Thursday, October 19, 2017

Spooked as a Child--You Too?

If you haven't had a chance to meet author Carrie Clickard, I recommend it.

I was introduced to her by Michelle H. Barnes in her SPOTLIGHT ON interview at, Today's Little Ditty, two weeks ago. 

Each month, Michelle holds a DMC (ditty monthly challenge) and I try to keep up with the rest of the poets that always have the best ideas.

This month's challenge is: Write a poem about a person, place or thing that spooked you as a child.

I accepted the challenge but then the blank page loomed large. I have no shortage of spooked experiences....but how to encapsulate even one. 

I shouldn't have fretted. Kat Apel saved me by introducing a cool poetry form, tetractys, She shared some on her blog last week. I knew this form was perfect for a spooky topic.

In an update to my posting on Thursday night, Kat and I had an e-mail chat. She is so kind. As it turns out, my Double Tetractys are missing a line! Once the poet reaches the first line of ten syllables, the next line needs to have ten, then four, three, two and one. So, these double tetractys are going to go back in the oven a bit over the weekend. For now, enjoy the first attempt. 

Free-Photos. Free Photo: Forest, Snake, Arts, Trees, Path - Free Image on Pixabay - 336496, Pixabay, 3 May 2014,

afraid of
slithering snakes
hiding in the tall grass, shadowy shapes.
Sometimes long sticks
look like snakes
and I

Once I got started, I kinda couldn't stop. So, I will limit this post to three tetractys. The first one is shared on the DMC PadletHave fun being creeped out over there!

“Sump Pump Gallery.” AquaGuard Foundation Solutions, Aqua Guard Foundation Solutions, 7 Oct. 2016,

Oscar awaits
in the cellar under the sump pump door.
Uncle Tom gently
opens the hatch.
He roars --

This week's Poetry Friday is hosted by Leigh Anne Eck at A Day in the Life. And, you can find her moderating #TeachWrite in her spare time (ha!) She's working hard in grad school these days but is graciously making sure we all have some poetry to enjoy this week. Thank you, Leigh Anne.

Slightly Different. “Free Image on Pixabay - Stairs, Light, Dark, Gloomy, Night.” Free Photo: Stairs, Light, Dark, Gloomy, Night - Free Image on Pixabay - 2799299, 30 Sept. 2017,

of basement
stairs – deepest dark;
shadows, cobwebs, spiders, hanging out there.
I’m less afraid
though, when my


  1. Love this form and yes, it is perfect for the DMC! Sump pumps even creep me out as an adult! Thank you for the sweet introduction above, too!

  2. This form looks like so much fun! I'll have to try to incorporate it into my Inktober poems. Snakes give me the heebie-jeebies. I've managed to see 3 in the past week, which is 3 too many!

  3. I agree sump pumps are creepy! I love the "slithering snakes/shadowy shapes" so good! You've inspired me to give this form a try!

  4. Fun poems here Linda, I did especially like the monster and the sump pump, and the last–
    "He roars--
    I'm ready to be spooked, thanks!

  5. Not only are your words wonderful, but you've matched them beautifully with the images. I'm so glad my post inspired this creativity!

  6. Oh wow. Three wonderful poems matched with perfect photos. I think the first is my favourite, because I share your fear - and, where I am in Australia it is snake season and I must confess to regularly jumping at sticks.

  7. I like these--I can definitely relate to the first one! I know snakes are good for many things, but I don't like coming across one unexpectedly. I'm been having similar trouble trying to write about some spooky topics. I think I'll give this form a try.

  8. Oh dear, I know I can relate to that first one all too well, and we rarely even have snakes in my area! Just an overactive imagination. :-D

  9. No matter that you missed that extra line, Linda. Each one shows a scare. I love that "monster, Oscar"!

  10. Oh! These are all such fun, Linda! Tetractys or not, they hit the spooky spot. :)

  11. I just love your attention to detail, Linda. Thanks for turning me on to this form. Great attempt.

  12. Fun poems, Linda. The snake one gave me the shivers -- snakes do indeed look like sticks. I once reached for a branch in my driveway and it slithered away and scared me to death. You found such great photos for your poems -- the dark basement steps made me think of horror movies. . .

  13. It never ceases to amaze me how many forms, and variations on those forms, there are! I'm off to try this one! Many thanks, to you and Kat, for the introduction.

  14. Oh, yeah. The gigantic spider who lives under the sump pump lid in the darkest corner of the basement. SCARY!!

    Fun terror tidbits!

  15. These are such fun, Linda, and your images are a great match! I admire how you're always open to new challenges, like the tetractys. Well done!

  16. These are inspiring, Linda. Maybe I will write one for Halloween.

  17. Thank goodness for flashlights!

  18. Linda, these are splendidly spooky! I love that you are such open to new invitations with your poems. This form looks fun and it seems like it's a great one to try when you are looking to get some writing going after a blank page moment. Thanks for sharing, Linda!

  19. This is a fun form! And that snake poem! I'm with you on shrieking when I see "shadowy shapes." Thanks for the inspiration!


Friendly, positive comments and feedback are always welcome here. Please let me know I'm not just whistling in the dark!