Sunday, September 29, 2019

FireLight

by Jamel Hall

i.
The evening like a fallow field until ready for harvest
as night descends on a forest of rice.

ii.
Tenggala rises.

Moonless night a metronome
keeping the pace of yesterdays and todays.

Each ancient and flickering star
a moment, a time, a passing.

The brusk blowing brass of grassy winds.

Canyon

by Yingtong Guo

Gold and green in the hills
Trickle through the rocks
In gazillions of rainbow droplets,
Run from the flanks
In ribbons of garish streams –
To paint the coral reefs
To dye the sea horses
In the Gulf of California.

An evaporating watercolor,
Unfathomable in its monotony.

Lines

by Joanna M. Weston

an eagle rises
from its kill
scarlet ribbons

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Claws of the Mighty

 by Kufre-Udeme Thompson

   Sweating drummers,
Growing so wild;
   Anxious crowds,
Expanding like ringworm.

   Hefty-hefty,
Like a bunch of palm fruits;
   Huge shoulders,
Dancing into the sandy circle.

   Smoky clouds,
Drifting across the dying sun;
   Human voices,
Chanting their names.

   Tough palms,
Clashing like swords;
   Heavy legs,
Rooting like Mangrove.

   Trickery-trickery,
One plunged the other down;
   Roaring crowds,
Lifting him shoulder high.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Lines

by Padmini Krishnan

Drizzle aftermath
How different they smell
young leaves and the dried ones

The moon gives witness

by Joan Eyles Johnson

Crows in a pear tree
pass the moon between them
ripple Lake Gregory
under the branches

What Basho Knows

by Ron. Lavalette

fog is good
but god’s a frog
loves the sun
—leaps—

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Socotra Cormorants, Ahmadi Beach 1991

by Oormila Vijayakrishnan Prahlad

three Socotra cormorants lie pinned
in quicksand,
amorphous lumps sinking
in puddles of congealed oil,
beaks and feathers crusted,
stripped of the strength
to extricate their bodies,
burbling breath, life dissolving
in the spill that chokes
the shores of Kuwait City.

through the pyrocumulous clouds,
the occasional patch
of cornflower blue sky peeps,
glimpse of a time before strife -
sands pristine, skies unblemished,
phthalo blue waters, mirror-still,
the shade of cormorants’ eyes.

the Arabian Gulf stretches, a wasteland
bubbling poisonous black,
viscous veins plump with decay
clawing across the waves,
the inferno of the oil fields of Ahmadi
glowing with molten hellfire,
ringed with the bodies of cormorants.

Fireburst

by Ben Rasnic

Jalapeños, cayennes &
habaneros
hang like Christmas ornaments
in their clay containers;

reds & yellows,
greens & orange
basking in the mid-
Atlantic august sun.

Peppers, waxed & polished,
crave the next eruption
of nor’easter rainfall;

capsaicin branding
the soft inner flesh,
bursting with seeds.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

there’s no such thing a loneliness

Stephen A. Rozwenc

there’s no such thing a loneliness

weather trembles admirably
the opera glass snake aria
serenades pleasurable rocks
that dapple the river bank

venerable waters sparkle genius
dark bowers wander fearlessly
bleating palm trees
welcome lush adoration

in a breathless hush

Vortex

by Yuan Changming

Turning, twirling

In ever smaller circles
A vortex in the stream
Seems to be sucking in
All the waters on earth
Like the black hole
Trying to swallow
The whole universe

Frank Talk re: the Off Ramp

by Todd Mercer

Going extinct will be tragic enough,
but once we’re there no one
will concern themselves with it
or care to write it down. We should try
harder to avert a needless crash,
but it looks like that’s not what we’ll do.
Disappointing, but no sense in handwringing,
messing up our weekends with the doom.
The end won’t be long. Without people
in the equation, Nature will soldier along
perhaps for quite a while. Until asteroid.
Let’s not sugarcoat the shameful fact
that we know how to save the species,
but we just don’t feel like it. Too much hassle,
no fast cash in it. We’re funny like that.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Firefly

by Yuan Changming

Burst with courage

You are flying around, using
Your little light
Like a sharp scissor tip
To rip off the heavy curtain
Of all the darkness
Blown out of frenzy dreams

Sunday, September 8, 2019

The Reef (Sattahip, Thailand)

by Ellen Chia

At knee-deep,
The ebbing tide's a semblance
Of an expansive glass aquarium;
Within, a city's vivid lights
Have long since snuffed out;
A gradual dimming culminating
To a washed-out white
Before armies of minuscle greens
Laid seige,
Cleaving to this labyrinthine rubble
Like a skintight cloak
Though muffling not
The echo strains of a requiem.
What remains is this
Museum of shame
Gazing back at us.

San Bruno Mountain

by  Dan Richman

Looking up
the slope is studded                                                                 
with Wild Mustard,
Milkweed, Sticky Monkey,
Lantana, Coyote Bush,
Sage,
Yarrow,     
Lupine, brutal
but useful
Thistle, and Wild Fennel,
and scattered within the Red Fescue,
the orange kisses
of California
Poppy. And then it
ends and one is struck
by just how
blank
the sky can be.

green so

by Steve Piazza

the piebald fawn grazing conspicuously alone

unaware as we are of the vanity in our projecting insecurities
about outcast and shunning and how does this happen
and
oh    the    poor    thing

cranes effortlessly to reach challenging leaves

while we waver against the steadiness of nature
and resort to clashes over domain and supremacy
and
who    wins    this    time

according its grace before despondent eyes

Friday, September 6, 2019

8.7.19
8.59 a.m.
71 degrees

by John Stanizzi

Privets ragged in the heat begin their late summer droop lifted somewhat by the slow
ooze of Joe Pye’s lanky mauve, and the goldenrod spirals in the humidity, swirls of
nurls reaching through the air, and here, remnant of a drama, more air than substance, a barred owl
deposited a feather, perhaps dropped as he swooped down then up startled frog on the rising.

Lines

by Susan N Aassahde

frog stiletto dustbin
radio pyre
strawberry fee curfew

No Signs of Intelligent Life

by Todd Mercer

Beam me up, Scotty. I’ve seen enough.
This place is devoid of civilization.
Get me the fuck out of here, before
the prevailing madness mires me in muck.
The locals keep voting to abolish
the locals. They think it’s in their interests.
Something went wrong at the schools,
learning is no longer possible.
People like this cheer for meteors
that are streaking straight toward them.
They can’t foresee the destruction,
only focus on the shiny light.
How they’re still here even this long
is a stumping mystery.
Rumor has it the same citizens
used to want what’s good for citizens.
Little proof remains. So who can say?
They must have somewhere to go
after here’s obliterated. No panic
at irreversible damage from
intentional decisions they have made.
They could fix their society and ecosystem
for free, but they reject the effort,
they suspect a darker motive.
Stupid people lack the means to self-assess
and to alter course. Beam me up
and set a course for basic rationality.
Enlightened self-interest prevails
on the higher quality planets. This was
an asylum before the funding ran out.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Rugged Northern California Wilderness

by Julia Lesel

Grinding. Pulsing. Flashing, dragging, crashing waves.
Rugged, jagged, foggy at various levels.
Bright yellow birch leaves sparkle, dotting through the sequoia forest-scape.
A glen of fat birches, flooded at the bases by creeping moss
Messy sword ferns the edge of a rapid river,
Shaggy, drooping from angular cliff walls, heavily wet.
Cattails elongating from thick spiny bushes
Flanking the winding road out of town.
Glassy silver-green leaf broad clumpy strangling vines,
Large silvery boulders dispersed between a bare spot in the strangling heaps.

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Lines

by Sylvia Semel

the water lily
floats by in slow motion
the still sandpiper

On Visiting an Unnamed Swamp

by Ahrend Torrey

Amid high brown cypress in thick
dark air, amid the scent of dirt

and fern, Water Moccasin
lurks head-up, through

black water— question mark,
after question mark.

Cicadas in the distance—
buzz, buzz. Some-

where between they merge
with crickets’ chirp

lacing through the dark air:—
what throbs and throbs of faint light.

Coho

by Sterling Warner

Skokomish longhouse
Overlooks wintery pines
Salmon seaward run