Day 30 – cento

Well I haven’t done yesterday’s yet but I wanted to at least try and do something for the final day.

I used the marvellous Poetry By Heart website and just picked random lines from random poems until I got this. I am sure you can tell… Hopefully I will bring myself to do the full 30 but it’s been a blast, anyway. One of these days I may actually continue to add to my blog after the challenge…

Hot July brings cooling showers –

strange voices cry in the trees, intoning strange lore.

The hazels hold up their arms for arches.

Day by day I float my paper boats one by one down the running stream

To the freshwater eels.

Last year is dead, they seem to say,

And the smell of everything that used to be

like light and wind and water and time

it is the story of the falling rain

in roars and squalls

inside your head.


Day 28 and I’m up to date! (will that do?)

I did a mini online writing workshop/catchup with friends earlier and I managed to get myself back on track again. Only two more days! I think I might even miss it…

at least the fringes of them
at the edge of the shingle
the reluctant pebbles
towards the waiting depths
sit idly, watching the ebb and flow
emerges slowly, as the tide falls
flies by, like the keening gulls
is cruel, like the open sea
will also fall, will rise again
while the sun and moon
play chase

Day 27 – sorry, we don’t do duplexes

I make no apology for the fact that I am just writing something today, and ignoring the prompt. As I am doing this a day late, I started thinking about the next prompt, concrete poems, and drew a spiral. which led me to write this little ditty.

Since I lack the computer graphic skills (and software) to present it like that, I’m afraid it is just in a normal form as well. Disappointment on disappointment eh?

See how the snail slides slowly
round the side of the pot.
Its path is not hurried,
it has no concept
of fear or worry.
The thought stays my hand
from landing a killing blow –
its slowness has saved it,
since I can spare
a plant or two,
if it is no faster
with its chew.

Day 26, epic simile

Finally, I am up to date again! Looking good for actually finishing the challenge this year.

I am afraid I switched off a bit at the explanation and examples of epic similes. As a result I just wrote what may be what passes for one, who knows? At least I wrote a poem again today!

Writing a poem
with lots of similes
is like wandering
through a strawberry field.
You keep your eyes peeled
for perfection,
the crimson glint
of ruby in emerald.
You stop short,
caught in its glow,
start to salivate,
the sweetness that awaits.
It smells like sunshine,
is plump and inviting,
but sometimes,
as you hold it,
all the imperfections
are revealed.
There is a moment
of realisation:
no longer what it seemed,
its riches plundered,
you drop it –
lost for words.

Day 23 (out of sequence!)

Better late than never, I have managed to complete something.

Give me a break, I know it’s not amazing but I have made an effort, at least! I don’t want to fail in the last few days so I am being kind with myself.

Essentially these are all workshop poems, anyway, and I must say some of them (even the ones I didn’t like or struggled with) have definitely given me something to think about and ideas for more considered pieces when April is over.

There were no
wardrobes involved –
just a hall wall
that beckoned her in,
offering a tempting peek
of the Paradise
she was seeking.
An idyllic land,
so close to hand,
what was she waiting for?
All she had to do
was walk up
and step through
the waiting door.
She could even hear
birds singing,
smell bougainvillea –
the dappled shade
made up her mind…

Next morning
they looked everywhere
except there,
because it wasn’t real.
After all, no one
in their right mind
would be led
up the garden path
by a trompe l’oeil.

Day 25, aisling

Still trying to finish day 23, but moving on for now…

I don’t think (for anyone British anyway) it will be too hard to work out where I live! If you need clues, just ask 🙂

I was fast asleep in bed
when a voice spoke, in my head,
and a very strong aroma filled the room.

Tears sprang to my eyes,
so it came as a surprise
when a hazy figure floated through the gloom.

“So, who are you?” I said.
“I’m the Goddess of Garlic Bread,
and I’ve come to share the future, just with you!”

“I don’t really wish to gloat,
but I think you’ve missed that boat”
I told her, and I saw her sad face fall.

She let out a garlicky sigh,
“Come on”, I said, “don’t cry”
“There’s more delights on which to weave your charms!”

I saw her sad eyes glint
as she popped in a Polo mint
and said
“Well, have you ever tried a pasty barm?”

Day 24, similes (oops, metaphors!)

I have still to finish and post my day 23 challenge, but so I can almost feel like I am up to date I want to post today’s. Sorry, just realised they are all metaphors (not nice and zany/funny I’m afraid) and I used Simon Armitage’s ‘Not the Furniture Game’ as an inspiration.

Not The Game of Life

Her eyes were a scolded child,
her eyebrows were the Forth Road Bridge straight out of there
and her eyelashes, the railings on the hard shoulder.
Her cheeks were the first, crisp glass of Sauvignon
and her laughter was thunder in a tumble dryer.
Her breasts were buttered scones
and her belly was blancmange, when a skin’s formed.
Her thumbprints were the 1960s
her clothes, the demure side of the 80s.
Her pride was the rustle of autumn leaves,
her discretion a lesson that had to be learned.
Her breath was sal volatile,
her past – a suitcase left unclaimed in a luggage locker,
and her shame was the Marianas Trench.
The fog was a wraith of anger, unleashed,
the end, an unexpected release:
her smile a splash of spilt blood,
her heart a fist.

Day 22, Repetition

I have no idea why this prompt just stopped me in my tracks. Just as I think I’m getting into the swing of things, it seems that I go all ‘rabbit in the headlights’ again and end up three days adrift! Ah well, I started thinking about repetition and started focusing on the dogs going crazy every five minutes. Even though we know that shouting makes no difference and you have to use distraction techniques, somehow we never seem to remember our training and shout instead.

Daily, our house erupts
with bursts of barking
at the sight of a bob hat,
a high-vis jacket
or a passing cat.

Then we join the chorus,
yelling at both to “SHUT UP!”
but they might as well be deaf,
and deep down we know
we may as well save our breath.

Frankly, it gets tiring.
All of us constantly shouting –
power, frustration and rage all in the mix,
yet no one’s actually listening.
In fact, it’s a lot like politics…

Day 21, lots to take on board!

Well, I have finally caught up again with this one. So pleased!

My laptop has died so this may look a bit spaced out/wonky as I’m having to do it on my phone. Hope I got the right end of the stick.

I wonder where you are now Vicky,

With your man-made twinset and over-long nails?

I hope you’re a tattooed grandma,

happily flaunting your toyboy lover.

Mornings could be a challenge:

Parcels of pests through the post.

But still, I gained a sneaky admiration

For the impermeability of cockroaches.

A suffocation of darkness,

Blanketing hidden secrets.

Phantoms flowed from the shadows

Into my teenage psyche.

Can you have daydreams at night?

Day twenty, anthropomorphic fruit

Well there’s a phrase I don’t utter very often! Maybe I need more anthropomorphic fruit in my life?

I once wrote a poem about a banana, but not from the banana’s perspective, and I realise now that this might have been rather presumptuous of me…

I’m that one, squishy strawberry, lurking in the pot,
lying in wait, to lay waste to the lot.
They employ someone special, I’ve heard them say,
to pop one of us in, before you take them away.
Have you not found a pepper, all oozing with slime,
or a blue-and-white-mould-covered lemon or lime
that site at the back of the fridge, out of sight,
leaving your chilled G&T without bite?
A pack of nice veg, with a decent shelf-life,
is reduced to a pulp, no longer fit for the knife.
We’re sly little time-bombs, just waiting to rot.
Buy today, check tomorrow, then throw out the lot!