Steps In Between

Celaine Charles ~ My journey as a writer ~ CLICK "Steps In Between" for past posts

Let the Words Roam…National Poetry Month, April 2020

National Poetry Month

This year, our entire world is isolated and locked down during National Poetry Month. But I say, let the words roam! Let them “beat upon your head like silver liquid drops” (Langston Hughes, April Rain Song, 2)! Let them singe from your fingertips as you write and embrace your heart as you read. I say, fill this time of fear and instability from an enemy-virus with grace and hope and acceptance—celebrate the season that’s still here.

With great honor, I bring you poetry from writers who wish to acknowledge the season. It’s Spring! It’s National Poetry Month! With heavy hearts for those suffering, with patience for the mishandlings in understanding something so grave, we present a moment of peace.

If this post finds you filled with inspiration and you wish to join in the merriment, please contact me at celainecharles@gmail.com and I will happily include you. I will be re-sharing this post all April long, so there is no rush.

In alphabetical order, I am happy to introduce some amazing and thoughtful poets celebrating National Poetry Month this April 2020:

POETS

Yvonne Brewer (Spring Sends Love Letters)

Ailsa Cawley (Crocus Chorus)

Celaine Charles (Just a Daffodil & Spring Hope)

Steven Fortune (The Sweetest Little Shower)

Marichit Garcia (Perspective)

Pamela Hobart Carter (Sky Glowers Stormy or Wafts Fragrance)

Alyssa de St-Blanquat (Silence)

Benjamin Hobbs (A Year in Proverbs, April)

Linda Imbler (Clear Window & What’s Not to Believe)

Ferris Jones (Monument & Song #19)

Kevin McManus (April the Awakening & Ostara, the Gathering of the Light)

Morgan Scott (A Lighter Boat)

Martha Silano (Spring)

April Thompson (Puddle At Her Feet)

Arleen Williams (Public Pool)

 

Spring Sends Love Letters ~By Yvonne Brewer, from her book, Twigs

 

Spring sends love letters

to Summer,

written in ink of green,

a love affair blossoming,

secret nocturnal awakenings.

 

Sunrises unwrapping nakedness

in orange and gold,

sunsets hiding moonlit secrets

only bats and owls can be told.

 

Love bursting buds

sensual smells of fairy bluebells

ring out to the lovers

to come lie here

in beds of purple

 

under shady oaks

where time stops and

the earth’s love making

is camouflaged by

bird song and frog croaks.

 

Spring wraps her thighs

around summer,

letting bog heat and

garden juices flow

 

and longer nights by

cool water banks

as the river bends

shyly,

as if not to know.

 

national poetry month 2020 angie plant crocus choir

Image: Ailsa Cawley

Crocus Chorus ~By Ailsa Cawley

 

Every winter I’d look for it
That sign on my dreary ride to work
A dark damp office filled with hopeful people
That their fortune would be better
After the silver tongued charmers told them
It would all be fine
It was a true miserable winter.

Then I began looking I don’t recall why
Or if I just needed a sign of hope
Face pressed to a window to look
For what I didn’t know
Among high rise flats and graffitied walls
Something was there to make me feel joy
And one morning it was

Where there’d appeared to be nothing
Here sprang a multi coloured carpet
Of yellow, white and purple
Masses of flowers tiny delicate blooms
Pushing their heads through frost and snow
Yelling in their riotous silence
We have arrived the crocus dawn is here

They seemed to dance in the wind and flout
The weather that should subdue yet couldn’t
Heralding the way for the daffodils golden trumpets
That sang spring is here finally here
Spring has triumphed winter again
Let gladness in

So I did
Every year I search for beds of crocus
To give the dawn of spring her proper start
To show us all that new beginnings happen
More often than we dare to dream.
And if you listen too you can hear it
On the breeze the crocus chorus.

Each year I anticipate the time when she
Will wake from her slumber
The warmth on her back from lukewarm sun
Yet enough to kiss her skin awake
As she stretches and casts out across earth
Her myriad of jewels for the hopeful
Like me whose heart sings as I see
The earth has renewed and awoken
Bringing beautiful spring filled with joy.

Ailsa
©️AilsaCawleyPoetry2020

 

national poetry month 2020 just a daffodil char's picture

Image: Celaine Charles’ iPhone 🙂

Just a Daffodil ~By Celaine Charles

 

I find a cluster of flowers on my walk.

They sparsely cover the tiny spot

assigned outside the vast church

parking lot, a Tent City in the back

 

for the homeless in despair. The bells

ring as my gaze falls along the bark,

a flower dressed without its usual

golden gown, a scant of hue instead.

 

Just a daffodil in a pocket of blue sky,

unaware of the clouds on the horizon,

or the few eyes that will ever see

its milky petals and sunshine face.

 

Innocent in present time, without

hang-ups or misfortunes, no regrets

to stitch its soul, roots already grounded

from April’s breeze, just a daffodil

 

in search of truth—arriving new

with every morning sunrise, and glorious

birdsong embrace. It holds a message of

promise tied to each wing in white—

 

“See me for today. Remember me

tomorrow. I cannot save your body

from the concrete of this world, but

weave your raveling soul to mine

 

and deeper, I will sink my roots

so that even as the season turns,

though I will not be here for you to touch,

hope will anchor you to its promise.

 

Spring Hope ~By Celaine Charles

 

Crickets chorus out my window,

open to let in the breeze.

April flurries lift away

all winter cares

because Spring has latched

her long green fingers,

caressed my soul with hope,

for a fresh new start.

 

The Sweetest Little Shower ~By Steven Fortune

 

Should our eyes meet

between the golden raindrops

of a late-Spring sunshower

would your hand’s purified arc

grant my lips a taste of ginger

on the eve of offering a palm

glistening beneath a handful

of moist flame?

Would the fire in your feet

stroke the sweet clash

of the elements?

 

Should I wish

the waltzing waft to life

please afford my green steps

a leeway of playful patience

saving some for catching

my hypnosis swimming

in your wet face

 

There was a thought of

asking you to be my umbrella

then it melted

 

not in the sun

not in the shower

 

in the feral grandeur of your marigold prance

 

national poetry month marichit garcia painting

Art: Marichit Garcia

Perspective ~By Marichit Garcia

 

A slip, a tricky twist of the ankle,

Somehow this odd awkward angle

Halfway into a fall,

Offers an interesting view,

Reveals things hidden

From a default height of looking.

And thus, there, between the lower branches,

Crisscrossing to form a star,

A shadowed path that

From standing upright only seemed

A dead-end.

 

So I approach, on elbows

And knees, dragging a throbbing left leg.

Touch the threshold

With nervous fingertips.

A soft breeze meets my hand, scented with spring.

I feel a grip around my heart,

Like an invisible hand or

The memory of a song,

Like a warning,

Like an invitation.

 

national poetry month 2020 pamela hobart carter poem

Image: https://billingsgazette.com/outdoors/learn-about-osprey-at-free-programs/article_d021b3a8-9c11-5ce6-a126-afa0a1ad5b99.html

Sky Glowers Stormy or Wafts Fragrance ~By Pamela Hobart Carter

 

In my religion every bower serves as altar,

every fishing osprey as authority.

When the hunter flies past my window

salmon in its talons, it is spring.

I may live in the city,

but it is cycles

of bird and tree and air

 

set my clock.

 

Silence ~By Alyssa de St-Blanquat

 

In the air

In the heart

Remember

The best

Happiness

Daily

Like a prayer.

 

A Year in Proverbs, April ~ By Benjamin Hobbs

 

  1. Your doubts, fears, anxieties, and emotions come from resentment, which comes from the devil. Banish all of them.
  2. Having a job is being told what to do; having a career is figuring out how to get around brick walls.
  3. Putting originality on a pedestal is the death of art; the only true originality there ever was came in the aftermath of a caveman getting donked on the head.
  4. Some might say I’m too young to be wise. I’m not going to be around forever.
  5. It’s more important to know what you don’t know than what you do know.
  6. Wisdom is not measured in how many years you have but in how many mistakes you’ve made.
  7. Imitators imitate; geniuses innovate.
  8. All masters make mistakes because the quest for self-improvement (rather than the quest for unachievable perfection) requires they work outside their expertise.
  9. Individuality unbacked by diligence and commitment is actually conformity through mediocrity.
  10. Tradition reconciles a people to anything.
  11. By different methods different men excel.
  12. In the wilderness shortcuts are made through bushwhacking with a machete.
  13. Those who need not want not.
  14. Deterrence is better than intervention.
  15. Fearing what happens after life makes as much sense as fearing what happened before life.
  16. An enemy’s concession is better than well wishes from a friend.
  17. Inside a stasis of peace lies a cry for war.
  18. Advice is always free except when taken.
  19. Giving advice is much like gambling with someone else’s money.
  20. Especially in politics the advisor will never have to pay for his mistakes.
  21. Transactional thinking is good when it’s a negotiation, bad when it’s a compromise.
  22. A ship capsizes not from water outside but the water within; be careful what you take on or in.
  23. Truth more often comes from the enemy’s lips than anyone else’s.
  24. God tests his faithful not through pass/fail but so they might return stronger.
  25. You’re going to step in shit. Just walk on.
  26. Life’s so chaotic it’s almost impossible to have the worst set of circumstances.
  27. Having the worst set of circumstances in the world right now can’t possibly last more than a pinpoint in time but if it does and then it happens again that’s more miraculous than lighting striking twice in the same spot.
  28. The same goes for the best set of circumstances, by the way.
  29. God made us for two things: 1. thanksgiving and 2. forgiving.
  30. So give thanks to god and forgive everybody of everything hastily.

 

Clear Window ~By Linda Imbler

 

My early admiration

of dawn’s neon vibrancy,

through cold window panes,

on a crystalline morning.

 

The normal thick traffic

of feathered creatures

which passed across the yard-

absent.

 

What lay on the ground,

a small bird,

clearly in need of rescue,

its tiny wings semaphoring at me-

someone’s abandoned child.

 

In time, I healed it without naming it,

and on the day of its release

wondered to where it might now fly.

 

And although present time is unique,

thus, it is so for later days

my hope, that some echo of kindness

will fly into my future.

 

This is paid back yearly,

when my plumaged friend

returns each Spring,

and peeks through

my clear window,

and waves at me.

 

What’s Not To Believe? ~By Linda Imbler

 

In time

Man will find his wings

In time

Woman will exorcise the moon from her womb

In time

The child will smooth the rough edges of the psyche

In the nick of time

A hero will shift the world

Back onto its feet again

Before it

Stumbling

Shatters its bones.

 

Monument ~By Ferris Jones

 

It’s eternal with deep sources,

Filling all estrangement

With the dangerous, gripping

Raindrops of a pleasant downpour.

It takes care of you.

 

The cloudburst of comfort

Holds as a child’s first step,

In the incredible heart

Of a parent content.

It takes care of you.

 

Song #19 ~By Ferris Jones

 

How well I spent the weekend fair

And tasted the rivers form,

Until the morning of Sunday bliss

Ended with Monday’s reform.

 

With laughing mind, I departed

And tossed my love aside,

Went back into hiding

And with society I complied.

 

April, the Awakening ~By Kevin McManus

 

A time of change and transition.

The sun climbs higher,

the light grows stronger.

Life springs from dead winter branches.

Regrowth, rebirth and renewal

 

The swallow on the wing,

the call of the cuckoo,

a herald for fine weather

 

The shower of petals,

Like snow in April,

streaming from the Haw thorn,

ablaze with white blossoms.

 

In hedgerows creation abounds,

a wildfire of colours.

In the meadow the lamb

Life like blood rising,

a sacred icon of sacrifice and awakening

 

Ostara, the gathering of the light ~ By Kevin McManus

 

The vernal equinox,
a period of equality and balance,
deadlock and stalemate,
night and day,
light and dark,
inside and outside,
man and woman,


A hallowed conjugal
the young Sun God has growing power,
the Earth Goddess has warmed and is awake,
fertility has been reborn,
rebirth and renewal,
the gorse and the violet.
the woodruff and the narcissus
the colours and the bird song
the hare and the egg.

 

© Kevin McManus

 

A Lighter Boat ~By Morgan Scott

The cool breeze pleases my bare face
It is calming yet invigorating
Not unpleasantly chill
Spring shall be here soon
With swift winds and rain
Yet flowers will try to bloom
And persist throughout the pain.
My darkness whispers me to sleep
As echoes chant in my mind.
The ache of winter, bearing
– On my left eyelid, twitching –

The ever soreness of my grasp,
The backwardness of the past
May taunt me little further.
For as the haiku flows
And the cedar flute blows
I too will come to know
That I can again
Be light upon my toes.

I have graced glimpses,
Raw hands and strained feet,
Appendages beat, through winters sleet.
The bark upon the tree grows thick
The weight bears down upon the heartwood
But keeps the branches warm.

I have stood silent among chances,
And lived the winter forlorn.
Reading slowly upon an old friend’s couch
– cold coffee in the afternoon –
Moments I once reveled in,
Now tainted in tar and smoke,
Habits cast aside and kicked
So that I may be lighter in this boat.

For as the flute blows more rapid,
More excited enthused and entropic
The tall trees sigh and lighten
The cold gone and branches strong
Their heights will steepen and brighten
And the sun finds their leaves up drawn.
The rowboat moved slow along its way
In circles, heavy in dismay
But now with sails
Though some worn and slightly tattered

– the boat now ship now quick now flipped –
Speeds on to islands new.
For there is nothing quite as refreshing
As a new springs cool dew.

 

Spring ~By Martha Silano

 

smells of dirt, wet leaves, a water snake’s tongue.

The blue jay has something important to say.

I sit quietly, wait for the fern to unfurl.

What I wanted to say is purple, yellow, white:

a bee hovers near it, a cricket mostly agrees.

The pond is a bathtub for my dusty mind,

there is food here for both me and the sedges,

this place where the arrowhead, at any moment,

will begin to speak, where the orchids will answer

with a bearded nod. The frond of a giant fig

crashed onto the path like a tropical bird. Digging,

we found layers of the broken, the smallest pieces

of ourselves, the edges of who we once were.

 

[Martha Silano, First published in Whale Road Review (2019)]

 

Puddle At Her Feet ~By April Thompson

 

Gray blanket in the sky

Crispy, cool air

 

Rain falling

Pitter, patter, plop, tink

Puddle at her feet

Jump!

 

Splash of innocence

Splash of bliss

Rain falling down

 

Pitter…plop….tink…

Earths cleansing silence

Makes room for

Purity of laughter

 

Gentle breeze reveals

Suns protective warmth

 

Kissing wet cheeks, dripping hair

Rainbow wraps the sky in comfort

Wonder in her eyes

 

Carry on, child, carry on…

 

national poetry month 2020 public pool

Image: ttps://www.sentinelsource.com/news/environment/for-the-birds-a-well-kept-birdbath-keeps-the-birds-coming-back-by-chris-bosak/article_23c4076f-67bb-5f7f-afb9-47d455dfd4c0.html

Public Pool ~By Arleen Williams

 

Our front-yard birdbath is a public pool

For junco and chickadee, sparrow and thrush

 

They come like kids on a warm summer day

Pushing and shoving to make room for more

 

Eager to dunk and dive, to flutter and fluff

They hop foot to foot on pickets and branches

 

Twittering gossips, they preen to impress

Then drift off in pairs or groups as they came

 

Now empty, the water settles in calm await

For another visit on a warm spring day

 

National Poetry Month

There you have it, my friends, original poetry by some amazing artists. Please share this post to spread their words and good wishes to everyone during this April 2020 spring time. We can still celebrate poetry even in a crisis. Let the words do their trick, let them heal. Lean on them when you need a break, inspiration, or an adventure. Let the words roam…

If you would like to join in the festivities, please email me at celainecharles@gmail.com.

Until then, thank you to my poet friends and cheers to National Poetry Month!

As always, happy writing (because at least you’re writing),

Celaine Charles, April 5, 2020

photo cartoon pic 2

Image and Content Credits:

http://beyondtheturmoil2301.blogspot.com/2012/08/healing-rain-is-falling-down-i-am-not.html (image used for Ferris Jones’ poem)

http://www.ensata.co.uk/wildlife-pond-and-lakes (image used for Martha Silano’s poem)

https://bigskyjournal.com/celebrating-nature/ (image to introduce poets)

https://billingsgazette.com/outdoors/learn-about-osprey-at-free-programs/article_d021b3a8-9c11-5ce6-a126-afa0a1ad5b99.html (image used for Pamela Hobart Carter’s poem)

https://godsfingerprints.co/products/wisdom (image used for Benjamin Hobbs’ poem)

https://lizapaizis.wordpress.com/2018/02/20/for-the-love-of-trees-drawings-paintings-and-jewelry-inspired-by-these-noble-nature-elements/ (image used for Yvonne Brewer’s poem)

https://pixels.com/featured/child-in-rain-vicki-wynberg.html (image used for April Thompson’s poem)

https://www.brookgallery.co.uk/product.php?prid=22210 (image used for Steven Fortune’s poem)

https://www.jeremypaulwildlifeartist.co.uk/wildlife-art-prints/greeting-cards/ (image used for Linda Imbler’s poem)

https://www.sentinelsource.com/news/environment/for-the-birds-a-well-kept-birdbath-keeps-the-birds-coming-back-by-chris-bosak/article_23c4076f-67bb-5f7f-afb9-47d455dfd4c0.html (image used for Arleen William’s poem)

Image of white daffodil, Celaine’s iPhone (image used for Celaine Charles’ poem)

Title image created by Celaine Charles using Canva.com

 

 

 

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21 replies

  1. Thanks for sharing such a great post. I enjoyed the read. Each poem and image would have made a great post in their own right. Happy Poetry. Stay Safe. Stay Smiling.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Interesting read.World need this kind of positivity. Keep smiling stay safe.

    Vipin

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for including and sharing my work among these beautiful others. I’m honoured. Thanks Celaine

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Reblogged this on johncoyote and commented:
    Wonderful poetry. Read and share the amazing words.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. All the poetry was wonderful. Each one was a gem. Thank you for sharing the outstanding work.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh my gosh and such worldly poets! I love everyone’s perspective on such various topics

    Liked by 1 person

Trackbacks

  1. Fill Your Writer’s Well ~ STILL Delighting in National Poetry Month, April 2020 – Steps In Between
  2. Poem In Your Pocket Day – Steps In Between
  3. arleen williams: Poetry & the Pandemic

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