Unfolding Seasons–dVerse Quadrille 2–with all (both) words

Unfolding Seasons
Quadrille Collection

Part I Winter

There is a purity to fresh-fallen snow,
the quiet of night, of nature’s repose,
birds, silent now, sleeping in dense junipers.

Walk alone, outside, in midnight dazzle
of virgin white. Snow crunches beneath your feet,
settles on trees, rocks, housetops.
You will discover magic.

Let’s see if I can jump into the challenge of using all the words for dVerse Quadrille and making sense. Today there are only 2: rock and crunch.

Photo: pexels. Labeled for non-commercial reuse.


sunday morning–dVerse Quadrille

Caption: Victoria Slotto

sunday morning
(in the manner of Chinese wilderness poets)

snow dusts silent earth
branches bow beneath its touch
cedar wax wings descend to berry filled trees

moon drops behind Sierra
morning sun stretches lazily
paints sky in hues of rose

frozen grass crunches beneath feet
distant train signals crossing
hope hides in shadows

Welcome to dVerse Poets Quadrille this week–my favorite prompt! Today De is asking us to write our poem of 44 words, no more, no less (excluding title) within which we will include the word “crunch.” I’ve just begun reading “Mountain Home: The Wilderness Poetry of Ancient China,” translated by David Hinton.  I suspect that, little as I grasp of it, there will be some influence in my writing. Do you feel a sense of emptiness?

Please join us at the pub with your 44-word crunchy poem. The doors swing open Monday at 3 PM EST.

Now–dVerse Haibun Monday

Photo: David Slotto
Cedar Wax Wings

a Haibun

Yesterday, my husband and I had the opportunity to visit a homeless encampment/tent city to share some sandwiches we made from leftovers of our late celebration of Thanksgiving. On each face we had the privilege to see, I witnessed etchings of pain, left by the stylus of bad luck, or, perhaps, bad choices. It matters not.

There, I savored the beauty of true gratitude, not a blithe nod to an abundance of gifts—but in those eyes I saw a sadness that pointed to a life without much hope in the future.

My own plans are non-specific for the time being, due to a lack of personal time—for reasons outside my control. But what a blessing it is to live in the present moment, to find opportunity to love today, to sneak in a creative moment whenever life slows down to a crawl. What a blessing it is to accept the now with wide open arms.

they come by in waves
eat of our berries and fruit
migrating wax wings

On Monday, Kanzen Sakura invited us to post a haibun that dealt with our plans for dVerse Haibun Monday. While I have a plethora of ideas I would love to pursue, sometimes life puts a constraint on that. Toni (Kanzen Sakura) has told us of her new plans. I wish you well, my friend, and look forward to your continued sharing of poetry, if not prompts. Thank you for all you have taught us.

Off-Season Desert Rat

Off-Season Desert Rat
a Haibun-Quadrille

I drive to the desert through fields of red lava—rocks tinged deep red, belched from the bowels of earth. Towering mountains surround me, enclose me in a bowl of hot soup.

Pockmarked stone, dry heat
summer sun casts oases
dry as parchment skin.

It’s Monday Quadrille at dVerse .

Today, Mish is asking for a poem of exactly 44 words, excluding title. Your poem will include the word ROCK. Use it as a noun, verb…any way you like. But make sure there is something rock-y about it. See you there!

Image: wonderopolis.com


Victoria C. Slotto, Author

A Haibun

Do falling leaves ache with the pain of letting go? Or do they revel in the freedom of floating and of the taste of earth? Did they boast of glorious colors that they wore in days before releasing their hold on life?

And the trees—do they grasp obsessively to their robes of glory, regret the day that finds them stripped, exposed and naked—vulnerable to cold and rain.

I am October now, buffeted by aging. I hurl my somethingness into the great unknown, one gift at a time. I face the imminence of winter, move beyond the sting of loss into the joy of unknown expectations. I am old but full of hope, in the springtime of new life. Beneath the soil life pulses.

Je suis depouilée
stripped bare like October trees
richness lies hidden

Photo: Victoria Slotto

*The French word depouillement means stripping. The verb depouiller is…

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dVerse Haibun Monday: Shimo No Koe, Voice of First Frost

Photo: Labeled for reuse


I awaken this morning to temperatures of 28 degrees Fahrenheit, open the back door and breathe in the purity of crisp, fresh air. Hoar frost designs sparkle on the deck and the vegetable garden sags—leaves like tears hang from the tomato and cucumber plants, light splashes of color awash on our maple and ash trees. The glory of the cerulean sky sings joy. Reality intervenes.

blood-red leaves appear
fall gently on the pavement
frost-beauty weeping

Today, I’m hosting Haibun Monday at dVerse Poets. The prompt is Shimo No Koe–Voice of First Frost. Please join in. The prompt is open all week.

shoe markdowns you don’t want to miss–dVerse Poetics

Late, perhaps, for Kim’s prompt at dVerse Poetics: SHOES (or lack thereof). Within a few minutes of each other I read an article about Harvey that mentioned so many fleeing flood waters were without shoes, and then an ad that became the title of this poem.

shoe markdowns you don’t want to miss

she had no money
she had no shoes
the sign in the washed-
out store mocked her
mocked them all
she held her baby closer
huddled on the flatboat
riding flood waters
into an unknown future
more than she could say
for others

Image: Fox News