2020 April PAD Challenge: Day 14

For: https://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/poetic-asides/2020-april-pad-challenge-day-14

For today’s prompt:

  1. Write a form poem (here are 100 poetic forms to choose from) and/or…
  2. Write an anti-form poem. I get it; some people don’t like forms.

If you feel like a form doesn’t quite give you direction for today’s prompt, write a poem about something with structure or form, or write a poem about chaos.

Remember: These prompts are just springboards; you have the freedom to jump in any direction you want. In other words, it’s more important to write a new poem than to stick to the prompt.

My Contribution:

COVID

Containment
Overwhelming
Vicious
Insidious
Diabolical

COVID-19

Don’t run and hide.
There isn’t anywhere to go.
We must wait it out.
The pandemic will end.
Pray for those who are sick.

©2020 CBialczak Poetry

Book: discover Prompts

https://wordpress.com/discover-wordpress/2020/04/14/discover-prompts-day-14-book/

I have four published books.

I published the four books in what is considered a Vanity Press. This is simply a publisher that asks for the payments upfront, instead of offering you a contract or publishing deal. There are pros and cons to this.

Pros: I got four books published with real ISBN numbers and out in real books stores, online, ebook format, etc.

Cons: A lot of publishers don’t consider this “publishing”. It is very expensive. You have to do your own marketing for the most part. They accept pretty much anything, even if it’s not that great.

Do I regret doing it? No, not at all. It gave me the confidence to take up writing seriously and to think of it as something I am good at. I still want a publishing deal. I did realize after publishing and then trying to go through an agent for a publishing deal, that my books had some flaws that I wish someone had pointed out to me. Nothing can be done now. I don’t think I will ever make all that money back but I can say I am a published author!

The four titles are Penelope, Penelope Picks her Pals, Penelope’s New Puppy, and Penelope still picks Suzie.

Word Disassociation | Daily Inkling #25

Write a blog post inspired by today’s Daily Inkling: https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/118697376/posts/10505

Word Disassociation

You know how sometimes you’re asked to play Word Association, where you’re told to blurt out the very first word that pops in your head after hearing a word?

Yeah, we don’t want you to do that.

Instead, take an uncomfortably long time agonizing over each word on the following list, making sure to come up with something as far away from instinct as possible. Take at least 30 seconds before writing your answer. 

Jump > Something you go over on your bike

Hemisphere > one side of your brain

Contribution > what you give when you are at a conference for work and the speaker wants input into the subject

Knot > How many knots do you know how to tie?

Pat > bread dough

Cower > when the cold shower hits you

Trap > the thing with the sharp teeth that cuts your foot off

Harmony > peace

Mine > underground

Recommend > opinion

Fish > something you do at the lake

Champion > a brand of clothing

Movement > a fetus

Willpower > don’t do it!

Feature > The good movie

For bonus points, try to work your 15 new words into a blog post! 

Billy ran home from school, knowing his bike was in the garage waiting to be taken out for a ride. He knew he could go down to the playground where his friends were. They built a few jumps there and he wanted to see if he could do them and land on two wheels. One part of his brain said, “go for it”, while the other hemisphere said, “don’t break a leg!” He ran in the front door and saw his mother in the kitchen. She was about to pat the dough, for the bread she was making, but hesitated. She knew she was going to have to tie the bread so it wouldn’t expand too far but didn’t know what kind of knot to tie. She wanted it to come undone easily after baking.  

“Hey Billy! Can you come here for a minute? I would like your contribution to my dilemma. What kind of knot can I tie that will untie easily?” Billy decided he was going to recommend the square knot.  

He then pulled on his Champion sweatshirt and told his mother he would either be at lake fishing or at the movies watching the main feature. He didn’t want her to know he was going to do new stunts on his bike. The last time he told her she got so angry. He didn’t like lying to her, but he would have to have the willpower to keep his mouth shut. Billy knew that if his mother got upset and felt any movement in her belly, she would blame him for upsetting the baby. Lying to her right now was really a way of keeping harmony between them.  

Billy hopped on his bike and headed toward the park. He knew he would have to get there before dark. Once it got dark there were holes under the equipment that seemed like eerie mines, dug thousands of years ago. He didn’t want to fall in or get stuck in some hunter’s trap. To his surprise the park was empty. Billy was disappointed but also a little relieved. He was glad he didn’t tell his mother, she would have worried for nothing.  

Billy got back on his bike, headed home and told his mom he was taking a shower. Before she even had a chance to tell him they didn’t have money for the oil this month and that there was no hot water, Billy had the water on and was already singing. His mother heard him whimper as he must have cowered when the cold water pelted his skin. She’d have to let him know later.  


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The Caramel Crunch

Written for Caramel: https://crushedcaramel.wordpress.com/2020/04/11/the-caramel-crunch-15/

WHEN IT COMES TO THE CRUNCH – WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

You are in love and the person you have been courting for some time wants to marry you. Although you are very close, there is one main difference in your outlook. One of you believes in a Creator and wants to practice a particular faith. The other does not believe in a Creator and despises all religion. When the two of you talk about beliefs, emotions run high and generally the conversations have to be cut short because it can become hurtful. You realize this may cause challenges, despite the love you share.

Luckily, I have never been in such a situation. In high school and college the boys I knew were the ones I grew up with so it didn’t really matter because none of us loved going to church. When I met Bob, my husband of 21 years, we found from the beginning that we grew up going to the same church and held very similar views.

Now, David and I have pretty similar views. I would like to be more involved sometimes, as does he, but life gets in the way.

So now….I think the thing to do is to agree not to talk about it. And if the other person talks about it, it is what it is. Imagine a couple, as you proposed above, dating for quite a while but not wanting to get married or have children for a long time. What happens when she gets her period? She might mention it to him for various reasons. The man will not understand what she is talking about when she says she has cramps. The man will not agree that there is nothing worse than wearing a pad. So what happens? She tells him she has her period, that she is cranky, has cramps and just ruined her best pair of Khakis. He listens. Life moves on. Do the same with your religious beliefs.
Think of this scenario: Patty is very religious and grew up in a very Catholic home. Barry is not. He considers himself an atheist, that religion is overrated and ridiculous. Patty has a real rough week at work, between the expectations and her awful boss. By Sunday she is ready to go to church to sit and listen to the Gospel, pray to God for the strength to make it another day. Barry won’t go. So Patty goes alone, embraces her time with God and her faith and feels better. Barry stayed at home, watched a few episodes of Breaking Bad on Netflix and is very comfortable. Patty gets home, tells Barry how much better she feels having connected with God. Barry says he is happy she feels better. Why does it have to be more complicated than that?

delightful: Ragtag Daily Prompt

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2020/03/16/rdp-monday-delightful/

Someday soon

Isn’t it delightful  
to get out of your house 
to see your next  door neighbor 
to kiss your loving spouse? 

Before we knew what happened 
we were locked up in a  jail 
no where left to go because 
COVID tipped the scale. 

But now that we are able 
to go where life will lead 
Take your own precautions 
before you do proceed.  

No one is immune yet 
no matter how we hope 
A vaccine is on the way they say 
until then try to cope.  

©2020 CBialczak Poetry

Blogging A to Z April Challenge: L 04/14/2020

Levels: What do they mean?

When many adults were in school years ago there were groups; children have always been placed in groups by levels. Whether it is level of reading, social maturation, or even size, there seems to always be some groups. Nowadays, grouping is much more strategic and occurs less. Have you wondered why? 

Many groupings have gone away, especially in public schools. Not only it is against HIPAA rules, it can also be demoralizing and detrimental to a young person’s emotional development. Here is a scenario to explain it: 

Johnny came home from school to tell his mom and dad that they started reading a new chapter book in class. He goes on to say that the teacher has them in small groups so they can read together.  
I. “Well, Johnny, which group are you in?” 
“I’m in the red group” 
“What’s the red mean?” 
“I don’t know.” 

II. “Well, Johnny, which group are you in?” 
“I’m in Peter and Marcy’s group, and also Jessie” 
“Isn’t Jessie a slower reader than you?” 
“I don’t know” 

III. “Well, Johnny, which group are you in?” 
“I’m in group B” 
“What is group B? Shouldn’t you be in group A with the highest readers?” 
“I don’t know” 

So, you can see there is a lot of ambiguity and a lot of questions that come up. To be honest, the teacher doesn’t have to tell you how the groupings occurred. If she were to tell you, it may go against privacy laws. Maybe Peter is super low, and Johnny was put there to be a role model. Or maybe it’s the other way around. Maybe Johnny is put in that group because he is the best behaved…or the worst…? 

Here is another scenario: 

Debbie comes home from school to tell her mom and dad that they started a new math concept and they were put into groups in class. She goes on to say that the teacher put them in groups based on how good they are in math. *Understand that Debbie thinks this is why they are in groups… 
I. “Debbie, who else is in your group?” 
“Billy and Paul and Emma” 
“Isn’t Paul that little boy who is always in trouble?” 
“Yes” 
“Then why are you in his group?” 
“Because we know the same math.” 
“How can you know the same math if he is always in the Principal’s office?” 
“I don’t know” 

II. “Debbie, who else is in your group?” 
“Mark and Faith and Raheed” 
“Raheed? Where is Raheed from?” 
“My school” 
“No, what country is he from?” 
“Mine, I think. Why?” 
“Never mind” 

III. “Debbie, who else is in your group?” 
“Vince and Paula and Samson” 
“I don’t know if I like that little girl Paula. Her mother is not very nice” 
“She’s nice to me” 
“Never mind” 

Now, these are just silly scenarios I made up but there are so many problems with this that teachers now avoid groupings if they can. The problem with that is then parents wonder why there AREN’T groups. 

“Why isn’t Becky with the higher readers so she can move ahead faster?” 
“Does Billy behave or is he disruptive during reading time?” 
“Isn’t Jack special needs? Why is he learning to read with my child?” 
“I don’t think Carl is a good influence and I would rather see my child in a different group” 

What is my biggest point? Don’t worry about groupings. They are not what they used to be and do not mean what they used to mean. They may occur and the teacher may have a strategy but that is her prerogative and can assure you of your own child’s success, but not about any other children in the class.  

If you have a grave concern, ask the teacher to talk privately, without your child there. The teacher will be able to give you some sort of explanation and ease your mind, but please remember, the majority of teachers out there only have the best intentions for all the children in their classrooms.