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All material on this website is © Donna JT Smith unless otherwise noted.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Have a Slice of Ice?

Some of our lesser icicles...
It's the beginning of the March Slice of Life Challenge - The challenge is to write a snippet of life each day for the whole month, post your link to Two Writing Teachers and read other Slicers' offerings each day.  I have been doing this challenge each March for the past four years  - year Number Five starts today!

I've been waiting for March 1, so I could say this:

Have a Slice of Ice?

February's over
March is BEGUN.
Let's hear laughter,
Let's have FUN!
Days are longer.
With more SUN.
Ice will melt...
Duck and RUN!

On Wednesday last week I was outside, and the sun was shining brightly; and though it was still very cold out, the icicles on our house were dripping and looking a little melty around the edges.  We have had literally "killer icicles" on our eaves this year.  Mostly we watch them grow for a bit and then knock them off.
However, one icicle started forming on the surface of the house under the porch roof.  Water was seeping down between the edge of the roof and the house right beside a window.  I'm surprised, but I don't think I took a picture of it on the house.
At any rate, this icicle was growing daily and there was no way to get it off without doing some damage to the side of the house.  So we left it.  Until Wednesday came along with a bit o' sun.  I had to take the puppy out, and on my way back in I looked at the icicle.   It looked like it might be working itself loose a little.  I put my fingers under the edges, first one side of the 10 inch span, then the other.  I could get my fingers under it a little farther than I'd been able to, but it still wasn't budging.  Fine.  Leave it there.
But then I noticed that the ice at the bottom kind of went off the edge of the porch over some of the stacked wood I'd put there the night before one of our blizzards in case we lost power.  I decided to chip it off the wood and maybe it would even help it drip and drain away.  As I shoveled and scraped it a bit, I was bent over beside the icicle. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw movement and realized in an instant what was happening.  The 8 foot long icicle was dislodging and falling directly toward me!
I put up my hand to deflect the huge column of ice and scooted backward just in time to mostly miss it.  As I pushed on the falling chunk of ice, it broke above my head.  I must have deflected it upwards, because it made another attempt at me. So I raised my other hand (the one with the shovel in it) and clunked myself on the head with the shovel handle for good measure, as I tried to protect my head yet again from that stubborn chunk of ice.

My hand was scraped up pretty nicely, and I had a sore head, but the ice missed knocking me out... or worse.  I looked at the ice on the porch, now broken into foot-long pieces about 10-12 inches wide and 2 to 3 inches deep.  I went into the house and put cold, cold water on my throbbing, stinging hand and wrist, ignoring my head because it wasn't bleeding and didn't hurt more than my hand yet, and then got the scales to take outside onto the porch.  Each broken piece weighed 10 or more pounds.  I figure there was a good 30 pound portion that had aimed at my head as I had bent over in front of it scraping the porch.
My hand is still a little sore, my head has a bruise on the top, and I'm a little more wary of icicles.  But all in all I'm here to write a happy ending to a Slice of Ice!

These are not your freezer ice cubes...

Friday, February 27, 2015

RePost and New

Linking to Poetry Friday at Heidi's "My Juicy Little Universe and putting out a call for poets and classrooms to participate in March Madness 2015!


Moon and icicle sky from my porch

Here's the repost from Monday part (see below for an actual poem AND a rewrite of it I did this morning - forgetting that I'd added to it already online, so now you have two poems that start the same and end differently):
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Ed DeCaria at Think, Kid Think is starting the March Madness poetry writing tournament beginning on March 8. Click on the link to go there to learn more about it and see who's in it this year (I made it!).  That's the day the poets in the line-up will receive their unique word and write a kid's poem that includes that word.  The first voting round will be on March 12, when poetry lovers of all ages and registered classrooms will be able to vote on their favorite poems.  The winners of each round will go on to compete until on April 2 there is one poet left standing.

I will at least be competing in the first round!  Yea!  Maybe I'll move on to the next round - that would be exciting!

Hope you will consider joining in on the reading and voting.  It is going to be a fun month!
Who knows...maybe spring will show up in the middle of it!
Heh, heh, heh....that was kind of funny...
Welcome back to school - returning to school after Feb. Break yesterday
We are so far under snow, we might as well keep our skis and snowshoes on until next Christmas.  This may be the summer of the snowpants.

I always wear a nice warm hat
atop my freezing head;
Winter's not the only time
I've come to really dread.
In Maine we never can rely
on days for bathing suits -
I wear my snowpants in July,
in August don warm boots.
Though summer days are longer
It would be finer fun
if we could shed these longjohns
And get warmth from the sun.
Perhaps before the snow flies
this batch will melt and go,
And we will make sand castles
instead of forts of snow.

©Donna JT Smith
New Portion
The Second Rendition

I always wear a nice warm hat
atop my freezing head;
Winter's not the only time
I've come to really dread.

In Maine we never can rely
On days for bathing suits;
I wear my snowpants in July,
in August wear my boots.

In midst of June under the moon
My socks cover cold toes;
At break of day my scarf goes on
to wrap ‘round ears and nose.

It isn’t always quite this way,
There isn’t any reason
Not to enjoy the one warm day
We have out of this season.

Put on your bathing suit that day
Get out there in the sun
On July fourth, I’m sad to say,
Summer started and is done.

©Donna JT Smith, 2015

So I you were to pick, which one would it be and why -  The first poem or the second?

Monday, February 23, 2015

March Madness Poetry 2015 Soon

Linking to Slice of Life Tuesday - and putting out a call for teachers to get their students excited about poetry by registering and participating in March Madness 2015!

Ed DeCaria at Think, Kid Think is starting the March Madness poetry writing tournament beginning on March 8. Click on the link to go there to learn more about it and see who's in it this year (I made it!).  That's the day the poets in the line-up will receive their unique word and write a kid's poem that includes that word.  The first voting round will be on March 12, when poetry lovers of all ages and registered classrooms will be able to vote on their favorite poems.  The winners of each round will go on to compete until on April 2 there is one poet left standing.

I will at least be competing in the first round!  Yea!  Maybe I'll move on to the next round - that would be exciting!

Hope you will consider joining in on the reading and voting.  It is going to be a fun month!
Who knows...maybe spring will show up in the middle of it!
Heh, heh, heh....that was kind of funny...
Welcome back to school - returning to school after Feb. Break yesterday
We are so far under snow, we might as well keep our skis and snowshoes on until next Christmas.  This may be the summer of the snowpants.

I always wear a nice warm hat
atop my freezing head;
Winter's not the only time
I've come to really dread.
In Maine we never can rely
on days for bathing suits -
I wear my snowpants in July,
in August don warm boots.
Though summer days are longer
It would be finer fun
if we could shed these longjohns
And get warmth from the sun.
Perhaps before the snow flies
this batch will melt and go,
And we will make sand castles
instead of forts of snow.





Friday, February 20, 2015

Sound Poem Day 20

This is a submission to Author Amok's 2015 poem-a-day sounds project.  Here are the guidelines for participating. 
For Day 20, the prompt was write to the sound of the reptile you chose.  My choice: The Common Garter Snake - which is plentiful in Maine.
Common Garter Snake -- Thamnophis sirtalis

S s
     ss            i i
         s s    i i       l         l  
             i i            e    t     y
                              n

I crawl to be
        over rocks
             and under tree
                  and then I stop
    and all you heard
        was the
           crinkly word
                  of a leaf
                       I crossed or a
               crossing bee.
        you won’t
                hear
                   me.

Solitude or Loneliness, Who Cares Which?

It's Poetry Friday and hosted by someone I like to think of as a friend that I have never met but feel like I know - Linda Baie at Teacherdance.  If you don't know Linda yet, go there to meet her and make a new friend!  Oh, and find more poetry linkups there, too.
Additionally, on Wednesday the new Poetry Jam prompt was issued... "Write about loneliness or solitude."  I have written a poem to address the issue.


Solitude or Loneliness, Who Cares Which?

I’m all alone at home again
I’m writing, and I’ve
tried
to ignore the constant scuffling
of two dogs by my
side,
and then there is the white cat
being obviously
denied
access to his sleeping place
and where he likes to
hide.
Oh, I talk to them - they listen with
their heads cocked to one
side.
So if I say I’m lonesome
I'd have have to say I’ve
lied.
My days are not my own,
I could use some
solitude.
Can't say that I don't like my pets;
I'd never be that
rude,
But when I try to gather thoughts
they carelessly
intrude,
And all my writings and my dreams
seem to be pet
imbued.
Solitude or loneliness -
oh, does it matter
which?
I think that either one might
surely cure me of this
twitch.
But then of course I’d lack excuse
for a poetic
glitch.

©Donna JT Smith, 2015

Thursday, February 19, 2015

You Think You Want Spring?


At the request of Lynn Proctor over at "My Life as Lynn Proctor", who commented on yesterday's posted poem called "Icicled Sight", I have written a poem as she requested, but the topic of which she did not request.  She requested a spring poem, but when I tried to write one, having just read the weather forecast and looking out over all the snow - which would make it very easy to jump out a window right now (like maybe you'd want to after this winter!) and not get hurt - I ended up with another winter poem.  And as I told her, I will try again later when the weathermen stop saying, "Here, have just another little bite of snow!"

So to make the ado short, here is what I came up with on short notice under duress of more snow...speaking of which, here we are this morning...one more time...everybody sing!
Snow, snow, I love snow, I'm absolutely, positively wild about snow.  Can't go around it I gotta go through...I said EVERYBODY sing!


You Think You Want Spring?
*****
So you think you want spring
with its goodness and light?
You think you want daffodils
and shortness of night?
Well, I hear your desire
I know of your plight,
But winter’s not over
it still has some fight.
*****
And so in your dreams
you’ll have to make do
with visions of daffy’s
and dandy-lions, too;
For gray skies are here -
they're still not true blue -
and we will be freezing
until they are due.
*****
No matter the shovels,
roof rakes and backaches;
We’ll just have to settle for
blossoming flakes,
The snow dunes on pathways
and ice caps on lakes;
Blizzards and snow squalls
 are what winter makes.
*****
You think you want spring now,
so this deep freeze should go?
Sorry, but winter has
more snowballs to throw
And if not for our winter
how would we know
How precious the spring
made from melting of snow?
*****
©Donna JT Smith, 2-18-2015

I will, I will, I will...do a spring poem soon.
I hope.
Stay warm and dry just a little bit longer.
We can do it.
We can do it.
Want to try to sing the snow song again?

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Icicled Sight

 
As we drove by on our way home on Saturday, I spied this house.  It just looked so much like the icicles were keeping the owners from escaping, or from intruders entering (not sure which).

I had to go back to take a picture.

And then I had to write this Monorhyme...a poem in which all the lines have the same end rhyme.

Icicled Sight

We quietly dripped through the night
As long we grew and held on tight,
To mimic cavern's stalactite,
And gain immense reverso height.
Once waking, you beheld your plight
Behind our bars of icy white,
And seeing this, forsook the fight,
Submitting to our gripping bite.
Imprisoned in the dark of night
For no good reason but for spite
(Or maybe just because we might)!
You must remain till sun grows bright
And we are feeling more contrite
Then we will melt, allowing flight,
And you can once again feel light;
And all the world will seem just right
As rain, with butterflies and kite
Instead of snow and icy blight.
But don't forget next year's invite,
'Cus your dismay is our delight.

©Donna JT Smith, 2015

Here's my husband braving the frigid temps and the hip deep snow to remove our icicle imprisonment.  Good thing he had snowshoes!  He tried it without, but you can't get anywhere when you sink to your belt.  BTW, that bit of shrubbery you see poking up is a part of our 5 foot high beach rose bush at the front of our house...there's a lot more where that came from.  You wouldn't want to just try to wade through three feet of thorns hidden beneath the snow!


It's a Slice of Life Tuesday, so go see what's happening in others' lives and maybe look at some Slicer Swag!

Icicles on the side of our house - the corner ones are only a couple of inches off the snow - reaching from ceiling height to interior floor - 8 feet long.


Sunday, February 15, 2015

Might Not Be Able to Go to Church Today

It's a blustery, blizzardy day today, and we could not make the trip in to church.  But that did not prevent us from reading devotions.  First thing this morning I wrote a bit of a thought, too.  So if you can't make it to church today either, don't forget to take it to God.

God in Me or I in God

When I stand alone
I am surprised
that I do not always remember
to muster with prayer
and awaken my spirit to
the Spirit of God
For it is then that He fills
and floods my insides
welling up
expanding until there is no more room
and He seeps out
flowing through pores,
an Invisible River
of Goodness and Peace
He surrounds me,
encompasses me
hedges me
with his Power and Comfort
until every fiber
every molecule
every atom of my being
is comforted,
caressed,
consoled
by His presence
and I am In Him
as He is In Me; 
And that is how 
I know
Heaven
will be.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

My Love is Not LIke a Red, Red Rose

It’s Valentine’s Day
a day for sweet cards
and chocolates
or wordy candies
and red, red roses
and softly scented candles -
A day for sweetheart kisses
and unexpected hugs
or a whisper
that tugs
on your heart;
but I will settle for -
...no...
I will crave -
an omelet
fried potatoes
a cup of strong coffee
a small oj
and my son
to join the two of us
for breakfast
at our favorite diner;
for there are
no finer times
than those real
life moments
to get sappy
over.


Happy Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Cold Meet Cold

Cold Morning in Maine - today

Cold Meet Cold

cold of ocean
ocean deep
cold meet cold
where snowbanks steep
cover rocks
and seaweeds creep
where cold meets
cold
and icicles greet
the ground
and reach
to frozen beach
shaking hands
seas and lands
shivering timbers
quivering sands
meeting up with
silvery bands
and slivery strands
of ice and snow
where men may go
where no
one could set foot
before the throes
of winter snows.

©Donna JT Smith, 2015

Snow is over halfway up most everyone's doors - including our garage doors. Our house sits pretty high, so it is keeping our doors and windows free of snow.  The icicles are impressive, too.

 And after one blizzard and a couple major snowstorms and a bunch of minor multiple inches of snow, we are being readied for a second blizzard starting tomorrow night (Saturday) through Sunday.
Our snowbank is quite high at our house and our icicles very long.  Usually right on the coast as we are, the snows turn to wet snow and rain, lessening the amount of snow - though making driving (Ha!  I just wrote "dricing" for "driving"... which is about right!) very hazardous due to the road icing.  This year it has been all snow and cold.
Here's my snowplow guy making us a little bit o'room for the next storm...


Had to do some prep for the storm so I'm late, but linking up with Poetry Friday today at Merely Day by Day with Cathy.  Check it out!