Miss Pelican's Perch

Looking at my World from a Different Place

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The Rings of Saturn

Today’s prompt is “to write a poem that… is inspired by a reference book. Locate a dictionary, thesaurus, or encyclopedia, open it at random, and consider the two pages in front of you to be your inspirational playground for the day.”    I used the link described here to hit this random page:  Zeroing in on one phrase, I derived this:

The Rings of Saturn

Down in Baja there’s a beach
where years ago we combed
for dead urchins and turban shells,
cracking open sand dollars,
amazed to see angel-shaped
shards fly free.

We watched Fata Morgana
mess with our minds and flip
All Saints Island on her head.
Under a Milky Way spilling
out of heaven’s black bowl
we telescoped Saturn’s pale green rings.

I do not travel as far these days
but the thrill of nature’s magical ways
still astounds and moves me to spend hours
Reading and writing and tending my flowers.

Ljg 2019


Ljg 2019.  Image courtesy of Wikipedia.


Peering at the World Through Cat’s Eyes

This is one of the first—and favorite—poems I ever wrote, way back in 1996. I am re-posting it in response to today’s prompt “to write a poem about an animal.”.

Peering at the World through Cat’s Eyes

To meditate like a cat,
Poised, enigmatic, sphinx-like,
on a redwood deck
watching morning sun splinter
through dew-drops,
sniffing the fading
night scents of jasmine,
listening to rising
birdsongs and strong steps
of mistress in the kitchen,
to meditate on such as this
in stillness, in silence,
peering at the world
with golden almond-split eyes,
is to watch it crack
open and display
its wonderous beauty.

Ljg 1996, 2019

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It’s All About the Beat

Today’s prompt is ” to write a poem that engages with another art form .”   Okay, that would be drumming for me.

It’s All about the Beat

It’s all about the beat and the rhythm and the flow.
For whatever reason I did not go
to band or orchestra like those other kids
with their black scuffed violin and trumpet cases
stamped with words: “Property of the Music Department.”

Still I sang and danced with my hair brush around my room
finding the beat and the rhythm and the flow.
I learned to belly dance and bang my zills
and what I lacked in those exotic skills
I made up for with beating out rhythms and finding my flow.

Darbuka and djembe and the timbrel too–
I played like Miriam so long ago
finding the beat and the rhythm and the flow.
I’m not that good but it doesn’t matter though
because it’s all about the beat and the rhythm and the flow.

ljg 2019

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A Haibun for an Endangered Species

Today’s prompt is to write a poem that “talks.”

A Haibun for an Endangered Species

On a bright spring day, before the May gray and the June gloom, I strolled along the boardwalk, dodging skateboarders and runners.  Old men and a few women lounged on plastic tarps under their tents next to shopping baskets filled with all their worldly possessions. Chaos and misery.  I found an escape, a narrow doorway, a real hole-in-the-wall leading to a new world.   A bookstore!   Brick and mortar.  An endangered species. Towering bookcases.  Poetry leading to politics, history to mystery, photo books to cookbooks. A calico cat rolled on the floor begging for a belly rub.  I lifted a book and parted the covers.  My hand caressed a soft page.  I remembered my youth—long warm days of reading in the backyard .  I could download this book. It would be cheaper.  But this species must be saved; there are far too few now.  So I bought the book and went home.

Red Adirondack
English lavender in bloom
Bird! Don’t plop on my book!

Ljg. 2019

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An Earth Day Blessing, Part I

The challenge is “write an abecedarian poem – a poem in which the word choice follows the words/order of the alphabet.”    It is a busy weekend for me.   I do not have time to craft a coherent 26 line poem. So I give you this brief Earth Day blessing—- part one.

Blessing on all the
Children of the earth.
Defiant, they stand,
Eager to give birth,
Fearlessly, as a movement
Grows from their
Hands that grip
Iron swords turned into ploughshares.

Ljg 2019


When Your Flaming Spire Fell

My poem for today could marginally be related to today’s prompt “to write a poem that … presents a scene from an unusual point of view.” But this poem is what is on my heart today so that is what I’m posting.

When Your Flaming Spire Fell

I wept when your flaming spire fell.
I cried when I saw the faithful
fall to their knees and pray.
I felt heavy in my heart
as your graceful face, marked
by weather and age,
stood backlit by that hellish blaze.

Was it the prayers of the people
invoking the Lady who saved you?
Or the skill and resolve of les pompiers?
Gargoyles, some would say,
are charged to keep evil at bay.
Or even the Lord Himself may
have set His hand on you.

Why did I cry–
not being faithful in that same way?
Was it history or beauty
falling as ash into the sanctuary?
Or maybe it is something else too:
in your ruined, crumbling frame,
Maybe I see me in you?

Ljg © 2019

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The Humble Egg

Today we’re asked “to write a poem that uses the form of a list to defamiliarize the mundane.”

The Humble Egg

White, brown, pale green, blue,
Cuticula, chalaza
Make sure they’re farm-fresh new
Viscous albumen:
Niacin, magnesium
calcium, fat, protein, potassium
Kitchen salvation for mothers and men
Scrambled, over easy,
Sunnyside up
Poached and served
in blue willow cups.
Frittatas, omlettes
Atop the ramen
Ordinary, extraordinary
Oh humble egg.

Ljg 2019


I’m Not Fine

Today’s prompt is to write a dramatic monologue. I love these because I really don’t have to think about them too much: just a stream-of-consciousness thing rolling of my tongue with a natural cadence taking over. So here it is:

I’m Not Fine

How am I? Oh!
You really want to know?
Convention says I should answer “Fine”
but I draw the line.  I’m
Lousy, shitty, crappy–
I can think of a few more adjectives,
that if I say enough will turn into
invectives against the whole #$&%$@# thing.

I’m supposed to write
a dramatic monologue,
fancy-ass words just to say
I’m gonna spew all over you.
This poem is gonna have its way
‘cuz I don’t have time to make it rhyme
or worry about meter and iamb.
It’s just gotta be what’s inside me.

I’m not fine.
I’m not fine.
Aren’t you glad you know?


ljg 2019

Image from Morguefile and manipulated by me.