NaPoWriMo Day 29

Who Am I

Doctor Who book
Dead of Winter James Goss
Doctor reveals his secret name
TARDIS crashed on Italian beach
Scrambling companion’s
Brain inside out
The end

Jack Vettriano’s The Singing Butler NY Times Image

NaPoWriMo Prompt – And now, for our prompt (optional, as always): today, I challenge you to write a poem in the form of a review. You can review either animate or inanimate things, real places or imaginary places. You can write in the style of an online review (think Yelp) or something more formal that you might find in a newspaper or magazine. (I imagine that bad reviews of past boyfriends/girlfriends might be an easy way to get into this prompt, though really, you can “review” anything in your poem, from summer reading lists for third graders to the idea of the fourth dimension).

When Mimi and Poppo were here in March we trekked to the bookstore. Gretchen did not go because she wasn’t feeling well.  After Rachael and I checked out the young adult lit section, I brought her over to the sci-fi section. I picked up a new Doctor Who book for Gretchen. Rachael saw several more books she was interested in reading as well. Gretchen finished reading Dead of Winter awhile ago and gave me a spoiler. Also she told me how it was written in letters (epistolary). Yes, mom saw a teaching moment. Dead of Winter is part of the Doctor Who history collection. My two favorite genres – sci-fi and historical fiction. Plus Gretchen’s spoiler made me want to see how everything works out in the end.


NaPoWriMo Day 28

Peace Bridge

spans across
Niagara river
brings two countries together
drab green color blends in well
offers no pizazz
to skyline

Voice of Niagara Peace Bridge photo

NaPoWriMo Prompt – And now for today’s prompt (optional, as always). Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem about bridges. A bridge is a powerful metaphor, and when you start looking for bridges in poems, you find them everywhere. Your poem could be about a real bridge or an imaginary or ideal bridge. It could be one you cross every day, or one that simply seems to stand for something larger – for the idea of connection or distance, for the idea of movement and travel and new horizons.

It’s funny how life works at times. I’ve been working on a bridge poem thinking about Big Bridges Motion poems submission call. Deadline is now May 15th so fellow napowrimo poets if you think your bridge poem has what it takes…

Meanwhile we have been bridging some personal family issues. Hopefully making a stronger connection. And of course Rachael bridged into NHS. They lit a candle for each inductee. It really reminded me of how they bridge in girl scouts, but there was no physical bridge and they didn’t say exactly what the candles signified. Yes, Rachael’s girl scout troop actually bridged up to the next level. Gretchen will be “bridging” up to high school. I just got an email about the parent praise letters they want us to write to our children?! My other daughter graduated from this same school three years ago and I didn’t hear about praise letters. On top of this, there was an example letter. I know you’re quiet and don’t talk to me about your day. Umm… whose kid are they raising? We have dinner together almost every night and both my girls fill me in on their day. Then the email said, letter should be one page. Ha! they really don’t know me. When the girls applied for the middle school honors program, Dad went to the parent meeting on what is expected. He came home and told me, parents have to fill out this section. Damn woman you wrote a book. Yes, we already had the paper work and I know how to read. It wasn’t my fault they didn’t give me enough room and I added another page. I’m a writer, after all. I wonder what the school will think when I send in a praise poem over a letter.

NaPoWriMo Day 27

Me, myself
I lost connection

no voice
inside my head

NaPoWriMo Prompt – And today’s prompt – optional, as always — comes to us from Vince Gotera. It’s the hay(na)ku). Created by the poet Eileen Tabios and named by Vince, the hay(na)ku is a variant on the haiku. A hay(na)ku consists of a three-line stanza, where the first line has one word, the second line has two words, and the third line has three words. You can write just one, or chain several together into a longer poem. For example, you could write a hay(na)ku sonnet…

Me, yesterday, I lost connection with my muse. Wrote a line here and there but nothing coalesced. It’s not helpful that real life is somewhat frustrating right now. Rachael had a successful 30 hour famine. Dad picked her up Saturday afternoon and then we had a family dinner (Nonnie, Ray and Caitlin included) at PF Chang’s to celebrate her induction into NHS. After that Shawn and I went to visit my uncle. My uncle and cousin are struggling right now, and we are trying to figure out a way to help them. They let things build up so long in silence; it’s a big tangle to untie.


life changes
unable to cope

builds up
faculties lose control

frustrated alone
gasping for air

held tight
safe trembling stops

Finally I breathe ~
never let go

NaPoWriMo Day 25

National Honor Society

Rachael Hosking
inducted into NHS ring.
Their criminal ways
maintaining straight As.

Rachael's NHS membership

Rachael’s NHS membership









NaPoWriMo Prompt – And now for our prompt (optional, as always)! It’s the weekend, so I’d thought we might go with something short and just a bit (or a lot) silly – the Clerihew. These are rhymed, humorous quatrains involving a specific person’s name. You can write about celebrities, famous people from history, even your mom (hopefully she’s got a good name for rhyming with).

I thought since one of the reasons I did not write a poem on Thursday was because I attended the NHS induction ceremony, I should get a poem out of it. My daughter is joining other infamous people like her own mother. Yes, this criminal behavior runs in the family. 😉

NaPoWriMo Day 24

This morning at 7am Rachael started her 3rd 30 hour famine. Later today she will be going to the church for the lock in. There the kids learn about children less fortunate than themselves and get a feel for what it is like to go without food just for one day. At 1PM tomorrow, the group breaks their fast usually with a sampling of the kind of food the children eat in the part of the world their 30 hour famine raised money to feed. Rachael’s fundraising page is here. Based on the previous two years, she thought $75 was a good goal. Thanks to some very generous donations she is almost at 300% of her goal. 😀

Fast thirty hours
Endure hunger for one day
Decrease starvation

She has fed one child for six months so far. There is still time to donate. Who wants to help make it a year?

Yesterday I did not write a poem. 😦 We were busy between orthodontist appointments, getting my cousin settled out of the hospital, and then Rachael’s honor society induction.

NaPoWriMo Prompt (today) Our prompt today (optional, as always), will hopefully provide you with a bit of Friday fun. Today, I challenge you to write a parody or satire based on a famous poem. It can be long or short, rhymed or not. But take a favorite (or unfavorite) poem of the past, and see if you can’t re-write it on humorous, mocking, or sharp-witted lines. You can use your poem to make fun of the original (in the vein of a parody), or turn the form and manner of the original into a vehicle for making points about something else (more of a satire – though the dividing lines get rather confused and thin at times).

Thinking of hungry children around the world does not leave one feeling humorous so –

Stopping by Water on a Hot Summer Day

Whose water this is, I do not know
Women walk miles to fetch and carry
Clean drinking water, children in tow
Confronting real numbers is scary

Raising Awareness for access to clean drinking water

NaPoWriMo Day 22

Spring Colors

Petals caress
Blue sky – stretch out in praise.
Springtime flowers bask in sunshine

Artist Gail Goepfert. Sulphur Cosmos “friendship flowers”

NaPoWriMo Prompt – And now for (as always, optional) prompt! Today is Earth Day, so I would like to challenge you to write a “pastoral” poem. Traditionally, pastoral poems involved various shepherdesses and shepherds talking about love and fields, but yours can really just be a poem that engages with nature. One great way of going about this is simply to take a look outside your window, or take a walk around a local park. What’s happening in the yard and the trees? What’s blooming and what’s taking flight?

Taking flight around here? My sanity. Real life is rather chaotic at the moment. But never fear Rattle Magazine has an ekphrasis challenge and the last one was about flowers. My entry did not win. Last Saturday Rattle posted the Artist’s choice(here). This Saturday they will post the editor’s choice.

Hopefully things will settle down here soon. In the meantime, Rachael is raising money to feed hungry children. Check out the fundraiser here and please consider a donation. Thank you!

NaPoWriMo Day 21

Blurred Reality

Two kinds of pills

yellow pills

shoved away hurt                                            left the mind on
blue ones
time was sheared away

Stuff dances

dancing memories

uninvited dancing stuff tickled

sashayed                  darted                    plunged
shook loose
blue                                                                                      black

Winter's Bone by: Daniel Woodrell p. 162

Winter’s Bone by: Daniel Woodrell p. 162

NaPoWriMo Prompt – Our prompt for today (optional, as always) is an old favorite – the erasure! This involves taking a pre-existing text and blacking out or erasing words, while leaving the placement of the remaining words intact. 

I don’t play well with photoshop and it looks like I was trying to erase too hard. On the plus side it gave me an excellent title. Only nine days remain of this insanity. And then summer break officially begins in a month on May 21st. Gretchen’s graduation ceremony is at 10:30 am that day. Rachael is registered for a summer class and I still have to figure out vacation plans. Meanwhile the NHS induction ceremony is on Thursday; Rachael will be filling up volunteer hours this weekend; and at some point the middle school will have its science fair and spring concert. Maybe I’ll be able to catch my breath in June.

Update: The Great Gatsby Anthology

This will be a first. Shawn and I both have poems included in this anthology.

Silver Birch Press

gatsby_cover_april2015 On March 15, 2014, Silver Birch Press issued a call for submissions for poetry and prose inspired by F. Scott Fitzgerald‘s masterpiece, The Great Gatsby — with a plan to issue the collection in April 2015 to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the novel’s publication. We intend to issue the book soon (but have to push our release date a bit due to factors beyond our control). Thanks to the authors from around the world who contributed their work to the collection. We’ll keep you posted on the spring release date. Stay tuned — and thanks for your patience.

Cover art by Erté

View original post

NaPoWriMo Day 20

When I was Five

I know address and telephone number
We memorized them in kindergarten
3986 Nottingham Ter Hamburg, NY
716 – 649 – 0084
Was it really thirty-five years ago?

I know I saw Star Wars seven times
in a real movie theater.
Last night I saw Mark Hamill guest star
in an old episode of One Day at a Time.
Was it really forty years ago?

I know time flies when you’re having fun
How is it Han Solo has gray hair
when I’m only four
with no bloody tee or one added
Was it really in a past millennium?

Kindergarten school picture

Kindergarten school picture

NaPoWriMo Prompt – And now for our prompt (optional, as always). Today, I challenge to write a poem that states the things you know. For example, “The sky is blue” or “Pizza is my favorite food” or “The world’s smallest squid is Parateuthis tunicata. Each line can be a separate statement, or you can run them together. The things you “know” of course, might be facts, or they might be a little bit more like beliefs. Hopefully, this prompt will let your poem be grounded in specific facts, while also providing room for more abstract themes and ideas.

Has everyone seen the latest Star Wars trailer? “Chewey, we’re home.” I did live on Nottingham Terrace when episode IV was released, but it was down the street from where I lived in kindergarten. And yes, yesterday I was watching One Day at a Time Schneider’s Pride and Joy and realized Mark Hamill was Schneider’s nephew. Hamill was my first celebrity crush. I find it funny my little one likes Luke Skywalker, too. Original series rocks! And no I did not cross original Star Wars with Star Trek – Scotty: N-C-C-1-7-0-1. No bloody A – B – C – or D! 😉

NaPoWriMo Day 19


Locked away inside behavioral
family does not see how this is detrimental

How am I a danger to myself
trapped within these four walls, I can only lend myself

to constant surveillance day and night
stuck inside behavioral, out of mind – out of sight.

Normal ship sails away

Normal ship sails away

Twitter has another great image of the quote.

NaPoWriMo Prompt – And for today’s prompt (optional, as always!), I’d like to challenge you to write a landay. Landays are 22-syllable couplets, generally rhyming. The form comes from Afghanistan, where women often use it in verses that range from the sly and humorous to the deeply sardonic and melancholy. Check out this long investigative article on landays for a fascinating look into a form of poetry often composed in secret, and rarely written down. You could try to write a single landay – a hard-hitting couplet that shares some secret (or unspoken) truth, or you could try to write a poem that strings multiple landays together like stanzas (maybe something akin to a syllabic ghazal?)

It may not be such a secret that writers are crazy. After sharing my tyburn yesterday, my sister said, “well, you yourself are rather strange”. Life is strange after my first visit to the behavioral unit of a hospital, we are given landay as a prompt?!

Anyhow on a happier note… Today is my Dad’s birthday!

Calculating score…
Happy Birthday; where was I?

And I, by no means, gave away his age. 😉