20 Lines A Day

A Community of Writers and Photographers

Hello Again

I just want to say that I have made my blog private for awhile. Therefore, I hope to return to 20 Lines and do a bit of writing here again. This is such a home for artists of words and images and I feel comfortable here. How many new people have joined since I was here last. I look forward to coming to know you through your work and comments.

I have taken Melissa up on her publishing offer through Sable Books and as of last night’s conversation with her, am going to publish my second book of poetry. After a few back-and-forth emails and one long phone conversation, I know Sable is the right choice for me. I would encourage any of you who are thinking of publishing to give Sable Books a try. I am so excited to be in the beginning stages of compiling my book. 

I could hardly sleep last night because words and ideas pushed around in my mind for attention. It was such a happy conglomeration of thoughts, though, and I am ready to forge ahead.

Here I come, Sable. Thank you for being there for me at just the right time.



Three years ago, I lost my mom.

She had been fading for years, but we still talked,

we laughed and loved.


It seems like since then loss and loneliness

have been so much of my life.

I feel like I am drowning.


After loosing my child, hope, faith,

and that special closeness with my family,

I feel I will never capture the joy in life again.


I can only beg you, young people,

to take that joy, when you find it,

and treat it as thought it was glass, because it is.



From mountain side
it is easy to see
the turning of the earth.
The wind pushing clouds
creating shadows,
dark and light only
moments apart.
Up here the trees sway
slow dances in the wind.

I watch you,
perched on a rock
beside bubbling spring.
Completely comfortable
in your nakedness;
at peace with the way
skin stretches over bone.

I wonder if there will
ever be a time
when I, too, can let my
hair fall upon bare shoulders,
when awkwardness vanishes
in the folds of soft flesh
stretched toward blue sky,
when I can sit securely
on my own branch without fear.

The river runs thick this year,
higher and faster than I
have ever seen it.
Like you,
it no longer holds
its breath, but I
can’t remember how to exhale.

Hey, Melissa

Hi, Melissa,

I’ve decided to reopen my other blog, Chronicles of a Writer. I just put a post there, but is there anything else I have to do to make it public again? I went to the “reading” part of the dashboard and tried to un-check “keep this blog private,” but it wouldn’t un-check.

Question: Can readers all of a sudden see it simply because I’ve begun writing there again? Or is there something I need to do to change it from private to public? I’m pretty sure that’s the case, but I don’t know what to do.

Can you help me?


And hi to all of you on 20 Lines. I’ve missed you. Be sure to come on over to Chronicles. I’ll meet you there as well as on Brainstorms.

1 Comment


I shuffle and squirm in bed, worn out from another difficult day. I’ve tried everything, reading, watching TV listening to soft music, nothing works.

Suddenly, I her the wind pick up and blow against my screen. A spatter of rain taps quietly n my roof. Lightening and thunder rumble far away. For a moment, the rain falls in torrents, then settles into a peaceful song. Nature’s lullaby.

Before I know it, my reddened eyes start to blink. My mind goes blank, my heart slows to a quiet rhythm. The soft breathing of my cat blends with the gentleness of a warm summer rain.

Soon, I am asleep. The rain has does its trick. Nature has helped me get a much-needed rest. I wake up, a bit surprised that it is morning. Somehow, that is alright, I feel refreshed.

Thank you rain for your blessing.


her last page

many thanks to Sky Vani, for sharing this song and beautiful video.
feel free to play it low as a soundtrack, as i did while writing this poem.

as early as her day begins, it ends
a sad memoir echoes an empty room,
and she breezes through her motions
without a care in this world.
as if her love never really ended
wrote the diary, it’s last page.

wide cupped latte’
a quick croissant
and her habitual daily stroll
to every place they ever met.
she’s hoping without a prayer
he’ll be sitting there as always
in his favorite, corner chair.

she chooses spools of woven thread
from the French village mercerie,
that suggestive red dress
he always loved
and it’s noticeable tear.
as if life never did really end
wrote the diary, her last page.

written April 2013



Setting the Dark on Fire

Through that night

and from across a room

Through crowded strangers

and all my awkward shyness

Through every hurt remembered

and scattering debris of aborted plans

Through a slow death in every unloved soul

and that night, that miracle night

Through our infinity of eyes

and every hum and flutter

Through faith rewarded

and there was you

and every night

there was you

gentle brush


wash warm hues, gentle brush

across a heart forgotten.

it’s soft caress no sadness lingers

renew it’s every fray and tear.

create a masterpiece, my lovely

erase all coloring of fear.

nuance streamed light and shadows

our layered texture, sweet romance.

and devote each waking minute

as Monet with Lily Pads.


reach me



all of my life

i’ve hid inside shadows,

never willing to


there was someone

like you


reach me.


don’t give up

on who you think you’ve found.

because it’s you

and only you

will ever



written April 2013




Amid this winter’s grey mist grip
our April mocks her Spring impression.
Rush hour red lights stop and start,
frustrated and my happened glance at

a waif like girl no more than nine,
she’s mouthing words of imagined rhyme.
I watch her whispering monologues
as she tiptoes boulders in the park.

Pure innocence her soft protection
from cruel worlds I suffer much too well.
I mouthed my thank you to the waif
and she tiptoed boulders until dark.



crocus abd bees 2012 001

Sunless skies, endless
grey clouded over grey crusted
snow, creating havoc for crocus shoots
struggling to make their stand.

Winter, a slow
death by its thousand windy cuts
and imperceptable emotional fade, now
so few words shared between them.

All purple and
orange in full bloom swathed across
front yard lawns stirring expectations, and
memories of their languid summer days.

Teal sky
days that start warm ending warmer,
their uninterrupted steady sun and their
sleeveless shirts and moist sweaty skin.

Sun, her kiss
once assured his unsteady heart. So many
purple and orange reasons to be hopeful but
March, always the cruel reminder.

written March 2013
revised FOR April 2013 :- /


that day

    She arrives


    through the door

    light on her toes

    despite our

    few days of


    for years the

    weekly ritual.

    Our eyes meet
    grey to grey and
    her skin color mine,
    though reaching down
    to kiss her forehead
    seemed easier that day.

    Hands could always effortlessly wrap around
    my fingertips meeting at her sometimes ponytail,
    or mingling among those tangled golden curls.

    And when did her head snug in at my chest when we hugged?
    Like the kitchen door frame penciled ever higher in our old house,
    maybe our bodies will mark those imperceptable passages now?
    Time it seems to move so slowly until that day, when it doesn’t.

    my first poem
    written April 2012,
    revised April 2013




He would trace the jagged map of cracks
smeared plaster wall aside his bed,
his ashen memory of their life imagined
‘How, how did it ever come to this?’

The signs were there trust and naive heart
believing every little late night lie,
the bills a bed and their sick calico Jane
‘Reasons? I don’t owe you anything!’

Now his grieving heart blindly traces cracks
blinds drawn closed on the summer day,
the life imagined all his dreams gone hush
‘How, how did it ever come to this?’

written April 2013


Poetry Challenge for April

April is National Poetry Month

We’ve all heard of the a-poem-a-day challenges for April, or 30 Days, 30 Poems, but here is a unique challenge for the month of April to hone your skills as a writer and poet, introduced by Richard Krawiec, who himself is an enormously talented writer, poet, teacher and editor.  (Please read more about Richard here.)  I asked him if it would be alright to extend his challenge into our community.

Here’s the gist, in his words:

April is poetry month and there are all kinds of ‘write-a-poem-a-day’ contests.  I see the discipline of doing something like that, but I think the emphasis on producing a large number of poems is wrong – it shouldn’t be how many poems we write. One excellent poem is far more valuable than 30 decent poems.

So my challenge is this – for April start a poem on April 1 and revise it every day. 29 revisions of one poem.

Are  you in?  

I am, and to the extent that I can, will work on it publicly here, on 20 Lines.

If you wish to stay true to the 20 Lines format, write a few lines of it each day.  Or write several and then revise.  Or whatever works for you.  I am going to consciously compose and work the poem differently than I normally would, to see what happens.

You can share along the way, or at the end, or even not at all — but let me know if you’re going to be working on this — I’d love it if you’d join me.

Cheers, and happy writing,



Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,368 other followers

%d bloggers like this: