All posts by Roselyn Elliott

Roselyn Elliott is the author of four poetry chapbooks: The Separation of Kin ( Blueline-SUNY Potsdam 2006 ), At the Center (Finishing Line Press 2008), Animals Usher Us to Grace (Finishing Line Press 2011), and Ghost of the Eye (Finishing Line press 2016). A Pushcart nominee, her essays and poems have appeared in New Letters, ABRAXAS, Diode, Streetlight Magazine, The Florida Review, Blueline, diode and other publications. She holds an MFA in poetry from Virginia Commonwealth University and has taught at VCU, Piedmont Virginia Community College, WriterHouse, and The Visual Art Center of Richmond. Currently she lives in Richmond, VA with husband and poet Les Bares.

some days by Marsha Owens

Pink flower on green background

when the horizon dips into darkness unsure about dawn, I touch the faded photo, your face still wearing a mere wisp of pink blurred now into brushed-aside memories. death is a trickster. it comes and goes as morning turns to night turns to day and we call it life until it isn’t. the old camera watched my childhood leapfrog. I grew up too soon, learned about dying before living and your too-short journey left us lost looking behind doors, behind trees, playing hide-and-seek that never ended even after night fell. so I tucked away small … Continue reading some days by Marsha Owens

From the Flume and The Cormorant, 2 poems by Barbara Tifft

Black and white photo of river flume

From the Flume The banks of the West Ausable River Is a place you’ve never been. Staring straight down into the flume Violent bursts of water over Great granite boulders mesmerizes The boys, but I pull them back To trek a well worn path through Tall timothy, navigating our poles Around brush and beaver dams, Following the sound of gurgling river water Till finally, finding still waters, they cast.   Cormorant In mid-afternoon sun I’ve stared for an hour At the lone cormorant perched twenty feet from shore On the remains of a tree grounded … Continue reading From the Flume and The Cormorant, 2 poems by Barbara Tifft

Is Your Poem Ready for Submission? by Roselyn Elliott

black and white computer keyboard

So, you’ve read a literary magazine’s guidelines, you’ve even read its sample poems available online, or ordered a recent copy of the magazine to learn about what they publish. Maybe you’ve taken a class/workshop in which your poems were critiqued by peers and a popular teacher. But, how is it that some of our poems we have toiled over to the point that they are strong and seem to be the best they can be, do not get selected for publication by the journals where we’ve chosen to send them? As a poetry editor, I’ve … Continue reading Is Your Poem Ready for Submission? by Roselyn Elliott

when i say i, i mean i by Joanna Lee

Color photo of ornate stone bench in a garden

because hope is a motherfucker, i went up to each house of the dead and knocked, but no one answered. still, i am haunted: the sun sets a little dimmer ever since the last feeble twitch of that cat’s tail, even while its head lay red & bashed on the dusked asphalt, the traffic passing and passing. because the heat doesn’t work properly, we huddle nose to nose, the trauma of the world reduced to a single stray hair strangled in the neck of your tee, golden in the breath of the bedside lamp; to … Continue reading when i say i, i mean i by Joanna Lee

Hare by Lance Lee

Color photo of a Brown Hare in the woods

lopes as only Hare can, all fits and starts, ears sky-sieves for the whoosh wings and clenched claws make as death stoops towards him— but not today, the sky bluebare serene in the heat, the great redtails who carry death on their shoulders perched on a high leafless limb to sentinel at noon: their eyes rake the cliffsides for mouse shadow a mile away. Nor can Hare stop his eyes’ search for coyote’s earth-colored pelt, or his nose twitching, tongue lapping the air for his rank smell though the brush is still. He leaps into … Continue reading Hare by Lance Lee

Migration by Priscilla Melchior

color photo of hummingbird

She’s been sitting on the feeder since first light, gathering herself, I suppose, for the journey south. I wonder if she slept there, waking for a sip from time to time, adding calories, planning her long, winged trek through the mountains to the Gulf and across the waters to Mexico. Not for the first time do I consider the courage of the hummingbird at one-tenth of an ounce, the toll it will take to travel 3,000 miles to flee the cold of winter. Not for the first time do I consider the family she fed … Continue reading Migration by Priscilla Melchior

De-constructing by Judy Melchiorre

Color photo old home with balcony and vines

His breakfast smells like ripe tomatoes and promises, pledged in youth and romance, a starter home, a child or two, a job with promotions and perks, naive happiness. We are older now, each creak and crack in the house has a name, unlike our shadow children. He works so hard, pale faced, heavy-footed, listlessness engraved into his bones. Desire distills into an uneasy companionship, his hand restive in mine, his shoulder sharp. I do not hear the word love, only silence, and the foundation settling. Judy is a poet based in Richmond, VA and a … Continue reading De-constructing by Judy Melchiorre

Crossroads by Ron Wallace

Black and white foggy morning with multiple trees

I try to find beauty ………in the autumn night. Your stars, your moon, they’re still right there where you left them ………But without you they seem merely splinters of glass soon to be swept into winter. Every October I watch a three quarter moon ……….white as polished bone, rise among the awakening stars in a charcoal sky ……….above the crossroads where Hecate is leading ghosts into the light. I close my eyes and see you walking ……….out of Plutonian darkness into the fragile magic of Oklahoma river mist, a quarter century spinning behind my lids … Continue reading Crossroads by Ron Wallace

New York City Was Snowing by Julie Wenglinski

Black and white photo of NYC blizzard

Our beckoning cabby from Tunisia, snaked through preposterous traffic, past the icy neon signs and the greening fragrance of stacked Christmas pines, to the Met where I almost cried, nearly blind from Van Gogh’s iris and his cypress, Henri’s vase of asters, Degas dancers, until I and other spent patrons roosted like pigeons on a rare bench. Outside the cafe windows, beneath the twisted trees, hooded minks walked their dogs in pairs, West Highland White terriers in candy quilted coats, as we inhaled the blackness of our coffee and gazed the sifting snow. Julie is … Continue reading New York City Was Snowing by Julie Wenglinski

Suspended by Michele Riedel

View through window with mountains

……….Hello? Is there anybody in there? ……….Just nod if you can hear me. ……….Is there anyone at home? …………..Comfortably Numb …………..Pink Floyd He lay on his side like a wounded animal eyes open toward the window, the morphine drip pulsing through him, the morning light becoming a thick sponge soaking up his breath— until the last angle of sunlight remained buoyant in the air. His bed a slackline where he lay balancing, arms folded, moving into shadow, could he see the dry leaved trees through the window and how they flushed through the snow? Michele … Continue reading Suspended by Michele Riedel