Friday, December 31, 2010


Happy New Year to All!

The poem (underneath the graphic) is in response to
* Thursday Poets Rally Week 36 *

                  )     *      (
        )        (                   (
       (          )     (             )
        )    *           )        )  (
       (                (        (      *
        )          H     )        )
                  [ ]            (
           (  *   |-|       *     )    (
     *      )     |_|        .          )
           (      | |    .  
     )           /   \     .    ' .        *
    (           |_____|  '  .    .  
     )          | ___ |  \~~~/  ' .   (
            *   | \ / |   \_/  \~~~/   )
                | _Y_ |    |    \_/   (
    *           |-----|  __|__   |      *
                `-----`        __|__

  __,  ,__)            __,  ,__)       __, ,__)
 (--|__| _ ,_ ,_      (--|\ | _       (--\ | _  _ ,_
   _|  |(_||_)|_)(_|    _| \|(/_(_|_)     \|(/_(_||
  (        |  |  ,_|   (                (__|


Ovillejo for 2011

What rhymes with eleven?
Seven?**  Andre Previn?***
That’s not a lot, I fear.
            Don’t jeer,
since I will volunteer
my wish that eleven
brings good stuff as I pen
            these words: Happy New Year!


A couple of notes:

*Heaven – a place you hope you’ll end up if you were good.
**Andre Previn – famous composer, pianist and conductor, married a bunch of times to different women, including Mia Farrow.
 ***Seven – a number after six but before 8, unless you count in Base 6, in which case, the number is – yep, you guessed it, eleven!  Is that cool or what?
****Chevin – a sans-serif font as well as a Star Wars creature.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Aunty Emma's Bad Blueberry Buckle

This looks really yummy, doesn't it? 
All blueberry-ish and sweet and crumbly.  When it's done right, it's mmm, mmm delish!  However, in the wrong hands...
Which brings me to the reason for this post.  Three Word Wednesday gave these three words as today's prompts:

Buckle, Evade, Wedge

Evasive maneuvers?  A chasm or wedge in a relationship?  All good starting points, eh?  But what to do with the buckle?  Belt?  Shoe?  Fashion statement?  Hmmmmmmm...

And that's when I realized this all could be about food.  (Of course.) 

Here's my unhealthy take on the prompt:

Aunty Emma’s Blueberry Buckle

Aunty Emma’s Blueberry Buckle
is the most horrible one in the universe.
Just one small wedge and we all cry,
“Please!  Get a doctor or a nurse!

(Or hearse!”)

I can’t guess what she puts in it
since cobblers, buckles and pies
are simple enough to make and so,
there’s usually no surprise.

(Not wise.)

Regarding Aunty Emma’s stuff:
Is it the berries or the dough?
Or is there something else in it?
Ooooh - ominous, I know.


there is one point and it's perfectly clear:
this food can’t be enjoyed.
So here’s the warning I must share,
“Evade!  Escape!  Avoid!"    


This pastry will make you sick as a dog,
and this I promise you.
Ergo, do not eat Aunty Emma’s
berry buckle blue.

(And just for the record, I don't have an Aunty Emma.  I just make stuff up, sometimes.)

Monday, December 27, 2010

My Appropos List

Big Tent Poetry
posts a prompt on Monday each week.  For this week, the prompt is to write a list poem.


If you read my last post, you probably noticed that my last poem had something to do with telephonics, as it applied to my kidlets.  In keeping with this theme, kinda sorta - and because my iPhone was sitting right on my desk in front of me (and I am essentially a lazy person) - I decided 'to poem' about it.  Here goes:


It comes with some presets
like iTunes and Clocks
and YouTube and AppStore,
Notes, Weather and Stocks.

Photos and Camera,
Safari and Mail
and Phone and that Calc thing
on page 1 prevail.

But guess what I added
to help me live better,
to organize, game-play
and be a go-getter?

HuffPost and YNAB,
Air Hockey, CraigsPro,
Facebook and Drum Kit
and Hello Vino,

Fruit Ninja, Kindle
and Yatzee and Nook,
Labyrinth, Koi Pond,
iZen Life, iBook,

Dogs Playing Poker,
iNeko, Flash Ready,
Old Booth and – wow! - NASA.
I feel a bit heady.

I’ve got mSecure
and there’s Flixster, More Toast!
and Louvre and Today Show
and movies like Ghost,

Poetry, PeeWee,
Shakespeare, reQall,
MLB dot com
and SketchMee, Skee Ball,

Big Oven, Weird Laws
and yes - Pocket Zoo,
Cooking Asst.,
xFractal, Yahoo!,

Talking Tom, Tongue Twisters
and JotNotPro,
Key Ring and Diptic
and also SpawnGlow,

iBroadway and iChing
and iTarot, too.
NY Times, TV Guide,
CNET Review,

TextPics, ConvertBot
and AAA TripTik,
Paper Toss, Tic Tac Free,
Solitaire, Music,

Pocket Informant,
Doodle Bowl, Glee,
Driver, Dictation
and Van Gogh HD.

I’ve got a few more apps
you might find in Wired,
‘cause clever designers
get truly inspired.
My iPhone? I give props,
with much flattery,
but all of these apps suck down
my battery.

So now I must charge up
my iPhone once more.
But while that goes on,
I’ll check out the App Store

to see what is New/Hot
and what is well, cool.
Just when you think ‘that’s it’
they get a new tool

or game or utility.
Conspicuous consumption
is the latest rage now,
a basic assumption.

So here’s to my smart phone,
which I love to employ.
‘Til something fresh comes out,
it’s my new favorite toy.


Sunday, December 26, 2010


Writer's Island's prompt was 'Celebrate'.  My poem was inspired by my 'tween twins and their latest electronic acquisition...

For Christmas this year
(oh, what were we thinking?)
we gave our kids cell phones.
My poor ♥ - it’s sinking.

So, txt, g@mes and ♫♪♫♪
they’ll articulate.
Perhaps we should now say,
“Come, let’s cellebrate!’

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Et Voilà!

Sunday Scribblings prompt was 'manifesto' - Delicioso!

Pesto Manifesto

First, you take some nuts of pine.
Second, you must then combine
garlic (minced) and basil, please.
Add some Parmesano cheese.
Splash a dash of lemon juice.
Finally, you introduce
olive oil (extra-virgin.)
Get the best: it’s worth the splurgin’.
Mix ingredients.  Say, “Presto!”
Et voilà, you just made pesto.

Monday, December 20, 2010

O December!

Sunday Scribblings has a prompt up and that prompt is (ta-da!) December.  My response to this is to write a play on a venerable old Christmas song.  Ready?  Here goes...

Oh December! (sung to the tune of Jingle Bells)

Dashing through the snow,
with ice down in my boots.
Jack Frost and Sir Chilblains
are really in cahoots.
The wind is howling so
my hat has blown away.
I feel as if the weather gods
have put me in squeeze play.


(Chorus #1)

O winter’s hell
and I’d rebel
if I could manage it.
The sleet may come
to make me numb.
December, I’m unfit

to deal with chill.
I’m sounding shrill
but what can you expect?
My spirit’s lame
it’s such a shame.
My halls aren’t even decked.


I went out to the mall
which was a crowded mess.
The things I thought I’d buy –
Sold Out!  (but I digress…)
I tried to order gifts
from online stores but they
won’t even start to ship them out
‘til after New Year’s Day!

(Chorus #2)

O shopping sucks
and costs big bucks
for what you really get.
They’re outta stock
and I’m in hock
but I’m not finished yet!

O Jingle Bells
I’m on eggshells
but still I’ll find some cheer.
I’m grateful since
December (wince!)
comes only once a year!

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A Mooooving Story


I found an interesting site thanks to Sharp Little Pencil, called Three Word Wednesday.  Each week, they post three words and the challenge is to write a poem using those words in some manner.  This past week, the words were Dabble, Lean and Utter.  There were many thoughtful, well-written poems created from this prompt (which are linked to the site, if you want to check 'em out - and I highly encourage it.) 


...of course, since my mind works in a strange, wordplay kind of way, well...this is what I got:

Utter Bull

Dabble? He lean and hungry dude
but haz no utters dat protrude.
Dat iz becuz he ain’t no cow,
so Mutter Nature can’t endow.

And on that note, guess I'll be moooooving along.  Cheers!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pear Trees

The Wednesday prompt over at Poetic Asides was to write a poem having to do with a receipt of some kind.  Here's my take (well, one of them actually) that has a sort of Christmas spin.  And apologies to whomever may have actually written the song The Twelve Days of Christmas, since authorship is not really known, despite the fact, per Wikipedia, that "The copyright to this arrangement was registered in 1909 and is still active by its owners, Novello & Co. Limited."

  (Graphics courtesy of NorCal  blogs)

Pear Trees and Such – A Christmas Shopping Tale

I looked at the printed slip I was handed,
and wondered, how from two things, it expanded
to twelve categories, I didn’t recall
buying at Costco.  Oh no, not at all.

What in the heck do I do with a tree
and a partridge who sits there, just gawking at me?
And…no! There’s three hens who are labeled, ‘FROM FRANCE.’
My weary cashier then throws me a glance.

“Move off from the line.  More people await
me scanning their stuff.  If you want to debate
an error which lurks somewhere in your bill,
see Customer Service right there, if you will.”

I nod and I move away from the queue,
And I glance in my cart - at some turtle doves.  TWO!
And four calling birds?!  This is such a mess.
How they landed in my cart is anyone’s guess.

I wouldn’t have minded a trinket or such,
but pricey new jewelry?  That’s really too much.
How do I explain these additional things
to my husband. He’ll yell at me, “FIVE golden rings??!!!”

“But it wasn’t my fault!”  I will try to explain.
Then, my husband will tell me, “You are quite insane.
No way are we keeping this odd merchandise.
Not even if it was a good price.”

But back in the store…

While I gave some thought to this baffling question,
my cart began rocking in a crazy jam session!
Six geese were a-honking.  The swans did ‘the swim.’
Eight maids brought out cow juice – both whole and some skim.

Nine ladies were dancing, I think a quadrille,
and kept up their toe taps. That is, right until
ten lords started leaping.  I thought – RiverDance!
Then Partridge joined in with those three hens from France.

Six customers ran straight on to my cart
to see the commotion, right in Costco mart.
Most thought it très cool, ‘though one guy was griping,
‘til eleven pipers popped up and started their piping.

“Oh, bless my soul,” the cranky man said.
“I once was a piper, but now I’m, instead,
an accountant.  It pays more that tooting a horn.
But I should have stuck with it, or so I’d have sworn.”

The pipers and milkmaids agreed, one and all,
he should try it again – ‘cause it was such a ball.
This party’s for FUN.  And then, WHOOSH!  Something more...
twelve jazzy-jazz drummers appeared in the store.

Christmas songs were soaring straight up to each rafter
with pipes, drums and honks, amid cheers and much laughter.
And I – I decided to stick my receipt
right into my wallet, preserved nice and neat

in order to reconcile my cash account later,
but right at this minute?  ‘Twas music the-ater!
Then…just when this joint was beginning to hop
with birds, trees and rings – it all came to a … STOP.


I looked all around me.  The scene had – poof! – vanished
as if some mean king-dude had said, “Y’all are banished!”
No piper or leaper or dancer or hen
was fete-ing in Costco.  So scary!  But when

I pulled out my paper, from inside my bag,
and scanned it and searched it, I wanted to gag.
Instead of those weird things, it looked like it oughta –
just listing some gift wrap and a case of spring water.

As if none of this happened, the twelve things were now gone.
No partridge was gawking at me, and thereon,
I wondered – O Christmas - where did it all go?
‘Then, my cashier winked at me and said, “Ho!  Ho!  Ho!”

Friday, December 10, 2010

Big Tent Prompt

The Fruit Company Glee Club

Gala & Fuji crooned, “An apple a day…”
The orange trilled a juicy refrain.
Raspberries sang a tuneful buffet:
in the Chorus of the Garden’s Food Chain.
The orange trilled a juicy refrain.
Red grape harmonized with white
in the Chorus of the Garden’s Food Chain -
this was a ripe sound bite.

Red grape harmonized with white.   
Star Fruit played the diva coloratura.
This was a ripe sound bite,
a fruit smoothie full of bravura.

Star Fruit played the diva coloratura,
while raspberries sang a tuneful buffet.
It was a fruit smoothie, full of bravura,
as Gala & Fuji crooned, “An apple a day…”

(Inspired from the pages of Referential Magazine – there was a poem under May 2010’s listing called The Significance of Singing Fruit by Foster Cameron Hunter- for some reason, I really liked the title and wrote this poem based on it.)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Rock on, Rondeau!

I just got some really great news: 

The results of the Poetic Asides' Rondeau Forms Challenge were just announced - and my poem, At the Fortuneteller's Tent made the list of Top Ten Winners!

Congratulations to Brian Slusher for taking First Place with his poem, Goodbye.  Also, congratulations to the other top ten winners - and to everyone else who took part in the challenge.

Finally - thank you (big time!), Robert Lee Brewer!

At the Fortune Teller’s Tent

“Your story’s told.  The cards?  They speak.
I hope my meaning’s not oblique,”
the fortune-teller said to me,
“but life is such a potpourri.”
I sighed, with just a bit of pique.

“You’ll meet someone with strong mystique
who seems quite nice but very sleek.
Your openness will be the key.
Your story’s told.”

Prognostication?  Not unique.
“You’re much too vague,” was my critique.
But she insisted, “I foresee
that this is what shall be.  Shall be.
It doesn’t matter what you seek.
Your story’s told.”


Thursday, November 25, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I just learned a new word today, courtesy of Changing  It's 'acutezza' and it means the use of wit or wordplay.  I think it just might be my new favorite word!

There's a whole lot of very cool figures of speech on that page, actually.  

Like, f'r instance, 'Dogberryism' (which sounds very Dilbert-ish, doesn't it?  It means the same thing as malapropism, which means replacing a word with one that sounds similar, but is generally just wrong!)

I also found 'aureation' (the use of fancy words) and 'glossolalia' (fabricated, meaningless speech) which are just wonderful, dontcha think?!

Well, that's it, everyone, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!

(How's that for a bit of 'paraprosdokia' with regard to today's post???)

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Tight Little Tangled Bundle of Yarn

Okay - I admit it.  I'm hooked.


As a poet of (primarily) light verse, this is one awesome poetic form because it really does lend itself mightily to the genre.  And it's fun!

I first heard about it from Bruce Niedt who posted about it at Poetic Asides.

According to Tilt-A-Whirl, a terrific literary ezine (which has published work by both Bruce and Sara Gwen, another amazing poet who posts at Poetic Asides) the form was made popular by Rhina P. Espaillat.

Wikipedia says that the first known use of the form was by Cervantes.

According to a number of sources... 

"The "ovillejo," an old Spanish verse form that means "tight little bundle." "-ejo" is one of our blessed diminutives, and "ovillo" means "tangled ball of yarn." The last line is a "redondilla," a "little round" that collects all three of the short lines. The rhyme scheme is established, but the meter is at the poet's discretion, although in Spanish the longer lines tend to be octosyllabic. ( octosyllabic: A line of verse containing eight syllables)"

Got that?

Meaning, in ten short lines, (the way I understand it), you have 6 syllables each for lines 1,3,5,7,8,9 and 10.  Lines 2,4 and 6 each get 2 syllables.  The rhyme scheme is:


Here's an example (based on what I've written for the Poetic Asides' prompt for today, which is all about taking a stand) 


I believe in Santa!
     Can’t a
grown-up (not precisely)
get a wish fulfilled by
     the guy
whose nine reindeer can fly?
Please come down my chimney
for gingerbread and tea.
     Dear Claus, I’m standing by!

(And of course, you know I do still believe in that jolly old dude in the red suit!)

Anyway, that's about it for today.  Thanks for dropping by!  See you soon.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

I'm Baaaack!

(Actually, I was never really away.  Well, sort of.)
In any event, I think it's high time I started posted here again, and so here I am!  Ta da!

Now then. (Is that an oxymoron?)

I have quite a bit of poetry recently penned which has been posted over at Poetic Asides, Robert Lee Brewer's awesome poetry site.  There's a lot of great poets that post there, so it's definitely worth a looksee, especially as the Poem A Day (PAD) Chapbook Challenge is currently going on as we speak (so to speak.) If you're looking for poetry prompts, it ought to get the creative juices flowin'.  I'm writing just about all my poems for this challenge in Villejo form, which is a lot of fun, since it lends itself quite well to (what else??!!) light verse!

More on the Villejo tomorrow.

In case you might be wondering, I'm not doing NaNoWriMo, although I think it's a superb project.  Why am I not doing it?  Because several years ago, I did do it and discovered something relevant about my prose writing: see, by the end of November, the idea is (with internal editor turned off) to write 50,000 words.  By Day 17, I had written 65,000 words and realized that coming up with words wasn't my problem - but, editing them back down was!

Which is why I generally write in short-ish poetic form, and because I like wordplay, I write frequently in rhyme (although I'm hell on metrics at times.)  It forces me to be concise - to say what I have to say with an economy of words.


But...if you're talkin' short fiction, that's another story.  Micro fiction is really cool, fun to write and much harder to do really well than you might think.  If you're looking for prompts for this, then you gotta check out Flashy Fiction.  And yep - I am still the Monday Flashy Lady.

Okay...that's it for now.