Category Archives: The Sunday Whirl

Whirling All Over

 photo 169_zps7534656a.jpg
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
over the yogurt
she lays a piece of muslin
to keep flies at bay
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
seven flavors of
manufactured excuses
dripping from her tongue
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
tonight’s harvest moon
on this side of the river—
such a tiny coin
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
geese in the millions
drowning the eastern flyway
with their plaintive honks
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
an ancient pilgrim
forgetting her arthritis
on the sacred hike
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
feathers of brown birds
shot from black cannons at dawn—
how the West was won
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
perhaps the turtle
making low sounds in its throat
thinks dogs will cower
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
The storytellers
make room for one another,
using fragrant words.
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
writing a letter
with lackluster paragraphs—
the same dusty words
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
In his own country
no one honors the prophet—
even ravens mock.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
One cry from the crow
beguiles the lunar eclipse
into shrinking back.
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
Cheeky ones go pale
whenever Jesus appears,
circumcising hearts.

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #209
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 169

Whirling with Walt

168 photo 168_zps5cb68022.jpg
 
The first line of each three-line snippet comes from “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman.
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
the eyes of the dead,
blind to beauty and blessing,
staring at nothing
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
knowing the perfect
candle to banish darkness—
only damp matches
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
eddies of the wind
on a mission for the storm
rising in the west
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
The shelves are crowded
with things simple and complex—
have you need of more?
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
choosing a safe spot,
perhaps your arms for the night,
before moving on
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
She owns the fine house
at the tip of the cape, where
no one is welcome.
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
on the granite floor
rivers of fresh blood flowing
from the killing spree
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
In the little wells
where the prairie meets the hill,
blind creatures huddle.
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
with me on the grass
seven ragged musicians
playing haunting tunes
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
Leaving me baskets
filled with ripe apples and rain,
she slips out to sea.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
The little one sleeps,
caring nothing for the ghosts
that would torment her.
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
Stall in the market—
an image of St. Joseph
stirs among the spoons.

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #208
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 168

Seeking One Ripe Plum

167 photo 1671_zpsf79ecbb4.jpg
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
Seeking one ripe plum,
I approach the laden tree
with a grateful heart.
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
behind the blue pantry door—
no one has a key
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
Seeking one ripe plum
to split among my children—
each will taste a slice.
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
to the east of the grain field—
three crows menace me
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
to give to the single mom
in Apartment 3
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
Seeking one ripe plum
I scratch my head in wonder
before the gnarled tree.
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum—
depending on the moon’s phase
I might find seven
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
while the player piano
rolls out tinkly tunes
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
for the youngest of my sons—
his birthday present
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
Seeking one ripe plum—
the glint in her eye tells me
she’ll split the bounty.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
on a level garden path
wingless butterfly
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
seeking one ripe plum
while spiders attach their webs
to my eyes and ears

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #207
 
More Sunday Scribblings 2: “Plum”
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 167

Dreadful

Sunset Crater lava bed photo Sunsettreelava_zps74ef4f06.jpg
Hardened lava flow, Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, Northern Arizona
 


dancing and praying
dark and dreadful shadows kiss
creature, cloud and stone

 
Text and photo © 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
More Blue Monday
 
More Poetry Pantry #206
 
More Shadow Shot Sunday 2
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 166: “Dark, Praying, Dancing, Creature, Dreadful, Kiss “

Quirky Quartet

165 photo 1652_zps5f883d88.jpg
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
drilled into the cliff
six holes filled with misfortunes
borrowed from the trolls
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
a wish, a whistle,
a pit in which to drink ale—
chimneyside dreaming
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
porcelain habits
shatter into deadly shards—
caveat emptor
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
Split the percale sheet,
rip out the mattress stuffing—
darkness comes at noon.

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #205
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 165

Quick Takes

 photo 164_zps809c65fd.jpg
 
Each little poem-breath begins with a phrase purloined from Paul Theroux’s Ghost Train to the Eastern Star.
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
In a stack of books
she finds a list of numbers—
pi comes at the end.
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
plump picture album—
placing it back on the shelf
to gorge on more dust
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
the little notebook—
holding it in her right hand
while the words quiver
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
shivering sparrows—
children say hello to them
but offer no cloaks
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
on a rusty bridge
she contemplates existence—
freight train bearing down
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
rain pelting sideways—
the monsoon’s monstrous power
lashing passersby
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
streets thick with traffic
not a single horn muffled—
such cacophony
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
an unlikely place
for a band of stomping monks—
the Doge’s palace
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
in a sacred place
the clamoring of pilgrims
not a whiff of prayer
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
praising the fish soup
in some strange piscine language—
old man of the sea
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
Amid the squalor
she hears the sizzle of fish
on an open fire.
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
in a yellow dish
a single shriveled lemon—
Van Gogh dips his brush

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #205
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 164

Variations on ‘Caged Bird’

163 photo 163_zpsc8a0516a.jpg
 
Each little poem-breath begins with a phrase purloined from Maya Angelou’s “Caged Bird.” Maya Angelou died on 28 May 2014.
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
On the grave of dreams
place a thousand paving stones—
let no wraiths escape.
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
the fat worms waiting
as the tractor keeps plowing—
hundred-acre field
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
on the distant hill
a fireworks launch at bedtime
children ooh and ah
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
the back of the wind
carrying a pungent scent
through my open door
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
with a fearful trill
and flapping of sturdy wings
cormorant nabs fish
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
Through the sighing trees
a lean and fluid roebuck
flees the hunter’s bow.
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
Till the current ends,
I have no need to propel
my raft with a pole.
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
He opens his throat,
spilling out jovial notes,
gracing all who hear.
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
Through his bars of rage
he glimpses freedom’s terrain—
one breath out of reach.
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
In the orange sun
seven crows chase each other,
crying raucously.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
of another breeze
piping countless melodies—
why the caged bird sings

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #204
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 163

Grotesqueries: Take Three

162 photo 162_zps9d3d65bb.jpg
 
Each grotesquerie begins with a phrase purloined from One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, the Colombian novelist who died 17 April 2014.
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
dusty iguana
without a squeak advancing
on a hapless fly
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
wind from the graveyard
a treat for ghouls and goblins
how their nostrils twitch
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
Leave the whitewashed walls
to mate with floor and ceiling—
reproductive rights.
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
To play the zither
you need the skill of David,
the patience of Job.
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
With a gardenia
perfuming the kitchen’s pores,
all the saucers smile.
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
in his burning bed
a moth begins to flutter—
messenger of grace
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
the holy scriptures
where gods are meeting mortals
on unleveled fields
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
fabulous nightmare
according to the report
written in shorthand
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
jugglers with six arms
losing face when they fumble
and the balls go down
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
covered by strange maps
of fantastical places—
north wall of her room
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
at the desk scribbling
the old woman’s rueful laugh—
all her unpaid bills
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
In the sewing shop
the owner takes a survey
of the mannequins.
 
~~ 13 ~~
 
More baskets of bread
are stuck in Danish doorways
than in London lanes.
 
~~ 14 ~~
 
preaching in Latin
to pigeons in the town square—
gibbering old priest
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #203
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 162

Grotesqueries: Take Two

 photo 161_zps20628dff.jpg
 
Each grotesquerie begins with a phrase purloined from One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, the Colombian novelist who died 17 April 2014.
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
Bottom of the pot—
why are the lobsters keening
about their karma?
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
Nights in the courtyard—
seven tattered people snore
underneath the limes.
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
The rear of the house—
are there any hollyhocks
wedded to the yard?
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
secrets of the moth
revealed in graphic detail—
the old druid sings
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
adobe houses
at the altitude of geese
Marc Chagall at work
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
faded velvet vest
not mine but the general’s
stained with soup and wine
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
tree in the courtyard
becoming alabaster
at the prophet’s word
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
where the gypsy girl
sews chaos to confusion
with a fraying thread
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
looking for the bag
to carry home a loaf of bread
and a pound of bones
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
fermented cane juice
served in blue plastic bottles—
champagne for the poor
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
Upset by the news
of the latest disaster,
she made friends of gnats.
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
When she could not sleep,
she would force herself to read
from Leviticus.
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #202
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 161

Grotesqueries

 photo 160_zps008d5aa2.jpg
 
Each grotesquerie begins with a phrase purloined from One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, the Colombian novelist who died 17 April 2014.
 


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
dusty almond trees
all the fruit turns into glass
bitter little shards
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
hand-painted flowers
remnants of the midget’s dreams
tossed to the bridesmaids
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
box of dominoes—
two pieces rub each other
in just the wrong way
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
place of burial
the earth begins to settle
after three amens
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
a wicker basket
hides a broken battle axe
under cloth of gold
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
houses with zinc roofs
shattering expectations
rusting overnight
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
glass beads for macaws
flung into the April sky
snatched by hungry beaks
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
a bulging suitcase—
the clumsy woman drops it
on the railroad track
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
clocks made of carved wood
vanish just before midnight
tick again at dawn
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
invisible paths
some on land, some on sea
Moses knows the game
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
clothing left behind—
an old man without a name
tries on the trousers
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
sticks of balsa wood
listen as the cotton string
tightens on a kite
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #201
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 160

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