Page the Second


A fronte praecipitium a tergo lupi. (In front of you, a precipice. Behind you, wolves.)

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Color Poem--Indigo--National Poetry Month

These don't seem that indigo to me. It's rare to find true indigo. That's why I love it.
On this last day of National Poetry Month, I'm going to do a color poem. If you want to know how to do this particular form, go here. Otherwise, here's my poem:
Probably not Pluto, but to me Pluto will always be a planet, just as Indigo should always belong to the color spectrum. Besides, you don't know what Pluto looks like.

Indigo is mystery; rare and difficult to find
Like Pluto on the outer edge, a pirate planet waiting to embark in shenanigans.
Like the sky just before the stars send sparks through the velvety night.
As comfy as an old pair of jeans with a new-found hundred dollar bill in the pocket.

Just a l'il bit of Heaven on earth right here.
 © 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Poetweet Poem--Lousy Memory--National Poetry Month

It's Poetweet day. If you're not sure what that is, go here. And now I'm going to have to cram everything into 140 tweet spaces, so I'm getting to it.

My memory looks like old Swiss cheese. 
Could I have a transplant please? 
My mind, unruly as a cat 
Goes every which way. What about that?


(Hah! Exactly 140 spaces. And it only took me about 10 minutes and the revelation that I'd forgotten a very important appointment...sigh.)

Friday, April 28, 2017

Clarihew Poem--Bitsy the Boy--National Poetry Month

This is a Clarihew Poem. Don't ask me how Mr. Clerihew rates a poem style, but Stephanie will probably know and tell you here. Anywho, that's what I'm writing today, if I can keep my eyeballs open. They're not hilariously funny, but what can you expect from 2 1/2 hours of sleep? In between stanzas, I'm playing my bodrhan (Irish drum).


Bitsy the Boy works hard when he works
But when he's not working, he dawdles and shirks
Perhaps if I gave him something better to do
He might not detest going after dog poo.

I took Bitsy Boy to the Oinks place to eat.
I mean how can you go wrong with bacon for meat?
But when he came out with two bags full of food
We found out you pay through the nose for what's good.

Bitsy the Boy is not very small.
And since he graduated he's gotten quite tall
I feared we would soon have to roll him to bed
If he sat there for too long he'd prolly be dead

 But then Bitsy Boy got a really nice job
Lugging fertilizer and cement for ten bob
So it looks like he can't get away from the poo
Whether it be from a bark, or a cluck, or a moo.

Free Verse--Take One Teaspoon of Tincture of Ireland--National Poetry Month

Sheepdog trials--Bah, ram, ewe!
I have to be up at 4am to take my son to work. "What in tarnation are you doing up this late writing poetry then?" you ask. Well I'll tell you. I intend to come back and go straight back to bed. Because if it's anything like last night, the sonorous snoring of the Hubs will keep me awake much longer than it should. Thus tonight. And thus I'm on my own again. Plus I have lately been inspired by better poetry than I normally write. Plus Poetry month is winding down. That said, here goeth my efforts to define Ireland:

"Come with me, girls," Mum said.
"I need my daughters around me, 
And an adventure to fill me up."
A bus-ride full of old ladies 
Knocking about Ireland,
Buying shamrock key chains and 
Erin go Bragh shirts? Bah! 
Mum--guess where she's from--but isn't she cute?
How would I fit
What I really wished to take
From Eire's shores
Into that infinitesimal time and space? 
A mere ten days, an instant 
To be paid for in careful 
Herding of pennies. 
I hardly thought about it--
Something so un-graspable.
The letter languished 
While I scoffed.
To find oneself suddenly transplanted 
Into a place one has so long
Dreamed of
Though could never make real.
Mum kept at it.
In very fact, she worked to make 
Phantasm a reality.
She must have had her own list
Of necessary souvenirs--
Mainly smiles and wind-swept hair.

Oldest and youngest at Blarney
And suddenly, without a means
Of catching breath
I found myself on Eire's shores
Whisked there as if by fey magics
One minute breathing stale,
I'll-be-here-'til-I-dessicate air 
And the next day?
Blessedly Other.

A two lane road with gorse hedges coming right up to it--everywhere
My soul filled with emerald richness
The scent of sea never far away
I wanted to own it, 
That first breath of cloud laden air, 
That lilt of Gaeltacht,
Lamb stew, and music.
I craved the right to pull it
Into my soul and keep it there,
Burnishing the memory 
Until it shone like polished brass.
An underlying drumbeat,
Heartbeat of aged place.
A day at Muckross Abbey
Not for my soul so much the 
Shopping and choosing and 
Counting of Euros, taxes and customs,
The boarding of a careening bus
At the behest of others 
Exhausted and tense with 
Jockeying questions
Of who am I with them, and why?
From the bus, Murt driving, thankfully
I took hardly a chance to pull it all
Inside and make it my own,
To fill reservoirs with green traceries
On peat bogged pebble.
But had I only known, 
Each encounter added a stone 
To the walls which hedge
My memories of that place.
I would have inhaled
The yeasty laughter,
The creak of aged oaks,
And the pattering of rain.
I had a really hard time getting a pic of a house with the keeper boards on the ends, but they were everywhere. The boards keep the shingles from flying away in the wind.
I now see I must return!
Like a necessary drug, 
I must breathe it in once more.
Perhaps to share, 
But maybe not.
To be dragged hither and to? No.
How can I say 
What things are necessary now
So they'll understand? 
I must seek again the sound of a 
Lonely whistle as painted sheep graze
On far-flung green hills.
Cliffs of Moher--me not jumping
I must savor the age of the stones
In my bones, 
Fill the air with my own drumbeat
And the haunting notes of an old new song.
Find that place to be 
Which hasn't felt the weight 
Of a million other hurrying feet.
Layer upon layer of aching History
Lives cherished and lost to the 
Brazen new world. 
I must tie my own rag
To the whitethorn tree.

Tying one on at a whitethorn tree
I ache for kinship with those who stayed
Who dragged a life 
From the stony soil or the angry sea.
Those who watered that soil 
With their blood
In order to breathe free.
Need to feel, not an interloper, 
But a daughter, long lost
Now returned.
Harder than it looks. The wind blows your breath straight back into you.
My soul must find roots and 
Sing them to life.
I must be in the music. Akin. 
Ancient me at Bunratty (or Mouth of the Raite) Castle
I am your seed, Eire. 
Lap me up and we two
May spread wing together
Take flight o'er peat bog and heath
To be the stones and the light
To be the flowers 
Gripping tightly to cliff-sides,
A safe haven for those without.
Let me help. Let me breathe.
Let me own.
Bid me return, not out of necessity
But from kinship.
The standing stones at Blarney castle
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Poem-in-Your-Pocket Day--Snorrrrrrrrrring--National Poetry Month

Today is Poem-in-Your-Pocket Day. You can go here to see what that is. I'm going to write one and then go hibernate because someone kept me up all night....


A big part of the problem is both of us do it,
That cacophonous commotionous, incredible feat
In spite of the contortionly positions I sleep in 
To stop up the sound of two walruseseses in heat.

But last night, long before I could even position
My head on the pillow to start my deep breaths
Your maw opened up and let loose a great aria
Of nasal proportions that featured great deaths.

I lay there and fidgeted knowing that too soon
The son for a ride into work would come knocking
But there you were, singing, with pompous bombastion
Oblivious to poking and prodding and boxing.

So now, in the morning, I'm a hag-ridden zombie
Stumbling around like I haven't a head
And I wonder how often I've done a disservice
To you, who must work, despite feeling dead.

Perhaps it is time to acquire a concoction
Which quiets the sound of embattled brown bears.
For then we'd sleep frapious and rise in the morning
All cheerful, callooing and doing loud cheers!

Until then I suppose there's a chair or the sofa
For those nights when you sound like a rattling train.
Or, I guess I could fill up your bedside with popcorn
Or nap so I won't go completely and absolutely and in all ways insane!
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy
And now I'm off to bed for the second time. Good night.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Senses Poem--Alaskan Love Song--National Poetry Month

The jungle in back of the cannery at Uyak

I'm going to continue my Alaskan Love Song theme because it makes me feel cooler...:o) The Hubs still hasn't summerized the cooling, so we swelter in near or at triple digit weather. So this is a Senses Poem, and you can read about how to do your own here. Meanwhile, ta-daaaaaa:

Me on the day I caught my halibut (but not with this  rod--a jig) This was for catching the bait.

Slickers were for babies. I still wear the red sweatshirt.

A whale passes the dock where I sit reading; it blows and lunges as it feeds.
The misty morning air smells of fish gurry and machine grease.
The gulls scream as they dive after the bits of breakfast roll I toss them.
The boards of the dock shove a splinter through my hand. I drag my gut knife out to cut the splinter away.
I can still taste the hash browns and salmon from the cafeteria.
This is a little bit of Heaven--at least until the work bell rings.

My Alaskan Heaven--with fish guts and exhaustion
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Acrostic Poem--Alaskan Love Song--National Poetry Month

We're doing acrostic poems today. To see how to do this, go here. I'm missing Alaska today as the temps climb back up into the triple digits here. It's a good thing I stocked up on memories while there. Take me back!

A land of majestic mountains scraping the sky in stark winter coats
Laboring to fill cans with salmon--then smoking some, the scent of hickory teasing tastebuds.
A place where the sun lets me climb rocky faces all night.

Swimming in snow melt--so bracing and so full of marine life.
Kayaking across the bay to fish in the still silences.
An eagle spreads its wings above us as it rides the thermals.
North of everything, in my mind, the wind blows full of fresh green beauty.

Empire of ice and wind and bone-chilling cold.
Xtreme living at it's most primeval.

Prepare for bears the size of trucks, and mosquitoes big as cows.
Eskimos and Klinkits smile with their whole bodies. 
Rivers teaming with spawning salmon, like silver ribbons through green velvet. 
Indian fishermen grin over their gill nets. 
Everyone takes care of their neighbor, no questions asked. 
Northern lights ripple across the heavens in a grand spectacle. 
Cakes of salmon, so yummy and filling.
Ever in my dreams, so often in my thoughts. How I miss you!

© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Monday, April 24, 2017

Nonet Poems--Doggy Love--National Poetry Month

It's nonet day. "What the heck is a nonet?" you ask. Stephanie answers that question here. Meanwhile I'll reveal my newest offering below:


Dog, streaming full out, his tongue trailing;
Airborn, he bites ball from thin air
Laughing hilariously
I call back slimy ball.
Someday I'll catch it
All on film,
But not

© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sonnet--When First We Met--National Poetry Month

This is an iambic pentameter sonnet I'm writing here--the BIG guns. So even though it's Sunday and people are around making noise and doing things, I'm of a mind to try it. So here goes. Oh. If you want to know how to do this devilishly difficult poetry form, be my guest. Learn how here. And anon, I shall at it:


The first time ere I on you did cast sight
A duck you wore upon your Jonesian hat
I thought you certainly a Bedlamite 
And that put mental paid to that

When next upon you my eyes I did clap
Your bore upon your person knightly helm
It seemed a strange way maidenly ken to trap
I thought, "The man's sanity doth underwhelm."

But when we found ourselves in grottos dark
I could not wait to call upon your princely name
My fiance all that with jealousy did mark
I could not say my heart did feel the same.

Your arrow found unerring place within my heart
From thence our Murphy history took its start.
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Free Form Poem--Denizen of the Void--National Poetry Month


Into the stillness 
Between waking and sleeping
A thought springs
And expanding,
Unfurling gossamer, iridescent wings
Until it fills me 
With awe.
It grips me
With delicate pincers.
The least breath
Of disturbance
In the space
Of the tick of a clock,
My etherial
It's gone!
What once
Filled me
Has vanished 
Without a trace.
Though I mourn
Its whispy passing
And marvel at its talent
For slipping, 
Through my fingers
I cannot hope to 
Bring it back.
Only lure
With night's wakefulness.
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Cinquain Poems--National Poetry Month

Today it's a cinquain poem. Here's the place to figure out how to do these.

Clark Kent
Alien man
Sent to sacrifice all
For the betterment of Mankind

God's Son
Sent to sacrifice all
For the betterment of Mankind

© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Friday, April 21, 2017

Pensee Pensiveness--National Poetry Month

Today we're doing a Pensee poem. If you have no idea what this is, but want to find out, go here. Here's my offering:

Sweet destroyer
Like Juno in your aspects
You wreak carnage in the kitchen
I wish I could tame you.

One minute sweet, the next, RAGE
Clean room but trashed relationships
How will we survive?

This next is not a Pensee poem. Just something I was pondering last night while waiting for my husband to get out of the pizza store...;o)
(Just as a side note, I notice some people putting things on there maybe a starvation survivor might add...like corn, oysters, pineapple, or squash. Let me just say, KEEP THAT TRAVESTY FOOD AWAY FROM MY PIE! That will be all.)
Pizza, pizza how I love you
Savory roundness pulls me in
Oh that scent of tomato-y gravy (that's what Italians call sauce)
It just dribbles down my chin

Strings of cheese span the gappage (Shakespeare made up thousands of words. I can make up one...;o)
Betwixt my chin and delicious joy
I would rather eat a pizza
Than go parking with a boy.

I load it down with pepperoni
Add the mushrooms, cheese, and sauce (clearly not in that order)
Top it off with yummy olives
Then it won't be taste bud loss

You can even leave the olives
Off your half of tasty pie
Just because I know you hate 'em
We'd have rootbeer floats close by. (His favorite)

If you really want to please me
Get a pizza pie for two (or ten) 
Take me to a drive-in movie
That is not a date we'd rue. (There are actually very few dates I'd rue--one being to do our taxes and I'm not going to the others in my head.)
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Brevette Poems--National Poetry Month

Today it's Brevette poems. I'd never heard of them either, so I went here to find out what the heck they were. Then I wrote these:

l i g h t s

h o l d

c u d d l e s

e a t s
ice cream

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Monorhyme--To the Beach!--National Poetry Month

Contrary to what my last poem said, today I'm doing a Monorhyme. If you're clueless about what that is, go here. Now getting down to it:


I wish I could go down to the sea for a sail
I'd take you along so that you could help bail
From hibernating inside, my skin is quite pale

I want to go surfing, dump sand in a pail
Jump in the water where I'd happily flail
I'd swim 'til my skin was stark white like a whale

And we'd eat enchiladas with kippers and kale
For dessert we'd eat crumb cake and guzzle wassail
We'd lie out on the sand 'til it got time to bale

Then home we would drive, over hill, over dale
And when we got home we would go through the mail
And wish we could carry our house like a snail
© 2017 by H. Linn Murphy