PROMPT #336 – UNDER THE MOON

This past week, we had experienced the phenomenon of what’s called the Supermoon/Blood Moon. Moon gazers came out to try and witness Mother Nature’s show. And we were all looking up at the same moon. In a sense we were connected.

This week we’re writing to the moon and back. Actually, we’re writing with the title “UNDER THE MOON OF_________________”. Fill in the blank and write it!

Give the moon qualities related to something or someone else. Some examples: Under the Moon of Capricorn, Under the Moon of Reason, Under the Moon Pie Sky, Under the Moon of Chocolate Confections… You get it. So give it a go and shoot the moon!

MARIE’S SHARE:

Beneath the Moon of God’s Choosing

In the midst of war
(and there is always a war)
lies grim misjudging.
Fear of difference.
Insatiable greed for land.
Resolute loathing.
Dire false impressions.
Grave miscommunications.

And a common moon.

And beneath that moon,
in God’s perfect alignment,
is home to us all.
We’ve food and water
(if only we’d gladly share),
great plains and mountains,
celebrated seas
with unfathomably large
communal mammals.
With microscopic
yet astoundingly complex
sentient beings.
Sands God has numbered
stay in place as our home spins,
not spilling a drop
of the vast waters
that both adorn and provide,
beautify and quench.

And though we do not
tend to her needs (let alone
the needs of “others”),
God gave us this home
brilliantly placed beneath the
moon of His choosing,
populated with
children He chooses to love.
(There are no “others.”}

© Marie Elena Good, 2021
5-7-5

WALT’S TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE HEART:

UNDER THE MOON OF WHISPERED DESIRES

I can see you in the distance
and I take the chance to dance 
with you in silhouette without regret.
The moonlight illuminates, it waits
for you to take your stance
in these arms of tender caress.
No need to confess our intent,
we have sent it packing 
for it was lacking any fault of misdeed.
This could lead to something more.
What the evening holds is the dream
of me holding you again, and then
I will lean in close and on the heated breath
of longing, breathe sweet somethings or nothings,
anything that will make you return to my arms
nightly. In the sight of the stars, you will quiver,
and I will deliver every nuance in advance. 
They can see us in the distance,
taking this chance to do our dance
under the moon of whispered desires.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2021

POETIC BLOOMINGS READING ROOM #59 – “MAKE ONE WOMAN”

A Poetic Find by Candy

Quite a challenge – choose a favorite poem and poet to share!

Billy Collins has been a favorite of mine for some time, although my first poetic love was Rod McKuen (yes, I freely admit it). So I went to my bookcases to find which of Billy Collins’ poems I would share. This took most of the afternoon, reading poems from his books (and from Rod’s too), which turned out to be the perfect way to spend a rainy day, along with a cup of tea.

I came across some slim volumes of poetry hiding there in the dark, waiting for someone to hold them, open them, read the words from a poet’s heart. One of these was a book titled, Grass Songs by Ann Turner. I’m sure I found this little gem at a used book sale. It is a collection of 17 poems about the women who were part of the westward wagon trains and their experiences. These poems are simple and real, and they pierce your heart.

According to the brief biography included, Ann Turner was doing research for a novel when she first read some of the journals of these pioneer women and was inspired to tell their stories in poetic form.

She is best known for her children’s books, but has written several volumes of poetry.

The book was published in 1993, so I don’t know if its still available. If you haunt used books sales, as I do, be on the lookout for it.

Here is the one I chose to share with you:

“Make One Woman”

by Ann Turner

Picture
Ann Turner
There is a better way
to make a woman.
Cut her from cloth, gabardine,
so strong and fine
it will not scratch or tear.
Sew eyes of black
that will not cry.
Paint one nose not over-
Particular about cattle
Smells and prairie ills.
Fashion two ears
that do not listen
for love,
that are content
with the wind and rain
and sleet.
Stitch her hair down tight
so the blizzard will not
tear it off.
Make those arms strong
enough for horse, harness,
and frozen wood.
Get two legs that will not
ache, that walk a prairie
like a city street.
And feet – do not forget
to make them long and large
for river fords and
winter boots.
Did I forget the heart?
Sew one red outline,
No shading in between.
It will not feel a child
gone, a husband cold,
a home left behind
like a favorite patchwork
quilt. 
I would have lasted,
had I been of thread,
cloth, and buttons.

PROMPT #335 – SOFT AND HARD

We’re working both sides of the street today and delving into the concepts of SOFT and HARD. We’ll write either into a poem. But to compound things further, you are to come up with a compound word highlighting either extreme. We’ll be doing a few of these exercises with different opposing ideas so this is just the beginning.

You ask, “What does Walt mean compound words!” Think of these few examples: Soft Cell, Feather Soft, Hard Sell, Hard Times, soft opening, hard headed… You get the picture. Write softly and carry a hard problem to an easy solution!

MARIE’S SOFT WORDS:

softly screaming

She never fingered
soft, supple, pretty petals
for fear of thorn’s prick.

Gently moonlit clouds
went unnoticed, for stark-glared
terror of tripping.

Her lips never sought
a tender kiss. Her heart slammed
shut, expecting ache.

She clashed with herself.
Subtly soft-spoken. Screaming
unyielding unease.

© Marie Elena Good, 2021

WALT’S HARD SOLUTION:

THE SOFT PARADE

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2021

POETIC BLOOMINGS READING ROOM #58 – “HATRED”

Today’s entry to the READING ROOM is presented by Debi Swim. Thanks to my heritage, I am somewhat familiar with Szymborska’s work. Here is Debi’s summation:

Wislawa Szymborska
1923 – 2012

 Wislawa Szymborska, from Krakow Poland, received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1996.   

Three of my favorite poets are Wislawa Szymborska, Langston Hughes and Wendell Berry. You are probably familiar with the last two but maybe not the first. I was ‘introduced’ to her by Barbara Young (author of Heirloom Language) on her prompt blog Quickly.

“The voice in Szymborska’s poems is natural, conversational in places, but even the seemingly simpler poems cast shadows that vie for your attention.” (Quote from Arms, Legs, and Astounded Head: Wislawa Szymborska’s Here | Outside of a Cat (wordpress.com))

Hatred, by Wislawa Szymborska

See how efficient it still is,
how it keeps itself in shape—
our century’s hatred.
How easily it vaults the tallest obstacles.
How rapidly it pounces, tracks us down.

It’s not like other feelings.
At once both older and younger.
It gives birth itself to the reasons
that give it life.

When it sleeps, it’s never eternal rest.
And sleeplessness won’t sap its strength; it feeds it.

One religion or another –
whatever gets it ready, in position.
One fatherland or another –
whatever helps it get a running start.
Justice also works well at the outset
until hate gets its own momentum going.

Hatred. Hatred.
Its face twisted in a grimace
of erotic ecstasy…

Hatred is a master of contrast-
between explosions and dead quiet,
red blood and white snow.
Above all, it never tires
of its leitmotif – the impeccable executioner
towering over its soiled victim.

It’s always ready for new challenges.
If it has to wait awhile, it will.
They say it’s blind. Blind?
It has a sniper’s keen sight
and gazes unflinchingly at the future
as only it can.

PROMPT #334 – IT HAPPENS

I was reminded during the millionth (it’s seemed like it) broadcast of Forrest Gump when the T-Shirt designer steps in IT and an unflappable Gump comes forth with the line “It Happens.” We all encounter things that “happen” in our lives, both good and not quite so.

What’s happening? Or better yet what has happened in your realm of influence? What would you like to happen? Be it personal, local, or wider spread than that, let us know through your poetic heart. It happens to all of us. We’ll help you step around it.

MARIE’S HAPPENING:

JUST YESTERDAY

I loved gardening
beneath sun and deep blue sky
in sensible shoes.

I loved Keith as he
painted old cheap plastic pots
‘seventies Corvettes.

I loved filling them
with flamboyant petunias,
modest marigolds.

I loved settling in,
sipping black coffee, watching
red robins rummage.

© Marie Elena Good, 2021

WALT’S HAPPENSTANCE:

HAPPENSTANCE

    “Experience is not what happens to a man. It is what a man does with what happens to him.” ~Aldous Huxley

You live and learn,
earning your respect
and stumbling your way
through this world. You hope to build
strength and character and
strength of character
to anchor you. Feet firmly planted,
convicted to depict a man
who makes his mistakes better
each next time he makes them.
Never curse the sins visited upon the son
for they were merely lessons the father
never got around to teaching.
Nothing wrong with reaching for the stars,
venturing far from home base,
yet keeping our heart close to the place
that bears your footprint.
Not all missteps are mistakes,
every deviation takes you to a new location.
For generations this had been your station.
But your errors are the foundation upon which
your life was built. Becoming sturdy
and strong, ending up where you belong.
Remember it happens to all of us.
Learn from it and move on!

POETIC BLOOMINGS READING ROOM #57 – “TO AUTUMN”

This offering of the POETIC BLOOMINGS READING ROOM is from William Preston. In Bill’s words:

Although my favorite poem is Frost’s “Stopping By Woods”, I selected 
Keats’s “To Autumn.” To my mind, it’s the perfect marriage of sounds and 
sense, with vivid imagery. My favorite season is autumn, and this poem 
praises it, describing its abundance, harvest, melody, and its 
fleeting beauty by using intense imagery. The rhyming melds so well with 
the images that I forget about it. Mainly, though, I love it for its 
sounds, especially the first line, “Season of mists and mellow 
fruitfulness,” which fairly whispers the reader into the poem.

TO AUTUMN

by John Keats

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
   Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
   With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
   And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
      To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
   With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
      For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
   Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
   Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
   Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
      Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
   Steady thy laden head across a brook;
   Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
      Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of spring? Ay, Where are they?
   Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
   And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
   Among the river sallows, borne aloft
      Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
   Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
   The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
      And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

CONGRATULATIONS TO 2021 MADNESS POETRY AUTHLETES DAMON DEAN, LINDA HOFKE, AND RJ CLARKEN!


Three of the 64 Authletes competing in this year’s Madness Poetry contest are long-time past-and/or-present Bloomers! They were chosen from rigorously competitive poets, and we couldn’t be more proud of them! Congratulations to Dean, Linda, and RJ!

Voting starts tomorrow (May 10) for all three authletes, so please consider making time to read and vote, at: Madness Poetry Matchups

Best of luck, you guys!

*******************************

Who would have thought the inauguration day of our new Spotlight feature here at Poetic Bloomings would include FOUR poets to honor! In case you missed it, here is a link to this morning’s post about Barbara Young’s new book: CONGRATULATIONS, BARBARA YOUNG! | POETIC BLOOMINGS (wordpress.com).


About Spotlight: Do you have a brand new shiny book you just got published? Have you received an honor?  Won a contest?  We’d love to hear about it, and announce it to the universe!  Or, at least announce it to our Poetic Bloomings community.   Please drop an e-mail about it, including any appropriate links (i.e., where to purchase your book, etc.).  We’ll do the rest.  Our e-mail is poeticbloomings@yahoo.com .

CONGRATULATIONS, BARBARA YOUNG!

Barbara E. Young

Congratulations to our own Barbara Young on the publication of her book of poems, Heirloom Language, to be released May 20, 2021 by Madville Publishing!

Heirloom Language is full of poems about life and dying, growing up and growing old; about how being loved transcends endings, and how sometimes anger and irony are ways of expressing love. Reality is defiantly chaotic, and makes some poems partial truths, jokes, or outright lies. It isn’t their fault. That’s how things worked out.”

Barbara is the first to be highlighted in our new Spotlight feature here at Poetic Bloomings!

About Spotlight: Do you have a brand new shiny book you just got published? Have you received an honor?  Won a contest?  We’d love to hear about it, and announce it to the universe!  Or, at least announce it to our Poetic Bloomings community.   Please drop an e-mail about it, including any appropriate links (i.e., where to purchase your book, etc.).  We’ll do the rest.  Our e-mail is poeticbloomings@yahoo.com .


Link for purchasing Heirloom Language: Heirloom Language by Barbara E. Young | Madville Publishing

PROMPT #333 – SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS

We strive for our efforts in all endeavors to reap the golden ring. Personal success is what drives us in what we do. It probably won’t make us rich or famous, but it may just give us the satisfaction to keep on going. Consider this quote to inspire your poem.

“Some succeed because they are destined to, but most succeed because they are determined to.” ~Unknown Author

Write a success poem. Even the smallest accomplishment comes with great pride and we’d like to hear it.

MARIE’S SUCCESS:

AND WHAT IS TRIUMPH, ANYWAY?

I penned a poem of triumph,
but it fell flat.
‘Cause nothing rhymes with that.
So I used my typewriter to write a nail biter about a huge spider that downed some hard cider and lit my igniter and bit the firefighter then this perilous web rider pulled an all-nighter and now I’d contend that I’m just a failed writer the end.

© Marie Elena Good, 2021

WALT’S SUCCESS:

BAC’s OF SUCCESS

Questions abound; queries that come around
whenever you push them from your thinking.
Every time you get that sinking feeling it happens.
Remember, you only live once, (even cool cats don’t get off
thinking they’re immune to this tune). So if
you want answers, you had better hope you
understand what it is that you want.
It isn’t asking much of you to
open your mind and
present yourself as a learned scholar.
Any self-respecting poet should know it.
Some feign it and explain it in terms any
dummy could grasp. But no matter what, it’s a
funny thing to bring your rhyme out and
give it the presentation it deserves.
Having said all you can, it remains
just what you’ve put on your page. So engage.
Keep your focus on the dreams you pursue in
lieu of wasting your talent meant to mystify the masses.
Zeniths are attainable;
Xanadu is a desired destination and
clearness of thought is the means to both ends.
Validate your verbiage,
bring your best for the rest to decide;
never hide your poetic pondering under a bushel basket.
Many will clamor for a taste of what you bring to the table.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2021

** An Abecedarian poem based on a QWERTY keyboard

POETIC BLOOMINGS READING ROOM – WHO DO YOU LOVE?

Wednesdays had come to be known around Poetic Bloomings as the “Reading Room.” A random poem from a randomly selected poet was featured for your consideration, and maybe introducing you to something new in our poetic exploration. But our preference in poem/poet says something about us.

So, for this edition of the PBRR I’m asking you. Who do you love to read? What do you consider your favorite poem or poet? This will be your feature to post for discussion. Select your poem and tell us what you love about it and the poet who wrote it. Write it up and send your offering to poeticbloomings@yahoo.com .

We’d like to see “who you love.” It’s poetic appreciation on a personal level. Any poet/poem famous or not is open to choice. Maybe an obscure offering of this writer would fit the bill. Whatever you will, who do you love?