A fledgling poet round two thousand three,
I found some friends who mentored me; they led
me to a site called Shadow Poetry.
By mental challenges there, I was fed.
I learned to better write according to
specific forms or themes, and I was thrilled
by all the many things that would ensue
the more time there I spent; I was fulfilled!
The annual big contest, Shadow Ink,
gave not just money, but a chapbook deal.
I paid to enter it and did not think
I stood a chance. How good I soon would feel!
My best friend and I tied. We HAD to call
our chapbook “Friendship Garden.” That said it all!
Note: Shadowpoetry.com was not able to be maintained as an interactive poetry community and after several wonderful years, the owner had to pull out. All our chapbooks were removed from the bookstore and the contests are no longer done. Today it is a website for writers' development only.
I love it when Spring finally comes
The buds showing their little sprouts
Yes indeed from this seasons of four
I'm awake many sleeping plants shout
I love it when I walk through the parks
When these buds turn to a sea of green
Forgotten are the plants being so stark
This birthing season just has to be seen
I love it when I sit on the park benches
When the breeze caresses Sakura trees
The airs scented by their pinky blossoms
Mother nature and man in total agree
When I retire I'll grow a green thumb for
I love it when Spring finally comes
Near somber guards, units of children heap
dead leaves, naive to any else fallen.
Friend, you chuckle, but your posture speaks
of duty on this day of contradictions.
Firefighters bow heads in silent paean,
while polished trucks stand at attention.
Families have again answered the call
to attend this festival, so uncommon.
Here, laughter rings around the memorial
for exuberance must never be doused,
Gloriously wrought, a sculpture of angels
commiserates with each mourning house.
You say, I see valor in lives that inspire.
I see heroes and their lines of fire.
At night I lay my soul to sleep,
Closing my eyes there is no peep,
This soft bed is just so mellow,
My head rests on this fresh pillow.
Forgetting the stress of the day
I am in bed without delay.
Soul at ease— the mind must follow,
My head rests on this fresh pillow.
Satin sheets over my shoulder,
Keep me warm—not getting colder.
Fantasy dreams I now billow,
My head rests on this fresh pillow.
At night I lay my soul to sleep,
My head rests on this fresh pillow.
Pure pageantry, how publishers' banners
wave over tents. Flocks of readers graze
on glossy trades, leaflets, hardcovers
and chapbooks. My friend, a true gent, stays
his ground. Maybe, it is the press of page;
Its forthright weave petitions for slants,
favors unique fonts, yet gilds no edge,
sees no need for illustration, just verdant
language. I did not intend to read
over his shoulder. He grins good-naturedly,
tweed makes an allowance. Each line, poetry,
he praises and I still my chatter. We feed
on gems, unrushed, but their brilliance spurs
a verbose woman and a man of his word.
*For David, a wonderful man, a devoted husband,
a loving and dedicated father. We know him here
as a poet who encourages, shares of himself freely,
and gives such solid advice.
He is a poet who does not waste words,
nor mince them. but he does send them out,
like lifeboats, when he spots chums in need.
Think the world of you, David.
I kidnapped David with a time machine.
The Word on the Street is a bookfair which
was held in Victoria park but is now held
downtown. SIGH. It was much nicer in the park,
early September. The squirrels would natter
from the trees, geese would fly by, low, aiming
for the pond
BLOG TO FOLLOW SOON
She lets me put violets in her hair,
good-humouredly, calls me Ophelia
in such a way that I spout, But Shakespeare
pushed war, not love. Resplendent, Thalia
strolls the peaceful paths of Victoria Park,
taken with the interplay of people,
the signs of change, bridges like love at work;
Often, her hands become divine steeples
of calm prayer. Yet there is imminence
heard in fervencies, a tremendous will
wrought with words of truth and tolerance
that dare to preserve all that is spiritual.
Three share our views in comfortable silence,
Me, hope and a Goddess of Non-Violence.
Loons sulk. Their search for meaning
sends us to sleep. Woods hold stillness.
As I dream of winds, ardent pines lean
towards waves, sooth brokenness.
Morning pulls us; from our tent we crawl,
hailed by daybreak, greeted by mist.
While coffee perks on the campfire, I’ll
shoulder your shoulder, find your kiss
is as smoky as the breakfast you fry.
Later, we explore the mossy woodlands,
stray from the path, surrender to sighs
shading the forest floor, under a span
of birch. Night falls, winks to wet lovers
who roll in stars, rock moonlit waters.
About this poem
This is a modern sonnet. It uses off rhyme, unusual punctuation placement and contains plenty of enjambment that extends past the usual insular quatrains.
Killbear park is a provincial park in Ontario. Its sites are quite... private ;-)
A warbling vireo hops from oak to elm.
Your gaze wanders, too. This amphitheater
hosts the lyrical, almost overwhelms,
for beyond the mill ruins, the Grand River
is deep in thought, reflecting. It’s as though myth
lives; Summerland has come to the hillside
where weathered fieldstones beguile the impish
to dance. They do or else tin flutes will chide.
Though cozy the spot, the world is at our feet.
Tanned toes can not help but tap. Strong is the lure
of pipes and those songs that dulcimers keep.
When night softly falls, one group brings rapture.
They sing until stars tire and all are hoarse
like poets rousing words to supplicate verse.
Cornices, and Gargoyles with eyes turned low,
hold fast the passing in a frozen stare
as slow vapor rising from vents below
is churned by soles into thick city air.
Undeterred, the well-heeled leather bottom
wingtips fly past sandaled sloths at crosswalks
while clicking heels kick dead leaves of autumn
and wind their way through crowded city blocks.
Just above a breezy sidewalk café,
sheer fabric wafts a low-loft window sill,
two pair of empty vamps and laces lay,
removed in shameless haste and lustful will.
Beneath the sheets, a naked feet affair,
entwined, aligned, with dreamy souls laid bare.
Michael F. Lewis and Thvia Shetley
I’ve loved her dearly since my childhood days
Watching her subtle movements under the sun’s hot rays
She was sheer beauty when calm and warm
And magnificent in the eye of the storm
She lured me with her magic charms
To far away places and a woman’s arms
To mysterious places and exotic sights
Under the Southern Cross, romantic nights
She reached inside me and touched my soul
She took my life and made it whole
The longing for her, my heart retained
A fading dream is what remained
I still dream of sailing her waters once more
As I stand alone along her shore.
Walk along the shore with me and let me see you smile
Close your eyes and visualize a romantic tropical isle
Palm trees and a summer breeze, sunshine overhead
Conversation with only our eyes, nothing being said
A secluded beach just out of reach, the surf the only sound
Two hearts one in the summer sun, a blanket on the ground
A sailboat dancing on the horizon, sun is going down
Tropical evening, harbor lights, as we walk back to town
Was it real or was I just dreaming as we walk along
And as we walk, the ocean singing her enchanting song
Feel the sand between our toes and taste the salty air
A falling star streaks across the sky going God knows where
You touch my heart and my soul in this island Paradise
The reflection of the Southern Cross in your loving eyes
I turn to my girl highlighting Mayday is near
A day of spectacle that the whole village views
There's Jesters of folly and Knights without fear
Witnessing lances and jokes, always going askew
To view such we can venture along different ways
We can stroll by the river listening to many sounds
In awe as we walk amidst most wondrous displays
That on any given day beautiful vistas abound
Decisions, decisions, as we contemplate which way
It's such a special day wondering what to wear
Beauty personified will my Olive be on this day
Knights or Royal Princes, all they can do is stare
So tomorrow we've decided to be our chosen route
Two hearts in decision, declaring what's their suit
Mayday morn now greets as I turn next to me
She my guiding light as beautiful as the dawn
Excitement illuminates for into her eyes I see
Onto my back I lie, that feel she's now upon
Into this day we go heading along the river
Crystal clear translucent such serenity in it's flow
Under greened canopies cooled shaded deliver
Wafting leaved dress in delightful fanned throw
We sense the clearings near for scents we sense
Sporadic clusters in capture of welcoming eyes
Mayday games have started, distant heard suspense
Knights on horseback mounted, now in espy
Now we're in amidst encapsulated we now are
She's here to cheer, her Sir James, soon to spar
Balcony she now awaits, white steed he's now astride
Blinkered pairings gallop towards intended foe
To win this Mayday he, to fight for her his bride
Eliminate his enemy, witness his crimson flow
His lance in now connect, thrown metal disperses
Petals of beauty hurled of rainbows selected
Images of we, now thinking marital rehearses
To know on this day, her intended she's elected
Moments of their previous now in recent past
Knowing they're now free in kaleidoscopic stream
Spectrum of feelings now in view full cast
In colourful extremes, fight for your dreams
River Laps Softly
The ripples of water lap river's edge
quietly I sit, a man seeking love
The orange twilight stirs my lonely soul
nearby, lonely call of a single dove
Sweetest place roaring river moans and churns
fish splashing about in a soft replay
Continuance as the world slowly turns
colors splash endings to wonderful day
The smell is that of fish , water and mud
cool air spreading its greatest soft relief
Comfort gives to stop anger in my blood
as Nature gifts a most calming belief
Soon its quiet , knowledge enters my soul
Victory came because I made it so
Robert J. Lindley, 08-08-2014
Poem Syllable Counter Results
Syllables Per Line: 10 10 10 10 0 10 10 10 10 0 10 10 10 10 0 10 10
Total # Syllables: 140
Total # Lines: 17 (Including empty lines)
Total # Words: 101
Entered in the contest, Any poem under 15 lines, Poet Destroyer
Sunset. Synergy is moving between chairs
that don't quite match, widening tight circles
of rovers. Muses Cafe, a small cove where
views internalize, so we heave heavy troubles
outside. Minstrel Mary Anne Epp shelters
songs about happenstance .When a server drops
a plate, she ad libs, Save cracks for later.
Heads nod to her witty vibes, bite-sized bops.
Inspiration strums as parlance sighs, Good grief,
my journal's at home. You say, All's fine.
but your purse offers only ONE loose leaf,
curiously room enough for TWO to lay lines.
Pens groove. Friend, you prove that poets can wage
self-determined verse while on the same page.
Fantastically, verse decrees: Yee scribe, share.
I take its council; I'm no longer alone
as I go back, back, to the Medieval Faire
with a modern Mystic who grins at thrones,
melts frosty cones. All that is lovely glitters
about her, in word, deed and spark of eye.
We joist in play, make mirth, and twitters
fly from two lost in the far of by and by.
Yah, we toy with dreams and dismiss regret,
for a Rose hath outwitted Robin of Hood,
and brave lady-knights join prancing pirates
with nary a query whether they should.
Modestly, she places the arrow in bow,
takes aims for a heart, then sets it aglow.
*For our own and only Mystic Rose, who write from the heart and for the heart.
(One day we must do lunch! Perhaps, meet at the A.G.O. and write side by side...;D
PHIDELLIA'S TEAHOUSE AND ANTIQUES
121 Peel St
10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily
There, you're here, but it was inevitable
that we would rewrite the plan. Loose leaf tea
has such allure, pulling us from our table
at Phidellia's. Those shelves are as giddy
as girls, all dolled up and flaunting cups. Blends
pester affectionately, brood like sisters
seeking attention. You sniff jars, find a friend
in Sweet Almond, but a look almost lists
for I've dwelled overly long on Alcott
and we haven't yet touched on Millay, Sapho
or Bronte! Two a-mused by more than pots.
"You see haiku. Well, I see Meg and Jo-"
"-Love, Et Cetera," You tease, such soft praxis,
so I kiss those cheeks with tender ekphrasis.
There be Scots as farrrrrr as the eye can see.
Brawn calves and bright kilts delight lasses
while pipers swagger out of the pub, tipsy.
Your smile broadens as a caber is tossed
end over end. Then, across the glen, highland
dancers in ghillies beckon with hearty flings.
Auch, it’s hot yet heather dare no’ wilt. Clans
gather, roguishly rib each other, as wool spins
in wheels. Aye, the romance can fair overwhelm
e’en the sensible. Worse for we, the fanciful.
Come, here’s the tea tent. Let soft fiddles calm
as we nibble oatcakes. Tartans and tunes pull
heartstrings. We sit raptly, lost in Brigadoon,
put pen to napkin and let wee thistles bloom.
Faithfully returning to Chantry Isle-
Though just in deep reflection-I cross the lake
with a stowaway wickie* who brightly smiles.
The boat, Our Lady, barely makes a wake.
We lean into the wind, drawing nearer
to Great Egrets crowning one weathered tree
on the sanctuary. So white the birds are,
as white as the limestone lighthouse. We
step onto a shore, approach the tower
and enter. I'd forgotten how reverent
even lamps, companions to lonely hours,
bless those watchers for beacons are God-sent.
Later, a found feather is clasped like a quill,
its keeper whispers, See? There be angels!
*A wickie is a slang term for a lighthouse keeper as they were ever trimming
This poem is for an angel of Soup, Gail, who I've long called our Lighthouse.
I know she loves them, too, so I hope she likes this.
Chantry is a small island just off the shores of Southampton, Ontario with a
meticulously restored lighthouse and tower. The Island is also a bird sanctuary, known
hfr its Great Egrets. I long ago toured this gem of the Great Lakes and fell madly in love with its tranquility, but there was also great loneliness in its isolation from the mainland.
Silver Strands Woven in Gold
Beneath the earth in the vale of the kings
For countless years undiscovered, unseen
In an old leather bag bound with brass rings
A necklet so rare, ‘twas fit for a queen
This beautiful piece with deep lustrous shine
In beaten red gold and fine silver strands
A stunning linked chain of complex design
Depicting the skill of artistic hands
From where had it come, to whom would belong?
A Queen, or princess of elegant grace?
Whose story was writ in the poet’s song
Sung by the slave girls in this ancient place
A priceless treasure found under the sands
A link to the past in fine silver strands
A nightjar’s sharp call can barely be heard,
T hough the breeze of Belize carries soft sounds,
R omance heats the white sands, whispers warm words,
O ceanids hide in waves, but stars abound.
P aradise enchants with sweeping moonlight,
I feel its magic, its allure enslaves,
C alypso drums pound sparks, my hips ignite,
A nd far down the long beach, revelers wave.
L overs and loners make tracks in the sand,
D reamers and drifters walk the Oceanside,
R elaxing tight thoughts as their hearts expand,
E ven solitude feels welcome and wide.
A ll is found in this quest for joy’s regime,
M y trip back to myself, a tropical dream.
By Cyndi MacMillan, March 11, 2012
Also an acrostic. I’ve never been to Belize, but oh... maybe someday. Here is something to listen to and watch:
As sure as I stand in the mixed of this garden,
Glimmering gold falls to the earth by my call.
Many are great and then some are a bit small.
I release magnets clutching an obscene pardon.
It is like balancing a beam that only I will harden.
I wrap myself into a silver plated resilient shawl.
Person place and time steadily climb up to maul.
It’s a give or take rejection expected to turn on.
One day ye shall see,
My Moon half drawn,
Ye see it was all of me.
Your Sun will be gone.
Only one Star shall rise up above my name.
It’s a special place inside my heart I frame!
®Registered: Ann Rich 2007
I sit on the edge of the bed thinking
Wishing you were here or that I was there
These work related trips keeps me hurting
But then my heart, I come to you and share
I sit in the middle of a moon beam
That comes into the room’s hotel window
A lonely bit of light, lonely it seems
Opens the room to its cool silver glow
I pout as I lay onto the hard bed
Seemingly to sure keep me up all night
I texted her with my whole soul, I sure pled
Hoping she’s up and will respond tonight
It’s hard to be away from by loved one
But soon I'll be home, my love will be shown
Entrant into Black Eyed Susan's "In a Hotel Room..." contest
< master of disguise menacing havoc
I fear not your pronged fork and wooden stick
but one illuminates from presents sight
tis I carries master key whom ends plight
brushstroke if must with your evilness twist
for I stand strong from an Hevenly bliss
poke and probe away with your woven schemes
tis I'll be the one laughing though it seems
your inferno fire from gates of hell
diminished by just one shake from this bell
so bring on your barriers and good grief's
tonight I'll be the one with good night's sleep
sowing not fear of satin's smitten grasp
but turning check telling to kiss thy ass
The Devil Made Me Do It
Sonnets Only Contest
I have had many frightening visions
of demons pulling me down into the infernal abyss:
to burn and torment my bound and shivering body...
as Dante envisioned it in his Divine Comedy.
Ah, Popes, Presidents, Kings, enemies and friends made no apologies...
they were glad to see me join them in their cell!
I accursed them even in that place called," Hell ."
And that gave me an opportunity to write many appropriate analogies.
" My flesh will burn, not my spirit! " I desperately hollered.
" This is not a place where I should pay for my earthly sins!"
" Eternal fire and condemnation are wrong!" I protested.
" God loves everyone, and He only demands repentance!"
Finally, that dreadful vision ended at the coming of the sunrise,
I found myself on Earth witnessing the wonders of Paradise!
Beneath strands of citrine dangling in the sky
arms glitter on a Moulin Rouge display
neon bulbs flirt with the Arc spinning high
a scenic delight, like tinted colors from Monet
And byways float on a flood of traffic yellow
unleashing a thousand moths on flames,
scenting an evening brushed by Van Gogh
as bodies grind on a roulette of voltage frames
The parade of magnetic sparklers blaze the café
Soon, a flushed crowd tingles on popped wine
dazzling in sweet madness, more hours to sashay;
while I, I lose myself in a mist of a song’s last line
“City of Lights” bathes in drops of fire glowers
where new romance thrills starry-eyed lovers
. .. . .
Paris night. 11pm ( few years back)
You sink into the bosom of the chair
And wonder if I too once sat amidst
The chattering, white coffee sipping fare—
The lonely writers ‘pining for a kiss.
Did I peer out over the porce’lain mug
And purse my vulgar mouth over the lip
My eyes a’roll behind my glasses’ fog
My writer turning phrase and spinning quips?
Did I curl my toes under my feet
Threading my fingers ‘round the scolding cup
My yellow molars grinding to the beat
Of meds-a-glee and glutt’nous caffeine ups?
I didn't’t sit cross-legged and introverted—
I flipped through glossy pages and consorted.
When limbs of Montmartre tint the glow
chemise de nuit falls to the ground,
belle de jour, come moan a pale sound
through alleys winding lamp light’s flow.
Her fine heels toss on follies’ show
she, au naturel , caprice bound ;
taunting stars to rouse below.
Uphill, this mistress wraps fired lips
fleeting sighs mixing red-hot drips,
amidst night bistros’ fragrant plight
where rows of faces wet love’s sips.
Then like a dream, her bedgown flips
denying passion, oh one last bite.
*Montmartre—famous Paris hill where art,
music, romantic atmosphere, and bohemian
culture thrive despite its religious strains.
*belle de jour--- beautiful lady
*au naturel--- in a natural state, also, nude
*chemise de nuit--- nightdress
. …. .
by nette onclaud
for Cyndi Mac Millan’s Un, Deux, Trois contest
31 may 12
Late 80s, Quebec, Ville de Lasalle,
A piece of my life, a piece of me,
I left behind; Fait accompli.
What I miss most? Je ne sais quoi!
Cartoons! Lagaffe, Robin Dubois!
Bicycle rides with my good friends,
Next to the river, along the bends.
I left behind a piece of my life…
The harsh winds snarl and bite like fighting dogs.
No pity in this bull-black bitter night.
No stars nor moon can pierce the city fog.
No shelter saves the beggar from his plight.
The winds whip swirling grit and stinging grime.
Mad demons breathe out sour tasting wrath,
And wine red sky now marks the passing time
When, waking widows mourn the hour of death.
Although the sulphurous gusts still groan and howl,
The night begins to fade for dawn's debut
While roaming dogs bare yellow teeth and growl
As smoky shadows slink through trembling dew.
The daybreak chimes, and morning sweetly sings,
Retreating night’s outshone by brighter things.
In the center I sit.
Unraveling a core,
I lay it by the shore.
It’s a wondrous fit.
It is in pieces by a bit.
It sails an ocean floor.
It has a rip where tore.
It makes the seas split.
It travels day and night.
A never-ending drift,
It is brilliantly bright.
Moving along so swift!
It travels a path lit by a Star,
Rendering miles that are afar!
© Copyright: Ann Rich 2007