Sunset Synthesis

Sunset Synthesis

That evening the lake
Hosted a convention of stars.
They floated in an array of sequined glory.
You threaded your fingers through mine –
Pulled me from my chair –
“Let’s go see the show.”

We sat on the pier – our legs dangled.
I shivered and you tucked me under your arm.
We watched the sun ripen
In a lemony slide toward the horizon –
I could smell it over the water.

You reached –
Plucked the skyfruit –
Squeezed it into a cerulean cup –
A juicy swirl of red, orange, yellow.
You drank and it made you glow.
“Leave me some.”

I reached –
The cup vanished.
Lingering drops of nectar
Glistened on your lips.
I kissed them off –
Sweet and hot fusion
Escalated through a florescent sky.
We rode the current – a twining helix of two.

When I opened my eyes
I saw that we were starlight.

H. Bullough 4-27-2017
Inspired by a poetry prompt at
Challenge: Write a poem with the phrase “and we were starlight.”

My UPS Driver Works for the CIA

IMG_4669 smaller

Not related to the poem below at all, but I liked the picture.

My UPS Driver Works for the CIA – Rictameter Verse


He grabs the box –

Carries it to the door –

Stashes it where no one will see –

Runs to the waiting van and speeds away.

The dog stayed silent – No one saw.

She came – the dog bellowed.

Heeled shoes are not


H. Bullough 4-21-2017

Please Understand, I’m Writing – Rictameter Verse

Rictameter Verse: Nine lines in the poem, and a strict syllable count — 
2 syllables in the first line, then 4 syllables in the next, then 6, then 8, then 10,
then 8, then 6, then 4, then 2 in the last, with the first line repeating itself in the last line.

Please Understand, I’m Writing

I want to say –
I can’t answer my phone
While I’m at work. It’s destructive.
Disorienting. I get yanked away –
Time and space shatter and I’m lost –
Will I find my way back?
Tell the prince, I’m

H. Bullough 4-21-2017

Abecedarian Daydreams

An abecedarian poem. This kind of poem starts each line with the next letter of the alphabet, in order. Why? Because I saw one on someone else’s blog and just had to try it. Besides, I always wanted an excuse to actually use that word. Did anybody else ever read the Children of the Lamp series, by P.B. Kerr?

Daydreams of Perfection

Analog or digital? I wonder, standing in the
Baking aisle at the supermarket.
Can’t cook without a timer.
Distractions happen.
Everything else gets
Forgotten. Burn the house to the
Ground if I’m not careful. A timer gives a measure of
Hope that all is not charcoal.
I may never be gourmet, but
Just once, I’d like my cookies
Kind to the teeth. Not
Like hockey pucks or something that begs for
Milk to help choke it down.
Nobody wants cookies like that. For
Once, I’d like them to be
Perfect. The kind you wake up in the
Quiet of night, mouth watering, unable to
Resist the temptation to
Sneak down the dark hall barefoot on cold
Tile floors, braving the Legos you
Unwisely thought could wait till morning to clean up. I have
Visions of pain and
Writhing on the floor because of a
Xyphoid piece of plastic. Digital, I decide.
You need precision to make cookies worth risking pain and nighttime

-H. Bullough 4-20-2017

Poetry On a Day With No Inspiration


This Jealous Day ran off –
Stealing my muse for an intimate tete-a-tete.
Their betrayal hardened my heart and
Convinced me in deed,
There is nothing new under the sun.
Anything worth saying has long-since been said,
Even published on the internet.
Don’t believe it? Ask Google.

Until at sunset,
Clouded in a perfume of rain,
She gusted through the front entry
In a flurry of pages, and slammed the kitchen door.
She found me despairing over a white page,
Kissed my head in apology,
And combed cool fingers through my hair.

Though I know her contrition is short-lived,
Her sisterly attention reminded me –
The world overlooked the red maple leaves
Teeter-tottering in the rain –
Wet spatters against the window.

She revealed vivid red, yellow, and green
Painted over a backdrop of gray clouds.
Together, we listened to the far-off thunder,
Telling of a fearless adventurer
Seeking refuge in the mountains.

Even the cat cried out in sympathy –
But perhaps she was just hungry.

-H. Bullough 4-18-2017

Good Things Are Coming

IMG_5125 resized for blogWhat a Long Time It’s Been.

Roughly three years. That’s how long it’s been since I have posted anything on this site. There was a lot of personal stuff happening that just sort of blew my writing efforts out of the water. But somehow, things seem to be unlocking for me now and I am back to writing. I am so grateful.

I have another blog that hasn’t been so dormant. It’s more about life and personal stuff. If you are interested, you can check it out at

Here it’s about my writing. The struggles, growth, conferences, poetry, vignettes, stuff like that. I’ve been working at it for a while, so I’m not so much of a newbie, but I haven’t taken steps to get published yet, either. Maybe soon.


Transported to Remote Canada, and Falling In Love

I said I was going to reread Mrs. Mike, but I think “reread” might have been the wrong word. For me, the experience is more like “re-living”. From the first paragraph I was transported straight into the head of the sixteen-year-old protagonist. This is the first time I’ve read this book since I started seriously writing and I respect and appreciate these authors more than ever before.

“The worst winter in fifty years, the old Scotsman had told me. I’d only been around for sixteen, but it was the worst I’d seen and I was willing to take his word for the other thirty-four.”

Isn’t this wonderful? Two sentences and I already know that the protagonist is sixteen, has been speaking to friendly strangers, and there is a problem with severe winter weather. We also get a glimpse of humor. I wonder how long it took the authors to craft that opening?

Agents and editors on the hunt for book submissions will often say, “Send me a synopsis and your first ten pages.” My youngest son, age 17, on the other hand, will read the blurb on the book cover and the first five pages before he decides whether he will take the book home with him. So I looked at this book through my version of his eyes. (I will never be a teenage boy, but I often learn a thing or two from him.)

In the first five pages of Mrs. Mike, we learn that Katherine Mary o’Fallon, age sixteen, in the year 1907, is being sent by her mother to the remote land of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, to live with her uncle John, from her childhood home in Boston, MA. Her doctors recommended the move to a cold, dry climate on account of Katherine’s pleurisy. Her mother is worried about sending her so far alone, and sees her off with a reminder to always dress warm. A harsh winter storm makes it difficult for the train to travel undisrupted on the snow-covered tracks. In a basket, Kathy is smuggling a boarder collie puppy which her mother gave her. We get a glimpse of her personality by the things she scratches into the ice-glazed windows and her homesick memories after eighteen days of train journey and the realization that it won’t be over anytime soon.

The ability to convey this much (and more) in the first five pages of a book is a hard-earned skill. And really, I didn’t even notice it until after two hours of reading when I heard a clock chime and I looked up from the book. Wait, I thought, I wanted to pay attention to how the writers made this book so wonderful to me. How did I miss that? So I went back and reread parts of it, including the first five pages, forcing myself not to get so pulled along by the story that I couldn’t see the working mechanics of the book’s engine.

For a moment, I’m just going to experience the awe.

Well, that’s done. Back to reading. Kathy is about to attend a barn dance with the handsome Sergeant Michael Flannigan, of the Canadian Mounted Police. I love this part.