Beautiful Feet


Beautiful (sneaker-clad) feet
(stacked like lego),
fingers hop-scotching across frets,
(falling like stray coins)
writing hope on hearts,
sticking truth on sleeves.
He comes,
marking souls with glory,
clipping bull-dog truth.
We hear your buttons and bows;
we see your domino smile.
We welcome your spring arms.
We bless your
beautiful (good news) feet.


Day Ten

Prompt: Today’s prompt is called “Junk Drawer Song,” and comes to us from the poet Hoa Nguyen.

  • First, find a song with which you are familiar – it could be a favorite song of yours, or one that just evokes memories of your past. Listen to the song and take notes as you do, without overthinking it or worrying about your notes making sense.
  • Next, rifle through the objects in your junk drawer – or wherever you keep loose odds and ends that don’t have a place otherwise. (Mine contains picture-hanging wire, stamps, rubber bands, and two unfinished wooden spoons I started whittling four years ago after taking a spoon-making class). On a separate page from your song-notes page, write about the objects in the drawer, for as long as you care to.
  • Now, bring your two pages of notes together and write a poem that weaves together your ideas and observations from both pages.

I chose the song “Beautiful Feet” by Nibs van der Spuy. The melody is so captivating and the lyrics so full of grace and beauty. I enjoyed writing both pieces. The bringing together was rather difficult.

To Do Today:


7am: breakfast: honey-nut cake with marmalade, oatmeal and raspberry jam
8am: go to Merry’s
9am second breakfast at Merry’s: seed cakes and cheese, apple-tart and eggs
10am: go to Farmer Maggot’s place with Merry
11am elevenses: mushrooms and bacon (thank-you, Mrs Maggot)
12pm: travel with Merry to Stock
1pm: lunch at Golden Perch: pork pie and salad with A PINT!
2pm: go to Fatty Bolger’s with Merry
3pm: afternoon tea with Fatty: cold chicken and pickles, corn-cake and honey
4pm: travel with Merry to Bag End
6pm: dinner with Frodo: toasted mutton & roast potatoes
8pm: home to Tuckbourough
9pm: supper: bread and butter, tomatoes and cheese and jams and sausages


Day Nine

The Prompt:  Write a poem in the form of a “to-do list.” The fun of this prompt is to make it the “to-do list” of an unusual person or character.

Favourite all-time character: Peregrin Took (a.k.a. Pippin, Thain of the Shire I, Ernil I Pheriannath, and “Fool-of-a-Took” ).



It all went by rather quickly,
to tell you the truth.
I had some good times in my 20’s —

until I got myself knocked-up
and had to marry the fellow.

Sis was shattered,
really expecting better of me,
and for that I felt little sorrow.
Never could tolerate double-standards.

But I felt plenty sorry for myself.

He was a nice boy.
A simple boy.
Hard working,
I’ll give you that.
And together we fashioned the American Dream:
two kids, a dog, a television
and a house with thick shag carpets —
mind you.

There was no parting in those days,
no double-dipping,
if you get my drift.
And though my body was there,
my mind was elsewhere:
wandering the honky-tonks,
dancing till dawn.

Kids grew.
Kids had kids.
I got old.
I fought being old.
Tried to distract myself.

But somewhere in my sixties
I gave in
and let go of my dreams.

Damn it all to hell!
One night,
one stupid, impetuous thrill
and I never stop asking myself,
“What if?”


Day Eight

The Prompt:  Read several poems from Edgar Lee Masters’ 1915 book Spoon River Anthology and then write your own poem in the form of a monologue delivered by someone who is dead.

Shadorma and the Fib

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Twilight is
atmosphere —
when the Sun’s
just below the horizon.
Magic silhouettes.



of Pisa’s
great passion and joy:
traveling mathematician.


Day Seven

The Prompt:  Choose between two interesting syllable-based forms of poetry – the shadorma or the Fib.
The shadorma is a six-line, 26-syllable poem whose count by line is 3/5/3/3/7/5. The Fib is a six-line form based on the Fibonacci sequence of 1/1/2/3/5/8.

I played with both forms and had fun (but need a lot more practice being brief!).

I met the Lord over by the river


and we fell to talkin’.
He aks’d me how I was faring.

I said that I was doin’ pretty good.
A few creaky joints —
but nothing beyond bearing.
To be expected,
I suppose,
at my age.
But then,
I added:
you’s much older than me.
How’s you gettin’ on?

He smiled —
a kinda sad smile —
an’ tol’ me
can be quite vexin’

and that they’d most surely
be the death of him.


Day Six

The Prompt:  Go to a book you love. Find a short line that strikes you. Make that line the title of your poem. Write a poem inspired by the line. Then, after you’ve finished, change the title completely.

I took a line from Gilead. But I couldn’t change the title.

pray GRACE prayers


pray GRACE prayers

..entertain ludicrous hope
….(with absolute abandon)
……dash all doubt
………………..and whirl reckless
……where ul(time)ately
….(worlds twist down)
..everyone standstills to

look at LOVE incarnate


Day Five

The Prompt: This prompt challenges you to find a poem, and then write a new poem that has the shape of the original, and in which every line starts with the first letter of the corresponding line in the original poem.

Without even thinking, I reached for my volume of cummings. Thank you, dear e e cummings, for your playful yet serious weaving of words! I chose cummings’ plant Magic dust.

plant Magic dust

..expect hope doubt
….(wonder mistrust)
……………….and right
……where souless our
….(with all their minds)
..eyes blindly stare

life herSelf stands



They all say:
Don’t go back!

But she cannot stay away.
She is called,
deep to deep.

As she stumbles forward
living shades surround her,
threatening to block her way.

Fists balled, face puckered,
she presses on,
jagged trails careening down cheeks.

by the strength of her own will,
she emerges

to absolute desolation.

No one.


Only suffocating silence.

She crumples,
face to rank ground,
her heart

Meaningless world.

Futile days.

Then a voice:
Why do you seek the living among the dead?


Day Four

The Prompt: Today, select a photograph from the perpetually disconcerting @SpaceLiminalBot, and write a poem inspired by one of these odd, in-transition spaces.

I chose the following photograph. It reminded me of returning to something that is dead and of the women who went to the tomb early Sunday morning. (Perhaps because today is Resurrection Sunday.)

Changing Seasons


(stretched thin
and weary of whiny wasps,
pestilent flies and swollen ankles)
remains abed
later and later
each day.

Autumn prances about the dawn,
swirling crisp currents of brisk breezes.
Expired leaves allemande around the yard
as Sarah pulls up her hoodie
and hugs herself.


Day Three

The Prompt: Today make a “Personal Universal Deck,” and then to write a poem using it. The idea of the “Personal Universal Deck” originated with the poet and playwright Michael McClure, who gave the project of creating such decks to his students in a 1976 lecture at Naropa University. Basically, you will write 100 words (one on the front and one on the back of each card/paper) using the rules found here.
Once you have your deck put together, shuffle it a few times. Now select a card or two, and use them as the basis for a new poem.

This prompt took me forever as I laboured over my “Personal Universal Deck.” I do like the idea and will enjoy using this deck of cards in the future for writing prompts and word games. In fact, I think I will introduce this project to my students.
Having spent a great deal of time comprising my list, I hastily wrote a poem on the changing of the seasons. (I used two of my words in this piece. Can you guess which ones?)

Sequoia to Ziziphus

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Walking ‘mongst giants, whose mighty boles
touch heaven and scent the gentle breeze
with quiet, green ancestral souls,
I am at peace upon this path I stroll
and want for nothing further so to please.

By strange design you came upon this road.
For but an instant our two courses crossed.
I watched you fade, my rhythm slowed
’til paralysed. I let go the sum I owed
to follow in the steps of our dear Frost.

Today a stride pushes through long grass
where warthogs kneel and giraffes press the sky.
Through still, hot air the insects fly en masse.
The buffalo thorn will snatch me as I pass.
But this blessed heart will never question why.


Day Two

The Prompt: In the world of well-known poems, maybe there’s no gem quite so hoary as Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken.” Today, the challenge is to write a poem about your own road not taken – about a choice of yours that has “made all the difference.”

I used to live near a redwood forest — a natural cathedral of ancient trees.
Sequoia sempervirens are the coastal redwoods that graced my days in another lifetime.

Now I live in African lowveld — a hot, dry land rich in flora and fauna.
Ziziphus mucronata is the buffalo thorn that grows in my “back yard” and catches me in its thorny grasp whenever it can.

cosmic ra

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discord for unity
inner space implosion

build it back;
break it down.
personal mythology
vacant ideology

unknow the known
reject the rule
blind to see

noise for words,

do they exist?

and in the end
(just like you)
i die.


Day One

The Prompt: Sometimes, writing poetry is a matter of getting outside of your own head, and learning to see the world in a new way. To an extent, you have to “derange” yourself – make the world strange, and see it as a stranger might. To help you do that, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem inspired by this animated version of “Seductive Fantasy” by Sun Ra and his Arkestra

A screenshot from the video.

This was a challenge indeed! But I learned some things — mostly, that I am not an ABSTRACT person. If you are reading this, I challenge you to try this prompt! It stretched me!

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