Push, or: Shove

A Cadralor

In the form of 5 Kimos

sweat beading up on my forehead; glasses
slipping; cotton undershirt
drenched through, sticking tightly

flat feet shifting just slightly, shin muscles
shooting sharply, absorbing
jarring jolts, careening

heavy laptop and accompanying
charger, mouse, keyboard in my
backpack, bumping others

air conditioning is requested by
an old lady; she's unheard 
over the rough jostling

pushing, I reach through slick, sardined bodies
to hit 'stop', as the bus swerves,
lurching towards my street


The cadralor is a poem of 5, unrelated, numbered stanzaic images, each of which can stand alone as a poem, is fewer than 10 lines, and ideally constrains all stanzas to the same number of lines. Imagery is crucial to cadralor: each stanza should be a whole, imagist poem, almost like a scene from a film, or a photograph. The fifth stanza acts as the crucible, alchemically pulling the unrelated stanzas together…


The kimo shares much in common with the haiku: it appears in three lines, making it a tristich, with each line following a diminishing pattern:

  1. Ten syllables
  2. Seven syllables
  3. Six syllables

Each of these lines are unrhymed.

The kimo often deals with a static image, a single moment in which there is no movement. Along with its brief nature, this makes it an excellent form to reflect on or celebrate a particular instance.

d’Verse poetics prompt:

‘Concrete or Abstract?’

Today at d’Verse, poets were prompted to write a poem using only concrete nouns, subject matter and imagery. For the purposes of this exercise, the following words are banned: soul, love, lust, dreams, sorrow, suffering, heartache, wonder, etc. 

Poet are to avoid writing directly of the emotions that concrete objects invoke. It should be left to readers to experience the emotions, without the poet referring to them directly.

Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

85 thoughts on “Push, or: Shove”

  1. A colorful Bus poem, which could have been the Subway; public transportation can be dehumanizing. You and Ingrid with the Cadalor. Haiku for her, kimo for you; fascinating.

  2. I hope you are receiving my comments, I don’t see my original comment about your poem in the wonderfully huge group of them. I do have Carl’s art and will keep it as long as I live. Carl lives with me, is developmentally disabled … though not severely. He holds down a full time job in a supermarket, we live close to it and he walks. Does not drive. He is an absolute joy as a housemate and I cannot imagine life without him.

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