Photo: Victoria Slotto

Photo: Victoria Slotto

Pregnant clouds
poise on the mountain tops,
wait for nature’s push—
but for now they hover.

Our desert valley thirsts,

Do you know spirit-drought?
Those long, dry days
of waiting for bad news?
Of watching a loved one’s
slow demise—death by the inch?
Of staring at a blank page,
waiting for a shower of words?

Our spirits thirst,

Tonight our world
lies awake, listens
for rain.

For the past few days we’ve watched rain clouds that just can seem to make it over the mountains. Drastic measures are being implemented in face of the drought. California has initiated a state-wide mandate to reduce water consumption by 25% or more. 

I hoped to have this up in time for Open Link Night but missed it by just minutes…actually seconds. But here it is, anyway.

Enter Death–dVerse Open Link Night


Image by finofilka via Flickr

autumn window

Enter Death

Death, you’re not supposed to
come today.
Not on a day when Nature
slabs of alabaster
into a cobalt sky.
When blood-red branches
stretch out arms
to embrace the heavens in

I cradle his body—
silken feathers dipped
in gold—
perfect symmetry.
His head plume,
like a tear drop,
falls to the side
as life escapes
the fragile form.

You overstepped
your boundaries.
This quail didn’t know you,
lurking in that window,
waiting with empty

Please join us at dVerse Poets’ Pub for Open Link Night. Share good poetry, friendship and a glass of winter ale. The party begins at 3PM EST.

All Hallows’ Eve–dVerse Open Link Night


Image by andy castro via Flickr

All Hallows Eve
An Acrostic

Any soul not yet at rest
Loosens the grip of uncertainty,
Leaves the abode of the dead, wanders

Here and there amongst the living.
As darkness enfolds earth’s visage
Lost spirits roam, hungering for
Love once refused, lessons to be learned.
Only those still in this realm who understand
What is required to seek fulfillment
Strive to offer hope and prayers.

Even these must wait to cross
Vast worlds and unexplained dimensions
Eventually to rest in peace.

I suspect that this will not be the only Halloween poem to be served up over at dVerse Poet’s Pub for Open Link Night:  Drop by for a treat…maybe even a trick, and enjoy some hot cider with a shot of brandy to warm you up…Brian Miller is tending bar. Be sure to bring your poetry to share with the rest of us or a hex upon you! But be assured, there is no theme; you can share whatever you want.

Crynkovic Yugoslavian–Open Link Night at dVerse Poets’ Pub


Image by arbyreed via Flickr

Crynkovic Yugoslavian

Voluptuous Earth Goddess,
bearer of sacred promise,
fruitful Mother,
we savor your delight.

Misinformed misogynist,
the patriarchal Hesiod,
knew not the taste of pleasure
nor the scent of paradise.

Photo: V. Slotto

The Crynkovic Yugoslavian is a variety of heirloom tomatoes whose seed originated in (you guessed it) Yugoslavia. When my gardener-husband harvested this one last evening it brought to mind early goddess images, most often depicted as curvaceous figures without distinct features. If you’ve never enjoyed heirloom tomatoes, you’ve missed a truly divine experience.

Hesiod’s work on mythology downplays the role of feminine deities.

Neon Kisses–Open Link Night at dVerse Poets’ Pub

Neon Kisses

I didn’t notice the color of your jacket
or your eyes.
Battered by rain and wind
we walked side-by-side.
Neon lights reflected on wet asphalt
blinked their messages in blurred colors.

Nor did I notice where you took me
or that we had to wait for hours.
Your words hung, suspended in air
like notes of a symphonic chorus,
at times harmonic chords,
reverberated, crashing down around me.

I didn’t notice that the rain had stopped,
leaving in the air a fragrant breath
of moon-fresh night.
Nor did I grasp the fact that when you left
the cold closed in, enveloped me like a shroud.

The only thing I hold in memory:
kisses. The taste you left upon my lips,
your touch,
your smile.

Linked to Open Link Night at dVerse Poets Pub where we share a drink or two, great poetry and friendship. Come on over!

The Sin Seller

street beggar or mystic?

Image by Makz via Flickr

The Sin Seller

A funny little man with a screwed up nose
came pedaling down the street.
“Seven sins have I that you’ll want to buy,
seven sins, but they’re not what you think.”

“I’ll take some lust and a pinch of pride,
just a touch of greed will do.
A scoop of anger is enough today—
hold the sloth—I’ve got lots to do.”

He looked at me with his rheumy eyes
and tried to lift his head.
“You didn’t hear what I said to you—
there’re things that you’ll want instead.

“Envy’s not for sale, gluttony non plus—
those are all for free, you know.
Look inside your heart and I bet you’ll find
you can order them ‘to go.’

“But what I’ve got you will recognize
though you might not call them sins.
Check this out, it’s called blame, gets you off the hook.
It’s okay. Take a second look.”

“I’ll go for that, doesn’t seem too bad.
Shouldn’t send me straight to hell.
What else have you got that can help me out,
something light—to my conscience quell.

“Ah, then you’ll want this.” He held out his hand,
Crooked fingers clasped a glass.
“Take a sip and you’ll see (with veiled eyes)
those in need—then walk blithely past.”

“Oh, the poor—those who beg—they are everywhere.
Always looking for something more.
It would be a relief not to have to care.
You know, they’re just looking to score.

“What else do you have that I could use—
Anything to bring joy to my heart?”
His smile should have warned of the slippery path
I was sliding down from the start.

He wrung his hands and his words hissed out
through the gaps in his crooked teeth.
“Here, I’ve got a book that will help you learn
how to use others who believe

“that by helping you they are serving God.
They’re so easy to deceive.
Use them all you want, they will never guess
they are tools to meet your needs.”

“I think that’s all that I want for now,
I’m a little low on cash.
How much do I owe for all these sins?
Let me know and I’m gone in a flash.”

“Not so soon, my friend, these sins are cheap
and I have much more to offer.
Take a look in this box and see what you think.
You can add this one to your coffer.”

He lifted the lid and I peered in.
The box appeared to be empty.
“What the heck is this—do you think I’m dumb?
I suspect that you’re out to contempt me.”

“Can’t you see what this is?” he said to me.
It’s a place to hide your talent.
Once you put it out there for all to see
you cannot find time just ‘to be.’”

“Ah, I like that,” I said to the man.
I want to hoard my gifts.
I’ll take a dozen, put them in the bag.
What more to give me a lift?”

He pulled a watch from his bag of tricks.
“You’ll want this one for sure.
It will store your time for you alone
to use at your leisure.”

“I’ll go for that, I could use some rest.
I’m really tired from living
with those who expect me to be aware
of everything that they’re giving.”

“Then you’ll want this, it will free you up,”
He said with a glint in his eyes.
He reached out his hand and gave me a cup
with a message engraved on its side:

Forget about everything that you hear;
you really don’t need to be grateful.
Ignore those gifts and the joy that they bring.
Don’t pretend that you are thankful.

“That way no one will wait for your return
on whatever they’ve invested.
You won’t have to give of yourself to them.
Love’s easier if untested.

“Take these drugs,” he said, “then I’m done with you.
You’ll want to have this treasure.
Be sure that you remain always unaware
of beauty, joy and pleasure

for if you see what God has done
you will want more of Him
and then you’ll live in consciousness
and not enjoy your sin.”

I paid the man and he ran off
carting his merchandise.
But when I got home and saw what I’d bought
something opened wide my eyes.

Things just were not as he said they were,
these were not just harmless vices.
Within each one I could see the seed
that would lead to darkest crisis.

I’d been terribly fooled by his evil lies.
I saw it now all too clearly.
It’s bit-by-bit that the soul dies.
It doesn’t scream, it simply sighs.

And so I took his bag of tricks
and tossed it in the ocean
of God’s good grace and cleansing love.
It’s little things that will do you in.

Linked to dVerse Poets’ Pub Open Link Night: This poetry community is open to all. Visit, read, post your own poem. On OLN, there is no theme…it’s truly open! Drop by and enjoy.