Challenge from Sarah Donovan:  Celebrate the end of National Poetry Month today in our group by writing as you wish. 

My response:

Sarah, I have a million words, and none of them can express the gratitude I feel for this group and the space and leadership that you provide as we come together to write – to be inspired, to grow, to expand our perspectives. You make a difference and give us all a place of purpose in this writing sanctuary. I echo your sentiment in these lines of your poem: “uncovered poetry’s gift of therapy —
its power to assuage souls, stir inspiration, and bring joy.”
Today, I have written a #verselove acrostic, and borrowed a favorite line from Susie Morice’s poem yesterday. National Poetry Month has been euphoric because of everyone who has written from the heart and shared. Cheers for the journey!

#Verselove: An Acrostic

Vivacious verse of
Energetic, creative souls
Renewing outlook of
Spirits: kindred hearts
Every writer inspiring the
Love of poetry – and of life itself!
Outshining the backdrop of the
Venom and vomit of all our plagues
Euphoric freedom found in #verselove!

Challenge from Jessica and Kole: write a poem about the process of your writing.  What do you do?

coffee first, then
computer: power up
check prompt and grab
Cross fountain and Moleskine, then seek
comfy chair in reading room to
craft the scraps and fragments and swatches
coming together on the left to
compose on the right as thoughts, swirling,
cook and simmer with alliterative Csonings
capturing a word
collision before deciding I need a second
chance and a
coffee refill

Challenge from Susie Morice:  Write a poem of renewal – – a new cycle, a watershed moment….

a set of brand new laundry twins
our clothes you’ve cleaned with freshening spins

through scrubs and rinses, soaks and suds
you’ve danced and tumbled with our duds

but slowly over time you’ve ailed
and six times now your cycles failed

just like Frank, we’ve sipped that Coke
we’re wrung out fixing all that’s broke

we’re worn down, agitated, sour-face steamed
you’ve cycled us from tears to screams

a ceremonial ablution
seems a logical solution

we’ll take the towel and throw it in
hurrah! yee-haw! high five! you win!

we’ll be hard-pressed to find two more
in any case, we’ll go explore

and when the sun comes up tomorrow
forget the rhyming sorrow……..
we’ll wonder why the hell it took us so long to let you go

Write a 6-Word Memoir today!
Visit The Six Word Memoir Project online to read some inspiring memoirs, and create your own. Ernest Hemingway’s famous example – “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” A long-married, happy spouse – “I still make coffee for two.”

Kim’s 6-Word Memoir:

read, write, share, eat, sleep, repeat…

Yesterday was National Tell a Story Day! You can roll a poem or story with Rory’s Story Cubes (available on Amazon).


my mother’s map
was well-marked
when God called her name
she climbed upward
above the sun and the rain
to the treasures awaiting her
in mansions of glory

Challenge from Anna Roseboro – write a poem about a brother using an acrostic

Baby by five years, he’s the Golden Isles
Real Estate Guy who was
Once a basketball coach and math
Teacher because he got the
Height and number genes
Even though he’s also a
Really gifted writer – – I don’t
Know what I’d do without his
Even-keeled patience and
Never-ending humor!

Write a Hashtag Couplet poem today – choose any topic you love! This one is about my two rescue dogs and the differences in their personalities. 
#one’s a Schnoodle #one’s a Schnauzer
#peaceful hippie #rabble-rouser
#flattened chin #bearded snout
#one with mustache #one without
#whale-spray tail #pine tree stub
#back scratch #tummy rub
#grumpy dog
#bump on a log
#black #white
#portly #sprite
#yin and yang
#paw and fang
#upside-down #right-side up
#sweet old soul #playful pup
#prized lamb #black sheep
#fearful growl #pleading bleat
#wants to play #sleeps all day
#up all night #snores away
#kneads and nooks #sits and looks
#twists and jerks #full of quirks
#lifts his leg #squats to pee
#both a he #not one she
#crack of dawn #dark of night
#playful tussle #vicious fight
#most expressive #blank glare
#raised eyebrows #stoic stare
#gnashing teeth #quivering lip
#holds it in #lets it rip
#one is docile #one gets zoomies
#in the car they’re kennel roomies
#needs a leash #runs away
#comes right back #here to stay
#self-served timeout #who’s in trouble?
#regrets mischief #lives in bubble
#nutmeg sofa #khaki chair
#king-size bed we all four share
#digs, sniffs, circles #plops right down
#crowds dad’s pjs #seeks mom’s gown
#neither fetches #both can sit
#both catch popcorn #lively wit
#table beggars #hopeful snackers
#turkey bacon #graham crackers
#love to ride #windows cracked
#heads in wind #playthings packed
#noises frighten #cuddling calms
#transcendental #fretful qualms
#one’s a purebred #one’s a mix
#does blood matter? #ask the ticks!
#designer dog #pedigreed
#worthless titles, most agree
#both were rescued #one abused
#one abandoned #each refused
#old ties severed #new lifesong
#not neglected #now belong
#both now wanted #both adored
#cherished deeply #family scored
– Kim Johnson
Challenge from Sarah Donovan:  Write a Reason/Response List for any topic about which you are passionate.

8 Responses to More Ecologically-Friendly Rural Outdoor Spaces

8 Be a part of the food solution. Hang a bee house for the pollinators to live rent-free facing the morning sun, five to seven feet off the ground and under an eave. Read more here:

7 Plant a butterfly garden outside a window, with host plants and nectar plants. A garden with fennel as a host plant will attract Black Swallowtails, and they love strawberry-lemon-orange sherbet Lantana nectar. Turn a garbage can lid upside down and offer sliced oranges. To attract a real feeding frenzy, add a small sponge and let a little grandson who loves to pee in the country air take aim. Butterflies LOVE a good tinkle-drinkle. Read more here:

6 Feed the birds. Infuse a variety of bird feeders in and around your butterfly garden to invite a flurry of feathered activity better than any movie. Try these: suet cakes hanging from trees; hummingbird feeders on ground hooks; flat trays for ground feeders; a mealworm tray for bluebirds; hanging feeders with different seeds to attract a wide range of birds. Purchase a field guide for birds common in your region to identify what you attract, and keep the binoculars handy for tree watchers! Read more here:

5 Bathe and house the birds. A bird bath with running water is the five-star hotel variety, but a simple birdbath with clean water and a few light-refracting pebbles is an easy and less expensive option. Invest in several wooden birdhouses and install them on poles with twenty feet of spacing apart. Plant irises at the base to give a thick deterrent to predators. Read more here:

4 Invite deer and squirrels to their own feast by setting out salt and mineral blocks. Keep the binoculars close by – – watch and wait for the appreciative woodland friends to come dine. Read more here:

3 Treat your yard for pests and cut off your grocery bill by investing in hens (and a rooster if your rules allow). More cities are allowing hens, and contrary to what the rooster believes, he is NOT necessary for hens to provide breakfast for your family. Read more here:

2 Compost! Stop using your sink disposal and return your scraps to nature to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Coffee grounds (even the filters), carrot shavings, potato skins, and any leafy vegetation will compost to boost your garden nutrients! Read more here:

1 Plant a garden – a vegetable garden will cut your family’s grocery bill. Plant some flower beds, too, in-ground or in raised platforms. It’s a beautiful way to celebrate the gifts of the earth. Get a plant press and learn the fine art of pressing flowers and ferns that can be used to decoupage candles and soaps, and create beautiful art and greeting cards. Boldly proclaim your love for natural beauty at every opportunity! Read more here:

Above all, take time to sip some lemonade and enjoy the beauty of this ecologically-friendly space you have cultivated, and maintain it every season!

Challenge from Jennifer Jowett: write a poem about an important “first” in your life

turning the page

June 1985
blue Canon Snappy 35 mm with a wrist strap,
locked and loaded

red double-decker diesel buses
black smoke trailing

old-fashioned white paper tickets to Starlight Express
rich black voice raising hairs on my arms, singing
“there’s a light at the end of the tunnel!”

British landscapes of John Constable
at the National Gallery

shared yellow Shandy in a rental car – a preachers’ family
driving (underage drinking, too) because we didn’t know
it wasn’t Coke

thick brown slabs of bacon
with charred red breakfast tomatoes

rich Earl Grey, swirling steam
in fancy china teacups and saucers
clinking daintily

brown and white sugar clumps I mistook
for crumpets – white and wheat
identifying myself as American at first bite

ornate gray facades of majestic cathedrals

blue denim jacket, colorful nickel-sized buttons
collected like a passport-stamped footprint

pitch-dark subway stop, Dad wondering aloud
in the silence: “Is this Oxford?”
“crazy American” chuckles all around

……but the best first of London:
the smell of age-old books, timeless classics
in creaky-wooden-floored bookshops,
worn covers waiting to be loved by

Challenge from Emily Yamasaki:  Write a poem that blends math and writing by incorporating at least 6-8 number values in the poem. 

A Dozen Reasons Readers Love Numbers

1. Me talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
2. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
3. The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
4. The Sign of the Four by Arthur Conan Doyle
5. Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
6. Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
7. The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
8. From a Buick 8 by Stephen King
9. The Ninth Hour by Alice McDermott
10. The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
11. The Eleventh Plague by Jeff Hirsch
12 Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose