Discolored past

Photo by Sue Vincent

The rocks mark the ground
between prospering weeds enriched
by the warmth of a sun surging overhead,
encircling those of us interred
on a planet whose
percussive heartbeat rocks me to sleep.

I sense the presence of wildflowers,
of ants scurrying together in the dirt,
of life — too bountiful to count or name — 
thriving in the darkness or 
at least out of sight — 
I dare not note a difference in perspective.

Photos remain after we pass on
a gentle breeze that thoughtlessly turns
blacks to sepia, discoloring too many memories
otherwise cruelly lost
in darkness 
though the sun shines tomorrow.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2020

My first poem of the new year! Submitted to dVerse Poets Pub Open Mic Night #257

Written for:



Who will?

Who will hear our prayer,
echoing through the empty air
that divides us, an appeal
to something unseen and unseeable,
our invocation lost among nothing?

Who will hear our psalm,
the choir humbly beseeched 
by a chorus reverberating with thanks
in its every deliverance before
the entreating congregation?

Who will answer our pleas,
voices searching for seraphic blessing 
while some celestial body
of spiritual vitality circles —
words bouncing in the void?


Phillip Knight Scott |© 2019

Written for dVerse Poetics : “echo … echo … echo”


How absurd

The comprehensive volume 
ate the details for a reader’s 
digestion, its stomach aching for
absolution. How absurd is heaven?
Beyond life — an after life like a river
struggling to find its course while
bemused water fowl refuse 
to follow the march to eternity.

The wandering fact
missed the hereafter, forfeiting glory
for eternal restlessness, light
balancing good and evil while
the judge looks bored in black.
What of the crowing girl who murders
a scarecrow? The last straw
dances in fields of gray.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for the dVerse Poets Pub. Linda asks us to explore surrealism in poetry. Real or not, this was fun.


Cracked ice

What monsters creep
on broken ice, cracks
beneath the weight of overlarge
beasts,
frigid footfalls frozen
in the night?

Is it the chill
or fear that has me
clattering,
clamoring
for warmth and home,
hounded by unseen glaciers,
winter’s snowy persistence
tapping my shoulder.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Submitted to the dVerse Poets Pub Quadrille #92: Take a crack at poeming and the Free Verse Revolution November Writing Prompt #3: monsters.

My first collection of poems is available at Amazon now! Check it out!


Pinching

I am stuck 
at the beginning, 
pinching
at rice like 
the expectant mother
pausing 
out of breath
mid-stair.
The other side is often pregnant. 

Intention grows 
even in 
chilled winds,
germinating while 
we fixate elsewhere,
though 
I don’t always recognize 
its birth.
Tomorrow takes its own word for granted.

Ambition shoves us 
forward, 
though I wish
I could
stop long enough 
to admire
the track, rushing, 
stuck at the
start. 
Light thaws in its own time.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for several prompts:


Just breathe

You look confused, eyes tangled
in bewilderment, unsure what comes 
next. Flustered words slowly swim
upstream, tangled in the waterweeds
and obscuring the direction 
of the current sweeping 
your feet out from underneath.

Breathe. Collect your thoughts — they are
but two-cent pieces taking 
up space in a piggy bank you had
hoped fattened by now, or full enough
at least for the both of us.
I’ll be here when you’re ready.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for the dVerse Poets Pub challenge: Meet the Bar by changing your perspective. This was an interesting exercise in which I imaged giving myself the advice to think it through before speaking. There’s no rush, and speeding through a problem can only cause more problems. Good advice I often forget.


In the black

What mystery lives in the black,
those dark corners where light
fears to enter, abandoning 
sharp edges for the comfort 
of round sides and smooth edges.

The charade may encircle us (eyes
blind the gust of puzzles pointing us
in the wrong direction) binding us
to this place in knots of fear
that only the unrevealed can tie.

I choose to embrace the dark,
the baffling ambivalence that bubbles
when we feel underwater, though
the lake remains half full 
whatever lurks beneath.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for dVerse Poetics: On Shades of Black


The voice

I heard the voice — whirling in my ears
like a breeze whistling on leaves
with the bluster of November not expecting
December to overshadow it — though 
in my delirium I could not find it.

The voice — alien and incoherent as it seized
my mind without a through to the impression
it left — told me to leave (bounded
in lunacy and invisible) to 
the irrational rabble wrapped in regret.

Was it mania — a psychic knot tied
to some forgotten tram unspooling and
unwelcome — or merely benign?
I am not delusional enough 
to think I know the difference.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for a few prompts:


I am thrilled, delighted, terrified and other emotions to announce that my first collection of poetry — PAINT THE LIVING PLANT THE DEAD — is now available to purchase. Check it out!


About time

We wink at infinity every time the clock
sounds its alarm, unbending as it howls
as if timelines drive forward between
well-marked lines. 

Hours turn 
but always circle back.

Sometimes we notice the period while
standing in it but in a lifetime shared, 
these eras softly merge, 

blurry in places though 
the color flashes in focus like leaves in Autumntime. 

And the clock shouts, begging for timeliness 
while eternity ticks
its pulsing heartbeat simply
a moment in time.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for the dVerse Poets Pub Meeting the Bar: Polyptoton

This Thursday, Frank is our host, and the challenge is to use a polyptoton somewhere in our poems. A polyptoton is a rhetorical device used for style and persuasiveness; it’s a special kind of repetition where the common base of a word is repeated, but not the whole word exactly.