For the d’Verse quadrille prompt “for whom the bell tolls“:
The bluebells are tardy this year.
Although perhaps I misjudge them,
perhaps they are just cautious –
perhaps, having seen the fate of the tulips,
those princesses reduced to muddied rags –
perhaps they are just waiting for the storms to pass.
Written for the dVerse quadrille Monday prompt “learn to labor or labor to learn“, 44 words exactly, including the word work (and dedicated to my darling twin boys and my husband who I didn’t listen to):
three years of hoping
nine months of waiting
twenty hours of labour
two thousand loads of washing
twenty thousand meals
for two lumps on the couch
grunting and picking their pimples.
You were right dear,
a dog would’ve been less work.
Written for the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “morning has broken“:
spores of self-doubt grow
and spread into a mycelium,
enmeshing every cell,
blooming into twisted,
here, on the wrong side of the morning,
hearing the first 4am cock-crows,
I count the hours
until daylight flows from the sky
washing away the night
A quadrille is exactly 44 words, and for the prompt the quadrille must include the word morning.
in the dusty darkness
and cob-webbed quiet of the attic
with nought but the resident mouse
to bear witness
to their mechanical trysts,
the typewriters have multiplied –
and now they lurk in their dozens
their presence betrayed only
by an occasional
Written for the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt, “what’s your type?“, and for my husband who collects typewriters and hides them in the roof-space where there is now a large colony of them.
dVerse is back! Yay! Here is my quadrille for Monday’s “let’s celebrate” quadrille prompt.
No alcohol, no curries,
or it kicks me in its sleep.
No coffee, no tonic-water or
it races, stumbles in a heap.
I’m trying to take care
of this rabbit in my chest –
no champagne for me,
a celebratory carrot is the best.
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.
no one breathing,
as they say 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.
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.
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.
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,
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.
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,
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
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.