The summer lapsed away*
its green-like guile sank into sand
and autumn stole across the cliffs
Smearing hues of brilliance
to shimmer with the morn
An impressionist’s palette
‘neath a deadened sky.
For the third year in a row…I’m taking part in the wonderful Postcard Challenge … a poem-a-day on a postcard, a different one each day to a different person on a list from founder Paul Nelson, and sending it to said person … thirty-one different souls around the globe. And in return, I will receive (hopefully) thirty-one cards from the thirty-one named persons above mine on the list…
One of the neatest experiences of which I’ve had the good fortune to partake…stay tuned for more information.
Oh – I’m writing this on August 6th and I’ve already received four cards! And yes, that’s a record for me. How many have I sent? Nevah mind…One cool thing, though … all of my cards this year are professionally printed cards made from my own photos … let me see if I can find the collage photo of the first half ….
On the following pages are the postcards I sent out this year…they are mostly in the order I sent them (except for three which I forgot because I was stamp-less for awhile…those got lumped in with the thirteen extras I had, and sent in early September, so apologies to Amanda, Anthony and Judy from my list; your cards are now on the way)…
To be a little clearer, to get to any one postcard, click on the title or date on the menu running down the right side of the page and it will take you right there…on the bottom of those pages, you may click to go to the next or previous postcard poem, or you can backspace to this page and look for another date and or poem. Clear as mud, yes?
So, just to confuse things further…sometimes the number beside the “title” coincides with the number the person is on the list…sometimes, the number coincides with the date of August the card was to be sent out (not always bang on as being from Canada,I know it takes some of mine longer to get to certain places in the US then other places, so I often sent mine in batches). I guess what I’m saying is … don’t try and figure out the numbers if you can’t…
Oh, and just to confuse the issue further…I love enigmas…some of the titles are actual titles…e.g “A Puddle of Pug” but most are quotations from the great Lawrence Ferlinghetti (and attributed to him on the postcard) – his quote was often the impetus for the poem (I’m sure I’ve explained elsewhere about response or turn-around poems: they don’t work especially well for me because of where I live and how long it takes and yada, yada, yada.) Happily though, even with typing my poems because of my gnarly hands, I was pretty much able to execute my editor this year and go with a first draft…huge for me.
Below is a photo of the postcards I’ve received so far (it’s September 3)…I’m still expecting a few more so might be posting a second shot somewhere down the road. Let me just add in case it isn’t clear, I loved doing this both years but this year it was FANTASTIC! Thanks Paul for all you did and thanks to all who participated…what a great community of poets and postcarders…
Yeah…imagine…Found Poetry Review is bringing it again this April and if the approve my application…I’ll be there too.
I thought last year was challenging but this year? This year is going to be HARD. Stay tuned.
Tell me what balloons know, you asked me
yesterday – are they filled with stuff like brains?
Do they think like I do, or do they just sleep
all the time? I admit I did not know what to say,
so said nothing for a bit. Finally, you told
me it was okay, that no-one seemed to know;
I guess you’ve been asking around, and balloon
experts are hard to come by … hmm.
Known for cowboys and rodeos, calf-roping
and horse-back riding…it is always surprising
when the skyscrapers spring out of the bald
Prairie, and they do. A big city with a
small-town feel – you can see the mountains
most days if the weather’s good. And downtown
is large enough and cosmopolitan enough to be
closed down to traffic. It’s an amazing place
to shop, dine, and party … and Stampede’s
a whole nother fine time.
It has been months now that I’ve seen you
hopping about that roof over there.
You perch on the chimney and then go to
the peak…then bounce along the shingles
Then off to the tree, back to the roof
I wonder where you sleep – do you have
a nest over there? Is it under an eave?
You don’t seem to make a sound but
maybe it gets lost with all the cawing
from the murderous crows around here
Maybe you are a crow – a baby – it’s hard
to tell – even with binoculars…I like you
Don’t fly away, okay?
“I don’t know,” the male says to the female; she
hunkers down, great with child, but still
they have no nest and she is very put out.
He, however, is concerned – snow has
been unpredictable and they’ve only just
turned brown. They still have bits of white
showing. She turns her back on him. Oh well,
better get moving or they’ll be splats on the
road, he knows it … he doesn’t want that for
certain. He’ll find them a place to burrow.
He hates when she’s mad.
In a library that’s more cathedral
than home for books, extra-high ceilings
are painted with scenes right from the Louvre,
or the Sistine Chapel. The architecture
is Beaux-Art; everything feels old world
and authentic (probably because it is).
It’s a place to write as well as read,
a true reference library, guarded as one enters
by intrepid stone lions: Patience and Fortitude.
Sailing down the Seine on Christmas night,
the boat scatters the Eiffel tower’s golden
reflections that blanket the water like sequins
An unexpected treat surfaces near the boat …
There were a pair but one dove more quickly
than its mate and is almost below the water
just as the photo is snapped…can you see
the other? It is mid-way down the left side
of the photo and is as graceful as might
be expected. Had it not been caught on film,
it might be deemed imagined – but no, twas
Christmas gift, miraculous …
a truly sweet surprise.
Bitter she was that day, the wind, and chill
We had to buy hats and gloves at that tiny place
across from the cemetery and my feet froze anyhow
and blistered to death as we searched in vain
for those famous souls reputedly buried here
How huge it was…so many graves and crypts
and family plots – it was hard to grasp
Harder still to imagine drinking coffee
and eating a brioche in a place named
for the graveyard…I remember how we laughed.
It is the city that never sleeps and
this square that she’s heard so much
about is every bit as crazy
as she’s been led to believe; it fair
vibrates with energy and people
The colors are richer, the sounds more
intense, the signs bigger and somehow
more meaningful and she knows
If she never sees anything else like it
again, it won’t matter – she’s seen
the real thing…Times Square is the
bomb, the best…NYC never lets her down.
The lake near me, my lake, I think,
calls to my soul when the Samhain
nights are near and I know if I go
there,it will possible to slide
between the now and then, in my
lake that is not the least pelagic
but has a demarcation so ill-defined
that I am upside-down in another
town – one that matches mine so
closely,I know not if I am there
or here … Atlantis-like but not,
it defies the telling of it.