Happiness Is (A Sonnet)

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Prompt: Emotion

 

Happiness is waking up on Sunday,
the sunlight streaming into your bedroom.
You wake up, dreams of last night gone astray,
but the dream was good or so you assume.
Happiness is making a cup of tea:
kettle-boiled water, lemon, and syrup.
You drink it up, feel the serenity,
then say a thankful prayer to gear up.
Happiness is being with those you love,
the ones who know what’s in your heart.
The need for small talk is disposed of
When you feel like you’re never far apart.
Happiness is the song that sings “Good night,”
filled with gratitude, hope, love, and delight.

Ode To The Library (Poem-A-Day Challenge Day 9)

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Ode to The Library

Dear Library,
Thank you for being my favorite hiding place
All throughout the days that I called myself a student.
No matter what happened or where I was,
I knew I could find safety in your silent shelves.

In high school,
I could sit amongst the likes of Austen and Shakespeare
While reading romance novels or comic books
or whatever new book caught my eye that day.

In college, I would grab a small pile
(and by small I mean as much as my arms can carry)
and sit in the lounge that looked out at the campus
It was also a nice place to take a nap.

Nowadays, I have to make a drive for the library
And they weren’t the hideaways they once were,
but I can still go there whenever I need an adventure,
because I can always get lost in a good book.

My Sixth Grade Notebook (A Garland Cinquain)

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Prompt: Doodle poem

Doodles
I liked to draw
little five pointed stars
Pentacles, enclosed in circles
Dreaming.

I don’t
want to be here
I love to read and write
But adventure is out there and
I’m stuck

This is
the sixth circle of hell
A white-walled box called “school.”
Nobody understands me here
at all

Changing
All of my friends
have grown up or moved out
I’m stuck waiting for my freedom
Alone

I write
I make stories
Each story is like a star.
Scribbling in my notebook, I
Escape

Doodles
want to be here
A white-walled box called “school”
I’m stuck waiting for my freedom
Escape

Urban Paradise (Poem-A-Day Challenge Day 7)

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Prompt: Urban

In my perfect life,
I don’t have to drive anywhere.
I’d be living in the city.
Everywhere I need to be
Is either a walk, a bus, or a train ride away.

I would start my day looking out at the city
Eating breakfast out on a terrace or a fire escape
The cacophany of the traffic is music to my ears.

The city becomes my muse
as the morning light reflects off of every skyscraper,
bathing the streets with hope.

I would go to places for writing
like a bookstore with a reading nook
or a village cafe,
taking inspiration from all the things I see.
Each sight and sound
becoming part of my poetry.

In reality, cities can be scary, cynical places.
The city of my dreams is just that, a utopia.
An urban paradise that can never truly be
And yet even the dream of that city
Inspires the likes of writers like me.

Questions and Answers At The Sixth Station

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Prompt: Write an ekphrastic poem. An ekphrastic poem is a poem inspired by art.

Inspired by the 6th Station of the Cross.

It’s been said that you once bled for 12 years.
When He healed you, He called you “Daughter.”
Just how old are you?
What happened after He healed you?
What brought you here now, to His hour of death?
Why did you bring that veil with you?
How did you get past the guards?
How long did you get to wipe His face?
Did you see the scars from the whips on His skin?
The piercing of the thorns upon His brow?
Did you think that if you touched His face
the bleeding He suffered would stop?
How could the one who helped you be so helpless?
How could the one who gave you hope look so hopeless?

It couldn’t have been easy for you.
And yet His face comes clear in your veil
The same eyes that loved you
The same ears that heard you
The same mouth that spoke to you
He is with you
Thankful for you
Daughter, your faith in Him is strong
So do you believe that He will conquer death?

Catch-22 April Poem-A-Day Challenge Day 5

Startup Stock Photos

Startup Stock Photos

Prompt: Experience/Inexperience

Most jobs have “experience” as a requirement
People casting out lines, learning the art of enticement
But you can’t get experience without a job
Even with a degree, people have to lob
Getting a real job isn’t something we instinctively knew
No knowledge from school is enough to break through.
Do resumes really capture the full extent of our worth?
Can a cover letter give us an opportunity’s birth?
Every interview feels like a bad date
You’re expected to dress up, show up and wait.
Then they ask you questions and you put on a good face
You ask them a few questions and try to make your case
Then they say they’ll call, but the line’s always dead.
Why can’t they just say “no” outright instead?
It’s especially hard for the awkward and shy
Whose true talents lie hidden to opportunistic eyes
Or for artists who want to break out of the mold
Only to “sell out” and just do as they’re told.
Still, there is hope that a living can be made.
Just think out of the box and make up a trade.
Create the right words and phrases and the money will roll in.
It’ll just take a while, but new chances will begin.

Go the Distance (Poem-A-Day Challenge Day 4)

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Last night I had a dream.
I was travelling somewhere.
The sky was clear.
The road was ahead.
People were waiting for me.
In the seat next to mine,
my mother asks me:
“Do you want to go?”
I really wanted to
At the same time, I was scared.
“I don’t know,” I said.
“That’s okay,” she said.
“We can go home and wait until you are.”
So the car started up
and I woke up.

How I wanted to say “Yes.”
Because I wanted to go the distance.
I know that I was scared.
I know that I’m still scared.
What we don’t know is always scary.
And yet whatever was waiting for me
Calling to me
I wanted to go.
I still want to go.

I know that the future is uncertain
The way isn’t clear, but the light shines brightly
I enter back into the dream
This time I say “Yes. I want to go.”
All I know now
is that I’m gonna go the distance.
Whatever else happens,
let it be done unto me.

Those Three Words (A Series of Haikus)

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The first time I said
those three words to somebody
I was just sixteen

It was my first kiss
Shared with a star-crossed “lover”
Boy was I stupid

I don’t think I meant it
Got caught up in the moment
Summer loves don’t last

I said them again
to someone else years later
I meant it this time

He was a lost soul
Wandering in the darkness
Wanting me with him

But I chose the light
of a bright shiny future
Instead of his love

Out on the dance floor,
I almost said those three words
to a charming man.

His reluctance mixed
with contradicted gestures
He was not my prince.

Caught under a spell
I said those three words again
But I didn’t mean them.

I was not about
To go back into the dark’s
empty promises.

I wish I could say
those three words to someone but,
I must choose wisely.

Someday, I’ll find him
Or he might find me instead
And then I’ll say them

This eight lettered phrase
Those three little words that mean
one thing: “I love you.”

Defying Expectations: A Poem In Honor of Autism Awareness Day

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The diagnosis began with a test.
I was called out of class
and was asked a lot of questions.
The results of that test were kept hidden

Until a classmate did a project
and the questions began their resurrection.
My mother revealed I had Asperger’s
I didn’t really know what that meant or what to do with it

Years later, I came across an article
about a model who had this strange condition
I watched her story play out, her struggle resonating with mine
It was as if she was saying “You are not alone.”

In time, I became more open about my Asperger’s
And found people who understood or were surprised
I guess I was more “high functioning” than I thought
But even so, there were dark clouds looming on the horizon.

One dark night, I was caught in a tidal wave of anxiety
Screaming for help in the riptide, I drowned instead
I washed up on the frozen shores of the Ice Queen’s land
Where she exiled me and wanted off with my head

For years I struggled with nightmares and wandering
Trying to find myself again through something, anything
I almost ended up losing myself entirely
Through the lies of someone else’s manipulative words

But I broke free of the lies that she said
I started my journey of finding myself again.
My broken dreams were scattered behind me
And all I could do was move forward out of the woods

Diagnoses and cold judgment were their short-sighted expectations
I ran from that insanity and with time, I found my way out
I ran out of the woods and made a leap of faith
I fell down into an ocean that became my cocoon

In the ocean, new words taught me to swim
A new voice became my light in the darkness
In the deep waters, I grew wings
And one day, suddenly, I found myself flying

From the ocean to the sky, I soared
The words of the naysayers a distant memory
The ghosts of the pasts can no longer bring me down
I defied the gravity of their expectations