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“.end games.” . . . and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“So I don’t think I’ll make Poet Laureate,
but I swear I’m not twisted and bitter,
If finely-wrought talents
don’t weigh in the balance,
I can always write haiku on Twitter.”

Rosy Cole, The Twain: Poems of Earth and Ether



A bit behind here due to recuperating from an unexpected and rather protracted hospital stay (thanks in part to California wild fires), but here we are at last: These moving and deeply felt poems are in response to the last Wednesday Writing prompt, the flautist wears a shaman’s headress (on the chaos in the world, the configurations of cruelty), November 14. Thank you to Kakali Das Ghosh, Jen E. Goldie, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Marta Pombo Sallés, and Anjum Wasim Dar for sharing their thoughts and talents, including photographs.

In addition to their words, I’ve included links to blogs or websites where available. I hope you’ll visit these poets and get to know their work better. It is likely you can catch up with others via Facebook.

Enjoy! … and do come out later today for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are welcome including beginning and emerging poets. Poems in languages other than English are welcome as long as they are accompanied by a translation into English.


My Obsess

Your blue eyes
So deep but surged
I wished to swim
and be merged

I longed to play with you
But they called me shameless
Withered all my flowers were
Their clutches -my obsess

I longed for wings
I desired for a blue sky
They tied my dreams
and bade goodbye

Why I’m so confined
Should I now be blind
Why do they blame me
I just tried a Freedom to find

© 2018, Kakali Das Ghosh


“The price of order is dictatorship.
The price of democracy is chaos”. Jamie Dedes

To this I have to say:

There is a shadow
in my light,
That wants to
take away the joy,
the naivete,
and sense of security,
That I have had
in Mankind….

© 2018, Jen E. Goldie

I was a 50’s child. We were fairly sheltered no doubt,
because of the hardships our elders went through before us.
I was lucky, pampered and did not do without. But as I grew up
and the 60’s and 70’s crept in, I heard Chants like “MAKE LOVE
NOT WAR”. Although I was not perceivably effected by this, or
knowingly effected, I must have been. I wrote prolifically as I
grew to be aware of the world around me.

-DID I SAY IT WAS SWEET-
In all reality the fight is never the reward,
If reward there be.
They take the good times when they find them,
They step on those who could intentionally
Destroy them.
They never enjoy the good times but for themselves.
They would take the bread from your plate;
They would see you starved and boiled for oil
when they needed light. They never want to give.
The loss they suffer is their humanity
And sense of joy.
They are Dark People with shining faces.
They would challenge your integrity to win a fight.
Fortunately, they do not live around every corner.
If they did, God help us all.
The war would have begun and ended Mankind,
Long ago….

© 2018, Jen E. Goldie


.end games.

women of everywhere help each other talk clearly and predict the state of the sea

women of dolgellau are strong define them selves

the problems

x

a wonder you are not worried sitting there quite nicely watching politics again you are not shaking you were last week

x

one hundred years

x

some of us have changed our thinking to suit our life

end games

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

it is raining today
quite hard .
sounds constant.

we are dry, safe ,
lucky in our lot, to be born
here.

i have heard the news today.

it is so bad.

there will be gusts of 35 miles
an hour moving north.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

some days my world is small here, so….

.. today across the lane..

he is splitting logs & sawing

in the sun

they will go at the back where the wind

blows round

kenny says they take years to dry

he knows his stuff

i broke the mower & have two

strimmers that work

cut the paths

tenderly leaving the flowers to grow

we try not to go out here bank holiday

week ends

so a rest indoors now

with

ARTURO MARQUEZ – DANZÓN Nº 2; GUSTAVO DUDAMEL
in blue writing

as if

it is important

you see

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


violet white flower

A Raindrop In Your Desert

I am a dew drop in your desert
You are a pearl in my ocean
In this groaning world
It’s either dust or turbulent waters.

You’d die of thirst
I’d wish to die in a raging flood
But long ago the flood found me
By deceit I was swept away
By this neoliberal world.

Unveiling its darkness
Three bullets besiege our souls:
Overwork
Stole our precious time
“Bang”
Reload, two more rounds

I miss that I don’t read anymore
I’m subserviant to those who make the time
For personal growth, artistic reflection on self

Still as rocks we cannot be
Chipped away or burned to ashes
Awaiting Einaudi’s Divenire?
What will we become?

As Queen Bohemian’s Rapsody
Carries me by the headphones away
Part of me sees hope in surrender to the mundane
The other part of me only defeat
Amid the storm and its crashing waves

Hardened
Multilayered skins?

Each layer is a bullet fired
Against their system.

Layers of art and poetry lines
Our little raindrops in the desert.

I am a raindrop in your desert.
But unfortunately I cannot provide
All the rain a friend like you would need.
No rainy day friend.

If I could just make it rain
As it did yesterday in my town
After so many months of silence
I felt its sound and cadence
The humid touch on my skin.

This would be the rain
For a no rainy day friend.
Yet I am still a raindrop in your desert.

Dyed my hair red passion today
As I would just dye the wide ocean
And red would be the love we all need
Where three things must always be:

Your willpower, your talent and
The third, the most difficult
Of all the things to achieve, is
The opportunity,
Someone’s willingness, as you say
A world that mentors that love.

Marta wrote this poem in collaboration with Donald Standeford.  She recommends his blog.

© 2018 Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)

Cruelty, Thy Name Is Blood

gaza
O for whom the blood flowed first
when we were the young children
we knew by which enemy for what
cause reason or  division of landwe lost hundreds and hundreds then
we got the land for faith and peace
we knew the flag and leadership
but down the line,lost was the grip
somewhere entered the evil mind
slashing loyalty leaving faith behind
everything further divided destroyed
killers shooters n enemies employedlife became money and money life
race to be rich in struggle and strife
a freedom attained became enchained
freedom protests in free country life-strangest demand with song n dance

putting the children young in a trance                                  IMAG0266
once again we know the enemy for sure
but a nation dead, not alive anymore–when beauty salons and fashion grow
destructive decline of civilizations show
O people where did you lose the way?
is faith weak, have we gone astray?For whom the warm blood flows now?
gold of hemlock  have we drunk
growing greed  broken kin ships
how deep have we, in Lethe sunk?

what does it mean in a world, free?
are we free, then still ask, to be free ?
why palestinian people every day die,

 blinded with  pellets are the kashmiris ?

but death is rampant brutal and rude
we have forgotten  Aad and Samood
death will visit again,who knows
to separate lives, leave bodies in pain

smiling young innocent laughter
quietened for ever in every country
grieved, shocked at butchering blows

IMG_2286

O For Whom,the blood so young flows ?

helpless I feel but write I must
wake up faith, let us be just
rise repent, follow the true path
before as dust, we all return,to dust.

پہلے کس کے لیے خون کے دریا بہے ،
جب ہم بچے تھے ،
ہم جانتے تھے دشمن کو پہچانتے تھے
کس نے زخم لگاءے وار کیے وطن کو کاٹ دیا بانٹ دیا ،
سینکڑوں بچحڑ گےء قرباں ہوءے
امن و ایمان کی خاطر ، ہم اپنے جھنڈے کو سمجھتے تھے ،
اپنے قاعد کی دل سے عزت کرتے تھے
مگر افسوس ، کیا ہوا ؟ وقت کا دریا طوفانی رہا ،
پانی اس کا خونی رہا ،
کشتی بھنور میں پھنستی رہی ڈو لتی رہی
کہیں شیطانی زہن جاگا وفاداری دفناتے ہوے ء
لوٹنے کا جال بچھایا ،
ایمان کو روندا ،تباہی پھیلاءی
قاتل دشمن لٹیرے فریبی جھوٹے لالچی لاتا رہا بناتا رہا
جب فیشن اور اراءش و جمال کے ادارے بڑھیں
تو قوموں کا زوال ہوتا ہے ۔۔کہاں راستہ بھولتے گےء
اب کس کے لیے گرم خون بہایا ؟
کیا سونے کا زہر پی لیا ہم نے ؟
بھول گءے قوم آد و سمود ،
کیا دنیا آزاد ہے اور پھر بھی آزادی کی طلب گار ہے ؟
کیوں کشمیر جل رہا ہے ؟
فلستیں کا خون بہ رہا ہے؟
موت ہر طرف پھیل رہی ہے ؟
کیوں ظلم ہو رہا ہے ؟ اور رک نہیں رہا ہے .؟
کیا انساں کا کھیل بن چحکا ہے ؟
ظلم و ستم چوری اور لوٹ مار بس
بے قصور مسکراہٹ سرد ہو رہی ہے
ہر قوم ملبے تلے دب رہی ہے
اب کس کے لیے خون بہ رہا ہے ؟
بے بس ہوں مگر بے حس نہیں ہوں میں ،
آواز اپنی اٹھاوں گی ، لوگوں کا ایماں جگأو نگی
جاگو جاگو ایماں والو سمجھ بوجھ اور عقل والو
اٹھو استغفار پڑھو سیدھی راہ پے چل نکلو
اس سے پہلے کہ خاک سے بنے
خاک میں ملے پھر واپس خاک ہو جاوء تم
مالک نے بنایا انساں کو اشرفلمخلوقات نرم حلیم ابتر
کیوں انساں بنا اک خون پیتا قتل کرتا ظالم خونخوار جانور
دنیا کی تباہی جنگ و جدل چور بزاری کا حسین پیکر
کیا مالک نے ایسا ہی سوچا اس پیاری دنیا کا منظر ؟
نہیں نہیں نہیں نہیں

© 2018, Anjum Wasim Dar (Poetic Oceans)

 

Into timelessness, poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“Will the day tell its secret
Before it disappears,
Becomes timeless night.”

Dejan Stojanovic, Circling: 1978-1987



These responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, melting into timelessness (i.e., God, Source, Being, the Ineffable), October 10, 2018.

Kudos and thanks to Sonja Benskin Mesher, Bozhidar Pangelov (bogpan), Marta Pombo Sallés, and Anjum Wasim Dar. A very warm welcome to Bhaga and to Shaik Sana.

I’ve included links to blogs or websites. I hope you’ll visit these poets and get to know their work better. It is likely you can catch up with others via Facebook.

Enjoy! … and do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.


Aaaahhh…
This one I like.
This one I can enter in
With pleasure
And melt in it
Into Timelessness…
The Foreverness,
Fullness
And Sweetness
Of Spirit…

© 2018, Bhaga (Lab of Evolution, For Research on Conscious Evolution)

I enjoyed Bhaga’s spontanious response to the last prompt and am delighted to introduce this wise bilingual (French and English) blogger here. Bhaga has mixed ethnic and national origins.She grew up in West Africa and spent significant time in France. You can read more detail about origins HERE and name HERE. The MIssion Statement HERE. Lab of Evolution is a stimulating, though-provoking site and worthy of you time. It makes a soft rather unique expression in our blogosphere. / J.D.


Imagine

But just imagine
Your home next to mine
‎And
‎You next to me. .
‎We’ll be laying
‎Side by side
‎Under the tree,
‎Talking about
‎Dreams and our
Coming destinies,
And just like that
We’ll live forever
In our own
Timed infinity.

© 2018, Shaik Sana (eleven eleven * Everyone Dreams of Being Home *)

c Shaik Sana

SHAIK SANA tells us, “I’m a medical student from State of Andhra Pradesh in India. Even though I’m committed to medicine, I have a thing for both history and literature. I like writing poems when the idea hits me.”


 

 

 

. the birds fly up.

it is a clear word

as water pure and bouncing

off rocks

a bird

or

messing about

remembering #

days mud building dams

fighting the tide

pushing back years

running the path

fighting for freedom

then it comes

unexpected

like

the lark

bird

having written of the hour,

move on when all is lost.

the days remain

timeless.

today, we walk the woods,

back home.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


A true compass

(Jamie Dedes)

“Our fate like cast lead can not
to change.
Nothing can change. ”
G. Seferis

Like a desperate winter …
Do you hear – how do the branches
the trees crack
under the night snow.
Bones under your weight.
You who embraced the frozen
water to see only
your body.
Your remote body.
I spoke to you out of the law.
Sometimes.
Not always
(“forever”it is for the prophets).
How lied your experience,
which accumulate the old gods
in the blood.
The true rulers of fate.
Who else talks behind your voice?
As soon as the homes touch,
who comes with the torches?
Glare of glass, ash
of the stars you make …
And deaf loneliness like a bell
(Lead gives nothing).

I tried.
Behind the ground and the winter.
On the day of John.

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


Marta writers: “How is it possible to make something timeless when we are finite beings and born to die, as Lana Del Rey sings? Yes, God is timeless, but so are human-made creations and memories that pass from generation to generation. Where does timelessness start? Lewis Carroll gave me an answer when Alice spoke with the Caterpillar. They were both responsible for a bit of inspiration to write this poem.”

I Tasted Spring

I tasted spring through my body,

closed my eyes and felt

that touch on my lips.

Memories of a dream revival

where everything felt so true:

My mouth on yours,

your delicious touch,

your willingness,

our timeless embrace

where nothing receded

in the open air,

in the magic moment

of timeless soulmates.

Time suddenly froze,

it turned into

Eternity…

Can you capture time?

Do you know how to freeze it?

“I can beat music”,

said Alice to the Caterpillar.

So there is time in music.

Any musical piece has indeed

frozen time forever

just as well as the other arts:

Photography, painting…

And writing…

How could I make this happen

with our delicious kiss,

the best I have ever tasted

although it was just a dream.

© 2017, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)

“And here is another one with the issue of time linked with cruelty.”

Time and Human Cruelty

Time
cannot be changed
or escaped.
Time is a thief,
a friend to no one
and every day is
a gift.

You cannot change time
or travel back
to reverse those things which
should never have taken place.
People killed for no reason
or
is there ever a reason
to kill other human beings?

Those people did not get lost.
When you’re lost you’ll sooner or later
find the way back.
Or perhaps not.
But you’re not erased from Earth.

Those people were killed,
just a few compared to other countries
in our world.
None of them will ever return
to the world as we know it.
They’ve just been removed too soon,
swept away by the cruelty of others:
white supremacists, Muslim terrorists …

But which governments are orchestrating
such massacres in our world?
Who’s feeding the monsters
is equally a monster.

Let’s tackle the root of the problem.
Only this way we’ll be able to say:
I am not afraid!

Time and human cruelty
are friends to no one:
Charlottesville, Barcelona, Cambrils
and many more.
The outcome is always the same.

© 2017, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)


Only My Heart Can See

every moment a tiptoe sounds

I close my eyes to see

as I feel the page

as words take shape and form

my thoughts encircle the song

inside the circle of the dance

is it the dancer or the dance?

Ah! only my soul knows

Only my heart can see-

I close my eyes to look

up from the book

at the love of purity

which is but a scent sweet

I reach out to touch

Nothingness ‘

Ah The presence in Nothingness’

Love of Eternity ‘

Close…

closer than the thorn is to the rose

growing from dust

glowing in the dust

dust to dust we rose

engulfed spirits in time

destined together to repose…

arms spread out to receive

like the scattered petals

of the beloved rose…..

my eyes on the book I close

the dancer moved bent and rose….

life went on, life goes….

far far away, forever

© 2018, Anjum Wasim Dar


ABOUT

Poet and writer, I was once columnist and the associate editor of a regional employment publication. Currently I run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers.

My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,Compass Rose, Connotation Press, The River Journal, The Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman.

 

“A Dark Matter” … and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“We sit and talk,
quietly, with long lapses of silence
and I am aware of the stream
that has no language, coursing
beneath the quiet heaven of
your eyes
which has no speech”
– William Carlos Williams, Paterson


These responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, your darkness, my light – how is it that love transforms us, October 3, 2018, delight, intrigue, thrill your mind and touch the heart. I know you will enjoy them and the two “value-added” sections (Frank’s lastest victory and Mike’s comment) as much as I have.

Kudos and thanks to Renee Espiru, Frank McMahon, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Marta Pombo Sallés, Mike Stone and Anjum Wasim Dar. A very warm welcome to Christi Moon. I’ve been reading her work on Facebook for some years and am delighted to have the opportunity to include her here today.

I’ve included links to blogs or websites where available. I hope you’ll visit these poets and get to know their work better. It is likely you can catch up with others via Facebook.

Enjoy! … and do join us tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.


Arrivals

(foreword)

I want to write about a man beside a train.
A year later and I’m still looking for the words.
The palm of that strong hand-
balm on small of my lower back;
always, pulling.

I’m getting closer.

Arrivals

I’ve only taken a few steps
when my legs stop responding
to the signals from my brain

my vision locked
on an image

you’re running
beside the train
your green hat folded
in your hand

five hundred thousand minutes
careen

into this
one

my feet can’t feel the ground

airy echoes
of your name
far away and
thrumming

she sounds like me

in s l o w m o t i o n
cinematography
we are captured
in these frames

in front of the lens
behind the lens
we are the lens

we are

standing still
and spinning

as the clocks vanish beneath

we are

heaved beyond
the gates

of this brief ceiling

© 2018, cs moon

CHRISTI MOON grew up in a small coastal town in California and currently resides in rural southeastern, Pennsylvania.  Her poetry has been published in the journal Brush Strokes and Ink Spots, an Anthology of Poetry and Art ~ The River Journal, Nomos Review edition 3 ~ Women on War and Conflict, Meat For Tea ~ The Valley Review Vol 8, Need Change, Poets Against War, and Twisted Tungz art & literature magazine, and online on Combustus, VerseWrights, The Creative Nexus, Solstice Initiative ~ Aqueous, and The River Journal. When not writing poetry, her personal interests also include; photography, yoga, and exploring local nature trails. She also facilitates poetry workshops for local cancer patients.


Flourishes & Whorls

When I first made your acquaintance
my hand wrapped ’round you
and found warmth & light

even though a tiny fragment of cedar
I minded not the lustrous feel of
your soft black carbon
within

as I grasped you time & time again
my muse trembled in anticipation
as she watched gradations of lines
forming

creating magic with loops curving
in every direction
to give life to every breath I
inhaled & exhaled

giving substance to the wind
to the very universe of which
the rotating earth is
contained

with each flourish & curve
you became as putty in my hand
as burning fuel for my muse

whereupon the light of day
merged with the dark of night
transforming sunrises
sunsets

igniting the embers in my soul
within my heart
into a flame

I have kept you close since
that crucial moment
the dawning of
a single
letter

© 2018, Renee Espriu (Renee Just Turtle Flight)


EVOLUTION

It takes a big leap of the imagination
to see the line of descent from dinosaur to
blackbird, until you view the fossil record. But
you still can’t quite collapse fifty million years into
an hour’s time-frame. Think then instead about falling
in love and being in love. Falling, but more
crucially, being caught in passion’s net, held or trapped
depending. Two tyros learning their moves on high-wire
or trapeze, diving earthwards, hands outstretched. Maybe
love really begins when they both discard the net.

This poem was first published in England in The Cannon’s Mouth.

© 2018, Frank McMahon

COSMOLOGY

Some millions of years ago two stars collided,
creating cosmic dust of platignum and gold.
Seven shillings: your nuptial ring, signifying
the conjunction of orbits,love’s trajectory,

not like Cassini, all mapped out. Some few details
clear, the rest to be discovered in those early
starlight days; trial and error, error and trial; flesh and
blood, proud children, losses, carefree days and friends,

small frustrations and winter days
yet love lacing a necklace of stars
round deepening inner space, new elements
re-fashioning our Periodic Table.

© 2018, Frank McMahon

Frank McMahon’s first radio play was broadcast last week.  It concerns the last two years in the life of William Tyndale, the priest and scholar who translated much of the Bible into English and was convicted of heresy for so doing. If you want to hear it, then go to: http://www.Corinium Radio.co.uk, follow the link to Listen Again and look for Somewhere Else Writers Present ” A death in Flanders.” Bravo! and Kudos! to Frank.  

Tyndale, before being strangled and burned at the stake in Vilvoorde, cries out, “Lord, open the King of England’s eyes”. Within four years, four English translations of the Bible were published in England at the King’s behest, including Henry’s official Great Bible. All were based on Tyndale’s work. Woodcut from Foxe’s Book of Martyrs (1563) / Public Domain.


.love . the numbers.

he kindness that is. glass reflecting. slowly it starts. maybe we need to check our numbers?

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

. mathematics .

irregular, you came, your best clothes shining. never mind. the first tune hit the mind, patterns and mathematics. the kindness that is.

he said. machine you see. glass reflecting. slowly it starts repeating. the walls of differing colours. we have the dvds. on and on repeating on and on repeating on and on repeating.

back to the counting, how many have there been, how many are left still standing. an issue for some, yet we amend the figures here and move on. lucky ones, maths divides and decimates others.

1.2

repeating.

© 2017, Sonja Benskin Mesher


The night is speaking like a cascade

The night is speaking like a cascade.
She’s knitting filigreed lights and shadows.
Sunk in the deep sea
of Sargasso eyes
I stay quiet and don’t find words.
And the scars on your hand
are fading, in order to burn
in my heart.
Oh, sailboats after a long trip
with all the winds in the sails –
sand is calling you.
But it isn’t death!
Oh, it isn’t the end too!
The hand
is going to knock up a hut for you
and in the wide garden
it smells with magnolia and manuscripts…

And I am a sign.

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


When Silent Love Met with Boasting Vanity

A long time ago
I got used to living with
My open wounds,
The last withered while
I was staring at the sunset
In the middle of the fog.

Yes, you told me so many times
About your suffering,
How your heart shrunk
Fisted in bleeding red
While your eyes tasted
The salt of the ocean waves
And cristal pearls were running
Down your cheeks.

On that plane you felt
The freezing coldness
Where just one thing
Would not freeze:
The fountain of your tears.

Yes, indeed I remember
All the pain on that plane.
You sent me back to the
Land of rejection.

Yet I am a resilient rock
With my withered wounds
That I carry since ancient times
On this eroded earth.

But to exist is to resist
And so I dwell in human hearts
Who care for each other.
And may I receive your boasting waves
Crashing on my shores
Those hearts will restore me again
For I am silent love and not vain.

© 2018, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)


“Your lines (and prompt), “your darkness my light” caused an explosion of thoughts in my mind. I thought about the latest scientific speculation about the composition of the universe, that most of it is composed of dark matter and dark energy that don’t interact with the matter and energy that we sense. I thought about how we focus on the sources of light and its reflections, the things that exist, the presences, but gloss over the sources of darkness, dismissing it as merely the absence of light, rarely able to sense the absence of things that once were, or that never were. Our world is filled with those things, words that were never spoken, or were spoken and unheard, or forgotten. I will try to come up with a poem that embodies these thoughts before the prompt is due, but I do have one poem that is more-or-less on theme. [Dark Matter – below]

“… and of course there’s the idea of somebody composed of dark matter falling in love with somebody composed of “normal” (baryonic) matter, although current laws of physics declare that impossible. Dark matter is not anti-matter. Anti-matter and matter interact by destroying each other. Dark matter and regular matter are just ships passing (through each other) in the night.” Mike Stone (Uncollected Works)

“A Dark Matter”

(Raanana, October 4, 2018)

I see you everywhere I go
You follow me even into the bedroom
And crawl into bed beside me
Entering my dreams.
You are the dark sun shining your dark photons,
Your shadows are my only light.
You are every age you’ve ever been,
You are the idea of you
Just after I discovered I was pregnant,
You are this thing growing in my belly
Now, this homunculus bursting from my womb
Suckling my breast,
And suddenly you are human,
Helpless, still inchoate, primal.
Then you see me seeing you and you smile,
You crawl, you stand unsteadily on your feet
And then you start to run.
You hold my hand, going to the nursery
And won’t let go.
Suddenly you’re holding her hand
Going to the Homecoming
In our car.
Then you come home
From the place you can’t talk about,
Your uniform full of grease and stench
Which I wash and iron throughout the night,
Then they knock on the door
And tell us you can’t come home,
That we can’t see your body
Because there’s nothing left to see.
When you were alive,
You were just a single person
In just one place, nowhere else.
Now that you are dead,
All of you,
The idea of you, the homunculus,
The primal human,
The little boy holding my hand,
The young man holding her hand,
The soldier coming home,
The soldier never coming home again,
Are everywhere, all the time.
You are my darkness,
I want no other light.
Your absence is so palpable to me
I don’t think I could live without it.

© 2018, Mike Stone (Uncollected Works/Call of the Whippoorwill) 

“Dimdumim”

(Raanana, September 14, 2018)

Here they call it dimdumim
But you call it twilight,
Still light when the orange sun
Sinks behind the distant trees
Or the purple sea under the far horizon
And the colors of the things around you,
The whites, the browns, and the greens,
The grass and trees, even the faces of people,
Bleed into gray, move farther away than before,
Not yet dark, yes, darkening perhaps,
But not quite dark. Suddenly the air
Through which you wade cools slightly,
Is easier to breathe, making you almost weightless,
Waiting for the absolute darkness of night.
In its obscurity possibilities hide,
Almost anything can happen
In the cool darkness
And the obscurity takes any shape
That thoughts can touch.
When night does come
You never see just when
The dimdumim disappears.

© 2018, Mike Stone (Uncollected Works/ Call of the Whippoorwill )

“A Poem Unwritten”

(Raanana, March 9, 2012)

No one has ever written a poem about a poem unwritten
Of the many virtues of such a poem
The perfect meter of noambic nometer
The clarity and minimalism leave
Even haiku silent with envy.
The language of silence is universal
Requiring no translation.
It will be unread by billions!
It’s amazing that no one has thought of it,
No one and I.

© 2012, Mike Stone (Uncollected Works/Yet Another Book of Poetry)

“Waiting to Be”

(Raanana, December 4, 2015)

What does a poem look like
Before it is written?
Just like a lover looks
Before you have met her
Or an infant looks
Before it is conceived
Like a soul looks
Whenever you look
Like potential,
Pregnant but barren,
Like the blank page of a notebook
But more than that
More than nothing
But undefinable
Waiting in the dark
To collect itself
To be.

© 2015, Mike Stone (Uncollected Works/Yet Another Book of Poetry)

Bemused is Mike Stone’s third book of poetry, covering the years from 2016 to 2017. The title means “perplexed” but Mike intended a more literal meaning: “in thrall to the Muse”. Mike has been in the Muse’s thrall for most of his seventy years. This collection shows his maturity as a writer and his courage in facing the dilemmas of life’s endgame without fear or delusion.

Kindle (digital): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0786JQJHQ/ ($2.99)

Amazon (paperback): https://www.amazon.com/dp/1981543775/ ($19.95)

Mike is one of The BeZine’s nominees for Best of the Net 2018.


Does Age Matter

And I believed in you because

I loved you

as a charming human being

Knowledgeable attractive witty and quick

And I tried to bear with your weaknesses

Because we all have them and impress

And I believed in you because

I wanted to

For I could see the tremendous potential

In you as a creative enthusiastic loveable

Charming personality that

The Almighty

Had made you.

And I believed you

That you knew so much more

than me

You could drive the car so perfectly

And examine the patients

so expertly

as your learning taught you.

And I believed you that you would share

With me all

That I wanted to tell you

That I wanted you to learn

You could do so much more

In your profession

And I believed you when you said

I always say’ Help yourself’

And you planned your time

And tried to read every book

that came your way

and after meeting you I had hopes of

reviving my shattered faith and trust

In relationships

And I loved you because

I believed we could make it together

I gave you all the chance

And I am still hopeful

That despite our age difference

We can still be happy with each other

And share care and learning and achievements

And I am sure it will be so

Because I believe in You.

CER © 2018, Anjum Wasim Dar (Poetic Oceans)

This is Anjum’s poem in Urdu. Unfortunately, I was unable to get the breaks right for which I apologize to Anjum and to any readers who speak/read Urdu. At least we have this, another example of how our poetry crosses borders.

مسکراؤں تو کس کے لئے آنکھوں کو چمکاؤں تو کس کے لئے غم کو بھول جاؤں تو کس کے لئے کوئی اپنا تو ہو کیوں دنیا ایسی لگے کیوں اپنے بوجھ بڑھیں کیوں اپنے غیر لگیں کیوں میں غیر بنوں میں بے وفا تو نہین چمکتی ہوں سب کے لئے رات بھر ٹمٹماتی ہوں خاموش کس کے لئے کوئی اپنا کہنے والا نہ ایگا کبھی انجم دل کا دروازہ کھلا رکھنا ، محبت انجن جگہ پانے گی


ABOUT

Poet and writer, I was once columnist and the associate editor of a regional employment publication. Currently I run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers.

My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,Compass Rose, Connotation Press, The River Journal, The Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman.

“souls and human beings”. . . and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

The urban poor buy water from water vendors for, on average, about five to 16 times the metered price. Photo courtesy of Oxfam East Africa under CC BY 2.0

“Wealth does not trickle down to the poor. Oxfam knows this, the IMF knows this, the World Bank knows this. Poor people have always known this.” Winnie Byanyima, Oxfam International Executive Director



These responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, which was “poverty,” September 19th demonstrate sensitivity, observation, conscience, compassion and skill. Clearly, these are more than good poets. They are the most decent human beings. Thanks Irene Emanuel, Paul Brookes, Irma Do, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Marta Pombo Sallés and bogpan (Bozhidar Pangelov). Also with appreciation for participating and sharing their fine work, a warm welcome Wendy Bourke and Alethea Kehas.

Read on, enjoy, be inspired and do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt tomorrow.  All are encourage: novice, emerging and pro.


souls and human beings

she walked down the street median … passed the row
of idling cars that would have raced by her,
but for, the bright red orb that signalled: stop

she held a cardboard sign ‘pregnant – need money for food’ …
I could not tell, if the gloom upon her old young face
reflected anger or hate or sadness or pain or all of it

it is impossible to move around this manic city without anguish …
without words like ‘souls’ and ‘human beings’ tumbling
across your mind, like tosses of dice in a game of craps

she caught me … staring at her through the window …
and I sheepishly cast my eyes down – for I knew the look I wore
expressed my shock and frightened thoughts of the fate
that awaited the unborn child … if there was an unborn child

she came up to my car door, as if she’d been summoned
and, rolling down the window, I pressed a blue five bucks
into a limp and grimy hand … wondering … if I’d just been played …
as if such speculations have a place … where human beings beg

© 2018, Wendy Bourke (Words and Words and Whatnot)

Canandian Poet, Wendy Bourke

WENDY BOURKE lives in Vancouver, Canada where she writes, goes on long rambling walks gathering photos and inspiration – and hangs out with family and friends.  After a life loving words and scribbling poetry lines on pizza boxes and used envelopes, Wendy finally got down to writing ‘in earnest’ seven years ago.  Her work has appeared in over 100 poetry anthologies and journals.


Bloated Bellies

I wasn’t poor for long,
At least that’s what I chose to believe
My grandmother tells me the story of our return
From the Hare Krishnas
Faces the color of ashes, bellies bloated
Over skinny legs
I was too young to remember
But the ache has become
A troublesome cyst
I refuse to extract
Inside a place to dark and deep
For life. Like the hole in our outhouse
I don’t remember walking in the night
But I remember shame folded
Into second-hand clothes
And the pink satin nightgown
Never worn by another child
All that was missing was a crown

© 2018, Alethea Kehas (Alethea Kehas, Author and owner of Inner Truth Healing & Yoga)

Writer Alethea Kehas

When she was two, ALETHEA KEHAS spent several months in hiding with the Hare Krishnas from a father she chose to believe was a villain until she reunited with him at the age of thirty-six. Alethea’s story is told in her memoir, A Girl Named Truth. She is also the author of The Labyrinth, Book 1 in the Warriors of Light fantasy series for children of all ages, but especially those who feel a little different on the inside and outside. Alethea’s Amazon page is HERE.


A Penny Drop

must never happen.
We must always be misunderstood

to communicate clearly and cogently.
Wrong end of the stick grasped firmly.

Vagueness is clarity.

If you let the penny drop confusion
and disillusion will result.

Please misunderstand me.

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

The Poor

burn amongst riches.
Shreds flicker fall from height,

Billow into drives of mansions.
Poor though they have less

always give more than the rich.
So many missed in the flames

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

As many of you know, Paul launched a series of interviews a few weeks ago. HERE is the link to the most recent.  It’s with Deborah Alma, one of my faves.  She was also featured on The Poet by Day and in The BeZine regarding #Me Too a women’s poetry anthology. She is England’s “Emergency Poet.”
HERE is the link to Paul’s U.S. Amazon page. HERE is the link to Paul’s U.K. Amazon page.

Togetherness

They’re there;
hollowed into make-shift sponge-foam beds,
tight-curled into malodorous rag-blankets
and plastic of dubious origin.
They’re there;
the shadow-ghost people
of no fixed abode,
gathered loosely together
in cohesive misery.
They’re there;
existing on society’s fringe,
sustained by the government’s pandering promises;
sharing glue-highs and garbage rot.
They’re there;
old children, dying people,
together in perpetual poverty.
They’re there;
trampled contours on grass verges,
silhouettes on street corners,
robotic vendors with nothing to sell but themselves.
They’re there;
the street-people of forgotten causes,
unified in the rainbow nation
of lost hopes.

© 2018, Irene Emanuel


Blessed

We met every Friday at 5:30

I gave without thinking

You were never poor in spirit.

Me, in my Abercrombie and Fitch,

You, with your Aromatic and Filth

We met every Friday at 5:30.

Pasta and tacos,

Admonishments and side eye

I gave without thinking.

Survival your strength

Laughter your life line

You were never poor in spirit

© 2018, Irma Do (I Do Run, And I do a few other things too …)

Irma is doing so well with her poetry. Four of her poems are featured in the September issue of The BeZine. Brava, Irma!  


.green road.

green road is where I was born; in winton.

green grocer delivered each tuesday and thursday.

green front doors and hedges line the road, repetitive.

green shooting brake denotes uncle’s arrival, posh we thought,truth came later.

green our neighbour’s face as bombs fell/were pushed; she hid in the outside toilet.

green school knickers; janet next door under her gymslip.

greens up the garden, with spuds & rhubard, runners & plums.

greens for dinner, liver & gravy; poor food, i guess there was rationing.

green her coat with big buttons,darted & half belt she wore while shopping.

green my mittens, shetland hand knitted; a souvenir.

green the scarf that matched, richer now.

green the sky; the storm passes.

2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.four boils

the planing office is up the road, by the old hospital

that was once a work house for the poor & suffering

to suffer more.

boils.

pass by regular on the way to somewhere else.

it is listed so any changes are scrutinised.

boils.

there have been a few.

changes.

i do apologise

did you say planet?

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


And Tiny Little Poem

and tiny woman
with
and tiny puppy
(in front of the bins)
collects
into big bags
her life

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


Ode to Trump’s Vanity et al

Spring anticipation in the air
Orange reddened sun
Gets ready to hide its rays
Behind the lowest of all mountains
Mirroring itself on the lake.
Vanity at its highest level.
Yet the picture turns out different
In a mixture of yellow and blue
Of greed and sadness a faithful clue.

“You’re so vain,
You probably think
This march is about
You…”
Reads the banner
At the Women’s March
January 21, 2017.

Millions came together
Across the globe
To raise their voices
Against your choices
Mr. Trump.
Your misogyny,
Racism,
Xenophobia,
Your greed and your lies
Are most unwelcome
Because it is your vanity
That makes you lie.

Where’s the first media-built man
That promised jobs for the working-class
To make America First and great again
When all you bring is constant pain
Erasing truths and liberties from earth.

The second man’s now on the surface,
Two sides of the same coin,
And the reddened sun sets down
While Vanity School runs high
For Marine Le Pen, Geert Wilders,
Frauke Petry, Beppe Grillo…
And the like.

Even Spain’s Rajoy’s a little Trump,
Profound ignorant and clown,
Who drains the fund backing pensions
With an air smell of corruption.

Won’t you grant us, Catalans,
Once for all that referendum
Any democratic state would offer
To a stateless people to decide:
The right to self-determination.

No, instead, you’re blurring powers
Just exactly as Donald Trump
Judicializing politics and sending
The very democrats to court
For organizing a participatory process
In Catalonia, November 9, 2014.

Vanity School expands its limits
And buys a handful Orwell’s 1984
While the sea has just began to weep:

Mare Nostrum, Mare Mortum,
In 2016 almost 5.000 people
Drowned and died
From 2000 till now 30.000 dead!

With Barcelona’s pro-refugee rally,
The largest in Europe and perhaps
In the entire world till now,
We will surely not have enough
To eradicate our human misery.

The red sun has just hidden
Behind the lowest mountain
And as darkness unfolds
The picture changes colors:
Grayish blues carrying their shadows
On a rippled lake obscured
Where birds and ducks move
Swiftly countercurrent.

© 2017, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)

Marta’s “A tasty lentil soup” served up in both English and Catalan was published in response to another prompt, but we’re going to share it again … Enjoy!

A tasty lentil soup

keeps you warm from the cold.

Coldness outside

speaks of emptiness,

sadness in a cloudy day.

Or is it just the fog all around

that saddens your mind and spirit?

Going through the streets

the walking dead

if they can still walk.

You saw poverty’s face

the system’s decay.

 

Needles in their hands,

hollow eyes, ailment,

people lost without a second chance.

Is this what you came here for?

But you had your lentil soup

that kept your body warm

while your bleeding heart

sank into the deepest darkness.

You detached it from the body

took it to analyze and

put it on to a microscope

 

And the bleeding heart spoke up

vomited nothing but the truth

awaiting the other truth that hurts.

You knew it would happen.

The lentil soup eaten

in the Arabian restaurant

and then a sudden sound,

a slight noise on the floor,

something moves near your table.

You raise your eyes and there it is:

A black pigeon inside

walks a few steps toward you

as if he wanted to speak.

“Do we have a new guest?”

The waitress gently guides him

to the main room

near the entrance door.

The bird moves his wings

flies inside the restaurant.

The waitresss, a little scared,

utters an “oh” sound

while the black pigeon

displays his wings, flies away

through the restaurant door.

A sad bird looking

for temporary company,

maybe a friendship

but forever unattainable.

El colom negre

Una saborosa sopa de llenties
t’escalfa del fred.
La fredor a l’exterior
parla de buidor,
tristesa en un dia plujós.
O és només la boira per tot arreu
que t’entristeix la ment i l’esperit?

Anant pel carrer
els morts caminant
si és que encara poden caminar.
Has vist el rostre de la pobresa,
la decadència del sistema.
Agulles a les seves mans,
ulls buits, malaltia,
gent perduda sense una segona oportunitat.

És per això que has vingut aquí?
Però tu et menges la teva sopa de llenties
que t’escalfa el cos
mentre la teva ànima sagnant
s’enfonsa en la més profunda foscor.
La separares del teu cos
i l’agafares per analitzar
posant-la en un microscopi.

I l’ànima sagnant va parlar
vomitant res més que la veritat,
esperant l’altra veritat que fa mal.
Ja sabies que això passaria.

La sopa de llenties menjada
en el restaurant àrab
i llavors, un soroll sobtat,
una remor al terra,
alguna cosa es mou prop la teva taula.
Alces la mirada i és allí:
Un colom negre a dins.
Camina uns passos cap a tu
com si volgués parlar.
– Tenim un nou convidat?
La cambrera el guia gentilment
cap a la sala principal.
L’ocell mou les seves ales,
vola dins del restaurant.
La cambrera, una mica espantada,
deixa anar un “oh!”
mentre el colom negre
desplega les ales, vola lluny
a través de la porta del restaurant.
Un ocell trist, buscant
companyia temporal,
potser una amistat
però per sempre, inabastable.

© 2018, Marta Pombo Sallés


ABOUT

Poet and writer, I was once columnist and associate editor of a regional employment publication. Currently I run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers.

My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,Compass Rose, Connotation PressThe Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman.