Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Neighbors

“….O stand, stand at the window
As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked neighbour
With your crooked heart.'’—
W.H. Auden, As I Walked Out One Evening


“I once asked a hermit in Italy how he could venture to live alone, in a single cottage, on the top of a mountain, a mile from any habitation. He replied, that Providence was his next door neighbor.”— Lawrence Stern

Midweek Motif ~ Neighbors

Everyone on this planet desperately needs a peaceful living. A good neighbor assures that. How well connected people are with those close by?

A few years ago a Spanish town granted cats and dogs rights as ‘non-human neighbors’. They definitely sought to dignify the lives of our furry friends.

A single date-palm tree was once my neighbor. It invited birds and even humans during winter mostly for its sugary juice. Then a day came. There was much hacking and chopping and it vanished.

I wonder if humans make good neighbors to all surrounding them?

Write a neighbor poem today:

Deep autumn
by Matsuo Basho

Deep autumn
My neighbor,
How does he live, I wonder

The People Upstairs
by Ogden Nash

The people upstairs all practise ballet
Their living room is a bowling alley
Their bedroom is full of conducted tours.
Their radio is louder than yours,
They celebrate week-ends all the week.
When they take a shower, your ceilings leak.
They try to get their parties to mix
By supplying their guests with Pogo sticks,
And when their fun at last abates,
They go to the bathroom on roller skates.
I might love the people upstairs more
If only they lived on another floor.

Poem of the Neighbours
by Charles Tomlinson

Bird neighbours the rising tree,
Leaf neighbours the waiting soil,
Flesh, fish, foal, all-kingdom-kind
Neighbour the other, sun to stone.

Man neighbours the sun in life,
Man neighbours the horse in life,
Horse neighbours the trodden grass,
Oak neighbours untrodden sky;

That life shall know increase.

Cat neighbours the bird in death,
Lion neighbours the doe in death,
Snake neighbours the hidden toad,
Hidden toad neighbours the fly:

That life shall know increase.

Hello, How Are You?
by Charles Bukowski

this fear of being what they are:

at least they are not out on the street, they
are careful to stay indoors, those
pasty mad who sit alone before their tv sets,
their lives full of canned, mutilated laughter. 

their ideal neighborhood
of parked cars
of little green lawns
of little homes
the little doors that open and close
as their relatives visit
throughout the holidays
the doors closing
behind the dying who die so slowly
behind the dead who are still alive
in your quiet average neighborhood
of winding streets
of agony
of confusion
of horror
of fear
of ignorance. 

a dog standing behind a fence. 

a man silent at the window. 

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 ~ Empowerment)


  1. Good morning, Poets United! Have a wonderful day!
    What a beautiful prompt you have made, Sumana. I've been thinking of it all week and it touched the core of my philosophy.

  2. Your prompt made me very emotional ..

  3. Your prompt aroused many feelings within me. I gave a lot of thought to being a neighbor, though I can't reflect this in my simple poem. But thank you for making me think and feel.
    Have a great day Sumana.

    1. Your poem is on your home page, Myrna. I could connect that page if you want. The link you provided isn't working.

  4. Your prompt took me right back to my childhood, Sumana, and I had to write about it!

  5. Hello everyone! I'll catch up with you tomorrow morning. I am glad that I have my poem at last.

  6. Thanks for the prompt, Sumana. I love it!

  7. Hi Sumana! A lovely prompt...but I've stuck to my own spelling of neighbours! (smiles)

  8. Hello Sumana- what a wonderful prompt. I consider all of you my neighbors and this poem is dedicated to you all!

  9. Evening, Poets! Thanks, Sumana, for this inviting prompt! Happy Hump Day, all! :)


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