Sunday, March 1, 2015

Butterflies In Heaven--By Ndaba Sibanda--Saudi Arabia

Butterflies In Heaven

In bloom
Those flowers are a beauty
Their fragrance a magnet
Resplendent in nature


They lure butterflies
And hummingbirds
Flowers twinkle and wilt
Into a scented paradise

Ndaba Sibanda is a Zimbabwean-born writer. His poems, essays and short stories have been published in Africa and the USA. Ndaba currently lives and teaches in Saudi Arabia. Of his career, he says, "writing is my life, and my second wife".

Weary--By Dan Tharp--United States


They say love covers
a multitude of sins...

I can only hope the little
I have loved will be sufficient enough
to cover the transgressions of my youth
and my middle aged complacency
where I reside in moments of conformity when

I grow weary of resistance.

Dan Tharp is the author of four books of poetry, 3 of which are in chapbook form... Side by Side, Yielding Desire to Fate, A Season Made for Wondering and A Rose in the Briar Patch. Dan resides in Southern California.


            Alan McAlpine Douglas--United Kingdom
            Miriam Sagan--United States
            Pat Durmon--United States
            Paresh Tiwari--India
            Jan Allison--United Kingdom
            Victoria Anderson Throop--Alaska, United States
            Annie Jenkin--England
            Nicole Neal--United States

Please welcome them to our community.  We now have representatives from the following countries--Australia, Botswana, Canada, Canary Islands, England, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Israel, Malawi, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States and Wales.  I look forward to expanding this list in the future. Thank you to everyone that has supported Whispers in any way.                                        --Sincerely,  Karen

We have a world wide audience. If you are currently reading Whispers, please consider submitting a poem for consideration. You may contact Karen at for guidelines. Thank you.

Note--Ads due for April column by March 25


Creative Inspirations is proud to offer another opportunity in celebration of the upcoming Mother's Day holiday. The chapbook will consist of roughly 15 poems by 15 gifted poets and also consists of a nice cardstock cover and envelope for the chapbook. The price is $8.00 per chapbook. Please make check or money order out (per how many copies) to: To God be the Glory! Publications and mail to: To God be the Glory! Publications - P.O. Box 19051 - Kalamazoo, MI 49019. To ensure accurate and timely delivery, all orders must be received by Friday April 17, 2015. For more information please contact MJ at:

Pijush Kanti Deb released a poetry collection, Beneath the Shadow of a White Pigeon,
published by The Hollow Publishing. More information about the book is available at,

Marianne Szlyk has released a new chapbook, Listening to Electric Cambodia Looking Up at Trees at Heaven, through Kind of a Hurricane Press' Barometric Pressures Authors Series. You may download the chapbook for free at this site: Thank you.

John Swain released his first collection of poetry, Ring the Sycamore Sky. Ordering information and reviews are available from Red Paint Hill Publishing at

Celine Rose Mariotti has a new mystery/detective book called Minister’s Shoes in which Rev. Castle helps Sada Sampson find her husband and he also proves that Trevor is innocent of killing Cartwright. The story involves casino deals, infidelity, gambling and some big town gossips who are knee deep in the casino deals.  Price of book is: $11.00. If you live in CT, sales tax is 6.35 so price would be $11.70.  Postage is $2.70.  You can order from Amazon or you can order from me:

Peter Dome released his first book of poetry called Love, Life and Inspiration, a collection of poems written from the heart. It is suitable for everyone with a wide range of topics including, nature, wisdom and spirituality. Peter hopes his book will bring a lot of pleasure to others. It is available at

Maureen Sudlow has a poetry book, Antipodes, was released in early December. More information available on her website

Maralee Gerke has published a new book of poetry called A New Lexicon. If you are interested please ask for more information at

Shloka Shankar has a poetry page on Facebook called 'Shloka Shankar: a rasika's musings'. To read more of her poems, please visit:

Lisa DeVinney has a website for her devotional poetry called Lifting My Eyes, at

Karen O’Leary released Whispers, her first book of poetry in 2011, published by APF Publisher. It has been getting good reviews and is available at online at (Search Whispers under Karen O'Leary) or contact Karen at

John W. (Bill) Williams published a science fiction book that he also illustrated called The Dream Hill.  To order copies from Xlibris Company call 1-888-795-4274 or go to  The website provides sample pages of the book for interested readers.


Please consider supporting The Jokester and Creative Inspirations by sending stamps or other small donations to help with postage.  Thank you for considering this.                                                                                                       ---Karen

Maurice J. Reynolds, the editor of the poetry publication Creative Inspirations, is seeking poetry 20 lines or less for his print magazine. Complete guidelines are available at  Stamps or cash donations would be appreciated to help with mailing costs.

ayaz daryl nielsen's print publication bear creek haiku is always open for postal submissions, mail poetry to bear creek haiku, po box 3787, boulder, co, 80307, USA, 11 lines and less, include SASE. Can be contacted at, blog site is

Tom Davis, publisher of Old Mountain Press, invites all to review his eBook site (Kindle and NOOK) where numerous Old Mountain Press Anthologies of poetry and prose are listed see: Self-publish an electronic book e-book with Old Mountain Press. Visit Old Mountain Press' eBook site at

Jean Calkins, editor: The Jokester, 2 pages of clean jokes free by email monthly, a forever stamp by snail mail (monthly or quarterly). Help bring smiles to shut-ins by contributing forever stamps. Even one stamp helps. Jean Calkins, 260 4th St., Waynesville, NC 28786-3762.

David Fox is seeking family-friendly poems for his magazine, The Poet's Art. Rates for the publication are $5 an issue or $20 for a 4 issue subscription. Checks should be made to cash.  Foreign contributors should pay $10 by international money order or American cash only.  Send submissions and  money for subscriptions to David Fox,171 Silverleaf Lane, Islandia, NY 11749 USA.

Whispers is always looking for new writers to join our community.  Please send family friendly poems 20 lines or less to  Complete guidelines posted 1/21/2013.  Thank you to everyone who has already contributed to the site.

Ads are placed by the underlined names.  Whispers has not verified the accuracy of all the information. 

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Submission Guidelines

Thank you for considering Whispers for a place to share your writing.  The guidelines follow:

1.  Submissions of unpublished and previously published work are acceptable.  Please do not send quotes from others unless they are in the context of the piece submitted and that the original author is given credit.  It is up to the author to obtain permission if needed for reprints.  By submitting to Whispers, the writer is assuring that the work is his or her own.  Whispers reserves the right to delete any work that has been copied from another writer without credit or authorization.

2.  Send one of the three following:

    ---1 poem 20 lines or less

    ---up to 5 haiku/senryu (please make sure to clearly identify that separate poems are being submitted)

    ---up to 3 tanka (see above)

    ---for people that are not poets, 1 short paragraph of encouragement will be considered

Writers are eligible for publication every other month.

3.  You may include a bio of 4-5 lines written in third person style.  See “Living Wings” published January 15, 2013 for an example.  A bio is not necessary for publication.

4.  No profanity, erotica, violence or other derogatory writing will be accepted.

5.  Whispers reserves the right to select poetry based on the goal stated at the end of the guidelines.

6.  Spiritual poetry is welcomed but the editor would like to have a variety of pieces that will uplift and inspire readers.  Humor is appreciated.

7.  Children’s poetry is appreciated.  Parent permission is required.  Please email before sending.

8.  Poetry will be published along the left margin for consistency.  Please keep that in mind when submitting.

9.  Preferred method of submission is to send poetry as a works document or in the body of an email with your name and country.  Please email your submission to Karen O’Leary at  If you would rather submit by snail mail, please email Karen for her address.  You may email her with any questions you may have.

10.  I hope you also participate by commenting on others’ writing. 

In this challenging time for many, it is the hope that Whispers will connect people in a way that is supportive, encouraging and inspiring to others.  Thank you for considering being a part of this community.

Editor's Thoughts/Mosaic--Karen O'Leary--United States

Dear Writing Friends,

This has been an exciting month for Whispers, with over 6500 and a new one day high of over 650 views.  This is a tribute to the talented writers contributing their gift of words.  We have eight new poets in February.  Thank you to everyone that has promoted our online journal in any way.  It's a joy for me to see everyone getting comments.

We had a wonderful response to this month's activity.  Thank you, Brian Strand, for sharing your poetry form and for being this month's Activity Editor.  I would like to invite anyone that has an idea for a future activity to contact me.  Trying new things helps us grow as writers.

If you have not submitted yet or haven't shared a poem in awhile, I will be posting the Submission Guidelines later today.  Thank you to those that share poetry on a regular basis.  You are the backbone of our online journal/poetry community.  Whispers feels like a family to me.  It is a joy to work with so many talented people.

Warm regards,



pebbles arranged
in intricate patterns--
each unique hue contributing
its piece


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, 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.

Haiku--By Ron C. Moss--Australia

mountain tarn
white tea-tree blossom
on the wallaby bones

dry billabong
the colours of moonlight
in the flame trees

dog star . . .
a hammering goes on
in the darkness

old friends
mountain peaks reappear
in the fog

Sunday prayers
a pot of red geraniums
in the light

Ron C. Moss is a Tasmania visual artist, poet and lover of haiku. His poetry has won international awards and been translated into several languages. Ron's art is sold as limited edition-prints and originals. He has been featured in poetry journals and has designed several award winning poetry books.  Ron is a two time winner of the Haiku Society of America International renku competition, and he is a current member on the Haiku Society of America. Please check out Ron’s

Friday, February 27, 2015

Time--David Coon--United States


Time's turbulent thrust
torments the tempest
that throttles thoughts
throughout transient

Time's travesties travel through thickets
threading tapestries to tomorrow.

David (Dave) Coon has been sharing has poems on various social sites since 1997 and has always gone by the name of Nissmech.

The Love Letter--By Keith O. J. Hunt--Canada

The Love Letter

My dear, I shall meet thee in the summer of thy heart,
where we once walked head to each
elegant upon the world....
And had not a care but for little winds of love
winking there in the dreams of trees,
laying upon me to so delicately, tickle with your autumn hair,
always so soap-scented you
Touch me where I had not known
the ease of such wonder in your eyes,
splendor only for a great king ----
but I a hopeless romantic muse,
with little empty pockets blessed with thy precious petal,
am richer than any lord!
I shall wait for thee in our golden glade,
the heart which flows the waterfall....
by the dawn of your sweet embrace,
in the summer of thy heart,
I shall wait....

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.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Creature In The Night--By Kelly Deschler--United States

Creature In The Night

Where cold stars exist in the dark,
serene winds whisper to trees
and scarce human ears can listen,
lone songs wail in the distance
in frozen moon's silver spotlight,
a mark left where paws had paused.

Kelly Deschler lives in Big Falls, Wisconsin. Her poem, “Creature In The Night“, was inspired by actual events that took place this winter when she discovered that a wolf had wandered near her home.

Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Michael Todd and Nicole Neal--United States

Remember (Mimi's Song)

By Michael Todd and Nicole Neal

I think I'd like to look back, but not sure how far I need to go.
To a place in time, you were just mine, that's all I needed to know.

What got in the way, perfect plans we made, just to roll with the flow.
For a time, you were the light of my life. Didn't we bask in the glow?

Remember a time, our greatest obstacle was being too young, some said?
Maybe, they knew then what we could not see, facing a long road ahead.

I only saw pride and passion as what mattered in those days, instead
You were the means to a perfect end, maybe my sense of reason fled.

Remembering, as if yesterday, moments of being more than just anything.
We had so much to overcome. The goal stayed clear, always to that you cling.

Should it matter that we went as far as we did, a stone's throw away from eternity.
Yet for all that we put into this, it was harder than it ever had to be.

I never asked you why this ended. It almost seemed of little concern.
Maybe we were meant for more than what we had, lessons still yet to learn.

Could we not have stayed in this long forgotten dream, a queen to a king?
As your smile faded, I was left to watch you fly away, like a bird on the wing.

We couldn't prove them wrong, just once. That would have been too hard.
Instead, we folded at the bend, at last chance to hold all the cards.

I am no longer sure it was the right thing to do, letting you go that way.
You were left with no choice but to walk out of my life, nothing left to say.

No more perfect life to live, even as such. Without you, I'll move on.
To pretend you were never there, makes remembering harder. When you're gone.

Gone--By Linda Hurdwell--England


Footsteps trample through my heart
Grief runs along my veins
It seemed to end before the start
Death pulled the life line reins.

So much to say, so much to do
But little time was left
Death really didn’t have a clue
When he left me so bereft.

But he’s let a flutter touch my soul
Memories timidly show
Finally I creep toward a goal
Allowing hope to flow.

My loved one is now next door
In the shadows of the past
I wonder what is now in store?
As I let him go at last.

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, February 25, 2015

Haiku--By Maralee Gerke--United States

winter soil
welcomes rain-
I imagine daffodils

miniature hearts
in the snow-
my valentine from a mule deer

snow melt
on patterned linoleum
my stocking feet

winter evening-
my stone lantern
turbaned in snow

Maralee Gerke lives and writes in Madras, Oregon. She is and avid reader and gardener. She describes herself as a work in progress. Her poems have been published in Calyx, Exit Thirteen, Moonset, Bathtub Gin, Anthology, Nerve Cowboy, Avocet, and Tigers Eye. She has published two books of poems and has had poetry and prose accepted in several anthologies. Her work can be seen online at Shadow Poetry, Long Story Short, and Moontown CafĂ©. She recently recorded 4 poems for the Oregon Poetic Voices Project. They can be heard at One of her poems “Refuge”, was recently selected to be printed as a limited edition broadside by the Penland School of Crafts.

Take Time To:--By Annie Jenkin--England

Take Time To:

Watch a fly jump about on a floor,
Watch the ants industriously explore,
Watch a loose feather gently descend,
Watch how a breeze makes tall grasses bend,
Watch how the colour of flowers merge and blend,

Hear a honey bee searching for pollen,
Hear the sea gulls’ cry and commotion,
Hear a train leave the station,
Hear the water flow down a drain,
Hear a raindrop on a window pane.

Savour the taste of apple or pear,
Savour the smell of shampoo in hair,
Savour the rare sense of life being fair,
Savour the feeling of being able to care,
Savour the moment of a shared pleasure.

Feel the heat of the afternoon sun
Feel the satisfaction of a job well done,
Feel the sadness of those who are absent.
Feel the delight of giving a present,
Feel the warmth of a hand held tight.

Annie Jenkin lives in Plymouth, England. Having not written poetry for many years, Annie has returned to poetry writing with enthusiasm. Her writing explores several subject areas that are insightful, humorous but can also be sensitive.

A Day When Winter Said Goodbye--By Rick Parise--United States

A Day When Winter Said Goodbye

In the midst of morn she quietly rose
to greet the dawn of silent repose

She searched beyond the frozen hills
and through the bough's of crystal frills

She danced in dream as clouds rolled by
in hopes the sun would pierce the sky

As moments passed nil of light
the wind kicked up with all it's might

In tumbling turmoil the west winds raged
in fluttering beauty to turn the page

Within a breath a single sigh
the Winter wrath had waved goodbye

As sunlight burned of velvet white
upon her face a shaft of light...

Rick Parise, known as “A Pondering Poet”, is from the beautiful land of Salem, Oregon.  The main focus of his poetry is to take the reader to a meaningful, personal time in their lives, to a place where spirit's are touched and memories unwind. He hopes you enjoy his work. To Contact Rick please email him at

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Elly Wouterse--Netherlands and Victoria Anderson Throop--Alaska, United States

Triptych of an Iceberg*

Birth of an iceberg

By Elly Wouterse and Victoria Anderson Throop

frost kissed mountain
vanished in molecules
memories settle birthing
an iceberg
crystal clear

fragile hearts
broken blue
married to sea green
forever severed
from a glacial safety
mighty jagged crack
in the groin of the sea
shaking ships on the horizon of its wake

nature's power
all consuming peak of joy
off and away
in the highest moment of bliss
beauty yearns
for the sky inhales the blue rips free

with a shattering cry of joy
breaks into thousand pieces
bobbing ....
sedately.... out to sea....

*The rest of this Triptych will be published in March at Whispers.

The Crying Candle--By Jan Allison--United Kingdom

The Crying Candle

I called my son... he said you were fading
The candle seemed to call my name
I watched its brightly flickering flame
The light from it shone bright in the dark
I was hypnotised by its golden glow
The wax melted slowly, so slowly
Like creamy liquid tears running down the sides
Drip, drip, drip, a silent puddle formed
Slowly, oh so gradually over time the wick decreased
Almost like your life was ebbing away
Getting smaller and weaker every second
The candle flame started to dim
Flickering, dancing, flickering, dancing
Fighting to stay alive with every ounce of its strengthen
Finally it flickers for the final time
It gave its final breath
Leaving a wisp of smoke
I imagined it was your spirit rising through the air
Ascending towards heaven

Jan Allison is a relative newcomer to poetry. She didn’t start writing poetry until her husband was diagnosed with prostate cancer and underwent surgery at the end of 2013. She wrote her first poem ‘Splendid Isolation’ whilst he was in hospital. Since then has discovered a love of poetry and has written over 500 poems. Jan also wrote collaboratively with her writing partner Darren Watson under the name Jadazzle United.

Dreams, Thoughts and Moments--By Robert Hewett Sr.--United States

Dreams, Thoughts and Moments

Every fanciful dream I dream at night
has you safe in my arms holding me tight.
Every little thought I think each day
has your beautiful eyes looking my way.
Each little moment of my daily life,
I have happy thoughts of you as my wife.
My every heartbeat is for your love.
I sing with the raindrops sent from above.
But, alas, such deep love can never be;
that love would be strong as an oak tree.
Even roses don’t last, not even for me.
Dreams are just wishful thinking.
Some dreams just leave my heart sinking.
Thoughts are gone as quick as blinking.
Moments never stay around very long
So love of my life I will sing you a song.

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 ""

Monday, February 23, 2015

Empty Chambers--By Robert A. Dufresne--United States

Empty Chambers

…Here it is!

It’s so cold in here.
 But the walls are still soft;
  …and the ceiling is higher than I remember.

It feels so still and morose.
 Even my thoughts echo within.

I have not dropped in on this empty abode for a while.
    There seems never to be enough time…. Too busy.

Look here.. and there. What a mess !
   Never did clean it up after she left.

No wonder I never visit here .

    Wonder where she went
after leaving this empty, cavernous
heart of mine…

  It‘s so cold in here….

I’d better go now….
Lots to do..


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 .


Brian Strand, an accomplished writer, generously offered to be the activity editor for another wonderful opportunity for writers.  He invited poets to explore his Septimal form.  The criteria for the form follows--

The Septimal is a three line poem in seven syllables 3:3:1 (or 1:3:3) with an integral title on the theme. Irony, parody and humor are often underlying features.

I would like to thank Brian for selecting these poems for publication and all the contributors that participated in this activity.  It is a growing experience to try new things and a pleasure to see so many wonderful poems below.  I hope you enjoy them.

                                            --Karen O’Leary, Whispers’ Editor

Father’s Cane by Robert Poulin

in my hand
I feel his

Imp Poetry by Ralph Stott

devil’s in
the detail

Blue Planet by Rick Parise

Perfect sphere-

The Night was so Cold by Sara Kendrick

The hound dog
curled by the

Another Last Chance by Barbara Tate

hunter's moon
the lone wolf

Come Closer by Brian Strand

was Seurat
making a

Cheaper by the Dozen by Charlene McCutcheon

planning for

Glitter Heels by Peggy Dugan French

how i miss
the click and

Emergency by Beth Winchcombe

dial for an

Ferlemanism by Rebecca Ferleman

Hubby and
two twin kids

Rush Hour by Rick Parise

Racing thoughts-
stalled traffic

Sightseeing Trip by Elizabeth Howard

Old Smoky
covered in

Long Term by Jim Teeters

to keep you

Painted Ladies by Karen O’Leary

homes with quaint

Cake by Joe Maverick

Eggs breaking
white and gold..

Young McDonald by Ralph Stott

day he will
own a farm

Weed Flowers by Robert Poulin

they don't know
no one loves

Two Golden Rings by Barbara Tate

midnight rain

Iceberg by Rick Parise

Sinking boat-
killer shark

Their Twitter Account by Ralph Stott

soon made a
# of it

Conceptual Art by Brian Strand

beyond my

A Sparkling Pathway--By Ali Znaidi--Tunisia

A Sparkling Pathway

Seen at a distance,
this pathway seems full
of sparkling gravel.

Last night, I dreamt
that I was gleaning
sparkles from that
very long pathway.

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

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Haibun for Papa--By Carl "Papa" Palmer--United States

Haibun for Papa

Unable to remember what happened yesterday, recall a name, date or telephone number, he will tell again and again every embarrassing detail of an event that happened twenty years ago.

stories about mommy
when she was young
grand girls laugh

Carl "Papa" Palmer, retired Army, retired FAA, now just plain retired, lives in University Place, Washington. He has seven chapbooks and a contest winning poem riding buses somewhere in Seattle. Carl has been nominated for the Micro Award and Pushcart Prize.

MOTTO: Long Weekends Forever

Deep Inside--By Shirley Smothers--United States

Deep Inside

When I learned of my pregnancy
I burst with pride,
But then there was a pain
Deep inside.

The doctor informed me
The pregnancy had ended;
I felt my heart
Could never be mended.

The passage of time
has helped the pain subside,
But time to time, I shed a tear
Deep inside.

This child lives
in my heart,
I must confide,
Down deep inside.

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

Friday, February 20, 2015

The Lonely Spirit--By Terry O’Leary--France

The Lonely Spirit

Midst sweet perfume
    of youthful bloom,
        the lonely spirit wars
and often cries
    and sometimes dies
        in quest of her amour.

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

The Gift of Love--By Suzanne Clement--United States

The Gift of Love

O Lord, I ask I may not be
A stumbling block to those I see
As I live out my earthly life
In daylight hours or hours of night

And not be rude when I converse
By using fresh or hateful words
Or words that hurt or criticize
Or that will cause people to cry

Or do deeds that are bad to do
For that will not bring joy to you
But speak and act in ways of good
Since that is the way I should

Suzanne Clement is a writer from Dover, New Hampshire.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Old Rag Sonnet--By Robert A. Hall--United States

Old Rag Sonnet

A denim shirt that you have cast aside,
I know that I am frayed around the cuff,
A button gone, and I am worn enough
To make the mending hopeless, though you tried.
If I were jewelry or a fancy gown--
But faithful service never was the thing
Could make a shirt into a diamond ring,
So carelessly you smile, and put me down.

But you might put me in some corner drawer,
The sentimental way you'd save a friend,
For you might find some use for me again--
Wear me around the house, or mop the floor.
And I'd be handy wiping up the rain
That streaks like tears across your window pane.

Published in Share the Cup: Poetry of Love and Life by Robert A. Hall. Available on Amazon. Royalties go to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation

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: Royalties go to charity. He does the Old Jarhead blog.

Stargazer--By James Andrew Fraser--Scotland


Amidst greenery
Such beauty abounds in bloom
Reaching to the sky
This Oriental Lily
Shows gorgeous colouration

James Andrew Fraser resides in Inverness, the Capital of the Highlands, Bonnie Scotland. He is married with four lovely children. Andrew, Steven, Rebekah and Liam. James has been writing poetry for about four years. He is a member of Poetry Soup where many poets have allowed his work to prosper, especially Carolyn Devonshire who has guided and inspired him.  His hobbies apart from poetry are music, art and football. You can read more of his poetry at his website 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Bluebird Flew Away--By Gerald Heyder--United States

The Bluebird Flew Away

Gone is lilac scented breeze
along with summer’s glow,
no symphony of autumn leaves
just silent winter snow.
Gone is hearty party joke
replaced by tears of pain;
a heavy wooden oxen yoke
in lieu of locket chain.
Gone is the photo of day
through negative of the night,
darkness of distant stars
due to pale moonlight.
Gone are the yesterdays
with tomorrows yet to be,
behind diaphanous veil
they slip into eternity.
Lost are youthful dreams
through innocence that went astray;
gone is nature’s sweetest song--
the bluebird flew away.

Gerald Heyder is a published poet from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

I Do Not Know You--By Jim Teeters--United States

I Do Not Know You

I do not know you
Slum of Santiago, Chile

I see your sweltering roofs
of corrugated metal
as we speed by in our
air conditioned airport shuttle

I do not see your dwellers
who I imagine go off to
richer streets to beg, perform, or sell

Perhaps the juggler of three limes
blocking the traffic lane, who hopes
for an appreciative payment
is from you
or maybe the man
soliciting to wash windshields
in the busy intersection is too

I only can guess for I am now flying
over the snowcapped Andes
cup of wine on my tray table

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.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

a water paradox--By Frances Simwinga--Malawi

a water paradox

Time and again I like to sip
a little of you, feel you drip down
my throat, leaving a stain on my lip,
that way my life you humbly sustain.

You are seen by many as simple
and in sync with life when fairly ample,
but the blight you possess when in excess,
or when you are scarce scant and erratic,
has unveiled the animosity in you.

You have hailed down untold grief
on my kids, my wife and my life;
my garden wilting at your absence,
or being swept away at your abundance,
sparing no elite, no destitute,
yet time and again I still need you closer.

Frances Simwinga is a budding poet. He has discovered healing in poetry. He happens to be biased towards slam poetry but greatly enjoys the written word too. This poem was inspired by the floods that have caused havoc to human life recently in the southern parts of the Malawi.

In Memoriam--By Ronald Grognet--United States

In Memoriam

friend’s untimely death—
    a perfect winter storm

sudden lethal stroke--
   survivors speechless

hospice was set up---
I thought they would stay longer

her haunting fragrance lingers---
    even-though she's gone

the eerie quiet---
   of a cold misty morning

Ronald Grognet is a retired Clinical Psychologist who practiced private individual and family therapy for thirty-five years. He lived and worked in Washington D.C., and Sarasota, FL before retiring in New Orleans to be close to his grandsons. Besides his volunteer time spent on disaster assignments for the Red Cross, he fills his time devoted to haiku poetry. His interest in poetry came as a gift in retirement. Reading an article about haiku filled with many examples, he recognized its similarity to the reflective stance of the meditation he practiced for many years. He has vigorously pursued its study for the last two years, personally experiencing its healing and enlightening qualities.