The Warm Scents of Autumn (Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – #Tanka)

Sweet scents fill the air

Colored leaves and pumpkin pies

On the crisp fall breeze

Autumn’s welcoming embrace

Always warms my homesick heart


My response to the third of Colleen Chesebro‘s Weekly Poetry Challenges for November: Smell & Cozy. The twist for this month is to only use synonyms for the prompt words! For this challenge, I chose to write an autumn-themed tanka. I hope you enjoy the poem! Thanks for the prompt, Colleen!

Homecoming

I stare out the window, watching, waiting. Mom says to be patient, but I can’t help getting excited. I’ve been waiting months for this day! Every passing car makes my heart skip a beat, until finally one pulls up in front of the house. I run to the door and throw it open. I’m outside before Mom and my brother can catch up. A man in a uniform steps out of the jeep. He kneels on the sidewalk and I throw myself into his arms. His hug is even stronger than I remember. I catch a glimpse of the neighbor’s flag over his shoulder, and without even thinking, I say “Thank you!” This is always the best part of the year. Dad’s home!

This coming weekend
Take the time to thank someone
Who’s served your country
Remember they risk their lives
So we can live in freedom!


Dedicated to all the veterans out there. Thank you for your service to our country! Have a blessed Veterans Day weekend!

Terrors in the Dark (Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – #Tanka)

October twilight

Monsters rule the witching hour

Terrors in the dark

Hear their cries of “Trick or Treat!”

On this festive Halloween!


My response to the first of Colleen Chesebro‘s Weekly Poetry Challenges for November: Fright & Night. The twist for this month is to only use synonyms for the prompt words! For this challenge, I chose to write a Halloween-themed tanka. I hope you enjoy the poem! Thanks for the prompt, Colleen!

A Sonnet for Halloween

The sunset on the last October day
Will usher in the year’s most haunted night.
Throughout the streets, the monsters start to stray
To fill the evening air with screams and fright.

The autumn moon shines brightly in the sky.
The sound of howling werewolves gives you chills.
While vampire bats and witches’ broomsticks fly,
The ghosts and zombies fill the night with thrills.

Dressed up like all the monsters they adore,
Young children start their quest for something sweet.
They plan to knock on every neighbor’s door
And earn free candy shouting “Trick or treat!”

Enjoy the year’s most frightfully fun scene!
I wish you all a Happy Halloween!

Darkened Heart

I didn’t believe it when they said what I’d become.

But deep down, I knew it must be true.

I no longer felt any warmth inside me.

The taste of blood had become delectable.

And the sunlight burned like fire.

Embrace the darkness, they said.

Accept what you are.

No longer human.

Cursed soul.

Vampire.


This piece is based on What If? Exercise 93: “Ten to One”. The exercise is to write a 55-word story in which the first sentence has ten words, the second has nine, etc., until the last sentence has only one word. The objective is to show that precision and thrift in writing can produce surprisingly powerful results. I hope you enjoy what I’ve written. Thanks for reading!

Stronger Than You

You think you’re so tough, don’t you?

You think you have limitless power. Every time you strike, it gives you such a high. You revel in the chaos and devastation you create. It’s never enough; no matter how much pain you cause, you always want more.

I know because I’ve been watching you from the start.

I know why you do what you do. You think you can tear down their spirits. You think if you hit them hard enough, you can break them. You think if you destroy them from the inside, you can win.

But I also know that you’re wrong. You will never win. You can hit them as hard as you want, and you may even break a few, but you will never destroy them all. Because on the other side, there will always be someone to catch them, to heal them, to mend their spirits and send them right back out to fight you and everything you stand for.

That someone is me.

Every time you threaten them, I tell them not to be afraid. Every time you hurt them, I defy the impossible to heal them. Every time you break them, I embrace them and remind them that they will recover, that the pain will make them stronger, that it’s not the end.

You want everyone to know they should fear you. But I want you to know that you should be afraid too, because no matter how many hearts you break, how many souls you claim, or how many lives you take, you will never defeat me.

You forget that for every one spirit you break, many more rise up against you. For every one soul you claim, countless others flock to me. For every one person you push over the edge, hundreds find solace in my love and choose to believe in the better life I promise. We outnumber you, and we always will.

So be very afraid, Despair.

Because my name is Hope.

And I will always be stronger than you.

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