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DOG WORD
by April Halprin Wayland

When I am very good,
She tells me
excellent.

When I sit crisply?  Excellent.
When I walk without pulling? Excellent.
When I don’t chase the cats?  Excellent.

Sometimes
excellent
is followed by a meaty bone.

Excellent
is definitely the most beautiful word
in the whole world.

GIRL WORD
by April Halprin Wayland

Every Wednesday,
Lara makes us do fifty sit-ups
with our knees in an L position,

fifty with our left leg in the air,
fifty with our right leg in the air.
and fifty with both legs straight up.

Every Wednesday Lara gaily chirps,
“20…30…40…50”
as we do another 50 and another and another

Every Wednesday her counting
rips into my stomach
with venomous fangs.

Finally Lara says,
“Done.  Done-done-done!”
in her sing-songy way.

Hear the harps
and the horns?
See the confetti spilling out of the sky?

Done.
the most beautiful word
I’ve ever heard.

Poetry Prompt:

My favorite part of a workout is when it’s over.  Sometimes the only thing that keeps me going at my gym class is repeating the following over and over in my head: “If Nelson Mandela could be in solitary confinement for 27 years, you can do this for 50 minutes.”  What a glorious word “done” can be!  It got me to thinking about favorite words.

Now it’s your turn.  This is a mask poem.  Become an animal or an object.  What would your favorite word be? 


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