Poetry

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DEVOTION – Weekend Word Prompt

Published March 3, 2019 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Thanks to Sammi Cox for the weekend challenge. 

The affair began in innocence

Understanding

Accelerated into devotion

Ardent passion

Resistance is futile.

I am a hopeless love slave.

Writing is a jealous lover.

FURROWED

Published January 19, 2019 by rochellewisoff

Once more I’m participating in Weekend Writing Prompt. For instructions on how to join the fun, click HERE. Thank you, Sammi, for something different to challenge and fire the imagination. Today’s mother’s reflection is brought to you by the word:

Do you believe in love at first sight?

I do.

I believed it then.

I believe it now.

When you curled your tiny fingers around mine

You furrowed an unfathomable trench in my heart

That has only deepened with time.

This was taken several winters ago when school was called on account of snow.

Weekend Prompt #87 -Ignite

Published December 29, 2018 by rochellewisoff


It’s all Dale’s fault. She’s been doing this challenge for a while now. I thought, “17 words, I can do this, right? Of course right.” If you’d like to try it, it’s led by Sammi Cox

The theme is inspired by my WIP with working title WHAT THE HEART WANTS

Missionaries’ flames ignite to kill the Indian, but save the child.

America the beautiful?

Or

Identity theft?

29 December 2017

Published December 27, 2017 by rochellewisoff

 

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT © Ted Strutz

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The following is an edited version of a poem I wrote in the 90’s while battling severe depression and anorexia nervosa which is about control. I thought I was in control but, almost too late, realized the demon was controlling me.  To sort through my confusion I wrote poetry as a means of journaling. Happily, this is no longer my reality, but at the time…

Genre: Adverse Verse

Word Count: 100

VICIOUS CYCLE

Knotted cords surround my thoughts

Like twine that binds a package;

Profusion of convolution, confusion

No solution

Seeking resolution, absolution.

            I’m choking

                        On the dry bread of shame.

And I’m left no choice

But to savagely purge myself.

Cathartic poison,

Painful comfort.

I run a perilous race

To a fatal finish line.

Lethal, venomous humiliation besieges me.

The sins of the forefathers,

Cousins, babysitters and uncles  

Devour and bury.

The demon lures and captures me

In his serpentine embrace.

Too weary to resist seduction,

I relinquish and surrender.

Profusion of convolution, confusion

            No solution

Seeking resolution, absolution

To what conclusion?

 

WAXING POETIC

Published May 25, 2017 by rochellewisoff

For the past five years, since joining Friday Fictioneers, I’ve written or posted a flash fiction at least once a week. My favorite genre is historical fiction, but that hasn’t stopped me from writing humorous anecdotes, realistic fiction or just plain nonsense. But any and all who know me very well will tell you that Jewish themes are my favorites. Nu? Why shouldn’t they be? I am after all, a Jew.  All four of my grandparents came from Eastern Europe to escape the pogroms in the Pale of Settlement or the Russian draft. 

Last month I met Eve Brackenbury, a gifted poet who co-owns Inklings’ Books & Coffee Shoppe in Blue Springs, Missouri, on Facebook. Social Media is my friend. 

Eve Brackenbury

Not only did I make a new friend that day, I also made a valuable connection on many fronts. Our first conversation dealt with the challenges of marketing. As we chatted in an IM she said, “You write Jewish Historical Fiction. Are you Jewish?” Is the Pope Catholic? 

Eve told me about the CloudBursT Jewish Poetry event and gave me Martha Gershun’s email address. Although I don’t write what I would call poetry, I thought perhaps Martha might be able to point me in the right direction as far as reaching a Jewish audience. I inserted one of my Jewish themed flash fictions in my email to her and, not five minutes later, the return email came with, “That’s really powerful. Would you like to come and read?” 

Martha Gershun- CloudBursT organizer and poet

I must’ve changed my mind twelve times as to which stories I would read. Finally, the day came, Sunday, May 21, and I’d narrowed it down to four of my favorites. The lobby of Congregation Beth Torah teemed with poets and their guests. We were warmly welcomed with food, wine and friendly conversation. 

So much Yiddishkeit. I felt like I’d come home. I particularly enjoyed Ellen Portnoy’s piece “The Nuances of Nu.” 

Out of 19 who read, I was third to the last, just before Eve. The ones I read are as follows:

THE ELEVENTH COMMANDMENT

            In preparation for his bar mitzvah, twelve-year-old Harvey Weinstein opened the book to his parashah. His stomach rumbled. “I’m hungry.”

            “Sh’mot beginning with Chapter 16,” said Rabbi Shmuel. “First in English, then Hebrew.”

            Harvey fumed. “I’m tired of Torah. I’d rather play Xbox.”

            “This is the perfect reading for you.” The rabbi winked and pointed to the page. “The children of Israel kvetched day and night in the wilderness. ‘Oy, Moses, we’re wet. We’re cold. We’re starving to death.’ Nu? Is there something we can learn from them?”

            “Yeah.” Folding his arms across his chest, Harvey smirked. “Jews don’t camp.”

***

FAMILY TREE

            “‘And they lived happily ever after.’” Leah shut the storybook.

            Shifra’s raisin-brown eyes, round as bottle caps, sparkled. “Bubbie? Did you love Grandpa at first sight?”

            “He was only eight when we met. Mama took him in…hid him from the khappers, bad men who snatched little Jewish boys from their homes and made them serve twenty-five years in the Czar’s army.”

            “Did she hide him in the closet?”

            “No she was smart, my Mama.”

            “He was like your brother, right?”

            Leah pointed to a tintype on the table of two little bonneted girls and grinned. “More like my sister.”

***

THE HEAVIEST WHEEL ROLLS ACROSS OUR FOREHEADS

            When I was a little girl in the 1950’s, Mom used to take me to visit my aunt in St. Louis. I so looked forward to those train rides. Sunlight dazzled through the trees as they whizzed by and the rhythm of the wheels along the track soothed me.

            Dad, on the other hand, hated trains, but would never tell me why. Only once did he accompany us.

            As we left Union Station, tears trickled from the corners of his faraway eyes.  

            “Daddy, what’s wrong?”

            “The stench was unbearable. Fifty of us crammed into a cattle car. I alone escaped.”

***

HATH NOT A JEW EYES?

            Do you know the word “Jew” is a common insult among Norwegian teens? Should this bother me? After all, I am a Norwegian Jew.  

            “If you prick us, do we not bleed?”

            Reptilian? I’ve been called this. Do people seriously believe this mishegoss—that Jews are lizard creatures from another planet?

            “If you tickle us, do we not laugh?”

             I will never forget holding my father’s hand as we strolled along a mountain path. Two youths shoved him and shouted, “Child murderer!”

             The memory of warm spittle dripping down my face sickens me still.

            “If you wrong us, do we not revenge?”

            Not in Norway. Instead, we hide in plain sight.

            Last summer a group of Hasidim invited us to a Jewish gathering in Oslo. We cranked up the music and danced in front of Parliament.

            I’ve heard that work makes us free, but we’re not falling for that again.               

 

 

 

 

31 March 2017

Published March 29, 2017 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

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Please be considerate and try to keep your story to 100 words. Thank you. 

***

Genre: Plagiarized Poetry with Apologies to Lewis Carroll

Word Count: 100

*

WHAT’S SO FUNNY?

*

The sun shone on the Med,

Twas shining with all its might.

The sea was wet as wet can be.

Rusty-Drain and Pinky walked hand in hand,

Shuffling through quantities of violet sand.

“If only it were cleared away,” said Pinky. “Wouldn’t it be grand?”

*

“The time has come,” said red-nosed Rusty,

“To speak of many things:

Of poems—purple pygmies—and joy buzzers—

Of snake-proof boots and strings—

And why the Arkansas is boiling hot—

And whether pachyderms have wings.”

*

“O Rusty-dear,” whined Pinky, shedding bitter tears.  

“We’ve had a pleasant run

“Alas, wee whoopee cushion have I none.”

*

*

Any questions?

RUSTY-DRAIN

Click here if you’d like to read Original Poem

PINKY

11 March 2016

Published March 9, 2016 by rochellewisoff

The disc and the dragonfly

Blue Ceiling FF

The following photo is the PROMPT. Keep in mind that all photos are the property of the contributor, therefore copyrighted and require express permission to use for purposes other than Friday Fictioneers. Giving credit to whom credit is due is proper etiquette. 

Please be considerate and make an effort to stay within the suggested word count. 

PHOTO PROMPT - © Emmy L Gant

PHOTO PROMPT – © Emmy L Gant

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Polonius said that brevity is the soul of wit. I’m trying something new for me and it’s ever so brief. Life’s been a bit of a whirlwind lately and my brain is on overload. Much of my writing time and head-space have been given over to my next novel, As One Must, One Can. Thank you for understanding.

Shalom, Rochelle

Genre: Haiku

Word Count: 25

.

.

TABULA RASA

 

sunlight after rain

casts light on sodden pavement

my dry bones languish

***

solomon said there’s

nothing new under the sun

as one must, one can’t

.

.

Unfortunately there are copyright issues concerning a decent recording. Many thanks to my friend Regina O’Hare who videoed this from her phone. Sorry about the quality.

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