The Cow’s Eye

The Cow’s Eye

I’d tilt, twist and turn the jar
but the soulless cow’s eye would hide
rolling in the formaldehyde.

Not a blink, nor a wink.
Snakes, lizards, starfish
and embryos of all sorts
from my father’s collection
taught me more than I wished to know.

— by Sabio Lantz (August 2016)

Prompt: Björn, at dVerse Poets Pub, challenges us to write a “Quadrille” — a poem with exactly 44 syllables and to use the word “jar” within the poem. I think I counted correctly.


Embracing Spills

Embracing Spills

When milk spills,
plans fail,
or hopes are dashed,

We can cry and sigh,
scream and shout,

or look for opportunities:

for sweet cream floating on the chaos,
for EN to jump out and dance,

and passionately embrace embarrassment
until our dreams twirl again.

–by Sabio Lantz 6/13/16


Prompt: Whimsygizmo, at d’Verse Poets, prompts us to write on “spill” with a 44 word poem (a Quadrille).




Peeking from behind a sneaky  tree,
my mind’s eye dances with naughty glee
as I watch our happy long-lost king
dance with his dog and joyfully sing.

                            — Sabio Lantz, April 2016


Prompt: Lillian, at d’Verse Poets, challenges us to write about “fantasy”.

That Tooth

That Tooth

We used to make fun of his gold tooth:
with its wet sparkles
shining through his irrepressible smile.

A humble man,
who refused to hide the joys in life.

And now,
his tooth shimmered and winked at me
as I kissed him softly in his casket.

by Sabio Lantz, 4/2016


Prompt: Victoria at dVerse Poets, asks us to write a 44-word poem containing some form of the word “shimmer”.


Only by your Hands

Only by your Hands

I thank my hands for their labor,
but to your hands I sing praise.

For only your touch can:
— melt the tensions in my spine
— tickle laughter and joy into my skin
— comb sweet slumber through my scalp
— warm my heart on our walks
— and forgivingly point out my foibles

Though I can survive by my hands,
I can only live fully by the grace of yours.

— by Sabio Lantz, March 2016


Prompt: Mish, at d’Verse Poets, asks us to “to write a poem that pays homage to hands.”

My Elf

My Elf

Often I think I know myself:
Then my elf
hearing my gaffes,
using me as his toy
for joy.

His folly seems a little ploy
to keep me light
and full of delight.

Then my elf laughs for joy

— by Sabio Lantz, January 2016


Prompt: Whimsygizmo, at d’Verse Poets, ask us to write in a form called the Ovillejo.

The Form: The Ovillejo is a Spanish form with 10 lines and a rhyme pattern of aa bb cc cddc. Lines 2,4 and 6 are short, and the last line (10) is simply a combination of those short lines.

Elfish Exceptions: Well those are the constraints I obeyed, but there is something else about “iambic dimeter”, “tetrameter”, but I did not bother myself with that — damn it, I am not Spanish!  :-) [cue the laughing elf]



As I passed my daughter’s room
her nail polish transported me to Apollo rockets
hanging on a thread in my childhood bedroom —
tenuously like my dreams of becoming an astronaut
and my father helping me cement them over the years.

Next I recalled uncontrolled laughter
and splitting headaches
that some kids enjoyed by sniffing glue
but which I suffered from cleaning chemical tanks
at my father’s factory
before I knew that ketones could lower my IQ.

Then came a fragrant flashback
of my father’s disappointment
in his son’s rejection of an appointment
to the US Air Force Academy
while bombs dropped in Vietnam
like the rockets falling from my ceiling
— shattering all our efforts.

Disappointment of not taking over his plastic company
but instead of going into medicine
where doctors “just fucked with you to take your money”.

Finally my daughter’s polish reminded me of diabetics in crisis
and of suturing a sassy drunk who didn’t know
that in the room down the hall
parents cry for their son that he just killed.

So to avoid the redolence of those ketones
I ask my daughter to do her nails on the porch
“Sorry, I just don’t like the smell.”

— by Sabio Lantz


Prompt: Kelly, at d’Verse Poets, asks us to write a poem about a memory evoked by scent.



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