Goodbye

Goodbye, dear one, my friend, my confidant—

You knew me well, better than I knew you.

You listened while I talked, bared my dark soul,

Without judgment or contempt—just silence.

You soaked me in, absorbed my rambling thoughts,

Consumed my anger, never gave it back.

Though you were a battle-scarred knight with wounds

That had ravaged your body, caused you pain,

You spoke little of your own afflictions.

Instead, you listened, you heard what I said,

Did not dismiss me as silly or crazed

As others have done. You truly listened!

You gave unconditional love, my friend, 

Wanting nothing in return but my love.

And I failed you, though you said you failed me.



You are gone now, off to a better place.

Some call it heaven, I call it sweet peace.

I hope your soul mate, whom death snatched away

Before it took you, waits with a smile and

A hand to lead you home, that elusive

Place you had searched for most of your hard life.

Goodbye, dear one, until we meet again.



©️2021 KT Workman

Dedicated to my “partner in poetry” who passed away recently.

(Note: blank verse poetry does not rhyme, and is written in iambic pentameter. It has a consistent meter with 10 syllables per line, where unstressed syllables are followed by stressed ones.)

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Little Fish

Above the torpid water, summer sleeps
as the creek meanders along its way.
Big fish slumber in the shore-shaded deep;
in the reedy shallows, little fish play,
young and bold, they care not about the day.
They dart and splash, chase crawdads and minnows,
joyous with life, not like the old fellows.

©2021 KT Workman

(Note: Rhyme royal—7 lines long, 10 syllables per line.
Rhyme scheme: a-b-a-b-b-c-c)

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Plinks

Drip-drip-drip, rain slides off the sheet-iron roof,
Plink-plink-plinks onto the wayward tin can
Placed by wily storms or fickle wind’s goof,
Who can rightly say, be it beast or man?

The rain cares not where the gentle drips fall,
Nor gives a thought as the plinks softly sing
To small ears listening behind safe walls,
Lulled to sleep by the drip-drip and plink-plink.

Silently they creep on tiny wet feet
Beneath a cracked pane of misted raised glass.
Aqueous drips and plinks, seldom they meet
Those to whom they sing at two AM past.

Plinks slowly lessen, lightly tread away,
Follow the drips as night steps into day.

©2021 KT Workman


(Note: A Shakespearean (English) sonnet consists of 14 lines written in iambic pentameter, and usually has 10 syllables per line. It has three quatrains and a couplet. Rhyme scheme: a-b-a-b, c-d-c-d, e-f-e-f, g-g.)


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Mama

Mom
so dear,
I still hear
your soft, sweet voice
in my memories
of a long-ago time.
I was small, you a giant,
quiet and gentle of nature.
You were homemade bread, killer of snakes,
dressmaker extraordinaire, cow milker,
gardener, canner, factory worker,
herder of children, a comfy lap,
the scent of vanilla, honest sweat,
a good example, warm heart,
rough-workened hands, bent body.
You were many things—
Mama to me,
home, sweet home,
safety.
Missed.

©2021 KT Workman


Happy heavenly Mother’s Day, Mama.


(Note: an etheree poem consists of 10 lines of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 syllables. The lines can be reversed in order—10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1. And you can do a double etheree, like my poem here, which is 20 lines of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1. Or can be written in reverse order.)


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Come In

Come in,

Sit yourself down, take up your pen—

There, your favorite one.

Enough ink yet

Remains,



Remains

To boldly write down your good deeds.

Yes, there’s not so many,

Less than a page.

Go on.



Go on,

List one, list two, list some not true.

Cover that damn page if

It takes all day.

Just write.



Just write,

Then flip the page over, go dark,

List your sins, bare your heart.

Blackness inside,

Hidden.



Hidden

Where no one can see what lies foul

In your flesh, blood and bone,

Your heart, your soul.

Come in.

©2021 KT Workman


(Note: Crown Cinquain—a series of 5 (entire) Crapsey Cinquains, 25 lines total. Syllable count 2-8-6-4-2 in each stanza; written with breaks between stanzas. Rhyme is optional. The last line of the previous cinquain is repeated as the first line of the next cinquain. The final line of the last cinquain does not have to equal the first line of the first cinquain, but is optional.)

Credit for the definition goes to Abigail Gronway at Dark Side of the Moon.

Image by andreas160578 from Pixabay

An August Day

A hot August day closes its simmering drapes
Sultry darkness creeps in on silent, soggy feet
A hot August day closes its simmering drapes

The sun slinks away in temporary defeat
Mimosas curl their leaves, heave a sigh of reprieve
Sultry darkness creeps in on silent, soggy feet

Katydids, crickets, and frog’s voices interweave
A warm breeze soughs through old oaks, tickles Spanish moss
Mimosas curl their leaves, heave a sigh of reprieve

A whippoorwill calls, shedding the sun’s scorching dross
Fireflies come out of hiding, frolic in the yard
A warm breeze soughs through old oaks, tickles Spanish moss

Through the screened window, Elvis croons, that fifties bard
On the front porch, sweet iced tea caresses damp hands
Fireflies come out of hiding, frolic in the yard

Where children shout “Red Rover!” in my heart’s Southland
A hot August day closes its simmering drapes
On the front porch, sweet iced tea caresses damp hands
A hot August day closes its simmering drapes

©2021 KT Workman

(Note: A Terzanelle is a combination of the villanelle and terza rima poetic forms. It consists of 19 lines containing 5 interlocking tercets, plus a concluding quatrain, in which the 1st and 3rd lines of the 1st tercet appear as refrains. The middle line of each tercet is repeated, reappearing as the last line of the succeeding tercet, with the exception of the center line of the next-to-last stanza, which appears in the quatrain. Each line has the same metrical length.

Rhyme and refrain scheme: A-B-A, b-C-B, c-D-C, d-e-D, e-F-E, f-A-F-A [or f-F-A-A].) Definition taken from: Shadow Poetry website.)

And a special thanks to Ben Alexander at The skeptic’s kaddish whose Terzanelle inspired me.


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The Cherry on Top

She bonded to him, till death they do part,
And merry they danced to the beat of years,
And picked wildflowers as red as their hearts,
While time flowed by, unencumbered by tears.

Now clumsily they waltz, feet lost asea.
Steps turn to missteps, they cannot keep time.
Shiny love rusts away, no longer cherry.
Respect fades too, scoured in bitter brine.

Time has a way of erasing what’s good
As bad temper, bad times, roll through the home.
He shouts and curses, is constantly rude,
But she’s grown too old to think she can roam.

Patient, but not content, she holds her breath,
Waits not for love, but for respite—sweet death.

©2021 KT Workman

(Note: Shakespearean sonnet—has 14 lines divided into 3 quatrains and a couplet. Each line typically has 10 syllables written in iambic pentameter. Rhyme scheme: a-b-a-b, c-d-c-d, e-f-e-f, gg.)

Image by Clarence Alford from Pixabay

Woman Unseen

can you see me
over here
still alive
still breathing
still wanting
still needing
needing what
I just don’t know
no longer young
but don’t feel old
not enough wisdom
in my weary soul
lived all these years
and learned
so damn little
Rome burned
while I fiddled
where was my heart
where was my mind
picking up sticks
wasting time
erstwhile friends
slipped away
to a time and place
of yesterdays
children grew
and moved away
don’t need me
to find their way
when I was young
and not yet old
still traveling
an easy charmed road
did not think
this day would come
old as the hills
but still
too young

©2021 KT Workman

(Note: Though this doesn’t seem to apply to men, we women of a “certain age,” become invisible. This poem is for all the not-seen ladies out there.)

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

March Chimes

Spring was my mama’s favorite season. She loved gardening, whether it involved vegetables or ornamentals, and when one visited, spring, summer, or fall, outside among the growing things was where one would likely find her. Her front porch sported a multitude of wind chimes, and when I hear mine (on my back porch) “tinkling in the wind,” I think of her. This one is for you, Mama.

 

March chimes tinkle in the wind,
Telling me spring is on the way,
Chasing away dark winter days.
And I wonder where the wind has been.

Unlike winter, spring sports a grin.
Yellow-bold, bright and warm and gay.
March chimes tinkle in the wind,
Telling me spring is on the way.

Sometimes brash, chimes dance, drunk on gin.
Or perhaps weed entered the fray.
Drunk or high or merry, who’s to say?
They jump and jingle as they spin—
March chimes tinkle in the wind,
Telling me spring is on the way.

©2021 KT Workman

(Note: Originating in French lyrical poetry of the 14th century, a rondel poem is a fixed form of verse based on two rhyme sounds and consisting usually of 14 lines divided into three stanzas. The first two lines of the 1st stanza are repeated as the refrain of the 2nd and 3rd stanzas. The meter is open, but usually has eight syllables per line. Rhyme scheme: A-B-b-a, a-b-A-B, a-b-b-a-A-(B)—capital letters represent lines repeated verbatim.)

Image by Carla Burke from Pixabay

Haiku 1

Golden color rains,
Crackles and breaks under shoes,
Spills dry, lifeless blood.

©2021 KT Workman

(Note: A form of Japanese poetry, a Haiku contains just 3 lines with a total of 17 syllables. The 1st line has 5 syllables, the 2nd 7, and the 3rd 5. It it usually about nature.)

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