Challenge from Allison Berryhill:  Write an Epistolary Poem today.

Image result for fountain pen

Braided Trio

Dear Moleskine Journal,
You’re a legend –
my favorite affordable luxury (don’t tell the Pilot).
You’re in MY hands, holding MY thoughts and ideas –
But before mine –
You held the depression of Hemingway- Ernest,
The renderings of VanGogh – Vincent,
And the adventures of Chatwin – Bruce –
Who first called you a Moleskine,
Packing you into his pockets for every journey.
If you can handle the depression and adventure of those explorers,
Surely you can handle my little old rural farm life and times.

Dear Pilot Varsity Fountain Pen,
You’re a classic –
My favorite affordable luxury (don’t tell the Mole).
You pick MY brain and share MY secrets –
But before mine –
You shared the side-splitting tales of Twain – Mark,
With his Conklin Self-Filling,
And the mysteries of Doyle – Conan,
With his Parker Duofold,
And the horror of Lovecraft – Howard (H.P),
With his Waterman.
Even Hemingway himself – Ernest,
Has Montegrappas designed for all the phases of his life –
The Soldier, The Traveller, The Fisherman, and The Writer.
If you can stretch into those deep-thinking wells,
Surely you can dip into my little old shallow basin.

Each of you has my heart –
And while I don’t play favorites
Or do love triangles,
I can’t choose between the two of you.

So we shall live our days as a braided trio –
My Pilot, My Moleskine, and little old me!

Challenge from Allison Berryhill: write an apology poem in the style of William
Carlos Williams’ “This is Just to Say”

this is just to say 
i should have been there
more days
you battled
that monster
when lewy body
played peek-a-boo:
cruel moments it
exposed the raw truth 
it torched memories
it kidnapped joy
it robbed futures

Challenge from Allison Berryhill:  Write a What I Want poem, using lines of enjambment and your first and middle initials preceding your last name.

Minimalist Makeover by K. H. Johnson

What I want is
to swap this house
and its frippery

for a log cabin
that sleeps 2

and not 12
except for the dogs

leave these 2
and add 10
to Boo Radley and Fitz

because more dogs and fewer people is
what I want

What I want is 1 wall hiding
1 bed and 1 bathroom
with 2 toilets, not 1

because dual thrones are important
crowning features
of log cabin castles

I want 1 sink, 1 counter,
0 cabinets to clutter, just 1

shelf for 2 plates, 2 cups, 2 bowls
2 forks, 2 knives, and 2 spoons,

1 pot and 1 pan
1 table, 2 chairs
1 fireplace and 2 lamps

I want 1 minimalist makeover
but please leave

ALL the books,
ALL the Moleskine journals and
ALL the blue-ink Pilot Varsity disposable fountain pens because that is
all I want.

Challenge from Allison Berryhill:  Write a 20 Questions Poem


                       Happy Birthday to the Lady with the Alligator Purse

Could the doctor have known the footprint of the newborn he delivered on 2/15/1820 would forever change the world?
Could your mother have known that the tiny hand of her newborn daughter would be writing at 3?

How long did birthday cake last on a Quaker farm, with six siblings?

Was your famous red shawl a birthday gift?

Or was the “Vote! Said the Lady with the Alligator Purse” purse an iconic present?

Did you have to pinch yourself to fathom an annual teacher’s salary of $110 for those ten years – or did it seem a rich blessing compared to the greater injustices you saw?

Should we thank the Sons of Temperance for your fiery passion to speak?

Did they know they messed with the wrong girl when they told you to, “Sit Down, Listen, and Learn?”

Did they know the firestorm they started in you would ignite the hidden sparks of a raging force?

When you got arrested and fined $10 less than your annual teacher’s salary, did you laugh at the symbolism of those “handcuffs?”

When Congress told you NO every.single.year. from 1869-1906 but you kept asking, did you know you taught us that “failure is impossible?”

Were you there in spirit, wearing a pink hat and marching alongside us in the streets, chanting: “”

Did you really not smile because you thought people wouldn’t take you seriously??!

Did God bring out a heavenly birthday cake 14 years after you arrived, when the 19th passed and bore your name?

Do you know we started carrying your image in our pockets in 1979 when you became the first woman to grace US currency?

Did you know that the sisterhood stands in line for hours on Election Day to cover your gravestone with their “I Voted” stickers?

Do you know how much we appreciate you, more now than ever, 200 years later?

Is there cake in heaven today, and will you save all of us a piece for when we get there?

Are you here with us in spirit today with your alligator purse, wearing a pink hat and a red shawl and eating cake, celebrating with all who proudly cast a big vote for the happiest heavenly birthday for our sister Susan?

Or did I already ask that?

-Kim Johnson