Vol. 3, No. 7
Georgia Atkin – Horizon
Meg Baird – Two Gals – 1
Dorothyanne Brown – Put together
Janet Brush – Bad Habit
Morgan Buhr-Boutilier – Endless Darkness
Alex Buys – Much Motion
Richard Collins – White Balloon
Beth Enman – On Change
Cathy Hanrahan – Storm
Tara Hurlburt – Song of the City
Scot Jamieson – Opening The Window
Suzanne Kittell – all of me
Erica Lewis – The Last Time
Ayesha Mushtaq – The Paranoid Immigrant
Nicole D. Myers – Mash Up
Jaywant Patil – Halifax Waterfront
Megan Power – Love of Place
Laurel Rennie – whorl
Derek Robinson – City Without an Airport
Elzy Taramangalam – Plover’s Prayer
I squint in the darkness,
trying to see
the hiding place of the sun,
that line that you can never reach
no matter how you run,
be it far
however more we seek
the more we speak, continue,
forge onwards, keep going,
the more steps there are,
and we may never catch that star
but we might just end up
somewhere else entirely.
a glass of wine and cigarette
at 2 a.m. I understand
her child beside her
envious I am
She assembles herself as
she pulls herself out of the dryer.
Shirt, bra, underwear
One sock. Much later, the other.
She finds it nestled in the bedsheets
Tumbled together in the thread eroding cycles
One covered with gym sweat,
……….the other with night sweat.
A malodorous bundle, now cleansed.
Assembled, she looks around her
Knowing it is just a breath
I have a bad habit –
I keep falling in love with gay men.
There was the one who said
“I must go home to my boyfriend”
…..in the middle of some heavy bump and grind
…..on the dance floor
There was the one who hugged me
after a client threatened to bash my face in–
…..then told me he and his man
…..were buying a house together.
Now there’s – no, I won’t name him.
He’s brilliant, witty, incredibly sexy,
……….and flamboyantly gay.
He posts pictures of himself in drag.
He’s committed to the “queering of Ireland”.
Why does this keep happening to me?
Is there a “Straight Women
who Love Gay Men Anonymous” group?
Though the night,
that is so bright,
only one can wish,
for the light.
As thou full of sorrow,
only one can watch it go,
so as the light became so bright,
it faded into the night,
no more light to undarken the night
To music played loud
The fog will come out
We know it won’t leave
Anything seen at least
The breeze helps me out
The hill underneath
Becomes a game
Playing it takes everything
While thoughts stay as light
As the streets will let them
Sounds rise and
Take me on a ride with each listen
A swell so well past hands
And bookshelves, friends and
Godly aspects lost in glossy
I think of Pinochet, who swelled
And led Allende to death, or regicide
By cruel Macbeth. I swell…
But, won’t forget.
A swell so well past frothy,
Brackish shores of sore neglect
And upset families’ white regret,
And nights of ample anisette.
A swell past lovers porcelain skin,
She left as others will, but I will swell
Past every father, burgeon on…
And swell to Godhood.
When we were young and worry-free
Each year seemed an eternity
We wished in vain to grow up fast
Unheeding as the days rushed past
Then as we grew, the changes came
To mind, and soul, and body’s frame
To break, and make, and shape our mould –
Is this the cost of growing old?
We moved away and left our home
Desired to venture and to roam
Decisions made and conscience tested
With respect earned and time invested
We met with sorrow, shook its hand
Sat sessions in the mourners’ band
There found the joy in letting go
To trust in what we cannot know
And now, the path lies forked once more
With avenues we might explore
Such choices as will alter fate
Put forth at an alarming rate
So in the midst of highs and lows
As weighty indecision grows
Take comfort in this, treasured friend:
To change is not to meet our end.
The storm is pushing through here
I feel it shake the trees
It’s pouring out its fury
No effort to please
My wish is to resist it
Not stagger side by side
But the storm will not heed
me So I attempt to hide
I plead with rising volume
As if the storm might hear
To commandeer this darkness
And take away my fear
Abruptly the clouds crumble
Sending forth a ray of light
Announcing a denial
That it could cause such fright
So now I sit and ponder
The consequence of its blow
That short lived ring of glory
The luminous rainbow
My quest is to remember
That storms will come and go
Fear can be as transient
As the shifting winds that blow
Wrapped tight in gowns of red and white
are the sisters three,
Singing out their smog-filled song
over the city.
Standing firm, all in a row,
they refuse to change their tune;
With none larger to lay scold
they make for hazy noon.
The harbour bows down at their feet,
forced to gain their favour,
And slaps on rocks its lazy knocks
that make song seem a labour.
The fog horn blasts its echoed voice
off each sibling’s bulk,
And then is sent, washing back,
over Sea Hag audience.
Harbour hands working bows and beams
are accustomed to the notes,
Silently appreciating the melody
as it connects with the boats.
Yet, at night when all are in
there isn’t a nautical peep
And I wonder if the city’s song
has finally lulled the sisters to sleep.
Opening the window,
listening as night thunder stretches
across the sky until it’s spent,
and galloping rainfall’s downward flow
makes random percussion, near and distant
knocking, splattering, pops and catches –
repetitious, some, some, intermittent . . .
Ears like mine must have listened,
for millennia no one can reckon,
to such night voices. Too soon we end,
dry little life, to attempt conversation.
Still, listening we are, listening for
what speaks no sense but awakens senses,
creeps past the sill, across the floor,
upon skin, into lungs, past mind’s defenses.
Eyes watch the bedroom’s darkened blur,
open, so open, as if something’s learning.
Mystery’s returning. I remember her.
i am your needy cartographers
I am the cure to your solipsism
I belie your weakness and your love
I am percussion
I am the gatekeeper of that place
where young and old converge
that epicenter of opposites
and I can be a compass
I know how to read the sky
I am a sailor
I am that ultimate paradox
I am by nature a place of emptiness
yet I have filled the world in
I am creator and subject
I am walls waiting to be painted
I am renaissance
I am that place where you keep him
drag him to be preserved
I am that briny gospel cave
roll these two stones away
and you will find him safe
I am a prison cell
for that irresponsible one
I close that vigilante in
and filter recklessness
beads of pollen
I remember the last time I ran.
Sprinting after a friend’s dog.
I had a feeling of quiet dread,
as though I had just done
something I would never do again.
I remember the last time I walked.
Leaning on my walker,
taking the recycling to the curb.
I had a feeling of indescribable despair
because I knew this was
something I would never do again.
I remember the last time I stood.
Pulling myself up out of my wheelchair,
grabbing onto the counter.
And when I sat back down, this was
something I would never do again
Greener pastures and silver linings,
Fade in a whiff of global smoke.
And out rise the green-eyed monsters
In chained smiles and sarcastic brows,
That curve and lift in foreign ways,
I understand not.
It is a place that adapts me,
But forbids me to adapt to itself.
A thriving museum of ship wrecked Sinbads,
Shore on these lost legacies,
And flags plentiful to feed the official documents.
Behind the delicate veil of race and color,
There exist age-old trials of humanity.
Un noticed- neither spoken nor fought in courts,
But merely suffered in the long hours of everyday.
I am no Lazarus, just a prisoner on a map,
Identified by my SIN # and geography.
No stars constellate to form my story,
As I pendulum between the Orient and the Occident.
Right or wrong goes a lap, Halal or haram?
Another day is past.
Pendulum, Tick Tock Tick Tock- East and West,
There is a time bomb in my head.
Tick Tock Tick Tock the polarity swings off course
Paling the pastures and waning the clouds.
a mirror morphs into
a magnifying glass
advance your own agenda
the dangers of all
the things we take
Halifax waterfront in the summer,
with people walking on the board walk,
greeted with sunshine and a gentle cool breeze,
what a refreshing delight to body and soul.
Watching people stroll by leisurely,
sail boats sail by majestically,
ships and ferry boats go by periodically,
a mesmerizing sight to behold with joy.
Warm sunshine gentle cool sea breeze
caress my face like lover’s gentle embrace.
I wish that summer was here all year long.
Spent my afternoons on the water front all year long.
Friday, 6:00 p.m.
This white thug ahead in line
Flaunts his huge 902 arm tattoo
Dark ink, gothic script
I heart NS too
Best in summer. Deeper as I age.
To my own detriment
(foreign friends quip)
Love of place is
Just like any other love
Eager to avow
Six moods of harbor blue
The perverse beauty of snow
Butter-lacquered lobster claws
in its circle-cares
and in miniature,
everything easily pieced apart.
i found out,
the circularity of this was brought to me
and because of this,
i found out.
every alive day
that is the only thing known
that on this day, things live
things are bringing breath
because of the circle nature, the turning
the wheel-like motion of our living
i can see you on the spokes .
i can see everything good in the future
and we are only wheeling closer
post-modern lovers wander; taxis circle
endless late nights
reasons dynamic, fluid in purpose
empty skies are lit only by satellite
to show the others: this place exists;
connect with distant radio voices;
and monitor winter’s timelessness
Idle rail-lines lead back to stations
relics; the place where
the privileged gather and recount
similarities, stories; compare lists
maps coloured red and a days upload
just to say they did – no more
where we’re going, where we’ve been
obvious at first glance
repeat to be heard, repeat to be sure
leave nothing unattended; unsaid
in this moment between
where you are and who you want to be
Hello love birds
Piping plover here
On the perfect South shore
Listen to our prayer.
Pair up in passion
Ruffle your feathers
Preserve shallow, sandy beaches
So we can nest in season.
Give us less rumble and quake in Keji
Just as we open
Wing to distant spots
To sport with destiny.
Deliver us from extinction
By changing direction
Bring back the future
Life on earth: Amen.