NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 20 – Write a poem that states the things you know – Every Year



Every   Year


The day is warm.

Today several people gathered

in this room.

It is a quiet evening.


The door is still open.

There was a hanging above the door.

It read Merry Christmas. I know.

Easter is two weeks away.


People had been gathered in this room to talk

about taking an Easter Camping holiday


After the people left someone stood on a chair,

reached up and removed the sign

from above the door.        Every year …. I know!?

Benita H. Kape © 21.4.2015


NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 19 – Write a Landay – I Will Kick Him Out

I    Will   Kick   Him   Out


With stealth, his first after life visit.

How did he get under the covers to make our lovers tryst?


I weep for I am no longer surprised.

It is too much to wish for, for fear he will not come.


For fear he will not come tonight.

I break out in a sweat, the nights he is here, the nights he is not.


He never comes when others are in the house.

I will kick him out of my bed if I grow tired of him.


Do you believe this? I asked my friend.

I believe everything and nothing of what you tell me she said.


Benita H. Kape © 20.4.2015


NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 18 – an urgency – Weeping Waters – Tangiwhai

“And now for our (as always, optional) prompt, which takes us from 2015 back to the 1700s. After all, it’s the eighteenth of April, which means that today is the 240th anniversary of the midnight ride of Paul Revere! Today, in keeping with the theme of rush and warning, I challenge you to write a poem that involves an urgent journey and an important message. It could historical, mythical, entirely fictional, or memoir-ical.”

Of the train journey that night this train passed by the house where I was holidaying with my parents about an hour before this happened. All my childhood I would listen to this passenger train and the Limited train which went through earlier in the evening chug up the hill from the valley near our home. My husband, a signalman in the air force had to work through that night and for several days after working messages as was done on the nearby base at that time. I lost a friend on that dreadful night.


Weeping Waters – Tangiwhai


It was Christmas Eve nineteen fifty three

As the Express train roared through the night;

on and on through the centre of the Island.

On board were two hundred and eighty five travellers.


And none of them knew of the great Lahar, from

the mountain above, released with force unpredictable.

The train gathered speed, few stops now in the hinterland.

And none could know that the piers of the bridge

they would cross had been damaged.


They sped on through the night,

Some already asleep, others too excited.

But a horrified man Mr Ellis, passing near

the railway track at the time, flashing a torch,

raced forward to alert the fireman and driver.


The First-class Engineer applied the emergency brakes

the fireman released the sandbox lever,

as the Express roared toward the bridge

over the Whangaehu River.


It would reduce the number

of carriages, personnel lost.

But the toll was high; one hundred and fifty one.

As brave Messers Ellis and Inglis worked

hard to save those in the teetering carriages.


Number Plate K 949 of the Wellington

to Auckland Express is posted on an obelisk

at the place of  “weeping waters” – Tangiwhai

and upstream the Lahar warning has sounded,

but once, since the sad night that bought

an even sadder Christmas we all remember.

Benita H. Kape © 19.4.2015



NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 17 – found poem – food packets and facebook – Clip the Instructions

I’ve followed the prompt from NaPoWriMo since day one. Several times I’ve thought OMG I can’t do that. Today I was about to break my rule for the month of following the prompt, but – well here I am again.

Clip the Instructions

found in the fridge and in facebook

Place in a safe microwave bowl

a four line poem

Meadow fresh yoghurt

Dried Cranberries

and Gravy

I would like some feedback

Good eggs

Alan and Percy

Metaphysical on

Flashback Friday

threads of harmony

implement activities

I would like some feedback

you must or you ought


I love … Hello, I’m Daisy

personally One Throne

Nelson …. clip the instructions

Coffee break

I would like some feedback


in a ten cup kitchen

They rifle the room

I might have to put this on my wall


It’s really hard for me to admit

until  one moment

When I talk through a murder

with my husband …

I would like some feedback


Benita Kape © 18.4.2015




NaPoWrMo 2015 – Day 16 – Today a terzanelle – Skinning the Beast


Skinning   the   Beast


Though my mother stood back at the sight

The lamb braced to the hook and raised,

Limp body, hind feet now lifted to a height.


Young child that I was, I was unfazed.

But mother just could not stand and watch

The lamb braced to the hook and raised.


As Dad yanked on the rope another notch

And wrapped the rope tight around the tree.

But mother just could not stand and watch.


So there was Dad, me and the lamb, us three,

While Dad adjusted the kill as it swung

And wrapped the rope tight around the tree.


Taunt the carcass, work moves up a rung.

Begin to skin the beast, warming a hand

While Dad adjusted the kill as it swung.


Mother simply does not understand,

That one such as me my farm skills excite.

Begin to skin the beast, warming a hand,

And Father guides me with pride and delight

Benita H. Kape © 17.4.2015


NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 15 – ‘write a poem that addresses itself or some aspect of its self’

Cheesy Talks Meets Cynicism & Sarcasm

. choosing one-liners / a choice for brevity /  about time rules / don’t believe no rules apply extending our experiment / allows you and me an extension of topic I’ll brush the cherry blossoms from the page / you can now replace them with grenades naked we both gaze at the moon / waiting for her reply / have neither of you any shame sheltered upbringing / not knowing a compliment from a curse tying my shoe lace / it’s you who hesitated / and it was  you who put me of my stride are you counting syllables / a poem intuits itself / don’t stop there having fun writing one-liners / yes, no, maybe can part one and part three of you exchange places / exchange part two if necessary collaborations / just you and me / spoil-sport approach an editor / I’ll edit yours if you’ll edit mine open your ears / hear the hedgehogs rutting / a little sex is acceptable pad and pencil on the bedside table / wasn’t strange noises that kept you awake time for something stronger than whisky / or something that will bring on a good howl you are a poem / with tastes eclectic / I’ll have that whisky now breaking out in a sweat / a haiku for the electric blanket left on where is the cat in this one-liner / I’m addressing you tonight / my poem out of hand dawn is breaking / sadly you’ve grown into a haiku with droopy eyelids you and your short outburst / well it gets the job done regretting dear haiku I hadn’t chosen you to be a quatrain / not today my narrow river of enchantment / cheesy / hmmmmmmm

Benita H. Kape © 16/4/2015

Some years ago I wrote lots of one-line haiku both alone and collaboratively. They have a place as does all poetry, but it is also very experimental. The only way to address this genre is to wait for the reply. Still have misgivings for this poem for this particular exercise / probably.


NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 14 – A conversation with another – Fostered Child


Fostered Child


Come my dear, share with me your news.

The old ones, the young ones.

All of it, all of it. What have you for your muse?


Some dear mother are close;

Some are far, further than you ever could imagine.

Much of what I will tell you will juxtapose

with romantic recall of which you were fond.


Come, you must not keep me in suspense

my bones have been aching to know the things afoot.

Open for me a new chapter, come commence.


How shall I approach such a delicate matter?

What resources the modern world

reveals to the seekers with you at the centre.


The threads, the answers to so many questions,

With ever more and more …and

the sweet mother you never knew … never knew

never knew. Never knew – any of this.


Because dear muse, words fail me.

Be comforted. Sleep well.

Benita H. Kape © 15.4.2015

 My first version of the poem gave some answers. I don’t think that is always what poetry should do. The poetry gods are with me today. I had an appointment. The car wouldn’t start. I adjusted my appointment time, got the poem I wanted (thank you dear muse) and now the car has started when tried again. Whollla. The picture is of my very recently discovered grandmother. My mother was her first child, not pictured here.



NaPoWriMO 2015 – Day 13 – Write a riddle poem – Eyebrow of Burnished Clay … ‘The Kape’

This poem, part riddle, is based on an art piece commissioned by my daughter for her father. It is stone polished clay in the shape of an eyebrow. The word Kape, which is our family name, means eyebrow in Maori. Because the shape is reflective of a seed pod the imagery is extended as a metaphor for each of our five birthed children.



Eyebrow of Burnished Clay … The Kape

for my late husband Pat, and our children


This, a connection to the land am I.

Many heads in one frame,

a small family.

I am the faces of all your ancestors.

Your descendants cannot escape me.

You are a language of clay speaking

for us.


Here, feel my smoothness.

There, I am as the hair on your head.

I am safe should I drop.

Raising comes naturally to me.


Seen introspectively,

the number of fingers

on one hand.


I am representative of questions and gestures.

I am all the answers of your small tribe.

They say hair never rots; neither shall I.


I am never to be seen by your young as logo.

Nor I am a coat of arms, though with ever less

and far more complications, but I am truly

a symbol of your lineage. I am so young

my guardianship has yet to be negotiated.


As I greet you,

the fact that I am not raised

is a matter of respect.

Benita H. Kape © 14.4.2015


NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 12 – Describe a room. – A Room of Rainbows

Willow st fireplace.

A   Room   Of   Rainbows


French doors open onto rainbows in the late afternoon,

crystals hanging at a leadlight window. The mantelpiece

is cluttered, the collection eclectic, antique glass vases

rub shoulders with a tiny birds’ nest, a sweet gift

from child; a mosaic by another. An onyx swan from

another. A small Wedgewood plaque, (this from my

mother-in-law) exquisite Pegasus and goddesses

delicately chiselled in white onto blue. On the walls

art and a stopped clock, kept for its colourful appeal

rather than my necessary reminder of time. Time falls

away here in my sanctuary.


Familiar faces on the wall; a scattering of small tables

around the room, each with a cargo of books. Hidden

behind a chair, a basket of embroideries, works in progress.

Squeezed there also canisters of CDs, discs and tapes

of anything from opera to country music. And at certain

times of the day the cat will be lolling on the carpet, or up

on rugged chairs, avoiding that expensive leather cushion: (whew!

so thankful for that.)


If you feel an aura in the room, I call it love. Sorrow has had

its moments here though more often the everyday comings

and goings I cannot take for granted, a life worked hard for.


Take a seat, delve into the bookcase as autumn begins. I’ll

be sitting here taking up my embroidery recalling nights

of love making on the rug before the cosy fire. And the dirty

little secret, again hidden behind another chair, is a box filled

with magazines I continue to finger through wasting yet

another afternoon.

Benita H. Kape © 13.4.2015


All Cretans are liars should be the title of this poem. I’ve never actually had the pleasure of making love on this particular carpet which I can’t quite add into the poem. Don’t want to spoil it.


NaPoWriMo 2015 – Day 11 – Sapphic verse – Fragment Self Esteem


Fragment Self Esteem

 ‘less aware of love than fear’: from

Sapphic Fragments by Eliza Griswold


Once I could not have written so bold to fear,

although choosing not to work in couplets

Eliza, I shall repair to the classic

to tongue untied.


Some women shared only in their homes.

Blind-folded another, but not those who spoke

to a world that has now come to support us,

empower us more


in poetry, art, each creative mile stone

creating excitement, transcending the bad

reputation given woman through fear:

who was not to fear


but rejoiced, reclaimed, elevated;

sung in concert and academy, city hall.

Chase out that which was so often otherwise:

loose fear, stand in awe.

Benita Kape © 12.4.2015


Eliza Griswold was speaking to a different fear but a fear which is common to both men and women as is the fear I speak of here.