Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Turning--By Molly Moore--United States

Turning

On this sizzling August day
Leaves are already turning
But a vague melancholia wants summer to stay
As tinges of red ignite old yearning...

Memories of hopes and loves long past
Which I can no longer retrieve
Nostalgic shadows just beyond my grasp
Enticing me while they deceive.

The turning seasons can seem so cruel -
Of my backward gazing they have no need.
From time immemorial they're bent on renewal,
Now scolding my spirit to take heed.

Best turn and greet September's face
She's waiting just beyond the bend
Painting the leaves of a new time and place
I'll welcome what intrigues she may send.

Claiming Hawaii as her true home, Molly Moore is currently residing in Seattle, Washington, pursuing a nursing degree. Perhaps her previous career as an international flight attendant is what launched Molly’s "flights of fancy" into poetry. A love of rhythm and rhyme sparks her creative side, especially while outdoors in nature.

Haiku--By Karen O'Leary--United States

hospice
the last leaf falls
in peace
_______________

Simon says
take two steps back--
spring layoff
_______________

windstorm
the wheat bent
but not broken
_______________

rattling windows
dad gasps his final breath
during a blizzard
_______________

winter seclusion
at the hill’s base
a lone cross
_______________

There haiku have been previously published in order at A Hundred Gourds, Frogpond, Showcase Haiku Haijin--Sketchbook, Sharpening the Green Pencil 2012, and Poems of the World.  Special thank you to these editors for allowing me to share my words.

_______________

Karen O'Leary is a freelance writer/editor from West Fargo, ND.  Her poetry, short stories, and articles have been published in a variety of venues.  She released her first book of poetry in 2011 called Whispers... published by A.P.F. Publisher.  Their second project, Snippets...an anthology of short verse, contains poetry from 73 talented writers from across the world and was released in 2012.  Karen is a member of The Writers and Poetry Alliance and the Haiku Society of America.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Our Peanut Puppy--By Shirley Smothers--United States

Our Peanut Puppy

Silly little Puppy,
Silly little Dog.
She’s hyperactive
she’s an attention hog.
I love her
to pieces,
with her I
love to play.
But sometimes I
wish she’d just
go away.
For just a
few minutes,
to give
me a rest.
Because sometimes
my patience,
she does test.

RIP Peanut
Nov. 10-1999
Aug 12-2014

Shirley Smothers is a poet. A few of her poems have appeared in Lone Stars Magazine, The Poets Art, and The Poetry Explosion Newsletter.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Poppies for the Fallen--By George L. Ellison--England

Poppies for the  Fallen
(Remembrance)

Poppies they grow now on Flanders fields
Where once many a brave soldier did fight
Against all the odds never wanting to yield

An unknown soldier lies there now
His bravery was never in any doubt
We remember each year as our heads we bow

We salute to the fallen that died
Who took up arms to protect against the foe
Did their sworn duty without fuss and with pride

So many wars through so many ages
So many warriors of land, sea and air
Gave their lives willingly their lore writ in pages

So many owed so much back at home
To those brave souls fighting so far from our shores
Some did return from conflicts to their kingdom

Poppies still grow now in Flanders fields
There are white headstones as far as one can see
Against all odds they never, never did yield

George L. Ellison is a writer of poetry and  short stories. He as published two books called Poetic Reminiscences and Weaving Words.  George lives with his wife and dogs in Chester-Le-Street, County Durham in England. He is a member of The Writers and Poetry Alliance. He is currently working on his new project as well as learning to play the saxophone at the Sage Gateshead!

Evergreen of Faith--By Kevin Bates--United States

Evergreen of Faith

I stand before you an evergreen of faith;
never seasonal in faith, yet year round.
Deeply rooted I am my foundation strong.

There will be test, offers from those of evil;
setbacks as I grow & learn the Lord’s word.
Every leaf that falls there’s more to replace it.

Standing tall and erect forever reaching out.
Glorious colors of faith are never changing,
proud of who I am the way the Lord shapes me.

Fresh pine needles to irritate those that oppose,
never easy to brake those walking in true faith.
Forever my colors, love and gratitude for the Lord.

Kevin Bates is an avid reader. You will find him reading everyday books of non-fiction or poetry online. He loves family, sports, reading and writing poetry. He has one handsome son and grandson. He hopes to one day be published, bring a smile, and help many through his poetry. He lives outside Houston, Texas and can find him reading or writing right now.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Prairie Flower--By Robert Hewett Sr.--United States

Prairie Flower

The fiery sun blushes the cactus and sage
The flowers unfold to the morning rays.
A harmless roadrunner hustles down the road.
Prairie Flower rises in a happy mode.
The cloudless sky echoes with desert tunes.
To come and play among the dunes.
The Scorpion circles its prey and stalks.
Prairie Flower puts on her hat and walks.
The mockingbird repeats its many songs.
The Diamondback rattler slithers along.
Life among the sand dunes is very strong.
Prairie Flower strolls humming a soft song.
A hawk swoops down on a scared running prey.
An antelope jumps, looks and runs away.
Each inhabitant lives life in its own way.
Prairie Flower stops to rest in the shade.
All her desert friends pass by her each day.
She smiles and wishes them well in her way.
Angel of the desert for a day,
then Prairie Flower fades away.

Robert Hewett Sr. was born 1n 1933 on a Texas cotton farm. He moved to Oklahoma City at Age 14 and entered the U. S Army from there in 1953. Robert has been writing poetry and short stories for his family and himself since his teen years, but is just now publishing his collection of works. His hobbies include writing poetry and stories; clock and watch collections; gardening and growing flowers and shrubs from cuttings. Most of his poetry tells a story, a gift from his father who was a master story teller. He has received numerous awards for his work in his professional life and for his writing. You can find some of his writings at "roberthewettsr.hubpages.com"

a micropoem--By Shivapriya Ganapathy--India

a micropoem

clouded by tears,
the night wears
a black moon.

Shivapriya Ganapathy is from Kanchipuram, India. She graduated with a Masters degree in English Language and Literature from Madras Christian College, Chennai, and is now a research scholar at University of Madras. Apart from being a researcher and an avid reader, she is an aspiring poet, constantly learning and experimenting with new forms like micropoetry, black out and erasure. She maintains a personal poetry blog (www.wordsfromdarkness.blogspot.in) and finds writing, therapeutic.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

If You Are Lonely--By Connie Marcum Wong--United States

If You Are Lonely

If you are lonely, watch the birds In their freedom of flight...
Feel the warmth of the sun kiss your cheeks and smile.
Visit the shore and listen to the waves sing sweet songs.
Close your eyes and smell the fragrant seasonal flowers.

Transport yourself through Time’s great abyss
In memories of streams that flow with a youthful glow...
Dive in pools of aqua waters through your mind’s eye.
Delight in the breeze’s playful mood
As lush verdant trees sway in tune.

Listen to the purr of a contented cat in your lap.
Write a letter to yourself and promise to answer...
Better yet write a poem, one that will linger long
In someone’s lonely mind.

Connie Marcum Wong has been the Web Mistress of a private poetry forum Poetry for Thought since October 1999. Her poetry has been in many publications, anthologies, magazines, and e-zines over the years. She published her first poetry chapbook, Island Creations in 2005. In 2007, Heart Blossoms was published. In January 2010, an anthology, A Poetry Bridge to All Nations, was published by Lulu Enterprises, Inc. Connie created the 'Constanza' poetry form in 2007 and Con-Verse form in 2010. She has resided with her husband in Hawaii since 1980.

Nocturnal Hum--By Jan Oskar Hansen--Portugal

Nocturnal Hum

She sat in her nightdress on the steps up to
the terrace looking up to the sky - Full moon
and stars so near you only needed a curtain
ladder to pick stars as galactic fruit.
She had fallen asleep I carried her to bed and
her dream continued. Overcast and a cooling
wind, the good night was erased and I had been
warming my cold heart on a child’s dream

Jan Oskar Hansen is a published poet from Portugal.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Storm Clouds--By Russell Sivey--United States

Storm Clouds

The clouds spike their way in, grey and powerful
An amazing sight, climbing up to the sky
Such power and light flows through in bountiful
Electric pulses-mastermind-move and die
Where now the rain begins to flow very hard
Storm comes striking in just like a razor shard
It leaves its mark in the barren land beneath
Drowning the cacti with power, rain bequeath

Russell Sivey lives in the United States and has been writing poetry for 26 years (after his major car accident that left his arm paralyzed). He has been improving year after year. Russell enjoys reading poetry as well as writing it He finds himself listening to almost any type of music. Russell has been with Poetry Soup for almost 3 years and enjoys the poetry that he reads there from his friends. He is currently attending school for a Creative Writing degree with a specialization in Poetry. Yes, that means he will have a poetry degree. He looks forward to reading everyone's poems here on this site. His muse is the moon.

Special Feature Youth Writer--Dayva Ann Learned--United States

Stinger

Soaring through the sky
Wings fluttering majestically
Get on my wrong side I'll be your worst nightmare
Inside of me lives a bee

Don't judge a book by its cover
Though a bee is glorious to look at
With alternating stripes of yellow and black
Being the size of your fingernail
A bee could leave you crying in a second
Small but powerful I have the ability to sting

Leave me alone, I leave you alone
Get on my bad side, feel the sting
At moments the bee inside me is calling
Begging me to let it out

I am a fun loving creature
I can get as happy as a child on Christmas morning
Although inside me lives a feisty little beast
With a horrid temper
You don't want to meet it
It is only released at the most wicked times

I am proud and playful
I am tough fierce and persistent
I am determined and clever
Deep inside me lives a bee

Dayva Ann Learned received second place for Stinger in the 2013 Florida State Poets Association Student Poetry Contest. She is twelve years old and lives in Ormond Beach, Florida with her parents and two brothers.  Dayva enjoys writing poetry and short stories as well as painting and drawing. In addition, she is a fierce bumble bee on the soccer field.


Editor's note--Dayva is our first youth writer.  In order for writing to live on , it is important that we have talented young people to share in the journey.  This is a special honor for me to be able to publish her words.  Best wishes, Dayva, with all your writing endeavors!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

We all walk…--By Jim Teeters--United States

We all walk…

this tired earth
hopeful or afraid
carry burdens
      speak love
follow or lead
sometimes alone or
hand-in-hand
         toward an uncertain
              destination

Jim Teeters has published poetry in several anthologies. He conducts poetry workshops for children and adults and is active in poetry readings in the Seattle area through the Striped Water Poets. He is the author of six poetry collections and the book, Teach with Style, (ASTD Press July 2013). Jim is a retired social worker living in Kent, Washington.

Memories--By Linda Hurdwell--England

Memories

I hear the voice of dreams
And sniff the scent of memory.
Your touch, your noise, your smell.
How cruel is life as his mask now beams
Upon my broken heart
That’s turned into a shell.

Linda Hurdwell has been a widow for 5 years.  She has two adult sons. Living in the English countryside, she takes her dog, Bessie, for a daily walks and that's where many of her poems and stories are born.  She has always loved writing and has a few short stories published.  Although now a pensioner,  she enjoys working with adults with learning disabilities and running a mencap social club once a week.  Her hobbies are writing, tap dancing, and going to the theatre or cinema with my friends.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Spring Song--By Marlene Million--United States

Spring Song

Winter's gone, all the frost and
snowmelt flowing into local streams.
Sun's warmth shines in reverie upon May's
buds, bursting into youthful spring dreams.

Park and valleys are green, grassy, lush
refreshing rain cascades to nourish.
Array of daisies, daffodils, and tulips
are mid-high, dance in breezes, and flourish.

Robins and sparrows have nests to tend,
their young, ready to leave, scout.
Beneath eaves of safety from harm,
fledglings try their wings, fly out.

As clear streams run over mossy stone,
butterflies, bumble-bees scatter on land.
Crickets chirp under fresh-scented peonies,
and spring's melody of rebirth blooms grand.

Marlene Million is a retired insurance secretary from her husband's business and grandmother of four. She has published two chapbooks and belongs to several writers’ groups. She had a poem on display at Indianapolis Arts Garden the month of February, 2013 and has been published in a variety of venues.

Silence--By Mary Kent--United States

Silence

The room is quite
my eyes are closed
the only sound I hear is the beating of my heart
I listen closely--and I can hear my heart
telling my life story with each beat

Mary Kent resides in the Pacific Northwest, a successful business woman. She is a wife and mother, blessed with a wonderful family. Mary is ever inspired and enriched by life and nature. She is dedicated to writing in her journal of poetry. She writes from her heart and soul, pleased to share her words with us.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Retrospective--By Brian Strand--England

Retrospective (a phrasis)

Humble stirrings of our spheres,
flowers of inner feelings in a retrospective
of words, made now, for the
moment. From heart to pen,
to heart. Inner & outer thoughts
this capacity to evoke, soul to soul.
Roses from the flush of youth, petal
by petal the unconscious to impart.
Moving images of the intellect,
intangible yet speechless, felt &
seen, said sounds to paraphrase
the resonance of truth.

Brian Strand has created short poetic forms including 'broken monoku' (a haiku variation) and 'footle' (a trochaic monometer with witty, topical, etc themes) and Captioned Cartoon, an Ekphrasis combining his art and poetic interests. He has published a seven kindle ebook series Poetic forms; A Strand of Verse; My Choice Strand Verse; A Strand Guide; Christianity Explained; A Strand critique; and Captioned Cartoon Ekphrasis. Brian has written nearly 200 Amazon reviews and is a Wiki poetry and art editor.

An Unwelcome Guest--By Robert P. Hansen--United States

An Unwelcome Guest

Just outside my window,
the flutter of wings
against the pane.

A robin has built a nest
of mud-encrusted twigs
and feathers on the sill.

I’ve lived here years, and
never has a bird encroached
upon my territory.

I know what spring will
bring: the noisome squawks
of hungry little birds.

I try to open the window,
but it is cemented into place
by the dried mud.

I have no ladder to reach
it from the outside, but there
are no blue eggs in the nest.

Yet….

Robert P. Hansen teaches philosophy and ethics at a community college, and he is currently finishing the second book of a fantasy series. His other three novels and collections of his poetry and short stories are currently available as e-books through various online retailers. For details, visit his blog at: http://rphansenauthorpoet.wordpress.com/.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Carolyn Devonshire--United States and Paul Callus--Malta

Halloween’s Mask of Comfort

By Carolyn Devonshire and Paul Callus

In a house beside the forest lives a woman and her son
He is scarred by burns and fire – hidden kept from everyone
There is land where he can wander far away from prying eyes,
But he misses friends to play with; all alone he often cries.

That is why he gets excited at the thought of Halloween
He can mix with other children without fear of being seen.
Mother picks the perfect costume that will fit his height and size
Then she adds a mask for comfort – the completion of disguise.

The boy behind the mask wishes every day was Halloween
He'd gladly offer friendship to any child who wasn't mean
But he knows that one day he will be too old for trick or treat
And he prays each morn to see the sunshine on a public street

Even though he realizes his wish may never be fulfilled
For he'd have to learn to avoid stares and let confidence build
After reading the sad tale of Frankenstein, he sheds a tear
As he can relate to Frankenstein and sees him as a peer

And so he keeps reading stories of people judged by their looks
His greatest fear is what will happen when he runs out of books

Of Promises and Ashes--By Joe Maverick--England

Of Promises and Ashes

A promotion of anxiety
entwines with current society,
engendering moral surrendering,
we live a life now so compromised, 
with more to fear therein, than mortal demise.

Joe Maverick is a freelance author, from a widely educated background. He has been writing for 27 years. He is interested in feedback from the public; readers are the reason for his writing. Some of his poems are short and succinct, others tell a story. He would like to see the literary flame burn bright in any day and age, believing that it can feed the spirit and bring enlightenment.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Reason for Mortal Life--By Yancy Lee Dalton--United States

Reason for Mortal Life

I remember, Dad taking his snow boots off, while observing upset mom.
She was listing to the battery powered radio. Dad asked, "What's wrong"
"Pearl Harbor was bombed and were now in the war," was her angry reply
This memory, I thought I experienced as a very young child. Years flew by
Memory still fresh in my mind, in the library, I looked it up in a history book
December 7, 1941 was day of the bomb, view May 12, 1942 my birth look

Shocked at this new found evidence, I saw my parents before I was born
Collecting criteria from others, some shady, some clear, thoughts did form
Concluding, birth is but a forgetting of an existence lived before this birth
Proving to me, every plant, beast or man existed before coming to earth
Now housed in a temporary mortal body to grow in, master and control
Preparatory to a greater permanent immortal body of a conscious soul

Growth challenge then becomes to lean not to our natural understanding
Often reeked with self, selfish ego, so becoming alarmingly demanding
Is so hard to imagine that a loving father prepared this for our discovery
Sending a mortal + immortal Son to ransom for our complete recovery?
Like scripture describes, individual growth is the reason each are here
Not war or slavery, but liberty to act with love, compassion, free of fear

Yancy Lee Dalton is a published writer from Colorado.

Tanka--By Chen-ou Liu--Canada

latest volley
in my diplomatic spat
with the muse ...
the words in my tanka
morph into dead cockroaches

the muse
hooded in black ...
clich├ęs
cursing through
my veins

I wrestle
with the ghostly muse
until daybreak
my words of longing
spill onto the page

Chen-ou Liu is the author of four books, including Following the Moon to the Maple Land (First Prize Winner of the 2011 Haiku Pix Chapbook Contest). His tanka and haiku have been honored with many awards. To read more of his poems, please go to Poetry in the Moment, http://chenouliu.blogspot.com/

Saturday, August 16, 2014

the color of august--by jani johe webster--(In Memory-May 2013)--United States

the color of august

what is the color of august
you ask me
what is the sound
of a shadow
and how do you say
a hope

can you see time
in a dream

i am looking you said
for a gentle
unhurried place

perhaps
you said

someday

i'll find it

Thoughts from jani johe’s daughter, Nila Webster--"I remember when jani johe webster, my beloved mother, got the idea for this poem, over 30 years ago. We were in the kitchen; she was ironing and I was drawing a calendar for her, and I asked her what color August was. She took my question and turned it into a poem. This was her gift, and a gift she gives still and always."

Breath of Life--By Gerald A. McBreen--United States

Breath of Life

You filled my breast with hope
raised desire beyond promise
mocked the future, made it cry.
You were my breath of life
the song in the singing pines.
Your baby blues fluttered
like moth wings
teasing around the flame
of my burning heart.

Gerald A. McBreen found poetry after he retired from the US Postal Service. He discovered he had a flair for romance. He has been publishing for ten years with True Romance and their related magazines. He is the coordinator for Striped Water Poets. They sponsor an “open mic” every first Wednesday of the month. They also post 'Poems on Posters' around the area. In 2009 Pacific, Washington celebrated its 100th anniversary, and he was appointed Poet Laureate. (2009 - 2013)

Friday, August 15, 2014

Angel-Bearer--By Jane Richer--Canada

Angel-Bearer

Going through mankind's wishes, suddenly a twinkling star appeared,
hidden inside - a heartfelt cry for a special soulmate most revered!
The star spoke of a man with a reverent longing in his heart,
a Moon-prince looking for his Sun-princess on realms apart!

His ache struck a chord deep within my tired and wintered soul
and I searched the worlds to attain his mate and make him whole!
I am the Angel-Bearer and I believed nothing of true love still remained,
so vexed at the lust and vows so wantonly broken; borne of men and women's shame!

Here was a man with a gentle spirit and a searing ache unfulfilled,
so with my magic, his soulmate I have procured; exerting my powers-skilled!
She flies a Moonbeam to where her companion stands alone in evening's glow,
and I shed a tear of joy, as at last; united souls walk hand-in-hand below!

Jane Richer is a poet and writer who lives in Alberta, Canada. She is published online and in print. She loves to poke fun at herself and rather likes to write tongue-in-cheek poetry but she will dabble in all kinds of genres to widen her creative nature. She loves to 'sister'- (write a complimentary poem) and feels that is the greatest form of acknowledgment and respect in expression for another poet's talent.

Poet of the Month--Terry O’Leary

We May Meet Again

By Terry O’Leary

Beneath long lashes, misty clad,
    Your limpid eyes are sometimes sad;
        They bring to mind a homeless waif
            Engulfed in rain with nowhere safe

Most times I find a cheerful light
    Within your eyes that sparkles bright,
        And though my thoughts I try to hide
            My happiness wells up inside

At dawn I see your eyes aglow
    Like founts through which your passions flow;
        And when I’m low they always loom
            Like morning glories through the gloom

Your smile ashine beneath my gaze
     Effulgent eyes beam all ablaze:
        A look, a touch, a kiss I yearn,
            You slowly make my body burn

While at your side and in a heap
     I scanned your eyes, half closed, asleep,
        And as you slept with pillow clutched,
            Your eyelids with my lips I touched

And if you’ve ever wondered why
     I try to search within each eye,
        Though past is past, your eyes remind
            Of bygone times when love was kind

Yet, though your eyes still cast a spell
    They seem to bid a fond farewell,
        Reflecting but a fading storm
            Although I know your thoughts are warm

But now our paths will part, alas,
    For good things always come to pass;
        Perhaps it lies within God’s ken
            That someday we may meet again

_______________

From the editor--It is a pleasure to announce that Terry O’Leary is August’s Poet of the Month.  He is a talented writer accomplished in a variety of forms.  Readers at Whispers enjoy his work.  Terry has been an encouraging voice in our community since 2013, regularly leaving thoughtful comments which others appreciate.  And if you are wondering, we are not related.  This award was truly earned!
_______________

Thoughts on “We May Meet Again”--When Terry sent me this poem, I was immediately drawn to the stair casing format which enhances the artistic experience.  In poetry, details matter. The rhyme flows easily giving his poem a whimsical feel that works well for the subject matter.  The imagery helps the reader experience what Terry conveys.  It is evident that he has delivered a truly remarkable poem.  Maybe some day the two will meet again.
_______________

Congratulations and thank you Terry!  I appreciate all you do and have done for Whispers.

Sincerely,

Karen O’Leary, Editor

Lost Love's Dream Shadow--By Robert Lindley--United States

Lost Love's Dream Shadow

Deep within a sunlit drop of refreshing rain
I saw a glimpse of her beautiful face again
Dreams flow past as swift mountain streams
she haunts me lovingly in midnight dreams

Outside my window the great moon dares to sink
more time, more time is all I can think
She appears all the more real in her golden gown
as the great moon glides slowly slipping down

I feel earth trembling deeply into night
nothing feels better, nothing feels so right
Her voice whispers from shadows all around
smiles so deep that it echoes in loving sound

As dawn flees upward to meet the newborn day
I hear her parting, caressing voice softly say
Dreams can not stay, they must go on past
our loves are forever and forever they last......

Robert Lindley is poet from the Southern USA. He has been writing poetry since 1969. Robert writes with the intent to offer others words to enjoy and with high hopes he may inspire and brighten lives in some way.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Tanka--By Caroline Skanne--United Kingdom

i bury seeds
in morning sun
a flower prayer
for this earth
to be healed

crickets
in the night
your song
fills me with
summer stars

a dream
combed through
moonbeams
once more
surviving the pain

Caroline Skanne is a poet, originally from Sweden, educated in London. She lives with her family in a cottage near the river Medway in Kent. When she is not writing she enjoys photography, mudlarking, bird watching, foraging, gardening, yoga and martial arts. Her poems have appeared online and in printed journals most recently Moonbathing: a journal of women’s tanka and brass bell: a haiku journal.

The Shy Rose--By Kelly Deschler--United States

The Shy Rose

Such a beautiful, blooming rose,
There is no reason to be shy,
So, why let your petals close,
When the sun is low in the sky.

Daisies and daffodils arrive in spring,
But, roses are rare, delicate flowers,
Brilliant sunsets are also amazing things,
So, why shy away in the midnight hours.

A rainbow of colors shine in daylight,
Pretty pink, sunny yellow, and rosy red,
But, don't be afraid of the night,
Don't go to sleep in your flower bed.

Look up, and behold the radiant moon,
Gaze at every shimmering, falling star,
The sun will be rising again, soon,
So, wait and see these beauties that are.

You do not get to experience any of this,
When you only awaken in early morn,
What celestial wonders you do miss,
But, every rose must have it's thorn.

Kelly Deschler is a poet, living in Big Falls, Wisconsin. She wrote this poem in the spring of 2013, for a fellow poet who asked that she write a special poem just for her, about her favorite subject....flowers!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Burial--By Maureen Sudlow--New Zealand

Burial

They come to farewell us
before the lonely trek to Reinga 
carried by the wings of the little owl
calling us to tangi with them
before the long night
hides us one from another  
before we put on the mourning
leaves of the kawakawa
before the whanau gather
to share in our grief

Whanau is the Maori word for family, and the Maori believe that the spirits of the dead travel to Cape Reinga on their way to Hawaiki.  Tangi is the Maori grieving process.

Maureen Sudlow is a member of the New Zealand Poetry Society, and lives in the Kaipara, in the North of New Zealand.  She loves poetry, photography and writing for children.  She has published a children’s picture book Fearless Fred and the Dragon and has written for various on-line journals and magazines.

This Way to the Egress--By Eleanor Michael--United States

This Way to the Egress

My generation is leaving
one at a time, more lately.
Yes, we’ll be around awhile,
but those left are slowing down.
Like me, writing short stories,
not novels, and short poetry.
Though, at this time, not sharp
enough to research non-fiction,
I’m sad for the loss of knowledge,
however flawed or out of date.
Recorded facts do not have
all our individual memories,
how each life was perceived.
To misquote a favorite quote:
we were rocks that sat up
and looked around.

Eleanor Michael has published poetry and short stories in a variety of venues.