Friday, March 31, 2017

Editor's Thoughts/Poetry for Thought--By Karen O'Leary--United States

Dear Whispers’ Friends,

I look forward to these end of the month opportunities to share with you my gratitude for all the support, inspiration and kindness you share with me and others.  Whispers is a tapestry of many over these last four years.  Some come for a season, others have shared words for the duration of our flowing journey. Each one of you is woven into the fabric of our family, a timeless celebration of words.

Poetry for Thought

Petals of ideas
On branches of verse
Entwining into poems
That flower with words
Rich, creative writing
Yields artistic views

Flowing with lines
Our kaleidoscope of thoughts
Reach out from our cores

The blossoms of souls
Hues alive with imagery
Opening windows of hearts
Unveiling moments of magic
Glimpses of journeys
Heartfelt messages, too
The gift of words

And so today, we celebrate this time, this season searching for a way to lift others up in this challenging world.  Bringing problems to light and fostering a greater understanding of the each other reaches beyond borders with the gift of hope

Blessings always,

Karen O’Leary
Your Whispers’ Editor

When desires end--By Dr. Upma A. Sharma--India

When desires end

An emptiness to my soul stings,
And treasured memories now haunt,
Heartache rhymes with mood swings,
As tears of grief constantly flaunt,
Tranquil in veins lays all my want.

Blooms of spring are now history,
Vibrant autumn blown by breeze,
Echoes and reflections end in mystery,
As the golden moments with time freeze,
Feelings of hurt can anyone squeeze?

Those rosy paints that glowed in grace,
Sprouts of depression could not defend,
And ate throbbing hues to minutest trace,
A final point where all desires end,
Till body and soul advent an eternal blend.

Passion for poetry can turn anyone crazy, Dr. Upma A. Sharma has proved this so well. She finds time from her busy schedule to satiate her appetite for words, words that rhyme with her heart. She feels that nothing in this world happens without a reason and so is poetry. This indeed is a purposeful expression of emotions and thoughts that are well oxygenated before putting them into circulation, and positive words certainly are a way to serenity. 

Her Immortal Sadness--By Suzanne Delaney--United States

Her Immortal Sadness

There is no drama in a robot’s day.
Often - I saw her through an open doorway,
practical, driven, and pre-programmed,
simply staring, in a shaft of filtered sunlight-
robotic and never choosing, her haloed hair
and, sometimes, anything including, how to walk,
or, her expressions, so often - caught a whiff of bourbon.

We lose surprise in what’s predictable;
a bunch of red plastic roses on a round table.
Always, I imagined that she choked back tears
but never saw them, and she never moved position. 
We press the buttons and the duties execute themselves.

Was that a glimpse I caught of her immortal sadness? 
Mechanical, dependable - a sodden handkerchief, 
wrung in tribute to her lost love.

Suzanne Delaney is a retired Registered Nurse.  Born in Tasmania, Australia she is now residing in North Carolina, USA. She has a fond passion for writing poetry, creating mixed media collages, and for traveling.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Resurrection Song--By Molly Moore--United States

Resurrection Song

A soft, subtle music gently drifts
Through the chilly April air,
Catching my attention as it uplifts
My awareness to places where

An elegant symphony is playing
On this sunny Easter morn.
To my straining ears it's sweetly saying
That the earth it wishes to adorn

With its melody of hope and renewal
As it tinkles a tiny bluebell
And sounds the note of a magnolia jewel
With a message it seeks to tell

Through the golden voices of daffodils,
The red tulips in colorful choir,
And the cherry tree blossoms' fluffy frills
That sing out their ardent desire

That all rise up and join today
Their song of resurrection.
Humanity choosing a peaceful way
Can change our world's direction.

Molly Moore returned to Hawaii after completing her nursing education in Seattle, Washington. 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.

The Book of Love – a Wedding Prayer--By Andrea Dietrich--United States

The Book of Love – a Wedding Prayer

See it there
in virgin perfection.
Open its pages.
They are so white
that they radiate light.

See the magic pen
sitting by the book
meant just for two.

Each of you - together -
Reflect the pages’ light!
Then with the pen,
you may write
your beautiful life,
for this is
the Book of Love.

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.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A Prayer of Hope--By Patricia Ann Farnsworth-Simpson--Canary Islands

A Prayer of Hope

What-ere maybe I think of thee
And I pray my love is felt
For you have always given me
A real good hand dealt

Across the miles you’ve been happy to share
Inspiration for poets everywhere
If a phrase came you let it flow
To inspire others with a glow

Now in your need comfort we send
So you’ve strength needed to fight
All pain and hardship found in life
For inspiration not to blight

Putting pen to paper does bring strength
When expressing self at length
It helps us come to terms and cope
When we write a prayer of hope

Patricia Ann Farnsworth-Simpson is a coal miner’s daughter, the only girl among 6 lads. A young mother to a son, she became a widow before she turned 18. Patricia, then, married her childhood sweetheart who fathered her lovely son and two wonderful daughters. Her children encouraged her to pursue her own talents. After 51 years of marriage, she became a widow again recently. She fills her time with poetry, helping others whenever she can.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Two Trees--By Yvonne Sparkes--England

Two Trees

I saw two trees in fond embrace,
Their trunks entwined and interlaced,
They have been so long in fixed abode,
They had fused together, and it showed.
As if the very hand of time, 
Stood still, with picture so sublime.
A frame within my memory,
A pure delight and joy to see.
This brought to mind a marriage when,
Two people vowed to be akin
And sometimes life would draw them thus,
Or part their ways without a fuss.
But now and then, occasionally,
They would fuse together as the tree.
It is then they weathered every storm,
Though life hurled problems, caused no harm.
As joined together hearts and minds,
Embraced the years and intertwined.

Born on Feb. 27, 1940 in Barkingside, Essex, England, Yvonne Sparkes, immigrated to New York in April, 1948 with her parents.  She now resides in Chelmsford, Essex and has two sons.  She has a book published by Cyberwit called Captured Images. A writer for many years, Yvonne has been published in Israel, Germany, France, Australia, America, and Britain.  She has read her poetry in public at Church and Knockout Competitions. Her hobbies are travel, the arts, reading, hiking, taking her Scottish Terrier for walks, and spending time with family and friends.

Learning Preferences--By Shannon O'Leary--United States

Learning Preferences

Learners diverse
Educators be ready
Actively engage
Really must think
Not all learn the same
It’s meeting students’ needs
Noticing and embracing all
Going the extra mile

Preparing hands-on lessons
Real life experiences
Extra practice
Finding what works
Expecting all students to succeed
Realizing potential
Each student matters
New interventions
Communicating

Shannon O'Leary is an elementary educator from Fargo, North Dakota. She completed her masters degree last year. She teaches at Holy Spirit Elementary School. Her poetry has been published in the following venues, Sketchbook, Snippets, Whispers and Smile. She is the daughter of our editor.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Haiku--By John McDonald--Scotland

bomb site
...always
the singing flies
___________

Christmas card
from the Holy Land -
they've coloured the snow red

two dead crows -
the raised chalice
of their empty nest
___________

snagged
on the barbed wire
wool and wind
___________

Aleppo flattened -
my neighbour whines
over a bee sting
___________

John McDonald is a retired stone-mason who came to haiku in the mid-nineties. He fell in love with the genre immediately. Being a writer in the Scots language this genre fitted so well with Scots: a language steeped in rural life and having a natural succinctness to it. John has his own blog in Scots, with English versions: http://zenspeug.blogspot.com  He enjoys being involved in translations, working with the very fine Irish poet Gabriel Rosenstock on various ventures, the most recent being translations into Irish and Scots of the great haiku poet Buson: Moon over Tagoto and has appeared in many anthologies.

Under This Weeping Tree--By Julie Petersen--United States

Under This Weeping Tree

Standing under this weeping tree
Hearing raindrops fall on golden leaves
Whispers from your heart to mine
Trickles of love upon my face

A smile grows with drizzling drops
Looking up into the storm
Seeing your face within the tree
Joy cleansed tears falling on me

Golden and green swaying breeze
Waving, beckoning, mesmerizing colors
Touching, tapping, reaching down
Pulling me up into your arms

Your glow, your smile, your gentle sound
Embracing quietly, attentive, true
Eyes closing gently
Feeling you

Julie Petersen is a poet and amateur photographer. Her work has been published in Tuck MagazineIndiana Voice Journal, the Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze anthology, which can be purchased on Amazon, and will soon be published in the Dandelion in a Vase of Roses anthology. Julie is planning to release her first chap book of poetry in the near future. Her writer page can be found on Facebook.

Shoreline--By Paul Callus--Malta

Shoreline
(Common Meter Stanza)

The ocean waves come rolling in
There’s not a soul in sight
With heaving breath they break on shore
And burst in brilliant white.

The sound of wind is in the air
The jutting rocks stretch high
Tall redwood trees defiant stand
So tough, and yet they sigh.

Paul Callus is a Maltese author who writes both in Maltese and English. He has contributed to several anthologies. Apart from poetry he writes lyrics for songs and has published two books, one a story book aimed at children (related to his experience as a teacher) and a historical book based on research.

Friday, March 24, 2017

In Memory with Love--Beth Winchcombe--October 2, 2015--England

Uncontrollable

Why are we drawn
towards the ocean?
Liken to human beings,
it has life
energy   power       
moods

Gazing at the horizon
as far as the eye can see
a vast expanse of blue
peppered   twinkling
on a CALM day

Waves crashing
against the shore                    
consumed with ANGER

Neptune failed
when he attempted
to rule the waves

Just as human beings
the sea has a mind...
...of it's own

Dear Whispers' Family,

It is a pleasure to share another poem in tribute to Beth. Sadly, we said good-bye to her in October 2015.  Beth embraced the Whispers community, supporting and caring about others with her kind heart.  She was a blessing in my life.  Beth shared her gift of words for monthly activities, collaborative poems, individual poems, and uplifting comments for other writers. She was our September 2015 Poet of the Month, an honor she richly deserved. She touched my heart. Thank you, to her husband, Geoff, and Jack Horne for allowing me the honor of publishing this poem.      –Karen O’Leary, Editor

Moments...--By Marilyn Ward--United Kingdom

the farmers field 
a kite looks for movement 
from the scarecrow
____________

rough
his hands
hold me gently
____________

an umbrian breeze 
swishes the downy tendrils 
of my grandpa's beard 
____________

Marilyn Ward is a 62-year-old grandmother, who from childhood loved words, the language did not matter, any words would do. For the last two years, these words have been turned into poems. Her favourite form being haiku--brief, beautiful, perfectly selected, words. 

Poetry Moments--By Thomas Canull--United States

butterfly so frail
driven from your warm cocoon
reluctant beauty
______________

series of moments                                        
life is connected by time                              
vanishes like wind                                        
______________

flight of fantasy
hummingbirds dart to and fro                               
spring breezes return.
______________

Thomas Canull, in his early seventies, is a man of modest means who since his retirement has become a 'Haikuist  of note' with several of his poems being published in the Japanese on line media Asahi Shimbun. 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

My Birthday Gift--By Alice Couch--United States

My Birthday Gift

The buttons on my pants
pop off whenever I run.
Mom looks with dismay,
something must be done!

I use Grandpa’s suspenders
until he finds out.
I’m in trouble now,
hear Grandpa give a shout!

Grandpa yells, “I’ve lost weight,
and my jeans now fit.”
“So whoever has my suspenders,
you keep them as my gift!”

Alice Couch is a retired nurse’s aide who spends her days playing with her dogs, Nibby and Squeakie, while writing poetry for her three children, four grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and four great great-grandchildren. One of her stories published in Living with Children. She studied yoga and Buddhism and has a gift for blending the rational approach of the Western mind with the deep spiritual wisdom of the east in her poetry. She was named Noblesville’s Senior Poet Laureate in 2012.

To touch a poem--By Angelee Deodhar--India

To touch a poem

A deodar        blue in the sun
its cones warm in my hands

beneath the hemlock’s
                 spreading shade
smooth mushrooms
the colour of rabbit fur

the pine’s spiky, musky green

to the song of a warbler
past a weathered branch
of rain softened beech

I walk on dew wet grass

and with these words    
touch a poem.

(Previously published in first Katha e book of poems, 2010, The song is, in 2015 and in GlOMAG 2016)

Dr. Ms Angelee Deodhar, an eye surgeon by profession as well as a haiku poet, translator, and artist lives and works in Chandigarh, India. Her haiku, haibun and haiga have been published internationally in various books and journals, and her work can be viewed online too. She has edited three anthologies Journeys , Journeys 2015 and Journeys 2017, her latest anthology of International Haibun has just been released on Amazon. It has a total of 133 haibun, the work of 29 poets of international repute.

Poetry--By Mary A. Couch--United States

Poetry

Poems,
life’s essence
spoken, or written,
musical lyrics of tantalizing
words.

Mary A. Couch resides in Noblesville, Indiana, and works as an Admin Assistant for Taylored Systems, Inc. a local telecommunication company. She is the Premier Poet for the Indiana State Federation of Poetry Clubs, and she learned poetry from her mother and two grandmothers who were writers, artists and storytellers. She has been published in a variety of venues.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Dark and Light in Washington DC--By Isha Wagner--New Zealand


I wonder how long it will endure
This Vietnam memorial : will it expand or contract
Or explode into smithereens
A sentinel to something : dead soldiers
As I think of unborn children
Un-reaching to the ovum
Lost forever without knowing the
Distillation of life's variances

Moving to the Potamac River
Struck fiercely with November sun
Streaming diamonds of light
Making morbid thoughts obsolete
To this of nature's visions
For some small time
I know everything is alright

It's Thanksgiving here : crowds swarm
Hundreds like me amongst the trees looking down
On swift shining water

Back to the conscious self again
Mourning now without tears

Isha Wagner is a New Zealand poet. She has resided in many countries including Iceland, Libya, India, and Australia. She read some of her work at the VIII International Poetry Festival held in Granada, Nicaragua, in February 2012. She has had three collections of poetry published. 

A Decade Since Redeployment--By Arthur Turfa--United States

A Decade Since Redeployment

There are no hills; only distant ridges
evoke accustomed landscape.
Sun strikes harshly;
gradually the new places
become home as
a pair of shoes conforms
to the contours of the feet.

Morning flight from Rhein/Main
hurried hugs at Ft. Dix
changing into civvies.
Brief flight to new home:
reunion with family
flurry of interviews
careers resumed.

In time, peach orchards
tall pines in sandy soil
glimpse of distant peaks
and mustard-based barbecue
tie me to the new place.

Arthur Turfa is a transplanted Pennsylvanian who enjoys living in the Midlands of South Carolina. These places and others are reflected in his book, Places and Times, eLectio Publishing, 2015. His bivocationl career path has given him a wealth of experience which makes for a rich blend of poetry. Currently a moderator in three Google+ poetry communities, he is working on a second book.

Partners in Poetry--By Keith Dodrill--England and Hifsa Ashraf--Pakistan

Eternal Beauty
By Keith Dodrill, England and Hifsa Ashraf, Pakistan 

The eyes of my heart search for you
But still you are hidden from desire's gaze
And my utmost attention is not enough;
Yearning overwhelms me
I must break the cocoon of my thoughts
Ready for transformation of the 'Self '
To the next stage of ability

Now I conceive and capture you
Wander the shore of your tantalizing eyes
Looking for answers in the surf
Waiting for you to unfold for me;
My surrender is close
I am balanced on the horizon of our union
Our immortality

Dimensions converge
Your beauty is everywhere
And I feel the petal-soft skin of your Being;
Your smile dives into me
Dissolves within my flesh
And there is such tranquility
That which is present after suns collide

In this calm
Your perfection is realized;
Your face no longer a dream
Your touch is enough
Your arms so comforting
Your kiss renews bliss
Your Love is my ocean
And your heart is my beach
So warm and Eternal

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

With Love Besides--By Sheryl Splane--Canada

With Love Besides

Many days have dawned with clouds in the sky,
the sun veiled from view.
Yet, it still shines somewhere out there,
by FAITH, we know it's true.

The path of life we travel on
will often twist and turn.
Our faulty map leads us astray,
the right road we must learn.

The destination we had sought
brings hardship that's unplanned.
But when we reach beyond ourselves,
then HOPE lends us a hand.

Before us spreads a brand new road,
LOVE, our friend and guide,
when we had thought we were alone,
was always by our side.

By FAITH, the sun is shining,
then HOPE, shows us the way.
But best of all, with LOVE beside,
we go on rejoicing each day.

Sheryl Splane spent several years as a missionary in Senegal, Africa. She had to come home due to health problems, but part of her heart remains there... Sheryl now cares for the elderly, for whom she has a special love. Sheryl lives in Hanover, Ontario, Canada, near her parents. She and her dad both play several musical instruments. They go to senior residents in their area, entertaining the residents with music and gospel messages. 

Secrets--By Carl "Papa" Palmer--United States

Secrets

behind cupped hands
her whispers smile
in papa’s ear

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
www.authorsden.com/carlpalmer

Monday, March 20, 2017

WHISPERS' MARCH ACTIVITY--ALLITERATION AND ASSONANCE

Dear Whispers’ Family,

The March writing activity has been, Working Alliteration and Assonance into Our Poetry. Thank you to all who sent in submissions. What a delight it is to read all of your skillfully crafted creations. Let poetry be fun!

Michael Escoubas, Whispers’ Features Editor
_________

Dublin on the Liffey

The Liffey – no longer sniffy,
ambles through our capital city.
It once inspired Jack B. Yeats
to paint The Liffey Swim*.
Nowadays, it’s a genial host
to cruise liners and tall ships.

*1923, Nat. Gallery of Ireland.

Mary Gunn, Ireland.
_________

Memory lane

As I walk down the memory lane
plateaus of emotions whine and wane,
Grace on face stays
while smile deepens,
and wrinkles sprinkle
the essence of pretence in time.

Dr. Upma Sharma, India.
_________

The Treasure

Furry feet in hasty haste
Eating eggs tasty taste.

Diana Dalton, United States
_________

"Haiku" (Double Triodyne)

Good writers writing in haiku
Strange title to set subject to
All subjects one title, "Haiku"
Time after time, line on line
Reason for a title in a Triodyne
Line on line, time after time

Yancy Lee Dalton, United States 
________

Pregnancy Cravings

I buy myself, red roses wrapped in ribbons
As I feel so depressed and restless
I walk here and there and everywhere
To curb my pregnancy cravings
I can only think of turkey tacos
Or the delicious donut dipped in dairy creamer.

Archana Kapoor, India
_________

Two, to go 

A simple chicken biscuit 
in Chapel Hill 
conjures college-day memories
of road trips and restlessness, 
flaky and buttery. 

Douglas S. Malan, United States 
_________

Golden Persimmons

coffee cake and persimmon wine
let us dine

too late
raccoons rampaged through the gate
and ate and ate and ate

Elizabeth Howard, United States
________

She Winks

astutter aflutter
my blinks
subtle and supple...
i turn nary a spurn
her kiss feels like bliss

Pat Geyer, United States
_________

Smiling in My Sleep

Milky Way moonlight
spillpools upon my pillow,
protection and peace.

Candace Armstrong, United States
_________

The tap

Transparent I transcend
A spit, splatter or splash
All rains down to ripple and rise
Confined and contained
Constantly until I reach the rim
Where I run, rushing over freely

Anna-Marie Docherty, Wales
_________

Precious Peace

In times of stress, sweets bring momentary solace.
Aspiring higher actuates a heavenly alliance
bringing a blessed and more enduring substance.
With His help I give heed to "Let go and let God"

Charlene McCutcheon, United States
_________

Beneath the Coyote Moon

Twirling, twisting, whirling,
the west wind wanders and winds down
lonely canyons kicking up sand
and dancing with tumbleweeds
to escape its earthly heaven.

Barbara Tate, United States
_________

Confusion

Restless roaming through my raging thoughts
An unceasing search for truth is scourging
my weary, dreary molested mind
The pleasant purring of my content cat
wakes me out of my dubious dazed state

Inge Wesdijk (Daginne Aignend) the Netherlands
_________

Money Makers

Making money may make me rich
Saving some with little spent
I’ll be wealthy when I die
Prosperous people live longer lives
If you save a lot like me
Someday you can be debt free

Glenda B. Frazier, United States
_________

honeybee

a honeybee and her happy life
swing and swirl in nature’s ride
lick and lift the nectar of flowers
feel and fight with toxic powers
drain and drop a sweet viscous
present a precious heaven liquor.

Hifsa Ashraf, Pakistan
_________

The Theater Calendar

Fitful flurries sift onto the orange primrose.
Morning warms and we two gardeners
wait for a daytime high that will keep
pea seeds from freezing. We want
to remember to watch for the stage
of this night’s moon, sliver seekers.  

Tricia Knoll, United States 
_________

"Unkind, Undaunted ... and Unpublished"

There once was a pompous poet
Her poetry did definitely show it
"If you don't absolutely love it
You can take it and shove it"
With every poem she'd send, she'd blow it

David Fox, United States
_________

Great Grades

when our college students
study seriously and systemically
exam fear fades away fast for some
every paying guardian or parent expects
cool scores, not crappy, creepy grades
or curt remarks from careless educators

Ndaba Sibanda, Kuwait
_________

Misty Dreams

In stealthful shadows,
the pensive pilgrim
pauses for a moment…
nature whispers
to his searching soul…
a twilight adieu

Karen O’Leary, United States
_________

Dream

This enchanted evening seems
full of grace and goodness.
Your gown of silk and lace
draped in velvet folds cascades
down and around your silver slippers.
We dance in this my dream romance.

Michael Escoubas, United States
_________

Winter Guardians--By Connie Marcum Wong--United States

Winter Guardians

Rows of heavy snow flocked pines
in varied heights, stretch to touch
white cloud dappled azure skies.
Their blue-gray shadows cast across

pristine snow and swift river's flow.
Steep hillsides lure camera lenses
with picturesque clear alpine air
sharing serene senses with dawn.

Rounded river rocks dressed with
snow covered marshmallow tops
greet the beauty of the celestial sun,
in divine display of this blessed day.

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.

The Way She Dissipated and Danced Over There--By Ndaba Sibanda--Saudi Arabia

The Way She Dissipated and Danced Over There*

She left some villagers wet but devastated.
Will she reimburse them for their losses?

Her love for gamboling was so strong in 2017
that it engulfed cars and flooded away bridges.

Sis C Dineo cavorted with muscular winds and rain
in Mozambique and South Africa and Zimbabwe.

*Cyclone Dineo`s trail of blessings and destruction.

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".

Channeling Maya--By Peggy Dugan French--United States

Channeling Maya

I wonder what Maya would have told me if I’d had the opportunity to ask her for guidance? Would she have said “stand tall girl and walk your walk” in that big booming voice full of hard-earned wisdom?  Or remind me to be gutsy and adventurous and to always be my own person, whatever the cost?  She might have told me to think with my head but lead with my heart and not let fear be my guide. She would no doubt advise me to work hard and be passionate, share my gifts and soak up life’s goodness.  She would certainly want me to be generous and kind, be a good friend and love a child – be a blessing to somebody. Her solid truths would have rained down on me and I would have soaked them up like a welcoming summer rain. Perhaps she would have invited me into her womanly tribe and help pilot me to my true center, making it easier to see the light shining within. Maya enlightened generations with her insightfulness and tasteful originality, she lit the road for many and fueled my own curiosity for life and living well. I’m thankful for her clear headedness and her courage, I have found a richer road to travel because her words mixed with my young soul and have strolled along with me through the years. I vow to always try to be a blessing to somebody.

volumes full of brilliance
traveling companions
channeling Maya


Peggy Dugan French is a California girl with Minnesota roots. She has enjoyed being the editor of Shemom since 1997. She has worn many hats over the years, but being a Mom has been one of her greatest adventures; she’s had the pleasure of sharing that journey with her best friend.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Partners in Poetry--By Annie Jenkin--England & Michael Escoubas--United States

About Moonlight . . .
By Annie Jenkin--England & Michael Escoubas--United States

if on your journey
the sun dims over one path
you will find it again
lighting the way
along a different path

the receding sun
signals night’s purple curtain
full of chandelier shine—
an illuminating presence
as if by destiny sent

may the wind always
blow gently against your back
to fill billowing sails
suffused with dreams
toward your new horizons

the journey engaged—
moonlight with a billion
silver sequins shows the way
by points of light dancing
on a moonlit stage

Friday, March 17, 2017

Shrines--By Maralee Gerke--United States

Shrines

My grandfather’s inkwell,
a small silk doll,
and a red bucket filled with multicolored pens.

Dried lavender in a pale blue vase,
poetry books in jumbled rows,
words piled like salt cairns holding the tide.

Among tattered scraps of wisdom,
fragments of prayers, the past folded
into long white pages, I seek my inheritance.

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 oregonpoeticvoices.org One of her poems “Refuge”, was recently selected to be printed as a limited edition broadside by the Penland School of Crafts.

Finding Spring--By Linda Hurdwell--England

Finding Spring

Nodding heads and waving arms
Cheerful and exquisite charms
Yellow, resembling gold
Imagination does unfold.

A yellow crowd looks to smile
As I stop and stare for a while
Fish will swim and the birds will fly
Sometimes there's blue in the sky

My heart sings with certain joy
Bright heads turn a little coy
Bringing optimism around
Winter goes and Spring is found.

Gold covers the grassy hills
A gang of careless daffodils.

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.