PROMPT #350 – NIGHTS IN SHINING ARMOR

We’re writing a night poem. The shining could be the moon and stars. The armor can be an alcove of trees. The romance is whatever stirs your emotions! Take your words and try to get medieval on us. Or better yet, make us swoon.

MARIE’S NIGHT:

Still


If time stood still, would I continue on?
Would forward movement cease then to exist?
Could sun and moon be viewed from dusk to dawn,
And deadlines not be met, yet not be missed?

Would falling stars suspend themselves in space,
Like frozen fireworks across night’s sky,
As lovers fused beneath in warm embrace
Would never need to say the word goodbye?

Would guarantees be suddenly fulfilled, 
Or would our contracts be for naught, and nixed?
Would all that’s overflowing go un-spilled?
Might what was once detaching be affixed?

If all that was foreshadowed was foregone
As time stood still, would we continue on?

© Marie Elena Good, 2021


(The first stanza was taken from a poem I wrote in 2013.  I liked that stanza at the time, but not the remainder of that poem.  I decided to use it as the first stanza of a sonnet, and use the first line as an echo at the end.)

WALT’S PEACE:

NIGHT FALLS

Evening descends like a hushed silence,
and tranquility is its marker.
Your song is a lilting lullaby
in the shadows of the night.
There’s no threat of violence
as the midnight sky grows much darker.
The constellations fill the sky
contradicting darkness, bringing light.
I see you in silhouette.
I see you in whispers.
I see you in every moonlit sky.
You are the vision this night craves.
It saves me from the pain of my wretched soul.
It takes its toll. From the moon to the stars,
from Venus to Mars, from these hearts of ours. 
When love calls, night falls.

© Walter J Wojtanik

240 thoughts on “PROMPT #350 – NIGHTS IN SHINING ARMOR

  1. NIGHTTIME ENCOUNTER

    It might
    be dull and trite
    or maybe laced with fright,
    but nothing kills it like a bright
    night light.

  2. Still Dark

    beneath the Big Dipper
    air shimmers
    with a dozen owls
    whickering from the woods
    and from the deep pools
    beneath fence line cedars
    bull frogs coming alive
    until mists move in
    layer upon diaphanous layer
    erasing everything… muffling
    even the stars winking out.

  3. AS THE NIGHT GRIEVES

    I abhor the day when I do not
    set eyes upon your
    grace.

    I writhe amidst the shadows,
    deprived of your
    element.

    Even night grieves a time,
    as daylight takes its
    place.

    If you are noble red spiced wine;
    choice, ageless, I’d be your
    sediment.

    If I were a royal high goblet,
    I’d forever savor—your
    taste.

    Benjamin Thomas

  4. MYRIADS OF BEAUTY

    Soft splintered light
    descends from on high.

    A cloudless sky reveals
    myriads of star-flung light.

    Its beauty stretches
    beyond what the eye can see.

    But only manifests itself,
    within the high tide of night.

    Benjamin Thomas

  5. MEG, my favorite sonneteeress, I will borrow a line from you and say that this is wonderful and so you. I like that you sample from your previous work. It is something doing a lot of recently, finding that editing and adapting makes me prouder of my efforts.

    Walt, your “tranquility is its marker” is a brilliant statement, one that I hold I. My heart for you and your well-being

  6. Timeless at Midnight

    I can still taste the rain
    after it had fallen
    as I listen
    to spirits in the air.
    Leaves rustling
    in a gust of wind speak
    a language of their own.
    Raindrops on windshields
    glisten green tears,
    but inside I see a couple laugh.
    Neon hues
    of reds and blues
    in the window of a bar
    glow dreams.
    Tonight there
    a bartender and I
    hold hands over my drink
    while conversations
    about sweet nothings
    mean everything.
    They linger in stillness
    at midnight as the day
    unfurls into another.
    Up the hill lies a cemetery
    where headstones
    of my aunt and uncle
    tell tales of years spent together
    as they rise from the ground.

  7. THE NIGHTINGALE’S OPERA

    The connubial song of the night
    does not impress with gasconade,
    but with imperial sweetness of melody.

    The male nightingale welcomes sunset;
    inherits the covering and dress of nightfall
    in a grand stage opera.

    Its tranquilizing hospitality of song,
    ends a soul of suffering, drys a face of anguish,
    until the slow rise of the morning star.

    Benjamin Thomas

  8. Potential

    In that time the ancients
    called the death mist,
    others the black sun,
    he knows it as
    the ‘tween times,
    before new day has begun.
    He mostly sleeps well,
    though frequently turning in place,
    recalling the presence of Spirit,
    knowing he lives in grace.
    Still, ideas spring unbidden,
    perhaps prompted by moonlight,
    deep meditation not required.
    Great rhymes are found, written down,
    or lost, no matter how inspired.
    It’s the night shift,
    poems bathed in shadow,
    starlight used to burn
    the words in stanzas,
    each spinning on its axis,
    a muse-ical nocturne.
    Poems have always come at night,
    though nicely drawn,
    they are words in flight,
    too often lost, here then gone,
    he’s unwilling to rise, bring the light,
    as perfect thoughts vanish before the dawn.

  9. Here is one I shared a while ago, but I was tardy to the prompt, and the gate had swung shut I think.

    This one is about a young me who confiscates a discarded refrigerator box, and learns an unexpected lesson. Hope you enjoy it.

    Elegiac moon</b)

    With smoke and groans the truck arrives and coughs a spray of air.
    Gloved driver nods; my fathers helps unload the Frigidaire.

    A knife tears through its cardboard skin, the ivory beast exposed,
    my gazing eyes grow round with hope as I watch the box disposed.

    I seize upon that tawny shroud, my body now her contents.
    The darkness veils the world around against all sounds and scents.

    As eyes adjust, my newfound world in darkness I abide
    with all shut out, one tiny hole betrays the world outside.

    That speck of light, elegiac moon against the coal black sky
    attracts my eye, arrests my soul, forbidding hope to die.

    'Twas God who made the two great lights to rule o’er day and night;
    to reflect the sun, lieutenant moon, serves as his sole delight.

    In lamenting cries night’s prefect calls, “This darkness do not love!”,
    “Look through me, see the Son, and everything above.”

    Obediently I press my eye up to that opening,
    where Glory reigns beyond the dark, revealing everything.

  10. THE NIGHT HE DIDN’T KNOW HE WAS

    Simply responding to the night
    He gallantly jumped on his horse
    Tossing away any fright
    He followed his heart’s course

    He rode away into the darkened sky
    Igniting a trail of poetic delight
    Never stopping to ask why
    He kept his focus and clear sight

    A sparked word had caught his eye
    His response was immediate
    A feeling he couldn’t deny
    No way could he fight it

    By riding in when he did
    At least two stars felt the affection
    Nothing less could have disappeared or slid
    A starry night’s destined connection

    Carving the way to a greater expanse
    He wrote on with the inky pen of night
    Their hearts opened to one more chance
    Allowing love to finally take flight

    It’s as if he gathered all the stars
    Writing his heart on a cosmic chalkboard
    Holding onto Venus, Pluto and Mars
    Rearranging light with his exacting sword

    Freeing up the limited space through fire
    Allowing for a delightful dance for two
    A motion full of free-flowing desire
    The cosmic harmony would do

    By parting the clear night sky
    More heart could fill the space
    His love didn’t need to work at it or try
    He created the moment’s perfect pace

    She flew towards him, gently to land
    He made sure she’d arrive on time
    He somehow knew she’d understand
    Like a shared, easy poetic rhyme

    Once the star filled night ended
    And union was unfurled
    All doubt was suspended
    As thoughts, words, and energy swirled

    Cast aside was a heaviness
    A now untethered weight
    Happily, they did confess
    Love, at that point, cannot wait

    A heart that is free
    Can take a boundless flight
    That’s what these two could see
    And feel deeply on this night

    It was a night he didn’t know he was
    Beyond what he could write
    Yet a heart knows what it loves
    Under the wings of starlight

    (c) Janet Rice Carnahan 2021

  11. This is not a night poem… the armor is what got me , and so before I write a night poem… I am writing an armor poem…

    Bullies built my armor

    I am a warrior born,
    But it was not a mantle
    I wanted…
    But was within me
    To be built.

    Teased and laughed at
    Made me cringe…
    Told to get tough…
    Made me build my armor.

    Pinches and feet stuck out
    To make me fall, and
    When I did, I heard the snickers…
    My armor got stronger.

    Words heard- she’ll never
    Amount to anything.
    Made me sharpen my ax
    To prove them wrong.

    One man told me
    I was too gentle
    For the work ahead of me.
    He didn’t know my mettle,
    And where I learned
    My skills…
    Facing down bullies
    Instead of making me weak
    Made me strong
    For
    I am a warrior born.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 5, 2021

  12. Milky Way

    N ighttime is the right time to wander
    I nto the realm of near total darkness
    G etting away from the ambient light
    H e carefully gathers all of his favorite
    T ools and wanders into the wilderness

    P eering into the crystal clear heavens
    H e squints to locate his desired target
    O n the chart it points to the southeast
    T welve midnight it will be the brightest
    O h, he has waited so long for this chance
    G ood weather and timing came together
    R ight as the galaxy peaked in the sky
    A mazing the chance that this night will
    P rovide for the shot of a lifetime that
    H e will surely hang on his wall for
    Y ears to come

  13. Memories the night brings to me…

    The black lace that trees
    Form against the sky
    Remind me of a lace slip
    I wore when I was young…
    The lace cradled my legs
    Like the lace of the trees
    Cradle the night sky…

    I was young then…
    And the night beckoned me,
    And sometimes broke me,
    But I always came back
    Until I didn’t.

    As the twilight hums of tree frogs,
    And the moon navigates across
    A slightly different path
    Than it had traveled the night before…
    Or is it the earth that changes its directions…
    I forget, but I remember

    I remember those nights
    Where I dressed in lace
    Beneath a muslin gown
    A hidden secret
    Gliding across my skin
    As the moon glides tonight
    Against the darkness
    Of the space
    It inhabits.

    My old skin craves
    The nights of my youth, and
    It remembers the silk feel
    Of nylon clinging to it
    On a night filled with sweat…
    My skin remembers
    What I try to forget…

    I sit here remembering
    A youth long ago,
    And wish I had done
    More than throw it away,
    But
    Knowing that there is no way
    I can go back
    To recover what I had lost.

    The morning light will sweep
    With its golden broom
    The fragments left of this night,
    And I will wake
    Greeting its sun
    While having another sleepless night
    Caressing the memories
    Of black lace.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 5, 2021

  14. THE NIGHT DRESS

    The night is silk
    upon my skin

    Cool and relaxant
    without a hiccup

    Or hint of friction
    fraction of enmity

    But delightful as
    deliquesced chocolate

    Abiding momentarily
    pleasing to the palate

    Fragrant as scattered
    mirthful mint

    Light and fresh as breath
    captivated by scent

    The moon is milk
    wet as wintered wine

    Titillating perked nerves
    calmly possessed

    That is worthy of dark silk
    of splendid triumphant dress—

    of nighttime.

    Benjamin Thomas

  15. A Night for Knights

    Riding an ivory-colored
    horse, he gallops
    down the path, metal
    clinking. She sits
    on a smooth stone facing
    the other way. Today, she
    is sorrowful, lonely.
    Maybe that full moon has
    altered her mood. She hears
    horse hoofs and a clanging
    sound. She swirls around,
    rubs her eyes. The magic
    lamp had worked! Here was
    her knight to whisk her
    away to a brand new world
    on an ivory-colored horse.

  16. THE HEAVENLY COMMISSION

    I am an heir-child of the fire of night;
    fathered by the borrowed amenities
    of the Sun borne—light.

    I am a child of the Mother Moon,
    of the resplendence of crater,
    and the power of catered might.

    I am a sibling of the hosts of stars,
    twins in beauty sacred composition,
    burning brilliance—is our heavenly commission.

    Benjamin Thomas

  17. Night Fright

    They shut down in the early night
    ‘Cause to them things weren’t going right
    But all had changed by the early dawn’s light
    They had won the fight
    In the dead of night

  18. THE ELDER STATESMEN

    There was a certain elder statesmen roving about,
    not more than two hundred paces from his house at eventide.

    He thought to himself…

    “What shall I liken this night to? It is unique in all its beauty,
    utterly magnificent and extensive in its effect.

    This night is like a wisened spruce of tea, paying obeisance
    to the heated vessel of a kettle; wailing in a cascade of puffs
    from its manifest train of steam.

    Just as the moon rock steeps in the heat of a parade of rays,
    overflowing blackness, and the sleep-siren of grays.

    So this night is an Earl Grey sea…with a touch and oil
    of Bergamot, encompassing me!”

    “Yes, that’s it.” He thought to himself as he went
    about on his merry way.

    Benjamin Thomas

  19. Some Nights…. Like This One

    I am restless tonight.
    Somewhere my memory
    Is jabbing me
    To remember…

    I want to look forward,
    But the ghosts
    I share this house
    Are restless also.

    I lost a friend…
    They know I am sad.
    She led a good life.
    I am sad but not regretful.

    It has been many a day
    Since I felt them this close.
    After Ma died,
    I heard her whisper my name
    Just as I fell asleep.

    They feel the change
    Of seasons in the air…
    I feel it
    And know change
    Is coming to my life.

    I am coming to a crossroads.
    It will be a choice I make.
    No one else can make it.
    They know this.
    They also know
    My choice has been made.

    I am restless tonight…
    Closing my eyes,
    I strain my ears
    To hear one of them speak
    My name in a whisper,
    But I must be still to hear.

    The night floats in stillness
    Of whispers, and
    Silent kisses…
    And moonbeams
    That float into my room
    And onto my floor
    Where my shoes I wore
    To church lay
    Still waiting for me.

    It is difficult to be still
    Enough to hear
    When I am so restless tonight.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 5, 2021

  20. Silent
     
    I stand silenced
    gazing at the silent stars
    as if the night was velvet,
    a vast soft black acoustic cloth
    on which the lights are scattered
    quieted, humbled where they lay.
     
    Then, standing still, I hear
    or feel, a thrum,
    an undulation,
    much like a distant orchestra,
    preparing for performance,
    the tuning of long strings, wet reeds
    and muffled brass vibrating,
    while taps so soft upon a timpani
    accompany the slow beats of my heart.
     
    The night,
     the night!
    A gathering of stars
    Prepares,
    is ready to resound with praise.
     
    A black and velvet curtain
    Is about to fall.
     
    I listen, and I hear.
    My eyes are ears.
     
    © Damon Dean 2021

  21. I should be sleeping…

    Instead, I am writing this poem
    About nothing really
    Except it is night,
    And sleep has evaded me.

    I could step out into the darkness
    Of night but the air is muggy,
    And it makes me wheeze.

    I sit at my computer
    Writing this poem
    About how long the night seems
    When sleep has played
    Dodge ball and it is winning.

    When the morning comes,
    I will be tired,
    And will fuss at myself
    For having another
    Sleepless night.

    I make empty promises
    That I will
    Sleep more
    The next night.

    It is a game I play…
    Sleepless nights
    Always win.

    This is why you have this poem…
    I will now go and tell myself a story…
    It has not worked tonight,
    But there is always hope
    It will…
    Good night, and
    To some of you- Good morning…

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 6, 2021

  22. COSMIC ANESTHESIA

    If I could only languish in a bed of stars.
    splash in a bath of regnant brightness.
    Allow it to gorgonize the senses,
    let it act as cosmic anesthesia.

    If I could only follow its ray,
    ride its beam and travel the distance;
    across the open expanse of heaven’s glitter,
    let it swallow me whole and fade away.

    Benjamin Thomas

  23. UNDER THE MOONLIGHT

    I remember when I was shot,
    mortally wounded by your gaze.

    Defenseless and awestruck,
    under the prowess of your countenance.

    In the same vein, I remember
    a time of tearful healing.

    In that very same moment
    of youthful bliss.

    I remember your illustrious eyes,
    kind kiss, like the weeping willow.

    Precious as the value of Pearl,
    transparent as an open window.

    Into the sight of your soul
    I peek—and seek the cryptic eyes of the Sun.

    Benjamin Thomas

  24. Stars Dancing…

    I was still weak
    From my brush with death, and
    Wondering why I was still here.

    My nephew said,
    Let’s go watch the stars tonight.
    I agreed because my heart needed it.

    I was in my twenties
    The first time I saw
    The stars dance.
    I remember that night
    Created
    In the precision
    Of fine cut crystal.

    In the middle of a dark night,
    We slipped out
    To go to my hill…
    The place I often went
    When my soul was in turmoil.
    To me it is a holy place…
    A place of prayerful silence.
    That night it was holy
    In the beauty given…

    The sky was dark,
    And no earthly lights
    Marred the skyline.
    The stars were placed in patterns
    Observed over centuries
    Of humans who lived,
    And breathed,
    And died
    Having witnessed
    At sometime
    The glory of the night’s cloak.

    The stars began to dance
    Across the sky…
    Shooting like an arrow
    Shot from the Master Bowman,
    And I wondered who
    Was casting a wish
    On the falling stars.

    My prayer that night
    Was to simply know
    Why I was still here
    In this life,
    But that prayer
    Gave no answer that night
    And since that night
    The answer
    Has been given to me
    In bits and pieces,
    And I am still waiting.
    I understand now
    Twenty years later,
    I may not ever know
    Why I was needed here,
    But I know that I am.

    That night on my hill
    With my nephew
    Woke my sleeping soul
    To knowing
    It was not
    That I was still living…
    But that I was being
    That mattered.

    For life is life
    When we simply
    See ourselves
    Not as people
    With choices
    And rights
    And a myriad other things
    We think is needed
    For us to live
    Our days…

    Being is releasing
    All those things
    That clutter our lives…
    And in the simplicity
    Of watching a night sky…
    In the stillness
    We are graced
    With the cosmos
    And knowing
    Our being
    Is part of that cosmos.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 6, 2021

  25. THE HEART OF NIGHT AND DAY

    Sometimes our heart can be
    likened to a knight of coruscating
    armor, but no armor is built to endure
    the cursed longevity of war.

    Eventually blow by blow, it begins
    to deteriorate the pride of defenses;
    made subject to the repetitive onslaught
    of vile arrows meant for destruction.

    It is then made vulnerable to the heinous
    beasts of the wild, and predatory voracious
    fowl that mercilessly feed on death.

    Sometimes our heart is an impure alloy,
    like the mingling of metals, a contrary
    blend of night and day—that constantly
    wrestle back and forth without a way, out.

    Harboring darkness, it then becomes a heart
    of night. A night of forbidden sorrows arisen
    from scarred shadows and caverns of pain.

    Until it favors an enlivened heart of day
    —springing forth with valor, peace and joy.
    A day of lasting meadows, fearless armies
    of evergreen grasses, wild flowers recklessly
    dancing in the plain.

    Benjamin Thomas

  26. In The Heat… of the Night…

    In the summertime…
    The days can be steamy…
    When you live in the south…
    It is a cradle to the grave thing
    All of us born in the south understand…
    We might complain about the heat,
    But we know it is our bond…
    For we all have survived the summers…

    But the nights…
    Are filed with mosquitoes,
    That bite and sting,
    And the music of the night
    Is the calls of owls,
    Or the sound of bugs buzzing
    And frogs croaking
    And the slaps of people
    Being bit by those pesky mosquitoes
    Some call the Southern states bird.

    The air is so thick with humidity
    Especially in the swamps
    No wonder the legend of the Lizard Man
    Is told lives in the Congaree Swamp.

    I went hiking there once…
    One hundred mosquitoes bit me,
    And nothing but time
    Cleared up the pain and itching.
    That night the air was murky and sticky.
    My night clothes were too much to wear,
    And I went out on the porch in the sweltering heat…
    Hoping for a breeze bringing the smell of gardenias,
    But it didn’t…
    My clothes stuck to my skin,
    As my body’s sweat sticky
    With droplets beading on my forehead…

    If I had been home in my forest that night,
    I would have had a cold shower and
    Ditched the clothes-
    Because some nights in the south
    When the stars are always there,
    But so is the heat…
    Clothes seem to be less a necessity
    On nights such as that night

    In the south the heat that seems
    To grow dense
    As the sun disappears into the horizon,
    And the nights fill with memories
    Dense with lost possibilities.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 7, 2021

      • it was and I we waded into water about four feet deep… I am five foot two… it was black and mucky… and my best friend Gracie slipped and went under the water and got poison ivy all over her… I am not allergic to poison ivy… anyway… we were both a mess it was for a college botany class…

  27. Knight in Shining Armor…

    I know this man…
    He wears an armor of God.
    When he rises in the morning
    He puts on the belt of truth.
    It will hold him in that truth
    All the day.
    He places the breastplate
    Over his heart, and
    It is righteousness…
    It will protect his heart from harm.
    He puts on his shoes
    That are made
    From the Gospel of Peace
    That will take him
    Where peace needs to be heard.
    He carries a shield of faith
    That keeps him protected.
    He wears a helmet
    That was created
    When he accepted salvation.
    The Sword of God
    Is the Word He has given
    To this knight in shining armor…

    He seeks moments of quiet
    For his prayers…
    I am thankful for his prayers.
    I am thankful for this man…
    And may the Armor of God
    Keep him safe.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 7, 2021

  28. Lightening at Night…

    The storm was brutal.
    The dark sky
    Became white
    For mere seconds
    As the lightening struck.
    Then thunder shook the windows
    And my cat Tillie cuddled close
    And made a small mew,
    But she has a tiny voice
    Of course, it was small.

    My big brave moose cat
    Who would fight a fire-breathing dragon,
    But hides from strangers,
    Is a mix of tiger
    And frighten kitten.
    Each time the sky went white,
    And the thunder growled,
    She sunk closer to me.
    I told her she was safe,
    But she thought I was lying.

    One storm passed
    And then another followed.
    I groaned
    For I needed sleep.
    I groaned
    Because a tree might
    Be across my long driveway,
    And I would be stuck.

    Lightening in the daylight
    Is not as dramatic, and
    Though thunder rolls
    It doesn’t seem to boom
    As if someone
    Set dynamite off in the sky.
    At night, the shadows fade
    As the lightening hits its mark,
    And thunder is a bomb exploding.

    Unlike Tillie,
    I love storms,
    And was tempted to walk
    Out into the night
    To feel the electricity
    Knowing how dangerous
    That was, and I am older
    And besides Tillie
    Needed me to cuddle her.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    September 8, 2021

  29. THE NIGHT’S SYMPHONY

    The night is mist upon the shadows.
    The shadows weep in synchronous symphony,
    its four movements masquerade in cosmic decor;
    when beholding sky’s star-strung epiphany.

    An ocean of infinite black writhes in its orbit,
    sweet hum of dark energy’s bass pounds as gravity.
    The planet’s rings stroke as violin strings,
    skillfully smooth as finished mahogany.

    Woodwinds as cosmic winds soothes the wild.
    A mass bassoon of moons agree in harmony.
    The brand brass of galaxies bid their ecstasy—
    when nature’s crescendo resound in musical orogeny.

    Benjamin Thomas

  30. THE TAPESTRY OF NIGHT

    The night is like an awakening upon the eyes,
    when the beauty of the cosmos reveals itself
    from a clouded sky.

    The revelation of the heavenly host is hidden by day,
    masked is its extravagance within an abundance
    of light.

    When the plethora of distant, age-old foreign rays,
    distinguishes itself from the sun borne
    flight.

    The manifestation of the artist’s bright stars at play,
    an extraordinary tapestry is only revealed by
    night.

    Benjamin Thomas

  31. SOUNDS OF THE NIGHT

    The rhythmic sound of tire’s frictional bellowing
    against pavement resembles a low howling of wind.
    A gathering of unseen crickets fellow hiccuping.
    A collective voice of frogs singing hymns of melody.
    The resonant encore of nature’s sleeping silence—
    pours the presence and testimony of night.

    Benjamin Thomas

Plant your poem or comment here!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s