The day after Christmas has always been the day folks rush back to return gifts. Things get to return to “normal.” Some people return home from visiting relatives for the holidays. So it is fitting we write a ”return” poem.
LEARNING TEACHES We’re on an information highway, traveling at the speed of light in a vacuum. With instant information gratification, who needs fact memorization? Surely it’s time to table times and periodic elements. But, no. For learning stirs a yearning. The churning of knowledge and haulage of speech and fact actively draws us. gnaws at disinterest, and erects a monstrosity of curiosity. Learning reaches us. Teaches us. And in return, we learn. © Marie Elena Good, 2018 I'm sorry I'm late! For now, I returned to a poem I wrote in 2018. If you want to see my cutiepatootie granddaughter in my original post, take a look: https://picturedwords.me/2018/08/15/learning-teaches/
BACK INTO THE BOX Another year has come and gone and I'm done with my mission. My condition is not so serious. And I'm not delirious, my time in the suit has come to another sad end. Just as it had begun, another year has come and gone. I return the red suit to the box, cap in place and the beard that graced my face has been stowed away. I have no clue if I'll return to this station or get to don the threads again. It thrills me if truth be told, I don't think I'll ever be too old to serve my time as Santa Claus. (c) Walter J Wojtanik - 2021
113 thoughts on “PROMPT #366 – MANY HAPPY RETURNS”
LET IT GO TO WAIST, NOT WASTE
The Christmas table tends to be
a regular groaning board,
the kind intended to promote
camaraderie and accord,
so that is why I cycle back
for seconds, perhaps even
the third and fourths the icebox holds
for enjoying the feast of Stephen.
How fitting that, on this return prompt, you’ve brought back a memory of something I haven’t thought of in many decades: St. Stephen’s Day. Thank you! Your poem brought a smile and a chuckle. 😉
William, I am returning to the icebox and counter full of bagged and boxed remains so often now that my acts are subconscious.
I hear you
It’s fattening but enjoyable
Get it, William. I have been practically living on all types of baked goods and candy.
I get it! I have been practically living on baked goods and candies.
Love your piece, Walt. Here’s hoping you’ll be donning the threads for many a moon to come. Happy New Year.
Hear hears, and cheers!
SANTA’S NEW YEAR’S WISH
When I return,
may “peace on earth” not be a dream;
when I return,
may love be easy to discern
beneath the sunshine’s warming gleam;
may peace segue from dream to stream
when I return.
This grabs my heart. Yes, please.
Love this, William!
Love this one William!
Morning to all. Love both of your poems Walt and Marie!
Good afternoon, Benjamin! Thanks much. 🙂
Marie, for me the heart of your poem is the second line of the second stanza. Wonderful.
Thank you, sir!
THE RETURN OF THE SLOTH?
The steering prongs of the dawn are but a song,
to aggrieve the sleeping, rile the dead from sleep.
Tis the torturous noise of clatter and bird,
a vile conspiracy of sorts, to pry one’s eye a peep.
The broad hymns of sweltering skies piddles a tune,
to encroach the hearts, enkindle one’s lazy veins.
Shouldn’t they know by now? The manner of the sloth?
Where all wakefulness is utterly disdained?
He is dumb and deaf to all concerts of the world
hearing naught song nor siren, none to make him wroth.
He only knows the champion ecstasy of dreams,
his prized possession—a pillow. That, he’ll always keep.
Ben this is delightfully written. Loved it.
Delightfully written, indeed!
Thanks Marie. 😊
Thanks Damon! It was fun.
Methinks those sloths are on to something:
Fun one, Benjamin!
A dutiful jolliness you have served, Santa Walt.
Before the time of allowances,
forced to come up with creative ways
to earn money, my friend and I trudged
door to door pulling a borrowed wagon
collecting pop bottles.
We cashed in the returns
and purchased plastic sheeting
We hauled our loot up the hill
into the woods
and created our cabin
stretching the plastic sheeting
The plastic roof kept out the rain.
Quite proud of it,
we and my sister
decided to spend the night.
Since we built it on a hill,
we place a board at the base
between two trees.
We slept fairly well,
but the morning found
all three of us scrunched
together at the bottom.
We kept our cabin occupancy
to the day time,
enjoying our little home away from home
till some town boys
thought it their duty to rip it to shreds.
True to the adage,
they returned to the scene of the crime.
We gave them an earful,
which didn’t faze them,
but my neighbor tattled on them
and their parents forced then to apologize.
We never did build it back
but went on to new adventures.
Connie, I can totally envision it all. I’m sorry you had to deal with these boys, but it sure made for an engaging read!
Connie, those woodsy adventures fill my memories too. We once cut down to tall pines with our boy scout hatchets to span a drainage ditch….Bridge Over the River Kwan.
Sounds like you enjoyed it for the time it survived.
Such an adventure in this Connie.
Living between two eternities,
we always return
to where it began
I mean, nobody really cares
what your major was,
what you used to do,
who you used to be,
what your title was.
I fully grasp the desire,
even the burning fire,
to return to how it used to be,
the good old days, but…
Everything is temporary.
It’s helpful to know that,
to let that be enough.
What new opportunities await my yes?
What more do I have to offer?
Appreciating the past, yes, but also
enjoying the now.
Being grateful for everyone.
Today is so very special.
New Beginnings always are.
There is so much to be joyful about,
and, satisfied, we might capture
bits of today’s breezy brilliance,
enlivened by the simple pleasure of it all.
We can check our pulse, appreciate our heart,
check our mirror, give it a thankful smile,
grateful for this good day, today.
This is profoundly wise stuff. Many thanks.
Profoundly wise, indeed. Add my gratitude, Daniel. ❤
Daniel, so renewing, so uplifting. Thanks.
Thank you for this uplifting poem, Daniel.
Wonderful Daniel. ❤️ I love those first two lines.
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Banking on the Circle
Drought year and the pines dry
too exhausted to drink and revive
so you take this last warm day
to return the Tree back to nature
the next farm’s goats in a feeding frenzy
later maybe or just shelter for snow birds
threading in and out of stiffened needles
So you return the blown glass ornaments
that you bought at the fire sale at the TG&Y
to their gold boxes complete with
their original price tags of $6.99
and how you didn’t even have a tree
that year or so many ‘nexts’– just banked them
for some future you couldn’t have
predicted and you tuck in pine cones
Their plaid woolen bows soft
against your fingers the way your mind
caresses those few soft memories
return silver filigree butter-and dragonflies
to their boxes beneath crumpled tissue
nestle the rustic crèche into its worn box
and then that last bit of ritual the tucking in
of the cards from your kids grown now
but the cards never seeming to age even
though the ink fades, how you slide them
beneath the lid and the bubble wrap
that sheathes the bronze Madonna
alongside Joseph with his staff and the
angel shaking stars from her fingertips
the whole of it returned to find again next year
some karmic circle drawn against fate
banking again on more happy
returns in the belief however tenuous
that Christmas past will once again
become Christmas present.
This is so vibrantly visual. Wonderful.
Pat, this is stunning in beauty, and warming in sentiment. Wow …
Pat, love this moment. You always put every possible hue of emotion in your poetry, the colors are as deep and sure as heartbeats.
Lovely thoughts and images, Pat!
Yes. A visual full of passion. 👌
Beautifully done poems today, Walt and Marie! Well written poems for us all to see!
CHOCOLATE SEEMS TO KNOW
Giving away my chocolate stash
Seemed important, maybe rash
Yet children were coming to my house
I couldn’t leave any too small even for a mouse
Fill those stockings, as full as they can bear
Fill the toes, put it all in there
It will delight, I’ll see those smiles
Very well worth it, lasting all the miles
Let them taste it or smear on fingers
Best flavor ever, it thankfully lingers
A tinge of sadness as it goes out the door
I looked around, there wasn’t anymore
It wasn’t too long that I had to wait
Christmas was here as was my fate
Four different people gave me their gifts
Knowing what I love, offered uplifts
In came more chocolate in so many ways
Turtles, truffles, the mint kind, loved always
I couldn’t help but gush and certainly blush
Regrets of giveaways, instantly turned to mush
My stockpile was full to overflowing
Leave it to friends and family for knowing
But I think the chocolate knew as well
With none in the house, it’d be an easy sell
Better bring it by so she’ll have her delight
After all, it bargained, it was Christmas night
Joy given away seems to love to come back
Now it is in front of me in one big stack
Chocolate has obviously been heard and seen
I have a tasty royal flush, I am the queen
Only trick now is to stretch it out
As long as I don’t ever have to go without
(c) Janet Rice Carnahan 2021
Charming poem, Janet!
“Joy given away seems to love to come back.”
I love this. ❤
Yes, eternal chocolate! Loved this Janet.
No time to look back, we must
Return to normal
I’m afraid to crack that door open! LOL!
Think on what you’ve learned
from your since-adjourned seasons
and all the reasons
you are who you are.
Record it in your memoir
for those who return
to turn its pages
ages from now, in search of
keys for their cages.
© Marie Elena Good, 2021
Wow. This piece invites much pondering. Such a thoughtful response to the prompt.
Thank you, Bill.
Yes, Marie, we create returning points with all these musings when we write them down. Loved this.
Thank you, Damon!
Outstanding and thought-provoking, Marie!
Several striking lines in this. 😊
We’ll return the toaster
And return these pants
But we’ll give this jacket
Another fighting chance
What about this thingie
Whatever it be
We’ll have to regift it
To your cousin Lee
I think this is yours
‘Cause it’s not my style
Don’t know how it got
Mixed up in my pile
Now wait! What we doing?
How ungrateful we be
These gifts bought with love
They gave you and me
We’ll use them or wear them
With thanks in our hearts
When we’re all together
Even when we’re apart
Each gift has a meaning
Though some mysteries
Important to someone
No matter what they be
So we’ll keep it all
No returns this year
It’s all in the spirit
Of true Christmas cheer
Enjoyed the take and outlook in this skillfully written piece, Earl.
Gratitude in the attitude! Loved it.
When will He return?
No one knows exactly when
Better be ready
Much said in few words. My favorite type of writing.
The Return Line
I never liked standing in the Return Line
It made me look like I didn’t appreciate
Some of the presents that were under the tree
When in truth I already had the same thing
Or maybe something didn’t fit just right
Either way I felt a little on the awkward side
But I have observed some interesting people there
Some who were miserably unhappy with life
While others were bubbling with positivity
And then there were those that were unreadable
Not happy, not sad, not miserable or anything else
The kind of person that would make a good spy
I always wanted to be a spy, or an astronaut
Or even better, an astronaut spy on the moon
It would have been better than standing here
In the Return Line with all these other folks
There are enough people in line to man a crew
For that spy ship on the way to the moon
But I digress
It’s my turn
For my return
Broad smile here
An astronaut spy on the moon! HA! Love it! Sounds like the premise of entertaining kid lit!
Ha! Yes, the busy-ness of discontent.
It’s time to face the music of reality
That nasty little virus is here to stay
Just like the flu and other variants
We’ve just got to learn to live with it
We’ve got to work back toward normal
Live and take our chances once again
Life’s a gamble no matter what may come
And it’s high time we quit living in fear
They must return all our personal freedoms
The freedoms to choose our own path in life
Just like the Founders intended us to live
And the way God created us to survive
It’s time to say “NO!” to the overlords
Before they tie our souls to their goals
It’s time to face the music of reality
And let God be the One in total control
Skillfully penned, as is always the case for you.
A Pigeon’s Decision
With a message tied to his leg,
the pigeon was off, but instead
of delivering note
which by now was rote,
he flew the coop with a female named Peg.
Oh my goodness what a clever take on the prompt! 😀
Hilarious Sara, an awol pigeon!
Pardon me while my sides split.
Now that I’d like to see!
Good one Sara! Love the ending.
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Into the box I go,
my stint was brief
upon the bough,
my life has been like that
Into the tote my box
the dark gets darker.
year by year I
to attic spaces where
I’ll yearn to be again
put on the tree.
I wonder where
my place will be?
Higher, I hope,
Perhaps next year.
The crown, the edge,
the front, the peak,
a higher, brighter limb
But still, no bauble
can be bright
unless the tree
stands in the light.
I’ve got a year
to think and pray
until that glorious
© Damon Dean, 2021
Such sweet melancholy here….
This is just darling. I sometimes struggle with the “feelings” of inanimate objects. You haven’t helped my cause any, Damon. 😉
Hahah! Glad you liked it.
This is charming and clever, Damon!
Thank you Sara!
Wonderful 👏 Love the perspective in this!
Thanks Ben…now I hate to put any of them away! Tree still up…
The Hunger Returns
Traveling to Arizona and California last month
satisfied a hunger in my soul.
Visiting with family.
Playing in the ocean.
Basking in the sun during winter.
But like I’m ready for a meal
four hours after the last one,
I’m ready to travel again.
Like my tummy growls when I’m hungry:
My eyes search for something new.
My fingers itch to pack a suitcase.
My feet long for the feel of the gas pedal.
Some folks understand this and some don’t.
Regardless, I must deal with it,
and I’d rather fulfill it, than starve myself.
Super interesting! You and I are opposite in this regard. I’m such a homebody, Connie! 😀 Love the poem.
No wonder it’s called “wanderlust.” Sounds familiar.
I wish I could return
The day before Christmas eve,
I knew something was amiss…
Just didn’t know what it was…
Your call on Christmas Eve
Broke my heart and stole my solace…
You are dear to me…
And I have lost so much…
I never wanted to hear those words
Cancer in the fourth stage
Connected to you.
You are hopeful.
I am prayerful.
I want to go back to the day before…
And gather my strength
For storm coming towards me.
But life doesn’t allow us to go back
To that point we have no knowledge.
It is times like these
I really wish
Eve hadn’t taken a bite
Of that forbidden fruit.
Mary Elizabeth Todd
December 27, 2021
Mary, I’m touched by your words and your heart. ❤
thank you to you both… and Happy New Year… I saw him yesterday and he is hopeful, and I am prayerful.
So many powerful lines here.
MANY HAPPY RETURNS ON THE DAY
Tis the splitting birth of splintered light,
amid the pangs of horizon’s surefire blood—
A humid, belligerent brawn of emergent dawn
snakes wistfully past branch, limb, and bough.
Spilling happily against damp, deprived fields,
setting scores of twiddling wildflowers aflame.
The diffusive, wailing cries of the infant day,
jubilate the Robin’s song, soothes her tender verse—
While light’s familiar wings brighten dark things,
her vocal chords laud her precious name.
Flooding the fleeing shadows with another tune,
and awaken a sleeping, slumbering earth.
Wow! Talk about a “gotcha” opening line.
Thank you sir.
“wailing cries of the infant day” – Love this line, and the whole feeling of this poem.
RETURN THE RETOURNE
(Apologies to Cole Porter)
When I return the retourne,
it brings back a night of dropsical writing;
it sends a muse I thought was inviting
when I return the retourne.
That French form’s once more deserted me
and down by the shore my muse is decrying
my self-pitying as I sit here sighing
when I return the retourne.
To write it again is past my endeavor
for that bloomin’ form laughs at my pen,
so here I am, swearing off it forever
and promising not to do French again.
So please let me return the retourne.
Let the form that was once a fire, fade to an ember;
let it sleep like a dread desire I only remember
if you return that retourne.
Welcome, Walt! So long Santa!
The End of the Year…
Most years I do not want
To go back and live over,
But there are a few moments
That I wish I could have again…
I would like to spend more times
With phone calls to and from my friends,
And one in particular who is special.
I would like to live all those joyful days
Again, for there were many.
I have loved the nights
I took a ride out to see the moon shining,
Or wake up to the bright morning light of the sun.
The moments my nephew
Cleared up places that once I loved,
And thought was lost to me forever.
I am so thankful for those moments
For they gave me hope.
I thankful for all the hugs
And best wishes I have had…
I remember the moment
I finished writing my third novel…
The third one I have finished in two years.
Not bad for an old broad,
Who plans to make ninety.
Those times I learned something new
Understood something I had not understood before
Still make me smile.
The year is at an end,
And there were hard times to be sure,
There were good ones,
And I just want those good one to grow
In the coming year…
I will savor each one of them.
Mary Elizabeth Todd
December 30, 2021
A good resolution, that.
and one I think I can do… thanks
MANY BLISSFUL RETURNS
Tis’ the errant reflection of the expanse of heaven, squandering flagrance of shadows upon a distant earth.
Land and sea, effervescent cloud and sun, collaborate—Many blissful happy returns, that are soon to come.
THE RETURNING RAINS
The auspicious sound of returning rains
brings about a certain kind of delightful glee.
The steady pitter patter of plop after plop,
in continuous succession of grand symphony.
It is the unquestionable promise of green things—
to bring about the vision of kind, unseen things.
Such as the applicable beauty of its essence.
A shell of the seed, that once denied its very own presence.
Now a full blown manifestation of the hidden—
A powerful designation of the life it’s been given.
“The steady pitter patter of plop after plop.” Perfect.
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