Wings Rising [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. 

I hope you all had a beautiful Thanksgiving weekend. Ours was lovely, and fun, and busy. We celebrated great news (the marriage of a nephew) and sat with very hard news (cancer and forthcoming treatment for a beloved niece only in her 20s). Poetry, as always, helped me through. Reading it. Writing it. I’m so happy to be here in spirit with you guys, although I am flying today and won’t be commenting. :>(

Houston Convention Center
Photo: Laura P. Salas

 My art for the coming weeks will largely be from Houston and my NCTE experience. This piece in the convention center is made of glass or acrylic or something and looks like a flock of birds in flight.

This image makes me think of several things:

  1. fog and how you sometimes have rain/fog where you can’t tell whether it’s going up or down
  2. confetti at a parade
  3. the balled up  pieces of a hundred failed drafts

And here’s my first draft.  Still no laptop, so still going old-school.

Storm Parade

Drum major waves
a lightning baton

Clouds march
Thunder drums
Confetti rains down

–Laura Purdie Salas, all rights reserved

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







31 Responses

  1. A Storm Parade! What a lovely idea. I can imagine that image helping young children who fear thunderstorms. Here’s my very quick response:

    Dreams take flight
    or fall to earth
    Perspective matters

  2. My mother-in-law just returned from a trip to Whitby Island, Washington. She described the beauty of a sandhill crane murmuration.

    Sandhill crane migration
    high wind murmuration
    frosty sunrise creation
    bird watchers’ salvation

    1. This is just lovely, Margaret! I love the word murmuration. Also, I have your beautiful journal with me for my trip journal. Thank you so much!

  3. Laura, I wrote a comment and it disappeared. I’ll try again.
    My mother-in-law just returned from a trip to Whitby Island, Washington. She described watching a sandhill crane migration and murmuration.

    Sandhill crane migration
    high wind murmuration
    frosty sunrise creation
    bird watchers’ salvation

  4. I’m at a conference right now. It’s so nice to not have to rush out the door this morning. I’m sitting next to a 350 pound gingerbread house in Williamsburg, VA.

    Today a silver lining opened–
    falling one feather at a time

  5. I don’t know if it’s something on your end, or on mine. Comments never show up until the next day- not even mine after I post. I send out in blind faith!


    Fluffy cloud flakes
    fall softly,
    a guarantee
    salt spreading.

    1. I had that problem last week Cindy. Thought I had commented in the wrong space and only one comment finally came through. All seems well on my end this week. Big time salt spreading going on right now.

  6. Love your storm parade! The image was a picture of life — at least from my perspective in recent months.

    I Go

    From depths below
    To heights above
    As a delicate
    Note released
    In gales.

    1. I feel your angst Donna! We have certainly had gales down south. Enough to blow shingles off of the roof. Gales in other areas of life too.

  7. Good morning Laura. Wishing you a safe and delightful convention. So sorry to hear the news of your niece and yet be able to rejoice in happy news. Your poem is perfect. Truly inspired in my mind. Building on that, there is something in the upper part of the picture that immediately took me to the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

    The Great Bequest

    Ancient wall
    releases her past
    providing space
    as modern wails
    are cast.

  8. nd XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX I am so sorry of your news

    poem by Jessica Bigi

    The Love Of Reading

    cart-willing hearts
    reading books
    thousands of flutter-winged
    words tumbling pages
    of unknown imaginings

  9. So sorry to hear about your niece, Laura–hoping her treatment goes well.
    This photograph brought to mind the scene on our icy lake yesterday:

    low-hanging clouds drift
    over the lake, mingle with
    gathering of gulls

  10. Laura I am both happy and sad for your news. Your poem is lovely. I too received devastating cancer news of a dear coworker yesterday. I wish your niece well! My prayers are with your family.

    Shattered pieces
    of hopes and dreams
    Winter sky laments.
    How I yearn for summer.

  11. I don’t know how I missed that beautiful display in the convention center at NCTE, Laura. It is beautiful! It reminds me of the DIY arbor we made for our oldest daughter’s wedding several years ago, adorned heavily with tulle and 100+ oragami paper cranes, folded lovingly by her little sister.

    Hopes and dreams
    for the future.
    Promises and commitments
    for navigating the rough spots.

  12. What incredibly inspired poems this image has yielded! Hats off to each of you!
    Here’s mine:

    Scattered thoughts
    dip and swoop -
    swallows in flights of fancy.

  13. Beautiful art and imagery, Laura! What a fun idea to write 15 words with a picture prompt. I will have to try this with students. Here’s my go at it:

    The violet evening sky
    breathes her contented sigh.
    Cinematic serenity is nigh.

    1. P.S. I also played with the words “synchronous” and “symphony” in the third line…“Synchronous serenity is nigh” or “A synchronous symphony is nigh.” This is fun!!

  14. The sculpture made me think of ashes and the wildfires, so this is a sad poem.

    Ashes fall
    from flames,
    and drift like birds,
    with nothing.

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