Constellation – a 50 poem for Jane Dougherty

Forgetting foolish rows and crazy fights
And all our fractured days and shattered nights,
We hold our breath and watch this secret sight –
Fireflies copying stars in dancing flight,
And stars that mimic fireflies, sparkling bright –
Hoping we can re-light each other’s light.

Just last week I pointed out that Wednesdays wouldn’t be Wednesdays without a prompt from Jane Dougherty – and now she’s decided to take a little break from doing the prompts. It’s a shame, but she has been so helpful and supportive to her group of poets over the last few weeks, and I can’t begrudge her a break and some time to work on her own writing. 

This is a slightly whackier image than the ones we usually use. It gets a bit wilder every time I look at it, and I don’t think I’ve really done justice to the craziness, but there you go. Jane has asked for a poem of 5 lines, each with 10 syllables – do you see what she did there?File:Constellations1.jpg


Three moons – a trilune for Jane Dougherty

Three coins lay in the palm of my hand.

What to spend them on? First, on your thoughts,

Your hopes, your dreams. It seemed a fair price.

Second, on a great white horse, still running,

The night clouds parting before its hooves,

As it makes its own path through the skies.

Third, on the gleaming ghost of a kiss,

Fragile, hung on a fine silver chain,

What’s left in the grate, when the fire dies.

Rain – for Jane Dougherty’s poetry challenge

The image is by Franz Marc, and it’s called In the Rain. Jane Dougherty is allowing us any form we like this week, and she’s given us some optional words: rain, red, relentless, river, regrets. I’ve done some minute poems. A bit of dialogue, or perhaps trialogue?


She Says
This rain falls so relentlessly
It lessens me
The world turns grey
I turn away

He says
I wonder what I should have said,
Or done, instead,
To make her smile
And stay a while?

The dog says
Humans do make life a muddle
Jump a puddle!
Rain can be fun –
Who needs the sun?


Red boat rondelet 2 – for Jane Dougherty


And as I am a glutton for punishment, here is my second rondelet for Jane Dougherty’s poetry challenge #37. The rhythm is a tricky one, but I think we’re getting there.

 Journey makers

We’ve travelled far,
You and I, through the great wide world,
We’ve travelled far,
Two backpacks, a tent, a guitar,
And we’ve watched the sunrise unfurl
Roads of diamonds, oceans of pearls –
We’ve travelled far.

Pebbles – a Pantoum

This is a pantoum for Jane Dougherty’s prompt on pebbles. It’s not a form I’ve come across before, and it’s a bit tricky, but I’m sure it’s good for me. Here goes:



I’m thinking now of all the time we spent,

Heads together,with the wild gulls crying,

Carefully choosing – some stayed, and some went –

And all the while, the sea sighing.


Heads together, with the wild gulls crying,

We chose one if it gave us pleasure,

And all the while, the sea sighing,

As we amassed our glittering treasure


We chose one if it gave us pleasure

We brought it home, a fragment of our past,

As we amassed our glittering treasure:

A twisting shell, a sea-worn piece of glass.


We brought it home, a fragment of our past,

When you were young, and muddy, and ran wild

A twisting shell, a sea-worn piece of glass,

A stick, a stone, all treasure to a child


When you were young, and muddy, and ran wild

Carefully choosing – some stayed and some went –

A stick, a stone, all treasure to a child:

I’m thinking now of all the time we spent.


Thank you for the prompt Jane Dougherty


On this silver day
When the storm has blown itself out
And rolls like a cat in the bay,
And the light itself
Meanders along the shoreline
Too lazy to catch fire,
I send you a map
Of a place you’ve forgotten,
And a key to the door
You locked yourself.

I send you the secret
You whispered
As you climbed aboard
The dream that would carry you.

On this silver day
When the sun trails
Ethereal veils
And each grain of sand
Is a diamond
I send you a thread
That will lead you home

If home is where you wish to be.


“Nothing is forbidden here” She said
“Only your dreams constrain you.
Here we are clothed in robes of smoke,
Drifting like indigo across the lawns;
Here love is fleeting, and desire a glance;
And still we cry like night birds
To the distant stars”

This is for today’s prompt from Jane Dougherty

The visual prompt is quite lush and romantic, so I let loose my inner Pre-Raphaelite. Big time. 

I have always had a liking for the whimsical and fantastical, and have always veered away from writing poetry that reflects that side of me. I am quite enjoying letting it run free, and tagging along for the ride!

The weeping angel

We watched the storm come in
From the horizon, faster
Than a bird could fly.
Cowered all night beneath its wings
Beating at our small house.

Next morning, we walked down
To see the sea, and all the world
Washed clean and new

And on the beach, we found an angel
Broken by the winds,
His wings all torn and twisted
So he couldn’t fly

My sister knelt up close,
But I held back – I am
The cautious one – and then
She said “What colour
Are an angel’s tears?” –
Holding up something
Strangely bright, as if she held
A golden penny in her hand.

And then he turned to us,
Face sorrowful and majestic
And spoke, his voice as bright
As sunlight on a window,
“Our tears” he said “Take different hues
Depending on their causes.

The soft purple of an evening sky
When we weep with a mother
Who has lost a child;
Red as a storm cloud
When we weep in anger
At the foolishness of men;
Blue as the distant sea
When our tears mingle with a
Grieving widower’s. Every
Tone and shade.

I am not weeping for myself”
He said, “But for the world.
There are too few of us,
And who will weep with you
When I am gone?”

And so we took him home –
He was so light
A child could carry him.
We smoothed his twisted wings
And fed him honeycomb
And clear clean well water –
As if he was a bird,
Or some bright insect.

And in the morning, he was gone.