Poetry Per Diem

A poem a day. Maybe some of them will be good.

Robyn Martins

Robyn Martins
June 21
I am a freelance writer embedded in Small Town, Ohio. I have decided to write a poem every day as a discipline, and like a good potter, I intend to set aside a few as keepers. While I do the sorting and pruning, I'll post them all here.


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MARCH 4, 2015 4:25PM

Spring Villanelle

It’s a mistake we make to welcome spring

as if it were as harmless as sheep.

We’re wise to be watchful of what it can bring.


Snow-weary birds with songs to sing

look for branches that wake from winter’s sleep.

It’s a mistake they make to welcome spring.


Calves… Read full post »

MARCH 2, 2015 8:02AM


This pull some have

toward the epicenter

of what drives them,

toward the Jerusalem

of their core value,

toward the epic desk

in the center of the room,

must be a glitch in their compass,

forgetting tsunami power

is washing the coastline

on the periphery,

with one hand shaking another,

with… Read full post »

MARCH 1, 2015 2:44PM

It Was Kathy's Mother

I think it was Kathy’s mother

who hallowed her out enough

to make room for the characters

she performed at odd times

that made us giggle and cringe—

the woman on the train to Altoona,

the stylish traveler with scarves,

the slow child who wanted a hug.

Agatha was her name,… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 27, 2015 10:16AM

Her Aging Closet

The way she hung her clothes in her closet

her hand-made suits and ruffled blouses

and all the pumps in rows on the shoe rack

to go with the houndstooth and the wools

pink and green for spring

and gray and brown for winter


the way she kept her necklaces… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 25, 2015 12:44PM

The Little Rocker

The little red rocker

with the twine seat I wove

when the old one wore out

sits in the corner

of the room no one enters

in no place of honor

as a treasured belonging,

but I do treasure it

as the chair I sat in… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 24, 2015 7:59AM

Poem #365!

Today’s poem marks 365 poems written in 365 days! Initially, I thought I would write a daily poem for a year and then move on, but I find writing is now such an integral part of my day, I cannot imagine letting go of this practice, even if I don’t postRead full post »

FEBRUARY 23, 2015 7:53AM


If there were an award for dissembling

and resourcefulness

it should go to Costanze


who said what needed saying

to get by

who did what needed doing

to get honor

due the husband who died


“I know of no Requiem but this”

cast doubt on the doubters

masked whispers… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 22, 2015 8:23AM

From the Merciful Sky

The snowfall erased our traces

after we romped in the yard

punching holes in the surface

with our laced-up boots and gloves

destroying its finish

like jumping on a bed

freshly made and unspoiled

like breaking the peace

of a sensitive soul

and we stomped back indoors

leaving the sheets and… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 21, 2015 8:41AM

Leave Us In Peace

We’re keeping an eye on this bird’s nest

that was mud-daubed on the porch post last April

when the barn swallows moved in and hatched babies

making messes too large for their size


and when this deep freeze finally unfreezes

we’ll bash it in with a shovel

and replace it… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 20, 2015 11:53AM

The Lives I Love

The lives I love have been hard and are harder

because that’s the terrain of the tracks we’re traveling


and I search for a metaphor to describe their rides

and for phrases that rhyme in comforting meter 


that portray my place as caboose with a coupling

who pushes from… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 19, 2015 8:50AM

A Whistling Emotional Steam

A friend suggested I title this poem "To Be Read with A Grin," but I think if I have to tell you I am well aware it's over-the-top, then it doesn't work. I'm interested in your opinion on that kind of forewarning. Is it like the notion that if you haveRead full post »

FEBRUARY 18, 2015 8:43AM

In Hidden Places

Whose job is more difficult, I wonder,

the one who keeps the fox from the door,

who puts the pieces in order

and counts the coins in our pockets,

who sets the traps and clears the brush,

or the one who creates the sanctuary

where the dog sleeps and the soup… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 17, 2015 8:18AM

In Ringlet Tresses

I contemplate my hair in the mirror

poker-straight with cowlicks

a pate of wisp and disappointment

to my mother who set it on rollers


who permed it at the kitchen sink

who berated its free-will inclination

and scolded my desire to “let it go”

because pretty girls should have curls… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 16, 2015 8:35AM

A Winter Concert

The ghost of last night’s performance 

fills my mind like a smoke

drifting and lifting toward the grid 

where the curtain hung above us

as we played for a frosted audience 

cast in boots and coats hinted 

with the scent of ice and wind 

no match for the radiating stage&… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 15, 2015 10:19AM

The Life Of A Dog

He climbs up lumbering onto the sofa

curled large on the towel that separates

his wet paws from the upholstered cushions

his chin on the arm rest

and he closes his eyes to sleep

simple and easy with no meditative thinking

no reviewing of the days events

except when his legs… Read full post »

JANUARY 21, 2013 9:55AM

There are Plenty of Rights To Go Around

It doesn't happen every year, of course, but this year Martin Luther King, Jr. Day coincides with my deceased father's birthday. In my father’s mind, this occasional lining up of commorative days felt more like intentional collisions than coincidental overlapping. Being a product of the segre… Read full post »

It never fails that one good idea spawns copycats. Some creative person introduces a new book series or electronic gadget or website; and within months of its initial success, someone who wished they’d thought of it first introduces something a lot like it only different.

This has… Read full post »

There are films that hold your attention at least until the credits roll, and there are films that leave a more lasting impression, and you decide to add them to your private collection. And then there are films that will forever be embedded in your psyche; and whether you own them… Read full post »

MARCH 8, 2012 7:13AM

International Women's Day

or Courageous Women Bring Hope

Today is International Women’s Day, celebrated with hundreds of events around the world designed to call attention to the state of being female in the year 2012.

For example, a music store will host a concert in Portland, Ore. highlighting women composers, and S… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 1, 2012 8:13AM

Pinterest—A Modern-Day Memoir




As if I didn’t already spend enough time on the Internet, I have fallen prey to another site and have added Pinterest.com to my daily rounds. I had heard about the site months ago but dismissed it. Then, I dipped in for a few minutes and was hooked,… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 23, 2012 8:22AM

Good Fences


Big Puppy


February is Dog Training Education Month, so it seems fitting we would be in the process of training our dog. I notice, though, the designation suggests more than just teaching the dog a few new tricks—it’s clear the dog owners must learn to teach before offering eve… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 16, 2012 8:05AM

The Value of A Penny

For the most part, we are Earthbound, we work-a-day humans who keep our noses to the ground, focusing on our daily tasks and sticking to what we know. But NASA has done us a service by giving us cause to look up once in a while and to remember what we… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 9, 2012 7:47AM

Finding Insight in Expected Places

I was on a long flight recently, the over-night type where you’re never quite sure what time it is, and you don’t know how long you’ve been sleeping, but you know for sure you won’t be going back to sleep anytime soon. So, I rifled through the seat pocket in front… Read full post »

JANUARY 26, 2012 12:21PM

LEGO Offers Choices for Modern Girls

LEGO brand toys recently introduced a new line of products marketed strictly to girls. The line is called Friends, and it includes sets to create things like a café, a beauty shop, a house and a dog show arena, along with accessories like a convertible and a swimming pool. The blocksRead full post »

This week, we acknowledged the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a national holiday. The civil rights leader remains an icon decades after his death because of his ability to lead people, not to incite them but to move them and unify them as an outspoken and courageous man… Read full post »