Thursday, June 30, 2016

Global Warming as Evidenced by Coral on the Beach at Heron Island

by P. J. Wren

we walk with
naked soles across
the brittled staghorn

touch of salt water
intake of breath
thin red stream


by Carl Mayfield

afternoon sun
the lizard
once again

Sunday, June 26, 2016

The Mutts of Dhaka are Survivors

by Sayeeda T Ahmad

These mutts lap up spilled tea or snack crumbles on the footpath,
curl up in a spot of sun near a streetside tong,
till the tong owner kicks them away
for disturbing his customers.
These mutts trot down every alley and road they know,
next to and through piles of rotting refuse,
till nearly or fully run over by careless chauffeurs,
driving their owners’ to the next NGO meeting.
These mutts scramble under empty pull carts in the rain,
till chased away by goons or street kids
intent on cutting off their tails for kicks.
Just another nonentity, infested with fleas and welts.
Just another beggar with no bowl.
Just another carcass among the millions.

Call for Clean Water

by Ingrid Bruck

The lit upper levels
of the world’s oceans 
produce most of the oxygen 
earth needs for life. 

Water is holy, blessing optional. Life began in water. Come quench your thirst at the open faucet, drink mouthfuls of water straight from the tap. Dawn braids a sparkling rope of light from sun to sea to shore, the setting sun a pale mirror on the ocean. 

Wet uninhabitable deserts grow, 
five great sea patches of desolation,
405 dead zones,
the whale-path littered with plastic that whales choke on. 

The surface crackles, white flames dance on lit upper levels of the world’s oceans. Whales sing  joy for the light show, a lung deep hum, a pulse that spirals and echoes between each other under water. 

Dirty water smothers
algae, diatoms, plankton,
fowl, flowers and fish 
gasp for air. 

A fish gets caught on a hook, mouth open agape, lungs on fire, a silent scream for clean water. He can’t pull oxygen-rich water through his mouth and pump it over his gills so he can breathe. Lidless black eyes spark terror. The color of the ocean echoes a silver scaled sky on a stormy day.  

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The After-Light

by Ed Hack

The after-light, late afternoon, a spill
of silvered glow as clear as ice that holds
the world before light leaves. The tree is still
as breath when something mortal has been told,
or beauty has just caught you by surprise--
a red, thin Cheshire Moon in early spring,
or Dogwood ghostly as the evening sighs
before the world goes black and stars can sing
their silver song of Time more quietly
than snow. You blink. You can't believe
your eyes. This is a kind of piety,
this haunted glow that cannot last, reprieve
from change's avalanche that pours and roars
each second's tick on life's storm-pounded shores.


by Joanna M. Weston

the intricate beauty
of this tumour -
an unfolding rose

Monday, June 20, 2016


Joanna M. Weston

the wheel trapped
in its shadow -

Sunday, June 19, 2016


by Sayeeda T Ahmad

The perfect time to hike the trails of the Bandarbans,
“dam of monkeys” in Bangla.
Be wary of capped leaf monkeys, and capped langur,
as you clamber up the grassy peaks of Keokaradong and Saka Haphong.
Goat on nimble feet,
thickset branch clasped in one hand,
instinct in the fingertips of the other.
You must know to skip past the rotting leaves,
hiding python or king cobra princelings beneath,
on your way down to Sangu River, and back on the trail.
Thin spirals of smoke linger in the air as the jhum chaash goes on,
slash and burn, slash and burn.
Better to hike now, climb now in the dryness,
than let the monsoon mudslide kill you next season.

Night Watering

by Stephen Jarrell Williams

Yet firm
Soil saturated

Roots engorged
Lifting again in morning sun

Bent down by rain

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Taking Place

by Stefanie Bennett

 ... Babble along
 The mendican
 And look how
 The risen sun

For the Raven

by David Chorlton

The stone light on a slow road
runs straight past a raven
who bounces from a fence post
with a bone held shining in his beak.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

The yard is full of ice

by Sarah Henry

when the hail storm comes.
Ice bounces hard on the grass.
They say an oak feels pain
when another falls in the forest.
Both trees collapse, screaming.
In the spruce, a nest like spun
glass holds an uneasy finch.
Songbirds navigate by radar
and the stars at night.
The storm was all
a big mistake.
The yard is full of ice.

Mother Earth, am I your daughter?

by Emily Ramser

Mother, just before I fall asleep each night,
I can almost see
your rivers beneath my skin
rippling with each breath I take
and your rushes swaying
on my boney banks,
their roots entangled with my veins
and the backs of your silver
fish flashing as they swim amongst
my blood cells and antibodies,
and Mother, I can almost see
your wheat growing
in my skin between the blonde hairs,
waving back and forth
in the light breeze
that tickles my goosebumps.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

May Day Hook-up

by Jan Hamlett

Dressed in mousy brown,
she perches confidently on the cable
and raises her tail feathers.
The fiery male cardinal swoops down
to share the swinging wire.
Facing her, he begins his dance.
He hops over her,
first one side, then the other,
and back again.
Furiously flapping his wings,
he is above her.
In less than a heartbeat, it's over.
She flies east; he flies west.

Mother Owl

by Kel McNeal

Universally solitary
Til her beak locks his
Monogamously mating
Epitomizing gender dichotomy
She lays and waits
         For him
Fiercely protecting
What is theirs

Sunday, June 5, 2016

That’s Actually Oregano

by Todd Mercer

Some people know what thyme it is—lemony or savory.
Most take a guess or else they generalize.
Eagle-eyed forestry scholars can name each species of tree—
Latin terms or popular. Others lose the Linneaen distinctions
at level of class or phylum. They’re content to know
a leaf-dropper from an evergreen. Adam (no last name),
busy crafting Genesis myth, made a word for every creature.
They probably appreciated it, new titles.
His average descendant can’t remember
what they ate for breakfast or where their keys are.
They couldn’t tell you where they’ve been.
since the Garden closed for maintenance.
Some know a grouse from a mourning dove.
If it flies, most people just say, bird.

Pine Pollen

by Michael Friedman

Yellow dust from yellow pines
wring loose
and mist across a paved road.
The intense strain of immobile
copulation. Unbridled from
from cones, not pumped and spilled,
but shaken forth,
smeared onto the lips of another.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Twilight Brings The Renaissance

by Narendra Kumar Arya

Beside my house
Flows a river
In the nights it has cold
At the noons it has fever.

There are trees
that are unfamiliar to me
And I ask the botanist
And they say, we?
Too much old, Very tall,
Teaching me lessons in recent history.

And twilight brings the Renaissance
About the nests and birds
Of too many tongues,
Which are dying for lack of many
I yearned I were Salim Ali
They sing, I observe
Clouds rush following
Each other’s cacophony.