Nocturne–dVerse Quadrille #37

Photo: Jim Kennedy via Flickr

This week I am hosting the Quadrille Prompt at dVerse Poets. I am asking for a poem of exactly 44 words, not including the Title, that includes the word FEAR. Remember, the prompt is open all week, so, hopefully, you will join us.




Owl screeches.
Frissons of fear ripple through shadowy woods,
tiny creatures scurry,
huddle ‘neath rocks and shrubs.
Full moon breaks through scattered clouds,
outlines the silhouette of dying
in pewter skies.
I remember the spill of blood in snow—
crimson drops. Mournful
dove, singing.


Vacuum–dVerse Haibun





I am afraid to grieve—afraid that if I open that door a crack those other monsters hidden in the shadows will creep in and invade my peace. Is it because that loss began so long ago, when the brilliance of her mind began to dim, when judgment fled and anger peeked between the clouds? Or has the “business” of dying obscured the underlying pain? And when that’s done (if ever) what awaits? I dread am afraid of grief.

ducklings romp outside
april joy plays in sunshine
hawk swoops in, devours

Kanzen Sakura asks for Haibuns written on the subject of our most honest fears. Visit dVerse Haibun Monday to share.

Photo: Flickr
Labeled for non-commercial reuse

considering trees

Photo: V. Slotto

Photo: V. Slotto

sometimes i am stuck
in the mind-skin of the child i used to be
when i’d climb my pepper tree
to hide from all
that i was not,
would never be.

this morning i awoke,
sun glancing through full branches
of my pear tree,
reminding me that love
is quite enough

and that whatever this day brings,
whatever the years may hand me,
i shall always find a tree.

Written for Marina Sofia’s prompt for dVerse Poetics in response to the question: “Describe a morning when you awoke without fear.” I also had in mind an earlier  prompt of Shanyn’s that I was unable to write to. 

A Season of Newness

Photo: D. Slotto

Photo: D. Slotto

For today’s reflection I would like to share an excerpt of the homily delivered by Pope Francis I at the Easter Vigil Service.

“In the Gospel of this radiant night of the Easter Vigil, we first meet the women who go the tomb of Jesus with spices to anoint his body (cf. Lk 24:1-3). They go to perform an act of compassion, a traditional act of affection and love for a dear departed person, just as we would. They had followed Jesus, they had listened to his words, they had felt understood by him in their dignity and they had accompanied him to the very end, to Calvary and to the moment when he was taken down from the cross.

We can imagine their feelings as they make their way to the tomb: a certain sadness, sorrow that Jesus had left them, he had died, his life had come to an end. Life would now go on as before. Yet the women continued to feel love, the love for Jesus which now led them to his tomb

But at this point, something completely new and unexpected happens, something which upsets their hearts and their plans, something which will upset their whole life: they see the stone removed from before the tomb, they draw near and they do not find the Lord’s body.

It is an event which leaves them perplexed, hesitant, full of questions: “What happened?”, “What is the meaning of all this?” (cf. Lk 24:4). Doesn’t the same thing also happen to us when something completely new occurs in our everyday life? We stop short, we don’t understand, we don’t know what to do

Newness often makes us fearful, including the newness which God brings us, the newness which God asks of us. We are like the Apostles in the Gospel: often we would prefer to hold on to our own security, to stand in front of a tomb, to think about someone who has died, someone who ultimately lives on only as a memory, like the great historical figures from the past. We are afraid of God’s surprises; we are afraid of God’s surprises! He always surprises us!

Dear brothers and sisters, let us not be closed to the newness that God wants to bring into our lives!

Photo: Jimmy Akin Francis washing the feet of several young people, including women.

Photo: Jimmy Akin
Francis washing the feet of several young people, including women.


Choice–dVerse Poetics, Twitter Poetry

Photo: David Slotto This is a path in our neighborhood  that leads to the Truckee River.

Photo: David Slotto
This is a path in our neighborhood that leads to the Truckee River.

A new path invites
Does it lead to meadow or abyss?
Fear surrounds me.
If I follow will I be free?
If I don’t enter is beauty lost forever?

Linked to dVerse Form for All where Sam Peralta invites us to write a poem using exactly 140 characters, including punctuation and spaces. I edited an old one on Twitter, to be exact. Join us if you will.


I began writing this for the contest celebrating dVerse’s first year anniversary, (for the urban theme)  but I wasn’t able to complete it in time, so I thought I’d link it to OLN. I’m beginning to think I’m a rural recluse at heart!

Photo: Google Images


I fear the city.
I fear gang-
ly groves of trees
that prowl,
pursuing bedlam.

I fear unknown
faces, unfamiliar voices
lurking in night-black
their purpose
fraught with pain,
I fear their primal rage

and I fear FEAR,
that hurtles toward
or success,
anonymity amassed
in closed-in space
that sucks stifled
stale air.

I fear the loss
of open fields,
of earth’s dank smell
and Gaia’s grainy touch.
The loss of birdsong,
and of honeysuckle scents,
of water running clear.

How I fear height,
the towering structures
pressing on my freedom.

I long for mountain tops,
escaping expectations.

Join us over at dVerse for some wonderful poetry and good friends. The pub doors open wide at 1500 EST on Tuesday.

Walking Between Worlds

Troy Lim photography via Photobotos

Last night an owl
visited my dream.

At first, a shadow
till the moon reflected
layer upon layer,
feathered phantom,
snowy countenance,
searing eyes,
her image in a well
of watery, starlit magic.

Gift of wisdom:
darkest light that shimmers—

plumbing fear,
extracting secrets,
harboring power
of the womb.

The risk is this:
you dare not go within.

The owl totem is a symbol of the feminine, the moon and the night. It is a bird of magic and darkness, of prophecy and wisdom. When she visits your dreams, you are well-advised to look within.

Written for Open Link Night over at dVerse Poets’ Pub hosted tonight by Joe Hesch. Stop on over. I suspect he’ll brew up a magic potion just for you.

Photo Credit: This photo is the work of Troy Lim as featured on  It is my understanding the work featured on Photobotos my be used for non-commercial purposes. If this is incorrect, I will be happy to remove it from this post. It was the photo (and a dream) that set my mind to working. I highly recommend this site to fellow poets as a marvelous source of inspiration.

Fear–dVerse, Meeting the Bar

Macro of Amethyst Quartz. It is 3 inches (8 cm...

Image via Wikipedia


Incense settled in the air,
masking the taste of bile
rising to the back of my throat.

Downstairs, in the bookstore,
chattering sounds, muffled—
New-Age sorts milling about in search
of answers to Age-Old questions.

She sat across from me, eyes closed.
clutching a pillar of clear crystal,
sandaled feet obscured by folds
of a voluminous purple skirt.

I folded sweaty palms together,
clenched my jaw and waited for her guides
to tell her what they wanted her to know,
fought the urge to bolt down stairs
into the frost-laced autumn morn.

Warning words from long ago:
Père l‘Aumonier, a gaunt aesthete
cautioning in a whisper:
“Mefiez-vous de la magie noire,
meme de la magie blanche.”
A shadow poured across the loft.

At last her eyes flew open.
and she placed a globe of amethyst
upon the edge of the weathered
wooden table that marked a boundary
between her world and mine.

“This is you,” she said, pointing
to the lilac orb, “and this is who
you can become,” she said, point to another stone,
a glowing golden citrine on the far side of the table.

And then she took the heavy chunk of quartz,
warm now, no doubt, from the cradle
of her palm, and lay it down between the others.

“And this is all that holds you back.”
She pointed to the crystal, and named it.
Named it then the very same name
that I have chosen for this poem.

Linked to dVerse Meeting the Bar, which I had the privilege of hosting. I hope you will stop by, join in. Bring a poem, have a drink and enjoy the work of your fellow poets.

Note: the French translates: the (priest) chaplain said: Beware of black magic, even white magic.

Untitled Octain–One Shot Wednesday

Jean Jacques Henner, Solitude

Image via Wikipedia

Here’s another attempt at an Octain, a poetic form created by Luke Prater and linked to One Shot Wednesday:

Untitled Octain

How many lives are spent in vain,
too conscious of the voice of fear,
thoughts muddled so that sight’s unclear.

They creep through days avoiding pain
or, warped by hate, they learn too late
to trust that love should ever deign

to visit them and draw them near.
Too many lives are spent in vain.

Sunday 160–“Fear-Mongering”

LA Times

Image via Wikipedia

Submitted to Monkey Man’s Sunday 160 in which you are challenged to use exactly 160 characters, including spaces:

I found last Tuesday’s newspaper—soggy, torn—
half-buried in a corner by the geraniums.
The crisis predicted on page one
had slipped, unfulfilled,
into obscurity.