Tag Archives: dVerse

three-way [ 3(C2H2) -> C6H6 ]

Yesterday’s dVerse challenge was to write a trimeric poem. I thought “cool, a chemistry topic! My chemistry is a bit oxidised, but I still remember what a trimer is… right, here we go:

Oh ethyline, oh ethyline
you pretty little thing,
oh my darling little monomer,
from you I’ll make a ring!

You pretty little thing,
Let me loosen all your bonds,
No, leave on your hydrogen…

Oh my darling little monomer,
look, I’ve brought a friend for you,
hold hands and dance along of her!

From you I’ll make a ring,
all that’s needed is a third
to which you both can cling.

Oh ethylines, oh ethylines,
you pretty little things,
my darling little trimer,
now a lovely benzene ring.

…reading on, I realised that a poem about a molecule made from three other identical molecules was not in fact what was wanted.  And that I’m probably even more of a nerd than I realised.  Damn. Oh well.  Time for some ethanol.



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0800 biochemistry lectures

This is for the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “smudge”. A quadrille is 44 words exactly, and must include the prompt word.

I have tried,
I have tried so hard!
I have drunk coffee,
wiggled my toes
sat in the front row
holding my eyes open…
Only to find myself,
woken at the lecture’s end
with drool and
a smudge of ink on my cheek.

A lot of my poetry is at least semi-autobiographical. This is definitely autobiographical. Despite quite enjoying biochemistry at uni, I did sleep though almost every 8am lecture, no matter how hard I tried to stay awake. And I woke up more than once with my face stuck to my smudged notes. I don’t know what the poor lecturer thought of me sleeping in the front row with my eyes propped open.  


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Please be assured…

I have not been guarded or wary enough.
I have gone running naked, laughing, down the corridor,
and I have sat in the corner and cried,
without remembering to close the door.
I have shared too much of myself –
what is behind the eyes
as well as what I see through them –
And I didn’t calculate the risk
in letting down my guard,
in dropping the ghillie suit,
in taking off the mask
that hides how I feel.
Please be assured it won’t happen again.


Written for the dVerse prompt “take a risk”


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I started writing this because it’s almost marking season, and with the shift to online teaching and assessment there is a big focus on preventing and identifying plagiarism. It’s a sector wide issue, not particular to where I teach. And getting up early and seeing the dVerse prompt MTB: To turn again, about turn again. with the instruction to use epiphora (end of line repeats), and examples from Eliot, I thought it must be time to post it. So, with a nod to Macavity (Eliot, 1939):

Integrity, Integrity, there’s nothing like integrity,
it keeps you well within the law, and does it with sincerity,
but it’s power to inspire trust has gone and here instead
is a scene of academic crime – Integrity is dead!
Do not presume the authorship of anything you’ve read,
for Turnitin is telling you – Integrity is dead! Continue reading


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Another late one for dVerse, this time a fruity one inspired by “the way to cut a pomegranate”.

I’m bingeing on persimmons at the moment, while their short end of autumn/beginning of winter season lasts. The way to cut a persimmon, unless you eat the skin, is 4 cuts and then pull it into 8 segments like an orange as shown in the picture of my breakfast. 

Glowing orange with
all the light of autumn caught
and stored as sweetness
beneath that smooth glossy skin –
four cuts for a winter feast.


I wrote a tanka because I thought they were native to Japan, but just checked and discovered that they’re actually native to China. Ooops.  


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need, greed or curiosity?

I’m a little late for the dVerse Monday quadrille, but here is my take on Curiosity:

What drives you?
What gets you out of bed,
out the door,
out of your comfort zone?
Is it need?
Or greed?
Or curiosity?
Need got us out of the trees,
greed got us across the seas…
And curiosity?
Curiosity got us to Mars.


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the kangaroo and the ute

It’s OLN at dVerse tonight (this morning), and Lisa has provided, for our inspiration, Edward Lear’s “the duck and the kangaroo”.

With apologies to both Lear and Lisa: 

Said the kangaroo to the ute
You’re a fine looking automobile
To travel with you would be beaut,
Strewth, mate, that’s how I feel.
I’m not asking you for a seat
On account of my ginormous feet,
I’m a macropod to me boots,
Said the kangaroo to the ute. Continue reading


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lower right cheek

For the dVerse Monday haibun prompt “flower moon“:

Glimpsed for a moment through the thick autumn fog, stubble coloured sheep speckle stubble covered paddocks. A wheel thumps over a dead ‘roo, a fresh bloody mass smeared further across the tarmac by my passing. I turn up the fan to dispel the mist growing, by some sympathetic magic, on the inside of my windscreen.
Watching the car thermometer dip below freezing as I roll down into the valley, I ponder this morning’s poetry prompt: flower moon. In the northern hemisphere anemones, bluebells and lupins are flowering, and corn is being planted.

On the earth’s arse, just
a week away from winter –
no flowers here, mate.


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I know you

Oh my goodness! It’s a dVerse prompt during Australian EST waking hours! Meet the bar waltzingMy favourite waltz is Tchaikovsky’s  sleeping beauty waltz, which I used to like playing on my clarinet, although it’s better on violin. How long has it been since I played? I wonder if I still can… 

The reed on my tongue tastes
of grasses, river banks,
sunshine under blue skies. Continue reading


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For the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “What’s in a word?”:
The challenge is to write a quadrille, so that’s exactly 44 words, including the homograph pair (same spelling different meaning) “wound”.


Did you never wonder where my words went?

I wove them into bandages,
and wound them well about me
to dress the wound yours left.

But your words still fester within,
and my own have become a winding sheet
that I tied too tourniquet-tight.


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