Saturday, January 6, 2018

"Natural Order" a poem in five parts


This NE Writers Guild anthology was released in late December. I feel honored to have been included in it.

The  four-page poem, "Natural Order," is about my five children. 
Birth order and it's impact on personalities is the basis for the subtitles of the five parts. The "natural" part of it refers to things found in nature (a dandelion, a fawn, a cheetah, a dolphin, and a caterpillar) that are metaphors for each of my unique children. 

Sunday, December 31, 2017

"A Writer's Nightmare"

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I was surprised and pleased to hear another poem of mine has been published in Fine Lines. This time it's in the Winter 2017 issue.  

This poem is literally a bad dream I had, then woke up, and wrote it into a poem. It's about losing the words to express oneself. 

See this book on Amazon

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Christmas Present

Tanner on left and Lacey on right.

We re-enacted our 2014 Christmas couple photo. 
The obvious change is two different black and tan dogs, Tanner and Lacey, who joined our family a year ago. Our house has become a retirement home for senior dogs it seems. 
Other changes, I had forgotten until comparing the two photos: 
different couches, artwork, and TV. 
But we haven't changed a bit. Haha!  

For a peek at our 2014 photo "Christmas Past":

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Christmas Past

Sophie on left and Lulu on right.

This is our first Christmas without Lulu, the cockapoo.
Sophie, a schnauzer-terrier mix, has been gone several years.
I love this photo of them sitting with us in their furry winter coats.
 These two certainly left paw prints on our hearts!

Look ahead to "Christmas Present" at:

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

A Hot Chocolate Memory

A mug of cocoa for a squirrel-y mom.

Today is the perfect fall day to warm up with a mug of hot chocolate. I even splurged with a messy glop of whipped cream. Not quite coffee-shop quality, but satisfying. It’s in my favorite mug, too. The one with the squirrel on one side, and a loving sentiment on the other: “Nuts About You.” It makes me grin to think of my son, Peter, who gave it to this squirrel-loving mom.

Smiling at this mug reminds me of a mug from my youth. At my best friend’s house, I was often treated to the home-made cocoa mix made by Helen’s mother. I vividly remember the taste and the surprise of my first mug of it.

Helen and her siblings and I were gathered around the kitchen table, laughing and talking after school one day. Her mom passed steaming mugs to each of us, and the conversation died as we focused on the treat.  Mmm, smooth and sweet. Not too hot, not too cold. It went down easy, warmed me up, then gave me a surprise!

With mug tipped to my mouth, I spotted something emerging from the brown liquid like a swamp monster. I almost spilled it in shock! The expectant faces around the table burst out laughing. The mug had a ceramic green frog affixed to its interior bottom!

I obviously wasn’t the first guest to be given this special treatment. And I wasn’t the last. That mug never seemed to lose its power to create a laugh. As a frequent guest at their house, I got used to sipping from the frog mug. I looked forward to spotting its bulgy eyes peeking from the cocoa.

Hmm, I wonder where that mug is now? I’m guessing it’s still in their cupboard, ready to play tricks on the grandkids.

I'm nuts about you, too, Pete!

Friday, October 6, 2017

Old Reference Books

I saw this stack of old reference books and, since I love books, it made me sad. 
I just had to take a pic and write a cinquain (5-line) poem about it.

Old Reference Books
by Janet Sobczyk, 2017ⓒ

Haphazard piles 
stacked up
like plague victims
in a narrow pauper's grave.

Speaking of books, one of my poems, "Their Eyes" recently appeared in the anthology, Fine Lines Autumn 2017.

The poem is about eyes that speak volumes from the black and white photos 
in newspaper obituary notices. 

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Thursday, September 7, 2017

Happy Anniversary Month

I saved this post until September, the "anniversary month," because my two sisters and I all got married in September (to spouses, not to each other.)

This syllabic poem of mine, called "Phases of Love" was published in Screamin' Mamas magazine this year. It's about all the predictable phases that a couple goes through in a lifetime together.

I wrote it after taking a class in Human Growth and Development six years ago, and posted that incomplete version on this blog on 9-6-2012. This new posting includes the last two stanzas, which were added after Mom passed away.

Phases of Love
By Janet Sobczyk 2011
Two people fell in love.
He loved her laugh, her beauty,
and skills with cooking.
She loved his eyes, his calmness,
and sense of humor.

They talked about marriage,
about their dreams, and children.
They shopped for two rings,
made announcements, set a date;
plans fell into place.

The big day soon arrived.
He was happy, she just glowed.
She walked down the aisle,
wowed the big crowd, they said vows,
then he kissed the bride.

Their honeymoon was grand.
They flew away, for a week,
to walk on the beach,
hold hands and kiss, and relax,
loving every night.

Next they bought a house,
did some painting, laid carpet.
They filled it with stuff,
good cooking smells, and laughter.
It was what they’d dreamed.

Soon a baby arrived,
to change their lives, forever.
With smiles and gurgles,
frequent feedings, sleepless nights,
and all those diapers.

Baby worked hard to crawl
and then to walk, next to run.
Toddlers turn into
children and then, teenagers,
each phase a challenge.

Life got much busier.
With stressful jobs, and more kids,
time flew by so fast.
Car pools and school, lots of bills,
aging parents, too.

Their worries and cares grew.
Tensions emerged, pulled apart
by their hectic lives.
How well could they, or would they,
keep their love alive?

Don’t be a statistic,
stay together, for the kids,
was their decision.
Ride out the storm, and then hope,
for much better days.

The nest became empty.
How could kids leave?  It’s too soon.
Now what will they do?
Renew old ties, use the time
for themselves again.

They found some new hobbies,
Joined a card club, went dancing,
found new restaurants,
planned vacations, took pictures,
enjoyed the grand-kids.

The golden years flew by.
Old age set in, sickness too.
“’Til death do us part”
wasn’t so long, after all.
Now what will she do?

She moved from the old house,
cleaned and downsized, organized,
her kids helping now.
She made new friends, ate meals out,
and waited a while.

Her time, too, grew short.
She slowed way down, lost more weight,
didn’t care to eat.
Her children cried, “It’s okay,
go to Dad. We love you.”