Tag Archives: writing challenges

The one-third mark

We’re a third of the way through September and I’ve managed to compose a poem every day so far. Those short poems have done a good job of keeping my head in the game when I don’t have much time to write.

(Sep 9)

Willow is the emo child
of the Deciduous family,
bangs forever hanging
across her face.

(Sep 10)

This was inspired by an event in early April and a post at Formidable Woman Sanctuary: https://formidablewoman.org/2020/07/14/wardrobe-escapee-what-happened/

The pandemic in two small items of clothing

While walking on my street –
a street that goes nowhere
and leads to nothing, just circles
around the neighborhood
and back on itself – I saw
a pair of crew socks in the road
like they’d fallen off the roof
of a car or been dropped.

Separated, slumped, bedraggled,
abandoned – I felt as lost
as they appeared and as full
of unanswered questions.

It really is September…

A little behind as usual…

Four poems in a single post sounds like a lot, but they’re small so it’s not really.

(Sep 4)

chainsaws roar
wood chippers growl
so homeowners don’t have to hear
the weeping of trees

(Sep 5)

In one of those odd
slips of the mind, I saw
“boardroom” but read
“boredom” instead.

(Sep 6)

Ever the late bloomer

I just want to sit and read
or write or crochet now that my brain
has shaken off its pandemic

paralysis, but the world is back
at full throttle and I missed my chance
to savor the quiet unfolding

(Sep 7)

Outdoor poetry circle

Poets occupy the four corners
of the deck, safely distant
but close enough to hear
over the güiro of cicadas.


And now for the garden photo:

Hibiscus moscheutos ‘Blue River II’ reblooming!

30 days hath September…

August wasn’t a total bust, writing-wise, but I didn’t set any records. I’ve decided it was a fallow period in which my brain rested from writing, though I did a fair amount of reading and tending to domestic matters.

September doesn’t belong to any special writing category that I know of, probably because it’s when a lot of people go back to school. But it is a 30-day month, and thus ripe for some kind of writing challenge. Indeed, a quick search turned up a boatload of September writing challenge prompts, as well as a number of generic 30-day writing challenges that fit.

In the spirit of those challenges, I’ve decided I want to write something each day this month, just to keep myself going. Work and family have demanded a lot of time of late, so I am composing in my head during small, stolen moments and trying to commit the results to memory until I can record them.

Here are the first three days’ efforts, followed by a photo from the garden.

(Sep 1)

This day has been too many
weeks long; this morning
I thought of a poem,
but now it’s gone.

(Sep 2)

Of time and timing

I have lost five poems
for every poem I’ve written
because they came to me
at inopportune moments.

(Sep 3)

Tired and frustrated,
I pen short poems that feel
like haiku but aren’t:
a new American form?

And now, the promised garden photo:

Sedum ‘Matrona’ with garlic chives. A bit of salvia ‘Black and Blue’ in the upper right, along with a couple of flies and a goldenrod soldier beetle (Chauliognathus pensylvanicus).

Day twenty-two poem, LexPoMo 2015

LPM2015-01-1024x768This was inspired by a poem posted today as part of the Lexington Poetry Month challenge.

Reblogged from the Lexington Poetry Month blog.

(with thanks to Rudy Thomas)

another poet* reminds me I am far more
the poetry I have not written

an iceberg, whose mass lies most
unseen and fresh beneath

a sea cold enough to kill
but too dense to freeze

*“The Voice,” Rudy Thomas (http://www.accents-publishing.com/blog/2015/06/22/the-voice/)

Day thirty poem, LexPoMo 2014

LexPoMo2014-blog-pic02-1024x878Reblogged from the Lexington Poetry Month blog.

The dry spell ends

it was raining most gloriously
soft, gentle, steady
and she wanted it to continue
all night long

Day twenty-six, LexPoMo 2014

LexPoMo2014-blog-pic02-1024x878My parents would have celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary this week had my father not died 26 years ago.

Reblogged from the Lexington Poetry Month blog.

Our 50th Year

there will be no party, no surprise
trip to Hawaii, no family photographs
it feels so hollow, this
anniversary, a golden clanging
bell with no clapper, like me
without you

Day eleven poem, LexPoMo 2014

LexPoMo2014-blog-pic02-1024x878It feels strange to post a day eleven poem on day twelve. I offer the following by way of explanation.


today I must write a lame poem
because I don’t have time to write
a bad poem — truly bad poetry
takes as much skill and effort as good
poetry — perhaps even more

Day ten poem, LexPoMo 2014

LexPoMo2014-blog-pic02-1024x878Reblogged from the Lexington Poetry Month blog.


She sits at the table, hands wrapped around fresh
coffee. Her fingers trace out of habit
the large red heart on the mug. Yesterday’s news
lies open to the amusements
page, a shared morning ritual now
suddenly solitary. She has finished
the crossword and scramble, laughed
too loud at the comics, clucked amazement
at Dear Abby. All that remains
are the horoscopes. Beneath her husband’s sun
sign she reads, “Your challenge is to explore
the freedom of commitment.” With a sharp
bark of laughter, she lowers the mug and draws the waiting
pile of divorce papers across the table.

Day five poem, LexPoMo 2014

LexPoMo2014-blog-pic02-1024x878Reblogged from the Lexington Poetry Month blog.


today a sinuous slipstream of poems
roared onto the straightaway
each drawing the one that followed
so close there was no wake
each pushing the one before
ever faster toward the finish

LexPoMo 2014, day 4

LexPoMo2014-blog-pic02-1024x878Reblogged from the Lexington Poetry Month blog.


no suffering can enter
where my name rests
nightly on your lips
if you but hold me
in your prayers
I shall be safe
whatever befall

whatever befall
I shall be safe
in your prayers
if you but hold me
nightly on your lips
where my name rests
no suffering can enter

Comments and suggestions (especially for a title) are welcome!