Trees rustle and sway
and make a day of it.
Leaves, cut by the winds of change
rearrange, only to rediscover
home again. Nestled and rested,
the best place to recline.
But I find it annoying,
a noise toying with me.
It is there, somewhere
near the patch of saplings,
rapping an echo as of rabid canines.
It’s fine, but it hearkens to me,
this bark of the dogwood trees
unleashed. Their bite’s not so bad!

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Bloomings Prompt #213: You Come To My Senses



I grew up a stooge.
I had Moe’s haircut
but I got into trouble
when I’d double-up my fingers
to poke my brother’s eyes.
I learned the trick watching
slapstick comedy. Aim for the brows
and hope he doesn’t flinch.
After the first time, he never did.
I hid my love for being a physical joker,
faux eye poker for years. But my greatest
fears were exposed when I chose to watch
“Dodgeball”. A madman throwing wrenches
as a training tool? The only fool
was the guy that didn’t duck.
“If you can dodge a wrench,
you can dodge a dodgeball!”
An involuntary belly laugh every time
I heard it chime off of the man’s head.
You’d think he’d learn after the first time.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides Prompt #452: Game


I wasn’t a very fast lad, but I wasn’t too bad,
I had a gait that I would hate all my life.
I liked to run, but only to get places quickly.
I was built thickly as a boy and the joy I took
when I shook a leg was all I needed.
I had exceeded expectations.
There was elation.

But, reality came in this revelation. I got caught
up in aging, and staging a race to a finish line
took on a whole new view. And I would eschew
a harried pace, just in case I would fail.
No more high-tailing it. Now I mail it in.
My knees can’t take the beating. It bears repeating,
I will run no more forever.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Miz Quickly’s MuhwufSS: Goodbye To All That!


My muse was defenseless,
a senseless ramble that was
slower than half-fast, as I’ve discovered.
But it’s Friday and I’m tired, uninspired
and the desire to poem has been sold
down the river of dreams, so it seems.
I have uncovered my flaw.
It gnaws at my words.
Such challenges should be left unheard.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018



Miz Quickly’s MuhwufSS: Free Day of Sorts


My Dearest Edgar:

It has been hard to reach you.
I beseech you to hear me out,
you imp of the perverse!
The power of words is in your court.

Do I need to resort to retorts
and provocations? Is your station such
that you no longer care much
for the world as it has become?

Remember that night we had that fight
after polishing off that cask of Amontillado?
The vintage was weak, I must say,
yet the musty bouquet had a kick like opium!

I had seen Annabel Lee, and she
had no nice things to say of the way
your pipe dictated your muse. I refuse
to believe your descent into the maelstrom

of clear thought was wrought with whatever high
your pipe would provide. You can’t hide forever!
That fall at the House of Usher should have
weaned you from such addiction, but your dereliction

was surely remorse filled. Of course
your sadness over Lenore was understandable.
It was the premature burial they gave her
that troubles me to this day. We could have saved her.

The oval portrait that hangs in your study
is ruddy red from whatever substance
you rendered. But your love for her was well known;
your heart was tell-tale – you never failed to wail

and lament that what had sent her to the grave.
I read the narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym.
It was him who should have cast
the proper verdict. The good doctor and professor

would surely have been tarred and feathered.
It was that purloined letter that convinced me.
Since we hardly speak now, how do I reach you?
Again, I beseech you. Is the city in the seas

the place where your haunted palace spreads?
Or do you consider me dead to you as well?
Do tell. Stop living this dream within a dream.
You seem lost to those who wish you none but well!

That is truly a predicament. I’ve sent
three score letters, all returned unopened.
I suspect the same fate from this hand.
I remember what you had said in the years

when our youth plagued us. “Trust your heart.
Never bet the devil your head. The oblong box
will wait for your fill!” Your words are still
in demand. You are the man!

These streets are in an upheaval, although I long
for a tamer lane than what exists now!
You remain an enigma, Edgar! I’ve been ravin’ of your wile
for a while. But left unanswered, I will write nevermore!

Sincerely yours.

M. Valdemar
Red Death Mask Company
Baltimore, Maryland


He was a poet and hated the approximate.
Rainer Maria Rilke
from “The Journal of My Other Self”

This Walt, quite precise to a fault,
drifted away from his passion with words.
His darkness preceded him and he conceded
that his craft to him, felt combative.

Drifted away from his passion with words,
he found what he said had been said before.
That his craft to him, felt combative
is a testament to the utility of his poetic futility.

He found what he said had been said before,
he felt like a repetitive bore and what’s more,
his testament to the utility of his poetic futility
was an admission to his failing at maintaining his pace.

He felt like a repetitive bore and what’s more,
writing the glut of emotions he had felt and feels
was an admission to his failing at maintaining his pace.
Prolific was terrific for a while, but it wears on one’s soul.

Writing the glut of emotions he has felt and feels
dealt with his life of love and anger and despair and loss.
Prolific was terrific for a while, but it wears on one’s soul,
and losing control of your muse was like verbal abuse!

Having dealt with his life of love and anger and despair and loss,
exposed the truth about his other self; made words seem wrong!
And losing control of your muse was like verbal abuse!
Lately he tended to struggle with the words he’d use!

Exposed, the truth about his other self made words seem wrong!
His darkness preceded him and he conceded
that he tended to struggle with the words he’d use!
This Walt is quite precise to a fault!

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides Prompt #450: Something goes wrong


He had lost his wind,
and his lungs had rescinded
their cooperation.
His respiration was fine,
as far as that went,
but this gent was losing his grip
on life, rife with pitfalls
and bear hugs, shrugs and squeezes
that cause him to wheeze and he sneezes
unprovoked, choked off from the precious
air he needed to succeed in this life.
“Remember to breathe!” she had said,
it’s the best way to prevent becoming dead.
So he pauses. Inhaling slowly, he holds
it in, exhales and does it again.
In and out,
in and out,
in and out without prodding,
not nodding into that Big Sleep.
Keeping on this side of the sod.
Thank God he was a quick study.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #449 – Learning _____


“True ease in writing comes from art, not chance”

  ~An Essay on Criticism (Sound and Sense) Alexander Pope

The heart expresses all that its eyes can see;
it is a voice that’s clear and speaks to all who wish to hear.
So, do not close your mind to what is possible. It can be
that a heart so blind will make love disappear.
But pens that stroke in broad and heartfelt hues,
will yield a master work in the words you choose.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2018


For this warm-up, we’re going to write titles, titles, and more titles.

To give inspiration a little help, this constraint: blue.

A bit of titular jocularity…

Blue Hued Mood
Blue Wisps of Sky Scattered Amongst the Clouds
Pirouette in Blue
Blue Tea and Synchronicity
Second Blue to the Right (Or I’ll Bite)
July Blew By Quickly

…slightly warped they might be.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

MuhwufSS – Monday Warm-up Blues (TITLES)

ME AND POETRY (A Sestinacci)

A man
mired in poetry,
given to expressions of words;
a sharing of emotion and fits of rhyme.

and words.
A guy Walt,
a muse full of poetry
and too much time for just one man.

is poetry!
It moves me.
It takes this guy Walt,
and fills his expressive soul with melodic words.

like Walt
can make rhyme
sing, and totally move me
to slather my heart with the sweetest poetry.

within me.
Women and men
come to read my rhyme
and leave comments about the madness of Walt.

in rhyme;
painted with words;
offered to the gentle (wo)men;
and thrown down as a gauntlet by me.

I am Walt, this is me,
a verbose man of poetry.
Giving these words of rhyme my time.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

MuhwufSS – Repeat and Vary, part 3: The Sestina