{the #MoSt Poetry: 12}

Prompt #12 (for December 26th): I’ve been carrying the words and melody of the carol “In the Bleak Midwinter,” (based on Christina Rosetti’s poem, and usually set to a melody by Gustav Holst) in my skull for a few days now, and still find myself gripped by by these lines:
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak mid-winter
Long ago.

Here are a couple of versions to listen to/watch (after the annoying YouTube commercials).

Whether there’s winter snow where you live, consider this painting by Vincent Van Gogh, entitled “Winter (The Vicarage Garden Under Snow)” as you prepare to write today’s poem. Once you go to the Norton Simon site, you’ll probably want to enlarge, zoom, and/or pan the painting to notice the details. To the right of the picture are some bits of biographical information and some questions worth considering—to which I’ll add some other possibilities:

What is it like to work outside in cold weather? What things are under the snow? What secrets are revealed—intentionally or accidentally—when we uncover what’s been hidden? Use any of the above stuff (the painting, the carol, seasonal sensations)— or anything that occurred to you while reading this—to write a poem set in winter, bleak or joyful, arduous or easeful.

R e a d y…Steady…Go~~~


dusk comes so early —
not yet a moonlit blanket
water turns to stone

{the #MoSt Poetry: 11}

Prompt #11 (for December 25th): There are a lot of holidays to celebrate in December! According to nationalday.com, there are several designated holidays between the 21st (Winter Solstice) and the 27th (National Fruitcake Day), including Chanukah, National Cookie Exchange Day, National Short Person Day, Festivus (!), Christmas, Boxing Day, Kwanzaa, National Candy Cane Day, and National Thank You Note Day. Whether you celebrate one, some, or all of these days, or have a favorite day of your own set aside for celebration or commemoration, how do you choose to acknowledge it? What sensations (sights, sounds, smells, etc.), objects, traditions, memories, and people come to mind? Write a poem no longer than 25 lines that explores these possibilities. For an extra challenge, write a poem about a holiday that doesn’t yet exist, but should. Ready…Steady…Go~~~

This one’s for Heidi Mordhorst, who observed that I already made this a poem anyway…

Starlight Saturdays

I’ve been reminded
Of tiny gifts of love pressed
Into willing hands,
Of stiff cellophane wrapping
& striped-red minty sweetness.
Tucked in a round cheek
Just a spoonful of sugar
Shortens the service.

If you celebrate, Happy Christmas.

{the #MoSt Poetry: 10}

Prompt #10 (for December 24th): Write a poem about the photograph below—which I snagged from some random Facebook post a year or so ago and don’t know how to credit. Try incorporating some of what you see into a “Just before this…”/”Right now…”/”And then…” narrative. Consider having your title serve as your first or last line—or merely number it as if this poem were one in a series. Ready? Steady… Go~~~

Transbay Tube

Heads down, on uptown train
The jostling faithful endures.
(O come, with frigid fingers
Cold cheeked and triumphant)
A crackling intercom
Produces staticked fragments
The next stop, presumably –
No one knows for sure.

And then
A man in a tree
Or, a man AND a tree
Shuffles on
Consumed by needles and lights
Exuding holiday.

Around him, passengers glance
Blink, taking in his festival garb
And go right back
To their phones.