what is your wish–dVerse Poetics: Wishful Thinking

what is your wish?

this morning as we walked
i saw a tree that bid to me.
i balked

not any more i told her
not with these old bones
and not-so-limber limbs
of mine

if you will come she said
caress my branches
smell my fractured leaves
you will be young again
begin

to taste your life anew
to run and jump and fly
with careless ease
if so you please

what is the cost I asked
were i to rise
into your textured world
(it tempted me)
you’ll flee

the confines of your age
you will begin once more
your journey on this earth
new birth

and lose all i have learned
the ones i’ve come to love
the memories
and yes
the pains and losses too
that nurture growth
i’d loath
to go through that again

forward, i walked in calm
i would not lose
the truths
i’ve gleaned along the path
of life
in spite of strife

Photo: Wikipedia Commons--Labeled for non-commercial reuse

Photo: Wikipedia Commons–Labeled for non-commercial reuse

Today at dVerse Poetics, Mish invites us to indulge in wishes. My response is a bit oblique. I have wishes, true, and they are precious. But so is aging, and that is where my muse wandered. I tucked in a bit of scattered rhyme, still enjoying the latitude that Walt’s prompt from last Thursday offered. No pattern. Just whatever happened. Oh, by the way, I grew up climbing trees.

An Armful of Color–dVerse MTB

An Armful of Color

Were I to cull hope, a bud at a time,
would it help you cope, fill your arms
with a ray of sun to brighten your day,
lift the burden from your weary soul?

Tonight I watch stars, believe that good
can become ours if only we believe
that in darkness, dense though it be,
pain so intense will soon dissipate.

Accept these flowers and all they represent—
lavender joy is ours, and yellow, pink—
so much fragrance to ease your spirit
with which I embrace the depth of your pain.

Photo: V. Slotto

Photo: V. Slotto

Linking to dVerse MTB where we are playing with different type of rhyme. I tried some things I’ve never done before. Thanks for a great prompt, Walt.

Pre-Op Holding

Victor Dorantes in a hospital gown

Image via Wikipedia

NaPoWriMo Day 1 http://www.napowrimo.net/

Submitted to Big Tent Poetry: http://bigtentpoetry.org/  BTP offers 7 weekly prompts for the month of April to celebrate National Poetry Month. This poem is written to the prompt of undressing in a place other than a bedroom or bathroom.

Pre-Op Holding
A Rondeau

Have others died naked in this place?
I strip my clothing in disgrace
as cold consumes my body head-to-toe.
What will come next? They haven’t let me know.
I wait, imprisoned in a fear I cannot face.

No loving arms to hold me, no embrace
to sooth my shattered nerves, to dread, erase.
Have others died naked in this place?

Penetrating chill invades my inner space.
Ah, here’s the doc who’ll force me to erase
the thoughts that make me, me. Panic grows.
A needle prick and now the world slows.
Have others died naked in this place?

This is my first attempt at writing a Rondeau–a French poetic form that focuses on a rhyming scheme and a refrain. The rondeau is comprised of three stanzas:

a/a/b/b/a

a/a/b/refrain (the first word or phrase of the poem becomes the refrain)

a/a/b/b/a/refrain.

The title “Pre-Op Holding” refers to a location where patients are prepared for surgery. For those of you lucky enough never to have experienced an operation, this is where they take away your clothes, garb you in an attractive hospital gown, make sure everything is in order for your procedure, start IV’s. The surgeon and anesthesiologist stop by and go over everything with you, and you may receive the first doses of meds that help you to drift into la-la land. Unlike in my poem, in this country they do explain everything to you, your loved one is allowed to wait with and you are accorded privacy.

Wordsmith Wednesday: VersePerfect–Guest Post by Mike Patrick

A poem made by Magnetic Poetry pieces. This po...

Image via Wikipedia

For today’s Wordsmith Wednesday I’m pleased to introduce you to a fellow poet, Mike Patrick, who’s told me about a couple of helpful computer programs. I’ve asked him to review one that can be a godsend to those of you who write poetry. If you have rhyme-meter phobia and have avoided forms that call for this, this could be for you. 

VersePerfect by Mike Patrick

A while back, the Digital Goddess, Kim Komando, offered VersePerfect as the free download of the day. (http://www.komando.com/downloads/category.aspx?id=9969). In case you are unfamiliar with Kim Komando, she does a daily radio program and website entry on computers, cameras and most anything digital. I mention this because I trust her. What she mentions on her show, or lists in her website, is safe–safe as in “no viruses.”

Kim described VersePerfect as “a great program for poets, songwriters or anyone needing a little inspiration.” Because it sounded interesting, and I was thinking of starting a poetry blog, I followed her instruction in the above site and downloaded it. I have NOT been disappointed.

Once downloaded and run, VersePerfect appears onscreen as three adjoining windows:

  • a main writing/editing screen covering most of the right side of the monitor
  • two smaller windows, one on top of the other, along the left side.

Between the large and smaller windows are two columns. One lists the number of lines, the other lists the number of syllables in each line. If you write anything from haiku to sonnets, syllable counts are important.  (I offer a word of caution here. I’ve noticed the syllable counts being off by one number occasionally. I haven’t been able to figure out why, but it hasn’t been much of a problem; I’m anal and count everything anyway.)

After every word is entered into the main window, the top left window automatically fills in with a list of rhyming words from the built-in McGill Dictionary of Rhyme. This list updates to the last word you type. If you are looking for a rhyme for an earlier typed word, mouse click on it anywhere it appears on the main editing window, and the matching list of rhyming words immediately appears.

While all that is going on in the upper left standard-rhyme window, the lower left window begins to display a list of “context” words immediately after the completion of each word. This is a list of matching meanings for any noun, verb, adverb or adjective you may type. A little dropdown window allows you to select the context in which interests you. For instance, after the word “window” is typed, the dropdown context lists only “opening (n.)” with over 130 related words. “Window” happens to be of trochee meter. If you are writing a poem requiring an iamb meter, you will discover several in that list that are true to the poem’s meaning, but still having the correct meter.

While those three program-windows in VersePerfect will do most of the heavy lifting, across the top is a row of buttons that allow for the toggling on and off many of the features. There is also a row of buttons instantly linking one to a hyperbolic thesaurus, online lookup, Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dictionary.com, and Google.

The program also completes spell-check, prints your work, saves it within the program, or cuts and pastes to Word or another word processing program.

The only complaint I can churn up is the font size. It is not adjustable, or at least I haven’t figured out how to it if it is, and I wish it was a little larger.

VersePerfect has done everything I have asked of it, and I still have not used many of its functions and capabilities. As time goes on, and my needs change, I may use them. As for now, I can highly recommend VersePerfect. It almost feels like cheating when I’m writing a poem.

Best of luck in your writing,

Mike Patrick

Thank you, Mike. Be sure to check out Mike’s poetry on his blog at http://thepoetsquill.wordpress.com/