Steps In Between

Celaine Charles ~ My journey as a writer.

My Wednesday Whims of Poetry


Poetry Collection by Celaine Charles…

photo cartoon pic 2 I’ve begun a “table of contents” below, but new poems are not added yet. Simply scroll down to find any newer poem.

Recovering from technology-still-not-working…

Poetry Table of Contents:

Three Poems For Independence Day
Wordless Love Song
A Daisy’s Concern
Wishing Star
Unlikely Lupines
Hungry Deadlines (A Tanka)
Standardized Testing and Little Souls
Cartoon Dreams
New Eyes (Georgia O’Keefe)
Poetry Falls
Spring’s Corsage
Rainy Day Vengeance
Sand Crab Haiku
Blue Bowl, Unbroken
The Gate (Haiku)
Woes of Early Spring
Haiku for February
All Weather Tires
Finding Myself
Heart Related
Far and Wide
Wyeth’s Window (as the curtains blow) Inspiration Andrew Wyeth
Dear Crow
Good Afternoon, San Francisco
Spark of Hope
If I Were A Book
Fall Creeps In


Loose Threads and Goodbye


I stare at the car lights


as she drives away,

every bad-mom moment,

whether real or imagined,



on repeat.


It doesn’t matter

that our visit was good

or memorable,

that we smiled

and enjoyed

each other’s time;

I will forever wonder

What I neglected to teach.


I will forever mourn


I may have forgotten

to pass on.

And as beautiful and responsible

or independent as

she may be,

I know my little girl.


She hungers

for the piece of me

I failed to provide,

or at least I feel

it must be so,

as my fingers fumble

along loose threads

in empty pockets.


By Celaine Charles, 2018


Mimi Remembers

She smiles on her journeys,

leaves fall at her feet,

cherry blossoms

float tenderly by…


when a story

spills from her lips,

swirls into the universe,

and cradles the ears of her heart.


She sucks in life

like a breath of magic,

exhaling miracles in her path;

though only the wise can see.


Souls who cry in beauty,

sway in sadness,

and lift up

their presence to count.


No matter in this lifetime,

or the next,

or maybe the one before

because gifts are timeless,


and tied with tiny red threads

making memories

to remember…

to remember.


By Celaine Charles, 2015


Trapping Fish

My daughter suggested I try a black-out poem – so much fun! I used the book “Delbert’s Weir” by Carmen Peone. A young adult adventure book set in 1870 my son just finished reading (he enjoyed it very much).

Trapping Fish


“Plenty of worry

about you feeding us

before fish

double back, swim

into our traps.”


He headed downstream,

sticks and pebbles

clutched in both fists.


Rolling, the fish

dart past, jerk

his tender feet.


The current pulled, but

he trudged on,

his feet to perform their

trout-gathering dance.


Hope-abundant, splashed

at the traps…



~ By Celaine Charles, BLACKOUT poem inspired by page 59 in Carmen Peone’s book, “Delbert’s Weir” (young adult adventure, set in 1870)


The Next Footfall

Footsteps on the pavement,
each connection grounding
my spirit to this body,
to this place.

If I think about flying,
about refusing the next footfall,
I might simply

Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad
to spare some burden
of the weight
off my shoulders


By Celaine Charles, 2018


Daylight Savings


She leaves work with darkness chasing her heels.

“It’s only five o’clock,” her sigh finds life on the wind

just outside her car window. Red dots blur

down the road in a long line

headed nowhere fast.


“Does it matter?” she wonders,

because night steals any motivation

she may have felt a day ago, a week ago

when Sun gave wait in setting until after supper,

and she joined the event.


A glass of wine in hand, deep breath swelling

in exhale. Inhale. The days back then full of life.

A day ago, a week ago, when light led way to jubilation.

“And now it’s time for bed.” She sank into the driver’s seat,

gaze fixed on a red line down the dark road.


By Celaine Charles, 2018



Image Link:

Happy Halloween poetry friends, or should I say, All Hallows’ Eve!

Soul Cakes for Prayers


A promise to pay, a promise to pay,

door to door for soul cakes today.

Before the cockcrow, before the morn,

the beggars will pray for souls to be mourned.


A promise to pay, a promise to pay,

families prepare on the eve of All Saints.

Soul cakes are baked, the currents adorn,

soul cakes for prayers; hear the knock on the door?


By Celaine Charles, October 2018 ~ Inspiration Link:



Fat Squirrel


Fat squirrel feeds on the bird seed I’ve scattered.

The very mix a man at the Grange said,

“They’ll stay out of these kernels, for sure.”

Though this critter fills his cheeks regardless

of the sales clerk’s expertise.


He hardly looks for danger, this squirrel,

silver with his sunshine face, still pink

from his youth. Is it bravery strutting

for show, to the glimmers of his brothers?

They could be watching, and there’s always a need


in nature, to be feared for your strength.

To be honored for your abilities.

To surpass the expectation of “others”

watching… may they take heed.

Or, perhaps, it is his youth that hinders


his impulsiveness. Like a storm that swoops in

faster than expected, without precautions, only

anticipation, because the seed is spread—

tempting him for the taking, calling his sense of

hunger, his basic need of survival undermined


by the fact he sits here now,

on my porch, birdseed strewn about

and bulging at his sides. He’s far too fat to outrun

an enemy, or predator, or even the birds

for whom the sales clerk claimed to advocate.


By Celaine Charles




Image Link:

Every Thought That I Have


I am my every thought,

so I will devour every ounce

of sunshine and good tidings.


I shall think on every success

and all my days of laughter;

sad memories will have no place


on my plate, although I regret

their loss and tuck them neatly

away in the cupboards.


Folded and stored in case

reverie comes knocking, there is value

and worth in such burnt offerings.


But today, I will love instead.

I will spoon golden sunflowers at dawn,

grateful to awaken another day


I will knead childhood memories

into smooth round dough,

bake bread in the hearth of my soul,


let the scent permeate the air—

reminding me I have become

every thought that I have.


*Inspired by Philippians 4:8-9

By Celaine Charles


bellingham squalicum harbor

North Winds

It’s cold here
on the coastal shores of Bellingham.
Fierce ocean breezes
blow the tent flaps,
like sails in a storm,
along the festival of
Summer’s End,
and reminds us all
on land
who’s in charge.

Though the brick barrier
encircling Squalicum Harbor,
built by man
to honor fisherman gone to sea
and never
to return,
feels warm on my legs—
heated from the sun;
perhaps nature’s golden

By Celaine Charles, photo with my iPhone.



Image Link: Lothlorien art;

Forest Free

Night parts way for moon

Spotlight gleams beyond concrete 

Forest takes the stage


~By Celaine Charles

bear scratches back

Image Link:

Husband Awake

Like a tree he stands,

the weight of the wind

threatening to timber.


Like a bear, sleepy

from slumber, but alert



Scratch – scratch, tree bark

almost hits the spot,

or is it a door post?


Rumbling growls, low

on the wind, slip under

hums of modern cooling;


he makes his presence known.

And I smile,

my husband awake.


~By Celaine Charles, 2014


mother son artIMAGE LINK:

Time Capsule

Time with my son

comes with great



The world through

his skin feels




and porous

at the same time.


And though he knows


yet so little


in his tender




When he looks at me,

offering advice,

I know



at my age

to smile;


to bask

in the glow

of our time capsule.


By Celaine Charles, 2018


birdsong at dusk

Image Link:

Birdsong at Dusk


Birdsong at dusk—


Vibrant notes carry on

as if to record the day

in a big bound book

of time.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


summer to fall dandelion

Image link:

September’s Spindle


Ticks and tocks begin their tilt

as time pushes back

in September.


Long days fall, one atop the other,

sleepily entwined;

a sudden halt.


Across Autumn’s spindle,

Summer coils to wind

around the hour.


Fibers neatly thread,

now waiting to be woven

into October.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Image Link:

Change of Season

Summer folds in close

Persimmon change of season

Stitches pulling taut 


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Butterfly 1

Image Link:


Butterfly floats on August winds, dusting
Tips of sand-anchored foliage
Fear-of-fire dry
The only color striking
Lies delicately
Across fluttered wing

…And she hopes

Butterfly soft atop brittle, broken
Bits of pine
Needles lost to summer
She dances tip-toed
Across tiny leaves of courage
Held in time, thoughtfully tight

…And she trusts

Butterfly chances her honored visit
Selected gift to seekers
Knowing escape
Comes in a blink, expectancy
Lasting an instant

…On hearts of summer winds

By Celaine Charles ~ Published on Nature Writing ~



Image Link:

Rules of Summer


There are no rules of summer,

only suggestions

for time.

Let its tick tock metronome nest

with the robins, and wait for babies

chirping cheer for mama’s worm,

caught at dawn, after dewy jewels

adorn the day.


There are no rules of summer,

only counsel

for cares.

Let them gather in a tinderbox

as fuel to set flame, for sunsets

melting ruby red against

blackened Independence

Day skies.


There are no rules of summer,

only blessings

for joy.

Let it run rivulets down chins,

spit seeds in the grass,

green and growing like vines

underfoot, tethered gently to

season’s wind,


forever blowing freely

… for a spell.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Palm Trees

Fronds fall peacefully

Bidding triumphant welcome

Bouquets in blue skies 


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Grandma Benner 1934 Grad Pic

My Grandma Marie, 1934

My Grandma’s birthday was yesterday, July 31st, so I honor her today on “Wednesday Whims of Poetry” with a poem published in Dime Show Review, inspired by memories of her and her endless field of buttercups (or at least endless in my mind).

Happy Birthday Grandma…

The Secret to Life (From the Back of my Mind)


There is always a hum in the back of my mind.

The dryer clanging a cacophony of notes

to a song that should be softer.

When I remember my grandma’s line of laundry,

flapping in the wind.


It was wistful and breezy,

linens with stories stitched into their seams.

Always they teased flight

in my seven-year-old imagination.

They temped me to run through them.


The arms of her nightgowns beckoned

to meet them on the other side,

there in the buttercup fields to the north of her land,

under the warm blanket of summer,

I knew I would find the secret to life.


I laugh now, loading the dishwasher,

adding its chime to the chorus of reality.

Years later, grandma long gone to the other side,

I wonder if it’s the same chord from before,

only louder and banging to capture my attention.


To turn the head of this forty-year-old body,

Moving slower now, with temptations at hands length.

I think too much about the laundry, and the dishes,

the certainty of life that calls upon my absolute focus.

I can’t stop for childhood memories, games that might push me off course.


The whirr in my laptop springs to life, because

I might as well get some work done.

My to-do list grows, like the buttercups from Grandma’s field

still blossom, like the north star still signals a shift,

and I can see the signs as clearly as her rose-budded


nightgowns, swaying in the breeze all those years ago,

tempting me to run through them,

their tune a constellation to be deciphered,

if only I could hear the melody through the cacophony

of the dryer, and the dishwasher, and the hum of the laptop


in the back of my mind.


By Celaine Charles ~Published in Dime Show Review:


shark Great White

In Honor of Shark Week

Photo Link:

Great White, Built to Hunt

(Inspiration Article: Maloney, Brenna. “On the Hunt With the Great White Shark.” National Geographic Explorer, Nov. 2015, pp. 2-9.)

Part 1: Great White

Great White swims under blue skies,

canopy to his water world.

Winding deep

he finds his way.


Perfected body, curved and tapered,

water slips without

currents swirling,

without slowing.


He catches the scent, blood

in the water, a sign.

An injured animal… seal;



Part 2: The Hunt

His flexible skeleton bends,

back and forth

he turns his head;

discerns the way.


Lobes in his back-fin swing

side to side,

keeping balance,

granting speed.


He is made for the hunt.

Lateral lines run


down both sides.


Vibrations travel the tubes

under skin,

and he feels the energy

from his meal.


Diving deep, he veils below

unknowing prey.

His dark back cloaked

against dark abyss.


Charging, he makes his move

through open water.

Rows of jagged teeth

snap at the prize…


Part 3: The Kill

Injured seal is fast.

He leaps and twists.

Scratching claws swipe

the shark’s eyes.


But this creature— made to hunt,

rolls his eyes back,

protected. Sight now

unneeded to pursue.


Electroreceptors pick up

signals. With closed eyes

he finds his prey

poorly bidding escape.


Mouth open, jaws clamp

on second attempt;


He may not eat again for weeks.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018



Glare on Roadway, by Barry Shuchter (Photo art:


Glaring Revisions


Rewriting words is a blinding task.

The pages toss objections,

resentment, disappointment

into reflections

only the mind’s eye,

tired and overused,

see flaring like angelic gleams.


If it were a song,

It may only be heard

by small yipping dogs.

If a flavor;


bland, and only appropriate

for infants.


This blinding

unheard dish

presents itself

in hot dry seasons,

where the ground cracks

in protest,

where the heat rises


in waves,

like gasoline exhaust

distorts a view.

Dizzying vistas

to otherwise typical settings,




on the page,


with mixed-up words;

the untold story


an outstanding



Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018


Landscape Dreaming (Inspiration Dorothy Napangardi)

Dorothy Napangardi working

My Ekphrastic Poem inspired by Dorothy Napangardi, Australian Aboriginal Artist.

Landscape Dreaming

Grandfather’s Dreaming

from the beginning of time,

threads woven through the years,



from beneath the sands.

As once they emerged,

Ancestral Beings;



All that is seen, or walked upon,

or breathed into lungs,

every plant, animal, ounce of dirt,

every stream…


moves to the pulse below

the lands. The earth we share

is not for sale, but rather



And waiting for the day

in which their tale is retold,

revived and with

tumultuous force


to be free.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

Photo Link: (SAMS)

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Three Poems For Independence Day

flag art

America the Beautiful, by Shannon Chiba

Three Poems for Independence Day ~ Mixed feelings this year, but still proud…

1) For All… For All

The Fourth of July once

expressed a time of spark and glow.

Colors blossomed against night skies,

drizzled pride in our country, and

in our hearts.


Until lately,


we seemed to have forgotten,

our chins held high, with

eyes on the frame of freedom,

with liberty and justice for all,

for all…


who end up a some.

And only those who do not see

wonder why, wonder where…

We may need those glowing



red, white, and blue,

to increase our night vision.

To see through shadows

looming between the colors

on the flag.


To saturate another

“… foul blot upon our nation”

and make amends

to the very ones we claim

to stand for…


One nation under God,


with liberty and justice

for all…

for all.

~ Works Cited:

  • Lyrics from “The Pledge of Allegiance”
  • Quote from Henry Clay


Happy, at least, to live in a country where we can disagree

Opposite views are still worth fighting for, though

Perhaps we can unite again and come together as a people

Engaged in aspirations for a future brightly sought

3) Thank You

Thank you to the men and women still standing

with our flag, though torn and ragged.

Blood shed to protect those unforgiving.

Perseverance for those willing to fight.

Purity to come together as an uncomfortable



Thank you to the men and women who put

their lives… their families on the line

for something bigger than themselves.

Because that flame still burns in the night—

for those who hate, for those who love;

for healing…


thank you.

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

Image Link:

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Wordless Love Song

horse Junior and Anna

Wordless Love Song

Velvet muzzle nudges

wordless love song

for only two



golden sun.


Only two hearts

beat in rhythm,

yours and mine,

for this moment


in time.


And years away

when hearts settle

adrift, wordless love

songs forever


the wind.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

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A Daisy’s Concern


A Daisy’s Concern

Concerns of a daisy—

only Summer knows.


The pressure poured freely

on her poor petal back,


“He loves me… he loves me not…”


Does she carry this burden by choice?

Does she hold some regal say?

Or smirk mischievously,


her face in the sun.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

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Wishing Star

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)

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Unlikely Lupines

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

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Hungry Deadlines (A Tanka)

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

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Standardized Testing and Little Souls

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

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(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

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Cartoon Dreams

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

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New Eyes (Georgia O’Keefe)


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

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Poetry Falls
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.”

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Spring’s Corsage

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

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Rainy Day Vengeance
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

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Sand Crab Haiku

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) 🙂

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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

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Blue Bowl, Unbroken
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

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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

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The Gate (Haiku)

The Gate

Beyond trampled path,

faded white and memory-worn,

ethereal hope.


Soon to be published: Beneath The Rainbow

Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

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Woes of Early Spring
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

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Haiku for February

Image Link:

Haiku 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

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All Weather Tires

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

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Finding Myself

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

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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

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Far and Wide

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

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Wyeth’s Window (as the curtains blow) Inspiration Andrew Wyeth


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

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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

coat each limb,

and I am pushed back through…

Awake in my own world,


alien again.


Copyright © Celaine Charles 2018

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Dear Crow


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

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Good Afternoon, San Francisco
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

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Spark of Hope

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

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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

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If I Were A Book

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

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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

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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

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Fall Creeps In

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


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