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Four April centos: No. 3

My third cento may be titled “Bad sad mad” but that doesn’t mean these 24 closing thoughts of the month are any worse than the rest. They simply gravitated together to create something that we all need to purge from time to time.

When April was over and done, your poems didn’t leave me alone. So I gathered the final lines of all 96 last April poems as posted on the official NaPoWriMo website on Day 30 and rearranged them into four centos.

After the first two centos that were teeming with positivity (the links are at the end of the post), here are some last April lines that didn’t sound all that cheerful. The poets might not have planned it and their poems might otherwise be quite happy, but I thought to combine these 24 poem endings into a following dramatic sequence.

The links under the cento lead to all included poems. Twenty-nine poems remain for the last cento that will come next week.

I had to insert some punctuation where there was none but – as always – no word has been changed or added.

Thank you, poets. Your words live on.

Bad sad mad 

Oh no! Oh no!
Retirement’s not for me!1
My head is a computer turned off
completely empty, waiting for
I swear to God I’m past my limit
One pic on Snapchat…
drop him in it…3
Phone texts for eyes
younger than mine
still adjusting to digital.4
I can’t help but groan aloud
How can I forget the strain?5

The dirt is folded in the creases
of my palms, like a road map home.6
Desert, a wasteland 
created by 
Queueing forever.
Just for dart.


“In a world where you can be anything,   
be strong, be self-sufficient, not kind.10 
And you accept that the world didn't crash
when you decided that it did
the only way to live with yourself.11
I’ll tell you a secret, but it may be a lie:
this torch I’ve got?
I’m carrying it for someone else.”12

Her smile drained me, 
leaving me with a pool of tears.13

I’m so frustrated looking for you.14
Will you free me?
Will you pull me through?
I’m not sure.15
You seem nearer 
and more with me in death16
and the zeal is waning 
from hunger17
and murdered women

In the evening I can’t sleep and gives me a fright
No from me.19
Other than that
I’ll see you in hell 
and that is what you mean to me.20 

Out loud, I say “Au revoir. Hope you are well.”21
              Give me a minute
to float, and I’ll be ready.22
I’ll admit I got carried away.
Consider this my apology.
Peace to your ♥s! Stephanie23

(I wrapped it up with general positivity
and didn’t even mention even once the shit)24 
  1. Laura McGinnis: Shanty – Palinode
  2. Milly Stale: Palinode of Book Covers
  3. Montaffera: Retraction
  4. Ken Gierke: More or Less About Time
  5. Dawn D: Limping Along
  6. Sidney Jones Jr: Retraction
  7. Roger Walker: #30
  8. Anna Enbom: Internal palinode
  9. El Desdichado (Bob): Ecclesia
  10. Ipsita Banerjee: To Ipsy, sometime later.
  11. Yugantika (LIFE): On the love, you rue
  12. 7eyedwonder (Nora). Day 30 poem has expired but read Nora’s intriguing Day 8 poem.
  13. Ally L. Mare: Day 30
  14. A. Chakir (The Dreaming Path): Where are you now?
  15. Kapat Kapayas (BLACKWELL SHIVERING GLASS): And say we did
  16. Syl Fluff: The Night – Your Love (Syl was the first to complain about the copyrights. Serves me right to wish to incorporate everybody. Next time I stick to my people.) This line: ©Syl2022-2025
  17. Maria L. Berg: Defining Zealousness
  18. Christine Smart: Grief
  19. Ladyleemanila: My Palinode – No from me
  20. Timothy Brien: At One Time
  21. Carol Jackson: Taking Back What I Haven’t Said
  22. Sidra Elvey: Floating
  23. Stephanie Malley: Fairy Tale Mail
  24. Ruth Berkoff: What Really Happened at the River
Closer is not necessarily bad. A rear view from Rome.

Four April centos:

Three previous NaPoWriMo centos:

Published by Manja Maksimovič

A Slovenian in Italy for love. Blogger, photographer, translator and would-be writer who would be a writer if she wrote. Plus reluctant but emerging poet. Beware.

28 thoughts on “Four April centos: No. 3

      1. People are crazy. Seriously. They are so self-important and self-centered. I’m indignant for your sake. You are giving credit; that should be more than enough.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. There is something like cento. You are the first to complain. I’ve been called generous for doing this, keeping the April spirit alive, notifying everyone about it. Not sure how to go about it now. I suppose you don’t approve that I link to you.


  1. I love the way you create new rhyme from your mixing and matching in “not for me” and “empty” and “apathy.” And I like the movement in that piece from the technological imagery in the first stanza to the dirt and the desert, which feels like the very opposite.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Alana! I did try to combine the sounds well too, not just the meaning, so that it has a good flow. There are opposites, but connections as well. We must fight desertification on all fronts.


  2. So glad to see your new cento, dear Manja! You truly do justice to all our NaPoWriMo efforts. Positive, negative—doesn’t matter. The words carry their own truths. Thank you for doing this—you’re amazing.💜🙏🍃

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so glad you approve, Romana. I’ve had such lovely feedback – and one complaint over copyrights. I know that I should have asked for permission beforehand but there were almost 100 people to ask. The last cento is coming tomorrow. I should stick to like-minded people and dead poets.


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