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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/1253431-Beetlebung-and-Kettlehole--April-Poems/sort_by/entry_order DESC, entry_creation_time DESC/page/7
by Joy
Rated: 18+ · Book · Drama · #1253431
Poetry in April -- in celebration
Daisies poetry signature

This is my Second Book of poems. I may not have eaten the plums from the icebox, but I am guilty of writing poetry without thinking too much, without laboring over words and lines.

This Is Just to Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

          by William Carlos Williams

You, too, forgive me for I only love the writing process; the result is secondary...And please never mind that I am also aping William Carlos Williams's false apology. *Wink**Laugh*


From where does the title Beetlebung and Kettlehorn come from?

The name Beetlebung and Kettlehorn has to do with ancient whaling practices and Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod.

During the nineteenth century, because of its dense white wood, the tupelo tree was used in whale oil casks made of copper. Beetle was the mallet made from the Tupelo tree and bung was the stopper in the cask hole. In Martha’s vineyard, the Tupelo tree is still known as the Beetlebung tree, and at Chilmark there, is a Beetlebung Corner, with shops at Chilmark Center, from where roads lead to other interesting points.

Kettlehorn, as well as being an ancient surname, refers to a piece of equipment resembling to but much bigger than a shoe-horn, used to stir the hot blubber and separate the fine oil from the denser particles. Whale oil was a popular commodity and, as a fuel, was used for lighting the dark, burning to provide heat and as an aid in cooking. After the whale was hunted, men in a boat cut strips of blubber from the whale's back, tied them together and rowed ashore. There the fat was cut into smaller pieces to be boiled into oil in large copper kettles.

In addition there exists kettle corn in Cape Cod which are corn chips fried in kettles and sometimes mistakenly called kettlehorns.

For some reason, way back when, the words Beetlebung and Kettlehorn were used together and, at one time or another, were given to shops and other things that go together as titles.

I adopted the name for my on-the-spot poetry in reference to the idea of blubber. *Laugh*

"Poetry the shortest distance between two humans"
Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Previous ... 3 4 5 6 -7- 8 9 10 11 12 ... Next
April 4, 2016 at 1:54pm
April 4, 2016 at 1:54pm
sand between toes I glide at the water’s edge
slate gray sky with streaks of color
filtering in early morning

ocean plays tag with the beach
then gags plastic on yesterday’s beer cans
mussels, periwinkles, a blanket of shells

suddenly an orchestra of cacophony
wings clap overhead as if laughter
sea birds are awakening in a rush

soft wind like a daring spirit brushes my face
then my toe rubs against a discarded coconut oil bottle
as a reminder of the bold world

and instinct forces my feet back toward home
for he is my priority over this stroll
be that I am, on the opposite pole, only his option
April 3, 2016 at 11:40am
April 3, 2016 at 11:40am
too late! I will not cut you any slack
far too many callbacks you missed
in fact, I barred the door
arranged another act on stage
to raise the red-velvet drapes

strange! how clownish you’re now
but no more ad libbing, no curtain call
to bring down the house
play peacock to fans and clan
ham it up to thump the show in a jam

pathetic! your mimicry is not a feat
a gig, a rap, a tour de force
since failing to pick up cues, you fell
through the trap into an infinite hell
clutching the part you snatched from me


Prompt: late, tardy
April 2, 2016 at 5:23pm
April 2, 2016 at 5:23pm
warnings on the blitz
no outbreak yet, but
a hurricane’s on the way
fears, whirlwind thoughts,
I have to get out of my head

ripping in frantic pace
my myths in recurrence
no tripping on stones
erratically lodged, but
crafty magnetism to appease barriers

bewilderment graces your face
you pull the shutters down
and lock all doors, terrified
if only I could visit the hidden rooms in you
discreetly, to stay safe


Prompt: a visit, visitor, or visitation...
April 1, 2016 at 11:06am
April 1, 2016 at 11:06am
out at dead of night
darkness erases all pangs
shadows fall on rough earth
leaves rustle

but in the zen garden
no scent of soil,
yet, stillness

stumbling into rocks
she floats down
to the ground and cries,


Prompt: A mishap or an injury
April 1, 2016 at 11:02am
April 1, 2016 at 11:02am
spread over handicapped lines
patches of soft pink
a glittering necklace
on the vacant sky

its painful fate
last farewell to the sun
then to turn inward
and dwindle in loss

but, before the stars show up,
my desecrating click
tucks inside the camera
a specter of its memory


Late last evening I took this picture:
April 30, 2015 at 1:25pm
April 30, 2015 at 1:25pm
Was I the one eating fire, dancer on the painted horse of the merry-go-round, clown, acrobat, or juggler, or was I the whip-cracking tiger tamer, or elephant woman? Maybe I had the will of iron on the tightrope, passion to love all caged beasts, and zest to roll out the red carpet for the bareback rider. Maybe I swung high in red and gold sequins on the trapeze against the canvas top, then spun and fell. Maybe I was the one who heard his heartbeats while he threw his knives around me and missed.

One night, on the clearing where the river curved, the tent folded up under a full moon, and the circus, without glitter or fanfare, left town and me. So, now, in my tiny room, wrapped in my shadows, I raise my eyes above the door to see my raven still sitting there and know there will be no other end after this.


prompt: the end of something, anything
April 29, 2015 at 12:27pm
April 29, 2015 at 12:27pm
“who are you?” he asks

an alien in this weird place,
among charming green palms
a contorted oak, hosting
crow’s nests high up
and I welcome the burning sun

“with hurricane winds,
your grip is lost
thus you’re firewood”

his verdict is nothing

for I choose my own pattern
of synapses to rule him archaic
and hold on, growing extra legs
into sand, mindful of the lines
he cannot cross

prompt: a judgment
April 28, 2015 at 12:07pm
April 28, 2015 at 12:07pm
A celestial zoo this life is, she mopes, like the misty nebulae or the stars spilled in clusters, sparkling white on black, worming in holes, while she swirls in blues at the rim of the galaxy. Those glittering lights from aeons ago, apparitions playing at the vault of her world, she sees through them perfectly now, Pollux the bright golden boy and lascivious Venus from nearby. She guesses how they must have joined seeds in her own Milky Way, slipping out at night under cloudy skies, and how she watched him leave for good, flailing arms, stunned by her rage. He was born under Gemini; no wonder, a two-timer.


April 28—the stars, or a particular star or constellation
April 27, 2015 at 11:57am
April 27, 2015 at 11:57am
knotted and dark
a veiled pillbox
with a ruthless tilt
fluttering its fishnet
over her pale face
and I, a vanquished sardine
caught from
my ocean of dreams,
learned from that hat
how to pull policy
for a pardon.


Prompt: a hat
April 26, 2015 at 1:53pm
April 26, 2015 at 1:53pm
The eyes, sprightly blues caught under lids for his special friend, ebony wood with polished face crafting sound through thin lips, with the wail of a passing train telling legends in a distinct voice. In my inner ear’s recall, not a treacly tone but silken, long, soothing balm, dense as the jungles of days spiraling with the grace of a ballerina, spinning notes, waltzing in air, exuding a tidal wave of solace.

And now, I am shadow chasing, wishing him near, once again, as the memory blends the smoke of his cigarette, wasting away at ashtray’s side, and his intricate music drawing nostalgic patterns of elegiac tears.


Prompt: a musical instrument
April 25, 2015 at 5:28pm
April 25, 2015 at 5:28pm
Davy has a huge SUV
to burn gasoline and money
he drives too high, he drives too low
to meet up with his honey

          if dinosaurs returned
          they’d want their bogs back
          if dinosaurs returned
          they’d want their oil back

Dude, you’re driving too much
your thinking’s convoluted
the traffic is always thick
and the air’s polluted

          if dinosaurs returned
          they’d want their bogs back
          if dinosaurs returned
          they’d want their oil back

if hybrid isn’t your bid
look how blue is sky and sea
combine trips, take transit
stay green and carefree

          if dinosaurs returned
          they’d want their bogs back
          if dinosaurs returned
          they’d want their oil back


prompt: song lyrics (poem could be a song)
April 24, 2015 at 12:08pm
April 24, 2015 at 12:08pm
all he can think of is their bed
read in it, sleep in it,
love in it
pyramid-like, or the Sphinx
with the cat’s body
cats love to snooze
they can get away with it
like pharaohs and their wives
on the nights of their lives

all he can think of is their bed
how she led his foe
into it, behind his back
how she lay curled in it
as a bloodied kitten
under the quilt
cold and alone
like Queen Sesheshet
sunk under the sands


Prompt: A piece of furniture
April 23, 2015 at 2:19pm
April 23, 2015 at 2:19pm
“It’s not my thing, strenuous aerobics, like glassy-eyed bimbos,” I tell him, “I only let my heart dance,” feeling giddy with the taste of soup at lunch in front of TV. “All those motions are for the birds and fish, in water or wind.” Fine-tuned and high-toned is my discrimination against exercise, for I, clumsy and maladroit, share a vulgar languor with Doric columns and Easter Island heads.
Meanwhile, someone on CNBC jokes about a Bugatti. What is a Bugatti? I imagine, a fancy car, its rubber squealing on pavement.
He leans over to caress my cheek. “No aerobics, then, Honey. You don’t have to do everything they suggest.” His hands the instruments of demigods, and how I don’t want to drive past this vast moment…


Prompt: one of these things is not like the other
April 22, 2015 at 7:46am
April 22, 2015 at 7:46am
nothing about you,
no flash, since you’re off focus
snapping shots
of waves upon rocks
seagull wings dripping brine
butterfly-shaped acacia flowers
as white as snow lines on mountains

nothing about you
only gales scattering leaves
like orange-colored lanterns
on nights your camera
goes after a rare moon
opening its shutter
with harmonic clicks

nothing about you
this orbit-stirred chorus
all terra’s textures
its caress of life
urging you to obsess
in making ghosts out of everything
with lens you can’t control


Prompt: nothing about you
April 21, 2015 at 12:43pm
April 21, 2015 at 12:43pm
Welcome, to your new state,
to that motion
that genuine surprise in your drinks.
You see,
serenity is not the goal
at the bottom of the ocean
once you taste the salt
once you let the imagination
drag for nameless treasures
at your own leisurely tempo
despite the storms.
Are you old enough to appreciate
all this? Maybe too old?

But to have such faith in the world...


Prompt: a snippet of overheard talk

Ruby Tuesday’s at the mall, 4/18/2015 – The end part of a conversation between the waitress and a customer, a somewhat aged burly guy.

W--How exciting!
G--I’ll drag the bottom of the ocean for a change after being on a ship in the navy
W--Welcome to Florida. Your drinks will be right up
G--Welcome to Treasure Hunt.
April 20, 2015 at 11:59am
April 20, 2015 at 11:59am
A Prose-Poem

This morning, the Queen Palm in the front yard is waving its fronds to greet the breeze, fresh like clean laundry under the bright sun. A celebration of some kind it must be, same as Taylor Swift’s mom presenting her with an award and a moving speech last night, her cancer scare thrown in for the bitter edge. Those bitter edges…if you just stare them down while you look into them...Then you see the loving hands, shining cups, people touching people like our local food bank launching Summer Hunger Campaign. Such sweet music in everything and everything's making so much sense that, if I have to stroll away someday, I’d so miss this world. If I could, I would fit them all into a picture frame and take it with me to remind me of beautiful people, green earth, and all this love.


Prompt: make a poem from 4 things: 1) an object in your home 2) a natural thing in the landscape 3) a fact or news item from print media 4) a fact or news item from tv, radio, or Internet (the Relief from Writer’s Block exercise of Thomas Lynch)

1. Photo Frame
2. Queen Palm
3. Local Food bank launches Summer Hunger Campaign –Port St. Lucie News
4. TV last night-- Country music awards: Taylor Swift’s Mum Presented Her With An Award And Gave A Moving Speech After Cancer Diagnosis
April 19, 2015 at 12:11pm
April 19, 2015 at 12:11pm
you stretched on
the chaise lounge in the balcony
in complete control
to let sunbeams rub you
like a free masseuse

veni, vidi, vici

so what if you heard a door opening
to the stairwell and knew
they’d find her, cut-up
facing the wall, motionless
on the third floor landing

veni, vidi, vici

how she fell down several flights
taken by surprise, bleeding,
bruised, mouthing your name
eyes huge, as large as her hunger
for you

veni, vidi, vici

but now, so deep in sleep
she still has life
under her headstone
blooming roses
for you

veni, vidi, vici


* trucidator = killer (from Latin)

Prompt: learn a new word and use/define it in a poem
April 18, 2015 at 1:36pm
April 18, 2015 at 1:36pm
She sips 2004 Dom Perignon with flair,
while she talks, like a well-oiled machine,
of Cialis, Kardashians, his Waterloo,
but in her eyes, loneliness in rivers,
locked-up fears, and deepening nostalgia
and she flutters her eyelids.

Between us fences we hedge,
islands of silence, redeemed jungles,
my unruffled nods, and inimitable swing
as I slurp Arnold Palmer
resolved to never flutter my eyelids
while she is Dom Perignoned.


Prompt: a fence, wall, or stile
April 17, 2015 at 12:33pm
April 17, 2015 at 12:33pm
her voice spins and leaps
angling at a song of praise
for that burnt bush
its smoky smell assailing the nose
mean somewhat
like an exotic fragrance
or the steaming water for Kreplach
for family invited back

she wants to reach out
down the slope
to what rolled away, long time ago

next she’ll bake sugar cookies
but not break, taking them
out of the oven,
aware of the time when he
came down the mountain
carrying that heavy load
on bent legs
and shattered the tablets

what was lost
can they ever catch it
unlike what their hands couldn’t grasp?


Prompt: an angle or a bend

April 16, 2015 at 1:05pm
April 16, 2015 at 1:05pm
Evelyn, the number queen, watches the linking of night to day, while we sip Earl Grey inside the covered porch. Dusky purple clouds against a blaze of pearly pinks, golds, corals, and oranges, ruptured with burgundy red slashes like sudden strikes of lightning. Colors overwhelm in their dazzling fashion to soon blend into the dark night.

Divine and mystical, Evelyn’s measuring life. Her voice surges as she mentions destiny, soul urge, and inner dream. “Each color has a number, like your years.” I wonder if she can intuit I have a bone to pick with colors and numbers.

It started the day I was born when they waddled me in blues, with hopes gunned down for a son. After that, as if an underground cistern, I held, in contempt, colors, mainly blues, and numbers. Still today, while colors drive at my face, I hold a hand across my teacup to keep the sky from falling in.


prompt: —measuring or counting

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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/1253431-Beetlebung-and-Kettlehole--April-Poems/sort_by/entry_order DESC, entry_creation_time DESC/page/7