morning prayer–dVerse Quadrille

Photo: Victoria Slotto

morning prayer

Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46, 10

All is still this morn—
the pond outside my window

mirrors palm trees and mountains

egret dives,
sends ripples through this quiet time,

butterfly slashes blue sky
with gold flight,

two small wrens
attack a crow.

all is calm this gentle morn

This week’s Quadrille at dVerse, hosted by Grace, asks us to write a poem of exactly 44 words, exclusive of the title, using the word STILL.

February Desert




Even in the desert, February
winds harass the trees,
whipping fronds from their palms.

Hummingbirds seek shelter
in clumps of orange Lantana,
appear surprised by winter’s onslaught.

Mother joined us for a Valentine’s
Day visit. Alone for too many years,
she still cannot befriend the loneliness.

That night the desperate clamor of frogs
promised us an early spring
Wind howled its objection.

This poem is from 2010–this past February was not like this until yesterday when significant winds did batter us–and today, March 1st, we have a much-needed steady rain.

Today (March 1) and tomorrow, my most recent novel, “The Sin of His Father,” is available (for free) on as a Kindle giveaway. If you do upload and read it, I would be so grateful for a review on or Goodreads. Thank you.

Monday Meanderings–Nervous Breakdowns and the Internet

Photo Credit: Victoria Slotto

Photo Credit: Victoria Slotto

Greetings from Palm Desert where I’m trying to grab a bit of solitude for writing purposes. I’ve discovered an inherent bipartisanship between Time Warner (the Internet provider here) and Charter (my e-mail provider). They can’t seem to come together on anything…sound familiar?

I’m not one to ascribe blame like so many in the world of politics do. Both sides of an opinion or ideology have valid points, as well as those that are the product of skillfully spun untruths or exaggerations. Mind you, I won’t sit back and be passive. I’ll vote and express my opinion to those who should do something about it, but most often ignore my views. But here I am…sunk in the sludge of politics when I’m really talking about ISP’s who seem to forget the service part. Gee, that sounds like politics too, dosen’t it?

There, I just saved this document since the one I’d written before is somewhere in cyper-space…along with a few e-mails I’ve tried to receive or send, and the one that translated itself into Greek.

Do you see where I’m going with this? I’m living in a world of uncertainty for a few days, learning to live with ambiguity and, perhaps a bit more solitude than I’d planned on. If you see me, you’ll know my two opposing Internet entities have achieved detente. If not, I’m off spinning poetry and stories for a later date. And that may not be such a bad thing.

One goal I had was to do a bit of tweaking with my blog, set up new pages, refine it a bit. Perhaps all parties will behave as they are at the moment and that will happen. Perhaps I’ll be able to link to dVerse and other blogs. Perhaps not.

And maybe I’ll just need to chuck the whole project till I get home and go out, enjoy the gorgeous weather we have right now and play some more golf. Or dream!

Photo Credit: David Slotto

Photo Credit: David Slotto


Today at dVerse Poet’s Pub, Meeting the Bar, I’m happy to introduce Pamela Sayers, who makes her home in Puebla, Mexico. I’ve always been impressed with Pamela’s ability to capture a sense of place in her poetry. Today she shares with us a bit about her own process of bringing us into the heart of Mexico, and invites us to join her by sharing something of our own, about the place we call home.

Photo: David SlottoChaparral CC

Photo: David Slotto
Chaparral CC

While I make my home in the high desert of Reno, Nevada–a short 40 minute drive to Lake Tahoe, when those cold winter winds and snows start getting to our old bones, my husband and I pack up the dogs and head south with the birds to Palm Desert, California. The desert is in my blood from my childhood, when we would head east from the LA area each April to soak in the sun and get our first sunburns of the year (big mistake).This poem is more of a reflection on what the desert means to me, than a travelogue. If you have a sense of deja-vu, I have posted it before!

I look forward to reading as many of your poems as I can and Pamela will support me since my husband and I are currently in the midst of a small renovation project.

Photo Credit: All Posters

Photo Credit: Tim Laman

Sometimes something
we judge to be barren
throbs with life.

Wind scatters sand
like gossips spread destruction.

If you go to the desert,
you will see the stars.
Perhaps one of them
holds your life purpose.
Then you are no longer
afraid of the viper’s kiss.

The power of thirst
consumes all other desires.

Shifting sands
are like people
who vacillate—
you don’t know
where you stand.

The desert is a canvas—
open to splashes
of vibrant color.

The desert is
a state of mind.
Are you alone?
Or lonely?

The desert is
a place of temptation.
There the devil tempted
Nothing has changed.

If you try
to leave your mark
upon the desert,
Nature will erase it.
We don’t really matter.

The hotter it gets,
the fewer people hang around.

Many people
do not understand
the beauty of the desert
or of wrinkled faces.

At some point
you will visit a desert
and discover

When the desert blooms,
you will find grace.


April Desert


A poem celebrating spring, linked to Poetry Potluck  for this week’s challenge: Color, Rainbows, Spring.

Linked to One Shot Wednesday:

Visit this site and browse some up-coming and seasoned poets and add a poem of your own if you like.




April Desert

The scent of flowering citrus trees
overpowers pungent Lantana
beneath the window sill.

A mockingbird rules
from his perch on the chimney,
fills the air with
sacred song.

Palm trees relinquish fronds,
accede to winds
blowing from the West,
bow graciously.

At home, in the Sierra,
a layer of snow
swathes the budding

I lean against the knotted bark
of my ancient pepper tree,
crush its fruit,
taste the warmth of Spring.

Special Post–Leucistic Hummingbird

D. Slotto 4/2011

D. Slotto 4/2011
D. Slotto 4/2011

We are receiving frequent visits from a pure white (Leucistic) hummingbird.

He is friendly when we approach him at the feeder and has even flown up to my husband who has been able to take a number of photos.

Leucistic hummingbirds are rare, but albino hummers are rarer. Leucistic hummers have dark eyes, while those of albinos are pink. These small birds are vulnerable to predators because of their light color.

In American Indian lore, hummingbirds represent joy. White is a symbol of purity and truth.


 My husband, David, took these photos. We do not have photoshopping capabilities here but when we return home he will work with them and many other photos he has captured.

This little fellow inspired the poem I submitted to Poetry Potluck:

For more information on this beautiful little creatures, visit:


February Desert

Submitted to Lady Nimue’s Months-of-the-Year Challenge:

February Desert

Even in the desert, February
winds harass the trees,
whipping fronds from their palms.

Hummingbirds seek shelter
in clumps of orange Lantana,
appear surprised by winter’s onslaught.

Mother joined us for a Valentine’s
Day visit. Alone for too many years,
she still cannot befriend the loneliness.

That night the desperate clamor of frogs
promised us an early spring
Wind howled its objection.

Perfect Poet Award from Jingle–10/8/10

The Santa Rosa Mountains at dusk.

Image via Wikipedia

Perfect Poet’s Award from Jingle: 10/8/10–Thank You

Desert Swan: a Haiku

An errant golf ball

killed our peaceful desert swan.

Serenity died.

Sorry to do a sad one but when I saw the image I had to memorialize the beautiful swan we lost last year. Our home  (my mother’s, actually) in Palm Desert is on the 12th hole of a golf course, a water hazard. When I first began visiting my parents there, in the early 1980’s, there was a pair of swans. A few years later, the female was hit by a car, and the male remained alone. His job was to spar with the mallards who would visit, scaring them off to another hole. Last year my cousin came to visit and told us, when he arrived, that he thought something was the matter with the swan…indeed, there was. He’d been cold-cocked by a golf ball. It’s hard to describe the beauty he used to bring in the early morning hours when the rising sun cast a glow on the Santa Rosa Mountains, and reflected back onto the still water. He has not been replaced, to our chagrin.