Condor

Standing on Navajo Bridge

I see two condors

on the cliff face they look small

great wings tucked and resting

Colorado River moves below

takes rafters through the Grand Canyon

hoping to see a condor

maybe a peregrine falcon

Our guide tells of the time

high on the rock ledge

temperatures so hot

fledglings died in their nest

Still I want to see a condor take flight

I want to watch it soar

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Nesting condors have been observed at Zion National Park and I am hoping that global warming doesn’t push them out of their nests too early. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-9814501/amp/Two-critically-endangered-California-condors-spotted-near-Zion-National-Park.html

Condor

Oyster Knife

The oyster knife fit perfectly in her hand, its old wooden handle smooth and darkened with a century of use; how it pried open the barnacled shell (shell after shell) until there was a pile resting at her feet and the soft flesh of the oysters filled a bowl, their delicate lace edges curling outward away from the green sack of their being. She slipped one into her mouth— oysters on the half shell always her favorite. Always a top shell and a bottom shell. Never a pearl. Someday, she said to herself— someday she will find a pearl, but until then she promised herself, she would keep on eating oysters.

When the blade goes dull, I will think of Zora Neale Hurston who wrote

“No, I do not weep at the world — I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.”

Sharpen your knife.

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dVerse prompt to write prosey using the words of Zora Neale Hurston from 1928 in World Tomorrow —How It Feels to be Colored Me.

Also using Ursula K. Le Guin’s Steering the Craft Exercise 3, using long and short sentences.

Real old oyster knife pictured found at a thrift shop San Juan Island.

Oyster Knife

Walking My Dog

Walking my dog into the labyrinth

he has no sense of following the path

(marked with stone and showing the way)

he prefers random ins and outs

sniffs along breaking the barriers

(set by man to keep us in line)

smudge on his nose

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dVerse prompt to write a quadrille and use the word smudge. I actually know a dog named Smudge but this is not about him. This is about my dog who always has his nose in just about everything.

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Walking My Dog

Middleness

crucial to finding the way is this there is no beginning or end only a lingering in the middle caught in the middle of nothing and nothing with no end marks and capital letters no space whiteness on a paper where a word isn’t and silence takes over just a blob of words on a page of middleness

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dVerse prompt on prosy using Jo Harjo’s line Crucial to finding the way is this: there is no beginning or end. combined exercise with Ursula K. Lê Guin’s Steering the Craft Exercise 2 to write with no punctuation

Middleness

In Robert Bly’s Hometown

remember the sound of your voice

reading my poem to the class

here something happens

poetry is making something happen

don’t be content with just words

make them leap off the page

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dVerse prompt to write about or to a favorite poet. I visited Madison, Minnesota a few weeks ago and went to the little house where Robert Bly wrote and it contains much of his library.

In Robert Bly’s Hometown

Joywriting

Words move over the page

back and forth

no reason or destination

hoping to see a site

pick up friends

trying not to be seen

don’t honk the horn

when you’re done

just ditch it

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Joywriting is a chapter in Susan G. Woodbridge’s Poemcrazy: Freeing Your Life With Words, a NaPoWriMo prompt for Day 18.

Joyriding is a term used for car theft that involves just driving around until it runs out of gas.

Joywriting

Coming In

My daughter loved the book of poetry Where the Sidewalk Ends. She took it to bed. Nestled in those pages was the line “If you are a dreamer, come in.” by Shel Silverstein.

I remember the dreams I had for me and I remember the dreams I had for you. Not just ordinary ones like getting a good grade in school or going to a fine university, living in a two story house or taking a trip to Greenland. Not the dream to be a poet or magician or architect. My dreams concerned paradigms, broader in scope than world peacekeeping or disarmament. I dreamt contentment for us all, lack of greed and pride, love of the human race, coming in together.

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dVerse prosey prompt on Shel Silverstein quote from his poem Invitation.

Coming In

On Carmel Point

To My Dear Robinson Jeffers,

When the fog rolls and the horn sounds

I will think of the stones you carried

up the hill on Carmel Point

to set a foundation for Tor House

You kept going higher and higher

until you met the hawk

the world expanding around you

your small window with a view of the Pacific

I want life and death to come as naturally

I want to thank you for placing stone

upon stone in such a way it formed

narrow pathway to the highest point

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Yes, my dear,

“Against the outcrop boulders of a

raised beach

We built our house when I and my

love were young.

Here long ago . . .

. . . all that we saw or heard

was beautiful.” Robinson Jeffers

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NaPoWriMo prompt on letter to a favorite historical figure and response by that person. One of my favorite poets. I visited his house and Tor House in Carmel one day while road tripping. Original take on this experience written in 2016.

On Carmel Point