Tag Archives: quadrille

say it, spell it, say it again

For the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “casting a poetic spell“:

 

Waist high and terrified
they approach the microphone
and await their word;
enunciated and exemplified.

We wait,
no one breathing,
as they say it,
spell it,
say it again.

Then sigh in shared sorrow
or breathe out in shared relief,
whoever’s child it is.

 

Years ago one of my sons made it to the NSW state spelling bee final. My proudest mum-moment was at the end of the regional finals when he got a second word after stuffing up a first, and then the only other remaining contestant stuffed hers and didn’t get a second chance.  He was declared the winner. And he went and told the judge that the other contestant should have had a second chance too. I know he reads my blog sometimes, and I hope he knows how proud he makes me, not just that day, but always. 

But on the whole I dislike spelling bees. The poor kids looked so tiny and so frightened, and it was painful watching any of them when they got a word wrong and their little faces crumpled no matter how stoic they tried to be.  I think every parent felt that, based on the collective sigh of sorrow whenever any child went out.  

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SNR < 1 & F(net) = 0

For the dVerse quadrille prompt “static“. A quadrille has exactly 44 words, and must include the prompt word, in this case static, or some form of it.

Some nights, sleep rises like static,
drowning out the clamouring signals
that can’t be stilled –
those remains of the day
that we cling-wrap and freeze,
to (we intend) reheat tomorrow.
Better ignore them, until,
desiccated beyond recognition,
they can be quietly thrown away.

 

And a second quick one, because I teach statics and couldn’t resist:

Sum-over-F equals zero,
that’s all that you need to know.
But remember that F is a vector, okay,
so that zero’s in every which way.
And choose your coordinates wisely,
so your maths will come out more kindly.
And that’s statics in 44 words!

next, dynamics… but that needs more than 44 words. 

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salt for sore eyes

It was my fault.
I chose the wrong seat,
making it inevitable
that you sat next to me,
mere inches away.
It could have been worse,
at least you were not opposite,
where I could not have avoided
such a salt for sore eyes.

 

A second quadrille for the dVerse “let’s get salty” Monday prompt.

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sea cravings / 100 miles inland II

Some mornings,
waking to hear the wind in the trees
roaring like breakers,
I smell the sea,
until the sun warms the trees
infusing eucalyptus into the tepid-tea air,
reminding me
that we are one hundred miles inland.
Yet still salt calls to salt.

Written for the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt, “let’s get salty” – 44 words exactly, using the word salt. 

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just one more

From a current and long past 30C summer day in Australia, a response to the dVerse quadrille prompt “shivering“:

 

Swaddled by the oven-breath air,
but shivering,
lips pale against sunburned skin,
we stare out to sea,
asking for “just one more”
“please, just one more”
as we watch the rollers
waiting for the perfect
XXX swell
XXXXXX rise
XXXXXXXXX curl
XXXXXXXXXXXX break
to carry us to shore.

 

When we went to the beach when I was a kid, which we did a lot, we’d stay in the water until we were freezing – which actually didn’t take that long in the cold waters off the south coast of Australia, even on the hottest day. My mother would have to yell at us to get out of the water because our lips were turning blue and she could see us shivering.  The water is a lot warmer along the east coast where I swim and body surf with my kids now, but they still usually have to be told to come out. 

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kookaburra quadrille

For the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “muse cues“: write a quadrille (exactly 44 words) using the word muse or some variation.

Kookaburra sits in the old gumtree,
shouting out into the bush is he:
“This is my territory!”
“Hey, how about sex?”
“Are you looking at me?”
“Seriously, how about sex?”
“Yeah, you and whose army?”

In loud amused glee,
kookaburras mates’ reply:
ha-ha hee-hee!

 

I heard the kookaburras at dawn this morning, yelling across the clearing to each other – saying much the same things humans are always trying to yell at each other, but with an appropriately amused tone. 

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a slurry of ashes

The guardianship application says Mr…
Not Dr…

I could ask for it to be corrected.
But why bother?

He doesn’t remember he held that title.

Alcohol didn’t feed the flame of his intelligence.
It doused it,
leaving nothing but a pale slurry of ashes.

 

A quadrille for the dVerse “ashes to ashes” prompt: 44 words exactly, including the word ash or a variation.

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grooved (or otherwise)

The dVerse Monday quadrille challenge was to use the word groove or a variation in a poem of exactly 44 words:

We fitted together
like tongue and groove.
We slotted in place
and never moved.
Which was fine for a while
until the rains fell, Continue reading

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facing the panel

For the dVerse quadrille prompt “stand”:

My mistake, I stand corrected…
Well, no, not stand,
I sit dejected.
In fact, I’m prone,
as I’m being vivisected.

Go on, use your scalpel,
dig in deep with that probe,
see what you unravel.
Am I role model or martyr?
Or cautionary example?

A quadrille is exactly 44 words, and it must include the prompt word or a variation thereon, in this case “stand”. 

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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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