Woodland Theme

silent beneath the trees, green
and brown, purple, yellow
and green again bright as sun-gleam

vines trailing last year’s wisdom
in leathered leaves and new
shoots of upright quivering

possibility, periwinkle stars open
or coiled for some tomorrow
no one sees but me

and you


NaPoWriMo Day 18. Off-prompt after a sun-filled, flowering weekend.


Wide prairie with a single tree

(add in your paint-blue sky
or cloud-dotted
or billowed with stormy gray
to the west
purple slashed from noon to night)

Wide prairie with a single tree

(make it a cottonwood, leaf shimmer
with a lonely farm—how small!
beside the lake
and give the lake a sunset glint
or a midday dazzle
and a few ducks or geese
or raucous scores of them among the reeds
cranes and herons, blackbirds
a finch?)

Wild prairie with a single tree

(strokes of swaying grasses
more than pronghorn-high
or covering the wheels of the covered wagon
the weary horses’ flanks
sweep it with flowers
purple, golden, red
or make it flattened, winter-scoured
with snow or sleet or death in the wind)

Wide prairie with a single tree

(have you found it yet
under the black, star-streamed sky
or why are you still here)

The Quest Is

In your dream you slept
by the riverbank
and not out of spite
I changed your love
into a flower, simple
bluebell in the forest
swaying daisy in the meadow—
one of a million light-sung flowers
in the hundred greendeep forests
in the thousand sunflood meadows
and how will you find love now
and what if love remained
deep-rooted, rain-thirsting

For next year’s garden

bring me canna lilies
red and gold, leaves bold
unfurling palm-like, shading
striped, streaked, splotched
great reedy canes
buds ruffled, spiraling
throats blushed
to bring bees, birds, bats
and if we can’t live on
through frost and dark
we’ll make paper, dye, beads
and music from the seeds

Playing with this prompt from Margo Roby: Wordgathering, also inspired by a gift of canna lily rhizomes from my son’s horticulture class.


evening purples
coneflowers, prairie clover
stirred by unhushed wings–

evening purples
asters, feathered grasses, pond-
held wary stillness

coneflowers, prairie clover,
rabbits quick-whisper
sun in slow descent

stirred by unhushed wings
sky quickens, blunt-crying geese
fade purple, southward

Written in the form of Troiku, inspired by this post at Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie.

Hoping for the Homestead

There’s no need to settle—
ever migrating, we light
on a blossom song
until we’ve drunk our honey-fill:
apricot, linden, clover
and by the lakeside listening
for night music, we dream
of trails wending west and west

Inspired by Margo Roby’s Poem Tryouts, “The Streets Where You Lived,” and including parts of names of several streets on which we’ve resided: apricot, linden, clover, lakeside, trail, west; with “night music” standing in for Mozartstrasse.


No fear, here, of the long night
half a year, half a lifetime
away. We open and glow moon-
flowered, sigh with perfume
by pale stars bedewed
pity the wan, draggled dawn.

I am falling behind with my Family Poetry Project postings–but still writing every day! The kids are, too. We’re having a great time with it. The prompt for this was “Night” in 33 words or less, from A Prompt Each Day.