Saturday, November 06, 2010

Seven Sisters & San Fran

Embroidered Bag from Colombia
Photo by Michelle Kunert, Sacramento

—Donald R. Anderson and Marie Ross, Stockton

Bright and early, we trekked the way,

upon electric rails to San Fran bay.

One met one then another, till seven,

making our mark to be remembered forever.

There was a coffee shop on the rain-slick street;

we entered and wondered if we would ever make
it through the long line to drink our wake-up cup of coffee.

Next door to the coffee shop was a magnificent hotel lobby.
My friend and I peeked inside, and thought we were in the midst
of a European palace. It was so grand.

Our rendezvous with coffee, and then with sound,

as in the house of eccentricity we gorged on vowels and consonants.
Our poems recorded into high tech mic,

our verbs echoed through warm daylight.

It almost seemed like the critters, and skeletons on display
were eating the tangled messages; we thought the mic had betrayed us.

Books on the ladder-high book case and flags sporting many countries
were pinned to the walls in no man’s land.

Glorious in store was the walkway stretched before

the Civic Center and Asian Art museums.
By some Buddha or such, we posed arms outstretched

for camera, minuscule in between its huge fingers.

The haze slightly wet our skins; we felt as if we were in ancient Asian gardens,
with lotus blossoms floating leisurely in a Koi pond. The essence of the day,

and the excitement of jolting the mic, to our audible approval, 

we strutted to the BART station and reluctantly hopped on.


—Sandy Thomas

Score 3-2
2 outs, 2 on

bottom of the ninth
3 balls, 2 strikes
closer 38
pitches 90 mph

it's a slider, outside

a swarm
orange and black
descend on
the diamond

Giants take
the Pennant


—Sandy Thomas, Sacramento

Score 3-1
2 outs

bottom of the ninth
3 balls, 2 strikes
closer 38
pitches 90 mph

it's down the middle

a storm
orange and black
roar in
the stadium

Giants win
World Series


Thanks to today's contributors; Sandy Thomas figures, if it's worth one poem, it's worth two!

Tiger’s Eye Editor Colette Jonopulos writes: I am co-writing a book about the abuse of women in spiritual communities.  We'll have a classified ad in the next Poets & Writers.  If you know anyone who would like to contribute, please give them my e-mail address (  This is about being heard, but it is also about getting past it, and living an entirely different life.

Carol Louise Moon, one of the Ophidian contributors who will be reading along with Sandy Thomas and 11 other illustrious poets this coming Weds. at The Book Collector, sends us some Pleiades. According to Katherine Arcand at, the Pleiades form was created by Craig Tigerman, lead editor of Sol Magazine, in 1999. The Pleiades is a cluster of seven stars visible in the night time sky. The Greeks saw this cluster and named the stars after the seven daughters of Atlas and Pleione. According to myth, Orion the hunter was in love with the sisters and chased after them until the gods took them to safety, transforming them first into swans, and then into stars.

So the root of this form of poetry comes from the number seven; the Pleiades is a seven-line poem with few restrictions as to content. Pick an item that is sitting in front of you right now. Write down seven words about the item that describe it or that are related to it that all begin with the same letter as the first letter of the item you have chosen. In a Pleiades, the title's first letter defines the rest of the poem, and the title may be only one word. In the following seven lines, each line starts with the first letter of the poem's title.

Enjoy these examples from Carol Louise:

—Carol Louise Moon, Sacramento

Notable herbs with potent spells.
Nosegays of lavender, thyme and mint.
Never enough time;
not enough men.  The women
needle-and-thread sachets.  The
name of a sweetheart comes to mind:
“Nearer my God to Thee,” it is hoped.


—Carol Louise Moon

How happy all you flowers look; I
hope it isn’t true.  I’m not as
hopelessly happy as all of you.  I
happen to be in a very bad mood,
having nothing good to say about
“hyacinths”, which I can
hardly pronounce, anyway.


—Carol Louise Moon

You are already gone too long.
Your hair, your eyes, your gentle way;
yolk separated from the white—
yellow reminder of morning sun
yet never again the rooster-crowing-
yap-of-dog at my door.  You are too
young to have left me too soon.


Today's LittleNip: 

—Patricia A. Pashby, Sacramento

She turns and feels that something is not right—
a sense, a hunch—her stomach goes awry
and now her fear turns daylight into night.
She hurries to the door—lets out a cry
knowing her intuition does not lie.



Memorial to Downed Cyclists 
at Carlson Drive & J Street, Sacramento
Photo by Michelle Kunert