dVerse — Poetics — I was never there

https://taotalkcom.files.wordpress.com/2023/01/d59c3-ghost_city.jpg

You said you saw me walking
but I was never there;
a shadowy ghost in the burbs,
you see me everywhere.
My locks blend in with wind-
bounced twigs, prickly grey.
My teeth in with picket fence,
where my smirking grin plays.
My skirt, a flapping plastic of
stripped windows, vacant home,
I make sure you see me
only when you are alone. I cry,
moaning on the wind, forever
wishing I could love you again.

top image:  “Lonely Ghost,” by Tim Probert

Merril is today’s host of dVerse’ Poetics. Merril says:
So. . .from the list below, choose at least two titles, and write a poem including the exact words of the titles within the poem. The word order of the title must be retained, but you can punctuate the longer ones. The poem can be in any style or form, and you may also use a podcast title for your own title, if you would like. Easy-peasy, right? I’m giving you prompt words. Now all you have to do is write a poem using them.

The Titles:
Articles of Interest: American Ivy
I Was Never There
Legacy of Speed
Not Lost
Pivot
Reveal: After Ayotzinapa
Rumble Strip
Serial
This American Life
Ghost in the Burbs

62 Comments Add yours

  1. Ron. says:

    Great stuff, Lisa. Those two were my top choices as well. Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Oh wow. GMTA. Will check yours out in a bit.

      Like

  2. This is quite evocative.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. merrildsmith says:

    Wonderful opening, and then you carry through. The line that really caught me:
    “I make sure you see me
    only when you are alone.”

    Such an evocative poem, Lisa!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks much, Merril. Happy you enjoyed it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. merrildsmith says:

        You’re welcome, Lisa. I did!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. rothpoetry says:

    I love what you did with this prompt, Lisa. Great personification of the world around you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Dwight, thank you, much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. rothpoetry says:

        You are welcome!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Creepy cool! Good visuals and I’m not talking about the Probert image.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      D, thanks so much 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Great job on the prompt Lisa! ❣️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Cindy thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. memadtwo says:

    Very evocative, especially the flapping plastic…shivers. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Glad to have shivered you, K 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Sadje says:

    Great use of the phrases to write an evocative poem

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Sadje, thank you. I think every person who wrote to this one used, “I was never there” as one of their choices. A lot of good poems were generated with them.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje says:

        Yes it’s a very powerful phrase.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh, this is spooky and unsettling, and I have a whole backstory in my mind for it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Feel free to write the backstory, Sarah. Thank you 🙂

      Like

  10. kim881 says:

    The rhythm and atmosphere of your poem reminded me a little of ‘My Shadow’ by Robert Louis Stevenson, while at the same time giving me the shivers, especially ‘My teeth in with picket fence, / where my smirking grin plays’. I love the poignant twist in the final lines, Lisa.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Kim thank you very much for your feedback. Always appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. kim881 says:

        You are moire than welcome, Lisa.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. the visuals make the haunting so tangible
    “My skirt, a flapping plastic of
    stripped windows, vacant home,”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Laura, thank you.

      Like

  12. This ghost embodies and embraces the town, impossible to escape it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      You’re right, Jane. On the micro it is a person, on the macro it is the rust belt decay of the midwest US.

      Like

      1. The rust belt rattled in your lines.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Your poem gave me shivers Lisa. I’ve seen a ghost or two in my life, and it’s always so unbelievable after.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks, Linda. I haven’t yet — and hope I never do! — but it is what I would imagine it would be like.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Bernie. Happy to see you!

      Like

  14. Jim says:

    And he’ll see your ghost for a long, long, time. I saw mine for over twenty-five years. She in person sat beside me at our granddaughter’s wedding. I didn’t recognize her until Mrs. Jim told me that she was my ex. We talked some but she wasn’t the person I had been seeing for all those years. And she disappeared from that day on, literally or as the ghost. Nice right, brings memories for me. But not for long, the ghost has gone.
    ..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Jim, now you are giving me the shivers. A lingering ghost for 25 years. Yipes! Maybe she was just waiting for you (and your wife) to acknowledge her? Glad she decided to move along!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. This reads like a ghost story to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      I’m glad, because that’s what it is. Thanks, Bjorn.

      Like

  16. Rob Kistner says:

    Oh Lisa this has a wonderful melancholy, and I love melancholy, so I was captivated by your writing here. The imagery was haunting, well written friend. Happy new year, hope all is well.🙂✌🏼❣️

    Like

    1. msjadeli says:

      Rob, I’m glad you captured the melancholy aspect of the poem. Thanks much, and yes, the new year is being warm and fuzzy. Hoping you are well also ❤

      Like

  17. Helen says:

    Your ghost story satisfies down to my very core … don’t know as though I’ve read more vivid descriptions … the picket fence teeth, the gray twisty locks of hair. WOW. Wishing you an amazing 2023!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks so much, Helen ❤ Wishing the same to you!

      Like

  18. Atmospheric and beautiful Lisa

    ‘My locks blend in with wind-
    bounced twigs, prickly grey.’

    ☺️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Christine, thank you. Glad you enjoyed it.

      Like

  19. I love how you stuck with the “burbs” imagery. This is a gorgeous poem. I feel the emotion at the end roll over me in waves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Colleen I imagined myself walking through town. The last bit was unknown until the end. Thank you very much.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It came together well. I love it.

        Liked by 1 person

  20. kittysverses says:

    “I make sure you see me
    only when you are alone.”
    These lines touched me. Well written, Li. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Kitty I’m glad you connected with the lines. ❤ Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. kittysverses says:

        You are welcome, Li. Happy 2023. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  21. I read the poem before I read the title; very fitting. Good stuff. 👍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Gia!

      Liked by 1 person

  22. lillian says:

    WOW! Lisa, this is an amazing write. These words hit me most especially:
    “My teeth in with picket fence,
    where my smirking grin plays.
    My skirt, a flapping plastic of
    stripped windows, vacant home,
    I make sure you see me
    only when you are alone”
    The teeth and the picket fence…the flapping plastic…this is spooky for sure but the imagery is perfect….I am MOST struck with the teeth and the picket fence! Just GRABS you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Lillian thanks so much. I don’t know if this ever happens to you, but sometimes when I get up in the night to go to the bathroom objects in shadows can take on an animated aspect, such as a grinning dwarf or other beastie. I always look away quick. My mind’s dream state is still active at those times, I think.

      Like

  23. Badfinger (Max) says:

    I like this one Lisa…very clever.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Max! It has a very noir feel to it, yes?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Badfinger (Max) says:

        Yes it does! Loved the Picket Fence line a lot. Many lines I liked but that one stands out to me.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. msjadeli says:

          🙂 Thanks again.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Badfinger (Max) says:

            Lisa I feel like I’m coming out of a fog…with the holidays, covid, and that virus…I’m finally feeling myself again.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. msjadeli says:

              Max, believe me, I understand. The holiday season is bad enough but then the months of greyness do take its toll. You have the added covid and virus and oh my.

              Liked by 1 person

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