River’s Bend

Lisa at dVerse Poetics: One True Sentence writes: “Your challenge today, should you choose to accept it, is to pick ONE of Hemingway’s quotes to be inspired by and write a poem. Do NOT use the quote in your poem, but please do include the quote on your post page somewhere, with Hemingway’s name as the source of inspiration. For bonus points, please say a few words about the experience of writing to an idea from the mind of Papa Hemingway.” Channeling Hemingway was a fun challenge for dVerse: his abbreviated diction, especially in dialogue, the unsaid reflected in the landscape as much as in the pools of silence surrounding a character. Click on Mr. Linky and join in!

‘It’s gone the way the mist is burned off the hollows in broken ground when the sun comes out,’ the Colonel said. ‘And you’re the sun.’
– Ernest Hemingway, Across the River and into the Trees (1950)

Continue reading “River’s Bend”

Fear

Genre: Fiction
Word Count: 100

Fear

I’ve heard it said that a woman should never be afraid of her own life. Yet I am. Every day the crowd multiplies. I grow old. The room grows smaller. Am I to be buried alive? Not with grave dirt, but with ghosts. The more confined I, the more rampant they. What diabolical art is this, that the dead suck life out of those they abhor? My nights are theirs to engorge upon in hopeless pain, my days spit out remnants of their celebration. For as vines strangle and overgrown briars encroach, my ghosts encircle me. And I am afraid.


Come along and join in with Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers and Eugi’s Weekly Prompt. Eugi asks us to use any variation on the word prompt (“celebration”).

Rochelle asks that we use the photo prompt (above, © Alicia Jamtaas) and limit our words to 100 or less. Click on the frog to read more stories and participate.

Melancholy

Photo by Eva Elijas from Pexels

I wonder listlessly at rapacious melancholy,
its beast-stalking litheness, peripheral,
ghosting my mind-altered diminishment

how in the revenant fury of buried bones
whose salient menace springs expansively
as darkness goes unhallowed by requiescat in pace
it thrives

I wonder clinging to my devourer.


WhimsyGizmo at dVerse asks us to write a quadrille (exactly 44-word-poem) using the word “go.” Click on Mr. Linky to read more poems.

Van Gogh’s Yellow

Mish at dVerse’s “Poetics” asks us to take on the persona of a color, “imagine what they see . . . . slip out of our human bodies and become nothing but a color.” So it is written, so it is done, but in the voice of one particular color, Vincent van Gogh’s yellow.

Van Gogh died in July 1890 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest.

Vincent Van Gogh, Wheatfield with Crows (July 1890)

When you turn to me away from Rachel
For whom you sheared your face of an ear
Isn’t the world brighter, like sunflowers?
And the walls of your house in Arles
Lavishly canvased, as the awnings
As cafés, bedframes, straw hats, sunsets
I am the light running before you
Swirling you up to starry nights and moons
Away from the blackness of eyes
That never see you like I have seen you
Radiant in the waving fields of wheat
Until the day you clasp your hands
Round the ochred skin of despair.

Vincent Van Gogh, Sorrowing Old Man (‘At Eternity’s Gate’), 1890

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Once Upon A Time

Today, Grace at dVerse asks us to “Meet the Bar” with regards to setting. So I began with that age old phrase, “once upon a time” and discovered that it seemed to be a setting unto itself, one that the speaker and the listener partake of evocatively, symbiotically. Or so I indulge myself in believing.


Photo by mirsad mujanovic from Pexels

Once, the old woman/man/animal/tree/rock began,
in the ages when spring set in for a millennium
water gushed from every nook and cranny
of underground wells and the vaulted heavens opened
she/he/it paused
there was an orchard where a blind child played
the rains dancing like fingertips, skimming her face
leaving braille-like tales of love and longing
the old woman/man/animal/tree/rock sighed,
upon the upturned eyes that could not see, the nose, the chin
the water savoring their quill-like strokes
the papyrus face now a harbinger of things to come
so that the blank eyes took on diamond sharpness –
here a tear fell, or was it a leaf, or a stir of dust –
her breath like the sifting wind among the chaff
her words a beat out of time so that the foolish laughed
but the earth claimed her as a shepherd’s star one still night
in the ages when spring set in for a time.

Dream Waves

Lisa at dVerse asks us to write a quadrille (poem of 44 words) using the word “way.” Here’s my drowsy offering as midnight creeps closer. Click on Mr. Linky to join in!


Photo by Steve Johnson from Pexels

When sleep comes my way
darkness warm like mother’s milk
lulls my hungry wakeful eyes,
I sink at last in ocean light
to caverns deep where you await
a Prospero’s Ariel caught betwixt
reflections of the world above
and the mirrors of my mind.


 

First Encounter: A Tale of Terror

Thought I’d see if I could squeeze a few fun writing prompts (see below) into one tale of terror. Thanks Di, Linda, and Michelle!

First Encounter

“That … that … that THING is coming closer!’

Kroot hugged her red scarf tightly and tried to be brave. Beside her Kreet cleared her throat, ready to deliver the speech she had been given by the Grand Penguin himself. Kruff shrank back into her corner, her eyes squeezed shut.

Continue reading “First Encounter: A Tale of Terror”

Common-Place Jotting: Dickinson’s Song

Common-Place or “Locus Communis” — a place to remember

Emily Dickinson commemorative stamp, 1971

Many great poets wrote their most magnificent poetry in their youth rather than at the peak of their maturity. Take, for example, Dante, Lord Byron, John Keats, and T. S. Eliot. Others wrote throughout their life with equal prowess: Milton wrote Lycidas when a student, and Paradise Lost as an old man.

But many come to poetry as late bloomers. Emily Dickinson considered herself such, watching others pass her by. Only ten of her nearly 1,800 poems were published in her lifetime. She kept “singing” anyway, saying with confidence, “I shall bring a fuller tune.” What do you think she means?

I Shall Keep Singing!                           by Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

I shall keep singing!
Birds will pass me

On their way to Yellower Climes
Each – with a Robin’s expectation –
I – with my Redbreast –
And my Rhymes –

Late – when I take my place in summer –
But – I shall bring a fuller tune –
Vespers – are sweeter than Matins – Signor –
Morning – only the seed of Noon –                                                            

“She said if a red fox had crossed somewhere, that area was safe”

When I left her yesterday
the black was in her hair
the gold was in her eyes
and she spoke of fathers
and unmourned sons
but now she freezes the air
like a stray from bygone forests
and primordial paths
looking at me like a traveler
she’d warned before
of hazardous roads
and one in particular
where red foxes
appear to startle the unwary
from perilous paths
and slipping slopes of memory
but for the shibboleth:
Mother?
You’re safe.

I somehow missed posting on this prompt from Sarah of dVerse who chose quotes from a book for us to use as poem titles.
"She said if a red fox had crossed somewhere, that area was safe" was the one I chose. 
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Image credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/mother-and-daughter-on-grass-1683975/