The Shelterer


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Day Nine

It is day nine of Poem-A Day-month and already I’m feeling the strain. Today’s prompt was to write a shelter poem.

                   The Shelterer

When what I believe about life ends
in questions Wise and Dined over,
Slept over with eyes open
like a violent flash upon my pupils,

When I run to the sting of death,
fearful of life, not to join but to observe
loss of daybreak and all its enchantments,

When I lavish pity on my restrictions
and loss of mine and ours and envious
lusts, I have not the courage to confess
that my longing exceeds my memory
of faithfulness or innocence.

*        *        *

There is a man who reclines his eyes
With passion aging upon his lips
He grieves with hope. What sin was
missing to gift him this that veils
such a worm as I? What shelter is
his home? When what I believe about
life ends in questions, I will set my
table with him and shelter my fears
behind his eyes.

How about you?

I applaud those who are able to write more than one poem each day. I don’t know how they do it. How are you doing with your poeming this month? Keeping up? Catching up? Keep poeming.




National Poetry Month Challenges Plus


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Sharpen those pencils. Purchase your favorite thesaurus and rhyming dictionary.

National Poetry Monthba1969

If you’re a crazy poet, a quiet poet, or a mind-boggling poet, you’re interested in knowing about ALL the Poetry Challenges during the month of April so you can pick and choose which ones you’ll participate in.


I can’t give ‘em all to you, but I can fill you in on a few.

1.  NaPoWriMo: Stop and Smell the Roses

Like most of these challenges, you will write 30 Poems in 30 Days. All you do is write a poem. There are no fees or nothing! You can add your blog or website to their online roster of participants in order to share your poem but you’ll have to pre-submit your site. Oh, and you can grab a nice badge for your website/blog, too.

2.  WordXWord or WXW 30/30 Poetry Challenge

30/30 Poetry Challenge 2014

In 2013, over 600 people took this challenge. You sign up to receive a daily prompt. 30 days in April. 30 prompts. A poem a day.

You can do it.


The Academy of American Poets has posted 30 Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month.

Here are a few of their ideas:

*Watch a poetry movie (they have clickable links)
*Ask the post office for more poetry stamps.
*Write a letter to a poet.
*Play Exquisite Corpse—a game I’ve never heard of. At least not by that name. I remember playing something similar in high school. You gather a group of poets, each person writes a word on a sheet of paper, you fold the paper to conceal it, and pass it on to the next player for his or her contribution. The result is always fascinating and fun.

For the rest of the directions, visit the website.

4. 2014 National Poetry Month Blog Tour

Savvy Verse and Wit asks “bloggers, poets, authors, and readers sign up to review books, talk about poets, write poetry, share their inspirations, and celebrate the love of poetry this April.” Just sign up with Mr. Linky. Great way to guest blog.

5. Poems in Your Pocket Day:

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On Poem in Your Pocket Day, Thursday, April 24, people throughout the United States select a poem, carry it with them, and share it with others throughout the day. This is sponsored by The Academy of American Poets.

The website contains a gagillion ideas for creating a poem, sharing a poem, or finding a poem to share.

You can also share your poem selection on Twitter by using the hashtag #pocketpoem.

6. Library Thing

April’s RandomCAT challenge is to read a poetry related book. How hard can this be? Most poetry chapbooks are relatively short. Reading poetry makes us better writers.

7. Miz Quickly


Miz Quickly will prompt and nudge you with a whirlwind of ideas. “And it costs nothing. Zero. Zilch.”

Stretch your writing muscles. Visit Miz Quickly.

8. Ragtag Poetry Doings:

* lists ideas, articles, and events to help you celebrate National Poetry Month.

*Info Please posts quizzes, bios, crossword puzzles, collections, quotes. Lots of fun here.

National Poetry Month

By the way, I’m just the messenger. If you have questions about any of these challenges, go straight to the site and find their FAQ’s.



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Yeah, it seems a little early BUT really it’s never too early to prepare for this challenge.

The rules are simple:

Write a poem every day for the month of April based on the prompts Robert Lee Brewer posts each day at Poetic Asides.

Share it.

Comment on the other poems that are posted.

Play nice. Play fair. Have fun.

This year the best of the best will be included in an anthology.

PYHO_Small for PAD Ap 2014

How do I get ready?

    • Some poets create a log of possible metaphors to use.
    • Some develop a theme.
    • Some decide ahead of time to use only specific forms.
    • Some poets have created point-of-view characters and write their poems in this character’s voice.

Get creative.

Poem Your Heart Out.

Spread the word.

Want to know more? Visit Poetic Asides.

Every Life Needs its Own Mirror


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I’m sharing a pantoum that I wrote yesterday for a prompt from the site formally known as Poetic Bloomings. The amazing poets who contribute to this site have recently voted in a new name: Creative Bloomings because the founding administrators, Walt Wojtanik, Marie Elena Good, and fellow contributing poets are now incorporating flashy fiction and photography and more. Michelle Hed was our guest prompter.

And here is the prompt:

Complete this thought and make that thought the title of your poem.

“Every life needs its own______________”


mirror 2

“Every life needs its own mirror”

(a pantoum by J.lynn Sheridan)

Every life needs its own burnished mirror
to peer into the far-flung past.
A tool to reflect our trodden paths,
whether wise, resolute, or marred.

To peer into the far-flung past,
then disclose our truths and errs.
Whether wise, resolute, or marred,
Echo-casting of years yet unknown.

Then, disclose our truths and errs
so the future repeats each mended rove.
Echo-casting of years yet unknown,
every life needs its own burnished mirror.


You try!

The Rules for a pantoum are fairly simple.


“The modern pantoum is a poem of any length, composed of four-line stanzas in which the second and fourth lines of each stanza serve as the first and third lines of the next stanza. The last line of a pantoum is often the same as the first.”

No rhyming!

Now, it’s your turn. Don’t forget to visit Creative Bloomings for more inspiration.

Share your love of poetry


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Tomorrow is International Book Giving Day

What better day is there to share your love of poetry than on Valentine’s Day?

I’m sure you have a poetry book or two hidden between the couch cushions or under a bed that someone would love to read.

Here are some suggestions for how to celebrate and share your love from the International Book Giving Day website:

1. Give a Book to a Friend or Relative.

Celebrate International Book Giving Day by giving a child a new, used or borrowed book.

2. Leave a Book in a Waiting Room or Lobby.

Choose a waiting room where kids are stuck waiting and there are few to no good books available. Purchase a good book, and deposit your book covertly or overtly in your waiting room of choice. The goal here is to spread the love of reading to kids, so choose a fun book, nothing controversial.

3. Donate a Book.

Wrap up a box of children’s books that your kids have outgrown and get them in the hands of children who could really use a book or two. Donate your books to your local second hand store, library, children’s hospital, or shelter. Alternatively, donate your books to an organization working internationally to get books in the hands of kids, such as Books for Africa.

Check out the website. They even offer printable book plates, book marks. and posters like this:


I have oodles of books I could share. How about you?

My Song: In the Spring


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Today dVerse has us writing songs. I just did this over at my other blog The Slow Forget. But, I didn’t write music. Just lyrics.

At the Poet’s Pub, the theme is Songwriting and its Relationship to Poetry.
I’ve said it over and over, the two are related. Our host, ,
mentions Pat Pattison at Berklee School of Music. Last year I attended a MOOC
n songwriting and Pat was the instructor. He emphasized Prosody: “appropriate relationship between elements, whatever they may be: melody and words, chords and message, rhyme scheme and emotion . . . .”

I thoroughly enjoyed this class. If you get a chance, I encourage you to take it with him.

The final project for the course was to take all the elements we learned and write a song. I chose to write a ballad. So, for you Pop lover or Rappers, this will put you to sleep.

Click the link. It will take you to my Sound Cloud page and it should just start playing. If not, click on those squiggly lines near the left side. I’m not a pro but I don’t think it will hurt your ears too much.

Here are the lyrics so you can read along:

In the Spring

by J.lynn Sheridan

Once or was it twice
you offered me your ring
and you said
maybe we’ll get married
next year in the Spring.

When the lilies open wide
you’ll be my pretty bride.
Next year in the Spring
you’ll be mine.

Well, a robin seldom tries to
sing on winter’s wing.
And a lady cannot marry
when she has  another dream.

So when the lily buds arrive
I cannot be your bride.
But, next year in the Spring,
I’ll decide.

For there’s a whole world calling me.
There’s a whole world for us to see.
Come with me.
Come with me.

Well, a man he has his pride
and won’t be tied to a string
when his heart desires to marry
next year in the Spring.

So, when the lily blossoms opened wide
you had yourself a pretty bride
and she wore your diamond ring in the
Spring by your side.

I cried the day our love died.
I cried she was your pretty bride.
Now you had your dream in Spring
and I had mine.



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