Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Camp (An island of memories anchored by stones my soul knows by heart.)

Lake Hubley from The Camp - photo by Amanda Young

My foot lands on the next stone
and the next.
In this way I walk around the Camp,
an island rimmed with stone
on Hubley Lake’s rocky waters.

Round and round I go

Blue grey water eases in
and out of crevices.
I hear the glop, glop
as it hits rock.
Life breathes in and out
as I walk counter clock-wise
around this home
away from home.

wood burning stove
boat house
all ancient
to an eight-year old’s
sense of time…

and here time has slipped
back to a past
where tiny porcelain dolls
with painted faces and
movable limbs play
in a tiny church.
Here the past is layered
in the scent of wood smoke
and the memories of others.

Round and round I go

I look across rippled waters
see another island. Wonder
who walks its paths.
A whole other world
only a boat ride away.

I continue my rounds.

In the distance, a stretch of beaches
where we catch minnows
as soft sand squishes
between our toes.

Round and round I go

I come to the lookout.
A huge, lichen covered rock
waits for me to climb up
become a part of it
as the wind blows
and the sun
breaks through
drifting clouds…

Round and round…

The Camp lives on
as cousins rebuild
take care
layer in more memories
that by now must be so thick
you can barely move
without being pulled back
to another time.

Round and round it goes…

And perhaps,
beyond the mists
my father
with his brother
cleaning fish

© 2015 Joanne Elliott

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Break Ground

The cement and asphalt
have to go.

We need to break ground
unbuild this edifice

we call civilization.
The Earth needs

breathing room or
we’ll cook in the heat

that is never fully

held within hard surfaces
rising at night

building clouds that
never rain down.

Nothing escapes
and the cycle replays

each day until
our thermometers

can no longer read
our meltdown.

©2015 Joanne Elliott

Sunday, May 19, 2013


The memory of your face
a relief upon her neurons
disintegrates. An ancient
pharaoh's image scraped away
by a successor, you become
dust upon the floor.

You become the forgotten
as the past gets rewritten
and what they call night
becomes day by another

©2013 Joanne Elliott

Saturday, April 27, 2013

In and Out of Shadow

Earth moves, day moves.
Take off your shoes and dance
in dust floating in beams of sunlight.

Dust swirls, settles and then a gust
sends it flying to another corner
scatters the ashes of the past

everywhere until it doesn't matter.
As dust settles so does night.
Shadows lengthen then fade.

Moon beams reach out
hold you beneath a veil pierced
by a million transcendent suns.

The Earth speeds through space
until rays of sun climb up beyond
horizon. Because of you

shadow is stretched out for miles
yet ever shortened
by the rising sun.

©2013 Joanne Young Elliott

I was working on a poem and listening to this music. Above is what emerged.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Love Letter to Hades

Oct. 17, 2012 109F

Dear Hades,

What fiery magic have you wrought here in this middle world. Do you wish to stifle me with your heated presence? Are you afraid I’ll forget you here in this lush land where trees still bloom in October? Do you think it possible I could forget your branding fingertips against my cool, pale flesh? Or that I might prefer Ra’s searing touch upon my skin?

I cannot forget your dark heat that warms me from within. Though I miss the loving touch of my mother, her protective embrace stifles in other ways; I made my choice when I swallowed the seed of the sacred fruit. I am now the dark earth in which the pomegranate waits to be born. I am the fruit that will return to this middle world again in spring.

But I hesitate here in this bright, lush land. Your furnace burns through from the underworld wilting tender blooms, but I want one more day here my dear, beloved Hades, one more day in the sun amongst the living, one more day before I return to the darkness, under your fire, the fire that lives in the seed, that essence that is both life and death. How like my mother you are, dark and beautiful. You know I cannot resist.

Withdraw your heat from this world. Soon I’ll be with you my love. Soon I’ll let you consume my soul for that long, dark night. Soon my burning one…soon.

Your Beloved,

This piece of fiction is for New World Creative Union’s Wednesday Wake-Up Call prompt. This week it is all about elemental magic. I thought of fire when it reached 109F here yesterday. Hotter than Hades! It got me thinking about what magic could be made to cool off good ole Hades…or at least get him to tone it down a bit. It was cloudy the better part of today and didn't quite reach 90F. Thank you Hades or maybe I should be thanking Persephone.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Sky Visions

Sky Visions


Green leaves shine against sky.
Yellow sunsets in smog.
Deep blue indigo of twilight.


Big sky captured in pyramid form
which she clangs and clangs…
Triangle wrangles the boys home.


Still pond reflects sky
studded with puffs of white cloud.
Peace prevails before winds.


The lilacs’ blooms taken by wind
for a moment speckled
the mid summer sky.


At dusk stars appear one by one
like magic. A child looks up
begins to count.

© 2012 Joanne Elliott       

Poem for New World Creative Union’s Wednesday Wake-Up Call

The prompt:
Take the following items and create something from them: prose, a poem, a sketch, a watercolor, et cetera. All of the following items must be a part, and distinguishable, of whatever you create:

1. The colors yellow, blue, and green
2. A triangle.
3. Peace
4. Lilacs.
5. A child.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Return of the Equinox

Nova Scotia Fall 2002 - Photo by Charles Elliott/Beautyseer

Fall comes and I who was to be
an Equinox child now lay claim
to Virgo ways, though my soul
still lives in Libra.

Light changes, stands still
for a moment and I wonder
why I couldn’t wait for Autumn
instead was born on an afternoon

the moon in its dark phase,
the mystic’s vision inward
the Virgin gathering wheat
instead of scales weighing.

I anticipate this turn of season
this descent into darkness
to harvest, to ruminate, to learn,
to understand how to let go

a red leaf falling
falling a great distance
in order to return to the land
whose stars I was born under.

© 2012 Joanne Elliott

My mother left the U.S. when she met my father, a Canadian from Nova Scotia. Near the end of her pregnancy with me they were visiting her relatives in Detroit…I guess I decided that is where I wanted to be born and so was born two weeks early. Many years later I returned to the U.S., though born here I had never lived here until thirteen years ago. I moved to So Cal when I met Charles/Beautyseer online.

This poem is dedicated to my parents and to both of my homelands.