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Prodigal by F.E. Walls

That moment you knew you were lost,
each rolling ridge of yucca, a duplicate,
the bandit sun stole your water, salt.
The desert locked shut against you,

set thorns, cat claws, spines —
needle-sharp. You are lost
in the foothills amid the stiff wind.
You grab cacti, hear the ravens

as you stumble, fall on a rosette of bayonets.
The boulders beside you once billowed
plumes of liquid rock. Cooled, eroded.
Wind and rain carried their dust to the sea.

Do not be afraid. This fire cooks our changes.

At dusk, the gnarled pinyon pine
blackened in death is a silhouette
against the loosening sun.
Ankle swollen, your slab of body

draining among the cholla
feels a halo encircle the full moon,
double rings of rainbows,
faint indigo repeated twice.

Bright eye of the moon ignores your gaze
though even now you are sought, the prodigal.
The flares alight; the helicopter
churns up each arroyo seeking a sign.
Sing like the owl in the junipers. Don’t hide.

F.E.Walls’ poems appear in Pontoon, Ekphrasis, damselfly press, Avocet, & Strange Poetry among others, the writing text, Writing Across Cultures, & the anthology, Peace Poems V. 2. She blogs at http://wordandimageworker.com

Traces by Tricia Knoll

After NASA’s pictures of the universe

Awe is finely filigreed
on translucent slippery scree.

The infinite is intimate
stitched in open lace.

Start with small seeds,
a belief in roots

among steadfast towers
overstating size and strength.

Elbow in concentric rings
of abundant mystery, pull through

the canals of birth, seep out
into the smallest crevices

of a speckled universe unfolding
open apertures of orange.

Slide the funnel clouds of palette.
Trace cilia, beaks, the striae

of wren feathers.
Ring the spirit dancer’s

bell to an ecstasy so small
and so big a journey

from grays and creams
of dreams to the vast forever.

 

  

Tricia Knoll is an Oregon poet whose work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize six times. Her collected works include Ocean’s Laughter (reviews), now available at Amazon.com, and Urban Wild, a poetry chapbook now available from Finishing Line Press. http://triciaknoll.com/ Twitter @triciaknollwind

Blood oranges, Shrove Tuesday by Beth McDonough

This last orbit of Sicilian suns
rounds my bowl’s deep glaze.

Tonight, I’ll thumb
fine-crater peel, curl waste
satellites beside hearts.

Inside, a virus flickers
sparklets, scarlets into smiles.

Everything erupts with two faces
at least. Before this puce season
I’ll squeeze them, wersh them,
sharpen pancakes, but I offer
no wish to be shriven.

Let the queasy buy rubies, not blood.

  

  

Beth McDonough has a background in Silversmithing and teaching, completing her M.Litt at Dundee University. Recently Writer in Residence at Dundee Contemporary Arts, she reviews for DURA. Her work is strongly connected to place, particularly to the Tay, where she swims. Handfast, (with Ruth Aylett, May 2016) explores both autism and dementia.

Fall Language of Cape Cod by Kate Wallace Rogers

Fullthrong and screak, boldrash of blue gray,
Howlscowling sand dunes aghast by the bay.
Red furly of creeper relashing the bogs
And bittersweet swell rounds gnarled choke cherry logs.
Grape leaves cringrashing like ocean’s sage roil,
Resolution of beach plum in clayurning soil.
Bestaggering scrub oak frights raspberry vine,
Birch boughs lean whippling, low low knotty pine.
Lilavender fluffweeds so tossled and scarred,
Bracing, slipgrasping the brittle groundshard.
Rose hips irreverent orange thornishly clasped,
Slantings of mushrooms erupt from earth’s grasp.
Not appalled by the gall of persistent windroars,
With rutsdreep in marshmire bold seascape endures.

 

 

Kate Wallace Rogers has been writing and performing poetry since second grade. She co-founded the Dragonfly poetry and music series in Dennis, MA and has been a featured reader in many Provincetown venues. A member of the Workshop for Publishing Poets led by Barbara Helfgott-Hyett, she has appeared in The Beaver and Red Weather. She has also self-published a slim volume of poetry silk screened on Japanese folding paper. She is originally from New York City, but currently lives in Provincetown in Stanley Kunitz’ house, where she cares for his garden.

The Treehouse by Damon Moore

‘We sucking on her natural bosom find
Many for many virtues excellent:
None but for some and yet all different…’

Romeo and Juliet, Act 2, Scene 2 lines 12-14

We spent a night
last
night
in Simon’s treehouse,

moonglow coming down,
a bird
imaginarium,
dark creels visible
through an apex skylight

ideas skipping between
what we can do
and what we can’t,
like the way we approach great poems
and great tasks.

The poem that you are
is not the person that you are
and no utopia good enough.

Link to ‘The Treehouse’ on YouTube

 

 

Damon Moore’s short-form poetry has found a home in RAUM, Eyot, The Literateur and The Flea whilst extracts from a narrative poem based on Sylvia Plath appeared in ‘Kindlings’, debut print publication of the online literary magazine, Writer’s Edit. Currently he is focusing on poetry films for his YouTube channel.

Here is the link to his YouTube poetry film channel, ‘DamonMoorePoet’

Aluminum by Chris Macalino

photo

 

 

Chris Macalino is an artist and writer. He’s reading The Beat Generation, 1970s Canadian Poetry, postmodern novels, with an interest in holo-novel theory. He was one of the winners of The Manitoban Literature Competition in 2015, and he recently found inclusion in several journals; ‘Lost Documents’, ‘The Papermachine’, and ‘Poetry Breakfast’. He lives in Winnipeg.

Fall by David Koenig

rain falling
falling into a hooded dawn
pattering upon the backs of fallen leaves
curled limbless across the windless lawn
wet beneath a starless sky—

light grieves in this murderous season
flames that fed each first uncurling bud
dreams each might be dreaming now
though their red and gold have bled
colorless beneath a starless sky—

while one by one light rain leaves fall
winging downward into darkness
so many fallen
so many fallen
falling still beneath this starless sky—

 

 

David Koenig is the author of a poetry chapbook Amaranth and his work has appeared or is forthcoming in Salamander, Forage, Rust + Moth and elsewhere. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Find him on Instagram @davkoe.

Climate Denial by Richard Parisio

Here’s what I know: heat ripples over asphalt
and the El train thunders. Lemon ices
numb the tongue and pucker
with cold-tart-sweet, and sidewalks
grate bare knees whenever
you go down — that’s Brooklyn summer.

That scent from hidden flower
constellations in the hedge — it sends
me back. A blackbird shimmers
like an LP record, whistles: just
connect the dots: “Indian” summer
makes the news. 120+ and thousands dead.

Says wise-guy winter: what in hell
do you know? Recall the frozen-over river?
Those old brown men whose daughters
fan them with palm leaves, dying in hospital
beds across the planet? Far from you as June
from January. Too far away to make you change your life.

 

 

Richard Parisio works as an interpretive naturalist in the Hudson Valley. He writes a nature column for the New Paltz Times and is NYS Coordinator for River of Words, a children’s watershed poetry program. Parisio’s The Owl Invites Your Silence won the 2014 Slapering Hol Press Poetry Chapbook Award.

The Voice, After All by Linda Parsons

Perched on my sleeve, tail flicked in my ear,
it’s the voice, after all, sonorous and open,
memory bubbling up from clay. Sound cupped
like a fledgling—my first husband silver throated
on the Americana station, the soft Tennesseeisms
of my second, liquid as the river he left me for.
The voice, bubbled freshet, lifeline branched
to hapless future, hard parting, the old ache
made flesh. I’d bottle it if I could, aged oak
casks, the best of times trebled forth. I’d drink
to the gills, awash in healing, a strike to the past,
perfect cast to shallows, hearing cocked to
flurried landings, carried on water’s chill breath.

 

 

Linda Parsons is a poet, playwright, and an editor at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She served as poetry editor of Now & Then magazine for many years, and her work has appeared in such journals as The Georgia Review, Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, Southern Poetry Review, Shenandoah, in Ted Kooser’s syndicated column American Life in Poetry, and in numerous anthologies. This Shaky Earth is her fourth poetry collection. Parsons’ adaptation, Macbeth Is the New Black, co-written with Jayne Morgan, was produced at Maryville College and Western Carolina University, and her play Under the Esso Moon was read as part of the 2016 Tennessee Stage Company’s New Play Festival and received a staged reading in spring 2017.