Adrienne’s Friendship Insight

[For the Christmas Eve prompt from Two Sylvias Press]

Friendships start
often
in
good times
easy times
hopeful times
eager times

Friendships fade
often
through
changing times
hard times
sad times
withdrawn times

Friendships deepen
sometimes
through all times
even times
without contact
for years

Then a lunch, maybe,
with hands held
for a moment
remembering
shared private losses
hard choices
disappointments

Friendships deepen
sometimes
through all times
even times
living apart
maybe for years

Visits and phone calls
FaceTime and Skype
virtual shared cuppas
travel together
rejoicing together
laughing together
sorrowing together
crying together
sharing wisdom and folly

Acquaintance, colleague, chum
come and go, start and end
In my life just a few become
a treasured wondrous friend

Contemplating Procrastinating

Why is it so easy to remember
the undone?

Do I ever lie abed,
not even dreaming of sleep

long into a restless night
recounting what I have done?

The presents bought
soon sink

treasures in deep quiet waters
of done

the presents unbought
bob and float

jetsam in stormy seas
of unease

Promises kept, projects finished
duties done, agenda accomplished

These have small space in memory.
Their stay is short, their value small.

But the one undone, ignored,
dreaded, or simply avoided

Ah, such a one glues itself to my soul,
wraps itself around my awareness

toothpicks my sleepless eyes,
treadmills my restless limbs

devil to the god of peace,
demon spawn of conscience.

Procrastination we name it:
“For tomorrow”

As if it were a positive contained thing,
a plan, an eagerly awaited opportunity.

Nonhodie
we should name it

“Not today”
Never today

The done is yesterday
dismissed, discounted

The planned is tomorrow
anticipated, awaited

The deferred is
when?

prolonged, postponed,
protracted, paused

Never today
Procrastinated.

Sans Emojis

[Another day, another prompt, another attempt at poetry]

Before emojis
Were
Parentheses
Sometimes in bouquets
(((())))
Like a single rose
Rising inside baby’s breath
The fortunate words so wreathed
((((became special))))
— Noticeable —

Before emojis
?????
Especially when paired with !!!
Or repeated
Hinted at emotions
Happiness!!!!
Surprised confusion!?!?

We curse wordlessly
#!@#!
We pause,
We imply intimacies…
We continue &
We connect;
“We quote”
Sometimes we just prevaricate////
Until we come to a full stop.
All without emojis

Cuppa Comfort

[Yesterday’s poem never got posted, but I had double the enjoyment – in both the writing of it and in the doing of the topic.]

Egyptian licorice tea
Anticipation begins the pleasure

Fill the electric kettle

While the water comes to boil
Open the cupboard
Take the teabag from the colorful box

Turn to the open shelves
For the favorite mug
The one from Bonnieux

Bonnieux
“Our” hanging village
In the Provençal Luberon mountains
Hills really
Above lavender fields
Villages built on heights for defense
Cascaded down the sides
Over the years, centuries
Bonnieux almost reaching down to the Pons Julien
Built for tramping Roman legions
Now no stranger to cars

The water is boiling
Just a little in the cup
Cradled in my hands as I swish the water
Around and around, warming cup and hands

Dump the warming water
Put the teabag in the cup
Wrap the string once around the handle
Pour in the boiling water
The aroma soothes and revives
Long before the tea is ready to drink

Egyptian licorice tea
Memories of France
Equally comforting

One Bright Spot

The road twists and turns
Through sharps and flats
Like the notes of a familiar tune

Winter trees with bare limbs twined
Rise to either side
Screen the setting sun

The road flows in westward arpeggios
So I need my sunglasses on
Although day is fast yielding to dusk

The striated sky does not blaze today
But fades to light blue
With dusky pink clouds hugging the horizon

A single small streak of brighter pink
Slices through, just above the earth-air border
Glistens against the calmer shades

I tip my sunglasses up
While careful to keep my attention mostly
On the curves and dips of the musical road

Even without my polarized glasses
I can see that single pink streak
Brightens one spot in the dusky sky

Just one bright spot
That I can look at only fleetingly
As I drive the road carefully

Just one bright spot
But it is enough

An Over the Counter Fantasy

[Today’s prompt included the instruction not to overthink it, which I certainly honored in this bit of stream of consciousness trivia.]

Acetaminophen sounds more like an enchanted nymph
turned into a tree toad by jealous Hera
because Zeus laid with her in the elf ring
of mushrooms, which resemble not at all
the ones moldering in my refrigerator’s spoiler drawer,
but which just might have been planted by Edmund’s Fairie Queen
sometime before 1590 when she was captured by the poet
though she hid under the hay with the rats nibbling her fairy toes
already sore from dancing en pointe as La Sylphide,
the doomed dream lover for whom James deserted his bride,
than a simple OTC remedy for my aching head.

Winter Ballet

[Today’s prompt challenged me to write in a way and style different than my usual.]

Through the wooden panelled window I watch the woodwind ballet:
Stage center, front, the still-leaved Japanese maple prima ballerina, not meant for these climes,
clings to frozen sunset leaves that quiver to the wind’s allegro beat.
Behind her, a proud Leland cypress danseur noble lifts high his green needles
not caring that he is an unnatural hybrid –
not the familiar cross between two species, but a wilder cross between two genera –
like crossing a dog and cat, my horticultural husband tells me.
I shrug, only somewhat interested in horticultural facts but fascinated by the forest dance.
Japanese maple and Leland cypress sway together as if ready for a pas de deux grand lift.
Further back, a bare limbed taller oak extends graceful empty arms towards the strangely partnered principals:
the Japanese maple with its clinging leaves and the Leland cypress with its proud needles –
the transplant and the hybrid who claim center stage in my picture pane ballet.
The mighty oak, a true character artist, dances on its own
while derrière ,the young corps de ballet, slim, loose limbed oaks and maples,
execute their flawless port de bras, eschew bravura, awaiting their years as principals,
growing into their strength, their rhythm, their aplomb
as the musical wind continues to chime through the winter day
while I, cozy in my center stage seat, sip my tea and enjoy the virtuoso performance.