PROMPT #340 – MAKE YOUR CHOICE

Today, the prompt is up to you. This is sort of a wild card day. I will offer three categories from which you choose where your poem takes you. The choices are rather ordinary. The extraordinary thing here will be the poem you write, for you are all extraordinary poets! So, her goes…

Write a colorful poem – Pick a color, any color and write a poem using that color as your inspiration.

Write a weather poem – Everyone talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it. So do something about it and use it in a poem. Wind, rain, snow, wherever you go take the weather with you!

Write a royal poem – You know the hierarchy – King, Queen, Prince, …Choose a ranking and make yourself the (your choice) of something. You are the King Of Rhyme, the Queen of Sumptuous foods, the Prince of Pondering… you get the idea. Write a “Royal” poem, but don’t let it be a pain!

MARIE’S CHOICE:

Her wittiness stings
and rings of cynicism.
Her Royal Wryness.

© Marie Elena Good, 2021



WALT’S SELECTION:

THE PRINCE OF PASSIONS

He has this longing from a long way off,
and he scoffs at any disparaging comment
that he was not meant to find love
in the expression of such passions.
He fashions himself as a romantic,
a frantic wordsmith, smitten with the words
he ponders and her out yonder.
Choosing to be perusing the horizon,
wise men become fools when love enters.
She loves a fool, for he gives her
full attention, not to mention a feeling
of warmth inside. He may come 
to hide it from the world, but the girl
becomes a point of his focus. 
No hocus-pocus brings them together,
as distance is as safe a haven that 
they’ve ever needed. Yet, indeed!
His princess gives him his standing,
no begging or commanding, 
just a seat in the throne. She brings him
home, he is the prince she all ways needed. 

© Walter J Wojtanik - 2021

331 thoughts on “PROMPT #340 – MAKE YOUR CHOICE

  1. THE KING OF SEAS

    He rides valiantly on wild chariots of churning winds.
    Tidal waves obediently follow in his wake,
    echoing his reign like a train of vanquished foes.

    He is the fearless king of roiling violent sea,
    commander of the utmost deep;
    His words boom, like the sudden anger of thunder.

    His eyes were lightening and never sleep,
    skittering to and fro askance—seeking
    all the creatures down under who know his name.

    The King of seas.

    Benjamin Thomas

  2. PAEAN TO A PROPRIETOR

    The man has owned the bookstore here
    for many and many a year;
    he offers books that are hard to find
    and coffee, if you’re so inclined.

    He write poems too, in limerick style,
    and many are worth a smile;
    he has a flair for the friendly chat
    and a soft spot for a cat.

    He is a sponsor of the arts
    and thngs that succor hearts,
    and when you sit in his back room
    there’s nary a hint of gloom.

    The phrase, that he’s a prince among men
    can be said again and again;
    his friendship’s not a pig in a poke,
    and friends, that ain’t no joke.

  3. Color
    (A duo-rhyme)

    I love the colors of all kinds
    They brighten souls and lift the minds
    From passionate orange to bold blue
    And violets of every hue
    Some pinks and reds and scarlet, too
    And greens and yellows, not a few
    In color, lots of life one finds
    They are God’s gift to humankind.

  4. Tillie, Her Royal Highness

    My cat Tillie was caught as a stray.
    I saw her picture on line, and
    Knew I wanted her.
    I did not know that I was
    Inviting royalty into my home,
    And Her Royal Highness
    And I would disagree
    About many things.

    She doesn’t want her bowl of food
    Left where I placed it.
    She steps away and looks at me
    With her big gold eyes
    As if to say, “I Said HERE,
    NOT THERE.”

    My new recliner is hers,
    And we have finally
    Worked out a time share
    In which it is hers
    Most of the time.

    My bed has become
    Another place of contention.
    That place is mine not hers,
    And I get a hiss of
    “How DARE YOU!”
    Each night, and
    I remind her
    The recliner is now hers
    For the night.

    When my guests appear,
    She disappears,
    Showing her disdain
    For disorderly humans.
    I have discussed
    Her bad behavior, and
    She looks at me
    And says the solution is simple,
    “DON”T HAVE GUESTS.”
    On this one she will not win.

    She speaks in a tiny voice,
    This huge cat,
    Has a soft meow,
    But don’t think it is demure…
    That it doesn’t carry
    A royal command.

    I like to sing opera,
    When I shower,
    And she comes running
    And hops on the stool
    By the window,
    Crying out for me to stop
    Hurting her ears,
    While secondly trying
    To save me from dying.
    For surely, I am
    If I am making such a noise.
    And
    Of course her ears come first.

    But despite
    Her haughty attitude,
    My moose cat,
    Of the Maine Coon Cat
    Persuasion,
    Makes me laugh
    Every day,
    And sometime
    In each day
    She seeks me out
    Just to be close to me.
    She puts out powerful
    Snooze gas, and
    I fall asleep…
    If they could bottle this stuff
    It would be a powerful
    Chemical weapon.

    I love how lightly she
    Steps among my antiques,
    And yet can stomp,
    Like a stampeding herd of cows
    When she is picking on Binkey.
    Something they both seem to enjoy.
    When she can’t find him,
    She comes to find me,
    But I can’t help, for Binkey’s hiding spaces
    Are his secret and he is not sharing.

    Tillie, her royal highness
    Of the moose cat variety,
    Just became eight years old.
    I hope she lives a long, long life
    For some days I need
    Something to make me laugh
    And I will gladly share my recliner,
    For as long as she lives.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 27, 2021

  5. Walt, what can I say,,, you are the high king of romantic poetry…with Daniel and Benjamin being kings also…

  6. Sunday Morning Rain

    I take the highway to a mailbox
    Where the paper man leaves
    a Sunday Edition before
    heading for deliveries farther south
    passing cars throwing rooster tails
    as I slow to check rising creeks
    heavy mist blurring the windows
    so that swiping wipers send runlets
    down the edges of the glass like tears
    trickling down throats of orange
    daylilies sprung wild along crumbling blacktop

    the big river going into full flood
    now in the bottoms but yet
    I find myself strangely thirsty
    so home again I wander in the rain
    until I remember heirloom seed
    for Moonflower lilies’ spreading bushes
    bearing giant heart-shaped leaves of green velvet
    along sturdy stalks come back year after year

    those of childhood pushing through
    three scraggly tea roses struggling
    in front of what we called the patio
    Lilliput, Queen Elizabeth and Taffeta
    mostly prone to blackspot but
    now and then producing a perfect bloom
    yet nothing in comparison to creamy trumpets
    opening at dusk and luring every night
    insect to partake of sweetness beading
    on blossoms bending under heady perfume

    and although they closed each morning
    with the sun’s first kiss it was only
    after an onslaught of bees and wasps
    gleaning whatever nectar remained
    wings glinting as they hummed and buzzed
    even as blooms began to droop and twist
    around their giddy gathering and feeding

    now in an almost reverent remembrance
    I push flat round seeds into rain damp soil
    a rite more meaningful than those touted
    by the day’s televangelists, what falls
    on my shoulders truly living water though
    some would challenge my paraphrase
    of ancient scriptures even as I pat the tomb
    to await seed’s future resurrection
    this private service the only way I know
    to really quench my parched spirit
    gone too long without a true drink.

  7. The Encounter

    Encumber me with color
    It is a weight I will bear.

    Entice me with delights
    Of colors glowing in the sun.

    Embrace me with your inner light
    That shines opulent colors of heaven.

    Enchant me with dancing
    And laughter sparkling tints of hues.

    Enthrall me as I hypnotize you
    With the colors that I wear.

    Enrapture me as in a Jane Austin book
    With figs with hidden forbidden colors.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 27, 2021

    • By the way I write poems about figs…I love the color of them… and the taste,

      • In Praise of Figs

        In the heat of summer
        The bees find them first,
        There hangs a fruit
        Those who preserve treasure, and
        I desire.
        For I believe there is not a more
        Sensuous fruit than the fig.
        Hanging on the fig bush,
        They seem unimpressive, but
        As I pick one from the bush…
        My senses have been engaged.
        The colors are mystical
        From lime green at the stem
        Flowing into olive green
        To a purple rubied brown…
        It is soft yet firm and rough to the touch,
        The glossy shine deceiving.
        Breaking open the colors continue
        Ecru covers the inner flesh
        Of squiggly soft pulp
        That is a rosy purple brown.
        The fig is a celebration of color.
        Biting into the fruit is a taste of heaven.
        Sweet juicy, sticky, tickling the tongue
        There is nothing that tastes quite like a fig.
        It is exotic and familiar…
        Forbidden and filled with summer sun.
        I have always thought they that decided
        The apple the forbidden fruit
        Got it wrong.
        The fig is the most sinful of them all, and
        Must be the one that tempted Eve
        For it certainly tempts me.

        Mary Elizabeth Todd
        April 6, 2018

      • St. Vincent Millay wrote of figs regularly too. Are you channeling? 😉 All your poems get a blanket wave of support, Mary as do Benjamin’s So many poems to comment on without sounding redundant. You are both so gifted!

        • Thank you so much I am honored….I never ate a fig until I was grown and then it was what I had been missing… of course I had the same reaction to Cayenne pepper.

  8. The Will of Weather

    Pale blue sky struggles
    to deepen, and coax
    sun to appear. Charcoal
    clouds move overhead. Few
    drops of rain. We are in
    a car, nearly home, and several
    blocks ahead of us, everything
    is enveloped in fog. Odd.
    We ride into foggy area only
    to discover there is no
    fog, simply sheets of pounding
    water covering the windshield.
    For one chilling moment, nothing
    is visible. Humidity follows.

  9. THE SEE OF TURQUOISE

    A glimmer on a wave,
    Just as the sun hits it,
    A passing piece of jewelry,
    Completing a beautiful,
    Southwestern outfit,
    The balmy oceans of Hawaii,
    As they reach the shore,
    A weaving through of carpet,
    Standing out when paired with gold,
    Turquoise on anything catches my attention,
    A young girl’s skirt,
    A dashing man’s youthful shirt,
    On an ice cream box,
    A safe dial before it locks,
    Maybe on a sticker,
    Just passing by,
    I stop for anything turquoise,
    Without ever wondering why

    (c) Janet Rice Carnahan 2021

    PS I haven’t been on for awhile but I am grateful for Walt’s listing of two of my Bokettos. He inspired me with them a few years ago and they are a joy to write! He mastered the form and making the attempt to do the same was not only fun but the form itself captures a great deal in just a few short lines! Thank you, Walt, so grateful to you for introducing the Boketto!

  10. ON ANY CLEAR DAY

    Rain or shine,
    Anytime,
    I’ll dance happily in the dew,

    I’ll joyfully spend,
    A day in the wind,
    Fully enjoying it with you!

    It might be snow,
    I just don’t know,
    I’ll just hope we don’t get caught,

    Let the just day be,
    Whatever we see,
    Whether it is weather . . . or not

    (c) Janet Rice Carnahan 2021

  11. A LOYAL ROYAL

    There once were three kings named Lance,
    Apparently, all they could do was prance,
    They never walked straight,
    They had an awkward gait,
    The English always blamed it on France!

    There once were two queens named Alice,
    They argued who should live in the palace,
    One wanted the tower,
    The other, just the shower,
    They decided to share, avoiding malice!

    There once was a chatty prince named Fredrick,
    He insisted his castle be made of brick,
    He layered each piece,
    After he tore up the lease,
    He hid away until his death and didn’t speak!

    (c) Janet Rice Carnahan 2021

  12. Jester
    (a Gogyohka)
     
    I am It,
    the jester in the court,
    tagged by laughter in the chase,
    my futile attempt to flee
    my lowly role.
     
    I wink and smile
    at my painted face
    reflected in the mirror of my dreams,
    and mumble secret, quietly,
    “they would cry without my silly schemes.”
     
    I am It,
    the jester in the court,
    no royal joke,
    for kingdoms crumble for the lack
    of laughter, I am told.
     
    © Damon Dean, 2021
     
     
     

  13. Some of my Ancestors

    I have searched my family tree
    Trying to find a hint
    As to why my father’s skin was dark
    And why I have a disease
    Associated with those,
    Who come from the Mediterranean?
    No luck there
    My efforts have been fruitless,
    But I did find
    Some of my ancestors
    Happened to be nobility,
    And most of those
    Parted with their individual heads,
    Because they had insulted
    The Royalty,
    (Which if I lived then would have
    Been me)
    And one of them happen
    To be a poet.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 27, 2021

  14. I gave my art teacher fits….

    My prime and proper art teacher
    Who loved to draw landscapes…
    Tried to teach how blue and yellow and red
    Are primary colors from which
    All other colors are made…
    Black is the combination
    Of all colors,
    And white is the absent…
    Unless you are talking science
    Then it is the opposite.
    No wonder we were confused,
    And it had nothing to do with hormones.

    She set some boots on the desk
    And told us to draw them.
    She said no one would draw
    The boots the same
    Because we each had a different perspective.
    She gave paper and bit of charcoal,
    And said draw them as we saw them.
    I saw them sitting on a porch
    Left out muddy from the previous day,
    And the milk jars were left for the milkman.
    I drew them as I saw them.
    She shook her head,
    And said that is not what I asked.

    I was given crayons and geometric shapes.
    She told us to trace them
    And make a picture.
    I saw them as flying creatures,
    I colored them green and yellow,
    Pink and purple,
    With triangle eyes,
    And curves for wings.
    She shook her head and said,
    That is not what I asked you to do.

    But at the end of summer,
    She asked me to take lessons from her.
    I learned to mix oil paints,
    And acrylic and a wee bit of water colors.
    She taught me how to make shadows,
    And how taking a small step
    Could change your perspective.
    Those lessons I have carried
    With me all these years.

    I have added mixed media
    And watercolor pencils,
    And sometimes pastels…
    I have cases filled
    With paint and pencils and pens.
    I almost forgot all my brushes
    They are my secret passion…

    I say I play at art…
    And some say I am good…
    I give it mostly away
    For it is my pleasure to do so…

    But besides the learning of art…
    This teacher taught me one thing…
    We all have a perspective,
    And see things differently…
    Just a snapshot of life really.
    I learned to get a clear picture
    That all those perspectives
    Have to be seen or heard.
    It is then we have the true color
    Of what we are seeing.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 28, 2021

  15. There is a storm in the distance…

    I look out at the sky
    With big white billowing clouds,
    And know somewhere in their journey
    They will become a storm
    Throwing lightening to the earth
    Scorching the places it hits
    With deliberate fire…
    I love the power of those storms…

    But not the one that I sense is coming
    Into my life… that despite my efforts
    To replenish the iron, I feel myself grow weaker.
    I am as helpless as that tree that is struck
    By the storm randomly.

    I pray for strength
    As my eyes close for the second nap
    I have had in the day.
    My skin gets feverish
    Trying to keep my body warm.
    My breathing becomes labored
    As thunder shutters
    Against the lightening strike.
    Iron is vital for me to exist.
    I ask again to the wind that is blowing…
    How do I fight this?

    I do not get an answer, but
    I found peace that I will weather this storm.
    I will be strong, and
    There is an answer…
    I just must keep searching.

    The white billowing clouds are lovely,
    But I remembered
    I love the dark clouds
    For there are layers of colors
    As the layers of colors
    In a human face.

    I love the challenge
    To defy the power of storms once again.
    For a moment I forgot
    I am a warrior born.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 28, 2021

    years ago back in the early 80s I wrote a poem with this title… it was a poem about the end of a love affair. The poem was bad. but I liked the title…So I wrote this using that title from the earlier poem… Don’t worry I won’t show that bad poem…

  16. Lilacs

    There was a hardy row of bushes
    behind my boyhood home,
    annually filled with scented lilacs,
    whose colors varied from year to year.
    Likely something to do with the pH
    or the changeable Wisconsin weather.
    I mostly liked the light purple ones,
    would cut a few for a tall glass
    on the yellow formica kitchen table,
    so when my blue-veined, fragile mother
    came home from being on her feet
    at our IGA grocery store,
    she might smile at the gesture.

  17. Yellow

    I dreamed of yellow daffodils
    every year at the turn of winter
    when the frost is almost gone but
    not quite and silent morning dew
    graces slender blades and bare feet
    and there they’d always be suddenly
    my eager sunshine friends nodding
    giant yellow heads on spindly stalks
    and reaching growing towards the sky
    the yellow scent is always strongest
    the first day that the daffodils appear
    I never dared to take them from their dance
    but i dreamed of their scent all spring

    I always said i wanted daffodils
    in my wedding when i got big
    my older sister laughed and told me
    daffodils are not wedding flowers
    I don’t think she was right about that
    however i grudgingly turned my attention
    to more mature blossoms purple clematis
    white lilac pink flowering dogwood
    my heart held yellow close but quiet
    thrilling every year at the turn of winter
    when the daffodils were dancing
    rioting every golden summer when
    the glorious sunflowers were smiling

    I dreamed of yellow yellow yellow
    a color that made sense and held
    a universe of feeling in its brilliance
    I didn’t end up having daffodils in
    my wedding but my love’s eyes are full of sunflowers dancing on a blue sky
    and yellow blossoms spill easily from
    my lips and thoughts and chest and heart
    I gravitate to yellow when i pick out
    flowers to grace the lonesome place
    where my brother and my childhood sleep
    yellow daffodils full of my heart and
    sunflowers laden with all of my feelings

    – Erin Kay, 2021

    • As always, your writing draws me in and fills me up. So many beautifully full phrases, including, “eyes are full of sunflowers dancing on a blue sky,” “my heart held yellow close but quiet,” and “where my brother and my childhood sleep.” *sigh* Just extraordinarily lovely writing.

      P.S. Yellow really is a cheerful color, isn’t it? And daffodils for a wedding bouquet? Why not? Why not? 🙂

      • Yellow is a cheerful color indeed and my favorite since I was very small. Yellow seems to follow me everywhere, or maybe that’s just the energy that I end up putting out into the world, but I like things best when they are yellow. Thank you for reading and as always for your kind words! I love your feedback ❤️

    • Gorgeous… I loved every line… and daffodils remind me of my brother Joe, who came to visit every spring and picked the daffodils grown on our family land, and brought them back to my mother…it was how I knew that spring had come.

      • Oh Erin, tried to post when you first put this out there, but messed up. I was SOOOO overwhelmed by the sheer gorgeousness of every line… the images, the smells, the whole huge metaphor that the daffodils were as well as the color yellow. I couldn’t begin to pick out my favorite lines there were so many. Seriously, there is SUCH skill here in the weaving of what appears on surface to be so simple and yet is intricate, primal, and comples. WOW . Am in Awe!!

        • Pat, I am just floored by this comment. Such high praise from a poet whom I admire so highly! And you understood it perfectly, to me daffodils and yellow are synonymous for each other, and yellow is where my heart is happiest. Thank you for reading and for these very kind words, I value your input so much.

      • Mary, daffodils make me think of my brother too. I think they are sweet and childlike and I knew him only as a sweet child, so it fits. Thank you for reading and sharing this connection ❤️

  18. Junior
    (englyn cyrch)

    A storm of sadness today
    My friend puts her pet away
    Her tears tumble down like rain
    Through clouds of pain, we will pray

    A dachshund, and a dear clown
    Mostly black, a little brown
    He would flop down at her feet
    Him she would treat like a son

  19. THE COLOR OF FEAR

    What is the color of fear?
    What is its hue?

    When it seizes the soul
    What is one to do?

    If fear were a color what would it be?
    If it materialized as hue, which would you see?

    Is it visible to the naked eye?
    If you’d ask to see it would it comply?

    What would its saturation or brightness be?
    How does it hold power over you and me?

    The color of fear is a sneaky guy
    But in order to see it we’d need a special eye.

    Benjamin Thomas

  20. IN THE HEAT

    If pigs could fly then it’d be me
    then I wouldn’t worry about the lack of AC

    I’d bath in breezes flowing through my hair
    flapping my wings as the people stare

    If pigs could fly then it’d be me
    just to avoid becoming human rotisserie.

    Benjamin Thomas

  21. Fits the Bill

    He’s no less than the prince of Eddy,
    rose-colored compliments ever ready,
    a true king of kindness, every time,
    brings joy and love, come rain or shine.
    If this was Yelp, he’d be five star rated,
    no fellow poet more appreciated,
    every comment a definitive treat,
    sincere, witty, appropriate and sweet.

  22. Hurricane Florence, the Turtle who Stalked Us.

    It was the last of August,
    When the winds off Africa
    Gave birth to a small storm,
    Who moved in a deliberate fashion.
    She was named Florence
    And she was setting her sights
    On the Carolinas.
    As other storms rushed by her,
    It was like the tortoise and the hare
    In a huge galactical manner
    Were having their race.
    The finish line was the Carolinas.
    The other storms went wild
    And raced to the north,
    But Florence was moving slow and steady.
    She was going to win this race,
    Even if it took over two weeks to get there.
    As she went across the Atlantic,
    She gathered up water from the air,
    And the ocean… she was pregnant with water,
    And she planned to lay it
    On the coast of the Carolinas
    Like those big sea turtles did each year.
    Someone said, “It is like being stalked by a turtle.”
    It caught on as some days she traveled mere feet,
    Stirring up the waves, and tossing tornados
    Like a child throwing a top
    Spinning until they wobbled and fell over.
    The air got thicker with humidity.
    I was over a hundred miles from the coast,
    But I felt her coming slowly.
    A migraine set in, and nothing would dissolve it.
    I want Florence to race through, but she didn’t.
    The air smelled of salt, but gave no relief.
    The clouds traveled in a huge circular motion,
    But Florence “The Turtle” Hurricane
    Took seriously the saying slow and steady
    Wins the race. When she crossed into the Carolinas.
    She slowed down and laid thirty inches of rain
    On the coast of the northern Carolina.
    She was two hundred and fifty miles across,
    And I felt her winds rising.
    My head was exploding,
    With the barometric pressure.
    I would have shouted to her to go faster
    If my head had not hurt so bad.
    The rains began to fall, and
    Florence, “The Turtle” Hurricane
    Drifted into vapors,
    While going into the record books.

    I love to watch the big storms
    With their powerful winds raging,
    But
    I don’t like the migraines they bring,
    Or
    The destruction that they create.
    I will remember Florence
    The Hurricane who was a turtle
    Who stalked us at the end of summer.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 29, 2021

  23. THUNDERSTORMS

    Rolling thunder bells crackle aloud the skies,
    declaring the arrival of imminent radiant silver waterfalls.

    As if the heavens now weep heaps of cool ashes
    steadily fluttering down from on high.

    Eager soils readily accepts the high tears wept,
    pondering deeply, her wet well-spent sorrows.

    Benjamin Thomas

  24. The Color Dark…

    There was one child
    I had wished was on my caseload,
    But she was on my friend’s caseload.
    This toddler empress
    With her dark nearly black eyes
    And smooth dark chocolate skin
    Had a presence at three.
    She was regal,
    As she held her back
    Ramrod straight…and
    Her name was Victoria.

    The first time I met her,
    She came to stand in front of me,
    And said firmly,
    “I am Victoria.”
    She would never be a Vic or a Vickie.
    She was two.

    After our first meeting,
    She gave me edicts.
    “Tell, Mrs. Farr,
    I need a visit.”
    “Tell, Mrs. Farr,
    I need new shoes.”
    “Tell, Mrs. Farr,
    My brothers are crybabies.”
    I always told Mrs. Farr,
    What Miss Victoria had commanded.

    Her foster mother was proud
    Of this bright little girl.
    She could count to almost twenty
    When she was almost three.
    She knew her abc’s.
    One day this proud foster Mom said,
    “Victoria, show Miss Todd
    How you know your colors?”
    She marched to her room
    And brought by her crayons.
    I was informed by Victoria
    That her brothers weren’t allow
    To touch them because they would break them.

    I handed her a crayon,
    And she called it yellow.
    It was.
    We went through the box
    Of those big crayons,
    And came to the color black.
    I asked her what is this color.
    Victoria was firm in her answer,
    “Dark.”
    Her foster mother said,
    “Victoria, you know that is black.”
    Victoria shook her head,
    “No, it is dark.” Her voice deliberate,
    As she repeated her answer.
    I knew Victoria knew the color.
    She, also at this young age,
    Knew she as called black,
    And she wasn’t the color
    Of that crayon.
    I studied her a minute and then asked,
    “Victoria, is this color of your room
    When the lights go out for you to sleep.”
    She smiled and nodded her head,
    “Yes, Dark!”
    I smiled at her foster mother, and said,
    “She knows her colors better than us.”

    Since that day,
    I have thought of this regal toddler,
    And wondered if she became a judge.
    Sometimes when I pick up a tube
    Of my black acrylic paint,
    I look at it and say dark
    In memory of a lesson
    I learned from a child
    Whom I always knew
    Would have that presence.
    How I wish I could see her again
    And instead, I say a prayer
    To keep her safe
    Wherever she might me.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 30, 2021

    • I loved this little girl. She was so very polite and often waiting until I finished my visit with the little boy I had in the home. She was learning to read when she was going to live with her new family. She asked me if she could read to me, and I told her I would like her to do that. She went to get her oldest brother’s reader. She told me that he might come in crying because she had got it. She climbed up into my lap. Something she did often. She read a couple of pages, and then leaned over and gave me a kiss. I had to keep myself from crying because it was my last visit with Victoria. I told her thank for reading me the story and I kissed her forehead. she hugged me and got down to return her brother’s book. I cried on my way home but Mrs. Farr told me she got an excellent family.

      • Oh, Mary … the poem … the update …

        She makes me think of the Little Princess in her precocious little self. And your way with her (and other children) makes me smile. You were cut out for the work you did. God called, and God equipped. So evident.

        • Thank you…. she was darling… and it probably was good that I did not work with her and her brothers… more than once in the early years the adoption worker from Columbia tried to convince me to adopt, but with my father ill. I knew it was a mute dream.

            • I was blessed because most of my coworkers were Christians. I know Mrs. Farr was… I always prayed the children I knew would get good families…she would be in her late 30s now.

  25. THE COLOR OF THE SOUL

    Sometimes the soul changes color at any given moment—
    when it’s draped in the shadows of black;
    chained by the attack of grief and mourning,
    like the sight of scar tissue that bears semblance
    to that which was once living.

    Sometimes the soul bleeds a molten red hot lava,
    like the fierce passion of lovers on the bliss
    of a summer night, or overtaken by the deep burn of
    angry red hot salsa offending the senses.

    It can morph hues into the dark blue gist of trust and loyalty,
    then mist into the heavenly palace of a broad blue sky;
    like the sweet calm after the storm passes by.

    The soul can be tainted yellow, jaundiced with
    the bitter taste of bile obstructing the flow of one’s joy;
    like the pain of stolen smiles and the bitter
    taste of sour lemons assaulting an injured tongue.

    A souls mind can be an emerald forest green,
    populated by growing things at the perennial height of spring,
    solid trees with rich canopies and the royal crown of a king.

    Benjamin Thomas

  26. The Eclipse Effect

    I was in my driveway
    Waiting for the Eclipse of the sun…
    I had read that in the absent of light
    The green leaves I loved
    Would become black.
    I wanted to know if this was a truth
    Or a fragment truth.
    As the sun and moon did their dance
    Of courtship for one gave light,
    And the other needed its light to shine.
    The birds began to roost,
    And the leaves got darker and darker.
    As the moon was selfish drinking all that light.
    When the sun was finally hidden by the moon,
    The leaves were black and dull
    As if soot had covered them.
    The tiny crescent moons danced on my gravel drive.
    I didn’t hear an insect buzzing, but
    In the distance I heard a cow lowing.
    The forest was still and dark soot covered.
    Then the sun began to move slowly
    As the leaves returned to green, and the birds began to chirp
    Their anthems to the sun rising, and
    The cow stopped lowing.

    I have thought about that moment
    How wonderous it was.
    I thought about how love was light
    And that we constantly sought it.
    I thought how hate was what changed
    A person from seeking light
    For hate blocked that light,
    And the soul was eclipsed
    And light could not touch it,
    Becoming black and silent.
    If we could stop hate,
    What a light filled world
    This would be.
    The thought made me sad
    For we humans often
    Cling to our hates
    Like they were gold
    When all they are is soot, and
    Cast away our loves so easily.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    July 1, 2021

  27. THE CREED OF THE KING

    His reign had ended,
    but he retained the warrior’s pride
    handed down from his blessed ancestors.
    That was all he needed.

    There was no need for a kingdom,
    silver, or subjects beneath him to rule;
    for a true king rules the character
    of his own heart.

    He himself is the start, sets the statues,
    and he himself is the standard to be followed—
    knowing no defeat, nor surrender.

    He gazed at the glint of metal shining
    in the light, glaring from his longsword
    like a mirror—seeing himself.

    He is a weapon, the tip of the spear,
    the sword of man and beast; with double-edged
    sharpness against foe or enemy.

    Closing his eyes, he placed the crossguard
    of his sword at the center of his head,
    declaring his father’s creed.

    I am the sword, and enemy of weakness.
    I am the master of my fate. I serve duty
    and honor. I am the vengeance for my father’s
    people.

    Duty and honor!
    He proclaimed boldly as he returned
    to the heat of battle, sword in one hand
    and shield in the other.

    Benjamin Thomas

    • I love this, and for some reason Martin Luther King, Jr. came to my mind…It could be all the research I have been doing into the research of the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s. He was a warrior born. Just as a side note… I love movies that have swords in them although I joke that this warrior uses a battle ax.

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