The Aftermath of Asking

Elizabeth Boquet on the importance of “no”

Oaks to Acorns

April 13
Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt: “…write a poem in which the words or meaning of a familiar phrase get up-ended. For example, if you chose the phrase “A stitch in time saves nine,” you might reverse that into something like: ‘a broken thread; I’m late, so many lost.’ …” For today’s poem, I chose to up-end “It can’t hurt to ask.” In retrospect, however, I suppose it could have been “Just Say No!”

 The Aftermath of Asking

I bet whoever coined
It can’t hurt to ask
was either lucky, thick-headed
or an oligarch —
or maybe all three but
for the purpose of this poem
let’s just call the author

Except for those
with a genie in a bottle,
few receive happy answers
to their questions
every single time.
And even the genie-gentry
are allotted just
three positive responses.

Sooner or later,
at best, we all hear

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Aurora Phoenix

I write as Aurora Phoenix. Nine months ago my world shattered. Unexpectedly and dramatically arrested, I have been incarcerated ever since, as I await the unbearably slow machinations of the system. Devoid of verbal communication that is unmonitored, pen and paper have served as my truest outlet for grief, fear and angst. Armed with toilet paper for intermittently copious tears, my motions experience and reflections are PaperMate poured. In this chapter of my life, I write.

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