Prompt 12, Poem 12: True self

 

The forest has a secret world he

visits when the world is asleep

searching for his true self in

the stars and deep in the

ocean, he travels

from tree to tree;

he isn’t

paralyzed

here.

Prompt 11, Hour 11: Building

Rain had nourished the Periwinkle;

a beautiful blue flower with petals shaped like a fan.

The little girl took them gently in her hands and sniffed them

then she returned to jumping in the puddles nearby.

Her black gumboots were caked with mud and she had no care in the world.

 

A single cloud remained in the sky after the storm.

Her mother took pictures and spread them out on the table;

Admiring each one closely, pressure to choose the right one for the newspaper building.

She has to beat the best local famous photographer in the contest to have her picture printed.

 

She glances up and looks out at the window,

Spotting her daughter’s lit up face, turned to the sky, her laughter sneaking in the nooks and crannies

of their house and filling her soul with peace.

She can’t help but smile and lift her camera once again.

Prompt 10, Hour 10: Peace

New year’s eve doesn’t hold the magic it used to.

It’s just another year gone, then another year born.

I write down New Year’s resolutions in my journal and I look forward to that.

But nothing more.

And it’s okay.

 

Every holiday doesn’t need a party or spending lots of money.

You just need peace to go on.

I yearn for peace.

Prompt 9, Hour 9: Relief

Hard times were upon us all in 2020.

A pandemic hit.

Many lost jobs and loved ones.

It was an apocalypse that will never be forgotten.

The world was in crisis, some still are 15 months later.

People are asking for continued help from the president.

Some sit on the edge of their seats, waiting for more relief.

Its not over. And yet there was a pandemic in the early 1900s;

the Spanish flu

and people made it through, not untouched.

So as worry levels climb,

there is a promise;

this too shall pass.

Hour 8, Poem 8: Hope

Tiredness sneaks in and makes me slow.

Mistakes are made but as long as I make it through I’m okay.

Between poems, I lay down and close my eyes.

Images dance behind yet my emotions are disconnected.

Waiting to hear my alarm to write another poem,

I disappear for a while within the hallways of my mind.

and hope I can it all done.

Prompt 7, Hour 7: Normal

Ever since I was a young teen, I wished I could be normal.

Have a brain without mental illness and anxiety disorders.

No chemical imbalance.

Lifetime depression would be absent.

Sometimes, I don’t want to be me.

Some days, I’m so tired of being alive.

Few days, I actually feel all right.

Sometimes, I tell myself over and over I’m okay.

Some days, my mind won’t stop.

Few days, I don’t believe my mind’s insults.

I take an anti-anxiety pill and breathe out.

If I was normal, I wouldn’t struggle to hold a job.

If I was normal, I’d be confident.

But I’m not.

Prompt 6, Hour 6: In

My heart leaps along with the violin.

My mind is cleared.

There is hope everywhere.

My cats glance up from their cat tree.

Is she finally writing after a long break?

Get it all out. Ideas bloom in my imagery garden.

I examine from all sides and choose a setting.

Words dance with each other. I nod my head to the music.

We are never truly alone. There is always poetry and books to escape in.

Just bring down the walls

and let the beauty in.

Prompt 5, Poem 5: Grandma

Rain has cleansed the town,

nourishing the grass and flowers;

I sit on the front porch,

breathing in the clean air.

Suddenly, one of my cats comes running across the yard

and stops, batting at an object sticking out of the ground.

I cautiously approach and poke the blue circular glass object with my foot.

It begins to turn and shake violently, blue smoke rising from the middle.

I am swallowed by the blue smoke and dropped into my grandma’s old living room.

I watch my 6 year old self and my 4 year old cousin, dressed for summer, talking to

Grandma in the kitchen.

We are playing house, we tell her. We need a job.

How about a famous author? Grandma suggests.

I’m teleported into grandma’s living room with blue couches, the one

in front of the window rocks.

I watch as we each sit on a pillow, construction paper and markers

surrounding us on the coffee table.

We write away with little chatter and show Grandma after.

She gives us a quarter for every story.

We feel like good mom’s.

My heart warms.

Blue smoke fills the air and I am brought back home.

What is this trying to tell me?

Publish a book?

I sigh as my cat rubs against my legs.

It’s still my dream.

Later, I sit writing poems with other poets.

Grandma would be proud

that I never gave up.

Prompt 4, Poem 4: Remember

 

Thus, remembrance;

the tiny memories I keep in a box with a heart on the top;

protected from forgetfulness.

Pictures are all around in my home, memories trapped in time I can revisit.

Or of people or cats I can reminisce.

Stuffed animals are everywhere,

they bring comfort and love,

I’m always looking for more.

There is art here and there that gives me joy,

stirring my inspiration

and soon I am writing away again.

I write one positive thing a day in my journal,

so one day, I can look back and remember.

 

Thus, remembrance. – Colleen Schwartz, Bellingham, WA, U.S. Hour 7  The Poetry Marathon Anthology 2019

Prompt 3, Hour 3: In My Heart

There was a rainbow in the sky

and a rainbow across the calendar.

It’s June; pride month.

I watch my rainbow flag ripple in the wind.

If there is anyone around here that is alone and can’t show who they are,

There is an ally who lives here.

I’m your neighbor, an advocate, I’ll be your family if you have none.

 

There was a black lives matter sticker on my car-

it’s a little damaged from wear and tear;

and there is a black lives matter sign in my heart.

It’s 2021, racism should be dead.

I watch as people glance at my car.

If there is anyone around here who is mistreated because of skin color and can’t find love,

There is an ally here.

I’m your neighbor, an advocate, I’ll be your family if you have none.

 

There is a no tolerance for bullying rule wherever you go.

Sometimes it’s as if there is small print, excusing bullying

but not when you enter my world.

I can’t stand someone being hurt.

I read stories and my heart breaks.

If there is anyone here who is being bullied, reach out, tell.

There is an ally who will stand up for you.

I’m your neighbor, an advocate, I’ll be your family if you have none.

 

There is stigma and judgment around mental illness.

Sometimes those who suffer can’t get help or speak up.

They feel alone in the hell their mind has become.

Writing helps me stay sane.

If there is anyone that is a prisoner of their own mind, write, scream, open up.

There is an ally who will listen and be there for you.

I’ll be your ears, on your team, rooting for you and sitting with you in the dark.

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