Steps In Between

Celaine Charles ~ My journey as a writer.

Wednesday Whims of Poetry

Poetry Collection by Celaine Charles…


moon reflection CC

Blue Moon, by Mike Ball 


Wishing Star


I want my star back,

the one I wished upon

as a child.

The one floating downstream

in moon’s scornful reflection.


Unbeliever,” Moon spurns.

All the time gone by,


in those tender years between

eye lash wishes and rabbit feet.”


Grow up,” he laments,

not down, cascading


Ascend to the hope soaring in starlight,

the hope you once felt.”


Image Link: – Blue Moon, Mike Ball (and Creative Commons)


Lupines take 2

Unlikely Lupines

Lupines stand tall,

illustrations of endurance,

for the small,

the frail.


Their seeds once lost— strewn

amongst rocky shores

and cliff sides, adrift in

barren wind-pressed cracks,



on troubled dry grounds,

until the earth declares;



Lupines are

living proof

of the resettling

of debts.


The universe grasps

even the unlikely,

when the unlikely

stand reaching.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Image Link:

Hungry Deadlines (A Tanka)

Has my mind eaten

every last morsel of thought?

Devoured insight,

leaving the blank page barren,

and deadlines wanting dessert.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Standardized Testing and Little Souls


Standardized testing,

mixed results.

I suppose it helps

our state to think

they know

each little soul’s



deep inside.

All the stretched


and the making of

new myelin.

Little souls’ crinkled foreheads

when pressed


with something quizzical.

Perhaps they’re readers

of imagination and


within every bubbled







I wonder though,

if these little souls’


have the same gain,

that the state is equally


with their rhythm…


as they dance

across playgrounds,

and frolic

in soccer fields.

When one bends

low to spy an ant,

or wish upon


a dandelion.

Does the state see

little souls’


in each delicate umbrella,


and drifting through childhood?


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



(in an octave of 8-syllables, as inspired by Tamara Miles)


My fingers clutch the earth below,

as tether for a wandering soul.


I grip the soil and leaves and grass,

and will my heart to anchor so.


Gravity taut with binding roots,

protect me from a transient flight.


My fancy tends to flee on whims,

allow my steady home to bend.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Anna colorful art 2

Art by Anna Vowels © 2018


Cartoon Dreams

The apex of living,

never steady,

gains height

as we trudge

like little ants,

tromping mindlessly

down carved paths,

because we know the way.


We need not think

deep thoughts, buried

under years,

behind stolen Saturdays.

Yet our subconscious

ventures off route:

Destiny hijacked.

Because life is lived


in cartoon dreams…


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



My young students inspired by Georgia O’Keefe.

New Eyes

“Nobody sees a flower – really – it is so small it takes time – we haven’t time – and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time.” ~Georgia O’Keefe

Step into my flower,

the one nobody sees,

“Really –


It is so small it takes time.”

Time to notice red that’s more orange,

that’s more… vermillion.


Lean back against soft petals,

in long lines

to hold you still.


Transform your faith

in new landscapes,



and you will unfold

new eyes to see

beyond borders.


Mother bathe me

in golden stardust,

lands so green…


for then, I will take,

“…time, like to have a friend

takes time.”

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Limerick Writers Center Pic 2017

Poetry Falls

Poetry falls,

rain on the window


Renewed thoughts roll,

winding their journey

a c r o s s




Ideas slip,

turn in hollows, already

there, reflective only

forgotten, unseen,





Published by Limerick Writers’ Centre for “April is Poetry Month in Limerick.”


rhodi sunrhodi cloud

Spring’s Corsage

Rhododendron bursts,


scarlet bells bundled

brightly on green lapels,

Spring’s corsage

rings in the season.


Her song skips

across gray-blue skies,

announcing her arrival,

declaring her claim,

though Rain’s dark hand



His own beat,

his own light— glints


and rumbles behind,

to stake his counterclaim,

to shout:


One is not without the other!



Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


drip drip drop rain

Image by Creative Commons (

Rainy Day Vengeance





Begins a whisper in the background,

nature’s call of attention, until…

a spoiled child

he beats his fists to rumble hearts.


Disregarding moods,

drenched and cold,

he dares in tempt of judgement,

anger strikes…


Then mockingly he salts the wounds

of hopeful souls,

who weigh each day’s success

with golden fare.


Behind dark shrouds of mist and gray

he snickers in delight

at the prize of disappointment

in your face.






Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Sand Crab Haiku

sand crab in palm

A flip of a rock

New discoveries await

Crawling crustacean

sand crab crawls in sleeve

Whoops! He’s on the go

Seeking shade from blinding sun

He makes his own path

sand crab hiding

Suddenly exposed

Though king in his own small world

He eyes the giant

sand crab in shadow

Permission granted

No need to drum fierce pincers

Rest safely my friend

sand crab sunny

Sand crab finds solace

Within a coat sleeve shelter

Gratitude bestowed


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018 (and photos from my iPhone) 🙂


I participated in a Pic and a Word Challenge this week. So fun! The picture and my poem are below, the inspiration word is “Twilight,” and the info & credit goes to Patrick Jennings:




Twilight strikes like silver swords

cross and cut the sky,

sheathed within chill.


Songs from the old exchanged

in secret,

Crepuscular tales told…


By only the lone awake,

sneaking about

between the seams of time.


by Celaine Charles, #picandawordchallenge


blue bowl

Blue Bowl, Unbroken

She loved to entertain,

and cooked for my family

in laughter,

children ran amuck at our feet,

and her fiery locks draped

behind bended shoulders.


We shared wishes with teabags,

desires with cream and sugar,

high hopes

mixed and swirled into every recipe.

And her fiery locks draped

behind bended shoulders.


But in the morning,

truths left bitterness on our tongues,

sour endings

to perfectly constructed mealtimes.

And her fiery locks draped

behind bended shoulders.


For that final night together

she gifted me the last

blue bowl

from her broken collection.

And her fiery locks draped

behind bended shoulders.


He moved her away after that,

recipes revealed her ruse,

secrets burned…

without goodbyes,

and her fiery locks draped

behind bended shoulders.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


more kind less judge


Kindness appears to have its own etiquette,

Impossible to keep things orderly.

Not that I’m unaware of its meaning,

Dare I say my mother taught me well:

Notice the people around you, and treat them

Every way you wish to be treated yourself… although

Some, I fear, forget their manners in this practice,

Soliloquies to others in disdain.


Image link:

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



The Gate

Beyond trampled path,

faded white and memory-worn,

ethereal hope.


Soon to be published: Beneath The Rainbow

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


new daf in snow

Woes of Early Spring

Bending low,

Daffodil slumps her shoulders.

The weight of the season

frigid and white,

glistening in clumps at her feet.


Winter’s bejeweled accessory

tossed to the earth,

symbolic of her arrogance

her inability to see the meek

as they climb to meet the sun.


Too soon they stirred in warming soils,

stripped from dormancy,

hues rich in a naked world.

No return from whence they came,

and so they bend            low,


while Winter receives her final

curtsies and praises,

icy fingers applaud her finish.

And Daffodil bends         low

burying her shame.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Image Link:

Haikus for February

Tempestuous zeal

Amongst snowfall and sunshine

Twenty-eight days twain


Ice crystals negate

Flourishing sunrays rebuke

Both duel and duet


Cerulean skies

Converse flakes iridescent

Together they dance


Terse month in the year

Opposition of seasons

Quibble their day’s rest


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



I wrote this love-poem one year ago as a Valentine’s Day gift for my sweet. It was also part of my Tupelo Press 30/30 Challenge, February 2017. It still holds true. 

image link –

All Weather Tires

Waiting in the cold sunshine,

car trunk open,


except for the jumper cables,

first aid kit,

black box of… stuff.

I leave it at: emergency car essentials.

I don’t really know, because

the tips of my fingers start purring;

cats demanding attention.


I drive them further into my pockets.


New tires,

all weather

“See these deep grooves here…”

He bends over,

uses his hands,

touches the carved rubber,

“I had them siped to improve traction

and lengthen the life of the tire.”


He goes on like a salesman.

I can see my breath before my eyes

forming little cloud animals;

a bird,

half a horse,

a buffalo.

I shake my head to focus

because he’s on auto-pilot now,

and it’s almost time to go.


Just a day trip,

I will see him by nightfall,

when he looks at me,

finished with his sermon,

his personal driving crash course


as if I’d never driven before.

And he flashes a smile.

Sun gleams from behind me

splashing his face

with light –

a spotlight.

He shakes his head…


“You’re the exact picture of what I always wanted.”


Time stops.


My misty buffalo dissipates,

and the horse, gone wild, follows.

The cats in my pockets scatter,

on prowl for a cloudy bird.


For suddenly,

I am warm inside this crisp

February morning



feeling loved, deeply



and quite honestly


with my four tires,

all weather.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018




Art by Anna Vowels

Finding Myself

Who am I today?

Who do I want to be,

who do I need to be…

This is the conversation

I have in the mirror.


It’s different, you know,

with different people,

at different times,

in my past,

in my now,


because I haven’t decided yet.

I haven’t had every


every desire



How do I decide,

when sometimes it cuts,

razor sharp,

and the pain swells beyond

the face I paint?


When sometimes it mourns,

behind shaded branches,

sorrowful truths

dissected for all

to judge.


When sometimes it’s just me


for no reason at all,

because I need a beat

to find my rhythm.


To find myself today,

in contrast

from yesterday,

to bring about the change

I want to see…




Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Heart-Related (Wear RED on February 2)


Cardiovascular thoughts

run red today.

Reminders to remember,

to think past

where you are right now,

because tomorrow you may race

against time,


against the evil in numbers,

one death every 80 seconds,


against the evil in percentages,

80% preventable,


against the evil in acronyms,

HDL and BMI.


Numbers and letters represent

hidden proclamations.

But, you have the power

to change,

to stand up,

to make a difference

against this wicked threat,


on this wintery blustery day

in the month of love

and sweetness…

We are reminded to make

better choices

in the matters of the heart-



Image Link:

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Far and Wide

The tree bends

far and wide,

just enough to reach

you and me.


You’ve blessed me

with this day,

in your temple,

in your world.


Honorably I accept,

and listen to learn

something old,

in a new way…


and I see

that we fit


under this tree.

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Wyeth’s Window (as the curtains blow)

Ekphrastic poem in response to Andrew Wyeth’s painting, “Wind From The Sea.”

Gust of wind on a still day,

summer tranquility caught

in between time

as it sits



woven intricately with

featherweight cotton threads, white

like a whisper


her flight.


Until this moment, the birds,

benumbed by heat’s encumbrance,

revive and fly.

The flutter



My heart bobs in the ocean,

just beyond this window’s view,

and I inhale

more than dust

stale air.


Though my spirits rise on end,

and I glance back to be sure…

August crocheted

her message

of praise


to be discovered.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Art by Anna Vowels © 2018


Soundless moment.

That breath between sleep

and wake…

the in-between I slip through,

with narrowed shoulders.


Senses illuminate,

breath hums, bones trill.

The rush of wind

washes through me, though

I still stand.


Color alive, I reach out,

to touch, swirl

my finger in the bowl,

taste its essence,

swallow its purity.


Indigo sky

drapes me in blanket,

covers my wounds and scars,

folds durably around elbows,

shoulders, and hips.


Golden stalks of wheat,

an offering,

drip with music, and

melodies sung in rhythm

taste like honey,


yet I do not sneeze

here, in this place.

Food does not poison as it does

my daytime body,

back through the in-between.


So I gulp lavender air,

and cling to silver stones.

Hold me here!

Feed me here!

Just a little more time.


When lashes flutter,

familiar irritants


each limb,

and I am pushed back through…


Awake in my own world,

alien again.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Dear Crow

Black Bird,

carrier of dark valleys and sworn curses.

You soar as high as Eagle

and carry winds to cool these woods.


But you are a blot against the sky,

and death follows you,

or at least its scorn

paints your path.


We are forgiving folk,

we are…

If only you weren’t Black Bird.

Your tides of loom wash over

like unbound waves of sea.


The omen you carry sparks fear,

and stories rise from the soil

to jest

and torment,

to mock what if…


Majestic is your flight

dear crow,

and we bow to your grace,

although with one eye open…

Just in case the stories are true.


Image (
Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


San Fran

Good Afternoon, San Francisco


Paint-strip houses, stacked row upon row,

as I descend into the city by the bay,

painting tired eyes pastel in welcome.


Vista soars its shadow box of color:

sandpaper, maze, terra-cotta, blue,

and lavender with its triangle roof while the others lay flat.


I try on shades with day dream skirts;

what ifs… maybe one day… perhaps another life,

If I could start anew, adrift in the sun.


Until the gun metal gray of the city

glints to catch my eye,

pulls me from my wardrobe, buzzes with new life,


which once was and still is

emerging from within the mist,

like icing on a cake; a delicacy for my eyes.


And from the watery wharf,

tradition melts on my tongue…

My heart made up sweet for the day.


Good afternoon, San Francisco.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


candle light

Spark of Hope

Leaning back,


forward onto my knees—

Every which way,

I seek a flame,

a spark of hope.


The chance to step aside

from this moment,

this season,

this time of typical,


dare I say—



Head shaking, locks

dance about,

in slow motion.

Blindingly dizzy,

I seek flame after flame,

some spark of hope.


The chance to step outside,

breath caught

trapped inside,

choked through, because

sometimes you must



take off the outer layer

of yourself,


to seek the flame,

the spark of hope—


For something new.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


beach pull


Chest rises

Like a breath

Inside my lungs


From outside my body



Senses gladdened

Ripple out

Through purple veins

Freedom gifted


On this morning

Seated in the sand

Ocean’s blanket


Tide’s pull


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Placeholder Image

If I Were A Book

(Written from a prompt on, Where the Light Most Falls, with DJ Tamara)


If I were a book,

I would be shelved in Poetry,

wearing words on my fingers

and tales on my toes.


Though at night,

I would sneak over to Fiction.

Not for the horrors and murders of Mystery,

or the sad truths and burdens of Reality,

but for the enchanted realms

of Fantasy.


You see by day,

my feet,

they move through verse like notes

in a song.

My toes, never still,

weave together words

that clothe my body,

protect my thumping heart

in perfect beats,



But at night,

my feet,

they do not rest.

For there is no need

in the life of books,

forever alive in the author’s mind.


My feet plant themselves

on the moon,

and I fall

upside down,

little girl on a swing,

with popcorn stars

in brilliant darkness.


My front row seat

to stories,

teased out of freedom air.

No confinements.

No rules of spirit.

Only the place my imagination

soars higher

than swinging bent knees,


until morning comes,

and my satisfied soul

finds the melody

of rising sun

heating the day.

And once again,

my feet,

they find a rhyme to stand on,

barefoot, and happy to be…


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018




The dictionary says it is something that makes things visible

or affords illumination.

It is also electromagnetic radiation

to which the organs of sight react.


Standing as a beacon,

it can guide ships in from treacherous angry waters,

or at least mark the spot not to go,

but regardless it illuminates the way.


That is more than the murky lightbulb

in the plastic lantern lighting my driveway.

Of course, there is no unknown destiny

in a driveway. Or is there?


Maybe those moments in the early dark

of morning, awaiting the stubborn engine

to kick in, to wake up, to rumble

the dead to work.


Maybe that soft glow conducts something

internal, something in the deepest corner of your heart,

and guides you on a journey. A calling you could miss,

if it wasn’t for the light.


But you miss it, because the light is blinding,

as dimming as it appears

in the wee hours of the night. It radiates

in the morning,


as tired eyes, the organs

which react to the electromagnetic radiation,

want to close. As they do at night,

after a long day.


And so the light, the beacon, the guide away

from the wrong spot… keeps you

in the same spot

with little light to illuminate the way.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

friendship golden Glassybaby


Amber light creeps

sunrise warm,

chilly room,

empty walls, wait

to be called home.


Anticipation flounders,

cold space, exposed.

Unfixable flaws, long

for attention, hopefulness.


Cutting blade sinks

through cardboard, thick,

tape bound wounds

left behind, still healing.


The honey hue, sticky

with reminders, lifts

the mood. Its message,

clarity in a dark room.


Through tinted glass,

candle holder pleads,

tea light gleams, expectant

beacon ablaze…


Home is not a place.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


leaf in rain

Fall Creeps In

Fall creeps in

sneakily, in colors of sunset.

Amber eyes watching,


tucked in

between bouquets of green,


summer’s peace…

Unknowingly vulnerable.


And like winding floral ivy

twists in final turn,

like rolling ocean breeze

blankets an end to starry nights,

like a snake hunting


as its prey…

Summer slithers softly



Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018