Tuesday, April 30, 2019

A Haiku for My Bed

A Haiku for My Bed

Wild geese on the back
of a turtle, my Earth is
a flat down pillow. 

GloPoWriMo Day 30 - minimalist poetry

It is the final day of GloPoWriMo, so allow me to be a little chatty today. There are two things I am proud of:
2. I have, yet again, completed the challenge. I wrote every day and I actually managed to write more than 30 poems in 30 days. It was like a marathon, which is probably why I wrote a haiku for my bed today. The second poem is my attempt at a one-word poem. It was supposed to look like an hourglass, but I am not sure I have succeeded.The "lullaby" image at the beginning is also mine, but I created it a few years ago, though I never thought about it as a poem before. I have used it here simply because it fits in with both the topic and the prompt.
I would like to thank all my NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo friends. I love you all and I will miss you, but I know we will see each other again next year. Thank you for your support. Above all, I am really, really grateful to Maureen Thorson, who runs both the NaPoWriMo blog and the project itself. Thank you, Maureen.
See you all next year!

Monday, April 29, 2019


Image by Alexandra Haynak from Pixabay

I am proud to say that I was the Day 29 featured participant on the NaPoWriMo blog.


On Anger

I planted a seed in my
garden long ago.
They say the fruit is poison.

On Sadness

There is a video game.
Also, there are seven secrets to letting go of it.
It is one of the six basic emotions.
Some families don’t allow it.
The rule can be conscious or unconscious.
Some suggest making a list.
Symptoms appear three days after exposure.
Most people recover in a week, but it can be hard to shake.
Wash your hands and take care of yourself.
If it keeps you awake at night,
if you can’t breathe
and feel like drowning,
this might be a sign
that there are complications.

GloPoWriMo Day 29 - a poem that meditates on an emotion

Sunday, April 28, 2019

What is poetry?

Image by Roland Mey from Pixabay

What is poetry?

Poetry is what it is.
A voice,
as old as history and older.
Such magic,
the line on the page,

GloPoWriMo Day 28 - a meta-poem
This is a found poem. I used this Encyclopaedia Britannica entry on poetry, then just kept erasing until I ended up with this short piece. 

Saturday, April 27, 2019

LX, Erased

LX, Erased

GloPoWriMo Day 27 - "remixing" a Shakespearean sonnet
I have "remixed" Sonnet LX, by creating an erasure poem. Here's the original sonnet.

Friday, April 26, 2019

So Serene

Image by Denis Doukhan from Pixabay

So Serene

Bright red on dark green.
Her path is long and winding.
Ladybird on a leaf.

Her path is long and winding.
The earth smells of fresh mushrooms.
Soft breeze whispers in the grass.

Tiny feet, tickling.
Soft breeze whispers in the grass.
She needs her meat.

Greenflies taste of fresh mushrooms.
She needs her meat.
Her path is long and winding.

Ladybird on a leaf.
Soft breeze whispers in the grass.
So serene.

GloPoWriMo Day 26 - repetition
I also used yesterday's prompt (seasonal, the five senses) and combined the two. 

Thursday, April 25, 2019

How to Write 1000 Pages

Image by congerdesign from Pixabay

How to Write 1000 Pages 

This is easy.
Start by stretching time,
Nothing but a question mark on the first page.
The second page, just a single word.
Let the word be important.
Then nothing.
If someone notices (which they won’t,
since nobody will read it anyway)
say that you are writing an invisible book,
white on white.
Say that you want to show
the emperor is naked.
Learn to transcribe the pauses,
the silence.
Always look busy.
Keep flipping the pages until you reach the last one.
Then write a killer sentence
to conclude your life’s work.
After that, you can rest.

GloPoWriMo Day 25

Wednesday, April 24, 2019


Image by homecare119 from Pixabay


At its source, a river is usually steep. The bicycle converts the energy of the cyclist into propulsion. Wingspan is the measurement right across the wings of a bird or aircraft. Asteroids were unable to form distinct planets when the solar system was born. Butterflies undergo complete metamorphosis. One of the earliest attempts at creating a motorcycled bicycle was in 1867. A flame is ignited gas. As it looses its steep gradient, the river slows down. Although most moths are drab, some are brilliantly coloured. A monoplane has a single wing. Flight feathers support birds in flight. Igneous rocks are created by molten magma cooling slowly. In a hot-air baloon, the air is heated by burners located below it. Flight is the act or a manner of flying, or a hasty retreat. Kites were first developed more than 2500 years ago. An airplant is a plant growing naturally without soil. Flightless birds are naturally unable to fly.  

GloPoWriMo Day 24 - inspired by a reference book

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

These Creatures

Image by Dean Moriarty from Pixabay

These Creatures

A ruby red sea dragon,
a giant tortoise,
a spikey worm with 30 legs,
Snubby, the sneezing monkey
(You can hear him sneezing when it rains),
a tiny snail
(it can’t be seen with a naked eye),
a 10-foot-tall terror bird with a hooked beak,
dementor wasps
that turn their prey into passive zombies,
a hippo-sized vacuum cleaner mammal,
a skeleton-like peacock spider,
enormous sea scorpions in Iowa,
four-legged snakes, with five digits on each foot,
a pig-nosed rat with vampire teeth,
these creatures,
living and dead
were found in jungles and in museums
not long ago.
It just shows
that we don’t know much at all.

GloPoWriMo Day 23 - a poem about animals
The poem was inspired by this article. 

Monday, April 22, 2019

The Two Fridas

                                  Courtesy of www.FridaKahlo.org

The Two Fridas

This is how you multiply. First you pluck your heart out. It is easier to breathe that way. Technically you are dead now, but we know you are not. The heart is still beating and she is exactly like you, except that she is not really you, but they will never know the difference. Next, you can open your skull and dismantle your brain. Give it to her, you will see that it hurts less this way. She will carry it well, this burden of your heart and this burden of your memories and of your sleepless nights. She will carry it well and she will not complain. She is a good friend, the best you ever had. Everyone will think it is still you and they will never notice the difference. In the meantime, you can get some rest for a change. Just make sure you wash that dress first. You don’t want people to start wondering. They will never be able to guess the truth, but they will poke around and ask questions. You don’t need that now. Now you need some sleep.

GloPoWriMo day 22 - an ekphrastic poem

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Muja the Alligator

By PetarM - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Muja the Alligator

Everyone is still talking about the night the Zoo was bombed for the first time.
There are several versions of what happened afterwards.
People claim they saw
animals flying.
There are stories of
lions, leopards, polar bears and wolves roaming the city,
underground tunnels full of monkeys, blackbucks, buffalos and zebus,
pelicans and parrots hiding in trees,
even a tiger who married a girl
somewhere in the mountains.
Those are all just legends.
He is the only one who knows the real story.
He could tell you this tale and many others.
He prefers to keep quiet.
No one has ever seen him move,
except the guards.
They say he is fast for his age.
They say he can spring into action when you least expect it.
Do not throw objects in his direction
or make silly noises.
That will not disturb his calm.
He has been around for too long to fall for that
and he has seen it all before.
They don't know exactly how old he is.
He is the oldest of his kind in the world.
That much they do know.
He was fully grown when he arrived.
That was in 1936.
The Zoo was bombed five years later.
Then twice more, but people got tired of this story.
He had a wife at first, though she didn’t live long.
He never had any children.
Loneliness doesn’t seem to bother him, or captivity.
He has never been free.
I think he is just waiting.
He has seen the bars disappear three times.
It could happen again
any minute.

GloPoWriMo Day 21 - a poem with wild, surreal images
Both Muja's story and the story of the night animals roamed the streets of Belgrade are true. Sometimes life is stranger than fiction. The bombing of the zoo has inspired many artists, including Emir Kusturica and Tea Obreht.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Why she said what she said

Image by TeroVesalainen from Pixabay

Why she said what she said

It was the full moon.
Her dog peed on her clean carpet.
She couldn’t find a taxi that morning.
It was hormonal.
She hadn’t slept the night before.
Her bathroom was flooded.
Too many dishes to wash
and the dishwasher had broken down.
A black cat had crossed her path.
She was tired of this job.
She hates you.
Or maybe she said what she said
because that’s exactly what she wanted to say.

GloPoWriMo Day 20 - a poem based in spoken language

Friday, April 19, 2019

Two Poems for Day 19

Image by congerdesign from Pixabay

The ABC Soup

B is for beet and butternut squash
C is for celery and for carrots
D is for dill and for daikon
E is for endive and F is for fennel
G is for garlic and green beans
H is for horseradish and harricot beans
I is for instant pot, I have no time
J is for Jerusalem artichockes
K is for kale and L is for leeks
M is for mushrooms
N is for nettles, the stinging ones
O is for onions and P is for peas
Q is for quinoa, it is good for you
R is for radish greens, S is for sweet potato
T is for tomatoes and turmeric spice
V is for vines, W for watercress
X is for that secret ingredient (which most call love)
Y is for yams and Z is for zucchini,
also for Zataar, to finish it off.

Image by jamesstegall from Pixabay

Thank You for Nothing

Another day.
Business as usual.
Calling my muse.
Doing my duty.
Entering the underworld, looking
for answers there.
Going deeper now.
Hoping for something, anything.
If only there was a map. 
Just keep searching. I don't 
know what I am searching for.
Look harder. I really need a 
map. I might
never finish this,
or find a way out.
Persist, persevere, perspire, perambulate.
Question everything. Burn it all.
Rinse and repeat.
Start over as many 
times as necessary.
Walk down this tunnel. Look for the
X sign on the floor. Dig.
You will have to work all night. Come on. Show me some
zeal. Give me some zest.

GloPoWriMo Day 19 - an abecedarian poem

Thursday, April 18, 2019

The Photos

Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

The Photos

I didn’t want to have those photos taken in the first place. The man showed up uninvited and wouldn’t leave until we paid him. We put the photos into an album. It was strange to look at all of us from this sideways angle. Later on no one could tell me what had happened to the album. We suspected my two aunts. They hated each other, but they were a good team when desperate measures were needed. The photos were never found again. My aunts are gone now too, so I suppose this will forever be a mystery.

GloPoWriMo Day 18 - an elegy 

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

What the Man Said Later

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

What the Man Said Later

I saw her take the knife. 
Of course I remember her, such a pretty girl.
I often eat there, but I hadn't seen them before.
I saw her slip the knife into her bag.
I didn’t think much of it then. 
I barely noticed.
Of course, later I remembered.
I should have said something, I suppose.
Would that have made a difference?
I guess we will never know now.

GloPoWriMo Day 17 - an unusual point of view

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

What We Need for the Stew

Image by wnk1029 from Pixabay

What We Need for the Stew

Garlic, to ward off evil spirits.
Onions, because we can do with a good cry.
Mushrooms, for that earthy taste.
Cinnamon, to sweeten our life.
Black pepper, to balance the sweetness.
Red wine, a touch of truth.
Beef, because that’s what this dish is about.

GloPoWriMo Day 16 - a list

Monday, April 15, 2019



Excuse me, but I have a problem
with how I was explained away.
There was nothing pretty about what happened,
nothing romantic.
I wasn’t singing, or picking flowers.
I was lucid then.
I knew my name.
I remembered my father
and how he was explained away too.
I never floated on water.
What nonsense is that?
There is nothing pretty about drowning.
Let us, for once, tell this story right.
I jumped. I suspect you knew that already.
I am sorry to be such a disappointment,
but I knew what I was doing
and I could, once again, remember my name.

GloPoWriMo Day 15 - a monologue

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Miss Homophone

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Miss Homphone

Miss Homophone ate
eight oranges
and a pair of pears.
And with a brisk gait
she walked through the gate,
got into her car
and rode down the road.
This scene I have seen,
but I’m not allowed to say this aloud,
so I'd better write it right.

GloPoWriMo Day 14 - homophones, homographs and homonyms

Saturday, April 13, 2019



She is a long and cold winter.
She is death and rebirth and dreams.
She is a wolf, a sorcerer.
They burn her at stake every spring.
They drown her in every river on their way home.
They know this will not help.
They know she will return.
Be careful on your way home, little ones.
Whatever you do, don’t look back.
If you stumble and fall, you will die.
Close your doors and windows, for she will find you.
You know she wants revenge.
She will come to you as your worst fear.
She is the mother of nightmares.
She lives in the dark shadows of your bedroom.
Sooner or later, you will fall asleep.
She can wait.

GloPoWriMo Day 13 - a poem about something mysterious and spooky
The poem is about an old Slavic godess called Morana or Marzanna. You can find out more about her here.

Friday, April 12, 2019

My Grandmother's Paper Clips

My Grandmother's Paper Clips

They belonged to my grandmother,
and to her grandmother before her.
The craftsmanship is beautiful.
These are Gem clips,
made of steel wire,
bent into a perfect double loop.
None of my friends have anything similar.
They are a link to my female ancestors.
I have worn them all my life.
The clasp is strong,
 they can’t be removed.

GloPoWriMo Day 12 - a poem about a dull thing that you own.
The poem was based on the following anecdote of something that happened to me in 2011:

My Grandmother's Earrings

These earrings belonged to my grandmother. She got them from her grandmother when she was a little girl. In a way, they are a link to my female ancestors. 
The craftsmanship is beautiful. The earrings are flower-shaped and the blue petals are made of turquoise, which is my favourite stone.
A long time ago I decided I was going to wear them. They were different from anything my friends had. I wore them constantly for 20 years. The clasp is very strong and it was hard to remove them even when I wanted to. Until about a week ago when I lost one of them. I was really unhappy, but two days later I found it lying on the carpet, hiding in plain sight.
I was under the impression that my female ancestors were trying to tell me something. 
What could that be?

Thursday, April 11, 2019

The White City

By Vlada Marinković - Vlada Marinković, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3881485

The White City

People have lived here for 6000 years.
At the beginning, women ruled.
The Argonauts sailed through,
or so I’ve heard.
There are passages and dungeons under your feet,
your way out, should you need it.
You will have to face your fear of the dark first,
for there are monsters underneath and labyrinths.
Or so they say.
From time to time, the city burns itself to the ground.
A new city grows, completely changed.
No one quite understands why.
Only the wind is always the same
and the two rivers.
The climate is harsh and the people are meat eaters.
The land is constantly eroded.
Nothing is ever solid and there will be cracks everywhere.
You'll need to learn how to live with that
should you decide to stay.

GloPoWriMo Day 11 - a poem of origin

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

What I Know about the Weather

Image by O12 from Pixabay

What I Know about the Weather

My grandmother said if you saw a lot of sparrows on the ground, there would soon be snow. She always hid a chilly pepper inside her wallet. Sparrows are losing the battle to magpies and crows.  If you hear an owl during the day, that means a storm is coming. The sparrow has lived with the man since the Stone Age.  Cows will stop grazing and will smell the wind before a change of weather. Ice is melting worldwide.  If a rooster is rolling in the dust, hot weather is coming. Some butterflies have migrated north. My grandmother was not allowed to eat chilly peppers because of her gallbladers. Global sea levels are rising. The weather forecast written inside a pig’s spleen is better and more accurate than the  official one, the butcher said. Some regions are experiencing severe drought. If a spider is hiding in shadows, there will be rain. Mosquitoes and ticks are thriving.  If the wind doesn’t stop after 3 days, it will blow for a week. If a bear sees his shadow on Candlemass day, the winter is not over.  If, after a week, the wind doesn’t stop, it will blow for two weeks more. My grandmother said her soul would yearn for chilly peppers forever.

GloPoWriMo Day 10 - a poem about the weather
Based on Serbian folk meteorology and on this article.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Things That Have Been Mislaid

Things That Have Been Mislaid

A set of keys for a place where no one lives.
An audio cassette, recorded for someone special.
A child, left to grow up with her grandparents until the day she goes to school.
A glove, forgotten on purpose in the car of a married man.
A ring that fell into a crack in the floor.
A one-eyed doll that once could speak.
A hand-woven rug given as dowry, now eaten by moths.
A squishy toy that a dog used to play with.
A box full of tickets, postcards and maps.
Ten notebooks with hand-written poetry.

GloPoWriMo Day 9 - a list of things

Monday, April 8, 2019

How to teach outside the box

How to teach outside the box 

Know this: that I believe in our learning focused lesson plans and our emerging communities.
Your child exhibits exceptional focus and diligence.
Be professional in dress, manner, and attitude.
 I want this concept map to be flexible.  It's important to apply it across the curriculum.
I love that your child does her best every single day.
Act professionally in public.
Think about synergy. It's highly relevant in the context of deep learning.
Your child’s persistence is exemplary.
Speak clearly and loudly enough to be heard.
 Together, we will visualize technology-enhanced opinions with synergistic effects.
With a little more effort, your child could move up to the advanced group.
Know where the fire exits are located.
It's time that we became uber-efficient with our constructivist common core.
Let’s work on motivating your child.
Be familiar with disaster procedures.
We need a more blue-sky approach to inquiry-centered action plans.
Your child may need additional assistance.
Keep manuals in one place.
 This approach will prioritize intuitive proficiencies within the new paradigm.
We will continue to work on your child's behavior at school.
Have daily lesson plans well prepared.
 It will unleash student-centered niches in authentic, real-world scenarios.
Let’s meet to discuss strategies to keep your child on track.
Encourage students to dream.
We will orchestrate emerging instruction within professional learning communities.

GloPoWriMo Day 8 - exploring the argot of a particular profession

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Now see what you have wished upon us!

Image by Vicki Nunn from Pixabay

Now see what you have wished upon us!

And the red looked pretty upon the white snow,
and she thought to herself,
would that I had a child.
I will have a child, even if it is a hedgehog.
If all the pigeons in this field were turned to sheep and belonged to me,
as white as snow,
if all this water was turned into wine and belonged to me,
as red as blood,
call for a kingdom, for gold, pearls, rubies, diamonds,
ask for a dress the color of the moon,
ask for
a black pudding,
as black as the wood of the window-frame,
for princely garments and wealth untold,
as bright and shining as the sun.

GloPoWriMo Day 6 - the power of "if"
This is a found poem. Here are the fairy tales I used: 
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: https://www.cs.cmu.edu/~spok/grimmtmp/042.txt

Friday, April 5, 2019

How to Raise a Baby Alligator

Image by sven kopping from Pixabay

How to Raise a Baby Alligator

Baby alligators are much like the babies of any species
Martha, my dear
cute, little and seemingly helpless
Though I spend my days in conversation, please
It is illegal in all states to release a pet alligator into the wild
Remember me
Any pet can show aggression; be prepared and cautious at all times
Martha, my love
If you're having difficulty with your alligator, contact your local wildlife authority for assistance.
Don't forget me
Thick rubber bands can be placed around the alligator's jaws
Martha, my dear
Alligators can live in captivity for more than 50 years
Hold your head up
Survival instincts cause alligators to view humans as a threat
You silly girl
and possible dinner option
Look what you've done
a constant battle against 100 million years of evolutionary programming
When you
add rats and rabbits to the menu
Find yourself in the thick of it
reaching an adult length of 4 to 7 feet
Help yourself to a bit of what is all around you
Unable to resist temptation
Silly girl
the Caimans are smaller, but more aggressive
Take a good look around you
Create an enclosure for your alligator
Take a good look; you're bound to see
Use the lights to mimic the seasons
That you and me
Offer food at the same time every day
Were meant to be
Use a different routine
For each other
getting ready to feed
Silly girl
you definitely don't want them to confuse the two
Hold your hand out
they have to be removed eventually
You silly girl
These can be purchased frozen from a reptile house
See what you've done
but must be completely thawed before
When you
mice pinkies, cricket and earthworms

GloPoWriMo Day 5 - lines taken from an outside text, lines that oppose each other
This is a found poem. I used alternating lines of:

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Peacock in Repose

Image by pixel2013 from Pixabay

Peacock in Repose

I keep sitting here,
There is nothing else to do.
Does it look to you
like I am resting?
I didn’t choose these wings or these feathers.
I was bewitched into walking on my hands
long ago.
I have no cravings.
I can not stomach human food.
All I ever think of these days
are those apples.
Red as sin.

GloPoWriMo Day 4 - a sad poem

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

The Ghost Tree

Image by David Mark from Pixabay

The Ghost Tree

Snow comes to mind first
when the wind picks up the flowers.
Japan, though neither one of us has been.
A child is sitting in the tree.
Time has frozen this image.
You are lying in a hammock,
your feet towards the ghost tree.
Red toenails.
No need to close the eyes any more.
There is nothing to distract you,
no new images to interfere.
You can now see the blue sky clearly.
And since we are there, let’s throw in a rainbow or two.
Maybe an eagle is flying over,
or a pheasant.
In my world colours are not as vivid
as they used to be.
Darkness is coming.
Your darkness.
In my world the child is a man now
and they cut the cherry tree a few years ago.
I still have to rely on cold facts
and what is or isn’t there.
Darkness is coming and, once it does,
I will have blue skies and eagles
and a cherry tree on my threshold.

GloPoWriMo Day 3 - a story that unfolds over an appreciable length of time