Featured

Season of Snares by Pamelyn Casto

The Knife Grinder by Catherine Chandler

                     translating Juana de Ibarbourou

Elemental Ugliness by Debasis Tripathy

Oblivion by Abdulkareem Abdulkareem

haiku by Joe Sebastian

 

Uninvited by Leslie Martinelli

Winter Games by  Salvatore Difalco

Five Featured Poems

Questions

Why so Green?

Because Nature is good?

Really?

The source of suffering and pain?

Is it not responsible for

diseases from animals?

From the black plague to

malaria and tuberculosis?

That good friend?

The one who gives us hurricanes,

tornados, earthquakes and death?

That Nature?

The one you love?

Isn’t it unrequited?

Who is this Medea?

Paul Kindlon has published 50 literary works including one-act plays, aphorisms, fiction, and poetry.  After having graduated with a PhD in Russian literature and Philosophy, he taught Humanities for 23 years in Moscow, Russia. He now resides in Buffalo, New York.

Remember his name?

I don’t remember his name, if I ever knew it

and I’ve only myself to blame, because I blew it,

I’m sure you’d have felt the same if you’d gone through it

— did I ever know his name?

 

We met on a winter’s day, it was deep December;

against the cold and the gray he glowed like an ember —

a smile like the sun’s first ray, that’s what I remember,

yes I’ve only myself to blame.

 

He offered a ride in his car (a sharp wind was blowing)

a stop for a drink in a bar with a fire glowing

but what his motives were, there was no knowing —

I’m sure you’d have felt the same.

 

So I shook my head and walked on, into the cold

and when I looked back he was gone. Now I’m getting old

but I still weave dreams upon what that smile might have told . . .

No, I never knew his name.

Judy Koren lives in Haifa, Israel. Her poems have appeared in several Israeli and international magazines including this one. She is President of the English-language poetry society, Voices Israel.

We are not innocent

We were raised to raze it to the ground,

never built a city that we didn't want to see go down.

 

We are not innocent.

We spit aspersions like pumpkin seeds,

some we eat, like sweet meat,

feel them root, like rot, inside our guts,

sense their savage fruit build up.

 

We are not innocent,

no matter what we say or do,

we build gutters for grief to go down,

send it away, we wouldn’t want

the runoff of pain to spoil our day.

 

We are not innocent,

we sing innuendo like arias,

shatter glass houses where

somebody else had made themselves

feel wholly at home,

 

then go back to our own holes,

alone.

Rebecca Wener’s work has been published in Beyond Words and Poetry Quarterly. She’s a psychology graduate student in Denver, Colorado.

Imaginary Conversation with
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

by Kevin McLaughlin

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834) by Peter Vandyke (1729–1799).jpg

This was not the first time I’d fallen through a wormhole while kayaking the South Fork of the St. Lucie River. Six months ago, I’d tumbled back in time to live for a while with the indigenous Ho-Be Native Americans. Two months prior, I’d spent an enjoyable afternoon with William Butler Yeats and Lady Gregory.

 

I was initially disoriented. Then I realized I was in London and estimated the time frame to be between 1815 and 1820. I was at the quays where several ships were moored. I followed a tatterdemalion of a man; he repeatedly looked over his shoulder and his eyes appeared haunted like a spirit during Samhain. He had an albatross draped around his shoulders. I was within a few feet of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. I recognized him from a poster that had hung in my college dorm room. He accosted me, due in part to my futuristic garb.

 

Coleridge had no problem accepting that I was a time traveler from the future. In his world this seemed a natural occurrence. Eager for conversation, he ushered me into The Bat and Fox, a pub tucked between a blacksmith shop and an apothecary. “Tell me about yourself,” he said.

The Bridge

My aunt drove us in her Chevy Impala

over the old bridge crossing

 

the north fork of the Chehalis River.

Downriver, we could see the new bridge

 

rising in concrete and steel,

and one of us, one of the four or five of us

 

being fetched home from somewhere that day,

asked, “How will they know it won’t fall?”

 

She flicked an ash from her cigarette,

said, “Oh, I’ll test it for them —

 

I’ll have all the windows down. If it falls,

I’ll just swim away.”

 

Forehead pressed to the car window,

I could almost see her, a mermaid flippering

 

over river stones. And when she died

of breast cancer a few years later, I thought again

 

of her, crossing that bridge with all her windows down,

making certain it would bear our weight.

Bethany Reid’s poetry books include Sparrow, which won the 2012 Gell Poetry Prize (Big Pencil Press, 2012), and The Thing with Feathers, which was published as part of Triple No. 10 (Ravenna Press, 2020). She blogs about writing and life at http://www.bethanyareid.com.

Les Neiges d’Antan

At my old job, I had a colleague, Anne,

a doctor in her fifties. Who could guess

that underneath her white coat flexed the flesh

of a bodybuilding champ, rock-hard and tan?

A listener unusually astute

might pick up on a stony timbre in

her bright voice. In the cafeteria line,

she stockpiled protein, skipping carbs and fruit.

 

I sometimes visit art museums, soothed

by the abiding calm of pieces like

Noguchi's sculpture Ground Wind #2.

A slim rod of black granite, polished smooth,

it twists upon the ground, a languid snake,

untoothed yet filled with power through and through.

Jenna Le (jennalewriting.com) is the author of Six Rivers (NYQ Books, 2011), A History of the Cetacean American Diaspora (Indolent Books, 2017), an Elgin Awards Second Place winner, and Manatee Lagoon (forthcoming, Acre Books, October 2022).

yair-mejia-318376-unsplash.jpg

Yair Mejía on Unsplash.