June 14, 2011

Conch Shell

Prompt from Word Gathering: write an etheree poem
Margo Roby defines the etheree as such: "The poem is ten lines. The first line has one syllable, the second has two, the third has three, and on until the tenth line which has ten."

Photo Prompt from Magpie Tales
out to pink
tinged with coral,
sanded in beachtones-
treasure chest of sea-sounds,
surf and sand sealed in its spire,
pearl of the deep, vessel cradling
Neptunian strains, bottled message,
each conch shell a beachcomber’s pandora.*

*Beyond the traditional meaning of "pandora," which refers to the mythological creature who opened the forbidden box of evil, it can also refer to a handsome fish that lives off the Mediterranean coast (Pagellus erythrinus), a mollusc (genus Pandora) the lives on sandy beaches, or a stringed musical instrument (from the word "bandore").


  1. How gorgeous! I love this. I thought I had seen you on my site before, but am glad you found me. I have exercises every Tuesday; thoughts on writing every Thursday; and a roundup of prompts and exercises from all around, on Fridays. I hope you will visit again. And, write more etherees!

  2. Thanks Margo! I certainly plan to frequent your site!

  3. Thank you for the information about the pandora, and the well constructed etheree.

  4. wonderful poem. As a longtime shell collector, I enjoyed both the words and the photo. :)

  5. Don't know about the form but loved the poem and the Pandora's 'shell' of imagination it holds.

  6. Lovely, lovely. Have to get over to Margo's site to try the etheree! Loved the pink spiraling to more pink, and thanks for the addendum concerning the pandora. All I know is this: Holding a conch or any shell to one's ear is to hear a bit of God's voice. Amy

  7. I like the way this builds up, just like the sound in a conch shell.

  8. Beautiful, like the shell it portrays. As Margo suggested in the prompt, your etheree gradually unfolds, to full effect.

    Yours also looks good, as your words are so carefully chosen that the line endings make a smooth line. Bravo.

  9. '...vessel cradling
    Neptunian strains,...'
    Nice piece, your words are beautiful!

  10. Perfectly structured poem,

    love the imagery.