Tag Archives: dVerse

mezza luna

For the dVerse Monday haibun prompt, to write about the half-moon or “Mezza Luna”:


I hardly noticed the change. Just a few days ago there was a thin finger-nail clipping of a moon, hanging above the horizon at sunset, gleaming white against a purple velvet sky. Now on my evening walk she is overhead, a neat half-circle, the terminator drawn with a sharp pencil. And in another week I will see her rise, plump and full, climbing above the ridge to the east as the sun drops below the ridge to the west.
They run in circles, chasing each other above this still Earth. But you can see that she wants to be caught, because she runs a little slower than the sun to let him catch up. But, oh… every time, every time… he runs past her.

Mezza Luna points,
her sunlit face an arrow
aiming at her love


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thank you for cleaning the bathroom sink

For the dVerse Valentine’s day prompt “come and state it plainly“, and for D.  

I don’t love you every day.
You know as well I do
that if I said so I would be lying.
There are days when the irritation
from brushing against each other
day after day
year after year
is like contact dermatitis,
that is never allowed to heal
but just gets more annoying,
until I have to scratch it.
But this constant abrasion
has carved us into shapes
that fit together.
Most days.



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hare turned tortoise

A haibun for the dVerse Monday haibun prompt, “heart“:


Ba-doonk-a-doonk, Ba-doonk-a-doonk. Eight-thirty p.m. and my phone alarm is flashing “take meds”.
The tablet snaps in the cutter, and the two halves fall neatly apart: two 25mg doses of atenolol. There is a satisfying definiteness to that snap, a decisive counting out and finalising of the days with this miniature guillotine. (I am always tempted to run my thumb along the little razor blade to test its sharpness, but I do not. At least, I have not so far.) It clicks down SNAP! and another day is gone, decapitated, and dropped into the little plastic box below the blade.
I am no longer measuring out my life with coffee spoons – I am not allowed caffeine anymore – but with half-tablets of heart medication.

The rabbit is tamed:
it twitches rather than kicks
and plods tortoise-paced.


My heart no longer
skips a beat when I see you
(if I take my meds).


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winter melts

Winter lies sadly melting in the sink.
An ice-blue sky reduced to an anonymous puddle
in a plastic zip-lock bag.
And for what?
To make way for bargain priced minced meat.
“I’m sorry” I say to the little one,
who just shrugs.
And for a moment I consider telling her:
“It remembers what it was. Water remembers.”
But I do not say it,
because she is not so little anymore,
and would just roll her eyes and say “muuummm”
at such sappy Disney bullshit.
She accepts that snow must make way
for ‘reduced to clear’ minced meat.
And I am sorry for that.

Written for the dVerse prompt “poetics: the blizzard of the self“, to write a poem about winter. I used a bit of poetic licence here, it was actually a bag of hailstones rather than snow that was taken out of the freezer a while ago to make space for ‘reduced to clear’ meat. But snow somehow fitted better with the broader theme than giant hailstones which are themselves due to climate change.


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lost and found/2022 beginnings

The “finding it first” challenge from Laura at dVerse was to create a “found poem” by taking the first line of the first poem from each month of 2022 to create a new poem. No changes other than tenses, no additions other than conjunctions, but enjambment okay and the lines don’t have to be in order. 

Three years of hoping
still she carries spring in her step,
though the bluebells are tardy this year.

The alarm goes off at midnight, mid-winter,
listen to him crowing under the blood moon!
If we make it through December,
then what if I wrap up my truth, and
throw the Christmas tree out the door?

Some nights, sleep rises like static, and
I don’t understand why the humans persist.


This came out sounding rather dark, although some of the poems they came from were meant to be funny ones, eg the last line comes from a poem about my pig eating doormats. They also almost all come from responses to dVerse prompts! 🙂 

These are the first lines and where they came from:
January: Throw the Christmas tree out the door from ‘anno dissolvi
February: She carries spring in her step from ‘mum’s hairdressing salon II
March: I don’t understand why the humans persist from ‘high fibre snacks
April: Listen to him crowing from ‘summoning the sun
May: Some nights, sleep rises like static from ‘SNR < 1 & F(net) = 0’
June: What if I wrapped up my truth from ‘a little empty space
July: Mid-winter from ‘woodsmoke
August: The alarm goes off at midnight from ‘looking up
September: three years of hoping from ‘labour of love’
October: The bluebells are tardy this year from ‘bluebells
November: Under the blood moon from ‘under a lilly-pilly moon
December: If we make it through December from ‘If we make it through December

I’ve never written a found poem before, and rarely go back and re-read any of my poems. So this was a really interesting challenge, and I enjoyed it very much.  Thanks Laura!


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Ginger-mutt growls at the thunder, 
is unphased by fireworks.
He is the fiercest hunter
unafraid of whatever lurks
in the undergrowth. He laughs
at the rooster’s spurs and beak,
but at the sight of the little calf
the bold cattle dog just freaks.


Written for the dVerse Monday Quadrille prompt “Bold-ly go” – 44 words including ‘bold’ – about our red heeler cattle dog who is scared of cows. The calf kept following him and he kept hiding behind T1. He’s also scared of llamas, but that’s just sensible. 


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1400 January 7th / Why I make the bread.

He is not a tactile person.
He thinks this is a criticism when I point this out.
It is not meant as a rebuke, or a slight.
Although perhaps any observation
that contains an element of pity
is also a slight.
The difficulty
is that he uses spoons and measuring cups.
He would never plunge his hand into the sugar jar
and enjoy the graininess,
before casting a handful into the bowl.
He does not know the texture of the flours –
the silky-soft feel of the white flour,
the roughness, like calloused hands,
of the wholemeal.
I cannot say how many cups of flour,
how much sugar, how much water, how much yeast.
He has asked,
but I cannot quantify,
or explain how I know
when enough flour has been kneaded in.
My hands know.
They know the touch, like skin, of the surface.
They know the flesh-firm give of the dough.
These are things known with the hands,
not the head.
So I cannot tell him.


Linking in to the dVerse OLN (Open Link Night) # 329 prompt. Any poem, old or new. This is a new one, and also part of my “hours” sequence.  

I’m looking forward to joining OLN live finally! I just need to work out the time difference.  🙂 


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fireworks and dripping tears

Written for the dVerse Haibun Monday prompt, “Fireworks and a dripping tap” to write about your feelings towards this new year.  I have already written several poems about my feelings about 2022 and it’s ending, implying that it wasn’t the best of years. But let’s just lay it all out now, so the tears make sense. After this, I am going to leave 2022 behind. 

2022 was supposed to be a better year for everyone – covid vaccinations making us safer, travel opening up again and back to teaching face to face. But it was a year characterized by tragedy. One of my students took his own life a few weeks into semester. And then just weeks later another was killed in a car accident. Then there was a second suicide on campus, and, just as the year was finally drawing to a close, a colleague’s son died, a boy the same age as my twins.
Everyone said the usual thing to everyone else after the first suicide: “you can’t blame yourself”. But I do. I blame all of us – every one of us on campus that didn’t pay enough attention, every one of us that should have seen something, every one of us that could have said something, every one of us that might have made a difference. All of us that should have done better.
So, how do I feel about the year gone and the new one starting?

Thank God it’s over. Next year
I will do better.


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choosing candles

Written for the dVerse prompt “St Lucy – bringing light into darkness“, and also as a follow up to my last poem, about putting the candles on the tree.

There is a science to choosing one’s candle. Continue reading


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If we make it through December

For the dVerse prompt “come sing with me“. The challenge was to include at least 2 song titles from the winter themed list provided, which I’ve copied below. 

If we make it through December
(and after all, why wouldn’t we? Continue reading


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