PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine. Volume 6; Issue 5; May 2022

6.5

Lullaby for a Politician by Jennifer Bradpiece

Self-possessed by Guna Moran

Start reading again by David Flynn

Imprint by Joanne Olivieri

DonkeyWork by Patricia Walsh

                      Lullaby for a Politician by Jennifer Bradpiece

for dad

When I say, “I knew this would happen,”

my mother looks like she wants to slap me.

And who could blame her.

I’m portending my father

landing in the emergency room

the very day the old dog passed

with the same certainty one might lament

a full glass toppling off a table’s edge.

Where were my minders?

I had nearly misplaced an entire continent.

I turn on the television to keep the younger dog company.

Ernest Cossart’s Irish brogue gently chastises,

“Ah, there’s a real piece of idiocy—woman’s instinct—

every slab-sided female in the world is a crystal gazer—

she’s magic. She can fore-tell the future—like a politician.”

Flustered, I grab my water bottle, recheck the emergency number.

As I wheel around before closing the door,

I see Ginger Rogers, black and white in soft focus.

She spins around at her door, facing me

and an off-camera Cossart.

All the way down the hall her plucky voice follows me,

“And don’t you worry about me pop, cause I can take care

of myself alright! Goodbye pop!”

Jennifer Bradpiece was born and raised in the multifaceted muse, Los Angeles, where she still resides. She tries to remain active in the Los Angeles writing and art scene. Jennifer has interned at Beyond Baroque and often collaborates with multi-media artists on projects. Her poetry has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and published in various anthologies, journals, and online zines, including Redactions, The Common Ground Review, and The Bacopa Literary Review . She has poetry forthcoming in Breath & Shadows among others. Jennifer’s manuscript, Lullabies for End Times will be available in early 2020 by Moon Tide Press.

Self-possessed by Guna Moran

Joy flee at the first opportunity

It does not give company always

Like sorrow

Sorrow is the true friend

It is not ethereal like happiness

Whose life partner is sorrow

Sorrow is one’s happiness

Happiness is dream

Sorrow is reality

Absurd dream is not my longing in reality

So I do not say myself to be unhappy

Even if I’m not happy

Translation : Bibekananda Choudhury

Guna Moran is an assamese poet and critic.His poems are being published in various international magazines,journals and anthologies.Apart from this,his poems have already been translated into more than twenty foreign languages.

Start reading again by David Flynn

Start writing again.

But why?  No one hears.  No one

notices my words.

So wake up there, you.

Slap.  Pay attention.  Love.  Care.

React.  Now you stare.

Rise from the sofa.

Scream.  It’s a start.  Now sit down

again.  You have changed a bit.

.

David Flynn was born in the textile mill company town of Bemis, TN.  His jobs have included newspaper reporter, magazine editor and university teacher.  He has five degrees and is both a Fulbright Senior Scholar and a Fulbright Senior Specialist with a recent grant in Indonesia.  His literary publications total more than two hundred.  He lives in Nashville, TN, where he is director of the Musicians Reunion, an annual blues music festival now in its 37th year.  He currently teaches at Tennessee State University.

Imprint by Joanne Olivieri

At dusk

a quiet silence rests

sipping merlot

on white sands

Sunset minuet

permeates the sky

cotton candy clouds

pattern a natural masterpiece

You tell me you love me

as the moon debuts

we jazz it up

leaving imprints

Along the shore.

Joanne has been writing for 50 years. She is a published poet and photographer. Her works have appeared in numerous in print and online

publications such as The Parnassus Literary Journal, Westward Quarterly, The San Diego Arts and Poets Magazine, Nomads Choir, SP Quill, just to name a few. She was awarded a round-trip ticket to Hong

Kong in 2007 by Cathay Pacific Airways for her winning entry in their poetry contest. Joanne is the founder and editor of Stanzaic Stylings Literary Ezine. Joanne enjoys reading, writing, collecting old poetry books, live music concerts, roaming art galleries and museums, leisurely lunches with

friends in diners, getting out in nature with her camera and making toys for and playing with her feathered companion, Sammers

You can learn all there is to know about her by visiting her website/blog

at http://poeticshutterbug.blogspot.com  

DonkeyWork by Patricia Walsh

The rotten learning code of excavation

Becomes your physique in spite of joy

Muscles where hidden comes to the fore

Sacrilegious sunscreen carving the timeline

Pain where deserved, a lesson interrogated.

Like a maniac, proving my ability

Digging nails into warmest flesh

Covering sins with the neatness of dalliances

Truth of love covering over sins,

Dedication on the outskirts of learned ridicule.

Full-on assault to shore up an acquaintance

Kissing for propriety a singular aim,

To charm back affection is no good

Eventual distance rests its case

Smirking over your beverage is some defence.

God, cold as ice, diverges our paths.

How can somethig so good turn out so badly

Swallowing pills en masse to knock consciousness

Where it hurts, naming the unnameable

Explaining away your part in the affair.

Staring at the four walls, illiness redeemed

Catching attention is not all it seemed.

Nor right to depression callled out of bounds

Sinking into clay a luxury

Roulette of medicine coming into play.

Some death wish sizes me and you

An unholy mantra pervades my being

Mercy on real terms is the way do go

But I cannot see past my guilty hands

Nor time the assault to a tee.

A lonely pedigree is all that is left

Counting backwards is the sin making graves

The local diaspora baying for blood

You leading the way, spotless in in your prime

Choosing your collective makes it worse.

Sleeping at midday, tears on the sheets

Love denied slices my very innards

A raw ecstasy parcelling my zeitgeist

Evaporating sympathy from all concerned

God being silent when it’s too late.

Slitting myself into a box too small to count

Demanding apologies from everyone around

Too late of course, tracks being covered

Theories of disappearance wash the night away

Under cover of free alcohol, and food.

Consumed under dark, a quota of kisses,

Cruelly denied, or taken up, as for sure

Prime position for  loyalty cards

Laughing at my tawdry arguments

In the same place where I left it.

Patricia Walsh was born and raised in the parish of Mourneabbey, Co Cork, Ireland.  To date, she has published one novel, titled The Quest for Lost Eire, in 2014, and has published one collection of poetry, titled Continuity Errors, with Lapwing Publications in 2010. She has since been published in a variety of print and online journals.  These include: The Lake; Seventh Quarry Press; Marble Journal; New Binary Press; Stanzas; Crossways; Ygdrasil; Seventh Quarry; The Fractured Nuance; Revival Magazine; Ink Sweat and Tears; Drunk Monkeys; Hesterglock Press; Linnet’s Wing, Narrator International, The Galway Review; Poethead and The Evening Echo.

.

 

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine. Volume 6; Issue 4; April 2022

6.4

Poets Die by Michael Lee Johnson

Low Tide by John Grey

Cloudiness by Eliza Segiet

Dream Cadence by Wayne Russell

Enabling Cookies by Ryan Quinn Flanagan

                      Poets Die by Michael Lee Johnson

Why do poets die;

linger in youth

addicted to death.

They create culture

but so crippled.

They seldom harm

except themselves—

why not let them live?

Their only crime is words

they shout them out in anger

cry out loud, vulgar in private

places like Indiana cornfields.

In fall, poets stretch arms out

their spines the centerpiece

on crosses on scarecrows,

they only frighten themselves.

They travel in their minds,

or watch from condo windows,

the mirage, these changing colors,

those leaves; they harm no one.

Michael Lee Johnson lived ten years in Canada, Vietnam era. Today he is a poet in the greater Chicagoland area, IL.  He has 244 YouTube poetry videos. Michael Lee Johnson is an internationally published poet 43 countries, several published poetry books, nominated for 3 Pushcart Prize awards and 5 Best of the Net nominations. He is editor-in-chief of 3 poetry anthologies, all available on Amazon, and has several poetry books and chapbooks. He has over 536 published poems. Michael is the administrator of 6 Facebook Poetry groups. Member Illinois State Poetry Society: http://www.illinoispoets.org/.

Low Tide by John Grey

The sand’s as gray

as the low sky.

It’s not smooth

but a series of gutters

in which tiny creatures

grapple for what they can live with.

Exposed rocks seem proud

of their slimy skin.

Abandoned sea-weed stinks

like a brothel

at the end of the midnight shift.

Some mottled shells.

Bubbles of sour foam.

Once, this was where life began.

It remains, to this day,

the inspiration.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Sheepshead Review, Stand, Poetry Salzburg Review and Hollins Critic. Latest books, “Leaves On Pages” “Memory Outside The Head” and “Guest Of Myself” are available through Amazon. Work upcoming in Ellipsis, Blueline and International Poetry Review.

Cloudiness by Eliza Segiet

I hide

in the silence

of uncertainty of tomorrow,

I am glad,

that today the sky is

above me.

I tell a tale from the clouds,

although I do not know

how it ends.

The wind gives an ending,

until the sky does not open

– I look,

because I see shapes in the sky from down below.

Beautiful are cloudy travels

and cloudiness of the sky

is beautiful.

[Translated by Artur Komoter]


Chmurność

Chowam się

w ciszy

niepewności jutra,

cieszę się,

że dzisiaj nade mną jest

niebo.

Opowiadam bajkę z chmur,

choć nie wiem

jak się skończy.

Wiatr daje zakończenie,

póki niebo się nie otworzy

– patrzę,

bo w niebie widzę kształty z ziemi.

Piękne są chmurne podróże

i chmurność nieba

jest piękna.

Eliza Segiet is Jagiellonian University graduate with a Master’s Degree in Philosophy. She completed postgraduate studies in Cultural Knowledge, Philosophy, Penal Fiscal and Economic Law, and Creative Writing at Jagiellonian University, as well as Film and Television Production in Łódź. She has published three poetry collections and two monodramas.

Dream Cadence by Wayne Russell

A sparrow whistled a song into my ear last night.

Death is always a heartbeat away, life is an echo,

snuffed out all too soon.

The grass sings a serenade, soothing natures fleeting

breath.

While an ancient lullaby reaches its crescendo, she

dances upon this midnight dream cadence.

Peering through tear stained windows, outside where

innuendos swirl in vacant breeze.

We were here, do you remember?

Yes, it was we, when we were one and not two,

cascading and thus sealed over, simplified by

the finality, reaching its terminus point.

Life plays the sad song so out of tune, death stares

us down like a red-tailed hawk in the midday heat. 

Wayne Russell is or has been many things in his 49 years on this planet, he has been a creative writer, world traveler, graphic designer, former soldier, and former sailor. Wayne has been widely published in both online and hard copy creative writing magazines. From 2016-17 he also founded and edited Degenerate Literature. In late 2018, the kind editors at Ariel Chart  nominated Wayne for his first Pushcart Prize for the poem Stranger in a Strange Town. “Where Angels Fear” was his debut e-book, but due to unforeseen circumstances, it was pulled from the publishers’ list of titles recently.    

Enabling Cookies by Ryan Quinn Flanagan

She bakes them on a tray

in the oven

gets antsy when they are not ready

when she thinks they should

be.       

It is her grandmother’s recipe.

Handwritten on a single yellow old cue card

passed down through the family.

And I try one while they are still hot,

this woman who loves to bake.

Her grandmother returned to dust.

We eat an entire tray in one sitting.

Ryan Quinn Flanagan is a Canadian-born author residing in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada with his wife and many bears that rifle through his garbage.  His work can be found both in print and online in such places as: Evergreen Review, The New York Quarterly, PPP Ezine, In Between Hangovers, Red Fez, and The Oklahoma Review.

 

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine. Volume 6; Issue 3; March 2022

Poet of the Month: Noelle Kukenas

The Unrealized Dreams of the Night by Edward Lee

Earth Poems by Shola Balogun

Wicked Resuscitation by Thomas M. McDade

Someone loved me once by David Estringel

A Quiet Place to Think By Mark Kodama

From Beginnibg to End Liao by Daniel de Culla

Adoption by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Elephant and Castle Underground Station by Eadbhard McGowan

My Heart Beats For You…. by Eric Golden

Poet of the Month: Noelle Kukenas

Still I Believe

The door slams shut

Opportunities denied

No (fill in the blank) Allowed

Still I Believe.

The money has run out

No way to provide

The cupboards are bare

Still I Believe.

The pain is too great

My strength is diminished

Memories are blurred

Still I Believe.

There’s nothing left

Even the ashes drift away

Leaving only scarred earth

Still I Believe.

The final call sounds

I’m taken away

Never to return

But – Still I Believe.

The Kingdom

This makes no sense

trapped inside an unexpected and unexplained mess

created from what madness?

what illness?

or sheer indifference?

The Caustic Queen

perched upon a throne

grins like a Cheshire Cat

watching the struggle with evil glee

greedily consuming the entire kingdom.

The Kingdom?!

Once an admirable work of financial art, prudence, and discipline

shining in splendid glory

an example to emulate

carefully crafted and created with intention to care for others.

Now a burned-out shell of its former self

an unrecognizable wasteland

littered with broken promises

sucking the life out of the remnants of prior greatness.

Starving children dig through the ruins

searching for any scraps or crumbs

of the future once promised them.

While the One who-should-have-gone-first

feasts upon the riches of others

tossing aside the bones

to be scattered

among the chaos.

Noelle Kukenas began writing around the age of nine and continues to this day. She enjoyed working in several career fields, many which allowed her to contribute as a technical writer in some capacity. Her published works include a short story in Scraps To Scribes and poetry in Sisterhood 4: We Are Women. Recently retired from the nonprofit sector, Noelle enjoys spending her free time traveling with her husband, creating havoc with her grandchildren, and enjoying the California sunshine!

The Unrealized Dreams of the Night by Edward Lee  

In the centre of the night

there was a crescent of light

which was not the moon

nor some distant and dying star;

something was about to begin,

something previously unknown,

with no one

to witness

in these hours when time

exists outside of existence,

only lazily destined to hear, after,

its echo as it faded from sound

into a crescent of light,

the remains of possibilities

and wishes unmade.

Edward Lee’s poetry, short stories, non-fiction and photography have been published in magazines in Ireland, England and America, including The Stinging Fly, Skylight 47, Acumen and Smiths Knoll.  His debut poetry collection “Playing PoohsticksOnHa’Penny Bridge” was published in 2010. He is currently working towards a second collection.

He also makes musical noise under the names Ayahuasca Collective, Lewis Milne, Orson Carroll, Blinded Architect, Lego Figures Fighting, and Pale Blond Boy.

His blog/website can be found at https://edwardmlee.wordpress.com.  

Earth Poems by Shola Balogun

Wine for your thoughts.

Raft of corn seeds,

Whispers in the attic,

The locked eyes in the helve,

The treading of the sole of the foot

In the winepress. You heard tell

That trampling tongues

Birth Belial roots

In the dark pool of rushes?

Child, meddle not with the shadows.

Stones tasted wine in time past.

Shola Balogun, poet,playwright and filmmaker has been featured as a guest writer and contributor,especially in the areas of poetry, post colonial studies and dramatic criticism to various magazines,anthologies and journals. He studied Theatre Arts at the University of Ibadan. Balogun lives in Lagos,Nigeria.

Wicked Resuscitation by Thomas M. McDade 

I knew a woman

who lived in an old

apartment complex.

Once when we stopped

at her place after partying

she snapped

the light on and it was

as if we’d interrupted a

cockroach Mardi Gras

and I didn’t pick that

event out of the blue—

it was precisely that

time of the year.

My friend didn’t panic,

said those insects

were preferable to mice.

The bugs quickly scattered

and I wished they’d remained

a minute or so longer

to deep freeze in my mind:

a paper was soon due

on Kafka’s Metamorphosis.

I planned to argue

metaphor vs. reality.

Visiting next,

after the monthly

pesticide application.

I picked up five victims

expired in a kitchen corner

closed a fist around them

as if administering some sort

of wicked resuscitation.

Closing my eyes, I imagined

Kafka high on something

better than pesticide doing the same

telling his partying friends

just watch my burdens

someday turn me into one.

Thomas M. McDade is a 73 year-old resident of Fredericksburg, VA. He is a graduate of Fairfield University, Fairfield, CT. McDade is twice a U.S. Navy Veteran.

Someone loved me once by David Estringel


Buoyant hustle emerging from smokey  fields,
It is his voice that sings me to peace.
Capacious affection  breathing down my neck
Like sun rays warming my skin.
I have been the metaphor of destruction
And he, the metaphor of revival. 
Feral detest bubbling within the cauldron of my chest
But overridden by his sweet summer scent.
Someone loved me once;
He loved me enough to make me love myself.

David Estringel is an avid reader, poet, and writer of fiction, creative non-fiction, & essays. His work has been accepted and/or published by Specter Magazine, Literary Juice, Foliate Oak Magazine,Terror House Magazine, Expat Press, 50 Haikus, littledeathlit, Down in the Dirt Magazine, Route 7 Review, Setu Bilingual Journal, Paper Trains Literary Journal, The Elixir Magazine, Soft Cartel,Harbinger Asylum, Briars Lit, Open Arts Forum, Cajun Mutt Press, Former People Journal, The Ugly Writers, Writ in Dust, Cephalopress, Twist in Time, Merak Magazine, Salt Water Soul, Cherry House Press, Subterranean Blue Poetry, Printed Words, Sunflower Sutras, Tulip Tree Publishing, Salt, PPP Ezine, Digging through the Fat, Haiku Journal, and The Good Men Project. He is currently a Contributing Editor (fiction) at Red Fez, Lead Editor/columnist at The Good Men Project, and an editor/writer at The Elixir Magazine. David can be found on Twitter (@The_Booky_Man) and his website at http://davidaestringel.com.

A Quiet Place to Think By Mark Kodama

I need a quiet place to think,

A shaded spot beneath the pomegranate tree,

Isolated from man and beast,

A platonic spring from which to drink,

Stillwaters for reflection

On all of life’s imperfections

In an ugly and chaotic world

Full of beautiful contradictions.

I need a quiet place to think,

A safe harbor to hear my inner voice

Whispering its truths to me

In all the colors of the rainbow.

A spot in the shade to meditate,

For ideas to gestate.  A place

For the butterfly to nourish itself,

Before taking winged flight.

Mark Kodama is a trial attorney and former newspaper reporter who lives in Washington, D.C.    His short stories and poems have been published in anthologies, newspapers, journals, magazines and on-line blogs.

From Beginnibg to End Liao by Daniel de Culla

From beginning to end

is explained absolutely everything worth knowing

about absolutely nothing.

Why not’?

We felt that the Beginning is a true leaf

of the inmortal literature

as a side of bacon changing the pig

discovering the best way to keep its legend alive

encouragingmytology

and the controversy about it:

Sun wil have its tide spreading over our maps

Moon remembering us we were gone

and we still sing everything waiting

for birth, death

inside this den of us.

Spring, Summer, Autum, Winter

coming with feelings of love, radiance

quiet and delight

As ever.

Daniel de Culla is a writer, poet, and photographer. He’s member of the Spanish Writers Association, Earthly Writers International Caucus, Poets of the World, (IA) International Authors, Surrealism Art, Friends of The Blake Society, and others. Director of Gallo Tricolor Review, and Robespierre Review. He participated in many Festivals of Poetry, and Theater in Madrid, Burgos, Berlin, Minden, Hannover and Genève .He has exposed in many galleries from Madrid, Burgos, London, and Amsterdam. He is moving between North Hollywood, Madrid and Burgos; e-mail: gallotricolor@yahoo.com

Adoption by Ahmad Al-Khatat

When I was a teenager
I donated to a little orphan
since then I made a vow that 
I would adopt her, and marry her

Days go by and nights come 
I learned how to hurt myself 
by doing bad habits that will 
guide me to die below the bridge

I lost count of my harmful cuts 
I lost all the joyful memories and 
moments from weeping beneath 
the lights of the miserable bar

My mother thought that I was well,
As my smile hid the tears that 
damaged my physical therapist 
within minutes after hearing me

I lost many chances and luck
until I met a broken heart,
she cried when she knew that I 
found what was missing of me

I found her 
between all of my poetry
between all of my cigarette smoke 
I tried to lose her
as I saw my shadow following her

Ann you didn’t adopted a regular girl
you have definitely raised one angel
that showed me life with colours
From your love and care for my princess

the grief inside of me has smiled when
your daughter kissed my salty lips and 
wiped my tears, hopefully she will
close my eyes after my smiling face rests

Ahmad Al-Khatat was born in Baghdad, Iraq. His work has appeared in print and online journals globally and has poems translated into several languages. He has been nominated for Best of the Net 2018. He is the author of The Bleeding Heart Poet, Love On The War’s Frontline, Gas Chamber, Wounds from Iraq, and Roofs of Dreams all of which are available from Amazon. He lives in Montreal, Canada.

Elephant and Castle Underground Station by Eadbhard McGowan

Waiting in the dark, we dream of light;

deep, underground, we hear detonations,

vibrations of bombing causing fright,

impact of loads dropped on a town.

What awaits us outside is unknown,

when we inch to daylight with we desire:

a day darkened by smoke

or a night glowing with fire?

Grasped by fear and helplessness,

by air raids and trembling walls,

recognising nightmare’s relentlessness

in the horror of today’s sundown

when night falls like a gown

and sirens sound the all-clear,

in these days of war and fear,

in shelters with neighbours and strangers.

Wherever we look into dark future’s night,

far from the here and now, flickering light,

far from home, hoping, and hearing

the word without knowing its meaning.

Did we see warnings looming up?

Signs on the wall, in Belshazzar’s hall?

Did we anticipate tyrants, invasion, depravity?

Victims, the dead, the bombs on Coventry?

Sons of the land clothe themselves with death,

arm themselves to kill their own kind

in the places of horror, up and down the land.

Dream weavers weave a wreath,

money counters count and pay in kind;

armourers forge, steel unsheathed;

soldiers kill; leave thousands bereaved:

we are all led like puppets on a string.

In the city of lost angels,

a masked man sharpens his black scythe,

saddles his mighty horse

for the very last fight.

Burn, Phoenix, that your ashes bear fruit,

keep your heart’s blood, Pelican, to feed us.

Grim Reaper has his harvest time.

We hear graveyard bells chime.

Almost filled is the hour-counting shadow glass;

nearly faded, are pottery shards with your name,

the Tree of Life, standing pale in the rain;

wilted, the rosebush that lived your love,

windblown breath that carries your words,

naked, featherless- lonely peace dove.

Go where you have never been before,

where yet so many wait.

Eduard Schmidt-Zorner is an artist and a translator and writer of poetry, crime novels and short stories. He writes haibun, tanka, haiku and poetry in four languages: English, French, Spanish and German and holds workshops on Japanese and Chinese style poetry and prose. Member of four writer groups in Ireland and lives in County Kerry, Ireland, for more than 25 years and is a proud Irish citizen, born in Germany. Published in 60 anthologies, literary journals and broadsheets in UK, Ireland, Canada and USA. Writes also under his pen name: Eadbhard McGowan 

My Heart Beats For You…. by Eric Golden

Let me touch your beautiful soul

Don’t you know I need someone to hold

To fill me up until I overflow

Brimming with happiness & never wanna let it go

You walk thru my door bringing in rays of sunshine behind you

Your presence is soothing & relaxing & yes this is true

You have handfuls of peacefulness & you come over with a heart full of content

The moment you walk thru the door I’m hoping the opposite way you will have never ever went

A smile full of beauty, a soft gentle touch to warm the heart

It wasn’t supposed to be like this, this wasn’t how it was supposed to start

But now it is & were trapped in each others ideas of what could be

We want to take it to the next level, to see what it is it should be

So what feels like years, has only been days

I can’t help myself cuz u got me feelin like I’m in a daze

& what feels like days feels like years

I’m ready to let you in, so please help me walk thru these fears

I told you that you’re at the top of my list, so there’s no one else above you

& it’s getting to the point where I want to tell you _ ____ ___

& our souls braid together in order to become one

& when we make love it’s like the rising of the sun

I gotta make sure the timing is correct

Don’t want to let you down, truly out of respect

But I’m willing to take a chance & risk it all for the thought of us

It’s going to take a lot of respect, honesty, love, & trust

Soft touches that make us blush

Take your time so we don’t have to rush

But now it’s time for you to go & I’m not sure when I will see you again,

But the more were together the more I like you for more than just a friend

If I get the chance I’m gonna keep you all to myself

I’m willing to let my guard down but please be careful nursing my heart back to health

I need you to support me in my goals & dreams

I need you to never leave

I need your nurturing touch

You see, I need you so much

Our hearts best in tandem

We both breathe in unison

I’m hoping that when my phone goes off that it will be you again

So never despair My love because I will be your hero

Even when we’re apart I promise I’m still here though

Your voice sounds so at ease

Like on a bright sunny day w the wind blowing thru the trees

It soothes me, comforts me, & heals me

I want to love the real you & you to love the real me

So let us not get lost or caught up in doing the wrong thing

Because if we allow love to flow, then happiness it will bring

______, my heart beats for you…..

Eric was born in Omaha, Nebraska. He graduated from Boys Town high school and went on to get a degree in Social Work. He married at 19 but later got divorced and has raised two children alone. His love for music and arts has led him to his writing. Much of his poetry and writings come from experiences and love of life. He often adds humor to enlighten and has been writing for over 20 years.

 

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine. Volume 6; Issue 2; February 2022

Poet of the Month: Ahmad Al-Khatat

Class Photo by Brian Rihlmann

Unraveling Rhyme by Ann Christine Tabaka

Buried Alive by Glory Sasikala

Golden Giant by Hongri Yuan

Poet of the Month: Ahmad Al-Khatat

Am I

Weak am I,

no longer am I the knight of a stranger’s dark dream

sad am I,

with a thirsty spirit seeking for a bloody river

lost am I,

I cannot find a way to heal my wounds during the day

drunk am I,

running away from people’s hateful judgments

sick am I,

waiting on the bullet to end my miserable hope

fool am I,

for believing in tears, and ignoring the mouths of lies

who am I,

today I am miserable for writing on the city walls

who will I be,

nothing but a drunk writer in a forgotten cemetery

Writing a Letter

I will be writing a letter

to nobody brave or I know

I want to say I am sorry

for the ones, who hurts me before

I know that life is more

than one locked door

perhaps, my heart is the

house with broken lock to protect me

yet, my enemy win over my

innocent moves, his words

are sharp knives, and my answers

are the seeds of the plants in heaven

being blind means, you are

gifted, you just believe in the

ones who wishes you death

and nothing else of good in darkness

I am not Alone

O people, I am not alone in this world

my spirit may be tired of my wounds

I’m seldom hopeless to find the door

to knock on, to open and, forgive me

they say that love comes very softly

under the stars, in front of my sight

she will be beautifully hostage on the

one-way bridge to the blinding light

up in the smoke of my cigarettes

I taste her lips, when I add a teaspoon

of earth and sea, in my cup of

nostalgia, of her body and scent

the bitter flavour of lonesome

it’s the time, I draw her on the mist

a stranger is watching me in tears

even though he doesn’t know me

I am not alone, but you are alone

you will miss me, when my blood

will be the cut of a sacred river,

Ahmad Al-Khatat, was born in Baghdad, Iraq on May 8th. He has been published in several press publications and anthologies all over the world and has poems translated in several languages. He has published two poetry books “The Bleeding Heart Poet” and “Love On The War’s Frontline” which are available on Amazon. Most of his new and old poems are also available on his official page Bleeding Heart Poet on Facebook.

Class Photo by Brian Rihlmann  

I look at that class photo, Kindergarten

and wonder what is left

of those faces and bodies and souls

as we, now nearing mid life

are awakened by harsh alarm bells

on the east or west coast

or somewhere in between

and we swarm out into the streets,

down into subway tunnels or onto buses

or hop in our cars and brave freeway madness,

faces now lined and wrinkled

like clocks and dollar bills.

I wonder if anything at all is left,

or if there’s anything sacred

in this routine. It’s hard to see, but

I still look for it, as I weave

among cars on the freeway, 70 plus,

toward someplace I’d rather not be.

Brian Rihlmann was born in NJ, and currently lives in Reno, NV. He writes mostly semi autobiographical, confessional free verse. Folk poetry…for folks. He has been published in The Rye Whiskey Review, Cajun Mutt Press, Alien Buddha Zine, Synchronized Chaos, Madness Muse Press and The American Journal Of Poetry.  

Unraveling Rhyme by Ann Christine Tabaka

The rhyming and the not,

as if I had forgot,

my words of many years,

embedded in my tears.

Days of youth have passed.

The die has long been cast.

Pieces of my life

still wading through pained strife.

Time has come and gone.

I waited far too long.

My words have all grown stale,

now lost beyond the pale.

A fire that once burned,

has long ago been spurned.

My passions all I gave,

lie cold beyond the grave.

Ann Christine Tabaka was nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize in Poetry, has been internationally published, and won poetry awards from numerous publications. She lives in Delaware, USA.  She loves gardening and cooking.  Chris lives with her husband and three cats. Her most recent credits are: Ethos Literary Journal, North of Oxford, Pomona Valley Review, Page & Spine, West Texas Literary Review, The Hungry Chimera, Sheila-Na-Gig, Synchronized Chaos, Pangolin Review, Foliate Oak Review, Better Than Starbucks!, The Write Launch, The Stray Branch, The McKinley Review, Fourth & Sycamore.

Buried Alive by Glory Sasikala

In the graveyard of the buried alive

she screamed and groaned…

moaned

and they sighed…

another one

to tell a story

It was the best day of my life (she said)

there from my coffin

in my best clothes

mascara, rouge and lipstick –

I could hear them praise me soft and low

twas pure bliss!

people in black and mourning

with nothing but good to say of me

highlighting my achievements

played down my bad

and I had been waiting

my whole life for this!

and then they were there

these people in black

my friends, foes

and I don’t knows

kissing me on my forehead

bidding me goodbye

hardly aware that i was screaming

silently – no one heard my cry

my mind registered bouquets

a malicious eye or two

some tears spilt to wet my face

a whispered word from you

and then they gently closed the lid

and nailed it into place

and lowered me down by ropes

down into the hole

and threw mud upon my face.

hey! ‘don’t do that!’ i cried from where within

i could hear the muddy rain

but bury me they did and an epitaph –

“Buried alive – never to be heard of again!”

Glory Sasikala is a poet and writer currently residing in Chennai, Tamilnadu, India. She is the Editor and Publisher of the Monthly Online Prose and Poetry magazine, ‘GloMag’ and is the administrator of the group of the same name on Facebook. She is a language editor and quality analyst by profession.

Golden Giant by Hongri Yuan

Translated by Yuanbing zhang

Who is sitting in the heavens and staring at me?

Who is sitting in the golden palace of tomorrow?

Who is smiling?

Golden staff in his hand

flashes a dazzling light.

Ah, the flashes of lightning-

interweave over my head…

I walked into the crystalline corridor of the time-

I want to open

the doors of gold.

Lines of words in the sun-

Singing to me in the sky-

I want to find

the volumes of gold poems

on the shores of the new century

to build the city of gold.

Laozi with rosy cheek and white hair-

Smiles at me in the clouds,

A phoenix dances trippingly

and carries with it, a book of gold.

Lines of mysterious words

made my eyes drunken,

countless giant figures

came towards me from the clouds.

Ages through seventy million years

emerged leisurely before my eyes,

the cities of gold

surrounded with crystalline gardens.

A sky of sapphire

sent out a colorful miraculous brightness,

onto green hills of jasper,

dragons and phoenixes were flying

Exquisite pagoda-

with majestical palace of gold,

the airy pavilions and pagodas

stood within the purple-red clouds

Laughing girls

riding the colorful husbands and wives,

propitious clouds

sprinkling the colorful flowers.

I opened the door to a golden palace,

saw the rows of scrolls of gold,

a giant who had the haloes all over his body-

there was a golden sun over his head.

Smiling, he picked up the books of gold

recited the sacred verses-

Intoxicated with the miraculous wonderful words

I was enveloped with purple-gold flames.

A golden lotus

bloomed beneath my feet,

lifted up my body,

wafting it up out of the golden palace

The red clouds

drifted by my side,

in the far distance I saw

another golden paradise

the leisurely bells

calling to me.

There- countless giants

roamed in a golden garden,

with skies of ruby,

rounds of sun

like the golden lotus

blooming in the sky,

intoxicating fragrances of flowers

like sweet good wine,

golden trees

laden with the dazzling diamonds,

wonderful flowers

in bloom for a thousand years,

this land of gold

inlaid with the gems.

The pavilions of gold were

strewn at random, clustered in multitude.

Someone was playing chess

Someone was chatting…

Quaint clothes

colossal statures

miraculous eyes-

happy and comfortable.

White cranes

flying in the sky,

husbands and wives

crowing leisurely.

Beside an old man I approached

as if he were waiting for me

in this golden pavilion.

He opened an ancient sword casket-

A glittering ancient sword

engraved with abstruse words and expressions,

which were clear and transparent, like lightning,

dimly glowed with purplish-red patterns.

He told me a metaphysical epic:

The sword came from nine billions years ago,

made from hundreds of millions of suns.

It was a sacred sword of the sun-

It could pierce the rocks of time,

open layer after layer of skies,

let the sacred fires forge the heaven and the earth

into golden paradises.

The old man’s eyes were deep, archaic, difficult to discern-

Dimly showing the joyful flames.

He let me take this sword

to fly towards a new golden paradise:

The huge golden lotus floated leisurely-

I flew among the skies, for a thousand miles.

Huge pyramids

loomed impressively in front of my eyes

Mountainous figures of giants

walked about in front of the pyramid,

the huge pyramids of gold

far taller than the mountains.

The giant trees of gold

like a forest

stood in the sky

laden with the stars.

The multi-colored propitious clouds

were like a colossal bird

in a silvery sky,

crowing joyfully.

I came to the front of a pyramid-

a door was opening wide for me,

a group of blond giants

sat with smiles in the grand palace.

An old and great holy man

recited in monotone.

The temple was painted with the magical symbols

and giant portraits of Gods.

The palace was full of silvery white light

blooming with magnificent flowers,

a peal of wonderful mellifluous bells

that made one suddenly forget all time.

I heard an immemorial verse

that was written hundreds of millions of years past,

relating countless eras of giants,

the creation of the holy kingdoms of heaven.

Their wisdom was sacred and great

knowing, omniscently, the past and the future of the universe.

They flew freely among the skies

landed on the millions of planets in the universe.

They altered time per one’s pleasure,

encompassed other powers, such as-

turning stone into gold,

making gold bloom into flowers.

They were like the bulbous sun,

which could erupt with sacred flames

let all things blaze in raging flames..

Manifest imagination into reality..

They landed on planets

establishing golden paradises

and with their magical, cryptic wisdom

built platinum cities.

I saw the splendid words

spied from the volume of gold

and the magical wonderful halos

rotating like colorful lightning in the sky.

I came to another wonderful planet,

saw a massive monumental edifice of platinum,

the whole city, an intricate work of art

emanating, softly, a brilliant white light.

A huge round square

encased unearthly works.

Giants of great stature

came and went leisurely in the street.

They wore spartan, common clothing

covering their bodies,

all with smiles upon their faces,

both men and women looked beautiful.  

They spoke a wonderful language

intriguing and pleasant as welcome music.

Some of them travelled by spaceship

flying around silently in the sky.

I walked into a towering edifice of platinum-

saw a magnificent hall,

its platinum walls were inlaid with gems,

among which was a row of unusual instruments.

Their eyes were like bright springs

and they wore multi-colored clothes.

Some were operating the instruments.

Some were talking softly among themselves.

I saw a fascinating picture, a simulacrum that

drew giant planets,

arranged cities on those planets,

with crystal gardens.

I opened a crystal door-

noticed a group of men and women, who were happily,

singing softly,

with glittering books of gold in their hands.

Arrangements of flowers and glasses filled of golden wine

sat on the huge round table.

Golden walls were sparkling

carved with all kinds of wonderful images.

I saw a demure girl,

with sparkling golden halo above her head,

adorned in a lengthy purple-gold dress

peerless in its quality.

Pages- were marked with cryptic glyphs

or lines of ancient magic words or symbols,

each of their books were made of gold

inexplicably constructed in golden crystal.

I understood their euphonious songs-

They were singing the sacred love

They were singing great ancestors

They were recounting the civilization of the universe

Gardens filled their city, everywhere,

surrounded with the sweet rivers.

The whole earth was a piece of jade,

the clay, a translucent layer of golden sands.

I saw enormous bright, white spheres

suspended high above the city,

emanating outwards a dazzling light-

illuminating the skies and earth- bright as the crystal

The towering, great buildings stood in great numbers

As if carved by a singular piece of platinum.

Doves and colorful birds

were flying among the heavens.

A mono-train was

flying swiftly through the sky,

the streets were illuminated in bright white,

and any moving vehicle could not have been seen.

These people’s bodies were unusually strong.

Playing a wonderful game-

they piled up the pieces of great stones

arranging into grotesque works.

Similar to giant eyes

and ancient totems,

there were strange birds

covered with lightning feathers.

I saw a couple of tall lovers-

aviators, riding in their spaceship.

Their eyes were quiet and bright,

colorful halo around their bodies.

This wonderful space was gyrating leisurely

like a huge, resplendent crystal.

I said goodbye to the unusual city,

towards a space of golden light.

The cities flashed in the sky.

I flew over the layers of the sky again

and I saw a new-fangled world:

the multi-colored city of crystal.

The high towers were exquisitely carved

displaying multi-colored pearls,

layers of its eave painted with dragon and phoenix,

hung with singing golden bells.

The earth was a crystal garden,

the palaces were limpid and crystal,    

huge mountains were like a transparent gems

lined with the golden trees.

I saw the tall giants-

who wore their purple clothes,

with heads of round suns,

bodies enshrined with halos.

They sat up in the main halls  

singing a mellifluous song.

Some were roaming leisurely in the garden.

Some were summoning the birds in the sky.

The crystalline airy pavilions and pagodas

were beset with jewels and agates,

a huge jewel on the spire,

shining golden lights.

I saw a holy giant

sitting in the middle of a main hall

the purple-gold flame, flashed around his body,

which filled with the whole majestic main hall.

Full-bodied fragrance filled the hall

like a cup of refreshing wine.

Solemn expression was merciful and joyful,

a huge book was in his hand.

The hall was full of men and women

listening quietly to the psalms of the saints,

the lotuses were floating in the sky

where the smiling giants sat.

The golden light poured down from the sky

bathing the whole of this crystal kingdom.

The jewels above the giant towers-

the golden suns.

The golden walls of a golden tower

were carved with the lines of golden words I had glimpsed-

hovering around the dragons and phoenixes,

as if they were intonating the inspiring poems.

The smiling giants in the sky-

With wide halo flashing around their bodies,

were each dignified and tranquil,

floating in the golden translucent sky.

I flew over this crystal kingdom,

saw a vast golden mountain in the distance

sending out the brilliant lights in the sky

where the propitious clouds were blossoming.

This was a golden giant

sitting in the golden translucent sky

his body composed of thousands of millions of constellations

the golden sun rotating on his forehead.

He lit up the whole marvellous universe-

the kingdoms of heaven shone in the sky.

Here there was no the sky nor earth,

lights of pure gold emanated in every direction.

The smiling giants were sitting

on the gold-engraved pavilions.

The pavilions levitated in the translucent sky

shining the layers of purple-gold light.

A scene of multi-colored translucent mountains,

propitious clouds floating in the heavens,

large wonderful flowers blooming in the mountain peaks,

trees of pure light.

A river flowed from the sky

and with river bottom reflecting a layer of golden sand.

There were strange and beautiful birds and beasts

some like aerial phantoms.

This was a world of light.

Everything was made of light.

The divine light formed all things

and the golden paradises.

The golden giant-

shines the kingdoms of heaven within his body.

The cities of gold-

brilliant and fascinating in his bones.

I observed lines, words of incredible profundity

arranged into a huge book in the sky.

It seemed as if they were the bright stars

constituting a wonderous drawing.

There was a golden pavilion in the sky

guarded with behemoth dragons and phoenixes.

An old man with a whisk

waved to me and smiled in the pavilion,

I seem to be attracted by some sort of magic-

leisurely came to his side.

He told me the golden giant

was namely my great ancestor

This was an eternal palace-

There’s no concept of time here.

Holy light- was exactly the God.

What I witnessed was better than the heavens.

He pointed to the huge book in the sky

told me that it was the mystery of the universe.

The book contained magical wisdom,

created the countless worlds of gold.

He pointed to a pagoda in the sky,

told me that it was the temple of words.

The light turned into the sacred words,

and the words created the time of gold.

He held up a very large pearl

in which flashed the pictures (and all images).

He told me that it was the future time-

the embodiment of all the wonderful worlds.

He told me that it was another universe.

Still desiring to go to these paradises,

he gave me the magical pearl,

to let it be my future guide.

I said goodbye to the old holy man,

set afoot onto a new road towards the heavens again.

I sat in a golden pavilion-

lightly flew to the distant outer space…

02.09.1998

Yuan Hongri (born 1962) is a renowned Chinese mystic, poet, and philosopher. His work has been published in the UK, USA, India, New Zealand, Canada, and Nigeria; his poems have appeared in Poet’s Espresso Review, Orbis, Tipton Poetry Journal, Harbinger Asylum, The Stray Branch, Acumen, Pinyon Review, Taj Mahal Review, Madswirl, Shot Glass Journal, Amethyst Review, The Poetry Village, and other e-zines, anthologies, and journals. His best known works are Platinum City and Golden Giant. His works explore themes of prehistoric and future civilization.  

Yuanbing Zhang (b. 1974), is Mr.Yuan Hongi’s  assiastant and translator.He is a Chinese poet and translator, works in a Middle School, Yanzhou District , Jining City, Shandong Province, China. He can be contacted through his email-3112362909@qq.com.

黄金巨人

远红日

谁 坐在天上向我凝望

谁 坐在明天的黄金殿堂

谁 微笑着

手中的金杖

闪出耀眼的光芒

一道道闪电啊

在我头顶上交织

我走进了一座

时间的水晶长廊

我要打开

一扇扇黄金的大门

一行行太阳的词语

在空中向我歌唱

我要找到

那一部部黄金的诗卷

在新世纪的海岸

把黄金之城建造

白发红颜的老子

在云端向我微笑

一只翩翩的凤凰

衔来了一部金书

一行行玄妙的词语

迷醉了我的眼睛

一个个巨人的身影

从云中向我走来

七千万年的时光

在眼前悠悠浮现

一座座黄金的城市

簇拥着水晶的花园

蓝宝石的天空

闪出七彩的灵光

一座座碧玉的青山

飞翔着龙和凤凰

玲珑的宝塔

宏伟的金殿

一座座亭台楼阁

矗立紫红的云间

欢笑的少女

跨着七彩的鸾凤

一朵朵祥云

洒下缤纷的花朵

我打开一座金殿的大门

看到一排排黄金的书卷

一个周身光环的巨人

头顶一轮金色的太阳

他微笑着拿起一部部金书

朗诵了一首首神圣的诗篇

我陶醉于神奇美妙的词语

周身环绕起紫金的火焰

一朵金莲

在我脚下盛开

托起我的身体

飘出了金殿

一朵朵红云

在我身边飘过

我看到了天外

又一座黄金乐园

悠悠的钟声

向我召唤

一个个巨人

漫步在黄金花园

红宝石的天空

一轮轮太阳

像一朵朵金莲

开放在天上

醉人的花香

像甘醇的美酒

一棵棵黄金树

结满耀眼的钻石

一朵朵奇葩

盛开了千年

黄金的土地

嵌满了宝石

黄金的楼台

错落重叠

有人在对弈

有人在闲谈

古雅的衣裳

巨大的身材

神奇的眸子

欢喜自在

一只只白鹤

飞翔空中

一只只鸾凤

悠然啼鸣

我来到了一位老者身旁

他仿佛正在把我等待

在那黄金的楼阁之上

他打开了一只古老的剑匣

一柄闪闪发光的古剑

镌刻一些玄古的词语

清澈透明像一道闪电

隐隐泛出紫红的花纹

他告诉我一部玄奥的史诗

这柄剑来自九亿万年

亿万颗太阳把它炼成

它是一把太阳的神剑

他能穿透时间的岩石

打开一层又一层云天

让神圣之火熔炼天地

化成一座座黄金乐园

老者的双眸古奥深沉

隐隐闪耀欢喜的光焰

他让我带上这把神剑

飞向新的黄金乐园

巨大的金莲悠悠飘荡

我又飞过了万里云天

一座座巨大的金字塔

赫然出现在我的眼前

山岳般的巨人

在塔前走动

那黄金的巨塔

比山岳更高大

黄金的巨树

像一座森林

矗立在空中

结满了星辰

五彩的祥云

是巨大的鸟儿

在白银的天空

欢喜地啼鸣

我来到了一座金塔之前

一扇大门向我敞开

一群金发碧眼的巨人

微笑着坐在宏大的殿堂

一位神圣巨大的老者

口中念诵奇特的语言

这圣殿画满了神奇的符号

还有一幅幅巨大的神像

殿内充满银白的光明

盛开一朵朵巨大的古葩

一阵阵奇妙动听的钟声

让人把时间顿然全忘

我听到了一部远古的诗篇

它们写自亿万年前

讲述一个个巨人时代

创造了一个个圣洁的天国

他们的智慧神圣伟大

洞明宇宙的过去未来

他们在空中自由飞行

登上宇宙的亿万星球

他们让时间随心变化

可以通达另外的空间

让一块石头化成黄金

让黄金盛开朵朵鲜花

他们像是一轮轮太阳

可以喷发神圣的火焰

让火焰熊熊燃烧万物

化成他们想象的作品

他们登上一颗颗星球

创建了一座座黄金乐园

用那神奇古奥的智慧

建起了一座座白金城市

我看见一个个华丽的词语

在黄金的书卷上闪过

一团团神奇美妙的光环

在空中旋转像彩色的闪电

我来到另一个奇妙的天地

看到一座白金的巨厦

整个城市像一幅作品

静静地发出灿烂的白光

一座巨大的圆形广场

雕塑着一些奇异的作品

一个个身形高大的巨人

在街上悠然地来来去去

他们穿着奇特的服装

全身上下闪闪发光

他们脸上都含着微笑

男男女女都容貌姣好

他们说着奇妙的语言

像音乐一般迷人动听

他们有的乘着飞船

在天空无声地飞去飞来

我走进一座白金的巨厦

看到一座华丽的大厅

白金的墙壁镶嵌宝石

还有一排奇异的仪器

他们的眼睛像明亮的甘泉

穿着五光十色的衣裳

有的在那儿操纵仪器

有的在那儿轻声交谈

我看到一幅神奇的画儿

画着一颗颗巨大的星球

星球上矗立一座座城市

还有一座座水晶的花园

我打开一座水晶的大门

看到一群快乐的男女

他们轻声地唱着歌儿

手中一部部闪光的金书

巨大的圆桌上一簇簇鲜花

还有一杯杯金色的美酒

黄金的四壁闪闪发光

雕刻着各种奇妙的画图

我看到一位端庄的少女

她头上闪耀金色的光环

她穿着一件紫金的长裙

像一座雕塑美妙绝伦

书页上镌刻着古怪的词语

像一行行古老神奇的符号

每一本书都由黄金制成

又像是一块金色的水晶

我听懂了他们悦耳的歌声

他们在唱着神圣的爱情

他们在咏歌伟大的祖先

他们在述说宇宙的文明

他们的城市处处是花园

环绕一条条甘美的河流

整个大地是一块玉石

泥土是一层透明的金沙

我看到一些白亮的巨球

高高地悬浮在城市上空

那巨球发出耀眼的光明

把天地照得明亮如水晶

一座座高耸林立的巨厦

仿佛一整块白金雕成

空中飞翔着一只只鸽子

还有一些七彩的鸟儿

我看到一种奇特的列车

在空中神速地向前飞驰

一条条大街洁白明亮

看不见任何行驶的车辆

他们的身体异常强壮

做着一种奇妙的游戏

他们叠起一块块巨石

化成一些怪异的作品

仿佛一些巨大的眼睛

又像是一些古老的图腾

还有一些奇怪的飞鸟

浑身长满闪电的羽毛

我看到一对高大的恋人

他们乘着一只飞船

他们的目光宁静明亮

周身闪出七彩的光环

美妙的太空悠悠旋转

像一座巨大璀璨的水晶

我告别这座奇异的城市

奔向了一片金色的光明

一座座城市从空中闪过

我又飞过了一层层云天

我看到一个新奇的世界

五光十色的水晶之城

一座座高塔玲珑剔透

闪耀一颗颗五彩的明珠

一层层飞檐画满了龙凤

悬挂着一只只歌唱的金玲

大地是一座水晶的花园

一座座宫殿明澈晶莹

巨大的山峰像透明的宝石

林立着一棵棵金色的树木

我看到一个个高大的巨人

穿着一件件紫红的衣裳

他们头上都有一轮太阳

身体也闪耀一层层光环

他们端坐在一座座大殿

唱着一种动听的歌曲

有的在花园里悠悠漫步

有的在召唤空中的飞鸟

一座座水晶的亭台楼阁

镶嵌着宝石和玛瑙

那塔尖上一颗巨大的明珠

闪耀出一道道金色的光明

我看到一位神圣的巨人

坐在一座大殿的中央

他身上闪放紫金的火焰

充满了整座宏伟的大殿

浓郁的芳香飘满殿堂

像一杯沁人肺腑的美酒

庄严的表情慈悲欢喜

手上托着一部巨书

殿内坐满了男男女女

静静聆听圣者的诗篇

一朵朵莲花在天空漂浮

端坐一个个微笑的巨人

金色的光明从天空洒下

沐浴着整个水晶王国

那一座座巨塔之上的明珠

就是一轮轮金色的太阳

我看到一行行闪光的词语

刻满了一座金塔的金壁

周围环飞着一只只龙凤

仿佛在吟唱动人的诗篇

那空中微笑的一个个巨人

身体也闪放巨大的光环

他们一个个端庄宁静

漂浮在金色透明的天空

我飞越了这座水晶王国

看到了远方巨大的金山

在天空发出夺目的光芒

周围有一朵朵祥云绽放

那是一个金色的巨人

端坐在金色透明的天空

他的身体是亿万个星座

额头旋转着金色的太阳

他照亮了整个奇妙的宇宙

一座座天国闪耀空中

在这儿没有天空与大地

上下四方是纯金的光明

一座座黄金镌雕的楼阁

端坐一个个微笑的巨人

那楼阁悬浮透明的空中

闪耀一层层紫金的光明

一座座五彩透明的山峰

像一朵朵祥云漂浮天上

山峰上盛开巨大的奇葩

还有一颗颗光芒的树木

一条河流从空中流过

河底闪映出一层金沙

一些奇丽的飞禽走兽

也像是一些空中幻影

这是一个光的世界

一切都有光芒形成

神圣的光芒形成万物

和一座座黄金乐园

我看到的那个金色的巨人

体内闪耀一个个天国

我看到一座座黄金之城

在他的骨骼中灿烂迷人

我看到一行行巨形的词语

在天空排列成一部巨书

仿佛一颗颗明亮的星辰

构成了一个奇妙的画图

天空中一座黄金的楼阁

环飞一只只巨大的龙凤

一位手持拂尘的老者

在楼阁内向我招手微笑

我仿佛受到神奇的引力

悠然来到了他的身边

他告诉我那位金色的巨人

就是我的伟大的祖先

这是一座永恒的殿堂

在这儿没有所谓的时间

圣洁的光芒就是上帝

我看到的一切胜过天堂

他指着天空的那部巨书

告诉我那是宇宙的奥秘

那书中蕴含神奇的智慧

创造一个个黄金的世界

他指着天空的一座宝塔

告诉我那是词语的圣殿

光芒化成了神圣的词语

词语创造了黄金的时间

他托起一颗硕大的明珠

里面闪映一幅幅画图

他告诉我这是未来的时间

都是一个个奇妙的世界

他告诉我这是另一个宇宙

我还要去那一座座乐园

他送给我这颗神奇的明珠

让它做我未来的导游

我告别这位神圣的老人

我又踏上一条新的天路

我坐上一座黄金的楼阁

飘飘飞向了遥远的天外

  1998.2.9于北京

  1998.2.11抄改

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine. Volume 6; Issue 1; January 2022

Poet of the Month: Wayne Russell

Summer Lies by DS Maolalai

The Fisherman by Heather Sager

Solitude by Kenneth Vincent Walker

Possum brain stew by Joshua Martin

Towering Twilight by Sanghpriya Gautam

Features; for Helen Hengxiang Liao by Yuam Changming

Of Their Noises And Vocalisations by Ndaba Sibanda

Tiger Island by Lorraine Caputo

Is the Poet Obsolete? The Role of the Artist in Society by Gary Beck

Poet of the Month: Wayne Russell

When We Surrender

Beneath the severed sky,

and where this will end

this gentle parade?

This sudden collapse of

humanity, this saddened

fade from view.

Those stars that have

shown for eons, only to

fade out at dawn.

Can you cast your fear of

the end into the beckoning

sea?

Oh that salty grave, that

soft mortal veil!

Closing, in mock surrender,

venturing into the unknown.

In Exile

Falling to the dirt

majestic sway and

ramble of bones.

We have loved all and

now it’s time to bid our

final farewells.

A wolf can be heard

howling in lonesome

forest and though we

could never hear that

plea, that cry for help

we stood and watched

while nothing happened

in our meager existence

within our collected

genius, with our guns

ablaze and scholars

peering icy down the

barrels of superior

intellect

nothing happened and

probably never will until

permanent silence erases

our stains away from this

wounded soil of tattered

earth.

Where The Blues Live

I can feel the emptiness within,

cascading into the pit of my soul.

Sometimes it fades for a while,

when I hear the sounds of the

peaceful arrival of nightfall.

Just know that she is there, to

share what is left of this life,

the blues subside and move

out for a while, but they are

never very far off, when a new

day dawns, and the madness

begins with the drudgery of

traffic and work and so many

people that are so angry;

at everyone and everything. 

Wayne Russell is or has been many things during his lifetime, he has been a creative writer, world traveler, graphic designer, former soldier, and former sailor. Wayne has been widely published in both online and hard copy creative writing magazines. From 2016-17 he also founded and edited Degenerate Literature. In late 2018, the editors at Ariel Chart nominated Wayne for his first Pushcart Prize for the poem Stranger in a Strange Town. In addition; he was nominated for Best of the Net via the editor at The Abyss. “Where Angels Fear” is his debut poetry book published by Guerrilla Genesis Press.

Summer Lies by DS Maolalai  

on the city  

like a saucer,  

and a sliced pile  

of browning- 

and clammy- 

skinned apples. heat;  

this shifting miasma  

of a shit-thick  

and biteable air.  

flies hum, and I 

get up from my desk 

and walk to the corner, 

turning the plastic  

of fanblades.  

the air shifts,  

mixes itself, 

makes a hot soup 

of horseshit 

and pours it  

to texture, 

like kicking  

about on a bed 

of wild apples 

and making  

the cold earth 

uncomfortable. 

DS Maolalai has been nominated nine times for Best of the Net and seven times for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry has been released in two collections, “Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden” (Encircle Press, 2016) and “Sad Havoc Among the Birds” (Turas Press, 2019).  

The Fisherman by Heather Sager

The man

with the gaunt, wind-burnt face

Head bowed down

Head of curls

Wrists wrinkled by sun

The time he spent

manning his boat

on the churlish sea

off the rocky California coast

I visited his house in the hills

Yard with chickens

The small house

with the tin roof,

the rain buckets

The green hills echoed around us

like an ocean

Heather Sager lives in Illinois, USA. Her most recent poetry appears in Fahmidan Journal, Magma Poetry, Version (9) Magazine, The Orchards Poetry Journal, Red Wolf, Trouvaille Review, Lothlorien Poetry Journal, and more. Recent fiction appears in The Fabulist and elsewhere.

Solitude by Kenneth Vincent Walker

It takes fortitude to

Endure such solitude.

I’ve grown accustomed

To its long dogged face.

Though I’ve never been

Here before, I have been

Here before. It’s become

My home, my silent place.

The bustle of the world

Has no bearing here and

Neither do the wiles of,

So-called, civilized man.

I hold the sand in my hand

Releasing it into the breeze

Just to watch it swirl from

My grasp into the expanse

And beyond into eternity.

Kenneth Vincent Walker is a “New Formalist” poet, spoken word artist, performer and author of Borderline Absurd (An Exercise in Rhyme and Reason), published by Poem Sugar Press 2015.

Possum brain stew by Joshua Martin

Needle neck          time worn

     down to nub          stalled out

glacial ingestion               digestion

resisting arrest:::

                       heartburn

                       as you turn

, to shatter old age record book ,

          stubbing hook

          knees up & above

          rows of possum [brain stew];;;

stumbl,ing accusation mansion

               disapproved meltdown canister

, before long ,                accumulation uttered

                                      merciful prospects to

                                            [it]self,,, then

banish,ed bag[ful] of hiding.

Joshua Martin is a Philadelphia based writer and filmmaker, who currently works in a library. He is the author of the books combustible panoramic twists (Trainwreck Press), Pointillistic Venetian Blinds (Alien Buddha Press) and Vagabond fragments of a hole (Schism Neuronics). He has had numerous pieces published in various journals including Otoliths, M58, The Sparrow’s Trombone, Coven, Scud, Ygdrasil, RASPUTIN, Ink Pantry, and Synchronized Chaos. You can find links to his published work at joshuamartinwriting.blogspot.com.

Towering Twilight by Sanghpriya Gautam

The colors and the spread,

Melancholy and the rest,

Sighs make notes of every flickering coil.

The wind is subtle,

It shall remain subtle,

Make the music box play it’s vital tune.

The harping melody

Shades towers, the twilight.

The eyes smothers in vacuum

Rising towers.

Towering twilight.

No wind to tumult.

Sanghpriya Gautam is an aspiring poet who is trying to find life’s meaning in between the leaves through the busyness of life. He has done his MPhil in English Literature and is currently pursuing Ph.D in English Literature.

Features; for Helen Hengxiang Liao by Yuam Changming

Not coincidentally, I have met many a person

With a strong appearance of a lower species

For instance, one school mate of mine carries

The features of a rabbit, another close relative

Those of a horse, a colleague of a familiar dog

An acquaintance of a hedgehog, a fifth of a

Snake, a sixth of a pig, a rooster, a rat, a water

Buffalo, a donkey, a goat or chimpanzee &

Each seems fated to fall within or without some

Chinese zodiac year

  While my wife often

Looks like a nasty cat, she says my face oftener

shows all the hideousness of a demon, as if to re-

Mind her like every other fellow human, I was

Born in an extra year of Satan though we were

All created equal in His image

Yuan Changming hails with Allen Yuan from poetrypacific.blogspot.ca. Credits include Pushcart nominations besides appearances in Best of the Best Canadian Poetry (2008-17) & BestNewPoemsOnline, among others. Recently, Yuan published his eleventh chapbook Limerence, and served on the jury for Canada’s 44th National Magazine Awards (poetry category).

Of Their Noises And Vocalisations by Ndaba Sibanda

a parrot is pretty, 

and probably prudent &

peculiar because it talks!

come to think of it,

the above stanza has five Ps,

perhaps a parrot says: I`m a person?

I wonder why a swan cries

while a snail munches & maybe…

maybe that`s why a linnet chuckles?

How I wish I could see a rooster`s

internal clock that makes it envision

sunrise, a day-to-day hunt for food

and of course, territorial  protection!

a rooster crows a wake-up in the morn,

& the vim for its day & nightly crows?

a kangaroo chortles, as if to say,

your hearing ,sight & hopping abilities

are not a patch on mine, you`re game!

The other day I heard a kangaroo boast:

I can hop 25 feet, come in several sizes

& shapes, use my tail as my fifth leg!!  

I guess it`s not a wise idea to sneak

into a hideout with a flashy frog since

it croaks, & a petty pig that snarls,

but call to mind, it can tell you

how it is smarter than a dog

that barks, that it can’t sweat!

why does a hyena laugh?

strange as it may sound, by virtue

of a sense of frustration & insecurity,

One day I said: enough of domestic noises

and vocalisations, because  a horse was

neighing ,a donkey braying, a cow mooing:moo!

a goat lowing:maa! , a dog howling: owooooooo!

a content cat purring, meowing, a duck quaking,

a cackling chicken after laying an egg, what a tune,  

after saying enough of the egg song, I headed

for the forest, a mannerless mosquito tingled

me before buzzing & whining away, damn!,

evading my swat by  the skin of its proboscis,

how could it bite me to obtain protein that

it needs in order to lay its eggs? more what?

that meant more mosquito bites in the future,  

in the wilderness a quail called, a lion roared, 

a hapless hare squeaked , a cricket chirped,

a monkey chattered like a tireless gossip,

so much so that an okapi let out  ….yes

a mocking, maddening cough while,

a giant alligator appeared & bellowed,

& if that did not get me crying & cringing,

the elephant`s trumpeting saw my feet fly away!        

Ndaba has authored 24 published books and coauthored more than 100 published books. Sibanda is the author of Cabinet Meetings, The Immigrant With A Difference, Notes, Themes, Things And Other Things, The Gushungo Way, Sleeping Rivers, Love O’clock, The Dead Must Be Sobbing, Football of Fools, Cutting-edge Cache, Of the Saliva and the Tongue, When Inspiration Sings In Silence, The Way Forward, Sometimes Seasons Come With Unseasonal Harvests, As If They Minded: The Loudness Of Whispers, This Cannot Be Happening :Speaking Truth To Power, The Dangers  Of Child Marriages: Billions Of Dollars Lost In Earnings And Human Capital, The Ndaba Jamela and Collections and Poetry Pharmacy. His work is featured in The Anthology House, in The New Shoots Anthology, and in The Van Gogh Anthology, and A Worldwide Anthology of One Hundred Poetic Intersections. Some of Ndaba`s works are found or forthcoming in  Page & Spine,  Peeking Cat, Piker Press , SCARLET LEAF REVIEW , Universidad Complutense de Madrid, the Pangolin Review, Kalahari Review ,Botsotso, The Ofi Press Magazine, Hawaii Pacific Review, Deltona Howl, The song is, Indian Review, Eunoia Review, JONAH magazine, Saraba Magazine, Poetry Potion, Saraba Magazine,  The Borfski Press, Snippets, East Coast Literary Review, Random Poem Tree, festival-of-language and Whispering Prairie Press. Sibanda has received the following nominations: the national arts merit awards (NAMA), 2016 Mary Ballard Poetry Chapbook Prize, The Best of the Net Prose and the Pushcart Prize.

Links:

https://www.pagespineficshowcase.com/ndaba-sibanda.html.

https://ndabasibanda.wordpress.com/2017/03/26/first-blog-post/.

Tiger Island by Lorraine Caputo

In the bright afternoon sun 

            cormorants swoop above 

                        the silver-lamé water 

The tide washes high 

            swirling away from the base 

                        of a red lava cliff 

A magnolia clings to its face 

            digging its gnarled roots deep 

                        into the black-streaked rock 

The white flowers scatter the 

            slope & beige sand 

                        with a sweet perfume 

Lorraine Caputo is a documentary poet, translator and travel writer. Her works appear in over 250 journals on six continents; and 18 collections of poetry – including On Galápagos Shores (dancing girl press, 2019) and Escape to the Sea (Origami Poems Project, 2021). She also authors travel narratives, articles and guidebooks. In 2011, the Parliamentary Poet Laureate of Canada honored her verse. Caputo has done literary readings from Alaska to the Patagonia. She journeys through Latin America, listening to the voices of the pueblos and Earth.   

Is the Poet Obsolete? The Role of the Artist in Society by Gary Beck

The role of the artist in society has changed dramatically at various times in recorded western history. One of the earliest notable exemplars of the reputable place that a poet occupied in society is Aeschylus, who did his public duty in 490 b.c., when he fought against the Persians at the battle of Marathon, participating in the struggle for survival of the democratic polis, Athens.

The options of the artist diminished rapidly with the growth of empires, since the role of the artist is not vital to the existence of the state. For almost two millennia, the normal pattern of life for the artist was dependency on patrons, sponsors, or commissions. The exceptions were the select few born to privilege, for example, Byron, who gave his life for Greek freedom, perishing in 1824 at Missolongi, during the Ottoman siege. During this span, the artists outside the system led difficult lives and were fortunate to practice their art, however difficult the conditions.

The Industrial Revolution diversified the control of wealth by the lords of power, bringing forth a new class of financial barons, who turned to the arts in imitation of their betters. Suddenly artists were able to create their work without it being pre-sold, consequently they were no longer mere craft-persons. Many became personages of some stature in the eyes of the new prosperous middle-class society.

From the 1870’s on, some artists had a world view that allowed them to look beyond their individual discipline, as they searched for a more significant role in the life around them. Poets patriotically enlisted in World War I, and the British poets in particular wrote about the horror they experienced. The poets who dutifully went to war in World War II returned quietly and never really developed a public identity. The crisis for American poets began in the early stages of the Cold War. American painters skyrocketed to world acclaim, fame, fortune, while the poets composed in relative obscurity. More and more poets sought a modicum of security, finding shelter in universities far from public recognition and reward.

In a dynamic American cultural revolution, every art form from the 1960’s on, offered the possibility of wealth and status to the artist, except poetry. Poetry had no opera houses, concert halls, museums, galleries, or mass-market publishers to attract large audiences. But the poets now were college-educated and with a few exceptions, such as the Beats, led obscure lives in colleges. The artificial atmosphere comforted the isolated wordsmiths with the illusion of accomplishment, reaching small groups of students, readers of poetry periodicals, and miniscule audiences attending poetry readings.

Poetry in America experienced an identity crisis. The anti-Vietnam war movement in the late 1960’s firmly closed the portals on the topic of war, mankind’s most consequential activity, as a suitable subject. Virtually all American poets were liberals and in all good conscience opposed war, so the government became the enemy.  Since the poets mostly could not identify the capitalist owners of America, they scorned the system of flawed representative government and retreated further into safe niches.  Internal revelations and lurid exposés of parental abuse became valid subject matter, transforming the nature of poetry into microcosmic excursions, rather then explorations of big issues.

In an era of uncertainties and dangerous conflicts, domestic and foreign, there is no designated role for the artist in American society. The very concept of training poets in college, an environment that discourages extremes and negates any natural inclination to action, leaves the poet adrift in a world that dismisses the practitioners of passivity.

The poet travels towards his or her destination, a journey of creation of what should be a meaningful body of work, through a haphazard combination of education, exposure and personal preferences. This occurs in an unstructured process that makes the accomplishments fortuitous. In medicine or engineering, students are taught and trained by measurable standards and the results are assessable. Even acting, the most superficial of the performing arts, which lacks the stringent requirements of music or dance, has more predictable goals than poetry. The poet’s path could be adventurous, since it explores an uncharted wilderness without landmarks or traveler’s aids, but it will be a dismal voyage for the timid.

Poetry, once the preeminent literary art, has been supplanted by mass market commercial fiction. The authors of novels have become far more prominent than any poet, whose limited possibilities of achievements are determined by effort, talent, and coincidence. Rarely is anything meaningful achieved without a mentor, the sponsorship of a like-minded network, or a supportive artistic community. The poet can be susceptible to a stifling tendency to huddle together in protective enclaves, rather than move in the sphere of the world at large.

The poet must learn to expand his or her perception of existence and enlarge their scope of interest, or risk becoming inconsequential in this demanding life. There is an urgent need to reach out to diverse audiences, prisoners, seniors, the culturally underserved, and most important, to youth, not to make them poets, but to introduce them to a broader view of life. With proper instruction, poetry is the most accessible and cost-effective way to reach large numbers of youth. The constriction of the classroom rarely develops confidence in youth, the quality that allows them to choose who they will grow up to be. The poet can help launch venturesome journeys for youth that will promote their contribution to the future of our society.

It is implausible that America will produce warrior-poets who will fight on tomorrow’s battlefields of freedom. But those poets who wish to participate in the life of their times, participate in a grander arena of creativity, design a meaningful role for themselves in their society, must outreach to needy and deprived audiences.  The poet’s efforts will enrich their audiences, who in turn will reward those poets who are receptive with the great satisfaction derived from serving humanity.

Gary Beck has spent most of his adult life as a theater director and worked as an art dealer when he couldn’t earn a living in the theater. He has also been a tennis pro, a ditch digger and a salvage diver. His original plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes and Sophocles have been produced Off Broadway. His poetry, fiction and essays have appeared in hundreds of literary magazines and his published books include 28 poetry collections, 11 novels, 3 short story collections, 1 collection of essays and 2 books of plays. Published poetry books include:  Dawn in Cities, Assault on Nature, Songs of a Clerk, Civilized Ways, Displays, Perceptions, Fault Lines, Tremors, Perturbations, Rude Awakenings, The Remission of Order, Contusions and Desperate Seeker (Winter Goose Publishing. Forthcoming: Learning Curve and Ignition Point). Earth Links, Too Harsh For Pastels, Severance, Redemption Value and Fractional Disorder (Cyberwit Publishing). His novels include Extreme Change (Winter Goose Publishing). and Wavelength (Cyberwit Publishing). His short story collections include: A Glimpse of Youth (Sweatshoppe Publications). Now I Accuse and other stories (Winter Goose Publishing) and Dogs Don’t Send Flowers and other stories (Wordcatcher Publishing). Collected Essays of Gary Beck (Cyberwit Publishing). The Big Match and other one act plays (Wordcatcher Publishing). Collected Plays of Gary Beck Volume 1 and Three Comedies by Aristophanes translated, then directed by Gary Beck (Cyberwit Publishing). Gary lives in New York City.

 

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine; Volume 5; Issue 12; December 2021

Poet of the Month: Ndaba Sibanda

Spoons by CL Bledsoe

Passion by Edward Lee

An End by Edward Lee

A Dangerous Journey by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

I Return Always to Taste it Always by Shola Balogun

The Trinity by Thomas M. McDade

Phantom by David Estringel

High on Orion by Bruce McRae

The Cookie Crumbles by Paula Hackett

Poet of the Month: Ndaba Sibanda

A Dance With Nature And Life

They thirsted for a touch of freshness

A touch to wash away their dryness  

A new week ushered in: Sunday morning greeted them in style

A pleased pair of ears received pattering sounds: a dream shower

It poured down and enriched the land. Nature`s love was live!

Land was quenched of thirst, plants healed of pangs of dehydration 

Rivers roared in celebration, dams hugged inflows in humming ways

Farmers were ready to farm, fauna and flora flourished as if feted  

Cut Down

They bought lawn mower after lawn mower

as if they had lots of cash or they had grassland  

yet they wanted to bid on government contracts

to cut the unkempt hair of government officials!

They brought razor blade after razor blade 

as if they wanted to cut the long nails of officials

yet all they sought to do was to move from shop

to shop in order to cut down the prices of goods! 

An Orgy Of Bondage And Plundering  

He had an insatiable hunger for all things

That clanked like capitals and cartels  

He had the disorder of grabbing all—

And a compulsion to cheap labor 

His cluster, his colony and all

Were founded on captivity

Oh Africa, oh dear Africa

You surely don’t want

 Or warrant any pain

And a rain of drain

Anymore, anytime 

For an official’s gain  

Ndaba Sibanda has contributed to the following anthologies: Its Time, Poems For Haiti- a South African anthology, Snippets ,Voices For Peace and Black Communion. He edited Free Fall (2017). The recipient of a Starry Night ART School scholarship in 2015, Sibanda is the author of Love O’clock, The Dead Must Be Sobbing and Football of Fools. His work is featured in The New Shoots Anthology, The Van Gogh Anthology edited by Catfish McDaris and Dr. Marc Pietrzykowski, Eternal Snow, A Worldwide Anthology of One Hundred Poetic Intersections with Himalayan Poet Yuyutsu RD Sharma scheduled for publication in Spring/Summer 2017 by Nirala Press and Seeing Beyond the Surface Volume II.

Spoons by CL Bledsoe

A fuzzy-headed daisy, shocking the humus

of my little life, the eye is drawn and can’t

help but delight in your color.

I set down the corpse of my long-dead world,

to better see you tumble across the living

room. Your wrists are thinner

than my hopes. I hope you never understand

any of this. Just know that when you wake,

it’s enough, and when you sleep,

the quiet holds its breath so as not to disturb. 

You say, “I don’t want to learn right now!”

When I try to tell you stories

of the dead, though living. Later, you settle

into the back seat and say, “Tell me a story

about the time Aunt Cookie

dug a pool in the yard with spoons.” I dodge

potholes, interjecting plot points with curses

and tell a story about the woods

I used to cry in. You deserve more than the dying

world I’ve given you. But it’s all we have.

Let’s make a new one.

CL Bledsoe’s latest poetry collection is Trashcans in Love. His latest short story collection is The Shower Fixture Played the Blues. His latest novel is The Funny Thing About… Bledsoe lives in northern Virginia with his daughter and blogs, with Michael Gushue, at https://medium.com/@howtoeven.

   

                                                    Passion by Edward Lee


Your beauty shattered
the air in my lungs,
leaving me speechless,
forced to communicate
with my fingers
on your pale skin;

you answered me,
your breath drawing deeply,
repeatedly, with a song silently,
endlessly sung.



Edward Lee’s poetry, short stories, non-fiction and photography have been published in magazines in Ireland, England and America, including The Stinging Fly, Skylight 47, Acumen and Smiths Knoll.  His debut poetry collection “Playing PoohsticksOnHa’Penny Bridge” was published in 2010. He is currently working towards a second collection.

He also makes musical noise under the names Ayahuasca Collective, Lewis Milne, Orson Carroll, Blinded Architect, Lego Figures Fighting, and Pale Blond Boy.

His blog/website can be found at https://edwardmlee.wordpress.com.

An End by Edward Lee

        for PW

And that is it,

isn’t it, your life ends,

but our lives continue on,

days falling into nights,

nights renewing into days,

always, even as we wish

for time to slow, stop,

for just a moment, an hour,

a day, some amount

of time so we might catch our breath,

hold it, fall into senselessness,

that the pain of your absence

might recede from our hearts,

that we might know some of the peace

you now know, pain no longer curling

your being, your very soul,

that we might think of you

without tears staining our breath,

that we might grief

without grieving, and smile

without guilt, or regret.

Edward Lee’s poetry, short stories, non-fiction and photography have been published in magazines in Ireland, England and America, including The Stinging Fly, Skylight 47, Acumen and Smiths Knoll.  His debut poetry collection “Playing PoohsticksOnHa’Penny Bridge” was published in 2010. He is currently working towards a second collection.

He also makes musical noise under the names Ayahuasca Collective, Lewis Milne, Orson Carroll, Blinded Architect, Lego Figures Fighting, and Pale Blond Boy.

His blog/website can be found at https://edwardmlee.wordpress.com

A Dangerous Journey by Edilson Afonso Ferreira 

Sometimes I venture to make a risky journey.

I go to the past, long ago, distant and perilous.

The road I take has been built entirely by me,   

in very hard a way no one at least dreams of.

Rough a path and full of so many deviations,

that even me, well used to, I go so timorous.  

Now, I see that there were no other choices,

for only this way would lead me where I am.  

Where and what I must be ever since I was.

In this visit, I see friends, lovers, enemies,

grandfathers and cousins, see also myself.

Then, undoubted alive, they talk to me,

ask for news and soon we are laughing,  

like old comrades absent for so long. 

On leaving, one or other intend to follow me,

but I don’t feel confident and go home alone. 

I suspect that past is jealous of its deeds

and always hides how has weaved them. 

I think it must be visited as few times

as one is capable of.

Edilson Afonso Ferreira, 75 years, is a Brazilian poet who writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Largely published in international journals in print and online, he began writing at age 67, after retirement as a bank employee. Nominated for The Pushcart Prize 2017, his first Poetry Collection, Lonely Sailor, One Hundred Poems, was launched in London, November 2018.  He is always updating his works at http://www.edilsonmeloferreira.com.

I Return Always to Taste it Always by Shola Balogun

You are the muse ink of my poem song.

Let me be your poet prophet to tell

The glorious coming of your glorious laughter.

Shola Balogun, poet,playwright and filmmaker has been featured as a guest writer and contributor,especially in the areas of poetry, post colonial studies and dramatic criticism to various magazines,anthologies and journals. He studied Theatre Arts at the University of Ibadan. Balogun lives in Lagos,Nigeria.

The Trinity by Thomas M. McDade

A cap and tweed coated, wiry gent boards the train

nose bleeding, hand over a blackened eye he holds

out an empty coffee cup to catch contributions

no words accompany phlegmy volleys of “Ahem”   

smiling as coins drop, he tilts and bobbles thanks


A gum-chewing troubadour strums an electric guitar

that’s the tint of the panhandler’s blot, a tad shinier

a Yank in a yachting lid and a mismatched suit

pumps his cane as if once the song and dance kind

is the pretty, pixie-headed arm jewelry a stowaway?

She looks more mistress than daughter or wife

her breathy accent conjures a quaint crepe shop

close your eyes and poof: breathe Left Bank air

as they dawdle along navigating the crosswalks

the crowded sidewalks she’s nearly carrying him

Leaning against a wall by a fragrant flower stall

she holds a lacy handkerchief to his allergy flow

his boating cap drops top first attracting a medley

of coins and himself, mistress, wife or daughter

slide warily down to share laughs bawdy or not

Thomas M. McDade is a 73 year-old resident of Fredericksburg, VA. He is a graduate of Fairfield University, Fairfield, CT. McDade is twice a U.S. Navy Veteran.

Phantom by David Estringel 


On eery nights as tonight,
Your phantom plagues me.
A scintilla of buried delight
That only the graves see.
Your eyes beset my soul
As if to a beast I’ve been sold.
You’ve become a raucous ghoul,
And I find an abode in your cold. 
A haughty banshee’s rage resides in you,
But how oblivious you are.
Cadaverous face and feral shadow too,
And a glimmer of purity shrieks from afar.

David Estringel is an avid reader, poet, and writer of fiction, creative non-fiction, & essays. His work has been accepted and/or published by Specter Magazine, Literary Juice, Foliate Oak Magazine,Terror House Magazine, Expat Press, 50 Haikus, littledeathlit, Down in the Dirt Magazine, Route 7 Review, Setu Bilingual Journal, Paper Trains Literary Journal, The Elixir Magazine, Soft Cartel,Harbinger Asylum, Briars Lit, Open Arts Forum, Cajun Mutt Press, Former People Journal, The Ugly Writers, Writ in Dust, Cephalopress, Twist in Time, Merak Magazine, Salt Water Soul, Cherry House Press, Subterranean Blue Poetry, Printed Words, Sunflower Sutras, Tulip Tree Publishing, Salt, PPP Ezine, Digging through the Fat, Haiku Journal, and The Good Men Project. He is currently a Contributing Editor (fiction) at Red Fez, Lead Editor/columnist at The Good Men Project, and an editor/writer at The Elixir Magazine. David can be found on Twitter (@The_Booky_Man) and his website at http://davidaestringel.com.

High on Orion by Bruce McRae

November’s darkened star,

winter threatening violence,

winds playing with knives,

floods coming to cleanse the soil,

another cord of wood stacked

and windows shuttered,

hunger unsettling the animals.

Once a year the world turns,

leaning back, slanting west.

Once a year Orion rises.

His stars bloodied.

His belt loosened.

The disgraced hunter come

to slaughter the beasts of the Earth.

Bruce McRae, a Canadian musician currently residing on Salt Spring Island BC, is a multiple Pushcart nominee with over 1,400 poems published internationally in magazines such as Poetry, Rattle and the North American Review. His books are ‘The So-Called Sonnets (Silenced Press), ‘An Unbecoming Fit Of Frenzy’ (Cawing Crow Press) and ‘Like As If” (Pski’s Porch), Hearsay (The Poet’s Haven).

The Cookie Crumbles by Paula Hackett

Fragrant, beautiful,

with secret ingredients

that make her a wonder.

But then there’s a wearing away,

not like a precious stone

that time embraces,

but with rodents carrying her away on their backs. At times whole families

taking slivers, chunks, slices,

or a crumb for the rogue insect.

The cookie crumbles

as the strangers feast.

.

Paula Hackett’s poetry is influenced by her life experiences growing up in Berkeley during the vibrant and explosive 60’s. The daughter of novelist Paul Hackett, she studied under John Beecher, Angela Davis and Grover Sales. She has written lyrics in collaboration with her brother John Hackett, for many great jazz composers including Teddy Edwards, John Handy, Ivan Lins, Joe Sample, Eddie ‘Cleanhead’ Vinson, and Cedar Walton. Her life long love of jazz is reflected in her many poems about musicians and in her CDs with pianists Rudi Wongozi and Connie Crothers. Her discography is represented in the images and links below.

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure EzineVolume 5; Issue 11; November 2021

Decomposing Reality by James G Piatt

Sunday in the Hills by Yash Seyedbagheri

Light Reading by John Grey

Forgive me, I can’t be general by D S Maolalai

From the Shore by Wayne Russell

Illusion by Fabrice Poussin

Oneness by Mohammad Saif

A Christ very little remembered by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Of Heirlooms and Linens by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Heck Hog by J D Nelson

Little Hills of Esigodini by Ndaba Sibanda

Decomposing Reality by James G Piatt

Arriving in the late hours of 

an iron colored and eerie night, 

rusting symbols 

covered with an aging patina of dark contradictions 

whispered across forgotten memories 

causing screams of agony: 

My crystal poems 

written in scarlet ink, 

were shattered by metamorphic hammers 

pounding words of grief 

into shattered synonyms, 

causing dark allegories to become lost 

inside the cold weariness of my aging bones. 

While walking in a cemetery, 

images of broken tombstones 

in a field of unknown graves 

entered my consciousness 

and trails of tears melted into the cemetery’s soil 

filling it with sorrow. 

I sensed once forgotten memories 

being awakened in my brain, 

and sharp pangs of grief  

started piercing my collapsing mind 

in a fit of decomposing reality.

James, a Best of Web nominee and three time Pushcart nominee, has had four collections of poetry; “Solace Between the Lines,” “Light,” “Ancient Rhythms,” and “The Silent Pond,” over 1525 poems, five novels and 35 short stories published worldwide.  He earned his BS and MA from California State Polytechnic University, SLO, and his doctorate from BYU.

Sunday in the Hills by Yash Seyedbagheri

a white truck roars up a hill

and then another, this one black

lights break through the snow

trucks whooshing past

laughter and invectives break the sky

license plates from hidden counties

whipping past

with Bud Lights

armpits and stale feet

and clouds billowing in your exhausted face

they disappear around a bend and another bend

the roar eaten by the pines

flakes flutter

growing

like ballerinas in rehearsal

the sky is still 

Yash Seyedbagheri is a graduate of Colorado State University’s MFA program. His stories, “Soon,”  “How To Be A Good Episcopalian,” and “Tales From A Communion Line,” were nominated for Pushcarts. Yash’s work  has been published in The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Write City Magazine, and Ariel Chart, among others.

Light Reading by John Grey

Night knuckles down to its task,

devours the mountains,

fills in the valleys

with its own brand of black.

It doesn’t step around an object

like a current does a rock,

but swallows it whole,

the roads, the houses, the forests,

everything.

No need to wonder

if you’re to. be spared.

It’s already creeping up

on you from all sides,

including above and below.

For a while, you’ll resis.t

with consciousness.

But, given the choice,

I’d recommend light.


John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Orbis, Dalhousie Review and Connecticut River Review. Latest book, “Leaves On Pages” is available through Amazon.

Forgive me, I can’t be general by D S Maolalai

forgive me,

I can’t be general – what I write

are specific poems

and sometimes with names

of my friends.

I am not a painter

or any sort

of musician, not even

a dispassionate

reporter; at best

a diarist, placing days

on pieces of paper

for the benefit, I hope,

of someone else.

DS Maolalai has been nominated four times for Best of the Net and three times for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry has been released in two collections, “Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden” (Encircle Press, 2016) and “Sad Havoc Among the Birds” (Turas Press, 2019)

From the Shore by Wayne Russell

As my ship departs the comfort
of familiar shores, the emptiness
devours shadows of this endless
night, silence engulfs everything.

Alone again, water surrounds this
vessel, within the vast cradle of
darkness, I am eclipsed by silent
galaxies, on a parade of terrifying
hopelessness.

You’re standing on the shore, in a
shadowy silhouette, a memory too 
the world, dead left in the wake of
this ship that morphs, transparent,
and shattered into oblivion. 

Wayne Russell is or has been many things in his time upon this planet, he has been a creative writer, world traveler, graphic designer, former soldier, and former sailor. Wayne has been widely published in both online and hard copy creative writing magazines. From 2016-17 he also founded and edited Degenerate Literature. In late 2018, the editors at Ariel Chart nominated Wayne for his first Pushcart Prize for the poem Stranger in a Strange Town. “Where Angels Fear” is his debut poetry book published by Guerrilla Genesis Press.

 

 

Illusion by Fabrice Poussin

He screams in the surrounding prison

made of densest darkness at noon.

Blind to the light of a guiding star

as an apparition twirling in the air.

The words are sounds without form

arms extended he seeks contact.

If only the body could dissipate

and reach out to the end of this verse.

Pain transpires through a makeshift image

of a boy man with undefined existence.

Entity uncertain of a fate it floats

crushed by something invisible as space.

Seeking into every particle of the realm

silence reverberates its deathly response.

Alone here frozen in every place

desperation his only treasure.

Unrecognized the journey continues

a voice unheard a life unknown.

Hope has vanished into the night

yet the search must continue forevermore.

Fabrice Poussin teaches French and English at Shorter University. Author of novels and poetry, his work has appeared in Kestrel, Symposium, The Chimes, and many other magazines. His photography has been published in The Front Porch Review, the San Pedro River Review as well as other publications. 

Oneness by Mohammad Saif

You, who, with your pure solemnity,

Swore this chase

Have sailed a long way.

Following this fading trail,

Past apprehensions of alienation

And incalculable murk.

Meet me in a distant space of

Vivid thoughts, transcending time.

Where you shall find

An unrecognisable self

Of renewed you.

Mohammad Saif is currently working as a Visiting Faculty with Amity Institute of English Studies and Research, Amity University, and teaches English and Communication skills at undergraduate and postgraduate level. He earned Distinction in M.Phil. for his dissertation ‘A Study of Selected Narratives on the Tradition and Practice of Al-Hijama’. Driven by sheer alacrity and insatiable thirst for knowledge he seeks growth in the field of academia.

A Christ very little remembered by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

‘On Christ Cleansing the Temple, Wood by El Greco, c. 1570’

We surely must follow Christ, learn from him,

unquestionable master of love and tolerance.

Son of God, yet a brother, he bequeathed us

divine words and deeds that survive forever.

The way he loved us, great and pure,

no one had or has ever equally leveled.

His sacrifice on behalf of humanity,

that of then and of coming times,

unworthy and infidel ones, perhaps,

just by this,  

took him to redeem us from bitter destiny. 

But, aside from his Divinity, his grandeur,

do not forget the passage of Matthew 21-12,

when he entered the temple of his father.

Then, not by a conversation or dialogue,  

‘He cast out all them that sold and bought’,

 ‘overthrew the tables of the moneychangers’.

I love this Christ, so human and so brother,

who did not conceal his anger, as one of us.

By now, in our time, to honor our Lord,  

we have failed to call up one Saint Fury,

just like that day.

Edilson Afonso Ferreira , 76 years, is a Brazilian poet who writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Widely published in selected international journals in print and online, he began writing at age 67, after retiring as a bank employee. Nominated for The Pushcart Prize 2017, his first Poetry Collection, Lonely Sailor, One Hundred Poems, was launched in London in November of 2018.  He is always updating his works at www.edilsonmeloferreira.com.

Of Heirlooms and Linens by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Inside my parents’ lake house

after they’d moved on I unfolded

heirlooms and linens that summered

in my mother’s hope chest, having

been unopened for years on end,

the belongings inside waiting to

be reborn, now releasing scents

of cedar, valleys at my fingertips

of tawny silks, quilted geographies

sewn so lovingly by hand and their

terrain of textures. Prying deep

inside were scraps too gay to be

dust cloths and pretty sateen

bouquets. My great aunt loved

stitching little squares together

with anything she could find,

throwing nothing away; her

best handiwork left still intact

a crib-sized comforter pieced

together from petticoats for

her firstborn. I drape some of

her patchwork over my lap,

and like hand-me-downs,

they continue to wear on.

I slip on a prim coat my mother

had saved, still fragile as the

shadows outside my window.

When I’m done for the day

evening has gently come, and

catbirds and crickets begin to

sing their solitary song.

Bobbi Sinha-Morey’s poetry has appeared in a wide variety of places such as Plainsongs, Pirene’s Fountain,The Wayfarer, Helix Magazine, Miller’s Pond, The Tau, Vita Brevis, Cascadia Rising Review, Old Red Kimono, and Woods Reader. Her books of poetry are available at www.Amazon.com and her work has been nominated for Best of the Net in 2015, the Best of the Net 2018 Anthology Awards hosted by Sundress Publications, and the 2020 Best of the Net anthology. Her website is located at http://bobbisinhamorey.wordpress.com.

Heck Hog by J D Nelson

morning the toot wilhelm

ghost chicken for the goose of days

good luck soap

a seldom used machine

centipede realization

we can’t get that locking machine to weep

a lion was a bug sprout

not candle wax

the dumpster yes is a shining fox crouton



J. D. Nelson (b. 1971) experiments with words and sound in his subterranean laboratory. More than 1,500 of his poems have appeared in many small press publications, in print and online. He is the author of several collections of poetry, including Cinderella City (The Red Ceilings Press, 2012). Visit www.MadVerse.com for more information and links to his published work. Nelson lives in Colorado.

Little Hills of Esigodini by Ndaba Sibanda

fabulous sight

landforms snake up and down

in extraordinary humps

of Nature’s poise and pride,

breasts of land projecting

into charged saddles-                  

midwifed to gush out milk

of purity and tranquility;

the hills- though

small in size,

short in height-

lug and beam

a beauty that towers

the sky of my sensuousness;

their warmth appendages

the body with a nobility priceless,

like a cup of undiluted water,

they stand out undisturbed,

unchallenged by the ever-jerky

wheels of seasons and weather;

during gusty days their music

makes love to my ears with

a rare calmness-

l feel altogether like

abandoning my journey for them,

crowning them my beautiful infinity,

during sun-drenched days-

their seemingly little panorama,

drowns and dazzles my eyes into captivity;

an image of snug oases-

unparalleled greening of my soul,

they snuggle me all the way to the apex

of amity and stimulation…

they vacillate between ideal and real,

l relish to no end

their serrated depressions and passages

that feel me with a passion

beyond mere touch and tour,

they captivate my touch at will

l cannot give them a cursory look-

the harder l try to scuttle away

the further and so further

l gravitate into their cuddling glare;

they confer upon me the throne

of Nature’s dutiful and indebted admirer

of the stupendous dexterity of our Creator;

the little hills that dominate my dreams-

those that epitomise a hustle-free haven

for the breezy incubation and birth

of a romance and a love of a lifetime;

those are my little hills heal that  my soul,

they will define and refine my life

so that l get to appreciate the meaning

of dreams and days-

l am not surprised to hear that the

these hills are lovers’ haven,

the scenery  is just compelling,

the shrubs and trees ooze a lively life;

the serenity is so delightful that

it promotes a refreshing union of hearts;

they are like alternative therapies-

the remedies of matters of the heart,

the birds` chirping –mellow

mends troubled  souls-  

melts bitterness and rancour-

nurses and mesmerises the ears

beyond any measurable fears!

the shrubs and trees beget an aroma

that makes a mockery of artificial perfumes,

those hills heal my soul in a high manner!

Ndaba Sibanda is the author of Notes, Themes, Things And Other Things, The Gushungo Way, Sleeping Rivers, Love O’clock, The Dead Must Be Sobbing, Football of Fools, Cutting-edge Cache, Of the Saliva and the Tongue, When Inspiration Sings In Silence, The Way Forward, Sometimes Seasons Come With Unseasonal Harvests, As If They Minded:The Loudness Of Whispers, This Cannot Be Happening :Speaking Truth To Power, The Dangers  Of Child Marriages:Billions Of Dollars Lost In Earnings And Human Capital, The Ndaba Jamela and Collections and Poetry Pharmacy.  Sibanda’s work has received Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominations. Some of his work has been translated into Serbian.

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure EzineVolume 5; Issue 10; October 2021

April 10, 1815 by Michael Ceraolo

Heritage by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Coyote Dusk by William Doreski

Provincial by Gerard Sarnat

Risk-Reward Ratio by Robert Beveridge

Somewhere, Prometheus by Louis Faber

Lonely at Wedding by James Croal Jackson

Paradox by Mohammad Saif

A Red Bird’s Wings by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Yo soy el Fenix by Sergio A. Ortiz

Platinum City by Hongri Yuan

April 10, 1815 by Michael Ceraolo

In the Indonesian archipelago

the top three thousand feet of a mountain

was blown off,ejecting

smoke, ash, and acid into the atmosphere,

killing tens of thousands of people

and more than that number of animals

and causing massive devastation in the area

And the devastation was not limited

to the immediate area or time

The cloud of smoke and ash

would travel around the world

The next year would be known

in the Northern Hemisphere as

The Year without a Summer:

heavy snows in June

frosts in July and August

“the seasons . . .very unlike what they had formerly been”

“the most adverse to agriculture

which had ever been known”with

“No prospect of crops”

Some of the subsequent years would be almost as cold

And a few more people were now convinced

that smoke in the air could affect the weather

Michael Ceraolo is a 63-year-old retired firefighter/paramedic and active poet who has had two full-length books (Euclid Creek, from Deep Cleveland Press; 500 Cleveland Haiku, from Writing Knights Press) and has two more full-length books, Euclid Creek Book Two, and Lawyers, Guns, and Money, in the publication pipeline.

Heritage by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Many times, in the day to day, we came across

surprising and unpredictable events,

that leave us breathless and speechless.

Some sad, unwanted and hurtful ones, 

which we cannot understand its origins or reasons,

carried out by family, friends, even by ourselves.                                                             

We must also remember those, likewise unexpected,

that had brought happiness, joy, and well-being,      

which, without better judgment, we accounted

as if had been natural and fully deserved ones.  

Indeed, in the harvest we do every day,

we are used to abundance, sometimes to scarcity,  

healthy fruits alongside some sick ones.

We should always take into account

that have not been only we who have planted

what we are now reaping.   

It had been sowed by parents and grandparents,

also by everyone who preceded us. 

Really, it is the heritage we must honor,

interdependent as we are, in our common,

beloved, sometimes so suffering human race. 

Edilson Afonso Ferreira , 77 years, is a Brazilian poet who writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Widely published in selected international journals in print and online, he began writing at age 67, after retiring as a bank employee. Nominated for The Pushcart Prize 2017, his first Poetry Collection, Lonely Sailor, One Hundred Poems, was launched in London, in November of 2018. He is always updating his works at www.edilsonmeloferreira.com.

Coyote Dusk by William Doreski

Hear the coyotes howling,

urging the dark to arrive?

The small bones in your ears hurt

as primal fears parse the noise

into barely digestible bytes.

Yes, they began that gray chorus

soon after you left for Nashua

with the highway trying to warp

itself into a Moebius strip.

Yes, most drivers go crazy

when spring light decays in shades

of ecru the eye can’t process.

A wonder you got home alive

to hear the coyotes desiccate

the over-familiar distance

between the wooded horizon

and the post-glacial hills beyond.

The Spanish Revolution failed

or succeeded before our birth,

but the howling of coyotes

invokes the pack mentality

that drew martyrs to the flames.

Would you self-sacrifice to save

Picasso’s Guernica from grief

atonal as the end of the world?

You drove to Nashua to shop,

but the coyotes could explain

the carnivorous point of view

more clearly than the meat cutters

at the supermarket you favor.

We’d better get the groceries inside

before the coyotes finish

tuning up for a long pale night,   

their appetites so perfected

we might be tempted to imitate

by baring our secret fangs.


William Doreski has published three critical studies and several collections of poetry. His work has appeared in many print and online journals. He has taught at Emerson College, Goddard College, Boston University, and Keene State College. His most recent books are  Water Music and Train to Providence.  williamdoreski.blogspot.com

Provincial by Gerard Sarnat

view of current world

as First (us), Second (Commies)

well as Third (have-nots)

— condescending, out-of-date —

we all fight the COVID fall.

Gerard Sarnat won the Poetry in the Arts First Place Award plus the Dorfman Prize, and has been nominated for a handful of recent Pushcarts plus Best of the Net Awards. Gerry is widely published in academic-related journals (e.g., Universities of Chicago/ Maine/ San Francisco/Toronto, Stanford, Oberlin, Brown, Columbia, Harvard, Pomona, Johns Hopkins, Wesleyan, Penn, Dartmouth, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Baltimore) plus national (e.g., Gargoyle, Main Street Rag, New Delta Review, MiPOesias, American Journal Of Poetry, Parhelion, Clementine, pamplemousse, Red Wheelbarrow, Deluge, Poetry Quarterly, poetica, Tipton Journal, Hypnopomp, Free State Review, Poetry Circle, Buddhist Poetry Review, Poets And War, Thank You For Your Service Anthology, Wordpeace, Cliterature, Qommunicate, Indolent Books, Snapdragon, Pandemonium Press, Boston Literary Magazine, Montana Mouthful, Arkansas Review, Texas Review, San Antonio Review, Brooklyn Review, pacificREVIEW, San Francisco Magazine, The Los Angeles Review, Fiction Southeast and The New York Times) and international publications (e.g., Review Berlin, Voices Israel, Foreign Lit, New Ulster, Transnational, Southbank, Wellington Street Review). He’s authored the collections Homeless Chronicles: From Abraham to Burning Man (2010), Disputes (2012), 17s (2014), Melting the Ice King (2016). Gerry is a physician who’s built and staffed clinics for the marginalized as well as a Stanford professor and healthcare CEO. Currently he is devoting energy/ resources to deal with climate change justice. Gerry’s been married since 1969 with three kids plus six grandsons, and is looking forward to future granddaughters.

gerardsarnat.com

Risk-Reward Ratio by Robert Beveridge


This is where all the beer
in the world ends up, where
Oscar-winning actors fallen
on hard times congregate.
This is where the guy you
thought was your next door
neighbor, maybe a distant
cousin, turns out to be
a closet billionaire. This
is rock and roll subjugated
by the tumbler, pulled out
smooth, polished, ready
for the sterile display case.
This is the sanitized biopic
that turns a racist into a paragon
of inclusivity. This is Tabasco
in place of gochujang, Kamchatka
in place of Nic Cage. This is where
the pipe diverts, heads off
to sump straight into the sea.


Robert Beveridge (he/him) makes noise (xterminal.bandcamp.com) and writes poetry in Akron, OH. Recent/upcoming appearances in Red Coyote Review, Deep South Magazine, and Aromatica Poetica, among others.

 

 

Somewhere, Prometheus by Louis Faber

Chained to the great rock

atop Mt. Caucausus

did you dream of Epimetheas

somewhere below, did you foresee

Pandora, her evil gleam

reflected in the love struck eyes

of your brother, a gift of the Gods

not to be ignored despite your entreaties.

Was that the price of fire

secreted by the Gods

until stolen in your tube.

Didn’t you see the great cloud

rise quickly from the rubble

and glowing ash

of Hiroshima and Nagasaki,

the core settle into the earth

a hole in Chernobyl.

Were these the visions

that ate at you

plucking at your liver

from its philosophical aerie

your resolve returned

each day in the office

nestled into the New Jersey countryside.

You waited patiently

for your redemption

for the eagle of doubt

to be felled by logic

freeing your to pursue Irene.

We continue your quest

although the Gods

have grown bored with us

and Pandora has moved

to Afghanistan.

Louis Faber’s work has previously appeared in Exquisite Corpse, Rattle, Eureka Literary Magazine, Borderlands: the Texas Poetry Review, Midnight Mind, Pearl, Midstream, European Judaism, Greens Magazine, The Amethyst Review, Afterthoughts, The South Carolina Review and Worcester Review, among many others, and he has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

Lonely at Wedding by James Croal Jackson

nameless in a crowd
at table six
is the tableau of good
people but will
I remember them no
sometimes a lady wears a red
dress and it is the table
cloth and you will not dirty
your hands not with no
one dancing one is
dancing to these cliched
songs and my only friend
here knows it’s not about

me she’s the one
getting married the bartender
has my back offering
me champagne pop
this wine I consume
and wonder about good
decisions the groom’s dad
made a speech about
good decisions and personally
I wonder if this is a good
one he claims it is
this marriage
at least I have learned
this

James Croal Jackson (he/him/his) is a Filipino-American poet. He has a chapbook, The Frayed Edge of Memory (Writing Knights Press, 2017), and recent poems in DASHSampsonia Way, and Jam & Sand. He edits The Mantle (themantlepoetry.com). He works in film production in Pittsburgh, PA. (jamescroaljackson.com)

Paradox by Mohammad Saif

Disbelief, is it or inability?

A conundrum?

Endeavours to resolve,

with given complexity,

the intricacy

of this universe.

Is it then sardonic?

These pursuits and

unevenly matched failures,

to fathom

the depths of, simple,

docile emotions pressed

against absolute perplexity.

Mohammad Saif is currently working as a Visiting Faculty with Amity Institute of English Studies and Research, Amity University, and teaches English and Communication skills at undergraduate and postgraduate level. He earned Distinction in M.Phil. for his dissertation ‘A Study of Selected Narratives on the Tradition and Practice of Al-Hijama’. Driven by sheer alacrity and insatiable thirst for knowledge he seeks growth in the field of academia.

A Red Bird’s Wings by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

As light sifts down the hills

behind the barn, she sits with

her coffee cup watching

sparrows rest on the wire,

a red bird’s wing cutting

across her stare, the sunset

soaking into the iris of her

eye as she leans towards

her golden years. Now it is

July with its hot thick yellow

days and an owl feather

floating in a little pond;

a mare that still grazes

near the fence, head down,

content in sweet grass.

Her heart rises, framing

her life by the kitchen

window, the desert of

her dreams now so far

away, the closeness of

her family wrapped around

her every day, comforted

always be the voice of

someone dear.

Bobbi Sinha-Morey’s poetry has appeared in a wide variety of places such as Plainsongs, Pirene’s Fountain,The Wayfarer, Helix Magazine, Miller’s Pond, The Tau, Vita Brevis, Cascadia Rising Review, Old Red Kimono, and Woods Reader. Her books of poetry are available at www.Amazon.com and her work has been nominated for Best of the Net in 2015, the Best of the Net 2018 Anthology Awards hosted by Sundress Publications, and the 2020 Best of the Net anthology. Her website is located at http://bobbisinhamorey.wordpress.com.

Yo soy el Fenix by Sergio A. Ortiz

my multi colored feathers 

shine. Your jailers 

are no obstacle, it’s my 

nature to rise. 

El tiempo me dice,

A jugado tanto con el amor 

que ya no sabe amar. *

Camina, corre, cabalga.

Now what, where will you 

go from here?

¿A que nueva cárcel 

me desterrara? 

¿A qué otro silencio?

It pains me to know 

that tomorrow’s daylight 

might bring you tears. 

Niños del color 

de mis tristezas jugando 

frente al mar

en casa de cartón.* 

Your choice, not mine.

Make sure you don’t hurt 

yourself while trying 

to save me.

_____________

*He’s played so much with love

that he cannot love 

*What new prison will you exile me to? To what other silence

Am I being banished to?

*Children the color of my sadness playing in a cardboard house in front of the sea.

Sergio A. Ortiz is a retired, Educator, Bilingual-Gay PRican Poet, Human Rights Advocate. Pushcart nominee, Best of the Web, Best of the Net. He took 2nd place in the 2016 Ramón Ataz annual poetry competition, sponsored by Alaire Publishing House. He workshops his poetry in RatsAssReview workshop. Recent credits include Spanish audio poems in Parragon Press, South Florida Poetry Journal, RatsAssReview, The Maynard, and Spillwords. He is the Founder of Undertow Tanka Poetry Review now Undertow Poetry Review, La Resaca. His chapbook, Welcome To My Archipelago, will be published by Parragon Press.

Platinum City by Hongri Yuan

Translated by Manu Mangattu

Ah! Of iridescent gems of time

The heavenly road you paved light!

In a kingdom of stars,

I found my home.

In the golden cities,

I opened the gates of the city to the sun,

To behold the godly giants.

At the royal palace of the jewel

I read of prehistoric wonderful poems

The enormous, gorgeous ancient books.

Carved with the golden words

The wondrous strange mystery tales,

Made my eyes drunken.

I walked into the full new universes,

And saw the holy kingdoms:

Even before the earth was born

The erstwhile home of human history.

Across Time and Space in crystalline glitter

Stands this moment a platinum city –

The spaceships drifting leisurely,

Like the birds, resplendent in variegated hues.

In the crystal garden I saw

A crowd of youthful giants,

Their eyes were bright and glittering

In the aura of the body sparkle..

They sang happy songs

They danced a wonderful dance

Lanky boys and girls in pairs

As if to celebrate the splendid carnival.

I saw a circular edifice

High above the city.

Giving out white-bright lightnings.

Raised ground to fly into the quiet space.

A frame of platinum edifice

Creating a beautiful pattern.

The whole city is a circle

Arranged into a fine structure.​

Into a bright hall I went.

A strange instrument there I saw.

A huge screen hanging on the wall,

Displaying a golden space​.

Like bits of colourful crystal gemstones!

Resplendent with variegated colours of the city!

Those strange and beautiful high-rise buildings

A sight better than the myth of the world.

I saw lines of strange letters.

On one side of the screen flashed swiftly

Numerous young and strong giants

An effort to concentrate on the changing images.

Their look is quiet and peaceful.

The learned flame flashes in their eyes.

In a flash of clothes

The next is a whole.

Their stature, unusually tall.

Each one is well-nigh seven meters high.

Both men and women look dignified

Almost no age difference apparent.

Their skin is white as snow

With a faint flashy shine

Bright eyes are as naive as an infant’s

Also kindled with a strange flame.

They manipulate the magic of the instrument.

The pictures of the changing space.

Their language is artless and plane.

As the bell is generally pleasant.

As I survey the length and breadth of the bright hall

I feel a powerful energy

Body and mind suffused with bliss and delight.

As if I too am a giant.​

I seem to understand their language.

They are exploring the mysteries of the universe.

The cities on a lot of planets

Peopled with their countless partners.

Their mind they use to manipulate the instrument

Also can to transfer data be used

Even thousands of miles apart

Also to talk free to the heart.

Many lines of text on the screen

Is but a message from afar.

The whole universe is their home.

They build cities in space.

They use the spaceships

To transport you to far-distant other spaces.

Into a lightning, a moment, and you

Vanish into thin air, without a trace.

I feel a new civilization.

They have magical eyes.

They seem to be able to see the future

And can enter diverse time-spaces.

Men and women are holy and loving

Superior to our world’s so-called love

They don’t seem to understand ageing

Neither do they know about war.

Time seems not to exist

Science is jut a wonderful art

Their happiness comes from the creation of

A universe full of divine love.

I saw a young giant

Opening the door of a platinum

A round, magnificent hall

Packed with rows of giant s of men and women.​

I saw a crystal stage.

Gyrating at the center of the hall.

Where a dignified and beautiful girl

Was playing a huge musical instrument.

A bunch of golden rays,

Shifting with all kinds of brilliant graphics

A mysterious and beautiful music

Like the Dragon leisurely crowing.

Thence I saw an enormous giant

Jump out of the remarkable dance onto the stage.

His hands held a huge ball

Which flashed with many colourful drawing .

I saw a group of young girls

Wearing a kind of white dresses

They seemed to fly lightly

Like the giant cranes.

The huge circular hall was resplendent

With clear, transparent decoration.

Like a bizarre gem of a full set,

Scintillating brilliantly in the light.

I saw a young singer

About the golden flame

The sound was strange and striking

Like singing , like chanting too.

Their music is at once mysterious and blissful

That shift randomly like the lightning

As if many planets of the universe

Shining bright and light​ in space.

The crystal city, aloft in space

Looks resplendent, magnificent

Countless wonderful golden flowers

Bloom and blush in that flawless space.

I saw an image of a transparent smiling face,

As if it were a colourful garden

The sky shed the golden light

And turned it into a city of gold​.

I strode out of the circular hall

Came to a wide street with a smooth

Pavement covered with precious stones

And in line with the platinum edifice.

There are no terrestrial trees here,

But they are in full bloom with a lot of exotic flowers.

Sparkling with rich incense,

Shaping a garden at the center of the street.

Some strange flowers were there.

The branches as transparent crystal

Flashing all kinds of brilliant colours;

And bunches of round golden fruit​.

I saw a huge statue.

It was like a spaceship.

Clustered around by shining stars,

High above the centre of the street.

I saw the column of a dazzling fountain

In a huge circle in the square;

The elegantly modelled statues

Portraying the holy giants​.

The soaring magnificent edifices

Ran round the circle square.

There were some garden villas

There was a platinum steeple.

I saw a wide river

Girdling this huge city

The bottom flashed with transparent gold dust,

Amidst which were scattered brilliant gems.

The planning of tall trees on shore

And a long crystal corridor

A big multi-coloured bird

Three five one group floated on the surface of the water.

I saw a vast forest

The swaying tree, a tree of gold

The trees with towering spires

And as some platinum Pavilion​.

I saw some giants along the walk,

Some male and female bodybuilders.

At the water’s brink or in the forest

Like birds carefree and relaxed.

The wonderful space was as bright as crystal

Embraced this platinum city;

A giant, white and bright ball

Flashing boundless light into the air​.

It resembled the huge suns

And like the man-made planets

The whole city was shining too,

Weaving a rare breed of magic​.

A strange speeding train circled

About the city back and forth;

There seemed to be a kind of track in the sky

Like a shiny silver curve​.

They seated body white buildings

As if it was a dreamlike maze

This huge city was unusually quiet,

Could not even hear the sound of the wind​.

I bade goodbye to the platinum city.

Near a golden space

Stands another city here

A huge city of gold​.

The building here is also huge.

But it’s another beautiful shape.

The whole city is glittering

Golden edifice as beautiful as sculpture.

Here there live some other giants.

As if from another nation

They have boundless wisdom.

Like a golden, holy civilization.

Manu Mangattu is an English Professor, poet, editor, director and rank-holder. He has published 7 books, 73 research articles and 36 conference papers apart from 14 edited volumes with ISBN. He serves as chief editor/editor for various international journals. He has done UGC funded projects and a SWAYAM-MOOC course (Rs 15 lakhs). Besides translations from Chinese and Sanskrit, he writes poetry in English as well as in Indian languages. He was named “Comrade to Poetry China” in 2016. A visiting faculty at various universities and a quintessential bohemian-vagabond, he conducts poetry readings, workshops and lectures when inspired. After an apprenticeship in Shakespeare under Dr Stephen Greenblatt, he currently guides 23 research scholars and mentors NET English aspirants.

白金城市

远红

时间的五彩宝石啊

你铺成了光芒的天路

在一座星辰的王国

我找到了自己的家园

我打开一座座太阳的城门

在一座座黄金的城市

见到了一个个神圣的巨人

在那宝石镶嵌的皇宫

阅读了史前奇妙的诗篇

一部部古奥华丽的巨书

镌雕着黄金的词语

一篇篇玄奇美妙的故事

迷醉了我的双眼

我走进了一个个崭新的宇宙

看到了一座座圣洁的王国

在地球还没有诞生之前

曾经是人类的史前的家园

时空的水晶啊光芒闪耀

一座白金的城市矗立眼前

一只只飞船悠悠飘过

像一只只巨鸟五光十色

我看到一个个年轻的巨人

身体闪耀七彩的光环

他们的眼睛欢喜明亮

聚会在一座水晶的花园

他们唱着欢快的歌曲

跳着一种奇妙的舞蹈

一对对高大的少男少女

仿佛在庆贺盛大的节日

我看到一座圆形的巨厦

高高耸立在城市的上空

发出一道道白亮的闪电

高高地飞入宁静的太空

一座座通体白金的巨厦

构成了一个美妙的图案

整个城市是一个圆形

排列成一个精致的结构

我走进一座明亮的大厅

看到一排奇特的仪器

墙上悬挂巨大的屏幕

显映出一片金色的太空

一座座五光十色的城市

像一块块五彩晶莹的宝石

那些奇丽的高楼巨厦

胜过了人间幻想的神话

我看到一行行陌生的字母

在一面屏幕上匆匆闪过

几位年轻健壮的巨人

专注地观看变幻的图像

他们的神情宁静安然

两眼闪映智慧的光芒

穿着一种闪光的衣装

通体上下是一个整体

他们的身材异常高大

个个足有七米多高

男男女女容貌端庄

几乎没有年龄的区别

他们的皮肤洁白如雪

隐隐闪出亮丽的光泽

明亮的眼睛单纯如婴儿

又含着一种奇异的火焰

他们操纵神奇的仪器

变幻太空一幅幅图景

他们的语言简洁流畅

像钟磬一般悦耳动听

我端详这座明亮的大厅

感受到一种强大的能量

身心充满了幸福欢喜

自己也仿佛变成了巨人

我似乎听懂了他们的语言

他们在探索宇宙的奥秘

那一颗颗星球上的城市

住着他们无数个伙伴

他们用意念操纵仪器

也可以用意念传递信息

即使相距千里万里

也可以自由地用心交谈

那屏幕上的一行行文字

即是远方传来的信息

整个宇宙是他们的家园

他们在太空建造城市

他们乘坐的太空飞船

可以到达另外的空间

一瞬间化成一道闪电 

在空中变得无影无踪

我感受到一种新的文明

他们长着神奇的眼睛

他们似乎能看到未来

也能进入不同的时空

男男女女都圣洁慈爱

胜过人间所谓的爱情

他们仿佛不懂得衰老

也不知道什么叫战争

时间仿佛并不存在

科学就是奇妙的艺术

他们的快乐来自创造

对宇宙充满神圣的感情

我看到一位年轻的巨人

打开了一座白金的大门

一座圆形的华丽的大厅

坐满了一排排男女巨人

我看到一座水晶的舞台

旋转在这座大厅的中央

一位端庄美丽的少女

演奏着一种巨型的乐器

一束一束金色的光芒

变幻出各种奇妙的图形

一种玄妙动人的音乐

仿佛是龙凤悠然的啼鸣

我看到一位健美的巨人

在台上跳出奇异的舞蹈

他手中托起巨大的圆球

球内闪耀着彩色的画图

我看到一队妙龄的女郎

穿着一种雪白的裙裳

他们仿佛在翩翩飞翔

像是一只只巨大的仙鹤

巨大的圆厅金碧辉煌

像水晶一般清澈透明

又像是嵌满奇异的宝石

闪耀出一种绚丽的光芒

我看到一位年轻的歌手

全身缭绕着金色的火焰

那声音奇特而又优美

像是歌唱又像是吟诵

他们的音乐欢喜玄妙

像一道道闪电变幻莫测

仿佛是宇宙的一颗颗星球

在太空中闪烁亮丽的光芒

又仿佛一座座水晶的城市

在空中矗立宏伟辉煌

无数奇妙的金色的花朵

开满了清澈晶莹的太空

我看到一张张透明的笑脸

仿佛是一座缤纷的花园

金色的光芒从天空洒下

化成了一座座黄金之城

我走出了这座圆形大厅

来到一条宽阔的街道

光洁的路面嵌满宝石

两旁林立白金的巨厦

在这儿没有人间的树木

却盛开各种奇异的花朵

浓郁芳香又闪闪发光

形成了一座座街心花园

这是一些奇特的花木

枝干透明仿佛水晶

闪烁各种奇妙的颜色 

还有一串串金色的圆果

我看到一座巨大的塑像

仿佛一个太空飞船

高高地耸立在街头中心     

周围闪耀一颗颗星球

我看到一柱柱晶莹的喷泉

在一座巨大的圆形广场

一座座造型优美的雕像

刻画出一个个圣洁的巨人

一座座巍峨壮丽的巨厦

环绕着这座圆形的广场

巨厦的上面是一些花园

还有一座座白金的尖塔

我看到一条宽广的河流

怀抱着这座巨大的城市

水底闪映出透明的金沙

还有一颗颗七彩的宝石

岸边排列高大的花木

和一条条水晶的长廊

一种色彩亮丽的大鸟

三五一群在水面飞翔

我看到一座广阔的树林

摇曳着一树树黄金的树叶

树林中耸立一座座尖塔

又仿佛一些白金的楼阁

我看到一些漫步的巨人

男男女女健美潇洒

或在水边或在林中

像鸟儿一般逍遥自在

奇妙的太空亮如水晶  

怀抱着这座白金城市

一只一只白亮的巨球

在空中闪放无际的光明

仿佛是一颗颗巨大的太阳

又像是一颗颗人造的星球

整座城市也闪放光芒

形成一种神奇的景象

一种奇特的飞驰的列车

在城市上空回环往复

天空中仿佛有一种轨道

像一条银白闪亮的曲线

那一座座通体白亮的巨厦

仿佛是一座座神奇的迷宫

巨大的城市异常宁静

甚至听不到风儿的声音  

我告别了这座白金城市

奔向了一片金色的太空

在这儿矗立另一座城市

一座巨大的黄金之城

这儿的建筑同样巨大

却是另一种美丽的造型

整座城市金光灿烂

黄金的巨厦美如雕塑

这儿生活着另一些巨人

仿佛来自另一个民族

他们拥有伟大的智慧

像黄金一般圣洁的文明

Yuan Hongri (born 1962) is a renowned Chinese mystic, poet, and philosopher. His work has been published in the UK, USA, India, New Zealand, Canada, and Nigeria; his poems have appeared in Poet’s Espresso Review, Orbis, Tipton Poetry Journal, Harbinger Asylum, The Stray Branch, Acumen, Pinyon Review, Taj Mahal Review, Madswirl, Shot Glass Journal, Amethyst Review, Fine Lines, and other e-zines, anthologies, and journals. His best known works are“Platinum City”and “Golden Giant”. His works explore themes of prehistoric and future civilization.

 

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure EzineVolume 5; Issue 9; September 2021

On the Leaves by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Fred Limerick by Charles Leggett

Inclusion by Eliza Segiet

Lullaby Remind by Emalisa Rose

Left Behind by Fabrice Poussin

Droplets by Ferris E Jones

The Unordinary by James G. Piatt

Rush by Kelli J. Gavin

Take to the Sea by Luis Cuauhtemoc

Poetry by Lynn Long

The Summer Wolf and the Express by J. D. Nelson

On the Leaves by Ahmad Al-Khatat

 

On the leaves
Of autumn season,
They are colour
Of your flesh.

On the leaves
Of spring flowers,
They will breathe
Of your perfume.

On the leaves
Of the notebook,
They are lines
With your name.

On the leaves
Of life journey,
Joy and tears
Of one being.

On the leaves
Of poetry book,
Rebound and dark
Are the themes.

On the leaves
Of colorful mirror,
Reflects your smile
Against my request.

On the leaves
Of blind eyed,
Joys arises when
Dreams become hopes.

Ahmad Al-Khatat was born in Baghdad, Iraq. His work has appeared in print and online journals globally and has poems translated into several languages. He has been nominated for Best of the Net 2018. He is the author of The Bleeding Heart Poet, Love On The War’s Frontline, Gas Chamber, Wounds from Iraq, Roofs of Dreams, and The Grey Revolution. He lives in Montreal, Canada.

Fred Limerick by Charles Leggett

There once was a thinker named Fred.

His theories were quite widely read.

       When he found that his strife

       Was all caused by his life

He simply pronounced himself dead.

Charles Leggett is a professional actor based in Seattle, WA, USA. His poetry has been published in the US, the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. Recent/forthcoming publications include Sublevel, As Above So Below, Automatic Pilot, Volney Road Review, Ocotillo Review, and Heirlock Magazine.

Inclusion by Eliza Segiet

From the orchestra of sensations

only moments are stopped in time.

They remain,

they last like an inclusion hidden in amber.

The past veiled by the memory

of stone nature.

My mind are the corals of the past,

monads of memories

immersed in a whirl of madness.

The corals of the future crystallize

into indeterminacy.

Fortune will materialize tomorrow.


Eliza Segiet is Jagiellonian University graduate with a Master’s Degree in Philosophy. She completed postgraduate studies in Cultural Knowledge, Philosophy, Penal Fiscal and Economic Law, and Creative Writing at Jagiellonian University, as well as Film and Television Production in Łódź. She has published three poetry collections and two monodramas.

Lullaby Remind by Emalisa Rose

once a spiralling storm,

we morph in the mist

of the harbor, yesterday’s

rain rhythms, seeking

significance, eternity’s

oracle, unbound to the

scramble of scrabble words

and your lullaby eyes

of our cradle’s remind

lulling me softly to sea.

When not writing poetry, Emalisa Rose enjoys crafting and birding. She volunteers in animal rescue. Living by a beach town, provides much of the inspiration for her art. Her latest collection is “On the whims of the crosscurrents,” published by Red Wolf Editions.

Left Behind by Fabrice Poussin

Take the happiness with you;

I will stay behind and take care of

the mope.

After all, many a tear will be shed,

and one will have the labor so he may

wipe them one by one.

No reason to take a chance for others,

they may slip, slide, break away forever,

unknowing of a drama so recent.

Take the happiness with you slowly,

for the pain will hover, it does always,

on the cold walls of light blue.

Let the glow of your supple warmth

linger just a little longer for the icy heart,

to thaw for a moment, to hope for an eon.

Remember to stay again; anticipation

of your return, no one will be aware;

this intimate secret of two souls, ours alone.

Leaning on the heavy groan of cries, longings,

and heavy sighs, I promise to remain alert,

protect, cherish and nurture what you leave,

to be safe in hands trembling of simple want.  

Fabrice Poussin teaches French and English at Shorter University. Author of novels and poetry, his work has appeared in Kestrel, Symposium, The Chimes, and many other magazines. His photography has been published in The Front Porch Review, the San Pedro River Review as well as other publications. 

 

 

Droplets by Ferris E Jones

From the winds of darkened roots,

The droplets fall compulsive,

To seek life, it pollutes.

With faint eyes it exposes

The blindfold, while slow, crowded men

Discuss what it imposes.

The glory of life may pass,

Primeval pleasures weep,

An honor to be the last.

Ferris E Jones is an award-winning, internationally published poet and screenwriter living in Puyallup Washington. His work has appeared in both print and online magazines, including as the featured poet for Creative Talents Unleashed. Other magazines include: Glo Mag, Piker Press, Se La Vie Writers Journal, Write on Magazine, Outlaw Poetry, Degenerate Literature 17, Tuck Magazine, The Literary Hatchet, Warriors with Wings, In Between Hangovers, and many other literary publications. He is the recipient of two grants from the Nevada Arts Council and the Editor and Publisher of Nevada Poets 2009. Ferris has twice received honorable mention awards from Writers Digest annual screenwriting contest. Ferris is also the Author / Editor of seven collections of poetry. You can learn more about Ferris E. Jones by visiting www.inquisitionpoetry.com where each month he features the work of other poets. The goal of this site is to spread the word of poetry throughout the world.

The Unordinary by James G. Piatt

Rhymes, like curling snakes waiting

For victims, hiss to the surface of 

Searching minds begging for reality,

The poet’s drama, dark, fleeting, 

His dark metaphors painted

With the hue of tragedy,

His thin lines filled with meaninglessness, 

Erupt into absurdity, as he spills 

Crimson ink on parchment, creating 

The unordinary.

James G. Piatt is a Best of Web nominee and three time Pushcart nominee, has had four collections of poetry; “Solace Between the Lines,” “Light,” “Ancient Rhythms,” and “The Silent Pond,” as well as over 1480 poems, five novels and 35 short stories, published worldwide. He is now looking for a publisher for his fifth collection of poems which he has just completed.  He earned his BS and MA from California State Polytechnic University, and his doctorate from BYU

Rush by Kelli J. Gavin

Please rush me

If you don’t

I never will

Make me

Do it

Make me move

Make me start

Make me want more

Please rush me

If you don’t

I never will

Kelli J Gavin lives in Carver, Minnesota with Josh, her husband of an obscene amount of years and they have two crazy kids. She is a Writer, Professional Organizer and owns Home & Life Organization and a small Jewelry Company.  Look for Kelli’s first book of short stories and poems in 2019. You can find her work with The Ugly Writers, Sweatpants & Coffee, Writing In a Woman’s Voice among others. Find Kelli on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram@KelliJGavin  Blog found at kellijgavin.blogspot.com

Take to the Sea by Luis Cuauhtemoc

I turn these rocks into flowers.

I give a handful to all my loves.

I turn the rain into sweet wine

and the flowers back to rocks.

I don’t throw rocks at anyone.

I turn the noise into silence and

the trees into home sweet home.

I take to the sea.

It fills my thirst for adventure.

I go there smiling.

I turn the shells into coins.

I hold them in the palm of my hand.

I take to the sea.

I spend most of the days there.

I hold my love standing on the beach.

Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal lives in California and works in Los Angeles. His poems have appeared in Blue Collar Review, Crossroads Magazine, Kendra Steiner Editions, and Setu Magazine.

Poetry by Lynn Long

And I see you

Floating on a breeze

Adrift in the wind

Just like a leaf

And I want to reach out

To touch you once more

For I know you fly

To a distant shore

You see me too

As I blow a kiss

In sweet adieu

 you smile…

Your journey begun

And I whisper

May you reach the sun-

feel its warmth

May you touch the clouds

On your journey forth

And may you know

Upon the tawny sand

Inner peace

When at last you 

land…

Lynn Long

Poet, writer, dreamer

And believer in the impossible…

Residing somewhere in time

Artist at https://hitrecord.org/

https://linktr.ee/lunadeity

The Summer Wolf and the Express by J. D. Nelson

when I sit and eat the paper to stop that friend from pushing

the calm name of the wind

whiting up the bread was a new earth on a pole

on the corner was a bull and he was a busy bull

well he had a meltdown

fool of the world walked up and ate the sun

it was saucer night and he ate the moon too


J. D. Nelson (b. 1971) experiments with words and sound in his subterranean laboratory. More than 1,500 of his poems have appeared in many small press publications, in print and online. He is the author of several collections of poetry, including Cinderella City (The Red Ceilings Press, 2012). Visit 
www.MadVerse.com for more information and links to his published work. Nelson lives in Colorado.

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure EzineVolume 5; Issue 8; August 2021

Pass by Robert Beveridge

A Defense of the Moon by Yash Seyedbagheri

4th Alone by Wayne Russell

Unendingly Picturesque by Pawel Markiewicz

Chimp by Joel Schueler

The Friday Night Poker Game by John Grey

Tiny Sparrow Feet by Michael Lee Johnson

Spring puts the Mischief in Me by William Doreski

Raspberry Sugar by DS Maolalai

Palo Alto Ingenuity by Gerard Sarnat

Baggage Reclaim by Ben Nardolilli

Pass by Robert Beveridge

You unclasped my watch,

laid it on the nightstand.

“You don’t need this,” you told me.

“We have the whole weekend

before us.”

What reason would make clear

time again confounds;

your copper skin against mine,

the play of fingers over flesh,

the endless minutes and hours

that pass in seconds.

When it came time to sleep,

you kissed the bare

strip of flesh uncovered

by the watch, closed your hand

around it.

Robert Beveridge (he/him) makes noise (xterminal.bandcamp.com) and writes poetry in Akron, OH. Recent/upcoming appearances in Throats to the Sky, FEED, and Sublunary Review, among others.

A Defense of the Moon by Yash Seyedbagheri

don’t write of the moon, you say,

adjusting your beret, not without some twist

you want some twist, some new spin

but how can you distort a soft lunar lullaby

that soothes through the pines

over the rooftops

over bars

whose liveliness is masked?

she breaks through the shadows

and guides the crowds

and the lonely hearts who wander a little bit slower

she dwells in Debussy

and Beethoven

tell me

what’s your vision

is your twist to paint the moon

psychedelic pink with

mushrooms protruding and a cynical smirk

is it the moon with bodily fluids smeared

and declared art

is your twist

the moon renamed something less tender

or tell me

is your aim

to paint clouds over the moon?

because it’s easier to take away, than to add

and you can play with your beret

without missing a beat

Yash Seyedbagheri is a graduate of Colorado State University’s MFA program in fiction. His story, “Soon,” was nominated for a Pushcart. A native of Idaho, Yash’s work is forthcoming or has been published in The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Write City Magazine, and Ariel Chart, among others. 

4th Alone by Wayne Russell

Four Christmas’s alone

now, talking to myself

and the barren walls.

There’s no love herein

this rickety old studio

apartment, no need be.

There’s no presents,

underneath no tree,

there’re no lights lining

doorways or window

panes.

But there’s plenty of

pain in this aching

heart, it’s my 4th alone.

Should I text my ex

girlfriend? Beg her

back?

“Could we try again babe?”

“Please?”

No answers forthcoming

from my brand-new cell

phone.

She still has my beat up

ol’ guitar, and my sneakers,

some old jeans and a t-shirt.

She has my heart worn loosely

and broken, around her necklace.

I returned her presents after she

broke up with me again, always

via text, always catching me off

guard, knocking the wind from

my lungs. Knocking me too the

ground.

Wayne Russell is or has been many things during his time on this planet, he has been a creative writer, world traveler, graphic designer, former soldier, and former sailor. Wayne has been widely published in both online and hard copy creative writing magazines. From 2016-17 he also founded and edited Degenerate Literature. In 2018, the kind editors at Ariel Chart have nominated Wayne for his first Pushcart Prize for the poem Stranger in a Strange Town. Earlier in 2020, Wayne was nominated for his first Best of the Net. Where Angels Fear is his debut paperback published by Guerrilla Genesis Press.

Unendingly Picturesque by Pawel Markiewicz

a pulchritudinous sonnet according to Paweł Markiewicz

I am through a superb window – looking.

An angel of feeling awakes in me.

The dreamy oak-trees stand alway leafless.

The native auspicious cue is just large.

My scenery – the enchanted verdure.

The moony old barn of Ted my dear nuncle.

I am looking at a proud throng of crows.

They belong to the whiff of every times.

The springtide looks so meek-beauteous-fair,

first and foremost  Morningstar – at night.

I daydream springwards window-view withal

of a dreamy Ovidian summer gale.

Homelike herbage that seems to bewitch all.

My cats want to enchant the fantasy.

Dreamed subtle morn withal notably.

………………………….

gale – archaic: wind

alway – archaic: always

cue – archaic: mood

verdure – green

nuncle – archaic: uncle

throng – archaic: bevy

Paweł Markiewicz was born 1983 in Siemiatycze in Poland. He is poet who lives in Bielsk Podlaski and writes tender poems, haiku as well as long poems. Paweł has published his poetries in many magazines. He writes in English and German. 

Chimp by Joel Schueler

As the Philistines plagued with tumours panicked and returned the Ark of the Covenant to the Israelites that they may not be further punished, fearful of the God of unknown power belonging to their foe, I turn to you but with the most part fear removed from mind. If I return your heart, would you box it up and save it for a more worthy suitor than I, one who may ripen your days, one who is a moulter of clothes in the hunger of night, pulling you nearer whilst winter sleeps; leaving you illuminating, widely grinning when the weather is. I only ask that you please not tell me who he is nor how he does it. 

Joel Schueler’s work appears in over ten countries in over fifty publications including Pennsylvania Literary Journal, London Poetry Magazine & The Brasilia Review. From London, he has a BA(Hons) in English Literature & Creative Writing from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. 

The Friday Night Poker Game by John Grey

They gather around the kitchen table

on a Friday night,

puffing desperately on cigarettes

as if it’s the last place on the planet

where smoking is still allowed.

A wife made dip,

filled bowls with chips,

then headed for her mother’s.

The fridge is full of lager.

And there’s another case on standby.

They’re in their fifties.

long past their futures,

weary factory workers,

shop clerks, office nobodies.

Someone deals.

They all look gingerly,

then somberly,

at their hands.

Time will tell

if the cards are in their favor

more than the stars ever were.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Orbis, Dalhousie Review and Connecticut River Review. Latest book, “Leaves On Pages” is available through Amazon.

Tiny Sparrow Feet by Michael Lee Johnson

It’s calm.

Cheeky, unexpected.

Too quiet.

My clear plastic bowls

serves as my bird feeder.

I don’t hear the distant

scratching, shuffling

of tiny sparrow feet,

the wing dances, fluttering, of a hungry

morning’s lack of big band sounds.

I walk tentatively to my patio window,

spy the balcony with my detective’s eyes.

I witness three newly hatched

toddler sparrows, curved nails, mounted

deep, in their mother’s dead, decaying back.

Their childish beaks bent over elongated,

delicately, into golden chips, and dusted yellow corn.

Michael Lee Johnson lived 10 years in Canada during the Vietnam era and is a dual citizen of the United States and Canada.  Today he is a poet, freelance writer, amateur photographer, and small business owner in Itasca, DuPage County, Illinois.  Mr. Johnson published in more than 1072 new publications, his poems have appeared in 39 countries, he edits, publishes 10 poetry sites.  Michael Lee Johnson, has been nominated for 2 Pushcart Prize awards poetry 2015/1 Best of the Net 2016/2 Best of the Net 2017, 2 Best of the Net 2018.  210 poetry videos are now on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/user/poetrymanusa/videos.  Editor-in-chief poetry anthology, Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1530456762; editor-in-chief poetry anthology, Dandelion in a Vase of Roses available here   https://www.amazon.com/dp/1545352089.  Editor-in-chief Warriors with Wings:  The Best in Contemporary Poetry, http://www.amazon.com/dp/1722130717.

Spring puts the Mischief in Me by William Doreski

 

The aftertaste of crows rasping

in watery May overcast                                                                                                          

reminds us that appointments

with the afterword are overdue.

Our doctor suggests we slip

into sizes a bit too large

so we can swim around inside                                                    

ourselves, barking like seals.

Our plumber suggests that leaks                                                                              

soon become swimming pools so

why not enjoy the season?

Our mechanic argues that oil pans

contain in microscopic shards

the clues to our local travels,

so we could shroud ourselves in maps

and pretend that’s orgiastic.

“Spring puts the mischief in me,”

Frost said, but lies preceded him

into both the afterword and

the afterworld, distinct locations

with lakes and hills and distant

views of the over-brimming sea.

Our posthumous menus include

appetizers. wine, and dessert,

but the main course still eludes us,

possibly still unslaughtered

on a farm where country music

heehaws softly in the background.

You want to share the credit

for shaping the air to our needs,

but my degree in random thought

proceeds me like a cutting edge—

not to scold or punish but sculpt

a path to the shadow of forest

where we can lie together

or separately in soggy heaps.

William Doreski has published three critical studies and several collections of poetry. His work has appeared in many print and online journals. He has taught at Emerson College, Goddard College, Boston University, and Keene State College. His most recent books are Water Music and Train to Providence.  williamdoreski.blogspot.com

Raspberry Sugar by DS Maolalai

drunk again, of course

on the patio,

and we open our laps

and fill them

with pennies.

we are ferris-

wheel workers. we are bumper

car workers. around us,

the stickiness

of cotton candy

smoke. staining our outfits,

tasting of raspberry,

sticky old fingers

and sweet.

DS Maolalai has been nominated four times for Best of the Net and three times for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry has been released in two collections, “Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden” (Encircle Press, 2016) and “Sad Havoc Among the Birds” (Turas Press, 2019)

Palo Alto Ingenuity by Gerard Sarnat

Old yarmulkes’ drawer,

boring beyond belief – now 

voila morphs face masks.

Betsy Ross would be so proud

as would Anthony Fauci

Gerard Sarnat won the Poetry in the Arts First Place Award plus the Dorfman Prize, and has been nominated for a handful of recent Pushcarts plus Best of the Net Awards. Gerry is widely published in academic-related journals (e.g., Universities of Chicago/ Maine/ San Francisco/Toronto, Stanford, Oberlin, Brown, Columbia, Harvard, Pomona, Johns Hopkins, Wesleyan, Penn, Dartmouth, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Baltimore) plus national (e.g., Gargoyle, Main Street Rag, New Delta Review, MiPOesias, American Journal Of Poetry, Parhelion, Clementine, pamplemousse, Red Wheelbarrow, Deluge, Poetry Quarterly, poetica, Tipton Journal, Hypnopomp, Free State Review, Poetry Circle, Buddhist Poetry Review, Poets And War, Thank You For Your Service Anthology, Wordpeace, Cliterature, Qommunicate, Indolent Books, Snapdragon, Pandemonium Press, Boston Literary Magazine, Montana Mouthful, Arkansas Review, Texas Review, San Antonio Review, Brooklyn Review, pacificREVIEW, San Francisco Magazine, The Los Angeles Review, Fiction Southeast and The New York Times) and international publications (e.g., Review Berlin, Voices Israel, Foreign Lit, New Ulster, Transnational, Southbank, Wellington Street Review). He’s authored the collections Homeless Chronicles: From Abraham to Burning Man (2010), Disputes (2012), 17s (2014), Melting the Ice King (2016). Gerry is a physician who’s built and staffed clinics for the marginalized as well as a Stanford professor and healthcare CEO. Currently he is devoting energy/ resources to deal with climate change justice. Gerry’s been married since 1969 with three kids plus six grandsons, and is looking forward to future granddaughters.

Baggage Reclaim by Ben Nardolilli


Travel brings out strange combinations
for the sake of space, all improvised,
my oxblood loafers sit on top of t-shirts,
rolled up socks sit inside my boxer briefs,
and toiletries are nestled in breast pockets.

I have worn each of these items down
until they became personal talismans for me,
mass manufactured in their common origins,
some are mirrors of love and friendship,
reflecting the feelings of those behind the gifts

Packing my bag it is hard not to reminisce,
I think of trips to the shoe store and then
the ordeal to get my razor, which links me
to my first razor, even though it is gone
and nowhere to be found inside the luggage.

There is time before I begin the jaunt
of switching trains, enough to open up the bag,
I take a census, surprised how hard it is
to remember if I have forgotten anything,
here is my past, I take it where I need to go.

Ben Nardolilli currently lives in New York City. His work has appeared in Perigee Magazine, Red Fez, Danse Macabre, The 22 Magazine, Quail Bell Magazine, Elimae, The Northampton Review, Local Train Magazine, The Minetta Review, and Yes Poetry. He blogs at mirrorsponge.blogspot.com and is trying to publish a novel.