Welcome to Four Lines! I have a goal I would like to write at least four lines of poetry or a haiku every day for the rest of my life. I'm excited about this challenge! Also, along with my daily poem, I will be reading at least four lines of another author's poetry. I'll try to include that here also. So I'm thinking - how difficult can it be to read and then write one poem a day? We will see! - Claudia

All poems on this blog, unless noted, are written by Claudia Callaghan.
© 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 Claudia Callaghan
Used only with permission. Please feel free to join Four Lines and request permission.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Happy on the drive home,
our children met for the first time.
All four of us on sweet sand
poised to run into tumbling waves.
On your mark.  Get set!  Go!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Hi out there!
I am a four line poem. 
I wish I could see you
reading me.
This starry, still moving pond shines
  in my eyes everywhere I look -
 Dimpled drops of dew light leaves
  and flowers.  Autumn edges
              everywhere -
 this palate changing daily a little more.
   Nothing is small or large - equality is
The wrinkled tree creeks, melancholy
  and lovely like the hermit thrush echoing
around me. I find this melodic master
  perched on the tree's high branch.           
is home.  I love this feeling.  Like
  a haiku moment capable of being

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Under an umbrella
they kiss.  I feel it
on my lips.
My hair hats my head, veils my neck, willows my shoulders,
  curls around my ears, light brown and gold with a gray
slow-moving, melodic melody line I love. 
  I have no onyx Rembrandt hat with a rim
or cap of white on, no enigmatic expression
  behind which teams an ocean of emotions and history.

His hair, I run my fingers through whenever given the
  chance.  He wears no sable Rembrandt hat either,
no vague expression. He puts his socks on standing
   on one foot reciting Laurel and Hardy.
Laying across the end of the bed in my chetah silk gown,
  I observe him, intrigued with this behavior and imagine
him adding juggling balls of socks of different colors.
  Which socks to put on? The ones that fall.

He finishes, buttoning his shirt.  I determine to leap,
  pin him to my bed, kiss his mouth, face, neck,
bite his ear. I attack my prey. Retreat is futile.
  He observes my behavior laughing...
I wish I wore a black Rembrandt hat.
  Removing it last, I'd fling it up in the air to land
perfectly on the hat stand.  His socks I'd hide
 under my bed accompanying shoes secretly eclipsed.
I'm deciding.  Deciding... I don't want him to leave.
  I may never want him to leave!  Hmm... he'll
have to find his socks and shoes first.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Oh my Lord, what nonsense! -
No me, not You -
nonsenses' antithesis...

How to piece together something,
anything, powerful in seconds,
before the library closes?

Overhead I hear every calm, laconic voice
I've heard in my life...
"The library will be closing
in 20 minutes. Please proceed
with your books to the front desk
at this time.  Thank you."

I have no books today - second on the list
for "Bill Moyers Journal,
The Conversation Continues" -
surrounded only by unfinished word
combinations I dance around sweating
to unlock.

The tigress she is, Annie Dillard said
something like...  don't save anything,
say it all, write it now,  and if you know
something, share it or it will destroy you...
among other things. Her wisdom kept me
pondering all day...  Now with fifteen minutes
to go, I race to figure out tumblers, the drumming
of my beating heart.  Can I hear my speaking blood
flowing to my hands?

Today studying Moon Beam without thought -
her golden, blinking, oval eyes,
unusual calico patterns of gray, white, pink,
her gentle movement transforming into
a stealthful, stalking lioness in seconds,
her soft paws, white, beautiful as spring lilies,
her needle nails, gray and pink nose -
an epiphany rose over the horizon.
Yes, I started thinking -
(often a futile habit, but not always)
God is curious, joyfully curious, about everything!
Nothing can be left out of this eternal pleased curiosity!

Today, I also semi-lied to Michael.
- Thought I would die, - Have to be cremated.
My epitaph..."Here she semi-lies, a semi-poet
of unfinished,  polka dot poems and songs."

"The library will be closing
in ten minutes."  Oh dear!
Well, I fessed up right away,
conscience in my hopeful mouth.
Weight of the dirt on my grave disappeared.
I burst forth like a geizer, my water self
settling to the ground.  Love!
His is of three elements.  It ribbons deep
into the earth that lives forever, rains lightly
with humor, knows, too, he makes mistakes,
using them like Michael Jordon - to learn.

Oh!  Dimming lights, the final call,
"The library is closing now."
The screen blinks, "You must log off
the computer now."
I'm bequeathed other chances to graduate with wings.
We're all bequeathed other chances!  Thank you Creator.
Computer off...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Joseph Campbell, the universe sage
we love said, "follow your bliss."
Last night, I followed you.
Last night, you followed me.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

  What is it like to live in Eurasia?
Mom is flying to St Petersburg soon - 
  she has seen herself there.
In her bags there is no room again 
  to sneak myself in.  Perhaps 
I should set aside French, Spanish
  and learn Russian, across the tracks... 

  across the tracks I'd meet poetry kin
at ancient places, share wine at cafes.  
  We could laugh and drink till
we slice our hands and blood to blood
  become bonded siblings.  Yes... 
I'll fly over the illusory divide
  maybe with Michael, who loves
the entire world.  We'll pull up tracks, 
  plant orchards, extend our families
and learn more... what it's like
 to be Eurasian and American.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Sunday, August 19, 2012

In my house resides a dove,
  a connoisseur of conversation,
a source of humor and elation.
  Many a man has disapproved,
some have asked me to remove
  this bird who flaps her white-sky wings,
preens herself, struts and sings -
  flies around without a cage,
perches in meditation like a sage.
  I let her out, a rebel set free.
She knows every branch of every tree,
  glides on air, the sky her stage.
I have learned what it is to love
  for in my house resides a dove.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

A taciturn, waltzing monarch
and a purring bumble bee,
merry in their element
on a joe-pye weed, 
that makes three.

I am the weed's flower
growing to the sun,
enjoying every kind of weather
that passes swiftly on,
a reperoire of song.

Don't cut me down,
put me in a vase.
I'm happy from my rooted toes
to my flower face and out
into conscious space.

If you do, I will content me,
for a day or two stay strong.
When I die, put me under
my joe-pye weed
where I belong.

Friday, August 17, 2012

I remember when I was young
  part of me pined to be a nun,
    to love God, only, with all my heart
as my Creator and as a man.

Then everywhere was John Thiele...
  on the bus, in the halls, the basketball 
    court, laughing with my brother.
I thought I'd die when he looked at me,

my heart not in my chest - even then,
  I'd given it away as the sun gives light.  
    I dreamed, if I became a nun,
I'd commit adultery and kill myself!

However...   I know the fire of loving
  Yahweh, a fire burning in me more 
    every day and when I die,
Love will consume me.

This is the reason of my morning.
  The vatican is, in part, a sea of egos,
    yes, not always and not all.
Today, our brave and married nuns

follow their Son, wherever He leads...
  where He lead his disciples...
    to the poor and the outsiders hated,
to the devoted and the dead,

to all who would listen!
  Our nuns are on fire with Truth! -
     Egos at the vatican fear them.
Perhaps they could speak to Mother Mary.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

he's far away -
unfinished poems -
half done cakes -
unemployed -
unripe plums -
forgotten hopes -

animated hopes!
excited for plums!
cakes in the oven!
progressing poems!
he's almost home!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

his vocal timbre,
like ocean waves
upon my white sand shore -

oil on my canvas
hands on my piano
garden to my flowers -

wood of my fire
fire through my forest
forest on my land -

water to thirst
yang to yin
wind to wind -

his vocal timber,
laughter in my air
laughter to my laughing!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Slide down sun beams
to hug trees every day!
T'is possible!

We write her two lists -
a wonderful self list,
and a gratitude list.

Lovely like corn silk,
growing stalks of corn,
golden, from her mouth
not mine. 

She asks, "Are you for real?"
She lives in a Chevy truck.
I know she is real.

We envision her in her garden,
past and future, in her own home,
safe and welcoming...

In her wonderful self list...
she is first a nurturing mother.
She gives to strangers in need,
loves sitting under stars,
discovering worlds through a telescope.

We talk, she surrounded by trees,
me in a mountain of glass and concrete.
Tomorrow we can add 
to your lists too, I tell her.

I'm starting one of my own.
I slide down sun beams
and hug trees.

Monday, August 13, 2012

My stomach knots when the phone rings
  morning and evening, when you sometimes call.
A beautiful, braided knot...
  You braided my hair once,
the night we admired distant, white stars,
  before you left.

Sometimes, I sense it during the day,
  like aching hunger without being hungry,
or anxiousness... nervousness too...
  as if something is missing - a part of myself.

Can it be that you are a part of myself?
  A part of myself far away, far away,
traveling by bus nestled roads to Delphi,
  a part of myself far away, so far away,
gazing up at night at the Acropolis in lights...
  that this beautifully braided knot hurts.

Where is my scarce, pragmatic self?
  I must find her, because soon,
soon... heaven be with me,
  I'll cry.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

He cuts from the back...

unlike long ago when I faced it...
shaking in line between two courageous brothers.
I cried in my mind,  "I didn't do it! Whatever it is! We didn't do it!"
We were often one, not three -
one innocent, waiting to be bruised and survive
the scarred voice demanding to know it's own frightening lie.

He cuts from the back, his covered with stitches. 
Around him I decide to wear steel.

Yet, if I wear steel, I'll be shaking
again between my beautiful brothers,
panicking aware of his silent stalking.

What if he's bringing me a cafe mocha,
sincere conversation and an apology instead?
What if it's me directing a former scene?

Even in scary rain, real or unreal,
the celestial sun smiles on me.
*Above all else, I am determined to see.

He approaches behind me.
I'm ready.

*This line is from the holy book, "The Course in Miracles."

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Friday, August 10, 2012

This gentle dawn my piano seemed to
  play itself moving my hands before
    anything, before stepping out under
lillac skies to walk my canine sister,
  before sipping a hot cup of earl gray
    between bites of blueberry muffins,
before splashing cool water on my face,
  brushing my teeth, but not before
    the reverie of waking, breathing deeply.  
Quietly mornings bloom now, past mornings
  fade without trying - except for my
    mornings with you.  They are pulling
me forward to my piano, melodious,
  poetic days and adventurous terrain!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Love, more than sunrise, opening
  eyes and petals of the world.

Love, more than water, filling
  each being with thirst to live.

Love, more than air, the portal
  between heaven and form - consciousness.

Love, more than fire, in peace and flame,
  living and dying.

Love, more than evolving earth, inspiring
  birth, giving, experiencing.

Love, more than yourself, for you are
  beyond ideas of time and space contained.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Zucchini bread and eggplant on my
  doorstep and brightest, garden hues
vased on my dining room table from you.
  My kitchen and dining room are happy!
You leave your embrace, kind,
verdant piano leaves, and flowers -
a red rose, purple tall larkspur, alstroemeria,
  lilies, pink aster - and your eggplant,
and hand made bread self behind for me.

I'd rather you hid me in your suitcase! -
  than see vicariously Greece and Turkey,
unable to breathe Mediterranean air.

I wish to stroll ancient streets
 with you and Liana, seeking
to know brilliant faces and places,
  to bring part of the another side
of the world home and leaving
  lilies, purple larkspur, pink aster,
alstroemeria, red roses and verdant,
  kind, piano leaves of ourselves behind.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Words are lost in a
  world too big for
small things...

  small things like molding
sand castles with moats,
questing for cowrie,
  pen, and jingle shells,
laughing at wet sand
 between toes...

  small things like cooking
with sesame and poppy seeds,
  drawing orange spring poppies, 
singing a loved one awake in the morning,
  kissing someone on the nose.

A little blue box holds
  pearl earings and all
elements of the sea,
  or a dark chocolate truffle
and all elements of earth,
  or a haiku, with all
elements of condensation

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Too sleepy to write.
  The screen, bright-white
as a full moon in my
  half-dreamy night.
The illusory, moving moon 
  like the turning of a page,  
the closing of a book,
  of my eyes before I have
barely started, being
  too sleepy to write.


Saturday, August 4, 2012

You, Peter, are my friend and Lord of the Marsh.
  Michael is my love and Lord of Music.
Jim is my brother and Lord of the Mountains.
  Sheri is my sister and Lady of Friendship.
Sarie is my daughter and Lady of the Animals.
  Eve is my mother and Lady of Beginning.

It is you, who are building a bridge
  across the marshland, balanced
and generous, as you said you would.
  You build for everyone
to cross into the realm, where
  love abounds and peace fills
every heart.  You do not need
  this bridge you are building,
flying on gleaming turquoise wings.
   You say my wings are growing!
If that is true, it is partly 
  because of you.

It is also you, who rekindled,
  the world in me where we all are
lords and ladies, where the sea
  is my lady and the sky my lord,
the bag lady is my lady, the president
  my lord, a Siberian tiger is my lord,
and I am Annabelle, Lady of the Woodland Lake,
  who sees music and poetry in everything.


Friday, August 3, 2012

lighting, rain, wind,
thunder, Beethoven!
outside my window -

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

  In the library parking lot,
singing to heaven tenderly,
unraveling strand by strand,
pieces, layers, years of you.
Years of you melt in melody
like March snow and ice,
joys daffodils close behind.
  I sing to your frozenness, 
your melting and thawing, 
your smiling in Spring,
a loving tune that steadily mends.
  I sing baring flowers
of every hue on earth,
a fountain of gratitude,
of kindness for you.  
  In the library parking lot,
singing to heaven tenderly,
a song forever for you.