I’ve forgotten yesterday by the time today approaches. The past is a dream I can no longer access—an afterthought, insubstantial—something I once acquired and then quickly lost.
But my hands remain busy, continually shuffling the cards. Each time I turn them over I see nothing–both sides are empty. No surprise. They have been empty for a long time now.
The hours chase me unguided through tunnels of almost and maybe, seizing and destoying probably until it’s anyone’s guess. My mind has become an imperfect mixture of what I can’t recall and what I don’t want to remember.
The wind tells me stories, invites me to become a passenger inside its song, cut loose from any need to reconstruct the places I have been, the ones that once contained my life. I am weightless, free. In the tender gray I swim undisturbed.
The prosery prompt at dVerse, chosen by Lisa, is from Celia Dropkin’s “In Sullivan County”.
you fling the blooms, graceful– hands filled with abundance, harvest untroubled by time’s immanent decay,
the cost of seeds waxing– each life encircled by its opposite—how all language breaks in to tears—
but dance!– the seasons are not closed—the same sun that sets early now will grow, expand, greet sky open
again, in tangible contrast to our useless attempts to resist, turn back clocks, challenge the tides
My response to Merril’s autumn ekphrastic prompt at dVerse. I chose the above image, Child Dancing With Chrysanthemum Branch. Chrysanthemums are the birth flower of November, symbolizing both long life and mourning or grief. I’ve used Jane’s Oracle 2 words as inspiration.
I did not realize until after I wrote the poem and was searching for appropriate images how well it fit this response to Nick Cave’s soundsuits that I did for a recent Kick-About prompt.
The soundsuits created by Nick Cave, the artist, are totally different than the songs created by Nick Cave, the musician.
bombs are cold explosions of bitterness sucking the warmth out of what remains of possibility
bombs are greedy machines, meant only to destroy, burn any seeds, annihilate life
bombs are hungry voracious conduits for our worst impulses eating our souls from the inside out
A quadrille for dVerse, where Lisa has given us the word warm. In 2014 I did a series called “What Is It Good For?” on memadtwo. There were, as always, many conflicts in the news. Hearing this song from Buddy and Julie Miller this morning, it reminded me of the art from those posts.
It also made me think again of how cold this winter will be for the Ukrainians and so many others the world over. How short our attention span. How little we have learned.
What IS it good for–the guns, the bombs, the dying? We know the answer.
what season is this? dark, enigmatic, grown wild– spilling from our eyes
don’t weep– rings encircle us inside life’s limits– we must learn to accept the turning of the tides
Elisa Ang provided the artistic inspiration, above, for my series of volcano poems appearing this week at Pure Haiku. Serendipitously, the Kick-About recently hosted a prompt based on Turner’s painting of Mt. Vesuvius, for which I made a series of collages and wrote a cadralor of volcano-themed poems titled “In Search of Venus”. And Jane’s Oracle 2 words provided further inspiration for me to write five Badger poems to go with the volcano theme.
You can read my poem at Pure Haiku here. Thanks, as always, to Freya Pickard for her continued support of my work.
Goddess was the first word that the Oracle gave me this morning. The collage above is a very old one I named “sha/wo/man”–it’s a stitched collage. I did a few of them about 10 years ago. I don’t know where the original is, but I recently found a photo of it in my files.
I found Ishtar in my files also–a message from the Collage Box Oracle in 2019 with a very similar theme.
I am listening for the language of the goddess– dishonored and swept away by linear time
nightwings remember when our motherworld was a sacred song, a home for voices belonging to the spirits of stars
my mind ebbs, then flows out like an ocean sailing the wind– empty channels drift away from the center to the edge– multitudes of changing colour, condensed motion, thoughts full
I was going to write a sestina with Jane’s Oracle 2 words and I picked out six that called to me: ocean, colour, wind, edge, motion, full. But after writing the first stanza, it seemed too daunting, so I revised it into a sijo instead.
When looking in the archives for art, I immediately picked out the first painted mandala, but when I saw the collage I knew I had to include it too. It’s based on a painting by Nina’s father that she posted; you can read about it here. Nina has written several times about her father’s service in WWII and this is in honor of all our fathers and mothers and friends and relatives who fought and fight in the world’s continuous wars on this Veteran’s Day 2022. May we wake up and bring the need for them to an end.