April poems, thirteen out of fourteen

I’m a three-speed Schwinn

And you are an Aston Martin, midnight blue,
on a solo cruise down the Autobahn,

your speed so crazy cliffs, trees, stars and moon
whip together in a frenzied banner
brushing your sleek lines.

Have you forgotten what the sky
looks like, even when your top is down?

When was the last time you stopped
to give someone a ride?

As the sun rises from a patch of spring violets,
you close your eyes in a darkened garage
and your engine no longer vibrates.

I bring up the rear, pushing my pedals on the open road
until my heart frays – tiny, untouchable threads.


I have to write one more poem or at least a rough draft (and really they are all drafts, at this point) to catch up with the pace of April poems. And I really feel like the bicycle in this poem – my energy is flagging a tad bit. It’s hard to churn out a poem to a specific prompt. But at the same time, I’m a ‘good student’ type, and if someone gives me an assignment I can generally rise to the challenge. So at least I’m writing.

This poem is based on a prompt I wrote for Read Write Poem about cars. Which means I’m writing to my own prompt. Student and teacher in one. I also included it in the Poetic Asides poem-a-day challenge in the category of objects.

April poems, twelve out of thirteen

Ninja Mama

The ninja sightings began
after I started watching
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
with my young boys.

But the ninjas stalking me weren’t
the jolly types who eat pizza
and break dance on their shells.

No, these shadows peeked
around the corners of the toilet paper aisle
at Kroger, trying to steal my coupons,
or they hid among the stacks of poetry
books at the library,
learning my line breaks.

Because of the ninjas
I learned to pivot on one foot,
kick my leg as high
as the top of a door frame,
wave my arms in figure eights
to confound my enemies.

They will never know what hit them.
I will whorl around like a spider monkey,
fly over their heads like a bat,
shower them with a spray of stars.

When my boys dress as ninjas
for Halloween, I will be one too.
They’ll be proud of me,
a mother who can kick ass.


I think I’m losing it a little bit, with this constant stream of poems! Oh well. This one is for Jill’s prompt about movies, and Robert Lee Brewer’s prompt about hobbies. It would be very bad-ass to be able to fly around like those Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon fighters, wouldn’t it? Except I wouldn’t want to do any damage, just pretend, and show off my skills. 🙂


April poetry, day 8

Beach Rituals

At sixteen my son and his two friends
are cresting the first wave of manhood –
their arms and legs extend

from their torsos like freshly molded
coils of clay, and a glaze of down
glistens on their upper lips.

After slapping on a few dabs of sunscreen
they trudge across the sand, in the wake
of three Venus de Milos with dimpled hips.

Laughter trails away with the cries
of gulls and breakers. A breeze carries
the scent of salt, mollusks, and seaweed

to my spot under a lime-green tent,
where I’m sheathed in a long-sleeve blouse,
protected with sunglasses and a hat.

They bare their chests beneath
a sun nailed to the sky, poised to forget
that I’m in the background, waiting.


This one was supposed to be about routines, but I veered from the theme a bit. It’s hard to write or even think about routines when I’m at the beach.

From my vantage point on a bench outside the Venice Library there’s a giant palm tree, a live oak with a wide canopy,and a lovely sea breeze calling me back to the waves. I miss you all, but I’ll catch up when I return on Sunday. I have a few poems to write between now and then, since I’m a day behind with napowrimo!


Saturday's attempt, day 4

The Barnacle Says

I am a lunar crater on a gray whale’s back,
a lightening bolt on the Bering Sea.
I am hailstorms stinging Pacific swells,
baby fog drifting on hidden lagoons.

I am feathers that tickle el Niño,
a calm morning before the storm,
the wing of a dove as it lands on a branch,
a curl of smoke from distant lands.

I am the silent breath of a slow ride,
the chill in the air, an alpine moon,
a shiny nickel found on the sand.
I am antique paper rolled in a bottle,

faded letters scratched in blood.
I am the tip of a whittled stick,
the thoughts that drift out to sea
and return with the incoming tide.


Day 4. I wrote this poem using a few words for colors found on paint chip samples, the idea for my prompt currently up at Read Write Poem. I’ve used this idea before with some amusing results. Sometimes the names for colors on those paint samples are beyond the pale… . I also wrote about an animal for Poetic Asides. dyalns-letter-a

April poetry, day 3

The Problem with 3

3 doesn’t know it’s overexposed.
Just look at it, mugging for the camera,
mouth open, ready to devour 1 and 2.

3 insinuates itself into crowds –
Jesus, Mary, Joseph, the Father,
the Son, the Holy Ghost, the Fates,

the Furies, the Graces, the hearts
of a squid, the pieces of a suit,
the beginning, the middle, the end.

3 needs to lie on its back, let another
number take center stage.
With both curves on the floor,

3 could be an adorable derriere,
a waxed-tip moustache, a wave
in the ocean. 3 could be 2 –

2 smiles, 2 chins, a pair of mango
breasts, 2 arms open for company.


Thanks, Carolee, for a great prompt at Read Write Poem. I also combined Carolee’s suggestions with Robert’s prompt at Poetic Asides.

Writing this poem helped me make it through an MRI this morning. I wrote it in my head while the machine droned like a jack hammer outside a window. The MRI is done, I’m fine, and poetry lives on!