Tag Archives: prompts

waiting for Persephone

For the dVerse Tuesday poetics prompt “Persephone“: 


The birds know she is coming.
They are staking out their territory,
marking the boundaries with song.
The sheep know is she coming.
The tender white lambs crowd
under their mothers’ dull grey fleeces.
The seeds know she is coming.
They are pushing green shoots
through the cold, damp earth.
The kangaroos know she is coming.
Their pouches bulge and stir
with impatiently folded joeys.
The trees know she is coming.
The wattles are dressed in
their best golden gowns,
ready to greet her.

Though the wind is so cold it bites,
it carries with it her sweet kiss.
Tasting of pomegranate seeds.


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For the dVerse Monday Haibun prompt, “August“:

August is a time of uncertainty, of transition – of winter greys and browns being suddenly speckled with green and yellow as the daffodils in my garden and the wattles in the bush bloom.
One day I wake to find the birdbath frozen over, and huddle in my coat, woolly beanie pulled low as I rush to do my outdoor chores. The next day the sun warms my back so much I shed layers down to a t-shirt – fooling me into forgetting my woolly beanie the next day so my ears freeze.
One day the air carries the sweet dusty scent of the wattles, the next it is so icy all I can smell is the sharp metallic scent of cold, that reddens the nose and makes it run. And then, suddenly, a hint of spring drifts through again.

A tendril of warmthwattle
curls through the air, carrying
scent of earth and growth.


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hoohoo haha, hoohoo haha

This is for the dVerse monotetra challenge. A monotetra is :
“*Comprised of quatrains (four-line stanzas) in tetrameter (four metrical feet) for a total of 8 syllables per line
*Each quatrain consists of mono-rhymed lines (so each line in the first stanza has the same type of rhyme, as does each line in the second stanza, etc.)
*The final line of each stanza repeats the same four syllables.”
My rhymes aren’t perfect, and the rhythm’s not quite right… but this is it anyway:


Kookaburra laughs at the dawn,
all our night’s fears, banished by scorn.
Start afresh a new day is born.
Laugh for us all, laugh for us all.

Kookaburra laughs at nightfall,
all our day’s woes, gone, big and small.
Gone away, released by your call.
Laugh for us all, laugh for us all.


I was running through my magic pudding To Do list for the day while feeding the animals, after cooking breakfast for the kids, and feeling a bit grumpy and put-upon. Then a kookaburra started laughing. It’s just not possible to feel grumpy while listening to a kookaburra – it’s like the universe laughing at itself and everything in it. Unfortunately my free WP plan won’t allow me to post a sound file, but you can listen to a couple here.   I bet you can’t get more than 30s in without at least smiling. 


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experience is a comb

For the dVerse Tuesday prompt “the proverbial“:

Hot water sluices over me
and the scent of roses rises in the steam
as I wash away
the disappointments of the day.
But always a trace remains,
and the lines on my face are a little deeper,
and my soul a little more tarnished
than it was yesterday.
If I stood here long enough,
if I scrubbed hard enough,
could I clean away the years?
And would it be worth it anyway?
If I could go back,
would I just find myself here again,
trying to wash away the day?


Inspired by the Chinese proverb “Experience is a comb which nature gives to men when they are bald.”


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morning commute: stream of consciousness

For the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “stream“:

Dirt and ‘roos -> gravel -> tarmac, one lane -> two lanes -> white lines -> more lanes, highway barricades.
Trees -> fields -> farms -> villages -> outskirts -> suburbs -> cement-grey city towers.
Farm utes -> dusty wagons -> soccer-mums’ four-wheel drives -> city-cars – shiny bubbles of banality on wheels…
all of us joining the stream


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shy Thalia

Tuesday’s dVerse prompt was “choose your muse“. I think mine must be Thalia, muse of comedy and pastoral poetry, as that’s what I seem to mostly write. Finding quiet time to write is a challenge at the moment. 


My muse is shy, she won’t come out
if there is anyone else about.
I hear her whisper, but can’t catch the words,
she demands silence to be properly heard.
So I wait impatiently, all day, and then,
when at last we’re alone, I take up my pen.


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FBD, chant with me!

I use the odd rhyme and other mnemonics in my teaching, including online last year asking my class to turn on their microphones and all repeat after me:

“I solemnly swear, to draw the forces, all the forces, and nothing but the forces, on my free  body diagrams. So help me John”. (John is my co-lecturer – and it sounded better than “so help me Kate”). 

But after pondering the dVerse prompt to meet the bar with  a chant, I now have something bigger and… maybe…better… for this year’s cohort:

Now I know ’cause Kate told me

Now I know ‘cause Kate told me

I must master free body

I must master free body

Diagrams that show each force

Diagrams that show each force

If I want to pass this course

If I want to pass this course Continue reading


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gardener’s despair

This morning’s dVerse prompt from Claudia is garden(ing)!

I love gardening, but it’s a constant struggle here with the hungry wildlife and my own insatiable pig. Most recently the edge of the mouse plague has been the problem. 

Fucking kangaroos
and bastard possums!
They’ve bent my trees and
eaten the blossoms!

And the cockatoos!
That hooligan mob,
chew off the branches
to finish the job. Continue reading


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jukebox (quadrille)

d’Verse is back from a summer hiatus – yay! And happy 10th Birthday dVerse!
Today’s prompt is “juke” for a quadrille. So that’s exactly 44 words, and must include juke or a variation thereon.

The last time I used a jukebox was decades ago, in Melbourne… Nice to have some memories dredged up, but I’m feeling old and nostalgic now.


We meet the horse-and-carriage man
outside a corridor-narrow diner
under a pink Melbourne sky.
Sat at a formica-topped table,
the horse-and-carriage man orders teas –
his shout tonight.
The busker drops one of his coins into the jukebox
and tells me to choose a song.


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silent relic II

For the dVerse “midsummer live” prompt:

A silent relic
recalls bright midsummer songs
through winter darkness.


Not live, but rushed to you only a few hours later.   😀
Looking forward to the return of dVerse after your summer break!


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