Sunday, April 29, 2018

Scary Poem
                                by Ralph Fletcher

I’m afraid of one poem,
the verbs that creak and moan.

That one frightens me
from the first simile.

One haunting metaphor
strikes fear to my core.

I’m deeply disturbed
by one vicious verb. 

The rhymes of that verse
make me fear the worst.

No use pretending:
I d-d-dread the ending. 

Friday, April 27, 2018

Family Photo

              by Ralph Fletcher

One last picture
before we head off
in different directions.

One last group of
all of us, smirking,
with rabbit ears.

Three generations,
kids on shoulders,
a baby cousin on my lap.

And in the middle
Grandma and Grandpa
who started all this.

We’re all ripples in a pond
spreading out
from a stone they threw.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

                  by Ralph Fletcher

I remember Grandpa.
He’d get up early with me,
made me “alien pancakes”
that were yeah you guessed it
out-of-this-world delicious.

I remember Grandpa.
We were always outside.
He took me to the pond
when the first peepers
erupted in early spring.

I remember Grandpa.
He concocted wild tales.
          His true stories were great
          and his fake stories  
          even better.

          I remember Grandpa.
          He taught me how to sew ties
          before we’d go trout fishing:

If you make ‘em right  
they’ll last forever

like my memories of Grandpa.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Great Blue Heron

                    by Ralph Fletcher

Even when we walk up close
he pays no attention to us
as he walks along the shore
peering into shallow water
looking for some juicy crab
or unsuspecting sushi.

He looks like a dorky teacher
teaching advance algebra,
all eyes and bones and beak,
lecturing to invisible students,
hungry for that one moment
when he will get across his

Tuesday, April 24, 2018


The Man-Cloud
                                by Ralph Fletcher

In a buzzing morning meadow
when the sun was not yet high
I thought I saw a man-cloud
walking in the sky.

My brother saw it differently.
He told me with a laugh
that what I’d seen was actually
an ice-skating giraffe.

“Can’t you see the way he’s gliding?
With those long legs see him striding?
I distinctly see a tall giraffe
walking in the sky.”

I didn’t stop to disagree
or tell him he was wrong.
I saw a man-cloud walking,
and wished to go along.