May 20, 2010
By Big Tent Poetry

by Carolee, Deb & Jill

It’s show time! It’s time to post your original poem, written in response to Monday’s prompt — seems Wordles are loved by all! — or any other inspiration from the week. (We love it when you write to our prompt, but we also love it when you write on a whim. We all know how fickle that muse can be.)

So leave a link to your blog post, or leave your poem itself, in the comments!

Let the show begin! This post is “sticky” — it will stay right here in the spotlight for you all weekend.

Here’s how prompts work under the Big Tent

You’ve got all week to write your poem, based on this week’s prompt. Come Fridays (today!) you’ll find a “Come One, Come All” post (this one!) where you can 1) leave a link to your poem or 2) leave the poem in its entirety.

We want to give you all weekend to post your work and read each others’ work. Take your time. Enjoy all the poems that are new to the world.

Some hints

Hint: We’ve set Big Tent Poetry to Central Time.

Hint: An easy way to check on new post comments is via a RSS reader, if you use one. Here’s the address you would add to your reader:

Hint: Since we’re a new site, and you’re new to it, your comment(s) will be held for moderation for your first few posts. We’re checking the filters often, so don’t despair! That said, if it takes more than a half a day to see it come live on the site, do email us at info (at) (But be patient, okay?)

Circus etiquette

We figure you know how to play in the poetry community, but here are the basics:

Be nice. Have fun. Remember we aren’t a critique forum. We want to support each other as we bring more poetry into our lives. Only provide critique if someone specifically asks for it.

Although we love seeing our badge in the sidebar of your blog, we would appreciate it if you would also link back to the site in each of your poem posts. Linking within your post helps people travel back and forth from your site to the Big Tent Poetry site, and it helps perpetuate Big Tent Poetry “findability” in Google searches — and that helps us all.

One other thing

So it might be more than one. Read our barkers’ articles, if you haven’t recently. Great stuff. Here’s the list of links.

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103 Responses to “ COME ONE, COME ALL / May 21 ”

  1. rob kistner on May 20, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    Opened the Big Tent early for business tonight… ;)

    • rob kistner on May 21, 2010 at 12:43 am

      My wordle poem: Integrity

      • Mary Kling on May 21, 2010 at 4:35 pm

        I did visit your blog. I could not leave a comment on your website. For some reason it would not let me. I liked “Integrity” very much. It made a lot of sense, which is something that is hard to do with using an assorted group of words. You’re a master. I hope you will visit my blog. My poem uses only one of the words – Futile!

        • Carolee on May 21, 2010 at 9:43 pm

          mary, don’t worry about using just one of the words. when the muse reacts to something, it’s best to encourage it! sometimes it’s fun to push and fit in all the words; sometimes we go with what we’re shown by the muse!

        • rob kistner on May 22, 2010 at 9:40 pm

          Don’t know why you couldn’t leave a comment Mary, but I thank you for your kind words – and I transferred your comment to my blog… ;)

    • Deb on May 21, 2010 at 8:17 am

      When it is midnight in Kansas we raise the flap!

      • Carolee on May 21, 2010 at 9:46 pm

        sounds kinky

      • Linda Goin on May 21, 2010 at 10:01 pm

        Back or front? =)

        • Deb on May 21, 2010 at 10:50 pm

          both! (or is it all?)

          • Linda Goin on May 22, 2010 at 9:22 pm

            Both, unless you have side flaps as well. =D

      • rob kistner on May 22, 2010 at 9:37 pm

        This week you raised the flap at 10 in Kansas – perhaps you weren’t in Kansas any more… ;)

    • Brenda Clews on May 21, 2010 at 10:00 am

      “Creative Fire,” a riff, a poem & collage photo, a response, images arising from my womanly body, to a quote by Clarissa Pinkola Estes:

      The wordle word: sapient

  2. James Barger on May 20, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    I just discovered Big Tent Poetry last night so I was a little late to participate in this week’s prompt, but I’m excited about becoming an active member in this community. My poem of this week is called “The Second Time I Thought I Nearly Heard the Voice of God.” I just started my own poetry blog and want to invite everybody to read and comment – I can’t wait to dig into the writings of fellow Big Tent participants. Happy writing!

    • Deb on May 21, 2010 at 8:17 am

      Welcome, James! Glad you found us. Enjoy poetry under the big tent. Most questions can be answered in the bottom navigation bar (the white one) but ask away if you need anything.

      Everyone, here’s the direct link to James’ poem:

      • James Barger on May 21, 2010 at 9:27 am

        Thank you for the welcome greeting Deb! I’ve been writing since my early high school years, but, aside from a few poetry groups with friends, it has always been a relatively lonely activity. Thank you for bringing this community together – I can’t wait to become a part of the family :-)

    • Carolee on May 21, 2010 at 2:24 pm

      hi, james! so glad you found us!

      • James Barger on May 21, 2010 at 2:24 pm

        Thank you Carolee – glad to be here!

  3. angie on May 20, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    a before-bed post –
    and apparently I need some sleep.

  4. pamela on May 20, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    thanks for the prompt. i love wordles.

  5. Brenda Warren on May 20, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    This one wrote itself. Darn it, if it didn’t sneak in a murder! My muse watches crime drama on television.

    Thanks for opening the Big Tent before bedtime.

  6. Tiel Aisha Ansari on May 21, 2010 at 12:01 am

    Got them all… I think…
    A Glitch in the Fashion Works

  7. irene on May 21, 2010 at 12:22 am

    Here’s my poem.

    temporary brain glitches

  8. Stan Ski on May 21, 2010 at 12:26 am

    Here’s mine IN DECLINE

    • irene on May 21, 2010 at 1:18 am

      Wow this does paint a picture of ‘life’s a bitch’. (Stan I could not comment on your blog).

      • Stan Ski on May 21, 2010 at 7:54 pm

        Thanks Irene; Not sure why, but sometimes it takes a couple of tries.

  9. barbara on May 21, 2010 at 1:43 am

    I’m a fool for wordles–and challenges (dares), I suppose. Providing, of course they don’t require any physical effort. So, I have three poems (take your pick) the short one is proof, the one I like is chronomancy until it gets a better name, and the one Rall (and Deb) more or less dared me to try is prologue

    • Deb on May 21, 2010 at 8:18 am

      You’re a champ who can’t resist them. :-) Way to go!

    • barbara on May 22, 2010 at 9:06 pm

      I took a stab at adding voice to the gimpy wimple one. Can’t read it like I wrote it, though.

  10. vivienne blake on May 21, 2010 at 2:53 am

    Mine is here:

  11. vivienne blake on May 21, 2010 at 3:20 am

    My elephant sequel:

  12. Jeeves on May 21, 2010 at 4:17 am

    • Carolee on May 21, 2010 at 10:16 pm

      “tight-lipped proof in my purse” — you guys are brilliant at squeezing these words together and getting them in. i’m taking notes from all of you!!!

    • Deb on May 22, 2010 at 5:56 am

      I agree with Carolee! And that was a favorite line, too. I like the double-meaning of “tightlipped in/ My purse.”

    • angie on May 22, 2010 at 11:13 am

      jeeves — I love your poem!
      (but couldn’t figure out how to say so there.)

    • Linda Goin on May 23, 2010 at 9:26 am

      Jeeves — really liked your poem…the first four lines were…well, poetic. Lovely. Couldn’t figure out how to leave a comment on your site?

  13. vivienne blake on May 21, 2010 at 4:38 am

    Nice one, Jeeves. Is there a way of leaving a comment on your blog?

    • Jeeves on May 21, 2010 at 11:20 pm

      Thanks Vivienne. There are some issues in the blog to be solved. So comments are blocked. Really glad you liked my poem..

      • Marie on May 23, 2010 at 10:27 am

        Well, I enjoyed it too. You packed a lot into the tiny poem. Well done.

  14. derrick2 on May 21, 2010 at 4:50 am

    Here’s mine:

  15. nan on May 21, 2010 at 5:24 am

    My poem this week: seamstress.

  16. stacey wilson on May 21, 2010 at 6:33 am

  17. Iain D. Kemp on May 21, 2010 at 6:50 am

    Hi Folks,

    The guy who runs my blog is out & about so I haven’t posted my poem there yet, instead I’m going to put it straight in here….tricky but used all the words!

    News-wise: Virginia McKenna has now recorded “Peregrine” & I am awaiting a publication date,
    also it’s Friday which is podcast day, so you can hear my latest offering by clicking my name. Back later to read.

    Cheers all.

    In the Quest for Enlightenment: Madness

    He sipped the sacred 80° proof tincture,
    knowing the transformation would come,
    this world he knew,
    clear and bright
    would soon be gone,
    left for another;
    a world of insanity and mayhem,
    a world of obscurity and chaos

    The drug took hold, he felt himself buckle,
    crumple at the knees,
    he felt the surge of power and terror
    course through his veins,
    through his soul,
    he screamed as a banshee,
    as a madman;
    he rose again to his feet
    and laughed
    as only a lunatic can laugh.

    This strange creature, more beast than man
    yet sapient still, mounted the horse,
    he stretched a hand to fondle the mane,
    strangely intrigued by the ornate pattern
    of the caparison;
    kicked the horse into movement,
    into action,
    there was work to be done,
    dark work,
    the work of the night.

    A passenger in the street doffs his cap,
    imagining a noble,
    he screams and sets himself to flee,
    but running is futile,
    escape impossible,
    the dark twisted creature falls heavy from the horse
    the victim pinned down
    and ruined.

    The dawn approaches, the being rests,
    its blood lust sated, its energies spent,
    opening a leather purse it stares
    half smiling at the small green bottle,
    again the laugh of lunacy
    … a light comes on in the darkened mind
    and a light goes out in the amber eyes,
    there was, he was warned, a danger,
    a snag, a glitch in his alter-ego’s plan.
    The sun light full upon him now,
    yet he remained as was, unchanged,
    a dark twisted figure,
    trapped in madness and pain…
    …there was no returning.

    The creature laughed no more,
    it smashed the small green bottle on the ground
    the manic laughter gone,
    replaced by uncontrollable sobbing,
    soon to be wailing, keening,
    screaming at the bright day:
    what have I done?
    what has become of me?
    What madness…
    …what nightmare…
    …what life.


    • Deb on May 22, 2010 at 6:08 am

      A harrowing tale!

      • Carolee on May 23, 2010 at 9:32 am

        what deb said!

    • Mary Kling on May 22, 2010 at 7:37 am

      Good one, Iain.

    • Linda Goin on May 23, 2010 at 9:33 am

      Gads, what absinthe wrought! Terrifying tale! Have you recorded this one yet, Iain?

      • Iain D. Kemp on May 23, 2010 at 9:39 am

        Thank you all.

        Linda – not yet but I think I’ll add it to the list for this week… I have almost 6 months worth put down so don’t know when it will appear…


    • Marie on May 23, 2010 at 10:30 am

      What a story you tell! Really readable and compelling.

  18. Marian Veverka on May 21, 2010 at 6:57 am


    Tell me the reason for roses
    The glitch in the system that
    Let a pattern of petals to accumulate
    Into flowers so fragrant that tinctures
    Have been made from their perfume.

    If there is no reason for roses, ask
    The sapient for proof of their
    Existence. Then we can doff our
    Hats to the results than stun us
    Not only in summer, but crumpled
    Petals that hold their scent for years
    After the blooming has capitulated
    Into memory.

    Pick one and put it in your purse,
    Fondle it later and the scent will be
    Released . It will be your secret but
    The true secret of why this flower
    Has developed into the symbol for love
    Will be only futile guesses.

    • vivienne blake on May 21, 2010 at 8:40 am

      I think this is my favourite so far today. Love the poem, love roses.

    • Deb on May 22, 2010 at 6:10 am

      Lovely! I especially like the simpleness of “Pick one and put it in your purse,” and the idea that follows it.

      Nice to have you here, Marian.

    • Linda Goin on May 23, 2010 at 9:35 am

      Hey Marian — thanks for your rosey perspective. I never thought about putting a rose in a purse, but I’ll have to try it. I have a yellow hybrid, one of the only hybrids with smell, and it’s luscious. There is a reason for roses, I believe that.

    • Iain D. Kemp on May 23, 2010 at 9:41 am

      I absolutely love this. Excellent work!!


    • Carolee on May 23, 2010 at 9:49 am

      i like the scent being released later … followed up by secret. nice!

  19. Dina Spice on May 21, 2010 at 6:59 am

    Your great wordle inspired some loooove. Yet another love poem thrown into this world….

    - Dina

  20. Nicole Nicholson on May 21, 2010 at 7:36 am

    Here’s my offering for this week:


  21. Cynthia Short on May 21, 2010 at 7:43 am

    Here is my piece, “War Within”.

  22. Deb on May 21, 2010 at 8:11 am

    Good morning! There weren’t too many in the spam today. Yay!

    I’m still working on mine, so probably won’t read until I finish it up, but yay! It’s so nice to see you all here. :-)

  23. Rallentanda on May 21, 2010 at 9:07 am

    Here’s mine.


  24. Rallentanda on May 21, 2010 at 9:09 am

    Oops forgot the link

  25. Joyce Ellen Davis on May 21, 2010 at 9:45 am

    Boy you guys are FAST! But, hey. Come on over to the little god’s and see what’s in her purse! Just click on my name…. :D

  26. Francis Scudellari on May 21, 2010 at 10:02 am

    Oops… messed up the link again. Here it is:
    Mix me a fixer upper

    • Deb on May 21, 2010 at 10:09 am

      (I deleted the other one.) Hi.

  27. Linda Goin on May 21, 2010 at 11:07 am

    Oy, a caparison? Ok…I’m committed:

  28. Linda Watskin on May 21, 2010 at 11:16 am

    I selected my word—pattern and then thought of writing a poem that had a form (pattern, if you will). So here’s my sestina.

  29. Deb on May 21, 2010 at 11:24 am

    Here’s mine: Pattern Language.

    • Marie on May 23, 2010 at 10:37 am

      Great, Deb. I love this: “threaded rivers are silvered tinctures”. What a beautiful image.

  30. Tumblewords on May 21, 2010 at 11:28 am

    It’s hard not to love Wordles! Thanks…


  31. Ana on May 21, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    This:Anaïs: Big Tent Poetry: step 2
    has, probably, more potential to it -it is a rough draft for now. My source of inspiration was a very, very actual political debate to which I could match most wordle words with only a little effort.

  32. carolee on May 21, 2010 at 2:22 pm

    i can’t believe we’re three prompts into this gig! it’s starting to feel like home. thank you to everyone who’s making that possible. :)

    here’s my link! i used the wordle …

    • Brenda Clews on May 23, 2010 at 9:31 am

      Carolee, your poem appears to be password protected. I can’t read it, nor, unfortunately, comment.

  33. Peggy Goetz on May 21, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Here is my wordle poem using the word Purse


    That purse is you, Mom,
    a happy color, red,
    filled with surprising
    stuff, not well organized,
    but all the essentials.
    Could be right, Daughter.

    • Linda Goin on May 21, 2010 at 10:34 pm

      Right as red…clever, Peggy, and you have me wondering what you found in that purse.

    • vivienne blake on May 22, 2010 at 2:50 am

      Sounds just like my purse (in the UK sense; porte-monnaie in French) it gets bulgier and bulgier.
      I like your poem very much.

    • Deb on May 22, 2010 at 10:13 pm

      I like exposing the metaphor. Nice!!

  34. Mary Kling on May 21, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    I only used one of the words – futile.
    I hope you will check out my effort. (Thanks for any comments.)
    I will look at yours!
    It does seem all so futile to me.

  35. Nathan Landau on May 21, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    I only used two, but took the opportunity to change things up a little.

    “What Began as an Apology”

  36. Wordle, Wordle, Wordle with a Little Latin on May 21, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    [...] you want to read the other poets’ attempts at this challenge, be sure to visit the response page at Big Tent [...]

  37. Marianne on May 21, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Loved this prompt! I used all 12 words! Many thanks!

  38. Carolee on May 21, 2010 at 10:17 pm

    ok, circus-goers! it’s bedtime for me. made it part-way through and will have to wait until sunday to finish. i’m out all day tomorrow, but look forward to checking back in with you sunday!

  39. Uma Gowrishankar on May 22, 2010 at 2:11 am

    Here is my poem for this week’s prompt –

    • pamela on May 22, 2010 at 1:02 pm

      I this it is seductive and wonderful
      I could not leave a comment on your blog

  40. Christina Hile on May 22, 2010 at 2:18 am

    You can read my poem here:

    The Rag & Bone Shop

  41. Nate Hile on May 22, 2010 at 2:53 am

    Here is mineTalbot Wins The Purse

  42. Rachel Barenblat on May 22, 2010 at 11:27 am

    I tried to write something with these wordle words, because I love wordle prompts, but I wasn’t happy with the result. So instead I’m sharing the other poem I wrote this week, another in my ongoing series of mother poems:


  43. Peter on May 22, 2010 at 1:26 pm


    • Gemma@Greyscale on May 23, 2010 at 6:53 am

      I tried to leave a comment several times, but it said I do not own my blog! So weird!

      So here is my comment!

      The word “scroll” seems to scroll through your poem like a haunting pulse! Fascinating and, at times, unnerving – just like those shivers when writing just won’t flow as it should!

  44. Victoria Hendricks on May 22, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    I’m trying to link to just one poem, the way so many of you do so you don’t have to wade through more recent entries. Sorry for the second post, but I think I finally did it right. This week’s poem link is

  45. vivienne blake on May 22, 2010 at 3:44 pm

    I tried to comment on your blog, Victoria, but it wouldn’t believe I am who I say I am!

    Lovely poem: I particularly like the last two lines. Do you think our poetry is our immortality?


  46. Marie on May 22, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    Oops! I posted mine in the wrong place. Here it is:


  47. Linda Goin on May 22, 2010 at 9:37 pm

    I’m so very confused by all the new links…if I haven’t visited your site to comment on your poem, will you let me know? It’s been a confusing week, and I’m confused. Confusedly so.

    • Deb on May 22, 2010 at 11:27 pm

      Hi Linda,

      The “nested comments” are for when someone replies to another comment. So you shouldn’t find new poem links in there, with a few exceptions, of course. :-)

      • Linda Goin on May 23, 2010 at 10:19 am

        Hey Deb — I gave up and just started from the top, clicking on every link. That worked sufficiently. Thanks!

        • Deb on May 23, 2010 at 10:33 am

          Thanks for doing that for the poets. I also like to read the comments via my Google Reader feed (and I can click through to links from it) — hopefully you get a system that doesn’t drive you crazy. :-)

          • Linda Goin on May 23, 2010 at 11:01 am

            I think what I’ll do is wait a few days in, until most of the poems have been posted. I sure enjoyed reading them this morning…some of the poems were absolutely stunning. What a joy to read them!

    • Carolee on May 23, 2010 at 10:49 am

      i think of it as an outline. the original/main comments are on the left margin. you can just read those, if you like. that’s *usually* where the links to poems are found.

      our friendly little dialogues usually unfold in the indented comments.

      • Carolee on May 23, 2010 at 10:50 am

        oh! and the little arrows help, too. if you see an arrow it means it’s a response to a prior comment. if you’re just looking for the poem links you could skip the comments with arrows.

        hope that helps!

        • Linda Goin on May 23, 2010 at 11:04 am

          Hey Carolee — I’m seeing this now on my larger screen. The laptop wasn’t much help…I felt as though I was caught in a never-ending wave. (I have issues) =)

  48. Catherine on May 23, 2010 at 1:39 am

    I’m late, and it’s the middle of the night in the US I guess, so if this is being moderated it will be Monday morning here before it goes up (still the weekend in the US though). I’ll try to be earlier next time!
    I managed to use all the words. Here’s my link: Weaving the Nets

  49. Gemma@Greyscale on May 23, 2010 at 5:53 am

    These words create quite a stew of ideas! Finally, I decided to be selective!
    (And by the way, this site is looking fantastic!)

    Alternative Infusion

  50. one more believer on May 23, 2010 at 4:29 pm

    hello, another great prompt this week and have enjoyed the site very much.. yeah, it’s late… perfect stranger


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