I belong to a poetry writing group and we are tasked this month by writing to ‘prompts’ that are sent each morning. There will be a prompt each day this month thus a different style of poem each day.

“Poetry Prompts – Sunday, April 6 – Are you still writing to celebrate National Poetry Month? Why not try something different? Write a COUNT UP on any topic – This titled form consists of exactly ten lines, the first line having one syllable, each succeeding line adding a syllable, the stanza having with a total count of fifty-five syllables; the form allows both rhyme and meter, while its similar cousin, the ETHEREE, allows neither.”

I gazed upon her first when I was young

and by her perfection I was stung

by cupids arrow in my heart
my lifes obsession it did start

a romance that has endured
that time and miles have not cured

I still return to where we met
and gaze longingly without regret

As she lies naked ready for dough
knowing her cooking time will be slow

My dearest corn dog you are sublime

And in a few minutes you will be mine

like an adoring groom  waiting for his lover to arrive
she promises to come but only on the appointed day, at the appointed hour
the grains of sand move slowly in the glass
Helios appears chained in the east, his transit a snail’s pace
Friday night at sundown the queen arrives
each Saturday, at sunset, she leaves and the longing begins anew
each passing day is filled with hard hands and sweat stained clothes
sunrise to sunset the substance of toil never ending
but in  mindfulness of her, relief comes marking off the days

until she returns again

The mind tantalizes with assorted images of then and now
growing up at the ocean’s edge tide pools to explore
boy’s life dungeness crab, razor clams, fishing from the rock jetty
smell the salt air, feel the fresh cold ocean spray on your face
 when the waves throw themselves on the beach
another time walking the streets that Rexroth walked,  when he was 20
riding the orange line train past the old stockyards, see  faces of workingmen
mark the corner where the Haymarket Riot took place
Rexroth stood over there, a boy really, watching soldiers shoot civilians
Waiting to go to jail, for a month, a suspected sympathizer
looking out at a garden, buds summoned by the warmth of the sun
early bees setting up housekeeping for the summer
birds signing while building their nests, dodging the cats with ease
lemon and pomegranate trees survived the winter
and the chilipequin is leafing out nicely, next to the still sleeping lantana

where will I live today?

submitted for publication