One man’s art

The match lights.

The newspaper sparks immediately —
the flame matching the intensity 
of the ink passionately spread through
a dozen stories — and dissolves into ash.

The infant flame crawls onto twigs.

I stand mesmerized by this transmutation:
words once poured over by anxious writers
now spilled into a fire as kindling, sweat 
burning into memories I’ve already forgotten.

The winds shift.

I rearrange the sticks to assist their demise,
wondering how many revisions — how many 
editors’ notes — were born before the news 
fanned out to a half awake audience.

The flames leap from twigs to logs.

I stare transfixed at the graceful movement
of the blaze (so gorgeous as it spasms
on this log, then another) effortlessly 
transforming timber into trifling confetti.

I find it poetic. 

My stomach screams an idea, an ephemeral epiphany 
I must immediately share for art’s sake,
enthusiastically published on pulp
and eventually catalyst for another fire.

Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Written for V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #69: Kindle and Ragtag Daily Prompt: Scream.



The spider’s web hosts
today’s seclusion,
hidden from the finders, keeper
of tranquility’s repose.

Silky isolation wraps the introvert
in a sticky embrace –
mistaken for warmth –
providing solitude to dream or just

His thoughts fade,
calm and still,
and the spider goes

(c) 2019 by Phillip Knight Scott

Written for the following prompts:
– A quadrille (44 words) for dVerse
– Word of the Day Challenge : “welcome
– Putting My Feet in the Dirt : “finders keepers
– Ragtag Daily Prompt : “web

That’s a lot to squeeze into 44 words.


Mirrored nature #writephoto

The sun peaks between the timber
unsure, hesitant to reveal
itself fully to an insipid world
too often indifferent
to its nourishing warmth.

And still we look to it
to illuminate the beauty too often
unnoticed – the greens shining
with life, brilliant and glistening
in the early morning.

But the pond holds close its treasures,
refusing to admit
the luminous gleam as we are left
to wonder what mysterious riches
lay submerged,
twirling in the dark

secret celebrations beneath the calm – looking
glass turning glamour
upside down
for our benefit. I dare not
provoke ripples.

(c) 2019 by Phillip Knight Scott

Written for this week’s photo writing prompt courtesy of Sue Vincent’s brilliant #writephoto challenge : “mirror”

Photo by Sue Vincent

Also written for the Ragtag Daily Prompt – “insipid”



What once was a pebble has gathered
no moss, rolling (not yet
declining?) towards middle age,
that problematic but venerable epoch
of reading glasses
and white hair
and aching back.
I clearly see the oncoming

shadow of dark golden years overtaking me,
weighing on me as I tumble
faster, as we age onward,
dropping like a stone, perfected
for the fall
through a life – if not well
lived – at least

The blind man hopes
through heightened senses he may hear
the darkness ebb, hindsight
in the vanity mirror he no longer bothers
with, confident that
a life without regret is one well lived
after all. After all.

(c) 2019 by Phillip Knight Scott

Written for several prompts:
– August Writing Prompts at Putting My Feet in the Air : “heightened senses”
Ragtag Daily Prompt : “pebble”
Your Daily Word Prompt : “problematic”

Also posted for this week’s real toad challenge. I chose the song “We age onward” … in case you couldn’t tell.


Edge of Summer

A puppet tricks a telephone,
answering to no one
in the sunshine,
wearing a garish bathing suit
several sizes too large
held up
by sweat and determination.

Genuine in her vitality, she
bares the heat
in her beach chair,
wearing the virtuous look
of someone bravely
the view from the edge of summer.

The puppet stumbles to her bike,
cycling through the rhythm
of homecoming,
wearing the dog days
in sown-on lips,
by the last seaside breeze.

(c) 2019 by Phillip Knight Scott

Written for the Tuesday Writing Prompt at Go Do Go Cafe, hosted by the wonderful Devereaux Frazier and Beth Amanda : “edge of summer”
Also written for the prompt “genuine and virtuous” from M at Putting My Feet in the Dirt; “agitate” from the Ragtag Daily Prompt; and a fever dream that overtook me this morning.


Battle of the ages

A child skipped below an umbrella,
         the joy of youth insulated beneath
an innocent weapon
                 fighting back an inclement future.

Inspired, though not inspiring,
        I longed for such a battering ram
to bludgeon the plaintive
                skeptic buried beneath the years.

I tinkered with my cynicism, flirting
         with the optimism of youth, hoping
I might change
                 or at least feint near —

Instead, though, I creep back to sleep.
I lack the energy for that particular battle.

(c) 2019 by Phillip Knight Scott

Combo response to several prompts this weekend:

The one word challenge at Fandango : "cynicism"
Weekend writing prompt #119 : "Tinker" & exactly 75 words.
Word of the Day Challenge : "flirt"
Ragtag Daily Prompt : "plaintive"


Mark of time

The clock prefers
a polite tree,
over time,
one more

ring with each
content, marked
for the trouble.

The corridor reads
all mundane nameplates,
over time,
the future

unspooled before it
like ribbon,
slowly marking
time’s dance.

The flame pretends
it cares, ice
wax, alive
only now

indifferent to
acerbic mark
in time.

(c) 2019 by Phillip Knight Scott

Partially inspired by the Ragtag Daily Prompt – “acerbic



I’ll not wake up, no,
swimming here in this conch shell
of a life, shadows tickling my ear,
playing house while the real
world assumes it’s won.

I’ll not confront it, no,
kicking up the remains of reality
swept under expensive furniture
when we could afford the luxury
of not caring.

I’ll remain in my head,
enveloped by this conch shell,
closed to those sounds desperate
to encroach, honking displeasure
at deaf eyes shut.

(c) 2019 Phillip Knight Scott

Written in response to the Sunday Muse #68 photo and the Ragtag Daily Prompt: Wake.

Photography by Edouard Boubat

Let’s return

Let’s return, you and I,
to a dream – that one
we shared, hiding from the world
revolving around us
(Was it sunny?) I remember
only echoes in the dark
as we bounced off walls,
the world forgot.

The greens and browns
crossing the landscape now,
hostile in their indifference,
existing as though we care,
will slowly turn dark,
forgotten again, shadows
playing by themselves,
the world forgot.

(c) 2019 Phillip Knight Scott

Written in response to this week’s #writephoto from Sue Vincent and also for Ragtag Daily Prompt – Friday, this week posted by Emily.
Photo by Sue Vincent.