A Football Shoe Tossing

How the white football cleats arrived hanging from the overhead cable at Clearwater’s Philip Jones Park in the North Greenwood neighborhood is no great mystery, but why, and by whom? A few possibilities:

  • Bullies;
  • In celebration at the end of a successful season;
  • In commemoration of their use by a player who had outgrown them and is finally getting that new pair;
  • Pranksters (see Bullies);

in my neighborhood
sports shoes dangle from wire
how many tosses?
In darkness or in light of day he flung
and flung again until the cleated shoes,
enjoined by laces over wire hung,
a myriad of reasons why to choose.

And not just any pair of shoes are these
ensaddened white designer football cleats,
that flew beneath a player's nimble knees
how many touchdown runs, or sprint repeats?

A perfect step into the dewy grass,
uniting fingers with the spinning ball,
but whose feet wear white cleats beneath the pass,
the one who runs, or he who slipping falls?

What dreams now hang and sway from copper wire,
What dreams fulfilled, or burned in funeral pyre?

A Blank Renku [1] [2], by Paul Guernsey, © 2019


[1] blank renku – a form of linked verse, written by one or multiple authors in alternating collaboration. Blank renku differs from renku in that stanzas alternate between haiku form, and blank verse. The shortest blank verse stanza would be a couplet. The longest would fill a Post It note, the original (fictional) medium of blank renku, as invented for The Blank Verse Mystery. Variations are expected.
Blank renku can be played as a game, in the original spirit of renku. It merges poetry from East and West. Writers can choose to write in their stronger form or in their weaker one, and in this way it is similar to Terry Pratchett’s game of THUD.

[2] As noted in the definition of Blank Renku, variations are expected. In this case, in “A Football Shoe Tossing,” the author has chosen to extend blank verse into a formal Shakespearean sonnet. Might require a bigger Post It.

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Refrigerator Magnets 015 Range Time

5 mm Bucky Balls at 2 m


ears plugged and covered
muffled pops of cannon shots
ready to defend

of patriots with hearts of steel respect
of metal blue and powder cased in brass

chests reverberate
groupings tightening each day
holes punched through paper

[blank renku] by Paul Guernsey, 2019


blank renku – a form of linked verse, written by one or multiple authors in alternating collaboration. Blank renku differs from renku in that stanzas alternate between haiku form, and blank verse. The shortest blank verse stanza would be a couplet. The longest would fill a Post It note, the original (fictional) medium of blank renku, as invented for The Blank Verse Mystery. Variations are expected.
Blank renku can be played as a game, in the original spirit of renku. It merges poetry from East and West. Writers can choose to write in their stronger form or in their weaker one, and in this way it is similar to Terry Pratchett’s game of THUD.

[blank renku] paddle in water

paddle in water
powered from core rotation
elbow high and straight

As crosswind swells and bow waves alter course,
the compensating pilot points his bow.

high and bright the sun
water churning bottom sands
depths become opaque

Despite the waves he plies a true-ish course,
the faceless wind today is not too cruel.

copyright 2019 Paul Guernsey


blank renku – a form of linked verse, written by one or multiple authors in alternating collaboration. Blank renku differs from renku in that stanzas alternate between haiku form, and blank verse. The shortest blank verse stanza would be a couplet. The longest would fill a Post It note, the original (fictional) medium of blank renku, as invented for The Blank Verse Mystery. Variations are expected.
Blank renku can be played as a game, in the original spirit of renku. It merges poetry from East and West. Writers can choose to write in their stronger form or in their weaker one, and in this way it is similar to Terry Pratchett’s game of THUD.

The Bluff on which My Cabin Stands

With waves cascading gently on the shore
when not the keen relentless arctic winds
have whipped them to a crashing noisesome train
of locomotive strength to scale their best
the frail and crumbling bluff without success;

For liquids to the shape of their container
must abide, and though its massive waves
from deep, and dark, and vast, and cold have come,
and though their forces multiply with bad intent,
when frozen to a crystal pickaxe thrown
by winter’s gales to etch and chisel out
the arching shore, our God entitled lease
upon this land is still enshrined, as long
as tree roots thrust into the rock and stave
off wind, and rain, and snow, and wave of lake;

As long as from those trunks our axe and saw can hew
the knotty pine, and iron nails from that
same rock do smelt, then cabins’ lanterns still
will hang, a shining beaded necklace worn
about the Great Lake’s tender nape, a string
of sentinels against the rising waves
to gather in the setting suns of days to come,
and gentle noon day summer breezes, too,
which follow fast spring’s growth of tree, and man,
and flower on the gently rolling hills.

Paul Guernsey Player © 2019/04/18


See Also…

Impatient as the Passing Waves

Decentralize or Die


In response to …

Ren Brabenec‘s facebook video post about the sunsets seen from his small cabin on the bluffs above the Lake Superior.

[blank renku] winter squirrels

winter squirrels rutting
what better time to do it
florida’s seasons

But rutting is by far too coarse a word,
for what the squirrels have done is honest play.
And winter is by far too strong a word,
so far they are from hibernation’s sleep.

young buck’s urgent press
the doe’s unguarded yielding
once more, yes, again

So, out they came to frolic and cavort,
to leap and romp and spring in crisp fresh air.

springtime pups brewing
tiny buns in the oven
unknown joys ahead

a blank renku by Paul Guernsey Player, © 2019/01/11

______

blank renku – a form of linked verse, written by one or multiple authors in alternating collaboration. Blank renku differs from renku in that stanzas alternate between haiku form, and blank verse. The shortest blank verse stanza would be a couplet. The longest would fill a Post It note, the original (fictional) medium of blank renku, as invented for The Blank Verse Mystery. Variations are expected.
Blank renku can be played as a game, in the original spirit of renku. It merges poetry from East and West. Writers can choose to write in their stronger form or in their weaker one, and in this way it is similar to Terry Pratchett’s game of THUD.

[blank renku] apsides

[1, Janice]

another year
another Christmas
mulled with memories

[2, Paul]

As steamy mists arise from mugs abrew,
and dark reflective eyes stare back from depths,
unfathomed wishing wells of thought turn back
to looking outward once again, and on...

[3, Paul]

post christmas, post haste; 
the new year's spring compressing; 
perihelion;

[1] another year: haiku by Janice, On The Land

[2] Paul Guernsey Player, © 2018/12/28

[3] compression by Paul Guernsey Player


*blank renku – a form of linked verse, written by one or multiple authors in alternating collaboration. Blank renku differs from renku in that stanzas alternate between haiku form, and blank verse. The shortest blank verse stanza would be a couplet. The longest would fill a Post It note, the original (fictional) medium of blank renku, as invented for The Blank Verse Mystery. Variations are expected.
Blank renku can be played as a game, in the original spirit of renku. It merges poetry from East and West. Writers can choose to write in their stronger form or in their weaker one, and in this way it is similar to Terry Pratchett’s game of THUD.

More on blank renku here.