Sunday, December 1, 2013

A Poem for December

The Balloon
My head is a balloon,
I bound it to my body with a knot.
I would like to let it go,
but it's tied so tight
that I cannot.
Instead, I lift my feet
and let my whole self float.
I slip quite by accident
from the child's hand.
I go where all balloons go.
I leave my little keeper
on the ground to cry. It hurts
her so, but not me. It hurts her
to stay there on the ground,
but she should smile, for I am free.

Friday, November 1, 2013

A New Era Begins

Officially, as of today, November 1, Poem of the Week comes to an end. Actually, it ended back in March, 2011 when it morphed into Poem of the Month. Starting today, you can find poems every first-of-the-month as well as lots of nifty ideas about life, death, love, truth, and onions at my new blog, Frying the Onion. Thank you for reading all these years, months, weeks, and days. I hope you will stay with me as we journey into new adventures together.

Best always,

Sunday, September 1, 2013

A Poem for September

That Kind of Night

It was that kind of night when your ankles itched so bad
that you didn’t know if it was bug bites, poison ivy, or an allergic
reaction to the antibiotic you were on for a bladder infection
that you never should have had in the first place.

It was that kind of night when you went to your mom’s to borrow
hydrocortisone cream and you dragged her to come out to see
the full moon with you rising up over the lake like a big flood light
and you brought Gummi bears to share from the gas station.

It was that kind of night when the gas station attendant left the register
for just a minute to talk to her ex outside and she saw a regular customer
bend over to pick something up off the ground near the pumps. A debit card.
And when she looked you up in the phone book, she was amazed to find you.

It was that kind of night when you were so tired and itchy, you were
going to ignore the blink on the phone machine and just get in bed
with your Gummi bears, but you thought better of it, and you went
right back out without taking time to put on the anti-itch cream.

And when you got there, she said, oh it’s you! And right then, you knew
to be glad to live in a place with that kind of night, and you vowed
to stop fretting the small stuff or any perceived lack of anything
because that kind of night doesn’t happen to just anyone anywhere.

Lisa Vihos

Friday, August 2, 2013

A Poem for August

Dear friends, 
Wow. Once again the first of the month has come and gone and I forgot I owe you all a poem. I must have a few things on my mind. Meanwhile, earlier this summer, I answered a call for poems written in the style of a "Zoltar" fortune card. These cards will be given out from a human Zoltar machine (remember the fortune telling machine in the movie Big?) at an event at Pintoresca Library (love that name!) in Pasadena, CA, tomorrow night: The Red Hen Press Poetry Prom. Boy, do I wish I could be there for that in a beautiful new dress. But, at least my fortune poem will be there! To read more about Zoltar, go here: and scroll down a few blog posts. 

Wherever you are this weekend, may poetry and promming be part of your fun. This month's poem goes out with thanks to a new friend, Nicelle Davis. And now, for the fortune card/poem: 

Zoltar Speaks Your Fortune
Round and round the ball will go
Pulling down your fortune so
Be you joyful, be you sad
Know nothing is forever bad

The crystal gazer sees
that you will soon embark
on a strange and wonderful journey.
Be confident in sharing the songs
you have learned from angels,
stars, and spiders. Your life
is about to become a symphony.
Rejoice I say for you have been given
big shoes to fill.You are filling them
wisely.You exhibit a glowing spirit
and people rarely dislike you.
(Those who do should be ignored).
Go toward love, love will come
toward you. You have many friends,
particularly among the bread bakers.
Sit quietly with them in a warm place.
They will help you rise.
Play Again!
Your Lucky Numbers: 11, 15, 5, 9, 33, 79, 60

Thursday, July 4, 2013

A Poem for July

Well, it finally happened. The first of the month came and went and I completely forgot about Poem of the Month. Finally, on July 4, I woke up and remembered that I owe you one. Happy Independence Day! Love, Lisa

The Healing Properties of Color

Once in a blue moon,
you’ll find yourself in the black

having one of those
screaming red letter days,

fire engine red wagon red
cherry red days

and not a scarlet letter
in the house. Sometimes,

it becomes so dizzying
you’ll turn a bit green

(whether from nausea
or envy, I really can’t say).

On grey days like these,
carefully sort through

the dark clouds, unthread
their silver linings

eat a peach, peel an orange,
scan the yellow pages.

Look over every white
picket fence, listen for the hum

of white noise. Wait
for Mary’s violet eyes

to make John stay up
nights proposing. Then,

when all that happens,
it feels like the end

of something has settled
right there in your solar plexus

and you become the pot of gold
everyone is looking for.

Lisa Vihos

Saturday, June 1, 2013

A Poem for June

This Particular Heaven 

In this particular heaven,
there are no numbers
to count the days
and no day’s end, just dusk,
when mothers call names
and fireflies lead the charge home.

In this particular heaven
There are bins of root vegetables,
of cinnamon sticks. There is strolling
along a boardwalk and then, sitting
with croissants and coffee
in a yellow café in southern France.

Right now, in this particular heaven,
we tremble at the thought of death
because it comes in all disguises:
a train, a clearing of leaves,
old age, a mysterious disease.
You are here, then, gone.

In this particular heaven,
there is no dark or drink
that can drown these sorrows.
In fact, there is no sorrow.
Only a forgetting of what is;
the loss of innocence.

At last, in this frail, final heaven,
there is sky-blue lake and lake-blue sky.
And later, when the moon rises
russet on the horizon, it bobs
like a glad party boat,
calling us to come aboard.

Lisa Vihos

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

A Poem for May

A Few Straight Lines

I am soothed by the view
from my bedroom window,
a distinct, straight line
where the lake’s deep blue
meets steel grey sky.

Happier still to see the underline
of the gazebo roof, erected
by my city to mark the ground
of North Point Park. It parallels
the aforementioned horizon.

How did city planners achieve this?
Did they know a woman would be sitting
at point A, viewing their structure
at point B, measuring it against
point C, the only straight line in nature?

Finally, aligning all,
the slats of my Venetian blind
that match the roofline (under which
I could stand, if I so desired)
and the unreachable horizon,

where I can never go. And so,
in just those few moments
of rocking chair attention, I see
only perfect alignment cut through
the tangle of everything.

Lisa Vihos