2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 17 – ‘Behind the Forced Smile’

forced smile

Day 17’s prompt: Write a nice and/or mean poem

 

 

‘Behind the Forced Smile’

I try to be nice,

Smile warmly,

Grin and maintain

A cheerful tone,

Nod politely

And answer chirpily

(Even if inside,

I’m slowly going barmy).

 

Most requests

I can swiftly address

With minimal effort,

But if constantly pressed

To point of stress,

My jolly façade soon cracks,

Revealing the pitiless man

Behind the jaunty mask…

 

I don’t try to be mean,

But it’s an inevitable scene

When I run out of steam,

The weight of expectation

Causing eternal frustration

And those responsible deeming

Me as acting unreasonably,

Ignorant to damage they’re causing…

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 16 – ‘Blocking Out the Beast’

blocking the beast

Day 16’s prompt: Write a ‘response’ poem

As I often do when presented with a ‘response’ prompt, I chose to write a poem responding to an earlier poem in the month, in this case Day 10’s (‘Beast Beneath the To-Do List’)….

 

 

‘Blocking Out the Beast’

I now know the nature

Of this beast,

All-consuming,

Devourer of sanity

If given opportunity-

But now I can fight

Against its savage bite

By simply ignoring

Its unneeded ferocity…

 

So many roars are demand

And tasks that can’t stand

To be torn callously from

What matters here and now-

Through this calm reasoning

I am finally silencing

The beast whose claws seized

So much of my mind and body

And very nearly consumed me…

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 15 – ‘The Meaning of Quiet Moments’

powerofmeditation

Day 15’s prompt: Take the phrase “Meaning of (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. 

 

‘The Meaning of Quiet Moments’

We should all be scheduling

Those moments of quiet reflection

And bubbles of contentment;

The Sundays of our existence

To be enjoyed and savoured

Before Monday’s manic hecticness…

 

If life was all crazed dashing

From wall-to-wall responsibility

We’d be locked in an eternity

Of quiet but choking insanity;

There is no hope of stability

If trapped in a race of anxiety.

 

The secret meaning of quiet moments

Is for the mind to squeeze in silence

Between the loud, blaring events

Of a world frantic and unrelenting;

We’d rediscover the relaxed component

Just through breathing and focus…

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 14 – ‘The Healing Power of Memory’

memory

Day 14’s prompt: Write a memory poem

‘The Healing Power of Memory’

The warming glow

Of old photos

Soothes our souls;

Precious memories

Looking back at me

Reassuring and comforting

In those times of life

Tainted by sadness and strife.

 

Sometimes reminiscing

Can keep us going,

Remind us of the reasons

To keep on living;

Remembering gives hope

Of new days to come,

When we’ll forget current pains

And surely smile again…

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 13 – ‘Friday the 13th’

friday-the-13th-ftr

Day 13’s prompt: Write a ‘luck’ poem

‘Friday the 13th’

Friday the 13th,

A day usually deemed

As mystically unlucky

By dubious superstition

And a movie series

Of macabre distinction…

 

But in the chaotic misery

That is the year 2020,

This arbitrary aligning

Of month and week

Is met with shoulder-shrugging

And indifferent apathy…

 

It’s just the next dawning

Of another day locked in

A haze of confusion

And crippling anxiety,

A world nervously awaiting

The next stage of calamity…

 

Days have blurred seamlessly

During this great uncertainty,

Between worry and thumb-twiddling

We are all patiently waiting

For the glorious morning

Where our luck changes, finally.

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 12 – ‘6:45am’

6-45am

Day 12’s prompt: Write a ‘Number in the Title’ poem

 

‘6:45am’

I roll to my side

Groggy-eyed

As cat leaps

Pawing, meowing

Onto the bed

Demanding to be fed.

 

I try to fight

The unwelcome daylight,

Moan and grumble

Something unintelligible

As I strive to snooze

Before making a move.

 

But my simple longing

For cosiness of doing nothing

Must continue unrequited

As there is no respite

From the daily whirlwind

Of pressure and responsibility.

 

But I can still yet dream

Of days of just these covers, and me.

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 11 – ‘The Power of the Red Pen’

red_pen_corrections

Day 11’s prompt: Write a ‘colour’ poem

 

‘The Power of the Red Pen’

Some poems are best left to stew

For a day or two,

The initial rush of words left

To silently sit still;

Once a few days have passed,

A discerning eye can be cast

After each sound and part

To determine the impact

Of their rhythm and cadence…

 

This is when a red pen strikes

To callously cross with crimson line,

To chop and change the design

Of a poem’s reason or rhyme;

Some may see it as pitiless

For a work to be so brazenly edited

In harsh amending tone of scarlet,

But a poem may only reach potential

If met with this fiery amendment…

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 10 – ‘Beast Beneath the To-Do List’

to do list

Day 10’s prompt: Write an easy and/or difficult poem

‘Beast Beneath the To-Do List’

It looked so simple

On the surface,

Deceptively easy,

A sure-fire cinch

To be completed quickly-

But once I drill in

To the nitty-gritty within

Waiting and snickering,

My heart sinks instantly…

 

So many niggling intricacies

And pesky little objectives

Combine to create a terrifying

Beast of burden and difficulty-

Always roaring and demanding

When time is rapidly depleting,

A constant foe I’m battling

After being so naïve

To dare to even believe

It would not utterly consume me…

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 9 – ‘Our Time’

holding hands

Day 9’s prompt: Take the phrase “Our (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem.

This one ended up being a bit more sentimental than I intended…but I hope it affirms the importance of sharing relaxing time with those you love…

‘Our Time’

After all the frenzied rushing

Of tightly-crammed meetings,

Frantic facilitating

And thankless chasing,

The only thing keeping me going,

My reason for living-

Is the thought of sharing

Precious hours resting

With the one cherished being

For who my love is enduring.

 

We’ll lie back in pure reverie

Of each other’s company,

Hold each other closely

Whilst sheltered safely

From all the daylight lunacy.

In this peace our eyes meet

And we’re both silently smiling,

Grateful for the other to be

Within this fleeting serenity,

Our time to escape the insanity.

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a

2020 Nov PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 8 – ‘A Christmas Tree Comes Out Early’

xmastree

Day 8’s prompt: Write a ‘persona’ poem (A persona poem is one in which you take on the persona of someone or something else)

So as I ended up putting up the Christmas tree and decorations last night, much earlier than usual (as I suspect a lot of others will do this year), it seemed the logical thing to do was to write a poem from the perspective of the tree itself! Enjoy, and I hope the imminence of the holiday season (whatever form it may take this year), is keeping you all going…

 

‘A Christmas Tree Comes Out Early’

I’ve been wrestled from the box

Waiting in the spare room

Somewhat earlier this year-

Unearthed and thrust on display

In an attempt to spread cheer

During times of chaos and dismay…

 

I watch the weary humans

Suddenly entranced with wonder

As they carefully attach

Gaudy trinkets and baubles

To my stark naked branches

(As is the somewhat baffling custom).

 

I usually resent the tarnishing

Of my perfectly adequate

And dignified default appearance,

But this is an exception

As I know they need celebration

In midst of this devastation.

 

Seeing their smiling faces

Does warm this snowy fir,

Knowing I’ve granted relief

From the draining restrictions.

This Christmas might be different,

But can still be one of happiness…

 

the awakening

Like this poem? Read more in my first poetry collection, ‘The Awakening’, available NOW!

Paperback – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Awakening-Selection-Poems-Stuart-Peacock/dp/1911476335

eBook-: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017BZBH6M</a