there is always spring , a poem


times are
weighty
fevered
fervent
anxious

the canvas of your life weeps
it is a call to rest ~
to rest
to meditate
to wait …

for spring, a benediction
please listen …
there is always spring

this week
clouds swelled
burst into tears
overflowed into creeks and rivers
crashed into roofs and trees

but you’re still here
a survivor!

rebirth
renewal
relief

benediction

nothing lasts forever
not even this

© 2018, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved.


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May 22 Literary Gala to Honor Stephen King and Celebrate Free Speech and the Power of Words to Bridge Divides

I thoroughly enjoyed  Stephen King on Writing, A Memoir of the Craft. Entertaining. Practical. Down to earth. Recommended.

“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well.” Stephen King


PEN America will honor legendary suspense writer Stephen King with the 2018 PEN America Literary Service Award at its annual Literary Gala on May 22 at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. PEN America confers the Literary Service Award each year to a critically-acclaimed writer whose body of work helps us understand and interpret the human condition, engendering empathy and imagination in even the darkest hours.

Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide best-sellers and many—including such classics as It, The Stand, The Dark Tower, Misery, Lisey’s Story, 11/22/63, On Writing, Under the Dome, and many more—providing the basis for major motion pictures and serving as cultural hallmarks for generations.

Among King’s many accolades are the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters and the 2014 National Medal of Arts presented by Barack Obama. His depictions of horror and violence have also earned him a title as one of the most banned or challenged authors in recent decades.

King is an impassioned advocate of freedom of expression, literacy, and access to information, which he and his wife Tabitha support through their philanthropy.

King’s Haven Foundation provides unique and generous support to writers and other freelancers in the arts who have suffered personal hardship.

Stephen King’s outspoken defense against encroachments on free speech and pointed public criticism of policies that infringe on this and other rights have resulted in his being blocked by President Trump on Twitter.

Can be pre-ordered HERE.

Scribner will release King’s newest novel, The Outsider, on May 22, the day of the PEN America award presentation.

“No stranger to the dark side, Stephen King has inspired us to stand up to sinister forces through his rich prose, his generous philanthropy, and his outspoken defense of free expression,” said author Andrew Solomon, president of PEN America. “Stephen has fearlessly used his bully pulpit as one of our country’s best-loved writers to speak out about the mounting threats to free expression and democracy that are endemic to our times. His vivid storytelling reaches across boundaries to captivate multitudes of readers, young and old, in this country and worldwide, across the political spectrum. He helps us all to confront our demons—whether a dancing clown or a tweeting president.”

If you are reading this post from an email subscription, you’ll have to link through to the The Poet by Day site to view it: Creative Writing Lessons: Creative Writing Tips from Stephen King.


Courtesy of Stephen King, photo credit Shane Leonard

STEPHEN KING (b. 1947) is an American author of horror, supernatural fiction, suspense, science fiction, and fantasy. His books have sold more than 350 million copies.  King has published over fifty novels, including seven under the pen name Richard Bachman, and six non-fiction books. He has written around 200 short stories, most of which are in book collections. Mr. King’s Amazon page is HERE.

His novella Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption was the basis for the film The Shawshank Redemption widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time. It was in fact voted the greatest film of all time by Empire magazine readers in “The 201 Greatest Movies of All Time” poll in March, 2006. 


PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide. It champions the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. PEN America’s mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible.


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dancing toward infinity, a poem … and your Wednesday Writing Prompt

spiral galaxy in Constellation, Coma Berenices, 60 million light years from Earth

spiral galaxy in Constellation, Coma Berenices, 60 million light years from Earth


each lively soul
worlds contained
a galaxy of one
our gases, our dust
our gravitational pull
our weak wills
our strong compulsions
our stark shadowlands
our gaudy stars
dancing toward infinity

originally published in the June 2014 issue of The BeZine

© 2014, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; photograph, Nasa/Hubble Team, public domain


WEDNESDAY WRITING PROMPT

Describe in poem each lively soul’s dance toward infinity.  If you feel comfortable, leave your work or a link to it below in the comments section. (Please do not send your work or links to me by email or through Facebook message.) All poems in response to this theme will be published here next Tuesday.  All are welcome no matter the status of your career: beginning, emerging or pro.  You have until 8:30 pm PST, Monday, January 22.  Thank you!


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“it was after a journey” … and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

If you look closely, you’ll see the little Rufus Hummingbird. Hummingbirds remind us that the sweetest nectar is within.


And here are the responses to last Wednesday’s writing prompt, posted late in the day – Tuesday – with my apologies. I know that for Kakali and Anjum it is already Wednesday dawn. Colin, Paul and Sonja are still fast asleep. In just a few hours bogpan will be getting up and getting ready for work. Only for Lisa, Miguel and me is it still Tuesday, around dinner time. Phew! It’s been that kind of day for this poet.

Last week’s prompt, Brightness Beckons, January 10, was about transformative moments and I believe these poets have risen to the occasion, some by a thread and some all-in, but each one delivered a well-considered work. Enjoy!

Do join us tomorrow for the next prompt. All are welcome, no matter the stage of your career.  It’s all about exercising the writing muscle and meeting other poets.


Released

In utter despair
heart-broken open
stroke after stroke,
water engulfs me,
cradling, warm,
absorbing goggle-trapped tears.

Released, they said,
from one hell to another—
not free, not free to go home,
released from youth jail
to adult jail to wait for trial,
released, they said, cruel sentence.

Swimming my prayer,
please,
I can’t do this any more,
his pain,
merging with mine,
drop into drop.

Ears to hear, broken open,
voice in my head:
You must continue
they need you
he needs you
you can do this

Who speaks?
imagination or God?
mysterious mentor,
self pity called out—
Lady Justice, Compassion, Love—
who speaks?

Stroking the white-blue water
image etched on liquid canvas,
heart sliced open,
blood drops falling,
gold needle pulling golden thread,
closes red pulsing flesh.

Water holds me,
windmill arms can’t stop,
thunder breaths hauled in
puffing past ears that hear,
scolded, emboldened, submerged—
resurrected.

He, sitting behind bars,
sixteen, innocent,
Me, swimming,
free,
I can do this. I must.
Water.

© 2018, Lisa Ashley  (www.lisaashleyspiritualdirector.com)


it was after a journey

of fourteen hours
by plane and train when
arriving at a lonely station
in the far North I approached a man
who’d obviously been
standing in the road outside
for a hundred years
and was therefore likely to know
his way around like the back of his hand

– I want to go to Etlic I said
– Etlic: you’ll need to go to Mrs Warrender
who runs the boat service; you see that trail…

he pointed down a long sea-embattled peninsular
down which the yellow trail snaked
into the distance; it seemed that Mrs Warrender
had a boatyard in some village
at the end of it

active mind in ailing body
set off along the track
which went though tunnels with deep puddles
over many stiles and up through manholes
which was entirely appropriate
for a man in a hole struggling
with many other pilgrims
intent on making the next boat to Etlic
which he failed to do

throughout the following day
I maintained an active image of Mrs Warrender
whom I must have met in some other life

***

Don’t ask me where ‘Etlic’ is. I dreamed about the place so it must be somewhere! It had a kind of Bright Hope attached to it!

© 2018, Colin Blundel (Colin Blundell, All and Everything)


Gustave Doré’s illustration of Canto III: Arrival of Charon; public domain illustration

Almost a Song

“Per me si va nella città dolente…”
Dante Alighieri

You haven’t forgotten
you won’t forget…
In ices is swelling
the river again and trawling
roots and weeds,
and foam.
It leaves the shores bent,
mirrors,
swamps and frost.
But on the day
it kindles a glow.
With movements
spiral of
the hands,
I’m folding the air
after the beasts –
to that one threshold
(what does it say
no, I don’t know).

And the death ones leave.

© 2018, bogpan Bozhidar Pangelov – (bogpan – блог за авторска поезия)

“Per me si va nella città dolente” … The Inferno, Canto III, “Through me the way to the city of woe”  


Vinegar

And a clean cloth is what she needs
to scrub the smeared pains of her heart

just as Jill needed vinegar and brown paper to repair Jack’s broken bonce

after he fell carrying a pale of water,
but her spirit is not in a bucket,

but in a pane of glass that needs cleaning so she can see clearly the obstacles

in her way and be a pilgrim
and wipe tears from her granddaughter’s eyes.

© 2018, Paul Brookes  (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

Every Key She

puts in the door is her 21st when she hauls her late five year old screaming

daughter to the dentists to get her braces tightened, folk looking askance

as the child shouts for help as if she’s being abused and milking the attention

and five years later after her final visit
to the hospital she puts the key into her

echoing house when she would have been glad to hear her daughter’s voice.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)

The Neighbour’s Traveller

crawls along a mountain’s shoulder,
down a verterbrae of spines,

into the leaf mould of birth
where it cradles a knapsack of beliefs

in a bonegirdle. Pioneer savage
come to swap gifts with half
dressed gentlemen.

His garden drystone wall
of philosopher’s stone

waits for an answer to a question
it has forgotten. Meanwhile spiders hunt

spaces between carefully placed slabs.

© 2018, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow, Inspiration, History, Imagination)


Indefatigable

a sower here

— showed
a belief
as rising up

as change, as malleable

thought to call it god —

I spoke not knowing what I would say

just as easily —

the growing mountains of
refuse
mean something
equally
as insurmountable as speech
to really
satisfy

and that leaves the
obvious quiet

thematically dragged out on cue

— dream in cycles

each of these things committed
in silence — think
of the plethora —

guard as treasure

dub She

(c) 2018, Miguel J. Escobar 


#The Song Of A Dewdrop#

My chest twisted as a dying leaf
That had it’s last swing on  that grey hill
When suddenly I saw a dewdrop ,
A pearly corn on that dying leaf
In the rosy -pink light of dawn
fondling  a scarlet flower
Dazzling and giggling
in the wintry breeze .
Sparkling like diamond nose pin
That glitters and glistens on a queen’s nose
Or as a glossy prism  on the grassy leaf
It sang mirthfully
One beam of hope still  surpasses
That grey agonised mountain chest

©2018, Kakali  Das Ghosh


Post-Op. 2009

I’m roused from sleep again,
the nurse’s fob watch
twinkling silver
as she take my pulse.

She whispers an apology:
must do my obs.
check nothing’s come loose
and we grin.

I’m multi-tubed,lie flat
like a beached octopus.

I tell her I don’t mind.
I’m glad she disturbs
these drifting hours
between midnight and morning.

I’m glad of soft lights
above my bed,
glad of electric suns
along wide-awake corridors.

© 2018, Sheila Jacob 


.on spring #2.

black bird sings early, the same bird calls late.
new light drowns darkness, spring spins around.
black bird calls early, the same bird calls late.
sonnet sings ten beats to another’s spare sound.

who asks for word, who knows which hour it starts,
which minute, which rule of rhyme or reason.
making of lines , counting the breaks, our hearts
open. this is february, split season.
moon draws the tide, upper river pools
on spring, a note , a sonnet , a dance
where light or other prayers redeem fools,
those who rage the world sons may change perchance.

on spring we write in fourteen lines, to date,

black bird sings early, the same bird calls late.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher  (Sonja Benskin Mesher, RCA and Sonja’s Drawings)


Pilgrimage Toward the Light

     after Dr. Allama Iqbal’s poem, “Pilgrimage to Eternity”

O Restless spirit what seekest thou , since
awareness dawned, in innocence encased
bits of paper became letters symbolic ,
what messages were lost and  received
unknown unseen till strange sounds
sailed through the cool silent breezes
and the heart beat faster,fingers grew cold

eyes roamed the boundless skies, finding no cuts or breaks
birds flew trembling fluttering closer to each other
as the golden ball seemed to sink out of sight, finding darkness
behind the eyes turned to the skies again, behold, bejeweled
was the roof with diamonds arranged, twinkling for long hours
becoming small, disappearing from vision yet still present
‘Know that they are still there’ only hidden by Light’

Hidden by Light? and a voice called ‘Allah ho Akbar’
The Greatest is He, Prayer is better than sleep
prayer is better than sleep’ and the sight descends
to touch the earth,flat dry strong stony rough solid
The heart beat faster again…

‘feel the inner strength,the magnetic touch the Light’
slight pain in the back I felt, head down, bent in
body slipping instantly, invisibly flying to nowhere
in semi darkness, I reached a room square in shape
a small window opening near the ceiling, a single bed
lay in the center, on the floor…I smoothed the folds of
the white sheet, satisfied that all was set, I returned…
or was brought back…I awoke …the light streamed on

‘He made the day  for work and night for rest, and the
day allowing sight ‘there was no chaos, all was pure
clean ethereal and with great speed…

I heard another voice, ‘not now later’ a voice so clear
the night slipped away making way for the lightc
it grew brighter moment by moment, the eyes
roamed from one end of the to the other,seeking
what dost thou seek?
I still don’t know…

the light grew yet brighter till
the glow was whiter than any light , blinding…
the appeared small shapes like people sitting on
the floor bowing towards one point…brightest in the center
IMG_20170426_152958_467

and ‘the gleam increased’ unbearable light’
the Lamp as it shone revealed more Light
and I felt weak in the limbs…
where are the stars of the night?

the rainbow in the clouds
the colors on the ground
the amazing shapes in clouds
carrying holding water drops

I sailed through and through
flew like a bird, who holds their
wings,held me too, no desire for
food nor thirst for a drink just nothing
yet so much…yet felt only …
unseen purity “Light Of Divine Love’

© 2018, Anjum Wasim Dar  (EternalLights, Life Style and Strange Stories and Poetic Oceans)


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