Travel the Universe

Day 1 of 2019 Poetry Writing month (NaPoWriMo).  This is my third round of stamp-poems, using postage stamps as poetry prompts. This round is World Stamps.

First up is a stamp from my long time, dear friend Kala Lenn. Kala hatched the idea of using International Stamps.  Kala found this Cuban stamp stuck in the back of an antique dictionary. The dictionary was owned by a military captain. Imagine the places and things this captain saw on his travels. Enjoy the poem and plan a trip somewhere.

Cuban stamp from Kala


Travel the Universe

leaving a place
we take a bit with us
and leave a bit behind
packed in our suitcase
the memory of palm trees
so different than the oaks and maples of home
the impression of blue lagoons,
waves sliding into sand beaches,
beaches framing island time
slow and easy

like particles in constant exchange
travel informs our small mind
expands our one-person universe
challenges our assumptions
washes in ideas
exposes perfections and imperfections
of all places
generates gratefulness for our home
our tiny place in the whole


we change a place
moving the energy of money
around the world
touching the lives of others
so eager
and sometimes fearful
to meet a creature evolved
in a far-off land
as strange as a kangaroo
or pineapple or orchid.

We realize
as our planet shrinks
as ideas spread like viruses
as sameness invades
that we are all
an inky faded red
all shadows of other
all made of the same particles
all part of the collective mind
with oaks and palms trees
both swaying in the same prevailing winds
with waves ruled by the same moon

when we travel,
we travel the universe.


Here is a bonus poem because two poems came out of me this morning in response to this old Cuba stamp. I have not been to Cuba so only know if from news media, hearsay, one of “The Godfather” movies, and Wikipedia.  Still what I at least think I know of this storied place, might illustrate why we should not get so caught up in today’s drama but remember that everything eventually comes full circle.  I am not sure this poem is complete, so feel free to comment and add a few lines. If you’ve been Cuba, describe it for us. Here’s the poem:

island of many lives

once a playground for visitors,
business man seeking a place with fewer rules

then, the door slammed shut
political change
a place no one could go
an island in many ways

the gates now open
modernism seeping in

proving that time changes all
a swinging door
a pendulum back
and forth
the plane flies in
the planes flies out
like waves breaking on shore
and riding back out to sea

all mimics nature
cycles of the moon
cycles of good and greed
boom and bust


About createthedawn

Dawn’s calling is for her poetry to “light the gloomy corners of the world.” She writes custom poems life events important to you. Dawn also facilitates writing workshops both online and face-to-face, is a dynamic speaker on inspiration, innovation, change, and healing. Dawn believes in the power of poetry to process, to focus, to align, and to find our way to happiness and fulfillment. Thus, her business and her blog are called: create the dawn.
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