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

Poet of the Month: Wayne Russell

Summer Lies by DS Maolalai

The Fisherman by Heather Sager

Solitude by Kenneth Vincent Walker

Possum brain stew by Joshua Martin

Towering Twilight by Sanghpriya Gautam

Features; for Helen Hengxiang Liao by Yuam Changming

Of Their Noises And Vocalisations by Ndaba Sibanda

Tiger Island by Lorraine Caputo

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

Poet of the Month: Wayne Russell

When We Surrender

Beneath the severed sky,

and where this will end

this gentle parade?

This sudden collapse of

humanity, this saddened

fade from view.

Those stars that have

shown for eons, only to

fade out at dawn.

Can you cast your fear of

the end into the beckoning

sea?

Oh that salty grave, that

soft mortal veil!

Closing, in mock surrender,

venturing into the unknown.

In Exile

Falling to the dirt

majestic sway and

ramble of bones.

We have loved all and

now it’s time to bid our

final farewells.

A wolf can be heard

howling in lonesome

forest and though we

could never hear that

plea, that cry for help

we stood and watched

while nothing happened

in our meager existence

within our collected

genius, with our guns

ablaze and scholars

peering icy down the

barrels of superior

intellect

nothing happened and

probably never will until

permanent silence erases

our stains away from this

wounded soil of tattered

earth.

Where The Blues Live

I can feel the emptiness within,

cascading into the pit of my soul.

Sometimes it fades for a while,

when I hear the sounds of the

peaceful arrival of nightfall.

Just know that she is there, to

share what is left of this life,

the blues subside and move

out for a while, but they are

never very far off, when a new

day dawns, and the madness

begins with the drudgery of

traffic and work and so many

people that are so angry;

at everyone and everything. 

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

Summer Lies by DS Maolalai  

on the city  

like a saucer,  

and a sliced pile  

of browning- 

and clammy- 

skinned apples. heat;  

this shifting miasma  

of a shit-thick  

and biteable air.  

flies hum, and I 

get up from my desk 

and walk to the corner, 

turning the plastic  

of fanblades.  

the air shifts,  

mixes itself, 

makes a hot soup 

of horseshit 

and pours it  

to texture, 

like kicking  

about on a bed 

of wild apples 

and making  

the cold earth 

uncomfortable. 

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

The Fisherman by Heather Sager

The man

with the gaunt, wind-burnt face

Head bowed down

Head of curls

Wrists wrinkled by sun

The time he spent

manning his boat

on the churlish sea

off the rocky California coast

I visited his house in the hills

Yard with chickens

The small house

with the tin roof,

the rain buckets

The green hills echoed around us

like an ocean

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

Solitude by Kenneth Vincent Walker

It takes fortitude to

Endure such solitude.

I’ve grown accustomed

To its long dogged face.

Though I’ve never been

Here before, I have been

Here before. It’s become

My home, my silent place.

The bustle of the world

Has no bearing here and

Neither do the wiles of,

So-called, civilized man.

I hold the sand in my hand

Releasing it into the breeze

Just to watch it swirl from

My grasp into the expanse

And beyond into eternity.

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

Possum brain stew by Joshua Martin

Needle neck          time worn

     down to nub          stalled out

glacial ingestion               digestion

resisting arrest:::

                       heartburn

                       as you turn

, to shatter old age record book ,

          stubbing hook

          knees up & above

          rows of possum [brain stew];;;

stumbl,ing accusation mansion

               disapproved meltdown canister

, before long ,                accumulation uttered

                                      merciful prospects to

                                            [it]self,,, then

banish,ed bag[ful] of hiding.

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

Towering Twilight by Sanghpriya Gautam

The colors and the spread,

Melancholy and the rest,

Sighs make notes of every flickering coil.

The wind is subtle,

It shall remain subtle,

Make the music box play it’s vital tune.

The harping melody

Shades towers, the twilight.

The eyes smothers in vacuum

Rising towers.

Towering twilight.

No wind to tumult.

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

Features; for Helen Hengxiang Liao by Yuam Changming

Not coincidentally, I have met many a person

With a strong appearance of a lower species

For instance, one school mate of mine carries

The features of a rabbit, another close relative

Those of a horse, a colleague of a familiar dog

An acquaintance of a hedgehog, a fifth of a

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

Buffalo, a donkey, a goat or chimpanzee &

Each seems fated to fall within or without some

Chinese zodiac year

  While my wife often

Looks like a nasty cat, she says my face oftener

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

Mind her like every other fellow human, I was

Born in an extra year of Satan though we were

All created equal in His image

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

Of Their Noises And Vocalisations by Ndaba Sibanda

a parrot is pretty, 

and probably prudent &

peculiar because it talks!

come to think of it,

the above stanza has five Ps,

perhaps a parrot says: I`m a person?

I wonder why a swan cries

while a snail munches & maybe…

maybe that`s why a linnet chuckles?

How I wish I could see a rooster`s

internal clock that makes it envision

sunrise, a day-to-day hunt for food

and of course, territorial  protection!

a rooster crows a wake-up in the morn,

& the vim for its day & nightly crows?

a kangaroo chortles, as if to say,

your hearing ,sight & hopping abilities

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

The other day I heard a kangaroo boast:

I can hop 25 feet, come in several sizes

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

I guess it`s not a wise idea to sneak

into a hideout with a flashy frog since

it croaks, & a petty pig that snarls,

but call to mind, it can tell you

how it is smarter than a dog

that barks, that it can’t sweat!

why does a hyena laugh?

strange as it may sound, by virtue

of a sense of frustration & insecurity,

One day I said: enough of domestic noises

and vocalisations, because  a horse was

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

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

a content cat purring, meowing, a duck quaking,

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

after saying enough of the egg song, I headed

for the forest, a mannerless mosquito tingled

me before buzzing & whining away, damn!,

evading my swat by  the skin of its proboscis,

how could it bite me to obtain protein that

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

that meant more mosquito bites in the future,  

in the wilderness a quail called, a lion roared, 

a hapless hare squeaked , a cricket chirped,

a monkey chattered like a tireless gossip,

so much so that an okapi let out  ….yes

a mocking, maddening cough while,

a giant alligator appeared & bellowed,

& if that did not get me crying & cringing,

the elephant`s trumpeting saw my feet fly away!        

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

Links:

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

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

Tiger Island by Lorraine Caputo

In the bright afternoon sun 

            cormorants swoop above 

                        the silver-lamé water 

The tide washes high 

            swirling away from the base 

                        of a red lava cliff 

A magnolia clings to its face 

            digging its gnarled roots deep 

                        into the black-streaked rock 

The white flowers scatter the 

            slope & beige sand 

                        with a sweet perfume 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

Poet of the Month: Ndaba Sibanda

Spoons by CL Bledsoe

Passion by Edward Lee

An End by Edward Lee

A Dangerous Journey by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

I Return Always to Taste it Always by Shola Balogun

The Trinity by Thomas M. McDade

Phantom by David Estringel

High on Orion by Bruce McRae

The Cookie Crumbles by Paula Hackett

Poet of the Month: Ndaba Sibanda

A Dance With Nature And Life

They thirsted for a touch of freshness

A touch to wash away their dryness  

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

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

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

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

Rivers roared in celebration, dams hugged inflows in humming ways

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

Cut Down

They bought lawn mower after lawn mower

as if they had lots of cash or they had grassland  

yet they wanted to bid on government contracts

to cut the unkempt hair of government officials!

They brought razor blade after razor blade 

as if they wanted to cut the long nails of officials

yet all they sought to do was to move from shop

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

An Orgy Of Bondage And Plundering  

He had an insatiable hunger for all things

That clanked like capitals and cartels  

He had the disorder of grabbing all—

And a compulsion to cheap labor 

His cluster, his colony and all

Were founded on captivity

Oh Africa, oh dear Africa

You surely don’t want

 Or warrant any pain

And a rain of drain

Anymore, anytime 

For an official’s gain  

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

Spoons by CL Bledsoe

A fuzzy-headed daisy, shocking the humus

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

help but delight in your color.

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

to better see you tumble across the living

room. Your wrists are thinner

than my hopes. I hope you never understand

any of this. Just know that when you wake,

it’s enough, and when you sleep,

the quiet holds its breath so as not to disturb. 

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

When I try to tell you stories

of the dead, though living. Later, you settle

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

about the time Aunt Cookie

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

potholes, interjecting plot points with curses

and tell a story about the woods

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

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

Let’s make a new one.

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

   

                                                    Passion by Edward Lee


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

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



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

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

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

An End by Edward Lee

        for PW

And that is it,

isn’t it, your life ends,

but our lives continue on,

days falling into nights,

nights renewing into days,

always, even as we wish

for time to slow, stop,

for just a moment, an hour,

a day, some amount

of time so we might catch our breath,

hold it, fall into senselessness,

that the pain of your absence

might recede from our hearts,

that we might know some of the peace

you now know, pain no longer curling

your being, your very soul,

that we might think of you

without tears staining our breath,

that we might grief

without grieving, and smile

without guilt, or regret.

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

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

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

A Dangerous Journey by Edilson Afonso Ferreira 

Sometimes I venture to make a risky journey.

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

The road I take has been built entirely by me,   

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

Rough a path and full of so many deviations,

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

Now, I see that there were no other choices,

for only this way would lead me where I am.  

Where and what I must be ever since I was.

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

grandfathers and cousins, see also myself.

Then, undoubted alive, they talk to me,

ask for news and soon we are laughing,  

like old comrades absent for so long. 

On leaving, one or other intend to follow me,

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

I suspect that past is jealous of its deeds

and always hides how has weaved them. 

I think it must be visited as few times

as one is capable of.

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

I Return Always to Taste it Always by Shola Balogun

You are the muse ink of my poem song.

Let me be your poet prophet to tell

The glorious coming of your glorious laughter.

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

The Trinity by Thomas M. McDade

A cap and tweed coated, wiry gent boards the train

nose bleeding, hand over a blackened eye he holds

out an empty coffee cup to catch contributions

no words accompany phlegmy volleys of “Ahem”   

smiling as coins drop, he tilts and bobbles thanks


A gum-chewing troubadour strums an electric guitar

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

a Yank in a yachting lid and a mismatched suit

pumps his cane as if once the song and dance kind

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

She looks more mistress than daughter or wife

her breathy accent conjures a quaint crepe shop

close your eyes and poof: breathe Left Bank air

as they dawdle along navigating the crosswalks

the crowded sidewalks she’s nearly carrying him

Leaning against a wall by a fragrant flower stall

she holds a lacy handkerchief to his allergy flow

his boating cap drops top first attracting a medley

of coins and himself, mistress, wife or daughter

slide warily down to share laughs bawdy or not

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

Phantom by David Estringel 


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

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

High on Orion by Bruce McRae

November’s darkened star,

winter threatening violence,

winds playing with knives,

floods coming to cleanse the soil,

another cord of wood stacked

and windows shuttered,

hunger unsettling the animals.

Once a year the world turns,

leaning back, slanting west.

Once a year Orion rises.

His stars bloodied.

His belt loosened.

The disgraced hunter come

to slaughter the beasts of the Earth.

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

The Cookie Crumbles by Paula Hackett

Fragrant, beautiful,

with secret ingredients

that make her a wonder.

But then there’s a wearing away,

not like a precious stone

that time embraces,

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

taking slivers, chunks, slices,

or a crumb for the rogue insect.

The cookie crumbles

as the strangers feast.

.

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

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

Decomposing Reality by James G Piatt

Sunday in the Hills by Yash Seyedbagheri

Light Reading by John Grey

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

From the Shore by Wayne Russell

Illusion by Fabrice Poussin

Oneness by Mohammad Saif

A Christ very little remembered by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Of Heirlooms and Linens by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Heck Hog by J D Nelson

Little Hills of Esigodini by Ndaba Sibanda

Decomposing Reality by James G Piatt

Arriving in the late hours of 

an iron colored and eerie night, 

rusting symbols 

covered with an aging patina of dark contradictions 

whispered across forgotten memories 

causing screams of agony: 

My crystal poems 

written in scarlet ink, 

were shattered by metamorphic hammers 

pounding words of grief 

into shattered synonyms, 

causing dark allegories to become lost 

inside the cold weariness of my aging bones. 

While walking in a cemetery, 

images of broken tombstones 

in a field of unknown graves 

entered my consciousness 

and trails of tears melted into the cemetery’s soil 

filling it with sorrow. 

I sensed once forgotten memories 

being awakened in my brain, 

and sharp pangs of grief  

started piercing my collapsing mind 

in a fit of decomposing reality.

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

Sunday in the Hills by Yash Seyedbagheri

a white truck roars up a hill

and then another, this one black

lights break through the snow

trucks whooshing past

laughter and invectives break the sky

license plates from hidden counties

whipping past

with Bud Lights

armpits and stale feet

and clouds billowing in your exhausted face

they disappear around a bend and another bend

the roar eaten by the pines

flakes flutter

growing

like ballerinas in rehearsal

the sky is still 

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

Light Reading by John Grey

Night knuckles down to its task,

devours the mountains,

fills in the valleys

with its own brand of black.

It doesn’t step around an object

like a current does a rock,

but swallows it whole,

the roads, the houses, the forests,

everything.

No need to wonder

if you’re to. be spared.

It’s already creeping up

on you from all sides,

including above and below.

For a while, you’ll resis.t

with consciousness.

But, given the choice,

I’d recommend light.


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

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

forgive me,

I can’t be general – what I write

are specific poems

and sometimes with names

of my friends.

I am not a painter

or any sort

of musician, not even

a dispassionate

reporter; at best

a diarist, placing days

on pieces of paper

for the benefit, I hope,

of someone else.

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

From the Shore by Wayne Russell

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

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

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

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

 

 

Illusion by Fabrice Poussin

He screams in the surrounding prison

made of densest darkness at noon.

Blind to the light of a guiding star

as an apparition twirling in the air.

The words are sounds without form

arms extended he seeks contact.

If only the body could dissipate

and reach out to the end of this verse.

Pain transpires through a makeshift image

of a boy man with undefined existence.

Entity uncertain of a fate it floats

crushed by something invisible as space.

Seeking into every particle of the realm

silence reverberates its deathly response.

Alone here frozen in every place

desperation his only treasure.

Unrecognized the journey continues

a voice unheard a life unknown.

Hope has vanished into the night

yet the search must continue forevermore.

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

Oneness by Mohammad Saif

You, who, with your pure solemnity,

Swore this chase

Have sailed a long way.

Following this fading trail,

Past apprehensions of alienation

And incalculable murk.

Meet me in a distant space of

Vivid thoughts, transcending time.

Where you shall find

An unrecognisable self

Of renewed you.

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

A Christ very little remembered by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

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

We surely must follow Christ, learn from him,

unquestionable master of love and tolerance.

Son of God, yet a brother, he bequeathed us

divine words and deeds that survive forever.

The way he loved us, great and pure,

no one had or has ever equally leveled.

His sacrifice on behalf of humanity,

that of then and of coming times,

unworthy and infidel ones, perhaps,

just by this,  

took him to redeem us from bitter destiny. 

But, aside from his Divinity, his grandeur,

do not forget the passage of Matthew 21-12,

when he entered the temple of his father.

Then, not by a conversation or dialogue,  

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

 ‘overthrew the tables of the moneychangers’.

I love this Christ, so human and so brother,

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

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

we have failed to call up one Saint Fury,

just like that day.

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

Of Heirlooms and Linens by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Inside my parents’ lake house

after they’d moved on I unfolded

heirlooms and linens that summered

in my mother’s hope chest, having

been unopened for years on end,

the belongings inside waiting to

be reborn, now releasing scents

of cedar, valleys at my fingertips

of tawny silks, quilted geographies

sewn so lovingly by hand and their

terrain of textures. Prying deep

inside were scraps too gay to be

dust cloths and pretty sateen

bouquets. My great aunt loved

stitching little squares together

with anything she could find,

throwing nothing away; her

best handiwork left still intact

a crib-sized comforter pieced

together from petticoats for

her firstborn. I drape some of

her patchwork over my lap,

and like hand-me-downs,

they continue to wear on.

I slip on a prim coat my mother

had saved, still fragile as the

shadows outside my window.

When I’m done for the day

evening has gently come, and

catbirds and crickets begin to

sing their solitary song.

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

Heck Hog by J D Nelson

morning the toot wilhelm

ghost chicken for the goose of days

good luck soap

a seldom used machine

centipede realization

we can’t get that locking machine to weep

a lion was a bug sprout

not candle wax

the dumpster yes is a shining fox crouton



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

Little Hills of Esigodini by Ndaba Sibanda

fabulous sight

landforms snake up and down

in extraordinary humps

of Nature’s poise and pride,

breasts of land projecting

into charged saddles-                  

midwifed to gush out milk

of purity and tranquility;

the hills- though

small in size,

short in height-

lug and beam

a beauty that towers

the sky of my sensuousness;

their warmth appendages

the body with a nobility priceless,

like a cup of undiluted water,

they stand out undisturbed,

unchallenged by the ever-jerky

wheels of seasons and weather;

during gusty days their music

makes love to my ears with

a rare calmness-

l feel altogether like

abandoning my journey for them,

crowning them my beautiful infinity,

during sun-drenched days-

their seemingly little panorama,

drowns and dazzles my eyes into captivity;

an image of snug oases-

unparalleled greening of my soul,

they snuggle me all the way to the apex

of amity and stimulation…

they vacillate between ideal and real,

l relish to no end

their serrated depressions and passages

that feel me with a passion

beyond mere touch and tour,

they captivate my touch at will

l cannot give them a cursory look-

the harder l try to scuttle away

the further and so further

l gravitate into their cuddling glare;

they confer upon me the throne

of Nature’s dutiful and indebted admirer

of the stupendous dexterity of our Creator;

the little hills that dominate my dreams-

those that epitomise a hustle-free haven

for the breezy incubation and birth

of a romance and a love of a lifetime;

those are my little hills heal that  my soul,

they will define and refine my life

so that l get to appreciate the meaning

of dreams and days-

l am not surprised to hear that the

these hills are lovers’ haven,

the scenery  is just compelling,

the shrubs and trees ooze a lively life;

the serenity is so delightful that

it promotes a refreshing union of hearts;

they are like alternative therapies-

the remedies of matters of the heart,

the birds` chirping –mellow

mends troubled  souls-  

melts bitterness and rancour-

nurses and mesmerises the ears

beyond any measurable fears!

the shrubs and trees beget an aroma

that makes a mockery of artificial perfumes,

those hills heal my soul in a high manner!

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

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

April 10, 1815 by Michael Ceraolo

Heritage by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

Coyote Dusk by William Doreski

Provincial by Gerard Sarnat

Risk-Reward Ratio by Robert Beveridge

Somewhere, Prometheus by Louis Faber

Lonely at Wedding by James Croal Jackson

Paradox by Mohammad Saif

A Red Bird’s Wings by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

Yo soy el Fenix by Sergio A. Ortiz

Platinum City by Hongri Yuan

April 10, 1815 by Michael Ceraolo

In the Indonesian archipelago

the top three thousand feet of a mountain

was blown off,ejecting

smoke, ash, and acid into the atmosphere,

killing tens of thousands of people

and more than that number of animals

and causing massive devastation in the area

And the devastation was not limited

to the immediate area or time

The cloud of smoke and ash

would travel around the world

The next year would be known

in the Northern Hemisphere as

The Year without a Summer:

heavy snows in June

frosts in July and August

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

“the most adverse to agriculture

which had ever been known”with

“No prospect of crops”

Some of the subsequent years would be almost as cold

And a few more people were now convinced

that smoke in the air could affect the weather

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

Heritage by Edilson Afonso Ferreira

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

surprising and unpredictable events,

that leave us breathless and speechless.

Some sad, unwanted and hurtful ones, 

which we cannot understand its origins or reasons,

carried out by family, friends, even by ourselves.                                                             

We must also remember those, likewise unexpected,

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

which, without better judgment, we accounted

as if had been natural and fully deserved ones.  

Indeed, in the harvest we do every day,

we are used to abundance, sometimes to scarcity,  

healthy fruits alongside some sick ones.

We should always take into account

that have not been only we who have planted

what we are now reaping.   

It had been sowed by parents and grandparents,

also by everyone who preceded us. 

Really, it is the heritage we must honor,

interdependent as we are, in our common,

beloved, sometimes so suffering human race. 

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

Coyote Dusk by William Doreski

Hear the coyotes howling,

urging the dark to arrive?

The small bones in your ears hurt

as primal fears parse the noise

into barely digestible bytes.

Yes, they began that gray chorus

soon after you left for Nashua

with the highway trying to warp

itself into a Moebius strip.

Yes, most drivers go crazy

when spring light decays in shades

of ecru the eye can’t process.

A wonder you got home alive

to hear the coyotes desiccate

the over-familiar distance

between the wooded horizon

and the post-glacial hills beyond.

The Spanish Revolution failed

or succeeded before our birth,

but the howling of coyotes

invokes the pack mentality

that drew martyrs to the flames.

Would you self-sacrifice to save

Picasso’s Guernica from grief

atonal as the end of the world?

You drove to Nashua to shop,

but the coyotes could explain

the carnivorous point of view

more clearly than the meat cutters

at the supermarket you favor.

We’d better get the groceries inside

before the coyotes finish

tuning up for a long pale night,   

their appetites so perfected

we might be tempted to imitate

by baring our secret fangs.


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

Provincial by Gerard Sarnat

view of current world

as First (us), Second (Commies)

well as Third (have-nots)

— condescending, out-of-date —

we all fight the COVID fall.

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

gerardsarnat.com

Risk-Reward Ratio by Robert Beveridge


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


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

 

 

Somewhere, Prometheus by Louis Faber

Chained to the great rock

atop Mt. Caucausus

did you dream of Epimetheas

somewhere below, did you foresee

Pandora, her evil gleam

reflected in the love struck eyes

of your brother, a gift of the Gods

not to be ignored despite your entreaties.

Was that the price of fire

secreted by the Gods

until stolen in your tube.

Didn’t you see the great cloud

rise quickly from the rubble

and glowing ash

of Hiroshima and Nagasaki,

the core settle into the earth

a hole in Chernobyl.

Were these the visions

that ate at you

plucking at your liver

from its philosophical aerie

your resolve returned

each day in the office

nestled into the New Jersey countryside.

You waited patiently

for your redemption

for the eagle of doubt

to be felled by logic

freeing your to pursue Irene.

We continue your quest

although the Gods

have grown bored with us

and Pandora has moved

to Afghanistan.

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

Lonely at Wedding by James Croal Jackson

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

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

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

Paradox by Mohammad Saif

Disbelief, is it or inability?

A conundrum?

Endeavours to resolve,

with given complexity,

the intricacy

of this universe.

Is it then sardonic?

These pursuits and

unevenly matched failures,

to fathom

the depths of, simple,

docile emotions pressed

against absolute perplexity.

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

A Red Bird’s Wings by Bobbi Sinha-Morey

As light sifts down the hills

behind the barn, she sits with

her coffee cup watching

sparrows rest on the wire,

a red bird’s wing cutting

across her stare, the sunset

soaking into the iris of her

eye as she leans towards

her golden years. Now it is

July with its hot thick yellow

days and an owl feather

floating in a little pond;

a mare that still grazes

near the fence, head down,

content in sweet grass.

Her heart rises, framing

her life by the kitchen

window, the desert of

her dreams now so far

away, the closeness of

her family wrapped around

her every day, comforted

always be the voice of

someone dear.

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

Yo soy el Fenix by Sergio A. Ortiz

my multi colored feathers 

shine. Your jailers 

are no obstacle, it’s my 

nature to rise. 

El tiempo me dice,

A jugado tanto con el amor 

que ya no sabe amar. *

Camina, corre, cabalga.

Now what, where will you 

go from here?

¿A que nueva cárcel 

me desterrara? 

¿A qué otro silencio?

It pains me to know 

that tomorrow’s daylight 

might bring you tears. 

Niños del color 

de mis tristezas jugando 

frente al mar

en casa de cartón.* 

Your choice, not mine.

Make sure you don’t hurt 

yourself while trying 

to save me.

_____________

*He’s played so much with love

that he cannot love 

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

Am I being banished to?

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

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

Platinum City by Hongri Yuan

Translated by Manu Mangattu

Ah! Of iridescent gems of time

The heavenly road you paved light!

In a kingdom of stars,

I found my home.

In the golden cities,

I opened the gates of the city to the sun,

To behold the godly giants.

At the royal palace of the jewel

I read of prehistoric wonderful poems

The enormous, gorgeous ancient books.

Carved with the golden words

The wondrous strange mystery tales,

Made my eyes drunken.

I walked into the full new universes,

And saw the holy kingdoms:

Even before the earth was born

The erstwhile home of human history.

Across Time and Space in crystalline glitter

Stands this moment a platinum city –

The spaceships drifting leisurely,

Like the birds, resplendent in variegated hues.

In the crystal garden I saw

A crowd of youthful giants,

Their eyes were bright and glittering

In the aura of the body sparkle..

They sang happy songs

They danced a wonderful dance

Lanky boys and girls in pairs

As if to celebrate the splendid carnival.

I saw a circular edifice

High above the city.

Giving out white-bright lightnings.

Raised ground to fly into the quiet space.

A frame of platinum edifice

Creating a beautiful pattern.

The whole city is a circle

Arranged into a fine structure.​

Into a bright hall I went.

A strange instrument there I saw.

A huge screen hanging on the wall,

Displaying a golden space​.

Like bits of colourful crystal gemstones!

Resplendent with variegated colours of the city!

Those strange and beautiful high-rise buildings

A sight better than the myth of the world.

I saw lines of strange letters.

On one side of the screen flashed swiftly

Numerous young and strong giants

An effort to concentrate on the changing images.

Their look is quiet and peaceful.

The learned flame flashes in their eyes.

In a flash of clothes

The next is a whole.

Their stature, unusually tall.

Each one is well-nigh seven meters high.

Both men and women look dignified

Almost no age difference apparent.

Their skin is white as snow

With a faint flashy shine

Bright eyes are as naive as an infant’s

Also kindled with a strange flame.

They manipulate the magic of the instrument.

The pictures of the changing space.

Their language is artless and plane.

As the bell is generally pleasant.

As I survey the length and breadth of the bright hall

I feel a powerful energy

Body and mind suffused with bliss and delight.

As if I too am a giant.​

I seem to understand their language.

They are exploring the mysteries of the universe.

The cities on a lot of planets

Peopled with their countless partners.

Their mind they use to manipulate the instrument

Also can to transfer data be used

Even thousands of miles apart

Also to talk free to the heart.

Many lines of text on the screen

Is but a message from afar.

The whole universe is their home.

They build cities in space.

They use the spaceships

To transport you to far-distant other spaces.

Into a lightning, a moment, and you

Vanish into thin air, without a trace.

I feel a new civilization.

They have magical eyes.

They seem to be able to see the future

And can enter diverse time-spaces.

Men and women are holy and loving

Superior to our world’s so-called love

They don’t seem to understand ageing

Neither do they know about war.

Time seems not to exist

Science is jut a wonderful art

Their happiness comes from the creation of

A universe full of divine love.

I saw a young giant

Opening the door of a platinum

A round, magnificent hall

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

I saw a crystal stage.

Gyrating at the center of the hall.

Where a dignified and beautiful girl

Was playing a huge musical instrument.

A bunch of golden rays,

Shifting with all kinds of brilliant graphics

A mysterious and beautiful music

Like the Dragon leisurely crowing.

Thence I saw an enormous giant

Jump out of the remarkable dance onto the stage.

His hands held a huge ball

Which flashed with many colourful drawing .

I saw a group of young girls

Wearing a kind of white dresses

They seemed to fly lightly

Like the giant cranes.

The huge circular hall was resplendent

With clear, transparent decoration.

Like a bizarre gem of a full set,

Scintillating brilliantly in the light.

I saw a young singer

About the golden flame

The sound was strange and striking

Like singing , like chanting too.

Their music is at once mysterious and blissful

That shift randomly like the lightning

As if many planets of the universe

Shining bright and light​ in space.

The crystal city, aloft in space

Looks resplendent, magnificent

Countless wonderful golden flowers

Bloom and blush in that flawless space.

I saw an image of a transparent smiling face,

As if it were a colourful garden

The sky shed the golden light

And turned it into a city of gold​.

I strode out of the circular hall

Came to a wide street with a smooth

Pavement covered with precious stones

And in line with the platinum edifice.

There are no terrestrial trees here,

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

Sparkling with rich incense,

Shaping a garden at the center of the street.

Some strange flowers were there.

The branches as transparent crystal

Flashing all kinds of brilliant colours;

And bunches of round golden fruit​.

I saw a huge statue.

It was like a spaceship.

Clustered around by shining stars,

High above the centre of the street.

I saw the column of a dazzling fountain

In a huge circle in the square;

The elegantly modelled statues

Portraying the holy giants​.

The soaring magnificent edifices

Ran round the circle square.

There were some garden villas

There was a platinum steeple.

I saw a wide river

Girdling this huge city

The bottom flashed with transparent gold dust,

Amidst which were scattered brilliant gems.

The planning of tall trees on shore

And a long crystal corridor

A big multi-coloured bird

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

I saw a vast forest

The swaying tree, a tree of gold

The trees with towering spires

And as some platinum Pavilion​.

I saw some giants along the walk,

Some male and female bodybuilders.

At the water’s brink or in the forest

Like birds carefree and relaxed.

The wonderful space was as bright as crystal

Embraced this platinum city;

A giant, white and bright ball

Flashing boundless light into the air​.

It resembled the huge suns

And like the man-made planets

The whole city was shining too,

Weaving a rare breed of magic​.

A strange speeding train circled

About the city back and forth;

There seemed to be a kind of track in the sky

Like a shiny silver curve​.

They seated body white buildings

As if it was a dreamlike maze

This huge city was unusually quiet,

Could not even hear the sound of the wind​.

I bade goodbye to the platinum city.

Near a golden space

Stands another city here

A huge city of gold​.

The building here is also huge.

But it’s another beautiful shape.

The whole city is glittering

Golden edifice as beautiful as sculpture.

Here there live some other giants.

As if from another nation

They have boundless wisdom.

Like a golden, holy civilization.

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

白金城市

远红

时间的五彩宝石啊

你铺成了光芒的天路

在一座星辰的王国

我找到了自己的家园

我打开一座座太阳的城门

在一座座黄金的城市

见到了一个个神圣的巨人

在那宝石镶嵌的皇宫

阅读了史前奇妙的诗篇

一部部古奥华丽的巨书

镌雕着黄金的词语

一篇篇玄奇美妙的故事

迷醉了我的双眼

我走进了一个个崭新的宇宙

看到了一座座圣洁的王国

在地球还没有诞生之前

曾经是人类的史前的家园

时空的水晶啊光芒闪耀

一座白金的城市矗立眼前

一只只飞船悠悠飘过

像一只只巨鸟五光十色

我看到一个个年轻的巨人

身体闪耀七彩的光环

他们的眼睛欢喜明亮

聚会在一座水晶的花园

他们唱着欢快的歌曲

跳着一种奇妙的舞蹈

一对对高大的少男少女

仿佛在庆贺盛大的节日

我看到一座圆形的巨厦

高高耸立在城市的上空

发出一道道白亮的闪电

高高地飞入宁静的太空

一座座通体白金的巨厦

构成了一个美妙的图案

整个城市是一个圆形

排列成一个精致的结构

我走进一座明亮的大厅

看到一排奇特的仪器

墙上悬挂巨大的屏幕

显映出一片金色的太空

一座座五光十色的城市

像一块块五彩晶莹的宝石

那些奇丽的高楼巨厦

胜过了人间幻想的神话

我看到一行行陌生的字母

在一面屏幕上匆匆闪过

几位年轻健壮的巨人

专注地观看变幻的图像

他们的神情宁静安然

两眼闪映智慧的光芒

穿着一种闪光的衣装

通体上下是一个整体

他们的身材异常高大

个个足有七米多高

男男女女容貌端庄

几乎没有年龄的区别

他们的皮肤洁白如雪

隐隐闪出亮丽的光泽

明亮的眼睛单纯如婴儿

又含着一种奇异的火焰

他们操纵神奇的仪器

变幻太空一幅幅图景

他们的语言简洁流畅

像钟磬一般悦耳动听

我端详这座明亮的大厅

感受到一种强大的能量

身心充满了幸福欢喜

自己也仿佛变成了巨人

我似乎听懂了他们的语言

他们在探索宇宙的奥秘

那一颗颗星球上的城市

住着他们无数个伙伴

他们用意念操纵仪器

也可以用意念传递信息

即使相距千里万里

也可以自由地用心交谈

那屏幕上的一行行文字

即是远方传来的信息

整个宇宙是他们的家园

他们在太空建造城市

他们乘坐的太空飞船

可以到达另外的空间

一瞬间化成一道闪电 

在空中变得无影无踪

我感受到一种新的文明

他们长着神奇的眼睛

他们似乎能看到未来

也能进入不同的时空

男男女女都圣洁慈爱

胜过人间所谓的爱情

他们仿佛不懂得衰老

也不知道什么叫战争

时间仿佛并不存在

科学就是奇妙的艺术

他们的快乐来自创造

对宇宙充满神圣的感情

我看到一位年轻的巨人

打开了一座白金的大门

一座圆形的华丽的大厅

坐满了一排排男女巨人

我看到一座水晶的舞台

旋转在这座大厅的中央

一位端庄美丽的少女

演奏着一种巨型的乐器

一束一束金色的光芒

变幻出各种奇妙的图形

一种玄妙动人的音乐

仿佛是龙凤悠然的啼鸣

我看到一位健美的巨人

在台上跳出奇异的舞蹈

他手中托起巨大的圆球

球内闪耀着彩色的画图

我看到一队妙龄的女郎

穿着一种雪白的裙裳

他们仿佛在翩翩飞翔

像是一只只巨大的仙鹤

巨大的圆厅金碧辉煌

像水晶一般清澈透明

又像是嵌满奇异的宝石

闪耀出一种绚丽的光芒

我看到一位年轻的歌手

全身缭绕着金色的火焰

那声音奇特而又优美

像是歌唱又像是吟诵

他们的音乐欢喜玄妙

像一道道闪电变幻莫测

仿佛是宇宙的一颗颗星球

在太空中闪烁亮丽的光芒

又仿佛一座座水晶的城市

在空中矗立宏伟辉煌

无数奇妙的金色的花朵

开满了清澈晶莹的太空

我看到一张张透明的笑脸

仿佛是一座缤纷的花园

金色的光芒从天空洒下

化成了一座座黄金之城

我走出了这座圆形大厅

来到一条宽阔的街道

光洁的路面嵌满宝石

两旁林立白金的巨厦

在这儿没有人间的树木

却盛开各种奇异的花朵

浓郁芳香又闪闪发光

形成了一座座街心花园

这是一些奇特的花木

枝干透明仿佛水晶

闪烁各种奇妙的颜色 

还有一串串金色的圆果

我看到一座巨大的塑像

仿佛一个太空飞船

高高地耸立在街头中心     

周围闪耀一颗颗星球

我看到一柱柱晶莹的喷泉

在一座巨大的圆形广场

一座座造型优美的雕像

刻画出一个个圣洁的巨人

一座座巍峨壮丽的巨厦

环绕着这座圆形的广场

巨厦的上面是一些花园

还有一座座白金的尖塔

我看到一条宽广的河流

怀抱着这座巨大的城市

水底闪映出透明的金沙

还有一颗颗七彩的宝石

岸边排列高大的花木

和一条条水晶的长廊

一种色彩亮丽的大鸟

三五一群在水面飞翔

我看到一座广阔的树林

摇曳着一树树黄金的树叶

树林中耸立一座座尖塔

又仿佛一些白金的楼阁

我看到一些漫步的巨人

男男女女健美潇洒

或在水边或在林中

像鸟儿一般逍遥自在

奇妙的太空亮如水晶  

怀抱着这座白金城市

一只一只白亮的巨球

在空中闪放无际的光明

仿佛是一颗颗巨大的太阳

又像是一颗颗人造的星球

整座城市也闪放光芒

形成一种神奇的景象

一种奇特的飞驰的列车

在城市上空回环往复

天空中仿佛有一种轨道

像一条银白闪亮的曲线

那一座座通体白亮的巨厦

仿佛是一座座神奇的迷宫

巨大的城市异常宁静

甚至听不到风儿的声音  

我告别了这座白金城市

奔向了一片金色的太空

在这儿矗立另一座城市

一座巨大的黄金之城

这儿的建筑同样巨大

却是另一种美丽的造型

整座城市金光灿烂

黄金的巨厦美如雕塑

这儿生活着另一些巨人

仿佛来自另一个民族

他们拥有伟大的智慧

像黄金一般圣洁的文明

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

 

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

On the Leaves by Ahmad Al-Khatat

Fred Limerick by Charles Leggett

Inclusion by Eliza Segiet

Lullaby Remind by Emalisa Rose

Left Behind by Fabrice Poussin

Droplets by Ferris E Jones

The Unordinary by James G. Piatt

Rush by Kelli J. Gavin

Take to the Sea by Luis Cuauhtemoc

Poetry by Lynn Long

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

On the Leaves by Ahmad Al-Khatat

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Fred Limerick by Charles Leggett

There once was a thinker named Fred.

His theories were quite widely read.

       When he found that his strife

       Was all caused by his life

He simply pronounced himself dead.

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

Inclusion by Eliza Segiet

From the orchestra of sensations

only moments are stopped in time.

They remain,

they last like an inclusion hidden in amber.

The past veiled by the memory

of stone nature.

My mind are the corals of the past,

monads of memories

immersed in a whirl of madness.

The corals of the future crystallize

into indeterminacy.

Fortune will materialize tomorrow.


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

Lullaby Remind by Emalisa Rose

once a spiralling storm,

we morph in the mist

of the harbor, yesterday’s

rain rhythms, seeking

significance, eternity’s

oracle, unbound to the

scramble of scrabble words

and your lullaby eyes

of our cradle’s remind

lulling me softly to sea.

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

Left Behind by Fabrice Poussin

Take the happiness with you;

I will stay behind and take care of

the mope.

After all, many a tear will be shed,

and one will have the labor so he may

wipe them one by one.

No reason to take a chance for others,

they may slip, slide, break away forever,

unknowing of a drama so recent.

Take the happiness with you slowly,

for the pain will hover, it does always,

on the cold walls of light blue.

Let the glow of your supple warmth

linger just a little longer for the icy heart,

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

Remember to stay again; anticipation

of your return, no one will be aware;

this intimate secret of two souls, ours alone.

Leaning on the heavy groan of cries, longings,

and heavy sighs, I promise to remain alert,

protect, cherish and nurture what you leave,

to be safe in hands trembling of simple want.  

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

 

 

Droplets by Ferris E Jones

From the winds of darkened roots,

The droplets fall compulsive,

To seek life, it pollutes.

With faint eyes it exposes

The blindfold, while slow, crowded men

Discuss what it imposes.

The glory of life may pass,

Primeval pleasures weep,

An honor to be the last.

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

The Unordinary by James G. Piatt

Rhymes, like curling snakes waiting

For victims, hiss to the surface of 

Searching minds begging for reality,

The poet’s drama, dark, fleeting, 

His dark metaphors painted

With the hue of tragedy,

His thin lines filled with meaninglessness, 

Erupt into absurdity, as he spills 

Crimson ink on parchment, creating 

The unordinary.

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

Rush by Kelli J. Gavin

Please rush me

If you don’t

I never will

Make me

Do it

Make me move

Make me start

Make me want more

Please rush me

If you don’t

I never will

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

Take to the Sea by Luis Cuauhtemoc

I turn these rocks into flowers.

I give a handful to all my loves.

I turn the rain into sweet wine

and the flowers back to rocks.

I don’t throw rocks at anyone.

I turn the noise into silence and

the trees into home sweet home.

I take to the sea.

It fills my thirst for adventure.

I go there smiling.

I turn the shells into coins.

I hold them in the palm of my hand.

I take to the sea.

I spend most of the days there.

I hold my love standing on the beach.

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

Poetry by Lynn Long

And I see you

Floating on a breeze

Adrift in the wind

Just like a leaf

And I want to reach out

To touch you once more

For I know you fly

To a distant shore

You see me too

As I blow a kiss

In sweet adieu

 you smile…

Your journey begun

And I whisper

May you reach the sun-

feel its warmth

May you touch the clouds

On your journey forth

And may you know

Upon the tawny sand

Inner peace

When at last you 

land…

Lynn Long

Poet, writer, dreamer

And believer in the impossible…

Residing somewhere in time

Artist at https://hitrecord.org/

https://linktr.ee/lunadeity

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

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

the calm name of the wind

whiting up the bread was a new earth on a pole

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

well he had a meltdown

fool of the world walked up and ate the sun

it was saucer night and he ate the moon too


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

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

Pass by Robert Beveridge

A Defense of the Moon by Yash Seyedbagheri

4th Alone by Wayne Russell

Unendingly Picturesque by Pawel Markiewicz

Chimp by Joel Schueler

The Friday Night Poker Game by John Grey

Tiny Sparrow Feet by Michael Lee Johnson

Spring puts the Mischief in Me by William Doreski

Raspberry Sugar by DS Maolalai

Palo Alto Ingenuity by Gerard Sarnat

Baggage Reclaim by Ben Nardolilli

Pass by Robert Beveridge

You unclasped my watch,

laid it on the nightstand.

“You don’t need this,” you told me.

“We have the whole weekend

before us.”

What reason would make clear

time again confounds;

your copper skin against mine,

the play of fingers over flesh,

the endless minutes and hours

that pass in seconds.

When it came time to sleep,

you kissed the bare

strip of flesh uncovered

by the watch, closed your hand

around it.

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

A Defense of the Moon by Yash Seyedbagheri

don’t write of the moon, you say,

adjusting your beret, not without some twist

you want some twist, some new spin

but how can you distort a soft lunar lullaby

that soothes through the pines

over the rooftops

over bars

whose liveliness is masked?

she breaks through the shadows

and guides the crowds

and the lonely hearts who wander a little bit slower

she dwells in Debussy

and Beethoven

tell me

what’s your vision

is your twist to paint the moon

psychedelic pink with

mushrooms protruding and a cynical smirk

is it the moon with bodily fluids smeared

and declared art

is your twist

the moon renamed something less tender

or tell me

is your aim

to paint clouds over the moon?

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

and you can play with your beret

without missing a beat

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

4th Alone by Wayne Russell

Four Christmas’s alone

now, talking to myself

and the barren walls.

There’s no love herein

this rickety old studio

apartment, no need be.

There’s no presents,

underneath no tree,

there’re no lights lining

doorways or window

panes.

But there’s plenty of

pain in this aching

heart, it’s my 4th alone.

Should I text my ex

girlfriend? Beg her

back?

“Could we try again babe?”

“Please?”

No answers forthcoming

from my brand-new cell

phone.

She still has my beat up

ol’ guitar, and my sneakers,

some old jeans and a t-shirt.

She has my heart worn loosely

and broken, around her necklace.

I returned her presents after she

broke up with me again, always

via text, always catching me off

guard, knocking the wind from

my lungs. Knocking me too the

ground.

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

Unendingly Picturesque by Pawel Markiewicz

a pulchritudinous sonnet according to Paweł Markiewicz

I am through a superb window – looking.

An angel of feeling awakes in me.

The dreamy oak-trees stand alway leafless.

The native auspicious cue is just large.

My scenery – the enchanted verdure.

The moony old barn of Ted my dear nuncle.

I am looking at a proud throng of crows.

They belong to the whiff of every times.

The springtide looks so meek-beauteous-fair,

first and foremost  Morningstar – at night.

I daydream springwards window-view withal

of a dreamy Ovidian summer gale.

Homelike herbage that seems to bewitch all.

My cats want to enchant the fantasy.

Dreamed subtle morn withal notably.

………………………….

gale – archaic: wind

alway – archaic: always

cue – archaic: mood

verdure – green

nuncle – archaic: uncle

throng – archaic: bevy

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

Chimp by Joel Schueler

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

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

The Friday Night Poker Game by John Grey

They gather around the kitchen table

on a Friday night,

puffing desperately on cigarettes

as if it’s the last place on the planet

where smoking is still allowed.

A wife made dip,

filled bowls with chips,

then headed for her mother’s.

The fridge is full of lager.

And there’s another case on standby.

They’re in their fifties.

long past their futures,

weary factory workers,

shop clerks, office nobodies.

Someone deals.

They all look gingerly,

then somberly,

at their hands.

Time will tell

if the cards are in their favor

more than the stars ever were.

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

Tiny Sparrow Feet by Michael Lee Johnson

It’s calm.

Cheeky, unexpected.

Too quiet.

My clear plastic bowls

serves as my bird feeder.

I don’t hear the distant

scratching, shuffling

of tiny sparrow feet,

the wing dances, fluttering, of a hungry

morning’s lack of big band sounds.

I walk tentatively to my patio window,

spy the balcony with my detective’s eyes.

I witness three newly hatched

toddler sparrows, curved nails, mounted

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

Their childish beaks bent over elongated,

delicately, into golden chips, and dusted yellow corn.

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

Spring puts the Mischief in Me by William Doreski

 

The aftertaste of crows rasping

in watery May overcast                                                                                                          

reminds us that appointments

with the afterword are overdue.

Our doctor suggests we slip

into sizes a bit too large

so we can swim around inside                                                    

ourselves, barking like seals.

Our plumber suggests that leaks                                                                              

soon become swimming pools so

why not enjoy the season?

Our mechanic argues that oil pans

contain in microscopic shards

the clues to our local travels,

so we could shroud ourselves in maps

and pretend that’s orgiastic.

“Spring puts the mischief in me,”

Frost said, but lies preceded him

into both the afterword and

the afterworld, distinct locations

with lakes and hills and distant

views of the over-brimming sea.

Our posthumous menus include

appetizers. wine, and dessert,

but the main course still eludes us,

possibly still unslaughtered

on a farm where country music

heehaws softly in the background.

You want to share the credit

for shaping the air to our needs,

but my degree in random thought

proceeds me like a cutting edge—

not to scold or punish but sculpt

a path to the shadow of forest

where we can lie together

or separately in soggy heaps.

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

Raspberry Sugar by DS Maolalai

drunk again, of course

on the patio,

and we open our laps

and fill them

with pennies.

we are ferris-

wheel workers. we are bumper

car workers. around us,

the stickiness

of cotton candy

smoke. staining our outfits,

tasting of raspberry,

sticky old fingers

and sweet.

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

Palo Alto Ingenuity by Gerard Sarnat

Old yarmulkes’ drawer,

boring beyond belief – now 

voila morphs face masks.

Betsy Ross would be so proud

as would Anthony Fauci

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

Baggage Reclaim by Ben Nardolilli


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

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

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

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

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

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.