Day 29 – On the occasion | Poem a Day (NaNoWriMo)

dragonfly on a Sweet William flower
dragonfly

BIRTHDAYS

measuring time—
twenty-five or thirty-some years
yet to go … or less
looking at past records
of family births and deaths

my dad felt a hundred years
was too long to stick around for
my mother thought that ninety-four
was quite a bit too short
neither was pleased

don’t know what I’ll think
when my world and I transform
when time becomes eternity
maybe I’ll notice, or perhaps I’ll
forget what came before

Copyright © 2019-11-29, by Liz Bennefeld. All rights reserved.


Day 1 – Growing Up, Learning | Poem a Day (NaNoWriMo)

View of Village Cemetery
Hawley Cemetery – 2008

what’s the capitol
of the Peace Garden State?
where’s the garden at?

we learned all the answers there
working for Dad, clipping grass

Copyright © 1 November 2019, by Elizabeth Bennefeld.

When we were children (there were seven of us, and I am assuming that others got roped into this, each in their turn), Dad hired us during May and as needed during summer school vacations to maintain the grounds of the village cemetery where he was the groundskeeper and sexton. He didn’t retire until he was in his 90s. There was particular need for us children to prepare the cemetery for Memorial Day and to refurbish things after the influx of visitors during the following months. My brother Tim and I worked together, being close in age, and we would pass the time by challenging each other with such miscellanea as state and country capitols and other interesting trivia.

My mother died three years ago, this month, and my father followed her three-and-a-half months later. Their ashes are buried next to the family monument, near two siblings whose lives were measured in days.

Warming up for NaNoWriMo, Day 2

Cold Beauty

and why would I live
beyond all kin and kindness
absent to their eyes

so, one leaves a friendless warmth,
braving winter’s storms, to die

Copyright © 2019.10.31, by Lizl Bennefeld.

 

The many deaths of those most dear

within the past three years… Suddenly, I’m homesick

for a place I’ve never seen.

 

Mourning seems to come in waves. In the midst of happiness, remembered losses beg not to be forgotten. That’s a trap, I think. The insistence of the mind on revisiting those intense emotions, long after one has moved on. The bittersweet taste of loves and friends and family set aside until time ends, or else, renews all things.

Warming up for NaNoWriMo

I am once again planning to write 30 poems during November (NaNoWriMo)—hopefully, more than one a day, but we’ll see. November and December are cluttered months. Nonetheless…

Today’s and tomorrow’s poems are warm-up exercises. During this poem-a-day exercise, I am hoping not to resort to canned prompts, but to find poems in life as it happens.

P9199208 Waterdrops
Drop of Eternity

the years and the days
ephemeral, but endless…
looking for the end

Copyright © 2019.10.30, by Lizl Bennefeld.

Retasting realities

bookshelves beside my rocking chair
Rewriting the World

So many years, to notice I’ve returned to the place from which I started. A journey not yet ended, but which will end in an hour … or months … or decades from this day. A journey not taken?

streams of thought

and kindnesses not looked for

barely noticed

I saved gratitude for the end

but, thinking now, it should not be left too late

to speak through silent words

written on a screen…a sheet of paper

or the sky’s clouds

gentle rain

tracks

in dust

before the earth is wrung dry

and cries for tears

to dampen it, again

 

perhaps there is a time…a moment

to stop the flow of thought and reason

to feel what is and mourn

what might have been—

to acknowledge the gaps

measures underweight

until the world’s too light

not to blow away

[Rough draft].  Copyright © 2019-05-22, by Elizabeth W. Bennefeld.

 

 

Day 27 Late-Season Snow #NaPoWriMo

cocker spaniel playing in the newly fallen April snow
Late-season Snow Storm

Prompt: “Take one of your poems and, in three places, insert a parenthetical comment…” I used only this much of the prompt found at Cuyahoga County Public Library website. Only three more days to go!

late-spring storm
{by now, I shouldn’t feel surprise}
snow on puppy legs…face…tail
{how did he get snow plastered THERE?}
don’t sit in my lap!
{ah, well! there’s towels}

Copyright © 2019-04-27, by Lizl Bennefeld.LOGO FOR NATIONAL POETRY MONTH