Poem-a-Day Writer’s Digest Challenge #25. Theme: Echo

The Echoes

The bells of St. Mary’s peal,
shattering the glass ceilings
of dreams I put to sleep,
piercing the silence with the sound
of angels getting their wings—
a plaintive cry from the earth
to the heavens—
a tribute.

There is a changing of the guard,
and the rapid footsteps I know as Ritz’s,
echo on the dull linoleum.
The wails of the innocent,
bounce off the cement walls.
Those sounds are all that is soft
in this purgatory of iron rods.
Heaven, Hell,
or Heaven or Hell on Earth—
those are the only destinations
after leaving.

Ninety-nine years
a man lived,
having taken a life—
the life in these walls
who pays for his sin,
and the life he took,
who paid the ultimate price.
All that mattered was that
someone paid it.
It mattered not who.

Slang: From the 20s to the 50s


This really came in handy for my NaNoWriMo book, set in 1949 New Orleans.

Originally posted on Dazzlin' Gal:

When living vintage most aspects of life are adjusted to it. You look like a 1950s pin-up, you walk like a 1940s hollywood star but how about notalk like an average gal of the 40s or the 50s? Well, that’s why I decided to make a post about the slang of the 40s & 50s, since slang describes a certain social culture and time.

Slang in general Slang is the use of informal words and expressions that are not considered standard in the speaker’s language or dialect but are considered more acceptable when used socially. Slang is often to be found in areas of the lexicon that refer to things considered taboo. It is often used to identify with one’s peers and, although it may be common among young people, it is used by people of all ages and social groups.

Slang in the Fifties Slang has always been the…

View original 3,910 more words

Poem-a-Day Writer’s Digest Challenge #24. Theme: Love (or Anti-Love)

My accidental haiku (I did not count out the syllables before writing this one, and realized, after I looked at it, that I actually wrote a “form” poem).

For the Love of Mother Nature

Love the Creator,
for He gave us a gift,
called the Creation.


Poem-a-Day Writer’s Digest Challenge #23. Theme: Apology

Words Matter

She was sorry she ever lied,
for because of her,
the lie became a truth.

She was sorry she was ever truthful,
for because of her,
the truth had unintended consequences.

She was sorry she ever said anything,
and for saying nothing at all,
for bearing false witness of herself and others,
for not bearing true witness,
for placing the innocent with the guilty—
the latter a far greater error according
to the Ninth Commandment.

Poem-a-Day Writer’s Digest Challenge #22. Theme: Waiting for (Blank)

Several months ago, I read a story in “The New Yorker” about a woman whose mother told her that her father would come back before John Wayne died, because she thought he would never die (though I cannot find the story now, and I almost wonder if I dreamt it).  The story resonated with me, though, like it often is with a piece of art, I couldn’t say why.

The other night, I watched a movie called “Blossoms in the Dust”, starring Greer Garson (who, though not a beauty, had such a radiant charm, her beauty exceeded that of many others) and Walter Pidgeon (who I always thought was handsomer and more refined than Tyrone Power).  Blossoms” was about Edna Gladney, who fought for the word “illegitimate” to be stricken from birth certificates because of the social stigma.

Hence, the inspirations for this poem.

Waiting for her Father

She sits at the bay window,
surrounded by light,
her back to the shadows of the empty house.
From ages seven to twenty-one,
she has sat in this space on this date—
till the day the Legend died:
her birthday,
his deathday.

He will come, her mother had said,
before Elvis leaves this Earth,
he will come,
but then her mother had thought Elvis
would never die,
even though legends did all the time.

When the Legend passed on
to a world or worlds unknown,
it was like a second birthday,
a rebirth,
even though a part of her,
that part of her called hope,
died that day, too.
And yet, how freeing was a lack of hope
in things, or people, never seen,
and how limitless was hope in what was to come,
dependent upon her and no one else?

Fourteen years she had waited,
like Rachel,
laboring by being good
so that when he did come back,
he would stay.

But all those years had not been in vain,
for all the good she had been,
she had been for him,
till doing good became a part of her,
and it was only for that and her life,
she could thank him for.


Poem-a-Day Writer’s Digest Challenge #21. Theme: Strange

I am a Strange One

(A Self-Portrait in Writing)

I turn my clock backwards
before I go to sleep.
I am a strange one.

I don’t like to sleep on pillows,
but rather between two of them.
I am a strange one.

I set my clock ahead five minutes,
for 7:00 a.m. is too close to 6:59.
I am a strange one.

I am studying to work in the healthcare profession,
but the sight of blood makes me faint.
I am a strange one.

I love to read crime thrillers,
but I love to write children’s nursery rhymes.
I am a strange one.

I read the dictionary for fun,
Hemingway for school.
I am a strange one.

I am a maximumist when it comes to books,
a minimalist when it comes to DVDs.
I am a strange one.

I love foreign films with subtitles,
but close captioning drives me crazy.
I am a strange one.

I love and appreciate fine art,
but have a hologram of a tree hanging in my house.
I am a strange one.

I watch Fox and read the HuffPost.
I love the Shopaholic series, but am a fan of Dave Ramsey.
I am a strange one.

I have seven Rubbermaid Tupperware containers,
and seven Rubbermaid lids.
I am a strange one.

I like Coca Cola from Mexico,
but I would never drink the water there.
I am a strange one.

I don’t love to cook,
but I love to watch cooking shows.
I am a strange one.

I’d much rather “meet my meat”
than cook it.
I am a strange one.

I buy a new fruit or vegetable first,
then try to figure out what to do with it later.
I am a strange one.

I love most everything fried,
but I prefer my fries baked.
I am a strange one.

I don’t like bananas,
but I love banana cream pie.
I am a strange one.

I love the beach and water aerobics,
but I never learned to swim.
I am a strange one.

My dream vacation is in Iceland,
but I hate the cold.
I am a strange one.

I love cat jokes,
but will probably never have a cat.
I am a strange one.

I like to make bars of soap,
but I prefer to use body wash.
I am a strange one.

I am a night owl,
but I hate when it gets dark early.
I am a strange one.

I hate cold weather,
but I love to be able to wear nylons and sweaters.
I am a strange one.

I like to wear socks inside the house,
but not outside the house (with shoes).
I am a strange one.

I find brassieres uncomfortable,
but not bikini tops.
I am a strange one.

I prefer skirts and mittens
over pants and gloves,
because I like my parts to touch.

I don’t like beards,
but I like a man who can grow one.
I am a strange one.

I like a man who wears cologne,
but I don’t wear perfume.
I am a strange one.

I don’t mind loading washers and dishwashers,
but I hate emptying them.
I am a strange one.

I love shopping for clothes,
but I hate trying them on.
I am a strange one.

I live in the Deep South,
but I don’t say y’all.
I am a strange one.

I don’t have a single tattoo or piercing,
yet I love chandelier earrings.
I am a strange one.

I am an introvert,
but I wait tables for a living.
I am a strange one.

My truths may be strange,
but they are not stranger than fiction.
We are all contradictory,
and, at times, just a little bit OCD,
in our own way.

But at least I don’t go to a seafood restaurant
and order a hamburger.

Poem-a-Day Writer’s Digest Challenge #20. Theme: Use at least 3 of these 6 words…

…relent, horrendous, artifact, lagoon, wobble, and plunder.

The Burial Underground

Twined with rusting links resembling
tarnished jewelry,
wrapped like a mummy in white sheets,
like a goddess of ancient Greece,
a woman resides in the Lochness Lagoon—
an artifact of a domestic goddess
who identified with being a mermaid.
Her legs are tied together,
even as her hands reach upward,
unbound by wood or satin,
or the complexities of life.

In life, he imprisoned her;
in death, he set her free,
for there is no grave with his name on it
attached to hers.
She is free to remain alive in the hearts
of those who still love her above.

The water plunders her flesh,
even as it preserves her bones,
in this twilight zone
known as Davy Jones’s Locker.