Hello dVersians! Lisa here to challenge you with a word to write about for Monday’s Quadrille. We are a week or so into August, which is about halfway towards autumn in the northern hemisphere and about halfway through winter in the southern hemisphere. Both are welcome change times of the year. The sweltering heat of this summer is welcomed to vacate, making room for cooler weather. I’m looking forward to standing in chilled evening breezes and watching the sun set. Those who have been shivering in the cold of the southern half are happy to see greening on the horizon if they stand on tippy toes.
Not only is seasonal change afoot, we continue to take baby steps towards full disclosure of those shady secrets that everyone already knows. “Indian Schools” in Canada and the U.S. have spotlights on them, unearthing atrocities that most didn’t know about or didn’t care to know about. The pandemic rages on, with new variants and old resistance to vaccination. Critical Race Theory and whether it will be taught in schools is a hot topic. Investigation into the January 6th debacle and whether justice will be served, legislation proposed to hamstring voters in being able to vote, and the fascists that keep being treated with kid gloves keeps nerves on both sides on edge. I just learned about the Creech Drone Base in Nevada where remote drone pilots bomb targets and terrorize citizens in other countries. With so many political fires burning, sometimes it’s difficult to know where to stand without getting burnt.
Today’s quadrille prompt word is stand.
I really like the first poem I found, where it likens a community to the bones in a human foot.
About Standing (in Kinship)
By Kimberly Blaeser
We all have the same little bones in our foot
twenty-six with funny names like navicular.
Together they build something strong—
our foot arch a pyramid holding us up.
The bones don’t get casts when they break.
We tape them—one phalange to its neighbor for support.
(Other things like sorrow work that way, too—
find healing in the leaning, the closeness.)
Our feet have one quarter of all the bones in our body.
Maybe we should give more honor to feet
and to all those tiny but blessed cogs in the world—
communities, the forgotten architecture of friendship.
When there is too much going on and too many decisions to make, we can become paralyzed.
At a Standstill
By Samuel Menashe
The statue, that cast
Of my solitude
Has found its niche
In this kitchen
Where I do not eat
Where the bathtub stands
Upon cat feet—
I did not advance
I cannot retreat
I found great comfort in this last one.
The Old Deer Stand
By Stan Holliday
There’s a man I never met before
yet I know him just the same
and think about him often times
as I pass by a ruined stand.
The old deer stand I first saw long ago,
a few boards clinging to a dying cedar
with most of it upon the ground
being slowly reclaimed by decay.
The stand was old when i was young.
I suspect its builder was long gone,
his sons, perhaps, were near my age
and like me have become as gray
as the last boards clutching the tree,
boards which creak like old joints in the wind.
That builder, I can almost see
sitting up there hunting deer
with cold numb fingers and toes
on this ridge which never changes.
He, too, cherished this lonely place.
I see him watching grey squirrels play
and listening as wood ducks flew by,
slowly wiping a drippy nose,
slowly scanning the landscape
in search of antlers
so long ago.
I guess like me he slowly aged
and counted time by hunting seasons
as trees overtook nearby fields
and his father’s generation slipped away
while the years piled up unnoticed.
Until one autumn he failed to come.
No repairs to the favorite stand.
And the forest likely never noticed
for the land and game abides
and keeps abiding.
This old man who i never met.
this old man i have come to know.
This old man who used to pass this way.
I know him for I have become him.
Your challenge today, if you choose to accept it, is to use stand or any word that includes stand in it to write a quadrille. Describe what taking a stand means to you. Talk about how you stand in the world. Explore how you’ve seen others stand. Be at a standstill. Walk through a stand of trees. Whatever your muse brings to you. Your choice, as long as your poem is 44 words.
If you’re new to dVerse or the quadrille, it’s simply a poem of 44 words, excluding the title. It can be in any form, rhymed or unrhymed, metered, or unmetered. You MUST use the word stand or some form of the word in your poem.
If you are new, here’s how to join in:
*Write a poem (in any form) in response to the challenge.
*You will find links to other poets and more will join, so check back later to read their poems.
*Read and comment on other poets’ work–we all come here to have our poems read.
*Please link back to dVerse from your site/blog.