Saturday, December 28, 2013

"Railroad Growlin' " song written and performed by my son, William Bednar

My Friday Flash 55 is at the bottom of this post

Song written and performed by my son, William Bednar, with introductory drum roll by my youngest son - guess what he received for Christmas?

I am linking this to Imaginary Garden with Real Toads Open Link Monday.   My son is working on a song comprised of my poem "vanGogh Moon".  I really can't wait to share that here soon!

Lyrics to Railroad Growlin':
by William Bednar

I don't play the ukulele
But it's not hard to pretend
I bet you see right through me
And all my little white lies
I'm still waitin' for that train to come
I think I hear it just around the bend
Oh won't you stay for half an hour
Wait with me beneath the tracks
I'll teach yah chords that I learned to shape
by myself when I was cold
I'll walk you back beneath the stars
I coulda kissed yah but I missed it
I'm still thinkin' 'bout the railroad growlin'
My hearts howlin'
Every now and then
I get a lucky hand
So I'll see yah on a Wednesday
That day it couldn't come to soon
That other guy is nice
But I would tame the sky for you
Do you remember the railroad growlin'?
My heart howlin'
Every now and then
A little win will show its head
So I'll see yah on a Wednesday
I'm gonna make some time for you
I'll walk you back beneath the stars
I shoulda kissed yah, Now I miss yah
I'm still thinkin' 'bout the railroad
Thinkin' 'bout the railroad
I'd tame the sky for you
I'm still waiting for that train to come
At least I'm going to pretend
It's comin' 'round the bend.

The Songwriter
by Margaret Bednar

He's never without his little black book -
jotting down words, phrases.
Hums a tune as he walks,

shares with me
favorite lines of beloved old poets,
breaks them down so I can understand.

His energy is what amazes me -
like his hair, bounces, sways, flips
grasps life, careens forward -

melody, harmony, poetic passion,
eternally entwined.

This will be linked with Friday Flash 55 on Thursday after 8pm!

"Christmas Cookies"

Christmas memories
measured, baked, frosted
arranged, admired, praised… devoured!

Margaret Bednar, December 28, 2013

A little late, but this is for "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Words Count with Mama Zen" Ho-ho hoku 5-7-5 is the syllable count for today.  My oldest daughter started last year what I hope is a tradition - baking gourmet cookies for two days straight.

…and confession time:

The cookies do have jam and oatmeal ingredients… ?

"Turkey Pot Pie"

Turkey Pot Pie

Memories are sometimes
like holiday leftovers.

We pick them apart,
discard hurtful words,
sour looks, rolling eyeballs -

add a dash
of favorite vegetables, a few spices.

Create something that reminds us
of the laughter, welcoming tears
and warm hugs upon arrival -

even consider not brushing teeth
just so the flavor will linger
a little longer.

by Margaret Bednar, December 28, 2013

This is for Friday Flash 55 - a bit past the stroke of midnight - but we just got done playing a highly competitive game of chinese checkers.  It's been a wonderful Christmas break, but I'm glad to be back challenging myself with poetry.

We all know, family and friends are the best part of holidays - but everyone together can be a bit challenging as well!  May our memories shine bright :)

Friday, December 20, 2013

Thursday, December 19, 2013


The Ice Cutters, 1911 Natalia Goncharova

When your name
trembles upon my lips -
spikes a fever within,

I treat it with Hennessy -
an elixir that burns,

numbs my heart frigid
for a night.

Perhaps a second dose
as you rarely stay 'till morn.

An iced heart feels no pain.

Heat and ice -
neither a fine bedfellow make

…yet I'm totally addicted.

by Margaret Bednar, December 19, 2013

This is for "The Mag #198" - a selected weekly featured image to inspire poetry or short prose.  I started out writing something totally different - I think the only word I saved from that first attempt is frigid.  I think we have to say my poem is loosely based on the above image :)

Also linked with "Friday Flash 55"- a story (or poem) in exactly 55 words.

Monday, December 16, 2013

"Twenty-seven Years"

Twenty-seven Years

My heart's a dry dessert
yearning for summer rain,
dreams forever
castles in the sky.

My song of Hallelujah
suppressed behind a mask,
emotions spill forth,
ink stained, smuggled out.

My nose touches yours,
photograph dusted,
youth, life, sacrificed,
my image myth-like -

but I'm just a man.

by Margaret Bednar, December 16, 2013

This is for "Imaginary Garden with Real Toad's - Nelson Rolihlala Mandela - In Memoriaam" I in no way want to misinterpret his life's message or the meaning of this man's life.  I tried to focus on a very human part we can all understand - being separated from family.  The above poem is my humble attempt of capturing a slice of this man's life while in prison - compiled from letters he wrote to his wife, Winnie - HERE.  I also snagged the two ending lines from his statement he delivered on April 13, 2992 HERE when he announced he and Comrade Nomzamo Winnie Mandela were divorcing.

Nelson Mandela was allowed one visitor a year for 30 minutes - one letter written, one received every six months.  He was a prisoner for 27 years!

His autobiography is "Long Walk to Freedom" which I plan on purchasing soon.

Here is an amazing link I am still reading and wading through about this man I really know little about.

A review by Roger Ebert of "Winnie Mandela".  I hesitate to watch it as I often dislike what Hollywood does with real-life stories.    There is also a movie based on his autobiography "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013) and it got a 72% liking from "Rotten Tomatoes".  Has anyone seen these movies?  Are they worthy of seeing - do they do the two justice?

Saturday, December 14, 2013

"Winter Solstice"

Winter Solstice

Bud and blossoms
long since bowed low,
stripped, and stilled -
nakedly sway
as Capricorn's frigid breath
snuffs day's light early upon its quick.

While Orion's Belt sparkles
like a diamond broach
pinned to velvet nights,
we gather close beside the fire,
ponder infinity, celebrate faith -
pursue renewal.

by Margaret Bednar, December 14, 2013

This is for "dVerse Poetics - Candles & Lights".  I will be back later tonight to read the many excellent responses to this challenge.  Please click on over and see the many amazing responses of talented poets!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

"A Winter's Recipe"

A Winter's Recipe

A soothing open fire, two devilish dimples,
three lavish splashes of hot buttered rum,
and lips to whisper four (or more) feathered trails
along one's neck…

If the flame smolders to embers, well
what lady doesn't prefer a long, slow burn
to a frenzied heat for roasting chestnuts
and other such … amusements?

by Margaret Bednar, December 11, 2013

This bit of seasonal fun (and advice) can be attributed to Fireblossom's challenge for "Imaginary Garden with Real Toad's Get Listed".  She is stepping in for Mama Zen this month hence no word limit but she did issue a decree:  NO haiku.

My husband and I tasted warm, roasted chestnuts for the first time this past weekend… As he loves sitting 'round an outdoor fire, NOW I know what I will be getting him for Christmas - a chestnut roaster.  HERE is how it is done.

note:  For the record,  I do NOT require dimples (my husband has none  :)

This will also be linked with "Friday Flash 55".

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

"The Entanglement"

The Entanglement

Rubies, pearls,
onyx, and jade
gifts from a lover -
eagerly worn.

In the dark of night,
tangled, entwined
faithfulness shines
from moonstone eyes,

briefly brands "forever"
with ivory touch,
hints of a diamond
winks - is gone,

as smoke from his pipe
surrounds and clings.
In this soft dawn light,
shivering and cold

rubies, pearls,
onyx, and jade
gifts from a lover -
slowly I adorn.

Margaret Bednar, December 9, 2013

This is so very late and I hosted this challenge - "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Artistic Interpretations - Through the lens of Jennifer MacNeill"  She graciously allowed us to use her "The Collector" images for our poetry challenge.  Click on the link for further details.

Jennifer MacNeill is a fabulously talented photographer.  Her flickr sight can be found HERE, and her website HERE.

Please excuse me for hosting and then getting back with everyone so late - I was away for the weekend celebrating my husband's 50th birthday (and it was a lot of fun).  I will visit everyone's responses to this challenge tomorrow morning!  

Thursday, December 5, 2013



Daily I resist the constant need
to press into your cream puff cheeks,
nose breathing in your still sweet morning breath;

resist the need to smooth your Dennis-the-Menace cowlick
as you wait for the school bus;

or trace a finger along your sweetly exposed neck
in the library while you read "Dick and Jane".

I know this urge dissipates well before middle school
(I say this as my fifth grader gives me the raised
"Don't even try it!" eyebrow).

My heart soared yesterday as entering the classroom,
you yelled "Mommy!", wrapped me with a huge hug.

Six is still so dear, yet I know the day
will soon come upon finishing "Runaway Bunny"
you won't need Joey Kangaroo under the covers with you,
won't ask for an "Eskimo kiss".

I've been through this five times before.
It never gets any easier.

by Margaret Bednar, December 5, 2013

The video below of the little boy's voice and the mother's commentary cracked me up.  I have read this very same book to all six of my children…

This is for "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Out of Standard - Eskimo" - our marching directions? To use the word Eskimo without mentioning snow or any adjective thereof.

I may change "Eskimo kiss" to "butterfly kisses" at a later date as that is what we do, but for now, I claim "artistic license".

Oh, and don't think I don't kiss and squeeze my youngest as often as I can get away with (I just try to do it a bit more at home than at school or in public - although, he doesn't complain about it … yet).

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

"My Angel"

Image used for Magpie Tales #

My Angel

As a child
I quietly observed
"Do as I say, not as I do" -

made the mistake
of pointing it out
only once.

At twelve, realized angels
live among us, though mom
called her "a disgrace".

My angel taught me
to dream, helped
build my wings.

Leaving her behind
is the only thing
I regret.

by Margaret Bednar, December 3, 2013

This is not an autobiography - it is reminiscent of a friend I once knew who grew up in a family situation far removed from mine.  My friend's sister never "escaped" but truly was a guardian angel.

This is linked with "The Mag #196".  Tess provides the image, we provide the poetry.

This will also linked with "Friday Flash 55".

I'm also linking this with "dVerse - Form for All".

"Prince of Darkness"

Prince of Darkness

December's night breeze
rustles the leaves, rumples
forest's underbelly

betraying sanctuary's silence.

A haloed bronze statue
shines upon bared branches,
hears the pious prayers

of deliverance;

with angelic wings swoops down,
unearths the devout. Yet even
the Prince of Darkness gives thanks

before devouring his evening meal.

by Margaret Bednar, December 3, 2013

This is linked with Poet's United "Verse First - The Owl".  

Monday, December 2, 2013

"Skipping Stones"

Skipping Stones

I remember
fishing beneath the dam,
bass, catfish, pike? …
(they're all the same to me)
practically hurled themselves
onto our hooks.

Perhaps it was
the full moon's magic, perhaps
it was your presence beside me,
hand upon my back - either way,
I never thought fishing
would be so exciting.

I remember
sneaking sideways glances
as you showed me how
to skip rocks, a technique
you hadn't perfected.
We laughed, kept trying.

We never got around
to fishing again, never
stood shoreside beneath moon's
magic glow, touching -
but the easiness, the rightness
of it still lingers…

For over the years
love's the stone that triple skips,
glides, settles softly
beneath our ribs, other times
it plunks, plunges heavily,
leaves a splash upon our cheeks.

We still stand together
upon that bank
almost a quarter century
later "skipping stones"
hopefully continuing to laugh
and sneaking sideways glances.

by Margaret Bednar, December 2, 2013

My dear husband of almost 24 years will be 50 years old this upcoming weekend.  This poem is for him.

I hope all my American blogging friends had a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I was unable to even touch my computer, but am back on "regular" schedule now and am linking up with "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Open Link Monday".

I will also be linking up with dVerse - Open Link Night #125 - starting Tuesday afternoon.