Samuel S. Williams

Lunar

It strikes us
like a ball from Wembley
arching across the starless sky.

Clouds break apart
allow it to reach through
like a fingertip
dipping into the atmosphere.

We talk werewolves,
and howl with laughter
at the slipshod shadow puppets
we make under the streetlamp.

Snake. Rabbit. Dove.

Copyright © Samuel S. Williams 2016

Samuel S. Williams is a poet whose work has previously been featured in Poetry Cornwall and also online at Ink, Sweat and Tears.

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Mary Franklin

Night Watch

We bury him the Ojibway way
facing east.  His body seated
in the grave, we fold his arms
and hands across his chest, rest
his head against both kneecaps.
Near his right ankle we place
bannoch and a bag of wild rice.

On an icy night as clear as this,
a Birch Moon lights on Star People,
who emerge from the galaxy
to tell stories.  We shovel in
his grave, arrange several stones
in a mound on top, then above
the cairn set a large rock to mark

his passing.  Dawn’s rays will guide
him to the happy hunting ground.

Copyright © Mary Franklin 2016

Mary Franklin has had poems published in various publications including Iota, The Open Mouse, Ink Sweat and Tears, London Grip, Message in a Bottle, Three Drops from a Cauldron and several anthologies, most recently by Three Drops Press.  She lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.

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Eileen Farrely

Morning After (In the Garden of Eden)

Together, yet still unfamiliar,
prolonging their finery,
and the fragile coupling of the night before,
they weave through Sunday morning streets
in search of common ground. And breakfast.

Daylight, shadows and sunshine,
opens their eyes
illuminates their bodies
and fingers, entwined and tipped
with strangeness in the knowledge
that underneath it all
they are still naked.

Copyright © Eileen Farrely 2016

Elly’s poems have appeared in From Glasgow to Saturn, in two anthologies and previously on The Open Mouse. As well as writing poetry she is also a songwriter and performing musician.

www.ellyfarrelly.co.uk

 

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John McIntosh

Dandelion and Burdock
For Asad

All across the world and down through time,
Blood, soaking into earth, births flowers.
This is a pattern scored deep on our skin.
First blood, then flowers.
Some sequence in our DNA remembers
And repeatedly embodies that equation.

The ancients sensed it too:
All those bleating lambs and doves in Sinai,
All those Aztec children sung beyond the sky,
And now it’s kids in masks throwing stones at tanks,
Bold boys on hunger strike, scared girls twirling
To admire themselves in locked and loaded vests.
Our own or others’ lives are always being offered,
Surrendered on the altar of the future,
Hearts held beating up to heaven, chalices up-ended,
Pouring breath away to bring again the sun, the rain, the corn.
Someone always dies so life’s renewed and hope’s reborn.
One way of looking at it I suppose.

These were my half-formed thoughts as we all waited
That Good Friday underneath the yellow lights,
Quiet around the candles and the carpet
Of pale daffodils and tulips suddenly there.
The silent scream of parallels, the clunky
Symbolism wrapped round railings, echoed
Through my skull. Words whimpered and slunk off.

A hundred yards away a wee white tent
Was pitched right in the middle of the road,
Covering the black-in-moonlight stain
Where you fell and will fall forever now.
And on Sunday long-dead crosses once again
Will burst in bloom; the ancient rumour whispered
One more time, the cat let out the bag.

When you smiled and wished us Happy Easter
Truth arose and drove two hundred miles to
Stamp its foot and furiously shriek that Hell
Cares nothing for the gentle tales you tell.

And yet, this rainbow pavement-meadow grew in hours.
Though these of course, are not your only flowers.
Your blooms the children taken by surprise
At seeing pals and strangers through new eyes,
Who float off back to families and flats and Friday nights,
Like teenage spores, in darkness sowing galaxies of lights.
On fields, once frozen, glowing green and soon ablaze with Spring,
Clouds of Dandelion and Burdock seeds drift down, on ghost-grey wings.

Copyright © John McIntosh 2016

I’m a 56 year old teacher from Glasgow who is sporadically moved to write poems. Have had a few things published on this website and in the Glad Rag, a Glasgow southside Arts magazine, and hope to do more and more of this  as retirement appears on the horizon.

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Bethany W Pope

Hippocampus and Amygdala

The water of Lethe is clear and sweet —
You don’t need to remember the barn, or the closet.
A draught of the past will reduce you to meat,
Pounded blood-and-bone, steaming on hay. Treat
Trash like trash. Sweep it away. Don’t let it set.
The water of Lethe is clear and sweet —
It comes bottled in an orgasm; great,
Shuddering relief, followed by sleep. Pet,
A draught of the past will reduce you to meat.
Avoid things you once liked — a cow’s sour-sweet
Breath, the liquor-stench of silage. Forget it.
The water of Lethe is clear and sweet,
And it comes with a price. A terrible heat
Spreads out from the almond and seahorse. Regret’s
A draught of the past. It will reduce you to meat.
Grown-up little-girl, what on earth do you want?
Paradoxical erasure, your life; incomplete?
The water of Lethe is clear and sweet;
A draught of the past will reduce you to meat.

Copyright © Bethany W Pope 2016

Bethany W Pope is an award-winning writer. She received her PhD from Aberystwyth University’s Creative Writing program, and her MA from the University of Wales Trinity St David. She has published several collections of poetry: A Radiance (Cultured Llama, 2012) Crown of Thorns,(Oneiros Books, 2013), The Gospel of Flies (Writing Knights Press 2014), and Undisturbed Circles(Lapwing, 2014). Her collection The Rag and Boneyard, shall be published soon by Indigo Dreams and her chapbook Among The White Roots Will be released by Three Drops Press next autumn. Her first novel, Masque, shall be published by Seren in 2016.

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Mary Soon Lee

RETURNING

Through darkness,
King Xau rode with his guards,
changing horses at every way station–
hurrying the startled staff,
following them into the warm stables,
that smell of horse, of hay, of leather
as he helped tack up the horses–
his heart pounding as if time
were running out,
but the demon dead,
the kingdom safe.

Through freshening wind,
Xau rode with the eight men
who had shielded him
when he could not speak,
who’d woken him when nightmare wracked him,
when the demon called in his brother’s voice,
night after night–
his guards beside him,
then as now.

Under moonlight,
Xau rode, not quite himself yet,
wind drying his face.
Khyert dead.
Khyert, who should have been
riding beside him.
Xau rode,
home within reach;
his children, his wife,
the thought of them,
the need for them
driving him on.

Copyright © Mary Soon Lee 2016

Mary Soon Lee won the 2014 Rhysling Award for Best Long Poem. She is currently at work on an epic fantasy in verse, part of which may be read at http://www.thesignofthedragon.com

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Beate Sigriddaughter

IF

Because you didn’t love me,
I went to Ireland and took long walks
on the shore, passing
fuchsia and reeds each day.
I watched a lioness in Africa
stalk in the early morning.
I wrote lyrics as soft as April clouds
in New Mexico at sunset.
I posed in the nude for an artist friend,
and learned to dance hard
Latin rhythms easily.
My life is colorful.

If you had loved me, I might
be heavy now, splitting gray rain. Or
we might be exuberant beyond compare.

Copyright © Beate Sigriddaughter 2016

Beate Sigriddaughter, www.sigriddaughter.com, lives and writes in the Land of Enchantment a/k/a New Mexico, USA.

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