A sense is a feeling

Touch is a true sense / a feeling
Taste is a true sense / frozen lemonade / on a hot day / at Disneyland

But can we say that / of sight
We don’t feel the photons / hitting rods and cones
We don’t feel the molecules / of lemongrass / in our nostrils
We don’t feel the soundwaves / of Thelonious Monk / on Relaxin’ with Lee

But don’t tell me Starry Night does not move you
Or that the smell of chocolate chip cookies / baking
Doesn’t take you back / to your childhood
And / well / Monk’s touch on the piano / isn’t sublime

A thought is a sense / a memory is a sense
A dream is a sense / as is a nightmare
We have more senses / than we know / what to do with
How could we limit / ourselves to just five

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the day seven prompt at Poetic Asides to write a senses poem.

Ham Salad

You are neither ham / nor are you salad
At yet, you are no imposter / I don’t feel jilted
You are delicious
Which is more than I can say / for other imposters
Who do leave me feeling disappointed / and angry
They paint this picture postcard / view of themselves
But reality is not a postcard / or a poem
They impose this view of themselves / on me
But it does not hold / as an image / or a poem
It is a sham / unlike you / ham salad sandwich
You are delicious

/ / /

This poem was written to the day five prompt at Poetic Asides to write a food poem. I was also inspired by the craft resource from day five at NaPoWriMo: Some Thoughts on the Integrity of the Single Line in Poetry by Alberto Rios.

Impulse to Circle

What is the impulse to escape? Where do we move to?
Do we move as if dancing? As if singing?
Or is the sad truth that we don’t move at all?

After we retire, how do we light our way?
Down which corridors do we linger?
Will we reminisce in public spaces?

How ingracious of me to decide
everything for us.
Despite your longings, everything
you said to the contrary.

You evoke brilliant points
and scholarly arguments,
to which I am accustomed,
until you part from me.

And I am sorry, humbled,
for all those years;
and then I walk upwards,
continually resolving to listen.

/ / /

This poem was written to the day five prompt at NaPoWriMo, reacting “both to photography and to words in a language not your own.” I used the photograph below, and the poem was “Que exíguo impulso se move e não esquecemos?” by Rui Cóias.


Delana. “Moving Monochrome: 7 Black-&-White Photographers.” WebUrbanist, 10 July 2013, weburbanist.com/2008/11/13/black-and-white-monochrome-photographers-and-photographs/.

“Rui Cóias.” [Que Exíguo Impulso Se Move e Não Esquecemos?] (Rui Cóias) · Lyrikline.org, http://www.lyrikline.org/en/poems/que-exiguo-impulso-se-move-e-nao-esquecemos-13574#.WtFycdPwau5.


What is nowadays common
is nonsense over sense.
What was still is.
Moving forward is not
on the agenda, so
it is time for the not common.

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the day five “intelligence” prompt at Poetic Asides. It is a golden shovel based on a Voltaire quote: “Common sense is not so common.”

Case of Happiness

If we were to think on happiness
we would find that it is
much more so than it is not.
It is something
real and ready
for us, but it is not bought or made.

Thinking on happiness, it
goes, but it also comes
to us. It is from
us, from me, from your
heart. It is something you own,
built from your actions.

/ / /

This poem was written to the “Case (blank)” prompt at Poetic Asides, as well as being inspired by the “something abstract” prompt at NaPoWriMo. It is a golden shovel; the source is this quote by the Dalai Lama: “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.”

Don’t You

Don’t show, don’t tell
lies and fictions to me
that bolster your
sense of your troubles
how rough your life is and
how you are full of doubts

Stop giving
a sheen to you and me
from your heart inside
to the world and
the reality out
of your control and

Stop saying our love’s
powerful and yet so strange
just so – and then more – and so
rooted in love and real
genuine tenderness in
your heart and the
things we did in the dark

Stop asking me to think
about and around and of
all your thoughts and the
things raw and tender
that aren’t really things
between us that
we did when we
were together and when we were
apart or just working
because life moves on

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the “portrait” prompt at Poetic Asides. This is my first attempt at a golden shovel, using the following verse from “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” written by Keith Forsey and Steve W. Schiff and performed by Simple Minds.

Tell me your troubles and doubts
Giving me everything inside and out and
Love’s strange so real in the dark
Think of the tender things that we were working on


I, hands on the steering wheel,
my Ray-Bans on against the glare

You, sitting beside me,

The teenager, texting
a friend on his iPhone

The dog, beside him,
eagerly waiting our arrival

waiting so patiently
for the pack leader

to get us all
to the dog park

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the “portrait” prompt at Poetic Asides and the “poem that plays with voice” prompt at NaPoWriMo.


You sift the flour
The finer particles fall

You think on
what is left

What will not go
into the cake

Your family will love
this confection

You hold
the bitterness apart

This will be
your secret

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the “secret” prompt at Poetic Asides and the “secret shame” or “secret pleasure” prompt at NaPoWriMo.