PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure EzineVolume 5; Issue 7; July 2021

Close the Book by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Never Mine by Brian Rihlmann

It was the Same by Eliza Segiet

In a field of green, anonymity by Emalisa Rose

Moving In by Fabrice Poussin

From the Rising Sea by Ferris E Jones

Beach Boys Dance by Michael Lee Johnson

The Forest by James G Piatt

If the universe were as vast by John Tustin

Sea’s Incoherencies by Kyle Laws

The trees and the leaves by Luis Cuauhtemoc

Close the Book by Ahmad Al-Khatat

It’s the time to close
the book of negativity
Stop flipping over the
pages of wasted years
and stand in front of
-waves of confidence

It’s the time to close
the book of remorse
Start creating a place
for satisfaction above
-some dark thoughts
of attempting suicides

It’s the time to close
the book of long isolation
I want to feel like I am loved
to my country, back to my life
Smile again without wearing an
emotional smile that lasts forever

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.

Never Mine by Brian Rihlmann


I renewed my license last week,
and checked yes to donate my organs.
Then I thought about the person
who might get my heart…

It might whisper secrets
to its new owner, about
the times it had galloped in 
a strange woman’s bed,
or limped along after a breakup,
or fluttered on a blind date,
or stumbled and fell,
when I saw an old girlfriend
with someone new.

And what of the times 
it had stomped in rage, 
tiptoed in contentment,
palpitated with fear,
or thrummed with hope?

Maybe it should be burned
with the rest of my flesh, rise
to become ash, vapor, and cloud,
falling again as white snow
on lonely mountains
I used to climb, and it pumping
faster with each breath
as I reached the summit, gasping.

But no, take it, it’s yours.
It beats raw and red in me,
but with a will of its own.
A stranger, never mine
from the beginning…
never mine.

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. 

It was the Same by Eliza Segiet

There will no longer be home,

smoke from the chimney.

There will be no tomorrow.

Rotten beams

cannot withstand the pressure of time.

In the crooked house

a hunched woman

– waits.

It’s like it used to be,

out there behind the house flows a river.

Only now

the children do not have time to look at old age.

Time took away youth

– like the night takes away the evening.

There is no longer smoke from the chimney,

no chimney,

and there behind the house

still flows a river.

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.

In a field of green, anonymity by Emalisa Rose

lavender, lopsided

a white wisped triangular

juxtaposed ‘neath the

bough of the sycamore

bound to its hostess of green

for seventeen seasons, I’d

walked mid your dynasty

yet, you remain in remiss

of a proper name protocol

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.

Moving In by Fabrice Poussin

A prison of strange walls rose around me it seemed

I continued to speak, no one appeared to hear

losing a sense of others who was I becoming?

I believe I may have been singing an ancient tune

perhaps it was only known to my memories

an image of the outside so clear.

Turning into a strange alien I felt invisible

focused on a vision I still had of my hand

in the distance she stood placid

so recently still a sister, a friend, a lover.

Words uttered near my old self louder yet

delirious as they took a step back

immobile my bones remained strapped

I smiled inside for I alone knew all was well. 

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. 

From the Rising Sea by Ferris E Jones

From the rising sea strolled the fiend,

A male serpent of solemn might.

A manifestation of night,

Scales, remnants of wings convened.

Children were no longer portals,

The feast must be a regions fate.

Time for a purge of God’s mortals,

Swollen, their desires, innate.

The boiling war of forlorn horns,

Linger on the vengeful brows.

Realm’s will all fall, when mankind mourns,

Peace comes with a million bows.

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.

Beach Boys Dance by Michael Lee Johnson

They dance and drum to their songs.

Boogaloo Boys, Beach Boys, still band members die.

Revolts and rebellion always end in peace, left for the living.

Even the smoking voice of Carl Wilson dies

with a canary inside his cancerous throat called “Darlin.”

Dennis Wilson, hitchhiking, panhandling with the devil Charles Manson,

toying with heroin, he’s just too much trouble to live.

Check their history of the living and the dead; 

you will find them there, minor parts and pieces

musical notes stuck in stone wall cracks,

imbibe alcohol, cocaine.

Names fade, urns toss to sea

dump all lives brief memories,

bingo, no jackpot.

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.

The Forest by James G Piatt

In the hushed forest where deer often flock, 

I listen to birds warbling like in a dream,

Away from city people that only sit and gawk:

Images from my childish hours do teem,

Into my searching mind like a flowing stream:           

Over the dull yellow and arid lea so dry,        

The moisture-laden clouds vividly gleam,                              

And my thoughts idly flutter far up into sky.

As I sit near a pond’s verdant and soft loam,

Like a butterfly’s quest for a sugary thought,

Serene feelings into my lonely soul do roam.             

As the day is filled with feelings I sought,

 I ponder on the wood’s ancient lore,                                                 

As I calmly rest on the forest’s soft floor.                                         

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

If the universe were as vast by John Tustin

If the universe were as vast

As the glad imagination of

A five year old boy drawing

Dinosaurs at his kitchen table

In a second floor apartment

In the winter of nineteen and

Seventy six

Then maybe we will just find

Some intelligent life out there

After all.

John Tustin’s poetry has appeared in many disparate literary journals since 2009. fritzware.com/johntustinpoetry contains links to his published poetry online.

Sea’s Incoherencies by Kyle Laws

At the land spit at the end of the state,

grace no longer in the keel,

a wave crashes hard

against the jetty,

tide rushing the sail boat

as it drifts further out to sea,

a riptide keeping it from the granite

that in another storm was hurled

against houses with widows’ walks,

flattening a path inland.

This, the great upheaving

of what lies flat with ripples of white

before the horizon,

the leveler every sailor learns

balanced by knees from bow to stern.

This is why the drink’s in hand on shore,

to feel the surge underfoot

as you walk any hall

as if when you open a door

there’s a bunk with your duffel against the wall.      

Kyle Laws is based out of the Arts Alliance Studios Community in Pueblo, CO where she directs Line/Circle: Women Poets in Performance. Her collections include Faces of Fishing Creek (Middle Creek Publishing), So Bright to Blind (Five Oaks Press), and Wildwood (Lummox Press). Ride the Pink Horse is forthcoming from Spartan Press. With six nominations for a Pushcart Prize, her poems and essays have appeared in magazines and anthologies in the U.S., U.K., and Canada. She is the editor and publisher of Casa de Cinco Hermanas Press.  

The trees and the leaves by Luis Cuauhtemoc

I study the trees

and the leaves.

I take a picture

with my eyes and I

know that I will have

a good day.  I will

not let the bad news

take away my joy.

I am alive and

the trees are too.  I

admire the leaves and

its green colors.  I

touch the tree for luck.

The shade it provides

trumpets a solace

from the burning light

that falls upon us.

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.

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine (Fourth Anniversary Issue) Volume 5; Issue 6; June 2021

Poems by James G. Piatt

Poems by Lynn Long

Poems by Sergio A. Ortiz

Poems by Asha Viswas

Platinum City by Hongri Yuan

Poems by James G. Piatt

Sad Unwritten Poems

Beyond the crimson-tinted horizon, 

Beyond the last light of the sun, beyond 

Vanishing time, beyond symbols, even 

Beyond the sleepless hours of a 

Caffeine-laced night, church bells 

Resonated in a poet’s mind, stopping 

Him from writing sad poems with briny 

Tears on tissue paper. 

Something Stirring

In my mind the ocean’s curling tide washed onto shore, 

And the roar descended like a waterfall of tears 

Carrying  waves of sorrow. I sensed, in the shadows in 

My mind, plumes of bluish-green moisture soaring into 

The air, then falling, and shattering against sharp, 

Ebony-colored visions, visions that caused a sadness to 

Enter my lonely mind, a mind that held dark memories, 

Memories that smoldered in the silence of ancient fears, 

Fears like ebony worms crawling through shadows 

In my mind, that echoed all the dark moments of my life.

I sensed a sound unknown except in the darkness of 

Yesterdays, a whisper traveling from a place called 

Nowhere, a voice that said nothing, yet hung inside my 

Mind, like dark tears. The briny wind forced old images 

Of dreaded things remembered into my consciousness, 

Causing a cold weariness, a weariness carried in by the 

Whispers of the dead hiding inside my nightmares, 

Nightmares created by sonorous pulses that molded sad 

Thoughts into dreadful shapes in my weary brain.

Sadness abounded alongside the stark and lonely 

Images of yesterday, twisting in and out of constantly 

Moving emotions. Like eyes of stone that see nothing, 

Yet allow scarlet tears to fall into the ebony hours. my 

Emotional-road spun its tale, as grief became part of the 

Mystic rhythms of my nighttime dreams. The visions 

Appeared over and over, then disappeared into a tilted 

Reality, and then upon seeing something stirring… I 

Wept in dread.

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.

Poems by Lynn Long

Poetry

To ponder the residency
of one’s own heart
A fruitless sensibility?
For like the stars above
Tangible, yet,
untouchable…
Is the heart in love

Resplendent in valour
Worn upon the
courageous sleeves
of those vulnerable
enough… to believe

And I loved you


like purple 
in twilight hues
You loved me-
like the dawn
in sweet
morning
dew…

Lying in bed

listening to

midnight thunder

as raindrops fall

outside my window

 I dream awake

of a love that cannot

be real- yet, with every 

breath of my being

 I know it to be true

So I listen and I wait

Lost in the reverie of 

you…

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…

The journey begun

And I whisper

May you reach the sun

to feel its warmth

May you touch the clouds

On your journey forth

And may you know

Upon 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

With published pieces in various online publications, journals, ezines and anthologies

Poems by Sergio A. Ortiz

Yo soy el Fénix

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.

Notes:

*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.

Envy

I got close, gave my heart

knowing how little

I had to offer, 

and you envy me?

Sadness anchored

on my chest.

Smiling, my compass

the joy of your successes,

a celebration I share.

I’ll overlook, pretend 

I didn’t notice.

I won’t let it destroy, 

me, you, our friendship.

We go through cycles

of our own choosing.

I chose to live free. 

You chose to acquire, 

a house, a boyfriend.

Who’s looking, 

who cares?

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.

Poems by Asha Viswas

The Last Tear Drop

Always one lonely plate

Trying to eat its past

With innumerable clauses

Without a pause.

The syntax of the dining room

Has no verbs indicating a future.

The single cup tries to stay calm

while the wind chats in her own diction .

it is the archaic theme of waiting

for the endless nowhere.

The last tear drop has disappeared

Without leaving a trace.

The vanishing footsteps map the past

And the dust on the dining table

Hides a darkness deeper

Than the unreachable past.

Another vignette

The moon glowing on the veins of the leaf

That  moves against the stars ,

Takes the shape of animals

That often visit my dreams.

A line of trees hovering between

Day and night, makes the land soft

As if hundreds of girls were lying

With their hair turned to the sky.

The air is full of the moaning of the bees

And the purple flowers assume

A deepening shade of the dusk ,

A spider web holds a heart on a string.

Asha Viswas is a former Professor of English, Benaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India. She has also taught at  Aligarh and at the University of Calabar, Nigeria. She has published four collections of poems. The first collection Melting Memories was published in 1996 [Delhi]. For this she was awarded Michael Madhusudan Academy Award  [Kolkata] in 1997. Her second collection Mortgaged Moorings  [writers workshop, Kolkata] was published in 2001. For this she was given the Editors choice Award by the International Library of Poetry , U.S.A. IN 2003.Her third collection of poems was published in 2011 [Kolkata]. Her fourth collection of poems  THE EMERALD SHORES is published by Writers workshop (Kolkata),  Nov . 2017. She won the second prize in the All India Poetry Competition 2017, organized by the Poetry Society, India. Her poems have featured in the shortlist anthology of all India poetry competition organized by the British council and the poetry Society India 2004 , Kavya Bharati (Madurai) , Slug fest [U.S.A.] , The Mawaheb International [Canada] ,The Brob Times [ Ireland] , Jalons [France] and various other journals and anthologies in India. Some of her poems have been translated into French. She has read her poems in Western Europe, the U.S.A. and African universities. She had a fan club of her poetry in the U.S.

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

远红日

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 Ezine, Volume 5; Issue 5; May 2021

Steam Rises by Charles Leggett

Elegy by Pawel Markiewick

These Tears by Wayne Russell

Waffles by David Flynn

Ocean Restoration by Kelli J Gavin

Silent Moonlight by Michael Lee Johnson

And the Wind Came by Edilson A Ferreira

The House on the Knoll by James G. Piatt

The Reset Button by Glory Sasikala

He Called Himself Giraffe by Ndaba Sibanda

Lullaby for an American Ex-pat by Jennifer Bradpiece

Steam Rises by Charles Leggett

                                         a coffee mug

Steam rises as ceramic peregrines

Face each other like two continents.

Black background seeps between the long, beaked jaws,

Orange to pineapply yellow to dim lime.

Their heads, a dusky blue housing an iris

Of deep mauve. Each shows a wing, outstretched

And nearly meeting (gesture, not attempt),

Pineapple lapsing into Braeburn red,

The lime for outline. In turquoise green

Signed, “1993 J. Sweetwater.”

The longer that I look, the less the steam. 

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.

Elegy by Pawel Markiewick

 

Lunar  time feeling – coll, blackish dreams stealing – light of the moonlets.

Caressing dreamery – lies even, blink-sea, weird fell down.

The poignant dire  decease became drab comet – sphere have picked warmness.

Several she-wolves made terrestrial grave-stones killed the fay?

Endlessly nostalgic being – the grief–pang. Hades was followed.

Heavenly moony lure become noir. Dream-Ethics flies off!

However Your worm bawls after all. Death-men blubbing so withal.

Just the grim Reapers, cold-blooded praise  wind-breeze of gone time.

The tearful- invincible  Goblinlets  stars-thieves coming right galore.

Sensing the moonylike demise cool-blue song  will be free.

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. 

These Tears by Wayne Russell

Rain will never cease to be,

it’s raining in my heart, snow

buries thoughts of us.

Pain is unbearable, broken

by her, broken by the world.

You can never hide, nor

salvage the mournful sea.

These tears fell, salty from a

visage shroud, a cocoon of

of wounded weeping.

These tears fell for you,

beneath solemn moon,

in your memory, farewell.

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.

Waffles by David Flynn



Make magic.
Twist your hand and point to the plate.
There wait waffles,
Cold.  Tough .  Dried.
Now pour maple syrup
from a spout,
tapped from a tree
a thousand miles away.
Fill the squares with brownness,
sugar and sap.
Add cherries from the frig.
Cold.  Without the twig.  Red.
Sit in the chair.
Stare at the magic,
a square of squares filled with commerce and crunch.
Brown.  Brown.  Red.
This sorcery will keep you alive,
and even more
will fill you with feeling,
taste, pleasure and patience.
A reason to live:  
Waffles.

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 currently lives in Nashville, TN, where he is director of the Musicians Reunion, an annual blues festival now in its 36th year.  He also teaches at Belmont University in the English and Asian Studies programs. 

Ocean Restoration by Kelli J Gavin

The only hit I have ever welcomed was the slap of a wave

First, my ankles and then my thighs

Shocked by the coolness yet I welcome it again and again

When my waist is consumed and I gasp in delight Even when I stumble back a step and lose my footing I want more and relax as I go even deeper

The salt kisses my skin and the sun sparkles on each crest

I laugh freely as my neck is plunged into the darkness

As I begin to float and let each push plummet me closer to shore

I formulate a plan to return to the ocean

And back to the water I go

My body has become tolerant of all that assails

I pray my heart can handle the impact

That my thick skin somehow protects

The broken pieces of my heart that was once whole

Because the joy I feel in the depths

Exhilarates and mends and restores

The only hit I have ever welcomed was the slap of a wave

[Two plus years ago, after returning from an ocean vacation, I spoke with a friend about the restorative qualities of which I believed the ocean possessed. How it could quite possibly be a cure for anything that ails. She paused and then asked me, “Do you think it can mend my broken heart over my marriage that is falling apart?” I didn’t know that my friend was struggling in her marriage and she went on to explain that there had been physical abuse. It broke my heart to hear her speak of everything she has experienced in silence. I wrote this piece in honor of her.

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, Otherwise Engaged, Pleather Skin, Paper.Li, The New Ink Review, and among others.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

 

Silent Moonlight by Michael Lee Johnson

Record, she’s a creeping spider.

Hurt love dangles net

from a silent moonlight hanger,

tortures this damaged heart

daggers twist in hints of the rising sun.

Silence snores. Sometimes she’s a bitch.

Sunlight scatters these shadows

across my bare feet in

this spotty rain.

Sometimes we rewind,

sometimes no recourse,

numbness, no feeling at all.

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.

And the Wind Came by Edilson A. Ferreira

Showing that it did not come for love,

did not know how to be gentle and affectionate.

It came for lust and voluptuousness, not the breath

of a lover, but the madness of the impassioned.  

It did not learn to be breeze, was born this way,

snorting and showing its claws,

without notice or warning.

Knocking at the doors and all of a sudden

forcing the windows,

like a river which comes out of its bed

and floods the lands around.

It did not waste time making swirls or pranks,

its shot was direct and accurate, without pause or rest,

like a shameless male, clothes off and in open air,

covering, without modesty or prudence,

his chosen female.

It has warned not to scrimp its desire,

not turning into a hurricane.

Published in TreeHouse Arts, January 31 2018.

Edilson A. Ferreira, 77 years, is a Brazilian poet who writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Widely published in international journals in print and online, he began writing at age 67, after retiring as a bank employee. Since then, he counts 163 poems published, in 246 different publications. 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.

The House on the Knoll by James G. Piatt

The old saltbox house on the knoll 

Sits in anonymity as the sounds of 

Night creatures echo eerily through 

Its empty rooms.  

It is a rainy night in the country; 

Coyotes are yelping in the distance, 

And an owl is hooting its lonely plea 

Into the mist of the rain saddened 

Atmosphere. 

In the emptiness of fading night 

Hours, the old house cricks and 

Moans as the rain batters its siding 

And the wind twists through, leaf 

Filled eaves.

Reciting an old memory, a broken 

Clock peals out the hours to a ghost 

In the kitchen, who cannot sleep 

Because of her memories of living.

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

The Reset Button by Glory Sasikala

somewhere in her

there is a reset button

have you seen it?

she was doing well

when she married you

and then, one day, you woke up

and everything went haywire –

she was there sometimes

and sometimes she was not

she came, she went,

she came, she went,

she smiled, but her smile faded into sadness

there were no tears, mind you

and so you thought

she will come back

but one day you woke up

and she wasn’t there

you called, you tried to think what went wrong

you called, and they said, ‘did you do the re-set?’

‘reset! reset! what reset??’

‘the reset button in her heart, in her feelings

start all over again

tell her you love her, tell her till she knows

tell her she’s the only one

woo her with flowers, take her out to dinner

show her you may not be perfect

but you will still try

show her because she matters

show her till she knows

re-set button finely tuned

till the green light glows!’

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.

He Called Himself Giraffe by Ndaba Sibanda

That he was a towering figure was no debate

That he was a ‘giraffe’ was a rarity to celebrate

He called himself a giraffe, though some found it odd

He found it a tall order why they would fuss or be sad

Numerous souls on the streets raised eyebrows

Each time he appeared they gave him stares 

Not that he was a superstar by any measure 

 Out of courtesy, they would say it was a pleasure   

Oddly their gentility made him feel like an idol of sorts!

Behind his back they said he had a habit of saying truths 

Which meant that possibly he was economical with the truth! 

Maybe people didn’t understand his register, he was no youth

I`ll die if I don’t read a book week in week out, he would say

Liar or a bookworm? Did his hyperbole get other people astray? 

In the face of other people`s incompetence, he said: great job!

Was that a lie or a piece irony? When they said liar he didn’t sob. 

One analyst said anyone who called himself a giraffe had an idiolect  

Which could confuse people, and on how to say things he had to select 

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.

Lullaby for an American Ex-pat by Jennifer Bradpiece

The city is a woman.

Her eyes are Absinthe.

Her voice is ice.

When she speaks,

smoke pours from her nostrils

and floats up toward the diffusion

of starlight.

Her name could be Ashill

or Siena or Lyon.

But she is not merely quaint,

historic or scenic.

She is Praha. Timeless and ravaged,

dripping with garnets.

Her cobblestone legs open

Here your losses are

crumbling stone steps

you navigate slowly.

you catch your reflection in the water

as you stroll past the Vltava.

You see scaffolding, think “skeleton.”

The word “excavate” seems like flesh

you might penetrate. These words

become more intimate than

“hearth” or “home.”

You love her because you find her less foreign

than your room back home, saturated

by the scent of musty words and turpentine.

She is a canvas,

a blank gessoed stare you recognize

in relief at her skyline.

You toast her with Becherovka, soda water,

and lime, watching jazz cabaret

alone at U Maleho Glena.

The black and white image

on the matchbooks reminds you

of Dietrich.

December brings less devoted tourists

They flirt with her at the Christmas fair

in Old Town Square, sip her hot mulled wine

from paper cups, but you forgive her anything.

A new year marks the anniversary

of when she took you in, a refugee

of loss with a need to lose yourself

in something other.

You sit down at a café near the

Mala Strana. Sketch a man with a thick

beard who sits alone in a corner,

a couple whispering into each others’ ears

a girl with sad eyes who keeps

resting her head on the heel of her hand.

You place the mug back on the saucer,

pick up your book and read afternoon straight

into evening. Years later you will swear

it was a book of poems by Lawrence,

but it may have been Rilke or Gilbert or a story by Kafka.

You tip an undetermined amount of Koruna,

nod at the waiter, slide a packet of sugar

between the pages to hold your place

and walk out into the night.

Behind your back, the city raises

one ironic eyebrow,

winks, and turns away.

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 RedactionsThe 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.

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine, Volume 5; Issue 4; April 2021

Welcome Spring by Yash Seyedbagheri

Why may? by John Grey

Door of My Soul by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Either Way by Robert Ronnow

The Vision by Mohammad Saif

Trait by Donna Dallas

Depression by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Apparitions by Wayne Russell

Attacking Plastics by Ben Nardolilli

Raft by Eliza Segiet

Donkey Work by Patricia Walsh

Welcome Spring by Yash Seyedbagheri

snow crashes from branches

plopping into piles

from pines

bare arms reach out into the blue

and wave to me

a lone walker

who slunk through snowbanks in scarves

and now strides in slate-blue sweaters

along a road, a stream meanders around my feet

sun shimmering diamonds

water whispering

winding around a bend,

and then another

 layer of brown rises

from the last ice palaces

and nuzzles my feet

I’d almost forgotten warmth

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.

.

Why may? by John Grey

 


A tiny red trill,
a gray mist fades into the sky,
or rolls up with horizon,
somewhere, a fish-leap splash,.
an oak leaf floats above the water-veiled,
already what feeds on what
is disseminated in a flutter of feather,
a rabbit’s raised fur,
into a wind that articulates with scent,
in and out of tree close,
here tanager, there finch,
each note, a leaf rustle,
or piqued at open fields
where hawks lunge,
bobolinks panic away the calm of flight,
sun reaps loosestrife, musk mallow,
bearberry and bull thistle,
and human interpretations defer
to the chirp, the puff, of the powers,
the God of this who fills the page

but lacks interpretation.

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.

Door of My Soul by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Hidden away below

the giant elm with its

great limbs making

a leafy room I quietly

listen to the birds in

the morning light, their

sweet songs threaded

in hope, the sun warming

the garden before me so

I’m no longer trembling

in the cold, feeling myself

go so still as the mortal

clover having sealed its

lips in the unbroken peace,

like me forever waiting

at the lip of time, watching

a bevy of doves fluttering

a rhythm and the patient

wisteria sipping from the

fountain of bees. I barely

touch the wind in the

innocent air, breathing in

hope, one that gently opens

the door of my soul.

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.

Either Way by Robert Ronnow


If a poem or essay can end with a conclusion or its opposite, either one,
Can it be of any use to anyone?

Do the discrepancies and disparities, dualities and densities, reflect only the dementia
Of the bearer of the pencil?

First entertain, then enlighten if you can. One stretches truth in order to pretend,
Another leavens with levity one’s inevitable end.

Most days it’s not possible to bring your life into an expressible state. Disparate thoughts,
Arduous chores, word choices. And, of course, the state of the state.

Driven by ideas rather than rhymes, for it is not metres, but a metre-making argument
That makes a poem.  Convenience store or university English department

The day’s disputes, down to the meaning of the weather, leave you indisposed
To share your heart of zero and your inner rose.

It is the strong force, the energy of the loved ones combined with cooperation for good or war.
Dad’s years in New Guinea fighting Japs, he said, were his best by far.

The best that can be said or done is Be where you are. Love the one you’re with
Not necessarily an adult of the opposite sex, just a kid who hates math

And school, dresses goth, reads rarely but learns a lot from movies and YouTube,
Has the presence of mind to say I am who I am, deal with it. That’s who I want to be

And have always been. Today clean the house, again. Woke up this morning to two thoughts:
How sweet to be alive! Life is tough.

Robert Ronnow’s most recent poetry collections are New & Selected Poems: 1975-2005 (Barnwood Press, 2007) and Communicating the Bird (Broken Publications, 2012). Visit his web site at www.ronnowpoetry.com.

The Vision by Mohammad Saif

Past all trepidations of conscious mind

Encountered he, a place, alien kind.

Fathomless its distance and million seas

An unknown space of varying degrees.

Bore beauty infinite this secret zone,

Brighter its stars than all galaxies shone;

Multiplied its panache that gleaming light-

Wondrous spectacle fell before his sight.

Conquered light, thick clouds hovering around

Exuberant, charged melodious sound.

Disciplined Nature— an ideal place,

Beyond the dimensions of time and space.

Struck by its miracles he stood there still,

Touched his feet water, that thundercloud’s spill.

Arcane purred respectful breeze in his ear,

Lulled to sleep, frightened of different sphere.

A purest soul he in that slumber met

Sans envy, malice— sins he never fret.

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.

 

Trait by Donna Dallas

I think

he is

my father – I have

his hands

and my son

has his hands

long

defined

fingers that are

timeless….

steady

surgeon hands that

will pry

bone from

bone

to learn

if we are

in fact

one in the same

hand

Donna Dallas studied Creative Writing and Philosophy at NYU’s Gallatin School and was lucky enough to study under William Packard, founder and editor of the New York Quarterly.  Her poems can be read in Horror Sleaze Trash, Beatnik Cowboy and Zombie Logic among many other publications. She recently published her novel, Death Sisters, with Alien Buddha Press and currently serves on the editorial team for Red Fez.

Depression by Ahmad Al-Khatat

My eyes are numb from crying, 
my hand hurts from writing, 
my head is slowly attaching 
my neck to the cords of death, 
-due to the sorrows, I have 
adopted by myself.

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 theNet 2018. He is the author of The Bleeding Heart Poet, Love On The War’s Frontline, Gas Chamber, Wounds from Iraq, Roofs of Dreams, The Grey Revolution, and Noemi & Lips of Sweetness. He lives in Montreal, Canada.

Apparitions by Wayne Russell

See-through an empty veil ofyears now, ghost of the pastdrifting over the waves.The stars are lamenting, the  oceans are disjointed with their memory.Laughter’s scattered againstthe translucent molecules ofwater and sunrise.Apparitions disperse, we all goour own way, through a myriadof doors, through the corridorsof time.Some haunt the people downon Angel Street, some aresauntering down by the railroadtracks, some are lost forever inthe bars and pubs of their livingyears.

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.

Attacking Plastics by Ben Nardolilli

 

She swings her body, less like a dancer
and more like a hazy bell,
not to say, or write, that she is no belle,
I’ve seen her stationary,
she’s pretty enough for holiday catalogues.

The tongue-colored chairs are empty,
it preserves their curves,
no guests are here but she blurs herself busy
around full dishes and sets
of silverware that won’t stop sparkling

Last month was a success, we both agree,
but now she wants to remain
a permanent and voluntary reenactor
of all of yesterday’s parties,
an interpreter ready for buses on the horizon

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.
 

Raft by Eliza Segiet

Translated by Artur Komoter

To

drift on the life’s raft,

we need

a protective side.

Ocean of existence

can whisper,

sing and shout.

All this

to sail to the goal.

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.

Donkey Work 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 5; Issue 3; March 2021

Gloomy Days by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

The Shakespearean sonnet about my dog by Paweł Markiewicz

A little performance art by William Doreski

Ibsen by DS Maolalai

Cosmos Climate Care by Gerard Sarnat

Evasive Tactics by R. Gerry Fabian

An Old Notebook by Robert Beveridge

Poet’s Corner by Louis Faber

Broken A/C by James Croal Jackson

S.P.B. by Donna Dallas

Western Desert Speech by Nathan Anderson

Gloomy Days by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

My dead, those I loved in life,

I do not bury them.

They remain forever unburied,

at least as long as I can stay alive.

When I die, they will be buried beside me.

I am sure they know this, knowing also 

I am still counting on their help and support.

We talk about everything and everyone,

we laugh, weep, love and hate;

they rest with me at night and give me strength,

at the dawn of a new day. 

Every victory of mine, they applaud and rejoice,

as faithful crowd, that accompanies their team.

Morbid desires, unnatural cravings, some will say.

But no, it is just great and honest one love, a pure one,  

that understands and consoles me on certain days.

Days full with doubts, shadows and ill feelings,

those that fate has marked for me,

which, by sure, I will not be able to avoid.

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.

The Shakespearean sonnet about my dog by Paweł Markiewicz

 

You hound are a starry night over fog,

fallen in love with the Epiphany.

The moon may be mine! Told the moony dog.

With you tender garden – is so dreamy.

Bewitchment of stars, your ability.

Your hunting is dearer observation.

A moonlit night is your eternity.

May the soft  ghost be in adoration!

Roses awoken in glory – starlet.

You can taste, listen and feel them galore.

Enchant the nectar like druidic glade!

It was drunk from Ovidian amphorae.

Be, you dog, a heart-shaped meek poet!

Broken wings of loneliness are dead.

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 poems in many magazines. He writes in English and German. 

A little performance art by William Doreski

To find a stage in nature,

as someone has suggested,

I climb atop a boulder

and lecture the world of rocks.

I exhort them to have sex

with each other before erosion

blunts their crystals and renders

their surface too smooth to mate.

But I don’t merely lecture.

I dance a geological dance,

a still-life worthy of Degas

in his dreamy Paris studio.

Locked into place, my sturdy

hiker thighs grip the cosmos

so it can’t escape and explode

showers of comets and meteors

to shame the ordinary pebbles

to whom I address myself.

A symbolic gesture, yes,

but a dance without movement

poses universal questions

that only raw intuition

can answer without a tear.

The rocks gaze sightless at me.

Randomly sorted by glaciers,

they seem ageless. But each one

is the prodigy of a science

to which my youthful self was drawn.

Although all arts aspire to music,

as Pater claimed, all people

aspire to the condition of rocks.

Tough and self-contained, free

of crippling emotion, rocks need

only sex to perfect themselves—

and as I’ve demonstrated,

they could easily fake a dance.

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

Ibsen by DS Maolalai

a man takes a grape

from the top of his cart

and eats it quite slowly

looking at toilet paper.

a woman decides,

biting her lip,

between expensive coffee

and the other kind.

a man tells his toddlers

that they’ll have to take turns

wearing the hat.

a woman gets in line,

then remembers

she needs toothpaste.

wonders if she’ll have time

to grab it before things move.

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)

Cosmos Climate Care by Gerard Sarnat

Loaned from universe,

COVID get thee behind me.

Satanic how you

infect wet market bush meat

then get into us humans.

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.

 

Evasive Tactics by R. Gerry Fabian

Once again, I am informed

I will work the weekend shift

for the third straight week in a row.

My supervisor touts 

the overtime pay I will receive.

I sly smile at her.

Their competitor recruited me

last week on the phone

while working the weekend shift.

The irony brings on another smile.

I start Monday as a salaried employee

with benefits and no weekends.

“We don’t have anyone to work

‘weekend shift’ right now.” She explains.

That’s the first thing she’s said

in the five years I’ve worked here

that will turn out to be true.

R. Gerry Fabian is a retired English instructor.  He has been publishing poetry since 1972 in various poetry magazines. His web page is https://rgerryfabian.wordpress.com

He has published two books of his published poems, Parallels and Coming Out Of The Atlantic. His novels, Memphis Masquerade, Getting Lucky (The Story) and Seventh Sense are available at all ebook publishers including Amazon, Apple Books and Barnes and Noble. His third book of published poems, Electronic Forecast was published 4/2020.

An Old Notebook by Robert Beveridge


I write
this poem
in a two-year-
old notebook

my new one
with the beige
cover labelled
“Poetry II”

is buried
somewhere
in the piles
of clothes
on the floor

or hidden
under a pile
of empty bottles

so this new
poem is
scrawled
with the old

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.

Poet’s Corner by Louis Faber

I am the one

who hears the poetry of gunfire

tearing through the great square

who tastes the villanelle

of the ashes from the crematory

who reads the sonnet

of barren fields, starving children

who sees the pantoum

of children sacrificed to the gangs

who hears the quatrain

of crack babies in withdrawal

who touches the rondel

of the young lovers embrace

who knows the palinode

of the giggling child at play

who writes the sestet

of a world beyond understanding.

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.

Broken A/C by James Croal Jackson

on the highway heading home

memorial day weekend sweat

takes my shirt off lets the sun

roast me through open window

wind fanning I’m so hot I say

to each friend passing before a

calm stretch I slow down horses

merge into my lane in a white

trailer why the long faces oh

they are way hotter than me

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 DASH, Sampsonia Way, and Jam & Sand. He edits The Mantle (themantlepoetry.com). He works in film production in Pittsburgh, PA. (jamescroaljackson.com)
 

S.P.B. by Donna Dallas

Along the winds

My love

I heard you cry once

as a soul

Before me

Before dawn

Before time and birth I passed you

in a rush of plasma and light

I touched your core

Before you knew this life you knew

Me

Before your heart became a beat

I loved you

Donna Dallas studied Creative Writing and Philosophy at NYU’s Gallatin School and was lucky enough to study under William Packard, founder and editor of the New York Quarterly.  Her poems can be read in Horror Sleaze Trash, Beatnik Cowboy and Zombie Logic among many other publications. She recently published her novel, Death Sisters, with Alien Buddha Press and currently serves on the editorial team for Red Fez.

Western Desert Speech by Nathan Anderson

Out here
walking on castles
walking on ice
wearing sandals
holding idols
of Walt Whitman
and the new Madonna

We congratulate the soldier
for his vulgarity
with fresh skulls
and fresh linen
standing upon the pontoon
staring into the vastness
of the sad eyed night

Seeing as we sing
cherub-like
from pulsing cheeks
hymns of
plasticity
born of plasticity
born of numerous
numinous
collages
of heaped oil
served
and being served
as the body
and blood
of Christ
‘Amen’  

Nathan Anderson is a writer from Canberra Australia. His work has previously appeared in Otoliths and Gone Lawn. You can find him at nathanandersonwriting.home.blog.

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine, Volume 5; Issue 2; February 2021

 

The Puzzle by Fabrice Poussin

Full of Flaws by Alexis Ogunmokun

Believing in Yourself by Ahmad Al-Khatat

As Lovers Will by Edward Lee

Routine, Songs and Coffee by Ferris E. Jones

Our Predicament by James G. Piatt

The Forest at Sunset by John Grey

Blue Plastic Pool by Kelli J Gavin

Illusions by Lynn Long

Fraternity of Brotherhood by Milton P. Ehrlich

The Magic of the Rainbow by Ndaba Sibanda

 

 

The Puzzle by Fabrice Poussin

 

They wonder

if you know the lightning

of the aura following you

as you traverse the expense of green.

 

They wish

there was a way to break the spell

of the warm prison glow

your protection like a sarcophagus.

 

They ask

whether you might ever want to

be read like the open story you once were

fragile then in every fiber of your flesh.

 

I too imagine

what remains of the passionate girl

who used to share her infinity willingly

as a sacrifice to the upcoming suffering.

 

All witness

vanishing into the dense heat of a new dusk

as she walks in a dream of her making

her fortress impregnable into eternity.

 

 

 

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. 

  

 

Full of Flaws by Alexis Ogunmokun

 

I am a gemstone
That is flawless
I am forever
I am found in mines
Smuggled to America
Turned into jewelry
For profit while miners
Search for other hand like me
I am covered in innocent blood
I am considered woman’s best friend
Who am I?

 

 

 

Her name is Alexis Ogunmokun. She resides in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois. She works at Hy-Vee. She writes poetry and short fiction. She is an introvert with a dream to publish her poems. She has one brother and one sister. She loves to live life to the fullest.

Believing in Yourself by Ahmad Al-Khatat

 

 

Wake up and let the sunshine

over your misery darkness.

Wake up and let the rain heal

and wash away your deepest wounds.

 

Look at your healthy soul.

Listen to your heartbeat.

And give yourself a chance to

see what life has to offer.

 

Smile and don’t let haters

tell you cannot dream.

No matter what anyone says,

remember to believe in yourself.

 

Do you know that your eyes shine as

the sun shines? every time you achieve

something, your will ambitions will increase

and uplift you.

 

 

 

 

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.

 

 

 

 

 

 



 

 

 

 

As Lovers Will by Edward Lee

 

       

As dogs will do, with rainfall in their pelts;

As athletes will, regrouping from mistakes;

As lovers will; as with old skin, will snakes:

My maple shrugs the snow off as it melts.

 

 

 

 

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.

 

Routine, Songs and Coffee by Ferris E. Jones

 

 

It must be one minute

Before the morning begins

To prosper, for without,

The day will be in doubt.

No alarm ever rings

In a day, that has wings.

 

The signal from the sky

Cannot breathe, beat or deny

The joyfulness of time.

It must be soon to start,

No music from the past

And the day cannot last.

 

It’s counted by the stair steps,

Set up from the day before

To open, witness, feel

And prove its hindrance real.

An addiction begins

With a sip, hot with grins.

 

 

 

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.

 

 

 

Our Predicament by James G. Piatt

 

 

Arriving in the early hours

Of a rusting metallic morning,

 

Oxidized rhetoric covered 

With lies and innuendo,

 

Emerges from the dark banal hours:

Then a voice tweeting crimson ink,

 

Merges into our reality like

Dark allegories held in the 

 

Cold dreariness of obscurity,

And dishonesty.

 

Inside a sere field of graves,

Even death is unable

 

To delay the infusing of his toxic  

Rants into naïve minds.

 

The man without veracity defies

All rationality, and sanity,

 

As he destroys the nation’s 

Integrity, and history of morality. 

 

 

 

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

 

 

The Forest at Sunset by John Grey

 

 

 

Hell is not fire, merely the stifling of light. 

It watches for sunset, then moves in sublime.

 

There is no refuge in shadow,

nor the fading remnants of light.

 

And hell is not the flame pits of the afterlife

but an enveloping snare in this one. 

 

It’s a beast that’s let loose by the darkness.

It’s the dread that keeps coming back for more.

 

 

 

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

 

 





 

Blue Plastic Pool by Kelli J Gavin

 

 

My mother sat for hours in the front yard

She would pull a folding lawn chair Up to the edge of the blue plastic pool Positioning her sunglasses that she had saved From her last jaunt to Hawaii in the late 60s On top of her head

A tiara resting on her beautiful black short curly hair

She was generous with the sun oil

That always seemed to glisten on her arms

 

Once her feet entered that icy hose filled pool My sister and I knew she should be left alone Silence prevailed until she slowly removed her feet Mom would towel dry one and then the other

She then stood next to pool always studying the water

In the late 80s I finally asked why she loved that pool

 

Her answer came slowly as she removed her dark lenses

“That pool is a refuge.

I remember an ocean that I will never see again. I pretend that pool is water surrounding Hawaii. No other land that I can see.

Even for a few moments, it is him and I on the beach.” The HIM was Norman Allen Kaluhiokalani

The man she thought she would one day marry                                                                         

 

My mother didn’t marry Norman

She returned to Minnesota and then married my father

Norman and my mother lost touch over the years

My mother spoke of the water and the waves

Of body surfing and eating fish on the beach

Of time spent in a sandy hut with the man of her dreams More often in her final days his name fell from her lips Norman Allen Kaluhiokalani

 

Now when I swim in my large ever so blue pool

I often think of my mom and her refuge

Of her Hawaiian waters

Of sunglasses worn the last time she saw the man she dreamed of

 

Whether it is a pool or lake or the ocean in the gulf

I will always remember fondly a folding lawn chair

Pulled up to the edge of a blue plastic pool.

 

 

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, The Writers Newsletter,  Writer’s Unite!, Academy of the Heart and Mind, The Rye Whiskey Review, Spillwords, Mercurial Stories, 121 Words, Hickory Stump, Rabid Oak, HerStry, Ariel Chart, The Basil O’Flaherty, PPP Ezine, Southwest Media, Otherwise Engaged, Pleather Skin, Paper.Li, The New Ink Review, and among others.                                                                                       

 

Illusions by Lynn Long

 

 

Illusions of wondrous reverie

Woven in words

Upon celestial tapestry

Written to a lonely star

Enraptured by a Neptune

moon

She falls from the sky

in love- never true…

 

 

Lynn Long is a poet, writer, aspiring novelist, as well as a daydreamer and firm believer in the impossible. She has been published in the following ezines, journals and online publications: Stanzaic Stylings, PPP Ezine, Antarctica Journal, Contributing artist at HitRECord.org and Scriggler.com.

 

 

 

Fraternity of Brotherhood by Milton P. Ehrlich

 

 

Three drops of dew on a blade of grass 

glisten in morning sunlight.

A tiny butterfly hovering overhead,

whispers: I have a message for you.

Your brothers want to know

what’s taking you so long?

They have space reserved for you.

The fat drop barks: Can you spare a few bucks?

I need to shmear the bouncer at the door

or else I can’t get in. The other drop chimes in,

reminding me to get my teeth cleaned twice a year.

I tell the butterfly to let them know

I’ll soon be there just as soon as a few more stents clog up.

 

 

 

Milton P. Ehrlich Ph.D. is an 87- year-old psychologist and a veteran of the Korean War. He has published many poems in periodicals such as the London Grip, Arc Poetry Magazine, Descant Literary Magazine, Wisconsin Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Christian Science Monitor, and the New York Times.

                               

 

 

 

 

The Magic of the Rainbow by Ndaba Sibanda

 

 

There is something intriguing 

about a rainbow of nationalities

and a kaleidoscope of ethnicities 

not only about their various cultures,

their colours, creeds and languages,

their interests, hobbies and visions 

their farming, fooling,food and music,

but also about their understanding 

of the sense of humanity and history  

rooted in their many traditional stories, 

imbedded and loud in their ethnic clothing,  

their lives rich in colour, diversity & detail,

teaching us about our diverse walks in life

and the need to embrace the human race 

in its diversity and depth as it is both a unit 

and a badge of beauty ,ability and creativity 

 

 

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 Ezine. Volume 5; Issue 1, January 2021

Write Where You Know by Marianne Szlyk

Missing Feeding of the Birds by Michael Lee Johnson

Delusioner by Richard Oyama

An End by Edward Lee

Maimonides by Shola Balogun

From the Origin of Things by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Connotations by Eric Golden

His Handiwork by Thomas M. McDade

Madman by David Estringel

Death of Pericles by Mark Kodama

My Heart Oasis by Walid Abdallah

Write Where You Know by Marianne Szlyk

In the distance, reeds
preen and freshen,
moving in and out of
Russian green
shadows, in and out

of light.  Last bees
light on yellow sneezeweed.
No milkweed
this summer.  Birds hide
in tulip trees.

On this brilliant day, birds
speak.  Really,
really, one calls.  Doves
coo.  Red-winged black-
bird lands on nearby reed,

coming out
of hiding.  It is
the only bird I
know here, the only bird
that does not

hide from morning heat.
Water glistens.
Yellow sheen floats above
bronze water.

Turtles walk below.

Marianne Szlyk’s poems have appeared in of/with, bird’s thumb, Cactifur, Mad Swirl, Setu, Solidago, Ramingo’s Porch, Bourgeon, Bradlaugh’s Finger, the Loch Raven Review, Epiphanies and Late Realizations of Love, and Resurrection of a Sunflower, an anthology of work responding to Vincent Van Gogh’s art. Her full-length book, On the Other Side of the Window, is now available from Pski’s Porch and Amazon. She also edits the blog-zine The Song Is…, a summer-only publication: http://thesongis.blogspot.com

Missing Feeding of the Birds by Michael Lee Johnson

Keeping my daily journal diary short

these sweet bird sounds lost-

reviews January through March.

Joy a dig deep snow on top of my sorrows.

Skinny naked bones sparrows these doves

beneath my balcony window,

lie lifeless without tweet

no melody lost their sounds.

These few survivors huddle in scruffy bushes.

Gone that plastic outdoor kitchen bowl that held the seeds.

I drink dated milk, distraught rehearse nightmares of childhood.

Sip Mogen David Concord Wine with diet 7Up.

Down sweet molasses and pancake butter.

I miss the feeding of the birds, these condominiums regulations,

callous neighbors below me, Polish complaints.

Their parties, foul language, Polish songs late at night,

these Vodka mornings-no one likes my feeding of birds.

I feel weak and Jesus poor, starving, I can’t feed the birds.

I dry thoughts merge day with night, ZzzQuil, seldom sleep.

Guilt I cover my thoughts of empty shell spotted snow

these fragments, bone parts and my prayers-

Jesus dwelling in my brain cells, dead birds outside.

I miss feeding of the birds.

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 38 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.  204 poetry videos are now on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/user/poetrymanusa/videos.  

Editor-in-chief: Poetry anthology, Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze, Dandelion in a Vase of Roses and Warriors with Wings:  The Best in Contemporary Poetry

Delusioner by Richard Oyama

For Matthew J. Wells

Invisible Man meets Portnoy, the blurb raves.

My property would be a multi-book deal, exclusive cable rights,

Translation into 26 languages, Bridget Jones hosting the launch,

Airport racks chock-a-block.

On Shinkansen and D train, every passenger

A-swim in my masterpiece—

Brilliant mash-up of Shakespeare & Pryor. I close on

A Bel-Air mansion and don’t give out the address.

My new friends are gorgeous in

The exact same way. We lounge around the pool, talking

High concept and weekend grosses.

Mazzy Star’s on the box: dream-pop for end-times.

Richard Oyama’s work has appeared in Premonitions: The Kaya Anthology of New Asian North American Poetry, The Nuyorasian Anthology, Breaking Silence, Dissident Song, A Gift of Tongues, Malpais Review, Mas Tequila Review and other literary journals. The Country They Know (Neuma Books 2005) is his first collection of poetry. He has a M.A. in English: Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. Oyama taught at California College of Arts in Oakland, University of California at Berkeley and University of New Mexico. His first novel in a trilogy, A Riot Goin’ On, is forthcoming.

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

Maimonides by Shola Balogun

Tilted boulders, the expanse of cloud,

A swirling scent of grains.

I bid you come forth, bird’s flight

In this apocalyptic dream

And gird my descent into frozen rivers.

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.

 

From the Origin of Things by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

I keep always in a secret oak chest,

invisible, safe and inviolable,

all my prayers and hopes, loves and troubles,

triumphs and defeats, hugs, dismay and discomfort.

They are a mosaic of the days I have lived, witnesses

of laughter and affection, tears and sobs, which show

that I didn’t run away from life, having lived it honoring

the sacredness with which it was once conceived.

They will be the passport for my re-entry into the fellowship

to the one who sent us to this common arena of smuggles,

afflictions and despairs and, from time to time,

happiness, fearlessness, even a certain human pride.

Sometimes this chest becomes heavy and unbearable,

and I need to empty it, because other days and passions

are waiting to be cloistered.

Hidden from human eyes, I open it and its content is burned;

emanations are mixed with the indecipherable clouds above us, 

and, like an old Pandora’s box, gives rise to bonanzas, lulls, and, 

above all, storms and thunders.

Luckily, to date, tornadoes and hurricanes have not appeared.        

Edilson Afonso Ferreira is a Brazilian poet. He is 75 year-old, writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Largely published in international journals in print and online, he began writing at age 67. He was nominated for the Pushcart Prize 2016. His first Poetry Collection – Lonely Sailor – has been launched in London, November 2018, with one hundred poems. Read more of his work at www.edilsonmeloferreira.com.

Connotations by Eric Golden



Light.  Birds.  

We connotate the universe.  
Instead of solid objects, dining table, we produce a glow of associations, family, food, togetherness, 
love.
Wife.
I would take you in my arms, stroke your long red hair, kiss your lips like drinking cabernet, like . . .
Everything.
Wife.
You left me on the floor, stomach tangled into a painful knot, the future a cold bleak field.

So it is with light.
The universe is all light.  Matter is a form of light.  Light moves.  We are light.  We absorb light
like plants absorb light.  In fact, we live on light, the light from animals, the light from plants, 
the light from the sun.  We in turn glow with light.  We emanate.  
Isn’t that a warm concept?  Light connotates with beauty, cheer, joy.  
But light also can be ugliness, disaster, death.
We see everything through light that arrives at the iris, is processed through the brain.
If we are light then our tumors are light, as are our highest thoughts.
As is God.

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 230. Among the eight writing residencies he has been awarded are five at the Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos, NM, and stays in Ireland and Israel. He spent a year in Japan as a member of the Japan Exchange and Teaching program. He currently lives in Nashville, TN.



His Handiwork by Thomas M. McDade

Just 17, never drove a car

He’s steering a destroyer

Caressing this helm as if

Hooked up to fortune

Ringing up RPMs like pinball,

Enchanted by the dreamy sonar

Pinging and ponging mandolins

His fingers tapping the wheel

Anxious to work the fancy

Knots that lurk in their tips

Turk’s Heads, double crowns

Matthew Walkers, et cetera

He carries a line everywhere

To practice and the very first

Time ashore he shows off

For a French girl who’s duly

Impressed and in fair

English she adds one

More in a dark

USO corner where

She teaches him how

To braid her hair

He stutters to explain

How good knots loosen

As easily as they’re tied

She repeats his words

In her native tongue

And holds up her palm

To his and their fingers

Twine before a toss

Of her mane breaks

His handiwork free

 (Published in 2008 in The Peripheral Vision – Portugal – and translated)

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.

Madman by David Estringel

 
The heart is a madman when it comes to you.
Deliriously murmuring your name
Like an unhinged melodic mantra. 
Deranged mind of mine melts 
Into your fireplace like, fervent arms.
The piano tune within my chest,
Hysterically pleads for your fingers to touch the keys.
A psychotic addiction lingers inside of me
And the heart is a madman when it comes to you.

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 MagazineLiterary JuiceFoliate Oak Magazine,Terror House MagazineExpat Press50 HaikuslittledeathlitDown in the Dirt MagazineRoute 7 ReviewSetu Bilingual JournalPaper Trains Literary JournalThe Elixir MagazineSoft Cartel,Harbinger AsylumBriars LitOpen Arts ForumCajun Mutt PressFormer People JournalThe Ugly WritersWrit in DustCephalopressTwist in TimeMerak MagazineSalt Water SoulCherry House PressSubterranean Blue PoetryPrinted WordsSunflower SutrasTulip Tree PublishingSaltPPP EzineDigging through the FatHaiku 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.

Death of Pericles by Mark Kodama

Pericles lay on his sweat soaked back in bed, his head propped up by pillows,

Listless, with pale skin and dark circles ringing his eyes,

A shadow of his former self.  He vainly hoped the amulet hung

By a string around his neck would save him from the plague,

Sweeping through walled Athens now under siege

By the Spartans and their allies in a fight to the death.

The god-like Pericles, with his oversized head and

Oversized confidence, dominated his enemies

And built the Parthenon.  The nobleman who led

The commoners just a few years ago distained

Superstition as the absurd fear of the ignorant.

But outrageous fortune has a way of humbling

Even the most prideful of men.  War and plague

Had taken Pericles’s two adult sons and many

Of his closest friends.             Pericles, who once could do no wrong,

Was blamed by the people and stripped of his power.

Pericles – burning with fever – weakly raised right hand,

Asking for water in the same baritone voice

That once reverberated through the Assembly,

The Thracian slave girl – immune from plague –

Brought him water and changed his bedpan

And soiled bed clothes.  She sponged his fevered body.

Aspasia – his hetarai wife – cried in the adjoining room

As her young son Pericles the younger clung to her.

Pericles the elder, the former giant of Athens, the builder

Of cities, closed his eyes and slipped away.

Mark Kodama is a trial attorney and former newspaper reporter who lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife and two sons.  He is currently working on Las Vegas Tales, a work of philosophy, sugar-coated with meter and rhyme and told through stories.  His short stories and poems have been published in anthologies, on-line magazines and on-line blogs.

My Heart Oasis by Walid Abdallah

You are the oasis in my desert life

A ray of light in my eternal strife

The sun that always gives me hope and light

The dawn that finally shone after a long night

You grow dewy roses in my heart garden

You always lighten my heart heavy burden

You always give me a cause to live for

I promise I will love you more and more

You are the shade and shadow in my heart garden

You always give life to my feelings after they harden

Your smile cools and relieves my pain

You are my garden water and rain

You are the tree that protects me from life heat

You are the happy fate I always long to meet

Your touch gives me the breath I take

I enjoy the life you always make

You are the dream of my life as a whole

You are the leaves in my life that never fall

The flowers in my heart blossom on being together

Lilies grow on my heart wall and never wither

Water them with your true love that lasts forever

Dive deep in my heart, there is true love to discover

Walid Abdallah is an Egyptian poet and author. He is a visiting professor of English language and literature in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Germany and the USA, his poetry includes “Go Ye Moon”, ” Dream” and “My heart still beats” and has several translated poems which won prestigious prizes in the USA like “Cause”, “Egypt’s Grief”, and “Strangers’ Cross”. His books include Shout of Silence, Escape to the Realm of Imagination, and Man Domination and Woman Emancipation.

PPP Ezine

Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine

Volume 4; Issue 12; December 2020

Farewell Messenger by Tabassum Tahmina Shagufta Hussein

Read my Wounds by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Loving yourself too much by Alexis Ogunmokun

Forelone by Anupama Bhattacharya

High School Love by Brian Rihlmann

Sample by Charles Leggett

My Heart beats for You by Eric Golden

Someone’s Living in my purse by Glory Sasikala

Betwixt by Heath Brougher

Lullaby for an American Ex-Pat by Jennifer Bradpiece

O’ to Be Whole by James G. Piatt

Farewell Messenger by Tabassum Tahmina Shagufta Hussein

Oh dear Butterfly, be my farewell messenger to him.

The separation burns me up,

Wherever I go.

Where is he?

Where? Where?

Tell him, my farewell messenger,

That I will perish, separated from him,

Wherever I go.

Oh butterfly, tell him,

If only I had known,

When we separated, there is no me in me.

I would have never let him go.

Oh my farewell messenger, go and tell him.

My mind ponders and feels

He didn’t put off my heart ‘s fire.

Now, I burn eternally.

Oh butterfly, my farewell messenger,

Go and tell him my farewell words.

Tabassum Tahmina Shagufta Hussein is an aesthete from Dhaka, Bangladesh & MA holder in British &American Literature. Now a Free-lance writer, she is a Contributor for Different Truths Publications, India,  featuring humanitarian to diverse issues. She is the weekly Translator for, Point Edition, ITHACA Foundation, Spain.  She has contributed to other news portals.  Her poems appeared in literary magazines. She has contributed to five Anthologies so far. She loves travelling and participates in recitals She seeks beauty from the blade of grass to twinkling stars. She Aestheticism and humanism  are the essence of her existence. She is the International Fellow 2020 of International Human Rights Arts Festival. She can be reached at tts.hussein@gmail.com   

Read my Wounds by Ahmad Al-Khatat

I don’t deserve to live in this world
mainly, because my dreams are hidden 
from me as my bare feet are chained

Maybe my time should have ended as 
every night, my eyes begin to cry,
she disappeared from my cigarette
smoke and was harder to drink just water

My hopes are the graffiti on the walls 
after the fire, nothing stays but my ashes.
keep my story away from your loving ones
just remember that you have read my wounds

Make peace with love from the body 
of someone you trust, to share more than a 
lips kiss, as my mistakes are my everyday lies 
to hide my death on my last birthday

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.

Loving yourself too much by Alexis Ogunmokun

.

I never loved others
But I loved myself
I am named after a man
Who loved himself too much
When he rejected Echo’s love
For him
That condemned him to love his reflection
As much as he loved himself
Who am I?

Alexis Ogunmokun resides in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois. She works at Hy-Vee. She writes poetry and short fiction. She is an introvert with a dream to publish her poems. She has one brother and one sister. She loves to live life to the fullest .

Forelone by Anupama Bhattacharya

What is the word for

in English? The language of my choice.

What is the name for its dance

that we caper in  a procession

in the language of your land?

What is the rhythm called

or the incantation of its track?


How is that emotion spelled

which rattles by an eruption from

the deepest caverns of my heart?

When I see strange hands

beating a strange drum

to some strange tunes

in a strange land

bemused by a strange dance.

Although we worship the same gods

The workmanship looks distant.


What is the word for that

throbbinglongingness

in that language of my choice?

When I frisk through multitudes;

In order to find one

In this unfamiliar land.

With an M.A in English literature Anupama Bhattacharya is a teacher by profession. Her poems have found place in platforms like The Time of India, Ceasurae Literary Magazine and Ethos Literary Magazine. She calls herself an aspiring poet because she thinks there’s always so much to learn. Many other Kolkata based little magazines like The Beacon Kolkata have also published her work. With specialization inkathak and Rabindranritya she tries to find immanence in dance as well. An ardent lover of music, literature and poetry she believes in healing the world with words and rhythm. She can be contacted at anu14bhatta@gmail.com

High School Love by Brian Rihlmann



Not the cheerleaders
or the popular girls
or the pretty ones
but anyone who
showed interest,
smiled at me, 
asked “how are you?”
They were the ones.

I remember one,
a dark haired girl
at a house party,
my senior year.
We fooled around
my hand under her bra
kissing in a dark bedroom.

Later we argued
in front of everyone,
she laughed at me.
I was drunk, blurted out:
“But…I love you!”
Until the owner of the house
bigger, stronger, older,
grabbed my shirt front
walked me, stumbling backward
toward the door and shoved
and I landed outside
on the sidewalk.

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.

 

Sample by Charles Leggett

Think of sky. Then think of being shown

A carpet sample dyed the eldritch mauve

This layer, pressing, darkened from above,

Of cloud and fog assumes, lit from below.

As I fight hiccups and these drivers vie

For curb space, it can seem even the streetlamps

Struggle. Would a person, shown the sample,

Believe it could be an entire sky?

.

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.

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.

Someone’s Living in my purse by Glory Sasikala

someone slipped into my handbag

i knew then sadness

a wet hanky

my bad hair day

they handed me a comb

they exchanged chocolates

i’d sprayed into the bag

i found the wrappers in a corner

the tissue papers had messages in them

someone had drawn a moustache

on my pics

my credit cards were overdrawn

i swear i did not see them leave

but i found a new diamond ring

it lay beneath the wet hanky

i was washing clothes when i should have been jogging

my day list was all screwed up

someone’s living in my purse

someone and someone and someone

and they’re living me my life.

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.

Betwixt by Heath Brougher

We retain the ruins

and cosmology alight

a light in the darkness

at the noon of night

huddled starry pinholes

a vast space

and a gaping view

of almost nothing

stretches stretchingly away

in that longstretching heather

of pitch, of heath.

[does other Sentience curiously perceive these very things as well?]

[will they find our ruins first

or will we find theirs?]

maybe we’re not looking for extra-terrestrial life

maybe we’re looking for extra-terrestrial vestiges.  

Heath Brougher is the poetry editor of Into the Void, winner of the 2017 and 2018 Saboteur Award for Best Magazine. He is a multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee as well the winner of The Taj Mahal Review’s 2018 Poet of the Year Award. His work has been translated into several languages other than English. His newest books are To Burn in Torturous Algorithms (Weasel Press, 2018) and The Ethnosphere’s Duality(Cyberwit.Net, 2018).

Lullaby for an American Ex-Pat by Jennifer Bradpiece

The city is a woman.

Her eyes are Absinthe.

Her voice is ice.

When she speaks,

smoke pours from her nostrils

and floats up toward the diffusion

of starlight.

Her name could be Ashill

or Siena or Lyon.

But she is not merely quaint,

historic or scenic.

She is Praha. Timeless and ravaged,

dripping with garnets.

Her cobblestone legs open

Here your losses are

crumbling stone steps

you navigate slowly.

you catch your reflection in the water

as you stroll past the Vltava.

You see scaffolding, think “skeleton.”

The word “excavate” seems like flesh

you might penetrate. These words

become more intimate than

“hearth” or “home.”

You love her because you find her less foreign

than your room back home, saturated

by the scent of musty words and turpentine.

She is a canvas,

a blank gessoed stare you recognize

in relief at her skyline.

You toast her with Becherovka, soda water,

and lime, watching jazz cabaret

alone at U Maleho Glena.

The black and white image

on the matchbooks reminds you

of Dietrich.

December brings less devoted tourists

They flirt with her at the Christmas fair

in Old Town Square, sip her hot mulled wine

from paper cups, but you forgive her anything.

A new year marks the anniversary

of when she took you in, a refugee

of loss with a need to lose yourself

in something other.

You sit down at a café near the

Mala Strana. Sketch a man with a thick

beard who sits alone in a corner,

a couple whispering into each others’ ears

a girl with sad eyes who keeps

resting her head on the heel of her hand.

You place the mug back on the saucer,

pick up your book and read afternoon straight

into evening. Years later you will swear

it was a book of poems by Lawrence,

but it may have been Rilke or Gilbert or a story by Kafka.

You tip an undetermined amount of Koruna,

nod at the waiter, slide a packet of sugar

between the pages to hold your place

and walk out into the night.

Behind your back, the city raises

one ironic eyebrow,

winks, and turns away.

Jennifer Bradpiece was born and raised in the multifaceted muse, Los Angeles, where she still resides. She remains 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 published in various anthologies, journals, and online zines, including RedactionsMush Mum, and The Common Ground Review. She has poetry forthcoming in The Ekphrastic ReviewStimulus Respond, and The Bacopa Literary Review among others. In 2016, Jennifer’s manuscript, Lullabies for End Times, was acknowledged as one the final ten favorites in the Paper Nautilus Debut Series Chapbook Contest.

O’ to Be Whole by James G. Piatt

There is a chasm, between 

Reality and unreality, 

A detachment that I cannot 

Fathom, 

I thirst to know the difference 

between to exist, and not to exist,

To understand 

That which is…  Indecipherable.

I condemn the shadows 

In my mind, containing 

Unreality…I eschew 

The dark ambiguities, 

Which perplex the

Philosopher’s pursuit for 

Certainty. 

I pine for predictability,

Which my mind, can understand 

Without weakening the 

Fragile strands of my sanity… 

I hunger for all that is clear and true:

As I submerge my emotions into

The motionlessness of time,

My soul becomes lost  

In the elusiveness of truth:

With my human predilections

I cannot but listen to the sirens 

Wailing in my churning mind, 

Confusing the meaning of that,

Which I seek:

I need the certainty 

Of genuineness, so I can l

Feel assured and sense 

The unblemished hours of truth;

I require the vast calmness 

Of a verdant forest so that  

I can understand the essence of reality, 

And be whole

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

PPP Ezine: Poetrypoeticspleasure Ezine. Volume 4; Issue 11; November 2020

Alone Against the World by Wayne Russell

Thunderbolt and Lightning by Yash Seyedbagheri

Immodest by John Grey

Paradox by Mohammad Saif

Lullaby for a Politician by Jennifer Bradpiece

Asking for It by Patricia Walsh

Four Years of Service by Noelle Kukenas

Fall Thunder by Michael Lee Johnson

The Unreadable Dictionaries of Our Actions by Ndaba Sibanda

I Dream of My Hiking Boots by Milton P Ehrlich

Raw Realism, a Poetry Manifesto by Gary Beck

 

Alone Against the World by Wayne Russell

Out on his own,

ravaged like a

weathered ship

that washed ashore

a millennium ago.

Awoken one morning
by lone seagulls cry,
the world seems so
very cold now, not
knowing love.

It’s frightening growing
old, out on your own
listening to seagulls cry,
and shy away from looming
thunderstorm, that lashes out
for all the broken hearted 
down below.

 

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.   

 

Thunderbolt and Lightning by Yash Seyedbagheri

lightning jumps jagged

flickering fingers through a window

the thunder unleashes booming tongues

I sharpen tridents of verbs and adjectives

trek into booming tongues taunting

you’re weak, you’re sensitive, you’re not American enough,

make something great,

take something to make someone else great, preferably someone not swarthy

I raise verbs and invectives, trident falls

flailing in fleeting motherfuckers, cocksuckers, assholes, douchewaffles, fascists.

only in my room

do I weep

cue the white wine, a whispering Pinot

which waterboards my wailing

in a hangover

cue another thunderbolt and lightning

more jagged and more heightening

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. 

 

 

Immodest by John Grey

Grass thrives after a week of rain.
Cormorants dry feathers.
Herons flaunt theirs.
I have nothing to parade before the sun.
A thought takes hold.
My body is a willing servant
to why not this or why not that.
It’s a volley fired against an army of instinct.

It’s July. Trees are flush.
They don’t celebrate their cycles,
merely occupy them.
I am linear so I need feelings.
That’s why I love and don’t just breed.
My heart pumps for a cause.
Yes, tears are tears but my blood is likewise.

Dead raccoon in the slow lane.
Crows can now be crows.
A school offish floats into a sperm whale’s maw.
No one writes their eulogy.
I suffer that human twinge on their behalf.
They may even haunt me.
For all its hoots, no owl has ever seen
a phantom mouse.

I have my own problems.
Birds may sing but not at my bequest.
My actual sphere is smaller
than even I imagine.
At the end, flora, fauna,
give up themselves, their atoms,
to make more of what they are,
and some of what they’re not.

I grab hold of this identity
and try to steer it through life
and then out the other side.
Everything else has this world.
But I’m all I got.
Sensitivity, bravado and brain –
I don’t want to hear
that they’d be better served elsewhere.

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

 

 

 

 

 

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. 

They wonder should they ever strive?

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.

 

 

 

 

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 RedactionsThe 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.

 

 Asking for It by Patricia Walsh

It’s my own fault for not laughing

Seeing the gibe through a pain darkly

Flavour of the month being an easy target

Asking for ridicule is my monumental sin.

It’s my own fault for not standing up

Standing ground where none is intended

Being stolen from, getting off my case

A small fee for leaving in peace.

It’s my own fault for stating hard facts

Nobody associates with me now

For fear of congregating with damaged goods

It’s my own fault, just keep quiet.

It’s my own fault, for not being cool enough

Clothes, hair, makeup, beloved to a tee

Sufficient to impress the boys down the road

Five minutes before the buses leave.

It’s my own fault, for being silent.

Bleeding alone through sorry eyes

Scrutinised through the weight of inaction

People knowing my sins before I do.

It’s my own fault, conversing with the unknown

Attempts at decipherment running dry

Fear at what’s not understood, laughed at

In time for me to join in the fun.

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.

 

 

Four Years of Service by Noelle Kukenas

Memories stretched across time and space

San Antonio, Denver, Anchorage, Mountain Home

Mountain Home??? Yes…..it isn’t hell but you can see hell from here

That’s what they said

Lackland AFB – San Antonio TX

Lining up for chow – breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Lining up to march – to class, to get fitted for uniforms, to be physically examined

Lining up for mail – precious connections to my former life and those who love me

Lining up to leave – goodbye basic training

Lowery AFB – Denver CO

Grabbing a bite in the cafeteria before rushing to class

Getting to know my roommate and dorm mates

Going out with new friends to explore a new city

Gosh, this feels just like college – except for the uniforms

Elmendorf AFB – Anchorage AK

Taking the time and effort to form friendships that will last a lifetime and span the globe

Tearfully meeting the President and remembering why I serve

Testing my boundaries with authority – I should know better

Training for Arctic warfare – is this why it’s called the Cold War

Mountain Home AFB – Mountain Home ID

Finally adapting to married life, pregnancy, and the desert

Figuring out how to be a mother while still serving as a soldier

Fighting discrimination from all directions

Finding support from my sisters in uniform – and some of the men

Four years, four bases, four promotions

Many challenges, many friendships, many rewards

Glorious scenery, glorious experiences, glorious personal triumphs

Sisterhood at its best

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!

 

Fall Thunder by Michael Lee Johnson

There is power in the thunder tonight, kettledrums.

There is thunder in this power,

the powder blends white lightening 

flour sifters in masks toss it around.

Rain plunges October night; dancers

crisscross night sky in white gowns.

Tumble, turning, swirl the night away, around,

leaves tape-record over, over, then, pound,

pound repeat falling to the ground.

Halloween falls to the children’s

knees and imaginations.

Kettledrums.

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.

https://www.amazon.com/Michael-Lee-Johnson/e/B0055HTMBQ%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

https://www.lulu.com/shop/search.ep?keyWords=Michael+Lee+Johnson&type=  Member Illinois State Poetry Society:  http://www.illinoispoets.org/.

 

 

The Unreadable Dictionaries of Our Actions by Ndaba Sibanda

 

 

We are the idioms of our time, our sphere 

for we belong to the same era, ecosphere, 

yet, we are like measly words whose ovaries 

and gist no soul can establish from the glossaries 

of our shady actions. A life whose paths lead to ruin 

as the world struggles with floods or lack of rain. 

Our consumption patterns, our careless lifestyles,

our previous actions and decisions are our dirty files

that should be our proverbs for posterity and stability

yet we fail to infer from the lessons of our stupidity,

from wise sayings. A life whose paths lead to ruin 

as the world struggles with floods or lack of rain. 

 

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.

  

I Dream of My Hiking Boots by Milton P Ehrlich

                               

(I dream my paintings, and then I paint my dreams.)

                                                                                                    Vincent Van Gogh

I look down at my old hiking boots and see 

the Hogencamp Mountain trail that I hiked with my friend, Jack.

He loved to sing as we climbed to the pinnacle of this mountain.

He sang to the open valley bellow, belting out,

“Ol ’Man River,” in a deep bass voice

in memory of our fallen comrade, Al Schwartz.

It never failed to bring tears to our eyes. 

We roasted Shish-kebob in a red wine marinade, 

skewered with onions, peppers and cherry tomatoes. 

The spicy aroma is locked into my senses, 

as does the chocolate-covered halvah 

for dessert—always de-rigueur with a jigger of schnapps.

Milton P. Ehrlich Ph.D. is an 87- year-old psychologist and a veteran of the Korean War. He has published many poems in periodicals such as the London Grip, Arc Poetry Magazine, Descant Literary Magazine, Wisconsin Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Christian Science Monitor, and the New York Times.

Raw Realism, a Poetry Manifesto by Gary Beck

The nature of poetry has evolved since the innovation of free verse and now should allow vast latitude of expression. Too many self-appointed guardians of the realm of poetry presume to righteously define the boundaries valid for exploration, arbitrarily excluding what may not appeal to their particular sensibilities. When some of the French Symbolist poets, in particular Rimbaud, Mallarmé, Apollonaire and Valery, shattered the forms used for centuries and created free verse, resistance was automatic from the academics who scorned them. Those poets are venerated today as a vital part of literature.

The last major disturbance in the tranquility of poetry was caused by the Beats, who were dismissed as ill-disciplined, ill-mannered, disreputable advocates of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. Now they occupy a respected niche in the cathedral of poetry, having survived alienation from the mainstream despite excursions in autonomous verse, or unrevised stream of consciousness ramblings. Their contribution exploded some of the restrictions on style and content, but their accomplishments have become stratified,  while their disruption of incipient ossification has been forgotten. They are now as tame as Byron, Keats and Shelly, other forbearers who lifted the torch of rebellion against arbitrary constrictions on subject matter.

Traditionally, the self-anointed custodians of verse attempt to regulate the form, style and content of poetry and deny the validity of differing efforts. Many of the janissaries of poetry, sheltered by universities, grants, or private support, reject the adventurous spirits who seek other directions. The issues of our times are at least as consequential as effusive celebrations of the seasons, laudatory odes on public occasions, or indulgence in self-absorbed introspection.

The ancient Greeks raised poetry to the acme of public attention, with presentations of poetic drama at annual major festivals that were socio-religious-political-artistic competitions, with a laurel wreath for the winner. Today the most energetic presentations are poetry “slams”, crude performances of diverse material in rapid transit deliveries that contradict the fundamental needs of poetry; careful attention, time to consider the meaning and an atmosphere conducive to understanding, rather than raucous burlesque.

The only way to sustain poetry in the Information Age and maintain its relevance is to make it meaningful to audiences conditioned to the internet, ipod, Blackberry and text messaging. The dictum: “Form follows function” is still pertinent. If the duties of the poet can be conceived to include chronicling our times, protesting the abuses of government, raising a voice against injustice, speaking out about the increasing dangers that threaten human existence, it is critical to allow substance not to be shackled by style, content not to be constricted by form.

Rhyme and meter were once the only practiced format of poetic expression. Now they are increasingly marginalized. Perhaps metaphor and simile are not more sacred. We must aspire to emotionally engage new audiences, involve them in the illumination that poetry can transmit, preserve the existence of a vital form of human expression that is being overwhelmed by a saturation of easily accessible, diverting entertainment. We must also develop new voices that may achieve a dynamic readership by offering an alternative to brilliant wordsmiths. We need poets who will offer meaningful and significant truths to a public saturated by confusing information and nearly jaded by ongoing visual assaults on their sensibilities.

 

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 CitiesAssault on NatureSongs of a ClerkCivilized WaysDisplaysPerceptionsFault LinesTremorsPerturbationsRude AwakeningsThe Remission of OrderContusions and Desperate Seeker (Winter Goose Publishing. Forthcoming: Learning Curve and Ignition Point). Earth Links, Too Harsh For PastelsSeveranceRedemption 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 4; Issue 10; October 2020

Boredom by Donna Dallas

Oh Star, oh Star! by Nathan Anderson

apprehend by Jude VC

Misery by Mohammad Saif

Nineteen Minutes to Bedtime by Robert Ronnow

Cherished Daydreaming by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Serenity by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal

July 4th, 2020 Itasca, Illinois by Michael Lee Johnson

Wave by Marianne Szlyk

A Winter Walk by John Anthony Fingleton

Dear Therapist by Tabassum Tahmina Shagufta Hussein

 

Boredom by Donna Dallas

I wash this face                        this soft peached skin

wash the day’s dirt       

soap my body / touch the softness / melt into myself / wash away sins

while a spider quietly weaves                           in and out

of a little web it formed in the corner         under the window

that hasn’t been opened in ages         I see my skin droops / slightly                   here and there

at the jaw line / the eye line / I see it / you don’t

the web is almost perfect             what will he eat

this spider       furry and brown with its little life pulp packed into an orb

how’d he find his way in here and

how’d we get to this place / this time / this year

the heart is strong             so strong       it knows no end only

a means to its own

I watch the spider             I have seen spiders in that very same spot before

some beckoning from one                     spider

to another              how long could they truly live      

how long could a little creature persevere

in a window frame

how very ancient it all seems           when the spider is part of this daily

ritual                  wash and weave                    in fact

if this spider disappears            I fear            I will ache to know

what fate has become of it

 

Donna Dallas studied Creative Writing and Philosophy at NYU’s Gallatin School and was lucky enough to study under William Packard, founder and editor of the New York Quarterly.  Her poems can be read in Horror Sleaze Trash, Beatnik Cowboy and Zombie Logic among many other publications. She recently published her novel, Death Sisters, with Alien Buddha Press and currently serves on the editorial team for Red Fez.   

 

Oh Star, oh Star! by Nathan Anderson

 

 

The star of accusation writes kindly to me
as I sit in my Buddha repose
casting salt at chickens’ feet
                                       ‘Oh, Henry’

Tired of milk butter for blood
wishing with a tired suit
and a tired hand
and a tired longing for meat and pistachios and
paper
                                       ‘Again screaming’

Free me of your buckwheat canoe
your strange expanding lithographs
and ebullience
like a child
lacking…

                                       ‘Concord on third and fourth again’

Nathan Anderson is a writer from Canberra Australia. His work has previously appeared in Otoliths and Gone Lawn. You can find him at nathanandersonwriting.home.blog.

apprehend by Jude VC

don’t say conviction is what followed but rather understanding

in the face of some great question mark

or another we all have to face whatever it

is (the question, that is)

but of course in its face what can you really say but to face

another side of

being or something (else) it shows

It’s not agreeing to anything not 

even to disagree but to

know and get it for the first time ever

and if that causes certainty

then it is not in viewpoint but it

is in apprehension

so alright call it by certainty

call it by anything as long as it’s right.

Jude’s work has previously appeared in Soft Cartel and is forthcoming in Current Accounts.

 

 

 

Misery by Mohammad Saif

The sun departs assuring hope,

Knocking perpetual miseries.

People yearn for a fulfilling life,

Apprehensive of qualms and mysteries.

The thought of hope exits the minds,

Relentless damage done to world,

Takes hope away, and causes blind

The eyes of minds of all.

Promises broken soon than made,

Each day sun rises and shines bright.

The brightness- but devoid of light;

They wonder should they ever strive?

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.

 

 

 

 

Nineteen Minutes to Bedtime by Robert Ronnow

Jack just had a big fight with his son Zach about it. He said
I’m tired of hearing how you’re too tired to do your homework. You’re
not too tired to play basketball or Xbox. That was that after Zach said
Whatever.
                    Visiting the nursing home you think Never
will I allow myself to live long enough to end like that, that’s
a fact. But promises are broken all the time, to others and the self,
and that one probably will be too unless your face is shattered
into shards of broken glass, by accident.
                                                                         Then it will be quiet, too quiet.
Day by day goes by until the day you receive news of your disease,
personal, unique, irrevocable, musical and factual, withal.
That’s that you think but in fact it’s not. You discover (circle with a dot) dying’s
much like living. That that’s true until the body just stops barking, breathing.
Whatever.
                    Salvation in the details (sub-atomic particles). Granite
or sandstone, ash or oak, Odysseus or King Lear. Get it? Not yet.
For someone who doesn’t want to be anonymous, Jack’s anonymity runs deep.
His work sunk in a tar pit or peat. The worthwhile effort is to meditate
on that, accept and repeat.
                                                  Like a flat spun nickel, shiny sunny side down,
shadowy silvery moon up.

  

Robert Ronnow’s most recent poetry collections are New & Selected Poems: 1975-2005 (Barnwood Press, 2007) and Communicating the Bird (Broken Publications, 2012). Visit his web site at www.ronnowpoetry.com.

 

Cherished Daydreaming by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Sitting by the road’s edge, I watch life go by.

I see men, women, old and young people.

They carry on their faces their realities and, beyond,

I try to imagine what really lead them to move on, 

but cannot be seen: their well-kept secrets and desires,

their high esteem, their own motto, their ego.

They are striving to be individuals,

rather than simply one more.

Sometimes I see even myself,

mixed in the crowd, perhaps a little lost,

but firmly believing to be on the walk too.

I feel we are all connected in an invisible web

and hope that each of us will reach,

at its own time, the promised land,

that Canaan where milk and honey spill

and evil never finds shelter.

       

 

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.

 

 

Serenity by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal

 

I give myself a break.

I cannot give myself hope.

I look into the sun.

It shows me no pity.

I drown in sunlight.

The heavy leaves provide me

solace, but no pity.

The tree falls on me.

I let it crush me.

The shadows bury me.

I grow like a seed.

I fill the noise with silence.

I feel whole this way.

I am like the tree that fell on me.

The scattered leaves are my blood.

Under the earth the old me rests.

I feel no pain, only serenity.

There is a pulse in my trunk.

My fingers are the thin branches.

The leaves are my eyelashes.

I have no face.

I am like the tree that fell on me.

I sleep standing up.

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.

 

 

 

 

July 4th, 2020 Itasca, Illinois by Michael Lee Johnson

(At Hamilton Lakes)

Stone carved dreams for men

past and gone, freedom fighters

blow past wind and storms.

Patriotism scared, etched in the face of cave walls.

There are no cemeteries here for the old, 

vacancies for the new.

Americans incubate chunks

of patriotism over the few centuries,

a calling into the wild, a yellow fork stabs me.

Today happiness is a holiday.

Rest in peace warriors, freedom fighters, 

those who simply made a mistake.

I gaze out my window to Hamilton Lakes

half-drunk with sparkling wine,

seeing lightning strikes ends,

sparklers, buckets full of fire.

Light up the dark sky, firecrackers.

Filmmakers, old rock players, fume-filled skies,

butts of dragonflies.

Patriotism shakes, rocks, jerks

across my eye’s freedom locked

in chains, stone-carved dreams.

*This year, 2020, due to COVID-19 I watch fireworks off my condo balcony alone,

share darkness alone, share bangers in the open sky.

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.

https://www.amazon.com/Michael-Lee-Johnson/e/B0055HTMBQ%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

https://www.lulu.com/shop/search.ep?keyWords=Michael+Lee+Johnson&type=  Member Illinois State Poetry Society:  http://www.illinoispoets.org/.

 

 

Wave by Marianne Szlyk

 

 

After Aquarela

Taking up the whole screen,

the wave turns to glass,

solid too slippery for

ship or whale or plastic

that clots stretches of sea.

The wave hides life

that scurries and clings

to ground miles below. 

Sole object of the lens,

the wave swells beyond

what this multiplex screen

grants.  We gaze

to find meaning

in this scene without

human or animal,

without ship or land.

We wait for a human voice

or violin or dog’s bark

to break the spell.  

We won’t hear the wave

break its heart on stone.

Marianne Szlyk’s poems have appeared in of/with, bird’s thumb, Cactifur, Mad Swirl, Setu, Solidago, Ramingo’s Porch, Bourgeon, Bradlaugh’s Finger, the Loch Raven Review, Epiphanies and Late Realizations of Love, and Resurrection of a Sunflower, an anthology of work responding to Vincent Van Gogh’s art. Her full-length book, On the Other Side of the Window, is now available from Pski’s Porch and Amazon. She also edits the blog-zine The Song Is…, a summer-only publication: http://thesongis.blogspot.com

  

A Winter Walk by John Anthony Fingleton

In was a staggered wind that winter,

The kind that comes and goes with ease,

One minute it was a howling gale –

The next it was a breeze.

The beach was drawn and empty,

With debris from the sea,

And rolling waves that came and went,

As nature tends to be.

A desolated beauty,

Which only lost souls could employ,

A substituted happiness,

That only the insane would enjoy.

One gull drifting on the airwaves,

Gave out a primeval scream,

As if to remind a forgotten world,

This was once how it had been…

An Abandoned Lane

I walk along this abandoned lane,

Under a halo of tangled trees,

Lost and overgrown-

Now in the company of weeds.

I remember when it used to dance,

To the sound of children’s games,

Snowball fights in winter;

Or sheltering from the light summer rain.

I find the old scarred willow tree,

Where once we children carved our names,

And wonder, where they all are now?

All scattered to the winds.

The songbirds are still singing,

Undisturbed by my tracing feet;

Enhanced by the silence

As if nature found its peace.

I am the intruder-

So I steal silently away,

Before I break the magic spell,

Of those far off distant days.

Dear Rajnish,

The information you requested.

John Anthony Fingleton was born in Cork City, in the Republic of Ireland. Now living in Paraguay South America. Poems published in journals and anthologies in Ireland, UK, USA, India and France as well as three plays produced. Poet of the Year (2016) Destiny Poets International Community. Poems read on Irish and American radio as well in Spanish on South American broadcasts. Contributed to four books of poetry for children. Has poems published in Spillwords, Alien Budda, The Red Door, Piker Press,Super Poetry Highway, The Writers Magazine, Ariel Chart and numerous national and international journals, blogs, reviews, and anthologies. Poet of the Month (March 2019) Our Poetry Archive. Poet of the Month (April 2019) The League of Poets. First solo collection ´Poems from the Shadowlands´ was published in November 2017, ‘Words That Found Me’ December 2019, ‘Poems From The Banks’ January 2020, ‘Poems from a Restricted Place’ April 2020 and ‘Secret Fjords’ May 2020. All which are available on Amazon

Dear Therapist by Tabassum Tahmina Shagufta Hussein

I feel to stay in bed forever.

I look outside helplessly.

Birds chirping don’t interest me,

I am a night owl myself.

I don’t feel like talk to anyone.

The bed is more dear to me than anyone.

I watch TV endlessly.

I eat and eat.

I don’t look at mirror.

I don’t brush my teeth

or brush my hair.

How many days haven’t I washed my face?

It is easy to say

‘Go to a therapist ‘.

Can the therapist make me forget,

what I have gone through.

All years of pain,

from torture and abuse,

Finally, I gave up on life.

It is easy here.

No one to bother.

No sunlight,

no reality.

I don’t want to think what I was

 and What I am now.

I feel and see all signs of deterioration of body.

Dear Therapist,

Can you bring back what I have lost.?

Can you erase those haunting memories of pain?

Can you make the life  as it used to be?

You can listen only,

 and advise to seek my true self.

Your soothing words can’t bring back what I have lost.

Dear therapist,

 how would you know what it felt like

Because you weren’t there.

You may nod as if you understand,

But you weren’t there.

Dear therapist,

 I don’t need you.

The way I am going, the end seems near.

My deteriorating body will take me to my final sleep.

I need not to think about to put off  my misery by myself.

Soon, I will be out of my misery.

Is not all want ?

Soon, there will be No More Pain.

Only silence and solitude.

The moon and peeping stars depressed,

And weeping willow only to cry in my name.

And no one else.

 

Tabassum Tahmina Shagufta Hussein is an aesthete from Dhaka, Bangladesh & MA holder in British&American Literature.Now a Free-lance writer. She writes weekly column for Different Truths Publications, India  featuring humanitarian to diverse issues. She has contributed to other news portals.  Her poems appeared in literary magazines. She has contributed to five Anthologies so far. She loves travelling and participates in recitals She seeks beauty from the blade of grass to twinkling stars. She Aestheticism and humanism  are the essence of her existence.She is the International Fellow 2020 of International Human Rights Arts Festival.  She can be reached at tts.hussein@gmail.com.