cells; they mutate and mutiny, cells
    conspiring to conspire, to conspire

    against the brick-and-mortar you, against
    who holds you under lock and key, who
    keeps your feet planted as your soul keeps
    lifting up, after years of heavy lifting,

    until its arms are light as air, until
    time, at long last, no longer need keep time.


    Rome was where it began, and as I roam
    along, ghosts of hoggees walk along
    too, and as we traipse the towpath, two by two,
    canal boats course the Erie Canal

    again in my mind. I see mules again,
    pulling the packets in the Ditch, pulling
    line boats filled with freight, straining at the line.
    I see the wooden locks, in my mind’s eye

    opening into the past, opening
    wide to reveal the grandeur of the wide
    waters and turning basins. The waters
    call to me in memory, and the call

    echoes across New York, like the echoes
    Time demands of us all, all the time.

    copyright 2014, William Preston

  4. Dancing Fairies

    Dancing fairies in the moonlight, dancing
    Whirling with the wind, ‘round and ‘round, whirling
    Twirling, tap-tapping, tippy-toed, twirling
    Shadows, dancing, whirling, twirling, shadows

    Dancing fairies in the moonlight, dancing
    Singing timeless silvery songs, singing
    Laughing, musical, tinkling-tune, laughing
    Whispers, dancing, singing, laughing, whispers

    Dancing fairies in the moonlight, dancing
    Wishing on starlight, whispering, wishing
    Swishing their long, wavy hair, swish-swishing
    Slippers, dancing, wishing, swishing slippers

    Dancing fairies in the moonlight, dancing
    Singing timeless, silvery songs, singing

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  6. Bigger than a Book

    Drum out this raw rhythm – your heartbeat drum
    held in abalone, this pulse is held
    sacred feminine voice seized, still sacred
    pearl’s lustrous – wisdom silenced – pretty pearl.

    Within, untruth has been planted within
    seed of sand – underlying lie – a seed
    practiced, for generations it’s practiced
    deceiving, this treasure is deceiving.

    Open casing, grey history open
    call those unbalanced uneven walls, call
    release this closed-minded-thinking – release
    center – unbiased truth reveals center.

    More than just a pretty gem shining, more
    escape patriarchal shell – escape.

    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2014

    I don’t know how to retain italics when copy/pasted here but the second “pearl,” in my first stanza and “treasure,” in the second stanza are supposed to be italicized.

    I have a lot of notes from the poet on site if anyone is interested in the background of this poem.

    Thank you for the form and example Walt and poets playing along! 🙂

  7. Shadow sonnet

    Swimmers of the life; we all are swimmers
    Short or long – we give it distant shot
    Yearning for the best we better learning
    Quote the wisdom we get rated by Klout.

    Brave, we ford malignant spots in rave
    Catalyst the waters served as catalysts
    Surreal mission makes our lives surreal
    List the issues, be aware at least.

    Swimmers of the life, we dance a shimmy
    Ebbs are tracing odds, colliding abs
    Crucial in order to save the crew shell
    Not to lose yourself in final note.

    And giving spark to spoofed end
    Hand’s reaching for another hand.

    ~ combined my poem with ‘swimming’ theme at PU

  8. With Each Beat of my Heart

    Beating of my heart says I’m not yet beat.
    Yule season awaits but I am sure you’ll
    not want to see me which will leave a knot
    tied in my heart, where hurt flows out like the tide.

    Blue, sitting, recalling wild winds that blew
    through my soul that night you said, ‘we’re through.’
    Rain slides down my window, and I must rein
    in all thoughts of you. Remember that inn

    we stayed at last summer, with so wee
    a lass who served us tea? Oh, alas,
    I’ll not see you again; no walk down the aisle
    for us. Maybe we’ll meet, have tea at four,

    two old folks needing someone to talk to
    whine about life, still precious like fine wine.

  9. Very challenging. (Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is… ; ) Very good advice in a lovely poem.)

    Such a Tiny Word

    If I could look in your eyes once more, if…
    such a tiny word, yes, tiny word, such
    are hopes and frustrations made of. Are
    there any Fates to pity mankind their
    sad state of separation by death? Sad,
    yet, tender are the sweet memories, yet
    they don’t compensate for one touch. They
    can’t fill the empty space that is you. Can’t
    recall the blueness of eyes, can’t recall
    the hunger in your searching look or the
    still tenseness of your shoulders made of steel –
    where I laid my head, where came my strength. Where
    are you now? Where have you gone? Far you are.
    If I could look in your eyes once more, if…


    Snow has come again: the driving snow
    drifts amidst the Ponderosa pines. Drifts
    flow down the mountainside, their surging flow
    lifts the snowshoe trails toward the lifts

    while whiteness blankets all, all the while.
    How strange to find it so pleasing; how,
    mile after mile and mile upon mile,
    now peace reigns. All is of a piece, now.

    Why this feeling? Why this subtle glow? Why
    would a snowstorm that obscures the wood
    deny all darkness? I cannot deny
    good when it comes. It has come. All is good.

    White commands the land and sky with white
    light, to free my soul and bid my heart be light.

    copyright 2014, William Preston


    Aromas fill the kitchen, pleasing aromas.
    Sweet potatoes, turkey and pumpkin pie are sweet
    reminders to be thankful, as if reminders
    are necessary knowing just how blessed we are.

    Hard times made me less aware and it became hard
    to remember other folks were struggling, too.
    Filling other’s needs had to be more fulfilling,
    more comforting, than believing I deserved more.

    On the road to self-pity, I had to move on
    where people with no food to eat or clothes to wear
    would rely on me to warm their fires with wood,
    share my coat or give meals when they had none to share.

    Far from being perfect, I’m more content when far
    less concerned with myself and satisfied with less.

    © Susan Schoeffield

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  13. Compared to the fine examples above. . .I wanted to at least try, and to wrestle with the direction of my recent meditations. Here it is:


    Holy is the Lord who keeps us whole
    In His care, always and ever within
    His heart, my own synchronized with His
    Step by step, I totter up life’s stair steps
    Ascent possible when I assent
    To God’s law, counting on His mercy too
    Turn around in time to see the world turn
    People orbit my circle, people
    Who see mirrored in me the God who
    Is holy love, but the reflection is
    Distorted, wrong choices distorted
    High and wide, yet familiar face waves hi
    Through me God greets the world, as He once threw
    Stars skyward to reveal His Morningstar

    P.S. I learned this week that the publisher who has published my books for ten years is closing its doors. I am in a word, devastated.

  14. “Santa’s Schnoz”

    Santa, rest your frozen nose! Oh, Santa!
    fire that yuletide log so we may fire
    aloft as bulbous snuffer sits aloft
    bold cold and frosty cheeks with laughter bold.

    Order now a hanky for some ardor
    Nest your protuberance in warmer nest
    Jolly is a beak warmed by the jolly
    splinter and whistle of a good fire’s splinter.

    Nosegay and red now grows your nose-so-gay
    Skin flinty are the cinders near your skin
    Proboscis Gloria in proboscis!
    One warm ‘ed by the fire, we are one.

    Oh, Walter rest your snuffer on this theme
    Dream warmer days will sniff out all our dream.

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