Learned the hard way

Black and white image from the mid 70’s of a girl in shorts and sleeveless top tossing a baton in the air
Black and white image from the mid 70’s of a girl in shorts and sleeveless top tossing a baton in the air
Image of the author from the mid-1970’s from the Jacobs family archives

How do you teach stability
To someone who knows
They will move again soon

How do you teach self-acceptance
When someone never felt
Accepted in any environment

How do you teach safety
To someone who was spanked
Clear up until college

How do you teach self-worth
To someone taught all their years
That they didn’t matter

How do you teach anyone sanity
When they were raised in
An insane manner

You teach stability by ensuring
That their life, their home
Isn’t just where they live

You teach self-acceptance by reminding
Yourself that you are loved
For who you are, warts and…


rope tied to a cleat on cement
rope tied to a cleat on cement
Image by Bruce Jacobs

Sliding down into the dark
Alone, afraid, apart
Wondering if there is a bottom
Wondering how to get out
As I slide ledges appear
Out of the dark
Places to grab onto
If I could only move
Slowly I will myself
To reach out, grab a loop
Trying to hold on
Trying not to fall further
I swing my body along the side
I find a ledge, a resting place
Taking a risk
I grab on
Climb up
Stand up
The ledge is firm
I am falling no longer
The darkness shies away
Letting light onto my ledge
I call out for help
A rope appears
The light shows ledges above me
I slowly climb from ledge to ledge
Holding onto the safety of the…


Image by the author

Love flies from one to another
Sometimes expressed in words
Other times in looks and actions
Letters, packages, hugs, smiles

The warmth that comes from
Knowing you are safe
Warms the heart, the soul
Relaxes the body, clears the mind

No matter how it is expressed
The feeling of being loved
Is a wonder to the lonely heart
Balm to those long away

Loving others — just as brilliant
Sharing your heart
Helping others bloom
Sitting quietly together

Without love, life becomes
A burden unshareable
A weight you can’t shake
Until that love comes back

My wish for you today…


Image of a Hawaiian sunset
Image of a Hawaiian sunset
Hawaiian sunset picture by Bruce Jacobs, used with permission ❤

Inspired by Aeishwarya’s great prompt “Head”


Photo by Jan Tinneberg on Unsplash

It is with a heavy heart that we announce the closing of the One Line Poem Project and Chalkboard itself.

When we started the One Line Poem Project here on Chalkboard back in December of 2016, we saw it as a chance to give some visibility to short form poetry. Since then, we have published over 225 prompts. While it is difficult to know exactly how many poems were published over the life of the One Line Poem Project, we estimate that the number is somewhere between 25,000 and 50,000 poems. Close to 300 different writers have had their work published. We currently have over 9,000 followers for Chalkboard. By any metric, this project is a success.

Chalkboard itself has…


One Line Poem Prompt for May 19, 2021

Black Curtains with rainbow colored paint effect. In front of the curtains, a light and an easy chair
Black Curtains with rainbow colored paint effect. In front of the curtains, a light and an easy chair
Image of the window in my office — taken by the author

Curtains open in the day to let in the light
Curtains closed at night to keep out the fright
Beauty surrounding me, day and night

Your Turn

THEME: Curtains

Share your own one-line poem on the theme as a response to this post or write a stand-alone piece if you prefer. Tag your piece “One Line”. If you have a stand-alone poem, be sure to leave a link in the response section below.

Want to get notified about the weekly prompts? Complete this form.

Have a question about the One Line project? Read our submission rules!


Celebrating Mother’s Day, togetherness, survival

Mom beams, such a gorgeous site
First time in years, her four boys home
I’m the plus one, the only other female
Sitting near us both the grown grandchild
I long for the day ours can be here too

We all sit chatting
Sometimes in the same room
Sometimes in different rooms
Laughing frequently, four conversations at once
Family puns thrown from one room to another
As they try to listen to each other

One wanders into the den
Where a second is watching soccer
Talking about how the game has gone
Later in the day, all will end up there
Watching Rooster Cogburn…


All that is left of the 200+ collectible demitasse spoons I collected as a kid — Image by the author

Kathy Jacobs

💚POMpoet💚 Former software tester, still breaking things. Social Media geek. Former OneNote MVP. Phoenix Mercury fan. Green Bay Packer fan.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store