Category Archives: Nonet





Written for: What do you See? Challenge prompt – Photo above


Obsolete  (Nonet Poetry form)

forgotten, bare of accessories
frozen solid telephone booth
creaking in the winter wind
yearning intonation
passionate whispers
singsong accents
joyful noise
deep voice

©Hélène Vaillant

When I was a little girl playing with friends, we would strip clean two empty cans. With a long string of rope, we’d move the hollow cans away from each other as far as the rope would go. This was our walkie-talkies. Surely you have heard of walkie talkies?

At my house, a huge black telephone rested on a table in the hallway. A fat wire from the telephone reached into the wall. This telephone was for adults. If ever I picked up the handle from its cradle I could hear voices in there. Mom said we had a party line. Surely you have heard of a party line?

You needed to know your numbers if you were going to use an adult telephone. It was difficult to get it right the first time. My finger would slip out of the rotary thingie or it got stuck in it. I’d get a wrong number.

Teenagers need privacy right? I would take the black telephone into the hall closet, close the door behind me. ( the wire kept a slight opening at the door – without a doubt, an older brother was listening on the other side of the door)

At the convent, I loved the pay telephone booths. I could call my boyfriend in total privacy. Today I believe that the nuns had a system to listen in on those calls.

Fast forward…. are our calls ever private?