Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Two Poems by Changming Yuan

The Two in the Grove

she is a willow
gorgeous and graceful
his whispers are breeze
gentle and generous
blowing through her branches
slim and sunlight-glazed
constantly making her tremble
like a chuckling tree
I kissed your morning
With mine, and held
Your night closely with mine too
Between your spring and autumn
I lay my summer
Deep in winter
From your January through February
To your March, I wrap your April and May
With my June and July
Within your August
I use my September or October
To caress both your November and December
And right from your moment
I suck my whole year
Changming Yuan, an 8-time Pushcart nominee, grew up in rural China and currently tutors in Vancouver, where he co-edits Poetry Pacific with Allen Qing Yuan. Since mid-2005, Changming's poetry has appeared in 839 literary publications worldwide, including Best Canadian Poetry, BestNewPoemsOnline and Threepenny Review

Sunday, July 20, 2014

A Poem by Diane Webster

Green Light, Red Light
Green lights blur
like white center lines
on midnight highway
until car
euphorically sails
silent in darkness
fingertip close
until roller coaster
plunge flashes
red lights, red lights.
Diane Webster enjoys the challenge of picturing images into words to fit her poems. If she can envision her poem, she can write what she sees and her readers can visualize her ideas. That's the excitement of writing.  Her work has appeared in "The Hurricane Review," "Eunoia Review," "Illya's Honey," and other literary magazines.

Friday, July 18, 2014

A Poem by Adreyo Sen

The wind tugging at the hem of her black and gold caftan,
struggling to pull her close as it blasts its way,
she stands remote, her hands crossed across her bosom,
oblivious to the catcalls of urchins as they loll past her,
staring at her with insolent curiosity, yet respectful,
her eyes looking beyond the jungle of traffic,
past the bleating cars, past the commuters,
to the desire of her heart, she waits patient,
monument of sacrifice,
mutely shaking her head in negation, as vendors,
spread their colourful array of goods before her,
hoping to take advantage of her soft tender face.
Gentle and barren, the black hem of her caftan,
forming a respectful train, she waits,
waits for her dream, her eyes firm and resolute,
a part, yet not a part of this world.
Commuters hurry past her with dispassionate glances,
trained in the controlled cynicism of stock markets,
casting her into the scattered scrambled memories,
to mull over in the security of their home,
the pathetic sweet figure they think they smiled at.
As her lips start to tremble and her eyes dim,
no longer her bright messengers of hope,
she sees her dream and flings her arms around him,
and as he lifts her up in his arms, kissing her radiant face,
the great city of commercial gods carries on, oblivious as ever,
to the triumphant march of love.
Adreyo Sen resides in Kolkata, India.  He is pursuing his MFA degree at Stony Brook, Southampton.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Three Poems by Ally Malinenko

Big Sur
Am Alone, says the king,
walking down the stone path.
Am Alone.
And at first he means it, they all do.
At first.
Until the silence grows
louder than the noise he used to make
down in the dirty city bars.
It grows like the moss on the trees,
like the gray hair on his arms.
Am Alone, they say
to get better
to be well
and still and peaceful,
to quell the fury.
But they hate it, like all kings hate being king.
They have no idea,
these men
with the bright ideas,
with the looks that give and take
away from the spotlight
and all their fickle tempers,
their broken glasses,
cutting the bottom of feet.
All the roaring.
They hate it
when there is no one to hear them.
Nothing but silence and the echoes
of their own fury thrown back at them
from the ocean’s mocking slap.
still, Am Alone,
something I have never known
not truly.
To live without it.
To forget and be forgotten.
To be still
for as long as I wish
vibrating like an atom.
Forever, even
Am Alone.
Building Civilizations
Sometimes I wonder if I made you up, too.
The way I have always made up stories.
Especially when you told me that you had never read
all the books you said you did when we were young.
And I stopped on the street, shocked.
I saw my reflection in the store window,
my windblown hair,
my boy jeans, my fall jacket, taken aback.
I have watched you,
over the course of our life together
and even in our life apart,
create and recreate yourself for other people
but I had the secret. I knew you when.
And now, I realize it has happened again,
this time to me.
“It was you,” you said.
“Those were your stories. I couldn’t be bothered.”
When we were little we built civilizations
in my basement. Giant pillows for continents,
toys and dolls for people.
We played God. Some lived, some died.
Back then, I wrote poems too, inside
without paper or pencil I just didn’t know.
And here on the street, with the slump
of your shoulders passing my reflection
I reach out and take your words,
pluck them from the cool night air where they float,
stuffed them in my pocket, like a survivor
and when you were gone,
I ate them, bite by bite,

savoring them, like a secret.
Yowling in the Next Life

In the next life, 
I'm going to come back as a cat.
No more of this pink hairless life.
Instead i will set on the dock in San Francisco
and laugh
that white bright laugh
that used to torture the prisoners on Alcatraz.
The sounds they could hear over that quiet bay,
all that gentle conversation, the awkward
dinner dates, the shuffling starts and sputters
of men and women getting to know each other.
The symphony of clinking silverware, coughs, chatter
nervous accents, embarrassed pauses, space of silence louder
than laughter.
All of it floated over all that black water
over the honking of seals,
and came through those
rusty, sea-stained windows and 
my god, it must have driven them crazy.
The cacophony of want.

yes in the next life,
I'll be on the dock, too.
A fat black cat, yowling at your moon. 
Ally Malinenko has been writing stories and poems and novels for awhile now. Possibly too long. Occasionally she gets them published. Her first book of poems entitled The Wanting Bone was published by Six Gallery Press and her first novel for children, Lizzy Speare and the Cursed Tomb, was recently published by Antenna Books. She can be found blathering here: http://allymalinenko.com/

Monday, July 14, 2014

Four Poems by Agholor Leonard Obiaderi

Body Language
When you came in through the
language followed you.
The way you held your
was in itself more eloquent
than speech, high ,
regal like a queen decked out in
pink petals which decorated
the ruffled neck of your  gown
flowing, its own smooth river.
No words tumbled out
of your mouth, or crashing
waterfall, yet your eyes held
a vocabulary more vast
than Shakespeare. You sat
in the window seat to watch
the morning sun
to the gold-coloured  curtains in
soothing phrases.
Your presence was meant to calm.
Every time you raised a slender finger
to smooth your hair
each strand
was a personal idiom that admonished
About mother’s death? Wipe
away your wretched frown.
In your presence, I flourished in the
but memory floated higher
and higher
each time you stepped through
the door, language, an epiphany
like  a dog at your heels
chewed dead consonants.
(July, 1969 -  Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon, the fist human )
First time I appeared in
school. Maiden journey
to the moon  started, scribbling
paths on the blank page
the Milky Way.
Mother handed me and my wet
cheeks to the class teacher.
First time I kissed a girl. My virgin
savoured a taste of nectar. Her pink
tongue, red lips suppressed bright
colours like secret intercourse.
First time I held my baby in my
stars filled my head, my
heart and loins.
First time  you betrayed me .
A wormwood-bitter memory
of sweat, hot breath and a
lover’s  whisper
seeking a hiding place in moon craters.
A generation of firsts. Yet,
they never reached fertility. They inhabited
the dormant eclipse on this marooned
I hope to make another
first attempt,
leaping across to Mars.
In the ash-coloured dawn, I
have stared at the  sequence of
petals, their ring.
To discover what will stand
erect as a tree trunk or lie flat
as the horizon.
The crimson-cheeked flower
possessed little knowledge of it.
I have gazed at the long road,
its endless hours rolled into
open-ended pouches.
A hope for something I
could hold up to the
I have stood by the roadside,
no sparrows
twitter in
the hatching reddish
The gloved hand turned
inward, dipped into me,
touched something equidistant
between the heart and the mind,
bloodied but  
stainless. So, I knew I
could  see  the shape of tomorrow
veiled in  floral patterns. 
Too Late to Change
It was the names
through their  rainbow-coloured reefs
through their poison of the stingray , paved
their path to the tears.
His name  wasAndrew. Meaning?
Pestle arms, palms
cupped into a mortar,
he ground nearby
sapplings into dust.
Manly, tough.
Firstborn ; Felix. Meaning?
Happiness. He walked the night
right into a speeding
Secondborn. Aurelia, Meaning?
Golden girl. Her nostrils
of white powder nudged other
girls heaving bosoms.
Father disowned her.
A name he could have changed.
Andrew, rough, strong.
No wonder, his arms swung
Hurting feelings, breaking
wills crushing even  
Deborah, the
Thirdborn; a bee. Deborah
stung  without speaking,
eyes green as buzzing
Fourthborn; Allen. Meaning?
Harmony yet the raging
battle of blood generations
Till death ploughed
Andrew deep into the ground.
A graveside full of strangers. Faces
he wished he had changed.
Agholor Leonard Obiaderi holds a Bachelor's degree in the English Language.He lives in Delta State, Nigeria. He loves poetry, crime novels and wrestling. His poems have been published in UptheStairCase Quarterly; Barnwood International Magazine; and Shortstory Library. He has been featured as poet of the week in Poetry Super-Highway.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

A Poem by Marc Carver

Free Festival


The woman with the Italian name
she kept after marriage
told us that
in this special farm
they milked the cows to classical music.
A picture came up in my head.
Two cows with their udders hooked up
Not this bloody Rimsky Korsakoff again.


At the free wine tasting
all the people sat at the tables
sipping their wine.
I threw it down my throat as soon as I could
and then waited for the next bottle to come out.


At the cocktail masterclass,
we all tried some of the cocktails afterwards.
I saw the server with the last jug so I ran over to somebody else's table
and told him to fill me up.
"You have some of the white one in their do you want a fresh glass?"
"No, I don't care, throw her in."
The table burst out laughing,
but I was deadly serious.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

A Poem by William G. Davies, Jr.

Revlon or Max Factor
She was old
and the compact
she was looking into
to fix her lipstick
must've told her
something else,
she pressed more
into her lips
as though she were
stubbing out a cigarette.
William G. Davies, Jr. lives in a town surrounded by dairy farms. He has been happily married for thirty-eight years. His work has appeared in the Cortland Review, Bluepepper, The Wilderness House Review, Gloom Cupboard and many others.