Category Archives: The Sunday Whirl

Grotesqueries: Take Two

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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

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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

Tiny Tales

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~~ 1 ~~
 
twenty months of drought
the fortitude of pine trees
blackbird’s plaintive song
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
At the nursing home
the moody night shift nurses
wait for the next death.
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
a broken platter—
crickets jumping at the chance
for dabs of jelly
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
on gossamer wings
mist stealing through the forest—
fragile little bird
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
Though your life is brief,
you may take a stone in hand
while you are weeping.
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
the simple brilliance
of this singular moment—
blue iris blooming
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
Spontaneity—
from the dust of wilderness
healing pools arise.
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
inevitable—
the birds that followed Jesus
pecking at my eyes
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
birth pangs at midnight
the poem in my belly
kicking to be free
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
in a barren land
no pattering of raindrops—
plethora of light
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
difficult to see
on the dark and stormy way—
stories no one tells
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
first evening shadows
creeping into dead men’s shoes—
blackbird turns to ash
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #200
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 159

If

Dead Indigo Bush photo deadindigobush_zps27ada9ce.jpg
Indigo Bush (Psorothamnus fremontii), Sonoran Desert, Southern Arizona
 


If the branch could speak,
it might become a channel
to release new truths.

 
Text and photo © 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
More Shadow Shot Sunday 2
 
More Straight Out of the Camera Sunday
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 158: “Branch, Speak, Become, Channel, Release”

Fishing Tales

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~~ 1 ~~
seven fishing boats
rocking imperceptibly
in a gentle swell
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
fishing line tangles
twice around the willow limb—
Elijah returns
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
fishing through the mess
in the middle desk drawer—
pages torn from Psalms
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
fishing from the bridge
with a stolen rod and reel—
Egypt lies downstream
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
how her heart aches
fishing for compliments
that never come
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
deep-water fishing—
nothing God says in mercy
keeps Jonah on land
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
sharp prongs of lightning—
a fleet of fishing trawlers
limping back to shore
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
fishing boots with holes—
watching prophets weave and sway
limping round puddles
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
guts bloody the sink
from this morning’s fishing trip
to Lake Galilee
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More Poetry Pantry #198
 
More Carpe Diem: “Fishing”
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 157

Convoluted Whirl

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~~ 1 ~~
Three redwing blackbirds
swear an oath to the north wind:
We will outlast you.
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
To be in fifth grade
is to sip from a dry brook—
your tongue turns to wood.
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
Through an April fog
three strange women are stumbling—
one begins to chant.
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
a porcelain doll
without a stitch of clothing—
enigmatic smile
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
singed with fires of hope
a dozen souls in limbo
crying out to God
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
on her wrists and palms
a dozen faces held fast
by tattooer’s ink
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
tumbleweed heaven—
ten thousand miles of fences
on the Kansas plains
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
three crickets chirping
papers littering hallways
my house is too small
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
gaudy little gifts
clutched by desperate tourists
for the folks back home
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
Park bench at midday—
the bag lady rests briefly
before shuffling on.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
listening deeply
hearing a cry of distress—
from her eyes falls frost
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
moonlit this evening—
Jaffa, the port where Jonah
runs away from God
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More The Sunday Whirl #156

Whirling with Abraham

Banner photo BANNER.jpg
 
This week’s words: barrier, detail, diamond, pleat, power, strap, swing, suspend, tough, unit, waterfall, zip

 
The first line of each 5-7-5 snippet is taken from various poems in Robert Bly‘s The Night Abraham Called to the Stars.


 
~~ 1 ~~
 
thrown into the fire
an old leather strap curling
then crumbling to ash
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
By the widow’s door
a tough old crow is lurking—
dare she let him in?
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
crack in the ceiling
loose thread in the plaid skirt’s pleat
things falling apart
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
So many forces
try to zip us in their bags
and whisk us away.
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
a strawberry patch
planted by the waterfall—
feast for the ravens
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
Eight thousand tulips
power the old Dutch windmill
with their heady scent.
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
around the orchard
erecting a barrier
against blossom thieves
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
The knees of the wind
swing this way and that, knocking
down bush and blossom.
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
some fiddle music
to suspend between two stars
while the fiddler rests
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
The house of sorrow
has not a single diamond,
only lumps of coal.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
a single black hair
perfect in every detail
in the dead man’s nose
 
~~ 12 ~~
 
It’s too late to move
to Unit Number Seven—
someone stole the door.

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
More Poetry Pantry #196
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 155

Warning

Apples: A Baker’s Dozen

Banner

 
 


three apple blossoms
fragrant as a baby’s breath—
such milky sweetness
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
To trade your language
for sounds that have no substance—
babbling to apples!
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
dense with leaves and fruit—
apple orchard shuddering
as the pickers come
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
seven apple trees
their limbs burdened and groaning
with ripe crimson fruit
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
in apple harvest
agile pickers in the trees
plucking crimson fruit
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
trees laden with fruit
the apples plummet earthward—
lashing autumn winds
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
fall’s apple madness—
Courtland, Macintosh and York
gracing my table
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
reading apple peels
by flickering candlelight—
ancient malic runes
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
gifts from the orchards—
crisp apples and tender plums
placed in a blue bowl
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
Why is it singing,
the apple crisp and golden,
to the rising moon?
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
In the photograph
three apple trees are blooming,
never bearing fruit.
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
a bright confusion—
gear engages gear, grinding
apples into wine
 
~~ ~~ ~~
 
Near the apple tree
nine druids gather at dusk—
poteen stains their breath.
 

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 152
 
More Postcards from Paradise at Recuerda Mi Corazon

Crickets

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~~ 1 ~~
 
Outside my window
I miss the morning crickets—
paradise is lost.
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
Long before daybreak
a cricket in the cotton
leaves her voice behind.
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
three motley crickets
hiding from ravenous birds
in a green bean row
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
a broken platter—
crickets jumping at the chance
for dabs of jelly
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
the long trip homeward—
hoping to hear one cricket
in her mother’s room
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
On a day this hot,
you’d think that crickets would bake
and centipedes broil.
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
Drunk cricket lovers
catch the train to celebrate
their team’s victory.

 
© 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
More Poetry Pantry #192
 
More The Sunday Whirl, Wordle 151

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