Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Resisting Arrest (A Poem for Day Twenty-One of PAD)

I've been writing on my own for this PAD challenge but thought I would post today. 

Here is the prompt for day twenty-oneFor today’s prompt, write a protest poem. These poems don’t have to be political (though that’s fine–just poem nicely). My 9-year-old protests taking showers every. single. time. A student may protest a grade, or a teacher may protest grading papers that don’t follow the instructions. That said, one fun way to attack this prompt may be to take a saying from a popular protest placard and make it the title of your poem (and then, write the poem).

Photo of toy on piano by Julia Freeman-Woolpert
Too Tired to Play

Resisting Arrest

Dog tracks line
the kitchen floor.
They smell of
blindness &
rotten teeth.
They lead to stains
of a future,
     buried, like her
cherished bone.

The dog rests
on the bedroom
floor, too tired
to make it to her
(death) bed,

too tired
to die today. 


Friday, November 2, 2018

Meet Me at Midnight (A Poem for Day Two of PAD)

I am participating in the November PAD Challenge, but I am not posting my poems everyday on my blog. 

For today, though, my poem is below.

Here is the prompt for day twoFor today’s prompt, write a darkest hour poem. Some people may think of midnight or the witching hour. Still others may picture those moments right before the sun starts gradually lighting up the sky. But the darkest hour could also be a moment in time that is psychological, metaphorical, or some-other-kind-of-cal. And remember the poem doesn’t have to be directly about your idea of the darkest hour; it could be set in it or refer to it.
Photo by Chris Randalls
Why Did We Wait?

Meet Me at Midnight

Waited all day,
every day,
for two or three
for your
to join you
in an exciting

was the day,
only it
was for
your burial,
no longer


Sunday, April 22, 2018

Not the Teacher's Pet (A Poem for Day Nineteen of PAD)

Here is the prompt copied from Poetic Asides for day nineteen: For today’s prompt, write a memory poem. Pick a memory, any memory. It can be a significant event, but sometimes there are beautiful insignificant moments (that ironically are very significant–quite the paradox). Mine your memories to come up with something good today.

Photo of Blackboard by Gary Scott
They Said It Was Me

Not the Teacher's Pet

Every time I sit
down to remember,
unruly schoolchildren
sneak in, wipe memories
from the blackboard,
place tacks upon teacher’s
seat, call her distasteful
names, tell her
it was all me, then snicker
when she makes me stay after
to atone
for their sins.


Procrastination Temptation (A Poem for Day Eighteen of PAD)

Here is the prompt  copied from Poetic Asides for day eighteen: For today’s prompt, write a temptation poem. Nearly everyone is tempted by something: fame, glory, money, chocolate. Today is the perfect day to give in to the temptation to write about your (or “a friend’s”) temptation. Also, I totally understand the temptation to write about The Temptations today.

Photo via Flickr by Rachel Fisher
I'll Write It Tomorrow

Procrastination Temptation

Take two
lines, call
a poet
in the morning,
when hope
the block,
of my head,
my pen.


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Husband That Never Was (A Poem for Day Seventeen of PAD)

Here is the prompt (for day seventeencopied from Poetic Asides: For experienced April PAD Challengers, today’s prompt will seem familiar. In fact, I kind of tipped my hand yesterday with my example poem of what today’s Two-for-Tuesday prompt would be.

For today’s Two-for-Tuesday prompt:
  1. Write a love poem.
  2. Write an anti-love poem.

Photo of Record Shop by Eurok
There's No Record of You and Me

The Husband That Never Was

We said “I do” a thousand times
under the scraggly
limbs of my neighbor’s
apple tree where I stepped
on a rusty nail the summer
we eloped before
we ever met.
You climbed the
blue fir tree up to the electrical
wires, then looked
down on me, smiled with only one side
of your mouth the way you do now
from across the way.
For our honeymoon, we ransacked
your mother’s bedroom, spread out
on the floor among some five hundred
"Jive Talking”
our wedding march.


Oxymoron (A Poem for Day Sixteen of PAD)

Here is the prompt (for day sixteencopied from Poetic Asides: For today’s prompt, write a favorite poem. Maybe that sounds a bit silly, but what I mean is to write a poem about something that’s your favorite. A favorite teacher. Favorite movie. Favorite ice cream flavor. I don’t know, because I have my own list of favorites. Only you can do you…and your favorites. Who knows? Maybe this will end up being your favorite prompt this month.

Photo of Beach by Daniel Mendiola
Sometimes My Favorite Place is the Beach


My favorite saying
is that I have
no favorites. I love
everything and
just the same . . .
any foods
meat and
spring time
by summertime
heat, and then
there’s those workers
who are underpaid
for the color
of their skin
or because
of their age.
I suppose
there’s another
thing, too. Scammers
who prey on
the emotions
of others
or take advantage
of lonely
elderly widows.
Karma is karma,
and whatever
they do
will come
right back
to them
butts in. Then karma’s
arrows will shoot
back to me to interfere
with my philosophy
to not take favorites
but instead
to favor
for their individuality

respect their 
on their 

     own life’s 


I Am a Mermaid (A Poem for Day Fifteen of PAD)

Here is the prompt (for day fifteencopied from Poetic Asides: For today’s prompt, write a metaphor poem. That is, write a poem built around a metaphor. Remember: Metaphors actually take on another object (like “I am a Tree” or “I am a Rock“). This is not to be confused with similes, which are like metaphors (for instance, “I am like a tree” or “I am like a rock”), but not quite. Dig? If so, then you are a shovel or spade or bulldozer. Now poem the heck out of metaphors today.

Photo of Forget-Me-Nots by Pedro Irizarry
Hold Me in Your Heart

I Am a Mermaid

But I don’t live
in the sea.
I flower from May
to September
when I add
a sweet touch
of color
to your garden.
Those who've
cultivated me
call me
a forget-me-not.
I’m easy to grow,
reliable, too—
you can count on me
to bloom and add cheer
to your life
when you’re feeling blue.


Monday, April 16, 2018

Funeral Home (A Poem for Day Fourteen of PAD)

It's late. I'm tired. A short poem was in order. 

Here is the prompt (from day fourteencopied from Poetic Asides: For today’s prompt, write a report poem. I know, I know: Writing a report sounds about as far away from poetry as flying is to a penguin, but many poems report on a moment or an instance or a scene. In your poem (or poems) today, report on something big and important or small and inconsequential (or small and important–or, well, you get the idea).

Photo by Linda Graindourze
Goodbye Never Gets Easier

Funeral Home

Same dead body,
same casket,
same urn,
same last respects,
same tears,
different family.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Booklice (A Poem for Day Thirteen of PAD)

I'm hurrying to catch up. I've cut this copied prompt down a bit: For today’s prompt (day thirteen), pick an insect (any insect), make it the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “Praying Mantis,” “Ants,” and “Grasshoppers.” 

Photo of Chewing Gum by Jeff Prieb
I Wonder if They Would Chew Gum Instead


Wingless members of the family
Trogiidae, commonly found
in human dwellings,
these tiny authors
feed on scripts, spit
them out for tenants to find.
The Psocoptera evolved
from ancient scribes
but have lost all recollection
of manuscript keeping.
Poor eyesight and pen-
less, they communicate
using sound instead,
tap with the end
of their abdomens, using Morse
code in a faint ticking noise
and chewing to communicate
stories like that of
Violet Beauregarde.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Freedom (A Poem for Day Twelve of PAD)

For today’s prompt (day twelve), write a lament poem. Maybe you lament a relationship or a missed opportunity. Or maybe it’s that doughnut (maybe speaking from personal experience). Whatever it is, today is the day to let it all out–in poem form, of course.

Photo of Money Shirts by Piotr Bizior
Your Money or Your Life


The citizens lamented
something had gone
terribly wrong but couldn’t
quite put their finger on it.

Darren said the local
discount stores had gone
out of business,
and the water commission
had made new provisions
of sprinkling only on
Tuesdays, three to five.

Johnny added that records
showed little Theresa’s
mother failed to pay,
had her daughter’s
hot lunch taken away.
Beth repeated evening news—
commuters on downtown
streets would soon
be tolled; and later,
those just out for a stroll
would pay to cruise
city sidewalks.  

The lunch bell rang
and off they hoofed
back to their stalls
where bosses
monitored every call
and email they received
and sent. After all,

they were being paid
for those jobs,
and those in charge
needed assurance
they were worth
every cent.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Morning Warning (A Poem for Day Eleven of PAD)

For today’s prompt (day eleven), write a warning poem. Warnings can be found everywhere: on the labels of medicine, in the speeches of leaders, and in the advice of parents. Even stories and poems have been known to harbor warnings.

Photo of Alarm Clock by Ronaldo Taveira
Alarm Clocks Are Easily Ignored

Morning Warning

Alarm clock
attempts to prevent
missed buses,
tardy slips, dream
rickety reality.

Alarm clock
reminds me
of another
blank page,
of falling behind
on poem-a-day.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

What’s the Big Deal? (A Poem for Day Ten of PAD)

For today’s Two-for-Tuesday prompt (day ten):
  1. Write a deal poem.
  2. Write a no deal poem.

Photo of Seeded Dandelions by Rita Mezzela
The Weeds Are No Big Deal

What’s the Big Deal?

It’s really not a big
deal tossing out
a few words like wild-
flower seeds, seeing
where they land
or if they even blossom,
too many pecked
up by neighborhood
hens, anxious
to chinwag, but I’m
not talking, I’m locked
away, a princess
next to a tower
of books, yelling
at me to save
myself, don’t wait
till the garden’s
has ended.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Monday, April 9, 2018

Battle on the I-5 (A Poem for Day Nine of PAD)

For today’s prompt (day nine), take the phrase “Battle (blank);” replace the blank with a word or phrase; make the new phrase the title of your poem; and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “Battle Tested,” “Battle of the Sexes,” “Battle of the Bands,” and “Battle of the Bulge.”

Photo of Volkswagen Bug from

Battle on the I-5

Somewhere behind
the windshield smear
of bugs that didn’t make it,
innocent passersby are
slugged, Volkswagens trundle
off down the highway.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Family 411 (A Poem for Day Eight of PAD)

I was really hoping to write something lighter or even funny. But this is what came out and my bed is calling. 

For today’s prompt (day eight), write a family poem. Good, bad, big, small, adopted, imaginary, nonexistent–everyone has to deal with family (even if that involves running from it or chasing it down). I have a feeling today’s prompt is going to stir up some really good poems.

Photo by Felix Atsoram
Our Memories Bring Them to Life

The Family 411

We’ve been wandering
in the back yard, behind
the unfinished A-frame,
prying up weather-beaten
shingles, and peering
into mountain
beaver towns.

We’ve been following
the grassy knoll through
cherry blossoms, rhododendrons
and other shrubs,
searching for nuts
from the family
tree. But it seems
we were too late.

The place has been
overrun by flying
squirrels, moving
across the sky. There’s
no stopping them.
Their grub hunting
and hoarding, has 
our family capsized.

If you dare pay a visit or even
respects, or dare to get
even with death’s refusal
for leaving, just beware, you might
fall down the cracks
or be swallowed alive
by that hunger we all
now struggle
to live with—
it never dies.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Memorial (A Poem for Day Seven of PAD)

For today’s prompt (day seven), write a senses poem. That is, write a poem that uses one or more of your senses. Smell, taste, touch, sound, sight, or even a sixth sense. Focus in on one of them or try to incorporate them all.

Photo of Burning Sage in Seashell by Michelle Kwajafa
Only Smudges of Him Remain


On Thursday, she wore a violet
dress, plucked a jasper stone
from the dish upon her desk,
wandered to her garden
where the scent of rosemary
and thyme awakened her
taste buds to flavors
she savored
at their last supper.

She burrowed her hands down
into red clay and dirt,
trying to feel her existence,
trying to find her worth.

She wondered what it’s like
to sleep and never wake.

Would there be peace
beneath the surface or would
all memory of her ex-


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

He Saved Her with See’s (A Poem for Day Six of PAD)

Well, I got home late and haven't been to bed, so it's still technically April 6, right? 
Here is the prompt for day six of the April 2018 PAD Challenge: For today’s prompt, pick a food, make it the title of your poem, and write your poem. It can be a food you love, food you hate, or food you’ve never even tried before. Your poem can be about the food–or not. Your choice.
Photo of Bag by Paul Pasieczny
It's What's inside That Counts

He Saved Her with See’s

A white paper bag
about eleven inches
by five, hidden in sight
on the shelf above
the entertainment center,
filled with marzipan,
Bordeaux, and some-
times a few nuts
and chews—
he’d hold open the sides,
offer it to her salivations,
offer her salvation
from the effects
of being whacked
on the head, of being
the entertainment
of those five bored
eleven-year-olds, of ducking
away from them into bath-
room stalls, her feet
planted on toilet seats,
while she silently prayed
she was invisible.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Friday, April 6, 2018

Not So Smart After All (A Poem for Day Five of PAD)

Day five (yes, I'm behind). 

For today’s prompt, write an intelligence poem. Of course, intelligence is subjective. What is common sense for one person makes no sense to another. But intelligence is more than IQ and test scores. There’s artificial intelligence, intelligent animals, and military intel. And I’ve found that many poets have a special intelligence of their own.
Photo of Scrabble Tiles by Stephen Hyun
My Brain Was Scrabbled

Not So Smart After All
Tried to compose
a poem using only
letters found in
“intelligence,” but
I guess my intellect
falls one T short.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Case of the Missing Life (A Poem for Day Four of PAD)

Here is the prompt for day fourFor today’s prompt, take the phrase “Case (blank);” replace the blank with a word or phrase; make the new phrase the title of your poem; and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “Case of Water,” “Case in Point,” “Case Study,” and “Case of the Missing Person.”

Photo of Keyboard by Shamseer Sureash Kumar
She Will Live On Forever

Case of the Missing Life

She went out in search
of the levels of creation,
awakening legacies,
and how to be her own
Buddha. She lived by myths
and dreamed of angels;
she embodied the world
with hands of a goddess,
and she even went a little wild.

But halfway through
her mission, she found
that mystical travelers
finish last, that they ask
and get nothing, that the Guide
to Essential Knowledge 
is in-
complete. She found
that vampires are real,
and that real people
are the fairy tale.

So she wondered
how she could
save the cat
if she couldn’t even
save herself.

Now she knows
those books and dreams
are all a fake, created
to make a buck
from unsuspecting fools
who’ve had their smiles
turned upside down,
then have their commonplace
existence erased, like her,
gone from the world,
her memory living on only
in cyberspace.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

A Four-Letter Word (A Poem for Day Three of PAD)

Today (day three) is a Two-for-Tuesday prompt, which means you can pick one prompt or the other, do both separately, or mix both together. Do whatever makes you feel good. Here are the prompts:
  1. Write a stop poem.
  2. Write a don’t stop poem.

Photo of Street Signs by Robin xx
Are the Signs Confusing?

A Four-Letter Word

It was a tiny ex-
     pression meant
to control flow
and indicate right-
He said go.
She said no.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Framed (A Poem for Day Two of PAD)

Here is the prompt for day two of PAD: For today’s prompt, write a portrait poem. You can use an actual portrait to write an ekphrastic poem. Or think up an image from real life. Or fake life. Or don’t be so literal; instead of writing a poem that describes a portrait, use the poem to frame a moment or lifestyle or whatever. By the way, how many times did I type “or” in this paragraph?
Photo of frame by Dora Mitsonia
His Family Portrait is Empty


He’s a fight
that broke out
after a kiss and make up.
He’s a rescue mission
with no survival guide.
He ponders his demise
each morning
while dressing
nine to five.
His dreams
were arrested,
given twenty
to life.


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]

Subjective Hearing? (A Poem for Day One of PAD)

It's time for the April PAD Challenge again! Here is the prompt for day one: For today’s prompt, write a secret poem. This poem can reveal a secret, incorporate a secret activity, or involve any other secret interpretation. Poem written in code (acrostic, anyone?) or with double meanings.

Photo by dmitry poliansky
There Was No Evil to See, Hear, or Smell

He Wasn’t Ignoring You

It’s no secret
she still whispers
I love yous in her mind
to comfort herself
for being unkind—for leaving
him behind—because (she didn’t know
at the time) he wasn’t snubbing
or sneering but simply
of hearing


[Please note that all prompts have been copied from the Writer's Digest Poetic Asides website.]