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Baobab

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baobab2

(Father of Many Seeds)

Before time
we stood —
cast down,
(some say)
from heaven
because our grandeur
challenged the gods.
Accidentally planted
upside-down
on a backward planet,
we dug deep
and drank long.

Now
our time ends
in agony
as we
slowly
die
of
de-
hydration

for the angels
have forgotten
how to cry.

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At dVerse Poetics our host Anmol (alias HA) challenges us to write on the theme of the ongoing climate crisis.  I chose to write about a tree that is very dear to my heart, the baobab.

Baobabs in southern Africa have begun to die off rapidly from a cause yet to be determined. Most scientists believe that the die-off is a result of global warming, climate change and greenhouse gases. “It’s not just the baobabs, either. Around the world, the creaking deaths of ancient trees are testifying to the period of extraordinary environmental change that we are living through.”   [Ed Yong (11 June 2018). “Trees That Have Lived for Millennia Are Suddenly Dying The oldest baobabs are collapsing, and there’s only one likely explanation”. The Atlantic. Retrieved 12 June 2018.]  

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Freesia laxa

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Freesia laxa

Tiny seeds, no bigger than flakes of pepper, scattered haphazardly in a forlorn tray of poor soil, are forgotten.  Weeks later thin stalks begin to break ground.  Long emerald fingers emerge from the confused dirt, stretching skyward.  Vibrant life, pulsing, pushing, reaching higher every day.  Then suddenly, on a slow Friday morning, a small, six-petalled wildflower appears, punctuating sharp leaves with fire.

Stark green grassy blades
pointing accusing fingers
kissed by red blossoms.

 

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Merril is hosting the final Haibun Monday before dVerse goes on its summer break.
A Haibun is comprised of 1-2 tight paragraphs followed by a traditional Haiku.
Merril asks us to conjure the magic of nature in a Haibun.

 

Perspective

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She drove us around town
pointing to the homes
of the rich and famous.

“Twenty-five en-suite bathrooms!”

“Indoor olympic-size pool!”

“Fifty seat theater!”

But I was not listening.
I kept running my hands
over the leather seats
of her BMW.

Imagine owning a car!

 

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Kim is hosting at dVerse today and asks us to write a poem of exactly 44 words (not counting the title), including the word “rich.”

I am intrigued by how our point of reference influences our view of the world.

News

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I cannot read the newspapers anymore.
The world as we know it
is dying  — fast,
faster than we thought.
Our bellies are full of plastic.
There will be no more
(fill in the blank with anything but cockroaches)
in the next 50 40 30 20 10 years.
Doomsday, people.
We are talking Doomsday.

I cannot listen to news radio anymore.
No one speaks hope.
No one talks about
compassion,
humanity,
brotherhood.
It’s ME-this and I-that;
We don’t give
a (fill in the blank with the expletive of your choice)
about anybody/thing else.
“SHUT the (expletive) UP!”

I cannot watch news on television anymore.
Everything is being burned
or blown up.
The (fill in the blank with anything but the cost of living)
is falling —
falling down like fat eggs on walls
and we can’t fix it.
W E     C A N N O T     F I X    IT!
People are shooting our children.
Our children are shooting people.
Floods, drought.
Earthquakes, mudslides.
Before our eyes
the world is crumbling.
We all fall down.

I cannot bear the news anymore.
Read me a bedtime story.

 

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Over at Writer’s Digest, Robert Lee Brewer in Poetic Asides is offering the Wednesday Poetry Prompt. For today’s prompt, he asks us to write a negative poem.
Why not write along?

Elemental Composition

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Take
and break
the word
(like so much decomposing vegetable matter),
using teeth to chew
it into bits.
Then spit
them
on the south side of the hill
and the north bank of the river.
The naked sun
will bake them
into hard round pebbles
which will then roll
into rings around Saturn
before falling back to Earth
where they will form
a perfectly planned,
random
poem.

 

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Amaya is hosting at dVerse today and asks us to write a poem about or tangential to our element.  (Chinese Five Element Theory https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_astrology)

I am a  “yang earth dog” according to this.  I worked these elements into the poem answering the question “Of what am I made?”

The Theory of Pointless Housework

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Based on thermodynamics
and the four basic laws thereof,
I’ve a theory why housework is pointless.
(So toss away those rubber gloves!)

The zeroth (0th) law states clearly:
systems which to each other have access
will come to an equilibrium,
all rooms will reach a balanced mess.

The first (1st) law then tells us
that energy is constant (though it can change).
It cannot be created or destroyed,
so clutter will just be re-arranged.

The second (2nd) law is my favourite —
closed systems tend toward chaos there
and fighting disorder requires great energy
which simultaneously increases turmoil elsewhere.

The third (3rd) and final law is absolute,
for when temperatures drop really low
(like at minus two hundred and seventy-four degrees Celsius)
disorder and entropy cease . . . SO

0)  Everything reaches a balance
1)  Disorder is constant and everywhere
2)  Clean in one place, another gets messy
3)  When hell freezes over, who will care!

 

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Merril is hosting at dVerse today and asks us to write a poem about theory or theories – how we make sense of the natural world, our bodies, space, or whatever.

I apologise for my loose interpretations of the laws of thermodynamics.  I have always been fascinated by entropy and order.

 

We All Fall Down

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Wind puffs the leaves
one by one
from their respective branches
like so much dandelion fluff
and they swirl
to the dusty ground.
Autumn pulls all things down —
leaves, birds, weather, shades, blankets —
even me.
But from my knees
upward rises
a prayer.

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De is hosting the Quadrille over at dVerse today.  Join us!

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