Thursday, July 31, 2014

Day 31 Creative Bloomings Camp Back home

Back Home from Vacation

Week One: Exhausted. Unpack. What was I doing before I left and why?
Week Two: Ah yes, I remember. It has caught up to me with a vengeance.
Week Three: Up to my ears in to-dos.
Week Four: Catching up a bit
Week Five: Start looking at travel brochures.
Week Six: Major project accomplished
Week Seven: Itching to go somewhere
Week Eight: Time for a vacation.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Day 30 Creative Bloomings camp Goodbybe

Goodbye Poeming Camp

Instead of singing around the campfire,
we tap on laptop keys in our homes.
Instead of swimming, canoeing,
horseback riding, we play
with words, prompts and metaphors.
Instead of gobbling hotdogs and s’mores,
we feast on each other’s creativity.
We never see our fellow campers,
but we enjoy each other’s company.
Our camp counselors did a good job
and now I wonder, what next? 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Day 29 Creative Bloomings Camp Don't want to go home

Camp Ends

The river gurgles its goodbyes.
The pine trees sadly wave farewell.
The empty campsites look forlorn,
and, oh, what stories they could tell!

The rafts look lonely tucked on shore.
The dinner bell no longer rings.
The game equipment hides away.
The crows fly off on wistful wings.

The campers vow they’ll keep in touch,
with shouts of, “See you next year!”
As soon as the bus goes ‘round the bend,
the counselors begin to cheer!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Day 28 Creative Blooming Camp event

On all you can eat pasta night
We always end up in a messy fight
The goo sticks in our hair
Shirt, socks, underwear
Oh you’ve never seen such a sight

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Day 26 Creative Bloomings camp form poem

Lost and Hungry

We wandered down the same old path
With just a moments rest
Not even bread left in our sacks
Which bugs would taste the best?

Best cook them first in the stew pot
Over an open fire
We gathered up some short, dry sticks
The night of the bug pyre

Pyre down a shade or two
We dreamed that on the grill
We’d cook blueberry pancakes  
Till tummy noises stilled

Friday, July 25, 2014

Day 25 Creative Bloomings camp community service

Special Needs, Special People

You rarely see them on billboards,
television, or magazine covers.
People stare as they go by.
Children are often frightened.

They stick out with their award gaits,
guttural noises, drool,
inappropriate comments or touching,

In many ways they’re the same as the general public,
with their need to feel loved, useful, and respected.
 In many ways they surpass the rest of us
with their smiles, hugs, unique way of looking at things.

In the camp of folks with developmental disabilities,
are some of the sweetest, most admirable, people I know. 

Day 24 Creative Bloomings camp outdoors in the rain


It rained while we rafted
Pattering through the leaves
Clouds covered hot sunrays
White waters carried us
Cool wind caressed my face

It rained while we rafted
As guides shouted orders
Our captain made his calls
We squealed, laughed and hollered
And avoided the falls

It rained while we rafted
While we worked as a team
We aimed to stay the course
At times we succeeded
But sometimes met with force

It rained while we rafted
We were wet anyway
Water splashed as we’d spin
And sprayed from the boulders

At times we tumbled in 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Day 23 Creative Bloomings camp Nearby day trip

Hiking to Bear Falls Near Telluride, Colorado

Bright crisp morning beckons.
Golden aspens rattle their song.
Brilliant blue sky welcomes us.
Towering pines tremble.
Magnificent mountains demand admiration.
Busy river rushes by.
Cairns mark the path.
Boulders begrudgingly allow us to pass.
Cheery trekkers greet us.
Rabbits and squirrels dash off.
Deer and elk hide.
Tall falls spritz icy spray,
while we lunch.
Sun bids farewell.
Muscles breathe a sigh of relief.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Day 22 Creative Bloomings camp romance

Campfire Romance

To the tune
of peep frogs and crickets,
Kumbaya and acoustic tones by the fire,
your eyes flickered,
reflecting the flame of my heart.

When we go our separate ways
will the fire fade
to glowing embers
and then finally snuff out,
dead and cold?

Monday, July 21, 2014

Day 21 Creative Bloomings camp wordle

Family Vacation

We’ll all explore the great outdoors,
Escape this urban jail.
No bargain hunting at the mall.
We’ll hike the lakeside trail.
Yes, we’ll beware, of the black bear.

We’ll watch for signs of critters there,
A howl, some scat or print.
We’ll glide along in sleek canoes.
The view’s magnificent.
Lanterns at night, to give some light.

The family will all have fun
In rivers and the lakes.
They’ll fill canteens and play and swim,
Skip stones and watch for snakes.
Nix PlayStation, this vacation.

We’ll sleep under the moon and stars,
while wind blows through our tent.
We’ll save the fee for hotel stay
Or a log home’s high rent.
The group’s retort? We choose resort!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Day 20 Creative Bloomings new camp setting

Eagle's Nest

Give me a cabin
Tucked in the cliffs
With the sound of the surf
Far below

Sea gulls give glad cries
Palms gently sway
And whisper as balmy
Winds blow

Day 19 Creative Bloomings camp creepy crawlies

The crickets sound lovely at night
Fine chorus at dimming of light
But one in my tent
Will soon make me bent
On killing that critter on sight 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Creative Bloomins camp pairs

Rain and Puddles
(a Golden Shovel poem)

The sky lets loose its bounty, so
campers dash to their tents just past three.
It’s the stormy season of the year.
Huddled in tents, the young feel old
and the old feel like children.

The sun comes out, the campers enter
the fray, splashing about in puddles, the
end of the week, the devil-may-care phase
of camping, jumping, laughing, making fun of,  
stomping, getting muddy, name-calling.

(from Child Development by Billy Collins)

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Creative Bloomings camp food

Camp Food

The oatmeal will do at the craft time for paste
The omelets they serve are not known for their taste
Free protein, they said, of the bug in my stew
And raw dough won’t kill ya, you know that it's true.
I think they use coffee for fuel for the bus
The casserole meat, they refuse to discuss
Cook waves her knife when her food we keep dissing
I’m worried that the stray cat has gone missing

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Day 16 Creative Blooming camp Lake

Dust Devil Does its Deed

I watched the wind whirl up the hill,
then to the lake and friend’s kayak.
And whoosh! It hit my friend until  
it turned and got me front to back.
At first, afraid we’d take a spill,
we laughed as I fished out my pack.
But other folks were unaware
of why we sat with mussed-up hair. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Day 15 Creative Bloomings Camp Olympics

Scavenger Hunt

Get your list right here up front
For it’s time for a scavenger hunt
Video cameras to collect it all
We are going to have a ball

The entire team with a ranger
Autograph from a stranger
Team members wearing hats
Also posed with baseball bats

Taking toilet paper from the roll
Feather, flower, silver bowl
Chipmunk, rabbit, bird or deer
Calendar page from another year

Thirty-two cents worth of change
Shooting arrows on the range
Juggling rolled-up pairs of socks
Cairn made up of twenty rocks

Judges will now take a vote
Winners get to brag and gloat
Also get out of evening chores
Plus an extra helping of s’mores 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Creative Blooming camp raining

What to Do

It’s such a rainy day
We can’t go out and play
Nothing to do
We’re feeling blue
We can dance
Not a chance!
We can sing
No such thing
We can color
Like no other
We can dream
What a scheme
We can eat
Can’t be beat
We can sleep
Don’t make a peep
Oh, let’s shout
The sun is out

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Day 13 Creative Blooming Camp Five Senses

Alaska Rainforest

Retired mossy logs recline
on spruce and hemlock-covered hills
amidst oceans of ferns and green leafy plants
while rivulets of water weave through stones
and pale blue sky peeks through treetops.

Whooshes of wings, patter of claws,
scrambling hooves, raven cries,
rain pattering through leaves,
whispering wind through woods
make a melody, calming the nerves.

Sweet and tart blueberries,
seriously flavored blackberries
and wholesome taste of juicy gooseberries
seem to dance across the tongue,
while we tramp through forest.

Underfoot, the uneven ground, a combination
of rocks, moss, pebbles, sticks, pine needles
trigger country memories preceding sidewalks,
while a cool breeze sweeps across my sweaty cheek,
and my pack weighs heavy on my back.

Luscious lively greenery,
earthy decaying leaves and dirt,
tangy pine needles and fragrant wild roses,
with a touch of animal feces and wet fur
quicken my spirit and energize my steps. 

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Day 12 Creative Bloomings camp from photo

Treasure Hunters

A flickering torch lit the way down the narrow path.
We could not see the bottom of the chasm.
We held hands, as well as our breath.
We inched forward, ever so slowly.
Emeralds and gold glittered merely yards away.
Through the centuries, men older and wiser
than us had searched for this treasure
hidden by a band of pirates from a tropical isle.
We almost made it.
But Mom called us home for lunch.  

Friday, July 11, 2014

Day 11 Creative Blooming Camp Mix Up


These rough and tumble boys,
To me, are a lot more fun
They’re keen on climbing trees
They’re always on the run

I’m not big on flowers
Or chatting by the lake
And girls go on for hours
And most of them are fake

I’d rather catch a frog
Than sit and do my nails
And slosh through a bog
Than tell those shopping tales

So Mr. Counselor,
Let me give boys’ camp a whirl
I’d rather stay right here

Even though I am a girl 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Day 10 Creative Bloomings Campfire

Around the Campfire

Around the campfire, we breathe in smoky air.
The flames dance up and down, as if they have no care.
We toast marshmallows and hotdogs on long and pointed sticks,
watching orange and yellow tongues get in their fiery licks.
Then we load our flimsy plates with goodies brought to share.

We watch with fascination, from each folding chair,
twigs, paper, plastic cups meet their end right there.
It’s how we sometimes get our kicks,
around the campfire.

And when red embers glow, we dare
tell scary stories or sing with flair.
With words and melodies we transfix,
when gasps and laughter oddly mix,
till we have no more time to spare,
around the campfire. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Day 9 Creative Bloomings camp leader

Two Types of Leaders

Following the leader
could be delightful or dangerous
depending on the leader,
where he’s going
or what he’s about.
It’s such a joy
when the leader is going
where you’re going
and is gracious enough
to bring out the best in you
as he helps you to help him
reach the desired goal.
But a demanding dictator
headed the opposite direction you desire
is a tragedy
as deeply sorrowful

as a Shakespearean play. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Creative Bloomings Camp Camp?

Complaining Camp

Here is the place to go
When life’s too fast
And service slow
The drinks too hot
The food too cold
The campers shy
The help too bold
The weather’s bad
When stuff’s too tough to take
This is the place to belly ache                              

The soup is thick
The steak’s too tough
The bread’s a brick
The butter runny
The gravy’s thin
No dessert
Oh, you can’t win
Appetite lost
This is the place to growl and grumble
Whine, grouse, scowl and mumble

The crafts are dumb
The games are dull
You hit your thumb
You’d rather go
The beds are lumpy
There’s too much rain
Your clothes are frumpy
It’s time to leave
At criticism you’ve been a champ
But leave your complaints at the camp

Monday, July 7, 2014

Poet's Blog Tour

First of all, a big thanks to Claudette J. Young who invited me on this tour and for her warm introduction on her blog.

I have been writing with “Claudsy” for five or six years now on Poetic Asides and Creative Bloomings and she has greatly encouraged me in my own writing.Claudette Young’s NW Montana neighborhood near Glacier National Park helps inspire her poetry, short stories and novels. Her love for words and enthusiasm for life pours out of her writing. Like me, she has multiple projects. This summer she’s working on a sci-fi novella “A Grain of Truth.” She’s also working on a fantasy series, a poetry chapbook and a flash fiction chapbook.

Claudette began writing seriously in 2008 and continues to write in multiple genres.  She strives to learn something new each day—a new poetry form, new writing technique, new foreign word, or whatever strikes her fancy. Her primary genres are poetry, science fiction/fantasy, flash fiction, children’s literature, women’s fiction, along with creative non-fiction, essay, and memoir. She tries to cover all of her bases by writing for audiences that range from young children to senior citizens.

Claudette has been published in numerous online publications for poetry, fiction, and non-fiction, as well as print magazines and two international poetry anthologies. She continues to hone her craft by working on multiple projects, including book-length ones. Her regular work can be viewed on her collaborative website and blogs at: as well as

So, now on to the blog tour questions.

What am I working on?

Lately, I’ve been working on mostly small pieces. I write a poem a day. And I write five devotions a month for I also do devotional pieces for the Pagosa Sun. Occasionally I get assignments from Barbour Publishing. And I put together a short newsletter “ Scribette” for SCWA (Southwest Christian Writers Association) and a column for SCWA’s Ezine “The Scribe.” See SCWA’s website at 

I also have about fifteen novels in progress. Currently I’m trying to finish, really finish, my junior novel Quirks. I plan to publish it on Create Space. It’s my goal to finish and publish three other works this year: The State I’m In (an adult novel), Enthusiastic Soul (a book of praise poems) and Tea at the Zoo ( a picture book). A professional artist friend of mine, Annette Hutchins, is illustrating.

How does my work differ from others in the same genre?

On Robert Brewer’s Poetic Asides, it’s amazing how many completely different poems come from the same prompt. So I can only say my writings are different from others because I write them. Writing is an extension of personality, and like snowflakes and fingerprints, they’re all different. My writing is somewhat fun and serious at the same time. I love the Lord and this comes out in a lot of my poems. But I like to write about the daily stuff, too. My fiction is most always about God’s love and goodness.

Why do I write what I do?

In today’s media there’s a smorgasbord of offerings, a wide range from healthy and nutritious to seriously rancid. I hope to offer something to the reader that’s enjoyable, will help them grow and give them strength for the journey.  

I believe God is real. He’s proved Himself to me over and over. He’s good, loving and forgiving. My beliefs boil down to two verses: Matthew 22:37-40 and John 3:16. Despite my weaknesses and imperfections, I pray that somehow people will experience Him in my poems, stories and devotions.

How does my writing process work?

Describing my writing process is a little difficult because for me variety is the spice of life. But I’m a firm believer in free writing. I try to get the rough draft down as quickly as possible. Over the years, I've been outlining less and less.

Then I go back and revise. I eternally revise the longer projects, so that’s why the last few years I’ve been doing smaller projects. At least I can get them done!

I’m always regrouping my projects and schedule. With my host home of taking care of two adults with developmental disabilities, keeping my house clean enough to be healthy, a flood of writing projects and a few trips throughout the year, I have a variety of ways to trick myself into getting things done.

Three other poets will follow me as soon as I get them lined up.

Thanks again to Claudsy. Following are some links to other poets who have been on the tour.


Day 7 Poetic Bloomings camp prank

Annoying Amy had the jitters
About all the woodland critters
I howled at the moon
She ran away soon
Unaware of my guffaws and titters 

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Poetic Bloomings Camp Hello Maddah

From Camp Critter

We call bathrooms “bat”rooms because they’re often hanging there,
and Camp Ritter “Camp Critter” for the raccoons, bugs and bears.
I’m tired of leaky tents and the mud from when it rains.
The onslaught of horseflies is doing something to our brains.
The fish smell nauseates me when we swim in that cold lake.
And the credentials of the counselors surely must be fake.
Cooking breakfast consumes hours and then it’s time for lunch.
My air mattress has gone flat with my blankets in a bunch.
I’m fearful for our lives, when in the woods we roam,
but with all the fun we’re having, I’m not ready to go home.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Day 5 Poetic Bloomings Camp sounds

Forest Alarm Clock

Lying in my tent,
I woke up in the early morning
hearing a strange sound—
something like shaking a can of spray paint,
when the metal ball rattles around inside.
Who would be painting anything just past dawn
amongst tall timber by a mountain lake?

Carefully I undid the ties
and looked out the screen window.
Two gray squirrels chased each other in the trees.
They seemed to be enjoying themselves,
as much as I enjoyed watching them scampering about,
their claws on the bark making the noise.
Who would have thought it sounded like that? 

Friday, July 4, 2014

Day 4 Poetic Bloomings night lights

That’s Progress

In our country neighborhood
streetlights appeared one by one,
so gradually, we didn’t realize
they blocked the stars
until we hiked up in the hills
and there they were pulsing white
in a  black, black sky. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Dau 3 Poetic Bloomings Summer Camp Music

When He Saw Me in September

I wish I would have remembered
the sad crooner of See You in September,
“Will I see you in September
Or lose you to a summer love?”

He drove me to the airport.
Said goodbye with a lingering kiss.
I cried when I arrived at my sister’s.
Before the day was over I was missing him.

Thoughts of kissing him.
Would I make it through the summer?
But adventure called
and then young lovers.

I was soon entangled
by summer fun
and love,
choosing that one special one.

When I saw him in September,
he knew
he lost me
to a summer love.

From “See You in September”, words by Wayne and Edwards, sung by the Tempos

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Day 2 PB camp Bop, exploring camp, Poetic Asides new place

At Girl Scout Camp

At Girl Scout camp, I explored our new place,
not leaky tents this time, but bunk-filled dorm rooms.
I chose the top of the last bunk in the corner
and unrolled my bed roll with essentials tucked inside.
I neatly arranged the items at the foot of my bed,
and hid my novel under my pillow

In free time, I sought a solitary place.

The clamor of girls giggling, chattering, singing
and leaders shouting orders and blasting whistles
seemed incongruous with whispering pines
gurgling creeks and chirping of birds and crickets.
A bridge over the creek harbored a nice cubby hole;
between games, working on badges, gathering wood,
singing silly songs, and munching on S’mores,
I’d hide away there with my book.

In free time, I sought a solitary place.

I enjoyed laughing and talking with my friends,
searching for tinder, kindling and fuelwood,
roasting hotdogs and marshmallows over the fire,
making sit-upons and singing songs like
Make New Friends, Camp Granada, Kumbaya,
and I Don’t Want No More of this Camping Life, but

in free time, I sought a solitary place.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Poetic Bloomings Camp Day One

Up at the Bus                                                                                                    

Up at the bus, for a week-end stay
Are we there yet? We five would say
A retired school bus instead of a tent
In that old thing, many hours were spent
Five little girls full of fun and play

Dad would go fishing, it was his way
Mom would clean and cook throughout the day
We’d play pretend, that’s how it went
Up at the bus

Slept in bunk beds that would creak and sway
Ate at a fold out table or a metal tray
Kerosene heaters and lamps gave acrid scent
Stored water in milk cans, silver and dent
To a rustic outhouse, visit’s we’d pay
Often to the woods we’d stray, up at the bus.