When Winter Comes Early–dVerse OLN

Image: pixdaus.com

Image: pixdaus.com

when winter comes early
a trimeric

the day after the storm, white
paint splashes on mother earth,
leftover leaves, ankle-deep, clutter the yard.
i curl up beneath a downy quilt to read.

paint splashes on mother earth,
white and gold and orange, even green,
left over from the late autumn freeze.

leftover leaves, ankle-deep, clutter the yard,
soggy, no crunch beneath my footfall,
covering sagging shrubs and roses.

i curl up beneath a downy quilt to read,
to cull the warmth of words. ideas
swirl inside me, as another snowfall approaches.

Written and linked to dVerse Open Link Night where you are invited to share any sort of poem you like. I blended a few previous prompts: mine from Tuesday on weather, Mary’s on the trimeric form and  Bjorn’s on enjambment. Please stop by and enjoy the company and work of your fellow poets.

I-395 North to Reno

Photo: C. Campbell

Photo: C. Campbell

I-395 North to Reno
a Haibun

Plans cut short, I leave Southern California two days early, leave my mom to her dementia fog, to her perpetual present moment. I have no desire to drive half of my 500 mile drive in the midst of a promised snow storm heading in from the Northwest.

The drive is glorious—a cloudless cerulean blue skies flanked by snow-covered mountaintops to the East and West. Mono Lake and Topaz boast still turquoise waters at a low level because of the drought. Our thirsty earth throbs with hope for the forecast of an impending wet season. Walker River is but a trickle.

When I arrive home, I see a wall of darkness in the distance. Trees in an assortment of fall colors whisper in the wind, greet my descent into the Great Basin. I breathe a sigh of relief that I am safe and find my husband and dogs waiting for me. The chilling temperature does not impede the warmth of their welcome.

a heavy gray pall
creeps in like a stealthy cat
promising first snow

Today, for dVerse Poetics, I’m hosting a prompt, asking you for a current weather report from your corner of the world. This drive is, for me, so wonderful–leading along the Eastern Sierra, past Mt. Whitney, Mammoth, Mono Lake and Topaz Lake and so many glorious views. I feel so blessed to live where I do…for more info on this road trip check out this article in Via–a publication of AAA.

Now, how about joining us with your own weather report. The Pub opens at 3:00 PM Tuesday. I’ll be glad to mix you up a drink to fit your current weather-based needs.

As I write this, I see it is snowing outside (Monday 11/9/15 at 1600)! Large, fluffy flakes.

February Desert


Photo: kesq.com

Photo: kesq.com

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 Amazon.com as a Kindle giveaway. If you do upload and read it, I would be so grateful for a review on Amazon.com or Goodreads. Thank you.

After the Rain

Photo Credit: J. Korbetis

Photo Credit: J. Korbetis

Diamonds settle on mounds
of Dianthus while
sparrows splash with joy
in sparkling puddles.

Fresh scents suffuse morning
light: lemon
honeysuckle, spice.
Verbena and persimmon.

Today, I touch the moment,
but think of yesterdays
when once we walked
in rain and sand beneath

a canopy of stars
we tried in vain to count.
The promises you made
did not endure forever.

And now, alone, I ponder
life transformed by dew,
taste the sweetness of
tomorrow and a memory.

A FICTIONAL poem linked to dVerse Open Link Night. Hope you will join us. The doors open at 3:00 PM EDT.

Fickle Spring


Sun invades water droplets on the sago palm,
transforms them into kaleidoscopic riots of color.

Desert springtime tears apart expectations, time travels
us to summer before our neighbors to the North think thaw.

Last Thursday the finches abandoned our feeder, silenced
their morning prayers, turned Northward toward home, fledglings in tow.

Soon shall we follow—encountering yet again the flourish of rebirth
or, perhaps, another freeze before nature makes up her mind.

Written in Response to Claudia’s prompt for Poetics, but linked to OLN. Looking forward to visiting in a few hours.

October Haibun

Hawk, the Messenger,
seeks tomorrow’s sustenance,
dove feasts, unaware.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia Commons

Recently, a red tail hawk sat on our fence, watching an assortment of jays, robins, quail and doves fattening themselves on the seeds in our garden. Spent cosmos and coreopsis shrugged, let nature have her way.

Autumn smells pungent—
leaves moldering in crannies,
poems forgotten.

Photo Credit: Mayang.com

All the work of putting the garden to bed for the winter has claimed our attention, turning it from creative pursuits. The tasks of autumn bring to mind those chores that face us later in life—clearing away the debris of spent dreams, wasted efforts—preparing the soil for what is yet to come.

Late blooming roses
struggle in October frost,
clash with changing leaves.

Photo Credit: D. Slotto

A few brilliant roses still persist in their efforts to boast their beauty, proving that nature is not as fussy as we are when it comes to choosing the colors she will wear, or what’s deemed appropriate as defined by the expectations of others. Bright pink and orange: how freeing!

Truckee, languid now,
flows gently through our city,
hopes for winter snow.

Photo Credit: Mike Devon

The Truckee river, a block from our home, is feeling the effect of last winter’s drought. It is fed by beautiful Lake Tahoe, flows east through Reno and ends up in Pyramid Lake, home of the Paiute Indians. Snow fell today, just above our elevation, in the Sierra Nevada and it’s possible we may see some tomorrow. Reno is high desert, receiving only 7” of rain annually. We depend on the snowfall in the mountains and at the Lake.

Written for and linked to dVerse Poets’ Open Link Night, hosted by Claudia Schonfeld who I will have the joy of meeting soon! Her California trip coincides with my visit down South for my mother’s 92nd birthday.

I may be late in visiting. Tomorrow I have a minor procedure for which they’ll send me to la-la land. Doubt I’ll be rational enough to give you any valuable comments!

Damp Spring

Baby Birds in nest.

Baby Birds in nest. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The weather here in Reno is notoriously unpredictable. One year we had skiing up the road a piece (near Tahoe) for July 4th and it’s not uncommon to want heat and air-conditioning in the same day. This week, after temperatures in the 90’s (F), Mother Nature decided it was time for a surprise, so she sent in fierce winds, light rain, and thunderstorms. Since this is a year of drought, we would have been happy with the rain, but there wasn’t enough of it. This morning it was 38 (F) and we’re wondering where our guest hummingbirds have been–the wind made us take down their feeder. So today, for dVerse Open Link Night, I’m sharing another short poem:

Damnp Spring

Wet spring bouquets change
morning gray into a sunlit garden.
Birds nest between flowers
and a cloudy sky.

I hope to catch you later on over at the Pub where you will enjoy companions and verse and all kinds of fun and talent.


Desert Rain

Desert Rain (Photo credit: tinyfroglet)

As the day evolves
from overcast
to sun to rain again,

the Artisan steps in
and brushes clouds
across blue skies—

then takes a rag
and smears,

sprinkling sadness
into an otherwise
perfect moment.

I’ll be waiting for you at dVerse Poets Pub where a bunch of us gather to share friendship and poetry. Hope you’ll come join us. Claudia’s hosting and I hear she mixes a mean martini… then, there’s the German beer!

Photo: Wikipedia

Golfing Pinehurst–a Collection of Haiku

Golfing Pinehurst
a Collection of Haiku

There is no rough on Pinehurst #2...only what they call "waste land." It behooves you to stay in the fairway. The bunkers were my downfall.

Pinehurst number two
home of the U.S Open ~
misty memories

This bronze statue commemorates Payne Stewart's U.S. Open win in 1999. He died soon after in a Plane Crash.

standing on the tee
lurking in giants’ footsteps
wasteland surrounds green

The "Wasteland"

I drove the green on this one then missed a 3' putt for my birdie. :0(

torrents of rain slice
sideways across the fairway
we golf anyway

There are a total of 8 courses at the Pinehurst Resort. On the 2nd day we played #8. It was wet at first but it just poured after the first 6 or 7 holes. We toughed it out for 11 but had to quit. We were soaked through and walking down the fairway you needed boots. This photo was taken before the rain set in.

During my blogging break, my husband and I spent two days golfing at one of the U.S. Open courses–Pinehurst, North Carolina. When my husband won this trip last year, I finally got serious about my game. Even now, I’m a high handicapper…as high as they will give you…but I’m amazed to find enjoyment on the course, most likely because golf submerges you in the beauty of nature.

Thank you to Gay Reiser Cannon at dVerse Poets Pub who gave us a comprehensive review of the art of classic Japanese Poetry, including haiku. I’ve been having trouble awakening my muse since returning home, and this is the first poem I’ve written in a while. I wanted to reflect a bit upon this experience.

Photo: David Slotto 9-22-11

All photos: David Slotto

Armageddon in Slo-Mo

A tornado near Seymour, Texas

Image via Wikipedia

This is a poem posted some months ago, just after the May 21st predictions of the endtimes. Today, over at dVerse, Mark Kerstetter invites us to reflect on endings and beginnings. Because of the flurry of rumors about the end of the world in 2012, I thought this might be appropriate.

Be sure to join us over at dVerse for an amazing, poetic New Year’s Eve celebration. And if you do plan on going out tonight, please be safe. Happy 2012 to all my poet friends.

Armageddon in Slo-Mo

It didn’t come quickly as predicted
on a fair spring day in May.
Rather, cutting a wide swath
across the center of our land
it sucked up souls, one at a time
like a street-sweeper.

Today, further to the North
floodwaters seep through the pores
of nature’s edematous limbs,
defying her well-defined boundaries.

Somewhere in an untouched corner
of the world, an old lady pulls
cheatgrass from her garden,
prepares to plant nasturtium
and wonders if this is the year
that she will die.