Fifteen minutes – for Speed Challenge, Prompt 70

I followed mindlovemisery’s lead yesterday for the 10 poems in 20 minutes challenge and found it a really mind opening, artistic release. So why not try again, like her, this time with a different time limit? I went for 15 minutes, starting……

The spiral staircase
spine of this building
Depths dipped below
freezing point
to a primordial centre
Do I dare follow
the stairs ever down
or do I turn away?

I was a child of the wild
I did not know boundaries
I did not know fear
This is then
true innocence
and true freedom
all at once
I did not know this then
And as I grew
That child was gone

You thought you could
trap me like a butterfly
in your cocoon
Another way to transform
to something other
that which you had painted
in that little room
where you hide

I flew away
On gossamer wings
And laughed a little
At you
So we are sworn enemies now
And you will deny me thrice
Before even this night
is through

A baseline fracture
Hair thin
Running from my ear
To the forehead
Like a memory
Of brutality
Too fragile
And too fine
To announce its presence
This is what you left me
A scar too precise
For anyone to see
But me

Life is a carnival
I am a puppet
on its stage
I will bow to you
if you will pay the price
turn away
sawdust on your shoes
and find another delight

Count your words
You only have so many
in this life
Before they run out
try to say
something that matters
or at least something
that nearly makes sense

Laughing clown you are
with your pretend tears
Crocodile skin
Deep within
I know your soul
better than you
And it’s reptile
through and through

If you will not surmount your fears
then I cannot climb
upon your battlements
and hold your hand
You’ll run from me
And cry
And I will be

Learning my times tables
the sunlight falling
through a schoolroom window
The sleepy buzz that afternoon
I little knew
In those simple sums
lay the eternal secret
of us all

Cross my threshold
It is tired of vacancy
It grows weary just of me
And would welcome
Some company
As would I

Come deep within
This house a shrine it seems
Lost in a broken dream
And nothing is what
it seems
Not even you

I’m hovering
Before the day
Hoping it
Will go away
Hoping dream’s
Sweet disarray
Takes me far
Too far today

All these holy men
Walk barefoot
On harsh sand
The paths they break
Like footprints
Of design
And yet
I follow careful
Footstep by footstep
But all I find
Is dirt

This much
And no more
Will I say
This much
And no more

(c) Helen Valentina 2014, All Rights Reserved

Fifteen minutes done! Check out the prompt at:

And join in – this is one of the more fascinating, challenging and fun prompts so far!! 🙂 🙂

About Helen

I'm drawn to blogging as a way to share ideas and consider what makes us who we are. Whether it's in our working life or our creativity, expression is a means to connect.
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14 Responses to Fifteen minutes – for Speed Challenge, Prompt 70

  1. Excellent effort Helen, I particularly liked stanza 7…..

  2. Wow Helen you are truly the queen of speed writing! I loved them all but #5 was my favorite wow!

  3. speed writing – who knew?

  4. I’d still be working on my first. 🙂

  5. Love no 5 – I think i’ll give this a go

  6. Pat says:

    Certainly a roll here — and there is a wonderful flow as each seems to follow upon the heels of the other – and yet each is one in and of itself. Well done and very powerful 🙂

  7. Looks like a real challenge. I should try it one day. I actually had to look up the word “gossamer” lol. Nice word! I will remember it. 🙂

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