September 2021


View Issue vol. 12, no. 5
ISSN 2369-6516 (Print)
ISSN 2369-6524 (Online)

Scroll down to read all poems, or select the poem title to go directly to that poem. Select the author’s name to view a short biography (if supplied) and all poems by that author.

Janet BrushAbecedarian About Rhetorinarian

Charles BullClickity Clack

Matthew de Lacey DavidsonGreat Village, Nova Scotia

Harry Garrison Balance Sheet

Cathy HanrahanTime

Brian HardingGone

Jari-Matti Helppi Echoes and Ice Cream

Erica LewisGrief

Catherine A. MacKenzieFaces

Harry Mah On the road to Zen

Mike McFetridgeThree Score and Ten

Cathie PantelukForbidden Fruit

Richard S. Payne“I like to hold my drumsticks”

Memel PoundA Box Full of Hearts

Jasmin Stofferobservations in the garden

Gillian WebsterMorning Truths

Barry WoodWe Do

Gordon YoungRosalie

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Poem by Cathy Hanrahan

Soft memories floating
Downy as dew
Connected together
As passages through
The enduring, time.
Thoughts humble,
Then strengthen anew
Hard memoirs tumble
At low times
Callous and cruel.
Resolute resolve
Through hope’s cheerful call
Softens the darkness,
Embraces the fall.
Time, sweet connector,
Familiar and then changed
No chance of persuasion
For an unaltered same.
Weep not with remorse
For an impossible truth
Life’s joy is the journey
And time chooses its course.

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Poem by Catherine A. MacKenzie

I look in the mirror
And what do I see?
The face of my mother
Staring back at me.

I glance at my daughter
A mother now, too,
Her face familiar,
Ageing too fast.

I view my granddaughter,
Innocent and wee,
Alive on her face

A once-portrait of me.

Why I Wrote this Poem

While looking in the mirror one day, wondering where the years of my life had disappeared to, these words came to me. How I miss my mother and my grandmothers (and all my deceased family members). Most of all, how I wish I could see my grandchildren live to old age.

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A Box Full of Hearts

Poem by Memel Pound

We all leave in a box, but my
September heart came in one.
A ratty, stained and wet with
Cantonese rain kind of box.

She left it on the steps
of the industry of daughters
with a quickness that took too long.
She almost left it not, but could not

bring it back; not into her home.
She placed her heart in there too,
to beat with mine when the rain
falls hot on a Hong Kong moon.

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Forbidden Fruit

Poem by Cathie Panteluk

Ahhh to lie down upon my soft bed amongst
handfuls of words
Dreams caress me as I drift into
another world,
Once forgotten but awakened by sounds
and scents that stir the curtains,
Stolen first kisses on strawberry lips,
Heart pounding between nubile young
breasts, protected in pink gingham
Kissing an Irish lad so long ago when such
was forbidden,
Oh so much sweeter for that,
Cuddling and warm against a cold and damp
October night,
But curiosity causes us to do daring things,
to test our senses and taste temptation
among bales of hay.

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Poem by Brian Harding

I am so sorry.
But I don’t remember the night I died.
Was there a distant dream.
Did I smile.
I am so sorry, I cannot say.

Will you cry for me.
Shall I be missed.
I am sorry I will never ever know.
All those things that made life fun.
For me they are gone.

Be my dream, smile for me.
The world is yours.
For a time mine too.
What fun we had.
Sad really, but I do not remember the night I died…

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Echoes and Ice Cream

Poem by Jari-Matti Helppi 

I lasted as long as ice cream.
My frozen freeze did have a wink
for those left laughing at my pruning face,
aging like leaves caught up in November.
I knew no one caught my drift.
That was when I sent a message to God
and asked about humanity and logic?
Buddy only ponied up swirling echoes
of what I thought I knew

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Poem by Erica Lewis

I could pound the dirt with my fists,
give rise to deluge with my tears.
I could swallow the oceans,
hold the stars,
and it wouldn’t be enough.

Even the Earth, in all its vastness,
cannot absorb my regret.
The mountains only
echo back my wailing.

This is my language.
This is what I understand.

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Poem by Gordon Young

There are doors through which we flow
Through which we come and go.
(Or so
She seemed to me)
Mumbled to someone…. “Just let me be!”
There was no one else that I could see
Just Rosalie
And me
To hear her soliloquy.

Long ago and far away
We each by our childish bed might say
“Now I lay…
(Me down to sleep)
I pray…
(The Lord my soul to keep)
If I die…
( Before I wake)
I cry … Lord! My soul please take.

How then, did she stray
From dolls and curly locks,
To a vacant doorway
And a cardboard box.

Why I Wrote this Poem

It was late November. I had just left a lecture by R.S. Peters (University of London) on the “nature of persons”, My head was swimming with the wonder of the old philosopher’s lecture. I was hurrying to catch the train to Harlow. As I turned to cross Euston Street I saw her place her bags in the doorway of a building and spread out her cardboard bed for the night. The image completed the lecture with crashing reality.

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We Do

Poem by Barry Wood

Everyone likes to feel needed
Like a garden that has been freshly seeded
Basking under the sunny days,
but doing the best on hellish days, too.
We like to feel needed,
to be happy when life hands us lemons.

Somehow, we do.

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Morning Truths

Poem by Gillian Webster

Everything has become a transaction with no affection,
I think, as I step out of the tub.
And then I listen to the wind in the trees,
Wearing their hearts out, just like mine.

Trees are like picture-books, I think to myself.
Sifting the world into songs, flowers, birds,
And other staples of the heart,
Even though some of them sting.

Trees wear out eventually,
Acknowledging the forces of heat and cold.
But I would rather have a tree as a friend,
Than you, leaving me to sift out the truth.

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Great Village, Nova Scotia

Poem by Matthew de Lacey Davidson

There isn’t very much that’s there,
despite an hour-long search:
poetic spirits everywhere,
an historic church,

with antiques upstairs, ice-cream on
the maudlin lower floor,
served to children as they yawn.
I’m shaken to the core,

by their sepulchral indifference.
My private agony –
I’ll never hold in reverence
the home of Emily.

Instead, I see, with halting breath,
the childhood home of Elizabeth.

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Abecedarian About Rhetorinarian

Poem by Janet Brush

A study of
Big ideas,
Concepts of Rhetoric, such as
Ecphrasis, Enargia,
Gorgias and Aristotle arguing about
Hyperbole and hypotaxis.
I am drowning in Artificial Proofs.
Justice or injustice – refer to
Kairos to decide.
Logic or Logos – what’s the difference?
Mimesis? Imitation or reality?
Nominis fictio – aka
Pathos, logos, ethos – three pillars of Rhetoric.
Querimonia – complain, complain! Stop already!
Repetition, repetition, repetition – so much of it.
Synecdoche – a form of Metonymy.
Tautology of terms.
Utis – nobody commits so many
Vices of language as I do.
Wondrer – Puttenham’s parado-
X [no entry in the handlist for X]
Y? Why so many terms?
Zeugma – a kind of ellipsis. HELP!

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Clickity Clack

Poem by Charles Bull

My mind fully blown,
My heart blossoming like these wild
Flowers I’ve been gathering, I’m ready
To step up and take my place again
On the train,
Accepting perhaps the last few
Prerequisites for a Great Initiation.
I can scarcely imagine the destination.
I’ll just have to trust
The Conductor.

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On the road to Zen

Haiku by Harry Mah

Drive Defensively.
Happiness is a Full Tank.
Amber means Floor it.

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observations in the garden

Poem by Jasmin Stoffer

To be a bee
Flying flower to flower
Caring for only simplicity
Of sustenance and survival
Embracing the colours
In their truest vibrancy
Drinking the nectar
Oh wouldn’t it be marvellous
To live for such a short time
But to savour every moment

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Balance Sheet

Haiku by Harry Garrison

April is the most
taxing month, bleeding red ink
and black on a form.

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Three Score and Ten

Poem by Mike McFetridge

Three score and ten;
He said it again;
It just can’t be, he thought;
Three score and ten,
He believed was when
His time on this earth was stopped;
That is what he was told
Before getting this old,
Three score and ten was the end;
But still he was here,
What now my dear?
He didn’t want to overextend!

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“I like to hold my drumsticks”

Limerick by Richard S. Payne

I like to hold my drumsticks
and to practice my drum licks.
God provides the rhythm,
I leave it all to Him.
Together We get our kicks!

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