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Brevity Poems

Updated on December 10, 2013

These works were done as contest entries on a poetry site. Each one was given a word prompt that was not to be used in the poem or the title and a specific word count it had to match. The word counts are listed next to each of the titles.

Thanksgiving Turkey (Limerick)

A bird that's become so iconic
It’s “gobble” an int'resting phonic
With a drumstick in hand
If they knew what we planned
They might choose a sound less ironic

Paranoia (25 Words)

I hear voices echo
Speaking ill
Out to get me
Perhaps to kill
Keeping their secrets
With great skill
Unnerving plans
They must not fulfill

Porcupine

The pin cushion of Nature

A repellent prey

It’s quills not for writing

It keeps predators away

It’s reclusive, untouched

Because of it’s harmful array

Fall (24 Words)

Random vibrations

Branches stand still

Autumn’s frailty

Shaking in the wind


Warmer hues presented

As air outside chills

Branches emptying

Solemnly to the ground

You Are Not the Father

Prince Charming thought he’d met his mate

But to start the family, he was too late

Encapsulated in the woods

A few of the dwarves tested out her goods

Now knowing kid’s paternity

She was impregnated by sleepy

OCD About My Keys (54 Words)

I know I just put them in my pocket
But still I have to check
I can’t shut the car door without a pat
Or else I’ll be a wreck

It’s called obsessive
It’s called compulsive
But safety must come first
You would too
If you saw the clues
If the situation was reversed

Witness Stand (30 Words)

Sweat collecting on my brow
Keeping calm as mind allows

Words that slip from devil’s tongue
Breath escapes my frightened lung

Answer twisted in the air
Powerless, I only stare

Green Fairy (26 Words)

Green and translucent
Filled with mystery
Enjoyed by the opulent
Throughout our history

It’s distilled with 3 herbs
Including wormwood
Negative ad campaigns
Made it misunderstood

Time to Move on (30 words)

Rose colored glasses
Long since faded
Constant negativity
From the jaded

Seek a thousand answers
Find but one or two
A light switch in the dark
And finally I knew

Near Miss (32 words)

Dysfunctional radar
Causing concern
Aircraft above
Point of no return

Closing in Fast
Collision in sight
Quickly maneuver
Nerve wrecking flight

Almost disaster
But was averted
From bad to good
Situation converted

Foolish (35 words)

If you argue with a fool
All you do is prove there's two
Quickly brought down to their level
Beliefs on a carousel
If you think there is a winner
You remain the bigger fool

Magellan
Magellan

Puzzle (15 words)

Starting from the outside border
Pieces from chaos to order
Image of a past explorer

Painting (20 words)

As colors glide on fresh canvas
Emotions pour from fingertips
My mind's imagination racing
A story told without my lips...

Cat and Mouse (8 words)

Joyous escape,
Taunting rivals.
Frustrated predator,
Foiled again.

Pareidolia (8 Words)

Clouds speak thoughts,
Past Memories,
Forever remembered,
Within.

They didn't leave (24 words)

“You’re leafy” she said
I stared back confused.
She points to the ground
She was amused
A mass of leaves hitchhiked
On my shoes

Unknown (22 words)

Hidden in secrecy, Shrouding the truth

Showing little, Unable to sleuth

Reasons unknown, Motives unclear

Open to none, All out of fear.

Sliding doors (16 words)

I saw her look

from across the station

I ran,

the doors closed,

and she's gone

Hand Made (36 Words)

Molded to imagination
Lacks form on its own
Purpose lies in art and function
Not on one alone
Hands and eyes work together
Creating something new
Finished now and on a shelf
For everyone to view

Victory (20 words)

Veni vidi vici
Proclaim the spoils of war
Soldiers flood the fields
With guns out front
Planes and tanks galore

The Dark of Night (Cinqain)

Night
Calm, mysterious
Blankets the world
Time of relaxed reflection
Darkness

Who is Sisyphus? (8 words)

It's all Greek to me, so I Google.

Secret (25 words)

Locked in a vault behind the mind’s eye.
Hidden from the world in order to deny.
A slip of the tongue... it’s gone... you sigh…

Bank Robbery (14 words)

Sweat on his brow
Revolver in hand
She relinquishes the bag
Now he flees

Video Phone (18 words)

The perfect crime
So it seemed
But unbeknownst
At the scene
Someone caught it
On their cellphone screen

Camping (20 words)

Crisp Mountain air
Snuggled together in a microfiber bag
An enclosed zippered fortress
Protected from the elements
Communing with Nature

The Sun (10 words)

Night and day
Create illusion.
Masking truth of
Eternal sunshine.

Clothed in Ink (14 words)

Fish scales and flowers,
A saturated canvas.
Naked yet hidden
Under ink master’s design.

Untold No More (45 words)

Floodgates open.
Pouring forth a tale
Of mystery
And lessons learned.

A tale of caution
For open minds
To be soaked up
Like a sponge.

The release creates
Momentary ecstasy.
It escapes the lips,
Lifting a great weight.

Now the story will be passed on.

© 2013 Eric Niehoff

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