OneWord Poetry: Plague

memories linger
swaddling me like a cocoon
binding me in place
a plague of self doubt
worry
heartache

from this I will free myself
I will rise from the ashes
reborn into myself


Written for OneWord Poetry, but as it’s exactly 33 words and uses an idiom ‘rise from the ashes’, I’m adding it to this week’s Trifextra as well.

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“Caterwaul”

Morning’s quiet stillness is pierced
a single screech at first
then an accompanying cry
then several more calling back
No nightmare though
starts this cacophony
no half-remembered dream
or lingering desperation.
This dissonance is external
this clamor not held within these four walls.

As I wake early, turning my gaze to the sun
I take a moment to quiet my thoughts
to learn how to separate myself
from the discord.

“Come Alive”

there are things that need to be said
things that make the heart sing
or ache
words unspoken that yearn for the air
that once breathed into being
become like feathers
floating away
leaving in their wake
a sense of freedom and fulfillment

there are things that must be said
hopes and dreams require fuel
without voice they cannot emerge into the light
without the light they cannot be seen
and shared

there are things which we fear to speak
words that clutch and claw at our hearts
threatening to tear us open
leave us raw and bleeding
these too must be spoken
must be exposed and examined
for they are impediments to our true selves
to our happiness
our wholeness

set pen to paper, hold a brush in your hand
make music and art and poetry
and give breath to your fears
to your hopes
your dreams and beliefs
your wondering and your pain
allow it to live
and then to be free

“Conversations With Death: Evening”

Another visit from Death
came just after sunset.
A crescent moon hung low in the sky.
His approach brought with it
a brisk wind to stir up
the autumn debris.
He paused as he approached,
watching me.
I ignored his coming
and instead turned my face to the sky,
to the waxing moon
just beginning to illuminate the night.
He cleared his throat.
You can’t avoid me forever,
he said, his voice trying to be sinister
but only managing to be scratchy
like the leaves on the ground.
I smiled.
I know, I replied, and turned to face him.
But you can’t have me yet.
Death stared at me
eyes hollow
hands shaking from his own chill.
You’re beautiful, he said.
I stared at him
taken aback by that flattery.
He pulled his hoodie tighter around his face
not letting me see him
except for his eyes.
A breath or two later
he turned away, leaving me behind.
Once more I looked to the moon,
closed my eyes,
and truly felt alive.


Part three of this series, once more inspired by the prompt at Trifecta. This week’s word: sinister.

“Conversations With Death: Morning”

Death spoke to me early this morning
while it was still dark
and the chill of the autumn night
permeated everything.
He told me he was afraid
in a voice like dry leaves scattered across the grass,
and I laughed.
What could Death fear? I asked
and he looked at me grimly
(as only Death can).
I fear the things you surround yourself with
said Death.
I fear that brightness in your eyes
when you look upon those you love.
I fear the warmth that spreads through your heart
when you hear their voices,
when you feel their touch.
I fear the strength you take from a cold autumn night
and from an unrestrained storm.
When Death said these things he trembled,
cowering before me, pitiful and small.
Why do these things frighten you? I asked
and Death smiled.
Because of them I cannot touch you,
Death replied.
I can dance around you, taunting and jeering,
but while you are shrouded by those things
I can never embrace you.
I watched him then depart, slipping off into the cold
as dawn broke,
drawing the darkness away with him.
Death spoke with me early this morning,
and told me I am alive.


This, my first bit of writing in some time, was inspired by this week’s Trifecta challenge, and by the seasona; changes I see all around me.
Also offered up to With Real Toads’ weekly Open Link Monday, Poets United’s Poetry Pantry, and Open Link Night over at d’Verse. Click through and read some amazing words!

Note: I am humbled to know that this poem placed third in the Trifecta challenge for the week it was entered. Thanks so much!