Giant – A haiku


I am just a clump of dirt

You should be in charge

I am back on the streak with Patrick Jennings’ Pic and a Word Prompt #158 – Giant. These giant trees can be found on one of my favorite routes to run in my area. The path is paved and stroller friendly. At the bottom is a pond and at the top is a playground for a quick break before turning back around. The trail is a gradual uphill for 1.5 miles – going up can be brutal but you can fly going down.

As a mother, I loved Patrick’s short story – what mother doesn’t think her child should rule the world? But it also made me think about HOW I would want my child to rule – by believing that everything in the world is there to “serve” him, for her to plunder and use without regard? Or by instilling in my children that they need to care for our earth and the animals and people living on it? Is it fair that we puny humans are in charge of such grandeur when we are like toddlers playing with a new toy and then discarding it when we are bored or destroying it without even thinking about our actions? Most times, I think it’s not.

©️ iido 2018

Why Fear A Woman – a Reverse Nonet

Oh, now, don’t be scared by what you see.

My thick dark hair, my slender neck,

My ample bosom and hips.

Do I intimidate?

I like animals.

I can cook, too.

Like me now?

But, wait,



Than my

Body or

Niceness or skills.

I read, think and feel.

I make wishes come true.

Mine – and if I want – yours, too.

So, come in, talk, love – if you dare.

You should be scared by what you don’t see.

This photo from Hélène Vaillant’s “What do you see?” prompt intrigued me. While it could easily be related to the current Halloween season, it also made me wonder why images of beautiful women behind a pot, in the dark woods, with books, a treasure chest, and/or a pet bird, conjured such scary, spooky thoughts.

Why are women depicted alongside symbols or images of power, often vilified?

And why do we women accept those labels of witch (if we’re old or not that pretty) or bitch (if we’re young or pretty)?

A strong, intelligent, brave, beautiful and/or powerful woman should be cherished, not feared!


Did you read the title as:

~ A Question – Why fear a woman?

~ A Challenge – Why? Fear a woman?

~ Or with a sense of Incredulousness – Why, fear? A woman?

~ Or maybe even as a statement, possibly the title of an essay or the beginning of a list – Why fear a woman:


©️ iido 2018

Night’s Whispers – A Cascade Poem

My child cries “Mommy”

My lover sighs “Honey”

Night’s whispers change but the meaning is the same

For a drink or for potty

For snuggles or a story

My child cries “Mommy”

For a drink or movie

For snuggles or nookie

My lover sighs “Honey”

Darkness calls fear by different names

Speaks secrets and screams, depending on the game

Night’s whispers change but the meaning is the same

The Tuesday Writing Prompt at the Go Dog Go Cafe was to use the phrase “Night’s whispers” in a poem of any kind.

In my first drafts, I was using the phrase “night whispers”, but then I realized the prompt was for “night’s whispers”, that is “whispers belonging to the night”. A few tweaks and with the help of the cascade poem form, and this poem came to be.

This poem is probably the “time opposite” of my previous poem, “No Chocolate for Breakfast“. If you read both, you’ll get a sense of my life right now – day and night! If there was a prompt for “audience in the bathroom” or “all that schooling and all I do is taxi my kids around”, you’ll have the complete picture! Conversely, any prompts for “what’s something you do for yourself besides writing (or running)” or “what do you do when you have a free hour to yourself besides writing (or running)” would draw a blank!

©️ iido 2018

No Chocolate for Breakfast – A Quadrille

I witness it’s beginning

Eyes squinting

Lips frowning

Body quivering

Then the giant deluge of emotions burst from your body

It’s too early for you to understand

It’s too early for me to explain

So I hold you while we both dissolve into tears

Kim at dVerse Poets requested quadrilles (poems with exactly 44 words) using the word “early”. Here is my submission.

©️ iido 2018

Pastel Life – a Poem

In the ‘80s, the mute button was on

For colors and for words

Pastel festooned interior walls

Women breathlessly whispered to be heard

So we could carry the burden with care

Big shoulders and hair were in vogue

Mint greens, baby pinks and sky blues

Relaxed us so we wouldn’t go rogue

The pastel life appealed for a while

But then we realized

That keeping us in innocent colors

Were all just part of the lies.

It isn’t equal when we’re given more

But men weren’t required to take less

Care for your family and for your job?

No wonder it is all such a mess

And while you’re at it, don’t forget to be sexy

And make sure you don’t get too fat

This was how you can “have it all”

And still “be all of that”.

But times they changed and colors deepened

Bright and bold and loud

Like fuchsia and cobalt and emerald green

Attention getters finally, so proud

We shouted out and showed some skin

Girls just want to have fun

We asserted our independence

But was it a victory we won?

Why does it need to be a choice

Why can’t we have both/and?

Men have to evolve and make a space

Respect women, hand in hand

And women, we still have work to do

The trends are coming back

Don’t lose the goals we’re striving for

Because right now, they’re under attack

This poem was written for Patrick Jennings’ Pic and a Word Challenge #157 – Pastels. Full disclosure – I totally love the 1980s! Pastels, big hair (and big hair bands!!), shoulder pads, Jordache Jeans….fun times! I wasn’t aware at all about anything political besides the “Just say No” campaign. Maybe that was why it seemed so blissful!

For me, part of becoming a real grown up meant registering to vote and doing my part as a citizen. My parents are involved in the elections in our hometown – my dad as an assistant coordinator of six voting districts and my mom is a chairperson of one district. I’m very proud of them for doing this civic duty so I do my part and vote. We may not always agree on the issues but we all agree on making sure our voice is heard and our vote is counted.

As a citizen, voting is a privilege and a responsibility. So whether wearing your pastel jacket with the large shoulder pads or your skinny jeans and crop top – go out (on November 6) and VOTE!

©️ iido 2018

My Husband’s Affair with Ms. C

I know he doesn’t mean it

When he goes to you instead

He’s known you longer than he’s known me

Will you know him ‘til he’s dead?

I smell your perfume in his shirt

At the end of every day

I know he spends more time with you

Yet there is nothing I can say

Wordlessly I watch and wait

While his lungs turn goopy and burn

My love for him isn’t strong enough

He chose you and I lose my turn

This poem is in response to Jamie Dedes’ Wednesday Writing Prompt on The Poet by Day to write a poem about how addiction has touched my life. While smoking may not seem as terrible as opioid addiction (it’s not illegal, it’s still somewhat socially accepted), it is still an activity that takes you away from your relationships, obligations and hurts your health. In fact, I think any activity – even ones that start off as healthy, like running – can become an unhealthy addiction.

In this way, addiction has probably touched more lives that people might care to admit. Think of binge drinking in college or the even the use of smart phones – activities that people use as “coping skills” but, in reality, take people away from having real relationships and can cause serious mental and physical health problems. The mental and emotional components of addiction, as well as the physical aspects, has lasting effects, not only for the individual, but also for all the people in that person’s life.

In my professional and in personal lives, I am keenly aware of “addictive thinking” and “addictive behavior”. Tragically, I had a friend who died from alcoholism that she hid very well from us for many years. There is still so much stigma around addiction but we can’t be quiet about it any more. People are dying and we can’t just “wordlessly watch and wait”.

©️ iido 2018

My Name has a Story – A sonnet

Look up my name – it says I’m dead by now

It is an old name from the motherland

Whole, universal, complete – and that’s how

I try to be, inclusive, kind and grand

Two middle names, lovingly I’m given

One from a once proud, powerful people

The other means free, and surely driven

Ambition higher than a church steeple

Illustrious is how we end this tale

And turning words to action, my new game

What have I done? Whatever does not fail

That is the weight of my whole entire name

What’s in a name? The question is so bold

Your hopes, dreams are my stories to be told

This poem was in response to two prompts from dVerse Poets – one for a poem in Iambic Pentameter and the other for a poem on the theme “What’s in a name?” The links to join these challenges have expired (I honestly don’t know how other writers can churn out poetry so quickly and easily!) however I wanted to challenge myself, especially since I haven’t been able to write as much the past few weeks. This is my first (Shakespearean) sonnet – a poem in iambic pentameter with the structure ABABCDCDEFEFGG.

While I love the challenge of poetry with structure, I do feel that it sometimes hinders the true words or meaning of the poem that I want to convey. I love my name (despite reading in a baby name book that anyone with the name Irma should be dead by now – and that was in 2006!) and love how it is equal parts of my mom and dad. I wanted that to come through in this poem, but felt the structure, especially the rhymes, made that difficult. Maybe I will try a blank verse sonnet next!

©️ iido 2018

Campfire – A Poem

Dark night

No fright

Warming hands delight

Crackle snap

Snuggle lap

Conversation on tap

Scent of pine

Red gold shine

Crickets on a party line

Hazy smoke

Enfolding cloak

Scent of safety, summer bespoke

This poem was originally in response to Gina’s prompt at dVerse Tuesday Poetics last Tuesday. I had many ideas and smelly – I mean, aromatic – memories for this prompt, but this poem fits my mood right now. I might post the other poems at a later date. With the cooler weather, a campfire and cuddles seem to be in order!

©️ iido 2018

You Go Girl! (An update)

I’ve been missing…I hope you’ve noticed…

No writing this past week – it’s been a little hectic with guests visiting and schedule changes. Actually that isn’t true: poetry and ideas for this blog have been running through my head but I really haven’t been able to write anything down or to sit and think about how to put the words together. I’ve been working on this post since Sunday – I started around lunch time and I’m just posting it now (Friday??!!!).

I did get to do one (1!!!) run this past week. It was on Saturday with my Moms RUN this Town chapter. A decent 10 miles to prepare for the half marathon I’m running in two weeks. I was out of the house and on my way to meet my running group at 5:30 am – it was me, the highway and slightest sliver of moon. By the time we met up and got moving, the dawn was just peaking behind the clouds.

This run actually wasn’t bad for me. It felt pretty “easy” compared to my previous long run. Maybe it was the weather (overcast and cool vs sunny and humid) but more likely it was the extra sleep I had gotten the night before!

My RB, Michele and I, finished 10 miles in about 2 hours and a bit. One of my motivations was meeting up with the other ladies who were running more/less miles or who were doing a C25K at the local Starbucks. It’s always energizing for me to be around other strong mother runners!

(Photo credit: M. Grotte. Thanks MRTT ladies for letting me showcase your awesomeness for my blog!)

One highlight of the run was when another MRTT member who wasn’t running that morning, drove by us and honked her horn, yelling encouragement out her window. Woohoo!! You go girl!! It’s always nice to be recognized (in a non creepy leering guy sort of way). It’s so important to me to recognize the strengths and accomplishments of other women in my life so being on the other end of that recognition was totally validating and just made me happy!

Guests should be gone and schedules should be back to normal next week. So be prepared for an onslaught of writing (imagine that last line being said with a flashing background that goes in and out and my voice with extra reverb). Imma going girl!!


This post was originally supposed to be for the Pic and a Word Challenge #155 – Girls. Sorry, Patrick! Ended my streak but I hope to be back on the ball this week!