Can We …? . . . and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

Kalafat/Çanakkale Merkez/Çanakkale, Turkey courtesy of Zekeriya Sen, Unsplash

“We’re all ghosts. We all carry, inside us, people who came before us.” Liam Callanan, The Cloud Atlas

Here we are at Tuesday and the responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt,Out of the Womb of Time, May 13, which asked poets to consider:  Where are we in the great continuum? What do we gain from those who came before? What do we give to those who will come after? As always, it’s interesting to read the different perspectives from which each poet plays with the same theme. As a matter of fact, that’s one of the pleasures in this exercise. So, enjoy these poems, gifted to us by Anjum Wasim Dar, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Adrian Solanker, and Mike Stone. And do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All who’d like to participate are invited: beginning, emerging and pro.

Can We….?

Out of the womb of time,unseen
from the fluids of the water lodged
in the ground, immeasurable-
from sounding clay, from mud moulded
into shape and form, gifted uniquely,
capable, blessed with knowledge, free will

Out of the noble pair came generations
“a hundred great men” listed Prophets as best
in roles as guides and Messengers, as shepherds
healers, peace makers, law givers, grand fathers
‘grand mothers,’ on whose shoulders we stand’

their teachings and books are with us- but
are we all with them , do we read enough?
we drink and dance, we eat and sleep
we say what they said, but our hearts and spirits
have drifted away, or so it seems

is their deeper wisdom lost to the winds?
or has it taken refuge in water tight iron boxes
has our learning scattered like particles all over?
the bells do chime and toll, the “Calls do echo’
for there is Hope”

and now humanity, in chaos, seeks coherence, a
collective holism, a new more compassionate normal
free of hunger, poverty and disease, can we educate?
pass on true knowledge,stop and rebuild the collapse
ecological? can millions of bombs and guns remove hate ?

stuck in meaningless systems can we heal breeding
grounds of crime? or control domestic violence? or restore
ruined soil? or raise dense green forests in days, calculated?
wars , killings murders horrifying brutalities more we have given
than peace gardens, joy food learning and justice equal?

confined for years to the paths of our predecessors , we have
been led to senseless global conflicts, mass shootings unbalanced
social systems intense pollution and surging health crises, what good
is in hold scaffold ed for future generations ? isolated digital deceptions?
corruption? injustice ? suffering?

nature has sent an unseen tsunami a warning for humanity
to pause, think, reflect upon the grave threats, seek ways to
peace not war, to health not sickness, to joy not grief,
out of the womb of time slide out new meanings, the new 3 Rs
reunion of holism , repair of community, rejoining the web of life-

Out of the womb of time, comes a time for a reset of our precious world.

© 2020, Anjum Wasim Dar

Anjum-ji’s sites are:

“POETRY PEACE and REFORM Go Together -Let Us All Strive for PEACE on EARTH for ALL -Let Us Make a Better World -WRITE To Make PEACE PREVAIL.” Anjum Wasim Dar

..kiss the ancestors..

i am travelling to the end of the world

with you.


unless we stop to

start again.

unless we travel more careful

we shall see

blackened lakes.

kissing the ancestors, hugging the memories presently.


the will of the people over rides that of the mystery.

throwing all into

© 2020, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:

Language Marches On

With gigantic glasses and
feathered hair, yet not even
an embryonic inkling of
“vegan,” “churro,” or “blogs,”
my geeky teenage self,
still convinced that
“sick” signified “disgusting” instead
of “desirable,” couldn’t have
conceived that now
I’d chow down on
a vegan churro bar
while browsing blogs.
Less baffling would’ve been the binaries
between “swine,” “sheep,” and “cow”
and “pork,” “mutton,” and “beef”
because the Anglos once kept the livestock
while the Francos devoured the viands.
Do my nieces,
wrinkled newborns a decade past Y2K,
deride my Valley Girl-like sprinkling of “like”
as, like, naff fossil-speak, and
will they someday declare
on my tombstone:
“(downward arrow) (sleeping emoji) Pibling Adrian,
rip (crying emoji)”?

© 2020, Andrian Slonaker

To read more of Adrian’s work, just do a search on this site and/or on The BeZine.

Having Once Existed

Raanana, March 7, 2019

Having once existed,
I will not cease to exist
Once my life ends.

And having once existed,
My existence will continue
As long as there are consequences
No matter how insignificant
From my existence
Until the end of time.

And having once existed,
Before I existed
I existed as a possibility
A possibility that was inevitable
Since time’s beginning.

Like the universe
That existed as a possibility
Before time’s beginning,
Unfolding its wondrous petals
Of space and time,
And will exist as a consequence
After time’s end,
We will exist
Forever and ever
And ever.

from The Call of the Whippoorwill

© 2019, Mike Stone

Yggdrasil’s Children

We thank our foremothers for our roots
Reaching back to the mists of first times
And we bless our branches
Those that are strong and healthy
And those that are yet to sprout
Toward unknown skies.
These humans think they’re so different from us
But Yggdrasil remembers when
Our cells split off from our eukaryotic mother.
They walk past us like tumbleweeds
Unattached to the soil
As though they are going somewhere
But it’s always the same earth,
The same sky.

from The Hoopoe’s Call

© 2019, Mike Stone

 Outside of Eden’s Garden

As it is written,
God told Abraham to take his son, Isaac,
Whom he loved, to Mount Moriah
To make of him a burnt offering to Him
But sent only a messenger
To stay Abraham’s raised knife.

As it is written,
Moses led the Hebrews out of Egyptian slavery
Through the sea and deserts to the Land of Canaan
Where from the top of Mount Nebo
Moses saw his people enter
The Promised Land without him
Because God forbade him entry,
A man with a single doubt
Without whom his people would have perished.

And as it is written,
God put Job in the hands of Satan
On condition that he spare Job’s life
Because Job was righteous,
No matter what evil might befall him
Just to win a bet with Satan
Who destroyed everyone and everything
That poor Job had or loved.

Sometimes it is difficult
To tell the difference between God and Satan
Or justify His mysterious moves
But the truth is
We’ve outgrown Him
As we must if we’re to survive
Outside of Eden’s garden.

from The Hoopoe’s Call

© 2019, Mike Stone

A Thousand Years 

In a thousand years we won’t see
People being led into temptation
Folly, pride, hatred, and other evils
By false prophets in white houses or mud huts.

In a thousand years we won’t see
Smokestacks or exhaust pipes
Belching breathless smoke
Into the darkened skies.

In a thousand years we won’t see
The rich gentry carving fat birds
For falsetto voices and powdered faces
While children’s stomachs bloat from hunger.

In a thousand years we’ll see
Tall trees with rustling leaves
Beside brooks with grassy banks

Because only good will be left standing
Because only good can stand alone.

from The Hoopoe’s Call

© 2020, Mike Stone

Mike’s website is HERE.

Call of the Whippoorwill is Mike Stone’s fourth book of poetry. It and other books of poetry and of science fiction by Mike are available from Amazon all over the world. Mike’s U.S. Amazon Page is HERE.

Jamie Dedes:

Your donation HERE helps to fund the ongoing mission of The Poet by Day in support of poets and writers, freedom of artistic expression, and human rights.

Poetry rocks the world!


For Peace, Sustainability, Social Justice

Maintain the movement.

“Democracy is not a spectator sport.” Bernie Sanders

“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

FROM THE DESK OF MBIZO CHIRASHA: Opportunity Knocks for Women Poets

CALL for SUBMISSIONS as well as introducing our iconic Guest Editor for the June Edition Jamie Dedes:

Mbizo Chirasha

This edition gives women poets a platform to reflect as they share their experiences of the COVID 19 menace and  as well visualizing their lives and that of their communities after the COVID19 threats, loss and pain.  Sobriety and healing can be brought back by written word, writing, poetic reflections and reading experiences. We continue to value creativity and diversity. We say every positive change begins with writing. Every revolution  began and ended by WORD. We look forward to reading your  writings and reflections. Thumbs-up to Womawords 2020 Poet Laureate and June Edition Guest Editor JAMIE DEDES. Together We Rise.

The WOMAWORDS press June Edition is to be edited by our Poet Laureate and USA Associate to the WOMAWORDS Hall of Fame, Jamie Dedes.“The call is open to women poets from May 20 through June 20.“Ten poems and poets will be selected from the submissions, which should include a short third-person bio of thirty-to-sixty words and your photograph.“Submissions to be forwarded to BOTH Mbizo Chirasha and cc’d Jamie Dedes at

JAMIE DEDES is a Lebanese-American poet and free-lance writer. She is the founder and curator of The Poet by Day, info hub for poets and writers, and the founder of The Bardo Group, publishers of The BeZine, of which she was the founding editor and is currently a co-manager editor with Michael Dickel. Ms. Dedes is the Poet Laureate of WOMAWORDS Press 2020 and U.S associate to that press as well. Her debut collection, The Damask Garden is due out fall 2020 from Blue Dolphin Press.

– Mbizo Chirasha





mountains rise round, Mother’s ever pregnant belly
and the aspens dance with paper-barked madrone
screeching their yellows and reds, brindle and feral
like the snaked hairs of Medusa, they are warning

looming over me as I lay miles away on a mesa
the bones of my ancestors, the heart of my child
the pelts of the brown minks my father sewed
the vultures circle, mesmerized by my demise

I feed on the pinion and ride mountain lions
down slopes, into valleys, a wanderer, lost and lost
looking eastward, seeking John Chapman
he has something to say, or maybe it’s westward

John Muir, my ears are deaf, my eyes hear a song
emerging from brown bear, a surfeit of salmon
burning sage, clearing America, the wild beasts
are defanged and declawed and I am hawk-eyed.


            after Muriel Rukeyser
I lived in the century of world wars and
into the century of “hot spots” and “conflicts,”
those isolated regions of hostility and battle, of
choreographed shows of military cliché and the
violent disaffected eruptions of the marginalized

Every day is an homage to some insanity
Media reports are conveyed with facile intensity
by hyperkinetic journalists delivering easy
and ominous conclusions based on seemingly
recondite facts, quickly moving to celebrity
gossip and other insipid topics . . .

I have lived in two centuries of wars
I know what it is to be exhausted by the
vain posturing of the ruling class and
the tired protestations of tribal unity and
supremacy based on accidents of birth

I know what it is to imagine peace across
the circumference of one small blue ball
in a Universe of inestimable size and breadth
I know that darkness can descend with the
speed of light and that love is more than an
anchor and that vision keeps our dreams alive

I have lived into the century where the world is
grown small, where the peacemakers are tireless
and perhaps enough hearts have grown large …
sometimes I think I am living in the century
where peace is as possible as war


the ghosts of our parents search vainly
for wildflowers near the beach at Big Sur

they were deaf to the threat in thunder,
but we were struck by lightning,
heaved in the rain and waves and
the overflow from the melting ice

the computers went down
their screens black as the wicked water,
in whirling chaos they morphed into drums

every fetus turned in the womb,
the men went to the mountain tops
and the women sheltered in caves

the souls of saints and sinners
were run through a cosmic wash cycle
after the spin dry, a new wisdom

but the shades of our parents remain,
they wait in vain for us at Big Sur,
in vain by the Santa Lucia Mountains


About Womawords Literary Press

Womawords, an international eZine based in Africa, is the heart child of multi-award winning Zimbabwean poet in exile, Mbizo Chirasha.  It was established to support women and girls through the publication of activist poetry by women.  Current projects are Womawords companion publication, Liberating Voices Journal, and the newly founded Womawords Hall of Fame.

The Womawords Hall of Fame seeks to amplify women’s voices through literary and other arts and comprises representatives from around the globe: writers, poets, editors, and mentors among others.

JAMIE DEDES is a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. She curates the Poet by Day Webzine [], an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights. Email for permissions, commissions, or assignments. Jamie is also the founder and founding editor of The BeZine, which she currently manages and edits with American-Israeli poet, Michael Dickel (Meta /Phor(e) /Play).

MBIZO CHIRASHA (Mbizo, The Black Poet)  \is the founder of Womawords Literary Press, which is dedicated to giving space to the voices of women and girls. He is a multi-award winning poet from Zimbabwe who is in exile and running for his life. We have been coordinating in the search for safe harbor for him. In part I am posting this today to remind everyone that while we’ve made progress with funding, we still need to find a host for Mbizo, preferably Germany. Open to suggestion.  Connect with me ( if you are able to help, have leads, or have questions. You can read more about Mbizo and his story: Zimbabwean Poet in Exile: Award-Winning Poet Mbizo Chirasha, A Life on the Run, Interview.