As I stood atop
a crumbling cliff set for death,
a williwaw wailed
and grieved the earth it ate at
and the life it’d blown away.

Badge: Shapeshifting 13 #26

Natural Revolution

Photo prompt courtesy of Grammar Ghoul Press. I believe it’s an advertisement for the live-action movie adaptation of the manga Judge by Tonegai Yoshiki. After looking into it, my tanka seems way too lighthearted.

Predator and prey
secretly plot together —
seeking nature’s revival,
targeting children’s mindsets.

Badge: Shapeshifting 13 #24

Iris Domestica

Photo prompt courtesy and copyright property of Suman at Desibuckets via Grammar Ghoul Press.

I drempt
of heleniums,
lantanas, and
butterfly weeds
flushing over
the scratched patches
of earth
my windowless hut,
the dawning
of days
I could
not see

I awoke
and opened
the dull umber egress
to a world
with blackberry lilies,
clustered seeds
to assure
their renewal.

Badge: Shapeshifting 13 #23

The Ambivalence of Tengu

Photo prompt, Scary Monsters on the March at the Perchant Pagan Festival in Germany by Philipp Guelland, provided by Grammar Ghoul Press.

Tengu are too hard to identify.
Are they birds or dogs,
humans, gods, or ghosts?

Where did their evolution

Do they beckon war
with the torrent of their warped wings,
or is the torment tucked underneath their feathers?

Minor moment of plugging:

A flash fiction piece of mine entitled “A Murder of One” is currently available for free at freeze frame fiction. If you see this before/on Monday (10/19/15), consider swinging by Micro Bookends for their vote on this past quarter’s winners (I have a horse in that race, but only ask that any votes go toward the pieces that deserve them).

And don’t forget that Grammar Ghoul Press also has its own volume of The Ghouls’ Review out right now.

The Universal Language (A Mini Haibun)

"The Six Million Dollar Cow" by Anthony Wolff

The photo prompt, The Six Million Dollar Cow by Anthony Wolff, as provided by Grammar Ghoul Press.

The language we shared in common was capitalism. We only ever spoke when supply demanded.

Golden wheat all threshed;
money’s color never fades
in constant harvest.


Courtesy of Jen Brunett

Photo prompt courtesy and copyright property Jen Brunett via Grammar Ghoul Press, celebrating the completion of its first year of existence.


Sallowed silhouettes
with the sway
of a slivered light
by the laggard locution
of a wisped wind
hinting at
the haunting hazards
barely beyond
the glib glint’s


that the wickedly wagered wonder
lurking in the lingering legs of shadows
is an incorrupt infant
inchoately initiating
its inaugural wish.