June 2019


View Issue vol. 10, no. 4
ISSN 2369-6516 (Print)
ISSN 2369-6524 (Online)

Click the author’s name to view a short biography (if supplied) and all poems by that author.

Melissa BolandThe Cut Rose

Rick BrisonNear The Sea

Valerie BroadnaxLife Calling

Phil BrownHoly Cross, Digby County

Janet BrushIf Walls Could Talk

Normand CarreyThe Flight Out

Alan CollinsPoem on Being Stung by a Wasp

David DuIn May

Chiara Ferrero-WongMembrane

Dhavita Filekthe wave

Harry GarrisonPlay’s The Thing To Catch The King!

Robert GilreathCan’t Catch My Breath….

Briana HartA Rainy Day

Jari-Matti HelppiA FORGOTTEN

Alex JohnstonOh Call Me Gilgamesh!

Richard S. PaynePoetry in a Tea Cup

Rod StewartPotholes

Spencer StoddardPrevail

Elzy TaramangalamTravellers

Ken WardThe Poet

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Poem on Being Stung by a Wasp
Poem by Alan Collins

Winter wasp,
I gave you shelter from the frost
and ice. You fell asleep
on a napkin, then a plant.
You clung to a curtain for a while.
When you saw the sun you
made a run for the door.
I put my shoe on to go out.
Not knowing you were inside.
When you stung my big toe,
I gave a scream.
I felt the pain shoot through my foot
like a knife. At first I thought it was
a thorn. Then when I shook my shoe,
You fell out.
I could have crushed you
In one blow but angrily,
I threw you out the door
on a piece of cardboard.
You took off, happily.
Ungrateful wasp!

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In May
Haiku by David Du

The roses open
Their eyes, and stretch their bodies,
So, their faces smile

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the wave
Poem by Dhavita Filek

like the wave that
always returns
no matter how empty
the shore may be

your love will come back
and then it will rise

how beautiful it will be
to have your very own tide†

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The Cut Rose
Poem by Melissa Boland

You were cut to beautify;
You were cut for sport.

You bring joy in your colour;
You bring hope in your bloom.

You sit idly by;
Your life drawn short.

Your soft petals hold your allure;
The well-wishes attached, your boon.

You shall wither and die;
You have no retort.

You will fade and flutter.
You are gone too soon.

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A Rainy Day
Villanelle by Briana Hart

The rain falls gently down today
I listen to it pitter-patter on my window
In a puddle, autumn leaves will lay

The clouds are looming, bleak and grey
In the sky they hover, dull and low
The rain falls gently down today

Rain forms teardrops now as they
Drench commuters from head to toe
In a puddle, autumn leaves will lay

This weather paints a scene of much dismay
The wet, mild winds of spring readily blow
The rain falls gently down today

Within this rain I wish to pray
For a season blessed with sun and glow
In a puddle, autumn leaves will lay

I wish to see another day
Charming as the summers I’ve come to know
The rain falls gently down today
In a puddle, autumn leaves will lay

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Oh Call Me Gilgamesh!
Poem by Alex Johnston

Salted mist and sweat soaked brow.
Sweet soured sea scent.
Lamenting the sway and pitch of bow.
The green waters swirl, torment.

Oh call me Gilgamesh!
Guided to those forlorn shores!
Goddess bless my mortal flesh,
my heartbeat roars!

Did the flood rush in like a swarm?
Did the surf swallow up your home?
No hearth to sit and keep you warm?
Into the woods, go roam.

Leave me something worth my weight,
show me my destiny.
Tell me how to become great,
without a penalty.

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Poetry in a Tea Cup
Poem by Richard S. Payne

I wake up feeling seasick,
Tossing on a sea of words.
Gale force imagination,
blowing in my head.

Verses lashed on deck, or lost overboard.

A cup of tea, to steady my nerves.

Now it is morning, all is becalmed.
Some lyrics floating, maybe salvageable.
Others gone, beyond the mind’s horizon.

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Poem by Rod Stewart

It was a revelation to me,
That they tried to pave the moon,
Or at least that appears
What some brilliant brains
Had voted for.
Swerving recklessly left and right,
Me, that is, not the voters,
Over the slalom course
Of alligator back cracks
Bottomless gaping craters
Likely home to Hades,
Vehicular shrapnel,
And echoes of explicatives,
Trapped mercilessly
Within the maelstrom pits.
Yet another defiant design
By modern man,
Yielding, inevitably
To Nature Victorious!

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Poem by Elzy Taramangalam

Unhesitant we galloped to the equator
Trotted through the freezing subarctic
Cantered into the oasis of grand
Metropolises the world over
To cool our heels in separate continents.
Now you balk at the romance of Alhambra !
Is it the distance, the years
The unshared stories
The resounding hellish songs
That keep us apart?
That stops you from being
Packed into my heart?

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The Flight Out
Poem by Normand Carrey

Map in the brain, mazing’ly
Conceived in front o’ me
like a spreading enkephalitic dream

Fly o’er Brisbane, a black precipice
It’s Brisban here! All declare!
Before the Big O.P.!

Still, 14 hours to go.

Thoughts left behind, standing
Like chimney smoke, curled
Cliff edges; What are prisons?

They ain’t walls.

Can’t get over this good service,
As angels reach for maculate cloud
She pours the red, whitewash the

Reef, thick as sharkwatered skin
-40 degrees, 11,365 to destination

Still, 12 hours to Van,

Reciting Les Fleurs du Mal
Where commas are King,
And the numbers dance
Still, satanically naked.

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Life Calling
Poem by Valerie Broadnax
(Inspired by musician Alexandro Querevalú)

Mysteries Told
Hearts Unfold
Life Beckons
The Soul Reckons
Gifts of the Sea
Longing to be Free
Mine Eyes Open
To See Beyond the Ocean
I’ve Learned the Lesson of Life
One Thing…
One Breath of Air
Life is a Gift to Share

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If Walls Could Talk
Poem by Janet Brush
(From a photograph of an old hotel)

Sun streams in through windows,
through open doors,
illuminates the empty room.
Furniture covered in dust, chunks
of plaster fallen from walls litter the floor.
A piano with warped boards wishes
someone would play it again.

Through a doorway, 1950s furniture,
ceilings of dark stained pine boards
— a hunting lodge perhaps?
Yet the lush Persian carpet and
chairs upholstered in red velvet
send a different message.

What human drama played out in this room?
Why is it now abandoned, derelict?
“If walls could talk.”

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Can’t Catch My Breath….
Poem by Robert Gilreath

An anxious unease grips
My throat…such a tease.
It releases before I can take
That last breath.
Only to squeeze harder
When I’m resting easy.
Nowhere to hide.
Pills bring no lasting relief.
The lack of ease and well being
Beats me within an inch of my life.
If I fail to wake tomorrow,
It won’t hurt my feelings.†

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Poem by Jari-Matti Helppi

Feet’s toed tendons
move across puddled pavements
like slap happy flip flops….
Summer’s winter.
All is to us pending.
Not a care until you break ice alone.
Then, unless an otherwise speaks,
the pain of dismissal and naught
will move to home’s indifference
and a pillow’s sad forgotten.

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The Poet
Poem by Ken Ward

the poet wears her mother’s hat
splashing colours against the sky so gray
the children eat their lunch and pray
mice hiding from the fierce young cat
passing through this muddy town
soldiers defend lost promises
while waiting for that sweet sundown
whisper names of all those missed
the poet sits where mothers sat
so little time to chew the fat
startled by the donkey’s bray
kissed by children come to play.

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Poem by Spencer Stoddard

Huddled away inside of a hut,
Smaller than a studio apartment,
Bigger than a mansion,
Colder than the Arctic Tundra,
Warmer than the Sahara Desert.

Trying to comprehend everything,
When not a single thing makes sense,
And I always try my best,
But I always come up short,
I am never “first best”,
For I am only “second best”.

But no matter what happens,
I never stop trying,
I never give up,
I never quit,
Even if it breaks me down.

Despite all of the turmoils,
All of the pain,
All of the suffering,
Even when I cannot go on any longer,
I push forward,
And I prevail.

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Holy Cross, Digby County
Poem by Phil Brown

built for the massed believers
of eighteen hundred and thirty eight
with credence table, and host on a cherished plate
whilst further south people, humans, like you or me
legally herded west across the Mississippi
and as they crossed the widest river
did the congregation pray
or even feel the briefest shiver
house for the faithful burned back to ground
exactly a century later
what had been learnt in that time
remains a mystery
when in nineteen hundred and thirty nine
began the deadliest conflict
in human history
now faith and money expired
deconsecration, symbol stolen, symbol mired

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Play’s The Thing To Catch The King!
Rectangle Poem by Harry Garrison

Play’s The Thing To Catch The King! Rectangle Poem by Harry Garrison Most games are about possibilities, about what you can do with ability. Chess is not about what’s possible. Instead, it’s about the impossible. Enemies, wearing distinct uniforms, face each other on the battlefield. After a short-lived moment of calm, both parties advance into the fray. Perfect order, in just a few moves, turns to a knot defying untangling. It’s like bumper-to-bumper traffic. It’s similar to a Mexican Standoff. Moves are blocked by counter-moves, which, frequently, never get taken. Danger and oblivion are everywhere. The rival’s King must be entrapped!

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Near The Sea
Poem by Rick Brison

This near the sea,
I’ve always had it said to me
– The salt gets in your blood.
When people struggle day to day,
You’re sure to hear somebody say
– The sea controls your destiny.

The men she keeps around her
Are all of a kind.
Took her the way I found her,
She’s easy to find.
Heard her voice resound, her
Real home is in your mind.
This near the sea.

You see,
Too near the light can make you blind,
Too near the sea can drown you.
So near the sea, so near you see
She’ll take you as she found you.
Your destiny’s all around you.
This near the sea.

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Poem by Chiara Ferrero-Wong

There’s this fog!
It rolls in on promise
Filled morning rays, leaving
Its thick coat like mucous
On my arms, legs,
And my bare, naked feet.
This dewy layer that
Separates my skin from
The outside world is
Almost comforting.
And it is, comforting,
Until I
Remember that this seemingly
Vaporous blanket is
Really vanquishing, de-
Vouring me.
“Baby doll,” I
Whisper to me,
“What’s the point in
Having eyes, when there’s
No light to see?”

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