Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Stippling Winter Starling

by J. Conrad Smith

Dancing pepper specks
live limbs shimmering
tiny black flashes
bustling gypsy universes
shifting shapes of
hundred-year giants
distracting from nude
bones hollow holding
bent charcoal veins
stumbling skyward crossing
cold melancholy canvas
dreaming daily of
Dodger blue gobs
neon moss catching
cotton tufts falling
past cherry-stem toes—
more permanent tenants
that won't just
flicker and pass

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Lines

by Susan N Aassahde

stallion kale noon
janitor trap
falcon turnip hop

6.7.19
9.16 a.m.
70 degrees

by John Stanizzi

Preternatural this coupling and flying, this double-decker dragonfly, from an
otherworld, spectacular, and apparently tasty – the swallows dive trying to catch them
napping where they rest, bumping reed or water, and whether dragonfly or
damselfly, everyone is moving, flying, wary, trying their best to stay alive.

In the pond

by JS Absher

the mountain​
is not a mountain ​

it is mountain with dragonfly​
with overhanging trees​

their leaves spotted yellow​
with early summer heat​

in the pond the mountain​
is a spotted leaf​

in the pond the mountain​
does not have a backside​

it is all there before us​
dragonfly and leaf ​

under the mountain the minnow ​
cannot see the mountain​

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Crow Dead in a Field

by Ray Greenblatt

Crow on a fence
his eye a knothole,
spreading wings so black
they blend with tree branches above
that rise gracefully,
his observation static
as the length of fence itself.
Crow’s caw a nail down
a sheet of metal,
catching sifted light
his gray-blues of darkness
become parts of machinery,
          long rusting like crow's blood
          matting ruffled feathers.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Lines

by Carl Mayfield

ground-loving thrasher
                  stopping
           under the peach tree

Lines

by Roberta Beach Jacobson

a bloom of jellyfish when the ocean warms

Lines

by Susan N Aassahde

scorpion haze knees
trapeze dash
pears mountain sand

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Pieces of Eight

by Marc Carver

We went into the tropic garden
butterflies everywhere
I put my hands out hoping one would land on me
but none did.
Then half way round a big one came down and sat on her shoulder
like a parrot
I thought it would fly off but it stayed with her all the way round.
When we got to the exit she looked at me
If we take it out there it will die I said
So eventually I got it off and it just sat on a leaf.
Of course all it wanted was to die
I see that now

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Lines

by Sister Lou Ella Hickman, I.W.B.S.

                                         breath of pond water
thunder   lightning flash   rain stops
                an old frog singing

Morning Glories

by Michael Estabrook

In my wife's garden at dusk bats flit above
azaleas and forsythias while below in the final
moments of twilight paper-thin pink morning glories glow

Late Spring Under Red Pines

by Marguerite María Rivas

In the Northeast Kingdom,

illuminated
by a rising gibbous moon,
the deep night-sky is swept
clean of clouds
by gusts and gales
that animated them

in the first place.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Three Photographs
Karla Linn Merrifield


From out of the Fog
Glubokaya Bay, Kamchatka Peninsula


On the Beach
Kamen Ariy Island, Bering Sea


Remains of War
Attu Island, the Aleutians

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Shadows on Moss

by Patrick Flynn

I remember these woods from a photograph of snow
around a stage; overgrown space that became forest.
Moss shadows cover the pines,
at night, as a cold shiver speaks now:
pinesap hardens each winter. Branches chill.
Leaves scatter or blow downwind; sap,
like flesh and blood once captured this band
for a magazine shoot; pages yellowing
before turning brown in a closeted room.
They live in weeks past sleeves of shelved music:
before it snowed all day, on harvest fields
outside, walking over broken branches
fallen on a bowed, mildewed stage,
performance worn in the faded pictures;
old songs and melodies snapping
like frozen ice in a field; songs fading now
as the moon crosses the night sky; shadows
and moss on one side of a tree, in light
that does not meet the snow anymore.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Land Inventory

by Janet Sunderland

The county appraiser sent a questionnaire
and a topography map, wants me to update
our family farm value, asks about changes
to acreage or productive capability of the land.

Ignore the appraiser’s flat gray map, see,
instead, the sapphire sky, white-striped
like zebras in Grandpa's National Geographic.
Airplanes flying high to Africa or China maybe.

Walk the field of milo - stacked red heads
flaming on emerald stalks. With one swift swing
of the machete, sever a sunflower’s head,
wipe sticky black resin from the blade –

The map won't show Great Simba, now rotted
to a termite's meal, won’t capture hazy afternoons
we picked gooseberries, or our clamber up
the peeling bark to ride a gray husk to India.

Legends lie hidden in the appraiser’s map—stories
held by the wind, borne by cottonwood seeds, flung
free, as we were all flung free. Memory our property.
I sign the questionnaire; affirm no changes to the land.

An Oasis in the Badlands

by Jan Wiezorek

Breeze swallows the bend
in the back along a meadow

slope where wild sorghum
blows seed foggy

unseen except
that hazy

white reaching out
in a single pan of blue,

thinning in strands
and hollows.

Hempstead Plain

by Janet M. Powers

This flat space, exposed to shifting sky,
horizon unrelieved by undulating hills,
their blue haze always comfortably there,                           
is vulnerable to ocean, more so to man.

Here, the land makes no requirements
(no place not to put a road);
parkways stripe this space flowing east,
plaid counterparts move north to south.

Walking the waste places of Long Island:
risk no hill-born child should take,                                 
except chance set her down, and dice
dictate a half-hour daily walk.

What she sees are fences, anchor chain,
to keep some people out, others in,
yet trap the rich effluvia of their lives:
bags, newsprint, plastic-lidded cups.                     

Three old pines escape man's hand
 in both the planting and the cutting,                                 
huddle next to garbage humped with
used concrete. The sign says "No Dump."

A clean trill breaks the hum of engines
purring down the six-lane avenue:
bird I've never met, gold and red
and gray, gives out a brave new song.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Two Places

by Ron Geigle

moist heat haze
Uber
then Penn Station
the mass stinking
Platform 2
dead sprint
soot life

fingernails
hard in the pine needle slope
motionless
glacier water
30 feet below
lapping
on dead fir