NaPoWriMo, Day 3

Today’s prompt from the NaPoWriMo site was to write a “sonnet-esque”poem with iambic pentameter, and about something sad.  In the news recently is the sad story of Timmothy Pitzen, who went missing in 2011 after his mother checked him out of school, apparently placed him with unknown people to raise, and then committed suicide.  His father and other family members haven’t seen him since that day, when he was 6 1/2 years old.  In the past couple of days, a young man came forward claiming to be Timmothy Pitzen, but today it was announced that DNA results didn’t match.  While the young man may certainly be a product of abduction and abuse, he doesn’t belong to the Pitzen family.  I couldn’t imagine the family’s heartbreak, given even the slightest hope that their son was finally found, only to find out it was a (even well-intentioned) hoax.  So I wrote this poem for them:


For the family of Timmothy Pitzen, missing since May 11, 2011


The face, aged up, not his; the tweak of smile

the wrong angle.  We knew this deep inside

the phone’s jangle-tone, the way it sounded

like a nightingale, deceptive in its

joy.  We hadn’t seen him in many years,

that little bird, off to school with his bag

and jacket; we wanted to hear his voice

over the wire.  Instead we got a face

not quite right, outlined with nervous bruises,

asking for family he can’t recall.

Our arms, too weak from carrying with us

old pictures age-progressed for clarity—

they can’t embrace him or tend to his wounds.

His song belongs to someone else.  Just who

that is, may he someday discover them.

For now, we line our lonely nest and wait.

NaPoWriMo, Day 2

I missed yesterday due to an unexpected flare of a recurring illness I deal with from time to time, and it didn’t seem like a great idea (on the other hand, maybe it would have been fantastic) to write while under the influence of narcotic pain medication.  So I plan to make up a day this week and write two (although not today, because of aforementioned narcotic pain medication).  I vaguely followed the prompt given out by NaPoWriMo.



What is a minute?  A piece of our attention

chopped with a dull knife, divided equally.

What is a day?  A circle, gold-toned

and imperceptible to feet.  Only our skins

know the warmth, only our eyes know

the sting of a cloudless noon sky.

What is a month?  Crescents

arcing across, beads on a string,

silver like an ocean.

What is a year?  Beyond our attention,

longer than breath.  A swallower of minutes.




NaPoWriMo, Day 1

Another year, another National Poetry Writing Month!  Once again, I’m endeavoring to write 30 poems in 30 days.  Last year I got to 25, which was pretty exciting considering how much I had going on in the month of April.  This year, this month is even more packed, but I’m hoping to do at least as well!

I am kind-of-sort-of following prompts for the month…this one started as a response to a prompt, but veered off:


So you want a seat at this table

with a mouth that has never known

salt, with a nose that does not smell

fear.  You want to lick a plate

not realizing you set it yourself

ages ago.  Hashtag, you say.

Not all.  Stand up

at the table’s edge

and see your company.  Stand

on your seat.  The feast may,

in fact, be too bitter for your tongue.