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Cyndi MacMillan's Blog

About Cyndi MacMillan
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 I have been a member of Poetry soup since 2011. 


Though my forte is fiction, verse has always appealed to me. There is nothing like a play of words to rattle the ordinary, to tickle away the dust of stagnation. My favourite form is the contemporary sonnet, but I also enjoy free verse. Also, I love the zen experience of haiku, its seizure of a moment, how it can hold a universe in so few syllables. And I admit to a fondness for the Rondeau.




My life is simple, but busy. I’m a writer and stay at home mother. Days are full. 


Currently, I am working on a novel or ... ha ha... should I really say that the novel is working on me? Characters! They have a way of turning a world upside down.


There are some amazing poets on the soup. I am blessed to call many my friends ~~ Cyndi




 

Most Recent Blog Post


101 WAYS TO OUT YOURSELF AS A POET. WHAT MAKES A POET... FOUND HERE.
Blog Posted:3/25/2013 5:02:00 PM

 



Two years ago I joined Poetrysoup as a genre fiction writer who also writes poetry.

I refused to call myself a poet. Moi? Ridiculous!

First point, I’m a published short story writer. I’ve written a novel (sucked) and plan to write at least twenty more (hope I’ve learned enough to make sure they don’t suck, too. LOL). It seemed strange to try to stretch myself between poetry and fiction (PUH-lease, do not call it prose. No writer of fiction or non-fiction refers to it as prose.)

Second point, the incredible caliber of poetry written by Soupers made me feel like calling myself a poet would be like Abbott and Costello calling themselves brain surgeons. I didn’t measure up. Not by my standards.

I was reading poetry that made me think, cry, laugh and dream. Some nice poetry. Some good poetry. Some GREAT poetry. 

The thing is whenever I envision a TRUE poet, a REAL poet, I think of Mattie Stepanek.



If you don’t know who he is please immediately click on the link. Take the time to read and watch. I promise you that he is worth the effort.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3masTPPXfIU 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C8f6qiO3dOo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfLJnK35Q9U


Mattie began writing poetry at three.

He published six books of poems and died at the age of fourteen.

My bucket list will never be fully checked off, at least not while I’m alive. Because meeting Mattie is fairly high on that list.

So, what MAKES a poet?

Simple, a poet is made by writing poetry.

Writing one poem does not make you a poet. NEEDING to write poetry and doing so consistently makes you a poet. It is the COMPULSION to write verse which defines a writer as a poet.

I do not believe that you need to be published to be a writer or a poet.

Oh, but it is nice! LOL.

There are poets here who only share their poetry on Soup. There are octogenarians who write poems several times a week, just because they must. They are poets. There are teens who are just starting out, yet spend hours writing free verse instead of texting about ‘the Bieb’. They are poets. There are lawyers and truck drivers and doctors and ministers and computer technicians and market analysts who wake up at 1 a.m., get out of bed and write sonnets or haiku. They, too, are poets. There are people with Down’s Syndrome, autism, dyslexia or Turrets who enjoy writing poetry and do so as often as they can. They are poets. In fact, they are as much a poet as the current Poet Laureate.

Here are a few reasons that a poet will not call him/herself a poet

1) Modesty. They can not see themselves in this light. Poets are wise, intelligent, and concise with their language. Their writing is stellar, and their grammar is beyond reproach. These poets are not there ... yet.

2) Embarrassment. The general public doesn’t view poets as serious writers; a serious writer is someone who is aiming for paid publication, something most poets do not achieve. There is a certain... stigma to being a poet. Fill in the dots...starving - - - -.

3) Laziness. Admitting that you are a poet and not ‘just’ a writer of poetry’ means that you are free to write sloppy poetry. Calling yourself a poet raises expectation, your own as well as that of the reader. Poets push themselves, raise the bar and edit their work with a critical eye.

4) Fear – some critic will stomp all over their work, ridicule their content, arrangements, say, is that the best you got, hot shot? And you call yourself a poet?

I am was 100% guilty of all 4 of these reasons for not standing up and saying, I AM A POET. 

Then, I had an epiphany.

Did Maya Angelou pop out of the womb writing perfect poetry?

No.

First, she was just a writer of poetry.

Then, guess what?

She was a terrible poet.

Yup. There was, most likely, a period of time that she referred to himself as a dismal poet. Then she became a so-so poet.  Then one day she became a pretty good poet.

We now know her as an amazing poet.

Yes, poetry is an art and we can speak about heart and soul and vision and integrity until our lips cramp. I agreed with every statement on David’s cool blog, even the ones that disagreed with other points of view, lol, if that makes sense.

I believe we need to take poetry off its pedestal, remove some of its mystique.

Now, some of you know I discourage the use of adjectives, feel that poetry is stronger without them. And yet here I am about to lay dozens on you!

I think that even those who have, to this point, felt unable to define themselves as a poet will be suddenly see themselves SOMEWHERE on this list ...

HERE ARE 101 WAYS TO OUT YOURSELF AS A POET...

WHO ARE YOU?

HI, My name is (fill in your name) and I AM A(N)......



Aging Poet
Amiable Poet
Aspiring Poet
Average Poet
Bad Poet
Bashful Poet
Beginner Poet
Blogger Poet
Braggart Poet
BS’er Poet
Casual Poet
Common Poet
Confused Poet
Confusing Poet
Constipated Poet
Contemplative Poet
Country/Suburban/Urban Poet
Curious Poet
D.I.Y. Poet
Danged awful Poet
Damned fine Poet
Darned-if-I-Know Poet
Debutant Poet
Deranged Poet
Developing Poet
Don’t-give-a-rip Poet
Draconian Poet
Dull Poet
Early-morning Poet
Easy-going Poet
Emotional Poet                                        
Enigmatic Poet
Explicit Poet
Explorative Poet
Fair Poet
Fastidious Poet
Flip Poet
Focused Poet
Frantic Poet
Friendly Poet
Fixer-upper Poet
Hallmark Card Poet
Happy Poet
Hideous Poet
Hobby Poet
Hopeful Poet
Hopeless Poet
Hyper Poet
I-Don’t-Know-it Poet
Immature Poet
Improving Poet
Incorrigible Poet
Inquisitive Poet
Intense Poet
Irrepressible Poet
Kick-back Poet
Lazy Poet
Long-winded Poet
Loving Poet
Maturing Poet
Midnight Poet
Modest Poet
Mushy Poet
Naughty Poet
Nude Poet  ( please, don’t tell us. LOL)
Occasional Poet
Offensive Poet
One Cool @ss Poet
Part Time Poet
Party-hardy Poet
Passionate Poet
People’s Poet
Picky Poet
Politically-minded Poet
Puzzled Poet
Racy Poet
Radical Poet
Raging Poet
Relaxed Poet
Reluctant Poet
Rogue Poet  (Miss you Natalie!)
Romantic Poet
Run of the Mill Poet
Shy Poet
Silly Poet
Sensitive Poet
Serious Poet
Sloppy Poet
Stinky Poet
Terrible Poet
Typical Poet
Timid Poet
Still-learning Poet
Unapologetic Poet
Unfinished Poet
Unreliable Poet
Warrior Poet
Weekend Poet
Yearn-ful poet
Zany Poet
Zen Poet


So...  did I make sense?

Are you feeling this?

Do you see yourself, here?

Can you join me, now, a


and say WHOLEHEARTEDLY,



I..... AM.... A..... POET!



Whatcha think? ARE YOU READY???
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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 6:16:00 AM
    Will stop by this weekend, I hope, to reply to you... I just learned that Royal, PD's Daughter, had a still birth and I can barely think... I am so sad for them all. This was a danger when I was pregnant, because of my advanced years... I had to be induced early. I was at risk for stillbirth... I CAN imagine their pain. .... can't aathink gotata go xoax

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 6:15:00 AM
    I gave my thoughts on this subject on david's blog, I think anyone who writes poetry is entitled to call themselves a poet, but whether they are a good one is another matter; I don't know why people are hesitant to call themselves poets, there's no great mystique in it...some of the POETS writing on this site produce work that is far superior to many published, household name poets (in my opinion)...a lot of the time, whether one 'makes it' as a poet is down to luck in winning a big competition, having the right connections or one's ability to push one's work, as much as the actual quality of the writing itself...from an adjective-loving poet, (sorry cyndi!) lol

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 5:13:00 AM
    excellent blog Cyndi. Well David, i'm a weaver by trade, and as a young man i was good at it....especially the creative side of the task... so maybe i could say i am a weaver of cloth, which is no different to being a writer of poetry. designs and words all come from the same place one's mind, a self induced creation...so i'll get personal with you David,, and i'll tell you the answer to your question,, yes i believe fervently you are a poet, just as i would believe you a weaver upon see the finish goods

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 4:07:00 AM
    Stop asking David, just be and create. You are God's poiema(work of art) what you write and say is unique.

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 3:18:00 AM
    Don't get me wrong I am not seeking praise for my writing I am seeking an answer to my question and it still goes unanswered....I love Roger Mcgough and have all of his books, seen him many times and even been on stage with him (true) reading poetry, yet I went to see his adaptation of The Misanthrope (all done in verse) on stage last week and it was, in my humble opinion, just dire, so he confirms my question of 'What makes a poet'....

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 3:09:00 AM
    I have been writing poetry for 45 years and yes I am published, first one at 14 years old, I am in 4 local poetry groups and chairman of two of them, I seriously wake myself up in the middle of the night with syllables and words in my head and I have to get up and write them down, I cannot watch a single program with out getting out my notebook and writing down a great word or phrase I have just heard... I eat, drink, sleep, breath poetry...but would I dare to say 'I am a poet' ....No...not yet anyway, it is something I aspire to be and maybe one day I will...maybe never....

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    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/26/2013 9:43:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    so anyone can write a poem? Or can anyone write something and call it a poem, though it is not poetry? In which case, what is the difference in saying you write something you call poetry to calling yourself a poet who writes. AHA! Gotcha! Wink and smile, from your chum, and fan, and ... well... believer.
    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/26/2013 9:40:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thoughts?
    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/26/2013 9:39:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Question back at you. WHAT MAKES A POEM? ;-)
    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/26/2013 9:38:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    A thought just occured. I realized you ARE comfortable calling WHAT you write POETRY. So you do write POEMS, you have probably written thousands, so far, yes? So you are able to classify the body of your work as poetry, some probably poor, some middling to fair, some you are satisfied with... lol... maybe. As maverick would say, interesting... very interesting.
  1. Date: 3/26/2013 3:06:00 AM
    Hi Chum, ok I have read this great blog very carefully and I am going to fill it full of holes because it still doesn't answer my question because I don't think there is a true pure honest sensible answer. You are giving a list for people to choose from therefore you are 'asking' them are they a poet? I don't mean this in a derogatory sense but 'self praise' is no recommendation, which is why I don't think of 'myself' as a 'poet'...yes I write poetry, yes it has improved that still does not make me a poet. If someone writes consistently in one form and has worldwide fame does that make them a poet? I don't think so simply because they cannot write in any other form. cont...

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 2:47:00 AM
    POETS&POETRY What is poetry who is a poet.. and well may you ask... POETRY is structured prose.. poetic prose that fits a frame... one like this is an example of a structure..or more often/in lines like this/called a strophe or stanza or verse..often the structure has a particular form...whatevert he structure..it is constructed to be read aloud... A poet is a writer/who reads his verse aloud..to himself.. then to others..A poet never stops being poetic.. even when he no longer writes READ THE STRUCTURE OF THIS OFFERING IN MY POSTINGS Hear me read aloud here http://youtu.be/GiD8JdYi-jw

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  1. Date: 3/26/2013 12:24:00 AM
    This is a blog anyone should read..It really gives hope to all who really love and believe in poetry including me.I will have to see the link later cos baby Christina is jumping on me..needs some msma s love :)

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  1. Date: 3/25/2013 10:11:00 PM
    great blog, from a run of the mill poet

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  1. Date: 3/25/2013 9:46:00 PM
    Hey Cyndi, haven't been on the Soup in forever but I am so glad I popped in this morning ;) I still remember Matti too. Really an eye opener of a blog. Thanks for sharing this *hugs*

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    Neels Avatar Wilma Neels Date: 3/26/2013 12:11:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Hello Francine, Ruben and Charmaine ;) miss you guys too! Sorry for my silence *hugs*
    Chircop Avatar Charmaine Chircop Date: 3/26/2013 12:25:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    miss you willma
    O. Avatar Ruben O. Date: 3/25/2013 11:43:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Hello, Wilma!!!
    Roberts Avatar Francine Roberts Date: 3/25/2013 10:12:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Hi Wilma ! long time no see
  1. Date: 3/25/2013 7:08:00 PM
    Ouch! Ouch! I was so happy 5 minutes ago!! I didnt know this talented young man. A very sad and intense emotion; Mattie Stepanek's story broke me into pieces. My name is Ruben and Im a "broken poet." I'll be back later...

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    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/25/2013 7:15:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    One of the reasons I could not call myself a poet is because I've read his poems. Compared to that? I'm a hack poet. He? As genuine as they come. Sorry to break you. I sobbed for hours when he passed... a God Child, that one. xox
  1. Date: 3/25/2013 6:48:00 PM
    I AM A POET! hahahahaa...you knew I'd say that! LOL How many categories can I pick?

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    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/25/2013 7:00:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    As many as you want, sugar. I can go from an improving poet to a bad poet to a naughty poet to a contemplative poet in about 12 hours. LOL. You? ;-) If I see David say he's an improving poet, then I'll turn cartwheels. The man IS a poet. I'm sure his Mrs. would agree. <3
  1. Date: 3/25/2013 6:16:00 PM
    Yup!

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    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/25/2013 7:01:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Hi! :)
  1. Date: 3/25/2013 6:01:00 PM
    Nice pep talk -we all need that.

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    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 3/25/2013 7:03:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    We are all so hard on ourselves. We need to open ourselves to possibility and growth. Not easy for many. Hugs to you, hope you're still doing well!

My Past Blog Posts

 
HELPLESS, A KYRIELLE. NEW CONTEST WITH TIM RYERSON AS CO PILOT! WAHOO!
Date Posted: 4/14/2014 9:24:00 PM
ROLL CALL.... HERE, KINDA HERE, NEVER HERE, LEAVING HERE, RETURNING HERE?
Date Posted: 4/14/2014 6:16:00 PM
LIKE THE BEATLES SAID, LET IT BE... A NICE QUOTE I FOUND
Date Posted: 4/14/2014 9:00:00 AM
ROBERT KEIM, BLITZ INVENTOR, LEFT COMMENTS ON SOUP! Please read what positive energy can do...
Date Posted: 4/7/2014 10:11:00 AM
WE STAND WITH YOU, A RONDEAU FOR FLO AND ILYEZA, PLEASE STAY
Date Posted: 4/6/2014 7:48:00 PM
PHOTOS TO INSPIRE HAIKU.. Haiku prompt
Date Posted: 4/5/2014 10:43:00 PM
GINGHAM AND LACE, ANOTHER BLITZ... GUYS TRY THIS FORM. IT IS FUN AND FAST
Date Posted: 4/4/2014 9:32:00 PM
NUDE, THIRTY DOLLARS, A BLITZ ... THANK YOU TO VICKI.. COOL FORM!
Date Posted: 4/4/2014 4:26:00 PM
A CLOSER LOOK AT FOUND POETRY, How to collage a poem and a sad tribute
Date Posted: 3/27/2014 9:09:00 PM
HOW I SEE FLO AND HER GUY... FUNNY!
Date Posted: 3/14/2014 5:28:00 PM
YURT CAMPING
Date Posted: 3/14/2014 7:46:00 AM
A THANK YOU CARD FOR OUR ANGEL, GAIL. PLEASE SIGN!
Date Posted: 3/11/2014 5:05:00 PM
DANE ANN, CRAIG AND NETTE... AND SOUPERS...LOOKIE LOOKIE...
Date Posted: 3/10/2014 8:35:00 PM
HOW TO WRITE DIALOGUE: BEATS, TAGS, POINTERS FOR STORYTELLERS
Date Posted: 3/6/2014 10:20:00 PM
I DARE YOU TO READ THIS, POETS. IT MAY MAKE YOU UNCOMFORTABLE. GOOD.
Date Posted: 3/4/2014 9:29:00 PM
STEPHANIE DESHPANDE WINNERS-- HER BLOG IS UP -- THIS IS AWESOME
Date Posted: 2/26/2014 8:29:00 PM
ZOE THE CLOWN, FOR FLO, PICTURES, and a CUTE CLOWN
Date Posted: 2/24/2014 5:40:00 PM
MY NEW FOCUS, MY NEW TOY: SCRIVENER. I AM HEAD OVER HEELS IN LOVE!
Date Posted: 2/24/2014 12:54:00 PM
WERE ANY OF YOU 12- 17 in 1954? WOULD YOU BE AVAILABLE FOR OCCASIONAL QUESTIONS?
Date Posted: 2/19/2014 9:28:00 AM
BALLET AND SENSEI... PROUD MOM BLOG WITH PICTURES ...
Date Posted: 2/15/2014 5:42:00 AM
AN EXAMPLE FOR MY MOV(I)E ME WITH A CROWN CONTEST. PHOTOS, NOTES, HELPFUL HINTS
Date Posted: 2/13/2014 10:22:00 PM
HOW A CROWN CAN BE WRITTEN. YOU'RE GONNA LIKE THIS! NOT MINE!
Date Posted: 2/12/2014 9:55:00 AM
WINNERS OF THE STEPHANIE DESHPANDE / CONTEMPORARY FREE RHYME
Date Posted: 2/10/2014 9:47:00 PM
WHY ARE MY POEMS STILL ON SISTER SITES THOUGH I OPTED OUT?
Date Posted: 2/10/2014 6:07:00 PM
GUILTY PLEASURES....A WEEKEND BLOG.... SHOW ME YOURS AND I'LL SHOW YOU MINE
Date Posted: 2/8/2014 7:25:00 AM

My Poems

12345678
Date PostedPoem TitleFormCategories
4/8/2014BUKOWSKI CONTESTFree versemoving on,power,teenage,
4/4/2014GINGHAM AND LACE, A BLITZ POEMVersedaughter,love,
4/4/2014NUDE, THIRTY DOLLARS, A BLITZVerseart,imagination,lost love
3/24/201450 GODSFree versegod,peace,philosophy,
3/15/2014WINTER IN PORTLANDFree versedepression,winter,
3/11/2014FREEDOM BLUESTail-rhymefreedom,
2/28/2014WELCOME TO THE BLUENOSEAcrosticfish,history,journey,sea,
2/25/2014PITY THE PIRANHAFree verseintrospection,people,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY, LINDA MARIE, EASTER WALK, 7th REPOSTRhymefamily,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY 6- DEDICATED TO LINDA MARIE, REPOSTRondeaufaith,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY 5 - FAMILY TREE, REPOST FOR LINDA MARIEVersefamily,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY 4- A REPOST DEDICATED TO LINDA MARIERhymefaith,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY 3- EASTER LILY, A REPOST FOR LINDA MARIEVerseeaster,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY 2-- A REPOST AND TRIBUTE TO LINDA MARIESestinaheaven,
2/15/2014HAPPY FAMILY DAY-- A REPOST FOR LINDA MARIE- WE MISS YOUVersefaith,
2/13/2014DOUBLE OH, A BOND CROWN, EXAMPLE FOR CONTESTCrown of Sonnetsfilm,sexy,
2/13/2014DOUBLE OH, A JAMES BOND CROWN OF SONNETS - 6 down 1 to go- SAMPLE FOR CONTESTCrown of Sonnetsadventure,film,sexy,
2/11/2014ORION: A PERSPECTIVE for third to tenthSonnetmythology,star,
2/10/2014TARTANS, A SONNET FOR FRANCINESonnetfriend,patriotic,places,p
2/9/2014TESTIMONIALS, A SONNET FOR BRIANSonnetfaith,friend,nature,
2/7/2014Double Oh-- A JAMES BOND CROWN, BUILDING IT UP SECOND SONNET POSTED--Crown of Sonnetsgames,passion,
2/5/2014ON THE FRINGE, A SONNET FOR MARLONSonnetafrica,allegory,culture,f
2/4/2014FOR CALEB'S CROWN - ORIONSonnetstars,
2/3/2014SUMMERLAND, A SONNET FOR CARRIE RICHARDSSonnetfriend,music,places,poetr
2/2/2014WORD ON THE STREET, 2009, A SONNET FOR DAVIDSonnetbooks,friend,places,poetr
12345678

My Photos


Fav Poems

123
Poem TitleFormCategories
The Sowing Free versedevotion,
Ten Little ToesRhymedaughter,lifeold,old,,gra
Woodland RhapsodyQuatraininspirational
Contradicting KeatsSonnetintrospection,life
Surrender to LoveRhymeloveme,
A Totum Pole OdeConcretenative american,people,
MORE DREAMS TO ROWRhyme royalinspirational,life,
When the Tab Comes DueFree verseinspirational,introspecti
Lighting My Candle From WithinQuintain (English)caregiving,introspection,
The Kirk by the SeaCoupletnostalgia,religion,love,
Moonlight On The WardChokahealth,life,
Nocturnal PoetryRhymeimagination,life,poetry,
SlumberEpicdedication,epic,slam,
FROSTY NIGHT STROLLCoupletinspirational,seasons,
Our ThanksgivingLight Poetryholiday,
Tomorrow's GraceEthereepeace,
A New Star Shines Above HawaiiRhymededication,music,
Jesus, Our SaviorShapereligion,life,
Monarch of SummerHaibunanimals,devotion,inspirat
UntouchedRhymeforgiveness,me,me,
Midnight PearlsThan-Baukintrospection,love,
Beaucoup BloomsTerza Rimanature,spring,spring,
On Heaven's DoorwayNarrativeinspirational,life,care,c
WALKING ON FAITHVersefaith,for children,
BeachworldFree verseplaces,sea,sun,
123

Fav Poets

PoetCountry 
Debbie Guzzi United States Flag United States Read
Caryl Muzzey United States Flag United States Read
Andrea Dietrich United States Flag United States Read
Joe Flach United States Flag United States Read
nette onclaud Philippines Flag Philippines Read
Drake Eszes United States Flag United States Read
Mystic Rose Canada Flag Canada Read
mourning mist France Flag France Read
elizabeth wesley Canada Flag Canada Read
Rhonda Johnson-Saunders United States Flag United States Read
Ruben O. Argentina Flag Argentina Read
Carrie Richards United States Flag United States Read
kathryn collins United States Flag United States Read
Scribe ML United States Flag United States Read
Catie Lindsey United States Flag United States Read
craig cornish United States Flag United States Read
David Williams United Kingdom Flag United Kingdom Read
Rebecca L. United States Flag United States Read
Charmaine Chircop Malta Flag Malta Read
Francine Roberts Canada Flag Canada Read
Eileen Ghali Lebanon Flag Lebanon Read
Poet Destroyer A United States Flag United States Read
Faye Gibson United States Flag United States Read