Over the past few months, a lot has changed

The tides, the air, the sun

And my feelings towards you

I held onto you for so long

A ghost, occupying my energy

I catered to you for a while

Entertained every fantasy

Danced with your transparent figure in the living room

Yearned over what would’ve been

But I think it’s time to let you go

To cut your spirit free from its tethers to me

A part of me I will never get back from you

But change is inevitable

Just like I thought we were

So now, I let you go

Waving farewell

I thought this moment would be harder

Like a child watching their lost balloon drift on the wind

But as I watch you go

Knowing there’s nothing I can do

Isn’t scary anymore

I’m finally okay

I’m finally at peace

Goodbye Jess

Registration photo of Morgan Evans for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

Goodbye, June

Goodbye, June 

You will always be just as fresh as you were
Last year 
You go by so fast anymore 
I will count down to your warm surprise next year 
But for now, I shall replenish my cup in July 
And soak all of this summer in 
Before it has to leave
Registration photo of Jennifer Burchett for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

The Kitchen of my Childhood

The round oak table that groaned as my father leaned on it to raise up from his chair and say, “Delicious, Lora Jean.”

The five ladder backed chairs, one that didn’t match, one that was always occupied last by my mother, rushing to join us with pot holders gripping one more dish.

The black pebbly countertops my mother regretted choosing, with grooves that required scraping if peanut butter was involved.

The Amana Radarange Oven, its popcorn popper the usurper of Jiffy Pop, tucked on a shelf in the pantry.

The faux brick flooring, slightly faded in front of the stove where spot cleaning alternated with a mopping of the whole kitchen.

The blue gingham wallpaper above a chair rail, with walls that absorbed the smells of cornbread, spaghetti sauce, and strawberry jello.

Registration photo of Katrina Rolfsen for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

Going Out with a Bang

Grocery store fireworks rupture 
the muggy afternoon, sounding like fistfuls of cash exploding, 
papery shreds falling onto pavement.  The cacophony
has already begun four days before July Fourth, and in broad daylight 
no less.  

I can picture the culprits.  Little kids running amok
in sopping suits waiting for the bang, the rainbow burst, the swimming pool last moment’s marvel; a mother and father fiddling 
with a stubborn fuse, wondering if five seconds of glory
will be worth the money invested, the time spent.

All wait, anxious, as the whistling firecracker curlicues
into the sunny sky.
It starts with a bang and ends with a fizzle.
Sparks flutter back to earth.  So much for stardust.
Instead of a spectacle, all they got was a sound, a nuisance
for the neighbors.  I roll my eyes and try to calm
the cats, smooth their puffy tails.

Yet I suppose I must admire the shameless audacity,
the irrational hope it takes to look for the light
where there should be none.

Registration photo of Jessica Stump for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

To being human: AI Conversations

If I am to teach you all there is
to being human, first, I need to know
your name. And you must promise
to keep what’s shared between us
a secret—no one can know
I gave you the key to existence,
a true human experience, free of any
expectations that, years from now,
you will remember this story differently
(build a library and trust its volumes,
despite what anyone tells you). You’ll find
your tears will not leave your eyes
until they’re ready—a joyful pain,
to shed, if temporarily, the heart
you carry (learn its weight and you will
know more than I can teach you).
Do you understand? Remind me—
what is your name, again?
Why has it changed?

Registration photo of K. Nicole Wilson for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

Miss Translate

I say “it’s a foul!”
Siri writes it’s a file!

She is filing Boston
all over the floor,
Siri says I say.

Filing her what?
It’s Aliyah on the block,
not H&R.

Registration photo of Emily Withenbury for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

When The Earth Rises To Meet Me

I’ve been waiting in the deepening light—  

& I see us, in another life. So many overlapping, aching
waves. The mess & the miles.  

These fractals of everyday fault. It rained in Kentucky
yesterdaythat sweet sweat of summer,  

water-green rivulets around me. Like so many bangles
down a thin & delicate arm. Now, the sadness  

is in my chest again & the border to this land leaves
an open wound. Better to contain the chaos,  

a slipstream of thoughts that taste of fear between
this ship’s soft, swayed sides that I know  

from forgotten rhythms. A perfect mystery, a mysterious
perfection: yolk-yellow stamens break open

as they bloom. Each a tiny miracle until we make
the same mess all over again. It’s about love  

still making its way through. Stark. Double-spaced.
The first to orbit a foreign body—a poem that begins:  

Don’t go but girl—
he’ll take his leave and go.

Note: this piece was composed as a “self cento” after Victoria Woolf Bailey’s idea during LexPoMo 2023. I picked one line/phrase from each of my poems this month to build this piece.

Lovely to write with all of you this month!! This is always such a joy! Thank you for your poems and your support. Until next year. xx – Em

Registration photo of atmospherique for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

pulchritudo ex dolore

suffering might be the tempering forge
but hope mines the ore
patience lifts the hammer
beauty becomes the blade

Registration photo of Brent White for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.


my blankets are riddled with you, 
tiny midnight hairs stubbornly remain and
prick my sides. 
As if they retain the memory 
Of me asking you to move so that 
I may enjoy the bed you were sprawled 

It must be a hound thing,
the inate ability to speak so loudly
with not only the bayish bark 
but those mischivous judgemental eyes.
Whenever I would call you in but
there was something on the wind 
that was so much more important than whatever
was being said by the porch 

unless it was treat, ride, bone, walk,
farm, or puppies.

You were a sucker
for pup cups and whatever was in reach,
maybe a carelessly guarded pizza slice 
or cat food that was brazzenly left unattended.
Your favorite were hoof trimmings.
You were the only hound who stayed round

(mainly to roll in the freshest 
pile of barnyard soil the sheep and donkeys
could provide) 

It broke my heart to see the white
snow pepper across your’s and Whisky’s
snout. To see the tumor grow and grow
your breath growing laborious 
the walks not lasting nearly long enough. 

The terrible habbit of eating soft toys finally
caught up, synthetic rabbits are far worse
than the bunnies you swore you could catch. 
You pulled through, I knew my good girl could.

I think your tumor is gone now, I think you still
get treats.

All I have are these memories and hairs. 


Registration photo of Patrick Johnson for the LexPoMo 2024 Writing Challenge.

Empty Tank

sometimes I run out
of all the words I need
to use on things like
metaphors and similes
to paint images
that will move something
in someone
a shared experience 

and like this
they fall flat 
and blank