Wednesday, November 11, 2015

A Poem by Di Lombard

Sleep Torment
In the Voice of a Box Turtle

Clouds curtained night in my Indiana meadow,
where I stopped to sleep beside a wall.

Then knife of eye-fire dropped snaking by me,
its light a blaze so awful

my shield shell seemed to explode.
Death played white tag where I trembled.

Watching, I sighted voice of crack
call its smoke, the sculptured sky in pirouette

by my secret place of air-floating grass.
Its paint, bursting, flavored the taste of my tongue.

Are not, it marked its path north among the stars.
Listening, I lay afraid.

Di Lombard has a drawing published in the Impractical Cats anthology from Medusa's Laugh Press.  She has been working at a cognitive behavior lab since 1979.  Last year she collaborated in an Oregon State University-sponsored residency in the arts located in the Oregon Coast Range.

Monday, November 9, 2015

A Poem by Farfel Lombard

Ballet of Fire

Fireworks lighted happiness.
My mind bursts with the patterns
in the slowly darkening sky
driving weather down to cool and soft.

Balls of smoke screamed up
and balanced for a moment before exploding
and showering the air with a canopy of stars.

Farfel Lombard has published his work in Thresholds Literary Journal and has contributed to collaborative works in BluePrintReview and the Impractical Cats anthology from Medusa's Laugh Press.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Poem by Heather Gelb

Silence of the Crickets

The bronze cricket adorning the weather vane
Defies deceiving winds and only
Points east.

The caged cricket trapped to wisps of good luck
Defies the ears that strain for songs portending
Abundant harvests and joyful encounters.

The silent, unyielding crickets bring
Disharmony to those too wise
To hear the

It takes a child to blow wind sweet enough
To move the bronze cricket and
Wise enough, just enough, to
Open the cage and let good fortune soar
On wings of sound, just
A chirp away from all who hear joy
In the darkness.

Heather Gelb feels most fulfilled leaping from hilltop to hilltop, as she writes in her recently published memoir about her journey from Rwanda to Israel --  Her poetry has been published in such diverse works as Poetica Publishing, Deronda Review, Green Panda Press and Dead Snakes.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Two Poems by Simon Perchik

This leaf shutting down
drains as if its puddle
could speak for you

though the evenings too
have outgrown, no longer reds
or browns or face to face

the way all these trees
still gives birth in darkness
and the echo you listen for

has your forehead, scented
lulled by the gentle splash
coming by to nurse

--what you hear is the hand
hour after hour leaving your body
and this huge sea

that never blossomed
taking you back for rivers
that wanted to be water.

From under this pathway the sun
brings your shadow back
the only way it knows

though what it pulls up
is just as weak, hardly pebbles
and on a plate left outside

as if this grave is still vicious
caged the way the dead
are fed with your mouth

calling out from the dark corners
for stones, more stones--step by step
you remember things, better times

careful not to come too close
not raise your hand
or one false move.

Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, The Nation, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker, and elsewhere.  His most recent collection is Almost Rain, published by River Otter Press (2013).  For more information, including free e-books, his essay titled "Magic, Illusion and Other Realities" please visit his website at

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

A Poem by Linda M. Crate

Crow Song

the crows
always sang loudly
flapping their
to make me leave,
but stubbornly
i followed;
they stopped when they saw
my crow necklace
almost as if contemplating
who i could be
that i should walk into the forest
without fear--
the songs of the crow continued
ever more softly,
and i felt like they started trying
to teach me how to fly;
i have always
wanted wings and so i followed
listening to all their tales
maybe one day
i will have a pair of wings to follow
after all their dreams.

Linda M. Crate is a Pennsylvanian native born in Pittsburgh yet raised in the rural town of Conneautville.  Her poetry, short stories, articles, and reviews have been published in a myriad of magazines both online and in print.  Recently her two chapbooks A Mermaid Crashing Into Dawn (Fowlpox Press -- June 2013) and Less Than A Man (The Camel Saloon -- January 2014) were published.  Her fantasy novel Blood & Magic was published in March 2015.  Her novel Dragons & Magic is forthcoming through Ravenswood Publishing.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Two Poems by Kate Garrett

Through Bruton Park

summer hangs
     over the edge
of the orchard

grasping at autumn's
& ripening apples
     coax from each adolescent branch

your boy departs
     from the path

the hood up on his black sweatshirt
a druid to scale
creeping amongst those poppet trees

he respects & inspects
hands in pockets

returns, face glowing

a harvest sun

Beside the Irish Sea

testing folktales
               you push your luck--

it is said

off the welsh coast
brings misfortune
to all on board

but you have no ship

there is only you
& only tiptoes
over pebbles
to touch
               but tough
to cross

where the foam paints
the tide line red
with beached jellyfish

stretched flat
& doomed

& where she
once described
(as she rested
in hospital)
as a place
she'd found a sign
from the angels:

          white feathers dashed
                    & fluttering
                              across the sand

Kate Garrett was born thirtysomething years ago in southwestern Ohio, but moved to the UK in 1999.  She is senior editor for poetry and flash fiction at Pankhearst, and founding editor of Three Drops Press (which includes the folklore, myths, and fairytales webzine Three drops from a cauldron).  Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and her latest poetry pamphlet, The Density of Salt, is forthcoming in 2016 from Indigo Dreams Publishing.  She lives in Sheffield.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

A Poem by Herb Guggenheim


In Bermuda--
at Elbow Beach--
the ocean is swimming pool blue--
so clear that you can still see your toes
when you've waded out as far as you can go.

The waves at Elbow Beach are gentle mostly
but occasionally a giant one rolls in
almost in slow motion--
almost like liquid glass.

If you have your back to it,
you might not realize it's coming till the last second
and the wave washes over your head
and you're spitting out salt water
which you didn't mean to drink.

When my wife and I get out of the ocean,
a wave follows us back to our cruise ship.

We return home
and the wave is right behind us.
It accompanies me to my office
and comes home with me at night.

Sometimes the wave sleeps by the fireplace.
At other times I open the bedroom closet
and the wave jumps out,
surprising both me and my wife.

When we're out and about,
the wave spots some innocent bystanders
and washes over them,
leaving them speechless, spluttering, and a bit confused.
Also wet.

Eventually the wave gets homesick
and books a flight to Bermuda.
It flies coach,
gets a middle seat
and feels uncomfortable the whole way back.

When the plane lands
the wave boards a bus
and rides back to Elbow Beach
where it crosses the sand and slides back into the ocean.

We never hear from the wave again.

Herb Guggenheim's poems and short stories have appeared in a number of magazines, including The Beloit Poetry Journal, Poetry Quarterly, and Gargoyle.  He's been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and a Best of the Net Award.  Mr. Guggenheim's rhymed poem "Countdown" received an honorable mention in the 2015 Writer's Digest annual writing competition.  He is the author of Sunset at the Hotel Mira Mar (Infinity Publishing, 2011), and the chapbook, Strange Encounter at the Shakespeare Motel (Finishing Line Press, 2015).