In the meantime, enjoy the responses I have made to other prompts.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

My Take on the Common Core

As a teacher of middle school math
With change, I sincerely agreed.
Our students were weak in their skills
Our curriculum sorely in need.

On top of the shortfalls at home
The fact that was also a shame –
When students moved into our town
Their skill sets were never the same.

To conceive of a nationwide plan
Was brilliant (and way overdue)
But putting it into effect
Was commonly difficult too!

I love what the Core tries to do –
Develop a much deeper hold
Of concepts kids need to advance,
Discover instead of be told.

To process what they need to know,
To build on a base grade by grade.
I wish we had time to explore
Foundations once bases are laid.

Though claims were they’d lighten the load
Of concepts we needed to teach,
We still have an ocean of thoughts,
A target we don’t always reach.

The tests, though the questions are great,
Have issues to fix as we go.
By staggering test-taking times
Some takers can share what they know.

But trust me, I favor the Core,
The best set of standards by far
We just need to work out the kinks.
Let’s raise and not lower the bar.




This is my "review" for NaPoWriMo.net. This is our second to the last day to celebrate National Poetry Month.


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

What Can Make it Stop?

Where has Reason gone today?
Why has Anger blocked its way?
What will bring it back in play?
Peace won’t come without its say.

Wide’s the rift between the sides.
Selfish thought is what divides.
Impulse acts while Prudence hides.
Reasoned thought will turn the tides.

Build the bridge to ease the pain.
Find Concern and lose Disdain.
Simply stated: act humane.
Only then will calm remain.



Today's prompt from NaPoWriMo.net was to write a poem about a bridge. I, like everyone else, am upset about all the violence relating to alleged police brutality. I do not know all of the facts, but I do know a lot of innocent people are being injured, even killed, and there has to be a better way of dealing with these perceived or real injustices. I don't know exactly what the solution is, but my poem expresses some of my thoughts.

Monday, April 27, 2015

A Hay(na)ku Prayer

As 
I grow
grant me grace.

Let
me know
Heaven's a place.



Today's optional prompt from NaPoWriMo.net is to write a "hay(na)ku). Created by the poet Eileen Tabios and named by Vince, the hay(na)ku is a variant on the haiku. A hay(na)ku consists of a three-line stanza, where the first line has one word, the second line has two words, and the third line has three words."

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Way to Show Your Gratitude

I hear you speak of my demise –
because
like a swayback horse I
stand,
bowed at the center,
in your backyard.

How proudly I once stood with
my unweathered wood,
shiny silver chains hanging
like necklaces
with yellow and blue seats
inviting your daughters
to come
take a seat.

This is where they learned,
reach out, pull back
reach out, pull back
reach out, pull back.
Great job girls!

I remember you sitting next to them
pumping too.
Who would be the first to reach
the tips of the leaves?
What times we had!

Now
my seats sit still
unless moved by the wind
my wood is weakened by age
and so you speak
of my demise
dismantle and
chop 
into 
pieces
for Monday morning 
pick-up.

What 
a send-off.





Today's suggested form from NaPoWriMo.net was to write a persona poem, which means to write from the perspective of a person or thing.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

A Clerihew

Alexander Graham Bell
Could in no way foretell
How a device he invented for a voice to transmit
Would evolve into making us less socially fit.





Friday, April 24, 2015

Stopping by Mrs. Woods on a Tuesday Evening

Whose house this is of course I know.
He’s working on a late night show;
He must not catch me stopping here
To tamper with his status quo.
The neighbor kid must think it queer
A tall strange man walks to the rear
Between the hedges and the lake.
He may just call the cops I fear.

Ere long we hear the carport shake.
I ask her if there’s some mistake;
She shuts her eyes and starts to weep.
Beneath the bed I make a break.
The pile of hair and dust is deep
But I have nowhere else to creep.
So feeling unfulfilled and cheap
Amid the filth I fall asleep.


Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening 
by Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.




With apologies to Robert Frost we were encouraged by NaPoWriMo.net to "write a parody or satire based on a famous poem. It can be long or short, rhymed or not. But take a favorite (or unfavorite) poem of the past, and see if you can’t re-write it on humorous, mocking, or sharp-witted lines."

Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Emperor

Artist plays
            With clich├ęs
                        Statuesque
                                    Romanesque

On a stone
            On a throne
                        Sits a man
                                    With a plan

In his robe
            With a globe
                        Holds the land
                                    In his hand

Grasps the spikes 
            Lightning strikes
                        Vulture spies
                                    Mountains rise

Picture played
            Strength portrayed
                        What could be
                                    Meant for me?




Today for NaPoWriMo.net we were supposed to shuffle a deck of cards, pull one out, free write for five minutes and then write a poem from the writing. I pulled the Emperor from my deck of Tarot cards (that I bought years ago specifically for the purpose of finding inspiration for writing and used maybe once before today). I can’t say I am proud of the outcome, but it is done.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Oh Sun!

There’s nowhere else I’d rather be
Then where your light shines down on me.
Your finger rays caress my skin
Then radiate their warmth within.
They lift the shades on darkened days  
How curative, your finger rays!

Oh Sun, your praises oft’ I sing
For all the life to earth you bring.
But lo the mourning when you’re gone;
'Tis arduous to carry on!
There, like a child in wait, I yearn
At window’s pane for your return.

And if, oh Sun, I’d one request –
It is your star would never rest.
Hide not your brilliance from my face
I long to feel your healing grace.
I need your light to shine on me.
There’s nowhere else I’d rather be!





Today's challenge from NaPoWriMo.net is to write a “pastoral” poem. Traditionally, we're told, pastoral poems involved various shepherdesses and shepherds talking about love and fields, but ours could just be a poem that engages with nature.