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    2013 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 25

    Categories: November PAD Chapbook Challenge 2013, Poetry Prompts, Robert Lee Brewer's Poetic Asides Blog, What's New.

    I have a confession to make: I’m in Ohio right now with limited access to the Internet. As such, I’m not able to share each day’s prompt on social media sites like I usually do. Soooo… I’m asking a favor: Could you share today’s prompt (and the rest of the prompts this month) on your social media profiles (if you have one)? It would really help keep others engaged and motivated. Thanks in advance!

    For today’s prompt, take a poem from earlier in the challenge (that you’ve written) and remix it. You could take a free verse poem and re-work it into a villanelle or shadorma. You could re-work multiple poems into a new one. You could take a line from one of the poems and write a response poem to it. Or you can take it in an entirely different direction.

    Also, before I get to my example, I’d like to share that I’m currently running a remix challenge for poems in my debut collection, Solving the World’s Problems (click here to read about the challenge). It’s free to enter, and the winner will receive a $500 prize. Be sure to check it out.

    Here’s my attempt at a Remix Poem:


    I left just before they started
    running. I watched them watch. Sometimes
    intent trumps technology. He

    beat a woman with a hammer.
    Take it like a man. I’ve felt death
    at my elbow. I remember

    your hands, your words. Every time,
    a gun is fired. In every
    large city and small town, there is

    so much beauty it hurts to look
    too close. Children play, their parents
    talk, and databases collect

    us all. You didn’t know me, but
    I heard shots and wondered before
    leaving, and I’ll never return.


    Learn the Fundamentals of Poetry. Click to learn more.


    Robert Lee Brewer

    Robert Lee Brewer

    Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and took the remix approach of lifting lines from multiple poems he wrote during the first 24 days of the challenge. Not every poem had something to offer, but it was a fun exercise. Robert is the author of Solving the World’s Problems and married to the poet Tammy Foster Brewer, who helped show him new ways to attack the process of revision. He can be followed on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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    About Robert Lee Brewer

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    119 Responses to 2013 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 25

    1. JRSimmang says:


      Though I, on the surface,
      remain a still glass,
      you are able to see
      the tumultuous waves
      and spinning cyclone.
      So, while you say I am
      you can see that
      I breed volatility.

      -JR Simmang

    2. Yolee says:

      Phrases From November’s Poems

      The day packs her harvest, and Maria
      picks up the old oval mirror.
      Silence, and dust gauze over her
      reflection. Memories blow inside
      the opened window of her heart.
      Rain tinkles in the cup her mom
      drank from a year ago when Maria
      brought water to her dry lips.

      The end came unexpectedly
      like a mystery from a floating
      plan. Darkness stretches across
      the length of the wood floor like
      it is warming up to exercise
      on Maria’s survival. The soup can,
      filled with sharpened #2 pencils
      is the only object in the room
      lit by the almond extract
      of emerging moonlight.

      Mom was a gorgeous summer
      stuck to the bone of warm days.
      But her body and soul had to
      part. That which does not,
      is testing things Maria needs
      to say. Her mind is a nightstand
      where flat opened onion pages
      have check marks in self-help

      Mom was her favorite lullaby
      who transcended words, and opened
      a portal to a new knowing.

      She’s Maria’s home sickness,
      coming and cooking- now her mom
      is a flyer among autumn leaves.

      Thin ice cozies up to the window.
      A chill wrestles under her Old Navy
      sweatshirt. Life assigns, and Maria
      must tackle home work.

      A rustling wind taps the pane
      as if it to remind Maria
      that the invisible
      is present none-the-less.

      Nothing prepares a person
      to live with a time of death.
      Maria stares at the strange
      face through the thin veil
      of dust. She feels divided
      like an orphan leaning
      on a big sheet of glass
      vividly exposing something
      warm on the other side.

      November’s license will soon expire.
      Winter will soak in this room.
      Maria rolls out of bed, and leaves
      the mirror on top of her mom’s
      orange comforter with pale white
      roses. Her heart is on the hook;
      the doorbell has been crying out.

    3. BezBawni says:

      of Earth and Plant

      Your skin is rough against my touch.
      New life will still fight its way through
      and offer tender malachite stalks
      to lacing whips of raging sky.

      New life will elbow its way through:
      you raise it well, you turn your back
      to lacing lips of raging sky,
      drink up the pain. New life is strong.

      You raise it well, you stretch your back
      towards the sun until it’s down.
      Drink up the rain – new life is strong.
      The water seeps into the air

      towards the moon until it’s down;
      you welcome flames of rising fire,
      the water dies into the air -
      alive again on waking leaves.

      ~(Pantoum remix of “Elemental song”: http://keinerschertsich.blogspot.ru/2013/11/november-pad-chapbook-challenge-17.html)~

    4. seingraham says:

      Using lines from my own November challenge poems (1st line from Nov.1st, 2nd line from Nov.2nd, 3rd line from Nov. 3rd and so on) – I’ve loosely followed the instructions to create a cross between a Dadaist poem and one that would meet with the prerequisites of one of Bernadette Mayer’s experiments (in this case, limiting the number of words in a line to no more than 5 words) It’s an interesting exercise and one I’ve done before but never using my own words…(strictly speaking, the Dada should use printed matter like a newspaper..The links are so others can see how these forms work if interested…thanks to Al Filreis and ModPo/Coursera at University of Pennsylvania for the information and knowledge!


      Then Back Out They Go

      Everyone commented
      words overly harsh
      too drunk to…
      I wonder

      Ah, here come the rest
      that much prettier
      the trees

      It’s not that we
      finally made it,
      leaving a
      baby with croup

      He gets asked
      now and then
      and wonders
      at the size

      The most banal
      thoughts, like pigs
      in a blanket

      If you can imagine
      not well lets me
      easily check
      leads me
      to New York

      And if, snake-like tongues
      my main secret
      is the buried cities…
      I stare at shades
      of shattered stars

      My life is warmed
      like babies in sleepers
      for what feels like hours
      and melted like snow
      It shimmers over dusk
      like warmed oak

    5. Jezzie says:

      Ladies who Lunch (remix)

      We Ladies who Lunch have a good natter
      (when you live alone there’s not much chatter).
      We talk on every subject matter
      over our pub’s cut-price lunchtime platter.

      We girls love to come here once in a while,
      we do not drink much, but we dine in style.
      Our waitress greets us with a cheery smile,
      and when we leave we make it worth her while.

    6. The House Remixed (twice)
      from ekphrastic poem day 11


      I dream of a house
      on a cliff above the sea,
      forest at its back
      and green grass all around it.
      I dream it waits for me there.

      (My own invention: 3 lines, 3 rhymes, 8 syllables per line.)

      The house above the sea is old.
      Its big windows gaze from the cliff
      and the forest rises behind.

      I wonder has the house been told
      that I’m the one it waits for; if
      it knows that it is mine to find?

      I dreamed of it always: the gold
      sunlight, the breeze a little stiff,
      the sea shining … time out of mind.

    7. Cin5456 says:

      In Medias Res Revisited

      labored all day long.
      Worked harder,
      less, and I’ve nothing to show
      why I was busy.

    8. Months After Morning

      (Remixing “Milling for Morning”)

      It was a mistake to meet that boy
      in Badger. A girl always knows
      when something is going to go wrong
      when she can’t meet her own eye
      her momma’s mirror.

      I spent hours in front of
      fingerprinted silver, tracing
      my neckline, marveling over
      the pearls at the hollow
      of my throat, and steadfastly
      ignoring my own gaze,

      unwilling to be hooked
      like a fish by the knowledge
      I’d see there. The boy by
      the windmill is not my
      husband. But that’s my
      mistake to overlook.

      Still I never bargained for
      a soft stomach and the
      way panic replaced the pearls
      when I discovered a roll
      on hard ground meant that
      sometime soon I’d have to
      look my husband in the eye
      when I told him the truth.

    9. bethwk says:

      No angels
      on ladders this time.
      Only this:
      One old man
      wrestling me in the darkness,
      telling me my name.

    10. Well, this one was a challenge for me….but I came up with something that I could post—so here it is….My remix was of my 11-20-13 Free Verse titled “Always in Demand” which I turned into a Clerihew poem titled “A Purpose in Time” . posted on my blog at : http://leonaslines.com/2013/11/25/a-purpose-in-time/

    11. Julieann says:

      If I Only Used My Brain

      For my remix I used the line from the 11/18 “Forget what I said earlier poem” —
      “But stupidity seems to be the only truthful reason”

      Stupidity seems to be the reason
      For the things I do and say
      Acting without thinking
      Causes problems all along the way

      If I hadn’t taken my sister’s bike
      Without my parents’ permission
      Maybe I’d have had time for swimming
      Rather than the sin of commission

      Throwing the ball through the window
      Created quite a thrill
      Until I had to use my allowance
      To pay back the repair bill

      That left over ham begged for me
      To take a bite, and bite, and bite
      But when Mom when to heat it for supper
      There wasn’t enough left to be right

      The list could go on and on
      Including many words I’ve said
      It seems I do not do well at repentance
      And where I go, I don’t seem to lightly tread

      Truthfully, it really isn’t stupidity
      Or even a lack of brains
      I just never seem to use them
      Before I am the root of others’ pains

    12. randinha says:

      A remix of “Mappa Mundi” from November 19.


      I set out to find my heart
      on the mappa mundi.

      The sheen of the gilding
      was so sharp,

      the black lettering
      so blotted,

      I could only wander
      the world over, wondering

      if this or that sheen
      or this or that blot

      or this or that missing piece
      was mine.

    13. Clae says:


      Cremated by its own desire, another moth
      Tried to eclipse the spark
      Found it could not last
      Another reminder that what I long to touch
      Could torch me into dark
      Smoldering ash

    14. reworking of first prompt 24 poem formerly called ‘segregation’.

      -to keep from falling asleep-

      I picture my father
      lighting a cigarette
      in the baby dark
      of his bodily
      while sitting
      on a motorcycle
      not yet surrounded
      by snow

      I listen for my mother
      telling tales
      of white owls
      in outhouse
      and of the hole
      with a bottom

      I admire
      the dollhouse
      brushing its hair
      in the lopsided
      of my brother’s

      and I plan
      to make a stick
      from no more
      than eye-

    15. bjzeimer says:

      Remix from the poem I posted on Nov. 1.


      She appeared that Sunday
      morning as I waited
      in the lounge for her to be born.
      With her Aunt Brittney
      as Mommy Chelsi’s side,
      I waited in the lounge, whiling
      away the minutes
      on Facebook, scrolling,
      scrolling down,
      looking at the pictures—
      Baby Alaziah on facebook!
      her sweet baby face wide-eyed
      and sucking her tiny thumb
      lying on her mommy’s chest,
      Brittney in the background
      all that love and joy—
      pure innocence radiating
      from Facebook’s News feed!

    16. My life has changed
      I feel so blind
      Nothing is there
      nothing remains
      Notion dismissed,
      the feeling nags
      The day moves on
      thick London fog
      It hits at once
      I cannot see

      **Remixed from the poem I posted on November 1st.

    17. LeAnneM says:


      Seen pushing a cart of groceries
      Full, it was noted, “according to the American tradition”

      Snowden, hollow-eyed,
      Snapped on a tour of the city
      The Cathedral of Christ the Savior in the distance

      They report that
      He’s reading Dostoevsky and studying Russian
      That he’s followed everywhere by security

      Compared more than once to Philby
      Can he imagine a lifetime of this?

    18. MichelleMcEwen says:

      I remixed this poem “I Will Take Anyone to Bed (Poetically Speaking of Course)” by Sara Littlecrow-Russell; it can be found here: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/239036

      Lit. Lust

      I have taken Etheridge Knight to bed
      on the same night I’d been with Langston
      I let Terrance Hayes rest on my breasts
      and he got lightheaded
      I’ve had a love jones for Leroi Jones
      and for nights couldn’t think of anyone else’s body
      of work— he was that good
      he almost ruined me
      I have bowed down to Komunyakaa’s
      and marked up Cornelius Eady
      in a twin bed in The Hill District

      I stayed up all night, once, swallowing Al Young
      I woke up the next morning speaking in tongues

      Oh, my literary lust is also interracial
      I fingered Ferlinghetti and Bukowski
      while Robert Lowell watched and waited his turn
      I tried Walt Whitman and Ezra Pound
      they did nothing for me
      However, Allen Ginsberg made me howl

      Tonight, I am having a threesome
      with Warsan Shire and Erica Dawson
      I’m a literary lesbian, too…

    19. Lori P says:

      The Other Day Dream
      –remix of “Other___” and “Sweet”

      when you close your eyes
      do you wake up in a different place
      claiming the wrongs and fears, empty
      faces blending together
      I suffer through this bundle
      shifting like sand
      to forget your yesterday’s
      purple and Oliver and freshness
      for today’s door chimes and promises
      empty people that haunt you
      friends and foe struggle to make sense of it all
      I have to wish your mind
      because it is my job

    20. bxpoetlover says:


      There Is The Right To Own.
      The Last Time I Was Here,
      sheet of ice.
      What is should not be,
      on detail.
      Hardship was in
      The Pen,
      The Other Day.
      Give me some sugar and
      A Walk At Sunset–
      The happiest day of my life.

      What is it made of?
      I Did Not Know.
      And This Morning,
      If You’re the Only One Digging It,
      Always choose wisely.

      Secret messages.
      My Ideogram Looks Like a Light Bulb
      because I Shouldn’t Have Been There
      After My Last Break Up.

      (This is what came out when I made a poem out of all my titles of the poems I’ve done this month).

    21. rosross says:

      Secret message (2)

      Dream in staggered haunting reveals the image set in place,
      repeats the message yet again, of something lost
      … but what, is never shown or part revealed, in shape,
      yet comes to taunt and teach, of memory now tossed.

      In time tied to forgetting and pain of ancient cost.
      remembering is tangled and broken through the nights,
      of something which has happened, left imprint on dark host;
      yet huddles in the hidden realms of shadowed fright.

      This loss is ever lingering and trailing through the years,
      reality diluted, devoid of rigid thought or form
      as something dark and awful, in shroud of unshed tears,
      to wrap my dreams eternal, in torn, tormented cause.

      • rosross says:

        Secret Message (1)

        The dream in staggered haunting
        reveals the image set,
        repeats the message yet again,
        of something lost … but what?

        It comes to taunt and teach me
        of memory now tossed;
        of time tied to forgetting
        a pain of ancient cost.

        Remembering is tangled
        and broken through the nights,
        of something which has happened,
        yet hides in shadowed fright.

        This loss is ever lingering,
        a trailing through the years
        of something dark and awful,
        in shroud of unshed tears.

        It’s lost, it has no presence
        in real words, or thought or form
        and yet it wraps my world of dreams
        in torn, tormented cause.

    22. De Jackson says:

      original poem, here: http://whimsygizmo.wordpress.com/2013/11/03/returning/


      Returning, again
      (an erasure poem)

      The moon
      turned                      and

      asked if I would wait.
                       No sky stretches out for

                 Naughty moon.     Here,

                               wily one,


                 ragged shore;
           like you,            sent back      to sea.


    23. Against Love

      He followed ideas
      for romance,
      wanting love.
      Efforts went unrewarded.
      Dames are not worth it.

      (See Love and Anti-love)

    24. Amy says:

      “It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.” -Aristotle


      There are facets to a moment;
      planes that split and pitch the light
      in endless spectral roads.

      I stood still with the light;
      let it break upon my face
      and the moment of ruin

      rolled off my cheeks as tears,
      just following their path.
      I thought it was for me to decide,

      what to make of listless instants,
      but they bent and twisted like
      dried up leaves in winter wind;

      so carelessly discarded into shadow.
      The light retreated from my face
      back to its prismatic origin

      at the end of the spectral road.
      No longer split, I pitched forward
      into a facet of the moment.


      Kisses I savor, peppermint
      flavored. Candy kisses so sweet
      the way love’s kisses were meant.
      Kisses I savor. Peppermint,
      whether by flavor or scent,
      her kisses make me complete.
      Kisses I savor, peppermint
      flavored. Candy kisses so sweet!

      Remix (triolet) of Peppermint Kisses -Nov. 10 – Something Sweet

    26. Margie Fuston says:

      (Written with pieces of poems from days: 8, 16, and 21.)


      She’s always searching
      for silhouettes,
      tracing the forms of men
      in the glow of her bedside lamp
      as if shadows hold secrets
      like lines in a palm.
      In the morning,
      when the light through open shades
      leaves no more illusions,
      she wonders:
      How does the shadow
      from half a man
      always look so deceptively whole?

    27. DanielAri says:

      “Eclipse during Saturn return”

      a black hole
      in a ruddy glow.
      The moon went incognito.
      The earth followed suit. We reeled below

      like drunken twentysomething werewolves in snow
      painted red-black by the passing penumbra. When clans
      of carnivores feel their brethren, they howl concertos,
      hunt and howl long Os in trenscendant, blood-bound harmonies.
      Sleek-furred, open-nostrilled, taut-muscled, Josho and I

      twined our vulpine, astronomical supplications
      for connective joy, for female companionship—
      we caterwauled our throats raw for women.
      When the frozen white lite returned,
      we panted our prayers so

      bless by earth-moon


    28. gl866 says:

      The Return, a somonka

      Last time I was here
      I said I’d never come back,
      yet when I walked in
      neither of us was surprised
      and your smug smirk spoke volumes.

      Last time you were here,
      you packed and left in a huff,
      so when you walked in
      looking sheepish and flustered,
      my relief spread to a smile.

    29. hohlwein says:

      I have fish
      the pond drew raccoons
      And my birds
      eat fish too
      I hung the birdhouse out front
      white cats wait below

    30. Day 25
      Prompt: Remix previous poem/poems from this challenge.

      (From my Day 7 poem
      Prompt: Write a hardship poem.)

      (my attempt at a Terza Rima)

      She hoped for a clean scan for her stepdad,
      tumor markers low,
      radiation to zap bad

      cells, but no.
      He saw his doc; she’s sad,
      report cut off air to her hope.

      Keep the chemo coming till his body’s sated,
      only to keep him alive.
      The cancer won’t be abated.

      The cancer, not the man, will thrive.
      His options truncated,
      she will pray and wait and watch him die.

    31. De Jackson says:

      For my remix, I decided (heaven help me) to braid a cento from the titles of all 44 previous poems for the month. Whew.

      Naming the Stars
      (a cento)

      I know a few things about ink
      and old salt. Always, and everything
      after the word
      changes things, yep. Wave,
      weave some magic, spell
      your name in the slant
      of sunlight on sea,
      the quiet whoosh of a window
      opening. Siren it
      into song.

      You think this is un
      -familiar territory?

      I have read my own rap
      sheet. I have felt these long
      always blank sheets between
      tired digits. I know
      how to fold a fitted sheet
         (plump the verbs, tuck the nouns).
      I have seen the news
               (this, just in)
      and sometimes some of it
      is good.

      I have explored
      the other side of Franklin Street,
      the other name you gave me
      the conjugation of constellations
      and the teachable imposture of always
      even when it falls, far off,
      the sound of foghorns
      on deaf ears.

      I have stayed
      in Cordelia’s Cottage
      for wayward sea maidens, stretched fin
      and fingers far and wide and deep,
      embraced full this Tahoe
      moment, held hard
      -ship against my ribcage.

      I am beyond
      bottles, returning myself
      for chump change left to jangle
      in once empty pockets.

      I am the other time
      you smiled, and the strange
      symbiosis between salt water
             (NaCl H2O)
      and other solutions that sting. I am
      the answer to the way the sea
      smooshes herself
      against the butterscotch pockets
      of the other shore. I am the question
      left when she leaves with a moan,
      and milky moon.

      It’s closing time, and
      I have met
      my other, the one
      tryin’ to throw her arms
      around the world, trying to tie
      ember and ether
      together with silence,
      half truth,
      broad appeal, loose
      bootstraps. She’s tired,
      but still she dreams
      of pies, and bluer skies.

                   What is it?
      This thing I am stretching
      halfway there to heaven, this
      scar and scrap,
      slivered semblance
                             of poem?

      It’s born, and bare
      and black. And soon
            I am
      (O, for pete’s sake)
      taking it back.


    32. For a start, I decided to use some of my one-word titles to make a sestina, the hardest form to write–if one wants to make sense!

      Sestina to the Frightened Dead

      Always afraid of her own shadow
      she would her passing made the news.
      She lost her way, even with her map
      tucked somewhere in her pocket
      she could have sworn; Arrangements
      should have been made for her to survive–

      And no one ever called her a survivor
      She never even cast a shadow
      of confidence, of hope. Arrangements
      made by others felt like yesterday’s news
      to her. Fidgeting hands in her pockets,
      she wouldn’t even glance at the maps.

      She mistrusted all makers of maps,
      cast as she was– a lone survivor
      of a lonely life. Her pockets
      hung weightless as shadows,
      as if she hadn’t heard the news
      that all had changed, rearranged,

      and even age-old arrangements
      never lay smooth as folded map.
      Her wanderings begun anew,
      she could not have survived
      the unfamiliar haunts and shadows
      with less than a dollar in her pocket.

      Along the busy streets, in pockets
      flowed the people who arranged
      their lives as if they were not shadows,
      pulled forward, like magnets to maps
      of destinations. Who were these survivors
      Could they not bring her better news?

      Would they bring her any news
      at all? Like pickpockets,
      they robbed the last survivor
      on these mean streets. Her arrangements
      were announced in all the papers. A map
      showed where she lay, now a mere shadow,

      the shadow of a shadow. And how the news
      spread! Printed on maps, her empty pockets
      stripped by the deranged of all that survived.

    33. gl86 says:

      The Return, a somonka

      Last time I was here
      I said I’d never come back,
      yet when I walked in
      neither of us was surprised
      and you just sat there smirking.

      Last time you were here
      you packed and left in a huff
      so when you walked in
      looking sheepish and flustered,
      I smiled in my relief.

    34. alanasherman says:

      Day 25 A Re-mix

      This is from an earlier poem–New title as well.

      Things Change

      In dreams
      people love, argue,
      for what seems
      like a cause.
      Like life it appears to have
      direction —a plot.

      People move
      forward: One person
      at the heart
      of the action
      believes he can
      control the outcome.
      He tries but it is like
      putting his hand
      in an icy stream.
      Others get caught up
      in the spectacle
      and there is commotion
      in every event.
      There are characters
      and enough inventions
      to fill up time itself.
      Yet it ends without anything
      to take away except the telling.
      There is no denouement,
      no understanding
      of what it was about,
      but we know just the same,
      nothing is ever the same.

    35. MLundstedt says:

      “Half Awake Again” (villanelle based on “Half Awake” 11/16? I think)

      Where only darkness heard me scream,
      in that awkward state, half awake,
      I fought to shake a poisoned dream.

      So lonely, wretched, was the theme,
      I feared that I would simply break
      where only darkness heard me scream.

      But I was tangled, it would seem,
      in the coils of a satin snake.
      I fought to shake a poisoned dream.

      My senses slow, my pulse extreme,
      my hands and lips began to quake,
      where only darkness heard me scream.

      Frantic, I searched for any beam
      of moonlight. For sanity’s sake,
      I fought to shake a poisoned dream,

      that drowned me in a wicked stream,
      and caused my heart and soul to ache.
      Where only darkness heard me scream,
      I fought to shake a poisoned dream.

    36. Linda Goin says:

      Hunger Book, a Body Synopsis in American Sentences

      Chapter One: The young tongue tastes everything, yearning to learn rules, drooling for response.
      Chapter Two: Teens bite into ideas, body parts, and resistance like vampires.
      Chapter Three: Twenty-somethings nibble on leftover carnage and thick nonchalance.
      Chapter Four: The plot begins to fall apart; yet, cravings continue to inspire.
      Chapter Five: Best chapter by far, with life served on platters that affect gall bladders.
      Chapter Six: Midlife marked by macabre removal of non-essential body parts.
      Chapter Seven: The characters lose teeth and taste, the grip is shaky, the end matters.
      Chapter Eight: Too tired to rage, the finish is a surprisingly quiet dessert.

    37. Mixtape preview

      It always starts
      a hero or a villain
      poetry a painting more felt
      than thought
      Karma town
      and some big tatted Hawaiian
      throwing horseshoes
      over hand, overhead
      at windows of wonder
      your spun sugar
      and suddenly
      you think you’re old,
      hung out to dry
      no thunder
      storms left
      outside one creaky windowbox
      blowing in the wind
      a single flower
      your garden

    38. Hannah says:

      Thank you, Robert, that was a good opportunity to revisit the month so far…

      I can’t believe how fast it has flown!

      I ended up using one line-ish from each poem oldest -newest. Fun process.


      Smiles to all the poetical peeps in the house. :)

    39. Jane Shlensky says:

      This is a remix/response to Nov. 19′s “Daily Fare” that painted a pretty grim family picture of abuse. I apologize for the length. It seems that positive warm things may take longer than destruction.

      Daily Fare

      I hear their morning talk,
      how his rumble lies below
      her higher lilt, no words
      are clear, just sounds
      soprano, bass, a slapping door,
      the tumbling wood, the scrape
      removing ash, relaying kindling,
      remixing embers, stoking,
      scent of smoke from the stove.

      The pans and coffee pot
      have things to say, the water
      gurgles, mixing bowls for
      flour, the fridge whispers
      open, tutting closed.
      The back door must be open—
      drafty chill that carries outdoor
      morning sounds upstairs.

      The cows mill and moo,
      the collies yip for kibble or
      for scraps. He’s back
      in minutes with a slab of ham,
      I’m hoping, tucked beneath
      my quilt. It’s cold upstairs.
      We’re all awake but reticent
      to move, unless we smell
      a reason sizzling, the biscuits
      rising upward like a prayer
      and browning as the eggs
      make golden clouds.

      She’ll call us soon,
      children, it’s time, get up.
      Again, again, each time
      closer, firmer, louder, now,
      like labor birthing morning
      every day. He’ll take initiative
      rapping the wall, and booming,
      I better hear those feet
      upon the floor. Cold sparks
      leap as warm feet touch
      hardwood chill, and we don’t tarry
      pulling on our clothes.
      She giggles every time,
      hearing us rise, and I’d bet
      anything she meets his eyes.

      It makes him feel important
      that we move when he adds
      hints of threat into his voice.
      We let him think so, because
      she knows well it’s breakfast
      that we rise for,
      then the chores.

      • PressOn says:

        I adore this vignette, a little story all its own. Your words conveyed sight, smell and sound as clearly as I was a fly on the wall. Thanks very much for posting this.

    40. gl86 says:

      The Return, a somonka

      Last time I was here
      I said I’d never come back,
      yet when I walked in
      neither of us was surprised
      and you just sat there smirking.

      Last time you were here
      you packed and left in a huff,
      so when you walked in
      looking sheepish and flustered,
      I smiled in my relief.

    41. priyajane says:

      An attempt at a shadorma with remixing poems

      I shouldn’t
      Peek thro the cracks
      Spinning tunes
      But, spread arms
      freely, alive, with all parts
      Squeezing with passion—–

    42. Domino says:

      In response to “Code”
      Found here: http://dianaterrill.wordpress.com/2013/11/21/secret-message/


      I got your notes, I got your blocks
      of hieroglyphicked stone.
      I read your message in the sky,
      and couldn’t help but groan.

      I tried to crack your number code
      with the key you also sent,
      and accidentally spilled my tea
      on your cryptic argument.

      I can tell you wanted something,
      but I’m not sure just what
      and I’m not saying that you’re crazy,
      but you’re acting like a nut.

      I wish you wouldn’t scare me so,
      I kind of like your style,
      and when you’re not all nervous
      it’s nice to see your smile.

      So tell me now, get to the point,
      I need to know the score.
      I wish you’d tell me darling
      it’s me that you adore.

      (a remix of “The Trail To Black Rock Springs” 11/3/13)

      A trail
      I’ve walked before
      seems different in this light.
      The passage of time dismantles
      dubious memories.

      A wall,
      behind which stood
      a hotel spa for town folk,
      has no reminders save decay
      of ruined majesty.

      A thread
      in my thinking
      unravels to discover
      all that nature has reclaimed
      is given back a hundred-fold
      in images unseen.

      recall laughter,
      silence supplies the music.
      Contemplation heals the ailments
      of all who venture here.

      © Susan Schoeffield

    44. If at First You Don’t Succeed…
      “The knack of flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.” ~ Douglas Adams

      I envisioned throwing myself down
      but I never missed, I went splat.
      Except in my dreams, I fly
      swoop, turn – until I wake;
      the devil tempts me
      to try for real
      but I know
      it won’t
      So I
      smirk and throw
      myself at tasks –
      succeed or to fail
      at least I tried to fly
      and for every skid mark or
      bounce made to the ground, I had two
      times the adventures amongst the stars.

    45. Decided to remix the challenge to use 3 of the 3 words on 11-22-13.

      From Bullet to Burial

      The free world leader slain
      Hope of a nation eclipsed
      The nation mourns as one
      The final trip begins

      From Dallas to DC
      24 hours at 1600 Pennsylvania
      The casket loaded in caisson
      Horse drawn ride to the Capital

      One day for public view
      10 wide and 40 blocks long
      A quarter million or more
      In wretched cold they waited
      To walk past a closed coffer
      Lost hope interned inside

      Sunday morning on the move
      Casket and caisson slowly move
      The final trip to the Cathedral
      A funeral to attend

      From around the world they came
      To pay their final respects
      To shed a tear with the widow
      Condolences from far and wide

      Again casket and caisson unite
      JFK Jr. presents final salute
      Procession Arlington bound
      Cold, open plot awaits

      Words spoken
      Prayers prayed
      Tear shed
      Casket lowered
      Eternal flame lit
      That we should never forget

    46. Flipping Through Ideogram Memories

      Some memories eclipse
      others, acting like
      morass remoras
      drawing you back
      over and over again,
      sending tremors
      through your brain.

      While some are just wretched
      and you turn away as if scalded
      trying to close the casket lid,
      wanting to bury them deep,
      but they act like an overstuffed suitcase
      that won’t close…
      causing you to finally throw
      some metaphoric dirt
      over the top and
      walk away…

      to flip more memories
      to erase the unpleasant ones
      that keep crawling out of the earth,
      until you find a pleasant interlude
      and you mentally press
      a self imposed repeat button
      repeat, repeat…
      until the memories sigh
      and go to sleep.

      • PressOn says:

        The “or” sounds sprinkled through this have a lulling quality, or so it seems to me, and I find myself expecting the morass to or memories to fade, as indeed they seem to. This poem again draws vivid images, to my mind.

    47. writinglife16 says:

      This is a remix of my Day 4 poem, Papa’s numbers sheet.

      Papa’s numbers sheet(the remix)

      Papa played the numbers.
      Consulted his books.
      But there was a problem.
      Ma wanted him to stop.
      She went to a spiritualist who sprinkled
      the dream books with a fine dust.
      Papa’s sleep became filled with nightmares so frightening
      he burned the dream books.
      He played no more.

    48. Missy McEwen says:

      Don’t know if this counts as a remix. I changed the title and some words in the poem, so it’s more like a re-fix.

      Sometimes happiness

      Where we live, sometimes, most times despair
      hovers over us heavy like smog like the smell of cheap
      booze, cigarettes, and weed in the breeze that’s blowing
      our dreams down the street like old newspapers, it seems
      that way to us, where we live. Where we live, we live
      in houses crowded with three, four generations– grandmothers,
      mothers, sometimes fathers, sisters, brothers, cousins, aunts, uncles,
      grandchildren, everybody, and nobody can find work, screen doors bang
      shut in frustration like throwing their hands up along with the rest
      of us who live here, where we live. But sometimes, though,
      when it seems like this is all there is and hope is nowhere
      to be found, just hard luck and sorrow, sometimes happiness creeps
      up on us: a ray of sunshine through a curtain on a sleeping baby’s
      face or a ray of hope shining on all of us that day a black man
      was sworn in as the forty-fourth president of the United States
      of America. We were happy as can be, that day, suddenly smiling,
      like change was coming, like a new beginning, like it was finally our turn
      where we live.

      • PressOn says:

        I think this is superb. The repeated “where we live” phrases tap like a hammer, even as the lines stream along like those dreams in the breeze. Your poem concludes with a ray of hope or happiness, and the way you wrote the poem accentuates that conclusion, or so it seems to me. Thanks for posting.

    49. Dare says:

      (In appreciation of a Nose)

      Draw deep the scent of Life
      Lungs bursting with unspoken Moments
      Ever-Being, Ever-Becoming
      Kaleidoscope of Now

      And, another take :-) :
      Nasus Invictus

      My nose protrudes
      to lead the way
      as I explore
      each newborn day

      As every moment
      comes and goes
      I seek the courage
      of my Nose!

    50. FIGS

      I stop here for my dogs, green patch of grass
      where sun and windfall figs mix and mix again.

      Here’s a man with dog reciting his own verse:
      knives, unshaven rooms mix and mix again.

      Each line of verse lurches, as if a death-march;
      but his eyes bright, fired to mix and mix again.

      I was driving to a reading – signals, ideograms,
      what my dog finds – words mix and mix again.

      He found his dog in a goat field without a door.
      Dog wags, smiles, wants to mix and mix again.

      There’s poetry in dogs, I say. Just follow yours
      where words and sunlight mix and mix again.

      A man wanders mythic isles of the not-found
      following his dog. They mix and mix again.

      Drone of traffic, a stranger’s song, the wind’s
      long memory of cries all mix and mix again.

      As sweet as figs late-fallen off the tree, light
      and shadow, wind ready to mix and mix again.

    51. RJ Clarken says:

      I decided to take What a Peach/He was Sweet on Her and then use an Oulipo form called S + 7 on it. Essentially, you take the significant nouns in a poem, and change them to the 7th word which follows each of those words in a dictionary. The Oulipo poets were mathematicians and poets, and they loved games which combined the two disciplines. If you are interested in finding out more on the Oulipo forms (challenging but lots of fun) please visit Poetic Bloomings’ In-form Poet this Wednesday. :D


      What a Pecan/He was ‘Swinburne’ on Her

      disintegration of
      pecan iconoclasm
      is sure to be a whole lot ‘Swinburne’ when
      it’s shared by two peptides who are in lower-case,”
      he said, “So…
      here’s your



      (Remix of Secret Message)

      He trained
      His eye
      Upon her

      encrypted smile

      Lightly at her gifted

      Slowly strode
      Unable to break
      Her code

      Her gait
      Seamless hips

      Didn’t want
      To get hurt
      Heightened security

      Had an option
      To hack
      But backed off

      She was quickly
      Disabled her firewall

      Her guard
      Plates of armor

      Inhaled fresh air
      A deep cleansing breath
      Expanding her chest

      Traded floating signals
      Networks connected

      Turned out
      To be a solid connection
      At high speed

      Eyes continually freed
      Streamed countless motion

      Became avid readers
      Continually downloading
      Each other’s looks

      Tweeted simple
      Facial gestures
      Enjoyed open books

      Life was quite a blog
      A themed story
      Of steamed romance

      With great
      Mutual entries
      Of bonding love

    53. I decided to go the “response poem” route. Here’s my Day 21 poem again:

      To a Woman in the Sports Bar,
      After the Game

      The way you smile,
      the way you toss
      your hair back,

      the way you bring
      your drink to your lips,
      you have more signals
      than a third-base coach.

      If I should round the bases,
      would you hold me to a triple,
      or would you wave me home?

      ..and my new response:

      To the Guy at the Sports Bar,
      After the Game

      I don’t know what signals
      you though you saw,
      but I certainly know a leer
      when I see one.

      You’ve got me all wrong.
      I’m not a coach,
      I’m an umpire.

      If you slide over here thinking
      you’ll get at least to third base,
      I’ll be waiting with my thumb
      jerked in the air – you’re OUT!

    54. PressOn says:


      Overhead they pass, on levelled wings;
      their gazes are fixed to the north
      as steady winds from the south
      bring springtime to the air
      and hope to my heart,
      although the snow
      still festoons

      NB: this nonet is a re-mix of an etheree submitted 17 November

    55. annell says:

      Forget What I Said Earlier
      Yes I answered your question
      With a funny response
      Instead I should have said
      “In significant nothingness”

      For what else could it be
      If it is not true
      If it is not authentic
      If there is no blood
      At the scene
      And no heart
      In the creation
      We can’t call it art
      It is…..
      “Insignificant nothingness”

      I chose my poem blindly, just picked a date and then looked to see what I had written.

      Remember What I Said Before
      In early morning
      Before the sun
      Is up
      Think of me

      During the day
      When the sun shines
      Or the sky is overcast
      Think of me

      Later when the sun sets
      And all the world is aglow
      Draw a color from the
      Color box
      Think of me

      Remember what
      I said before
      No need to repeat
      That if it is not true
      Not Authentic
      Trifling or petty
      Too small to be important
      Or is of no consequence
      It is….
      “Insignificant nothngness”

      Note: In art class my instructor used to say, if it is meaningless, it is “insignificant nothingness.”


      Used to be that they came like
      migrant birds back to the nesting grounds.
      Now, with families of their own,
      they flock to other tables – in other homes.
      The nest is empty, but “home is where the heart is,”
      so, others come, having learned to migrate
      towards the open door where Love is always

    57. Misty Fjords, Ketchikan

      Gray sea breathes
      High cliffs hide in mist
      Falls form stripes
      Whales emerge
      Seals lounge lazily on land
      Eagles nest in pines

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