Category Archives: Poetry

these duplicitous times – NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo Challenge Day 3

these duplicitous times

pay close attention to the marginalia
we all must learn to read between the lines
disseminating truth right now is mania
in this, the most duplicitous of times

we all must learn to read between the lines
sift through every boastful sciolism
in this, the most duplicitous of times
to thwart attempts at history’s revision

sift through every boastful sciolism
find the facts, elusive, they may be,
to thwart attempts at history’s revision
don’t believe in everything you see

find the facts, elusive, they may be,
check out all the blather that you hear
don’t believe in everything you see
until trust is restored, we’re lost, I fear

check out all the blather that you hear
disseminating truth right now is mania
until trust is restored, we’re lost, I fear
pay close attention to the marginalia

~kat


A Pantoum for today’s NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo 2020 Challenge. (See below for today’s challenge and information about the pantoum poetry form). I chose my words from the last 10 days of dictionary.com’s Word of the Day feature, because hey, I love learning new words! Then I gleaned five rhyming words for each from Rhymezone. I managed to use a half dozen or so words from the resulting “word bank”. Phew! Today’s challenge was a workout!!!


NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo 2020 Challenge Day 3 – make use of our resource (online rhyming dictionary) for the day. First, make a list of ten words. You can generate this list however you’d like – pull a book  off the shelf and find ten words you like, name ten things you can see from where you’re sitting, etc. Now, for each word, use Rhymezone to identify two to four similar-sounding or rhyming words. For example, if my word is “salt,” my similar words might be “belt,” “silt,” “sailed,” and “sell-out.”

Once you’ve assembled your complete list, work on writing a poem using your new “word bank.” You don’t have to use every word, of course, but try to play as much with sound as possible, repeating  sounds and echoing back to others using your rhyming and similar words.


The pantoum consists of a series of quatrains rhyming ABAB, BCBC, CDCD, ZAZA. The design is simple:

Line 1
Line 2
Line 3
Line 4

Line 5 (repeat of line 2)
Line 6
Line 7 (repeat of line 4)
Line 8

Last stanza:
Line 2 of previous stanza
Line 3 of first stanza
Line 4 of previous stanza
Line 1 of first stanza


a good place to die – NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo Challenge Day 2

a good place to die

it is folk legend, instinct some would say, that animals
when they’re close to death wander off, alone to die

the perfect house in every way, one-level, secluded
on a hill, girded by hickory trees and wild pines, with
back windows facing east, front due west, undressed
to take advantage of warm sunrises and fiery sunsets,
textured white walls of swirling stucco, a fireplace,
garage attached, front porch and back, the perfect house

it’s only legend though; truth is, animals as they grow
old or sick, faltering, simply become weaker, slower

like my life, getting to the perfect house, the place where
I most certainly will die – in polite conversation we call
it a retirement home, or a forever home, though we all
know forever is not really forever –
getting here is a bit of a
journey, one must leave crowded house-lined King George
Avenue where pertinacious neon blots the stars from sight at
night, then travel along sleek four-lane byways flanked by banks,
churches, restaurants, dentists, service stations, and dollar stores,
curving, rising, dipping, along the rolling Blue Ridge feet, to
two-lane, no-pass roads, street lights replaced by looming
oaks, that lean over the winding bends, leaves dancing
from the rush of air displaced by passing cars, further
still, a turn, and then another, to a single lane, in an
unincorporated town identified by county seat, zip
code from a nearby, more civilized town with a post office,
past wire-fenced fields of grazing horses, cows, goats,
llamas and donkeys, down, down, around and up over
streams and creeks bubbling in the shadow of mountain
peaks, my dented mailbox leaning at the crux of a sharp
turn, there up, up, up, the driveway, she sits, sunlit
by day, warm green shingles beneath a 50-year metal roof
it is quiet, oh so quiet, but for chattering birdsong, and rustling
squirrels, the pensive, silent gaze of deer-folk greeting me

in fact, there are observed occasions where herds are known to stop, to wait
for lagging members, injured, vulnerable, to catch up to the safety of the group

neighbors at a distance dotting the surrounding knolls, this perfect
place, sans of things that no longer serve, knick-knacks, dust-collectors
and the like; my children will thank me in the end, when left with
little to dispose of my once busy, cluttered life and I am learning traveling
lighter has its benefits, most notable is time for reading, writing, planting
weeping pussy willows, irises, climbing rose bushes, sunflowers and
wild flowers, perhaps a dahlia cluster too amidst hybrid hostas in
the most lovely shade of blue, erecting bird feeders, feeders for the
squirrels too, and a lovely spot for barbecues to share with family
and friends who happen by, I’m in no hurry yet, to die, but this will
be my final home, the roaming of my youth long done, how lovely just
to sit a spell under the stars, and listen to cricket chirp and peepers peeping,
every night, good for sleeping, remembering the road that brought me here

it’s not intentional, their falling behind or wandering off, inevitably,
ultimately, they become too weak to return to the pack, never to be seen again


NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo Challenge Day 2: write a poem about a specific place — a particular house or store or school or office. Try to incorporate concrete details, like street names, distances (“three and a half blocks from the post office”), the types of trees or flowers, the color of the shirts on the people you remember there. Little details like this can really help the reader imagine not only the place, but its mood – and can take your poem to weird and wild places.


like an autumn leaf – NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo Challenge Day 1

like an autumn leaf

like an autumn leaf

like an autumn leaf, I’m clinging against the wind
crimson flushed, vexed by this calamity’s cruel din
now furloughed from the cubicle that once sustained
makeshift desk, remotely linked at home, is not the same
but duty calls, resigned am I to shelter in

one by one we watched the nations fail to win
succumbing to this foe, that strikes us from within
pandemics don’t discriminate, we’re the same
like an autumn leaf

my bank account and pantry are slowly growing thin
worried for coworkers, my family, my friends
normal lost forever, “new normal” stakes its claim
history will remember, we were forever changed
many not surviving this cruel whirlwind
like an autumn leaf

~kat


NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo Challenge Day 1: Write a self-portrait poem in which you make a specific action a metaphor for your life – one that typically isn’t done all that often, or only in specific circumstances. For example, bowling, or shopping for socks, or shoveling snow, or teaching a child to tie its shoes.

For today’s poem, a Rondeau. The Rondeau is a French form, 15 lines long, consisting of three stanzas: a quintet, a quatrain, and a sestet with a rhyme scheme as follows: aabba aabR aabbaR. Lines 9 and 15 are short – a refrain (R) consisting of a phrase taken from line one. The other lines are longer (but all of the same metrical length).


Pink Flamingos – NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo 2020 Early-Bird Challenge

Pink Flamingos

Perfection in pink
Ignoble, some might say,
Notorious, nonsensical,
Kitsch, in full, on crude display

Flamingos,
Long-legged, lovely loons
Aping graceful water nymphs
Molded plastic paragons
Immortal relics, sans of vim
No other curio competes
Gnomes defer their plotted place
Outdone, no crass landscape’s complete
So gird your lawns, flamingo pink!

~kat


For NaPoWriMo/GloPoWriMo 2020 Early-Bird challenge, “write about your favorite bird”. I couldn’t resist! I love plastic pink flamingos! The more, the better. I once thought about displaying a yard full with a sign that read, pink flamingo sanctuary! 🤣 The best part is that there’s still time for me to make that dream come true! This poem is an acrostic poem, where the first letter of each word spells the title…Pink Flamingos.


morbid covidity

morbid covidity

no news for me today
no hysterical talking heads
no sick counts, death tolls or lies to decipher
i’m just listening to the wind
no news is not necessarily good news

~kat


A Gogyohka today.
1. Gogyohka is a new form of short poem that is based on the ancient Japanese Tanka and Kodai Kayo;
2. Gogyohka has five lines, but exceptionally may have four or six;
3. Each line of Gogyohka consists of one phrase with a line-break after each phrase or breath;
4. Gogyohka has no restraint on numbers of words or syllables;
5. The theme of Gogyohka is unrestricted.


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