Monday, August 19, 2019

POEMS OF THE WEEK: BY BUDDAH, HANK AND LEE SAN

Today we have three wonderful, heartwarming (and heart-pinging) poems of marriage, brought to us by three fine gentlemen: Hank, also known as Kaykuala, who blogs at Rainbow, Buddah Moskowitz, of I Hate Poetry, and Lee San, also known as dsnake, of Urban Poems. These three poems send songs of love out into the world, and straight into our hearts. Enjoy.





What of it?
Reflecting on good fortune snug on a pedestal
When life was of prophetic indications pulsating
Looking to the sky clouds bidding as palatable
A tussle to recollect images of a pretty plaything

What of sweet recollections?
Gracious imaginations with mutual feelings of awe
Boy and girl whispering sweet nothings manifold
Insisting on a sacrifice towards a future together
Warm memories nostalgic in part but put on hold

What of uncanny acquiesce?
The winter of their life together devoid of fears
Meant for each other a relationship so blissful
What kept alive little anecdotes of yesteryears
Two hearts locked in place exquisitely beautiful



Sherry: I always admire marriages that have stood the test of time. I love this poem, Hank, and the loving story it tells.

Hank:  There comes a time in a man's heart, the recollections of those moments in time. It has been said. one remembers only too well an odd moment of grazing one's knee in a fall, more so the sweet moments of being together. 

Reflecting on such nostalgic moments together of times long ago can be therapeutic to the lonely heart. It culminates in this poem!

Sherry: And does it so well! Thank you, Hank. Buddah wrote a poem recently which also speaks to marriage, and the wonder of seeing the beauty of one's mate, growing richer with the passing of the years. Let's read.




(Frasier, Phillipe and Mosk)



I spied them
from the kitchen:

she was with him,
my beloved grandson,
and she was
so respectful,
and warm
and fun.

She was always
the woman I married,
but somehow,
I’d never seen
this woman before:

someone who consented
to share my life
and my fortunes,

a woman with a bounty
of lustrous eyelashes,
inviting curvature,
and an oasis smile.

She gives him
her truest,
most unguarded
laughter and joy,
and he is forever changed
one lesson at a time.

I see her expressing
the purest version of love
I’ve ever witnessed,

and the thought comes,
unbidden:

“That’s the woman
I want to make love to.”


Sherry: I love just knowing that marriages like this exist, Buddah! This is so heartwarming.

Buddah: The poem is about my wife playing with our grandson, and it brought out such love and desire, well, it's hopefully self-explanatory.

Sherry: I love it! Lee San's poem is addressed to his wife, also, in a much sadder situation. 






the eyes
are the open windows
to the soul
and in the moments that i look
deep into them
though they are clouded
because of the pain
they still burn with a flame
of fight

your eyes
smile like the first day
i met you
though there is a flicker
of regret
knowing that our days
together
will be like sand out of
our fingers

my eyes
are the dikes breaking
please don't
let her see my weakness
my fears
but a single tear
warm and salty rolls down
my cheeks

and then a frail hand touches my face.


Sherry: This is so moving, Lee San, the tears, and her frail hand reaching out to comfort you.

Lee San: I wrote this poem more than ten years ago, when on an idle day, I was thinking about my late wife. She had radiotherapy treatment for cancer, and the side effects were awful. I was thinking, she had put up a good fight, but why was she still taken away? These flashbacks  happen, I guess, even though I thought one had gotten over it. Anyway, the poem was sitting in my PC for some time. I thought it might be too personal to publish, but recently, I took it out, edited it majorly, and, yes, to push the publish button.

I think our memories and experiences, heartaches included, are deep wells from which we can dredge materials for our poetry.

Sherry: Thank you for sharing this, Lee San. I am so sorry that happened to you and your wife. I don’t think we ever get over such a loss; it just comes to live inside us. 

Sigh. These poems move me. Thank you, gentlemen, for writing and sharing them. Do come back, friends, to see who we talk to next. Who knows? It might be you!



Sunday, August 18, 2019

Poetry Pantry #490




This Mongolian girl, laughing with her camel, is about as happy as happy gets! The camel seems to share her sense of humour. I would love to know what caused such laughter. We could use some of it to offset the evening  news. Smiles. That, or an anti-depressant. Sigh.

On Friday, Magaly provided our Friday feature, our first interactive edition of Moonlight Musings, exploring the topic of negative criticism. Wow! It was so interesting! Do check it out if you missed it. It will not disappoint! 

On Monday, stop by and enjoy poems by the menfolk.  Buddah, Hank and Lee San are writing about the women they love, and their poems will touch your heart. On Wednesday, Susan's midweek prompt will be: Museum(s). That is an intriguing prompt. I look forward to reading the responses.

It sounds like another good week coming up. We hope you enjoy it. For now, top up your coffee, and let's enjoy some poetry!


Friday, August 16, 2019

Moonlight Musings: the Interactive Edition, #1

Greetings, word lovers. For quite some time, Poets United has offered Wednesday and Sunday prompts. That won’t change. We’ll just have a 3rd prompt on the 3rd Friday of every month, too. I hope we can use it to explore writing, reading, books, publishing... I wish us to share thoughts on the art, the craft, the magic (and business) of words.

The idea for this prompt came to me after an exchange on Instagram, about the following elfchen:
Hard
times turn
into easy grinning,
when love shows itself
thoughtful.

Through the comments, you can see that many people enjoyed it and found they could relate. Someone liked it so much that they reposted it. In the repost, someone else commented, “Sounds like a pipe dream… If I only could not choke on the smoke!”

Some of my Instagram friends were beyond outraged. They messaged me to show their support. One of my friends was so upset, that she informed me she was ready to “open a cyber-can of woopass”. I asked her to lower the can opener, and to let me deal with the issue. I did. The commenter’s attitude towards the poem changed, but the hostility didn’t decrease much—bitter people often stay bitter, methinks.

After my friend read the whole exchange, she asked, “How can you be so calm about this? They insulted your writing, belittled your relationship… And you didn’t even correct them!” My friend’s reaction made me wish for a place where I could discuss these sorts of topics with other writers and readers. And out of those thoughts, the Moonlight Musings: Interactive Edition was born.

I summarized my response to my (feisty) friend, in this poem:


So, for our 1st Moonlight Musings: the Interactive Edition, I invite you to write a short article (in 369 words or fewer), which explores negative criticism. 


Add the direct link to your article to Mr. Linky. Visit other writers, read their thoughts. Let us critique each other’s words, constructively.


Please remember that this is a prose prompt, in article or essay format. Links to poems and short stories will be removed. We can get creative with it, even use quotes from our own work to make a point (as I did with the prompt itself), but our responses should be in article or essay form. Thank you!

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Televised




 
“Some news managers have been slow to grasp that good television news is always substance over form.”— Jessica Savitch


SOURCE


“Television news is like a lightning flash. It makes a loud noise, lights up everything around it, leaves everything else in darkness and then is suddenly gone.”— Hodding Carter



      Midweek Motif ~ Televised




This little poem of Maya Angelou left me pondering. First the poem:

Televised news turns
a half-used day into
a waste of desolation.
If nothing wondrous preceded
the catastrophic announcements,
certainly nothing will follow, save
the sad-eyed faces of
bony children,
distended bellies making
mock at their starvation.
Why are they always
Black ?
Whom do they await ?
The lamb-chop flesh
reeks and cannot be
eaten. Even the
green peas roll on my plate
unmolested. Their innocence
matched by the helpless
hope in the children's faces.
Why do Black children
hope ? Who will bring
them peas and lamb chops
and one more morning ? 


This hurts so deeply.

Every society has its own problem and its televised version. This week we wish to do poems on current topics brought home to us by television and its impact on us.

Let us see what patterns of life surface from both the positive and / or negative sides of the televised news and also sometimes its purposeful silence on certain current affairs.




Here is a link to another poem by Susan Stewart:



Please share your new poem using Mr. Linky below and visit others in the spirit of the community—

              (Next week Susan’s Midweek Motif will be ~ Museum/s & Magaly is doing an Interactive Moonlight Musings every third Friday of the month. So stay tuned for this Friday)


Monday, August 12, 2019

POEMS OF THE WEEK: BY KIM R., LINDA AND COLLEEN

This week, we are featuring three beautiful poems by Kim Russell, of Writing in North Norfolk, Linda Lyberg, of Charmed Chaos, and Colleen Redman, of  Loose Leaf Notes . We're sure you will enjoy them. Top up your cup of tea, and pull your chairs in close. You won't want to miss a single word.






I call out to you in the dead of night.

Dawn seems so far away.

Enlightenment is shrouded in shadow.

A moment of solitary despair.

A moonbeam of ecstasy
and words appear.

The hoot and screech of owls pivot the changing light.

Even a poet feels the weight of sleep heavy on her eyes, when it was poetry that roused her from her bed.

To rejoice as a poet, you must learn to mourn with bluebells and violets, roost with rooks and crows in tall trees, where a nightingale might sing yet.


Sherry: This is so beautiful, Kim. I especially love a poet needing to learn to mourn with bluebells. 

Kim: Thank you for considering my poem, ‘Poetry as a Cry in the Dark’ as one of your Poems of the Week. I am, of course, more than happy for you to feature it.

It’s difficult to write a paragraph about it as it was back in April, right in the middle of NaPoWriMo, when we were all writing one or more poems a day! I wrote it in response to a prompt from Anmol on Day 16 of Poems in April at the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads. Anmol asked us to write a poem entitled ‘Poetry as…’, perhaps in the style of Ferlinghetti, who had just turned 100, and he gave us Ferlinghetti’s poem ‘Poetry as Insurgent Art (I am signalling you through the flames)’ as inspiration. I liked the form of that poem so much that I decided to try to emulate it, while writing about my own experience of poetry, which often keeps me up at night or wakes me up in the middle of the night or the wee small hours of the morning.

Sherry: You achieved your goal wonderfully, Kim. Thank you for sharing it. Linda's poem will follow it perfectly.






So you’ve been through the roaring fire 
Leaving you maimed, a soul of charred ashes 
But rising from this molten funeral pyre 
Comes a new woman with scars on scars. 

You must know though flawed, you are beautiful 
for you shimmer with the light of fractured stars
and you’ve heard the haunting mystical song 
of the grey mockingbird in pink light of dawn 
His singing sets your broken heart free to soar–
Euphoria your guide, higher and brighter
while you dance with glee in a majestic bluebonnet sky.


Sherry: This is so beautiful, Linda. I love the power and beauty of a woman who has walked through the fire, and can still dance. Love "You shimmer with the light of fractured stars." 

Linda: After over two years of writing poetry on a daily basis, I have learned that the truest poems come from the heart. I wrote this poem on a day when I was missing my mom and missing my birthplace - Texas.

In 1994, I suffered a terrible personal tragedy. Shortly thereafter, I had the opportunity to move to Philadelphia for a job promotion. Once I moved away, I never lived in Texas again for it still holds bittersweet memories. 

I live in Arizona now and I love the desert, but there are times when Texas whispers to my heart, 'Come home'. This was one of those lonely days. 

The Mockingbird is the state bird and the Bluebonnet the state flower. The Mockingbird's song is one of the most beautiful. And if you've never seen a Bluebonnet field in person, it is the most amazing shade of blue.




 Sherry: It is breathtaking! Thank you, Linda, for your beautiful poem, and for sharing your thoughts with us.

I think Colleen's poem is going to finish off this feature very beautifully. Let's take a look.





The sun plunges low
Jets trail like tribal arrows
 
Vultures circle like warriors
and startled doves cry
 
The moon meets the horizon
like a sacred hoop rising
 
Like a white buffalo omen
Dreamcatcher of hope




Colleen Redman photo


Sherry: Your imagery is spectacular in this poem, Colleen. Wow.

Colleen: I live on the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway and frequently drive to a nearby overlook to watch sunsets and moonrises.  As I waited for the April moon to rise over the mountain, a group of deer came into the field to feed. It was quiet and I was struck by the beauty of it all, but I was also unsettled due to current events and the unpredictability of our current administration.  The “jets trail like tribal arrows” and the warrior vultures startling doves reflects my sense of being in danger and on guard. 

As the moon began to peek up, I first began to think of it as a great white buffalo, a sacred symbol of hope to the Lakota tribe.  I began to think of the moon with amazement and as one of the great hoops of life that would hold us all together. Maybe it was a dreamcatcher that could catch the bad dreams we are having now. I knew it was a good medicine wheel of the natural world that we especially needed now.   I felt restored in the experience and a poem was born. 

Sherry: This is so beautiful, Colleen, both the poem, and your thoughts about it. I have always been fascinated by the legend of Buffalo Calf Woman, who will arrive with a white buffalo calf, as a hopeful sign. I see many white animals appearing in various locations now. Signs, I believe, in these unsettled times, a warning that we need to move quickly, and are in urgent need for good medicine to heal this ailing world. Thank you so much for writing this poem, and for sharing it here. It is not to be missed.

Thank you, Kim, Linda and Colleen, for gracing us with such beauty today. Do come back, friends, and see who we talk to next. Who knows? It might be you!




Sunday, August 11, 2019

Poetry Pantry #489





Summer is buzzing by as quickly as these busy bees.........I hope you are enjoying its pleasures. It is hard to believe we are this far into August already. 

Things are hopping at Poets United, too. You may notice that Sanaa and Magaly will now be joining Rosemary and I taking turns to bring you our Friday features. We think this will make Friday a very interesting day of the week at Poets United and hope you enjoy the variety. This past Friday, Sanaa featured Rudyard Kipling. Do scroll back and see what she put together, if you happened to miss it.

Next Friday looks like it will be a lively feature. Magaly will make every third Friday of the month an interactive Moonlight Musings. Well, that definitely intrigues me. Do stop by for that. I think Fridays are going to get really interesting!

On Monday, we will feature beautiful poems by Kim Russell, Linda Lyberg and Colleen Redman. And on Wednesday,  Sumana's prompt at Midweek Motif will be: Televised. Cool.  
                
Meanwhile, today is Sunday, and you know the drill. Link your poem, leave us a few words, and do visit your fellow poets. We are so glad you show up here so faithfully to stock the Pantry with your poems. I think it is my favourite day of the week online.






Friday, August 9, 2019

Thought Provokers ~ Rudyard Kipling

source

 IF


If you can keep your head when all about you   
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,   
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;   
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;   
    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;   
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;   
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,   
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,   
    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,   
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,   
    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!


  Rudyard Kipling  
from Brother Square-Toes’—Rewards and Fairies


Written in 1895; the poem was first published in the Brother Square Toes chapter of Rewards and Fairies, Kipling’s 1910 collection of short stories and poems. Like William Ernest Henley’s Invictus, it is a memorable evocation of Victorian stoicism and the “stiff upper lip” that popular culture has made into a traditional British virtue.

The poem gives advice on how one should live one’s life and takes the reader through various ways in which the reader can rise above adversity that will almost certainly be thrown one’s way at some point in one’s lives.

Which brings me to think how much anxiety and stress one attaches to life and aim of fulfilling goals, there is perhaps no respite from the constant nagging at the back of the brain - the opening line itself led me into a reverie, can we really manage to keep our heads and steer ourselves away from blame? 



Kipling demonstrates the importance of being able to pick oneself up and start again if one fails—even if the thing they’ve failed at has taken all of their life to attempt. The reader must always be prepared to start again.

He is reminding his reader that is important to be able to bounce back from disappointment or pain. One must not dwell on his enemies or the hurt a loved one could potentially cause.

The poem goes beyond the superficial aspects of modern manhood, and delves into the deeper meaning of the word. It's more of a gift than a poem if you ask me. 

If you guys enjoyed this poem then I invite you to delight in more of this Poet's inspirational work, just follow this link and you'll come across his complete collection of poems.

Do let me know your thoughts in the comment section below and if you have any particular favorites  please mention them also.