Another Peak

Written for:  Phoenix Rising, Destination:  Victoria Peak, western half of Hong Kong Island
Think of a place with a spectacular view and write from that perspective. Compare how this view is different from ground level; what does perspective add/subtract from it? Are you affected adversely by high places? Write of that. Use your height to your advantage, and write what you view!

Mount Hood, a white triangle
in the distance.

Multnomah Falls dazzles
the eye with crystal,
cascading streams of
water over rock.

Mount Hood, a white triangle
in the distance.

Winding, winding, winding
up to higher elevations,
fir trees forming roads
to guide you.

Mount Hood, a white triangle
in the distance.

Then, Timberline Lodge,
and a sudden brilliance
of white. Walk around
to the back. You are at
the base of Mount Hood.
It is August, and the mountain
is a bear of snow. Skiers
are in the distance, and you
are a tiny dot on the map
of Mount Hood.

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Open Up

Written for:  Poetic Asides #316 – Write an open poem.
The poem could be about physically opening something: a garage door, a bottle of soda, or your mouth. The poem could also go the metaphorical route of opening a can of worms or Pandora’s box. Or if you’re into golf or tennis, writing about the U.S., French, or British Opens is permitted fine. It’s all open to interpretation, I guess.
and for Poets United, Midweek Motif~Acceptance.

There is an open place
in my heart and mind,

a tolerance for lifestyles
and opinions of others.

Belief or non-belief
in religion, culture or tradition

makes my world an infinitely
more interesting place

in which to live, as openly
as I wish.

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Changing Times

Written for:  Phoenix Rising, Destination:  St. Basil’s Cathedral, Red Square, Moscow
The Cathedral of Vasily the Blessed (commonly known as Saint Basil’s Cathedral), is a church in Red Square in Moscow, Russia. The building, now a museum, is officially known as the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat or Pokrovsky Cathedral. It was built from 1555–61 on orders from Ivan the Terrible and commemorates the capture of Kazan and Astrakhan. A world famous landmark it was the city’s tallest building until the completion of the Ivan the Great Bell Tower in 1600.

St. Basil's CAthedral

St. Basil’s Cathedral

Distinction of being tallest
structure until 1600-St. Basil’s
Cathedral, gracing Red Square
in Moscow.

Empire State Building, tallest
structure in New York City
until 1973, when the World
Trade Center opened.

St. Basil’s became a museum.
A memorial was built to those
who perished in the World
Trade Center, 2001. It was replaced
with an even larger building.

Somehow, that empty, gaping hole
remained untouched for years.
The new building, for many,
only symbolizes how quickly
a large number of human beings
can lose their lives. I still
see the emptiness.

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Written for:  Carpe Diem #784 hirune (nap)
Write a poem in the same sense, tone, and spirit as:

a midday nap
putting the feet against the wall
it feels cool

© Basho (Tr. R.H. Blyth)

chilly coolness
my feet on the wall
a midday nap

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

this summerday
the heat makes me drowsy –
the cool stone wall

© Chèvrefeuille (our host)

On my glider
sun blurs words of book.  I wake
to fluttering pages

© Sara McNulty

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Lady Bug

Written for:  Carpe Diem #783 Tentoumushi (Lady bug)
Write a poem in the same tone, sense, and spirit.

arm full of lady bugs
my grandson, one with nature,
enjoys his childhood

© Chèvrefeuille

And here is the new haiku which I promised you above in which I have tried to bring some sensuality into:

white almond flesh
ladybug climbs the mountains
blanc breasts move

© Chèvrefeuille

Decorative black dots
red back of ladybug
count them before she flies

© Sara McNulty

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New Lives

Written for:  Phoenix Rising, Destination:  Ellis Island
Ellis Island is an island that is located in Upper New York Bay in the Port of New York and New Jersey, United States. It was the gateway for millions of immigrants to the United States as the nation’s busiest immigrant inspection station from 1892 until 1954. 

Ellis Island 1902

Ellis Island 1902

From Russia and Romania
my grandparents took
a terrifying risk–fled
their native countries
to start a new life
in America. They came
here poor, hoping
employment opportunities
awaited them. How would they
manage without a word
of English? Would traditions
and cultures  for which
they were persecuted,
be accepted in this new land?

My father’s parents birthed
two children, who taught
them English, and made them

My mother’s parents birthed
seven children, some of whom
had short lives, as did they.
In healthier circumstances,
they too, would have been proud
of their children.

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Written for:  Carpe Diem Special #158 Adjei Agyei Baah’s 5th special “Afrikuland”

On Strawberry

planting kisses
of strawberry breath
summer waves

filling her dimples
with strawberries
summer camp

two flavors
on our wild romance
vanilla & strawberry


just be mine


midsummer blues–
the wild memories of
a skirt-chaser

© Adjei Agyei-Baah, Ghana

Tartness of lemon
squeezed flesh for juice to bake pie
sour turns sweet

© Sara McNulty


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No More S’mores

Written for:  The Sunday Whirl, Wordle #209

words:  work, camping, marshmallows, rivers, damnation, fun, sunshine, tired, fire, kayak, hell, warmth

Warmth of hell and damnation
settled upon rivers,
turning them green
with algae.   Kayaking
was suspended,  camping
no longer fun,  as water
receded, and fire alerts
were posted. Kids did not

want to be restricted
to no cookouts or roasting
of marshmallows. Stubborn
sunshine baked the state
like a glazed ham. Tired workers
cut vacations short, grumbling
about having to wait
all year for these precious
two weeks.  And still, the water
receded leaving large cracks
in the earth.

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The Strip

Written for:  Phoenix Rising, Destination:  Las Vegas Strip
The Las Vegas Strip is a stretch of Las Vegas Boulevard South in Clark County, Nevada, internationally known for its concentration of resort hotels and casinos along its route.

Las Vegas Strip

Las Vegas Strip

The Strip is not
a strip club,
where you lose
your clothes.

The strip features
casinos, where you lose
your money, and if
you have any left,
see a show.

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Odd Appearance

Written for:  The Mag #280


On a day of gray, a sculpture
dating from 3,000 BC
appears in the town’s circle
exactly in the center. Washed
up by recent typhoon,
a partial face from ancient
Egyptian art. The townsfolk
are mesmerized, but afraid
to touch this grand statue
because of superstition. How
did it emerge in the one
sacred spot of their village?

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