Tag Archives: Poetry

A Rebel Yell on Michigan Avenue by Pamela Sumners

Photo of cotton field
 

Corsets of snow belly-bust traffic in Chicago, mercifully blurring the blocky derangements of Mies van der Rohe’s window arrangements. You look from Floor 23 down at Michigan Avenue, wax maudlin for a platter of deep-fried kudzu. We are not meant for such a graceless place, its buildings faceless, its rapacious bland spaces, its huge inhabitants, its malignant tenements, its grim aborted experiments with Southside facelifts. We were invented for the Redneck Riviera, the eternal Virginia Reel with Miz Scarlett O’Hara ravishing her radish from the ruined ramparts of Tara. The fantasy of Atticus Finch has … Continue reading A Rebel Yell on Michigan Avenue by Pamela Sumners

GOYA, THE EXECUTION OF THE THIRD OF MAY by Michael O’Mara

a giant sitting under the moon
 

      “The world is charged with the guilt of god & country,” that from the hanging judge is a quote that skulks into mind with startling regularity. In a moment freed of time, in that moment, how dark must the sky be, how subdued the distant buildings, or real the wall? Oil on a ninety-eight-plus-square-foot canvas stretched over two centuries —carbon dating of the leftmost still bleeding corpse    confirms this— At sixty-eight Goya paints the belated evening news: “Last night in response to local insurrection the soldiers of the Emperor Napoleon in … Continue reading GOYA, THE EXECUTION OF THE THIRD OF MAY by Michael O’Mara

Color by Number by Jennifer Schneider

A prism
 

Teachers said I’d be okay, if I follow the rules. No turnstile jumping. No jaywalking. Perfect change for bus fares. No hoodies. No song. No fights for my name, nor my girl’s. Walk straight. Down the corridor. No crossed lines. Life. A color by number book, with no directions. My life. In scribbles. Teachers said I’d be okay, if I stay in line. Use their sharpened #2’s, Ballpoint BICs, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green Crayola. My box. Full of chips of cracked colored wax. Unfamiliar hues. Burnt orange. Brick red. Deadwood brown. No rules. No straight … Continue reading Color by Number by Jennifer Schneider

Nightcap by Barry Roth

bourbon, pipe, glass, pocket watch
 

The struggle with what they call the mind opens new fronts. Migration, which should drop new birds into my garden, has not yet started, and the residents have made themselves scarce this year. I’m close to giving up my resistance to deity, and to the admission that solitude in age is not the greatest refuge after all. Hanging the hummingbird feeder is a variant of my nightly trek to the corner for the comfort of a sundowner. Barry Roth is a writer, editor, and biologist living in San Francisco, California; his biology practice focuses on … Continue reading Nightcap by Barry Roth

Lady of Sorrows by Ivana Vukovic Soraya

Photo of 2 swords through shield
 

For the seventh time I have pierced My heart, bleeding and beating Autonomous of my rib cage. Yet despite the pain, My tears are gilded on a face Lily white And no matter how I am pierced I still think the thoughts that make Reaching for the swords an option. Ivana Vukovic Soraya lives in Australia, specifically in Melbourne, Victoria. From a young age, she’s been writing stories, poems, and a number of other things. In her free time, she pursues a number of artistic hobbies including sewing, painting, drawing, and playing music. Follow us!

Van Gogh by Elizabeth Dingmann Schneider

old color wheel with large purple center
 

         “The rose is red because it rejects red.” —John O’Donohue, Beauty: An Invisible Embrace Van Gogh’s White Roses were meant to be pink, the faded madder red sold to him by a charlatan peddling adulterated pigments. This false red abandoned his roses, leaving only a chemical trace accessible to the scientists who now analyze what lies within. Undoubtedly, today the roses are white, the pigment rejecting not only the red vibrations but all wavelengths of light, sending them bouncing back at the human eye, as pure white as the light driven through Newton’s second … Continue reading Van Gogh by Elizabeth Dingmann Schneider

After Sunset by Ronald Stottlemyer

Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park
 

Eventually I find the shovel upright in the blackened pile of compost behind the garage. It’s hard to see in this light, but everything looks much as I left it last fall–shriveled ears of orange peel, a few egg shell fingernails, corncobs sticking up like bones in an ancient grave. As I turn the mound over a couple of turns for good measure, the moon breaks out of a heavy cloud and brightens momentarily with a grisly smile. The dark goes on rising up around me, turning everything under like the swell you never hear … Continue reading After Sunset by Ronald Stottlemyer

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