Tag Archives: word prompt

A High Note

Before growing pains seeped

thick into my womb,

searing it,

staining it scarlet,

ripping my freedom to shreds,

exploding idyllic preconceptions,

pouring hormonal rust upon my skipping youth,

a green heart played innocent tunes

on a swelling rib cage.

The meadows rippled in reply,

and the stream tinkled in time to the childish beat.

The hills, too kind to disillusion me,

echoed my refrain

in three-part harmony —

yet nature couldn’t prevent

the betrayal of my burgeoning body.

I made painful mistakes,

edging around the shadiest patches,

mostly staying in safe places.

These days, the lost ones shimmy down slimy drainpipes

as if life is a giveaway toy to treat lightly

and toss aside.

Lately, my heartbeat sings

a less vigorous song, muffled

by the grimy streets and the grainy patina of age,

but now and again a high note

echoes through the trees.

©Jane Paterson Basil

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Chain

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Spent a long time waiting for the coming of age,
waiting to wake with the wisdom of a sage,
waiting for patience to replace teenage rage,
waiting for childishness to disengage.

It creeps up slowly and you’re never done
with learning life’s lessons one by one.
As the last one ends, another’s begun
and soon you know that it’s part of the fun.

Life is awash with pleasure and pain,
it’s an oddly constructed, uneven chain;
some links are intricate, while others are plain,
some look too delicate to take the strain.

Whatever the condition of your current link,
whether it is flimsy or folded by a kink,
this could pass far faster than you think;
the blink of an eye might find you in the pink.

P.S.

Make the most of your talents each day,
never be fazed by what doubters say;
don’t let temptation lead you astray;
live your life in your own unique way.

©Jane Paterson Basil

If the Tables Were Turned

Please tell me, what would you do
if you were confined in a zoo
and all of the animals
from lizards to camels
strolled around pointing at you?

Now tell me, how would you feel,
if you were encased behind steel
while the chimpanzees
watched your antics with glee
and laughed at you eating your meal?

So, what if the tables were turned?
It’s time the corrupted ones learned
just like human beings
those creatures have feelings
and all of us should be concerned.

Inspired by the Government’s recent faux pas (how’s that for an understatement?) over the sentience of animals.

©Jane Paterson Basil

Boulders and Daisies

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.

You hustled a one-way ticket to hell,
hopping heavily aboard the chugging train,
smutty snow dripping down shrinking lanes,
tripping its way into cellular recesses
sifting your sight and your senses like sand.

Love and ribboned opportunities
jumbled up with rusty maybe-memories,
stuttered on the hollow horizon.
Blinded by the back end of a telescope,
all you perceived were burning trees.

You regretted the leathery ticket to hell,
and bravely you leaped from the trickety train.
Bruised by boulders and freed from near-misses,
the broken pieces were soldered with kisses
and you bathed in the cleansing rain.

This video is visually poor, but I like the sound. Beatlemania was a weird phenomenon – the fans made so much noise that they drowned out what they had paid to hear…

©Jane Paterson Basil

Dropped Stitches

“It’s like knitting a scarf,” the woman said, plopping herself down with another G&T.

She appeared to be talking to me, so I glanced her way.

“Life, I mean. It’s like knitting a scarf. You choose the colours, and make it as long or short as you want. You can make an intricate pattern, or keep it simple. It can be dull or exciting.” As she looked up, I noticed a tidemark on her neck.

“I suppose so,” I said uncertainly, taking in her unkempt appearance.

“D’you want to see mine?” she asked, opening a large carrier bag and pulling out something woolly. She proudly held it up. The lower end of it trailed on the floor, soaking up a pool of questionable liquid.

The scarf’s erratic hues screamed painfully at each other. Shamelessly dropped stitches and ladders gaped.

The Daily Post’s word prompt for today is Knit. Yesterday I wrote a poem about knitting, so today I had to come up with something different…

©Jane Paterson Basil

Ask Me Why

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.

When we were families,
grandma’s house was a shared nest, and her attic
held history’s secrets beneath
dust that had caressed generations of kin.
Fingerprints revealed the smudged sheen
of an oaken music box, broken
by children’s rough love.
Though empty, it retained memories
of seamed silk stockings and a mother’s kiss.
Buried in a leather trunk an unworn
wedding dress told a musty story of domestic hope,
its promise stolen by the guns of war;
beneath the yellowed crepe-de-chine
lay mothy remnants
of a bridal bottom drawer.

When we were families,
most of us had somewhere
we could call our family home.
It may be humble, rough-and tumble,
with crumbling bathroom walls,
but it was many times better than no home at all.
When cold weather crept through our vests,
we’d pile into the kitchen through a welcoming door
and nestle next to a warming fire.

   * * *

Beyond my window, rain splashes passers by.
A billowing wind blows them forward, to where dry warmth beckons .

Half a mile away an encampment of flimsy tents
does little to protect our homeless friends.

At night they crawl inside their sleeping bags, fully dressed.
Curling up tight, they pretend to themselves that their nest is safe,
while council officials continue their plot
to rob the dispossessed of what little they’ve got.

©Jane Paterson Basil

Putrified

words

It used to feel
      like they floated
          from the mild sky
             blowing dust motes
              aside,
              their music 
             filling 
          the holes in my mind;
        rhythmic beauty
      gently injected by
      a generous entity
       tripping through
          the very heart of me.

                Has my writing putrified
                  or have I become a better judge?
                  When I review my newer words
                 all I see is sludge.

©Jane Paterson Basil