“QUIETUS” … and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“If life is not a celebration, why remember it ? If life — mine or that of my fellow man — is not an offering to the other, what are we doing on this earth?”  Open HeartElie Wiesel 



What a treasure of a collection, these serious thoughts this week in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, Riding the Ebb-tides of Eternity, September 5. Touching. Stunning. Thoughtful.

Thanks and a warm welcome to Jim Wardell, new to The Poet by Day, Wednesday Writing Prompt.  Thanks to Gary W. Bowers, bogpan (Bozhidar Pangelov), Tamam Tracy Moncur, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Carol Mikoda and Susan St. Pierre. Special thanks to Susan and Bozhidar for sharing illustrations.

Read. Enjoy. Be inspired. And do join us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt. All are encouraged to participate: beginning, emerging, or pro poets.


Quietus

On this dew soaked morning
gentle sunlight streams between
the dampened boughs of an awakened day.

I think of you and of me
and of the many misted mornings
we laughed and whispered
until we had to part for a time.

Afternoon and evening sped by
but morning always lingered.

We moved at the pace of sleep
slow and without effort
to prepare the day for ourselves
while hustle and bustle and rush and whim
scurried and fretted about us.

Hidden smiles and secret plots contrived in haste
deals brokered in the light of the rising sun
conspiracies bound in blood and love
carried us through the day apart
the time of our unknowing.

Always when evening came
separated paths joined once more
promises of morning were fulfilled
in the drifting dusk.

As this morning of our lives lingers
I sit share laugh cry
etch upon my heart this memory
of hidden smiles and secret plots.

We have not changed
You and I remain bound in blood and love
we have not changed.

Morning ends as it always does
you on your path and I on mine
frightened to be alone.

We now step into the time of our unknowing
confident that when evening falls
the other will await.

© James Wardell (A Day of Wind and Moon)

James Wardell

JAMES WARDELL, a native of Kentucky, is a musician and educator who has made his home in the mountains of southwest Virginia. He plays, writes, teaches and learns at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise. Some days he works.

Previous publications include Jimson Weed Journal, Tipton Poetry Review, Goliath, Snakeskin Magazine, Bitterzoet Magazine and Press, and Voices Literary Journal.


tsftpot

teapots and tempests
some crafted some not
tosspots and destinies
often are wrought
if you behold
you’re beholden eh wot
but
cast
away rules
and then blossom some more
doorways to wayfaring ferret
glissandos
chandelier faceting
billboardish asseting
heat-rubbled smoke
the rising signal
A hell it made
not merely of manglecrush forms
but of the simmering magma
of hatred

the bombs we make we
lob into crowds
and they unmake
and we know it is wrong
but it is again a signal
that we are lost

but some of us love
some see seedlings
and keep them for spring

and some beyond us
save all endeavor

a tempest is not endeavor
a teapot is endeavor
thought is endeavor
some thought is divine

and tsftpot
stands for
the society
for the preservation
of thought

oral tradition
was its larva
movable type its nymph
and eons hence
its adult form
will be the very texture
of reality

stars do not die
they become something else
as will you
as will i

© 2018, Gary W. Bowers (One With Clay, Image and Text)


Supernatural Senses

How do I look at my own demise?
It’s not a surprise because the one thing we all know
Is that one day we too shall die
We will pass from this plane into eternity.
At 73 many people close to me have made
This transition in creation to another place in space.
Twice in my dreams two of my loved ones have appeared
at different times in my life
To free me from fear and doubt
First my grandmother and then years later my son
Each came during a time of hurt
Each came during a time of spiritual pain
Each came during a time of emotional distress
My grandmother and my son
They made that journey from the world beyond
to give me a supernatural hug
A magical hug
A mystical hug
A hug that enveloped me in God’s love
A hug of reassurance strengthening my mind
And my endurance to always walk in faith
Until my ultimate release into peace comes.

© 2018, Tamam Tracy Moncur (The Road of Impossibilities)


800px-Dürer_-_Mort_d'Orphée_(1494)

Orpheus

along the rivers Maritsa floats the cut head
of Orpheus
– „no,“ he had told the Maenad,
but they did not understand
in this land only in this land
„yes“ is for a return
the legend tells you that in the autumn you can hear
the tender sounds of the Lira, for everything is back –
Eurydice

now
only on the sounds and on the drops of blood
you can find me

© 2018, bogpan (a.k.a. Bozhidar Pangelov ) (bogpan); illustration,  “The Death of Orpheus (1494) by Durer,” public domain


BeFunkyfriends

To be remembered…
Leave footprints in the
Fresh sand of youthful wonder,
And seek wisdom found in
Questions you can’t answer .
Make memories on the
Pristine palette of a baby,
And explore forever with an
Eye on being present.
Eternity belongs to those
<Who stand out in a child’s life>
Etched in time and tradition,
You’ll be remembered.

© 2018, photo and poem, Susan St. Pierre (Silly Frog Susan)


‘smiley smiley’
monkeys smile

as can we, yet i guess
a duck can’t smile, ian.

can snails smile, i know
i smile a lot, learned it
at dance class, whatever
happens, keep it up.

continues now, at work,
they say it cheers you up,
makes your cheeks hurt,
sometimes.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.my life.

sundays is three things.today may be one.

sometimes it comes easy,sometimes it

don’t.

it is warm today, just look at all there is

here.

as opposed to elsewhere.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


Four Disagreements

The first postcard from hell said, “Don’t you get sick of being honest all the time? Everyone is always checking and making sure. Why not give them something to surprise them?” So I allowed jewels to fall from my mouth along with my impeccable word and flowers and once in a while bolts and washers with no nuts. Everyone was continually surprised.

The second postcard from hell told me I could relax, slough off my usual care and meaningful intention. “It’s so hard when you’re always trying to do your best, isn’t it? You deserve a break!” So I collected up a million of my favorite human beings and tooks us all to a resort where we relaxed in hammocks and beach chairs. All of our beverages included blossoms and little umbrellas. We napped.

The third postcard from hell was direct but a bit strained: “Some of these people? The ones with you at the resort? They look funny or smell funny or eat weird foods or speak funny languages! They don’t match you. Who knows who is lurking in there?” So I walked among those million people, talking, laughing, singing with them, sharing meals, until we all found something in common, like the color of our socks.

The million human beings had to go back to schools, jobs, homes, so I read the fourth postcard from hell all alone sitting in a broken beach chair. “Ha! They left you! Loser! They don’t like you! Go eat worms!” So I invented a machine to rearrange the grains of sand on the beach to send messages to the stars. The message I sent was:
L O V E

© 2018, Carol Mikoda (At the Yellow Table / We Are Stardust: Change Is What It’s All About)


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.

 

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Three by Debasis Mukhopadhyay, author of “kyrie eleison or all robins taken out of context”

Debasis Mukhopadhyay

“I walk slowly, like one who comes from so far away he doesn’t expect to arrive.” Jorge Luis Borges in Boast of quietness


I am pleased and honored to introduce DEBASIS MUKHOPADHYAY (between ink and inkblot) here today, though I suspect there are many who already know his work.

Debasis is the author of the chapbook “kyrie eleison or all robins taken out of context(Finishing Line Press, 2017). His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in journals & anthologies, including Posit, Words DanceThe Curly Mind (UK), Erbacce (UK), Strange Poetry (UK), Yellow Chair ReviewI Am Not A Silent Poet (UK), The New Verse News, Rat’s Ass Review : Love & Ensuing Madness, Writers Against Prejudice (UK), Manneqüin.HaüsAlgebra of Owls (UK), The Skinny Poetry JournalOf/With : Journal of Immanent Renditions, Anapest JournalCommunicators League (Nigeria), No Tribal Dance (UK), Quatrain.Fish, Duane’s Poe TreeWalking Is Still Honest, Leaving My Shadow : A Tribute to Anna AkhmatovaThirteen Myna BirdsWhale Road Review, The Apache Poetry Blog (Sweden), Scarlet Leaf ReviewSilver Birch Press, The Bitchin’ Kitsch, Foliate Oak, Eunoia Review, Revolution John, Fragments of Chiaroscuro, Down in the Dirt, With Painted Words (UK), The Wagon MagazineSnapping Twig, Words Surfacing, Praxis, Apple Fruits of an Old Oak, and Voice of Monarch Butterflies. His work has been nominated for the Best of the Net.

He was born in India & spent many years of his life in Kolkata (Calcutta), where he began writing poems. A fair number of poems in pora gach o megh oré, his debut collection of poetry in Bengali (Art Publishing,  2005), date back to this time of his life in India. Debasis holds a PhD in literary studies from Université Laval, Québec, Canada. His doctoral thesis constitutes an instance of multidisciplinary approach, exploring the linkage between two broad themes of social epistemology : travel and spatiality. The work is focused on the analysis of the Occidental subjectivity’s search for self and its perception of spatiality through Third World travel. The thesis can be found here :

Voyage à la Rencontre de la misère et pouvoir d’attraction de l’espace de l’Autre. Calcutta dans l’imaginaire occidental contemporain – étude de cas: Le chant de Kali et La Cité de la joie (Travel to Meet With The Poor and The Power Of Attraction of The Space of the Other. Calcutta in the Contemporary Western Imagination – A Case Study of Song of Kali and La Cité De La Joie).

Debases now lives in Montreal with his wife and his son. When his hand turns poetry, he just walks up to Monnet’s poppy field against the wall & bends down to swaying flowers thinking of the words gone in blood. When he is not writing, his best inspiration turns out to be what Xu Schen wrote (58 CE  ̶  ca. 147 CE) : “Ink, whose semantic component isearth‘, is black.”

Connect with Debasis at debmukhop@yahoo.ca or @dbasis_m on Twitter.



India journal

New Delhi : to get more than the dawn

a red tulle body flaring up.

the mosquito net

white & whooshing at times

& this foundry of wings of mosquitoes

now ready for the spilled over blood.

here sun.

somewhere birds crack the sky

dawn what I fear has never been so late

 

kid’s head buried in my chest.

do I know

what’s to cry like a bleating sheep

broken lines unfurls K’s poems in my thoughts

obliterating the bleeding sun dissolving into now a distant hum

very soon a cacophonous mix

what’s K to make of it in his poems

I think of the young poet of Kolkata.

somewhere the oblique overpasses ask for boundless love

slogging through memories

snuffing out the first azan of the day & the litanies of the stray dogs

 

kid’s skull rolls on my chest

his eyes waking to dawn

what’s that poet to make of it

kid’s eyes etched on his notebook page

which is perhaps whiter than the mosquito net now emptied like times

when I used to live in this land

& never had to step inside.

tomorrow I would be again in Kolkata

brushing dust from a palimpsest 

today I would just pass the day

Kipling Sahib gazing hatefully on New Delhi

the breeze stirring a tattered liana of madhabilata

high up among the colonial columns

dust on dust

to creep through

Kolkata : the waterboarding 

K’s poems are now bowing lower than this plane

bleeding off its speed

the cinnamon colored brick kilns look plastered by a green

that feels so unwanted in a blood brick telecast on BBC

years of rising smoke have gnawed the moulded bricks but the green

green green so green that I turn to Lorca’s ballad

& cry like a fool unheeded

for the girl of bitterness

until the touchdown when I hear K whispering

I leave you alone for the eve

now you would be too blind to trust my poems

begin me only when you end your quick days & nights in Kolkata

when you are left again to think that

you are still stuck like an albino bone in its craw made of loose scoria

these long years

 

these long years

were not so imminent in my mother’s dream of me becoming a Caliph one fine day

seven thousand miles away.

these long years were not a life book that rustles inside memories dying in the throat.

for a crown of light

she has been counting a thousand & one nights.

every morning

kneeling to the earth she tries to find me again amongst the sprouts.

ha the world has to pass

mutters my father

sparrows cluster in the back of his throat.

& here we are home, kid

hello hello

I say opening the gates of shadows of the crows

aloft & aground.

the long-spiked coconut tree leaves dance across K’s sun-blazed notebook page

capturing kid’s fingers making a ghost with a lump of earth

mine tearing the sword-shaped leaves only to reminisce all afternoon

upon a palm frond hat from my schooldays

 

maybe everything might have been…

everything like your face in my hands

dark eyes glistening in the folds

like malaria now & then

those love vomit & rum stained clothes moving under the coal iron in the neighborhood

coming back laundered the following afternoon

only to redeem truth

& to rehearse a hundred summers of solitude…

to think I’m going to see you again tonight

a conjurer had his time

on earth this is the place

where I can sing I am your man

a place that has no place in time

or maybe it’s always just half passed

like this late afternoon sun on water in K’s notebook page

like this fish put out to crawl through a hologram

never failing kid

fish eyes always give him thrills

 

processions pass

the foreheads of the deceased pressed against the cobwebbed evening

feel the reference point that had rattled so hard in life

now the queue in the burning ghats 

souls reassured once oxidized flake after flake

& then beguiled by the creeping waters.

placid slumbers the Ganges like the night at the bottom of the root 

this is the country

where cicadas chase every evening the crackling stars of each cast & class.

my friend sings taking my breath away

the dead to become boats floating downward the rim of the dark skies

drifting anew in the city alleys

in search of hearts that had no refuge from any versions of hearts.

processions pass

shouts drawling a tribute to dawn

poppy red flags

a street full of scars

you ask me how I feel now with my eyes peeled

K’s poems stopped to bleed into the evening

so wet & claiming

now again mouth into mouth

we keep frisking & gamboling round the night 

we come & coming on

like a hemorrhage

like Fidel Castro floating belly up dying of his own death

I need not watch for the moon

I close my eyes to get more than the dawn

more than its billow & spray

more than K’s love poems glittering like war

their curl of waves that come rolling in

& I say

Kolkata

my tin soldier

the waterboarding is all yours
 
 
First published in The Wagon Magazine July 2017
© 2017, Debasis Mukhopadhyay
 

 

November 9, Kristallnacht

all again

rein in

a throwback steed

for a headlong rush

into bodies

that are

apprised of sledgehammers

the vanity of a crystal night

raising its head

 

dry assaults

against parasites

are said dropped things

like a mirror

in flashcubes

sticking a gimlet to

disconnection

with what you can scavenge

on this day in History

 

the bludgeoned frogs

live through the November moon

crawling in the pit somewhere

ha you ain’t got nothing to recall

crying blood

the disgusting god

in our vain skulls

has never felt

sky rustling in & out

of cinders

of those millions awaiting

First published in Yellow Chair Review November 13, 2016

© 2016, Debasis Mukhopadhyay


Notice to rebroadcast

O Sultan mine, I just read your poem Notice to recast where looking on your flowerpot sky you feel the smudge of my absence on your skin. You hear the train behind the fence, you hear the rain in the kitchen and you are reminded of the necessity of touch. Several lines down you say, “I heard it and I heard it again. A song that stayed unopened in my throat.” Honestly, I am never very sure how your poetry works on me. You could hear everything : the rainstorms behind the kites, the pantomime in the trammels, the trampoline behind the rampages, the songbirds in the pantechnicons… everything across your roughcast of solitude. And everything reminds you of everything, from windpipe sonata to wingspan of a pansy. I wish I could understand how you napalm me while I sleep. As if just like my body my mind also can’t shake you and always awaiting you in bed unopened. True that poetry never sucks and the blancmange sloughing in the overdone ruts between my thighs. Sultan dear one, my husband, my boyfriend, my needleman of tournament, my winger right to left, my slaloming tramline behind my fertility, my panegyric of fucking superintendent, why can’t I understand your poems? Or why can’t I just write a poem that is what when my handgun trades the simile of blankness? But that won’t make it all right. No point in blitzkrieging to unbalance the brain. Let’s think about honeyed baklavas and listen to balalaikas. If you are my bloody bastard, I remain your bloodied bitch.

First published in Posit issue 14, June 2017

© 2017, Debasis Mukhopadhyay

RELATED:


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.

” . the gift 2 . ” … and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“Life is subversive.” Ernesto Cardenal, Zero Hour And Other Documentary Poems



The longing for and appreciation of the gifts of nature, the gifts unsullied by marketers are expressed beautifully in these responses to the last prompt Wednesday Writing Prompt, No Account of Trifles, September 1.

Featured this week: Paul Brookes, Irma, Sonja Benskin Mesher, and Carol Mikoda,

I hope you’ll visit participating poets and get to know them. It’s important for us to support and encourage one another in our art and in our solidarity around concerns for the social and ethical issues we care about, even if we disagree. Respectful discussion is a healthy thing. I’ve linked in blogs for each poet and for your convenience. If the poet doesn’t have a blog, it’s likely you can catch up with her/him on Facebook.

Paul Brookes

FYI: Paul Brookes, a stalwart participant in Wednesday Writing Prompt, is running a series on poets, Wombwell Rainbow Interviews. Five in the series are already completed and posted. Worth your time. I believe Paul has ten planned altogether and I’m honored to be among those that are upcoming.  So visit him, enjoy the interviews, get introduced to some poets who may be new to you, and learn a few things.

Join with us for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.  All are welcome – encouraged – to join in: novice, emerging or pro. It’s about exercising our imagination and our writing muscle, showcasing our efforts and getting to know other poets. This is a safe discerning place to share.


An Open

hand this petal an invite
to the best party
where laughter is plenty

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

A Little Girl

Places her found autumn oak leaf
In all its yellow and red on my conveyor belt.

I consider my potential responses:

Sorry love you can’t buy that here.

Sorry love it has no barcode, so won’t go through.

That’s a free gift from nature, love.

At the finish I advise

Sorry you can’t put that through, love

and she removes the leaf from the belt.

At the finish it is all child’s play
in the adult buy and sell.

From Paul’s collection Please Take Change, forthcoming from cyberwit.net.

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

Paul’s Amazon Page U.S.

Paul’s Amazon Page U.K.

When World Is

1.

an eye
you look into white surf clouds
roll over blue gust
white surf clouds roll over blue
gusted bright reed brands rise.

2.

Leaves fall to their end
cold darkens every step
naked limbs outstretch
untidy trees slough leaf clothes
so others forced to clean mess.

3.

Squirrels skitter up,
hold bounty for a nibble
stop, look and listen
as sky looks at itself holds
mirror up close for blemish

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

Let Me Pass Through

city walls
that bind all your threads together,

walk through this wood,
let your cityself take same walk, see
buildings as lone trees,
homeless hostel
is an oak, butchers
a willow that bends
down over the stream
where jammed traffic swims.

A dead bird breathes
animated by flies
is a man in the corner who sings
the blues to passers.

That fall of a leaf
tickertape homecoming parade.

Your pavement footfall
echoes in my forest.

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


Shade

Building or tall tree

Nature’s coolness shared with me

A welcome reprieve

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


.gift.

it was raining.

heavy.

the green house chair is comfy blue.

the book was read, while spiders

wove

their webs.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

. the gift 2 .

i was given a gift . not wrapped

just given. before the winter

festival, before the anniversaries.

the gift was given

gladly received.

if i believed in all that i guess i would give thanks, yet give thanks anyway.

one has escaped.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher


seasonal disorder

profoundly subtle cricket silence
that is not really
silence might not even
be only crickets but
powerful trigger of nightmares
deeply delicate evolution of leaves
first red maples edging
marshes eventually stunning yellow
of tall singular poplars
keenly subdued morning light
reaching resistantly sleepy eyes
intensely indistinct chill spice
of damp morning air

© 2018, Carol Mikoda (At The Yellow Table, We Are Stardust: Change is what it’s all About)


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.

“Born on the Wind” . . . and other responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

“When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands, flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty.”  John Muir, Travels in Alaska  



Phew! At last we are up and running again and much appreciation for everyone’s patience, especially those who so spiritedly and generously participated in the last prompt, which was inspired by California’s Redwood Forests and John Muir (1838 – 1914), the Scottish-American naturalist, activist, and environmentalist.

Featured this week: Paul Brookes, Deb y Felio (Debby Felio), Frank McMahan, Sonja Benskin Mesher, Carol Mikoda, Tamam Tracy Moncur, Marta Pombo Sallés, and Susan St. Pierre.  These poets talents are not limited to poetry. They also work variously in crafts, art, photography, essay and short-story writing. Special thanks this week to Marta and Susan for sharing their illustrative photographs.

The responses to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt, The Unfettered Canticle of Trees, August 22 are filled with movement, color, texture, keen observation, a tad of humor and more than a soupçon of wisdom and grace.  

I hope you’ll visit participating poets and get to know them. It’s important for us to support and encourage one another in our art and in our solidarity around concerns for the social and ethical issues we care about, even if we disagree. Respectful discussion is a healthy thing. I’ve linked in blogs for each poet and for your convenience. If the poet doesn’t have a blog, it’s likely you can catch up with her/him on Facebook.

Read on and be with us later today for the next (however belated) Wednesday Writing Prompt.  All are welcome – encouraged – to join in: novice, emerging or pro. It’s about exercising our imagination and our writing muscle, showcasing our efforts and getting to know other poets. This is a safe discerning place to share.


Thorns

pale and too weak to move
cough your guts over
edge of your bed
in faint light from the door
two trees
walk towards you

one black, the other white

black tree becomes a pair of eyes
you inhale smoke drifting up from a fire
sharp fruit fragrance
spiky, dark, sinewy, stiff bark,
oval leaves with a serrated margin

move
quickly over your body
touches points here and there,
painful thorns nick out bubbles
of your blood
it mutters strange
under its breath
with a low, crackling voice.
The night grows old,
dawn approaches
dissolves into

the white tree
with long bright hair,
lays a cool gentle hand on your brow,
mutters with a sweet bell-like voice
your sight sharpens
until the white tree,
becomes a woman,
your pain eases.  She sweeps
brown-grey, knotted
and fissured skin,
slender and brown limbs
covered in thorns
that do not hurt
up and down
your body, touches same places
as the black tree
pain vanishes
refreshed
into easy, restful sleep

From The Headpoke And Firewedding (Alien Buddha Press, 2017)

© 2017, Paul Brookes (The Wombwell Rainbow / Inspiration. History. Imagination.)

Oaksong

oaksongs

How can you be in two places
at once? I asked. A Christian
friend replied ” You can have
one foot inside the door
and the other foot outside.”

You would be forever
on the threshold, neither
one nor the other, or both.
A fence sitter, neither
Summer or Winter
God or Man.

Would you sacrifice the other
to be wholly another? To step
in and close the door
shut out the weather
from the other side.

Are you coming in or what?
Your letting in a right breeze?
Put wood in the hole.
Decide whether your in or out!

*******
I watch the traffic lights
consider a walk this way or
a green man allows me
to avoid bloodied bone

my mouth and ears
thresholds and doors
full of oaklimbs and leaves

reborn I stretch down
to deep dark moist

I stretch up to cloudlight
barkskin palmtouched
I let others breathe
shelter and endure

*******

moors were once forests
national parks heavy industrial
this oak headland a pitsite

lads snap off livelimbs
anarchic coppicing
black dogshitbags sway
on limbs left alone

don’t visit in a storm
oaks are lightningtrees
people can be oaks

oakgroves of druids
duir means a door
exit and entrance

raw open wounds of sacrifice
still bleed sap

this hand has molded
a garden out of wildlife
words out of nonsense

she used to say “when
one door closes
another opens”

From Stubborn Sod , forthcoming from Alien Buddha Press, 2018)

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

This Brash and Burn

1. To Burn Brash

Sat back barked.
Small insects crawl
down tree stretched above
inhabit hair
worn gloves
bruised brashed branches

Breathe wet peat,
damp soil, leaf decay,
autumn dead leaf dance,
spring bluebell wend
summer sacred stainglass
canopy sunshaft play
winter heavesnow clear paths

Sat back barked
canopy leaf horizon
floats shimmers

Calm

2. Our Wombwell Boxed

Lift small boxes wooden lid smell
broadleaved woodland
before rail/road
Press plastic button hear
Skylarks, Meadow Pipits, Woodpeckers,
before rail/road.

Press plastic button watch
Videowalk ancient Beech, Oak, Birch
before rail/road.

Electronic ringtone.

We would like to advise all visitors
The museum is closing soon.
Please exit through main door.
We hope you have enjoyed your visit.
Please come again.

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

Extracts from “Woodbrains, woodbrides, woodwives”

Grovemind, groovemind

synaptic branches
neuron tipped limbs
sacred grove recovery

oakbrain opens doors in my head
ashbrain spears my ideas
elmbrain plays the fey

electric gust moves limbs
inside my head

barkskin neural net
circumnavigates damage
fruited hemispheres
replenish, restore, reimagine

senses water roots
grove in my head
grooves in my head

between oaklimbs
between ashlimbs…

…Whispering forest

walk among us, as us

known as oakman
known as birchwoman
known as elmlad
known as ashlass

Each one gentle,
one is strong
one elegant
all older than they look

their voices not listened to
“I talk to the tree”
“Hug a tree”
“I am a tree”
seen as signs of waywardness
to be laughed at,
pilloried and scorned.

later they will scream
when cut down
or have a limb amputated

we ought to listen.

From The Headpoke And Firewedding (Alien Buddha Press, 2017)

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

Paul’s Amazon Page U.S.

Paul’s Amazon Page U.K.


Whose

Once again
we lay a claim
on land
not ours

chop down
build up
less natural
habitation

wildlife wanders in
refusing to give up
its native lands

to secluded cabins
in awe filled
fairy forests

bears feast on
chokecherries
and bird feeders

share trashed
leftovers
with foxes,
raccoons

toms, hens and chicks
claim grasses
and trees
for homes

deer leave
calling cards
thank you for
the flowers

mountain lions
prowling
remind all
who is king

I am grateful,
they share the space.

© 2018, Deb y Felio


To the river

This is where we came, here, to the river
for the first time, along the rutted path,
cowslips, bluebells crowding at its edge; past
the dandelion meadow, its pale-white
quilt of puffballs waiting to be blown and cast.

Together to the river to explore
vigorous and sinuous, limpid rills
and ripples,the glistening flow of water.
Beneath the cobalt sky, each moment
folding into itself the heat,intense
upon our faces, the stones’ cool splash and spray,
shouts and birdsong; each uplifted stone setting
free the grains of memory,where we were
one time held, entranced, imagination’s
captives in the bubble of our dreams.

© 2018, Frank McMahan


..wild wood..

photograph the trees. notice the wild wood

early while walking, imagine it may

be mine. to care for , to let be. it could.

it is for sale. new sign on the gate, today

the charcoal burner . he is a woods man

smoke rises grey. price is mentioned . plenty.

I think on his words, the idea, owning land,

crashing back into the wild wood. empty

headed. it is good to be quiet, alone

away from their thickening throng , the dread .

soft voices. smoke rises slow, ashes. old bone.

dust and dust , by dust we bury the dead.

he will split the wood. they may come and buy,

yet in my head the wild wood will be mine.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.the wild wood again.

when the fog clears we creep back into the wild wood watch birds eat wettened crumbs. softly rain falls each year falls an anniversary

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

.the new arrival.

hear that, crashing in the old wood, trees fall and die.

seems time stands still, nothing moves . happening.

older times are done, quiet now, seamlessly it will start

again.

one word, one sound, then blindly we will crash into the wild woods

again.

i met a man who did not know, had just arrived.

we may learn in time.

© 2018, Sonja Benskin Mesher

There’s much to enjoy in Sonja’s art and you can view much of it on her sites and she shares are generous amount on her Facebook Page. So multitalented.


Cathedral of trees,

where I worship every day;
Where I go to breathe in peace;
Where I go to be restored;
Where I go to bring back faith:
persevere in drought;
sustain my weak soul;
grow beyond eons.

© 2018, Carol Mikoda (At the Yellow Table, We Are Stardust: Change Is What It’s All About)


Patricia’s Garden

The tall oak tree…a sentinel
Standing guard over the small yard
Wards off invasions of mayhem
Keeping peace in the inner sanctum

Painted rocks surround pathways
Leading to artistic creativity
While small tables and chairs
In camaraderie congregate together

The mums sing colors across the garden
Yellow and lavender tones harmonize
Brilliant red petals bellow magnificence
In a perennial summer performance

Peace and compassion frolic in fun
Chasing joy between the evergreens
The sun’s reflection shimmers off the muraled wall
As happiness dances slowly towards the impending fall.

The tall oak tree…a sentinel
Standing guard over the small yard
Wards off invasions of mayhem
Keeping peace in the inner sanctum

© 2018, Tamam Tracy Moncur (The Road of Impossibilities)


Sunset SF

English

That Evening

That evening I sat

on a stone bench

gazing at the evening sun

over the peaceful ocean.

Birds flew across the sky

sun reflected on the water.

I sensed everything.

Closed my eyes

felt the breeze

filling my soul.

Gazed at the sun again

and hoped one day

it would dry my open wounds.

The sun set magestic

the sky slowly turned red

like the wounds you inflicted

on me.

Unwantedly.

There was no other way.

It was meant to be.

I shall stare at the sun

and thus hope

my still open wounds

will heal with the passing

of time.

Catalá 

Aquell vespre

Aquell vespre em vaig asseure
en un banc de pedra
contemplant el sol de la tarda
sobre l’oceà pacífic.
Els ocells volaven pel cel,
el sol reflectit a l’aigua.
Vaig sentir-ho tot.
Amb els ulls tancats
sentia la brisa
omplint la meva ànima.
Vaig contemplar de nou el sol
i vaig esperar que un dia
m’assecaria les ferides obertes.
El sol es va pondre, magestuós,
el cel es tornà vermell
com les ferides que vas infligir
en mi.
Sense voler.
No hi havia altra opció.
Havia de ser així.
Contemplaré el sol
i d’aquesta manera esperaré
que les meves ferides encara obertes
es curin amb el pas
del temps.

© 2018, poems and photograph, Marta Pombo Sallés (Moments)


050

Born on the Wind

Uniform saplings compete
-inspired with-
expectations of touching the sky.
Days, more days
-purposed on –
expectations of touching the sky.
Aged survival earns
-scarring from-
expectations of touching the sky.
Resigned and rooted
-seeds fly-
born on the wind … from the sky.

© 2018, Susan St. Pierre (Sillyfrong’s Blog – “Once a pond a time …” )


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.