In the Rooms, Women Come and Go – hour 12

Hour 12, Prompt 12


In the Rooms, Women Come and Go


Betty’s machine-gun laugh rat-a-tat-tats from the far corner where the hostess positioned her

Attempting to soften the gunfire with the plethora of ornament-themed throw pillows and expensive red rugs between the shrapnel and the refined guests

Someone I’ve never seen at one of these soirees offers to take Betty out to the patio

But a professor of minerology points to the ceramic tiles and drones about acoustics, reverberation, something about echo off the snow


Waiters in their tuxedoes with matching red facemasks and cummerbunds clink wine glasses against silver trays more loudly,

As if this will cover the lack of cultivation coming from the corner


Fancy women come and go, don’t you know


From my perch near the white grand piano, where a hired musician currently tickles a much-too-slow version of “Merry Christmas, Darling,” I accept from one penguin’s tray a waffle-cone cracker with a dollop of cream cheese and peach slice

Do I dare to eat this?

At least my trousers aren’t rolled

I know my hair is thinner than it used to be and my days among this society are numbered


My amusement heightened, I click across the marble floor, avoiding the pricy rugs of dubious material and introduce myself to Betty


“Chahhmed, I’m sure,” she says


“You know why Monique’s tree reminds me of a priest?”


Betty blinks her lush lashes at me, swishing her martini with its peppermint stick

“What? Why?”


“Its balls are just for decoration.”


With her head thrown back dramatically, Betty’s machine-gun fire erupts again


Fancy women come and go, don’t you know


Entwined – hour 11

Hour 11, Prompt 11

(the twisted tree image)



(this one is by the character Nigel Taiman from my world of Onweald)


I might have forgotten this day to mention

when the first sun spread

dawn’s pale blue across our bed

how perfectly you are an extension

of the soul of me


Gods placed and planted our roots side by side

to grow to embracing

perfection enlacing

supporting, holding your form alongside

close against the soul of me


It is the joy of my life to rise with you

and succumb to the breeze

tangling branches to appease

those entwined and wet with dew

out of the soul of me


The Lazy Honeybee – hour 10

Hour 10, Prompt 10


The Lazy Honeybee


The other bees grew weary of Larry droning on

about his sore wing.


Laden with pollen Larry refused to carry

because of his wing,


the other bees darted to and fro, past him lounging

cradling his wing.


Until the queen saw him at the edge of the hive

holding his wing.


With a kick and a shove, she sent him flying

on perfectly good wings.

January Tracks

Hour 9, Prompt 9


January Tracks


Come January when family’s tire tracks are frozen in the drive

And the cookstove pumps its heat through his roughshod shack

Wind whistles lonely hollow along the edge of camp

And mem’ries come quick on its melody’s tail

Of all the decorations Ma took home in her boxes

The one she missed is sweetest and dearest

His room’s bare bulb’s light reflects off its red Avon glass

Alone on a shelf where garland recently draped,

Then obscuring the silver screw-on ball,

Now mirroring his image back to him

Imagining Ma with a touch of Sweet Honesty Cologne behind her ear

Sweetening the cinnamon spice bread pudding with which she filled his place

Just looking at this ornament left behind swirls

The scents of nutmeg and pine

Reminders of Ginny laughing at presents unwrapping

And Ma blushing at the extravagance he offered

In a box of cordials and bracelet of gold

That he’d offer again just to see her smile

Before packing up Christmas and leaving frozen tracks in the drive



Unfurl – hour 8

Hour 8, Prompt 8





the unsettling rose upward

with tumult unfolding within


pressing, pushing, unfurling

frozen potential caught swirling

amid darkness and frustration curling


a great, dark swelling of intent

mixed with cellular structure


rent asunder and over under

held against pressure of eons


as if the ground could reach into

the unsettling rising upward


with great, dark swelling of intent

in the depth of dirt and mud and crust

reaching, stretching for what it must


with melting snow giving way

to purple crocus unfurling to the sun

Bird Treats – Hour 7

Hour 7, Prompt 7

(10th non-selfie phone pic)


Bird Treats (a haiku)

green’ry pink orchids

flaxen millet plucked from sprays

on lychees and kale

Gotta Block You – hour 6

Hour 6, Prompt 6

(a letter from someone who left me)


Gotta Block You


Thanks for voting for me in the vocal competition.

Thanks for sharing the link to buy tickets to my play—it went over great for an all-female cast in a small town like this, right?

Thanks for the chocolate-laden care package when Misty died due to complications from AIDS—I still miss her somethin’ fierce.

Thanks for all the excited text messages about the upcoming Bob’s Burgers movie—altho, you know, you used an EXCESSIVE number of exclamation points. LOL

Thanks for the pictures of mongoose and otters—I don’t know why I think they’re so adorable, but they make me smile.

Thanks for inquiring about my bro’s health and offering to pray for him before surgery—altho, you know he’s never been religious.

Thanks for always texting random song lyrics each time a new James song dropped.

Thanks for contributing to Pax’s veterinary fund—no one else had money to spare when that was going down.

But, look, Karen told me who you voted for.

And I just can’t even…


No Space Between Us

Hour 5, Prompt 5

Space, oak, knitting, sunflower, hardback



No Space Between Us (a poem from Onweald)


The thick oak planks beneath my feet

are smoothed, so polished with resin,

that they speak to foundational strength

and planning put into motion ages ago.


As if it were always fate knitting our lives so tightly,


That there’s no space between us


I could spend each day of eternity on this swing,

it’s hardback wood supporting

our quiet contemplation of approaching night

and the scent of heather, wildflowers wafting

across the fields the enemy would burn to reach us.


As if it were always fate knitting our souls so tightly,


That there’s no space between us


I will spend each night of eternity at your side,

your perfect power a complement

to my perfect strength in the approaching storm

With commitment, engagement, this bond entwined

like sunflowers turning toward one another in the dark.

The Wooden Shoemaker

Hour 4 Prompt 4


The Wooden Shoemaker


Andrew V’s not welcome here

To Scarface I’ll swear loyalty

Bring your coin for footwear

You’re free to speak easily


Lift your bootleg for measurement

And treat your shoemaker like a gent


It’s not many a cobbler

Who can carve like me

Buy a pair a cowshoes

And get a hollow cane for free

Lapwings on the Moors – hour 3

Hour 3 Prompt 3


Lapwings on the Moors


The clouds settled early over the moors today

Reminding me of the frosts that coat the late lapwing eggs in their nests


So I ran

I ran to gather them

To protect them

To save them

To give them a warm place they might shelter during the cold night


Only to find you’d tortured them with your trap

And now I see your bars

I long to escape your hold before I die in the nest as well

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