elizabeth lambro

May 7, 2015 Comments Off on elizabeth lambro

Cayuta Lake Inlet 5-2-15

a lynching
of carelessness
fishing line or
cord of some kind
now litter
entangled the legs
of a seagull.
it flew then
I imagine
it’s wings
still free
until the noose
got caught
in limbs of trees.
struggle followed
then death.
it hangs
upside down now
like a pure
winged Christ
arms outstretched
for our sins.

esra sarioglu

March 30, 2015 Comments Off on esra sarioglu

a deepening furrow
between his eyebrows
this angry look
on my laid-back American friend’s face
marks his fifth year in Turkey

valerie rosenfeld

March 16, 2015 Comments Off on valerie rosenfeld

my tears

not as captivating

happiness rises

we are more than just this

sunlight in March shines anew

laurence holden

February 17, 2015 Comments Off on laurence holden


If anything moves
it is by slight of hand.

Lost things
are always
in the last place we look.

we never find
that last place.

we never go far

we never return.

we never begin.

St. John’s Island – leslie ihde

February 2, 2015 Comments Off on St. John’s Island – leslie ihde

driven to the sea
by fierce tropic heat
we watch fish
twist and turn in
muted blue green light

three foot dreadlocks
a type of pride
despite a body
slender from
light eating

a herd of short haired sheep
crowds the road
someone owns them
we are told
but no one knows who

a village of land crabs
with earthen burrows
scurry into hiding
as we walk by
~ no risk too subtle

a solitary sugar cane
grows in a garden
descendants of slaves
launder sheets
and serve drinks

the sea
a horizontal
that calms the mind

reaching for another snack
the hungry donkey
sticks his head
under the sun bather’s arm
like a pet dog

our yoga teacher
does her own thing
unconcerned with instruction

a gentle breeze
pushes out the humidity
making me feel
like a soaring gull

another good beach
for snorkeling
let’s go tomorrow
when our new friends
won’t be there

maggie emmett

January 16, 2015 Comments Off on maggie emmett

Winter in Venezia

I catch the rapido train from Milano and edge slowly westward through the stops and starts of frozen points and village stations. The heating fails and an offer of warmer seats in another compartment. I decide to stay here. I put on my coat, scarf, hat and gloves and sit alone. In my grieving time, I feel closer to the cold world outside as it moves past me, intermittently. Falling snow in window-framed landscapes.

sky gun metal grey
shot through
with sunset ribbons

Dusk eases into black-cornered night. After Maghera, the train seems to race to the sea. It rumbles onto the Ponte della Ferrovia, stretching out across the Laguna Veneta. Suddenly, a jonquil circle moon pulls the winter clouds back and shines a lemony silver torch across the inky waters. Crazed and cracked sheets of ice lie across the depthless lagoon. The train slows again and slides into Santa Lucia. I walk into the night.

bleak midwinter
sea-iced night wind
bites bitter

No. 2 Diretto winding down the Canal Grande. The foggy night muffles the guttural throb of the engine and turns mundane sounds into mysteries. Through the window of the vaporetto stop, the lights of Piazza San Marco are an empty auditorium of an opera house. Walking to Corte Barozzi, I hear the doleful tolling of midnight bells; the slapping of water and the chink-chink of the gondolas’ mooring chains. Faraway a busker sings Orfeo lamenting his lost Eurydice, left in Hades. I wake to La Serenissima, bejewelled.

weak winter sunshine
Istrian stone walls
flushed rosy

Rooftops glowing. Sun streaming golden between the neck and wings of the masted Lion. Mist has lifted, the sky cloudless; I look across the sparkling Guidecca canal and beyond to the shimmering horizon.

molten mud
bittersweetness demi-tasse
florian’s hot chocolate

I walk the maze of streets, squares and bridges; passing marble well-heads and fountains, places of assignation. I walk on stones sculpted by hands, feet and the breath of the sea. Secrets and melancholy are cast in these stones.

At Fondamente Nuove, I take Vaporetto no.41 to Cimitero. We chug across the laguna, arriving at the western wall of San Michele. I thread through the dead, along pathways and between gravestones. At the furthest end of the Cemetery island, Vera and Igor Stravinsky lie in parallel graves like two single beds in an hotel room. Names at the head, a simple cross at the foot of the white stone slab. Nearby, his flamboyant mentor Serge Diaghalev. His grave, a gothic birdbath for ravens, has a Russian inscription; straggly pink carnations, a red votive candle and a pair of ragged ballet shoes with flounces of black and aquamarine tulle tied to their the ribbons. So many dead in mausoleums; demure plots; curious walled filing cabinets, marble drawer ossuaries.

bare, whispering Poplars
swaying swirling shadows
graves rest beneath

I walk to the other end of the island and frame Venezia in the central arch of the Byzantine gateway. I see that sketchy horizontal strip of rusty brick, with strong
verticals of campaniles and domes. It is here, before 4 o’clock closing time, I throw
your ashes to the sea and run to catch the last boat.

beacon light orange
glittering ripples
on the dove grey lagoon

© M.L.Emmett First published in New Poets 14: Snatching Time, 2007, Wakefield Press, Kent Town SA.

ellen pratt

January 9, 2015 Comments Off on ellen pratt

My Marsh

Every August, ducks appear in a small bog next to the thruway. I see them on my commute back from work. I enjoy looking at what they are doing, if a great blue heron has joined them for the afternoon. Often I will see a row of ducks on a dead
tree preening, while others gather sustenance from the dark waters, their paths marked by the disturbance of the algae. By October, they are gone and the marsh seems so empty.

leaves blanket the ground
loons singing their departure
autumn is here
in all its glory to announce
winter is coming

In the marsh, a heron stands on a fallen branch. It’s cloaked in blue-gray feathers on spindly legs. The heron rests, turned away and guarded in the shadows of the trees. Nothing moving in the bog, everything is still in the heat of the early summer day.

I blame others for my
my teacher points out that I’m

I armor myself
so not to be penetrated
by the world
a chink ~ I turn towards you
and speak the truth clearly

I’m overjoyed to see the first duck of the season on the marsh. One day as I pass, I see it perched on a log; another day it’s paddling through the algae exploring its home. Every day I pass, I look hopefully to see if other ducks have joined it. The duck preens and dabbles for food, seemingly unaware of being alone. I share with a birder
my distress at this duck being alone; he explains to me that its mate is probably on a nest hidden in the grass.

I laugh
I’m my own victim
making up reality
instead of discovering
the truth

previously published in Writing to Awaken

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