Tag Archives: Elevenie

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Evasively ensconced
Somewhere, anywhere, everywhere
Chaos in every pile

The prompt today was too long to summarise here. An interesting one, that invites to dive deep into James Schuyler’sHymn to life.

My hymn to life today has been to just live it. I’m contributing an #elevenie I wrote some time in this period as my poem for today. And a picture of Utrecht, because that was part of my day.


On my watch

Devouring me
Limb by limb
This has to end

“Today, in gratitude for making it to Day 20, our (optional) prompt asks you to write a poem about a handmade or homemade gift that you have received.” Safe to say that with this #elevenie I digressed from the prompt at napowrimo.net today. The day brought fights, stress, anger, sadness, powerlessness, unsolvable technical problems, a really good conversation and some hugs.


Carrying me
Gentle and steady
I bow my head


Last week’s #ThursdayDoor was taken from a hotel room in Spain. I also took a picture of these doors, because I wanted to share them with you.

I went to Spain for the second year of my education, even though I have a broken foot and I’ve had hardly any income for months because of it. The work we do there is too good to miss out on.

I think I underestimated how tough it would be, and in a way I’m glad I did. I probably wouldn’t have gone if I’d know I would be crying on day 2, because I was physically unable to go from the hotel restaurant back to the conference room. I was too tired. Too scared of the wet foot path. So I cried, and I asked for help. I wanted to be in the room where we learn, not alone and exhausted in my hotel room.

And help I received. In many different ways. People stayed with me, and helped me get back to the conference room. Someone checked if I’s be able to rent a wheel chair, and then arranged it for me together with another lovely person. The group chipped in to help me finance the wheelchair. I got help getting my food at meal time, taking me and the chair up the (many) stairs in the hotel. I got swirled around and danced with in the bar, patted gently on my cast..

It’s hard to explain what this has meant to me. I normally try to do things on my own, be independent, self-catering to my needs… So this was Different. Very Different. But it made my week. I’ve felt supported, loved, cared for, seen, and a number of synonyms I can’t even come up with. Maybe I can best explain it by what happened afterwards.

Last night I had a nightmare. It was about NOT asking for support, and how everything went wrong because of that. In my dream I felt that I needed support, and also why I didn’t ask for it or accept it. Me old-style… I was so happy when I woke up and

realised it was a nightmare. In reality, all those things didn’t go wrong. And I now know how to ask for support, allow for it, be grateful for it, and even enjoy it sometimes.

Thank you!

Utrecht (copy, paste, insert your own)

Today the first thing I do is to present a fellow participant: Shuku with her poem Family tree. Not only because the poem has SO much to offer (which it does) but also because of its beautifully written introduction. When you visit the blog, make sure you also check out Market District, Japan, 1945 (bomb-warning) and Call The Plumber, Paradise Is Stuck In The U-Bend (for a bit of lighter reading).

Enough brackets for now, here’s my poem for today. I’ve stuck to the prompt by not sticking to the suggested form. This is an elevenie about the place where I live:

Utrecht  (copy, paste, insert your own)

Rising majestically
Over mediaeval town
Visible from every direction

The prompt for day 12 was a to write a haibun, that takes in the natural landscape of the place you live. Poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil describes how this form ended her long search for a way to write about her travels. For me, the elevenie was an answer to that unasked question, when it got introduced to us during NaPoWriMo 2017 (thank you Gloria Gonsalves!) I wrote a number during my visit to Hamburg for example. I’ve just reread them, and they take me right back to some beautiful moments that I wouldn’t have captured otherwise.

More about how I stuck to the prompt by choosing a different form. As Aimee describes it, and important feature of the haibun is not simply to provide a shape in which to jot mundane musings of landscape and travel but also to a evoke a sense of aware —the quality of certain objects to evoke longing, sadness, or immediate sympathy.

I guess everyone who lives in an place with a distinctive tower, recognises the feeling I describe here. Seeing the tower means coming home. Hence copy, paste, insert your own… 

Domtoren Utrecht Pixabay


Sat outside
Laughing, drinking wine
It’s getting rather late

Walking in
Showing his club
Mine has nine spikes

I like how #elevenies help to capture moments, like snapshots. Yesterday was a very warm day, too hot to go to sleep. So a number of neighbours gathered outside and shared drinks and snacks, and a lot of stories. A fabulous evening in lovely company.

Today when we were having dinner a caveman walked in. Which was not as surprising as it sounds. My son’s school will have a school camp next week, and they chose cavemen as a theme. My son has been wearing a caveman outfit non stop for two days, and today the son of the neighbours came to proudly show his club. All cavemen are playing outside now. My guess is they’re testing their clubs…

Cat’s meow

purring softly
at the farm
We await your arrival

I used the elevenie prompt to capture a real life moment. The neighbours of my parents in law have a nest of kittens, and if all goes well one of them will be ours in six weeks.

It took me a while to publish this one, because I wanted to add a photo. We only have one or two weeks of waiting to go now. This picture was taken when we first met our new housemate. She wasn’t very eager to stay on my lap, so we cuddles her brother or sister after that.

Elevenie snapshots

plays piano
in holiday cottage
fingers dancing over keyboard

drive through
huge miniature landscapes
endless amounts of detail

plays piano
away from breakfast
mother irritated as hell

standing still
everywhere I look
luckily I’m on holiday

plays piano
chooses choir sound
to annoy his mother

going up
In Hamburg playground
daddy falls off, laughing

plays piano
end of holiday
goodbye cottage and piano

majestically bridging
the Hamburg waters
this city once obliterated

It’s the last day of NaPoWriMo 2017! This was the prompt: “Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem about something that happens again and again.” I’ve been capturing our holiday near Hamburg in elevenies. One of the recurring things was my son playing the electric piano in the cottage. We also visited wonderful exhibitions, had great food, and, unfortunately, there were many irritations.

Thanks to everyone who visited my blog, who has read my poems, who has liked, commented, responded to tweets, etc. You are what makes #NaPoWriMo so much fun!