Reanimated Lavender Granola Switchblade Nun rides again.

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Word Garden Word List--Dave Kelly


A long time ago--longer than I like to think it was--I bought a copy of "Poems In Season" by a poet named Dave Kelly. It was Volume Five of the Texas Portfolio Chapbook Series. Inside, I found a collection of blunt, truthful, unsparing, and unforgettable poems about every day life. I have moved many times since then, gone through myriad changes, but this book--along with others by undeservedly obscure poets like Michael Curley, Ric Masten, and others, as well as famous volumes like 'Howl"--have made the journey with me all the way to this very moment. They are part of who I am and who I've been, and it is from these poets that I learned to write fearlessly.

Dave Kelly is a difficult man to find, but in researching this list, I did finally manage to find out some biographical information which can be found HERE. I have taken the opportunity to order a couple of his other books, as well. This is the kind of thing that blows my skirt up, if I wore skirts anymore. To say that I am eager to read these new (to me) books is an understatement. 

And now, time for your weekly word list. What we do here is to take at least 3 of the 20 words provided--all taken from the poems in "Poems In Season"--and create a new poem of your own. Our aim is to use the list to spur new writing of our own, not ape the source poet, though a nod of homage is always a fine thing. So, compose, link up, visit others, and I hope that you will look into Dave Kelly's work as well. Enjoy!

Your list:



 Nobody thought he was handsome except for me,
the sharp-elbowed stick girl with the camera around her neck.
Always, he would show up on the street early,
a midnight cat sliding in on private grooves, to sit and wait
on the curb for the other workmen and the Jonah bus 
that swallowed them away.

If I could've, I'd have built him a church,
with Host of egg sandwich and coffee black or white.
I'd swear I saw him take out a rosary one diesel-rattle dawn
and it was strung with candy skulls and baseballs.
I imagined his prayers were colorful foreigners wandering 
in warehouse downriver drab Detroit, hated by strangers, loved by God.

After an absence, getting off gin and bad poetry,
I returned to find him gone, the bus stop shifted, the lone tree down.
The starlings had lost their home, me my jones,
and my camera stayed empty for a year after that, like an unfed stray.
I asked a girlfriend once, "Remember that guy, the different one
we used to see waiting?" Ugh, she said, that one. 
Like I said, only I thought he was handsome, like rain, 
like new work boots pawned.

Saturday, October 1, 2022



Mid-August, the weather patterns change,
but slowly,
like something forgotten in the fridge;
the holy
turning secular, then profane.

We had our own world, you and I,
a beautiful in-joke
but, behind your back as I looked at you,
a green-screen took
over and spoiled it with the whisper of a lie.

All summer, verdant leaves and cool shade
were hiding
the dying brown when the sugar stops flowing.
I'm finding
endings gorgeous, and terrible, like the love we almost made. 

Music: Jennifer Warnes "Pretending To Care" (written by Todd Rundgren)

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Lilac One

 I saw the devil standing in front of Lilac One
with the dawn across his shoulders
and his shirt cuffs undone
He said, "Why are you waiting, and who waits for you?"
then the dawn turned to diamonds
of peculiar blue.

The devil is lonely though he prowls Lilac Two
and his heart is a magpie
in a mirror that flew
with itself to itself in a blur of time spent
in evening's cold courtyard
by feigned accident.

The devil said, "Nothing can mar Lilac Three
though tomorrow's black roses
are vased there for thee."
Then he shook his hair out like leaving a love
that he's carefully carved--
that's a lot to think of.

shared to Dverse OLN

Lazy Fireblossom !


No Word Garden Word List this week, but it will be back next week! No good reason, I'm just feeling pleasantly lazy this week. :-)

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Word Garden Word List: Tom Waits


Hello everyone and welcome to another Word Garden Word List where a list of 20 words from a particular source--different each week--is provided and you are to use at least 3 of them in a new poem. That's it! This week our source is singer/songwriter Tom Waits, whose voice will make you want to quit smoking immediately, and whose songs are esoteric, unique, and run the gamut from

tender and tear-jerking

to absolutely crazy.

You might not know that the Eagles' hit "Ol' 55" was written by a young Tom Waits. I've been listening to him since the 70s and he is still coming up with amazing and singular songs. 

And now, your list!

Burma Shave
Martin Eden 

Things She Would Tell You If She Could


Romeo, gosh, I'm sorry how things turned out,
and sorry I didn't die after all like you thought.
I'm old now, you wouldn't look twice at me 
but I miss you still, even so, most definitely.

You could find me tonight across from a cornfield
working the St. Lucy's Fall Festival and how would you feel
about that, babe? I wear a lumpy old overcoat
and sell tickets to teenagers so in love they almost float.

I get feeling sentimental and sad about everything
remembering how you said you were the All-Powerful Weather King
and could make the sun come out if I wished it,
or kiss me and kiss me again if I told you I missed it.

My goodness, Romeo, you don't know how often I still think of you,
like when I saw some crestfallen kid with wild hair walking through
the festival like he had something on his mind
and he seemed lonesome, like you, and quiet and kind.

It's almost midnight and the lights are going dim
so I've got to pack up and go home alone again.
I wish so hard that things had turned out different
and I'd say, "Romeo, oh Romeo," and you'd know what I meant.

Music: Tom Waits "Blue Valentines"