FDDA: A Day In My Life

Today Fandango’s Dog Days of August theme is your daily routine.” Do you follow a daily routine? Many of us are creatures of habit. We have routines that we follow, whether it’s the time we get up each day or go to bed, what we do during the day, or how we spend our time. For some, it can be disruptive if our routines are interrupted. Share a story, a poem, a photo, a drawing, some music, or whatever you wish to share about your daily routine.

I love to write haiku – it’s the most fun kind of poetry to write. So I went a bit overboard writing it, but here’s my

PANDEMIC ROUTINE HAIKU

OMG! Will it
Never be over? Five months
And no end in sight!

My routine is thus:
Get up whenever I wake,
Weigh myself, brew tea.

Eat a banana,
And a piece of cheese, sip tea,*
On my screened back porch.

*I no longer drink coffee.

If hubby is home
We eat omelets and toast
On our screened back porch

If hubby plays golf
It’s cereal and yogurt
With fruit for breakfast.

Eventually,
I get dressed and brush my teeth,
Then find things to do.

Housework? Clean kitchen,
Maybe do laundry again,
Turn on computer.

Creativity:
Ways to combat the sameness –
Read, paint, blog, research

I might watch TV,
But not for long – I get tired.
Get up, get ready!

Take walks on campus
What are ducks and swans up to?
No cygnets this year.

Swans and ducks at West Lake

Meet friends walking too –
We discuss pets, pandemic:
End in September?

Reading is something
I love to do and I have
Read so many books!

Play scrabble online,
Write a blog for all to read,
Entertain myself.

Social media?
Facebook entertains also –
Enjoy the humor!

Cute cat videos,
I laugh at anti-Trump memes,
See doings of friends.

Listen to music,
Think about playing piano…
But I never do.

I can’t motivate myself to play, but I don’t want to give up my piano!

My husband returns –
Time for a nap! Then we check
Mail, e-mail, and texts.

Dinner delivered
To us on Styrofoam trays;
Cookies for dessert.

At night we watch news –
Rachel Maddow, Lawrence too:
Trump’s latest scandals.

Get a laugh watching
Late Night With Stephen Colbert –
Laugh so we don’t cry.

Selfish people won’t
Wear masks, claiming it’s their right
What about duty?

Five months of finding
Creative things to do and
Hoping it ends soon!

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!


30-Day Book Challenge: 19, 20, 21 – concerning Irish accents and poets

This post is in response to Sandman Jazz’s June 30-Day book challenge.

Day 19: An audiobook you like because of the narrator’s voice: I have listened to very few audiobooks because my ADHD doesn’t allow my brain to concentrate for long on spoken narration. But one that I really loved was Angela’s Ashes read by the author Frank McCourt – this is a sad story but listening to him read it, I about died laughing! His Irish accent and expression really made it for me!

Day 20: A book with an unreliable narrator: This one really stumped me. Is the character that is narrating unreliable or is the narration itself unreliable? I confess I have no answer for this one.

Day 21: An anthology you love: I can’t think of any anthology that I have read except poetry, and I don’t read a lot of poetry. Here are three poetry anthologies that I have either read in their entirety or have read parts of:
The Heath Guide to Poetry – edited by David Bergman and Daniel Mark Epstein. This was the textbook for a poetry class I took in grad school. I like it because it has a variety of poems & poets, and there are notes about each of them, helping me to understand them. I gained an appreciation for poets I had never heard of and poetry in general in that class. (I even began to write poetry once in a while!)
Cool Salsa: Bilingual Poems on Growing Up Latino in the United States, edited by Lori M. Carlson with an Introduction by Oscar Hijuelos. There are several of my favorite Latino poets in this anthology and the poems are sometimes funny, sometimes relevant, sometimes sad, sometimes poignant.

Collected poems of Ogden Nash – I have several anthologies of Nash’s poems, which I inherited from my mother. His poetry is light, funny, and often a veiled critique of society.

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. 

 

 

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

Friday RPD: Absent

Does absence make the heart grow fonder?

Absent the ones we love
Memories of times gone by
An empty house
An empty building long ago abandoned

20180803_150227 DP warehouse

Those absent
Are what we covet
Appreciation grows
For those we no longer have, can no longer touch

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Love grows
For our dearly departed
A home we had to leave
Empty shelves, empty nest
Beauty we no longer see
Music we no longer hear in the silence of our mind.

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Absent is what is no longer remembered
No longer reachable
Absent is the past.

Mother facing the empty shelves

Photos: A shuttered warehouse, an abandoned trailer, weavers’ nests no longer occupied, my mother in her empty apartment.

Friday RDP: Absent

WPC: Aqueous

WordPress’s Weekly Photo Challenge is liquid.

Raindrop: Microcosm
126

Fluidity: Still water peace
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Wave: Ocean in motion
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Liquor
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Aqua: Water is life
20170323_103016Reflection: Moisture in air’s reflection on lakeIMAG0778Buoyancy: floating on water
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Frozen liquid: dripping
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Rainbow: Moisture refracted, light dispersed20170527_200455Water cycle: Condensation20170524_160439

Fog is but a cloud
that touches the earth.
Water = Life

 

CFFC: Safari Haiku

Note: I wrote most of these haiku myself and took all the photographs. The haiku “Photography” was written by Dale Berman (my husband); “On Safari” (with slight modification) and “Origins” were written by other members of our Tanzanian Safari group.  Posted for Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Wildlife.

Wildebeest
Is it possible
that the gnu knew? Or was he just
a bewildered beast?

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Wildebeest is the Afrikaans name for gnu.

Zebra
Zebras’ stripes, black, white
Black and white and black and white
But no two alike.

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Baby zebras have brown stripes which gradually turn black.

 

Migration
Zebras know the route.
Wildebeest can smell water.
They move in tandem.

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Zebras and wildebeest are often seen together. They have a similar goal: to find the best grass for the season.

 

Lions
Are lions lazy?
They’re always lyin’ around.
First: hunt, eat; then rest.

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Female lions live in a pride with their cubs. Both male and female adult lions often hang around with their litter mates of the same gender.

 

Thomson’s Gazelle
Constantly swishing
black tail of Thomson’s gazelle
back and forth and back.

 

Genet
Whiskers and black spots
Curious big eyes, ringed tail
It is not a cat!

2-8 genet at Ndutu Safari Lodge3
This captivating animal is a carnivore which eats small prey, such as mice and lizards. Although cat-like, it is not related to cats. 

 

Impala
Graceful impala
Big ears constantly alert:
Predators nearby.

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Impalas are the most common gazelle seen on the African plains.  They are often seen in all-male and all-female groups. Only the males have horns.

 

Leopard
The elusive leopard
High in the acacia tree
Descends for a meal.

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Leopards can be hard to spot – they usually spend the day high in a tree.

 

Hyena
Ugly hyena
He feasts on young wildebeest
Bloodied and cackling.

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Hyenas are not dogs, but often work together to hunt their prey. They also feed on carrion.

 

 

Hyraxes
Small, furry creatures
Living in rocky kopjes
Elephant cousins?!

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Believe it or not, this guinea pig-sized animal is a distant relative of the elephant!

 

Ostrich
Ostrich on the plain
Long neck craning, pink legs run
Flurry of feathers!

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Male ostriches have black feathers and pink legs. Female ostriches have grey feathers and their legs are slightly lighter in color.

 

Giraffe
High above the ground
Ungainly shape yet graceful
Nibbling tops of trees.

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Giraffes grow to 17-18 feet. Their young at birth are 6 feet tall! 

 

 

Elephants
With mud-caked skin, they
Lumber on African plains
Their youngsters close by.
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Weaver
Pert yellow weaver
Weaving a nest to impress
He hopes she approves.

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Male weavers (see his head sticking down just under the nest?) make nests out of grass, twigs and other things they find. The female weaver will move in with the male that makes the best nest!

A watery life
Just their snouts protrude
out of the water to breathe.
Hippos in a pond.

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Hippos prefer to spend much of their day in the water. However, they can be seen on land looking for grass. 

 

On Safari
Dust swirls ‘round the truck
As more jeeps gather nearby
Big cats wish us away.
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Origins
We all started here
Herds migrate; hunters follow.
The bright continent.

2-8 Oldupai-map of sites where fossils of early man were found
The top two photos show an ancient buffalo skull and that of an ancestor of humans: homo habilis. The dots on the map show archaeological sites where hominin remains have been found.

Photography
Pictures were taken
Memories are kept alive
Trip not forgotten

2-13 group photo at Ang'ata Camp, Serengeti
Group photo taken the morning of our departure, including the staff at Ang’ata Safari Camp at Serengeti National Park.