A Shitty Poem

Number 7, no prompt — however, after filling some three and a half pages with thoughtful, poetic attempts, I was met with severe mental and artistic constipation (as seems to be the case every April, at some point). It follows that this one came to me as simply and purely as it did (no draft required):


You can never know

dear reader

whether I wrote this poem

on the toilet.


How does that

make you feel?


Catching up with Buzzards

I’m a few days behind, but here’s #6 as per the prompt of Day 6: “a poem that looks at the same thing from various points of view,” taking particular inspiration from NaPo’s example poet Wallace Stevens — though I’ve opted for buzzards instead of blackbirds.







seven black ghosts
wind about the daylight blue,
seek the unmoving
—more yet may come


sickle silhouettes
loom heavily above
but fear eschews the gap
of one missing feather—
the immortal sky
cuts through


too close to the sun,
ashen angels descend
to mortal earth,
wary and unsure
on solid ground


polished black diamonds
pierce the glint of dawn
from charcoal skulls,
dip to jerk and tear,
lift to scan the hearts
of their beholders—
trust no witness here


for death,
their dirks descend,
unpiecing what once was
before scattering
on the wind,
leaving shadows to dance
across the reeds


she carries death
in her sable gullet,
promising restitution
in open, eager mouths

The Sensuous Sublime

Day 5, as per NaPo’s optional prompt “to write a poem that is based in the natural world: it could be about a particular plant, animal, or a particular landscape… that you have personally experienced and optimally, one that you have experienced often.” (Though I lament that I don’t have this experience nearly often enough!)

Journal draft (outlined in red, though the remainder of the scribbles were also relevant to its development):



The final iteration:


My blood is warm and willful
beneath the falling rain:
the rivers deep within my skin
flow fast and free again.

My heavy, sodden clothing
invites me to the earth;
I lift my face toward the clouds
to bathe in my rebirth.

The scent of loam and verdure
are dancing on the air;
I breathe into the atmosphere
a silent, wordless prayer.

The elements surround me
and waken through the storm
the anima within my flesh
in her immortal form:

I see beyond the rainfall
behind my shuttered eyes;
I rise into the dampened ground
and sink below the skies;

I sing into the tempest
with neither tongue nor voice;
I choose to be and not to be
with neither fate nor choice.

I linger in this moment
outside the veil of time
conversing with the living storm,
the sensuous sublime.


I might add some more discussion to this one tomorrow, but for starters, if it’s not evident, I was very meticulous with the metrical structure of this poem, and paid fair attention to a consistent rhyme scheme.


Day/Poem 3, as per NaPo’s challenge “to write an elegy – a poem that mourns or honors someone dead or something gone by.”

For some reason, heavier subject matter tends to bring me back to the villanelle, so I’ve chosen that form again for this work.

The journal draft:


The final cut:

And who would mourn your silent, rueful name
whose kingdom lies below the bitter ground
when all is yours to candidly reclaim?

Though all the world laments your cursed fame,
we tremble, still, before your barren crown.
And who would mourn your silent, rueful name

whose breath would douse the longest-burning flame
and steal our own, resigning us to drown?
When all is yours to candidly reclaim,

we simple pawns grow weary of your game
and curse the Player’s talented renown.
And who would mourn your silent, rueful name

if we could see beyond your seeming aim—
should we discern the fate to which you’re bound…
When all is yours to candidly reclaim,

we ask ourselves if we would want the same
and whether we could shoulder what we found,
and who would mourn your silent, rueful name
when all is yours to candidly reclaim…

One Part Boy

For Day/Poem 2, I utilized NaPoWriMo’s optional prompt “to write a poem inspired by, or in the form of, a recipe.” The beginnings of this came to me fairly immediately after I woke up this morning.

Journal draft:

one part boy


And the final:


One part boy to two parts free
Snip off the tip for an old decree
One part boy to one part free
Pound to an even consistency

One part boy to one part teen
Simmer uncovered over torn blue jeans
One part boy to two parts teen
Harden under pressure from the football team

One part boy to one part man
Crack the brittle shell for the cast-iron pan
One part boy to two parts man
Grab her by the pussy just to show you can

One part boy to one part dad
Grease with the fat of the life he’s had
One part boy to two parts dad
Bring to a boil when the man gets mad

One part boy, one part regret
Stew on low, hope to forget
One part boy, two parts regret
for the freer man that he never met.

NaPoWriMo 2017: #1

With about forty minutes to spare, my first poem for April!


Here’s the journal draft:


And the final, followed by the photo I took that inspired it:

skyfire brings its molten wings
to span the sky as sundown sings
of triumph over wilder things
in heavy skies with blinding stings,
with tears to drown the dreams of kings
and winds to snap their puppet strings

a lucent voice now sweetly rings
beyond the veil to which it clings
as all around, in everything,
a warmness blooms and solace springs