I Have Your Back. Acrylic on watercolor paper. #lexleonardartist


  1. Take a handful of blueberries, toss them one by one, her attention, the prize awarded.
  2. They shatter, those berry blue words, like bullet splatter behind her back.
  3. Let their juices flow between the cellophane wall separating you from her with her cherry berry dyed hair.
  4. Draw your berry blue bloodied finger along the line of demarcation, a line for which you shall never pass.
  5. Let her know even though she will not turn to hear, twist to look, let her know you have her back, will you always have her back if she returns.
  6. You will have her back at the slightest drop of a single berry blue rolling its escape from the clamshell carton on the kitchen counter, remind her it was a mistake.
  7. Your hands stained, guilty for there is no excuse, no words to make amends in the blue puddle of berries gone.
  8. Your berry blue words streak sad, speak your words, this be your poem, your truth without remorse, your bloody berry blue words without regret, your poem to her, and to every blueberry lost.


Author’s Note..

I am drawn to surrealism and find this writing exploration unsettling. This image I painted has always bothered me and I didn’t know where it fit. I think it fits here with today’s prompt. A good practice piece again to push boundaries, experiment.

From NaPoWriMo:

‘Finally, here’s our optional prompt! Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem . . . in the form of a poetry prompt. If that sounds silly, well, maybe it is! But it’s not without precedent. The poet Mathias Svalina has been writing surrealist prompt-poems for quite a while, posting them to Instagram. You can find examples here, and here, and here.”

Blueberries and Neil Gaiman

I have stopped writing
to pick blueberries.
Forgive me.

Forgive me for taking your words
while you were gone
words that
sunburn skin
in the depths
of the night
when there are wolves in the

Go ahead
pick the luscious fruit
its blue blood
dripping through
your fingertips having
left behind the
blue ink
striping the page
where terrorists
hide behind weasel words

This blue
amusement of yours
charming your senses
needs no forgiveness
from American gods

When you’re done
find yourself a tearoom
make a cup of
blueberry tea

No forgiveness needed


Author’s Note:

Yesterday Neil Gaiman posted on his Facebook page the following: “I have stopped writing to pick blueberries. Forgive me.”

The beauty of these few words made me gasp. Visions of a writer, putting down his pen because he was drawn to blueberries also led me away to a deep wood in hopes of finding them, too.

I decided that this would be the perfect prompt for our Wednesday Afternoon Writers. We also used Bonnie Neubauer’s on-line Story Spinner to give each writer a set of words to use along with the prompt.

I have been working with “found poems” lately and this prompt offered another chance to take words from another source and weave it into something different.

I hope I am not being pretentious, but I am going to send this poem to Mr. Gaiman. I admire him and if some day by some chance, after writing and writing and writing and writing, I can write just a whisper like he does, I will be a very contented writer.