Posted in Poetry

Places I Have Lived

St. Joe
(never Ohio)
now in Orlando
(via some days in Kissimmee)
on the far reaching edges of insanity
and at times in mild hysteria
(where I’m known to grow purple wisteria)
but none can compare
to your eyes
(where I’ve also died)

© Jilly’s All Rights Reserved

Join us over at dVerse where we are writing Quadrilles.
*Kissimmee is the name of a real town just outside of Orlando. It is known for tacky strip malls and cheap hotels near Disney World.

Posted in Poetry

Down to the Boats (On Equal Footing)

And so you went down to the boats
great iron things on clouds they float,
your oars were but a journey from
unmoving Jack’s required coats

Scull and glide, you beat the drum
millennial taskers dressed for numb,
a royale spot awaits you now
so hoist the silk, the quest begun

Alas! Upon these rocks, your scow
digs up the jams you left behind;
you leap across six rocks – somehow
a mouse with ears your sacred cow!

And you, the mate, who followed fast
sans boots, beret, with verses clasp
into the Center of this World
armed with a blend, you set the mast

Into the glass the wine is swirled
and portraits of each boy and girl
pass hand to hand, and erudite
the tales and laughter are unfurled

So round this fire too cold to light
your kindled stories tell the fight
of love and loss and love regained
a rival of that great Twelfth Night

Lighthearted dawn will rise unchained
where all the lines are unconstrained
all boneyard thoughts are loudly heard
with tears and mirth are all sustained

Now shiver the timbers and the birds
spill out the wine, spill out the words
(but pie is seldom on the floor)
harassed and beaten, word for word

Too soon, too soon, there looms the door
while art demands a steep rapport
the upshot now – no going back
‘Repeat this passage!’ all implore.

© Jilly’s All Rights Reserved

A journey in the form of a Rubaiyat for dVerse’s month-long form challenge, hosted by Frank Hubeny. I have been reading Cantos by Ezra Pound, hence that opening line. A journey not meant to be understood, simply enjoyed for the sound and feel. 🙂

Posted in Poetry

Reset ~ a poem

I reset
the chess set
this morning, six months
it sat mute
in the upstairs office, sent
there to avoid
weddings, parties of summer, autumn,
cold stone accusations
I ignored
each night passing
the door switching
off lights

I gathered  
the pieces set
them in crowds in the center
of the board, minglers
at a cocktail party
clusters of soldiers, royalty and clerics,
as though they
have something to talk
about over champagne
and cold fish

I reset
them this morning, lines facing
ready for battle wondering
if I remember
my first move
while spring threatens
to approach

© Jilly’s All Rights Reserved

Join us over a dVerse Poet’s Pub where Sarah has us considering Harbingers.

Posted in Poetry

All I Ask

All I ask is that you lick
your phone less and maybe use your
hands to play childish string games
cradling cats
here’s the church
here’s the steeple
instead of building barriers
of one-handed pepperoni pizza
and stiff cold-jointed bones to
worship, worship, worship

© Jilly’s All Rights Reserved

Join us for a bit of quadrilling at dVerse!

Posted in Poetry

Now In Gold – A Sonnet

My mother’s grave is covered now in gold
and yellows mums; I never visit there.
The wind in winter blows too rough and cold;
I lack the strength to stand the frigid air
against my face; my hands would only ache.
Sucking in the chill my lungs burn dry,
I’d gasp and clutch a tree against the break-
neck speed of gales and squalls that singe my eye.
No, I remain deep in the south where warm,
the sun can only do me good, and think
of how the snow drifts round the stone in storms;
where frozen mums are waiting roses pink
to kiss the face of God when time is done
and scatter blossoms all about in sun.

Image Source

Breaking with the strictest rules of the English Sonnet, I have chosen the following aberrations:
The first eight lines are broken, not into two quatrains, but into syntactical breaks of five and three. This choice is made to propel the poem forward with a sense of urgency and to support the imbalance of the voice.

Also, line seven is only 9 syllables, which echoes the meaning of the line — stolen breath.
Lastly, line nine, which serves as my turn (volta) is clearly not in iambic form, which puts into question the choice made to not visit. Because the subject matter of this sonnet is meant to express an asymmetrical feel, these slight deviations are designed to support that.

I welcome feedback regarding these choices!

Join us at dVerse Poet’s Pub where we are challenging ourselves with the Sonnet Form. This week I am hosting a special edition of Meeting the Bar where I support our month-long Sonnet Challenge with a close look at how the enjambed line impacts our sonnets.

Posted in Poetry

The Day the Iguana Went to the Spa – A Terzanelle

He had no regrets and no last hoorah
Luncheon was served; hibiscus flow’r
The day the iguana went to the spa

No need to flee, nor did he cower
Seeing the good life stretch out before
Luncheon was served; hibiscus flow’r

Life in the wild was such a chore
A cultured iguana with an ear for the jazz
Seeing the good life stretch out before

No doubt about it, knows what he has
Lighting is perfect, the vibe is quite cool
A cultured iguana with an ear for the jazz

No resistance, he’s never the fool
His name up in lights, now he’s a star
Lighting is perfect, the vibe is quite cool

Placing an order for caviar
He has no regrets and no last hoorah
His very own limo, step up to the bar,
The day the iguana went to the spa

© Jilly’s All Rights Reserved

Join me at dVerse for Meeting the Bar where my challenge is to write a poem in one of the Repetitive Forms.  We explore 5 potential forms: Villanelle, Terzanelle (like this one!), Pantoum, Triolet, and the Chant. Of course, you are also welcome to use any form that makes use of repetitive lines.  Hope you will join in!

Posted in Poetry

Poetry – Phoebe and the Buffleheads – Quadrille

all summer we shovel heat
scrape humidity
icing our drinks
as we huddle close around
the fan

at last


and the buffleheads
have returned
from the edges of the arctic
to cheer us
with news that a light
sweater might be needed

©  Jilly’s  All Rights Reserved

De is hosting the Quadrille at dVerse this week; come and raise a toast with us as we enter a season of cheer! 

It occurs to me that Phoebe and the Buffleheads would be a great name for a rock band, but in reality, these are two of the birds that winter here in Central Florida.  It is a seasonal milestone when each of these species arrive; one for which there is much rejoicing in the land 🙂

Posted in Poetry

Dust & Rubble – a poem

I open my mouth to speak
but all that comes out is dust
and rubble

The storm that crosses the desert
of my words
strikes as lightning
but the remnants are only broken
glass and bits of sound
that no one remembers

The flame beneath the kiln
of these lips heats
a furnace of the unspoken

I wail dry tears and thirsty sobs
expecting that lung-cleansing

©  Jilly’s Poem & Image All Rights Reserved

Posting for dVerse Poetics where Victoria is getting our creativity all fired up!

Posted in Poetry

Nothing New To Say

The sun has risen just as it always does
The leaves turn brilliant colors and they fall
I see it all with placid eye because
I really have nothing new to say at all
Never mind me; it won’t be my downfall

Love has come to stay, where it never was
That smile across the breakfast table mine alone
I see it all with tranquil eyes because
I really have nothing new to say, I merely drone
Never mind me if clever words have flown

Death arrived, a bee without a buzz
It stings and gives no honey in return
I see it all with docile eyes because
I really have nothing new to say that can be heard
Never mind me; I’ll sit beside the fire, watch it burn

The sun has fallen just as it always does
The crocus and a daffodil burst through the snow
I see it all with timid eyes because
I really have nothing new to say, no words to show
Never mind me; it matters not, although…

© Jilly’s  All Rights Reserved


Grace is hosting at dVerse and we are challenged to write Quintains.  I have chosen an English Quintain which follows this format:

*The rhyme scheme for English quintains is usually A-B-A-B-B.

*There is no set measure or foot (the number and type of syllables or feet).

Posted in Poetry

Leonid’s Air

Leonid’s air
draws us
from this
warm bed

Setting belt
Rising gourd
the Lion roars
but once at four

Leaning into you
we gape and weave
through dream-filled



no cricket
song for

fate or God
spoils are won

© Jilly’s  All Rights Reserved

On the event of rising early for the Leonids
to see only one shooting star over the skies of Orlando

Lill is hosting the Quadrille over at dVerse.  Don’t be a spoilsport – join us! 😉