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it's five o clock
yes in the morning
birdsong has woken me
an hour and a half
before my alarm
was supposed to
even after another
terrible night's sleep
to-ing and fro-ing
with tossings
and turnings
staring into the blank
of ceiling and wall
not enough comfort
or perhaps too much
on this slumped mattress
to slip deep enough
beyond those initial
stages of slumber
down into REM
i'm surprised to find
i'm not as angry
nor as drained
as i thought i would be
at such premature awakening
i can lie still
untroubled for now
contentedly listening
to the chattering
of these feathered neighbours
an avian symphony
of movements manifold
Anais Vionet Mar 6
It’s the Thursday morning before valentine’s day. Lisa and I are scrambling to get out of our suite. We share an Organic Biochemistry class and we’re running a hot minute late. As we pulled on our shoes Lisa asked me, “Do you have fun Valentine's weekend plans?” The question, since I have a BF, contained a suggestion of impending sexiness. We grabbed our bags and were soon out of the dorm.

“I do NOT have fun.. WELL??.. well,” I said hesitating - was this the time to let my secret out?
“Well?” Lisa follows up excitedly.
We’re out in the quad now, an uncovered rectangle of grass and walkways. It’s 37° and cloudy. It’s going to drizzle all day. We maneuver around the slower movers, bookbags on our shoulders and coffees in hand.

“You’ve familiar with, umm, Twib?” I asked.
“Twib! I’VE heard of them,” Lisa, chuckles, “they do some singing and plucking of strings, I believe.”
Yeah, yeah. They’ve gone underground, and um, their crush is tomorrow night”
“Oh, Wow,” she said, somewhat shocked, “Twib has crush?”
“They have crush,” I confirm.
“How did I not know this?” Lisa asks the universe, “EVERYTHING has crush!” she laughs.
“Everything has crush this year,” I agreed.“

We get to the bus stop right as the shuttle arrives - it’s perfect timing - and we board.
“I think “Crush” is a really cute name, better than “Spring Fling, for a dance name,” Lisa said.
“Anyway,” I softly announce, leaning into her even though we’re close and sharing a seat, “I’ve got three invites, so I’m taking Peter, of course, and YOU,”
Lisa laughs, “OK”
“And,” I add suspensefully - this was the surprise - “YOUR secret crush,” I add grinning and bouncing with excitement.

Lisa freezes, turns pale and looks at me like I’m crazy. “What?” she says hoarsely.
“Tom,” I said hesitantly, “Peter invited Tom..”
Now Lisa has a wide-eyed look and her cheeks have turned a flamingo pink color.
“He doesn’t KNOW he’s your crush,” I add quickly, reassuringly, putting my free hand on hers.
That seems to calm her, “You didn’t SAY anything,” she asked, scrutinizing me for any sign of deception.
“No, I swear, I said, making the sacred “x” sign over my heart, “We’d never. It was just a fun, surprise idea.” Suddenly the shuttle seemed hot and uncomfortable, I took off my scarf.

We shared the last 10 minutes of the ride bickering. After we got off, we made our bickering way to class. As we settled in (we sit together) I offered,
“We can cancel, I can cancel, it was a stupid idea - I’m sorry.”

“No,” Lisa sighed, “I don’t always adjust well to surprises.. OK.. let’s do it!”
“What was all THAT (bickering) about then??” I asked.
“Oh, that was just fun,” she smiled, “I was making you sweat. Ok, What’s the theme? What are you wearing? Where’s it going to be held?” Lisa finally started asking critical questions.

“It’ll be at Luther (college) and the theme is biomes,” I said.
“Biomes?” Lisa asked.
“Biomes - like grasslands and tundra,” I explained.  
“Ohh, ok, sure” Lisa chuckled.
“And I got a dress from Princess Polly. Sorry Fast Fashion,” I joked.
“Hey, you know,” Lisa agreed, “When biomes call.”  
“You got it,” I nodded, “and I’m excited because I got a dress for you too!”
“For ME?” Lisa exclaimed, “aww.”  
“I know what you like,” I claimed.  “You do,” she admitted.
“It was a surprise and time was short, you’ll love it,” I declared, as the TA took the podium.
“It’ll be a go-hard night.” I whisper.

“You should all have a PSet and paper to hand in,” the TA announces, as class begins.
BLT Marriam Webster word of the day challenge: Scrutinize:  "to examine something in a critical way.

PSet = problem set (homework)
crush = a dance that you’re supposed to invite your crush to.
TA = teaching assistant (a graduate student)
Christian Bixler Mar 2022
how rare
the warmth of afternoon turns
on my skin
Thank you for reading. Recently I’ve decided to work seriously on my poetry, on haiku in particular, so you can expect more regular posts. Also there may be a personal website in the future. If there is I’ll link it here. Thanks again!
Philip Lawrence Jan 2022
She sat down at the table across from him. She straightened her shoulders and spoke in a clear voice. “What are you reading?”

Startled, he looked up at her. He hesitated, then slowly closed the book, exposing the cover.

Her head down, she said nothing, only fiddled with a pen lying on the table, spinning it slowly.

“Who are you?” he asked.

She raised her gaze to meet his. She smiled. “I’m here to change your life.”
s Dec 2021
He makes me want to write again
Composure is hard to maintain
Erian Rose Nov 2021
you caught me by surprise
an entwined mess of pulsing spotlights  

you caught me by surprise
speechless at the hands of your smile

you caught me by surprise
drowned by shores of ovation

you caught me by surprise
over and over and over again
till when our realities cease to exist
Christian Bixler Oct 2021
fungal bloom
hidden beneath is
its source
Thomas Steyer Jul 2021
Can't decide what to play with today.
There are my colouring books and pencils.
I could also find my drawing pad
and use a ruler and some stencils.

I have my Legos and my cars,
and lots of other shiny toys,
but my mum sends me out
to join the other little boys.

It's a beautiful day, she says,
you should be in fresh air,
yet too young for school you are
no need to worry or even care.

I meet Timmy, my friend down the lane.
He shows me his bicycle with considerable pride.
It's new, he says, with bell, brakes and all.
I ask him if I could learn to ride.

Of course, he says, hop on and I'll push.
I follow his instructions - tightly grip the handlebar
and speed away without a plan of further action,
when along comes roaring an enormous motorcar.

Please make it stop, I scream. But Timmy is not there.
So just before the tragic but inevitable demise,
a miracle occurs, I wake up in bed safely,
all grown up and full of surprise.
Thomas Steyer Jul 2021
It is so bright outside,
I have to squint my eyes.
Has it snowed again?
What a great surprise.

'Cos Winter has long gone.

Yesterday there were blossoms
colouring the landscape white.
Temperature must have dropped
quite drastic in the night.

April's weird and getting weirder.

Changed my plans for today
and bear it with a grin,
just like the bumblebee
I've decided to stay in.
John McCafferty Aug 2021
Where does one reside,
as I take you open by surprise.
Some simply stir then slide,
smile wide when chuckles bubble up,
uncommanded from gut.

This energy is expansive,
sensing our echo chambers ring.
Mid to lower level signs start swirling,
an automatic response mechanism,
there will be no rehearsing.

Results of tears for reprimand,
personal preferences are assertive,
although we tend to sing collectively.
Fire breeds, we all bleed,
spasms squeeze in neck and chest,
brain now ceased to enjoy without conceit.
(@PoeticTetra - instagram/twitter)
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