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Occasionally our writers group pens what we call a “Round Robin.” It’s great fun, since none of us knows what literary masterpiece (or mess) will evolve from our blended imaginations. We each draw a number and wait for the writer who drew #1 to send us the first 300-400 words of a story. Then #2, in 300-400 words, takes the tale in any direction he or she wants. On to #3, and so on, until the poor schmuck who drew the last number gets to pull the whole thing together.

We decided to Round Robin a poem this year. Since we have only one poet, and one other who occasionally waxes poetic, this proved to be a challenge. Sherry, our poet and final contributor, not only brought the poem home but aptly titled it “Brilliant Madness.”


Brilliant Madness

Tires squeal on nearby pavement

Waking me from troubled dreams.

Wisps of distant memories linger

Memories always out of reach.

Is that you come back to haunt me,

Steal my soul, you ghostly leech?  (Liz)


You made me think you were hot stuff

Now a jam of slimy goo

Adonis standing in the buff

Oh, you’re such a pretty hue

Handsome form, but playing it rough

Laying there, a pile of blue

Shot in the heart should be enough

You’ll not get my daughter, too (Steve)


My daughter, the embodiment of love

Her goodness reaches the heights like a dove

Her spirit’s warmth will long endure

Your corruption fails against the pure

Darkness and evil emanate from you

But one sees her light filter through

Midnight spirit depart from here

You’ll find no hold on one we hold dear.

Light pierces the ethereal gloom (John)


Ancient weaponry unleashed

The most humble servant is the mightiest warrior

A simple tree, the sharpest sword

The fierce battle ensues

Love will never lose (Pat)


Forces dark and light to the death engage

Over pure spirit, weapons clash and creatures scream.

White walls surround her innocence, evil to enrage.

Despite black intent, she rests at peace in innocent dream

Awaiting pure love to find the key.

What sacrifice immortal will set her free? (Sue)


Immortal ghosts have been set free,

Masquerading as humans.

Swirling against

The full moon, as it glows against the ebony sky.

Tree branches with out-stretched arms,

Ready to snatch the girl

Who claims to be innocent of love?

Laying naked,

On the decomposing forest floor.

Her conscience floats between darkness and light.

Blood in her veins carries bad memories,

Violently pounding her soul.

Tires squeal on nearby pavement…

Jarring the dreams to shatter

Sprinkling glitter across the heavens. (Sherry)