Life in Poetry reading, writing, reflecting

Life in Poetry reading, writing, reflecting
April showers bring May flowers

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

⌗AtoZ challenge, April 23rd 2019, Letter T

Here is my contribution to the A to Z Challenge of April 2019.
This is the first time I am participating in this challenge, so we'll see if I have the stamina to       complete the whole month ! Nearly there !

I was also, very ambitiously, writing for the April NaNoWriMo ! So the challenge was twofold !! But I'm behind in the NaNoWrite, 1500 words out of 10 000 because I'm concentrating on research   and building bridges with my contacts.

Hang on to your horse and enjoy the ride. And good luck to all my fellow participants.


If you would like to know more about the A to Z Challenge or maybe even join in the Future (next year, sign-ups in March 2020)   go here

A special thanks to Arlee Bird for his post as host today and his contributions to the challenge over the years. My special thanks to Arlee for being one of my first followers on my Blogger (blog) back in 2013.

A word from Arlee Bird :

 If you're looking for someone to thank for this year's Challenge then don't be heaping any praise on me.   Maybe I seem to have been a bit withdrawn from the A to Z this time around and to a great extent I have.  If it weren't for the A to Z team this year this Challenge might not have gotten off the ground with the success we have seen thus far.

        Over the past couple of years we have downsized the A to Z Team from what it had been in the past and it's worked pretty well in my opinion.  We've had some outstanding A to Z Team members in the past and this year we've had one of the tightest most efficient teams yet. They're all Challenge veterans who've gotten the routine down to a science.

         So my most expansive thank you to our team captain J Lenni Dorner who with great competency took the reins of this 10th annual Challenge as I've dealt with some distracting personal matters.  J, you're the best and hope you'll stick with us in the coming years.  Also, my thanks to Jayden R Vincente who has done a fantastic job setting up the sign-up lists and maintaining them.   Another big thank you goes to John Holton who has provided technical assistance to make things run better as well as his continual efforts to promote A to Z.  And finally there is Zalka Csenge Virág who has been a key A to Z Team member since 2015 and provided valuable promotional support for the Challenge.

          I hope everyone who reads this post will take the time to visit the blogs of each of these members to say thank you.  I'm sure they'd appreciate that.

        Thank you Team 2019!



My contribution today (Susan)

I'd like to add my thanks to Tarkabarka Högly for contributing to this year's challenge with some very pertinent and useful posts as host.


T is for Trunk


The Elephants










They seek the shallows of a pool,



that shimmers, an oasis of greenery,



far, far, where the drought ends;



where mud meets the haze in the sky.





The long line of hooves beat




the ground, a hundred drums




to boo the sun.The matriarch




halts with a trumpet






to let the babes catch up.




The dust grows darker, settles.




Sharp paws dig into the slickest




patch.Trunks grab a sapling,






break a branch to hatch




a trickle of moisture.




A dark shrub has sunk






its roots deep down




and blooms food.




Humphing mouths






grope at the twine, munch




a coiled rope, sap,




into a nourishing paste.




Jaws grind in a circle.






Further along, the mud




gives up a pool.




Trunks suck and spray.






Backs tumble into the cool




water. The elephants fill the air




with grunts.


©susanbauryrouchard


I wrote this Poem in 2013. Then I edited it and workshopped it with my tutor of three years Tamar Yoseloff. At the moment, this poem is being considered as part of a pamphlet entry  for the Cinnamon Press competition of March 2019 : 15 to 25 poems of up to 50 lines each. Published or unpublished work as long as the copyright is preserved. As everything I post on this blog, this poem is copyrighted©susanbauryrouchard  and I have the manuscripts to prove it ! Everything that goes onto these pages and everything I send off in the hope of publishing,  I wrote longhand with my fountain pen in my notebooks (dating back to when I was about 9).


WWF calendar 2016. Been a member since 1997. A volunteer since 2007.
Also have just started as a volunteer with UNICEF France, giving talks to children in schools. 

I first saw elephants in the Wild in 1989, in Waza park Cameroon. The same year in Kenyan National parks and in Rwanda. In 2005 I saw them in South Africa in the Pilanesberg Park (West of Johannesburg, on the border with Botswana).

Pilanesberg Park  go here

A book that I read in 2009 about the difficult survival of Elephants in Africa.
The White Bone by Barbara Gowdy  go here

White Hunter, Black Heart, a film (1990) by and with Clint Eastwood. Trailer go here
An interview with Clint Eastwood about the film, novel and John Huston  go here  

WAZA, North Cameroon, 31/12/88

WAZA, elephants at the water hole.
Camp in the Wild, Frontier with Nigeria. The car broke down. 1/1/89

Our Gang, Dent de Mindif, near Garoua.

Postcard, Masaï Mara, Kenya. I have no photos. One night an elephant irrupted into our camp looking for food and attacked the metal canteen/trunk. Our guides raised the alarm and we all took refuge in the jeeps. The elephant couldn't open the canteen and went crazy so stomped all over the tents. We spent the rest of the night in the jeeps.


Pride of Lions, Rwanda, January 1989.

Lake Kivu, Rwanda, January 1989

Pilanesberg, South Africa, October 2005.
The children, Pretoria, October 2005.

Thank you for reading. Please feel free to comment, discuss. I will be sure to reply and visit your blog. See you tomorrow for 'U' Day.
Still windy in Toulouse. The laundry can't go outside to dry otherwise it will be covered in sand !




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