Pythian Games

put on your track shoes and write the miles

Archive for the ‘Neruda Poetry Challenge’ Category

The One that Got Away

with 9 comments

(inspired by the Pablo Neruda “I write the first faint line…” prompt)

I write the first faint line…

In sand, in water, in dust,

But more often,

In the clouds,

Along the mile markers,

While I am driving along.

It’s then I have my best thoughts –

When I can’t stop and write them down.


The ideas sneak up behind me,

Attack metaphors,

That pounce upon me

While I am in the shower,

Again, no pen near by,

No paper on which to write.


I used to mourn each lost gem.

Nowadays I tell myself

I am just a good sportswoman

Practicing “catch and release” –

The ideas will come back to me someday,

When I have my waders on,

My line is taut,

My hook is sharp,

My net is ready,

And the thoughts are

Much bigger and better…


© Kerry Vincent

Written by kvwordsmith

May 20, 2008 at 7:04 pm

Write the First Faint Line

with 8 comments

Write the first faint line,
unlock the door
to your mind,
and heart.

Sketch shadows
in a darkened room,
resolve questions,
of a forgotten past,
explore dreams .

Persist diligently
in practice, day after day
pursue wisdom,
ponder truth,
awaken your universe.

First line taken from Pablo Neruda’s exquisite poem Poetry.

Written by porchsitter

May 20, 2008 at 3:45 am

Saddest Lines

with 12 comments

The harrowing
Tormenting void
Taunts me
With its empty spaces
And reverberating silences
Vacant chairs
Small reminders

Empty wallet, glasses,
a book, marked
Where last it was held by living hands
A mat, with strands of black hair
From the companion who once lay beside me,
Adoring eyes watching

Trapped in a crevice above a seemingly
Black, bottomless void
Where life is extinguished
I feel
Helpless! Hopeless! Heart crushed!
Nothing to lose
I reach and, taking part of the void and leap

Pirouette, suspended
above the empty space
Spinning, weaving, rebelliously
Forming a lid
to fill the back, bottomless void
that would cloak and
Ruthlessly claim me.

Written by Heather Blakey

May 18, 2008 at 11:08 am

The Whistler by Mary Oliver

with 12 comments

The Whistler


Mary Oliver

All of a sudden she began to whistle By all of a sudden I mean that for more than thirty years she had not whistled. It was thrilling. At first I wondered, who was in the house, what stranger? I was upstairs reading, and she was downstairs. As from the throat of a wild and cheerful bird, not caught but visiting, the sounds warbled and slid and doubled back and larked and soared.

Finally I said, Is that you whistling? Yes, she said, I used to whistle, a long time ago. Now I see I can still whistle. And cadence after cadence she strolled through the house, whistling.

I know her so well, I think, I thought. Elbow and ankle. Mood and desire. Anguish and frolic. Anger too. And the devotions. And for all that, do we even begin to know each other? Who is this I’ve been living with for thirty years?

This clear, dark, lovely whistler?

Mary Oliver is my absolutely favorite poet. This, since I discovered her work about four years ago. I have all her books and so often find joy and/or solace in her words. This piece, The Whistler, she wrote of her long time partner, Molly Malone Cook, who passed on in 2005. Oliver, now in her seventies lives on with strong memories of her partner in life. She has recently published a book of Molly’s photography entwined with her own, s prose depicting their lives together through words and pictures.

I wonder if I, faced with such a loss go on as she is doing. My own partner of 45 years is at present undergoing tests due to symptoms that may point to the diagnosis of a debilitating disease. This being the case, I wonder where I will get the strength from to cope. I so admire Oliver and her work and know that I must look to others like her and take a page from their book of life…to find my own well of strength. I look for a positive outcome, but have to be prepared for whatever eventuality.


Written by woodnymph

May 17, 2008 at 4:27 pm

Neruda Rain

with 12 comments

Rain today,

out of the blue,

warm winds brought

rare rain,

Neruda rain,

words in the


coming through.

Writing Prompt – Heather Blakey’s Neruda Challenge on Squidoo

(copyright Imogen Crest 2008.)

Written by imogen88

May 17, 2008 at 5:49 am

I Spent the Day with Pablo….

with 11 comments

I spent the day with Pablo,
a stranger I yearn to know.
We met at the shore, where
Calle de las Sirenas winds down
to meet the sea, swirling and rolling
like a drunk in a rocky cove.

He is hard to know, this Pablo.
His voice whispers words
I strain to hear.

His puzzling songs–
of lovers and death,
of moss-covered stones
sleeping beneath
the Southern Cross,
of calls to solitude and solidarity–
beguile me.

Am I the woman he longs for?
Am I the lover he yearns to caress
with fingers like fiery rays of an afternoon sun?
Or is it another, distant and ancient,
that evokes his saddest song?

He spits at me, this Pablo,
so I slide back to the sea,
his song growing more dim
until the sea covers over me
and I melt into death.

Poem and images: L. Gloyd (c) 2008


Written by Pelican1

May 17, 2008 at 1:51 am

Sadness and Its Durability

with 13 comments

Vincent Van Gogh, Wheat Field With Crows, 1890.

I’ve rushed here through the stalks

To ask you to rethink the whole death thing.

No, really, you’re going to be quite famous one day soon.

Don’t you want to see that happen?

Take advantage of the privileges and benefits that come with it?

Look at Picasso.

I know he wasn’t a contemporary of yours, but

He knew how to live well off his talent.

Though his varying wives and mistresses

Would probably beg to differ.

But still: he certainly enjoyed what came to him.

You didn’t see him chopping off bits himself

And giving them to prostitutes for safekeeping.

Or seeing yellow in the bottom of a glass of


So get out of this field.

Theo won’t take it well, and

I just learned that “Wheat Field with Crows”

Wasn’t your last painting, like people romantically suggest.

Such a lonely scene, it had to foretell something

They think. Don’t hovering crows

And stormy skies signify madness at an end?

A few years back,

I saw this same painting turned into a doormat

In some catalog.

I was livid: this work,

This place the deed of death was started


Turned into

A place where people could grind mud

Into the lack of understanding in

What makes people tick.

I vowed never to buy from them again.

Such a sacrifice, eh?

But I did see “Starry Night” at the Met

Stood in front of it for a long, long time

People passing by me in a rush to get it all in

Before closing time.

I could have fallen in,

My eyes tracing lines of paint.

The poster at home doesn’t do it justice,

But it reminds me

Given a chance to travel time

I’ve hit this field,

Knowing what I do about

Sadness and its durability.

But now that I think about it,

I don’t think fame or money

Would be your cure.


Written by jodhiay

May 16, 2008 at 10:58 pm