Thursday, December 6, 2012

little girl in paisley, propane tank by the corner

Charlottesville, VA

Yard on fire, out front a trailer
single wide flame high as the roof
an old man with a camcorder
on a ladder, two kids aloof

gaily dance in circles, singing,
'Yards on fire,' out front the trailer
where they raked the dead leaves, glowing
faces alight, ever closer,

closer, antelope and tiger
already my heartbeat quickens
'Yards on fire!' out front the trailer
they don't turn and no one listens

as i pass in my car, heading
home, the man with a camcorder
filming (wind blows) children prancing,
yard on fire and soon the trailer

(i am sure it's a video
they'll watch often), a song on
the radio speed metal screamo
nobody listens, so i turn

it up louder---      

Over at dVerse Poets, Gay has us writing quaterns. The first 4 stanzas of this are written to the form---last stanza is my own addition to it. Saw this on the way home yesterday...the fire was so large and right up on the trailer, all it would take was a bit of wind and  whoosh...and the only adult was videoing from atop a ladder. I dunno. So try you hand at form, this one is actually relatively easy. Doors open at 3 pm EST.

And for my good friend, g-man. A little 55 word story from our breakfast table this morning. 

Loving like California

i like you.
             i like you too.

and just what's that mean
you're gonna do?
             today, i think
             i'll write a love note to you

'mom/dad, why are you
speaking californian?' my son
asks around a cinnamon bun
             'cause there's gold in them
              there hills, there's gold,' i say

look away, Cole
look away

88 comments:

Pat Hatt said...

First
With my burst

Pat Hatt said...

Two days in a row
What do you know
Poor Mary
Now may get contrary

Pat Hatt said...

Hmm what kind of gold
Is being fortold? haha
Wow to the fire
I guess a new adult they should hire
One with a little control
So no fire can just take a stroll

Brandee Shafer said...

The 1st poem stirred up a memory in me. Little kids are fascinated by fire: so many injured or killed in their fascination. Sounds like a chilling scene.

2nd poem got a smile out of me.

Claudia said...

so careless of the adult...ugh...sometimes we just end caught up and fascinated by sth. and forget how dangerous it can get...cool job on the form.. and just love the second one..so much warmth in it...smiles..the golden light always freaked me out a bit when i had to drive back from work when the sun just went down, sometimes it was hard to see the traffic then

DJan said...

Trying to think of an intelligent comment to leave. After awhile I gave up and will just add, "I enjoyed them both." :-)

Daniel said...

Quite a contrast with your two pieces today. The first one seems like it belonged on the redneck DVD release (smiles). The second one was quite cute.

Daydreamertoo said...

Sad isn't it, that a fire is so close and all it would take is the wind to blow in their direction and everything they may own would go up in smoke too and, all the adult does is film it. Amazing.
I love your 55 :)

SueAnn Lommler said...

Brilliant!! Love the juxtaposition. Very cool structure.
Hugs
SueAnn

Dave King said...

es, the first one is a corker. It really grabbed me. I could see it unfolding from a child's viewpoint.
The second, cleverly done (as always)left me full of admiration at what can be achieved in these shorties.

farawayinthesunshine said...

Interesting how recording the fire was a priority, when the children seemed so close...I hope the wind did not turn this yard fire into a feature on the 6 O'clock news. :/

Bossy Betty said...

Liked the first one. LOVED the second one!

Alice Audrey said...

You make me glad I no longer live in one.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

That first one is just a little bit scary in nature.

ReBelle said...

55 cute...

The trailer...scary...so many do catch fire...frequently in the news.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I really like the contrary nature of the two pieces. I loved them both!

Laurie Kolp said...

Great quatern... can't believe the risk some take... well, I can.

Love the second one, too.

G-Man said...

The first story?
Well Son, you DO live in Virginia!
The 55...?
Family inspired stories are my favorite. But really, drop the California speak. Your children needs to embrace their rich Appalachian heritage...hehehehe
Loved both tales.
Thanks for playing, and have a Kick Ass Week-End

rosaria williams said...

How do we stand there and film a fire?
I'm stunned.
The rest, ditto G-Man words.

Mary said...

That first one portrays a dangerous situation....as I read it, the fire DID spread to the trailer. What were these people thinking?????

The first one - what a warm moment! Love it.

Brian Miller said...

i guess people in california speak in love & riddles...i dunno where my son got that...smiles.

Myrna R. said...

Some adults are just too childish to be adequate supervisors. Like the way you wrote about this.

I also like your California breakfast talk. I don't know how to speak it (ha) but since my last few visits there, I like everything California.

Yousei Hime said...

Almost disturbing yet as riveting as fire itself can be. Enjoyed reading here (I always do). :)

Susan Daniels said...

Oh, these are both just right. Smiling and cringing at the burning yard and the kids giddy with it, and the second is just so sweet with a hint of sexy in it. Really like both!

Beachanny said...

Loved the way you worked the quatern. Somehow four just isn't always enough. We were talking about minstrels at lunch and how they added on to "bring the news town to town". I liked your "add on" it brought the Quatern home and made it a real Brian poem. Great job!

Tara Miller said...

I have no clue where Logan got the idea that we were speaking Californian....how funny!! I love your 55 about our morning and "look away, Cole look away" hee hee. You do look rather dashing today. ;)

Check __yes or __no

Audrey Howitt aka Divalounger said...

I thought I loved the first one, but then I read the second one--beautiful work!

manicddaily said...

First - I'm still smiling from the beautiful second one. And whoa, the first is weird. Great job with the form though. There was a weird fire in the middle of the street on fifth avenue last night, right in the middle of the pavement.

Your poem has a wonderful colloquial quality that works well with the form. k.

lori mcclure said...

Of course your quatern would be all eery and cool. I'm working but it's quite the mush fest so far. We'll see if I can make it less soft. And the second is sweet. Kids are funny. I wish I'd written down some of the gems mine have said through the years.

cloudfactor5 said...

Great Quatern, leaf burning season always has it's casualties, when the smoke has cleared

flaubert said...

Brian, saludos to you on the form, I get paralyzed when I start thinking about form poetry. As for the situation, that is dreadful. What was that "adult" thinking? Well captured scene. I love the second with its playfulness, and yes, folk from California do talk funny (says the New Yorker). :=) Nice work.

Pamela

Monkey said...

two very different pieces...both brilliant :)

Heaven said...

Nice form Brian, I can see the yard on fire. They are dangerous when children are also near ~

The second one brings a smile to me ~ Playing along with FF55 after a dry spell ~

Have a good day ~

dulce ♥ said...

Loving both these pieces... I love love and hate fire...What else can I say ? I've lost the habit to commenting too!! LOL
Good work as ALWAYs my friend HUGS and smiles :-)

Susan said...

The second earned a laugh out loud at "speaking Californian"--go gather that gold! The first presented a more serious picture. I liked how you varied the repeated line. I agree that that video will be played and replayed.

anotherwanderingsoul said...

sometimes it makes me so furious when people gawk - especially when there are children involved - such carelessness.
loved that you added the last stanza and made the poem 'yours'... made me smile.

Bodhirose said...

You sure see some interesting things in your day to day life, Brian. My goodness.

Good job on the form and for grabbing my attention...as always.

Ash said...

I love them both!

Maggie May said...

That was certainly different.
Fire does draw in childrens' attention. They don't seem to realise the dangers.
Maggie x

Nuts in May

Steve E said...

Trailer might go
maybe children also?
But, got it all on film.

Even if ladder-man
have to go on the lam,
he's got the pictures
on his cam.

Brian, I speak for everyone (HA!) when I ask when your "love note" will be posted...edited, of course, of course.--grin!

MAN...you ROCK.

vivinfrance said...

Kind of scary and funny at the same time. You've fulfilled the form, though your last stanza is sheer mischief!

henry clemmons said...

A very interesting account, very well told. I hope no one was physically hurt. I liked what you did with the form. Was the trailer lived in. Just wondering if there was a need for anything.

Nico said...

I'm glad you happened along to catch this little golden episode--and that you have the skill to put it into poetic form for us. Excellent work!

Joanna Jenkins said...

An adult with a camcorder. Sheesh.
That's for the double feature today.
jj

Jenny said...

Great job, Brian. Shows your talent...putting two very different pieces into one..Thank you
Are you a teacher? You often speak about your class.

Teresa said...

These are both great! I've been afraid to burn anything for a year-and-a-half now with the drought.

Cloudia said...

mmmmmmmm




Friendly Aloha from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral

~ > < } } ( ° >

> < 3 3 3 ( ' >



Margaret said...

G-Man stole my remark... You live in Appalachia! :)

Kids say (and hear) AND REPEAT the darndest things at the DARNDEST times :)

Brian Miller said...

jenny, i am....i taught years ago but this is my first year back...i spent several years in corporate world and in counseling since...smiles...and ministry...and....well i have gotten around a bit..ha.

Janna said...

You're always so prolific.
I admire your ability to write so freely in such a creative way.

Thanks for doing Friday 55.
Mine's here.

JANU said...

Playing with danger....adults are supposed to be careful with kids around.
I would love to know more about the love note :)

Alice Audrey said...

I 'spect them there hills have been mined out by now.

mywordwall said...

uh-oh. They are playing a dangerous game. :-)

Though I admit, there is no better way to clean up spring and fall's mess but with a nice bonfire.

missing moments said...

Hard to take our eyes off off disaster.
And like that California-speak.

Anders Woje Ellingsen said...

THE FIRE

The fire is
the conscience.
Ambivalence
may tell you this.

Fred Rutherford said...

Interesting things we see when we keep our eyes open. I would have to check my eyes, can't believe someone was sitting there videotaping a trailer burning, guess I shouldn't be surprised with how everything seems to find it's way onto you tube and elsewhere. Excellent Quatern, really like how you changed up the repeating line a couple times there with the quotes, that was creative. Really dig the 55, nicely done.

AJ Walker said...

I like this. Seems that they were dancing some ritual around a camp fire or something.

Lorraine said...

I'm aghast, the fire spreads the firemen join in the dance you speak Love, the world is crazy

Valerie said...

Fire! Help! Silly and irresponsible behaviour by the guy up the ladder. If only they knew....

Loved the 55, Brian. Happy Friday.

ladyfi said...

Oh gosh - a huge fire and no one doing anything?

beckykilsby said...

That refrain really moves the narrative on Brian .. like what you did with your quatern

Nessa said...

I've now got images of whac-a-mole and unlocked bedroom doors in my head.

Flash 55 - Wanted: Dead or Alive?

Sabio Lantz said...

ooooooh, Brian constrained to form!
well, kind of constrained
well, not constrained at all
well, still brian

"Rules are meant for mortals!"

Mr. Charleston said...

Yards on fire this time of year there's gold in them thar trees.

izzy said...

There IS gold in them thar hills!
heehee- at this time of year I will take whatever I can get! :))

Natasha Head said...

Love your driving soundtrack...and the fact you deliver quite a contrast and a double treat today. The first...my gawd, I HOPE they still have a home...the second...well, the smile tames the concern...ha! Good morning sunshine!

Kelvin S.M. said...

..oh..too sad incident Brian... your Quatern reads like a news item - exposing issues and delivering realizations... and just last month, in my place, a lot of almost similar cases of fire occured with a common cause(almost predictable): carelessness and not responsive to current situation... haay..
your second offering is quite a delight to read... and, yes, cute... some conversations we often missed in our home.. smiles..

Lady In Read said...

Loved both of them..
The first one reminds me of another incident like this recently in the news back in India
The second one made me smile...

Mama Zen said...

That first piece is kind of hypnotic. Very cool, Brian.

Annmarie Pipa said...

somethings are so unbelievable a person could not even make it up...like that fire scene?!

afterhisimage said...

Hard to believe people would be do foolish, yet we see it every day. Not as though I've never done any crazy fire stuff...

anglachel27 said...

Nice take on the form, Brian, and such a surreal moment to witness, haha.
Gene

Casey Freeland said...

Great work. #1 was prettier, but I prefer #2.

Cheers,

Casey

franza said...

loved them both, made me smile in awe of formful beauty,
franza

Poet Laundry said...

That first one...yikes!! And the second made me smile--delightful verse.

Grandmother said...

#2- in California they talk about love out loud in front of the kids!

kkkkaty said...

You are a popular guy..with with the stories you tell, or record from day to day, everyday..nice to see the form shine in this one. As for the second ..sounds like a smart kid there ;_)

ayala said...

Careless...fire is nothing to sneeze at :) Your 55 super cute :)

Polly said...

Brian, classic poem, could think of nothing other than Dylan singing 'This Wheels on Fire'~ 'if your memory serves you well' etc ... loved it, beginning to end.

Other Mary said...

Nice form Brian, sounds like an unsettling sight to see. And the 55 is a little gem :o) Oh, and you asked about my TARDIS - all I can tell you is it's bigger in the inside! lol I used to watch the old Doctor too, back in the day when he had a long striped scarf. And then I found him again...not exactly like Rose, but...anyway, glad it gave you a chuckle. Have a great weekend.

Yvonne Osborne said...

That's kinda scary,the first. I can see those children dancing on fire, everything's on fire, leaves, ladder, tigers, trailer. What a scene! And I love loving like California. Them thar hills.

She Writes said...

Okay, the second one I just have to laugh out loud! very funny :). The first? People are crazy :)!!

jane hewey said...

your quatern is chock full of wonderful details. fun to read and imagine. The 55 brought a big smile to my face : ) have a great weekend, Brian.

Victoria said...

Nice job with the form, Brian. Now...speaking Californian??? I guess that it's not such a bad thing!

avoidtheclap said...

There's gold in them there poems.

RMP said...

first — I like what you did with the repeating line. although I admit the whole scenario (while I don't doubt it's real) is quite unbelievable.

second — sweet...touching.... "look away Cole" indeed.

Syd said...

I think that there is some kind of primal thing about fire. We raked leaves and burned them a couple of weeks ago. It was the same with the camp fire this week. An entranced feeling staring at the fire.

Sue said...

Kinda crazy.

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