One must make a distinction however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the result is not poetry, nor till the autocrats among us can be “literalists of the imagination”—above insolence and triviality and can present for inspection, imaginary gardens with real toads in them, shall we have it.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Your lesser known cryptids....

Hiya Garden Dwellers,

Welcome back to the Out of Standard where I lay at your feet a challenge to shake you out of the ordinary. And today’s prompt is a little more on the wild side than usual.  

Getting comfy with less popular cryptids
A cryptid is an animal presumed to exist by people, even though there is no valid scientific evidence to prove it is real. And oh sure…there are a few that come to mind right away: bigfoot, the lochness monster, yeti, chupacabra.  Those cryptids get all the attention, all the fan fare. 

So today, we are going to dive a little deeper and our pens will get a little weirder. 

Your challenge: Choose a lesser known crypid from this wikipedia list (one you did not know existed) and write a poem about it.  

That's it. The platform is yours. The mic is warm.

Keep in mind
Like every challenge, your poem must by newly written and not one which you have previously written which conveniently fits the theme.

So go now, my muddy buddies, and bring us back something shiny and new.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

The Tuesday Platform

It's seldom that something sweeps me off my feet and makes me gasp in admiration. Greetings poets, wayfarers and friends I came across an incredible poem 'Triste, Triste' by French symbolist poet Jules Laforgue, which contemplates sadness in life.

Triste, Triste

Je contemple mon feu. J'étouffe un bâillement.
Le vent pleure. La pluie à ma vitre ruisselle.
Un piano voisin joue une ritournelle.
Comme la vie est triste et coule lentement.

Je songe à notre Terre, atome d'un moment,
Dans l'infini criblé d'étoiles éternelles,
Au peu qu'ont déchiffré nos débiles prunelles,
Au Tout qui nous est clos inexorablement.

Et notre sort! toujours la même comédie,
Des vices, des chagrins, le spleen, la maladie,
Puis nous allons fleurir les beaux pissenlits d'or.

L'Univers nous reprend, rien de nous ne subsiste,
Cependant qu'ici-bas tout continue encor.
Comme nous sommes seuls! Comme la vie est triste!

English Translation: (Sad, Sad)

I contemplate my fire. I stifle a yawn.
The wind weeps. The rain streams against my window.
Next door a piano plays a ritornello.
How sad is life and how slowly it flows.

I sing to our earth, atom of a moment,
In the infinite screen of eternal stars,
To the few that have deciphered our feeble eyes,
To all that is inexorably closed to us.

And our type! Always the same comedy,
Vices, griefs, melancholy, sickness,
And then we make lovely golden dandelions blossom.

The universe reclaims us, nothing of ours endures,
Nevertheless let everything down here continue again.
How alone we are! How sad is life!

Born in Uruguay, 1860 Jules Laforgue was a master of lyrical irony and one of the inventors of Free Verse. The impact of his work was felt by several Twentieth-century American poets, including T.S. Eliot. He also influenced the work of the Surrealists.

I also found an exquisite song by Indila which goes beautifully with the poem by Laforgue.

English Translation: Last Dance

Oh my sweet torment,
No point in fighting, you start again
I'm just a worthless being
Without him I'm a bit troubled
I wander around alone on the subway
A last dance
To forget my great misery
I want to get away, everything to start again,
Oh my sweet torment

I stir the sky, the day, the night
I dance with the wind, the rain
A bit of love, a drop of honey
And I dance, dance, dance, dance, dance, dance
And in the noise, I run and I'm afraid
Is this my turn?
Here comes the pain
In all of Paris, I abandon myself
And away I fly, fly, fly, fly
Nothing but hope
On this road in your absence
Try as I might, without you my life is nothing but a meaningless shiny decor
Read full lyrics here

If you have any thoughts to share, ideas you wish to release into the wild or a world view to express, then you have come to the right place. Please share a poem of your choice and enjoy the company of your fellow scribes. We look forward to reading you and hope you have a wonderful day ahead.


Saturday, January 12, 2019

Just One Word: Hollow

Hello, friends!

With the new year, let’s try a new weekend challenge here in the Garden. Let’s try allowing just one word to provide a springboard for our poems and see what happens.

Our first word is one that I (and maybe you?) associate with T.S. Eliot:


Please take this word anywhere it leads you and share with us what you create. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Wordy Thursday with Wild Woman: What We Save Saves Us

Jakelin Maquin, age seven

Just as Talequah the whale  increased awareness of our environmental plight and how it impacts other living beings, this little girl, Jakelin Maquin's, death in the custody of the U.S. Custom and Border Protection in December put a human face on the suffering of those fleeing violence, poverty and death in their home country. For those arriving desperate and exhausted at closed Mexican-U.S. borders, there is no welcoming hand, just greater despair.

Felipe Alonzo-Gomez, age eight

On Christmas Day, we learned a second child had died Christmas Eve, an eight year old boy from Guatemala. His name is Felipe Alonzo-Gomez. 

On January 19, women will march again, as they did in 2017,  a Women's Wave organizers expect to sweep the globe. "We march for her," a spokeswoman said, of seven-year-old Jakelin. "We march for Felipe."  They will march for the thousands of children at the border. They will march with the Parkland activists, with grandmothers tired of our long history of patriarchy and social injustice, with the young,  frustrated by the environmental disaster they are inheriting, and for you and me.

I am heartened by the 100 women who were elected in the midterms in the U.S. Time for women's voices to rise, along with the men who support them.

As we ponder the beginning of this new year, what is our best hope for 2019? Let's use our voices to dream a better world for the children. We need grandmother wisdom - and indigenous wisdom - as never before,  to begin to live respectfully on and with Mother Earth and all of her creatures. Including each other.

For your writing prompt: Pen a poem of social commentary in free verse or form - whatever thoughts spark your muse, in contemplating  these issues, whether an elegy of sorrow for the children, or a paean of tattered hope for all that needs saving. For what we save, saves us.

Whether we march or don't march, we can join our voices to those working hard to birth a better world. I look forward to reading your poems.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Tuesday Platform: These January Days...

January is a strange month. The festivities and parties are over and the appetite for newness is subsumed as the thought sets in that even with a change of a numeral, the things essentially stay the same. It's interesting to measure the weight of our resolutions and to find some semblance of warmth in this cold weather. I am sharing a poem which I hope all of you would relate to and enjoy in its light and gloom. It's an Anne Sexton verse brimming with the humanity of selfhood as well as a reflection on bereavement and loss.

Letter Written During a January Northeaster


It is snowing, grotesquely snowing
upon the small faces of the dead.
Those dear loudmouths, gone for over a year,
buried side by side
like little wrens.
But why should I complain?
The dead turn over casually,
            Good! No visitors today.
My window, which is not a grave,
is dark with my fierce concentration
and too much snowing
and too much silence.
The snow has quietness in it; no songs,
no smells, no shouts nor traffic.
When I speak
my own voice shocks me.


I have invented a lie,
there is no other day but Monday.
It seems reasonable to pretend
that I could change the day
like a pair of socks.
To tell the truth
days are all the same size
and words aren’t much company.
If I were sick, I’d be a child,
tucked in under the woolens, sipping my broth.
As it is,
the days are not worth grabbing
or lying about.


It would be pleasant to be drunk:
faithless to my own tongue and hands,
giving up the boundaries
for the heroic gin.
Dead drunk
is the term I think of,
neither cool nor warm,
without a head or a foot.
To be drunk is to be intimate with a fool.
I will try it shortly.


Just yesterday,
twenty eight men aboard a damaged radar tower
foundered down seventy miles off the coast.
Immediately their hearts slammed shut.
The storm would not cough them up.
Today they are whispering over Sonar.
Small voice,
what do you say?
Aside from the going down, the awful wrench,
The pulleys and hooks and the black tongue . . .
What are your headquarters?
Are they kind?


It must be Friday by now.
I admit I have been lying.
Days don’t freeze
And to say that the snow has quietness in it
is to ignore the possibilities of the word.
Only the tree has quietness in it;
quiet as a pair of antlers
waiting on the cabin wall,
quiet as the crucifix,
pounded out years ago like a handmade shoe.
Someone once
told an elephant to stand still.
That’s why trees remain quiet all winter.
They’re not going anywhere.


where are your letters?
The mailman is an impostor.
He is actually my grandfather.
He floats far off in the storm
with his nicotine mustache and a bagful of nickels.
His legs stumble through
baskets of eyelashes.
Like all the dead
he picks up his disguise,
shakes it off and slowly pulls down the shade,
fading out like an old movie.
Now he is gone
as you are gone.
But he belongs to me like lost baggage.

—Anne Sexton
(from The Hudson Review, Vol. XV, Number 2, Summer 1962)

This is Anmol (alias HA) and this is my first time hosting for this beautiful Imaginary Garden with Real Toads. For the Tuesday Platform, share one link to a verse, old or new, that you would like all of us to read. While you share, also visit the linked-up verses of others and enjoy the poetic company of many diverse voices and lives. Do not forget to visit later in the week for the late bloomers too. I look forward to reading you all. Happy Tuesday!

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Art FLASH/ 55!

It is a New Year, and a good time to reinvent our FLASH Challenge.

This weekend, I am introducing Luke Eidenschink, self-taught, left-handed Artist/Illustrator working in ink, from Arizona, USA. Luke has kindly given permission for us to use his amazing piece, Moth-Woman, for our poetic inspiration.

Luke Eidenschink
Used with Permission

If you repost the image on your blog, please give attribution to Luke, using the following link:

Feel free to pay a visit to on Instagram or Luke Ink Art where more of his amazing pieces are to be viewed, but not used for this prompt.

If you post your poem on Instagram, using Luke's image, please tag and mention him as the collaborative artist in your post.

There are no restrictions placed on this challenge: Let the image speak to you and respond in a poetic or prose form of your choosing: Literal! Figurative! Reflective! Narrative! Symbolic!

As an alternative, you may write a Flash 55 inspired by the photograph, or on a subject of your choice, as we keep the memory of Galen alive, and send our love and support to Hedgewitch, during her time off from hosting.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Get Listed: January Edition

And it yellow’d the strings of thy tangled hair,
                That shook in the wind of night.
The moon made thy lips pale, beloved;
         The wind made thy bosom chill;
                The night did shed
                On thy dear head
Its frozen dew, and thou didst lie
Where the bitter breath of the naked sky
                Might visit thee at will.
-from Lines: The Cold Earth Slept Below by Percy Bysshe Shelley
(read the full poem here)

Greetings Poets, wayfarers and friends. As January sets in, I am reminded of Shelley whose poetry reflects passion, beauty, imagination, love, creativity, political liberty and nature.

New year calls for new beginnings, new rules and new traditions. For this "Get Listed" edition I want you guys to choose any 3 words that fit best with the mood/theme/personality of your poem on a topic of your choice. For those who would like an added (optional) challenge feel free to throw in a word or two of your own and be sure to mention it somewhere in your post.

  • carnation                slightly               percussion               balcony                January 
  • deep                        toss                       heat                       snow                       wind
  • gravel                    morning                 city                       obvious                   pensive 
  • bedside                  bread                    clouds                     ache                       poems

Also enjoy this musical inspiration from Honne:

Good luck sketching, honing, and naming your masterpiece. I look forward to what you guys come up with. Please do visit others and remember to comment on their poems. Have fun!☕

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

The Tuesday Platform

Since Thou Hast Given Me This Good Hope, O God

Since thou hast given me this good hope, O God,
That while my footsteps tread the flowery sod
And the great woods embower me, and white dawn
And purple even sweetly lead me on
From day to day, and night to night, O God,
My life shall no wise miss the light of love;
But ever climbing, climb above
Man's one poor star, man's supine lands,
Into the azure steadfastness of death,
My life shall no wise lack the light of love,
My hands not lack the loving touch of hands;
But day by day, while yet I draw my breath,
And day by day, unto my last of years,
I shall be one that has a perfect friend.
Her heart shall taste my laughter and my tears,
And her kind eyes shall lead me to the end.
- Robert Louis Stevenson 

The sky is a palette of gutsy purple, solitary moments and new beginnings. On days like this I feel its energy the same way I would of the ones I love, infuse my soul and raise me higher. Once again I battle the wind and find myself in joyful anticipation of what the new year has yet to bring.

If you have any thoughts to share, ideas you wish to release into the wild or a world view to express, then you have come to the right place. Please share a poem of your choice and enjoy the company of your fellow scribes. We look forward to reading you and hope you have a wonderful day ahead.