Tag Archives: PAD Challenge 2009

I Knew

I’ll never forget the day—

After doctor visits
just me and him or with other family
in hospitals and waiting rooms,
examinations, procedures, and treatments
hours spent in fruitless and unavoidable worry,
we finally got the doctor’s
last words on the matter;

Whatever they decided to do
whatever dad accepted to be put through
he didn’t have much time to be here with us,
they were sure they couldn’t fix him.

My life moving on felt like
a betrayal to dad who’s life was coming to a close
and everything was heavier.
Still, I continued doing what I knew I had to
placing everything I could on my automatic list,
with breathing and swallowing
because everything I thought to do
became easier to just skip it.

And then one shimmering
breezy September afternoon,
I was driving alone when I laughed aloud
and had to admit it—
I can’t recall the song, joke
or thought that brought me to it,

but that was the day I knew
that even through my profound grief
over the impending loss of my father,
in my soul I would eventually know joy again.

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Write a poem about a memorable person or event. Day 30 of the 2009 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, from Poetic Asides.

Through this Passage

Through this life I travel
growing, changing, being changed.
My only constant the Self
the core me I can always recognize.

We are here for an unknown finite duration
moving through this ethereal passage.

Present with no reason why I’m here
in my youth I happened upon this affinity
grown into a hope a chance dream
to leave my mark with even one verse
that time will hold on to.

Through this passage we’re each alone
even in the company of others.

Without understanding it,
breathing is to sit with paper
and scribble thoughts that come to me.
Equally as unrelenting and unfathomable
is the desire to share with even one person.

If I had to choose having
a companion through this nebulous ephemeral passage
until our time together is done,
or having a verse known through millennia
I might actually lay down my pen
to share my limited time with one who gets me.
I might…

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Take the phrase “Through this (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. Day 28 of the 2009 November PAD Chapbook Challenge from Poetic Asides

Shapes Matter

A lovely face does not a relationship make.
But, in the equation of weighing whether
to remain a couple or separate,
there are some shapes that matter.

For example, there are
the shapes his mouth makes
when he says my name.
The soft arch his hand makes
when it covers mine at a dinner table.
The twist of my arm with his
as we watch movies together.
The bend of his arm wrapped
warmly around my waist
drawing me affectionately to him
as we walk wherever.
The way his eyes almost close
when he laughs out loud with me.

The sturdiness of his squared shoulder
when I need one to lean on
is a great gift in deed. And then
there’s my favorite, the way his smile
forms a mesmerizing crescent when
he appreciates some little extra thing
I’ve done.

These are the shapes that matter to me
the ones that entreat me
to stay and work in a relationship
instead of walking away from it.

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Write a poem involving shape (or multiple shapes). You can make the shape the title of your poem, or you can work the shapes into the actual poem in some way. For Day 27 of the 2009 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, from Poetic Asides

Taste for Gratitude

A luscious menu includes mouthwatering staples.
Family and friends enhance flavors and aromas.
Delectable conversation smooths digestion.
Delightful entertainment devours the hours.
The slightest hint of a taste missed
as I remember my dad and others no longer with me.
And I am thankful for each morsel and memory
that serves and fills me completely.

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Write a thankful poem. Day 26 of the 2009 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, from Poetic Asides.

Herman and Missie call it Quits

Herman delighted in
the kisses Missie planted.
Even sweetly on his cheek
they seared his skin
with a passion he never
sought as it was unfamiliar
to him. This gift of love
Missie ignited in Herman
was the flame he longed for
though he never knew the
name of it.

No chance to change
his mind; he wouldn’t
be able to keep it.

She touched his chest
in romantic caresses.
He held her closely
pressing her to him
in the small of her back.
To the passerby they looked
the part of any lovers in the park.

That is, until they fell down
on the ground.

Close acquaintances were surprised to learn
a coroner’s investigation revealed
Herman planted an oleander spike
in Missie’s spine and she reciprocated
with a similar prick in Herman’s ear.

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Write a temperature poem. Poem for Day 25 of the 2009 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, at Poetic Asides