Summer Disappearing

Robin finished his first year at the Carlson School of Veterinary Medicine in June. We had a small staycation over at the Talking Stick Resort and the Arizona Boardwalk. We had a lovely time seeing the butterflies and the aquarium.

At the beginning of July, I reconnected with an old friend. She is selling color street dry nail polish and had a few patriotic sets. I asked if she could be my manicurist if I bought a set. It’s a little difficult for me to do my own nails. Of course she agreed, we had a nice time catching up while I got my nails done. Then I actually took a photo of my left hand to show it off.

4th of July nails with engagement wedding rings next to my new 25th wedding anniversary band.

After I had my nails done, Gretchen asked to see my wedding rings. Well the engagement ring came off without a problem, but the wedding band was a different story had to enlist Shawn to help me get it off. I thought since our 25th wedding anniversary is coming up a new ring would be nice. I saw the infinity knot on glityjewels.com not that long after writing a haiku for the haiku challenge.

Recall our first date
Young man in search of prom date
Finds forever ♾ love 

I think Shawn likes my new band. He did acknowledge it fits better. There is no mystery there; when I saw how tight my wedding band was I ordered a bigger ring size. This past April, Shawn and I had our first date anniversary. We have been an official couple for thirty years now. Then we got engaged in April 1992 since I was still a senior in high school, we had a long engagement while I finished high school and college. Of course I wrote about it during #NaPoWriMo.

After our staycation and while Robin was on vacation up in Yellowstone with a friend, Shawn and I were planning our 25th wedding anniversary trip in October. And so my haiku challenge tweets have been focused on us.

Before our first date
Watch him run around the track
Surreptitiously

Young couple in love
Settle into married life
Twenty five years pass

Out My West Valley Window

The city of Goodyear had a call for a virtual exhibit – Out My West Valley Window. I took that literally and it was helpful I snap pictures out the bedroom windows almost daily. Both my submissions were included in the exhibit. Two more poems I happened to write this month.

Out My West Valley Window

The exhibit will be open through June 30, 2021. I took the guided tour and have actually kept the window open because I find their music accompaniment relaxing.

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Thirty

National Poetry Month Poster 2018

Write Your Way Through April

Watch rhyme and meter
Count syllables carefully
April poems sprout

Write every day
Poems will accumulate
As we say farewell

Write daily poems
Another poetry month
Ends until next year

How did we get here
Sweat, blood and perseverance
Last day of April

NaPoWriMo PromptAnd now for our final (still optional!) prompt. Today’s prompt is based on a prompt written by Jacqueline Saphra, and featured in this group of prompts published back in 2015 by The Poetry Society of the U.K. This prompt challenges you to write a poem in the form of a series of directions describing how a person should get to a particular place. It could be a real place, like your local park, or an imaginary or unreal place, like “the bottom of your heart,” or “where missing socks go.” Fill your poem with sensory details, and make them as wild or intimate as you like.

Good morning and welcome to day thirty – the final day of #NaPoWriMo 2021. Hopefully I gave you the recipe for a successful NaPoWriMo. When I wrote the post about my past participation, I realized in March of 2014 I posted previous napowrimo poems as a count down to April because they were not on this blog. On the last day of March 2014 I posted the first poem and the last poem I wrote in April 2012. I hope everyone feels they had a successful April 2021. I actually wrote at least one poem a day this year, something I have not succeeded at the last couple years; I considered that a success. I also had a haiku featured in the 100th episode of the poetry pea podcast. And a pleasant surprise, the haiku I submitted to the Poetry Illuminated project was included in the ebook the City of Goodyear put together. I’m still amazed they only received a total of twenty submissions.

All this was accomplished while going out and purchasing a new fridge; having the fridge delivered; finally convincing Shawn a corner breakfast nook table would be perfect in our kitchen (said table will be delivered today); getting my second Covid vaccine shot and the misery that ensued. I do feel my rewrite of Row, Row, Row Your Boat was kind of a cop-out as it’s only two lines, but I’m also impressed I was able to create anything in that delirium. And yes a minimal amount of housework was also done. Now we bid a fond farewell to this April. I hope to keep up my poetry writing the rest of the year – not on a daily basis but at least a few times a month. Last year I did not write too much poetry past April at all.

Thank you to everyone who stopped by my blog on a daily basis this month. I appreciate you reading and liking my posts. For some reason the post of The ASU class of 2020 I wrote last April has been my most popular one. Maybe because graduation season has rolled around again? But why would people be interested in a graduate from last year. And what would seem apropos for the last of April, today is the last day for the spring semester at ASU, and Gretchen has to complete and hand in her poetry portfolio today – the last assignment for her term. Yesterday Robin got his first Covid vaccine now that classes have wrapped up for Gretchen, we need to get her pokes scheduled.

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Nine

My mom in silhouette

Through Kitchen Window

Drop by childhood home
Mom in kitchen, drinking tea
Her cigarettes close

Peek through back window
Mom sits at counter reading
Permanent fixture

NaPoWriMo Prompt And now, for our prompt (optional, as always). This one is called “in the window.” Imagine a window looking into a place or onto a particular scene. It could be your childhood neighbor’s workshop, or a window looking into an alien spaceship. Maybe a window looking into a witch’s gingerbread cottage, or Lord Nelson’s cabin aboard the H.M.S. Victory. What do you see? What’s going on?

Good morning and welcome to day twenty nine of #NaPoWriMo where I’m looking in a window instead of looking out of one. I did go back to my childhood, but I dropped into my own home, and knew I had a picture of my mom sitting at “her spot” at the kitchen counter. I used the #haikuchallenge word – drop for the first part of the poem.

Portrait of Motherhood

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Eight

My Nightstand

I Question Living with Cats

What can be found on my nightstand
Why must the cats walk across it
in the middle of the night; then
wake me up, jumping on my head
Do they enjoy prowling at night
interrupting my beauty sleep
Why am I tired all day as cats
sleep soundly anywhere they lay
How do they accomplish the same
feat night after night and deftly
keep everything on my nightstand

NaPoWriMo Prompt Our prompt today (optional, as always), is to write a poem that poses a series of questions. The questions could be a mix of the serious (“What is the meaning of life?”) and humorous (“What’s the deal with cats knocking things off tables?”), the interruptive (“Could you repeat that?”) and the conversational (“Are those peanuts? Can I have some?”). You can choose to answer them – or just let the questions keep building up, creating a poem that asks the reader to come up with their own answer(s).

Good afternoon and welcome to day twenty eight of #NaPoWriMo where I question living with cats. They woke Shawn and I up before 6am this morning. I’m a little tired today. Two more poems to go before another poetry month is in the books.

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Seven

Scar on Right Hand Surrounded by artwork by Mr. Tookles

Initial V

Scar
Between right thumb
And forefinger

After surgery
Giving hand ability
To grasp
Scabulous!

NaPoWriMo Prompt In today’s (optional) prompt, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem inspired by an entry from the Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows. The entries are very vivid – maybe too vivid! But perhaps one of the sorrows will strike a chord with you, or even get you thinking about defining an in-between, minor, haunting feeling that you have, and that does not yet have a name.

Good Afternoon and welcome to day twenty seven of #NaPoWriMo. I’m feeling much better today; boy the second shot really does pack a punch. Yesterday I just wanted to crawl into a hole and die. Thankfully Gretchen was here to keep my water glass full and my cooling towel damp. She even made me soup while FaceTiming with Robin and I heard her ask, When it says lower heat to a simmer, how low do they mean? However it was accomplished, the soup was yummy. It may have been because it was the only thing I ate yesterday though. But after finishing one bowl I actually had enough energy to get up and serve myself a second bowl.

This morning I busied myself with all the chores that were not touched yesterday and so I started the prompt a little later than usual.

scabulous

adj. proud of a scar on your body, which is an autograph signed to you by a world grateful for your continued willingness to play with her, even when you don’t feel like it.

I’m not sure I am exactly on point with the definition of scabulous, but the word spoke to me especially after how I felt yesterday. I really do adhere to the idea that scars need not define us so I’m not sure if I’m particularly proud of my scar or have just learned to live with it.

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Five

Masked and Ready to Go

Second Shot

My shot
Stop virus spread
Auspicious occasion
Help create herd immunity
Vaccine

NaPoWriMo Prompt Our prompt for today (optional, as always) is to write an “occasional” poem. What’s that? Well, it’s a poem suited to, or written for, a particular occasion. This past January, lots of people who usually don’t encounter poetry got a dose when Amanda Gorman read a poem at President Biden’s inauguration. And then she followed it up with a poem at the Superbowl (not traditionally an event associated with verse!) The poem you write can be for an occasion in the past or the future, one important to you and your family (a wedding, a birth) or for an occasion in the public eye (the Olympics, perhaps?).

Good morning and welcome to day twenty five of #NaPoWriMo. Today’s special occasion – this afternoon I’m off to get my 2nd shot of the Moderna vaccine. It’s an auspicious occasion worthy of a poem.

Other occasion poems – 8th grade graduation

Twentieth Wedding Anniversary

My Dad’s 70th Birthday

And last week marked thirty years since Shawn and I started dating and in less than six months we’ll be celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary another occasion I’m sure I’ll commemorate in a poem. But for now I’ll be headed off to my local grocery store pharmacy for shot number 2 and if you don’t see a poem from me tomorrow you’ll know I’m probably not feeling well.

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Four

Bee photo by Gretchen Hosking

Pollinators

Ground nesting
Insects
Bees
Burrow in dirt

NaPoWriMo PromptToday’s (optional) prompt is a fun one. Find a factual article about an animal. A Wikipedia article or something from National Geographic would do nicely – just make sure it repeats the name of the animal a lot. Now, go back through the text and replace the name of the animal with something else – it could be something very abstract, like “sadness” or “my heart,” or something more concrete, like “the streetlight outside my window that won’t stop blinking.” You should wind up with some very funny and even touching combinations, which you can then rearrange and edit into a poem.

Good Afternoon and welcome to day twenty four of #NaPoWriMo where I did not follow the prompt strictly. I did read an article on ground nesting bees. We have had them in our backyard as far back as I remember. They are attracted to the flowers Shawn grows out there and the fact we never laid down grass or gravel. There is plenty of south facing bare soil in our backyard. Well last weekend Shawn was putting in new brick to finish off the look of the new patio we had put in in February and the ground bees were not happy with him. He was disturbing their homes. Since then we have noticed one bee flying in and out of the topsoil bag left from Shawn’s gardening in the spring of 2020. Poor bee did not chose a wise relocation; he’s going to be disturbed again if Shawn uses the soil for more planting.

Backyard Seating Area

Photo of the brick work Shawn did on what is now Speedy’s side of the yard. We now have brick at the back of the new patio to match. And some of our lovely flowers the bees and hummingbirds love to frequent. And for those curious my poem today is a Teacup dictionary poem. Another short poetry I enjoy writing. Ostentatious

#NaPoWriMo – My History of Participation

The first year I participated in #NaPoWriMo was in 2010. One of the poems I wrote that year can be found in the Read Write Poem NaPoWriMo Anthology (September 2010). Tea Time was one of my first concrete poems, I wrote about the memory of my mom making us tea. I skipped 2011 – MaMaZinA was publishing its final issue that spring and I also went back to Buffalo for my dad’s 70th birthday. Shutterfly sent me my photo memories from 10 years ago. My dad’s photo collage for his 70th birthday was among them and one of the photos is his kindergarten portrait.

My Dad 1946

Father has gray hair
Frame kindergarten photo
Towhead little boy

When I was little, I actually thought my dad had gray hair as a kid not really knowing much about black and white photos. I used today’s #haikuchallenge word frame to write the poem. Then I looked up my kindergarten photo in my yearbook. Yes, I have my yearbook from kindergarten.

Kindergarten 1980

Man has four daughters
Frame kindergarten photo
Third born his junior

I added to my #haikuchallenge thread with my kindergarten photo and of course I had to include the fact I’m Ron jr. I skipped #NaPoWriMo in 2011 but ever since 2012, I’ve been writing poems every April. Unfortunately in 2012 and ’13 my poems were posted on gather.com so I don’t have all of them. I do have some as I do write a lot of my poems long hand in journals, but they are not available online to read. But as of 2014 all my April musings can be found on this blog. And as for 2021 there is one week to go. So far I’ve been writing at least one poem a day something I haven’t done the last couple of years. We’ll see how well I keep up my writing come May 1st.

#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Three

Pink Rose by Shawn Hosking

Pink Rose

Sweet dreams
She sleeps soundly
Wrapped secure in his arms
He breathes in her effervescence
Love drunk

NaPoWriMo Prompt = Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that responds, in some way, to another. This could be as simple as using a line or image from another poem as a jumping-off point, or it could be a more formal poetic response to the argument or ideas raised in another poem. You might use a favorite (or least favorite poem) as the source for your response. And if you’re having trouble finding a poem to respond to, here are a few that might help you generate ideas: “This World is Not Conclusion,” by Peter Gizzi, “In That Other Fantasy Where We Live Forever,” by Wanda Coleman, “La Chalupa, the Boat,” by Jean Valentine, or “Aubade: Some Peaches, After Storm,” by Carl Phillips.

Good morning and welcome to day twenty three of #NaPoWriMo. Okay I wasn’t exactly getting into this prompt. I’ve replied to other poems before and didn’t really know who I wanted to read and respond to today. When I checked Facebook, I was reminded it’s Shakespeare day. But he’s a little over done. Then I checked my blog stats and saw someone read a post from #NaPoWriMo 2018; I started going through those posts and right near the start of the month Day Two I see I wrote a poem using Romeo & Juliet and responded to a poem Shawn wrote. So it hasn’t been six years since Shawn wrote me a poem; I’ve cut it down to three. The title of today’s poem comes from the photo and one of those silly games – Every Woman is a Flower. Apparently I’m a pink rose.

Love’s in the Air  2018

In the soft light of the night
It’s exciting to see you breathe
In effervescent waves
The rise…
The shudder…
The fall…
Of lungs full of love
Drunk with pollen’s pleasure

© Shawn Hosking 2018