Monday, May 27, 2013

Question Mark--By Shannon O'Leary--United States

Question Mark

I think I am like this question mark
not knowing which way to go;
what is my spark?
Life can be confusing, tumbling,
and circling in my mind.
Never knowing what to find.
So when I see this question mark,
I see me.

Shannon O'Leary is a first grade teacher from Fargo, North Dakota. She provides creative writing activities to inspire her students. Her first-graders have published poems in a local newspaper. Shannon has published her own poetry in the following venues, Sketchbook, Snippets and Smile. She is the daughter of our editor.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Haiku--By Robert Epstein--United States

zen garden
stands out

~ 2007 Haiku Society of America Members' Anthology

checkout time is noon
I turn in the key
and everything else

~ Checkout Time is Noon: Death Awareness Haiku, 2012

cathedral quiet
in the closet
where she hides

~ Modern Haiku, 43.3, Autumn 2012

in pine shade
for a while I forget
this life will end

~ moonset journal, #7, 2010

ragged clouds
what it feels like
to hold a rake

~ The Heron's Nest, #12, 2010

Robert Epstein is a licensed psychologist who lives and works in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has edited several anthologies: The Breath of Surrender: A Collection of Recovery-Oriented Haiku; Dreams Wander On: Contemporary Poems of Death Awareness; and The Temple Bell Stops: Contemporary Poems of Grief, Loss and Change; as well as two books of haiku: Checkout Time is Noon: Death Awareness Haiku; and A Walk Around Spring Lake: Haiku.  He is currently editing another anthology, The Sacred in Contemporary Haiku, due to be released in 2014.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Spring Paintings by Kinkade--By David Austin--United States

Spring Paintings by Kinkade

purple sky at eve
a log cottage by a stream
with windows aglow

after Vietnam
my old familiar path home
lights and chimney smoke

lilac carnival
decorates each city block
it must be springtime

a splendid stone bridge
arched over a placid flow
june night memory

blue wildwood steeple
with many a wagon track
june morning service

dusk in the city
rain soaked streets thrusting up light,
cars, shops and people

David Austin is professional violinist and teacher, who communicates through poetry. He has played with the Cincinnati Symphony, taught at Colorado College and various public schools. He is a published author, who has been writing poetry and novels for over 40 years. His pride and joy is a shelter in which he feeds and cares for animals.  David is a member of Poetry Soup.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Still - Again - I See--By Rick Parise--United States

Still - Again - I See

haunted by my haunts
so long ago, I look deep
before the morning
to let it go forever
the pain of remembering

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

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Limerick--By Jean Calkins--United States


The question has baffled us all;
I find myself climbing the wall.
The answer, it seems,
Must come in my dreams,
For my brain cells have slowed to a crawl.

Jean, at 80, has been writing poems since she was 18. For 25 years she published a popular poetry quarterly of up to 100 pages, with a subscribership of nearly 500. Illness in 1986 ended the magazine. She currently publishes, by email, a 2-page monthly of clean humor. Contact her at

Monday, May 13, 2013

Thoughts on Paper--By Karen O'Leary--United States

Thoughts on Paper

Writing is about connecting
and vision for a new way.
It longs to reach beyond
the limits of yesterday,
seeking paths to tomorrow.
It links people from all walks
in a way that challenges
yet invokes a harmony
not often captured in today.

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.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Spring Dance--By Dena M. Ferrari--United States

Spring Dance

Spring has arrived let’s sing dance and play
Climb aboard the world we call a stage
Don’t trip, don’t slip, don’t fall
Don’t come to a slow crawl
Dance with the fae on the new spring day

Ink flows in Dena's blood and spills its words upon the Parchment of Time...
Writing since four years old, she has a lifetime of created works in many genres.
Inspiration in Nature draws more work as Dena's Muse is relentless. Thank you Karen for having this work displayed....

Friday, May 10, 2013

Sage Advice From George Washington--By Robert L. Hinshaw--United States

Sage Advice From George Washington

"Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your reputation!"

This sage advice was offered by George Washington, the father of our nation!

'Tis but one of many wise adages to us he did bequeath.

Can be said that truer words were never spoken through falser teeth!

Robert L. Hinshaw served 30 years in the Air Force retiring in 1978 in the grade of Chief Master Sergeant. He began writing poetry in 2002 at age 72 and has composed over 1100 poems.

Tears of Joy--By Maurice J. Reynolds--United States

Tears of Joy

To cry.
Let my eyes fill with tears,
For tears help to cleanse the soul from hurt and pain.
Tears of joy flow like a river running down stream.

To laugh and then to cry some more.
Leave my tears alone.
When I was lost and confused,
Tears of joy came to me by way of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

To shout and yet cry some more.
No more bound by sin and wickedness.
It’s my prerogative if I want to cry
Tears of joy.

My tears and I will release them as often as I please, because
They belong to me.
Not those of agony,
But those of joy and happiness.

Praising God comes through my tears of joy,
Healing through my tears of joy,
Deliverance through my tears of joy,
Thankful for my tears of joy.

Maurice J. Reynolds is a freelance writer who has had material published in various publications.  He is the owner of To God be the Glory! Publications, a literary ministry that produces the poetry publication Creative Inspirations.  More information can be found at:

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Distance--By Ranu Uniyal--India


Tomorrow. You promised.
And I almost cried
needled anxiety, prodding fingers
Those between us smiled.
Caressing memories
of frayed dandelions.
We raced against ties.
Feelings. Wrapped up emotions.

A toast to a lost friendship.
He opened a bottle of cognac.

Inchoate and sullen like a lover’s kiss
something between us walked out
And mingled
with the banquet crowd.

I longed to crush
your where abouts.

Ranu Uniyal lives in Lucknow, India. Poetry keeps her going and is as much a part of her life as her love for humanity. She is a Professor of English at Lucknow University. She has two books of poems: Across the Divide and December Poems to her credit.

Ostrich--By Arthur C. Ford, Sr.--United States


I demand a re-evolution, Darwin!!
Why have You forsaken me-Divinity?
Other birds can fly!

Arthur C. Ford, Sr. is originally from New Orleans, LA., where he graduated from Southern University (S.U.N.O.). He studied Mathematics, Physics, Creative Writing(Poetry) and was a member of The Drama Society. He has traveled to 45 States, lived in Europe (Bruxelles, Belgium), and more recently spent 30 days doing missionary work and traveling throughout the country of India. He publishes a quarterly
poetry newsletter entitled THE PEN(The Poetry Explosion Newsletter), and resides in Pittsburgh, PA.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Van Gogh Died Broke Too--By Richard Sponaugle--United States

Van Gogh Died Broke Too

Editors keep rejecting me.
But someday it’s to be,
that I’ll be in Shakespeare’s stead;
appreciated only when dead.
Though publishers keep saying no,
I’ll be Edgar Alan Poe;
All my countless years of slavin’
will pen something like The Raven,
a posthumous masterpiece.
This earthly mission won’t cease.

Richard Sponaugle was born 4-20-60 in Maryland and raised in Northern Virginia.  He received a BA from George Mason University.  A prolific poet and songwriter, he has been published in many venues. 

The Wakes Week, implemented in 1907--By Jack Horne--England

The Wakes Week, implemented in 1907

The busy time is winding down,
Our holiday is drawing near,
The mills and factories will close;
Oh, what a joyous time each year.

Just for a week we get to rest,
(Although we won’t get any pay),
And stroll the sands of Blackpool beach:
A week to live and love and play.

Yet all too soon the week will pass,
And work will fill our days again;
But till that time, let’s live it up,
With joie de vivre, come sun or rain.

Jack Horne enjoys reading and writing poetry.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Off Key Wings of Song--By Suzanne Delaney--United States

Off Key Wings of Song

With blundering fingers- an off key funk-
a hangover disguised with natty turnarounds
as he plays on

Like a truth wheel his cosmos spun-
the light extinguished, that she,
like a night moth clung to

Good universe- there is still music,
mingling life with fears but there are
off - key wings of song and flights of fancy
that she might still return

Above his heart that just went- 'clunk'
soft fingers soar

Suzanne Delaney is a retired Registered Nurse. A resident of Hawaii, USA she was born in Tasmania. She now has time to pursue her passion for writing poetry, creating collages and for traveling.

York In Bloom--By Joann Grisetti--United States

York In Bloom

blustery wind
pushes round Clifford’s Tower
almost a spring day
daffodils nod to the sky
“Here sun, have some yellow”

Joann Grisetti has been writing for 45 years. She is a retired teacher from Florida. She receives encouragement from her daughter and has recently enrolled in a creative writing workshop. She is a member of Poetry Soup. You can read more of her poetry there.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Soul--By Barbara Siekierski--United States


Wisdom comes from the heart…

               teaches the soul

Barbara Siekierski is a writer from Swarthmore, PA.

Poets words, like rivers flow (Triodyne)--By Yancy Dalton--United States

Poets words, like rivers flow (Triodyne)

Oh the commonality of poets and rivers
Flowing through scenes of awesome beauty
Scribing a never ending path for all to see

Yancy Lee Dalton is a published writer from Colorado.

Poem by Mirza Ghalib--Translation by Sunil Uniyal--India

Urdu original poem by Mirza Ghalib

Wo firaaq aur wo visaal kahaan?
Wo shabo-rozo-maaho-saal kahaan?

Fursat-e-kaarobaar-e-shauq kise?
zauqe-nazzaaraa-e-jamaal kahaan?

Dil to dil wo dimaagh bhi na rahaa,
Shaure saudaa-e-khatto-khaal kahaan?

Aisaa aasaan nahin lahoo ronaa,
Dil me taaqat jigar men haal kahaan?

Hamse chhootaa kimaar-khaanaa-e-ishq,
Vaan jo jaaven, girah men maal kahaan?

Fiqre-duniyaan men sar khapaataa hoon,
Main kahaan aur ye bawaal kahaan?

Muzmmahil ho gaye kuwaa Ghalib,
Wo anaasir men aitdaal kahaan?

Translation by Sunil Uniyal, India

Where are those meetings and those partings now?
Where are those days and nights, months and years now?

Who has time to fall in love nowadays,
Where's delight in gazing at the Beauty now?

That heart is gone, that mind is no more, too,
Where's imagination's revelry now?

The tears of blood are indeed hard to weep,
Where's the strength in heart and liver now?

Love's gambling house is out of reach,
Where are the pennies in my pocket now?

I'm troubled by the concerns of the world,
Where do I fit into this pell-mell now?

All the power, Ghalib, I have lost,
Where's harmony in my elements now?

Sunil Uniyal ( born 1953-) is a poet and translator based in New Delhi, India. He has been writing haiku and poems for over thirty years and many of these have appeared in e-journals like Muse India, Kritya, AHA Poetry, Poetica Magazine, Sketch Book, Notes From the Gean, A Hundred Gourds and Haiku Dreaming Australia. His work in translation includes, 'The Target is Behind the Sky -Fifty Poems of Kabir', brought out by the Low Price Publications, Delhi in February 2012.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

A Lady Unknown--By Jan Oskar Hansen--Portugal

A Lady Unknown

I have a photo of my grandmother, she looks so
young and beautiful, her hair glossy, but there
is a paleness about her and a sadness in her eyes,
It is a death has sought her out cast a net of illness
around her, ready to haul its catch and devour her.

I know little about her, where she came from, was
she an angel that found its way to my grandfather’s
heart, one who became human out of love but knew
she could not stay? When I look in the mirror and ask,
"Have I got your eyes?" She looks back at me in grief.

I say I know who you are, the lost, daughter of Manus
the one he expelled because he found kindness in
your heart? Her eyes, deep as mystery lakes in May,
look at me in silence, but I do see a flicker of an ironic
smile… or was she the lady of the camellias?

I see tears swell in her eyes, depression grips me
as heart ache of love betrayed, shall I ever know
who she is… this woman who bore five children
and died at 27. It can’t be so there must be more,
not only this forbidding silence of the untold.

Jan Oskar Hansen is a published poet from Portugal.

Heaven's Song--By Christine Tate--United States

Heaven's Song

We love the sound when church bells ring
and the hymns a choir sings;
chirping birds put us at ease
as do wind chimes in the breeze.
but none compare to God's melody
composed in perfect harmony...
God's soothing voice can be heard
through His everlasting word.
celestial music calms the spirit
and uplifts those who hear it.
let's give thanks for heaven's song
that surrounds us all day long!

Christine Tate lives in New Jersey. She is the mother of three married sons and has eight grandchildren. She started writing inspirational poetry in 1994, and is blessed to encourage others and honor the Lord. She was widowed in 2007 and met her new husband Artie, a widower, in the nursing facility where their late mothers resided. They've been happily married for 2 1/2 years. Since neither of them ever expected to marry again, they consider it a "divine appt."

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Transubstantiation--By Kathryn McLoughlin Collins--United States


eyes on the runners
sweat to blood
on the sidelines
Patriot’s Day

Born in 1945, Kathryn Collins is a native New Yorker now living in Connecticut whose works have been described as “a gentle sort of poetry” by the editor of her first book No Need for Breadcrumbs, published by BeWrite Books, 2004. Her work has also appeared in numerous anthologies. Inspired by her beloved grandmother, she developed a great love of poetry at an early age and has been writing for 20 years.

Haunted--By Jan Henson--Turkey


Haunted by ghostly visions of the past
Honeyed passions that couldn’t last
Loving promises fell from gilded lips
Envisioned, not, love’s soft slips
Living in a carefree bubble
Unaware of tomorrow’s trouble

Haunted by phantoms of the sterile now
Actualities seem false somehow
Emptiness of the heart’s tender passion
Has become the day’s only fashion
Cares weigh heavy upon the soul
Wishing one day to become whole

Haunted by spectres of future worry
To be filled with the solemn word sorry
Waiting for the cold hand of death’s dark touch
The life didn’t seem to count for much
The world entered into all alone
Left the same ....covered with a stone

Jan Henson has written poetry for a few years. She finds it an enjoyable experience.  When she attended school in England (in the ‘50’s) poetry seemed such a dry medium and she wasn’t all that impressed.  After school, she became a hairdresser and continued the profession after her marriage and birth of her four children.  When her youngest was three, she started working nights at a nursing home.  She realized her passion for the profession and became a nurse.  She worked in the healthcare industry for 20 years.  After her children were grown, she retired to Turkey where she currently lives.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Waking April--By Sandra Stefanowich--Canada

Waking April

On a cold day under misty blue-gray skies
darkened clouds moodily pass each other by.
Seasoned tree tops shiver on the landscape
in the distance majestic deer glide upon the wind.
Winter shakes a disheveled April from her sleep
rising she tears at the old man's tattered coat.
Turning the old man howls at her in a cold rage
April cowers in fear, crying she runs and hides.
Lifting her up in a whirlwind before his aging eyes
"no need to cry" he gently says and disappears.

Sandra Stefanowich is from Ontario.

A Final Plea--By Carolyn Devonshire--United States

A Final Plea

I wonder if you can hear my cries.
With tear-filled eyes I look to the skies.
There’s no response; something inside dies.

I understand others have trouble;
life in pieces, I sort through rubble
and cast prayers aloft in hope’s bubble.

I meditate on my past mistakes
over sins committed, my heart aches.
Please listen, dear Lord, as my faith shakes.

I contemplate harm I’ve done others,
those I call my sisters and brothers,
as the hope within me now smothers

I stand in awe of Your great power -
and cast prayers aloft in hope’s bubble.
Please save this wretch in her last hour.

Carolyn Devonshire is from Ormond Beach, Florida

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Nature’s Intoxicating Songs and Sights--By Ndaba Sibanda--Saudi Arabia

Nature’s Intoxicating Songs and Sights

I just like  to stray into the forest each time l visit the countryside
How I like to immerse myself into its thickness and feel the
awesomeness of Mother Nature surge into my veins

The proximity to a life undiluted intoxicates my spirits
I heed the birds’ advice as they sing their happy
harmonies in their charming and chirping ways

Their serenading expertly makes love to my eardrums
I can’t tell you how the creepy reptiles wow me
to no end as they wiggle and  jiggle  in their
amazing fashion to their hazy habitats

I marvel at the beauty of vegetation
and condemn deforestation
in the strongest possible

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".

A Piece of the Puzzle--By Rhoda Galgiani--United States

A Piece of the Puzzle

The warmth of a winter’s sun
comforts the cockles of ones heart as
they lean into the rays of splendor

A spray of moisture touches their cheek
bringing one to a reality of life’s movement
figures gliding to and fro with a whisk of urgency

Holding on to eternal comforts woven within
carefully placed deep inside the human coils
the movement is gulped to be silently saved

A moment of satisfaction grasps the event
urging a joyful acknowledgement to another as the
passerby rushes to live a moment longer capturing…

a piece of the puzzle in life

Rhoda Galgiani is a published Poet and Author of two books, Expressions from the Inside Out and No Snow for Johnny, A Child’s Story. Rhoda is a retired senior that delights in maintaining her own website entitled Expressions Poetry Journal, established in 2009, which is dedicated to the world of poetry and the love of animals. You may view her work on her website at

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Time Out--By Helen Dowd--Canada

Time Out

Have you not seen how peacefully the fish swim in a pond?
Or watched a bird soar oh, so high, free in its world beyond?
Have you not studied how a cloud drifts gently in the sky?
Or watched a seagull on a wave glide silently on by?
If not, then take a minute from your busy life to see
how things in nature seem to flow. They happen just to BE.

Just take time out to have a look. Observe the world anew.
Become as little children. Inspect their point of view.
A little girl will pack a flower, or watch an ant pass by.
A little boy will hold a frog, and look him in the eye.
To children everything is fresh. It's something grand and new.
So do take time to see God's world as little people do.

Helen Dowd enjoys spending time at her computer, along side her husband of 55 years, writing poetry, story poems, stories about pets and life in general, as well as inspirational and Bible stories. She is a caregiver for her husband and sister, two dogs, three cats and 2 Oranda fish…Email address:

(haiku/tanka/dodoitsu)--By Andrea Dietrich--United States

two dolphins swimming
an endless sea before them. . . .
and love knows no bounds

always together
the dolphins follow instinct
but fun times ensue. . . .
frolicking in rhythmic waves
they leap up to catch sun's rays

splendid torpedo bodies
gliding gracefully along
as their world mirrors blue sky. . . .
poetry flowing

Andrea Dietrich grew up in Iowa and now resides in Utah with a spouse and two cats. She has two grown children and six grandchildren. Having graduated BYU with a Spanish major/ESL minor, she has spent most of her adult life teaching. It wasn't until 2000 that she began writing in earnest and discovering her "niche" as a writer of lyrical poetry. The internet opened up a new world for her, and she has spent nearly a decade now participating in poetry clubs, acting as a judge of poetry contests for various magazines and for the website Shadow Poetry.


It is a pleasure to share the first Whispers monthly ad column.  Thank you to those that have submitted accomplishments and publication opportunities.  Please drop by to congratulate them and check out the information below.  Those that have placed ads are welcome to add additional information in the comments section.  People having questions or comments, may use the comment section or contact the writers/editors at websites or email addresses provided.  (Deadline for June ad column is May 25)


Patricia Nolan announces the release of her latest book Western Brushstrokes, a collection of haiku and Japanese ink art. Contact: or the book may seen at and ordered from:

Ndaba Sibanda released a book of poetry titled The Dead Is Sobbing. More information regarding the book is available on: and on  Feel free to contact the poet at: loveoclockn@gmail

Rhoda Galgiani, a published poet, has two books available, Expressions from the Inside Out and No Snow for Johnny, A Child’s Story, available at and You may visit her website Expressions Poetry Journal at:
for more information.


Arthur C. Ford, poet/editor of "The Pen"(Poetry Newsletter) is looking for new subscribers and submissions. See information
(click on guidelines).

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

Karen O’Leary is seeking lanterne poems for possible publication in Creative Inspirations.  Please email them to   Please send only single stanza poems due to space limitations by May 29 for consideration.  For all other submissions to Creative Inspirations see the above ad.

Patricia Farnsworth-Simpson is seeking metaphoric poetry for a new website feature at  Please email your submissions to with Metaphoric Poem in the subject box.

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.