"I am hearing poetry when awake, dreaming poetry when asleep, breathing poetry with each breath, I am living in a poem."

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Forever Misused

Does anyone believe in forever,
set their minds to a vision
where love, hate or life never ends?

What does it mean?
Our human concept of forever
is so minuscule.
We toss the word around
most often with our impatience….
It took forever to see the doctor.
It takes forever for her to get dressed.
The drive to work took forever.

How can we understand something
that will never end, when we
demand immediate?
We rush to pop our lives
into a microwave so we don’t have to wait.

If we joined all our forevers , it would be
broken pieces of time cemented with
frustration and random promise.

We search our genealogy to find our roots,
to go back as many generations as we can
to find our beginnings.
Are each one of us pieces of forever
on a timeline our ancestors could never perceive?

Forever…..Just when did it begin?

©Susie Clevenger 2012

Photography: Daryl Edelstein ~ Mosaic Art: Isiah Zagar
We were challenged at Real Toads to write a poem based on Daryl Edelstein's photography
 and Isiah Zagar's mosaic art.

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Twisted Temptation

The sweet and sour
first meet on my lips
in a twisted flirtation.

The pink fluff
sweetens my tongue
while the tart turns it bitter.

I peel back the covering
seeking to consume
each delicate crumb.

Each bite brings
me closer to a
sugary demise.

Damn my diabetic disease
that rages in numbers!
I am doomed to a life unsweetened.

©Susie Clevenger 2012
Ella challenged us at Real Toads
to write on food. I wrote on my nemesis

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Noise of Unfounded Complaint

I hear the noise
of unfounded

It is nothing
more than
self proclaimed

Release me
from my futility
of comforting you.

You are still writing
the same dialogue
with your tongue

that I heard
from the first
moment of knowing you.

Your attitude
has tattered
my peace,

caused my smile
to turn into the gritted
teeth of a shrew.

I doubt my own sanity
to continue having
my ears abused.

There is so much
I would like to toss
back at you,

but then I would
be no better than
your whining twin.

I shall end
this friendship
with quiet withdrawal.

Goodbyes have always
been painful for me….
that is until today.

© Susie Clevenger 2012
Shay's challenge at Real Toads 
was to write about what it is that makes us snap,
to get on our last nerve, to...well, I think you have
the picture. This is my contribution. 
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Friday, May 25, 2012

War and Peace

Why is there war
that uses holy books
as reasons for death?

Voices raise sacred words
as battle cries to arm
the faithful to destroy
those of a different philosophy.

Greed burns green
while planting its feet
in red rivers of death.

Who decides truth or lies?
Propaganda spews from lips
of every color and nation.

Let anger dissipate.
Remove garments
of division and discord.

Be hungry in mind and body
for the end of battles.
Raise a universal white flag
to surrender to accord.

Humanity join hands
and let go of prejudice.
Let all of us go forth
to see the world
made whole again
and carry the light of peace.

©Susie Clevenger 2012

This was written for New World Creative Union's Wednesday Wake-Up Call ~ 5/23/12
For what it's worth ~ Change

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Painted With Silence

One pale nightlight
was all there was
to illuminate the life
behind four walls of pretense.

She told herself
having him come
home late was better
than being alone.

He told himself
having her asleep
when he unlocked the door
was better than seeing her tears.

Neither tried to cross the chasm
that lay between them.
They were just two people
sharing the same space
painted with silence.

©Susie Clevenger 2012
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Friday, May 11, 2012


I am off to visit family in Oklahoma and Missouri. I will be gone until May 22nd. I will try and stop in to read all the marvelous work my poet friends will be writing, but I doubt I will be posting anything. Take care everyone!!
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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Night ~ Tanka

The night puddles
under the oak tree
in broken stars and shadows,
the wind painting a Monet
with its branches.

©Susie Clevenger 2012
Photograph: All HD Wallpapers
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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Kicked Back in Rewind

“We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams.”  
Arthur William Edward O’ Shaughnessy 

There are songs that get into your soul
curling their notes around you,
binding you to the melody
thumping your heart with the rhythm,
stamping memories in your brain.

The first note and you recognize it.
Time evaporates and you are transported
to the connection, the faces, the moment
the song became important.

You kick back in rewind singing to the music
and reliving your glory days.
For a flash you are young again
living as fast as you can.

©Susie Clevenger 2012

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Same Color of Hell

Life lingers
to magnify
its indignity.

A woman
crawls upon
her rug
on crumbs
and dementia.

Reality is dying
inside a mind
that cannot
that the
she lies in
is her own.

She reaches
for shadows
that speak
from picture
her present
further into
the past.

There is
no division
in day
or night.
The hours
are all
the same
color of hell.

by a son
who placed
more value
on liquor
than her life,
her body
waits for
to free her.

©Susie Clevenger 2012

This poem comes from a phone call to my sister today. She made a visit to a woman we have known all our lives and she discovered her living in horrendous conditions. She called the woman's son and he said his mother could die in that apartment alone. He just didn't care. My sister called the Adult Protective Services and they are sending someone to assess the situation and see what can be done. 

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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Bell Bottom Flashbacks

Clean the seeds,
roll it tight,
smoke the high.

Tiny pills,
leave eyes wide,
impossible sleep.

Mind swirls
in a purple

in strobe lights

Waist length hair
catches the wind,
born to be wild.

Bell bottom flashbacks

©Susie Clevenger 2012

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

A Sunrise of Tears and Goodbye

The farmer plowed his hope
into the grave
of rocky dirt
and defaulted loans.
Then swallowed red dust
along with his pride.

He never dreamed
years of growing crops
to feed the hungry
would have him
begging for food.

A Salvation Army meal
received with thanks and amen
quieted his rumbling stomach.

Tomorrow would be a sunrise
of tears and goodbye.
The family farm would be sold
on the courthouse steps.

Bent with his burden
he spoke his goodbye,
and went home to ask forgiveness
from the ghosts of five generations.

©Susie Clevenger

This was written for the challenge put forth on Real Toads
to write from the work of Levon Helm.. Sadly we have had to say goodbye to him and the American Farm.
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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

They Look but Never See

"Just look down the road and tell me if you can see either of them."
"I see nobody on the road," said Alice.
"I only wish I had such eyes," the King remarked in a fretful tone. "To be able to see Nobody! And at such a distance too!"

They Look But Never See

The road whines under my tires
crying,  “One more soul passes
and doesn’t pause to see the wonder
of where they are.”
Wildflowers grow in bouquets
to line its asphalt ribbon.
They beg for travelers
to stop and rest among their blooming.
People pass this very spot,
connected for a single moment.
They look but never see who inhabits
the vehicle to their left or to their right.
For a few seconds earth, sky, plant, animal and human
are in the exact same place in the universe.
It only happens once and then it bursts like a bubble
to never be recreated.
Tunnel vision and detachment place travelers in a metal cocoon
isolated in their destination of who, where and when.
Life blurred by the speed of a speedometer
chasing time and hurried miles.
I heard the road’s sorrow as it spoke from its grooves,
the mournful imploring stirring me to open my eyes.
I will no longer take for granted the photographs that move around me
nor those junctures  on a roadway that will never meet again.
©Susie Clevenger 2012
Kerry's Wednesday Challenge ~ On the Road

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