The Nature of Things

Nature of Things

NaPoWriMo is rapidly coming to an end, along with a very cold, wet and busy April. I managed to fulfill my commitment of posting at least one poem each day during this past month (even if that meant double posting or being creatively silly on some days); so I don’t want to be this close to the end and not finish it out. With another self-imposed dissertation proposal deadline coming up on me by week’s end, I decided to take the ‘route already traveled’ today and post an ACP (already created poem).

This creation came about as a “snippet” of a scene I was chewing around in my brain (yes, my brain gets chewed on, often for months, before its contents ever have any chance to be regurgitated onto paper) for my novel-in-progress currently titled Magnolia Falls (though its original brief folder title still remains in my files as ‘Viral’).
Not long after sitting out on my deck one evening this past fall, admiring the beauty of a full moon, I was invited to submit a poem in the Nature category by World Poetry Movement. This one was my immediate choice. I hope you enjoy it too.

Just a Fessed-Up Mess

Her mom described Bess
being a well-behaved mess –
blessing in disguise.

But how did she bless?
Anyone’s wild-goose-chase guess.
Make one? Ill-advised.

Better not to mess
with mother’s rose-colored best
spying child-like lies.

© 2013 jody love                                             


I have a little more going on here than what might first meet the eye.

  1. April is NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month), in which I’ve challenged myself to publish 1 poem per day on my blog site in its honor. There are a trio of haiku above, for those of you less familiar with making immediate recognition. (I did these in the more traditional format of 5-7-5 syllabic stanzas.)
  2. Haiku do not traditionally have rhyming segments, but as NaPoWriMo comes to an end, I really just wanted to throw it all out there and doubly challenge myself. (Technically, in making this a “story” of sorts, I’ve broken from traditional haiku format, anyway, through the use of capitalization, punctuation, and such…)
  3. Now, it just so happens that the weekend came along and the Trifecta writing community (who has somewhat learned to tolerate me) came up with a new Trifextra challenge: “Your challenge this weekend is to give us 33 words about anything you want.  Your piece must include at least one hyphenated compound modifier.”
  4. Sensibly, if I wanted to balance my haiku beyond its syllables, it became my goal to balance my word count within each haiku to 11 words each. (Believe me when I say this is a little easier said than done, but compound modifiers are greatly accommodating here!)
  5. I’ve also come to highly admire Kristjaan (Chevrefeuille) at Carpe Diem, along with a wonderful writing community of haikuists (this is my own made-up term possibly) there who were my inspiration in trying this format to meet this multi-level challenge. Today’s Carpe Diem challenge was “Awakening,” which I consider may be the greatest challenge of all for a parent or a child to become aware of seeing the other as a fallible human being.

So, with that much-compounded explanation, all that’s left to say is…Ta-da! Let me know how you think I did in attempting to meet my challenges, whether self- or other-imposed.

Friday Fictioneers

Image Copyright-Claire Fulller

Nigel never read that strange mess of books.
He merely wanted them rearranged.
In truth, he rather liked all the queer looks
from others who thought him quite deranged.
He’d precariously ascend that wooden ladder
then plummet from tip top to floor;
until forced to go attend to his frantic bladder,
before he’d come back to engage them some more.
He’d visit his library daily,
sometimes pulling books off from each shelf.
Then go inform the head nurse, Mrs. Bailey
he had urgent need to relieve himself.
Nurse Bailey long ago had decided
it was far easier for her to clean
Nigel’s mess of books, rather ill-resided
than whatever else his excursion might glean.

© 2013 jody love


For Friday Fictioneers: I’m hopeful that I didn’t make an utter “mess” of this week’s poetic story!

Incendiary Crossing

UntitledUntitled © Vanessa Paxton via Flickr

pinhole 970, bridgepinhole 970, bridge © Darius Kuzmickas via Flickr

She was leaving her home

on a bridge to nowhere

For all other bridges she’d burned.

But the blaze in her heart that had

spread like wildfire

determined this trip not be spurned.

Innocence lost in forested decay

a dark, foggy future only filled with dismay

was all she encountered that lone, murky day

– no bright, warming light to illumine her way –

when she reached for the other side.

© 2013 jody love


What do you get when you cross 2 picture prompts with a 500 word limit?

During NaPoWriMo, you get this paltry poem!

Peace! -j

Mucking Up the Fall

He dug himself a hole in the ground.
Twasn’t no sandy dirt neither.
You’d think once he’d gotten far enough down,
he’d have stopped to take a good breather.

Heavens no!

In his mind, he was moving further upward,
traveling e’er higher and higher.
So hooten falutin and hoity toity,
he ne’er took notice he’d sunk in the mire.

I’ll say!

Dig himself out? No, he never would;
for he’d long lost that betting chance.
Before he climbed to the top to exchange
his (m)eager life for one last glance.

Dear Lord!

He looked down on that concrete block,
then decided he’d changed his mind.
But before he could turn to step away,
he was caught by the northern wind…

Er, I mean…his last stride was unrefined.

So what?

The lesson to this story, you inquire?
Besides taking care not to misstep?
If you’re going to write your words in rhyme,
best be sure to properly prep…

Regardless of the tough schlep…

Oh my!

Lest, as a poet, you risk your good rep.

© 2013 jody love


Speakeasy #106 is on – and I’m down to my final week of NaPoWriMo – so this might be my last poem submission here for awhile. Maybe…maybe not. We’re back to a starting sentence prompt (as opposed to anywhere in the post), so I’m betting you’re “purty smart” and can figure this one out without me giving a hint. The 2nd prompt is the picture that’s been supplied. The limit is 600 words max, but I felt like I was on Wheel of Fortune this week without having to buy any vowels – I still have plenty of those to spare. I bought expletives this week instead. 😉

Warming One’s Feet in a State of Ecstasy

She glanced in the mirror to comb through her wet hair, serenading into the toothbrush as she reached to grab it up. The words she had been singing with her iPod transitioned into muffled hums as she scrubbed away at her teeth. She spit, rinsed a few times, squirted some moisturizer on her face, and let the towel drop as she reached for lotion to rub on her arms and legs. One more minute to braid her wet, brown hair for bed; then came the ritual of iPod off, bathroom lights out, bedside lamp on, covers back, and pillow plumped. She reached onto her night stand for one of her academic reads. Looked like it would be some Aristotle and Socrates tonight. That familiar companion she had named Loneliness tried to creep into bed beside her. She pulled the covers up over her cooling body to ward off his chill before propping reading glasses over dark brown eyes that refused to look his way. Soon, she was convinced she had ignored him sufficiently. He could go find a more suitable bed partner. She understood the only state of ecstasy she could hope to enter into in this domain would come from the trance-like state of reading for the sake of nothing better to do. If only this type of ecstasy came equipped with foot-warmers, she mused.

who would have entranced
a warm bed to lie upon
gifts cold ecstasy


Yeah, yeah. I duped you with the title. Or…unlikely if you know me, since when have I ever written erotica?! (But I’m thinking Trifecta is trying to get me some of those types of followers, once I put in my tags…) 😉  Moving along…

Many thanks to my favorite pirate for introducing me to haibun, which has saved me (more than once) during NaPoWriMo when I wanted to submit prose. (Presto! Throw in a haiku at the end & you’ve got yourself a poem! I’m ecstatic!)

Ecstatic! Get it?! (moan & grumble, okay) That wasn’t exactly the definition Trifecta was after this week anyway. (And I’m apparently not ecstatic, based on my melancholy submissions as of late. What’s up with that anyway? Knowing me, they’re all just intros to those needing some better life stories – and those of you who know me know my mantra: Everyone needs a good story.)

On to the weekly prompt. This week’s word is:

1a: a state of being beyond reason and self-control

b archaic : swoon
2: a state of overwhelming emotion; especially : rapturous delight

Please remember:

  • Your response must be between 33 and 333 words.
  • You must use the 3rd definition of the given word in your post.
  • The word itself needs to be included in your response.
  • You may not use a variation of the word; it needs to be exactly as stated above.
  • Only one entry per writer.
  • If your post doesn’t meet our requirements, please leave your link in the comments section, not in the linkz.
  • Trifecta is open to everyone. Please join us.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Look UP!


When the winter winds groan, desolate and cold
While old oaks linger still in mossy slumber
Overhead, a promise of renewal settles in
Waiting for its time to be delivered.

Look up!


When darkened days prolong, never-ending
Trying to dry up life like brittle bones
Overhead, new plans may be hatching
For time does not waste; it carries on.

Look up!


Stormy weather will continue blowing
More battles in our lives will fully rage.
Yet die not freedom’s plans for our tomorrows
Time ever keeps them marching on their way.

Look up!



I’m submitting this post in response to the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge on UP!

These photos were all taken this winter, with all of them captured on the same cold, cloudy, wintry day except the one of the herons. That was taken one bitterly biting cold morning at my work. I snapped that picture just as the sun was rising and my ankles were f-f-f-feeling frost-bitten.

The poem is in honor of:

Let Peace Wash Over Me

Peace. I earnestly searched for it, but it wholly could not be found. I located tattered shreds of it lying all around. I went out to the street pass and begged for any left. I found that I was merely wasting my fragmented breath. No one seems to have any extra bits to spare. Either that’s the case, or they simply will not share.

Piece. I gleaned one today and brushed it off clean. Held onto it tightly to protect its bright sheen. But the more tightly I grasped it, the more deeply it pained – as it dug in my flimsy flesh, my palm left blood-stained. Letting loose of that piece of peace, I let it pass me by. No more need to ponder it; no time left to cry.

Peace, why just one piece of you could not I bear to bare? Why? Oh why?

my peace has all dried
should peace flow like a river
might I bathe before I die



The Ligo Haibun Challenge topic this week is PEACE.

Trust me when I say I nearly passed this one by, as I wasn’t finding mine this week. Then, this morning, I had an epiphany. Wait! That’s it! I can write about not finding peace. (It was actually like one of those V8 commercials, so maybe it was more like a ridiculous moment than an epiphany.) Okay, forgive my silliness – it’s a side effect. Seriously, I’m guessing most of us can relate to those moments in life when we feel we’ve lost our peace and perhaps that it’s not coming back. For some poor, unfortunate souls, it may never be found. I hope my haiku sums up the desperation the narrator is feeling for you.

A couple of form notes: I wrote the prose section in a rhythmic structure, not only because I’m participating in NaPoWriMo this month (writing poetry every day during April), but because that’s how it began to flow when I awoke this morning. (Writing poetry every day for nearly a month apparently has that side effect too.) The haiku I’m offering is in a less traditional format (not being in the more traditional 5-7-5, 17 syllabic form that the English language has more often adopted); rather taking on a hybrid-haiku-tanka structure that lands in 5-7-7 rhythm.

Peace to you & yours, -jody

Heart Welts (Friday Fictioneers)

I hoarded my precious basket of memories, to place them on my nightstand…wherever I found myself. They made strange places feel like home – while also stinging me with their emptiness.

That sweltering summer, down at the riverside.

Just the right pebbles to skim across the water.

He gifted me with the most beautiful ones for my collection – one for every night…with him.

The wasp nest shouldn’t have been a good memory – except for the attention he gave to every red welt and tear. He came back and presented it to me – a gesture of what he’d conquered on my behalf. Oh, that my heart hadn’t allowed him to conquer it before that last parting goodbye.


Up to bat at Friday Fictioneers once more. 100-word count story off the image prompt. Come join us! -j

And to fulfill my NaPoWriMo obligation for the day, let me sum up the story in haiku:

Memories move me.
First love’s sting makes its mark.
Do heart welts e’er heal?

By ‘n by Birdie (a bird-brained ditty for the Speakeasy)

Birdie Little, highest town flyer,
always demanded the best.
If not out gathering the juiciest worms,
she was building the finest nest.

When rumors took flight
all the other birds would say,
she wasn’t about to let anything
get in her way.

Oh-ho! Then Junior Redbreast
came gliding into town,
strutting his cocky ‘birds n’ bees’ stuff,
parading all around.

He had all foul beaks chirping,
all fancy feathers fluffed –
the chicks began ‘cheaping,’
flocked to call Junior’s bluff.

But hawk eyes for Birdie
were all Junior had;
he knew he wanted Birdie,
wanted her worse than real bad.

Birdie just wanted to flip up her wing
at her dreadful one traffic-light town;
she had bigger dreams of singing Freebird –
not settling for some bird-brained clown.

Junior preened and he courted, overtime,
to romance her with his dance;
then, early one day, hiding out in the bush,
Birdie cooed and he took his chance.

These days, Birdie seems to have forgotten
her birds-eye view of a distant shore
as she perches, awaiting Junior’s return
atop these freckled four.

We shan’t call a swan song for Birdie, though;
she’s putting back nest eggs.
For after Junior’s flown the coop,
she plans to spread her wings – living high on crab legs.


Time for the #105 speakeasy’s fiction slam & poetry jam this week!

Here are the main points to remember for this one:

  • Use the photo prompt (included above).
  • Use the theme sentence anywhere within the entry (provided by speakeasy #104 winner Natalie DeYoung):  ”She wasn’t about to let anything get in her way.”
  • Focus on the Future as part of the theme.
  • Keep it fiction (even if poetry) & limit it to a 500 word count max.
  • Oh, and go to the link & check out the other entries – and feel free to add one of your own!