Posted in inspirational, poetry


In the dream
the ancestors showed me
the scene.
An owl looking west
perched above
in the woods.
There’s more, the dream is bold.

A whispered tale
only, in my solace, in the turning darkness,

my usual forays in hallways and destinations

trying to find my room

then the scene

changes reflecting internal visions.

You will know.
Your guide is near.

This time you waited outside.

Posted in poetry, stream of consciousness writing

Essence Art




embrace change

devour listening

look brother

know thyself

with rhythm angel





the doodle of a forgotten page


a fool or a sage

words reflect who you are.



in the clear night sky

I feel as if I’m struggling to fly

in the dream I see the produce truck

laid out with radiant foods, fresh

neatly boxed

ready for market.

Posted in friends, inspirational, poetry, Writing for healing

You Left Me

Dear readers, I’m so sorry to be MIA but it’s been nuts lately. I haven’t forgotten you.

We have lost some dear friends and family members recently. Once again  I’m writing about grief. I haven’t been able to bring myself to compose something about Navajo angel Ashlynn Mike. Her little life must be honored and remembered. Words fail me completely with her death. The only thing I can think of is that our adopted mom, Bettye, crossed over in time to take Ashlynn’s hand and to comfort her on the other side. Yes, I believe in such things.



You Left Me

I thought we had one more visit
and until then
a phone call would suffice.
It was not to be
because you up and died
you rascal, you!
You left me.

This blast of grief is different
and catches me like a trumpet–
Gabriel’s trumpet,
fierce and full in my ear at sundown
and first thing in the morning,
doubling me down at noon.
You left me.

Why did I mistake the brilliant
orange tanager who landed in the mesquite,
a sign a symbol I should have cherished
by action and not writing some silly line
in my journal,
brief, non-committed.
You left me.

I thought I had one more visit
and you sent the warning through a bird
they always do that, you know…
there’s a warning, a message.
but I thought there was time, dammit.
It’s over.
You left me.

at bettye's summer 2007 004

With my dear friend and adopted Mom, Bettye B. RIP


copyright © 2016 by Susan E. Rowland


Posted in poetry, Writing for healing

The Cute Adopted Pet

willow pebbles and blair

New Year’s day is quiet

save for the ceaseless barking dog,

a new sound in the housing development

behind the wash near the desert willows.

I imagine the puppy’s face as the children

love and cuddle her cuteness, excited beyond containment,

until they grow tired of her.

They’re are off to the movies

to see Star Wars,

the entertainment of the holiday season,

leaving their pet to howl,

moaning, untended and alone

like an orphan.

Journal prompt: write about your own pets. Have you raised puppies? Are you a dog person or a cat person? What about other kinds of pets? Include your thoughts and experiences on noise. Do barking dogs bother you? Do you adopt?

Photo: above-memory of our last family dog as a puppy circa 1987. The kids begged and pleaded to keep one of the puppies from our last beloved  canine mama, Teddy Bear. They were captivated by watching the birthing process. The kids did a good job raising Pebbles with lots of help from Mom and Jesse. It’s been a long time since we owned a family dog. We’ll see…when the time comes….







Posted in poetry

Images are Enough

When words hurt the head and images are enough to tax the most tenacious of souls, nothing but a light touch will heal.

A woman struggles to keep her precious baby from drowning in the ocean;  they are called refugees, unknown families in a watery cavern of desperation- flashes upon the news.

In the womb of some state somewhere another mother insanely submerges her two little boys only to drown and die alone-thrashing bubbles of confusion.

A vengeful maniac unloads bullets into an officer at a gas station and we must swallow the vitriol from yet another shooting death. No matter anymore, what race, what skin, what blood type. What significance is the eye color, or nationality; the ideology of a revolving door of hopes and dreams of a multitude.

The identification marks of a human being beat inside a mother’s heart.

I pull old sheets and towels from the shelves in the closet, an attempt to make sense of my own life, to clear and clean as if my motions might help someone somewhere. The scraps of cloth bagged near the unused sewing machine remind me of what I have not done.

In a pasture down the road a pony whinnies at the scent of fresh hay and apples.

The words sometimes hurt my head in the midst of day.

Images are enough.


Posted in blog challenge, poetry, social commentary

Sonnet for the Future-Mama’s Warning


Day Ten, final prompt of Writing 201. How did we get to the end so fast? I will miss the class. I feel like I hardly got started with the material, but that’s the way it always is. That means there is more to do, more to write, paint, photograph, and create! Hope you guys have a great weekend. (((hugs)))


Prompt: future

Form: sonnet

Device: chiasmus


If, in a moment, the future I could see

The earth’s children, healthy, well-tended and fed,

The loveliest flower would overcome all misery,

Garnering finely threaded futures, not futures of fine thread.

‘Tis never for myself concerned am I;

Rather I am grievous over the suffering of mere innocents.

Who doth laugh in the face of tragic moments, look to the sky,

For your power is tendered by the trumpet’s lament.

You will stand with insatiable greed, your greed never filled,

Like Scrooge, the chains will rattle because you lacked righteous vision.

And let me add further concerns for the blood that has spilled:

If you forsake the elderly along with your insensitive base derision,

Only to please the need for more and greater gold, the madness of gain;

You will never rest wisely for lusting after profit, profit not, my friend, from another’s pain.


Copyright ©2015 by Susan E. Rowland



Posted in poetry, stream of consciousness writing, Writing for healing

Oracle of the Pacific


oracle of the pacific copy

Writing 201 Day Nine

Prompt: landscape

Form: found poetry

Device: enumeratio (counting, naming one by one)



                                                                             Oracle of the Pacific

Little bird in a basket, flying to the sea,

I am an illustrated journal

exploring archetypal imagery;

I am the oracle of the Pacific,

stitching design, twining, splintwork, plaiting, weaving,

beading the light with 1000 spirit guides.


Discussion. This was  a free form take on nature/seascape combining basketweaving, oracles, and journaling which are some of my favorite things. Hey, what can I say? You never know what found poetry will bring. Have fun. 🙂












Posted in humor, memories of houses, poetry

Ode to a Junk Drawer


junk drawer messy

Writing201 Day Eight

prompt: drawer


device: apostrophe (speaker in the poem addresses another person or object)


Ode to a Junk Drawer


The place where collective clutter is dumped

Why do you get such a terribly bad rap?

Doesn’t everyone have a junk drawer in the kitchen?

I’m most happy to admit ‘tis one in my own life.

Like a place where wayward thoughts and orphaned paragraphs reside,

Where batteries, paper clips, coupons, pliers and chip bag clips hide.


Oh little junk drawer, what would we be without you?

When children need an extra unopened toothbrush pack,

Or Dad is looking for a piece of tape and the way to finish a project with glue.

You hold such treasures, I’m always amazed to regard your myriad secrets,

Cleaned popsicle sticks, pens, and a favorite antique sealing wax,

Mom found the perfect tool for the job, right down to some yellow colored tacks.


Oh little junk drawer, how you long to be organized with care,

In one fell swoop on spring cleaning day.

We gathered all your contents sorted and arranged so well,

Scissors, a couple of good forever stamps, and a tiny travel pack

complete with comb, nail clipper and emery board,

A gift from Aunt Mildred, I continue to hoard.


junk drawer clean with magnifying glass


Journal prompt: Do you have a junk drawer in your house? What do your drawers generally look like, if you are willing to share. Write about the contents.






Posted in poetry, romance

Prose Poem for Jesse


Prompt: fingers

Form: prose poetry

Device: assonance


Meeting Jesse

Sure you had me at the handshake and I glanced at your fingers, the warmth came through them at hello. People tell me at the party that you are single as was I, they love to say your name, Jesse. My heart had been flighty after a decade of fighting. My kid’s dad was bitey; we argued like oil and water. A picky man has skinny fingers, yours were nice and round. You sanded wood with those hands, stacked the wares in your shop. A man of chess, your fingers were firm, slow, gentlemanly, sometimes with an air of authority but I needed what you had and that would be security. It’s not my nature, baby, to be in combat so sure you had me at the handshake. Now the years have made us strong, we survived the tribulations.  When we hold our old hands I’m still basking in the man, because of the name they all loved to say, baby, you had me at the handshake when I met an artist named Jesse.

Posted in poetry, social commentary

A Ballad for Rosa Parks

Rough draft

    Day Six Writing 201

Prompt: A heroic, or a heroine-type personality using Ballad

Device: epistrophe


Dear children gather ‘round and let me sing you a ballad

For certainly now’s the time to be saying,

She was born on the fourth of February 1913

And would help change the course of the world, oh sing praises,

      She would change the course of the world.


Now people would talk about the bus ride that day

When Rosa’s finely-done job served her rest,

A bullying bozo tried to push her around,

But she said no and changed the course of the world, oh sing praises,

      She would change the course of the world.


Now kids, don’t ever let the story be ill-related

About how Rosa Louise stood her ground,

When her last straw was tested, she looked the devil in the eye,

She said no and changed the course of the world, oh sing praises,

      She would change the course of the world.


Now let me say it out loud all my brothers and sisters

Lest the month of Black History quickly pass,

It’s time to sing the ballad of a lady who gave us courage

She would change the course of the world, oh sing praises,

     She would change the course of the world.


The important day was not something she’d  planned, my friends

Her personality was pious, devoted to others,

However when the brutality of Jim Crow could n’ere be avoided

She would change the course of the world, oh sing praises,

     She would change the course of the world.


So it is time for my ballad to come to an end, dear people

And should you travel to Alabama some day,

You might want to take a look at the sun on the streets,

She would change the course of the world, oh sing praises,

     She would change the course of the world.


© Copyright 2015 by Susan E. Rowland