July 25, 2017

Haiku Sticky #419

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


first garden
her Facebook page

July 23, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

With many thanks to Tara Smith who took the photo at her farm in upstate New York!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. Photo © Tara Smith, used with permission.


the flap of sheets
fans the labrador's nose
July heat

July 21, 2017

Poetry Friday--"Dear Bee"

The other day I deliberately and forcefully applied the sole of my slipper to a large ant in my kitchen. I found myself apologizing. I really would rather redirect little creatures back outside, but with ants, it's too daunting a mission.

I wondered what Emily Dickinson would have done. (This really didn't come out of the blue, I had recently watched the newly released DVD, A Quiet Passion.) The internet is wonderful and it allowed me to find her poems online and search for "ant" within the text. I have to assume that the negative result is because Miss Emily didn't write about ants. Probably because she'd dealt with them in the same manner as I did!

Of course I found a gazillion references to bees. So, I wrote this little ditty à la Emily Dickinson. It contains her beloved bee, and also, the neglected ant.

I hope it scans well for you. I tried singing the lines to both "The Yellow Rose of Texas" and the theme song to Gilligan's Island. It worked for me, but it might not work for you. (I wrote about singing Emily Dickinson poems here; also check out the comments for that post.)

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


Dear Bee:

You and all your kindred folk
dwell in the world outside.
In the fields, among the oaks,
there's nought for you inside

My cluttered home, where you will see:
the gray of dust and grime.
Do not come in. Heed my plea,
or, be subject to my crime

Of expelling you. Whacking you.
Rendering you nonextant.
Warn all your friends! It's up to you!
My apologies to the ants.

Katie at The Logonauts is playing host to the Round-Up this week. Do stop by!

July 18, 2017

July 16, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


...the bouquets that go

July 14, 2017

Poetry Friday--It's National Mac and Cheese Day!

Inspired by Tabatha Yeatts' post on donuts two weeks ago, I have decided to celebrate another beloved food--macaroni and cheese. July 14 has been designated as National Mac and Cheese Day and I'm celebrating with a non-caloric mac and cheese poem! I hope other bloggers will be celebrating the day, too.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


It's All about the Crumbs

Macaroni and cheese is
a diet-busting
tongue coating
easily going
down the gullet
dinner-time staple.

Go the extra step
and finely crush
a sleeve of crackers
sprinkle them over
the top, dot with
butter and bake
until the crumbs
are golden brown.

What you now have
is a magnific
mac and cheese.
That little crunch
surprises the palate
pleases the plebeian
gratifies the gastronome
exemplifies America.

Who knew I'd be writing a patriotic poem? If I were to go back, I probably would have used a word other than magNIFic. [Imposing in size or splendor : exalted.] It's not common, and people will probably read it as magnificent, or magnifique. Magnifique sort of negates the American emphasis of the poem. What word would you suggest?

My favorite addition to macaroni and cheese is fresh tomatoes. What's yours? Or do you prefer it plain? The good old blue box kind? Cheddar, American? What cheeses go into your mac and cheese? Do you make a cream sauce first? And as for the crumbs, I like the original Ritz crackers, but you may have another preferred crumb. What a versatile dish! I even love it cold.

I feel badly for those with dairy allergies. At least there's now plenty of gluten-free varieties of macaroni for those with gluten or wheat issues.

If you're short on time, you can whip up a single-serving size in a microwaveable coffee mug. I've done it and recommend you give it a try! Here's the simple recipe I've used (your quantities and cooking times may vary):

In a large mug or deep bowl (a Pyrex one-cup measure works well), stir in 1/3 cup uncooked macaroni and 1/2 cup water. Microwave for 3 minutes, stir, then microwave for an additional 2 minutes.

Stir in a scant 1/4 cup milk and approximately 1/2 cup shredded cheddar. Cook one minute more.

You can add crumbs at this point and put the mug under the broiler, but that makes for more prep, risks burning the crumbs, and, results in a mug that is too hot to handle. In other words, skip the crumbs.

Word of warning: you may need to soak your mug for a while after eating, although you could probably begin by greasing the mug.

Tabatha Yeatts: The Opposite of Indifference is hosting the Poetry Friday Round-Up, so head over there for more non-caloric poetry treats!

July 11, 2017

Haiku Sticky #417

For today, a cherita instead of a haiku.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


political rants

go unanswered
by a cat

one of several
reasons she prefers
to live alone

July 9, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

A little something inspired by my friend Pamela Ross. We, along with several others, have been discussing attending the Highlights workshop, "The Craft and Heart of Writing Poetry for Children" in October.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. The photo was taken several years ago at the Andres Institute of Art.


poised on the threshold
in or out?
the doorknob remains
in your hands

July 7, 2017

Poetry Friday--Back by Popular Demand

Some of you asked that I continue my Katku series, so, since you asked...here are three more Katku!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "The Rider" by Edwin Lord Weeks.


cat perched...
the swivel desk chair
holds a surprise

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Cherry Blossoms" by Lilla Cabot Perry (1911).


none actually
saw the vase tip over
...mopping up

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Morning Light" by William MacGregor Paxton.


east-facing window
cat hopes to catch the birds
if only by glimpse

Carol at Beyond Literacy Link will be rounding up the poetry links this week!

Next Friday, July 14, is National Macaroni and Cheese Day! Mac and cheese is one of my all-time favorite foods, so, I'm planning on having a mac and cheese poem ready to celebrate. How about you? Will you join the celebration, too? Have a great week!

July 4, 2017

Haiku Sticky #416

Happy Independence Day. This a a rather melancholy senryu. It's not a good feeling when you're constantly thinking about moving to another country.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


a renewed wish to be

July 2, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. Dude ranch ad Sunset, 1898. Cowgirl photo courtesy George Eastman Museum.

June 30, 2017

Poetry Friday--The Round-Up Is Here!

Yee ha! It's the last of this first half of the year's Round-Ups. The Fourth of July is around the corner and summer is in full swing! So, let's get started!

I came upon the name, Hélène Dutrieu, quite by accident--she turns out to have been one of the most fascinating women, ever! Hélène Dutrieu [1877-1961] was what I would call a real hot ticket! I hope to find out more about her one day soon, but her Wikipedia entry was enough to spark a bit of illustrated poehistory!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


Hélène Dutrieu: The Bare Facts

She conquered
as a cyclist,
as an auto racer,
and gravity
as an aviator.

Still, she could not
conquer prejudice.

Women of daring
and accomplishment
expected push-back.

Hélène received it
in the form of
fashion criticism.

A Paris couturier
designed her flight
suit, yet Hélène was
lambasted for what
she neglected
to wear in the air--
her corset.

Please use InLinkz to leave a link to your post. In the past, people from Australia had a problem using InLinkz (probably due to the time difference), if you have problems, please leave the link in the comments section and I will add it for you. Many thanks!

June 27, 2017

Haiku Sticky #415

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


after weighing
the risk of catastrophe
she still hits "send"

June 25, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

Inspired by Jama Rattigan's fortune cookie post this past Friday. This is more of a pun than a poem!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. Photo by Orel Hamawi CC BY-SA 4.0.


fortune cookies...
factory seconds truly

June 22, 2017

Poetry--Had Enough Katku?

This is the last Friday of Katku before I'll take a break. They are kind of addictive--at least as far as creating them is concerned.


winter sun
in complete control
of the cat


cat watches
the neighbor's cat


unfed cat's look
burns right through me
...she walks away

The Poetry Friday Round-Up is taking place at My Juicy Little Universe. Next week, it will be here!

June 20, 2017

Haiku Sticky #414

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


June kitchen
the diligence of ants
almost admirable

June 18, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


day at the shore

the blinding reflection
of sun on the surf

motion, smells,
the squark of gulls,
and, his imagination

June 16, 2017

Poetry Friday--More Katku

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Flower Girl" by Charles Cromwell Ingham [1846] courtesy The Athenaeum.


a gift of flowers...
cat develops a taste
for carnations

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Erastus Salisbury Field" [circa 1836] by Henry Thomas Robbins courtesy The Athenaeum.


breakfast delayed...
cat practiced in the art
of payback

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Prelude" [1882] by Charles Sprague Pearce courtesy The Athenaeum.


the cat's song
...early morning

Carol's Corner is the location for this week's Round-Up!

June 13, 2017

June 11, 2017

June 9, 2017

Poetry Friday--Katku

I have given myself a new project for the summer--Katku. Katku is a name I've come up with for cat haiku, which I've written and illustrated with works of art. The works, by generally unknown American artists, have been altered slightly by the addition of my cat's head. It's a project that combines my love of cats, haiku, and art! Plus, it makes me laugh, and keeps me out of trouble. I posted my first Katku on Happy Haiga Day! this past Sunday and I've repeated it today along with two more:

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Preparing to Fish (Boys Fishing)" [circa 1846] by James Henry Cafferty courtesy Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth.


the cat stares
fishing for the tuna
in my sandwich

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "Boy with Red Peonies" by Robert Lewis Reid [circa 1910] courtesy The Athenaeum.


curtain undulates
I feign surprise
as the cat leaps

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. "The Favorite" by Jean-Leon Gerome Ferris [1890] courtesy The Athenaeum.


cat's acknowledgement of
a human's request

Visit Mary Lee at A Year of Reading where the Poetry Friday Round-Up is in full-swing.

June 6, 2017

Haiku Sticky #412

The spring of 2017 in 17 syllables!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

June 4, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

I had a bit of photo editing fun putting my cat's head over the head of a boy in this painting, "Preparing to Fish (Boys Fishing)" [circa 1846] by James Henry Cafferty (1819-1869). I wrote a haiku to fit the painting and the character of my cat.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. Painting courtesy Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth.


the cat stares...
fishing for the tuna
in my sandwich

June 2, 2017

Poetry Friday--Ekphrastic Cherita

A few weeks ago I spent several hours at the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) in Salem, MA. Although I thought I wouldn't like the exhibit titled, "WOW® World of WearableArt™," I found myself enjoying the show immensely.

The stated purpose of the design competition that formed the basis of the exhibit is to
"get art off the walls and onto the body."
The competition's requirement was that the artwork outfit be wearable by a model, not just appear in a sketch or on a mannequin.

The variety of materials used is mind-boggling--from standard leather to milk-carton-type plastic to re-purposed handcuffs.

Here are a few of the photos I took during my visit and the cherita they inspired.

smell of well-oiled leather

sufficient to alert
her senses

her skin still
tingles even though
he is gone

near dawn

field mice feast on rice
between the cobblestones

his new mother-in-law
tallies up the cash
in their wedding cards

car show & swap meet

the 70-year-olds
around 50s models

grinning with each
story dredged up
from god-knows-where

after surgery

an appointment
at the lingerie shop

the weathered skin
of the woman who
fits the bras

Valentine's Day

she fingers
a rose quartz talisman

her mailbox empty
except for the junk mail
...same as every day

Photos and cherita © Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

For those who don't know the terms "ekphrasis" and "cherita," ekphrasis is art about art. Cherita is a small poem with 3 stanzas of 1, 2, 3 lines, and tells a story.

If you're in the Boston area, please be aware that the "WOW® World of WearableArt™" ends on Sunday, June 11.

Buffy's Blog will be hosting the Round-Up this week. See you there!

May 30, 2017

May 28, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

After seeing what I refer to as "the push heard round the world," I dug up this illustrated poem that I hadn't posted before because I had grown tired of posting poems of repugnance and recompense.

The repugnancy, unbelievably, continues to increase, and really, some sort of payback is necessary for all the damage done to our country's reputation. If you saw the video, you couldn't help but note that the featherless peacock looked clueless standing in the crowd of legitimate leaders.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


The Emperor

is not a suit an emperor
can have tailor made.
The nakedness of
his insecurity
results in barely
suppressed giggles.
Giggles lead to guffaws.
And where might
guffaws lead?

May 25, 2017

Poetry Friday--2017 Mass Poetry Festival Review, Part 2

Today's review consists of a writing exercise that was made available to all at the 2017 Mass Poetry Festival, and, some photos.

Many of the festival's events were held at the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM), and in the atrium area near the cafeteria, something different is featured each year. In the past there has been a typewriter orchestra performance, reading of "bad poetry" contest winning poems, chalk drawing and other crafty ideas. This year, Montserrat College of Art set up a flower vendor's cart with free paper flowers (the stem was a pencil). It was both a writing prompt and a souvenir of the festival.

How clever is this?

The instructions are:
Write a poem that begins: After the rain it all looked different. Make sure your poem contains specific details about the landscape, the glistening, the spring flowers, and perhaps the mood of the speaker.

Here is my poem. You will notice it is all about the mood of the speaker! After avoiding several cars plowing through puddles, I was slightly jaded about the rain. No stinkin' glistening flowers for me! (And maybe I was a little influenced by current events?)


After the rain
it all looked different.
Now the drivers
deliberately drove their
cars through puddles.
Pedestrians splashed
became the goal in a game
that requires minimal
skill but maximum

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Since Salem is such a walkable city, and I did a fair amount of walking, I thought I'd also share a few photos that have nothing to do with the festival, but simply show the city's unexpected delights found between the raindrops.

Glamor shots for wannabe witches.

Shop window display.

My favorite find! Note his shark bicycle helmet!

Don't even think about pouring your stale beer down this street drain!

The PEM is undergoing construction of an addition, so the museum is advertising current and upcoming exhibitions on Jersey barriers in front of the site. The horror movie posters exhibit looks like fun, but if you want to see it, you'd better go in August. When September comes along, Salem turns into tourist-central and parking is at a minimum at least until mid-November.

A little passive aggressive, don't you think?

This photo was taken last year, but I imagine the scene is still the same, although I didn't pass this particular building on my recent visit.

It rained on and off all festival weekend, yet somehow, I managed to miss "Raining Poetry." You'll have to read about it here.

Margaret at Reflections on the Teche will be hosting the Round-Up this week. I believe school is out now for Margaret, I hope she has a great summer! (And you, too!)

May 23, 2017

Haiku Sticky #410

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


drawn into
another cat video
...missing her

May 21, 2017

Happy Haiga Day!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


The Cracks

They fear
he will fall
through the cracks
not recognizing
that the cracks
will be what's