Thursday, May 31, 2018

Closing May/400,000 Milestone/Your Editor'sThoughts--By Karen O'Leary--United States

Dear Writing Friends,

I have a lot of good news to share so I am going to used teal to highlight each new section.  It is in effort for those of you that want to refer back to something easier. We have 12 new writers this month!  


                                    Paul Griffiths, England
                                    Rick Davis, United States     
                                    Elizabeth Kirkpatrick-Vrenios, United States
                                    Janice Fisher, United States
                                    Chris Page, England           
                                    Damon E. Johnson, United States  
                                    Michael Medler, United States 
                                    Lori Orth, United States        
                                    Naba Kumar Dey, India     
                                    Annie Johnson, United States
                                    Mike Brigden -The Ordinary Poet, England     
                                    Nuno Fatela, Portugal/The Netherlands

Please welcome them to our community. We now have representatives from the following countries—Albania, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Canary Islands, Costa Rica, England, France, Germany,  Ghana, Greece, India, Ireland, Isle of Man, Israel, Italy, Keyna, Malawi, Malta, Mauritius, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Singapore, Spain, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, U.A.E., United Kingdom, United States, Wales and Zimbabwe.              --Sincerely, Karen


We passed the 400,000 mark on May 29!  This milestone is a tribute to writers and readers in celebration of the community we have become. To each and every one that has graced Whispers in some way. I can't find words to express my gratitude.

Many of you have actively promoted our online journal, which am humbly grateful for.  Though I opened the door, it is those of you that walked through that door that have made this milestone possible.  Special thanks to Inge Wisdijk and Jack Horne, my co-editors!  We wouldn't be celebrating without them.  I hope you take time now and then to thank them for their efforts.


From Jack Horne--I've done a bit of research and found a solution that worked for me.  Apparently this sort of problem can be cured by clearing the cache and cookies on the computer.  So, I did that and was able to post a comment, it might be worth passing that on to anyone else who has this problem.

Also, please us the sign in box at the top right of the main page unless you are already logged in from another gmail site. This will help assure that you don’t lose any comments.


It is through writing we pour our souls onto paper, hoping we will connect with others. Our international family allows us to learn more about other cultures, countries, writing styles…  It is that shared experience we find new horizons and new friends.  What a gift my writing friends are!!!

Sage Mist

Wise pearls
seek ancient arts
stored in music and love.
Tradition dances with poems
and peace.

It is a blessing to be a part of this writing community.  I hope you can spend time immersed in the diverse poetry on a wide array of topics found at Whispers.  Please consider commenting and or checking the boxes below the poems.  You do not have to be logged in to check the boxes.  It still lets contributors know that their poetry is being read.

Wishing all of you the best with your writing journeys.  I hope you find the joy in working with other writers and editors. Please contact me at if you have any questions.  Our editor team works hard to find a balance so that different people can share their verse.  Thank you all!


An Exploration--By Nuno Fatela--Portugal/The Netherlands

An Exploration

Striving for grace and light while stained
by clumps of mist that storm each breath
the forged inner explorer shines with confidence
the real one gasps alone and scared to death

Fear paints dark fogs beneath the shadows
and breathed air turns into choking hazards
the chamber of kindness bounds every touch
where feasts of thorns become a coat of feathers

A life with scars can recognize a wounded soul
the self that lives in multitudes uncrowned
stands submerged below the wandering masses
where he lives unaided and nowhere to be found

The soul strives to move inside the halls of hope
knowing of the right to exist among all men
but the body fights lost wars with mother nature
while the heart envisions battles with a pen

Nuno Fatela was born and grew up in sunny Lisbon, Portugal being inspired by the ocean. He left Lisbon for Amsterdam where he settled by the canals. He is a book lover dabbling in the world of poetry. When not writing, he likes to bike from museum to bookstore and back, looking for inspiration.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Come Lay with Me--By Mike Brigden--England

Come Lay with Me

I want us to lay down in the long grass,
My head rested on your stomach,
Watching the heavens float by,
Holding hands and making small talk,
Between moments of quiet bliss,
I want to hear your heartbeat,
Feel it synchronise with my own,
Let minutes become hours,
Losing sight of tomorrow,
Alive in the present,
Counting each second as though
There is a lifetime between them,
Heads casually turning,
As we catch each other's eyes,
Something is exchanged between us,
Right at that point,
Something from deep inside,
All of a sudden, the world around us
becomes blurred, we are lost in each other,
Never to be found again.

Mike Brigden is a passionate writer best known under his penname 'The Ordinary Poet'.  His poems can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Vero. Mike is an incurable romantic who loves nothing better than to spend time with his wife and kids who are very often his inspiration. He is fascinated, awed and sometimes angered by the world around him, this is reflected within his body of work. 

Feelings--By Annie Johnson--United States


Thoughts of you move through me
Like sunlight in my veins;
Lighting up every part of me
With thoughts in living light.
Near you are in feature.
Near you are in beauty
Marked by depth of love
In unending earthquakes
Of deepest devotion.
You shake my being awake
With such timeless agonies
Of desire and longing.
You are so much a part of me
That I feel you are me.
I feel that if I pinched myself,
Somewhere in the world,
You would mutter, “Ouch!”

Annie Johnson started writing poetry when she was 15 years old. As a Junior in High School, she had to write a sonnet and her teacher loved it. She was hooked on poetry for the rest of her life. She is now 79 years old and has been writing poetry for 64 years. Anie has two novels and three poetry books on Amazon. She has 3 children and two grandchildren and 7 cats.  Annie plays a silver flute. She is Shawnee and lives in Indiana.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Special Feature Collaborative Translation Poem--Naba Kumar Dey and Partha Chatterjee--India

By Naba Kumar Dey (Bengali)

Kalom ta hothat kodal hoa galo
Ami Kamon jeno Boshivuto.
Kodaler echhei mati khurchhi.
ARO jore hat chalao
Ke jeno nirdesh dichhe.
Khurei cholechi...
Kintu Keno?
Ami kobi. Amar kodal noi, Kalom chai.
Abar sei akashbani
Vonita chharo
Ar kichhu lekhar nei tomader
Sovyatar kobor proshasto karo.



By Partha Chatterjee (English translation)

My soft pen
accustomed to create love sonnets
has been transformed into a spade.
And it is all on a sudden.
This spade compels me to dig the ground.
Under the spell of this magic spade
I am digging and digging.

But why?
I am poet.
I need a pen, not a spade.

Then the Oracle is heard.

Dear poet, you have nothing to write more...
you have to dig the ground
either to plant a sapling
Or to prepare graveyard for the

River Island--By Mary Bone--United States

River Island

I went to River Island
Where the water flows.
I was lying in my hammock
And getting ready to doze.
Morning glistened on every
Rose petal, as the sun shed
Its light on every flower.
A new day bloomed.

Mary Bone has had recent poems accepted at Whispers, The Poet’s Gig, Literary Yard and Magazine Record Blogspot among others. Mary has been writing since the age of twelve.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Spring in the Smokies--By Tom Davis--United States

Spring in the Smokies

Spring rains soak
the Smokies,
swelling the Tuckasegee.

An ancient sycamore
leans like the Tower of Pisa
from the river’s bank.
Soon, huge green leaves will unfurl.

How long can its roots
hold fast against its weight?
Only Mother Nature
and the tree knows for sure,
and they aren’t talking.

Tom Davis lives in Webster, NC and his work has been published in numerous venues. He authored several books which can be found at Tom has recently completed his memoir, The Most Fun I Ever Had With My Clothes On: A March from Private to Colonel. Tom is the publisher for Old Mountain Press since 1992.

Today--By Lori Orth--United States


The sky is grey--
the mountains high

With love and faith...

The sky turns blue--
the mountains fade
into fields of flowers

Lori Orth has worked in the business world for 30 years.  She was able to use her creativity to help businesses achieve their goals.  She now spends her time helping her aging parents and working with charities.  She enjoys spending time with family and friends.   She strives to touch other people's lives in a positive way.

(From your editor—Lori is my sister, her poem sent to Inge Wesdijk without Inge's knowledge of our relationship. I wanted Lori to earn this publication on her own merit.  This day, I rejoice in sharing our poetry community with her.  Lori, “Today”, I hope is just the beginning of sharing your talents with others.  Love you sis!)

Sunday, May 27, 2018

The Nightingale--By Yvonne Sparkes--England

The Nightingale

Of all the birds that grace this earth
The finest one is small and sings,
And when she trills, my heart takes flight,
And in my mind, I too grow wings.

She trills her couplets and what`s more,
I marvel at her prowess so,
Extensive is her range of notes,
That with each song the volume grows.

How can one stay in deep despair?
Or worldly care engulf the whole?
When God has blessed with golden throat,
The bird that thrills my senses so?

Heaven`s song pours from her heart,
She glorifies this lovely world,
With sweetest song, she will impart,
God`s Own Blessing now unfurled.

Yvonne Sparkes resides in Chelmsford, Essex, and has two sons.  She has a book published by Cyberwit called 'Captured Images'. Yvonne has been published in Israel, Germany, France, Australia, America, and Britain, read her poetry at Church and Knockout Competitions. Her hobbies are travel, the arts, reading, hiking, walking her Scottish Terrier, and spending time with family and friends.

Love Enigmatic--By Aju Mukhopadhyay--India

Love Enigmatic

Woman! Whether it was your frailty or mine
I could never realize; you’re always mine;
A source of emotive surge from the unknown nature
To a neophyte, it’s always fraught with danger.
Sometimes I shied away with beating heart
Even meeting of minds and vital urge could not feed the heart
Every erotic rush hurt, every achievement met with satiety
Ever I failed to find the sought for beauty.

Looking for beauty from birth my eyes have never been feasted
With attraction for any of you, my being has ever been satiated.
You are there sure; your face fading in the deep foggy morning
Once you walked leisurely until vanished at the turn of the road;
It’s unbelievable that we couldn’t meet, my eyes steadily following
With earnest hope of settling with you in a bower sweet and broad.
Feeling, smelling and breathing you even for a moment is euphoric
You live in my nest yet I do not find you; it’s enigmatic
Even an apple like you before me, I cannot eat.

Aju Mukhopadhyay, an Indian bilingual award-winning poet, author and critic, who has authored 34 books; 12 books of poems including two books of Japanese short verse, five books of short stories and a novel. He writes travelogue, on animals and nature. His poems and short stories have been widely anthologised.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Music Somewhere--By Michael Medler--United States

Music Somewhere

A bright glow,
a soft sway
of words fall
from late summer
branches. Distant
thunder rolls,
roils cloud mass.

You stand alone,
arms akimbo,
where your shadow
has caught you
spying on the sun.

Music somewhere,
leaves and echoes;
the drone of hours
has left us, you
holding my share
of forever within
just the borders
of your shadow.

Michael Medler writes because nature wills him to it. He recently left a dystopian suburb of Seattle and retreated to the knee-hills of the Olympic mountains and cut the cable. Now he finds inspiration from deep woods.

Missing You--By Allan Ball--England

Missing You 

Overcast in darkness 
the thoughts inside my mind

Teardrops still remind me
of the love we left behind

All my dreams were shattered
on that night you said farewell

Hoping you would forgive me
now my life's a living hell

You're with me when I'm dreaming
but that's just make believe 

With morning comes reality
there's no chance of a reprieve

One day I will recover 
my broken heart will heal 

These thoughts become memories
of a love I  can't  conceal 

Allan Ball has retired from a career in the banking and financial sector. Writing is both peaceful and rewarding, the written word allows our hearts to speak. His poems have been published in anthologies.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Special Feature Collaborative Poem--Peggy Dugan French and Karen O’Leary, United States

across the miles... 

By Peggy Dugan French and Karen O’Leary

a perpetual light
nestled in warmth

a towering beacon
spreading hope

granite rock
mixed with shale

the noble plains
and tumbling sea

circle back 
to you and me

our friendship…

The Rainbow of Life--By David Fox--United States

The Rainbow of Life

Red the color of roses and apples
Orange, the color of many fruits,
Inside of mangoes and cantaloupes
Yellow, the color of the Sun as well
Of daisies, dandelions and daffodils.
Green, the color of grass and
The stems of many flowers
Blue, the color of blueberries and bluebells
Indigo, a color which can be found
In certain sunsets.
Violet, the color of the eggplant,
And of course, violets.
All colors of life's rainbow
Can be found in fields and meadows

David Fox edits the magazine, The Poet's Art. For info about submitting and submissions fee, contact David by postal mail: 171 Silverleaf Lane, Islandia NY, 11749, United States.

haiku/senryu--By Arvinder Kaur--India

as if
the unknown is all mine -
train window
holding mist
by the leash -
morning walk
ceasefire -
a soldier comes home
wrapped in moonlight
bean stalks -
height marks fade
in our childhood room
kitchen gossip -
the sound of her knife
on the chopping board
meteor shower -
my mother's first valentine
after father died
Arvinder Kaur is an Associate professor in English and Media Studies. She writes haiku both in Punjabi as well as English. She has four books to her credit which include poetry, a work of translation and her first collection of punjabi haiku, Nimolian. Her work has been published in several haiku journals and anthologies. She lives in Chandigarh with her family.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

May Activity Feature--Reflections of Home--Hosted By--Jack Horne--Whispers’ Activity Feature Editor

We could hardly wait to find out what you call home, and we were delighted with these wonderful poems.  Thanks so much to everyone who took part in this month’s activity.

                                                            Jack Horne—Whispers’ Activity Editor


Pine Needle Path

Beneath the towering red pines, deep
in Superior National Forest, Dad took
me on a trail of discovery. He showed
me how we fit in among majesty. Filling
our lungs with pine scent, we set out,
sharpened blades on our hip. Dad was
relaxed, told me to take it all in, forest
creatures, wildflowers underfoot, this
was real, where all life was equal. "Keep
this feeling in your heart son" he said.

James Marshall Goff, United States



early morning...

Thanksgiving thanks
for biscuits with gratitude

sweet fragrance
of pumpkin spice
waffles through our home

Pat Geyer, United States



There is love, care,
Belonging and security
Within the four walls
Of our family home
And, there’s freedom
Riddled with insecurity
And unknown consequences
In the mean world outside
The mind is often perched
On a dilemma that haunts the threshold

Vincent Van Ross, India


Home-and-away Games People Play 

Overseas they work for their families
Egos and luggage they carry home

Who wants to go home empty-handed?
They feign happiness and brightness

They can’t afford to be mocked back home
This is a game of putting up good appearances

Ndaba Sibanda, Zimbabwe


Grey Place

This is a grey place, there's no denying.
Grey slate, grey granite.
And it rains a lot, there's no denying.
But when caught by a sunbeam
it makes glistening slides shimmering across the slate 
and falls in bright white tails or snakes like silver
spilling heavily over rocks,
it’s cascades catching rainbows as they crash
then spitting them back out in a fine spray of colours.
No grey at all in this place now, there's no denying.

Lynn White, Wales


My Home's

an active listener. When I tell a tale
It gives verbal nods. Floorboards

reply with I see…
radiators with I understand…
Armchairs creak  I’m with you…

and kitchen sink squeaks  Okay.
Bright cutlery mirrors my words.

Lit bulbs flicker acknowledgement.
At least she isn't here to confuse them.

Paul Brookes, England


A Home for Spartacus

His name is Spartacus, he was a stray;
He was eight when he came to Gables Farm,
Where a routine blood test showed he was FIV positive,
Bad luck and rough living or a fight with another cat
Means he needs an indoor home with no other cats.
With these needs met and a loving home
He has a normal life expectancy.
He’s a handsome lad, talkative and friendly,
And a real lover of cat treats.
His name is Spartacus and he needs a home.

Nick Spargo, United Kingdom


An Eternal Home

Sharing with other bums,
Living off the crumbs,
In the neighborhood slums,
These are my chums,
My buddies, my pals.
We share community towels.
Knowing God shares our pain,
We have eternal gain.
Many miles we’ve trod,
We’re just thankful-we know God.

Mary Bone, United States


Rambling Man, Where is your Home?

Where is my home? Where do I belong?
I really don’t know, always moving on to another place
Moved every other year it seems the last 45 years
Traveled to 49 states, 45 countries, drove across the U.S. six times
Lived in Berkeley, Yakima, Stockton, Seattle, Alexandria, DC, Oregon, Korea, Thailand, India, The Eastern Caribbean, and Spain

Where do I belong?  Where is my home?
Neither here nor there, nowhere and everywhere
And so is that my rambling man’s fate
Never to really belong anywhere at all

Jake Aller, An American in South Korea



back at his childhood home
with two children of his own
mommy's baby boy returns

served all his favorite dishes 
given constant hugs and kisses
hearing “I remember whens”

as his sons learn of times
Daddy did those same crimes
they get “time outs” for today

Carl "Papa" Palmer, United States



A place of peace and true love,
A place of unity and warmness,
Home, the abode of angels.

Trespassers and intruders, resisted
Scavengers and enemies, subdued
Home, the dwelling place of God.

East, west, north or south
Far, near, up or down
Low, high, rich, or poor
Home, the best: a God.

Ngozi Osuoha, Nigeria


Happy childhood memories
At home and school...
Of course, I grew up

David Fox, United States


The world is my home
being never alone
with memories and dreams
and with always good spirit it seems.
Feeling always at home
where friendly people live,
as to love and be loved
is the most precious gift

Gert Knop, Germany



I am in the womb
Of my mother, Earth.
Sweet home of mine.
I stoop to drowsiness
hearing the rhythm of flowing
blood into her vein. No scissors can
cut the umbilical cord now and separate
me from her.

Partha Chatterjee, India


Room Walls

Room walls –
Childhood canvas
I colored with crayons…
My masterpieces make me feel
At home.

Jagari Mukherjee, India


A Visit

I know every cobblestone in the small village
The ancient oak trees on Mill Street and the peaceful
park where you can sit and muse while watching
the gaggling ducks in the pond
Rosewood Hotel still breathes hospitality,
a warm haven for visitors
My roots lay here, made me the person I am today
I followed my heart, settled down with you abroad
The friendly receptionist greets me at Rosewood's
'Welcome, I hope you will enjoy your stay with us'

Inge Wesdijk, The Netherlands


Moving away soon—
shall I still plant flowers
in the window boxes?

Kelley White, United States


A Good Day
(witnessed from my front porch)

silent breeze flowing through
a screened window; robust
orange flavor infuses the sun
as it begins to set; chirping
crickets draw a close to the
evening; reflection tied into
emotion; a good day at home,

Maurice Reynolds, United States


A Sweet Home

A home filled with warmth and kindness
Surreal the scene that flashes to mind
Within this dream there is love divine
Ethereal glow radiates fineness
Eternal home not made by human hands
Territory beyond, all God's design
Heavenly home, oh! so fine
Overjoyed at my arrival 
My loved ones will want life's recital
Every detail of family, since upon earth's sands

Sara Kendrick, United States


Grandma & Grandpa

You were "Home" to me

Going hunting and fishing
Riding horses
And reading stories
New to me
Day after day
Protected and loved, you're
Always in my heart.
          "Home"--I had one once.

Barbara Tate, United States


A Home Sweet Home

At long day’s end, our thoughts may stray
 to where we long to wend our way
- a peaceful place where we dismiss
all things in life that are amiss,
and none are wont to cause dismay.

Our footsteps hasten us to this:
the warmth of hearth, the welcome kiss.
For those less fortunate I pray
a home sweet home they'll find one day.

Andrea Dietrich, United States


birthday stars
the bread crumbs
on the way home

Eren & Ece Cehreli, Ankara, Turkey

Eren is a 6-year-old and Ece is an 11-year-old.




Mary A. Couch, United States


Home is where the heart is...
Or so I’ve been told
Though, I’ve often wondered
Is the heart...
at home?
For once the heart has broken,
can it truly still reside,
with the memory
of love's token,
living deep inside?

Lynn Long, United States


Hate Has No Home Here 

My welcome mat’s worn with decades of dirt,
baby shoes, oxfords, high heels and sneakers.
Laughter and joy have passed through our door,
hate, locked out. But hate slithers like a cobra

in the grass, spitting venom at everyone it fears.
I am unafraid of fangs of rancor. A sign rises tall
among mums by my door to make my feelings

Shelly Blankman, United States


The House He Built

I sit by broad windows watching birds 
flock to feeders, squirrels and chipmunks 
scurry about, dogwoods abloom at forest 
edge.  For years, my husband planned 
this house.   After he retired, he built it, 
doing most of the work himself. Now years 
later, as night falls, I watch cardinals enjoy 
their bedtime snack and rabbits sashay 
out of the woods to dance on the dewy grass.  

Elizabeth Howard, United States


The New House

Suitcases packed, boxes in the van,
we backed down Stipp Street’s driveway
one last time—leaving friends, leaving home.
Eight hours later we pulled small items
from the car, to fill the empty rooms.
Four white walls, no furniture—
a new house—I put a pot of tomato sauce
on that new stove’s front burner.
Soon that familiar aroma filled the house,
making it a home.

Joan Leotta, United States


Last Leaves of Home

burying parents
in pouring October rain--
her final tears fall

By Karen O'Leary, United States


My Roots

Home, root of my foundation
Begun on cattle ranch station
Riding range, punching cows
Brand calves under tree boughs

Work was hard, days were long
Responsibility made me strong
Thinking of my younger days
I enjoyed growing up these ways

Yancy Lee Dalton, United States 



for me
was a small farm
with animals and fowl,
on the shores of Lough Erne - scenic,
near gran's

of two children   
"a lovely quiet child",
i'm told the dog sat by my pram.
Big sis...

Mary Gunn, Ireland


No Place is Home

Friends talk of home
Something existent

Each house lived in is my home
But only for a little time
Mind wearies of the sameness
There is no comfort one can find
In a place that has no bind


The next place will be home
This I always know!

Isha Wagner, New Zealand


Sweet Home

In Paris was her home as her birthright
She then lived in many a home in many a country
But meeting Sri Aurobindo once she realized
That her Real Home would be in Pondicherry.
After a tedious journey’s end as she disembarked there
After five more years, an air of joy and success greeted her.
Gradually establishing her Divine reign
She expanded her home to earth’s far end
Embracing all sentient beings in her Sweet Home
with love and spiritual centrifugal wisdom.

Aju Mukhopadhyay, India


Dear Activity Contributors,

What a wonderful outpouring of words and different visions of home! Home has been a happy place for me but burying my in-laws was sad time in our lives—my parents are alive and my husband is a son to them. I expect all of us have happy and sad times related to home but for most of us the ties remain strong.  It is something about home that seems to draw the human spirit even when things aren’t perfect our families, they are a part of who we are.

I hope those of you that have not submitted individual poems to our Poem Editor, Inge Wesdijk, there is still room in the May issue and since this is a rolling opportunity those that we cannot accommodate in May will be considered for June.  Her email address is  If you have collaborative poems, or other ideas for special features please send them to Karen O’Leary at  The guidelines for all our opportunities are at the top right of Whispers’ main page. We are looking for ways to give our contributors increased visibility and are open to writers of all levels.  Best wishes with all your writing endeavors. Thank you for participating in Jack Horne’s Activity.  Stay tuned for June’s activity due out on June 1.


Karen O’Leary
Whispers’ Editor