Friday, October 24, 2014

To Face the Day--By Peggy Heinrich--United States

To Face the Day

Sleep is the little death
that surfaces each day
in the sullen morning face
the bathroom mirror frames
the puffy eyes, pouches heavy
from unforgiving gravity
the lips a downward curve
reflect tragedy's grim mask
a splash of chill
the zombie wakes
the mouth reverses
to a somewhat smile
light from a distant star
floods each freshly opened eye
a sort of self returns
to the person in the mirror
the face, the soul revive
with each quick thought,
each spoken word, each smile
as day ticks down to noon

Peggy Heinrich's poems have appeared in Verdad, Future Cycle, and the new renaissance and many other small press journals. Her books, A Minefield of Etceteras and Sharing the Woods, showcase her longer poems. She has also published a collection of her tanka, Forward Moving Shadows, and a collection of her haiku, Peeling an Orange, both with photographs by John Bolivar. A long-time resident of New York and Connecticut, she now lives in Santa Cruz, California.

Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Yancy Lee and Diana Dalton--United States

Pain Play

By Yancy Lee and Diana Dalton

Pain and injury, not easily tolerated
Hurting topped by expenses generated
Popping controversial Dr. prescribed pills
Side effects, money hemorrhaging bills
Cooperate man, trumps men's misfortune
Expensively treated, a nasty distortion

Time to change the unfortunates’ way
Health care system where men play
World wide medical lottery system
75% to heal mankind, no victim
25% to winners treasure over strife
Life gamblers supporting each life

Now, I'm not a gambler in money means,
Yet, I'd gladly buy tickets for fellow beings

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Meditation on an Artist--By Darrell Lindsey--United States

Meditation on an Artist

He painted men with long beards and missing teeth,
bent women with canes,
lonely children walking through meadows
on their way back home.
At night, he would study each shade,
each shadow of their lives
in the ramshackle cabin
he inherited from his father.
Sometimes he said he could feel them
guiding the brush,
hear their voices
singing to the starry night.
Ah, to hear him hum
when the shapes, colors, and moods on the canvas
captured a bit of what it means to be human,
all too human.

Darrell Lindsey is the author of Edge of the Pond ( Popcorn Press, 2012), and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize ( 2007) and a Rhysling Award ( 2014). He won the 2012 Science Fiction Poetry Association Contest ( Long Form category), as well as the 2014 Balticon Poetry Contest. His haiku and tanka have garnered numerous international awards, and one of his poems is included in Haiku In English: The First Hundred Years ( W.W.Norton & Company, 2013).

A Prophet : Defining the Term--By Robert A. Dufresne--United States

A Prophet : Defining the Term

A Prophet is not one who can predict future acts.
He’s given the grace to see and relate the facts.
To those who are blind,
he appears most unkind,
And is susceptible to all kinds of attacks.

Robert A. Dufresne was born in Vermont and raised on a dairy farm. After four years in the Navy and trying his hand at a couple of trades, he settled in as a self employed remodeling carpenter for 31 years. He and his wife moved to Florida in 1998, where he continued his career. He began writing poetry in 2009 .

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Autumn Acrostic--By Yancy Lee Dalton--United States

Autumn Acrostic

Autumn chills all the air we inhale
Undermining the template scale
Tempting some in art of giving up
Under influence of bitterness cup
Mankind with egos & good minds
No wonder most this beauty finds

Autumn's a wonderful time of year
Carrying beautiful colors so clear
Rain bowed through out the land
Over plains, hills & rivers to band
Stirring eyesight of every heart
To inspire each man, in new start
Irrigating refreshing hope visions
Causing many mankind revisions

Yancy Lee Dalton is a published writer from Colorado.

The Shape of Inexistence--By Ali Znaidi--Tunisia

The Shape of Inexistence

When the night comes
existence takes the shape
of inexistence for those
who have no home
but the streets’ laps,
for those who queue,
           as usual,
waiting for new sorrows,
       & above all,
for those whose morning
is not yet to come.

Ali Znaidi (b. 1977) lives in Redeyef, Tunisia, where he teaches English. His work has appeared in various magazines and journals worldwide. He authored four poetry chapbooks including Experimental Ruminations (Fowlpox Press, 2012), Moon’s Cloth Embroidered with Poems (Origami Poems Project, 2012), Bye, Donna Summer! (Fowlpox Press, 2014), and Taste of the Edge (Kind of A Hurricane Press, 2014). Links to his published and forthcoming works can be found at aliznaidi.blogspot.com.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Autumn's Last Leaf--By James Rasmusson--United States

Autumn's Last Leaf

Before the biting arctic wind
autumn's last leaf helplessly clings.
Other leaves, less tenacious
lie wet and matted
beneath the season's first snowfall.

Nothing shows of summer's pointillistic canvas
save the occasional fir tree and bramble.
Winter's pen and ink simplicity waxes gray and white
to show the landscape's ebb and flow
in chiaroscuro light.

In the cold of winter the luckless suffer
the impatient perish,
yet here and there
the tracks of bird and rabbit
show how life goes on.

If autumn's last leaf were to weather wind and ice
and snow and feel again the tepid balm of April-spring,
it would surely come to naught
for nothing dead can cling
before the swelling of a tender bud.

James began writing in the 1960’s and immediately showed a love for seasonal, humorous, and philosophical poetry. In the late 70’s, he became an ardent photographer and soon found that the two artistic mediums cross pollinated each other. West Michigan is an art Mecca with over 100 galleries and art camps with Jim residing in the lovely coastal town of Holland, Michigan. A practitioner of Surat Shabd Yoga since 1972, his art is an expression of his lifetime love affair with nature and his quest for truth. James is the winner of many awards in both photography and poetry including the 2005 Shadow Poetry 5th biannual chapbook competition. The artist says he likes to underscore the abstract and tease the mind and be ever alert for juxtapositions that express irony, absurdity, and poignancy, desiring for people to feel both tension and resolution in his compositions.

Poems for Someone--By George L. Ellison--England

Poems for Someone

Rhyming poetry short or long
Gets my muse in the mood to write
Endeavour to make words a song
Give all I can not to sound trite

Emotive words drip from my quill
Leaving readers’ time to reflect
The words I’ve written did instill
Love for poetry and deflect

Thoughts of the most trying of days
Softened by words so poetic
Cast them to a place far away
You can go too when all’s hectic

Come with me and soon you will see
Each word I write is just for you
Universal praise is not me
Each word I write I write for you

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!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Eternity Anew--By Erich J. Goller--United States

Eternity Anew
(Ameri-Sonnet)

For the morning’s sky of blue
Thy love you have given me
Has turned all my thoughts to you
To share all the joy with thee

Love shall cause the sun to shine
I feel it with faith and trust
When the day turns even time
Then the moon brings out the lust

Lifted up by mighty wings
Love shall grow within the heart
Such loving blessing it brings
Never ever to depart

It’s beheld through to brightest view
For eternity anew

Erich J. Goller was born in Vienna, Austria. A close world war two survivor,
in 1955, he immigrated to California, where he made his living as a mechanic and as an actor. He been married for 56 years, has one daughter and one son. He is a published author of seven books. He now resides In Nashville, Tennessee, still loves to write, also enjoys doing art work. His web site, www.poetvienna.com

Tree Whispers--By Joan McNerney--United States

Tree Whispers

Blue diamond rains
filigree of golden light
so many shades of green.

Sun beams on a single leaf.
This small star pulsating
from my wet apple tree.

Bright new leaf
fits hand perfectly---the future
lies in your palm.

After the long rain
pine trees bending
with cones.

Sugar maple trees
sashaying with autumn winds
all dressed up in yellow lace.

Branches etch evening sky
turning razzle dazzle
purple red citron.

Joan McNerney’s poetry has been included in numerous literary magazines such as Camel Saloon, Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Blueline, Spectrum, and included in Bright Hills Press, Kind of A Hurricane and Poppy Road Anthologies.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

River Laps Softly--By Robert Lindley--United States

River Laps Softly

The ripples of water lap river's edge
quietly I sit, a man seeking love
The orange twilight stirs my lonely soul
nearby, the moan of a single dove

Sweetest place, roaring river churns
fish splashing about in a soft replay
Continuance as the world slowly turns
colors splash endings to a wonderful day

The smell of fish, water and mud
cool air spreading its soft relief
Comfort given to stop anger in my blood
as nature’s gifts, a most calming belief

Soon its quiet, knowledge enters my soul
Victory came because I made it so


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.

Whirlwind--By Robert P. Hansen--United States

Whirlwind

A whirlwind twisted through the streets
and settled in a lonesome heart;
It’s rhythmic thrum of hungry lust—
a need so strong it surely must
be sated!—whirred a hectic beat,

a frantic beat, a needful beat
that could not be denied. Her heart
was stymied, twisted by the blustery
                              whirlwind

until it lay in tatters, hurt
beyond imagining—a hurt
so deep it left a mark that lasted
months and years. Her heart was lost—
until she felt the kicking feet
                          of a whirlwind….

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/.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

With Wide Ears--By Keith O. J. Hunt--Canada

With Wide Ears

Listen to the wind.....
as she sings in her quiet lisps,
and sighs the past and gusts
with earnest need;

Listen to the tenets of the seasons
with their lovelies and tempests ----
and torrents and great rains
become blizzards,
then hushed and bequeathed sings the morrow;
and buds the leaf and the harvests
shall feed all in need

Listen to the tenuous hum and drum of mortal bars
crying out 'neath thy starry night....
when the world is weary in the City of Lights;
and the last dog has barked before bed.....
and the crickets with Godspeed ascend their chatter
in the last tumult of the day,
(Listen.....)

Keith O. J. Hunt is a Classic-Romantic poet who generally prefers the older styles which he finds the greatest way to express his thoughts. He loves people, nature, spirituality and all things beautiful. Keith lives in Ottawa, Canada and has been writing poetry for 15 yrs.

Rosemary Smith--By Linda Hurdwell--England

Rosemary Smith

Rosemary Smith is a slip of a girl
With thick brown hair that just won’t curl.
And eyes a shade of darkest blue
That stare disarmingly out at you.

Rosemary Smith has restless feet
And won’t stay seated on her seat.
Her fragile body wants to dance
And moves around at every chance.

Rosemary Smith can’t help but twirl
Because she is a special girl.
She finds delight in unusual things
Straws and shadows and butterfly wings.

Rosemary Smith watches the world go by
As she whirls about beneath the sky
Laughing in her secretive way
While lost music begins to play.

Rosemary Smith can bring such joy
As she dances for each girl and boy
Grabbing a stick or holding a straw.
Dear sweet child holds us in awe.

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.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Sonnet for the Vietnam Dead--By Robert A. Hall--United States

Sonnet for the Vietnam Dead

They were but boys, whose lives you threw away.
They went because the country asked them to,
And served a cause their leaders would betray—
Thank Christ they never saw that bitter day.

They lived in holes, and slept in soaking rain,
Grew thin, and sick, and weary through and through.
They knew each day the taste of fear and pain,
And never thought that sacrifice was vain.

And when the touch of death had come around,
To valiant lives forever shaming you,
For love of comrades and by honor bound,
They poured their blood like water on the ground.

And we who loved them, we cannot forget—
And won’t forgive—while breath is in us yet.

Robert A. Hall, a Marine Vietnam Veteran, served 5 terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He was an Association Executive from 1982 to 2013, retiring due to pulmonary fibrosis for a lung transplant 12/23/13. His 11 books, including two of poetry, Old Jarhead Poems and Share the Cup are here: http://tinyurl.com/n79esoh. Royalties go to charity. He does the Old Jarhead blog.

yet there are still--By jani johe webster--United States

yet there are still

the october nights
hold a chill
and the dawn speaks
of frost the kills
these disintegrated dreams
    from another autumn

yet there are still
the meadows of spring
sun on a june day

and flowers
that will bloom
   in the white snow.

Thoughts from Nila Webster--This poem, written by my mother jani johe webster, is reflective of her deeply held truth that even in the deepest and coldest winters, flowers are blooming in our lives, and in our souls. She always felt that our imagination held a special key to beauty, and this perspective continues to give me hope and courage.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Faraway Woman--By Donna Bowring--United States

Faraway Woman

She walks alone on a high mountain
glides barefoot through Arabian sands.
She communes with old gods in the high desert
builds a thatched hut on a beach
and explores forbidden jungles.

She lives on an island in Puget Sound
rides Alaskan ice on a dog sled
and dances under a silver moon in Tahiti.
She haunts a monastery in Ireland
and runs with the bulls in Pamplona.

She knits skeins of the past into long memories
drinks down the rays of a dying sun
and blows its ashes to the four winds.
She reads the dust of fading stars
for visions of love, fortune and death.

She lights a beacon
for those in restless slumber
who will rise in dreams
to become a faraway woman.

Donna Bowring is a retired graphic artist from Goodyear, AZ. Her short stories have been published in the 2012, 2013 and 2014 Inkslingers' Anthology, a publication of the West Valley Writer's Workshop. She has also published short stories in the 2012 and 2013 editions of Canyon Voices, an online journal from the west campus of Arizona State University.

Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Andrea Dietrich--United States and Jan Allison--United Kingdom

Poor Peter Pumpkin

By Andrea Dietrich and Jan Allison

Poor Peter Pumpkin had a very itty bitty head.
So the farmer made him stay inside the garden bed.

The farmer said that he was going to keep him warm with hay.
And there the itty bitty pumpkin stayed for many a day.

Finally, the farmer came to check upon poor Peter,
measured him and then exclaimed, “You’ve grown an extra meter!

I think it’s time for you to finally go and face the world.”
Peter got up from his bed. He twirled and twirled and twirled!

“My,” the farmer shouted, “You’ve grown two legs with feet!
You’re a special pumpkin. My daughters you must meet!”

Poor Peter heaved his hefty bulk, waddling away,
following behind the farmer so he would not stray.

They traveled rather quickly, and soon they reached the house.
The daughters saw the pumpkin and grew quiet as a mouse.

The silence lasted just until at last one daughter spoke,
“A pumpkin with two legs? Is this some kind of joke?”

Her father knelt beside her and whispered in her ear,
“Do not be afraid, my child. You’ve not a thing to fear.

We can carve a lantern. It will be your Halloween treat.
Then we can make lots of pumpkin pies for us to eat."

Peter trembled with a chill to hear their horrid plan.
Jumping out the door, he yelled, “Catch me if you can!”

He ran into the pastures. Then he tumbled down a hill.
As he rolled he bumped into the couple, Jack and Jill!

“Oh dear me,” cried Peter, “I do not wish to be
a lantern for this Halloween. Please, can you guys help me!”

Jack and Jill then led him to the land of Nursery Rhymes.
His sad fate has now been told to children many times.

For he ran across a man named Peter Pumpkin EATER.
Maybe you can guess now what became of our poor Peter!

Loyal Friends--By John W. (Bill) Williams--United States

Loyal Friends

Loyal friends
are compassionate and kind.
They are like a light
that warms the heart
when things go wrong.

Loyal friends
do not ask
what they can do…
they seem to know
when they are needed.

Loyal friends
are steadfast and admirable…
they grow in love,
and plant gardens
of memorable memories.

John W. (Bill) Williams is a retired language arts and children’s literature educator.  He lives in Martin, GA, where he stays busy with his art and poetry.  He has been published in a variety of venues.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Waves--By Phyllis Babcock--Canada

Waves

Forever relentless,
always receding

with all of it's power
pushes hour after hour

Unending sounds
carried on the wind

rolling in rhythmic beat
pounding beneath the feet

It rolls in like thunder
and rolls back under

Life resembles the waves
Times of lull then explosions

Phyllis Babcock was born in Saskatchewan, Canada in 1951 and currently resides in Regina with her husband. She has been blessed with two wonderful sons and daughter-in-laws. She has two grandsons and two granddaughters. She started writing poetry in 2004 and joined Poetry Soup site in 2006. She has been published in two anthologies, On Butterfly Wings and Snippets. Her work has also appeared on Poetry.com and in a local seniors’ newspaper. She feels writing has been a wonderful journey, meeting many new poets and writers along the way.

Poet of the Month--Paul Callus

The Poet Who Never Was

By Paul Callus

I thought I was a poet who had a pen of gold
With clear access to writing that was mature and bold.
I thought I could go roaming beside the foaming sea
And watch the seagulls gliding to give a show for free.

I thought I was a poet who walked along the beach
In awe I stood and wondered, my hand stretched out to reach
The silver thread dividing the water from the sky
And traced Selena’s features as slowly she went by.

I thought I was a poet who knew what joy could be
On hearing water roaring cascading down with glee.
I looked for inspiration, experienced utmost thrill
When climbing down the valley or up the verdant hill.

I thought I was a poet in charge of heat and cold
But lost my true emotions when I was duped and told
I had to reach perfection to please my heart and mind
By means of imitation. My soul I left behind.

I thought I was a poet who had a pen of gold
But now all of a sudden I’m weary, frail and old.
I thought I was a poet. My pen is of no use.
With teary eyes I whisper to my dejected muse.
_______________

From the editor--It is an honor to announce that Paul Callus is October’s Poet of the Month.  He is a talented writer who writes in both Maltese and English.  He is an accomplished author, published in several venues.  Readers at Whispers enjoy his work.  Paul is an encouraging voice, leaving thoughtful comments for other contributors.  He has also written a collaborative poem with another writer which was featured at Whispers.  It is a pleasure to present Paul with this award!
_______________

Thoughts on “The Poet Who Never Was”--Right away, Paul caught my attention with his intriguing title.  His skillful use of repetition builds this poem’s suspense.  The emotion flows through his words, helping the reader to connect to the poet who feels he “never was.”  The rhyme flows effortlessly and the imagery helps the reader experience Paul’s remarkable verse.
 _______________

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

Sincerely,

Karen O’Leary, Editor

Moonbeams--By Sara Kendrick--United States

Moonbeams

The moonbeams crossed the horizon
Carrying the sun in its wake
Soft light 'pon the grass like diamonds
The moonbeams crossed the horizon
Caressing each scrutiny wizened
Opaque hopes and moods forsake
The moonbeams crossed the horizon
Carrying the sun in its wake

Sara Kendrick married young and had a family soon after. After her last child went to school, she decided to pursue her GED. A gentlemen who worked with the GED program encouraged her to enroll in college.  She worked part time and cared for her family in addition to her studies. She graduated from Mercer University. Several years ago, after a health crisis, she started writing poetry. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sweet Butterfly--Terry O’Leary--France

Sweet Butterfly

Sweet Butterfly, with wings now dry 'tis time to break away
and light upon the leaves of dawn while weeping willows sway,
not reminisce 'bout chrysalis discarded yesterday,
but treasure life, with colors rife in nature's cabaret.

Sweet Butterfly, I've heard you sigh "terrene so strange and new"
but take a chance, with winged expanse of fairy-like bijou,
to taste delight in random flight, to drift beyond the blue
and then collect her pearly nectar, sipped like morning dew.

Sweet Butterfly, you question why the breeze is seldom soft
when swirling you, your wings askew, while floating free aloft.
Some seem to find their peace of mind believing gods have coughed,
but others, downed, have often found more freedom when they've scoffed.

Sweet Butterfly, you needn't cry, the fields are full of clover,
like meadowlands of braided strands in winds and waves that wove her -
but if you fear that, more than here, the other side is mauver,
just flutter by, behind the sky, unfettered flitting rover.

Sweet Butterfly, farewell, goodbye, you've left the world behind.
We now look back along the track of flowers that you've mined
recalling days of light sashays and movements unconfined
that complement the firmament where beauty lies enshrined.

Terry O’Leary defines himself as "A physicist lacking gravity...".

My Dad, the Soldier--By Celine Rose Mariotti--United States

My Dad, the Soldier
(In Memory of Peter J. Mariotti)

My Dad, he was an old soldier,
He always talked about the Korean War
Though time had passed by,
His memories of battles he was in,
Were always with him,
He often spoke of buddies he fought with,
The friends he left behind,
Of how he was wounded in Taegu,
My Dad never forgot,
Though our government did,
Korea was often called “The Forgotten War”
But my Dad and others like him,
Remembered their time at war,
Though he is gone now,
Up in Heaven with the angels,
His time being a soldier,
Lives on,
In the many stories he told us,
And the hero we knew he was.

Celine Rose Mariotti is an accomplished writer whose work has appeared in magazines all over the USA, Canada, England, Scotland, Australia and India. Some of those magazines include: Green’s Magazine, Poet’s Review, Poet’s Art, Tombigbee, Hindu Young World, Magnolia Quarterly, Lone Stars Magazine, Pablo Lennis, Coffee Ground Breakfast, Pink Chameleon and many more. She has had six books published. She plays the guitar and banjo; has her own home business and lives with her family in Shelton,CT.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Silent Love--By Frances Simwinga--Malawi

Silent Love

At Open Air we met that first week

I felt very weak not that I was sick
Only that my heart had seen a queen
Whose complexion forced a confession                                            
A will to own her yet hard to tell                                                                     
She swiftly put me under a spell                                                            
That would take ages to quell 

Today,  
I was speaking to you
I was screaming at you 
But your ears did not lend                                                               
Your heart stony and sealed                                                                  
Yet my gut felt I got my prey                                                                                     
On great day in a nice way

But time slowly elapses
My eyes gazed on in vain
The burden in my heart I bear                                                            
Soon my life it will take                                                                            
This silent love

Frances Simwinga is a budding poet.  He has discovered healing in poetry.  He happens to have a bias towards slam poetry but greatly enjoys the written word too.

Of Cows and Lymphoma--By Suzanne Clement--United States

Of Cows and Lymphoma

The
cows in
Hannaford’s
My Essentials
Dairy Department
smile as I steer my cart
along while shopping for groceries.

We
need milk,
cottage cheese,
stick margarine,
and some sliced white cheese,
as well as other things.

I
smile back
at the cows
who understand
that even though I
have low-grade lymphoma,
I’m doing the best I can.

Suzanne Clement is a writer from Dover, New Hampshire.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Art or Not--By Joyce I. Johnson--United States

Art or Not

Norman Rockwell, my favorite painter
Was scorned by the elite as a mere illustrator.
No need to wonder what his work is about,
Each picture is clear and leaves not a doubt.
He drew from real life, in our work and our play,
In each painting a message with plenty to say.
You may think me uncultured, an oaf and a fool,
But I cry at the little girl going to school.
He caught the tension and emotion so raw
As she marches so bravely, escorted by law.
Though perhaps not the Master as was Paul Cezanne,
Rockwell told the story of modern man.
Like Cezanne he painted the world that he knew.
He put his heart and his soul in all that he drew.

Joyce I. Johnson lives in the beautiful Skagit Valley of Washington State. She owns a small farm and rents her land to a bulb grower. She is surrounded by beauty in the spring from the tulips and daffodils that inspire much of her poetry. Joyce celebrated her 96th birthday in July of 2014.

The Autumn Garden--By Ralph Stott--England

The Autumn Garden

I walk the shorter paths,
Where the longer shadows stretch
Back from the greenhouse.

I see summer’s glow,
As I gather autumn fruit;
Crops of setting suns.

Solar-powered lanterns,
Fading by tilting stems
Of drooping sunflowers.

Above a lone spade,
Drunk from the apple-sour scent,
Gnats gather and dance.

As summer retreats,
There! The yellow garden-hose;
Coiled, ready for spring.

Ralph Stott was born in Kent, England in 1957. He is married and has two daughters.  He studied design at the Medway College of Design in the mid-70's. Expressing ideas through the written/visual media, has always interested him. Ralph began to dedicate more time to poetry with The Writers and Poetry Alliance, in particular the 'Stylists' forum, over the last 3 years. He has self published one book called Legends For Lunchtime; a collection of short stories and has a second book pending called The Sounding.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Alpinist--By Connie Marcum Wong--United States

Alpinist

I can feel the frigid air bite my lungs
as my shallow breaths try in vain to
soothe and stop the burning pain.
Each struggling footfall could be my last,
yet the mountain taunts me to keep onward.
The snow has consumed my crampon booted feet
with numbness as trembling loins beg my brain for rest.
Heartbeats match the pounding in my head.
I just can’t stop now when so near the summit.
Blinding snow begins to fall as I leave my two
closest friends behind on the promontory.
They plead with me to turn back with them.
All sensibilities have vanished into the whiteness.
“As I feel the snow fly, I will conquer or die”.
Let these words be my epitaph I call to them,
should the mountain claim my sorry soul.

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.

Tanka Prose--By Chen-ou Liu--Canada

I write, therefore I am

I try out
the word writer
in my Chinese mouth
several times ...
this bittersweet taste

I write poetry in the music of a language not natural to me. I am frustrated by my slow progress, but sometimes feel good about this hard fact: writing is the only thing I can do with my immigrant life here and manipulate it in the way I desire. When I stay drunk on writing, reality cannot destroy me.

at the gun-mouth
of time’s barrel
I write --
I live for myself
by myself

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/