cinquain in pain

A cinquain is a five line poem with first line as title and final line restates it. Syllable count: 2-4-6-8-2.logo-napowrimo




farmer midwife

gets up at night to check

first time heifers need help birthing

spring push



photo by lynn






gun explosion

young father missing

community feels shock

evil darkens human thought

 – tragedy’s   harsh   realities –

one cannot undo desperate choice

maybe she will leave so he leaves her first

do not assume the mistakes of others

such could happen to any of us

relationships turn on an edge

hold fragile hearts tenderly

commit to love thru pain

forgive each again

God help us all





This poetry form, an “etheree”, consists of 10 lines of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 syllables.  Etheree verse can also be reversed and written 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.  Sadly, suicide is irreversible.

seems only the best are taken

To honor Rallyn Van Beek, Betty Mennega, Kara Tippets, Phyllis Meerdink, and Ed Zomermaand; whose loss is grieved, whose memory is treasured, whose faith is rewarded!

pilgrims on a journey

through lonely valley

of uncertain, unchosen

battles of aging, cancer,

treatments, injury and pain.

how to understand it?

how to go on? one step by

wobbly step, one tough day to next;

Spirit lifts struggling saints

 in present hard grief to

glimpse higher vision.

their suffering redeemed by

the Father for holy purpose as

spirits grow ever stronger

with time, faith and courage.

dying is simply a

passageway to paradise,

true rest, complete healing;

they know the Prince of Peace

who calls and carries them home.


photo: “Rose of Sharon” (crown anemone) in “Promised Land” (Israel)

when words fail


Words can speak life

into a person’s soul

but sometimes words

are only silent syllables,

empty vowels mouthed

between lame consonants

not knowing where to spit.


In raw personal disaster,

how can anyone find words

that won’t do more damage

to an already fragile psyche?

Shame, blame, trite phrases

prove how small irretrievable

words only multiply misery.


Words elude both tongue

and pen when faced with a

child’s death by miscarriage,

accident, suicide;  Language

languishes in presence of

slow painful suffering  by

cancer, AIDS, dementia.


Who has an answer when words fail?