What is Love (2023 Poem Ten)

What is Love

Shelter from any storm
Courage to forever be true
Strength against all odds
Will to always protect you

Pain when I am not injured
Sadness on my best day
Joy when nothing goes right
Worry when all goes my way

Listening to the words I don’t say
Sharing a solid embrace
Four am calls without hesitation
Being my rock, my safe space

(Prompt: The first three words of your title should be “what is love”. That can be your whole title, in and of itself, probably followed by a question mark, or you can add more context onto the title before proceeding to the poem itself.)

Acrophobia (2023 Poem Six)


Fear of heights be damned, the Earth is flat, that’s easy enough to prove
If only I could walk up to the edge, but I can’t bring myself to move
I don’t need to take a photo just to make you see
The edge is over there on the horizon, it’s as plain as day to me

I know the edge must have a high lip holding all the water, just like a baking tin
Logic says it must be high enough to keep all the things and people contained within
Some say there is no edge, that Antarctic ice sheets go on to infinity
Clearly, once it melts it would all simply pour out, including all the sea

There must be dirt, mountains, beaches, oceans, and icebergs right up to the wall
If there was nothing to make the edge, clearly all earthly things would start to fall
It’s probably made of iron ore, or something magnetic and strong, you see
To bring a compass needle bearing north, and for the likes of thee

(Prompt: The earth is actually flat, you look over the edge and what do you see? Describe it. Disclaimer: I am in no way, shape, or form a flat-earther.)

Words in the Bayou (2023 Poem Nine)

Words in the Bayou

Watching you discard the raw beet left from dinner
I pull my jacket tighter closed against the bonfire smoke
To dispel my tremor from this October evening

Do you recall our last night upon the bayou?
Walking hand in elbow in the dusk
Our front porch lightbulb growing faint
Scent of cinnamon wafting on the breeze

The rain began as though pouring from a bucket
Calling elk broke the silence between us
As we ran back, laughing, sheltering in the carport

(Prompt: Use this list of ten words. Please pick at least five of them to use in your poem. If you want to use all ten, please do so. Words are: beet jacket tremor bayou elbow lightbulb cinnamon bucket elk carport)

Campfire Haiku (2023 Hour Eight)

Campfire Haiku

Wood smoke fills the air
hot face, cold back, boots melting
sizzle, crackle, pop

Warmth seeping into
bones chilled by desert
air under starlight

Silence here at first
full with life once you are still
vibrant if you look

(Prompt: Photo of a man holding a lantern, sitting next to a campfire under a night sky filled with stars Photo by Tianhao Wang)

Butterfly Glasses (2023 Poem Seven)

Butterfly Glasses

All that might be
Hearing winds swaying leaves
With care, I emerge
Full of wonder

Feeling warm golden sun
All that might be
Full of hope
Expanding outward, I stretch

Fragile wings slowly unfurl
Full of joy
All that might be
Inhaling peat scented earth

Full of love
Tasting sweet rain drops
Patiently waiting for flight
All that might be

(Prompt:  The viator is a poetic form invented by Robin Skelton. The first line is used again as refrain in the second line of the second stanza, and the third line of the third stanza, and so on and so forth depending on how many stanzas you include. The last line of the final stanza must be the refrain, so you start and end on it.)

Not My Door (2023 Poem Four)

Not My Door

Brings us together
Tears us apart

Hopes, dreams, connection
Ultimately Unknown

Be your best
Facade of self
Projection of your hopes and fears

I set down my pack
You place boulders inside
This is not my door


(Prompt: Write a poem about the topic of marriage, without ever using the word marriage, and while also ideally avoiding the words spouse, husband, and wife.)

Forty Four (2023 Poem Two)

Forty Four

(Inspired by and to the tune of Barrett’s Pivateers by Stan Rogers  url)

How I wish I was in Halifax now

I’ve taken forty four turns around the sun
Yet, I’m not sure what I have truly done
The spark has gone, there’s no joy, no fun
So I’ll raise a glass to the old Rum Run

How I wish I was in Halifax now

I dreamed of adventures across the sea
Now it seems life has got away from me
I’ve no idea where, who, or what I will be
In the year of twenty twenty-three

How I wish I was in Halifax now

Despite no plan, life’s not what I had thought
Tangled within your chaos, now I find I am caught
Explain to me, how and what we have wrought
It’s well past time, I must decide, to stay or not

How I wish I was in Halifax now

(Prompt: Write a poem from the point of view of yourself, ten years ago.)

How She Found Us (2023 Poem One)

How She Found Us                                                     after Diana Khoi Nguyen

This is how she found us
the past draped about us like a cloak

Woven unreliable memories
Tales from children who now are grown

Bound too tight to breathe
shielded from our dreams

(Prompt: Write a poem inspired by (and/or using this line) from the poem Selkie Weaning Young (Redux) by Diana Khoi Nguyen.  “This is how she found us/ the past draped about us like a cloak”)

Stardust (2022 Poem 24)

You loved that song
I had forgotten
Until this moment
Now my heart aches

You loved daisies too
I will not forget again
I would carve it all into my palms
Before I too am

(Prompt: Write a poem that starts and ends with the same word. It can be short, but it has to be at least five lines long. If you can’t think of your own word to start and end with here are my suggestions: hope, stardust, cheese, sleep, and shoes.)

Shantaram (2022 Poem 23)

We often dreamt of astral travels
Walked through corridors of dreams
Danced a slow waltz in Austria
And the last tango in Paris

Graced a castle in Peru
Strolled at midnight through the Louvre
Wore the Crown Jewels to breakfast
Broke bread with Elvish Kings

Flew supersonic jets into the heavens
Swam and dove through nebulae
Tiptoed on active lava flows
Ran with cheetahs and gazelles

Talked for hours with Tesla and the Buddha
Sang with Bennie and the Jets
Spoke of world peace at the Final Summit
Soothed a teething Baby Grogu

Solved for peace here on Earth
Watered, housed, fed the masses
Created consciousness spontaneously
Found everyone their soulmate

Built Stonehenge, breathed stars into being
Birthed Rasputin, Cleopatra, Elvis, and Joan
Taught Nietzsche and Superman everything they know
Do you ever think it will be our time to rest

(Prompt: Pick the title of a book that you love, that title is now the title of the poem. That poem can be about the book directly, or indirectly, or it can use the title as a jumping off point, and be about something else entirely.)

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