What a Nuisance!

This is the Word of the Day prompt, whose host defines this term thus:
 GABBLE-RATCHET. As well as being an old English dialect word for a noisy child, a gabble-ratchet is any nocturnal bird (particularly geese) that makes a lot of noise at night, once considered to be an ill omen.

I was attracted to this prompt today due to this unusual word!! The definition I found for gabble-ratchet is a bit different, from New Miriam-Webster Dictionary online:

Definition of gabriel ratchet
Miriam-Webster says the term derives from gabriel-ratchet, whose definition is:

dialectalthe cries of migrating wild geese flying by night which are often popularly explained as the baying of a supernatural pack of hounds and to which various superstitious significances (as forebodings of evil) are attributed.

I like the first definition better, but I am very familiar with the sound – a lot of Canada geese hang around our community’s campus when the weather is warm enough, and when they fly, they gabble-ratchet! So I am incorporating this unique word, with two other prompts from Fandango’s FOWC and The Daily Spur into my poem about

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CANADA GEESE

Canada geese everywhere
In pond and grass, and in the air
They leave their poop all over the place
When I walk, I look down, just in case
At the path where they have wandered
Poop here, poop there and over yonder
A gun is fired to scare them away
But they don’t care, they come back anyway
The swans in the ponds only chase after them
When their cygnets are young, but mostly ignore ’em
In the fall, those darned geese fly overhead
In V formation, full speed ahead
Their gabble-ratchet is music to my ears
They’re finally gone…until next year!
BUT
I wish I could say they really go away
But mild winters invite them to stay!
Call grounds crew to complain or snitch
But Canada geese have found their niche
I guess living with geese is just the price
We have to pay for a campus so nice!

RDP: Flatus

When I saw the Ragtag Daily Prompt for today, I laughed! Really? I thought. Does that mean what I think it does? Indeed it does – I looked it up, and here’s a little etymology:

Flatus comes from 17th century Latin (I imagine Chaucer made good use of it!), and literally means “blowing.” I don’t think I need to list all the synonyms, although “farting” is the word used in our house. Here’s an interesting synonym: borborygmus, its definition being “intestinal rumbling caused by moving gas.” OK, not quite the same – and although it may be embarrassing to emit the sound of a borborygmus in public, it is downright impolite to expel flatus in public, warranting a heartfelt “Excuse me!” And that inspires me to write a poem!

FLATUS

If you’re in a crowd
And it isn’t very loud,
But people start to stare,
Smile without a care!

No one needs to know
It was you that had to go
And emit (yes, you heard it!)
Flatus, or another name for it

Is farting, or more politely,
“Passing gas” whispered lightly.
Although considered rude
It’s just that I ate some food

That caused me to be so crude –
But I doubt you’re in the mood
To hear the explanation,
Of an old fart‘s gratification.

Sometimes there’s no help for it
And sometimes I just can’t quit
Whether “silent but deadly”
Or loud and like a medley

‘Cause my spouse is here beside me
We sometimes fart in harmony
So why not just have a laugh –
It’s only natural to pass gas!


Rhyme Time: The Blame Game

Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie has a writing challenge called Rhyme Time. Here are the rules:
This week we are “writing away, and having a play, with rhyming words for you today” with Rhyme Time.
‘Rhyme Time’ focuses on the use of rhyme to build your writing piece. You will be given six rhyming words* and need to use all of them (but not limited to these) in your response, which should be a poetry form of your choice.
*Homophones can be used as alternatives to the challenge words.
Our rhyming words this week are:
flame
frame
game
blame
same
claim

Examples of Rhyme in Poetry
A rhyme is a repetition of similar sounding words, occurring at the end of lines in poems or songs. A rhyme is a tool utilizing repeating patterns that bring rhythm or musicality to poems. This differentiates them from prose, which is plain. A rhyme is employed for the specific purpose of rendering a pleasing effect to a poem, which makes its recital an enjoyable experience.
Classification of rhymes may be based on their positions in the poem.

I do not consider myself a poet, though I have occasionally written poetry. Most of it is either free verse or haiku. But as I looked at the list of words, a poem started to form in my head, (not great really, but it was fun), and here it is:

Men Framed Art Prints*

THE BLAME GAME

The photo in the frame
Is of my old flame.
We were too much the same
Or that’s what he’d claim
It all became a game –
We were both to blame.
What happened I cannot name
But him I could not tame.
We both, I guess, were the same
In playing the blame game!

 

*Image downloaded from Google Images and can be found here. 

 

 

Lens-Artists #79: Window With a View

The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge this week is window with a view. I have often taken photos from the inside of buses while on a tour someplace. I also have taken photos from every window of my (previous) house. I wrote haikus to go with each one. Here are two of them.

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Bedroom window
The storm rages leaving behind
one leaf
plastered to the screen.
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Porch window
Branch torn from
a wounded tree
violence of a summer storm

The photo below was taken from a window of Prairie Lakes (Des Plaines) running track window last January. Wind, followed by freeze, cause the snow to create this rippling pattern on a raised area of the athletic field.
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On our tour in Israel, we had to be on the bus at 7:30 am! This photo was taken shortly after that from the motorcoach window: sunburst over the Sea of Galilee.
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Sometimes the window with a view was on the other side of the motorcoach; in which case, I had to try to shoot between the seats and people’s heads. This rainbow was in the afternoon of January 9, on our way back to Tiberias, Israel, after sightseeing.
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I learned that one way to reduce the reflection on the window from inside the bus was to put my camera directly on the window (this works best with a cellphone). This photo is of Lake Nasser in Aswan, Egypt. After the High Dam was built, that part of the Nile became Lake Nasser. This particular area was very shallow with lots of small islands.
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In Normandy, France last June, we drove through several small villages between Caen and Arromanches. This photo was taken from the windshield of our rental car.
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This last photo was taken from the bus for our tour group when our cruise ship arrived at Nuremburg, Germany.
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FOTD: Hark, Ye Heralds of Spring!

I was definitely in the mood for spring, but then…
On Sunday – three days ago! – we had a snowstorm! About 3 inches of wet snow fell.

By yesterday, though, the snow was completely gone and the temperature rose to above 70°F! I was able to go out for a walk wearing a t-shirt!  I admired the daffodils along the route, and saw a painted lady butterfly which landed on the daffodils.
20190409_150856I made up a silly song about daffodils. I think of them as heralds of spring because they bloom early and look like trumpets. This is to the tune of the Christmas song, Hark the Herald Angels Sing. (I tried to maintain the rhythm of the song and  rhyme every two lines!)

Hark, ye heralds of the spring!
I just cannot help but sing!
Sun is out and air is warm,
Winter’s gone and spring is born!

Joyfully I walk outside
Everyone I meet says, “Hi!”
Daffodils along my way
Showing off their bright array

With their trumpets they proclaim,
“Flowers, come join our refrain!”
Butterflies and birds and bees
Color everywhere for all to see!

To see lots of spring color, go to Cee’s FOTD 4/18/19.

 

A Day of Sunshine

Nancy Merrill has a perfectly lovely prompt for this week’s A Photo A Week Challenge: Sunshine! Sunshine is what I crave most after enduring a cold winter in the Midwest, and spring begins to show its face.

There is nothing like a sunny day to warm my face, my heart and my mood! I have so many photos of sunshine because I am a sun worshipper! So here is a “day” of the sun…from its rise to when it sets.

Sunrise
Brings the new day
The sun follows us all the way
To nightfall.

7:00 a.m. – Sunrise over the Sea of Galilee – Jan.  10, 2019
(Tiberias, Israel – taken from our room at Hotel Leonardo)
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8:30 a.m. – Sun rises over the Dead Sea, Israel – Jan. 12, 2019
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10:00 a.m. – Sun peaks through a crack between mast and sail – our first morning on our cruise on the Nile River, Egypt – Dec. 29, 2018
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Noon – Sun filtering through dark clouds – over the Caribbean Sea, March 22, 2017
(Panama Canal Cruise – south of Florida)
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1:06 p.m. – almost total solar eclipse – Aug. 21, 2017
(Chicago Botanic Gardens, taken using my special viewing glasses placed over my cellphone’s camera lens)
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4:14 p.m. – Late afternoon winter sun peeks through clouds, silhouetting the trees, in Des Plaines, Illinois – March 8, 2016
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7:20 p.m. – Winter sunset over Africa – Feb. 2, 2018
(Taken from  my airplane window on the way to Tanzania)
20180202_1920219:03 p.m. – My favorite sunset photo! First evening of our first cruise, Baltic Sea, Aug. 7, 2015Sunset view from the rear of the Eurodam.
And then it is night.
We wait again for sunlight
Tomorrow.

 

Someday

Sheryl’s Your Daily Word Prompt today is someday.

This poem is written for my son, who turns 34 today. It expresses a mother’s hope for his future.

Someday

Today is your birthday…
Someday you will be happy
Someday you will feel confidence
Someday you will love yourself
Someday you will have a steady income
Someday you won’t live alone
Someday you will believe in yourself
Someday you will be in love
Someday someone will be in love with you
Someday you will know how to deal with depression
Someday you will conquer your anxiety
Someday you will meet your soulmate
Someday you will look forward to the future
Someday you will look in the mirror and see
how beautiful you really are.

Someday…..
Even if not today.
Why not today?

Happy birthday, Jayme! I hope 2019 brings you joy!

Jayme & Katharine Villa-Alvarez
c. 1987

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At his sister’s wedding, January 2019