James, a retired professor and octogenarian, is the author of 3 poetry collections, "The Silent Pond” (2012), “Ancient Rhythms” (2014), and “LIGHT” (2016), and over 880 poems. His poems have been nominated for pushcart and best of web awards, and were published in The 100 Best Poems of 2015 & 2014 Anthologies. He earned his BS and MA from California Polytechnic University and his doctorate from BYU. His books are available on Amazon, and Barnes and Noble.
When there is no longer the
anticipation of time, I will try to
remember a beautiful smile,
clouds, flowers, mountains, and
red berries that gleamed from the
sun’s rays, and shadows and
silhouettes of golden goblets
filled with memories sitting on a mantle.
I will try to remember faces that
now stare from graves into
ubiquitous rooms of forgotten
thoughts in my mind surrounded
by sentiments that were dropped
through slots in doors with broken
locks leading to hidden visions.
When the wind is filled with the
shadows of rusted bones circling
bronze epilates scattered among
the realities of existence touching
weariness loaded with collapsed
hours, I will sit in a stone chair
laden with incongruities and etch
faux images of the past on wood
When I cross the dark boundary
of authenticity and enter a room
of pulsating sounds of lamenting
monks chanting though the
rubble of lost years and broken
echoes, and hear a cacophony of
broken chords consisting of
reedless saxophones and gutless
guitars playing a discordant
refrain of jazz in a bar in Chicago
along side a skinny chanteuse
with a constricted windpipe, I will
sing a sad song.
when the rusted
hours are weary of my presence,
and I sit on the edge of classical
ruins next to the bones of a
Native American clinging to the
warmth of the setting sun, I will
hear the voice of the owl calling
my name and sense the calm
scent of death offering a release
from the strain of the last winter
of my life.
All Your Fading Memories
Before you are unable to do so,
Visit the place where your early
Impressions were formed when
You were but a small child: Listen
Again to the squawking of
Haughty Blue Jays, the strident
Cooing of Doves, and the rat a tat
Tapping and frenetic chatter of
Woodpeckers high In Oak trees.
Put your toes in the lazily flowing
Translucent rill, and eavesdrop
On frogs with their basso
Grumbling voices croaking In the
Reeds. Watch hawks soaring in
The sky high above your head,
And take note of their haunting
Trilling as they dip up and down
In the currents of the wind.
Watch Huge luminous louds scudding
Over the mountains in the
Distance, forming mysterious
Statues in the sky for only you to
See. Smell the beautiful aromatic
Scent of wild flowers wafting in
The breeze, and notice their
Colorful summer coats, which
They display with such merited
Vanity. Then in the dwindling
Hours of the balmy day, lean
Against the trunk of a Pine tree,
Close your eyes and listen to the
Silence, and remember all your
Beautiful fading memories.
Outside On A Summer Night
The golden moon is full tonight as secret
revelations bounce against the ebony
edges of its craters, and into my being.
The atmosphere is balmy and clear a
soft calmness prevails. Distant stars
appear close enough to touch; thin pink
clouds close enough to taste. I bend to
the breeze lazily ambling down an old
road filled with furrows, and ruts begging
for smoothness. The moon’s rays
encircle Oak trees lining the old road
like golden spider webs, leaving gold
tinted leaves that glisten with childhood
memories. The night is calm, and my
cares and worries vanish into summer’s
warm ebony Hours.
The Gift Of Another Day
And…what is a metaphor without golden
wings that reach into lonely souls, or
without a fundamental definition of that
which cannot be, but is, or without
splinters of stars with gleaming voices
piercing our minds in the shattered
darkness of night?
And…what is a poem without limbs that
reach far into the unstressed iambic sky
causing rhyming feet
to walk along heaven’s edge?
When seasons come and go, and the
sun has risen, and set a thousand times,
when the owl has called my name in the
darkness of the late night, far too often,
and when dreams should be forming as
I attempt to sleep, I become aware that
the threads that wove my tenuous life
together are becoming, unraveled.
My poetic thoughts are becoming brittle
like my aging bones, my words, like my
weary flesh, are becoming ashen and
worn. I become aware that my poet’s
inky voice etched on canvass as white
as snow can only enter minds when the
grumbling gate to their soul Is opened:
Only then can my weakening mists of
words be accepted into their memories,
and reach into the spirit of their soul.
Future dreams flutter in the winds of
time like abandoned dry leaves in the
miasma of the last fading moments of
reality, slowly becoming unreachable, as
are the trails in the woods, which were
so dear to me, trails I used to walk upon
when I was young, during the early
morning hours of an apricot colored
My years have fallen like bits of burnt
wood into a fast flowing river and have
been washed downstream to be judged
by raucous crows filling the black void of
life with cawing. I listen to doves cooing
in the barren trees on the side of the
dusty battered road that begs for
smoothness, and try to fight back
against the phantom that tries to paint
my breath with the corrosive color of
In the wee hours of the vivid composite
colored morning, I hear the bells of a
church pealing far in the distance, and
listen to the final eerie wailing of a
coyote crossing the lea in a haughty
symbolic trot. I watch the moon outside
my window sending down beams that
pray for rain to quench the thirst of the
dry granite hard earth and wonder how
they will dig my grave in such hard
My long lost memories spin across my
mind like white crested waves in an
angry obscure ocean, creating a
colorless collage of feelings that cover the threshold between life and death, between grief and Joy, leaving icy thoughts echoing In my fading mind, and pain Increasing in my eroding body.
But… then in the breathless yawn of
daybreak, as I awake from my dark
somnambulant hours, I am stirred by the
day’s beautiful poetic pulse that shatters
the overwhelming darkness in my soul,
and paints an orange hue on the hills
and, the meadow below. It is then that I
realize that I have been given the gift of
another day of life… and sigh in
On A Beach
An elderly man and
woman sitting in the sand
and bright sun under an
umbrella, slowly sway from
side to side with the
summer breeze, like pale
ecru pieces of paper
Only old memories appear
in their thoughts: The
present has little time to
form new ones.
The man reaches for the
woman’s hand, fingers
clasp together, like old
leather intertwining with
silken strands. She smiles
and her eyes like burnt
umber glisten, he gently
touches her face and
The oceans waves rumble
onto the sand with a
thunderous roar, but they
only hear the whisperings
of their hearts.
Time is fading; the past in
a space where hours rust,
where memories hoard
precious vanishing years,
becomes the presence.
They sit in serenity and
silence as the waves come
and go, and precious time
fades into the scarlet hued
Blanca Alicia Garza is from Las Vegas, Nevada. She is a nature and animal lover, and enjoys spending time writing. Some of her poems are published in the new Poetry Anthology, "Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze", now available at Amazon.com. Other published work can be viewed at: www.thepoetcommunity.com,www.whispersinthewind333blogspot.com,www.winamop.com, http://www.indianavoicejournal.com, http://tuckmagazine.com
Thorns into Flowers
Reborn from within,
turning thorns into flowers
your darkness into light;
healing a bleeding soul.
Leaving sorrows behind,
smoldering in the fire
Try to forgive others,
but never forget the lessons,
or wounds that are imprinted
upon those desires.
Until your essence is ignited
and flies into oblivion.
For love is the only thing
worthy of this replete life.
Staring at the ceiling in my bedroom,
feeling a lump in my throat,
memories running down my cheeks
hurting me deep inside.
It's three A.M. and sleep I cannot...
missing you is tearing my heart apart.
In the darkness of my room
the silence is deafening.
I can hear the tick and the talk of
the clock whispering your name.
Time is sometimes cruel I say...
too short for those who are together...
too long for those who are far away.
My beautiful lady with Autumn skin,
do not be ashamed
of the marks that time left upon you.
Look into the mirror.
You're still beautiful...
You're still fire...
burning with intense desire.
Your body once was Spring,
then Summer, now it's Fall.
But there's still passion
in your soul and body.
Your skin still gets
goosebumps when touched.
Look into the mirror once more,
you're fire... you're desire.
My beautiful lady with Autumn Skin.
(Initially published in The Birdsong Anthology)
Hold My Hand
I could stay in the most dark and coldest corner of your soul... I'm not afraid of your darkness.
I would break my heart into a thousand pieces... just to write you a poem with every one.
I could remain in silence for awhile... just to hear the sweet melody of your heartbeat.
I will walk with you in the fiercest storm... if you promise to hold my hand tightly.
I've danced with a demon
flames flickering upon my entire being
burned pieces of my heart
now scattered on the floor
I picked up the embers one by one
and put them back where they belong
I wiped my tears and shook off the ashes
I'm ready to dance once more
but this time he will have to dance
to the music inside my soul
under this beautiful full moon
I'll hold him a bit tighter
and show his heart unconditional love.
P.T. Stone (@ptstoneofficial) is a senior English major at Clemson University. His work has appeared in The Moth, The Chronicle, andPoetry Quarterly. He runs two blogs, The Near and Far (thenearandfar.wordpress.com) and A Book of One's Own (bookofonesown.wordpress.com). He is also a blogger and reader for Spry Literary Magazine.
Fathers and sons
I was thirteen, never seen one before.
Her hair was matted but she was pretty,
had makeup on. Her ankles were propped up
on coke cans and her legs were spread
like she was about to have a baby or somethin.
Policeman told my daddy I might be scarred
from seein a crime scene but if anything it would
make me more of a man. Daddy laughed at that,
he told his huntin buddies by the creek about it
when we went out lookin for ducks.
My guidance counselor asked me about it
for two weeks—my best friend Red said
it fucked me up—“Just ain’t no way it don’t,
somethin like that.” Now, the dark brown color
of the stones in the sidewalk outside the hospital
reminds me, I was in love with Miss Kieffer.
Her titties were round and her hair was matted
but she was pretty, always had makeup on.
At my graduation, my daddy wouldn’t hug me
in front of granddaddy. He just shook my hand
real hard and beat me on the back. The slidin
doors at the hospital reminds me, when we did
the electric slide at the graduation party my daddy
said “Stop bein so goddamn prissy, boy” and I
sat down for the rest of the night next to my momma,
thankin everybody for comin out.
My wife’s sister comes outside to get me, says
“It’s done, come in” I do and doctor says “It’s a boy;
you’re the father of a baby boy.” I looked down
at his little naked head and I said “Hey son, I’m your
daddy.” He cried so I gave him back to his momma.
Save me, momma
I was ten. Daddy was sittin
in his recliner, packin more
chew’n tobacco into is mouth.
He asked me if I wanted to try it,
he said it’s what men do. And I
knew momma didn’t want me to
but I did it anyway. Tasted like shit.
Next day, it was the weekend. And
daddy taught me how to shoot a gun. I
knew momma didn’t want me to
but I did it anyway. Bruised my
shoulder from the kickback.
He asked me if I had a girlfriend yet,
told me I better not be a little faggot. I
knew momma didn’t want me to have
one, not till I was sixteen but I got one
anyway. His name was Logan, we kissed
on the fourwheeler. When daddy caught us,
he wore my tail out for bein a little faggot.
the dirt sestina
when my eyes winked open
i was outside and the sun
beat down like my daddy
and i felt his fist but i couldn’t
run this time on account’a my legs
wouldn’t move. there was dirt
in my hair and there was dirt
in my shoes. it crunched. and i saw an open
diner far away. my hand hurt. then my legs
finally wobbled me up while the sun
still made the cicadas scream. i couldn’t
keep my eyes open it was s’bright. daddy
was long gone now. you never think yer daddy’s
gone leave you some place, beat up an’ in the dirt,
left to dry like dust. but then he does. see, i couldn’t
stand to see him beat up on momma. right in the open.
for everybody t’see. “it ain’t right. it just is. buck up, son.”
he said. and that last time i thought if i got ‘im by the legs
then he’d be down and i could—but he wasn’t. nope. his legs
didn’t waver. his eyes were like guns. wasn’t ev’n scared. so my daddy
on account’a teachin me a lesson broke my hand. he beat me till the sun
went down and hoped i’d cry one more tear so maybe he could dirty
up my face too. then, about a hour when i knew he’d passed out, i opened
my window and i just started runnin’. runnin’ and runnin’ away til i couldn’t
see the light on the front porch n’more. now, i couldn’t
even tell ya whether i saw him come after me. my legs
sure as hell could—he did. an’ he let it go on me like a op’n
pair a’scissors (on account’a his belt’s got studs). y’see my daddy,
he just loves too hard. i saw ‘im cry one time. said it was dirt
in ‘is eye, but i knew. he loves us. he loves us like the sun
loves skin. a’course, problem is the sun
is real complicated. y’know, it couldn’t
just outright burn u like dirt
just outright makes ur legs
need washin’, no. daddy
just—well, i deserved it. “a pen
don’t write ‘less you make it.” the sun was burnin’ the scars on my leg but
i couldn’t help but smile when i looked up an’ saw daddy comin’ up the road,
dirt flarin’ up behind the truck. he open’d the door an’ he spit tobacco on me.
SAMSON RAITI MTAMBA Is a Zimbabwean poet of Malawian extraction (b. Harare, Zimbabwe, 1959).He has published both poetry and prose in Australia, in the United States of America, Germany, Ireland, and South Africa among other places. He has been practising the art of poetry since primary school. He studied at the University of Malawi, Chancellor College and was active in its Writers’ Workshop ending up editing the English Department Critical Broadsheet THE MUSE from undergraduate years to postgraduate. Briefly at Dalhousie in Nova Scotia. New Left. Interested in Poststructuralist Theories and Children’s Literature. Taught in Zimbabwean high schools and the Zimbabwe Open University (ZOU). Now independent researcher into the writings of J.M.Coetzee and Ayi Kwei Armah.
CURRENT: “DISABILITY, DEFORMITY AND DISFIGUREMENT IN CHILDREN’S LITERATURE: THE CASE OF BEN HANSON’S Takadini AND CLAUDE MAREDZA’S Harurwa”, JOURNAL OF AFRICAN CHILDTEN’S LITERATURE VOL 1 No.2, February 2013
WE LEARNT OF NOTHING BUT DEATH
AND THE THINGS OF DEATH
We learnt of nothing but death and the things of death:
We laughed with pure joy
Walking with pure laughter glinting from our teeth
Kissing with all the affection we could muster
Imagining that we flew bouncing like sprightly birds
Borne on the hardy wings of youth
Springing from each other’s breaths and heartbeats
While the others, bemused, stared
As the trees sang for us
The wind wiping our sweat-drenched faces
In the afternoon sun.
We learnt of nothing but death and the things of death:
We loved ardently.
We walked arm in arm in the streets of Harare
Doing what we thought most natural
Preferring the sweet orange to the bitter lemon
Avoiding pain and things of pain
Avoiding hate and hugging only what was beautiful
(No more and no less)
Buying only what was for sale
And repenting our losses
With the dew of somnolent amnesia.
But of life, alas, we learnt nothing surely
And for this, we are condemned to die young
Demented, destitute and sick-
Morons and ragtag yokels
Consigned to a cruel master,
For living and loving most naturally, most genuinely.
IF YOU CAME BACK TODAY
If you came back today
I would not greet you the way silver swallows
Weave their way in the sea of the sky
To celebrate the first rains
If you came back today
I would say that I was in the throes of sleep
And that you were the creature of a nightmare
Welcome only because inevitable
Though inauspicious and menacing to my world
I would not know
The meaning of your smiles
Nor recognize the inflexions of your speech
As in the past warming up
To every syllable of your words
The way heat is registered by metal
Or the lusty touch of the rain by the thirsty lips of the parched earth.
I would not know
Whether to be happy or surprised
In this speechless limbo
Pregnant with weighty questions
About departures without farewells
Returns without eagerly-hoped for arrivals
Or warm welcoming rituals...
If you came today
I would say that you were a dream
A gift from the gods
Which no one expects
Or can refuse
For whether a joke or serious sign
Just or unjust
Who but the gods themselves
Would know or say?
If you came back today
I would not speak
Or dare blink an eyelid
Fearing to see the lie of your truth
Or the truth of the lie
Before my bemused presence.
Matthew Wilson has had over a hundred and fifty appearances in such places as Zimbell House Publishing, Horror Zine, Star*Line, pellbound, Alban Lake and many more. He is currently editing his first novel and can be contacted on twitter @twitter94544267.
"Drunk on Summer Fruit"
I do not think I would like to live so long
I am not so selfish as to dance when the music’s stop
Nor linger when the fruit of summer time has rotten
I would not like to see my loved ones wilt and drop.
Time is a surprising gift I do not feel I deserve
Though there is time for dances in the sun
The chance to kiss a girl and have some fun
Before the winter comes and the joy is done.
No I do not like to think of greying hair and worse
The pains of wrinkled hands that did much labor
That lost their joy and beat their wife and child
That mislaid the love of life and found no favor.
Too many days would take the gleam off the few
Familiarity and boredom are things worth than death
When I could fit in so much living in just one summer
Still young enough to enjoy its beauty with each breath.
"Perils of Prometheus"
Aphrodite has poisoned her husband’s wine
She has set his guards upon my scent
This little fool who thought she loved
Running for his life from heaven sent.
I have taken shelter from the storm
Cowering in the cold of a mossy cave
Planning my next step to save my neck
To save me from stupidity and waiting grave.
I know that history pages shall forget me
The briefly living think I had no start
No chance of escape from Aphrodite’s hate
The queen of beauty who removed my heart.
I will save my fragile kind from her cruelty
I will leave the gift that sealed my doom
The fire that once belonged to Gods alone
I give it man to walk safe beneath the moon.
“Memories Not Owned By Time”
Time cannot have my possessions
I will snatch them all from its stream
My heart should be their place of detention
Like a miser hoarding the gold of his dream.
Time and tide devour the good of men’s keeping
Memories of dead friends gone to God’s garden
Sneaking in like thieves when men lie sleeping
Stolen moments to make the widows heart harden.
I will walk the world to reclaim every crayon sketch
An image of days before that shall never read again
Penned by my children who would throw and fetch
Now sleeping beneath winters ground in freezing rain.
In time that time and tide I despise shall claim me
I too shall go and play when my great work is done
But first I hold memories of dead loved ones inside me
Before I go to God’s garden and play in that beautiful sun.
Parker L. Dubuque is a student at Bryant University where he studies Finance and International Affairs. The opportunity to be published in any journals or sources has somehow alluded him thus far in his very brief poetry career. Parker is an avid reader and even has a card to his town library. Simply put, Parker is funny, smart, handsome, etc. It may appear to the readers he symbolizes utmost perfection, but ultimately kiwi fruit devastates his existence, as it gives him a bad case of hives.
See Spot Run
Spot and the chronicles relating to his past have been extensively documented.
Over the years, the seemingly happy-go-lucky canine is pictured throughout various locations.
Depictions from numerous sketch artists show the dog in motion, ranging from a green meadow soaked perfectly by Mother Nature’s touch to beaches speckled with the flakes of green bottles shaped by rugged nature of the sea.
The years have piled up like the dirt from Spot’s countless number of holes in the backyard.
Spot has only focused on one sole task: running.
Not even the rummaging from the neighborhood raccoons every Thursday night when the trash was taken to the curb was enough to deter the hound.
It has become his daily routine, his obsession, running had become Spot.
However, the question remains…why?
Rumor has it, the dog got involved with the wrong gang of Chihuahuas.
Leaving behind his stable life filled with vigorous tummy rubs and hefty servings of vegetables snuck underneath the dining table.
Instead, for a life riddled with tequila and lines of coke.
But when the time came for a “favor,” Spot was nowhere to be found.
Even with brains smaller than a peanut, the Chihuahua composed cartel does not forget those who have wronged them.
Word on the street has it that emotions got the best of Spot down at the track.
Given some insider information, his buddy assured him this new greyhound was a sure thing.
Ignoring the insurmountable odds he listened.
Selling all his buried bones and chew toys, Spot invested his life into that race.
With eyes symbolizing pure terror, Spot can only hope.
Hope that one day he will not turn to discover his bookie acting as Spot’s shadow.
“Unpredictable, unstable, and unruly”
These were just some of the words those close to Spot used to paint the subject’s image.
Stories of the dog were gossiped throughout the neighborhood, creating a snowball of devious antics.
Spot’s legend quickly grew, as his story was told to wide-eyed campers the flickering flames mirrored off their face.
With a portrait illuminated by the cliché essence of a flashlight, the nation of dorky dads would lean closer to the children telling Spot’s story:
“Worst of all, Spot doesn’t bother breaking apart Kit-Kat bars,
With utter disrespect to society and its established norms, he simply bites in the bar taking one giant chunk out of it.”
Rags to Riches: A Caterpillar’s Story
Last night I decided it was time to fly.
As the sun began to peer between the spaced foliage of my home,
I saw my cousin fall.
From the refuge of the tree,
To the concept of bitter reality.
The leaves became quiet,
Sun beams halted their path within the clear sky,
Time Froze still.
Her decent was graceful yet spastic,
But I turned my head before the journey’s end.
As the sun was at its peak in the infinity that was the heavens,
I saw my brother try.
Golf carts driven by campus security impeding his destination.
The dire consequences being treated as a game.
Soon he was playing Frogger for his life.
The game won.
As the sun was disappearing below the fading image of the distant fountain,
I said goodbye to safety.
The rain, the wind, and the howl,
These elements all beckoning me down.
I may not be ready,
But my chances slimming like the waning moon above.
Last night I decided it was time to fly.
At times we think of nights like you,
That come and go and brace the dues.
There arise glimpses of seeming peril,
The road in a haze as it may be time to settle.
But in the darkest times you pave the way,
For men like us to find and lay.
An ever present strength and guide,
Seeming eternal through countless tides.
I lay beneath as my heart still sings,
Starry nights more sacred than treasures of kings.
How wondrous your light that radiates still,
Wishing we had endless time to kill.
Oyin Oludipe is an emerging Nigerian writer. He is a contributing author for theluxembourgreview.org and co-editor at expoundmagazine.com. Oyin was a judge for the 2015 Green Author Prize, a literary award for young unpublished poets in Nigeria. Some of his poetry and essays have appeared in national and international art journals like Kalamu Review, Ehanom Review, Sankofa Magazine, Arts and Africa, Sentinel Literary Quarterly, Kaanem Art Magazine, Praxis Magazine for Arts and Literature, and several others.
Against Ideology that reaches for the neck
A vibrant arc rages to bullet,
Rages arc bullet into winds
In fears from bullet and rage
And winds enslave, and winds unearth the heave
Of futile rites, winds exalt
The gory feast of throats, exhume
Concealed hate as foolishly sprung.
Winds hoist proud voices of folly,
Fury leap of urea conceit, track demise
In repute, prescribe on lichen-earth
Of vain blood. Winds may warp
In strange litany, pray sanctions from
Ethereal lust – an eye for a myth
Mourning loss in spite, graveyards
For a mass crusade – the consolation
Of a silent table is broken by thirst
On pillage wells…
And winds enchain, and winds enact the peal
Of accord; winds deform the
Paths of that one last traveller
Pranab Ghosh is a journalist, blogger and poet. His poems are published in Tuck Magazine, Dissident Voice, Literature Studio Review and this magazine among others. He has co-authored a book of poems, Air & Age. He has also translated a book of Bengali short stories into English. The name of the book is Bougainvillea And Other Stories. He, at present, works from Hyderabad, India.
Waiting for the Sun
The overcast sky
like your pale face
stares at the morning.
Dreams and desire
mingle in the diffused
light of the day.
Mired in melancholy
you stand at a
distance trying to
bathe in the morning
breeze. Images cross
your mind. You
feel shaken by the
dark thoughts that
resemble the gray
clouds. You wait
for the sun to
brighten up your
soul and fill
the blue sky
with light, white
and pure. You
wait for the purity
of the morning to
return and I
embrace you to
whisper in your ears.
As I lay in your arms
thinking of the forgotten
dreams and the times
of joy we walked through
together not so long
ago, you think of
your lover. Betrayed,
I lie frigid as you
caress me in unmindful
desire. I feel like
throwing up, as images
of your mistress and
you devouring each
other cross my mind.
Tears moisten my
cheeks as you sink
inside me in false
gesture of love that
rots in your gut
and burns my flesh.
I want to pluck
you from the depths
of my body and
throw you in a
litter bin. I want to
shred you into pieces.
Trading of the Soul
The sleepless night
has been long.
He tossed on the
bed, tormented by
desire. She lay
asleep by his side
unaware of the rot
he was experiencing.
As night became darker
he became overpowered
by perverse longing.
His flesh burned.
His soul had left
him long ago when
he exchanged it
for power. Tonight
he lay powerless
wanting to die by
the side of the lady
he once loved.
His deepest secret fears
engulfed him. He
thought of a day
when he was stripped
of all worldly belongings.
His heart convulsed.
He lay motionless
enduring the pain.
The night he traded
his soul in company
of his lover, he remembered
his love for once.
but he brushed her
images aside. Tonight
writhing in pain, his
bowels twisting, he
wants to turn the clock.
But that is not to be.
Mefisto came and
went that night, and he
became a lump of flesh,
unaware of the decay
he had set within him.
He has lost his vigor.
He can no longer satisfy
the siren who accompanied
him that night when
he lost the protection
of the Lord. Tonight
satan will also desert him.
He pines for the lost purity
of his soul, desiring for
the dark night to end.
His days are also dark,
but at least he could
stare at the sun-filled sky
forgetting the cry
of his lost soul.
Nights are unbearable, with
his tormented soul
craving to be freed
from the slavery of a
heartless master, as
he suffers night after night
lying by the side
of the lady who is
unaware of the trade.
Souls are traded in
the darkest of nights
and he has nothing
to offer now as he
waits for his flesh
to perish and die.
Alone I contemplated
of the night you were
with me. Eternal light
invaded me as you
embraced me. I remembered
of a celestial union
light years away.
Ours is a different
union where two
entities become one.
Deep inside me I
felt your presence.
Red Krishnachuda lie
scattered by the road side.
She walks like a queen down
the road; her bare back
reflecting the morning sun.
The world was devastated
last night. Fierce wind
had tossed trees aside.
Hutments were razed
to the ground. Her home
withstood the fury.
She is going to fetch water
from the lost river
fed by the last night’s rain.
She walks alone with
pitcher on her head.
Her gait has a music,
the earthen flute
played by the wind.
The melody has engulfed
my soul giving rise
to new poetry.
Chrissie Morris Brady now lives on the south coast of England. She lived in L.A for several years, getting her degree at USC and working with recovering addicts. Chrissie is much travelled and is a human right's activist. She has been published by Writing For Peace, Bournemouth Borough Council, Mad Swirl, Dissident Voice, Novel Masters, and Scarlet Review as well as appearing in several anthologies.
A bloody white handkerchief,
waved as he carries the boy
through gunfire. The boy dies,
with many others on that
Ireland's second bloody Sunday.
So many deaths, so much blood
in the fight for freedom. How
many bloody white handkerchieves?
Rick Hartwell is a retired middle school teacher (remember the hormonally-challenged?) living in Southern California. He believes in the succinct, that the small becomes large; and, like the Transcendentalists and William Blake, that the instant contains eternity. Given his “druthers,” if he’s not writing, Rick would rather still be tailing plywood in a mill in Oregon. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
RECORD DROUGHT -
- abetted by human greed that has:
dammed rivers, to suck the reservoirs dry;
chemically fracked oilfields, that leak into aquifers;
overwatered selfish yards and moneyed golf courses;
damned a blighted land, unwilling to reverse a hellish spell.
Long-dormant seeds need at least some
semblance of moisture to burst the husks
buried under dry, brittle, cracked soil of the
canyon badlands, where life waits no longer as
humanity wrestles with corporations and politicians.
Fissures of erosion runoff become
dry, dusty openings to an underworld;
no hormone, only water, can restore suppleness
to this drought-besieged land; yet each passing year
the West’s libido ebbs, now only desertification remains.
Desert lilies lie comatose in culverts along Reche Canyon;
anorexic burros have dispersed, no longer herding,
thinned out with vanishing forage heat-seared;
the cliché of some is ‘dry as a bone,’ but this
boneyard no longer contains any marrow.
Eyes saturated - too many shades of jade,
razored cliffs with veiled valleys of the Na Pali coast,
sapphire sea with sky grayed by a gathering storm.
Youth blinded to horizons
Fall voyages begin