Photo and Art Prompts to Inspire Creativity in all Forms
For artists, bloggers, poets, writers and students

ENTRIES - January 18 thru February 10

The following is a list of some of the entries made on this blog. They are entered here in date order only. This list will be updated periodically.

Feel free to leave comments if you wish,
and if you'd like to visit the author's blog, click on the name above each entry.

(In reverse date order from February 10 - January 18)

Therese L. Broderick


She walks without shoes for miles
past jealous crocodiles,

hitting the sudden blasts of wind
blowing over the basin,

balancing water in an earthen jar
on the top of her hair,

knowing that her ancestors called
the waters here Ka'alakol,

(not Turkana, not Rudolph)--

she bears it, she bears all of it
wearing silver bracelets.

Meandering Michael
There's never enough,
No, there's never enough.
I never have all that I need.
No matter how much I can get
You can bet
That it won't be as much as I need

And so I need more
I need more
I need more
I need more than I have, I concede
I work to get more
And then more
And then more
But I'll never have all that I need

And so I take yours
You have more than you need
You mustn't be greedy, so share
And I will take yours
via stores
via wars
'Till I've got all I need, and that's fair

You say you want mine?
You want mine?
You want mine?
But I haven't enough for you, too
You say that you'll fight
For your share
In your plight
Well then, what is a body to do?

I don't have enough
No, I don't have enough
Though you think that I'm doing just fine
I get by
I get by
I will live, thrive, and die
But I'll never give you some of mine.

'Cause there's never enough
No, there's never enough.
I never have all that I need.
No matter how much I can get
You can bet
I'll deny that my need comes from greed.

Therese L. Broderick

So beau are the bows!
In knotted hair, plastic bows!

So beau are the bows!
On tight shirts, kitty bows!

So beau are the bows!
Locked on arms, elbows!

So beau are the bows!
Fixed to floors, brick bows!

Untie them, untie them!
Oh, let the little girls go!


Obsidian like eyes dart
to and fro playing tag
with questions and answers.
Shyness is a trait
yet to be learned by
her heart that still beats
a brave rhythm, her tears
always dry by morning.
Under this lens of innocence
the dirt on her tired limbs
is a fairies good luck kiss,
the cracks in paving stones
to be avoided no matter
the weather, and others
glances to be defied
with an unrestrained smile.

Therese L. Broderick

She pressed and
pressed them
onto pages she labeled
with the finest
writing, cursive letters
as spare as one stripe
on a flower's petal.
Hers are dried, dark, flat,
absent perfume. What's left
in her private herbarium
is the musk of
the orchids's names--
orbuculata, ciliaris,
Words she couldn't bear
to let die, intoxicating
as a hyphen in poem.

Meandering Michael
My children bloom
My children grow
And cast their radiance
about the room

And in their faces
In that glow
My Grandpa rises
from the tomb


And so he drew her head down onto his chest
murmuring a bedtime song
in obscure Germanic tones

And so she soon feigned sleep
hoping he would cradle her in his arms,
carry her carefully to her bed
avoiding corners that could knock knees
and hallway hazards that would jar her awake

And so he would tuck her in
flannel quilt up to her chin
sweep her bangs out of her eyes
then plant a bristly kiss seasoned with cloves
firmly in the centre of her forehead

And so she would remember him this way
strong arms lifting her
she, light as a cat
her small purr beside his rich tenor rumbling

Therese L. Broderick

When I was young
at Mass in my church
of the lost & forgotten,
I tapped, tapped
each one,
whispering their names.
"Holy" and "Ghost."
At twenty-two, I found
another broad pair
to cry upon when
the lover left. Today
I'm old. My shoulders,
aching, sore,
call to me
for healing.
What is needed now?
The finest
needles of a
doctor who knows
the oldest
ways. Chinese
for the places
of deepest pain.

Meandering Michael
Guiding Light

I stand firm
Warning them of the dangers

I stand firm
Guiding them to safe harbour

I stand firm
In my beliefs
In darkness
And sunshine

I stand firm
In my beliefs
And will not move for
Tempest or hammering waves

For if I move
I will no longer be in a position
To warn them of the dangers
To guide them to safe harbour

And so
I stand firm
And the world passes by

Therese L. Broderick

Beware approaching any
woman on a rock
near the sea.

Wind streaming in her hair
may be sign
of next October's hurricane.

Her lantern may foretell
a lightning strike
or fire.

The granite she stands on
may hold a town's
memory of rockslide.

Entire families have died
inside their lighthouses,
bodies washed out to sea,

lying beside the bones
of sailors, pirates, traders.

Keep both eyes
closed. Be deaf to
her song of
masts cracking.

Of a tower
soon to crumble.

Meandering Michael

Mama doesn't like it much
when I get underfoot.
"Watch out, child!" and
"Go stand there!" and
"Do not move. Stay put!"

She often tells me what to
do. I think it's borne from fear.
I think she's scared she'll crush me,
but I know it's safer here.

Therese L. Broderick

Allowing your young to another woman.
Baby-herding in the bush. Lumbering away
to locate laden leaves. Nose lowering
to the ground, milking infrasound,
milking dichotomous knowledge of
rumbles:(paws or tires?) lion or poacher.
Long gone are mammoths, mastadons.
Adopting all that mourns, births.

Go with me
Wherever I may go
About this country
I will show.

Dust like a London blush surrounds,
it transports migrating creatures
to the face of far off mars,
where they war against grit laced
elements to reach
an elders memory,
an oasis sprung up
amid callous death.
Dark eyes set deep into miniature
grey bodies blink blindly as they
walk carefully behind
a steadfast mother, each cry heard
and replied to by a weary
trumpet of her own.
Deep beneath her determined flesh
she knows the value of each day,
the spite in every hour
as across these torrid planes
a herd becomes one creature;
connected in the physical
- trunk to tail, trunk to tail -
and connected in the spiritual
-tears to loss, tears to loss-


She was one so unlike the other girls
she frightened us with her strange dark songs
that hinted of the secret places
inside the nests of swallows,
the alchemy of maple seeds
and the muttering of the bees.

She wore her hair high upon her head
from where it hung like a fountain’s spray,
catching petals and pollen and twigs
while we all wore ours straight and long,
our eyebrows arching with displeasure
just to see her so.

Though we knew she was her papa’s treasure
an only child, her mother gone,
we saw that she was mad;
and cruel as only children can be
we followed her on idle days
to witness her anomaly.

Each sun-kissed day while the asphalt seared
the calluses from our bare feet
the dust rose round us in choking clouds
and the tires stank of hot rubber,
the girl played alone in her deep, green garden
her hands cooly cupping each floral spray
as she sang it into being.

Lulled or charmed by her steady chant
one by one the skippers would climb
onto the pollen-laced arch her fingers made
feeling their way with rough clasping feet
and they rolled out their miraculous tongues
to taste the dew upon her skin,
dew that was sweet as honey.

As the shadows stretched, tired and long
we jeered and spat in the dust,
cruel as only children can be
while Vanessa sat high on a well-worn branch
in her papa’s great old apple tree
singing her strange dark faery song
of butterflies and blossoms.

Freckled skin is seen
between these fluttering wings,
the wonder in her glass green eyes
...a child's wonder...
dazzles this mid-June sun.
Monarchs have gathered,
becoming thick like thunder clouds
that have lost their way,
she speaks and a butterfly song
is carried in the whoosh
of passing dandelion seeds.
White blond hair in pigtail braids
whips about her head as she turns
in every direction at once,
a frenzied observation
of natural life.
Finally she is still, not a hint
of adult fear as they alight
on outstretched palms
and on the brim of a straw hat
...her grandfathers...
who watches this transaction
of life and learning
from a back porch swing, humming;

steal me away on your butterfly wings
take me to where the stars sing
take me away to candy mountains
and youth infused fountains

The girl's legs find the ability
to move once more setting her off
on a grounded flight across
this freshly mowed field,
its sweet smell
forever remembered
with every sight
of these delicate creatures.
Towards an another generations
open arms, her heart beating
in awe of the butterflies.

Therese L. Broderick

Awake now in bed, I know that
I have alighted on this satin
from somewhere else, but where?
The dream I was just in
trails behind me like another life,
the short weeks of a Monarch butterfly
who sails many hundreds of miles
before breeding and dying.
The egg she lays must grow
and change five times before
a young pair of wings
flutters back to the homeland.
So many diminishings, so many reachings.
All in order to return to what's familiar. But each new waking,
how different it is. How strange this same lacy pillow.

Meandering Michael
A butterfly
may flutter by
whilst on its great migration

If Butterfly
alights, un-shy,
I flutter with elation

When Butterfly
takes to the sky
I'm left with admiration

If I could fly
like Butterfly
I'd flutter o'er creation

If I could fly
like Butterfly
I'd be an inspiration

She walks into the water
parched, wrung dry
in the desert air

Floating on the surface
breaths of sand
echo in her ears

Rattle of chains that bind
her to you
drift in a current

What if I said to you
she swims to
release herself now

Therese L. Broderick

How long her first backstroke is,
body just leaving the wall,
arms and legs extended.

How long the blue pool lane is
waiting beneath her.
Smooth and clear.

How long this moment is
before a first kick
foams our easy viewing.

How long that black line is,
reflecting a streamer of flags
high above the water.

A line which cuts her
in half, giving her one length
more than all the others.

Meandering Michael
Environment, et al.
Are altered
And defined by
The force of
Urban sprawl

Therese L. Broderick

I must arrive at night,
alone, then drop
handfuls of
coins in a bucket

when no one
is there
ringing the bell
to praise my mercy.

The blessed say
this is how true
alms must be given.

In silence. In secret.
A tithe I subtract but
don't mark on paper.

I talk now not of
the man sitting
in the snow
with no boots on.

I talk of
the two of us
in those winters when

we are strangers
and sinners.

Damp cloth, a meager barrier
between a man
and this obstinate world...
a few cents have found their way
from semi-compassionate pockets
into his shabby hat,
while round the corner
dollars weigh down
collection baskets for the poor
in Africa.
The eyes of those passing
must be opened wide,
turned away and turned towards
the grief begging beside
their hurrying feet,
to the tears; that wash
these city streets.

Meandering Michael
Maslow, oh Maslow,
you've done great misdeeds
by teaching the shrinks
'bout your hierarch' o' needs.

Maslow, oh, Maslow,
I'm begging your grace;
should be at the base.

Maslow, oh Maslow,
With you I confide;
when there's nothing to eat
I can swallow my pride

Therese L. Broderick

a face-off, and then
a pass, swipe,
near miss,
a rush around the zone,
finally the catch,
a winner and a loser,
and at the end,
one victor soaking wet
A subtle sway like mother's arms,
a tight and tender grasp
like father's arms;
these branches contain
the love of both, even
a lullaby can be heard
when spring winds dance
with luminous leaves
and soft coral blossoms.
Triplets sit, oblivious,
encased in brown speckled shells,
carefully placed among
woven twigs and silken feathers.
Today they will remain, shielded,
high above a thawed ground and
far below a warming sky...
Today they will remain.

Therese L. Broderick

Three white eggs in a capsule
of intertwined twigs
are about to migrate northeast
out of our view, away from
that black & white mass
(tree? bush? thicket? marsh?)
crowding the other three corners
but left out-of-focus--
a photo to show us how birds
can fly before they're born.


Forsaken only just
this temptation to reach in
and touch the warmth

song in the branches
song in the leaves

this is my hand
holding back
and the dream of the future
hatching. Give me
please a glimpse

song in the sky
wings coming in
forsaken only just
for one moment

This one moment
I could have been a part
I, too, could have hatched
the dream and lived in flight
and have had a song in my heart
just for one moment.

the nest was found fallen
alone and battered
among the dirt and debris of the season

three mottled eggs remained
an intact remembrance
of life denied

beginnings are often only
fragile dreams
blown down or blown free

I met him when we were twelve years old
He kissed me 'neath the apple tree
He was handsome
He was bold
With buns of steel, you see

At sixty-eight he's not so spry
He rarely tries to kiss me
He looks tired
He looks old
But he's still got a sweet patootie

Therese L. Broderick

Married fifty years, and she still
mends his jackets, packs his lunches.
He still makes a living
fixing old clocks and watches.
He pays for the glasses she needs
to see his jackets and lunches.
Each year, on the day they married,
he buys her a potted flower.

...along cobbled streets
a man's journey is observed;
love never grows old...

Dressed for the part she must play.
A swan caught upon clear glass.
Beauty a blessing, a curse.

Beauty a blessing, a curse.
A swan caught upon clear glass.
Dressed for the part she must play.

Beauty, her mirage
of smoke and mirrors
dangling from
a shallow heart
like dime-store
diamond earrings,
a forced smile
draped across perfect teeth
like a string
of faux pearls.
She is devoid of color,
a black and white polaroid
inlaid in a stainless
steel wall, spotlights
never reaching beneath
this glossy surface.

Therese L. Broderick

An old country, lying long and tight
against the hull of Spain
like a sardine in a peasant's hand,
an old peasant living in an old hut
who still goes fishing every morning,
lays out his catch on his rooftop to dry,
cooks it on a stick over fire.
An old fire. An older sun. The oldest sea
in the world. When you visit here, fish
is a gift. As you swallow your portion,
salted cells in your mouth sing
Portugal, Portugal, Portugal.

See the branches all erratic,
like hair teased by a hollow wind,
swaying in front
of a royal blue backdrop,
a ballet set to the rhythm
of this tree's creaking trunk.
Breathless birds circle above
looking for a place to rest
their tangled feathers,
eyes watering with weeds pollen
yet they are still clear enough
to know the silent words sung out
by the branches dance.
Black clouds appear at the edge
of a disappearing blue,
this worlds anger stored in them,
shown now in electric sparks
that light up this days night.
All eyes have turned away except
for those below the ground,
turning in earthen beds
their warnings are masked
by a jealous thunder, booming
across cowering valleys.

Men, brooding like gods
watch a simple female figure
curled like a shivering cat
on slats of splintered wood.
Hair a dirty blond
lies still and limp
around her pinched face,
eyes closed tight against
the mist of an outside world
and all its blood being shed
like widows tears.

Unaware of an observers eye
she continues to sleep
underneath the insufficient warmth
of her devoted kitten, the blanket
more of a burden than comfort.
Silently a man peers through
an unbiased lens, its film
capturing her life's toil
in less than the tick
of a clock's second hand.

Meandering Michael
I understand the pleasures of a brisk, clear, flowing stream,
And the tickle of the bubbles on your skin.
I understand joy that playing in the water brings,
And the interest in the mysteries within.

But I'll never understand the minds of men nor what they do,
And I'll never see the world that lies beyond.
All I've got and all I'll ever have is this small pool,
So would you please remove your feet, sir, from my pond.

Sarah Copeland
A sideways glance,
an emotion playing across
a tempted face.

Resting by a muddy stream
you bow
to the translucent rain
turning the sky
into a rainbow, all the colors
reflected from this place
we call home.

Are we here now, grounded
by gravity? The question
from bulging eyes,
the question
spanning time and space,
land and sea,
man and animal.

in greater
depths see.
Longing forgotten
Do we know as much?
Do we feel this?
The cool water against our skin?
White upon white, can we reach this
purity? Can we breath again beneath
the surface? Will you swim with me
against the current and just be?

Crafty Green Poet
sitting by the lake -
a shoal of coloured fish
nibble my feet.

(Lake Malawi)

Meandering Michael
I believed what they told me:
That the path to freedom was through
riches and fame.

Now I know the truth:
That the path to freedom was in
my heart all along.

Sarah Copeland
We are the same,
yet different enough
to be best friends.

We were young
the color of our skin
was never complicated.

You had seven brothers,
I had one baby sister.
We alternated houses for dinner.

I celebrated your holidays
and you celebrated mine,
we both prayed to a God.

Walking down main street
we defied class, staring it down
with unflinching eyes.

(for Jenny)

It was Reeses peanut butter cups
and root beer in Central park
until we were sick and so high on sugar
the old metal swings seemed like an amusement ride.

And walking down the street
in the evening. Me first walking you
home and then you walking me home...
Until the night fell and we had to say
goodbye midway between.

And Peter Frampton playing too loudly.
Thinking that we were in love somehow
with those boys at school. Singing and crying
together as though that alone could make them
love us back and then laughing until it didn't matter.

Phone call after phone call.
This is what it meant to be 13.
Smoking at Burger King.
Drinking coffee we didn't like.
Trying on these roles.
The dance on the windowsill 12 stories high.
Finding the fine line of hysteria within
and pulling each other back to safety.

Do you remember? I have lost you after all
these years. You could be anyone walking
down a busy street. You could be anywhere
I have gone, just moments ahead.

If I stop at the corner 112th street and Broadway.
If I stop there and start to sing and kick up
my legs like a Rockette would you find me there?
Put your arm over my shoulder and sing with me
“I'm looking over a four leaf clover...”
Like we used to, just for a laugh and maybe
a quarter or two for a slice of pizza.
After all these years, would we still dare?

I miss you.
Black and white
leaves the rust to be imagined
like a ghost town's peeling paint.
Sit here behind this frozen wheel,
if only these seats could
tell of love; new and old,
remade and broken forever.
Take time, hold my hand
as you brush virgin fingers
through my tangled hair,
carefully now whisper pleasure
into a stale night as this
cracked grill imprints
itself on my bent spine...
Trees will sway, leaves spiral
to the ground and around us
the vines will rise.
Water from the gray sky feeding
this marshy ground.
Bugs crawl across my leg
finding shelter from a full moon
as an owl swoops overhead
on wizened wings; I laugh
full and robust, without inhibition.
Could my life be more cliched?
Could I love you even less
as I will these headlights to light,
show me my mind and stop the screaming.
Stop this ringing in my head
as your breath cascades
over my stiff neck.
Last night I lay alone, but forgiveness
you draw from me with every kiss.
Here in black and white, we lie tonight.

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