humming fools

the fool is humming again
the king is rolling olives around his mouth
the queen is busy with her needlework
but she is also listening

only the children are laughing
playing at stones and dominoes
while the men from the country
bring their sheep for shearing

the bleached wool will then be dyed
and spun by the traditional method
yarn for the queen’s needlework
she is not fooled by the humming

/ / /

salt      mouth
olive juice      napkin
fingers      dominoes

delicate method
sheep’s wool
fingers needlework

humming      laughing
feet      bleached stones
country men      fools

/ / /

These poems were written in response to Whirligig 8 at Sunday’s Whirligig. I had started the second one first, but it wasn’t going anywhere, so I tried something more narrative, which is the first poem above. Returning to my first attempt, I stripped it down, trying a different tack for a narrative.

the light

i wanted to gravel / the sun / to roar at it
to make it hurt / as i hurt / my blood rushing / my thoughts rushing

grieving my father / longing to talk to him / once more
to hear his prodigal praise again / to live up / to how he saw me

to remember / what I learned from him
to find that again / and treasure it

to walk away from the tavern / and the noise / and the alcohol
to enter the church / embrace the silence / and light some candles

/ / /

This poem was written to Whirligig 7 at Sunday’s Whirligig.

we are the leaning men

we are the leaning men
hollow together

we examined diversity level
in biological soil crusts
along a southward
rainfall gradient

the hallow ground spell
may be cancelled
by the mystic
but why would they
completely ruin it
with pestilence

a delicious recipe
for purple donkey punch
with Everclear
Absolut Mandarin vodka
Captain Morgan Parrot Bay coconut rum
and pineapple juice

the data on the feeble-minded
is inaccurate and meager
the age limit for admission
remained at twenty-one

the consolation
of your life
is your breath

/ / /

A found poem using Google search results for the following six phrases: hollow leaning, southward soil, feeble twenty, purple donkey, mystic pestilence, and consolation breath. The twelve words came from Whirligig 6 at Sunday’s Whirligig.

the elements

the elements
of a honey-do

to the grand opening
of the store
up the escalator
to the third level

our toddler hiding
in the rows
of clothes
bell-bottomed pants
back in style
his brother speaking
Pig Latin
pretending
he doesn’t know
where he is

i’m tired
and want
to sit down

my wife tries
on a new dress
simple and elegant

a honey tear
on my cheek

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the twelve words of Whirligig 5 at Sunday’s Whirligig.

resonant rash

resonant and dissonant leadership
are connected concepts

whether it’s because of a person
or an incident or the weather in general

in the summer,
a diaphanous silk dress
is often the go-to frock

shop outside the big box
for iridescent hair clip
from thousands
of independent designers

unique fabric is the velour
printed in pretty designs
as a combination

I’d estimate that one third
of all the handbags
and purses we receive
have ink stains
on the interior lining(s)

an oil based one-step stain
that provides durable protection

shade painting
is caused
when there is
a constriction
or narrowing
of small blood vessels
in the surface
layers of the skin
creating a mottled
lace-like rash

/ / /

This poem was written in response to the twelve words at Sunday’s Whirligig.

Process notes: This is a found poem. I paired dissonant weather, diaphanous velour, iridescent clip, ink purse, shade stain, and mottled lace. I ran a search on Google on each of those two-word phrases, and then used words in the search results to craft this poem.