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10 April, 2017: Ponder


C E Shy
My head can no longer hold
secret sounds that escape
through my ears. They leak. They
speak to unfamiliar themes that
see ghosts. They are caught in the
rhythm and can’t get away. All
this exists between the clouds
and the higher skies. This I see.
Below, snow flakes cake sidewalks.
Below, fetid winds blow dirt past
dust pans. Baby Grands are played
by those who can play them. When
the sounds change pace I race to catch
up. I want to see the pinnacle 
when I reach it.

“Ponder” by C E Shy from In the Company of Russell Atkins. Red Giant Press, 2016. Used by permission of the author.
C E Shy is the pen name of M A Shaheed, who began writing as a young person in the Muntu Poets, a Cleveland writing workshop and publication under the directorships of Russell Atkins and Norman Jordan. Shaheed became a professional musician and continued to write for a while, but then he stopped writing for three decades. More recently, he began writing again, joined the Cuyahoga County Public Library poetry workshop and reunited with Atkins. As a result, he has published poems in the library’s three online chapbooks of poems and in poetry anthologies, including In the Company of Russell Atkins. In addition, he publishes fiction.


Today is the 100th day of 2017. Write a poem about your first 100 days, being as generous or critical as you prefer about your year to date.

Chantelle Brady
100th day is finally here,
it is a Monday this year.
I remember the times,
the good and the bad;

Mostly the sadness,
the depression I had.
it's harder in college
when you can sleep
all day in your dorm
and continue to weep.

The busyness too
came with it non-stop
homework, and chores
and counseling talks

counseling for my
anxiety, depression,
sadness, and hopelessness
and sleepy impression

I've spent 100 days
with my new friend Suzy
whom is friendly, energetic,
clean, and quite snoozy.

My black and white friend
all covered in fur,
it's all I can do not to
think about her.

She's grown quite comfortable
in her new home,
which is my dorm room,
in which she can roam.

She's clean and she's cute
and she meows quietly.
like a whisper I hear her
meow silently

I always know what she wants,
she doesn't have to talk;
I love her and pet her,
and don't go on walks

she prefers to hide, and
into the open she sneaks
feeling her surroundings
and the dangerous squeaks

loud noises they bother her
even when they're small
sometimes things scare her
with no noise at all

100 days for Suzy to learn
about me and my room
I love being near her but
she hates one who looms

which is nice so I can leave
and go study outside
so she doesn't steal my pencils
away from my side.

I love her and pet her
and don't go on walks,
I feed her nice treats
and know what she needs
without her speaking
and telling her deeds.
I usually can tell
exactly where she is,
but sometimes she tricks me
and trips me like this.
4/18/2017 12:50:50 AM

Tammy Currier
Diane Kendig - Thank you!
4/17/2017 11:09:54 AM

100 days has come and gone
100 days has come and gone,
In the blink of an eye it seems.
My son he is another year older
As well as I, and so it must be.
My other son began to walk.
Oh My! How they grow so fast.
My daughter, she is reading well
In Kindergarten, having a blast.
Work is work and so it is
Busier and busier by the day.
Keeps time moving on and eventually
It is time to leave and drive away.
My husband, oh dear, had a health scare.
Turned out to be nothing fortunately.
I in turn went back to my heart’s hobby  
And began writing, even some poetry.
4/13/2017 8:20:10 PM

A hundred days come and gone
And am I better for it
Committ to change
And yet I still ignore it

Promise myself to do this or that
Start, fade and fail to finish
Regroup, try again
Still hold onto a wish

Wanna get away
Wanna new job
Still the same
Active, yet a slob

Will the next 100 change
Only time will tell
Try, try again
Or settle for my hell
4/11/2017 9:44:20 PM

N. K. Hasen
First 100 Days

Weather favor walking dog on longer walks
Winter cold didn’t bite much those early days
Anniversary of poetry blog, five years
Celerated two weeks pior with many poems
Until it reached one thousand published posts
Then a new arrival came
Another nephew to watch and see grow
Pinned on wall for March month calendar
My pup was known as miss March
Limbered up my fingers for the coming month
Prepared my mind for writing poetry
Through all the month of April
4/10/2017 9:40:42 PM

100 Days
I feel life passing by
like so many cars on the Interstate - whooshing
as I only stand there watching
A reminder of how much time
has passed brings an onslaught
of feeling and memory
unwelcome, but unstoppable
Where is the me I was when I felt like myself?
Time moves faster, gather energy
and I move ever more slowly losing
momentum along the way.
I wonder how many more days there will be until I stop.
4/10/2017 1:51:36 PM

Mary Casey Walsh
100 days

Is this enough time
to contain four seasons
or enough space
to enclose more worlds
(it doesn't seem enough)

In 100 days I have seen
winter winds and freezing thaw
sunny days and softling nights
rot and bud, still and storm

But then, this is Cleveland
and this makes sense here
100 days can contain
any number of miracles, here.
4/10/2017 1:41:30 PM

Tammy, and your orange peel would smell soooo much better than the rot we are left with these days. Brava!
4/10/2017 1:23:52 PM

Susan Rebecca Teller
I am very thankful Shaheed is writing again. Wonderful prose.
4/10/2017 10:27:06 AM

Tammy L Currier
100 days in
I wish I could peel it
like a dimpled orange skin
and discard it

left to fade in the sun
in some dust bin
or to molder in some rubbish heap

Or better yet, fuel
fecundity in a compost
pile - left to nurture life
on future days more sun than shadow
4/10/2017 9:58:42 AM

READ + WRITE: 30 Days of Poetry is a collaboration between Cuyahoga County Public Library and poet Diane Kendig. Our thanks go to Diane and the poets of Northeast Ohio who allowed us to share their poetry.