Thursday, November 27, 2014

November DMC Wrap-Up + Giveaway

Theatrical release poster from 1940

Black Friday has never seemed blacker....

  The monsters are taking my soul their toll.

"Monsters Playing Poker" by OtisFrampton on DeviantART

Oh sure, they think it's all fun and games! But you try sleeping at night with monsters lurking in every corner of your cobwebbed mind.

"Webbed" © GillyFace Photos, all rights reserved (used by permission)

At the beginning of this month, Bob Raczka challenged us to write a haiku from the point of view of our favorite monster.  From autumn's bones to zombies, and everything in between, mysterious miscreants have been passing through like it was Monster Central Station.  Glad to finally deposit the grim passenger-load here.

Welcome, dear guests...  
to the land of the freaks  
          and the home of the depraved!

All poems are copyright 2014, published with permission of the authors, who control all rights.

labyrinth at dusk
as darkness falls, escape dims
minotaur awaits
               by Tabatha Yeatts

                                   hollow eyes, grave grin
                                   click, clatter, rattle—
                                   bony escapee
                                                  by Joyce Ray

                                                                                Black Cat at Night
                                                                                          by Donna JT Smith

                                                                                fall night of shadow
                                                                                chases black < cat > black chases
                                                                                shadow of night fall

monster’s a poet
recording his thoughts nightly
in the damp dungeon

monster catches cold
hai-hai-hai-ku! seventeen
syllables scatter.

          by Penny Parker Klostermann

                                                                                 Kraken Rises
                                                                                           by Michelle Heidenrich Barnes

                                                                                 snaking tentacles
                                                                                 seek out dinner – grab 'n' go
                                                                                 fishermen platter

A dance
          by Susannah Buhrman-Deever

A spider's bite plus
music's might will make you dance
a tarantella

                                                             big hairy spider
                                                             on the bathroom floor
                                                             ...I put on a boot
                                                                            by Diane Mayr

                                                                                                      I turn
                                                                                                      toward her whisssper -
                                                                                                                     by Robyn Hood Black

Unraveled Mummy
          by Jan Gars

Mummy unraveled!
Please tell daddy to bring some
Clean sheets and Xanax.

                                        something strange inside
                                        the dishwasher is groaning
                                        it's not the dishes.
                                                       by Catherine Johnson

                                                                                                  moonlit stroll past crypts
                                                                                                  and tombs where zombies gather–
                                                                                                  brain-free, you join them
                                                                                                                 by Buffy Silverman

Lying in Wait
          by Kristi Dee Veitenheimer

garish eyes glowing
figure lurking in shadows
preparing to leap

                                        by Jan Gars

                              Thump...Thump...Thump... ground quakes.
                              Frankenstein Monster lurking,
                              Castle walls crumble.

                                                                      Vampire Feeds
                                                                                by Jan Gars

                                                                      A vampire attcks.
                                                                      Blood streams as maiden bleeds.
                                                                      Could have had a V8.

                                                                                                              Dusk to Dawn
                                                                                                                        by Jan Gars

                                                                                                              Coffin opens...dusk
                                                                                                              Dracula feeds, virgin bleeds
                                                                                                              Coffin closes...dawn    

vampirish pirates
in Gaelic, Scots-Irish kilts
dressed to the hilt, aye

piraty vampires
in khaki green, ratty pants
dressed for the dance, bleh

              by Ken Slesarik

                                                Report Card Sets the Record Straight
                                                          by Mary Lee Hahn

                                                There's no monster here.
                                                Terrifying envelope?
                                                That's your problem, kid.

                                                                                                Me very hungry.
                                                                                                Me want cookie– Uhm nohm nuhm!
                                                                                                Crumbs everywhere. Oops.
                                                                                                               by Miranda Barnes (age 11)

Not Skin Deep
          by George Heidenrich

Trees in November
Shorn of all leafy beauty
Reveal their good bones.

          by George Heidenrich

Trees in November,
Scrawny zombies of springtime,
Sway slowly, waiting...

                                                           Blood Feast*
                                                                     by Carol Varsalona

                                                           Mealtime approaching.
                                                           Teeth brushed. Anticipation!
                                                           DRATS! Garlic Spoiler.

                                                           *check out Carol's menacing visual interpretation HERE

shivers end at midnight
grinning masks enter my dreams
no matter where they rest
               by Linda Baie
                                                                                            by Carol Wilcox

                                                                                  Green-eyed monster wraps
                                                                                  big furry hands round my heart
                                                                                  squishes joy spirit


Many thanks to Bob Raczka, a.k.a. Dr. Haikustein, for coming up with this spine-chilling challenge, and to everyone who contributed to my insomnia this month with such monstrous little ditties! 


Now I know some of you are anxious to get started on your holiday shopping...

Photo: H. Michael Karshis, Flickr Creative Commons

or eager to get stuck into those Thanksgiving leftovers...

The Munsters: Season 1, Episode 6 – Low Cal Munster (29 Oct. 1964)

but if you haven't yet sent me your monster-inspired haiku, 
there's still time!

You have until Sunday, November 30th, to send your haiku to TodaysLittleDitty (at) gmail (dot) com or use the contact form in the sidebar to the right.

Everyone who participates in this month's challenge will automatically be entered to win a personalized copy of Bob's delightful new haiku collection, Santa Clauses: Short Poems from the North Pole. (One entry per participant, not per poem.) How cool would that be? Think of the holiday gift-giving potential, folks!

Alternatively, you may earn an entry into the giveaway by commenting below.  If you contribute a poem and comment below you will earn two entries in total.  Comments must be received no later than Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014.

The winner will be determined by and announced next Friday, December 5th.  Good luck!

The Poetry Friday roundup is being hosted today at Carol's Corner.


  1. Monstrously clever haiku here! I need to give this a try- I was drooling over SANTA CLAUSES at Tattered Cover on Wednesday!

  2. Such a fun, scary little feast! I'm glad we have Miranda's Cookie Monster poem for dessert - tell her "Uhm nohm nuhm!" thanks.

  3. What a delightfully varied collection! I would have to say, Robyn's entry really nailed it! Simply creepy.

  4. What a fun collection! This book inspired me to write a haiku a day from Thanksgiving until New Year's. Thanks, Bob, for a great book and a fun challenge! (thanks to you, too, Michelle!!)

  5. I've loved Haiku since their discovery (by me anyway) in high school.

  6. I wanted to add - love this collection. I'm in the car so the iPad does weird stuff when I'm commenting and I got myself unable to continue writing in the first comment box.

  7. Absolutely loved this month's challenge! Can't wait to see what you have in store for us in December!

  8. This challenge was a lot of fun. I enjoyed reading The Santa Clauses. Thanks for all the fun poems.

  9. Wonderfully creepy collection--I especially love (your father's?) trees in November.

  10. A smart, spooky collection of haiku - masterfully showcased! =)

  11. What a fun collection! I love that groaning dishwasher, and the monsterless, but still terrifying, report card :-)

  12. Awesome collection...monstrously fun!

  13. Michelle, sorry I missed writing to you last week. I was in snowy Syracuse for Thanksgiving. Thank you for mentioning me in the monster-inspired haiku challenge. I am so excited that I have my very own copy of Santa Clauses that I purchased at NCTE where I met in person some of our Poetry Friday friends.