Sunday, December 31, 2017

Editor's Thoughts/Archived Column--By Karen O'Leary--United States--Archived Portion Originally Published--July 31, 2016

Dear Whispers’ Friends,

In closing 2017, it was fun cherishing Archived Poems from 2013-2017 and celebrate so many talent poets we have journeyed with. Though the only new submissions published in December were Collaborative Features, we still had the pleasure of publishing one new writer
                                            Sharon Weimer—United States

Please take time to welcome her. Our poetry family now includes writers from Albania, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Canary Islands, Costa Rica, England, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Malawi, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, 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.

In continuing with the archive spirit, the rest of this column (with slight edits) is from—

July 31, 2016—It is a chance to share life experiences—our joys…our pain—and hopefully make a difference.  Our words span beyond borders with the opportunity to give us a greater understanding of this time of turmoil and pain.


the hope
for tomorrow--
fingers reaching beyond
angry voices and steel curtains
to touch

Let us begin a new season of love and understanding.  Many of you are shining lights in the writing community.  It is a pleasure to read your words here and in other venues. Thank you, all, for making Whispers possible.

Blessings and best wishes,


Archive Selection--By Ken Allan Dronsfield--United States--Originally Published--January 6, 2017

Song of the Garden Chimes

Steal away at moon rise,
star light from weary eyes,
you will find your spirit drifts
upon soft spring breezes.
Songs from the garden chime
play sonnets on a sprites harp
whispering in shaded scarlet
directly into my wanton heart.
Oceans of grasses gently sway
by the granite wall Robin's dance
enchanted orbs rise from trees
a twilight sky envelops my soul.
Your love keeps my heart smiling,
stars flirt above the garden chimes.

Ken Allan Dronsfield is a disabled veteran and poet. His poems have been published worldwide and can be found in many (online) journals. Ken loves life!

Archive Selection--By Archana Kapoor Nagpal--India--Originally Published--July 20, 2016

from a window to another
these clouds…
how they enter in my room
between you and me

from a jasmine to another
a dewdrop ...
I hold all seven colours
in my palm

Archana Kapoor Nagpal is an internationally published author of 6 books so far, and her winning stories are now part of international anthologies. She writes inspirational content for corporate newsletters, websites, blogs and print publications. Her inspirational poems touch every area of a person's life. She enjoys writing Haiku and Tanka as well. Visit her Amazon Author Profile to know more about her.

Archive Selections--By Lois Greene Stone--United States--Orginally Published--December 7, 2016

Stanislavsky's Unit

Oxygen tubes tickled tiny
hairs in my nostrils.
Monitored leads left doodle
lines on the overhead scope.
I stared at circular tracks
in the ceiling thinking they
looked like toy train rails,
only upside down.  Life doesn't
flash through the mind while
irregular beats blip on
rhythm strips; soap-opera
scene starring me is what my
brain believed.

(Previously published in 1988, The Writer, Inc.)

Lois Greene Stone, writer and poet, has been syndicated worldwide. Poetry and personal essays have been included in hard & softcover book anthologies. Collections of her personal items/ photos/ memorabilia are in major museums including twelve different divisions of The Smithsonian.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Archive Selection--By Christine Tate--United States--Originally Published--December 16, 2016


Confined to wheelchairs frail and weak,
they seldom laugh and rarely speak...
eyes now dim that sparkled bright,
minds confused not thinking right.
some forgotten by family and friends,
lonely hours most of them spend.
I didn't know until it touched me
when mom was placed in a facility.

I observed many patients there,
many depressed and didn't care.
The ones who seemed to be happy,
were visited by loved ones regularly.
mom's eyes lit up when I'd appear,
a familiar face to bring good cheer...

I read her scriptures, shared stories,
and recalled many fond memories...
anywhere there is a need,
we can perform a godly deed.
a little compassion goes a long way,
so practice spreading some each day!

Christine Tate has been writing since 1994. She's the mother of 3 sons and has 8 grandchildren. She was widowed in 2007 and met her husband Artie, a widower with 6 children & 12 grandchildren, in a nursing facility where their mothers resided. They've been happily married 4 1/2 years. They describe their meeting as "God's divine appt." because of their faith, and the fact that they swore they'd never marry again. 

Archive Selection--By John McDonald--Scotland--Originally Published--April 29, 2017

grandfather's house -
stripping wallpaper
finding a strange language

barn dance -
on silver strings
spider polkas

in the window
...both of us waning

of a distant daffodil

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:  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.

Archives Selection--By ayaz daryl nielsen--United States--Originally Published--April 6, 2017

The ballad of our hearts
endowing and inhabiting
touching and melting
two who have met
taking the world in hand
forgetting nothing
forgiving everything
embellishing salt-sweetness
while turning love into ink.


The cauldron of sunset
Slight rain across the forest
A tree’s calm presence, its roots
deep under the surface of things,
hidden within earthen mold
and a mightier silence
A tree’s calm presence, 
a tree’s calm presence
A mightier silence of earth. 


ayaz daryl nielsen, veteran, former hospice nurse, ex-roughneck (as on oil rigs) lives in Longmont, Colorado. Editor of bear creek haiku (26+ years/135+ issues) with poetry published worldwide, he also is online at:  bear creek haiku poetry, poems and info 

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Archive Selection--By Peggy Dugan French--United States--Originally Published--December 10, 2014


dairy cows sauntering through fields
grain-filled silos shooting skyward
fields of corn rolling in the breeze
cats sipping milk in the weathered barn . . .


standing on the gravel road
breathing in this unspoiled life
bundling it up for later
past and present colliding

(Previously published in Shemom)

Peggy Dugan French is a California girl with Minnesota roots. She has been the editor of Shemom since 1997. She welcomes this opportunity to share her work with the Whispers readers and thanks Karen for starting such a wonderful shared space.

Archive Selection--By Yvonne Sparkes--England--Originally Published--February 12, 2013

Winter’s Storm

How silently the snowflakes fall,
In darkness they appeared,
New winter blankets, white and tall,
Each plant wears hat and beard.
A covering like fondant cream,
Whipped by those winds on high
An Angel cake, that looks serene,
Without the wings to fly.
Silence covers all the land,
now that the winds have ceased,
And where the snow has blown and lands,
The rifts, like waves, have creased.
On virgin snow, no footprints lay,
Where man and beast have pressed,
Soon with the onset of new day,
Are patterns all have dressed.
The dream of nature’s canvas new,
One cold, dark, winter’s night,
Shows she alone is artist true,
Gives joy for man’s delight.

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.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Archive Selection--By Elizabeth Howard--United States--Originally Published--November 21, 2017

The Harpist

A volunteer brought her harp to the hospice house,
choosing a seat near the room where I was keeping
solemn watch. As she plucked the strings,
my heart’s tears flowed down my face.
Peace pervaded my soul. When she left, she said,
I’ll see you next week. If not, I’ll know
he’s in a better place. I never saw her again,
but I carry with me her blessed music and good heart.
I will ever be grateful for her ineffable gift.

Elizabeth Howard lives in Arlington, Tennessee. Her work has appeared in Comstock ReviewBig MuddyAppalachian HeritageCold Mountain ReviewGreen Hills Literary Lantern, and many other journals.

Archive Selection--By Pam Murray--Canada--Originally Published--July 19, 2015

The Haven

I lift my eyes to a piece of sky
Framed by the trees that I’m walking through
Feeling a summer rain’s soft kiss.
Morning has come and I think of you

Still fast asleep in your warm, safe bed.
Knowing you’ll smile when I return,
Fix me a coffee and sit with me,
I feel emotions begin to churn.

I count my blessing and take a breath
Of moisture filled morning, take it deep
And listen as wind whispers in my ear,
Secrets that called me up out of sleep.

My soul wants to walk for a little while
But I think of you and my feet must turn,
Hurrying back through the gentle rain,
Back to the haven for which I yearn.

Born in Calgary, Alberta, Pam Murray has been writing poetry since the mid-1960’s.  She was married for over 41 years and has two daughters, a son-in-law, and a grandson.  Pam has been published in a variety of venues.  Her proudest writing accomplishment was a poem she wrote for a United Way fundraiser, which was later framed with a French translation and hung on the wall of the legislature in Ottawa, Canada.  To her, poetry is a transposition of a vision she sees in her mind. Writing and crocheting are her passions.

Archives Honor--By Mary A. Couch--United States--Originally Published--August 16, 2015

Silhouette of Life

Your silhouette resides amid the field,
bleak skeleton remains of a home now lost.
Red brick rubble, once full of life that yield,
tears and laughter in days of sun and frost.

You stood beneath a scraggly old oak tree
whose branches harbored squirrels and tiny tots.
They climbed and swung upon its limbs so free,
but now like you, forlorn, it slowly rots.

Of brick and mortar, you were born one day,
enclosed by heather and golden flowers.
Naught but a shattered memory today,
an empty-eyed abode that’s lost it powers.

In life you were a home of joy for all,
you’ve gone, and what remains is one brick wall.

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.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

May Love Join Hearts This Christmas--By Karen O'Leary--Your Editor--United States

Some of you have already received this, but I hope you don't mind reading it again. Your friendship and support mean a lot to me.



Dear Friends,

One has time to reflect, being housebound for most of the last two years.  In that time, I’ve grown to appreciate the blessings in the corner of my life~~gifts of faith, hope and love.

We developed an in-home chapel in our bedroom which is where I spend most of my life these days. Battery operated votive and tea lights give me the chance to celebrate a deeper sense of faith, hope and love. This chapel is an ever-evolving gift as cards I receive are tucked into the unity with a cross light on the forefront.

My family has agreed to take on sending out our Christmas cards this year. I am blessed to have them in my life.

I hope this poem will bring meaning to your life--

One Candle

Light slowly penetrates the dark
abyss of sadness and grief.
It wraps me in warmth, gently
nudging me beyond yesterday.
A candle of hope strengthens my faith
and gives me courage to shine.

Thank you for sharing your light with me and my family, offering us the gift of hope.  I wish you a wonderful Christmas and a New Year filled with joy.

Love and light always,

Friday, December 22, 2017

Archive Selection--By Chen-ou Liu--Canada--Originally Published--April 30, 2017

wolf moon
a stranger's smell
on her body


cherry blossom rain
her fragrance lingers
in my mind


those three words
then silence ...
a gap in the clouds

然後一陣沉默 ...

a dragonfly pauses
between sunshine and shade
to stay or to go


drift of a leaf ...
the end
of my shift work

漂泊的一片葉子 ...

Chen-ou Liu is the author of four books, including Following the Moon to the Maple Land (First Prize Winner of the 2011 Haiku Pix Chapbook Contest). His tanka and haiku have been honored with many awards. To read more of his poems, please go to Poetry in the Moment,  

Archive Selection--By Mary Jo Balistreri--United States--Originally Published--August 3, 2016

Autumn Descant

October comes ablaze
 in scarlet robes and gold crowns
Sun hangs low in the fields
            sparking the wing tips of grasses

From the sweet gum   a lone leaf
            winds its way home
returns amber wealth to the soil
            and I remember—
it isn’t what lives in the light
            but what returns from the dark
that stays forever

Mary Jo Balistreri has two books of poetry published by Bellowing Ark Press and a chapbook by Tiger's Eye Press. She has more recently been enjoying learning and writing haiku type poems. She finds it helps her see differently and experience life in a new way. For more information, please visit her at  

Thursday, December 21, 2017

New! Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Peggy Dugan French and ayaz daryl nielsen--United States

across the miles we share the same sun and moon
my heart an empty room filled with your presence
memories stretching across decades reuniting us again
the poem of two souls, inhabiting, endowing, embellishing
written in the whispering breeze
"everything is as it should be”. . .

Peggy Dugan French and ayaz daryl nielsen

Archive Selection--By Angelee Deodhar--India--Orginally Published--August 15, 2016

Haibun: The messenger

Predawn dark…unable to sleep, I open the door and step out on to the lawn, look around the potted plants and suddenly see one pure white flower in full bloom. I marvel at its perfection and touch its petals gently…then I come inside and read about it.

I go outside again and photograph it to send it by email to a friend half way across the world…
                                   weaving into
                               that relationship once more-
                                  one frayed thread

*The white hibiscus a perennial with healing properties, is a symbol of divinity, innocence, purity and royal beauty. In Japanese hanakotoba, the hibiscus means “gentle” and it can be given to more or less anyone simply as a nice present, there are no strong emotions or questions of relationships attached to it.

Previously published Haibun Today, Volume 8, Number 1, March 2014

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.

Archive Selection--By Connie Marcum Wong--United States--Originally Published--October 15, 2013

Days of Autumn

An argentine sky adorns
The woodlands in a misty shroud
As only slight remnants
Of a long forgotten path remain,
Embraced by the beauty of maples
And by the scent of cool crisp air--
Autumn permeates.
Yet there is a subtle warmth
In the mélange of colorful
Pumpkin, gold and vermilion leaves,
In their swirling harmonic dance
As they depart the boughs of their birth
Unified in death, as in life.

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.

Archive Selection--By Andrea Dietrich--Originally Published--March 30, 2017

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, December 20, 2017

Archive Selection--By Anne Curran--New Zealand--Originally Published--December 14, 2016

shifting her plants
on the whim
of a spring breeze ...
it is a woman's privilege
to change her mind

a gunshot
from over the rise
in our suburb...
he never wanted
to go to war

an unseasonal
Autumn wind
stirring up talk ...
things are not
as we remember them

Anne Curran is a Hamiltonian and New Zealander. She writes in awe and admiration of all those Japanese verse poets and editors who have encouraged her on this journey. Anne has been writing poetry for the last ten years or so. She has good days and bad, but somehow with the support of family and friends keeps on keeping on.

Archive Selection--By Annie Jenkin--England--Originally Published--December 27, 2015


It crept in deceitfully
almost imperceptibly,
Snatching a word here or thought there
Leaving defenceless those who care,

Confusion is disguised as ribbons of lies
and thought retention unravels before our eyes,
More bold and open it erased memory
crushing remnants of personality,

Kindly words viewed with deep suspicion
provoking erratic aggression
Comprehension faltered...
then forever deleted.

Inability to dress,
read a newspaper
or handle a fork to eat their dinner,
Dissolving dignity into the abyss... 

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.

Archive Selection--By Molly Moore--United States--Originally Published--March 30, 2017

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

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Archive Selection--By Susan Kahil--Spain--Originally Published--March 3, 2017

Teardrop Child

Each raindrop fell and grew a child
Into a man who then rained tears
The sun drew a smile upon that child
Man blackened out the window of his heart
The wind whispered ‘love’ into the child’s ear
Man blew it back out stale breath spelling hate
Rainbows painted child with happiness
‘Hu(e)man’ discriminated
Earth sucked him back into her belly
Whilst the child giggled within

Susan Kahil singer/songwriter/poet is originally from the UK but has lived in Southern Spain for the past twelve years.  In a secluded mountain valley on her olive, orange and avocado farm surrounded by nature and wildlife is where she gets her inspiration for poetry and original songs. Some of her recent work can be seen in the soon to be poets’ anthology, “Dandelion in a Vase” and several publications in magazines.  She is currently working on her first poetry book.  Susan likes to look for the beauty and infinite potential in all things.

Archive Selection--By Charlene McCutcheon--United States--Originally Published--December 25, 2015

Christmas Year Round

Laying aside the things of this world, intently I listen.
How silently the soul-stretching gifts of the spirit come.
Seeking for things of a better, shelters from the storms,
they come simply with the asking; Jesus paid the price.

Soft sweet whisperings enter in, sacred engrafted words
speaking volumes, sufficient for my needs for added faith.
Kindly He wipes away my tears, replacing fear with hope,
Filling my doubting heart with Christ’s pure love; charity.

Charlene McCutcheon is a 78-year-old wife and mother of seven, grandmother of 30, great grandmother of 20. She lives in Manti, Utah. She loves life and people.

Archive Selection--By Dr. Upma A. Sharma--India--Originally Published November 9, 2014

Adieu to green sheet,
Twilight lends its orange charm,
Crispy brown runway,
Yellow beguiles all around,
Reddish hue across the blue!

Passion for poetry can enthuse anyone, Dr. Upma A. Sharma has proved this so well. A doctor by profession, 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. A purposeful expression of emotions and thoughts and positive words certainly are a way to serenity.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Archive Selection--By Michael Todd--United States--Originally Published February 14, 2016

Fortress of Solitude 

Clever how you assess blame, right and left,
Cold, hard cynic with the eyes of a child.
So far, yet close, aware we are bereft
Of marrow, merely to share life beguiled.

Cunning how, on surface I smile. In turn,
You feign deference. Taken by surprise,
Lessons learned, ignored, choose rather to spurn
The obvious, which led to this demise.

Chasing ghosts is foolish folly. That said,
You cannot take what is not mine to give.
This bridge is too narrow for two to tread.
To forget, divine, leaves none to forgive.

Fortress of solitude, in field of dreams,
Imprisoned; illusion not what it seems.

(Author’s Note: The fortress of solitude here, is a grave.)

Michael Todd aka Myke Todd has been writing and posting stories and poetry on social networking sites since 2006. He can currently be found at his dedicated poetry site...  

Archive Selection--By Paul Callus--Malta--Originally Published December 18, 2014

Rain over Vietnam 

There is the calm before the rain
It’s almost silent all around
The clouds expectant in the sky
Foreboding birds are homeward bound.

The soldiers stare at looming clouds
There is the calm before the rain
And yet there’s tension in the air
Will all this waiting be in vain?

They know the feeling well enough
The sun gets left out in the cold
There is the calm before the rain
They have to be prepared and bold.

The sound of planes will soon be heard
Torrential bombs will fall again
But ‘til the heavens burst in floods
There is the calm before the rain.

Inspired by the song “Have you ever seen the rain?”
Sung by Credence Clearwater Revival.
With underlying reference to the Vietnam War.

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.

Archive Selection--By Eleanor Michael--United States--Originally Published February 4, 2016

ME and the Mirror

The other day I woke
feeling so good.
I thought, “Today’s
the day I could
go look for work.”

Then, I got out of bed
tottered to the bathroom,
stepped on the scale,
and washed my hands.
I saw my reflection
in the cabinet glass.

That did it! Who,
in their right mind,
would hire the ME
in the mirror?

Maybe, with make-up,
a new hairdo . . .
lose a few pounds . . .

Eleanor Michael has published poetry and short stories in a variety of venues.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Our Whispers’ Team—Sharing Words

Dear Whispers’ Friends,

I announced our team members earlier this month: Inge Wesdijk (Daginne Aignend), The Netherlands and Jack Horne, England.  I believe we are a blend, able to look at things from a variety of perspectives. 

The Links to January’s opportunities—Please Check Them Out!

In looking to the future, we want to offer a variety of options.  We are open to poetry articles from guest columnists, suggestions, interviews, and other things that can provide variety and information helpful to writers and readers.  The most important—is to find what works best for our audience.

I hope you enjoy this collaborative poem by Inge and Jack.  Their bios are listed below their poem.
Written perception

By Inge Wesdijk (Daginne Aignend), the Netherlands & Jack Horne, England

Whispering words
of encouragement,
an inspiration to spread
the purity of words,
beauty and solace
softly caressing the mind.

Yes, the written word,
its beauty, a balm for my eyes,
that fires my imagination
with a universe of wonder;
the aesthetics of its alphabet 
decoded in poetry and prose.
Inge Wesdijk is a Dutch writer, poetess, and photographic artist who works under the pseudonym Daginne Aignend. She likes hard rock music and fantasy books. She is a vegetarian and spends a lot of time with her animals.

Jack Horne lives in Plymouth, England. Writing is his main interest & much of his work, including poems, articles, shorts stories & novels, has been published.
In addition, I hope the following poem shares what I believe in regarding the writing process--

Changing Course

clouds gather,
casting shadows
on the destiny
I created.  They call me
narrow minded.  Maybe I
was?  In the future, my plans will
be sketched in chalk instead of confirmed
in concrete, allowing for adjustments.
Karen O’Leary is a writer and editor from West Fargo, ND.  She has published poetry, short stories, and articles in a variety of venues including, Frogpond, A Hundred Gourds, Haiku Pix, bear creek haiku, Shemom, Creative Inspirations and NeverEnding Story. She edits an online journal called Whispers She enjoys sharing the gift of words.
I hope more of you will continue on our journey of sharing the gift of words—crossing borders and time, hoping to make a difference.

Blessings and best wishes,

Karen O’Leary

Whispers’ Editor

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Archive Selection--By Emile Pinet--Canada--Originally Published--November 26, 2016

A Picture of Paradise

A swing propelled by a young girl’s giggles,
arks into the air reaching for the sky.
And its rope chafes the bark of an old oak,
as flashes of my youth go streaming by.

Evergreen trees form an emerald hedge,
as peace and tranquility set the scene.
And reds, yellows, purples and pinks abound,
where patches of wildflowers offset green.

A wild rose tangled in the undergrowth,
scatters its fragrant petals all around.
And where lilac bushes support its perch,
violet blossoms confetti the ground.

A pair of Mallard ducks scurry away,
on a pond with a silver mirrored sheen.
And barring a picture of paradise,
this is the pretties spot I've ever seen.

A scarlet sun bleeds as daylight departs,
slowly retreating from twilight’s attack.
And flowing like a billion bleeding hearts,
crimson rivers color the edge of black.

Emile Pinet was born in a small city, (Bathurst) New Brunswick, Canada, the third eldest of thirteen children, ten girls and three boys. He is the product of a semi-dysfunctional family, brought up by a physically abusive and controlling father, versus a loving, nurturing mother. Many of his poems reflect the uniqueness of nature, which he loves, and his poetic observations of life in general. Emile is 66 years old and has been writing poems since he was about 35. The ideas started to come to him rapidly one day at work-- he decided to write them down and express himself through his poetry.

Archive Selection--By Terry O’Leary--France--Originally Published December 9, 2013

The Acrobat

The Circus gongs excite the Throngs in nighttime Never Land –
They swarm to see the destiny of Freaks at their command,
While Acrobats step pit-a-pat above the shifting sands
And Lady Fat sits down to chat and oozes charm unplanned.

The Dwarfs in suits, so small and cute when marching with the Band,
Ask crimson Clowns with frozen frowns, to hold a mutant hand,
While Tamers’ whips with withered tips, throughout the winter land,
Lure Cats entranced through hoops enhanced with flames of fires fanned.

White Elephants in big-top tents boast black-tusk contraband
To regiments of Sycophants who overflow the stands,
But No One sees anomalies, and No One understands.

At night’s demise, the dither dies, the lonesome Crowd disbands,
Down dead-end streets the Horde retreats, their tattered rags in strands,
And Janes and Joes reweave their woes, for thoughts of change are banned.

To play a part in Three-Ring Art, I thought I’d try my hand –
I mastered skills, I felt the thrills, I breathed and seethed firsthand –
But destiny denied to me to taste a lifetime spanned
With tightrope walks and trapeze chalks ... excepting second-hand...

For alcohol provoked a fall, as if a reprimand,
And now, a heap, I sometimes keep the ticket office manned...

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

Archive Selection--By John W. (Bill) Williams--United States--Orginally Published June 15, 2015

Away from City Streets and Towns

Dawn comes tiptoeing through
the awakening shadows;
as darkness diminishes,
a symphony of sounds.
Their voices lift to greet it
and out of the woods deer
creep cautiously to the lakeside
to lap its refreshing water.
As morning passes into noon,
a quietness intermingles
with chirping of birds’ songs,
raining down from treetops.
It’s a place to escape
the harsh and restless sounds
in the city streets and towns.

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

Monday, December 11, 2017

Archive Selection--By Carl "Papa" Palmer--United States--Originally Published--November 26, 2014

Dad’s Hands

In the cafe booth his son asks,
Dad, what do you see
when you look at your hands?

Palms up, palms down, open, closed,
bent, scraped, swollen and raw. Dad
answers, These hands are not mine.

He looks across the table
at this young man’s hands,
smooth, strong, flexible, straight.

You have my hands, Son.
These hands that I have on
once belonged to my father.

Someday, way too soon, you’ll see
that your son will have your hands,
and you, Son, will have mine.

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

Archive Selection--By Gert W. Knop--Germany--Originally Published--December 2, 2013

Lost Dreams

When mind wanders,
and travels with the soul
thoughts wait for answers.
Abysses there,
where once were forests and life,
now only bare land remains.
Lost like future dreams,
and frozen as autumn leaves
in early winter.

Gert W. Knop, born in 1943, studies art and tropical agriculture in Germany and Scotland (University of Edinburgh). He has lived in many different countries and writes mainly in German, English and Spanish. He currently resides in Zittau (Saxony), Germany.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

New!--Special Feature Collaborative Poem--By Sharon Weimer and Karen O’Leary--United States

kindred spirits

By Sharon Weimer and Karen O’Leary—United States

​butterflies bind
our hearts as one...
on wings our words
flow, hoping to help
the wounded arise

through storms 
confused and blind
we find each other
hands reaching

Archive Selection--By Suzanne Delaney--United States--Originally Published--January 29, 2013

Another Jewel Sunrise

Pink inks of dawn glow
through a dissolving fog
lifting botanical shadows
alive with enchanting birds.
Rustling leaves
stir the world awake.

Over the horizon a bustling
city throbs,
a million or more people
going to their jobs,
missing this quiet solitude.

Radios thump. They drive
bumper to bumper,
eyes glued to the freeway.

Another jewel sunrise slips
right by them.

Suzanne Delaney, Hawaii, is a Retired Registered Nurse certified in Med/Surg. Since retiring she has participated in (online) poetry groups. She is originally from Australia but lived in the Hawaiian Islands for most of her adult life. Her poetry is a mixture from living between both Australia and Hawaii. Her poems are included in an Anthology A Bridge to ALL Nations.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Archive Selection--By Linda Hurdwell--England--Originally Published--December 20, 2016

Autumn Leaves…

A Winter’s gale blows thick and fast
Tossing the leaves that are unable to last
While the timid sun sighs with despair
As winter laughs without a care.

Autumn hides with fear on her face
This land is now no longer her place
Birds migrate with urgent speed
There’s nothing here that they need.

Insects don’t thrive when it is so cold
Plants wither and become suddenly old
A lone robin still sings with some hope
Wondering how on earth he will cope.

Autumn turns and hurries away
Taking her hues and pride with dismay
She sheds such a small and silent tear
Grateful that she will be back next year.

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.

Archive Selection--By Caryl Calsyn--United States--Originally Publised--January 24, 2017

Not Just a Dress

Mother and I walked by the window
of a store named Jack and Jill.

Never in all my six years
had I seen a prettier dress—
white eyelet, ruffles and lace.

I didn’t ask if I could have it,
because I knew times were hard.

A few days later, to my amazement,
my mother gave me that adored dress.

For some unknown reason she could
not say she loved me or give me a hug.

But my white eyelet dress had love,
in invisible letters, written all over it.

Caryl Calsyn is a retired Interior Designer who only began writing poetry about five years ago. About three years ago she began submitting to publishers. Her first try was accepted and she now has 124 that have been published.  She is a board member for the county historical commission and the local museum.  She sings in a chorale and her church choir and loves family gatherings.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Archive Selection--By jani johe webster--United States--Originally Published--December 24, 2014

jani johe shared her unique style and insight which left readers in awe.  But more importantly, she was a bright light in the writing community, always ready to support others in their journeys.  I am glad to have been able to call her my friend.  She is missed by many.                                                                        Sincerely, Karen O’Leary--Editor

sound of dreams

what are
the sounds of dreams
on a winter
    dark night

it has been snowing steadily
and dawn comes all white and silent
with snowflakes dressed
like tiny poems

Thoughts from Nila Webster--This poem, like so many of my mother's captures the Zen of the season. Winter does bring its dark nights, for certain, yet the image of dawn 'white' and 'silent' is filled with hope and beauty. I love the idea that the snowflakes are dressed like tiny poems.