Dodge Ball

It’s Day One of NaPoWriMo!*

Today’s prompt: “write a self-portrait poem in which you make a specific action a metaphor for your life – one that typically isn’t done all that often, or only in specific circumstances.

My offering:

Dodge Ball

An odd game, dodge ball.
I learned to play as a child,
in a windowless, cramped gymnasium
that smelled inexplicably like old wet dogs and
burnt rubber.

Unless I missed the finer nuances,
the gist of the game is hit or be hit.
Two teams at opposite ends of the court race to the center line
to acquire as many weapons — er, bouncy balls – as they can,
return to their respective territories.
then lob their missiles indiscriminately at one another.

You try to get out of the way or, if you can,
catch a missile and shoot it back at the enemy team.
Once hit by a ball, you’re “out”
and spend the remainder of the game
on the sidelines.

When all of one team’s players are “out,”
the other team wins.

I have learned, over time, that
the real way to win at dodge ball is to choose
not to play anymore.


*National Poetry Writing Month, Day One

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Early Spring

tulips

longer days still dark
I shiver with the tulips
winter’s chill in spring

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NaPoWriMo Countdown

microphone

Tap tap…
“Is this thing on?”
I am answered with the squeal of feedback from my microphone.

Squinting through the bright spotlight, I see vague outlines of a few forms in the audience. I hear the shuffling of feet, some random coughing, chairs chirping as they scrape the floor.

“So, it’s been a while.” My breath stirs dustmotes from the mic.

Silence.

I clear my throat.

“Anyway, as you know, it’s almost April, and April is National Poetry Writing Month, or NaPoWriMo for short. And I’m here to announce that – even though I’ve only posted once on my blog so far this year – I fully intend to meet the challenge of writing a poem a day for the entire month of April.”

Silence.

Apparently, I’ve lost a few audience members in my absence. Or maybe a lot. Not that I had many to begin with.

Sigh.

“Looks like it’s just you and me,” I say to my muse. “Muse?? Muse!!” Now where has she gone off to?

Well, I’ll find her and bring her back well-inked and ready for the challenge.

See you then. If you’re still out there…

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Please Fasten Your Seat Belts

jet1

Today it is cold, wet and windy outside. From my living room, I watch jets coming in low as they approach PDX three miles to the south of my home. Usually they are high up and flying due south when they pass overhead, but with high winds, they must change their approach to an alternate runway, and so they pass across the view from my front window in a westerly direction, appearing almost as low as the trees.

It is January. A new year, a new decade no less. And with my birthday falling within the first week of the month, I face a triple mile post of time marked, and the reckoning that elicits. Have I spent the past year well? Wisely? And what will I do with this blank slate of 2020?

I will fly high, I vow, when conditions allow. I will be open to alternate approaches when circumstances turn dicey. And even through turbulence, I’ll take full advantage of the journey. because that’s the way of the determined traveler. I’m buckling up for 2020!

winter winds bluster
branches swing on steadfast trees
holding through the storm

jet2


For dVerse Challenge: Beginning (again) ~ Haibun

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Corvid

crow

You perch in silhouette on overhead power lines,
a black bird cutout from the gray-mottled clouds.
I’ve read that you recognize faces, and can
distinguish the friendly from the ill-willed.
I’ve read that you can even pass that specific discernment
down to your offspring.

And so, when you begin scolding me in raucous cawing,
I face you square on and remind you that I’m one of the good guys.
You laugh (or so it seems) and swoop down to the garden wall
where you observe (or so it seems) my every move.
When I return to the house, you will drop to the ground
and inspect the results of my comings and goings.
Perhaps I have turned up a tasty morsel from the garden.

You’ll return to your high wire and pose again,
black-on-black in silhouette against the sky.
And somehow, I take comfort in imagining
I have gained your approval and won’t fall victim
to a murder of crows.


dVerse Poetics: On Shades of Black

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Wordless Wednesday 11.6.19

191106

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Kept Woman

I was a kept woman:
kept from wanting, kept from having;
kept at home, kept at arm’s length;
kept alive, kept from living.

I kept my head down,
kept my opinions to myself.

I couldn’t keep up.
I gave up.

Now,
I’m a giver.


dVerse quadrille #91– keep

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