Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

poem- early June 4, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:09 pm
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Guest instructor

releases class without permission

Students delighted to wander the halls

bounce balls

study their phones

while the supervisor

looks around the class room,



poem- uh? excuse me? May 30, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 9:55 am
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This is a trifle awkward


I’m really sorry to bother you


but it’s kind of important


that you do what you were hired to do.


if you wouldn’t mind, I’d appreciate it


if you would follow through?




Canadian approach to slow contractors, agents, students, etc.  lol  Why are we so gentle?

(Okay- weird thing- just reading this as it’s published and noticed every second long line rhymes.  That was a complete accident.  lol   )


poem- swing May 27, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 9:50 am
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In the photograph, you are on a swing in city park,

the yellow paint on the support bar is worn and flaking,

you grip the chain, suspended on the tiny rubber seat

your tall man body mashed.

You’re smirking so wide your dimple dances with the light in your eyes

Our first French kiss lingered in the air,

as our future flashed fireworks over your head.



This photo sits on my desk, and makes me smile every day.


poem-rapid write May 21, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:50 pm
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Your pens are scratching

Timer ticking

Ten minutes of writing



instant effort

fired up

The buzzer sounds

and you have created

something that did not exist

ten minutes before.



In my classes students do daily timed writes to get the brains used to engaging quickly and just writing loosely.  I give them prompts to use or not: lines from songs, Rory Story Cubes, a photo. It’s amazing to see how they develop writing muscles.  I check these as complete, but don’t grade them.  They’re about process because you learn to write by writing. 🙂  


poem- startle May 18, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 4:31 pm
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No sneaking

No whispers

No clandestine act

Engine patters

Garage door rumbles

Back door slams

Yet a happy greeting yields hours of anxieties.

Something is not working here.


poem-critique May 17, 2015

Filed under: Poetry,Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 8:39 pm
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I love the simplicity

of this collection,

but it’s

bordering on saccharine


syrup on my waffles,

but not




(I had an official poetry critique by a famous writer/poet today.   I have never had my poetry critiqued by anyone ‘in the biz.’  This is the summary of the observations on the 20 or so love poems submitted.  😉  Apparently I should aim to be a *bit* edgier.  I think this is quite wonderful, actually).


poem-bone bling March 30, 2015

Filed under: Poetry,Teaching — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:51 pm
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“So what happened exactly?”

the students asked,

and I told them about the fall,

casts, surgery, plate, and screws.

“Ha!” one laughed, “That’s perfect for you!”

“Why?” I asked

“Because now

even your skeleton

has bling!”



True story.

I love my students.



poem- the look March 21, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:18 am
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I didn’t mean to do it.

The clerk was trying to teach me to do something for myself

but I had neither time nor inclination.

I just wanted a book, and if the one I had requested from the other campus wasn’t there,

it didn’t matter where it was in the system

or whether it was coming.

Today I could pick it up, not tomorrow or later.

It wasn’t here, so I just wanted to sign out the book in my hand.

When she tried to explain what I should do to trace the path of the missing book

explain the complex library system, invite me to log into a computer off to the side,

I gave her the look.

I didn’t mean to, but I did.

She froze and her sentence stuttered to a halt,

eyes gaping at me.

She passed my book over the scanner, gulping.

I apologized for not being teachable.

I don’t know where I developed the look,

I don’t realize I’m doing it until I see the reaction.

I don’t know what I’m doing precisely

that conveys such intense disinterest and disapproval

but it does.

At least I didn’t have to sit for ten minutes

for a lecture and computer consultation, like she wanted.

Three minutes in the university library was long enough

when I am hobbling with a cane

and irritated with accessibility.




poem-proximity February 23, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 5:48 pm
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next to my hair salon of choice,

there was an amazing jewelry store.

Before an appointment,

I’d peruse the sparkling wares,

and occasionally I’d be captivated,

to leave a great percentage

of my pay cheque there,

in exchange for lasting, glistening baubles.


next to my hair salon of choice,

these is an amazing chocolate store.

Before an appointment,

I peruse the creamy, sweet wares,

and always I am captivated,

to leave a small percentage

of my pay cheque there,

in exchange for momentary ecstasy on my tongue.


poem- waiting February 11, 2015

Filed under: Poetry,poodles — Shawn L. Bird @ 6:01 pm
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2:50 a.m.

I’m getting to bed at a decent hour for once

(well, decent for me).

I let out the dogs.

One’s back in a minute, tail wagging,

as he heads to his bowl for a quick snack.

No sign of dog two.

I whistle.

I call.

Were I bi-pedal, I would put on boots

go in the back yard and bring him in,

but I’m mono-pedal and the office chair

isn’t up for a snowy back yard

never mind the slope I’d never get up.

So I’m waiting.

and waiting

and waiting.

This dog does this a lot

at 3 a.m.

Never at 1 a.m.

or 4 a.m.

What’s that about?

At 3:30, I shut out all the lights

and decide he can sleep on the porch.

until hubby get’s up at 5:00.

Then I see a ghostly shape on the other side of the glass door.

Oh, hello.  You’re back already?  Grrr.

I steer him down the hall, and he hops up on my bed

with wet, dirty feet.  I growl, and smack his butt.

I pick up dog one, who has dry feet, is about to die,

and pees promptly when I put him out and then returns to the door.

In the dark, dog two lies on the dog pillow and I hear cats yowling.

In my bedroom.

In his belly.

Mewling, and yowling, and squeaking, and meowing.

He shifts uncomfortably.

His stomach gurgles and growls.

He can have breakfast later.

I’m going to sleep with the good dog

at my feet.



(No.  He didn’t really eat cats, despite what it sounded like).


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