At the 7-Eleven

Long line. He will get there before me.
Swing past the aisle. Don’t hesitate.
Make good time and beat him–quick!
Silver cylinder slung,
air in a can hung…
tube in his nose?
Eye meets eye.
–back up–
slow.

{This is for the prompt at Real Toads–Fussy Little Forms:Nonet. The nonet is 9 lines in a pattern of descending syllables. 9,8,7…1. These little forms are so much fun. This one is based on a personal experience about a month ago.}

Eviction {a sestina}

Are you sleeping? Waves are washing over
our home and the cat’s run out. A dead wind
is knocking at our front door. Is it real?
Is it crooked? Should we look to fight?
You can froth and fret. This is not your home,
said the wind to us that night in a storm

that gouged like a battered dog’s bite. A storm
that warped the walls we painted over,
left stains that must be hidden. Sell our home
to highest bidder! Never mind the wind–
wind that mocks, wind that’s calling us to fight.
Nothing can be deluged here; nothing’s real-

estate worth our salt tears. What is real,
we’re told, cannot be bought or sold. A storm
within our soul is willing us to fight.
Fear of an eviction note, an over-
estimate. Dishes pile up but the wind
speaks as if it were master of this home,

as if knowing what is right. Beyond home
neighbors gather, a witness to what’s real.
Not all storms announce themselves, declares the wind,
as we sleep in unmade beds, as the storm
rattles frames and photos and rages over-
head. Be still, the wind advises. We fight

no more. The weeds are thick. We cannot fight
them (growing lush as they are). And our home
surrounded– rain after rain pouring over.
And we recite hope– a hope that is real.
And we invent a way to tell if the storm
has moved away (waves agreeing with the wind):

Sun will dry the weeds. Cool will be the wind.
And we will rest our heads, never to fight
again. An inheritance to bear. And the storm
is still about. Never dying, always dead. Home
is a curio with glass. We display what is real.
We leave the candles always lit, even when it’s over.

Watch for the storm, says the wind.
Be ready to fight, says the rain.
We are real. And the waves wash over our home.

{Inspired by Matthew 8:23-27 and, unfortunately, a few real-life events.}

I am linking this poem on the Tuesday Platform at Real Toads today.

Nautilus

Shell, Edward Weston (1927)

see
sea
vision
whole jewel
wave after wave hides
you in a swirl of sand below
reach of ready hands
souvenir
obscure
chance
pure

{A Real Toads prompt based on the photo above. The form is the Fibonacci. The number of syllables for each line is based on the first six numbers in the Fibonacci sequence (starting with one) 1,1,2,3,5,8. Here, I reversed it as well.}

Music at Work

Sometime around midday, I pause.

My mahogany desk is so shiny. It’s always marred by fingerprints.

Beyond this dark wood is a wall of brightness. A live background mural of clouds and sky and trees. Silent and untouchable. No one who is busy with accounting notices.

I can’t help but study the living movement of the palm fronds. I hope no one sees me.

My co-worker is blaring gaudy pop songs for the whole office to hear. But I have my own music– a soaring melody for listening ears only.

I imagine this…
slender leaves are fingers
playing piano.

{This is my first attempt at haibun. I didn’t have one about dusk, which is the dVerse haibun prompt this week, so I am going to use this for Open Link Night #218. }

Dead Leaves

The trees here in the south,
though half-turned from the season,
are still every shade of green.
Moss sways in the cool sun,
casting black and gray shadows
that move like snakes
on my neighbor’s white roof.
He is unaware of their charm,
but they amuse me so.

My home is silent,
but every now and again
a sound like hailstones startles me
(even though we are frost-proof).
Hard, dead leaves are falling,
but what my neighbor sees
is soft and brown and orange.
It flies past his window
in a sudden gust of winter wind,
silent and secret.