Haiku Dreams

burrowing toad,brown toad,toad in flowerbed,

Hiding Toad

trying to find
my dreams and aspirations
black-winged damselfly

6-28-17

 

I think I left my muse in the woods when I went for a walk this spring. I wrote a couple of haiku, so I know she was nearby, but then I haven’t been able to write anything since. Maybe her wings got stuck in a tree branch or a rose bush. I hope she gets free soon. I have been blogging for 6 years and I still have a lot of poetry from last year to show you. Stay tuned by following me on your favorite social media platform.

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2016 Year in Review

poet symanntha renn failing at haiku image

So this year, WordPress decided to not help us make a blog post that reviewed our year. See my Twitter feed for details. Well, that’s about par for the course. 2016 has been a difficult and odd year. So I decided to whip one up myself. Do you look forward to reading “in review” posts from bloggers? I would love to hear your answer in the comments.

Also, I promise to try to be more hopeful and upbeat in 2017. This next year will be good if we all try really hard to make it be good together.

     Top 5 posts by views

Delayed Reaction

FF | Third Wheel

FF | Good Memories

FF | First Holiday Together

Halfway Through 2016 and I’m Back

     Top 5 posts by likes

Escaping the King 23

The Kind Baker 24

Good Memories 25

Dark Nights 26

The Last Resort 26

                (These are also my top Liked Friday Fictioneer posts.)

I did not get as many views as last year, but I did take 30 days off in June, in which I did not post or promote my blog. But the difference wasn’t that much, 870 fewer views this year than 2015. If I can get 900 more views in 2017 I’ll be a happy writer.

Thank You, Dear Readers

picture by symanntha renn,photo,blog banner,

  Cooking
the smell of pork roast
first time always turns out
replicating my
victory is what is hard
more than a flash in the pan

  1-31-2016

Thank you all so much! I am now at 705 followers! I asked more of you to follow this blog two weeks ago on Monday, October 24th and you did. By the next day, I was at 700 followers and the number has stayed up!

Thank you for reading my work. Thank you for seeking me out. Thank you for following me on Twitter and on Facebook. Thank you for leaving me comments. I appreciate every Follow and every Like I get. I appreciate the retweets and all of the other shares as well.

Thank you for staying with me as this blog changes. Thank you for joining me as this blog is in the midst of change. I posted my last quote on Monday of this week. While I love quotes, those have never been the most loved posts by my readers. My short stories have quickly become my most liked type of post on this blog. While I will try to write a short story and post it by Friday night, my heart is in poetry. I plan to share a haiku that you have never read before, every Monday, as always.

This tanka was inspired by a #fieryverse prompt.

A look at my poems from the last 17 years.

Since I have written over 900 poems I thought that  I would post some my poems here just for fun. Here are some of my poems that I have written on my 17-year journey. I have been writing since 1999. I wrote my first poem (The Run) when I was 11 so keep that in mind as you read through these. I meant to write this post in my 15th year of writing, but being a mom and getting a serious job has re-arranged my world.
Now, for those of you who would like to walk through my work, here you go:
 
#1 The Run
I am wheelchair bound until he says good riddance. This cast I say is a lot of pain
 
I don’t regret the pain for now my troubles are slain. Now I can run wild and free.
 
I used to walk high, now I walk with pride. I am loved by all. Now I can run like all.
 
They left me behind, but now they are blind, by the dust in their eyes.
 
Though I may moan I have backbone. Now I can walk out the door before they lock the door.
 
My mind says “No” but my heart says, “Go!” So watch now as I flow, run, skip, hop, jump, prance, and walk perfectly.
 
#100 Making the World Right
Sneaky fingers reaching out for my mind
Gut emotions squeezing my sides
Blindfolded people swinging out with clubs
Hateful words stinging the ears
Tears soaking my face, hiding truth
Hands gripping, holding on to the only clear thing
Love breaks through in the form of lips
Honeysweet words dance across skin
Flowing into ears sorting out truth
Love conquers all chasing away evil and hate
And at the end of the night, my world is just right
 
#200 Panic in the Forest (published on Poet Daily)
Like a wounded deer struggling in the snow,
I fear I’ll never rise again.
The fear makes it hard to breathe
 
makes the world seem so cold.
I see the blood dripping on the snow
and the panic chokes me.
 
Everything spins and I get dizzy.
I can’t get my legs under me.
The ground so solid comes rushing up
 
I am still…
 
#300 Thanksgiving at Grandma’s
We wipe the wet leaves off of our feet
and step into the warm house to look around,
thankful for several things including heat.
I put the food on the table
and go to the freezer to check out the desserts.
They’re all old favorites, none need a label.
I make my way back to the front of the house
an aunt grabs me and talks about how the kids have grown.
Someone makes a nice comment about my blouse.
We notice who has cut their hair and who has let it grow.
Some admit to dyeing their grays as we talk about age.
A baby toddles over, what a cute bow!
As we wait for the turkey to be carved,
we can smell the corn, stuffing, and gravy,
and we talk about how we’re starved.
After the Blessing is said, we line up,
and dip out food onto Styrofoam plates
walking in a circle, holding our cup.
Most find a place to sit, but some stand.
Someone mentions the cousin we wish was here
and not fighting in a strange land.
Later we talk about the kids and arrange
what kid got who this year,
we draw for the exchange.
We give long hugs and decide what to bring
next month when we get together for Christmas,
once again the doorbell will ring.
 
#400 Silent Battlefield
The battlefield at Carthage is silent now.
As silent as it was 150 years ago
before the people there grew angry
and a small creek ran red with blood.
It was a part of The Civil War
but there was nothing civil about it.
Brothers stabbed brothers
in the land of the free.
Guerillas bushwhacked soldiers
in the home of the brave.
More concerned with state’s rights than men’s
they shed blood on ground that did not care
about the color of the hand that tilled it.
Today that small wood is still
except for the singing of the birds.
The only dark place is the small cave.
Giggling children fail to realize the horror
that once stomped through these fields.
Some people still smell the powder burning
but they are relics soon to be stored
like the guns and uniforms at the museum.
It is a peaceful park now, with gentle shadows
and only signs to remind us of the war.
©Symanntha Renn 6-10-12
 
#500 untitled
traveling the road to work
same hawk in the tree
is he bored by me
 
#600 untitled 
my mouth can barely
contain the anger rising
poked rattlesnake
 
#700 Soft Like Velvet
They were red
soft like velvet
and smelled great.
But I didn’t know
it was the end
I didn’t know they
were graveyard roses.
 
#800 untitled
porcelain blue frog
doesn’t eat the red wasps
he is a fake
 
#900 untitled
traditional red
I have always liked the classics
rose bush
 
my latest: #
old hopes and dreams
erasing pins and deleting links
flowers that didn’t bloom
9-21-2016
 
poet symanntha renn failing at haiku image

No Blossom

moonflower plant,full bloom,blossoms,moonflowers at night time,

no blossom
on the moonflower vine
all is darkness
6-2-15

So things continue to be crazy. We are now 8 months into the year, and I cannot wait for December to get here. I made it 29 years without breaking a bone, but I broke one on the 10th. I broke my pinky toe.

And I know what most of you are thinking: It’s just a toe and the doctors can’t do anything for you. Just wear your flip-flops until you feel better.

Well, if you know about my foot and leg, you might realize that it is not that easy. And yes, it was the toe on my left foot. The foot on which I have had surgery. If you have not read through my testimony page, I will try to sum it up for you. I am missing some muscles in my left foot and my left leg. My left leg is also 1/4 inch shorter than my right left, so I have to insert a rubber lift into my left shoe. That shoe cannot be a high heel because I don’t really have an ankle so I can’t keep shoes like that on my feet. I also have limited movement in that ankle/foot. When the doctors cut the foot to move a large muscle, those cuts severed some nerves. The top of my foot in front of my toes, and the tops of my toes are numb. But they still have some feeling! Although I almost walk in a normal fashion (which was the point of the surgery) I cannot flex my toes up, and my left foot doesn’t flex all the way up.

I cannot wear flip-flops or any open shoe because the lift falls out, and shoes like that usually fall off of my left foot. Then my back works itself out-of-place and puts me in pain. Even though I wear my lift in appropriate shoes (sneakers) 95% of the time, my back still works itself out-of-place. Then the domino effect happens: my rib heads twist and my pelvic bones twist, and after they are all inflamed, my neck vertebrae will work themselves out-of-place and give me major headaches. I do Pilates and stretches in an effort to keep my muscles strong and everything in place, but I still have problems.

Anyway, I managed to break my pinky toe by stubbing it on the wheel of a roll-y chair. I was home sick from work, with a fever. So I took some cold medicine that always makes me nauseous and dizzy. I figured since I was going to be home, it was okay to feel that yucky. I got up to walk back to my bedroom for a ponytail holder, and as I was walking past the computer chair to step into the hallway, I hit my toe on the chair. Also, the day before I had to have blood drawn for a test so I was extra weak from that. Yeah, it’s been a fantastic week.

This occasion was all the more ludicrous because the 10th of August marked the 11th year of my husband and I being together. Our Wedding Anniversary is in July, but we have now been “together” for 11 years. I spent the day in bed, and my husband spent the day entertaining our son in the living room and bringing me stuff. I promised him that next year would be better.

Today is the 5th Anniversary of me blogging. I promise to try to do better next year. Stick with me and we’ll see how I do.

Half Way Through 2016 and I’m Back

hosta

Hey guys, I’m back. I am really glad that I allowed myself to take this month-long break. It allowed me to take a much-needed breath. I hope you didn’t forget about me and I hope you have subscribed to me so that you don’t miss any of my new blog posts. Look on the left-hand side of the screen to find ways to stay connected to me, and learn more about me.

We are halfway through the year of 2016.

So how are you doing with your New Year’s resolutions? Comment below and tell me if you are accomplishing them. Feel free to leave a link to a blog post of yours if you have been blogging about your resolutions or goals for 2016.

I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better. -Georg C. Lichtenberg

You can find my post with my explanation of how I start my year here.

My word for 2016 is steadfast; which is interesting because it has been a year of changes so far. Most people I know would say this has been a year of transitions. It definitely has been for me. Which means that God knew I was going to be sent big challenges when he gave me Psalms‬ ‭112‬:‭7 He will not fear bad news; his heart is confident, trusting in the Lord. (‭HCSB) to lean on.

I have gotten good news and had some really good things happen to me this year, it hasn’t all been bad. (click the bold words to get the back story) My part-time job (that I applied for on a whim last year) that helped us pay the bills turned into a full-time job with benefits. It is something that I could make a career out of, and I have extra money to buy more books. I have joined 3 professional organizations, became a Notary Public and hold 2 official titles. I am not going to say what they are because my blog is my safe place, and my artistic place. Work is where I have to professional and mindful of the image I project. These two places need to stay separate. 

Working a full-time job after 6 years of being a stay at  home mom, pretty much setting my own schedule and hours, was an adjustment. But I am glad to be a full-time working mom. I have to work a minimum of two nights a month, but I get all major holidays off with pay. It’s a good trade-off.

I am also glad I put my son in Pee Wee baseball. He has really enjoyed it this year. My husband was able to basically sit back and watch him play this season, instead of being a  coach. He has enjoyed that and so have I. But it had us on the run for about 5 days of every week from May to last week. The days we didn’t have a game or practice were the days we had to shop for our groceries or support other family members during their activities. 

I am glad that we got my son’s health issues straightened out. I think that had something to do with him enjoying ball so much this year. He is allergic to at least 6 different things, mostly trees, and the over-the-counter meds just couldn’t keep up. We got the test results in late April. We put him on new meds the night after his appointment with a Pediatric Allergist and after 3 weeks G was so much better. He didn’t have any colds or fevers after that.

I will admit that my writing has suffered amidst all of these changes and challenges. After National Haiku Writing Month was over, I didn’t write much. However, my relationship with God has grown. My prayer time was slacking for a little while but I am back at it. I did manage to read 7 books last year and I have already read 4 books this year. They have all been “Christian Living” or “Self-Help” but they have been amazing and have inspired me to push through all of my challenges these past 8 months. I tweet quotes from my favorites, so follow me on Twitter.

2016 has been a super hard year, I have even missed church services. But things feel more normal now, and I feel so strong and deep in my faith. I want to be inspiring others to be at church and to follow Jesus so I will be praying daily and going to church every week. I have been reading the Bible daily for over a year and that helps me so much. If there is one thing that I think every person on the face of the planet should do, it’s read the Holy Bible. I believe in that so strongly that I agreed to be Director of my Women On Mission group at church a year ago. Being the leader was different and more challenging than I thought it would be, but I do enjoy it. I refer to it as my other job, and I put a lot of effort and thought into our activities. 

Well, my posts usually aren’t this long. Rest assured that I am back to blogging and I will be sharing short poetry with you next week, and the posts will be much shorter!! I will also be sharing quotes on Fridays. I don’t know if I will be writing for Friday Fictioneers this month, as that group is kind of taking a break right now. But I will eventually write short stories again as well.

I hope your year is going well, leave me a comment below and tell me about it!

 

Handling Life

DSCN3432

 

I used to have a handle on life, but it broke. –Anonymous

 

 

 

 

I did not feel inspired by the photo prompt for Friday Fictioneers this week. It is probably me and not them. I am really tired. I also forgot to post a tanka for Tanka Tuesday. Next week will be the last tanka that I will post for a while so don’t miss it (as always, follow me with your email to get all of my poems). The month of March will be a CRAZY month for me at work, so you will not hear from me much. Please be understanding. I am in a transition period in my life. I don’t know what this summer will bring, and I dare not look as far forward as the Fall.

NaHaiWriMo Day 1 My Poem

anticipating the sting
having to touch the cabinet
work day in winter

Hey guys, I hope you remembered what starts today and I hope you are able to write your own haiku poem for the first day of National Haiku Writing Month. If you are unsure of the rules/definition/form of haiku then please go to my What is Haiku? page. Feel free to direct any friends there who may be unsure of what is happening in the poetry community this month. Also, tell them to check out the Facebook page where most of us meet to get a prompt and share our work. Today’s prompt is “zap”.

To make this easier on myself, I think I will use 1 image for this week, and then I will pick a different image to use for all of my posts next week. If I am going to share my poetry with you every day I will have to streamline things, and I want to share my haiku with you every day this month. I may end up skipping writing a post on Saturdays and Sundays, and posting all three on Monday, but I will try to make a short post every day. Today’s is long because I like to explain things fully.

Even if you don’t write haiku, or even if it isn’t your favorite type of poetry, please consider sharing your friends and favorite bloggers’ work this month. It is getting harder and harder to share on social media as all of the sites like Facebook now hide your posts (in hopes that you will pay to make them appear). So please subscribe to and follow any poets that you like and check the hashtag #NaHaiWriMo on Twitter and Facebook.
red cannas,blooming cannas,dwarf cannas

2015 in Review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,400 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

I got visitors from 63 countries! And I appreciate all of you!

Click the name of the post below to explore what it is about if you don’t remember. I hope you all have a fun and safe New Year’s Eve.

 

My Top 5 Posts by Views:

1 A quote about experience.

2 Spanish Proverb about Mom

3 The true worth of a man.

4 Soft Like Velvet

5 My Shade of Purple

 

My Top 5 Posts by Likes:

Tanka Dust   17 likes

The Taste of Words    16 likes

The definition of success by Ralph Waldo Emerson.   15 Likes

What Art does for the soul.   14 Likes

My Shade of Purple   13 Likes

 

Tanka Tuesday

peppermint hollyhock

I have decided that since I have written so many tanka, it might be fun to do Tanka Tuesday for a while. I will post them in chronological order, skipping the tanka that I have already posted. Leave me some Likes and comments if you like this kind of poetry.

 

Unexpected Death

Have a good day says
the lady at the drive through.
I do not have time
to explain that I cannot.
Unexpected death.

(RIP Alice Mullin)

Friday Fictioneers: I’ve joined.

Since I have decided to join Friday Fictioneers for realsies, I thought that I would show you the stories that I tried out (look for a new story that hasn’t been shared tomorrow!). Which is to say, I tested myself to see if I could write a 100-word story that was complete and interesting, this is what I came up with.

The time frame for entering these stories into the links with the other bloggers is passed, but I can still share them. Comments are encouraged! Go HERE to see the inspiring post for this story.

hill,erosion,beach,cliff,

photo credit: Sandra Crook

The Hill

The run-off looked like a giant brown snake slithering down the hill. It looked like the hill was alive. As if the cliff itself was a wave about to crash down on the beach.

But the cliff was not alive. It was stone cold. It was dead and unmoving like she felt. If she had any energy left, she would have climbed to the top of the cliff and jumped off, stopping her heart once and for all. Her heart wasn’t totally dead; she still cared that people would cry if she died. So she sat still, like the cliff.

 

Thinking of Joining a Writing Challenge Because Appearently I’m a Masochist

I have gotten to the point where I feel I am not terrible at haiku, in fact, I think I’ve written a couple of good ones. So naturally, that means it’s time to embarrass myself in another genre. I am thinking about joining a weekly writing challenge. My poetry well has been dry for a while, but I am itching to write a story. I wrote some short stories last summer but could not bring myself to share them on this blog, and was advised by one person not to mix my short stories with my poetry.

I do not have it in me to run another blog, I just don’t! So, I just couldn’t find the courage to share my short stories when my focus group wasn’t wowed. To be fair short noir stories are not what my friends are used to seeing from me. They are used to short poems about flowers. So I thought, maybe if I joined a writing community where people are used to seeing all kinds of short stories… maybe I could find some support/community/understanding. This group is called Friday Fictioneers.

There is a sub-group to this group called Concrit, I definitely do not have the courage to join it, but I would like to read those stories and possibly leave them some comments. I will not leave them any criticisms seeing as how I can barely take criticism myself.

So anyway, here is an example to what I am thinking of doing every Friday from now until I get too upset/tired/scared/angry to join in anymore. Please, please, give me some feedback! They will always be stories that are 100 words long and inspired by a photo. Do you want to see another one?

top of a skyscraper,roof top, dusk,garden,wheat,secret garden,

photo credit: Roger Bultot

Secret Wheat Fields  
She always stepped lightly here. It was a sacred place. One of the last pieces of field, one of the last pieces of garden, one of the last pieces of hope.
If the First Peoples couldn’t get the wheat to flourish, they would all starve. The whole world. She thanked whatever lucky stars that hadn’t burned out, that she had been friends with a man of the First Peoples before the 2nd Dust Bowl occurred. She looked around wondering where he was, then she felt strong hands grasp her waist. No matter how quietly she moved, he was always quieter.