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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Unusual encounters with nature

Write a poem about an unusual or startling encounter with nature....  Flowers, bees, skunks, lightening, earthquake, bats, hedgehogs what-have-you - either in reality, in a dream, in a mythological quandary etc etc.  Prompt inspired by an odd drawing of mine - you know that old saw about a man dreaming he was a butterfly or a butterfly dreaming he was a man. Got to wondering what other meadow dwellers would think about it, might be kinda puzzling.....


  1. I actually have a couple of recent poems with animals in them, and one of them has one of the little creatures that Victoria mentions specifically, so here goes:


    Skunks in the evening.
    A message to Lowell:
    A fault line in the brain.

    Lovers are coupling,
    Fancies are evil:
    Skunks in the evening.

    No more L. L. Bean.
    Sparks from an anvil.
    A fault line in the brain.

    The coastline is bleeding,
    No hope of retrieval,
    Just skunks in the evening.

    Nothing to gain.
    Each thought a betrayal.
    A fault line in the brain.

    Lowell is gone.
    So Plath, and so Sexton.
    It's poetry’s peril:
    Skunks in the evening,
    Fault lines in the brain.

    1. I didn't write the prompt, Tad. Mar Walker did! It's her drawing too. I have to admit I find this poem a bit incomprehensible, but then I find nature to be incomprehensible too. LOL

    2. I already made a comment on your poem, Tad, but something happened and it didn't turn up. I think I said that I enjoyed reading it even though I didn't understand it. And that the repetition of the lines put me in mind of a villanelle.

  2. It's a riff on Robert Lowell's "Skunk Hour."

    1. I think after reading what it's a riff on - it makes reply to Lowells poem quite well. Expectation, decay, change, inevitable irretrievable loss. Love the repeated "Fault lines in the brain."

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  5. Doldrums

    A tickle really, a night breeze passes, barely touching.
    In darkness I orbit the neighborhood's circle,
    pass the same facades repeatedly.
    Anchored by the hum of the highway,
    maybe a celestial dipper or two rising
    or a flock of little porch lights
    where a few someones live,
    I appreciate their seeming elemental persistence.
    Even now I point a bobbling flashlight to ward away shadows,
    though I have nothing to say to shadows these days.
    No one minds my silence.

    1. Sorry to post such a dark poem - I guess it just reflects my mood at the moment.

    2. Nice description of your feelings, no apologies needed.

    3. Thanks And now after looking at it,
      I see Tad's just as dark. Ah well.

    4. It's good to express your feelings in poetry. You were in a dark mood and you wrote an excellent dark poem. I love dark poetry.

  6. I opened the door to the closet,
    EEEK a Mouse I cried,
    my husband of the time had just
    left to go outside.
    The mouse ran up a coat sleeve
    and vanished quite away,
    I never saw that mouse again,
    I'm very glad to say.
    Husband came on back inside
    "Where is it?" he inquired.
    "Vanished away,thank goodness,"
    which is what I surely desired.
    "Then I'm not needed here," he said
    and off again did go.
    And where the mousie ended up,
    no one will ever know.

    1. That poem rated a chuckle from me, Tasha! I am still smiling. Out of sight, out of mind... lmbo

  7. How insightful is that comment!

    1. Tad has taught poetry at college level for a living, including at Marist, and as far as I'm concerned is one of the greatest American living poets. He was my poetry mentor and taught me to actually write poetry, after half a lifetime when I thought I was writing poetry. LOL.

  8. I'd heard tornadoes
    sound like close passing freight trains.
    Then I heard. They do.

    ... Wanted to get something out and am on vacation, visiting daughter and granddaughter, and training with my karate instructor. This turned out to be more complicated than I thought. I kept adding and removing the punctuation. Senryu are not supposed to have punctuation, but I don't think it works without it. Here it is again, with no punctuation, what do you think?

    I'd heard tornadoes
    sound like close passing freight trains
    then I heard they do

    1. I like the one with punctuation better. It shows the true meaning of the haiku.

  9. He was large and beautiful as
    he stood in my presence
    to show me his size.
    I saw gentleness in his kind eyes.
    His tongue when he licked me,
    covered my forearm and hand.
    I scratched his chin, his ears
    as he lay once again at my feet.
    "You ought to tell your woman,
    she might back away from my wolf."
    It was dust, nearly night at the Flea,
    in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
    It was a glorious night for me.
    It was magical;
    it was mystical;
    a moment out of a dream.
    The mountain man seemed nervous
    so, I backed away from his wolf.
    I didn't wash the magic off for a week.
    My spirit guide for life,
    became the magical, powerful wolf.