Bookshelf Poetry

16 Jul

Throughout my days I’ve always written poems,
but recently I started publishing
my works on-online, and born again, I write
for actual readers. Never had I sought
to print my poems in a paper book,
present my newborn children to an editor
and ask if they are worthy to be read.

Today, I write and watch my readership
expand. Immediately I see which verses
are most liked, which styles, subjects, forms
elicit comments, and from whom;
and conversations now erupt in which
we poets, writers, readers both engage.

A healthy dialogue this is, unfiltered
by a publisher of books, with no
delay between “it’s written” and “it’s read;”
not limited by printings, press releases
book tours ‘cross the land, or lands of Earth.
In three or four short months, my works are known
by folks who live beyond the easy byways
of my native land; from two score countries
do they hail. How else could I have placed
my words into such diverse willing hands?

It’s true, no books of mine sit waiting on
a library shelf, or in a coffee scented
bookstore, waiting to be found by random
eye, most likely to be read for free,
perchance to be exchanged for pocket change
and taken home and set upon another shelf
collecting someone else’s settling dust.

Bookshelf Poetry


The Blank Verse Mystery, Part 015

15 Jul

“Of course I know what kind of verse that is.
Haiku. You’ve never heard of it before?”

Librarians. Sometimes they really help,
and sometimes, not as much as you might like.

“Ah, no,” I say, “and never heard of Homer,
either, but I know that I can whip you
at Ms. Packman, so we’re even now.”

“We’re even now? I’m not quite sure I get

“Never mind. Just point me to haiku.”

“Did you mean, ‘Point me to the haiku, PLEASE?”

“Of course. Quite right. How could I be so rude?”
I smile and ask again with manners in.

The pit stop I had thought to make to snag
a book or two turned into more of an event
when shelf on shelf of haiku books I found.
Returning to my favorite cube on level
three, I garner several looks askance
when armload one of books comes tumbling down
upon the desk with somewhat less finesse
than I had planned. A quick “I’m Sorry,” mouthed
and silent heads return to books and pens.

[Previous]      [Main Story]      [Next…coming soon]

cumulus rising

15 Jul

cumulus rising
radar shadow tinted orange
blossoms in the sky

honey bees retreat to hive
nectar’s shallow wells revive

paul guernsey player, © 2018/07/15
in response to Nimbus Fury, by Isha Garg

The Blank Verse Mystery, Part 014

14 Jul

by Paul Guernsey Player, Copyright © 2018/07/14

With darkened brass door key in hand I walk
the path down from the chapel green, The River
far below in peaceful silence flows.
Its power, majesty and might concealed
beneath a harmless seeming glossy sheen.

But say this not too loudly to the farmers
on the flood plains fanning to the west,
or to tiny Elsah further down this path
a week of days beyond a Midwest spring-
time melt of winter’s heavy drifting snows,
for then The River has a scene or two
to paint of things less peaceful and serene.

A wave of worry flows on through my mind
as key turns lock and door swings open wide.
A dappled light forms dancing shadows cast
by swaying leaf filled branches high above
upon the lightly dusted hardwood floor.
Still strewn about are yellow Post-It notes,
a candle stick, knocked over, half burnt down,
an uncapped fine point blue Bic ball point pen. [1]

“And so, it’s all still here,” I say out loud.
They didn’t trust a single word I said,
and had no curiosity to look.

I squat, and reaching down, I grab a note,
three neatly printed lines in lower case:
another note, the same, and more and more,
and finally three notes stacked and stuck together.
YES! The three Professor O. recited
just before it all went crazy black.

[Previous]      [Main Story]      [Next]

[1] Congratulations to the reader for making it through this technically correct but difficult iambic pentameter that the author insists on keeping in the story, despite the objections and better judgment of all the editors. #CountingOnFingers


14 Jul

never ending line
viewed on-end is just one point
point on point makes time

in response to TIMELESS
by Lize Bard @HaikuOutOfAfrica



13 Jul

cat wretches hairball
brings home half dead mouse in mouth
sunrise purrs to sleep

Paul Guernsey Player, Copyright © 2018/07/13

In response to Issa:

Goes out,
comes back –
the loves of a cat.


13 Jul

neighbor knocks at door
pot with teacups steaming hot
cooling time to chat

Paul Guernsey Player, Copyright © 2018/07/13

In response to Tea, by Randall Evans