Monday, December 31, 2012

End of year poem.

So in the course of looking for work and writing articles and all that stuff, I found myself sitting in my quiet house the other day enjoying the world's silence.  Then, of course, the silence was broken by the most incredible sounds.  We've all heard it before, but to me it was a revelation and inspiration even.  From my broken silence was born a poem.

Geese Cacophony
Kimberly L McClune
December 29, 2012

Afternoon silence
Quiets the heart
Like dusk descending slowly
Across the horizon

A slow crescendo
Dawns on the senses
Gradual growing

Non-rhythmic squawks
Unharmonious honks
Out of sync

Noise grows across the sky
Honks and flaps
In scattered V
Graceless beauty

Headed South
Focused and determined
The geese cacophony

This simple poem is a revelation because I have been so caught up in trying to find a job and doing all the other massively important things that must be done in a life that I have not written anything new and creative in quite a few months. 

I hope this poem brings to mind the very experience of having your silence broken by such uncoordinated song birds. 

Do enjoy the last moments of this year and take time to think back on the joys and only the joys for the remainder must be left behind at midnight.

**credit for photo - Wikipedia

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Here Comes Christmas Again!

Well, we're in the midst of the holidays again and I dare say we shall survive.  I know I will despite still looking for a permanent job, doing more than one volunteer internship as a grant writer, keeping up with my daughter and trying to do some creative writing too.  Unfortunately, try is all I've done on the creative front lately.  

I did participate in NaNoWriMo last month and successfully wrote over 50,000 words towards a book.  NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month and it was fun but hard work.  I was writing my memoir which is not a usual novel type for NaNo, they prefer that you write fiction.  I was able to participate and win in any case.  Now I have a great start for a project I had wanted to work on for a few years.

As for other creative writing outlets, there have been none lately.  I don't regret that I have been doing grant work and the memoir, but I do miss putting a poem on paper though.  

Despite my lack of poetic creation of late, I do have a holiday poem to share along with the picture that inspired it.  

Our Tree
By Kimberly L. McClune
December 6, 2011

Tall, proud and elegant
Showing its best side
Twinkling, reflecting majesty
An elegant representation

Hours of preparation are forgotten
Lingering on a pillow
Stretched out by a fire
Admiration abounds

Up high, near the top
She looks out across her domain
Peaceful and loving she watches
Holding fast all dreams
All wishes

Beneath the lowest bows
Colorful packages scattered
Bows and ribbons peek out
Small ones teeter on the edge
Large ones impose

From the lawn a gentle glow
Escapes the bare panes
Beckoning all to view
Graceful glinting colors
Lights shining brightly

Never has there been such a one as this
Last year seems ages away
Next year seems it will never come
Only now, only this year
Is our tree the best.

This poem, and even this picture, bring to mind memories and images of Christmases and Christmas trees in my past.  I've decorated both real and artificial trees over the years, some large, some small.  It's never mattered to me what type of tree I adorned with lights, ornaments and tinsel, it only mattered that I was joyful in doing so.  Of course, the decoration of a tree must be accompanied by not only music, but the presence of family and/or friends to make the experience complete.  I don't believe that a tree can be properly decorated by just one person.  At least, that's my experience.  The more the merrier!!!

So as you do your traditional things for the holidays this year, make sure to enjoy everything.  If you find things getting boring or you feel its no fun anymore, change things up and make them fun.  No matter what holiday you celebrate at this time of year, take the time to embrace the joy that it brings for you.  Also, embrace your friends and family and remind them just how much they mean to you.

Happy Holidays!

Monday, October 22, 2012

When There's Not Much Time to Write

I've been so busy lately with my job search, taking care of my daughter and doing some blog writing for others that I haven't done much poetry writing lately.  I have jotted down a few that I have been working on and wanted to share a seasonal one today.

I can't remember what prompted me to start this one, but I finished it today with renewed interest.  I seem to remember not knowing where I wanted this to go when I first began to write it out.  I like where it ended up. I hope you do as well.

Midnight Walk
By Kimberly L McClune
October 22, 2012

I took a midnight walk
On the spookiest night of the year,
Past unlit houses
Under barren trees where
Darkness lends a new perspective.

The trees,
Whose once lush and full canopy
Would shade the moons light,
Now gape as coloring, drying leaves
Depart, clearing pathways
For descending moonbeams.

The moon is near her fullest
Hovering magically within
A black sky laden with clouds
Masking the stars,
Threatening reflected beams.

Across an open field,
The moon escapes her veil.
She tats a lacey trim
At the tree-lined edge.
Beams cast down between
Barren branches weave
Delicate patterns on illuminated grass.

Once familiar objects
Now only darkened outlines.
A mailbox looks like a man,
A pot of flowers like an animal.
Even the trees
Become eerie specters in
Haunting moonlight.

Walking at midnight
On the spookiest night
Gives one a new perspective.


I must admit that it was easy to complete this one today.  I have been sitting at the computer listening to the trees rustle in the wind for a while now.  Autumn is in full swing with crisp air, sunny days, and crunching leaves beneath your feet.  This is the time of year that I feel the most inspired.  You will likely see more posts from me in the next two months, despite my job search activities, as my writing notebook becomes filled with ideas, half written works and jotted notes.

Enjoy the poem and enjoy the Fall.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Well, I have nothing to lose by trying again to be published in another issue of Poetry Quarterly.  I submitted four poems, all older works, to them this morning.  This was inspired by having just written my first poem in at least two months.  Recently, my time has been spent in study for a new career, job hunting and raising my child so there has not been much time for writing, as I had hoped.

The inspiration for this new poem was not what most expect.  It was a very personal poem, kind of a healing work.  You see some poems are inspired by beauty and what you glean from the world around you, and some are from the depths of your soul and express deep emotion.  Take a sonnet from Shakespeare.  These works are doubtless the inspiration from the depths of a soul tortured in the fullness of love.  I say tortured because love can be a difficult emotion.

To continue on the topic of inspiration, when I write about a tree or sunset, there is less emotion and more appreciation for beauty in that work, that desire to put pen to paper and describe my view.  I love to paint pictures with words, to make a scene come alive from the written page.  What I have been learning in the last year or so is to bring emotion up from the page as well and this is harder because that emotion comes from deep within me.  I find that I do less editing on a poem that is filled with emotion.  The feelings must be real and they must be raw on the page.  They must not be altered to make them sound or appear a certain way, they must be the way they first come to me from deep within or they are not true.

Now, when you see the poem I wrote this morning you will find that it has a sort of rhythm.  This was not necessarily intentional.  This is the way that it came to me.  Honestly, it came to me as a song as I drove home from my daughters school before 8am.  I sang the first few lines to myself then came in the house and started to write.  The poem I will share here is exactly what came from me first thing this morning.

I cannot say that famous poets or more learned poets would take the same position about writing as I do.  I also do not profess to be particularly learned on poetry.  However, I can say that I am pleased with the results I achieve in my own writing.  Others, whose opinions I value, have given me honest, positive and constructive feedback on my work.  This gives me cause to believe that I have a talent for poetry beyond just my own pleasure.  Whether the world would agree or not is something that I am not concerned about.  If I took on the weight of pleasing everyone the joy of writing and the restorative peace I receive from the process would be lost and I would give it up completely.

So enough about the process and on to the work I produced in very little time this morning.  I will not reveal the reasoning behind this work as it is personal and not important to reading and culling your own enjoyment and thoughts from it.

World of Dreams
By Kimberly L. McClune
September 19, 2012

In my world of dreams
I would love you better,
Hope would come more easily
Faith would be more natural
Dreams would all come true.

In my world of dreams
You would always come to me
My arms would open wide
We would be so comfortable
Just to be.

In my world of dreams
I would know you love me
Just the way I am
No need for forgiveness
You would know I love you, too.

In my world of dreams
We’d have all we needed
No more need for fear
Worries all behind us
Together, just we two.

Friday, July 20, 2012


Well, two days after the first publication announcement I received my second publication announcement.  Poetry Quarterly has published a dual issue.  They combined their Winter and Summer issues in what they call their "Tricky" or "Sneaky" Issue.  My other two poems, Passionate and Under a Cloud Speckled Sky are both in this double issue.
This link is where you can go to check out this issue and see my work.  The issue is only available for free for a short time, but can be purchased as well.  Of course I have a copy of both this and the previous Spring Issue.

I have shared these with my Writers Circle and received a nice response from all of them in congratulations for being published for the first time, even in an online journal.

Personally, I consider it a great honor and opportunity to be published alongside award winning poets and the other wonderful talents that I have read in both of these issues.  I strongly recommend any of the issues from this site to anyone who enjoys poetry.

Unfortunately, my job search, studying my online grant proposal writing course, watching my friends son and working a weekend job are keeping me from doing much writing this summer.  I miss putting my thoughts on paper, or in a Word document.  Every once in a while I will take out a sheet of paper where ever I am and jot down some phrases, but nothing complete has been written for a few months.

I consider myself in a time of living.  So much has been happening and there is so much to write about.  When things have percolated long enough and are ready, the writing will come.  That's kind of how poetry is for me.  When the thoughts/words are there, I write them down.  I find that if I try too hard to find the words for a poem in the first writing, then the poem will never come together for me.  I can go back and re work a poem to get it just right, but it has to be congealed at its first writing.

Enough about my writing style for now.  Suffice it to say that I am extremely proud and excited to be published.  If this year ends and I am still unemployed, I will at least end the year having reached a goal outstanding since childhood, to be published.

Good evening and good writing.

Monday, June 18, 2012


Well, the time has come at last.  I'm published!

After submitting a few poems to Poetry Quarterly over a year or so, they chose four of my poems to include in their publications this year.  Two of them are in their Spring Issue.  Check it out on their site.

My two are together on pages 17 & 18.  Smoke and High Rise Thunder.

This has been such a tumultuous year for me that the news of this and then seeing them in the publication brought me to happy tears.  What a joy to see this culmination of my loving work to knit together words into meaningful, thought provoking phrases that would be read by more than just my friends and family.

Today, for me, a dream has truly come to be.  Right now I feel that if I never had another piece published, I have at least touched some lives with my words.  However, I know that in a few days I will be inspired to submit more material to Poetry Quarterly, and even to other publications.

So I invite you to go to the site for this wonderful digest of poetry and enjoy any of their issues that are still available for free or subscribe to them or purchase any issues.  This is a favorite place for me to go to read current poets.

Hope I can sleep tonight!!!
Big Smiles at my house tonight!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Summer Break

So, my daughter is on summer break and we are trying to have a somewhat scheduled day of activities together. We both love to read and write, both journal and creative writing.  We also both want to exercise together over the summer so we will swim this afternoon and are walking the other days of the week.

I'm hoping to get more than journal writing done with her.  She has great ideas for stories and has written some very nice little plays in the past.  I think it would be fun to write poems together.  She is better at rhyming than I am, in fact, I purchased a rhyming dictionary recently.

So along with my job hunting and working for my friends small business, I am going to be doing some fun things with my girl that will hopefully produce more poems in the near future.  After all, someday I may have enough to feel I can publish a small book of my work.

So leave you, my readers, with some poetic thoughts from a day not to long in the past when I took a walk along a small canal near our little cottage of a home.

'The sky, blue and clear,
Rimmed with clouds fluffy, white,
Sparse, scattered Spring clouds
Cling to the horizon daring not to venture
To the center of the heavenly azure dome.'

Enjoy the remains of the season and prepare for the increased warmth of the next my friends.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Yes, It's a new poem

Given all the time I now have, one would think I'd be producing so much work, poems, stories, etc.  Well, I wish that were true. 
Today, however, I took a walk in the cool morning air and was so inspired and refreshed. 
For years I have found that I go 'outside' myself when I am in nature, outdoors, away from the confines of society (buildings).  That happened to me this morning.  An open conversation happened between me and my Creator, something that hasn't happened in years.  It took only moments to remember that He is everywhere and in everything, at least in my perception.
This poem was born of that realization.

Everything is You
By Kimberly L McClune
April 19, 2012

Lord, I sense You
In everything.
Nothing is without You.

Hearing You
Trees whispering
As wind moves through,
Bird's song
One calling to another.

New petals
Stretching to the Sun,
Clouds drifting
Across the heavens,
Images of You.

Trees bark
Rough, textured by time
Yet gentle, soft
Sand against the tide,
I touch You.

Sweet floral perfume
Rising from a garden,
Rich, pungent pine
Carried down a mountain
Embody Your essence.

On my palate
Fruits, tart
Refreshing nourishment,
Breads, wholesome,
Crusty yet tender sustenance.

Yes, Lord, everything,
Everything is You.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Many things to tell my readers

Though my readers may be few, many things have changed since my last post which was entirely too long ago.

First I must mention that Edmund Vance Cooke, who penned the poem I posted in January, wrote many wonderful poems that I found after that post.  I send thanks to the kindly balloon artist at the local restaurant for recommending him.

Next, I will reveal that I am now no longer employed in the insurance industry and am free to search for employment of another kind, or attempt to continue in that vein.  I have chosen to try for further insurance work because it pays well for someone like me with much experience, however, my dream to be a writer cannot be ignored any longer.  Having the time and the great desire cannot be ignored.

I am, therefore, putting as much effort as possible toward writing.  With the wonderful help of friends, I have been able to connect with a few people in writing fields and have learned of some ways to get into writing as an occupation.

My next wonderful news is that I now have four, yes that's FOUR poems that have been accepted for publication by Poetry Quarterly.  I am bursting still with excitement about that news.  Just when I was content to only share my poems with my parents, a few friends and the people at the Writer's Circle at the library, I find that my work is getting noticed by those outside my little circle.

As Maria said in the famous movie, "When God closes a door, somewhere He opens a window."

Well, even though a rather important door closed for me, some very beautiful windows are opening and I am so glad for them all.

Finally, I will post a couple of newer poems that I have not posted before.

Dream in Color
By Kimberly L. McClune
February 26, 2012

Flashes of moments cross my mind
Faces known and unknown speak to me
What they say I can’t remember
For a moment I am in a house
Then I am by a stream
Oh, the colors of this dream!

At first a simple room, I am alone
Then crowds appear in a marketplace
Everyone is trying to go somewhere
Where, I don’t know no one will say
Yet we’re on a team
Oh, the colors of this dream!

In a field, with a child hand in hand
Picking flowers and singing
Yellow and orange speckled greens
Surrounded by houses, now in a yard
Following the sunbeams
Oh, the colors of this dream!

Walking with her, talking with her
Caring for her is my pledge
Winding road, speeding car
Dream it over, and over, and over
I have saved her it seems
Oh, the colors of my dreams!

Running, we are being chased
Who are they running with me?
It chases us down a hall filled with people
Around corners to the water tank
We must jump was its scheme
Oh, the colors of my dream!


Blustery Day
By Kimberly L. McClune
December 31, 2011

Constant wind whispers past
Pressed upon it
Wave after wave of gusts
Each stronger than the next
Howling, pushing, wailing
Forcing their way
Ringing through distant chimes
Whistling through trees
Branches bend, sway, dance
At once calm
At once fierce
Beneath the gusts
Ever constant wind
Like a locomotive
Pulling cars behind it.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Found new poem

Was out last night with my sister and our girls.  The very cool balloon guy sat and talked with us about poetry and poets. He shared the name of this poet and most of this poem with us.  Of course, I had to come home and check out the entire work.  It is so incredible and necessary for every one to know  it, I had to share.
I thought this was the only work of poetry this man ever penned.  It was great to learn he wrote prolifically.

Edmund Vance Cooke (1866-1932)

How Did You Die?

              1        Did you tackle that trouble that came your way
              2        With a resolute heart and cheerful?
              3        Or hide your face from the light of day
              4        With a craven soul and fearful?
              5        Oh, a trouble's a ton, or a trouble's an ounce,
              6        Or a trouble is what you make it,
              7        And it isn't the fact that you're hurt that counts,
              8        But only how did you take it?

              9        You are beaten to earth? Well, well, what's that?
            10        Come up with a smiling face.
            11        It's nothing against you to fall down flat,
            12        But to lie there -- that's disgrace.
            13        The harder you're thrown, why the higher you bounce;
            14        Be proud of your blackened eye!
            15        It isn't the fact that you're licked that counts,
            16        It's how did you fight --  and why?

            17        And though you be done to the death, what then?
            18        If you battled the best you could,
            19        If you played your part in the world of men,
            20        Why, the Critic will call it good.
            21        Death comes with a crawl, or comes with a pounce,
            22        And whether he's slow or spry,
            23        It isn't the fact that you're dead that counts,
            24        But only how did you die?

Friday, January 6, 2012

New Poems

Have been writing here and there, but the holidays have worn me out.
Here are a couple examples of what I have been up to lately.

Night Journey
By Kimberly L. McClune
January 5, 2012

Wakened by urgent need
Warm blankets left behind
Sweater and boots donned
Out into the pitch black night

Useless dim beam leads
Logs and bushes trip
Branches and brambles scratch
Run headlong into outhouse wall

Useless beam goes out
Drop flashlight
Blindly run hand over wall
Outhouse door lost

Search side by side
By side by side
At last! The door is found!
Handle turned, door opened.

Black, odor filled room
Gentle, careful steps
Slow, searching movements
Door slams shut, pushing me inside

Lurch forward, face first
Hands outstretched onto seat
Found it!
No harm, no foul (pun intended)

Careful completion of mission.
Wonder how to return safely.

Blustery Day
By Kimberly L. McClune
December 31, 2011

Constant wind whispers past
Pressed upon it
Wave after wave of gusts
Each stronger than the next
Howling, pushing, wailing
Forcing their way
Ringing through distant chimes
Whistling through trees
Branches bend, sway, dance
At once calm
At once fierce
Beneath the gusts
Ever constant wind
Like a locomotive
Pulling cars behind it.