A torch carried on forever, indeed,
for the aggressive rhymer in me,
is alive again, unshackled and freed,
rising to challenge another day, I see.
As I found myself lost deep in Tolkien,
with epic Star Wars, never ending,
surrounded in a geek paradise, serene,
optical illusions before me, suspending.
Life's songs on guitar strings strummed,
an epiphany unlike they've ever heard,
euphoric dreams in my visions hummed,
as I pen archaic word after archaic word.
Artistry is born only to be my brother,
encircled this star, a pentagram made,
my day is done, I have conquered another,
as the sun slowly brings down the shade.
A Word Collage For Chan Hurst
(Cyndi MacMillan's contest)
Beside a gilded wall of white a dainty bench is resting;
Victorian accents swirl about the ornate room, providing
An elegance, a beauty in each line and curve, attesting
To cultured tastes and upscale life, and hours spent deciding
What shapes and colors best would suit the airy, springtime feeling:
But looking closely, something there upon the bench reposes,
A lady's fan and soft kid gloves, their jumbled state revealing
What hasty movements cast them all aside when fragrant roses
Arrived in state with baby's breath, and some white note, nigh hidden
In bursting blooms of rainbow hue, by unknown hands delivered:
And having noted thus, the eye could not but roam unbidden
To she who holds the rose bouquet, to she who slightly shivered
With thoughts that youths so oft imagine, thoughts that made her giddy
And blushed her cheeks the color of the rosy dress cascading
With lacy ruffles from her shoulders, looking just as pretty
As her face, which looks for all the world like roses never fading;
Two lips like shiny cherries, or the poppies that she tends to,
Complexion like a creamy rose with hints of pink surrounding
The fragile outer curling of its leaves; brown eyes that send you
A warm, quick-spreading feeling, like the first hot sunrays bounding
Thro' seas of blue to make the greengrass grow. Now look, she's taking
The little note from out among the stems; perhaps with quiet
And careful steps the message could be read; I have to try it.
"My dearest Rose, I never could imagine so befitting
A name for one who does resemble all that man finds charming
In lovely blossoms: beauty surely, grace as they are flitting
In breezes sweet of scent, and frailty, which I find disarming;
So here's a gift no prettier and sweet than you. Sincerely,
A man that loves you more than you could know.
Quatrains of decapentasyllabic verse followed by a single line of iambic pentameter.
Written by Isaiah Zerbst. Published for the first time January 26, 2015.
Why is it poetry, is a like dirty word and talked of in undertones?
It’s like a naughty postcard, more flesh than there are bones.
Poets tend to deny their art, “I’m not a poet, I’m a rhym-er”
Come on you lot get stuck in don’t be a poetry two-timer.
After a glass of alcohol some may admit-“I like a little verse”
“But no I m not into poetry…” It’s like a speech they did rehearse.
Now poems I’m getting good at, but famous poets I don’t know any
Don’t ask me if I’m a poet, because in wages I don’t earn a penny.
Now rhyme I am not bad at, but at free verse I would stink
As for haiku, senryu, and other forms, I stink I really think…
I listened to some so called poets; decry their art the other day
They denied their art while they listened, to what each other had to say.
Standing there with their poems held high, “I’m not a poet” they all said
Well get down from the microphone and let’s hear a poet instead…
They pass their poems around the table, like some black market currency
Not wanting anyone to see it, but they are at a reading for poetry.
So be loud and proud you poets stand firm for what you believe in
Tell them you are a poet, and just get used to all the teasing
I used to be a shy poet and I write verse with some frivolity
But the definition in my dictionary says “words with a pleasing quality.”
So now I am open to judgement from all of you wonderful poets
You have all commented on my work, but do you really know it?
You all have qualities that scare me, you really seem so clever
So can I finally admit to being a poet, from now on and forever?
Self-gratification is the fruit of one's love,
making the artist's delighted face glow...
when every vision has been achieved,
and each intention joyfully revealed.
He will envision the shape and colors,
then transfer those images to canvas;
and with the gentles strokes of his brush...
real faces will appear and suddenly blush.
Thinker and dreamer, let passion and imagination flow,
don't be distracted by worries or external sounds below;
work diligently with your brush, transcending your own credibility...
but later, it would be too hilarious to scream out your insanity.
Self-gratification is the fruit of one's love...
that enduring, timeless legacy hard to ignore;
when others show admiration, you'll be so pleased
and motivated to add more laurels to your prestige.
Copyright 2009 by Andrew Crisci
I ponder marks cut into cliffs
or drawn in caves within the earth
and wonder if I have the gift
to leave a mark of equal worth.
As jet planes streak across the sky,
I think of modern man's advance;
will my profile engraved in stone
say only, "She excelled in dance?"
With silver trophies on my wall
and music thumping in my brain,
I long to weave a warm refrain
one worthy of someone’s recall.
Will sweet notes fall on future ears,
spit from my heart onto the page
and brand me as the wise old sage
whose written words a world reveres?
I read yarns penned by bards of old
and learn of fame poets begat.
Within my breast a yearning burns,
a wish that I could write like that.
Paste on your passion smile
Crisp all your words
as you settle yourself
to be self-consumed, heard
Whisper sweet nothings
which only you know
Don't stop the banter,
the words or the flow
You've reached the summit
of the loneliest point
You're king of the vacancy
best in the joint
Write all your poems
on the back of your hand
and read them at supper
of cream pie and sand
Your siblings will stand up
and whisper applause
You've felt all emotion
and ridden all stars
They bid you good-bye
for you're out of their league
and to think you just wanted
to be heard, succeed...
*Inspired by Edmund Blair Leighton's painting of the same title
She wanders into the garden,
A glorious book in her hand.
It's bound by the loveliest cloth,
And the story inside is grand.
The story provides an escape
From a life of duties and rules.
The characters become good friends
And prose adorns pages like jewels.
As lavender perfumes the air,
It mingles with wind through the trees.
She loses her place for a time
As pages are blown by the breeze.
Surrounded by flowers and shrubs
And shaded by trees that seclude,
She clutches the book to her chest
And basks in this sweet solitude.
Mornings of rubies and sapphires are fine
Afternoons of Topaz and turquoise divine
Evenings with Emeralds shine bright
But nothing compares to a Black Diamond night
Together the Owl and the PusyCat were married
Then again sailed out over the deep blue seas
Searching forever for the great Land of Nod,
To the place where they could find true peace.
True peace, true peace… Where they could find true peace.
The love that twined forever within their hearts
They sought throughout all the wonderous lands
Going to the place where they would live in peace,
A place where true peace, rules and lives in the hearts of the land.
The land, the land… Where true peace lives in the heart of the land.
Alas, the love of the heart, though truly not easy to find…
Is easier to find than the love of peace, found throughout the land.
So it’s said they will continue to sail, until that day comes true,
And when they land for the final time, will be up to me and you.
Me and you, me and you… That day will be up to me and you.
I am so far out of my element
It almost seems unreal
When in truth, which I always seek to find
Pretence is all that I feel
In this, my second language
I aim to express the glistening skin
That hides the shallow graves of conscience
Trapped so deep within
The pottery I shape in craft
Though pedistilled and on display
A camouflage that’s merely drafted
words of wisdom most portray
And in the spirit of fairness
As a virtue which we all possess
Accept my resignation
For this sport has had its best
I’m off to party hard and waste
My life as best as I know how
The animal within this chest
Needs freedom to survive for now
The playing game of words
is but a winding road that’s filled with stone
I’m parched in parts unheeded
As my cluttered soul heads home
The dandelion sat along on the hill
watching the rose's play.
He asked to join the fun and games;
is it all right if I stay?
The rose's said, you can not play,
for you are not one of us.
Go back to your hill to your grassy clump,
and don't you make a fuss.
For we are tall with our beautiful stems
and nicely shaped leaves.
Our petals are grand,
the best in the land,
so stay away you weed.
A beautiful flower, tall and grand,
you are, the dandelion sighed.
Your petals are grand, the best in the land,
but i'd rather be pretty inside.
For the rose's and their beauty so grand,
will fade and wither with time,
but the dandelion's beauty within,
is one thing that will never die.
Writing is much like a runaway cart.
With no destination in view, I start
a masterpiece using words in my mind.
Characters develop and a story I find.
I post my piece, releasing the reins
to an editor's hands. My genius wanes
as remarks come which tear it apart.
Writing is much like a runaway cart.
We photographed this shoot
Against frosted glass
In the shape of hearts
That captured her class
Her long blond hair
Catches the light
Her curvaceous shape
My love for her grows
White silk robe
In midriff drape
This vista, my view
I am left agape
Our shoot closes
The applause we take
As i turn to my Tink's
My darling, its you who makes
He was the bard from Stratford, and as a teenager
he helped his father in his trade; he married and had children
and became the most popular and admired play writer
in all England...acting was also his other pleasurable passion.
Curious Queen Elisabeth was one of the thousand spectators,
who came to see him in the Globe theater...she shed tears,
and was stunned by the performance of his timeless plays,
and yet, some of his fellow-poets criticized him for his writings!
I wish I had lived in that Victorian era so intellectual and refined,
and had met him in person and had showed him my ample admiration;
I would have asked him the secret, which made him so legendary and loved...
and he would have whispered it to me, to make me revel in that revelation!
I have read his inspiring works, and tragedies rampantly occur
from " Romeo and Juliet"...the Verona's immortal lovers, through" Hamlet "
whose insanity was undoubtedly caused by the specter of his father;
and why didn't Shakespeare choose less dramatic plays not ending in death?
He wanted to teach us indelible lessons to show us how the human spirit
can be passionate, adamant, loveless, envious, cruel, unfair and treacherous...
to outline all kinds of guilt: from murder to envy so well-expressed with eloquence;
it's no mystery to anyone how he conjured up such plots with grief, madness and wit!
Shakespeare was no ordinary kid, and he played with his siblings on Henley Street,
neighbors saw him trot to his grammar school, later he would make everyone weep;
early in adolescence, did his prodigious mind envision one from a vague thought?
It's no wonder that he is widely read even today...hear his speak, he'll impart worth!
Entered in Amy Green's contest, " Wow Me With Inspiration "
I grab the holder of my secrets, and dip him into black then red.
I do not mix them, so when I stroke my reveal; they accompany one another.
I wish it was easier to speak as others would, but instead I let myself shed.
without words and a knife, I bleed myself on this canvas, and let my brush smother.
Bitten fruit in still life oils
shined by light internal
shows there is no sweet perfection
Portraits crunched, pureed and such
by hands dissolved, ungifted
wipe the paint from canvas skin
until the stains are lifted
Soak the sky with thoughts of art
Speak like a simpleton speaks
Scour the ground for a speck of emotion
to hoard in your hollows for weeks
Reconcile to read a book
Bury your heart in it's sleeve
At the moment you feel like a still life imperfect
you humbly ask and receive...
Filled up with quips like a clanking balloon
blown up with coins not with air
Clittering, clatter on golden paved streets
his winsome words, plenty to share
Brilliant performance, he's taking his bow
on a bed of burnt peacock feathers
The skycap he wears filled with holes and with tears
has protected him well from the weather
The crowd gangly gathers with popcorn and fruit
with the wish and the will just to laugh
He juggles emotions with unending devotion
and doubles his jokes up by half
By the end of the night the whole room is alight
with marshmallow bellies still shaking
From the butt of all jokes to a friend of all folks
he's a super star right in the making...
Chinese Ribbon Dance
Ribbons fly in wide circles
Flung by hands of maidens fair,
As they dance with turns and twists,
Satin ribbons fill the air.
Loops of wonder, colors soft
Like a rainbow, mesmerize…
Music, synchronized, combine
Gifts of art through ears and eyes.
Ribbon circles rise and fall
Twisting, turning high and low...
Follow movements of skilled hands,
Twirl in endless color flow.
Round and round and round they go,
Ribbons foster mystic trance
Through the art of maidens fair…
Dancers of the Ribbon Dance.
© Sandra M. Haight 2015
All Rights Reserved
Contest: Chinese New Year & Celebrations
Theme: Ribbon Dance
Sponsor: Debbie Guzzi
Our exquisite Queen of passion
Rides on a dazzling white horse
Within her hand she wields a pen
Describing adventures of course
She takes us to many places
So our own psyches we can explore
To the thoughts of former lovers
Or through imaginary doors
Within her realm she is fearless
A true warrior of the mind
Some say the passion whisperer
She can give color to the blind
The fountain of her thoughts endless
With her we travel back in time
To former days of gallantry
As we engage in every line
Mesmerized by her artistry
As we follow her where she goes
Eileen's sexy has no limits
Ooh la la licious as it flows
Dedicated to Eileen, our queen of passion.
From the depths of choppy waters,
Emerges the shell of man.
Draped in an aquatic robe,
Deliberately...making his stand.
With New York at his shoulders,
And the Big Apple by his side.
His robust presence emerged,
Creating...the evening tide.
The sun boldly illuminates,
The way for birds to fly.
As the world protrudes the heavens,
Through an M.C. Escher sky.
When I search for blue
Which blue should I use
Is my blue a violet
Or is my blue a blue
When I need a sunset
Of orange and yellow hues
To describe a moment
Making words a view
Today my red is velvet
Yesterday a rose
On lips red is passion
And without words they propose
The sky has expressions
Shades of grays and blues
Sometimes it shows its rainbow
A splinder of its colorful use
Green gives birth to many colours
Innumerable flowers and fruit
They smell and taste delicious
With sented petals and flavorful roots
Colours tell us something
Words can never supply
Colours measure sweetness
And colours measure life
In the winter is snow
Made of purest white
In the midnight hour
Black is the darkest night
When we want attention
We make our colours bright
To mirror images in our minds
And gives the readers sight
Exotic and erotic names
Doesn't fit my fancy
But there are those that tightly hold
Strong colours in their fantasies
When red is mauve and purple fuchsia
And whites confused with peril
Seems like colours were once all men
But now some colours are girls
I stood on top the leaning tower of Pisa
And watched as the tourists walked by.
I felt just a little bit closer to heaven
When surrounded by her bells in the sky.
I visited Rome in the springtime,
With its colorful flowers galore.
Seeing Saint Peters sparkle in sunlight,
You couldn't ask for much more.
I have ventured down and around
A narrow cobblestone street,
And marveled at ruins near the edge of the city
Where the old and new come to meet.
While viewing the beautiful fountain of Trevi
And watching as young lovers kissed,
I could feel the cool breezes blowing
As the fountain caressed my face with its mist.
I remember the wonder of Michelangelo's David
And the pigeons that flocked to his arms.
How proudly he stands in the city of Florence
With her glorious art that defines her charms.
Beautiful Italy, where rolling hills of
Vineyards produce the finest wine,
And its grapes so plump and juicy
Can withstand the test of time.
In Venice, the city of romance,
Where lights in the evening dance on the sea;
Where all of one's cares seem to vanish,
And all of your worries will flee.
Oh beautiful Italy,
Where lover’s dreams come true.
A land of love and romance
Where I fell in love with you.
Italy - for "Somewhere Over the Rainbow Contest" by Debbie Guzzi
*Inspired by George Dunlop Leslie's painting of the same title
The wizard's slumbering garden
spins magic with ivy thread.
The lure of this mystical web
snares the beauteous girl in red.
He christens this damsel "Scarlet"
for the hue of her crimson gown,
for the tint of her blooming cheeks
that contrast the ashen ground.
The garden robs her rubescence
to fuel the wizard's dark spells,
draining her beauty and vibrance
until Scarlet becomes a mere shell.
But to her, this yard rivals Eden,
teeming with flowers and fruit,
bursting with colour and light,
from tallest tree to deepest root.
But her vision is mere mirage
in a garden half-dying and grim,
in a graveyard of latent runes
that veil this labyrinth of sin.
Here in the wizard's garden,
warm breath and cold death collide.
In the guise of a noble pardon,
Scarlet becomes his blind bride.
For Isaiah's "George Dunlop Leslie" contest
Here is a link to the painting: http://www.victorianweb.org/painting/misc/leslie1.html
Tonight we play our favorite duet
to an audience of celestial stars.
Variations over years; a song we never forget,
stroking familiar notes within each bar.
Andante: pianissimo: slow caresses as whispers,
giving attention to those sensitive keys.
Each to the other, a part we deliver;
Entwined we perform with such ease.
Allegro: increasing our synchronized tempo
as our chorus delightfully sings through.
Vibrating heartstrings deeply now flow;
enjoying our art as if new.
Vivo! As the beat of two hearts now race.
Crescendo! Intensively, climax is reached.
Pausing in arc at this euphoric place;
echos in afterglow; encores in dreams.
Is it painful to convey your art,
or is it artful to convey your pain?
Does the torment carry the weight of a thousand suns,
when the love of words slowly but surely drains?
As the heart is healed the poetry departs.
Poets' pens left straining in their hands.
But it's ok, in Love we are all One.
Let's melt into the heavens and flee this barren land.
His hands are mesmerizing;
They move with easy grace.
With wide palms and long fingers,
He stirs this breathless place.
His melody is haunting;
It strikes my deepest chord.
His hands pluck at my heartstrings,
Touch regions unexplored.
I can't help but imagine
Just how those hands would feel
Playing tunes against my skin -
A world of notes unsealed.
He concentrates so deeply,
Immersed in making art.
And here I sit - Pathetic!
Jealous of a damned guitar!
fly my little nightingale
and take this song i give you
to the land of genies and magic carpets
a piece of my heart i send too
hide yourself very well
and you will not be seen
but before the dawn becomes the day
proclaim my love with screems
fly my little nightingale
into her ear, into her heart
tell her i am always near
and will never ever depart
hide yourself within her dreams
and own from dusk till dawn
but when she leaves begin your screems
your mourning while she's gone
fishing at a river
not knowing what he'd catch
he casted out his line
not hopeing for the best
sometimes you get a nibble
and sometimes you get a bite
but you never know what's on the line
until you reel it in for sight
fishing at the river
not knowing what he'd catch
he caught a fish named charlie
some say that it's the best
she fell for it hook,line, and sinker
and surely did'nt resist
for all the fishermans trickery
he did his very best
he'd caught her with his words
and suduced her with his rhymes
pulled on her emotions
tightened up his lines
he had to be persistant
and hold on don't let loose
reeling in his biggest catch
gave his ego a boost
but when it came to falling in love
she'd put him to the test
the fisherman was surely happy
with hit lastest catch
She faced the fury of an angry sea
Screaming to the wind “You’ll not get me!
For I’m no stranger to crushing waves,
and have no desire for a watery grave.
"So bring on your worst, I’ll meet it head on,
and still be standing, when you’ve moved on.
I’ll set up an easel and take up my brush;
I’ll paint till it’s finished in the post-storm hush.
"All those who view it will relive again
the force of the storm, and the thundering din.
I’ll treasure the memory as they pause to inspect;
I’ll count my blessings, as I rest and reflect."
Opening the doors to
the old studio I find
A playful capriole
sprinted across my mind
Into a sashay and a glissade
I drifted back
I could hear the teachers
stick go tap.tap.tap
Once a prestigious ballet
school of great poise
Filled with music as our
slippers sounded with noise
The mirrors are cracked
and the floors dusty
Rain soaked wood left the
room smelling musty
The charm stayed behind
as if waiting for me
Spotlighting a ballerina to
The goddess of the sea
The young girl danced
flawlessly then took a bow
Then sashayed off the stage
without a moistened brow
An old battered piano
appeared across from me
Bearing red ballet shoes
like a crimson canopy
Charm embraced her while
honoring her memory
As I looked into the mirror
I saw that girl was me
Carole Cookie Arnold