A Fun Found Poetry Project

Magic Casements by Maria L. Berg 2022

New Poetry

Today is Open Link Night at dVerse Poets Pub. Head on over to read a diverse selection of poetry and share a poem of your own.

Yesterday, while looking at New Pages and planning submissions, I happened upon a call for found poetry from Heron Tree. The call is to create found poetry from works published before 1927. I hopped up and grabbed my copy of More Fairy Stories Every Child Should Know: Magic Casements edited by Kate Douglas Wiggin and Nora Archibald Smith and published in 1907. I found this lovely treasure in an antique store a long time ago and have not spent enough time with it. I was inspired by this call for submissions to dive into the book and interact with it in new ways.

I did a little research, and it turns out that Kate and Nora were sisters. Kate is best known as the author of Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, but she also was an educator that started many kindergartens in and around San Francisco. I tried to find out more about my book and the series it was a part of “What Every Child Should Know Library,” but the only thing I came up with was a Project Gutenberg digital copy of one of the other books in the series, Tales of Wonder Every Child Should Know.

Beautiful Title Page by Maria L. Berg 2022

After reading some of the past issues of Heron Tree, I realized that there is an area of found poetry I haven’t tried: fitting to form. I enjoy trying poetry forms each year during NaPoWriMo and OctPoWriMo, and the form challenges from dVerse Poets Pub, but I have never tried a form with cut-ups or collage poems.

I have photocopied the preface of the book and a few of the stories to get started on my quest for found poetry. Along with blackouts, cut-ups and collages, I’m going to try fitting my found words and phrases into some of my favorite forms.

A Parent’s Worried Mind

Three unmarried were too many.
Over with according to the
forest. And be careful. Soon they
recognized anything, that feast.

A father threatened had spoken.
Three unmarried were too many.
Ordered his son, the Hedgehog, be
together and he would cleave to

business brought sharp spines enjoying
themselves then three drops exactly
three unmarried were too many
making straight seven years only

to longer endure parents would
choose one question, so they thought. They
parents thought hedgehog and hedgehog.
Three unmarried were too many.
Truth on the Rain by Maria L. Berg 2022 (because I wanted some extra truth in the world today)

That was time consuming, but fun. I started trying some Cinquains, but liked the repeated line of the Quatern. I found the repeating line amusing.

Happy Reading and Writing!

Poetic Bookshelves

From the Outside to the Center by Maria L. Berg 2022

Today I thought I would have some fun and combine my photography and poetry for Of Maria Antonia’s 2022 Weekly Photo Challenge prompt “On the Shelf.” I rearranged my bookshelves to create poems from the book titles.

Here is how I read the first bookshelf poem:

From the Outside to the Center

The outsider
in the garden of blue roses
below the golden house
is nowhere wild, or
the watcher in the woods
lying in wait
I hear the owl call my name
and say, “The heart is a
lonely hunter. Teach yourself
to dream while on your
journey to the center
of the earth.”
After 20,000 dreams,
does the center hold?

Roads to the City of the Beasts by Maria L. Berg 2022

Roads to the City of the Beasts

Stained glass back roads,
Gaia star mandalas of
cognitive rehabilitation
pass the hollow where
the people of paper
are story-telling. It’s easy
just looking at great cathedrals
along the road to
the city of the beasts.

A cute cat with the word ZEST across him in orange print.
Zesty Kitty by Maria L. Berg 2022

That was fun. Unlike book spine poems I’ve done in the past, both of those feel like starts to longer poems, or works that may become strong poems through revision. And to go along with my title “poetic bookshelves,” the poetry books I’m reading and enjoying right now are (amazon associate links):

Indigo by Ellen Bass

Hybrids of Plants and Ghosts by Jorie Graham

Erosion by Jorie Graham

Happy Reading and Writing!

Winter Comforts

Pretty Pose by Maria L. Berg 2022

I had a pretty visitor.

Eye of the Hummingbird by Maria L. Berg 2022

New Poem


And some days are about comfort
like furry cuddles and pizza
and foreheads full of purrs
that leave the big questions
unpondered or wrestled
and wrangled by other minds
while I wrestle warm blankets
and purloin pets
not striving
for more

Winglight by Maria L. Berg 2022

These images fit with Of Maria Antonia’s 2022 Weekly Photo Challenge prompt “Pretty Little Things.”

Happy Reading and Writing!

Celebrating Play and Treats

What a Difference a Day Makes by Maria L. Berg 2022

As you can see, the snow is gone. I know I said I wasn’t going to publish all my word pictures here, but I wanted to show the result without the snow, and then I did some playing indoors.

Playing Indoors by Maria L. Berg 2022

New Poem

The dVerse Poets Pub is open after a two week vacation and today Lisa invites us to write a “celebration” haibun. I haven’t written a haibun in a while, so I think I’ll give it a try.

Celebrating Release from a Beautiful Imprisonment

I saw large, white flakes fall during my white-knuckle drive home through thick rain and sporadic drivers with speeds from infrared to ultraviolet.

Ten days it snowed since we opened presents, and ate Mother’s delicious strawberry cake, everyone generous and grateful. I remained sustained.

Overnight snowmelt
frees me from joyous ice jail
I return with treats

Playing in the Mirrorworld by Maria L. Berg 2022

And this image of the Mirrorworld fits with Of Maria Antonia’s 2022 Weekly Photo Challenge prompt “Chill,” I think.

Chillin’ in the Mirrorworld by Maria L. Berg 2022

Happy Reading and Writing!

Unlocking New Doors

Wonder World by Maria L. Berg 2022

I’m sitting at my desk, looking at these pictures, singing “This is freakin’ fun, this is freakin’ fun.” Though many of this morning’s experiments didn’t work (the filter didn’t work with my other lenses, so I couldn’t put “WONDER” on the mountain), I’m still so excited about my ability to put words in my world. I love to put wonder in the world and it is also one of Of Maria Antonia’s 2022 Weekly Photo Challenge prompts. It was also fun to discover that the color of the ink is captured, so that can add more possibilities. I’ve decided, as a little side project, I’m going to put my favorite words on my world, one a day all year. I won’t post them here, but maybe at the end of the year, I’ll make a book of them or something.

A fish-eye lens view of the lake and sky with the word "WONDER" in orange floating in the clouds.
A Sky Full of Wonder by Maria L. Berg 2022

New Poem

Poetic Bloomings Prompt #367 – Old or New challenges to write an “open door” poem or a “closed door” poem.

Opening Doors

A revolving door is
at first, fun, exhilarating
pushing the heavy bar
running in circles
watching sidewalk then lobby
park then escalator
man walking dog
woman with briefcase
through the glass

Now I’m stuck and want out
to reach my destination
but I’ve built up speed
and inertia keeps
a body in motion

I want new doors
perhaps heavy oak
with worlds of secrets behind them
I want keys to locked doors
big, ornate, heavy keys
that are kept in locked chests
that need little keys to unlock them
because the process
is the adventure
and unlocking those doors
opens awe and wonder
that won’t come around again

Wonderful Snow by Maria L. Berg 2022

I haven’t heard from any of you yet about what you would like to experience this year on Experience Writing, so I thought I would try a poll. Thank you in advance for sharing your answers.

Happy Reading and Writing!

#SoCS: Resolve to Dissolve

Sky Writing by Maria L. Berg 2022

Today, in response to Of Maria Antonia’s 2022 Weekly Photo Challenge prompt “A New Year,” I tried something I’ve been thinking about. Using the same clear plastic that I used for my “snowglobes,” I created a filter with written words and put them in the world. This opens up so many possibilities, an exciting discovery to start the year.

Snow Writing by Maria L. Berg 2022

Stream of Consciousness

It’s stream of consciousness Saturday. The prompt for today is “resolve.” I am resolved to have a day of stream of consciousness. Let those thoughts flow unfettered. When I looked up resolve, I was surprised to find it’s almost a janus word. It has the definition I expected: to come to a definite or earnest decision, but it also means to break up or disintegrate. It also has the musical meaning to progress from dissonance to consonance which could work well as a triple meaning in a poem. If my song ends resolved, is it determined to act, dissolved and broken, or just not dissonant? It can also mean to clear away or dispel (doubts, fears, etc.), so in that way it is a janus because if you resolve an issue, you can come to a decision about it or clear it away and dispel it.

New Poem

For today’s new poem prompt I browsed my WordPress Reader and found:

Fandango’s One Word Challenge (FOWC). Today’s word is Harbinger. I am a big fan of the word harbinger.

Paeansunplugged’s Ragtag Daily Prompt Saturday is Light.

Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #242 is Goodnight. This challenge includes a word limit of exactly 45 words.

On the Cusp

We have said goodnight but
light’s fingertips grip the horizon
the triumphs and horrors dissolve
and for a moment peacefulness
smells like melting orange dreamsicles
and the chill of brain-freeze
does not hurt but excites
almost every note I breathe
is a harbinger of resolve

A Bright & Shiny New Year by Maria L. Berg 2022
Dreaming of a Happy New Year by Maria L. Berg 2022

If you’ve enjoy the photographs I’ve been taking, I’ve added some to my RedBubble store and I’m excited about the new products. The abstract bokeh really lends itself to product design. So fun. If you get a chance to take a look, please press the hearts on the images you like. It will help my work get noticed. Thank you.

Happy Reading and Writing!

A New Palette for Looking Forward

Snowball Fight by Maria L. Berg 2021

New Poem


What joy to play with light
to join it frolicking
blue flashing white
orange blushing pink
or smiling yellow
I slow the shutter
and move the lens
thinking I can control the dance
but the ecstacy
is in the unexpected
when what I’ve captured
is a delicious panoply
no longer of its parts
but a melded mutation
in motion and now singular
to be copied, resized, or manipulated
but never reproduced

Blue Moon by Maria L. Berg 2021
Firefall by Maria L. Berg 2021

What’s Next?

Yesterday’s post was my 90th day of posting new photos and poetry every day. Though the new year is a good mile post for starting something new, I’ve decided to keep going until I hit 100 days. That will take us through the first week of January. Then it’s time to get back to revision and other writing experiences.

What would you like me to explore in 2022? What would you like to experience here on Experience Writing? What are your writing and reading plans for 2022? Any questions I can help you with?

December Daily Prompts by Maria L. Berg 2021 Please leave your links in the comments. I hope you will join me.

Happy Reading and Writing!

Sun Worship on a Snowy Day

Reindeer Log by Maria L. Berg 2021

New Poem

Oh Sun, We Have Missed You

Today we worship the sun
eyes closed, we absorb
It pets us with photons
enters us and makes us light
See orange turn to pink
behind our lids
filled with warm calm
our cheeks lift
as our faces float
We curl up and breathe it
let it fill our cavities
like bird bones
The vibrating surface
reflects its caresses
like blown kisses
shimmering fire hearts
sent across the lake
The shadows have already shifted
the sun moved to the next window
but our eyes still glow

Yule Log by Maria L. Berg
Water Log by Maria L. Berg 2021
December Daily Prompts by Maria L. Berg 2021 Please leave your links in the comments. I hope you will join me.

Happy Reading and Writing!

Fuzzy Mittens on a Snowy Day

Kitty Mittens by Maria L. Berg 2021

Today’s photo prompt “mittens” inspired me to get wrapped up in my snow clothes and go play in the snow. Kitty came out to guide me home.

My Snow Angel by Maria L. Berg 2021

New Poem

Slippers for Hands

I don’t own any mittens
I searched the drawers
and the cubbies in the closet
I have gloves
gore-tex gloves for skiing
knitted gloves lined with fleece
wine colored gloves with white fur cuffs
but no mittens
I shouldn’t be surprised
but I am
I always had mittens
growing up
off-white wool mittens
from Sweden
but you don’t need mittens
in New Orleans
since I never liked mittens-
I found them restricting-
why would I replace them
after evacuating
the closest thing I have
to mittens
are the slipper socks
I got for Christmas
when I first saw them
I pulled them over my hands
and tugged them up my arms
and said “or sleeves”
so I pull them on now
they are so soft inside
they reveal how dry my hands are
so I remove them and slather my skin
with moisturizer-wait-then apply again
I want the full softness experience
I pull my mittens up
over my elbows
like fuzzy opera gloves
the navy, white, and sky bumps
feel good on my face
I have no fingers
I have no thumbs
I can pick up my book
open it to my bookmark
but the pages turn in bunches
I cannot turn to the next page
after much trial and error
I bend down and stick my tongue
to the upper right corner
at first the saliva collects
tiny blue fuzz
but then
I read that page
and the next
with warm hands
wrapped in soft hugs

Snow Kitty by Maria L. Berg 2021
December Daily Prompts by Maria L. Berg 2021 Please leave your links in the comments. I hope you will join me.

Happy Reading and Writing!

Sunlight on the Snow

Snow Love by Maria L. Berg 2021

Today I learned that I can make bokeh shapes with sparkles on the snow. If the sun had stayed out, I would have played with all my filters, but it only peeked out from the clouds for a moment.

Such Lovely Snow by Maria L. Berg 2021

New Poem

Snow Day

Sunlight dancing on the snow enraptures
sparkling rainbows on every surface captivate
blissful seagulls dive and rise in thrilling chase
floating, flying fervent frenzy of freedom
rapturous revival raw and wild
the still silence entrances
a dreamy delicious day

Snow Love Two by Maria L. Berg 2021
December Daily Prompts by Maria L. Berg 2021 Please leave your links in the comments. I hope you will join me.

Happy Reading and Writing!