Ice Carving [15 Words or Less]

Hello, and welcome! This is 15 Words or Less Poems, a low-pressure way to wake up your poetry brain (guidelines here), and I’m very glad you’re here. 

Ice on Pavement
Photo: Laura P. Salas

I often use filters, but this pic of the thin layer of ice on our street (which I was sliding around on while walking Jack), didn’t want one:>) This image makes me think of several things:

  1. dragonflies caught in a sudden freeze
  2. the Snow Queen
  3. a botched glass-etching craft

And here’s my first draft. 

death of a dragonfly 15wol


It’s your turn! Have fun and stick to 15 WORDS OR LESS! (Title doesn’t count toward word count.)





44 Responses

  1. Each every edge

    Cuts right cuts left

    Until our center
    is lost to theft
    Stop thief, STOP!

    © Linda Mitchell

    I’ve added it with the graphic on my blog.

  2. This past summer I visited Tanzania, Africa. There we toured an art center for the handicapped. I remember watching the glass blower.

    Glass Blower

    Trial after trial
    blow, bend, break
    a mosaic of mistakes.

    1. Oh, what a gorgeous last line. Making art even of our errors. Isn’t that what life is all about. Lovely, Margaret!

  3. This reminds me of my picture window and the way it looks between washings! We have a very nosy, noisy yellow lab.…

    Time to Wash the Windows

    Dog’s nose composed
    On window’s pane;
    Her words imposed
    On my view of rain.

    ©Donna JT Smith

    1. Love the rhyme and near rhyme, Donna! Imposed is just right! And this makes me think of how disgusting Jack makes our car windows. He gets very anxious.

  4. These are all so lovely.
    I’ll try a d r a f t, Laura, thanks!
    : Jan

    At the Library, Wednesday Night

    Two writers meet
    we moan, groan

    A vow,
    our progressive
    actions can gain traction

    c. 2017 JanGodownAnnino

    1. Love your use of internal rhyme, Jan. And the fact that you name them as writers, not just any old people, hints at the actions they can take. Nicely done!

  5. Laura, dragonflies and their gossamer wings; sad yet lovely. My verse is a result of procrastination, big time!

    It’s Time

    No excuses
    delay no more
    soap scum gone
    lovely etched shower door.

  6. I’m loving all the different takes on this prompt, but especially those dragonfly wings, Laura. To me, it looked like some kind of mystical, ancient writing—like elvish hieroglyphs perhaps? I don’t know, sometimes I’m more abstract than even I know how to deal with. 😉


    ancient memory
    frozen in time—
    I shield my eyes from the sun

    1. But what a glorious moment. It makes me picture an archaeologist standing near the pyramids and coming to some huge realization–some earth-shattering, mind-blowing realization. (In my mind, the memory is in the “I” person’s head, not in the actual writing. That’s just where the poem took me.)

  7. The picture and poems are awesome today and all so different. Here’s mine — the interruption could be anything.

    Words linking
    in my mind
    with crystal clarity.

    Phone rings.

    New poem shatters
    into pieces.

    1. I want to make one of Margaret’s “mosaic of mistakes” from all these poem shards!

  8. Your comment about dragon flies really got me going.…

    Dragonflies in Ice

    sugar-coated double
    wings feather into

    an escher-like

    where I want
    to get lost.

  9. Laura–I’d love to see these photos (and poems?) on Instagram! Your photos are so evocative!

    1. I just started using Instagram yesterday (well, aside from a few photos from a couple of years ago!). I’ll have to see how to hook up my blog to my Instagram account. Thanks for the nudge, Kortney!

      1. Woot! Just found you over there! I didn’t mean to add to your work load.….but these short form poems and striking images are just made to shine at Instagram. 🙂

        1. No worries. You are absolutely right! I just have to figure out how to do it more automagically. I’m trying to make my social media easier, not more complicated, so starting up Instagram was pry not the best move. But I’m going to give it a try for a month or so and see what I think!

  10. Love this photo and everyone’s different takes on it. And special thanks to Jack for getting you outside to notice and photograph!

    The bonds that link us–
    strong as steel
    or easy to shatter,
    filigrees of ice.

    1. Ooh, lovely. And true. Our world and relationships are so strong and fragile at the same time. And bonus points for using filigrees without the word lacy. :>)

  11. What a great set up poems!

    I’ve been working on some dark poems lately, and that seems to have carried over into what I could manage with this image in 5 minutes.


    Little red riding hood
    turns into ice so she can hide
    unseen in the forest.

    1. Ooh, I like how surreal this is. I have two sets of poems I want to write right this minute (but can’t), and one set is very dark, and the other set is juat a little…southern goth, maybe? Not too dark, but with an undercurrent. This one gave me chills!


    How I wish
    my mother’s dish
    hadn’t shattered,
    pieces scattered
    Beyond repair.

  13. This photo is one of your best, Laura. And I can relate, with all the snow we’ve been having this winter!

    glass hands
    holding glass hands
    fragile world
    of hope and trust

    —Kate Coombs

    1. Thanks, Kate! What a cool image, because glass seems unbendable, and holding hands requires constant bending and adjusting. Lovely analogy.

  14. Sorry I’ve missed a few Thurdays I was felling sad about the loss of my Cat Jazzy I’m doing beater now Have a new Cat friend Mikah how is 9 and love atencion
    I love the pic today I’ll be jouning back in now xxxx

    Poem by Jessica Bigi

    Flurries of feathered
    wings fly in flurry
    over castells of
    in a swelling
    fluttering furry
    of a fairytale

    1. Hi Jessica–welcome back! Losing a pet is so very hard. Oh, I love your alliteration here, and the scene it paints for me. Nice choice to break up all the /f/ sounds with castles of crystal birches, too. A gorgeous image!

    On this frozen canvass
    icy hieroglyphics
    wait to be erased
    like an after-school

    © Charles Waters 2017 all rights reserved.

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