Merry Mackerel


The stars
were watching us tonight
(even though they appeared
to be minding their own business).
Their eyes followed us
around the garden,
minding our pace,
obsessing over our path,
refusing to abandon us —
until the silver moon
swam like a tuna across the sky
chasing the starry school of mackerel
into hiding.

Silly moon!
I miss the tittering gossip
and feigned indifference.

19 April
NaPoWriMo Challenge:  Write a paragraph that briefly recounts a story, describes the scene outside your window, or even gives directions from your house to the grocery store. Now try erasing words from this paragraph to create a poem or, alternatively, use the words of your paragraph to build a new poem.

I am functioning on last night’s 3 hours of sleep, so I chose to use a paragraph from a magazine rather than write one of my own.  This is from the April 2018 edition of TASTE (a Woolies magazine).

holy mackerel


Commonplace Rabbit

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Commonplace rabbit,
grey patch
in white snow,
planting patterns
with your brothers,
do not think,
despite your cunning,
that you fox us
with your hop, skip, jump.
We can hear
the frantic beat
of your dear heart
vibrating the quiet forest.


18 April
NaPoWriMo challenge:  Find a poem. Cover everything but the last line. Now write a line of your own that responds to that line. Uncover the second-to-last line of your source poem, and write the second line of your new poem to respond to this second-to-last line. Keep going, uncovering and writing, until you get to the first line of your source poem, which you will complete/respond to as the last line of your new poem.

I chose “In the Next Yard” by Helen Hoyt.

Apple Pie


The more I insisted
that we had no pie,
the more vehemently
the two-year-old argued
we did
(and she’d like some NOW, please).

I retort,
Show me!

Marching victoriously
into the kitchen
(like Wellington
after Waterloo)
she pointed
to the large tropical fruit
with its short, stalky stem.



17 April
NaPoWriMo Challenge:  Write a poem re-telling a family anecdote that has stuck with you over time.


Good Loser

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I fall
every time.
It’s only a game,
she says.
Let’s play again!
Best four of seven?
But she’s already got
three in her pocket
to my naught.
Soon the odds
will be astronomically,
against me
and I’ll be condemned
to compete
into eternity.
Rack ’em up
and I’ll break

16 April
NaPoWriMo Challenge:  Write a poem that prominently features the idea of play

Clorinda’s Bad Day

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Two broken nails and a grease stain —
the product of a day
that was meant to be spent in boutiques,
a girls’ day out in celebration of Ella’s promotion.

Instead the tire on my Corolla burst on I-80.

Ella —
who has A-Class Mercs in each of six colours,
five chauffeurs
and twenty-four/seven roadside assistance.

Ella —
who was having too much fun to pick up her phone.

Ella —
who failed to notice my face missing from her entourage.

Ella —
who is always and will always and only be about Ella.

By the time I got the tire changed
I had no intention of going to Ella’s little assemblage.
I would rather dream up a thousand different ways
to chastise my dear step-sister.

I went home
to soak my dress,
mend my nails
and plot retribution
over a glass of Chardonnay.



15 April
NaPoWriMo Challenge:  Write a poem in which a villain faces an unfortunate situation, and is revealed to be human (but still evil).

Up-Ended Idioms


Always over the orange sun
come hot chickens
running away from silence.
The dog is detained in the box
we won’t allow wakeful cats to jump about
laughing under bottled vinegar.
We zig and zag to the goats’ ears.
I think we swallowed less than we can spit out.

13 April
NaPoWriMo Challenge:   Write a poem in which the words or meaning of a familiar sayings get up-ended. For example, if you chose the phrase “A stitch in time saves nine,” you might reverse that into something like: “a broken thread; I’m late, so many lost.”

I had a difficult time choosing just one!
See if you can work out the eight idioms above.

no more me

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What I thought I knew, I guess I don’t.
What I thought I’d say, I suppose I won’t.
The rules by which we’re meant to play
were suddenly changed midstream today.
All was fun and bright and gay
until you pulled the rug away.
Stunned I sit upon my ass —
the cornered-dunce in history class
and vow you’ll never hear me say
another word after today.
My lips are sealed in solid line,
crossed arms and legs, rod-straight spine.
My pride is bruised, I cannot see.
The way back home’s not clear to me.
Tomorrow is another day;
which way I’ll go, I cannot say.

Followed no prompt today.  Just wrote.

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