Friday, February 5, 2016

A Poem by Jay Frankston

Pregnant Words

Pregnant words
hanging from the line
waiting to be picked,
sorted and arranged,
sentenced and given meaning.

Pregnant words
like ripe red grapes
hanging from the vine,
picked, crushed, fermented
and encased in a barrel
of premium quality wine
to be swirled in a glass
making you giddy,
absent minded and inebriated.

Pregnant words
squeezed into
a light headed poem.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Three Poems by Gary Beck

Chill Out

The day before the first freeze
city dwellers mostly sheltered
by urban comforts,
ignore changing conditions
considering the weather
an inconvenience
to normal routines,
only interrupted
by occasional storms, snow,
paralyzing blackout,
frigid temperatures
an opportunity
for displays of finery
by the fashion conscious,
a reason for complaint
from the disaffected,
all forgetting discomfort
when warm winds start to blow.

Urban Oddity

Time and again
a store or restaurant
opens for business
near a store or restaurant
that sells the exact same thing.
Survival depends
on customer loyalty,
convenience, better service,
more appealing product,
all the tangibles
that allow success
in a trade war
that no one understands
why it happened
on the same street.

Obedience Training

Presidential proclamations
fall on deaf ears in Congress
where special interests supplant
agendas that help the needy.
Many ignorant voters
never seem to understand
the purchaser's of legislators
expect them to do as ordered,
regardless of any harm
to the American people.

Gary Beck has spent most of his adult life as a theater director, and as an art dealer when he couldn't make a living in theater.  He has 11 published chapbooks.  His poetry collections include:  Days of Destruction (Skive Press), Expectations (Rogue Scholars Press).   Dawn in Cities, Assault on Nature, Songs of a Clerk, Civilized Ways (Winter Goose Publishing).  Perceptions, Displays, Fault Lines and Tremors will be published by Winter Goose Publishing.  Conditional Response will be published by Nazar Looks.  His novels include:  Extreme Change (Cogwheel Press), Acts of Defiance (Artema Press).  Flawed Connections has been accepted for publication (Black Rose Writing).  His short story collection, A Glimpse of Youth (Sweatshoppe Publications).  His original plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes and Sophocles have been produced Off Broadway.  His poetry, fiction and essays have appeared in hundreds of literary magazines.  He currently lives in New York City.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Three Poems by Randall Karlen Rogers

The Hair Starts Growing Upwards on the Neck (and therefore it should be shaved)

The beard grooming specialist
said if you don't have a well
trimmed beard it means you
just don't care.
Exactly, I said.

Death, The Final Frontier

I tired to remember
to forget.

Do the things we can
not think about.   Exist?
Only in infinity
and imaginations
and melatonin driven
outside the Universe,
Though it is said
by some, for eternity
to be real, any
combination or singularity
of thought is possible
and may have a possibility
of being reality,
if it can be thought.
And, if endless infinity
does hold sway,
since as it has
been said,
"The [present] Universe
is far stranger than
we can imagine" (Issac Asimov).
Unless, of course,
we consider eons
into the future,
when our Sun eventually
blows up/burns out/stops shining
and we have not transferred
to artificial intelligence
indestructible, non-aging,
self-rejuvenating some
type of organic or not
rather like
we are now,
but healing
much longer lasting
than we currently are, or
in a final analysis,
of course, if we are
mute-silent, and
very much
stone cold Dead.
Though even when expired
live as much-motion
atoms, nuclei, quarks.
It then appears,
if life, as well
as Death, we are
so gloriously
and persistently,
Recycling all the time.

The Morals of Nature

"[Words] cannot cover the dimensions of what is in truth."

                                       -- Ralph Waldo Emerson.

The morals of nature,
are in question.
in the extreme.
killing plants, I suppose,
by herbivores and
omnivores, is not
a violation of
"thou shall not kill."

Randall Karlen Rogers is fifty-three and resides in Rapid City, South Dakota.  Last published in "The Camel Saloon" and "Dead Snakes."

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

A Poem by David Chorlton

Sunday Drive on Interstate 10

Dark clouds over pale mountains;
the sun breaks through
and shadows in the sky
shift back.
            Sparrows perch
along a power line, a horse
drinks from a trough,
a vulture rises from the dry
              The desert shopping
outlet stands in silence
without even a security guard
to protect its vacancy.
trees that withered in the sun
stand grey on a grey
   Before and after
the San Diego turnoff
are billboards for the expensive resort;
for boots; for the adult boutique; and one
saying how to give up cigarettes
with another telling where
to buy them.
                 A cattle train
has stalled sixty wagons
long with a moan contained
in slatted steel,
                     while three
bold letters painted in white
on faded red say Vote for Van
for the Senate, although
there is no election
                          and nobody
knows Van.

Monday, February 1, 2016

A Poem by Yi Wu


The slow moment
you turned away
casting the slender long shadow
still smoldering with the Sun's
remnant warmth that brings back
memories of how it used to singe
where the two of us touched and
how we parted ways screaming in
flaming agony on the surface
of our epidermal spaces,

still smoldering, until your shadow
utterly blocked away even the morning star
and when H2O huddled together in cold
to be your unwitting messenger,
seeping through linen rags I put on to
clothe my mind to send a chilling reminder
that reverberated onto wherever blood flowed
da, da, weeeeeeeeeeeeeh
da, da, weeeeeeeeeeeeeh
shaking each of my moving part
to get its acts together, lest
I break apart into soaked debris,
each piece still physically repelling water
before the time would come for me to freeze

into tombstone,
and rain to slowly etch out the name and epitaph
you made for me

Yi Wu writes poetry and essays in Brooklyn, New York

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Three Poems by Ken L. Jones

In the Throes of Missteps
(for Kurt Cobain)

He's been put upon the darkest of pedestals
Because he used his guitar sprawl as a paintbrush
Both lethal and revered
And the aftermath of his lyrics
Which were a storage locker full of recorded phone calls
Still speaks to us murkily after all these years
And after his flannel heroin is there anything left to be said
Except that he explained himself as both the lost and the found
Until a shotgun went off while a flicker machine spun
As all of that was lost to a seagull
Then he departed us led by black angels
Who reminded him of butterflies
To something more exquisite than the Emerald City
Where dreams of becoming is only the beginning.

Retractable Elegance

The ghosts who whistle within my copper teakettle
Are like vintage video games long ago played by my young sons
That I still remember like icy crow footprints
Now preserved until spring on this April day of winter rain
And now are only rose petals which when strewn
Take on the shape of the stars and moon.

The First of Many

This rain and gloom is like T.S. Eliot wrote it
The titillation of winter is now gone
Fished out of a sea of somewhat untraceable
Recollections that lets my curiosity become a
Waterfront whose dance metamorphs
Into all that is low lying on an island of museums
I once visited that was a purge of my image banks
Back when I was a young god of such innocence
Till I found a lost passport of tacos for lunch
And then in the spoken word sculptures that became my forte
I hitched a ride on mixed media collages
And quit forever the bands whose symphony halls
Where only their family's garages.

For the past thirty-five years Ken L. Jones has been a professionally published author who has done everything from writing Donald Duck Comic books to creating things for Freddy Krueger to say in some of his movies.  In the last six years he has concentrated on his lifelong ambition of becoming a published poet and he has published widely in all genres of that discipline in books, online, in chapbooks and in several solo collections of poetry.  

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Two Poems by ayaz daryl nielsen

Solar Beings

Solar beings, we circle again as the
sun hisses "This is it!"  Time won't return
your inner sacredness, the sacredness
dark winds have swept away, and those
dark winds never blow the same way twice
Hidden are even the faintest murmurs
of your sacred inner magics  Our sun,
insisting, "What is sacred may be recovered.
Merge all your knowns with the unknown,
your past, with the future, all as one solar
presence, a presence without any
neediness of claiming anything other
than chance from every hometown
street corner's solar zephyr of
sacred celestial existence"


Within these hollow cities
the pallor of shallow nights
when sleep isn't enough
The loneliness of those
who were born to sing,
empty acolytes brave enough
to hear a seemingly whispered
presence, to wear a seemingly
invisible robe of gold
Those who have had time for
their mistakes and move on to
a grateful sense of sweetness,
the sweet embrace of the genuine,
because we are, after all, always
somehow someone that is needed.

ayaz daryl nielsen, x-roughneck (as on oil rigs)/hospice nurse, editor of bear creek haiku (25+ years/125+ issues), homes for poems include Lilliput Review, SCIFAIKUEST, Shemom, Shamrock, Kind of a Hurricane Press and online at bear creek haiku.