Another roll of metaphor dice

Today on Ethical ELA Stefani Boutelier invites teacher-poets to roll Metaphor Dice, originally created by Taylor Mali for composing poems with students.

I’ve written a few poems based on Metaphor Dice:

Your Ego is a Feckless Maelstrom

Junkyard Loss Is Not Elusive

Guilt Is a Stingy Odyssey

Here’s where today’s roll landed me…

Wearer Beware

seel (as defined by Dictionary.com):

 1. Falconry. to sew shut (the eyes of a falcon) during parts of its training.

 2. Archaic.

  1. to close (the eyes).
  2. to blind.

Bias is a capricious gauntlet 
a gloved hand
infinitely unwieldy 
but nevertheless employed
in stitching closed the eyes
in beckoning talons
begging the question
of rapture in the raptor
of rupture in the captor
over eviscerating prey
which is to say
once worn with intent
to destroy
the capricious gauntlet of bias
may turn, of its own accord,
to reach instead
for one’s own throat

beware the taking up
and the throwing down

Thunder Comes To Gauntlet. stanlupo. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

More metaphor dice

My son challenged me to make something with this roll of my metaphor dice: loss, elusive, junkyard.

This is what I have, so far…

Junkyard Loss is Not Elusive 

It is said that imagination
is the junkyard of the brain
where used things lie in limbo
until they are destroyed
taken back by the grass
or called into service again

which is to say
no experience is wasted
only catalogued and stored
in the deep recesses of memory
until the need for it
should arise
in solving a problem
in creating a new thing
in connecting patterns
in different ways of seeing
relating
expressing
understanding

which is to say
that beloved childhood doll
with the cracked face
or the scent of
your father’s shaving cream
or that dog, that dog
that chewed up your best shoes
but slept every night by your side
long ago, so long ago
comes bounding back
for a specific purpose

for there is unseen order
in a junkyard
where used things lie in limbo
until they are called into service again
or destroyed
or taken back
by the grass.


Metaphor dice

Today I played with metaphor dice for the first time.

The goal is to create a metaphor from a concept, an adjective, and an object.

I rolled guilt, stingy, odyssey.

What to make of this?

Guilt is a stingy odyssey
a relentless clutching on
the pearl-string of your days

its sweaty palms
obscuring nacreous elegance
choking your moments

whispering always
through clenched teeth
that you have no real worth


if you listen
the days roll on
like cement slabs

slamming end over end
one heavy turn at a time
every next day
just like the one before
—testify, Sisyphus

guilt is a stingy odyssey
whether true or self-imposed
it is unwilling to loosen its grasp
for if you should break free

and alter your course

you will discover
unforced rhythms of grace.