Tag Archives: poems

The Spot Writers – “Where Is the Love?”

Welcome to The Spot Writers. This month’s prompt is to choose a news article. Find 5 words in the article that jump out at you. Write a story using those words.

This week’s contribution comes from Cathy MacKenzie. Cathy’s novel, WOLVES DON’T KNOCK, a psychological drama, is available from her locally or on Amazon. MISTER WOLFE, the sequel, coming soon, as well as MY BROTHER, THE WOLF, the last of the series.

***

“Where Is the Love?” by Cathy MacKenzie

 

I don’t have to look at newspaper blurbs

To find five words

That jump out at me,

I don’t need to see

Ones that’ll stand out.

 

The ones that’ll shout

To me

Are these three:

Covid, social-distancing, death—

Seniors taking their last breath—

And these two:

Health and ICU.

 

This month of June

Couldn’t come too soon

But not much has changed,

The world is still deranged

And crazy.

 

People are lazy

And lackadaisical,

Recognizable,

Ignoring masks

And other tasks.

 

What happened to social-distancing

And outdistancing,

Groups of ten

And wise women and men?

 

Summer is here,

We want to be near,

But without health

What is wealth?

Money or not,

Life can’t be bought.

 

I fear I exist

And co-exist

In a dream,

A nightmare

From which I’ll never wake

To give my head a shake.

 

Despite upheaval

And evil,

Can we pray

For words to say

That won’t hurt

And phrases we won’t blurt

Without thinking,

Without blinking

An eye?

 

I look to the sky

And pray for change,

That we may re-arrange

Priorities

And help minorities,

That peace can prevail

Despite a gale.

 

Where is the love

Once sent from God above?

***

The Spot Writers—Our Members:

Val Muller: http://www.valmuller.com/blog/

Catherine A. MacKenzie: https://writingwicket.wordpress.com/wicker-chitter/

Phil Yeats: https://alankemisterauthor.wordpress.com

Chiara De Giorgi: https://chiaradegiorgi.blogspot.ca/

 

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The Spot Writers “Our ‘New Normal'”

Welcome to The Spot Writers. This month’s prompt is to write a “never have/had I ever” story.

This week’s contribution comes from Cathy MacKenzie. Cathy’s novel, WOLVES DON’T KNOCK, a psychological drama, is available from her locally or on Amazon. MISTER WOLFE, the sequel, coming soon! As well as MY BROTHER, THE WOLF, the last of the series.

***

“Our ‘New Normal’” by Cathy MacKenzie

Never had I ever
Expected to break my wrist—
Or any bone—
Is this the beginning of the end?

Perhaps it was, for:

Never had I ever
Heard such terms:
Physical-distancing, flattening the curve…
What the heck!

Never had I ever
Thought self-isolation would be cruel
And unusual punishment,
For no wrong of mine!

Never had I ever
Imagined imprisonment at home
Other than once-a-week outings for essentials,
Though it’s safer staying home!

Never had I ever
Thought I’d be afraid to grocery shop
Or enter another store—even step outdoors,
But the money I’m saving!

Never had I ever
Imagined I’d be yelled at
For walking down an aisle,
What are those floor arrows?

Never had I ever
Imagined ER treatment like a leper
Because of my postal code,
Isn’t that discrimination?

Never had I ever
Thought I’d be forced to don a mask
Other than on Halloween,
But it hides my wrinkles!

Never had I ever
Thought hugs and family gatherings
Would be forbidden,
The technological alternative does not cut it!

Never had I ever…
Thought the world would change as it has.
Never had I imagined a virus would—or could—
Shut down the world.
Oh, 2020, what have you done?
The year isn’t half over and
The news is too grim to watch
And Nova Scotia mourns and mourns…
Covid-19 deaths of too many elderly,
Canada’s worst mass shooting of twenty-three,
Six dead in a military helicopter crash.
On our porches we left boots for Dylan
And lights to guide him home,
A wee bit of hope that soon died.

So many “never-had-I-evers”…

Alas, the world has changed
And not for the better,
But when our “normal” returns
Perhaps people
Will change to better the world.
We can only hope and pray.
But I have my doubts.

***

The Spot Writers—Our Members:

Val Muller: http://www.valmuller.com/blog/

Catherine A. MacKenzie: https://writingwicket.wordpress.com/wicker-chitter/

Phil Yeats: https://alankemisterauthor.wordpress.com

Chiara De Giorgi: https://chiaradegiorgi.blogspot.ca/

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Happy Mother’s Day

Sharing the poem I wrote today for my ever-missed mother, titled “A Poem for My Mother.”

Mom recent

I tried to grasp that shooting star,

The one I eyed from afar,

The largest one,

Greater than the sun.

 

I missed and reached for another,

A beautiful one like my mother,

A lovely luminous flame,

A true lady, a delightful dame.

 

But that’s pretend, a magical lie,

For who can reach that high

Let alone snatch a star from night

To selfishly rob Heaven of light.

 

And I’d not want to spoil the sight

By taking the loveliest light

Or remove it from its rightful place

And leave a senseless space.

 

But this special day is for my mother,

There can be no other,

And if I could, I’d borrow her star,

Whisk her away in a red sports car.

 

I’d share my every thought,

All that which past years wrought,

Everything the sun and moon kissed

Over the last four years she’s missed.

 

I have many such lights above,

All of whom I dearly love,

Father, grandparents, cousins, son,

I pray for them when day is done.

 

Oh, how I wish dreams came true,

That life didn’t sometimes morph to blue,

That death could be forever flowers

Flourishing ‘neath soothing showers.

 

Mom

 

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The Spot Writers – “Carpe Diem” by Val Muller

Welcome to the Spot Writers. This month’s prompt is “never have/had I ever.” Today’s writing comes to us from Val Muller, author of the Corgi Capers kidlit mystery series. Find out more at www.corgicapers.com.

The dandelion, pictured below, served as inspiration for this poem.

“Carpe Diem” by Val Muller

 

Val flower pic

Never had I ever thought

I’d wait for bread in line

Or that a Meatless Monday

Would happen in my time.

 

Never had I ever thought

I’d stare at empty shelves,

Or panic when I coughed a bit

Or gasped for breath if I yelled.

 

Never had I ever thought

I’d live to see the day

When the 1918 pandemic

Came back again this way.

 

Never had I ever thought

The schools would shut their doors,

That I’d wash my hands ‘til raw

After a dangerous visit to a store.

 

Never had I ever thought

I’d be shuttered in my home,

To work from screen and keyboard

And to communicate—alone.

 

Never in my busy life

Had I ever banked on this:

That time, my short commodity,

Was now given as a gift.

 

Never had I ever seen

Dandelions graced by the rain

While tiptoeing through chilly dew:

It was like childhood again,

 

That timeless sense of wonder,

The lack of any rush,

To watch raindrops melt off flowers

In the early morning’s hush.

 

Never I, since growing up,

Felt wonder flow so free

As when this time afforded me to sit

While the trees whispered in the breeze,

Or when I watched a honey bee

Floating through the trees.

And while the world slows down a while

In fear of this disease,

And stresses about washing hands

And worrying when we sneeze,

We’re forced to wait—actionless—

While Fates do what they please:

The beauty’s there for those who’ll see,

Who can take the day—and seize!

***

The Spot Writers—Our Members:

Val Muller: http://www.valmuller.com/blog/

Catherine A. MacKenzie: https://writingwicket.wordpress.com/wicker-chitter/

Phil Yeats: https://alankemisterauthor.wordpress.com

Chiara De Giorgi: https://chiaradegiorgi.blogspot.com/

+++
C.A. MacKenzie is the author of (among other books) the novel WOLVES DON’T KNOCK, a psychological drama/thriller, available from the author or at various retailers including Amazon [https://www.amazon.com/Wolves-Dont-Knock-C-MacKenzie/dp/1927529387/].

 

 

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Happy Fortieth, Matthew

deer candle

Dear Matt,

I think of you today

As I do every day,

Days like these

With special memories

Are harder to bear.

 

I like to think you’re high

Above, looking down

Upon us,

Living life through us,

Not completely dead.

 

I’d visit you if I could,

We all would,

We’d throw cares to the wind,

To hell with social-distancing,

And have a happy party.

 

We’d bring you a cake

Lit with 40 candles,

We’d help you snuff out

The flickering flames,

Make wondrous wishes.

 

We’d cut the cake,

Plate the biggest piece for you,

The corner with the most icing,

And watch you enjoy

Sweet decadence.

 

We wish we could

Erase the past,

Turn the clock to better times,

The world’s gone crazier…

And crazier…

 

But we’ll cherish memories

Water cannot douse

Nor wind could blast away,

We’ll keep you in our hearts,

Shed private tears.

 

Happy fortieth, Matthew,

Happy birthday!

I lit a candle for you today

And blew out the flame,

Omitting useless wishes.

Matt nine years old 001 (2)Matt from C FB

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The Smell of Death

I must be feeling morbid today as I work on compiling poems into book form, poems I’ve written over the years. Here is one that grabbed me a moment ago. (Soon to be found in a book called “ONCE LAUGHTER.”)

THE SMELL OF DEATH

It’s the taste of death we smell
when someone is aged and nearly gone,
the scent that lingers about them,
wafting to and fro,
an odour so atrocious we plug our noses lest we suffocate,
and we don’t breathe again until we’ve left the room.

You can’t mistake it—
that smell—
it can’t be hidden,
it’s distinctive
and everyone recognizes it,
most everyone’s smelt it.

It’s the stench of old people—
everyone knows that—
it’s a horrid smell.

But is it truly the smell?
Or is it the import—
the nearness, the significance,
the idea it might be contagious, that the smell could emanate from you sooner than you expect, sooner than you want—that Death could come calling for you?

They say once you breathe death you never forget it.

It’s a smell that lingers forever.

+++

C.A. MacKenzie is the author of (among other books) the novel WOLVES DON’T KNOCK, a psychological drama/thriller, available from the author or at various retailers including Amazon [https://www.amazon.com/Wolves-Dont-Knock-C-MacKenzie/dp/1927529387/].

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Dear Matt

(Yesterday’s sad event)

 

Dear Matt,

 

We stand before you, burying you again:

Seventeen months after your death,

One day ahead of the first anniversary of your burial,

And tears are as fresh today as then.

 

I’m not in denial—none of us are,

We know you’re gone,

But like a broken record

So many unanswered questions abound.

 

I’m elated to be with your siblings this weekend,

We’re celebrating in style—not!

That’s only an expression

That came to my inebriated mind.

 

Perhaps we’re in reflection mode,

Enjoying each other as we did

When you were with us,

And, oh, how I wish you were here.

 

Perhaps we think of other things:

Sadness, happiness—who knows.

I’m not privy to others’ minds.

I only know mine.

 

We all grieve differently.

Everyone misses you.

Everyone sheds tears

In their own way.

 

We brought Bud Light with us,

We pray, we speak, we remember.

We won’t forget you.

We never will. I never will.

 

I miss you so much, my son,

My middle child,

My only planned child,

Ironically, the only child I didn’t want.

 

A contradiction, for sure (there’s a story there!),

But all turned out okay in the end:

Your birth, your life.

All was okay until I couldn’t save you.

 

I tried.

I tried so hard. With all my might.

I’d do the same for your siblings,

But I’m not God.

 

This world isn’t all about me;

I know that.

I’m just a peon in the universe,

Feeling bereft without one of my children.

 

Existing with a horrid hole,

Quashing aches within my soul,

Searching for a missing puzzle piece

Lost forever.

 

With every breath I miss you,

I shout to the Heavens,

I shriek to God,

How can this be?

 

I want to say, “Rest in peace, my son,”

But that’s such a cliché,

And who knows, really, what you’re doing

Or where you are.

 

No one knows.

No one knows.

Me?

I just want the impossible.

 

RIP, my son.

Rest in peace.

Matt Headstone Kenzieville

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It Only Takes One

Check out the March issue of  Open Heart Forgery, a free local publication in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I’ve had several poems published in this pamphlet of a magazine. It’s actually not hard; if there’s room and one’s poem is reasonably okay, it’ll be published. (At least, that’s my understanding.) Poems must be a maximum of 28  lines long and a max of 43 letters wide. Only one submission per author per month and a max of four poems per year. One must be a resident of HRM (Halifax Regional Municipality).

Here is my poem, “It Only Takes One”:

The night is hollow and cold,
and I’m alone in blackness;
I’ve never liked the dark,
don’t like what I can’t see.

Stars are funny creatures,
resting and hiding by day;
They emerge at night to party,
when their florid faces glow.

They glare at us, those stars,
spying upon us in the quiet;
And we stare back at them,
seeking fruitless fantasies.

I’ve never liked the dark,
Don’t like what I can’t see;
I beg I beg upon one star,
Please let my wish come true.

New post on Open Heart Forgery

March 2018

by ohforgery

cropped-ohflogo2r.jpg

View Issue vol. 9, no. 2
ISSN 2369-6516 (Print)
ISSN 2369-6524 (Online)

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