PPP Ezine Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine Volume 2; Issue 8; September 2018

Poet of the Month: Moinak Dutta

Dad by Jimmy Sharma

Finding My Way Through This Life by Wayne Russell

Will Be Quiet by Ahmad Al-khatat

He Falls More and Smiles Less by Ryan Quinn Flanagan

Flowers in Stone by Neil Ellman

my sister: the sea by linda m. crate

Full Moon by Steve Klepetar

Homage to John Logan by Stefanie Bennett

Odd Species by Grant Guy

Slate by Scott Thomas Outlar




Poet of the Month: Moinak Dutta


Places and vignettes, (travel poetry )



At Attari


Should’ve brought that lavender scented prickly heat powder

Was the first thing Labanya thought

Coming out of the car

Which had brought her to the hotel gate of Singh International,


Garment market was nearby

That was a relief,

But this Amitava,

When will he learn proper how to arrange for a tour itinerary

Keeping in mind the health and mind?


Has anyone ever made a journey from soothing relaxing luxurious clime to the horrid, sultry, sweating one?




It reminded her of bollywood

The hunks  in olive uniforms

Singing letters coming from home,





How romantic the flick was!

How much filled with chivalry!


The car again started

After Labanya added a patch on her face,

Powder flakes were running down her cheek

Like disobedient crowd of truant school boys,


The stadium ,


It looked like a grand occasion

Flags got hoisted,

Women danced,

Children clapped,



Came like several rounds of applause

Thundering shouts,


Gates on both sides

Started to close,


The show was over.




That fruit juice seller at Kufri



A meandering road lied upfront

Like a virgin spreading her charms,

The warmth of the day brought smell of

Cherries, apples and a lot of candy floss;


Hiking a few kilometres when thought to rest

The vendor selling juice appeared

I must have been thirsty

For took only few minutes

To empty the steel tumbler,

‘ want another?’

The vendor asked, business like his tone,

‘ yes, one more please’

I had been the most agreeable thing,

Docile, modest, too gentlemanly,


He smiled,

An all knowing smile,

‘ Kufri leaves no one thirsty’

He said.

I agreed not to disagree.




Letter from Solan


How many times have I thought to write


A letter to you,


A really long one filled with all the flavours and smell


That came one after another to me


As I went touring from one place to another,




it seemed speeding  like trains


Hurrying , having its own rhythm;


I peered out of the windows of flowing time,


like a wonder struck one,


Trees went past,


So also hills and valleys,


And rivers too,


I found them all singing for me


And for you too;


At that little station of Solan


When we stopped for awhile,


Got down with what desire know not I,


But those sights,


They wrapped me with curious blessed feel,


At one point thought


I should leave all my bags and baggage there on the loco


And just stay back,


Right there,


But you,


Your face came like call of home.





At that little station where the train stopped for awhile


It had been that kind of a day

When you would remain the most blessed one

You would get  a seat by the window of a toy train

And watch how it chugged along the narrow gauge

Making whistle now and then which went away

Waning from a shrill pitch to a song

Quite soothing,

Or was it that those children with bright and happy faces

 Akin to newly woken flowers, who  giggled and laughed aloud

Which made everything so enchanting?

May be,

I looked at my partner of everything,

My lover for fifteen years,

My mate for twenty,

My friend for thirty,


She looked like a queen of hearts,

Radiating splendour,

Her lips had caught the hues of roses,

Beside her sat her soulmate

Her childhood bud

In whom I found my sister’s image-

Daring, tomboyish and rebellious;

Beside them, sat a local couple,

Returning from Delhi,

– A Delhite woman and her man from the hills;


The train moved like a happy go lucky kind of a kid,

Whistling and singing,

Then that kid stopped,

As if he had thought to take rest for a few minutes-

To drink water, to have a plate of paneer tikka masala;

My better half  and  sister  got down,

Asking me to join them,

 I got down ,

My wife and my sister went to the only shop on the station

Selling pakoras and coffee,

I stood on the platform,

The kid like toy train waited beside me,


The station looked like the sweetest place on earth-

Surrounded by hills overlooking it like guardians,

And those trees-

they were like angels dressed for the spring festival

– flowers all over their bodies,

Flowers on their arms,

Their ears,

Their heads;

I thought I should never try to write poems

For they never express a day like that

Or a station like that where the kid like train stopped,

Or trees like those which were no less than fairies.





Moinak Dutta’s poems and stories are published in national and international anthologies and magazines and also dailies including World Peace Poetry Anthology ‘ ( United Nations),  ‘Setu’ ‘ The Indian Periodical’ ‘ Pangolin Review’ ‘ Tuck Magazine’ ‘ Duane’s Poetree’, ‘ Tell me your story’ etc.

His first full length fiction Online@Offline was published in 2014,  by Lifi Publications. His second fiction In search of la radice was published in 2017 by Xpress Publications.



Dad by Jimmy Sharma



You taught me all wrong, Dad


You told me that my smiles brought you joy


But my smiles made me look a flirt, an enchantress.




This is what they tell me with their eyes full of lust


You told me to be straight forward and transparent as water


But my outlook is questioned every now and then.




You taught me to be humble


But they think I am timid


You taught me values


But my politeness is misunderstood


Dad, could everyone become as simple as you were?


Or I’d become mad one day


Correcting and explaining.




Jimmy Sharma teaches English Literature and Communicative English at Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra, Haryana (India). She read for a Ph D on the writings of Amitav Ghosh from Panjab University, Chandigarh. She is the author of four books: Communicative English, Communicative English-I, Nayantara Sahgal: A Critical Study and a book of poems Echoes Within. Her work has appeared in various national and international journals. She can be contacted at echoeswithin82@gmail.com.




Finding My Way Through This Life by Wayne Russell



Finding my way through this life

and into the next has been catastrophic.



Along this gnarled path, strewn with

broken hearts, and twisted psyche’s,

I have bare witness, to madness and love.



Sifting through grains of translucent sand,

watching loved ones fade away, gnarled

in the coldest grip of deaths stalemate,




Waves of lost opportunity washed over the

drowning man, perplexed by evil hiss, Lucifer

shuffle and stamp me out.



Reborn and rise! The Phoenix! Soaring spirits,

higher towards golden medallion sun!


Do not fade like Icarus onto that tear stained

midday sun, do not perish like a dream that

never came to fruition.


Find your way through this life…..




Wayne Russell is a creative writer that was born and raised in Tampa, Florida. Wayne is the founder and former editor and chief of Degenerate Literature. Sadly, due to unforeseen circumstances and time restraints, DL closed in late 2017. Wayne’s poetry, short stories, and photography have been widely published both online and in print.

Will Be Quiet by Ahmad Al-khatat



I’m seeking a land, and not a homeland

Without the aid of Google maps, instead


I will discover a new land with a loyal pet as

I gave up from my friends a long time ago


I want to work like a bee, and fly with

the birds by the beautiful blue skies


I create a family of different plants

with seeds of my own, and rain from God


being a writer is being a father of grieves, and

writing about what the city lights hid from me


the rain drops wash the rooves of leaders

and damage the shelters of few believers


with my eyes I see, while nothing stops me from 

crying when I hear my adopted brother’s dying


I jump into the dead sea to cure my wounds

as I will have new cuts with no pain as long as


I will be drinking whiskey, and creating an unhealthy

cloud from the smoke of my addiction to cigarettes


being happy doesn’t mean I’m sleeping without

counting the stars, instead it’s another way to


forget that I am actually being hanged to death

since the day, I decided to own a colour of the rainbow


I will be quite with the mirror, and hold 

The candle dropping more wax in my throat



Ahmad Al-Khatat was born in Baghdad on May 8th. From Iraq, he came to Canada at the age of 10, the same age when he wrote my very first poem back in the year 2000. He also Ahmad has been published in several press publications and anthologies all over the world. And he currently studies Political Sciences, at the Concordia University in Montreal. He recently have published his two chapbooks “The Bleeding Heart Poet” and “Love On The War’s Frontline” with Alien Buddha Press. It is available for sale on Amazon. Most of his new and old poems are also available on his official page Bleeding Heart Poet Copyright on Facebook.

He Falls More and Smiles Less by Ryan Quinn Flanagan



This is a geological survey.


This is rum-runners attempting a half marathon.


This is all that can be said holding back.


I do not believe anything that smells like pepperoni.




The butcher has a knife and therefore my attention.


I would rather be guilty of something than innocent.


The way you hold your tea cup is a geological survey.


The old wise man is a lie.




He falls more and smiles less.


Break a hip and you are goners.


This is candy wrappers in flooded culverts.


This is free shipping.




Take it up with the city planners.


You are a town because they didn’t think big enough.


I am a worm in the wriggling hopscotch mouth of good graces.


This is witness testimony.




This is sensory deprivation tanks on the battlefield.


Smog is environmental hazing.


Pepperoni does not believe in the butcher.


Walk away and you are goners.




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.

Flowers in Stone by Neil Ellman


(after the painting by Paul Klee)



Flowers will grow


wherever they will


in gardens and glens


graveyards and streets


wherever their seeds


dropped by the wind


determine to live


as if they could share


their souls


with they who inhabit


the earth


and welcome them


to the hardness


of eternal stone.



Neil Ellman is a poet from New Jersey.  He has published more than 1,500 poems, 1,200 of which are ekphrastic and written in response to works of modern art, in print and online journals, anthologies and chapbooks throughout the world.  He has been nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize and twice for Best of the Net.

my sister: the sea by linda m. crate


singing in the ocean, i forgot my place was on land; they’ve always called me mermaid—the sea is my sister, and i am a daughter of the moon and sun; shimmering and glimmering tongues of truth and relief wash away my pain—here, i can be wild as fierce as i know myself to be, because the ocean understands; she does not judge me as people do just erodes away all the things i need to forget—the ocean is a place of hope and dreaming, a place that takes me out of the empty and broken promises people have given me that still cut into my flesh and heart like barbed wire;  here my heart is still and knows peace—the ocean knows i won’t beg on my knees, she knows that i will always fiercely fight for all my light and my dreams—she washes away the nightmares and the monsters so i can be freed of the darkness that foolishly believes it has any dominion over me.





Linda M. Crate is a Pennsylvanian native born in Pittsburgh yet raised in the rural town of Conneautville. Her poetry, short stories, articles, and reviews have been published in a myriad of magazines both online and in print. She has five published chapbooks A Mermaid Crashing Into Dawn (Fowlpox Press – June 2013), Less Than A Man (The Camel Saloon – January 2014), If Tomorrow Never Comes (Scars Publications, August 2016), My Wings Were Made to Fly (Flutter Press, September 2017), and splintered with terror (Scars Publications, January 2018).

Full Moon by Steve Klepetar



They say the moon is full tonight,


but I can’t see it.


The air is filled with rain,


which falls out of darkness


past the streetlights shining


in puddles below.


When my mother was dying,


she forgot about the moon,


how it sometimes resembled an eye.


When she was younger,


she would point to the moon


on cloudless nights,


or on nights when clouds


drifted over the moon’s face,


leaving smoky shadows in the sky.


Steve Klepetar lives and writes in the Berkshires, in western Massachusetts. His work has received several nominations for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize, including three in 2017. Recent collections include “A Landscape in Hell,” “How Fascism Comes to America,” and “Why Glass Shatters.”



Homage to John Logan by Stefanie Bennett



The dark has a door

All of its own

Through which


The begotten


Of sorrow.


To name it – you

Claim it.


Argus Eye

… The high road

So faithfully




Stefanie Bennett has published several volumes of poetry, a novel and a libretto and is of mixed ancestry – Italian/Irish/Paugussett-Shawnee; she was born in Queensland, Australia. Her recent poetry collection ‘The Vanishing’ is published by Walleah Press – available from Walleah and Amazon. “Blanks From The Other World” will be launched later this year.




Odd Species by Grant Guy



We are an odd species

Who pass on our darkest recesses onto others

We blames our homegrown sins onto the child

The housewife the construction worker the whore

The cop and the outlaw

We believe that is what God expects of us

Why else would it have given us

The accusing pointing finger






Grant Guy is a Canadian poet, writer and playwright. He has over one hundred poems and short stories published in internationally. He has three books published: Open Fragments, On the Bright Side of Down and Bus Stop Bus Stop His plays include an adaptation of Paradise Lost and the Grand Inquisitor. He was the 2004 recipient of the MAC’s 2004 Award of Distinction and the 2017 recipient of the WAC Making A Difference Award. 




Slate by Scott Thomas Outlar


Wipe me clean


without Clorox or bleach


just simple honesty




Sanitation is next to salvation


in some circles




Sacred vowels




ooh and ah


before sighing




Little spaces in the corner


dusted off


brought to surface


made to shine




Lord, help me find


the right words


to tithe




All I have


left to offer


are my dreams



Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry, fiction, essays, interviews, reviews, live events, and books can be found. His work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Scott was a recipient of the 2017 Setu Magazine Award for Excellence in the field of literature. His words have been translated into Albanian, Afrikaans, Persian, French, and Italian.


PPP Ezine Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine Volume 2; Issue 7; August 2018

Poet of the Month: James G Piatt

Seaview by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Once I was lost (And then you came around) by Lynn Long

Do Not Piss off the Locals, that is How Human Sacrifice Happens by Ryan Quinn Flanagan

ALLTHERAGE by Keli J. Gavin

Plastic by Janette Schafer

Invitation by Joan McNerney

Persons by William C. Blome

You Take Me Somewhere by Joanne Olivieri

Somewhere in Kitale by Wafula p’Khisa

Buy a Ticket by Glory Sasikala




Poet of the Month: James G Piatt



Winter is Here



Winter is here,


Brisk chilly winds abound,


Dark clouds forming…


Bits of moisture


Search for parched earth.


Birds quiet…


A cold silence echoes


In hollows,


The season is changing,


And life…


Searching for a new beginning…




Haiku Sequence IV


Dark winds gust through our


Minds in sad contemplation


Of our fading years




Twisting in our souls


And coloring present hours


With melancholy




Dear John


As the quilted snow crunched under his


Army boots, he walked in cheerless silence,


With tearful eyes as a lonely paleness


Entered into his warrior’s battered mind:




The wrinkled writing paper by his side, in its


Bleak whiteness, unfolded words penned in


Bitter faded ink, written with inelegance


Of soul:




He read the note with a cold sadness, and


His brain strived to contradict the explicit note


That shattered compassion Into an incoherent






As he continued walking, with rifle in hand,


He pined for spring again, when the sounds of


Guns would diminish and green leaves would


Begin to cover the hurtful message of such letters,


And, the downy vapor expanding from the damp


Sand would hide the reality of the bitter ink.


James G. Piatt has published 4 novels, “The Ideal Society,” (2012), “The Monk,” (2013),  “The Nostradamus Conspiracy,” (2015), and Archibald McDougle PI: An Archie McDougle Mystery (2017), 3 collections of poetry, “The Silent Pond,” (2012), “Ancient Rhythms,” (2014), and “Light” (2016), and over 1,000 poems, 35 short stories, and 7 essays. His poems have been nominated for pushcart and best of web awards, and many were published in The Top 100 Poems of 2016, 2015, & 2014 Anthologies, and the 2017 Poet’s Showcase and Yearbook.




Seaview by Ahmad Al-Khatat



Since the time

I built my first

sand castle

and the waves

damaged it

I knew that

temptation was

not fancy in

my small home

nor in the castle of my princess

The thieves

are well trained

to play with them

meanwhile, tears

are falling hopelessly

Different drugs

are no longer bad

as alcohol is dripping

above the thirst

to arise silent pain

I live once and

not twice with a

doctor coming to

me to say that

I will die within seconds

The sea view is

the only view

that reminds me

of times when we

were innocent and not miserable



Ahmad Al-Khatat was born in Baghdad on May 8th. From Iraq, he came to Canada at the age of 10, the same age when he wrote my very first poem back in the year 2000. He also Ahmad has been published in several press publications and anthologies all over the world. And he currently studies Political Sciences, at the Concordia University in Montreal. He recently have published his two chapbooks “The Bleeding Heart Poet” and “Love On The War’s Frontline” with Alien Buddha Press. It is available for sale on Amazon. Most of his new and old poems are also available on his official page Bleeding Heart Poet Copyright on Facebook.




Once I was lost (And then you came around) by Lynn Long


I was seeking

to be found…

But, no one was searching

And then you came around


Why did you do that?

Awaken my soul

Why did you do that?

To only let go…


I was content to

simply just be…

And then you came around

You set my heart free


Filling my world in hope

with your words

At last, someone got me

I was finally heard


Why did you do that?

Make me believe

Were you seeking too?

Were you searching

for me?


Perhaps, all a moment

A dream never true

Maybe real is the dream

As we now bid adieu


For finally I see

your truth at last

You awakened my soul

To find my path


Once I was lost

I prayed to be found

Once I was seeking

And then you came around

 Thank you…


Do Not Piss off the Locals, that is How Human Sacrifice Happens by Ryan Quinn Flanagan


Our rental car


has California plates


even though we are Canadians


in Nevada


for the first time


and I tell her it is probably a tax thing


and to go with it




do not piss off the locals,


that is how human sacrifice






and she asks me if the air


doesn’t feel different?




I tell her it does.


Like walking into the same old bathroom


and finding a pterodactyl pie


after 60 million years


of backrubs.




Waving my arms


like that makes anything






I just meant it’s dry.


Doesn’t everything feel dry?,


she asks.




Suddenly my lips are chapped


and I am aware that I am


in the desert.




Devoid of water


and surrounded by lights.




Humping bags


through underground


parking at 3 in the morning




like some idiot capitalist






She is right.


It is dry.




And we are here


in the desert


for the next seven






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.

ALLTHERAGE by Keli J. Gavin


























Kelli 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. She enjoys writing, reading, swimming, and spending time with family and friends. She abhors walks on the beach (sand in places no one wishes sand to be), candle lit dinners, (can’t see) and the idea of cooking two nights in a row (no thank you). Find Kelli on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @KelliJGavin Blog found at kellijgavin@blogspot.com



Plastic by Janette Schafer


She pulls a wig cap

over my giant Irish head,

tells me that hair plugs

are more permanent,

will look more natural,


that the pain is worth it.

I make little horns

where my scalp and hairline meet.

She hooks the wig on my fingers,


pulls it like a sheathe

over my thinning red hair.

I feel like a Barbie doll,

a marionette, a ventriloquist’s


dummy.  I grab a handful

of the fibrous synthetic locks,

pull it off my head,

run a hand over the


lamb’s wool of hair

that remains.  I scrunch,

fuss, but it is mine

and I will wear it.



Janette Schafer is a freelance writer, photographer, and opera singer living in Pittsburgh.  She is a 2017 Maenad Fellowship Awardee through Chatham University.  Recent and upcoming publications include Eyedrum Periodically, PublicSource, Chatham University broadsides, The Woman Inc., and Nasty Women and Bad Hombres Anthology.  A collection of her poems entitled “Other Names and Places” was published by LBF Books in 2004.

Invitation by Joan McNerney


Would you like to unwind


an afternoon at the lake?




Solar sparks spilling over us


in showers of golden sizzle.




Put on short shorts, skimpy tops,


stick our toes into oozy mud.




Breezes will shake treetops


while we listen to birdsongs.




Why not float on new grass


facing an Alice blue sky?




Read celestial comic strips


from mounds of clouds.




We can count sunbeams,


chase yellow butterflies.




Devour bowls of cherries


painting our lips crimson.




This noontime is perfumed


with illions of wild flowers.




Let’s go away all day…be


embraced by the goddess.



Joan McNerney’s poetry has been included in numerous literary zines such as Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze, Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Blueline, Halcyon Days and included in Bright Hills Press, Kind of A Hurricane Press and Poppy Road Review anthologies. She has been nominated four times for Best of the Net.

Persons by William C. Blome



My raucous neighbor asks me why


I never carry an ocean-green tambourine


or a long-handled hoe on my person,


and I tell him his wife prefers  I come and go


like mute September wind


shoving its way through bowed-down willow branches.


He scowls broadly and bids me come and look


at the side of a tree I’ve never touched,


the side up against the house.


There he’s notched the trunk each time


I came to see you; there he’s run up a lofty count,


and he starts to shout out our jumbo numbers.


But a lie from me not to forget


a tambourine and hoe from here on out


brings calm over his foaming person,


and then I promise him his wife and I


won’t be so very careful anymore.



William C. Blome writes poetry and short fiction. He lives in the ‘States, wedged between Baltimore and Washington, DC, and he is a master’s degree graduate of the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars. His work has previously seen the light of day in such fine little mags as Poetry London, PRISM International, Phenomenal Literature, Fiction Southeast, and The California Quarterly.



You Take Me Somewhere by Joanne Olivieri



Where trees shimmer


In the morning mist


And my body shivers


Beneath your touch.




Where the sun rises


Slowly, sensually


Coveting the Eastern sky


With warm kisses.




Where dewdrops


Caress my skin


And take me where


I’ve never been.




Where the wind howls


A rock n roll ballad


And our bodies dance


A frenzied climax.



Joanne Olivieri is a published author and poet who is the editor of Stanzaic Stylings ezine. She has been writing for 50 years and has been published in numerous online and hard copy magazines to include Jerry Jazz Musician, Parnassus Literary Journal, Black Poppy Review and many more. Her poem “Symphony Of Lights” was chosen as one of the 300 Short Listed Entries in the initial round of the Cathay Pacific Airways – 100 Reasons We Love Hong Kong contest for July 2007. As a result, Joanne was awarded a round trip ticket to Hong Kong for her winning entry. You can find out more about Joanne on her website at http://joanneolivieri.weebly.com




Somewhere in Kitale by Wafula p’Khisa


Everyone thinks fortune lies quietly herein, completely untouched

by the hands that tear our basket, and stick their nails down our throats

for something to quench the fire of appetite roasting their insides;

whoever dines and drinks from the spring herein thus, must grow fat and tall

for a man, bathing in abundance, needs not be sad.


But I’m yet to feel the gentle touch of blessings, rolling off saintly tongues

like water on leaves of grass

I shelved dreams, strained muscles, and bled to my last drop of blood

only to grow thin and weak instead

Isn’t man supposed to fatten on his sweat?


I’ve watched wild, tidal waves come — in the open eye of a storm

to drift some into the troubled sea of oblivion

who came dreaming, but leave holding their hearts, bleeding.

I’ve watched green ideas stumble and fall, because embracing them we refuse

Giants of dismissal threaten to devour us, verily

but we refuse to leave, for our clouded eyes fail to trace moonlit paths out of this jungle.



Wafula p’Khisa is a poet, writer and teacher from Kenya. He studiedEnglish, Literature & Education at Moi University. His work has been published in The Seattle Star, The Legendary (issue 48), The Beacon, Scarlet Leaf Review, Antarctica Journal, PoemHunter.com, Aubade Magazine (issue 1), NYSAI Press, AfricanWriter.com, Best ‘New’ African Poets 2015 Anthology, VoicesNet.com, The Pendulum, Mgv2 Magazine and the Best ‘New’ African Poets 2016 Anthology.   




Buy a Ticket by Glory Sasikala

 at the doorway

you will have to leave

your control issues

and possessiveness

your idiosyncrasies

and mood swings

your petty games

of yes and no

your see-saws

of love and hate

and mainly,

those three-petalled clovers

of ‘i love you’

‘i love you not’

along with your shoes

to enter my world



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.