Circus nights

The chairs wear clown shoes
on cold nights at the circus

while DJs turn tables under
big tents and singing stars.

Children play puerile games
on top of discarded peanut shells

while elephants enthusiastically echo
long-forgotten songs we played

once like trapeze artists
thoughtlessly turning head

over heels without a net. I had never
flipped so carelessly until you

tamed the roaring lion now
nipping at your blue-nailed toes.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

  • Fandango’s One Word Challenge: table
  • Ragtag Daily Prompt: cold
  • Your Daily Word Prompt: puerile #YDWordPrompt 
  • Daily Creativity Prompt at Brave and Reckless: nights at the circus #monstershewrotechallenge

A familiar scene

Somewhere light plays piano in the background
of that scene, the one that so often
repeats itself.  You know the one
I mean — it starts with the sun embarking
on its customary routine, dancing to a slow tune

through the sky. We feel emboldened to move
with mirrored steps at the rhythm
we choose, back and forth, as
time arcs above us in brilliant currents
of arrows sharpened by the blitzing wind

only to fall below the horizon. And still the familiar
scene continues into the dark as we
share a stage emblazoned
in the afterglow of another imperfect day
made idyllic by blissful notes we always hit as one.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

Private circles

You’re always cold, rosy cheeks trying
to escape another freeze or, like
a mermaid on shaky ground, limping
to your hiding place behind boxes of fate.

Fortune moves at a constant speed
regardless of temperature, though we may
feel warmer when a clock’s hands
share space with ours inside wool gloves.

As you shiver from that chill brought on
by anxiety or mysteries of the universe
too considerable to convincingly consider,
I’ll swivel you (wearing plaid designs

on our future together) around in my warm
embrace, reddening from a warmth born
of spinning hands keeping perfect time
as we retreat to privacy — finding our own tempo.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Written for dVerse’s Poetics: from a place of pain.

Other prompts:

In dreams (on holiday)

We took a holiday from the cold
stoicism bred into us over generations
and jumped with cavalier abandon

into each others’ dreams where
we secured passage to stations
never visited by anyone else.

We found warmth among the fires
burning at those depths, illuminating
desires awakened in dreams

we share, and though our sleep
must end we’ll jump into vacations
as often as our legs will let us.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

En route

I named a road in my mind
after you — the one that drives
rainbows of radiance
through my head like a brush
steering hair in one direction.

I’m conditioned by now
to think of the traffic
that bounces through my brain
as simply commuting
between thoughts of you.

Indeed, all streets stretch
one way, inexorably leading me
down the road and closer
to home with you.

Memories made on the trip
paint this lane in technicolor,
another colorful reminder that
I’ll never need take a detour.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts

  • Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt #230 – Brush
  • Fandango’s One Word Challenge – Indeed
  • Word of the Day Challenge – Squeeze
  • Ragtop Daily Prompt – Rainbow

I remember a superstition


What apparition dares walk
from this tomb, suave footsteps
echoing between faded stones
marking the passing of time
and human souls? Let the other
shoe drop in a puddle and expect

a splash, or does this spirit
have the confidence to walk barefoot
through a cemetery? Kids on the school bus
told me to never point at a graveyard
or I’d be there next but I can’t remember
if I listened or let the warning slip

through my fingers like an autumn
breeze bringing grave warnings
of winter and cold and death which
comes for us all while the bus driver
ignores us. Perhaps it was not a ghost
after all but merely the wind.

My imagination sometimes wins.

© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

  • New2Writing #WRITEPHOTO – TOMB
  • Word of the Day Challenge – apparition
  • Fandango’s One Word Challenge – suave
  • Eugi’s Weekly Prompt – Autumn

The Tomb – Image by KL Caley

Stamped letters

She broke the seal on the envelope
eager to read the letter locked inside
a catalog of a specific moment
I gleefully shared with her. 

We tie those moments downs as fast as
the ink dries, shadows of our past
written in the excitement of today
insisting on being tomorrow’s memories.

With a satchel of reread mail we embark
on another epoch with missives untied
before us, sharing a pen to forge another note
soon stamped with forever postage.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

Underwater

We lost ourselves in
the splendor of the lake,
dropping like stones to depths
we hadn’t fathomed before —

hiding from the real world.

We will break the surface again,
water rippling out in waves
from our bobbing heads —

but that hasn’t sunk in yet.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Quadrille # 137: Throwing Poem Stones over at dVerse

Double flower

Rain brings with it the promise
of gleeful blossoms sure to sprout
with tomorrow’s caboodle
where I find you blooming with me.

The smell of showers reminds me
of wet grass sticking to my bare feet
when I didn’t think of the future
but roamed moment to moment.

Now, tomorrow is a double-flowered
carnation — two blooms thriving
as one amid the rain and whatever
tomorrow’s weather brings.

I don’t roam alone any longer
and the rain falls sweeter.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Weekend Writing Prompt #229 – Caboodle

Slippery

We waited for admission,
sliding around like
disoriented ducks on ice — novices
to the winter but curious
what wonders lay in the watery depths
below — not eager to get wet. 

So we wait, not sure
what may come, skating
by on what passes for looks
at this age, but certain that together
we are stronger swimmers
unafraid of the cold. 


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Written for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie’s Photo Challenge #384

Photo credit Kyle Green

A higher view

We approached the bluffs, feigning
through tired legs the stamina
to make any adjustment in altitude

So we stood, her eyes obscured
by the company of clouds that played
unbound just above flushed cheeks
or maybe I merely imagined them

reddened after the climb

Punctuation can be fickle and
ellipses hide all meaning …

It dawned on me as the sun rose
like steam in the shower blooms
to its full height in its own time
that love is stronger than gravity

The view from the summit came into focus
as the clouds leapt with a twirl to the sky
and we danced even higher energized in the sun.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

A few prompts today:

A lesson

Somewhere near the lamp
a light lectures us on
the brilliance of a night

interrupted 

by twinkling dreams
where you and I shine

together

while the world
silently fades to black –
we hardly need the lesson –

entwined

we continue the conversation
in the dark, alone amid

bliss. 


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

  • Fandango’s One Word Challenge – Lecture
  • Word of the Day Challenge – lamp

Two cents

We sorted ourselves
into tidy piles

like a coin collector
sorting through pennies

(or maybe nickels
if he has more money)

until we shared our own
two cents among

slanted stacks
of well-traveled change.

You (a copper-topped coin)
and me (bronze faded

from age) together
a pair of pennies 

spared a life apart —
changed for the better.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Today’s prompt was New2Writing’s #WRITEPHOTO – MONEY
Money” – Image by KL Caley

The bouquet

I fell into a bouquet
of twinkling bliss
that night you flashed
your eyes (lightning

sparkles from somewhere
beneath those brown
globes I sometimes

orbit like a satellite
dependent on another
body together

in space) at me for
the first time. I’ve
been circling you, full-
hearted, ever since.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

In the fruit bowl

Tomorrow unwinds itself
on the tomato vine, redder
than yesterday but still
not as juicy if I could just
wait another day.

Patience tastes sour
on my tongue —lemon juice
forcing a pucker on my lips —
and while the days
pile up like fruit in a fruit bowl

I still turn to you to replace
my sour face
with something sweeter,
strawberry juice
on the corner of my mouth.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Mish hosts at dVerse today and invites us to think outside of the fruit bowl.

Breathe

You are my first breath
every morning
and while dreams linger
inside
— a gallery of half-remembered
artwork
that left an impression
on my heart —

I know whatever comes with
my second breath
I can survive if you stay
with me
until my final breath.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts:

  • It’s Quadrille #136: Let’s Linger at dVerse the Poets Pub! A quadrille is a poem of exactly 44 words. Count mine up – I dare you.
  • Word of the Day Challenge: Gallery

Soulful pour

Morning arrived with an icy slap
of good intentions — a cheeky reminder
to weather another day.

The sun illuminates colorful leaves
left lazing through the autumn night,
packed tight by soles of passersby
enjoying the crush underfoot. 

Sometimes I think I’d like to unpack
my soul and watch it pour
onto the ground just to see
the size of the mark you’ve left on it.

In the light we could marvel at the brilliance
of two souls cascading leisurely
together through whatever passes.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Ragtag Daily Prompt: autumn

Weeding

Insomnia took root in the fragments of the night
that buzzed through my mind like an earthquake
swaying my base and screeching for attention.

It’s a monster. 

The persistent ogre waits to spring,
even as I hide under cover
beneath the canopy of stars stretched
too tightly this cool evening.

Of course love is fearless, steadfast as it sustains us.

Those stems that sprout where we sow seeds
have the power to overwhelm weeds that found root
and together we drown out the din entirely.

I sleep soundly at last. 


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts

Spider’s web

I didn’t intend to disturb
the spider’s web as it twinkled
in the last of the evening light.
I was mesmerized by the soft knell

of the wind chimes announcing
the end of another day, the dirge
distracting me from the poor arachnid’s
impressive work. What remains seems

inadequate, or at least insufficient,
to capture dinner, and I wonder
if the spider will eat tonight
or begin work on another web,

empty stomach cursing the giant
thoughtless storm who lacked
the sense to walk around the glinting
piece of art now disappearing underfoot.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts

Whispers through me

The memory we created that night
comes asking for blueberries when I close
my eyes. Purple juice carries more weight
when pinched between two fingers.

Tomorrow jumps two ways if we let it. A comet
tells its tale for only a moment, though its arc
burns purple against black, as if we should
be expected to remember the contrast.

That night I held her hair in my fingers. Promises
of tomorrow whisper through me still, echoes
smoldering in a crescent-shaped bend near
places I had forgotten could feel warmth. 


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

For GoDogGoCafe’s Tuesday Writing Prompt “whisper through me”

Stardust

It’s precisely because you’ve let me in
to swim among parts of you veiled
from others but protected from dust
— unmistakably you.

The sky is a river to the stars if we can hold
our breath long enough to bathe among
the abundance of life born in stardust
— unmistakably you.

Love is the best thing we do as we travel
together through a luxuriant universe
that allows fated souls to preserve in pairs
— undeniably us.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts

A new home

If we were fairies we’d live
in the putt putt houses
at the Fun Park. We wouldn’t have
to mow the yard since
the grass is fake and we’d be

together. I probably should have
led with that. We could fly
among the boisterous kids
who won’t let their colorful golf balls
stop before striking them

again. I wouldn’t even assess
a penalty — I’d just float on air
with you, a perfect world
too enchanted for tilting at windmills
or other distractions. 


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt #226 – Yard

Binary stars

We are binary stars, orbiting
our own center so close we may appear
as one. Perhaps we are — one heart
burning with choreography
set to its own beat. There’s a universe

out there, a kaleidoscope of stardust
swimming in a river of hope
where the future is bright
because two stars shine as one and
everything revolves around us.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Prompts

My muse (when)

My muse wears dark hair
when she chooses. When
she makes a decision
there’s confidence in her eyes
that overwhelms
any foreboding before
it can take root.

It’s the roots
that first defy her. No one
else could resist her beguiling smile
when she resolves
to turn it up.
She inspires my own
if she turns up.


© 2021 | Phillip Knight Scott

Ragtag Daily Prompt: “foreboding and “hair dye”