[15 words or less poems] Gnarled

It’s March Madness Poetry time and the Sweet Sixteen poem matchups should be live soon. Visit, read, and vote:>)?

Photo: Laura Purdie Salas

Wake up your poetry brains with 15 Words or Less (guidelines here)!

I took this picture of a quirky-looking fruit, though I can’t remember where I took it. It was either in my grocery store or in the Bahamas over the holidays! Here’s what the image brings to mind:

1)?Medusa
2)?Arthritic hands
3) Dark Forest tree/banana transformer

And here’s my poem first draft:

Withered Corsage
dusty, brittle bloom
locked in’dance
trapped in time
–by Laura Purdie Salas, all rights reserved

What do you think of when you look at this image? Take any idea and jot down a 15 Words or Less poem. No polish. No pressure. Just fun!

110 Responses

  1. Monkey Medusa

    Twisted, entwined
    Sprouting from her mind
    Medusa’s hair of evil… bananas?

    Good morning everyone!!! I wanted to apologize for not being able to respond to you all’s amazing poems- I leave for school at 7 and don’t get back until often 6:30. But all your poems are wonderful so I will try harder. These looked like bananas to me… 🙂

    1. Love the title and that last word that changes the whole flavor of the poem. You made me laugh.

    2. Fun, Amelia! Love that title and the idea. And if you’re able to comment on a few poems, great:>) But don’t stress out about it!

  2. Monkey Medusa

    Twisted, entwined
    Sprouting from her mind
    Medusa’s hair of evil… bananas?

    Good morning everyone!!! I wanted to apologize for not being able to respond to you all’s amazing poems- I leave for school at 7 and don’t get back until often 6:30. But all your poems are wonderful so I will try harder. These looked like bananas to me… 🙂

    1. Love the title and that last word that changes the whole flavor of the poem. You made me laugh.

    2. Fun, Amelia! Love that title and the idea. And if you’re able to comment on a few poems, great:>) But don’t stress out about it!

  3. Staring Down the Maw of Dinner

    Do I hafta eat it?
    Really?
    ‘Cuz I’m pretty sure
    It wants to eat me!

    1. I love that!!! It is a somewhat scary prospect… 🙂 That gave me a smile.

  4. Staring Down the Maw of Dinner

    Do I hafta eat it?
    Really?
    ‘Cuz I’m pretty sure
    It wants to eat me!

    1. I love that!!! It is a somewhat scary prospect… 🙂 That gave me a smile.

  5. Laura, your poem got me to wondering if corsages are still a part of proms nowadays?

    The fruit was so intriguing I looked it up and found it is Bushukan, also known as Buddha’s hand!

    Produce Section

    Ackee,
    bushukan,
    cherimoya,
    durian.
    Apple,
    banana,
    cranberry?
    So very
    last century.

    © Diane Mayr

    1. Yep, corsages are still there, Diane. And the ties all have to match the girls’ dresses. Love this mini abecedarian. And even the way you don’t have a mundane D, but century echoes the sound of durian. So excellent. And yes! Buddha’s hand. That was half of what intrigued me about the fruit to begin with! I had totally forgotten:>)

  6. Laura, your poem got me to wondering if corsages are still a part of proms nowadays?

    The fruit was so intriguing I looked it up and found it is Bushukan, also known as Buddha’s hand!

    Produce Section

    Ackee,
    bushukan,
    cherimoya,
    durian.
    Apple,
    banana,
    cranberry?
    So very
    last century.

    © Diane Mayr

    1. Yep, corsages are still there, Diane. And the ties all have to match the girls’ dresses. Love this mini abecedarian. And even the way you don’t have a mundane D, but century echoes the sound of durian. So excellent. And yes! Buddha’s hand. That was half of what intrigued me about the fruit to begin with! I had totally forgotten:>)

      1. I’m subbing in art!!! Up too late for that, but alas no Kinders for me!! Hopefully no purple hair in the plans. Love the world through the eyes of our kids! Your poem speaks to this!!

      1. I’m subbing in art!!! Up too late for that, but alas no Kinders for me!! Hopefully no purple hair in the plans. Love the world through the eyes of our kids! Your poem speaks to this!!

  7. Scary corsage! I like that “trapped in time,” Laura. I guess many of us had those corsages hanging up somewhere, dried up-memories!

    Opportunity

    King Midas? touch transformed
    my jester hat to gold.
    Boldly, I cartwheeled out.
    It?s sold!

  8. Scary corsage! I like that “trapped in time,” Laura. I guess many of us had those corsages hanging up somewhere, dried up-memories!

    Opportunity

    King Midas? touch transformed
    my jester hat to gold.
    Boldly, I cartwheeled out.
    It?s sold!

  9. Bahama
    seahorse,
    barracuda,
    deep sea creatures
    landed
    and took fruit!

    Succulent
    sea-sucking
    whirligigs.

    Jeanne Poland

  10. Bahama
    seahorse,
    barracuda,
    deep sea creatures
    landed
    and took fruit!

    Succulent
    sea-sucking
    whirligigs.

    Jeanne Poland

  11. Laura, Your corsage poem is wonderful. Loved the “trapped in dance”.

    Alzheimer?s

    thoughts?
    yellowed
    and brittle;
    strangled synapses
    outstretch
    to claw at
    memories.
    …shadows.
    …fade.
    …black.
    ~Penny Klostermann

  12. Laura, Your corsage poem is wonderful. Loved the “trapped in dance”.

    Alzheimer?s

    thoughts?
    yellowed
    and brittle;
    strangled synapses
    outstretch
    to claw at
    memories.
    …shadows.
    …fade.
    …black.
    ~Penny Klostermann

      1. Good luck, Buffy. To add to what Penny said, I have nothing but admiration for the impressive poems all of you participants create.

      1. Good luck, Buffy. To add to what Penny said, I have nothing but admiration for the impressive poems all of you participants create.

  13. Twisted golden reeds
    Mess with my head.
    Maybe I could imagine
    Something magical instead

    - Anne McKenna.

  14. Twisted golden reeds
    Mess with my head.
    Maybe I could imagine
    Something magical instead

    - Anne McKenna.

  15. A Life Recalled

    Mourning fingers,
    unfurl in golden light,
    like a poem.
    Dance along the ivories
    reciting Bach.

    1. Janet, this is really lovely. Those mourning fingers with the next line giving the feeling of a plant opening in the morning, creates a beautiful dichotomy in the first two lines. I love this image of this melancholy piano-playing moment…

  16. A Life Recalled

    Mourning fingers,
    unfurl in golden light,
    like a poem.
    Dance along the ivories
    reciting Bach.

    1. Janet, this is really lovely. Those mourning fingers with the next line giving the feeling of a plant opening in the morning, creates a beautiful dichotomy in the first two lines. I love this image of this melancholy piano-playing moment…

  17. Thank you for your comments, everyone. These poems were fantastic — from Medusa to neurons to sea creatures to corsages to octopi to Bach, and more. I am in awe. I also learned about some new fruits and a new form, abecedarian, thanks to dmayr’s post and Laura’s comments.

  18. Thank you for your comments, everyone. These poems were fantastic — from Medusa to neurons to sea creatures to corsages to octopi to Bach, and more. I am in awe. I also learned about some new fruits and a new form, abecedarian, thanks to dmayr’s post and Laura’s comments.

  19. Hi Laura,

    I couldn’t make up my mind which one I liked more so I posted them both.

    Charles

    DON’T CHEW KNOW HOW LUCKY I AM
    I taste what I touch
    Larval seastarts, crabs and such,
    No chewing for me.

    DON’T CHEW MESS WITH ME
    I taste
    What I touch, crabs,
    Larval seastars and such,
    Floating, gloating over an un-
    Chewed meal.

    © Charles Waters 2013 all rights reserved.

    1. Oooh, don’t mess with my head. Chew-sing (ha) between poems in March Madness Poetry has left me exhausted! But I kinds like the second one better:>)

  20. Hi Laura,

    I couldn’t make up my mind which one I liked more so I posted them both.

    Charles

    DON’T CHEW KNOW HOW LUCKY I AM
    I taste what I touch
    Larval seastarts, crabs and such,
    No chewing for me.

    DON’T CHEW MESS WITH ME
    I taste
    What I touch, crabs,
    Larval seastars and such,
    Floating, gloating over an un-
    Chewed meal.

    © Charles Waters 2013 all rights reserved.

    1. Oooh, don’t mess with my head. Chew-sing (ha) between poems in March Madness Poetry has left me exhausted! But I kinds like the second one better:>)

  21. god of starfish
    in your ethereal ocean
    dance
    dance
    twist
    and dance
    over your
    creation

    (it’s been a while, but is that a buddha’s palm in the photo?)

  22. god of starfish
    in your ethereal ocean
    dance
    dance
    twist
    and dance
    over your
    creation

    (it’s been a while, but is that a buddha’s palm in the photo?)

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