Utter Nonsense

Bitter tears are as ambrosia.
Sweet desserts go so well with death.
In the corner on a table covered in black velvet, oranges dripped
studded with vanilla, cinnamon and cloves.  Childrens’ sighs and whines
echo in the shushing hall.
Regret smells the way highbeams blind a driver turning the corner.
Joyce warned me away from Lexington Avenue.
Regret has no smell.
Cornbread and brown beans with ham
make a good meal after the holiday feast.
That Ginger is headed for trouble, ’cause red hair
and freckles spell cancer and high blood pressure.
Oh yes, he was flat out like a lizard drinking.
The silent bells of fate reverberate in womb and casket.
Their tolling was as harsh as baby’s skin.
Ginger scrubbed off the freckles
and sold the auburn to the lizard.
Fairy Princess swept up all the crumbs,
baking them into tomorrow,
feeling he just might keep his promise.
When she opened her mouth, the careful saw
on her heart,
angelic scars.
There is wisdom in unwilling suffering.
dono kurai kachi ga arimasu ka?
The cake gave the eulogy, and the tears danced
into night’s starry embrace
until dawn’s golden descant.


This poem came from an exercise in The Practice of Poetry entitled “Twenty Little Poem Projects.”  If you’re interested in the prompt, go to Writing Prompts.  It was a lot of fun.

About T A Hillin-Smith

Just one of the literacy scholars on this site who wants to explore writing in all its complexities.
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27 Responses to Utter Nonsense

  1. lkthayer says:

    No I didn’t thank you for bringing it to my attention…I will! I’ll and you to my blogroll and let you know when you are squeezed! Thank you. -LK

  2. lkthayer says:

    Oh my, This is gorgeous! First time I’ve had a chance to get off the Juice Bar and get into your writing, magnificent!!
    Yousei, I would like your permission to “squeeze” this at The Juice Bar…may I? Let me know, I think I can just copy & paste the photo and poem…I will also link it to your lovely site! Beautiful writing! -L. K. Thayer http://lkthayer.wordpress.com/

  3. Amity Me says:

    there’s too much message in this poem…some hard to come by…and well….that’s your thoughts’ products…it’s a concoction of many a feelings huh!

    but the pic caught my attention…did you take it yourself? i see it as there is an ongoing weather disturbance, similar to that like of your poem!

    tornado? or what?

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I feel a bit like a magician whom someone has asked to explain his magic. 😉 Actually the sky you see in the picture is what is under the water in our pond, pond plants and such. It made an amazing picture with the leaves on the surface and the reflection of the actual sky in spots. It’s probably one of the best pictures I’ve ever taken. Can you tell I’m proud of it? (silly grin)

  4. Julie says:

    I love it, especially these lines:

    “In the corner on a table covered in black velvet, oranges dripped
    studded with vanilla, cinnamon and cloves. Childrens’ sighs and whines
    echo in the shushing hall.”

    It’s all fantastic, though. I have several stories swirling through my head after reading it, so it makes perfect sense to me, too.

  5. mydomainpvt says:

    its beautiful. just like a collage.

  6. lovebug35 says:

    interesting !

  7. catgirlslovehaiku says:

    That is a really cool poem. Great exercise!

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Arigato, Nekochan. It was really fun to do. I like how it turned out. The poet whom created the exercise said he still used it as a warmup. I can totally see that. Enjoyed your haiku. Really liked the leaf dislodged by passing traffic.

  8. lesliepaints says:

    Yousei this is nonsense in one way and not in another. I am not a poet and I only have my own experiences to relate to what is written. I felt, when I finished reading this like I felt the day my Mother passed.It was utter nonsense and unwilling suffering and meals had to be planned and fragments of our children and family and shushing and casket and lights blinding teary eyes, etc. It was the Holidays and it was all of these things plus life. So, whatever your prompts were or how unorganized this may appear, for one reader it made sense.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      This is what I believe. What is written by a poet is only half a poem. The other half is what the reader brings. As what is written is married with what is internal, something new and original is born. No two poems are alike in meaning or significance. I’m so glad it touched you.

  9. Technobabe says:

    First of all, it just so happens that here at our little hippie house we put beans and ham into the slow cooker yesterday and have the makings for cornbread ready to make today to go with it. So when I read the words in your post it made me smile. I so like the reference to the red hair and freckles!!! you are so clever.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Don’t beans and cornbread make a wonderful comfort food? Had a second meal of it today. Beans are even better the second day, thicker and richer. Thanks for your kind words. All my life, my dad was bald, but I suspect he had reddish hair. We certainly have the freckles. Personally, I like being different, though I’m sure it bothered me some when I was very young.

  10. Several attempts to reply… I think this is one of my favorites of your poems, for sure!!! I don’t like the title, though. I got a lot out of this poem. It was NOT utter nonsense to me. It was “Literary Nonsense” perhaps… On Wiki, under Lewis Carroll, there is a good explanation of what I mean…

    I Loved several lines in this poem:

    Oh yes, he was flat out like a lizard drinking. (this is fantastic!!!)
    The silent bells of fate reverberate in womb and casket. (this line has a great rhythm and vibration and more !!!)
    Their tolling was as harsh as baby’s skin. (this line stopped my brain completely for a bit)

    I won’t paste any more, but I could. These three were just something else! Is is because I was an acid eater myself that I love them? Don’t think so…

    These three lines make my brain wake up!!! What is this??? It’s NEW poetic territory! Who knows what’s coming next? Certainly not a poem about a moon in June!

    • Yousei Hime says:

      This was such a fun experiment. I’m glad you liked it. There were so many images I liked. I’m sure you’ll see a few of them resurrected in a more sensible format.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I chose “Utter Nonsense” because to some (and me at points) that’s what the poem will seem like. But more importantly, because it can also be read as a command–do it, speak what doesn’t make sense and see what happens. You know, I believe this is the most riled up I’ve “seen” you in a while. Can’t wait to see what happens. 😉

      • It worked so well for me! And perfect timing, too. My neighbor sent her brother over with a Thanksgiving plate of food, ostensibly because she knows I was “alone.” But her brother is starting art school. So…

        Long story short, he had a lot to say about all my artworks I have hanging on walls, stacked up on the floor, all over my house! Then he came back over and asked if I wanted to have a show at a downtown gallery where he knows the owners… (I am not that interested btw)

        So, that, plus your “Utter Nonsense” poem, blah blah… plus several days off… time to think… etc… and I have had a lot of emotional energy surfacing.

        Thanks for the help with that, I guess! This morning, after I was more distanced from the tidal wave of so much energy, I finally thought to myself, “She probably titled the poem that, for a reason” HAHA

        • Yousei Hime says:

          Good southern neighbors. How wonderful for the offer of a show, even if you aren’t interested. BTW, I like seeing your energy. I realize you quite a bit naturally, how else could you produce so many poems in a day. As far as the title goes, your comment was quite valid. I’m not sure the poem stands alone as it is, but it was great fun making it. I’ll use images from it for sure. Sounds like you had a good holiday. I’m glad.

  11. blissbait says:

    WOW oh WOW. This blows my mind. So many rooms here. Your words brought up a lot for me. It feels like a funeral I went to. And then others. Amazing. I will be back to reread when I have more time to spend more time. Thank You!!!!! Cheers and Namaste. 🙂

  12. Carmen says:

    Oh, I see. I just thought you dropped some acid before your big Thanksgiving dinner.

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