Friday, June 29, 2018



We looked forward to it
Starting right after Christmas
Would the cold never end
What about the lazy days of summer
At the beach
And no school

Time passed 
In those lazy days of summer
End of August
School began
We didn’t realize 
We were growing
Growing all the time
We needed new shoes
New clothes
The old ones no longer fit

Everything was measured by school
First grade
And each grade there after
At last the doors opened
School was out
We tumbled into the yard
What next
More school
A job
The military

Summer would find a place of its own
The lazy days of summer
Would become weekends

June 29, 2018

Thursday, June 28, 2018



The table is laden
Yet I remain empty
A delight for the senses
Pale green vases
Overflow with fresh flowers

The plates placed on linen
The crystal sparkles
The silver polished
Napkins neatly folded
Music is heard in the background

There is an air of expectation
Will you come
Will there be laughter
Will we remember

When our cups runneth over
Bellies full
Those were the days
We were comfortable then

We gave little thought
To what was to come
The emptiness of days
The end of time

And now
The table is sparse
Laid bare
Like my soul
Yet I do not want
My days are full

My heart keeps time 
With the beat of the clock
Thoughts of you fill my every hour
The hole you dug remains empty

June 28, 2018

Lillian is hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse today, the virtual pub for poets, asking folks to write a poem that somehow deals with opposites or uses the literary device of antithesis. One can include simple words in opposition happy/sad, inside/outside; or describe one event from two opposite viewpoints. The opposition can happen in one poem; different stanzas; or even two short poems.  Folks are free to be creative….as long as they deal with opposites! For a different take on the prompt, a satirical one, go to my second post, Mishmash Succotash. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time….come join us and write in opposites or just read along!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A PAINTER/poets united midweek motif/ "What do you think of yourself?"

Each morning the sun rises
Contradicting the idea of gravity
I enter the studio
Slip into my chair
Gather words
Organize random thoughts

I pick up yesterday’s thread and follow
As I take my place before the easel
Pathways open
Color takes on new meanings
At first, I am self-conscious

To paint a straight line impossible
Make corrections
Begin again
Slowly I pick up speed
Forget who is painting
Who is thinking
Who is seeing

I become everyone who has ever painted
Everyone who has ever struggled to express themselves
I create soul patterns with paint
Ideas come and go
Sometimes they are familiar
Like puzzle pieces that easily slip into place
The extra pieces I put into my pocket

June 27, 2018

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

POET OF THE WEEK/poets united posted by sherry blue sky

Poem of the Week ~ Celebrating Taos with Annell Livingston

This morning, I have one very beautiful poem for you to enjoy, written by Annell Livingston who blogs at AnnellAnnell: Words of a Painter. Annell wrote so beautifully about the spectacular landscape she lives in in Taos, New Mexico, that I thought we might savor this poem, and Annell's thoughts about it, all on its own. Annell is sharing some beautiful photos of the land outside her studio window as well. Let's enjoy.

Taos Mountain

“To remember is to go back to the heart, to make whole.”  
--Anonymous Quote

Adobe churches, houses, walls
Made from earth
Bricks of mud
Smoothed by hand

An old windmill spins
Speaks a rhythmic “clatter”
In hot desert winds

White clouds with underbellies of grey
Shaped like cotton candy at the fair
Stacked on horizon in cerulean blue sky
Similar to bundles of cotton bales at the gin
Clouds wait for Miss O’Keeffe
To return to her studio to paint them

Ravens and crows, magpies and such
Birds of prey: eagles and hawks
Soar above like a kite
Eagle eye you can’t escape

Lavender, pink, sage green, indigo, burnt sienna
Horizon, sand, earth, sage brush, mountains
Colors I call home

Mountains, mesas, canyons,
The Rio Grand, “Leopard Hills”,
Volcanic rock, boulders

Mesquite, pinion, tumble weed, cholla cactus, red willow, cotton woods
Fruit trees, apples, wild plums


May 19, 2018

Sherry: This poem is glorious, my friend. The place names sing, these places of your heart. I can feel the heat, the sand, see the old adobe on the mesa. The colour of the light in your photos is spectacular! An artist's delight!

How did this poem come to you, the words that so vividly describe the landscape that you love?

Annell: I drove to Santa Fe, on a Saturday, to pick up paintings from the gallery.  It was a quick trip, down and back.  I was listening to the radio, and there was a person talking who was from Jamaica; he said he was a Rastafarian, and he was explaining about that.  He began to talk about the word, “Remember,” and I was aware of its beauty of sound.  He said this quote, “To remember is to go back to the heart, to make whole.”  I have looked for that, but couldn’t find it, so I am calling it an anonymous quote.  The person speaking on the radio was anonymous, as is often the case, when listening to the radio, you don’t always get in on the beginning, and know who is talking, then you arrive at your destination, and you turn off the car. It is only later you begin to think about what you heard, and realize it was an anonymous conversation. But I thought that I would like to use what he said about, “remember.”

Later, on my way home, again, my mind was blank.  I had no ideas.  I think it was Kerry who told me she liked “list” poems.  So I thought I would make a list poem, something I have never done.  

Alone in the car, I could say the words.  Listen, and then write about them.  New Mexico is known for its adobe churches, houses and walls, made from the earth, into bricks of mud, and in the older adobe it must be resurfaced each year, and this is done by hand.

I saw a windmill, spinning in the dusty dry desert wind, and I wanted to say how it sounds.  There is a certain rhythm and often a sound like a clatter, I thought about it being the language of the windmill.

It is a most beautiful drive coming up to Taos, from Santa Fe.  The sky a clear cerulean blue, the clouds were in rectangle shapes, and seemed to be stacked like bricks on the horizon. It reminded me of cotton bales stacked near the tracks or in the gin.  There were other clouds shaped like cotton candy with grey underbellies.  Then I thought of the painting Georgia painted of clouds…and I thought maybe they were waiting for her to return to the studio to paint them.

There were birds flying in the air, ravens, crows. (I did not see eagles that day, but have on other trips to Santa Fe.)  But a most beautiful hawk, which seemed to be floating like a kite.

Then I listed to myself the colors I saw.   Earth and sky near the horizon was pink.   So much of what is green is sage green in varying values and shades of sage green.   The mountains indigo.  Much of the earth and houses, sienna.

Much of what you see are: mountains, mesas, canyons, The Rio Grand, “Leopard Hills.”  (Leopard Hills are seen near Santa Fe.) Volcanic rock, and  boulders.

I continued with my list, and to say the words aloud, savoring each word.  Mesquite, pinion, tumble weed, cholla cactus, red willow, cotton woods, fruit trees, apples, wild plum.   (To tell the truth, I don’t even know if Mesquite grows in New Mexico, but it does in Texas, and I love that word.)  I hoped the reader of my poem would also like to savor each word.  Saying it out loud.  Allowing the sound to enter him.

Just outside Espanola, I saw a road sign which read Velarde, Embudo, Taos.  As I read the sign, and said the words out loud,  I loved each word, and added them to my list.

When I got home, I began to rearrange the words in my list, and decided it was a poem.  (Kinda like fishing, you never know if it is a fish or not, maybe just caught on a log.)

And that is the story of my poem.

Sherry: How I love the story. I, too, enjoyed savouring the words on my tongue. They are so beautiful, and convey the wonders of the desert to the reader.

Annell, I wonder, having lived on the ocean in your earlier years, how did coming to the desert feel to you when you arrived there? Over the years, how did it become home? 

Annell: When my Husband drowned, it seemed necessary for me to seek a new life. My Husband loved to fish, and we had a house at the bay.  I wanted to leave the Gulf coast, so I came to the desert, in the shadow of the mountain.  

Everything was different, and I needed what I saw to be different.  A new life; I wanted to leave sorrow behind in the rear view mirror.  It was hard for my friends to see me grieve. I needed somewhere to howl at the moon, and I found my place on the mesa.  No one knew me, no one cared, no one noticed that I howled at night.  So, I was at home on the mesa, under a star filled sky, and moon light night.  I no longer heard the waves lapping at my toes, nor the sea gulls diving and crying.  The desert is a quiet home, the coyotes walked through my yard as if it was theirs, and of course it was.  

Because Taos is in the mountains, the weather was cool, and I found I could become a hermit and do my work without interruption.  I was constantly fed by what I saw, sunrises in the morning, and sunsets at night.  

Sherry:  And what spectacular sunsets! Wow! Right out your back door! Thank you for sharing how you came to the desert, Annell. You were so brave, making such a change, but it was the right one for you.

Annell: Millions of years ago, this land was all underwater, and it is like that today. Unless the wind is blowing, it is as if life is trapped in resin.  Nothing moves, and all is quiet on the mesa.  For a long time, painting was all that I could do, and writing…now I am here, and it seems it is where I belong, like the sage brush that holds the sandy dirt to the earth. Without the sage brush, the dirt would all blow away.

You asked about the difference between the gulf and the desert.  Actually, looking out across the sage brush is very much like looking out across the waves.

I have tried to be as honest as I can. When I write, it is straight from the heart. 

Sherry: And we receive what you have expressed with respect and appreciation, my friend. I have often heard there are similarities between ocean and desert. I can see there must be. In fact, I also see similarities between your desert and the Okanagan, where I grew up and raised my kids. Especially in the above photo.

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts, your very beautiful poem, and gorgeous photos with us today. What a feast of the senses it has been!

Sigh. Wasn't this a lovely interlude, my friends? We do hope you enjoyed it. Do come back and see who we talk to next. Who knows? It might be you!

WHAT DOES MATTER AFTER ALL/imaginary gardens with real toads -- tuesday platform


The sun and the moon
The world outside
The cosmos too
Let’s say

A jacket
With the words on the back
“I Really Don’t Care Do You”
The words are simple
Not hard to understand

Care about what, you ask
And I answer
What does matter after all
When they tell us 
Who they are
Believe them

June 24, 2018

Sunday, June 24, 2018

THE SHELL FOUND ON THE DESERT FLOOR/ the sunday whirl wordle #357

Far from the surf – a lacy edge – pink within

The one that called this shell home
Is nowhere in sight
The shell has lain in limbo
For at least one thousand years
Waiting for the next wave
To come ashore

Images of great butts
Mountains and mesas
Homes carved into 
Canyon walls
Pit-houses into hills
Provide a safe place to play

The sky an open space
Clear blue
Clouds form abstractions 
Three hundred sixty degrees
Thunder rattles…
Death rattles…

The snake rattles 
As she slithers under rocks
Safe from the sizzling sun
Fresh white sheets
Folded into neat piles
The edges as sharp as blades
The ring she wears
Sparkles in the setting sun

Hot winds blow
You gasp for breath
The wind chimes sound
Dust devils form
The desert can be a bitter pill 

June 24, 2018

Friday, June 22, 2018

TWO NUMBERS/verse escape 55 words


Two numbers the same 
Five and five
I hold up my hand
Count five fingers
One points at you

Two numbers 
Fifty five
Mid-life crisis
You are too old

Two numbers the same
Five plus five
Equals ten
Equals one
There is only one

Numbers indicate 
What is despicable
Uses children
A terrorist

June 22, 2018

Thursday, June 21, 2018

HOT WINDS BLOW/imaginary gardens with real toads


The morning cool
Temperature just right
As the day travels
The temperature rises
Hot winds blow

Within the dwelling
The sound of voices rise
Anger flies from the windows
The temperature rises
Hot winds blow

Your eyes aflame
Hot under the collar
Point your finger
Just for emphasis
The temperature rises
Hot winds blow

Remove your clothes
Nothing touches your skin
Sweat runs down your belly
The temperature rises
Hot winds blow

The sun sets
End of day
Twilight in the desert
The Temperature drops
Hot winds sleep
Cool winds take over

June 21, 2018

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

WHAT IS IT TO BE HUMAN/poets united midweek motif/human


We have elected a person
To “lead” us that
Shows us the worst of us
No, not unusual
He lies and cheats
He follows all
Self-serving endeavors
Lacks compassion
Isn’t very smart
Knows nothing of history
When things don't go as planned
Always blames someone else

He has a large head
Which appears to be empty
Has no heart
An empty vessel
His reign like
King George
Can I say it will be OK...
I think he will take himself down
With the weight
Of his ignorance

I’m mad
Who would use children
Hold them hostage
He thinks 
This is a good issue for him
The sun rises in the morning
To light the world
But, this is a dark time for our country

June 20, 2018

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

WILDFIRES IN EARLY SUMMER/imaginary gardens with real toads


Life goes on as it will
Like the river
That runs through the heart
Sometimes the water level
Is low
And sometimes it is high
We have to rush to keep up

For if we do not
We will never catch up
The river moves on
Toward the sea
It is said, “We never step
Into the same river twice”

The flow of water 
Comes from the mountains
In spring when the snow melts
The water levels are high
Water rushes down
Fills the river to over flowing
Life is like that
And sometimes the gifts of life
Are overflowing

End of summer
The river dries out
Fish caught in pools
Wait for the rains to come
It is all a cycle
Like the wheel on your bike
Turning round and round

It is early summer now
Wildfires blaze
Smoke fills our little corner of the world
The scene is like the pictures of China
Mountains lost and found
In smoky  atmosphere

June 2, 1018



If you had asked
I never thought 
I would be the one
To celebrate your leaving
And yet…
Each year about this time
I remember clearly
A film cycles in my mind
A sunny day in June
The scent of honeysuckle
Your chair empty

June 19, 2018

So get on your bike, fire up your cyclometer and write a poem of exactly 44 words (not counting your title), including the word cycle. 
Here’s how to Quadrille:
– Write a poem of exactly 44 words, including the word cycle.
– Put your poem on your blog and link back to this post.
– Link it up to our Mr. Linky.
– Visit other blogs. Enjoy some amazing poets. Comment. Come back later this week and write another one, and visit some more. Comment some more. Create as many poems as you please, including ones with all the words.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

THE GOOD OLD USA/sunday's whirligig #166


The morning is a wonder
The heavens opened
The rain came at last
The whole world smiles

There is much rejoicing
Some arroyos were full
The road remained passable
Travel continues

Tucked into your shirt pocket
Years of waiting
Dark clouds form over the mesa
The high surf is only a memory

What of greatness
Can a country defy it’s actions
I hear politicians say
“We are better than this”

I say, “this is who we are”
We are not better
We are known by our actions
How we treat the least of us

The homeless
The young
The weak
The sick
The old
The poor 
The hungry
Fly your flag
Be proud
“This is who we are”

June 17, 2018


  Mother   mother, a simple word just six letters   “m” is for mine, meadow, meow all the wonders of the world wild meadow orchids including...