Photo by Gino Santa Maria at

A baby in a manger
wrapped in thin linen
smiled at the simplicity
of a rhythmic thumping drum

Over his head a stables roof
the songs of barn animals
serenade his first lullaby
a mother and father by his side

It mattered not to the tiny child
that others had much more than he
the healing light within his eyes
would bring joy to all for many years

In this world of violence and crime
where wealth and fame
eclipse love and care
wrap your heart in the barest linen
and remember

The Blessing

Tala and Koda In My Bed Picture by Gypsie-Ami Offenbacher-Ferris

Cold wind howls in obscure octaves,
the notes lost among the cacophony.
Obsessed it is, the blustery wind.
Endless search.

Swiping Christmas decorations
from eave and porch, tree and bush,
attempting to hold on to mortality.
Useless endeavor.

Bitter air follows the whipping gusts,
the bite of it coats all it touches
with its frigid tenor, to ice.
Crystal sculptures.

Trees falter, statuesque trunks bend,
and fold beneath the weight and wrath
of Mother Nature’s moodiness.
Angry deity.

In my bed close to the frosty window,
freezing air drifts through warped sills
aged by time and neglect and time.
Endless loop.

Beneath the heavy blankets and quilt,
alone Christmas Eve on this wintry,
wet, windy night before the Miracle;
my pups bound up to sleep beside me.

I am blessed.


Edited by Gabriella Marie

Very honored to announce that some of my poetry has been selected for publication in HIDDEN IN CHILDHOOD: A POETRY ANTHOLOGY Edited by Gabriela Marie Milton to be released late January 2023!!!

Why Cats Hate Christmas!

By Tomasina Kat (aka Gypsie-Ami Offenbacher-Ferris)

In response to Bartholomew Barker’s prompt,
“Why Do Cats Hate Christmas?”

I have been asked it seems,
tasked it seems,
by a poet more learned than

To explain why we cats you see,
do not like Christmas
you see,
or really no holidays at all.

First off and number one
on this poem,
Having taken a poll
just for this list.

Is the loss of our favorite spot,
our sacred resting berth.
You push us away blocking the way
to our sunny window sill!

Secondly my dear sweet human,
in my sleeping place you set
A prickly Christmas tree
then forbid a cat from climbing it!

Third and might I say
quite devious of you humans,
You place upon that Christmas tree hundreds of baubling baubles!

They jiggle and sway all of the day
taunting, teasing, torturing,
Our feline kind not to bat,
not to swat, lest we all go blind!

Fourth and this causes a quite a tiff,
you have turkey and ham,
Cornish hens and fried Spam,
but do you deem to share any at all?

Fifth and hear me human’s mine,
this is the most important
Reason why cats truly hate
Christmas after all!

Have you ever seen a little kitty cat,
jump from inside a wrapped
Christmas box,
a gift for that little boy or girl?

No you have not,
puppies galore all over the floor,
But Christmas kittens,
there are not!

Sleeping Garden

The temperatures have dropped today
the Winter air is bitter cold
Hibiscus leaves have curled and dried
only stalks and roots survive
Soon those too will fade away
leaving deep buried roots behind

Gardenia blooms a sweet memory
tucked inside their stems until Spring
Bleeding Hearts and Sunflower discs
lay in wait for the warmth of the sun
To restore their lovely greenery
when Winter’s wrath is done

Wrapped up like Christmas presents
my favored Palm Trees stand
Bound around with burlap bags
protecting their wispy fronds
Feeding their roots with supplements
keeping them healthy and strong

My Cypress tree is truly bald
more naked it could not be
Just beside it’s barren form
two trees of bright evergreen
Underneath their long limbs sprawl
a remembrance of past splendor

The mulch is laid and piled around
the base of each and every bush
Christmas lights will fill the space
now barren of blooms and flowers
My garden sleeps in frozen ground
the silent night’s begin again

Can You See Me?

In response to photo prompt above by crispina kemp for Crimson’s Creative Challenge #215

I can see you
there beneath the hue
of reflected leaves and trees
water colored silhouettes
rippling on the water below me

You with yours
in your watery world
moving about with fluidic ease
under the eddies and gentle swirls
of your aquatic universe

I see you you there
can you see me here
here by the edge standing alone
my world edged with sharp planes
compact masses of steel for homes

Your world filled with soft grasses
golden sand stretches no barriers
skimming and swimming in perfect
unity you your family your friends
No walls to pen you within

Wind blows and the tide shifts
the current carries you away
to a new and better life
a different adventure every day
Do you see me standing here – still?

My Curmudgeonly Friend

In response to Bartholomew Barker’s prompt 15 Minute Gift Ideas For Old Bohemian Poets

First I had to decipher listicle
as in a poem of numbered form
Second I found I was rhyming
listicle with popsicle and then testi….
Better not.

My third thought turned to wine
Something not too expensive
to satisfy the palette of an old
curmudgeon poet just fine
Aged not old.

Fourth I had to review or at least recall
the occasions I’d noticed that poet
in his finite curmudgeonly grace
raise his glass in salute to one and all
With a smile.

Fifth I researched diligently
that worldwide library Google free
to determine what kind and what color
to offer a critic most innocently
Highest alcohol content.

Perplexed at number six with no end
as to when to stop poet-ing a listicle I forgot to buy those red spirits
for my old curmudgeon-like friend
Merry Christmas Anyway
My Curmudgeonly Friend!

Lucy and Ricky’s Toilet Paper Caper

In response to the photo prompt provided by Christine at Stine Writing.
Welcome to the 6-minute challenge!

A thick voice laced with a good amount of angst and a heavy Cuban accent, echoes from the bathroom at the end of the hall.

“Lucy! Lucy! We are out of toilet paper! Bring me the toilet paper please!” His voice holds a note of urgency.

Lucy looks up from her masterpiece, Ethel takes off, the apartment door slams shut loudly behind her.

“Lucy! Lucy! Are you there?
¡Ay, caramba Lucy!” The voice rises in pitch.

“Um, no, no I’m not!” Lucy stutters.

“What?” The voice asks, the t in the word ‘what’ nearly silent as his frustration mounts.

“Oh! Oh!” The red-headed ball of confusion mutters. “Ok, ok, I’m coming! Keep your pants on!”

“Lucy, what are you saying?
Mama Mia, Mira que tiene cosa!” Unintelligent Spanish verbiage fills the narrow hallway.

“Here you go Ricky! Merry Christmas!” Lucy pushes the entire concoction through the bathroom door.

Ricky, “ Lucy! You’ve got some ‘splainin to do!”

The Last Ornament

Photograph by Gypsie-Ami Offenbacher-Ferris

Boxes and boxes
of shiny decorations
fill the organized
Christmas tub

Baubles and trinkets
toys and lights
tinsel, garland and stars
wait to trim the tree

The newest go first
naturally it may be
and next the revered
most loved ages of history

Interest peaks finding
last years treats
each hung on the tree
with great care

The sturdy little ornament
hopeful for a turn
some years it’s left behind
inside its cardboard mew

A tree it seems
was much too small
no room for any extra and
sometimes it’s just forgotten

Still within its core
it carries a light
waiting for the day
it will sparkle and shine

the only one on a tree –

Yellow Tutu

Sunday Whirl Wordle #583
Hosted by bwarren

breath, spill, yellowing, bluff, torn, fairy, flush, soothed, greedy, safe, raspy, hiss

The aged fairy looked down at herself. She soothed her torn and yellowing tutu, a spill of tulle loose upon her body. Her raspy breath, greedy for youth, made a soft hiss as it left her thin lips.

She watched another fairy dancing in the moon lit night as she pirouetted on top of the grassy bluff. Her face, her skin, her body bore the flush of youth.

The young fairy would stay safe this night. The old fairy turned away, resisting the dark one yet again.