EJ Koh Brings Us Her Poem, "Division"
My body is nobody.
My skull is nobody.
My eyes are nobody.
I wake nobody.
I sleep nobody.
Happy is nobody.
Suffer is nobody.
Little and nearsighted, one living thing.
Then the dead in caskets underground
Like gas pockets in rising dough.
Nobody looks for an incision at the mountaintop.
Nobody is a prophet here.
A dead whale floats, and gas-filled, explodes.
There is food now.
There is sleep.
Nobody is language.
Nobody is a pink lake.
Nobody is the sun.
Remember the human light is borrowed.
Flaming spectacles to wear on the face.
I am sorry to leave.
Even the youngest brain glows.
Nobody’s universe, I see you
suspended between lashes.
I love this terrible nobody of shadows.
The cold goes out, pronged and star skinned.
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"From Shadows," By Louise Hastings
in the shadows
of the tall trees,
the branches tremble
in mid-February wind,
the leaves hold their breath,
wait out the winter skies and snowfall.
A robin lands in the gloom
in a flash of scarlet,
and something about all this falling
reminds me of him,
his voice, dark eyes,
clothes on the floor,
my body naked.
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All New Haiku From Poet Alegria Imperial
English and Bilingual Haiku
the judge’s decision clips
agkaradapen dagiti buridek
just beginning to crawl
a gibbous moon sails
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Two New Poems From Poet Ellen Conserva
The paint was always stained,
Where he hit and missed the light
And felt along the wall
Up the stairs.
Because of all the bar tops
and lamp posts
and dirty whores he touched
As he staggered home.
Keep your hands to yourself.
I am tired of repainting.
I take steady strides
Unaware of dew on pant cuffs.
Bending grass and flowers both
As my feet leave silver footprints
Which disappear and give no sign of how
I shall return.
The sun is on my nape
And the breeze arrives in time to spur me on.
Taking steady strides.
Dew on pant cuffs.
Sun and breeze.
I shall return.
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A New Poem From Poet Kathleen Everett
it's not the weight but how you carry it
its not the weight but how you carry it
loaded onto your back
like a pack mule
or ahead of you
wheel barrowing down the lane
it’s more how you think and feel
all manner of thoughts and feelings
how your tongue feels
as you voice
those longings and fears
or maybe how your lips part
when you sing
a love song
or maybe it’s just that everything we think is heavy
is just as light as a feather
it’s all in how you carry it
rising balloons tied to a string
or tied to your heart
maybe you are light hearted
and drawn to whimsy and mirth
or maybe glum and in need of a digestif
or a good hearty pat on the back
maybe you are light on your feet
dancing up a storm
or a jig or a pas de deux
balancing between sky and earth
its all a balancing act, you know
we are not merely players on a stage
following the gypsy caravan
with all our worldly goods
tucked into our backpacks
or pushed along in our barrows
its all in how you carry it
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Anne Graue Writes About The Forgotten One
Her body felt unnatural
under a forest canopy
in Western Kenya.
Dewy grass slapped her
ankles wet and shiny;
her leather sandals liquefied
sliding her feet
forward as she walked
behind the two men--
sie Deutsch sprechen--
They stopped amid
the tallest trees in Kakamega,
the language musical to her;
it mesmerized her
so that she hardly noticed
the crawling on her feet,
her toes; they laughed--
sie mich vergessen haben--
began to walk toward the cabin.
She looked down,
stared at safari ant pincers,
roundabout her ankles,
her legs bare beneath her skirt.
Sensing her panic,
they began to feast
on her skin--wet, slippery,
and right in their path.
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Sherry Chandler's Lyrical "Feeding the Birds"
Feeding the Birds
I watch you fill the feeders — raveled threads
hanging from your out-at-elbows coat --
birds, squirrels, raccoons, the lame stray cat,
you brave the wind and rain to see them fed.
Hands dripping suds, I watch you, head and nape
swaddled in your shapeless black sock cap --
its weave a snarl of lathe shavings, chisel chips.
Coat and cap, your wing bars, your crown stripes.
When our wide-mawed nestlings squawked for nurture
I fancied I was caged by need. I fought --
a swift come down the flue and caught --
flinging against this window toward free air.
No cage, of course, but my own hungering
to stay, though I starved in the staying.
Read the poetry of Sherry Chandler
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Now on VerseWrights: Sejla Srna
I will endure all heartbreaks you are responsible for,
because you are the person I envisioned
when I decided to let myself breathe.
You are the cliche-boy,
with scruffy hair and skinny arms,
and eyes big enough to replace the moon.
I will never tire of writing of you,
no matter how angry it makes me;
You will forever be my poem,
my unsent letters,
the words in my fingers,
the epic in my bones.
You are naive, and gullible -
Forever lost in rivers of blue-eyed girls
that think you are their’s.
Forever lost in your mother’s arms,
and your father’s unspoken love.
I found you in a forest,
I found you on a bench
and let you find home in my eyes.
When you pull apart the pillars
I will build it back up with limbless trees,
and keep you safe behind eyelash-curtains.
Read the poetry of Sejla Srna
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A Poem From John Alwyine -Mosely (With Reading)
A dead man when a tree cries ☊
1 The Dead Man when a tree cries
The dead man never wakes to the wail of a ghost
by the spite of a tree.
For pines have no time for ghosts but a dead man can
sit in any branch
with or without candles.
As flames are ghosts of trees the candles are never lit.
The moon if big and bright makes trees cry and ghosts
Each tree gathers darkness from the earth and twists it
with dead man laughter,
spiced with kisses taken without love.
Ghosts know this cold blackness and scream for what
but the dead man sleeps.
2 More on The Dead Man when a tree cries
Dead man dreams are never of trees shaking away the
Ghosts leave no footprints by the seashore where the
dead man waits for a boat of sun
making water molten brass.
The trees shaved and shorn are there as the boat
pushing the water into fire.
Pines cry on the shore but the dead man knows only
what is seen
and walks on the lines of fire.
When a dead man wakes, the circle of trees is always
but the ghosts stop laughing.
Read the poetry of John Alwyine-Mosely
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Enjoy this poem in the PoetryAloud area
From Mary Anne Rojas: A Poem And A Reading
you will want to avoid it ☊
you will want to avoid it
but someone you love will
eventually hurt you
you will want to hang each
breath on a clothesline
watch the sun exhaust the
effort each gasp came from
but this will not be enough
to calm the wound, to stop
the weeping. You will believe
every part of you is a plane
crash, midair against
thousands of birds- each
feather will need a funeral.
in between prayers for air
you will remember how
you brought him the sun
in tea cups and late night
massages, how the wrinkle
of his smile resembled the
circumference of a sliced
lemon. he will not give you
a straight answer to why
your company is not needed
anymore. but you will not
accept it. you will remember
how you fight for your black
skin, protect her from the evil
world of oppression. You will
travel back to your first rally,
how you chanted vigorously
for a better world-a different
kind of love, a new love that
would sustain everything
around you. and for that, you
will remember you need people.
he will suddenly look like a people.
the mirror will try to convince you
that you fail to love another.
you will disagree. the clothesline
suddenly will stop quivering and
you will call him. you will fight
for the good love. ask for an answer.
and remind him that you love
yourself more at that moment.
and hope to always know when
you need to love yourself, bring
the fear out of each tear like
the spill of blood from an opened
cut. you will not get aggressive with
silence, but stand above sound like
that something that wakes you
up each morning without an alarm-
your body will know when the light
Now On VerseWrights: Poet Archana Kapoor Nagpal
on the kitchen table --
a dandelion seed –
starry night –
jasmine buds drop
from her braid
pelting holy river
Read the poetry of Archana Nagpal
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Bing, Peggy, And E. Michael Desilets (With Audio)
Bing Guy ☊
My father was a Bing guy, crooning
“Where the blue of the night meets the gold of the day,”
maybe on his way out the door, or “Please,
lend your little ear to my pleas,”
while he stood at the stove stirring
spaghetti sauce, a dishtowel tucked
into his waistband.
Yet, every so often:
“You had plenty of money
in 1922 . . .” Ancient financial history.
“But you let other women make a fool of you.”
Dad in a blue mood, echoing a dark lady’s lament.
“Why don’t you do right, like some other men do?”
Then he’d sing solemnly into the simmering sauce:
“Get out of here and get me some money too.”
I was a resourceful lad, had a bike and paper route
found the song at Balboni’s Drugs on a 99¢ RCA
anthology: Lil Green on vocal, Big Bill Broonzy
on guitar. I saw the song was written by
Kansas Joe McCoy, Memphis Minnie’s ex-husband.
Not the old man’s musical neighborhood.
He was a Bing guy.
Years later I finally tuned in to the white lady
who taught Dad to Do Right: Peggy Lee,
Girl Singer and Goddess, holding her own at the mike
in front of Benny Goodman’s Orchestra. My father
was a Bing guy, but Peggy caught his ear and held on.
Peggy. Also my mother’s name: a perfect poetic
coincidence. Peggy, spinning Lil Green’s Bluebird 78
in neon hotel rooms on mean rainy Sundays. Something
out of Edward Hopper. Something out of Cornell
Woolrich. Something out of America the Beautiful
and the Cool. Could be he heard it on his sister Viola’s
Crosley or on Armed Forces Radio while I was lying
in my crib in that Concord Street apartment, my mother
reading True Confessions nearby. Peggy and Dad
and Lil: a magnificent, melodic ménage a trois.
Like Muddy Waters,
Lil Green made her way
from Clarksdale to Chicago,
where she died
on my 10th birthday,
bequeathing to us
the ultimate musical query.
Ann Neuser Lederer's Poem, "Two Mowers"
A whir of two mowers from angled directions
muffle her mutter.
We cannot know what she wanted.
Her figure wanders farther away
towards a leaf flecked path
speckled in yellow.
It is all so lovely—yet—we do not know
Her few words masked by the mowers’ motors,
troops of tribes bedecked in red feathers,
pointing their spears.
What was it she whispered?
Was it for our ears only?
Was its mystery serious?
Would it reveal all secrets?
Once, a phone rang, startling us awake.
We would say it had been in the middle of the night,
but really it was the dead dark hour of morning.
We had thought she would live to be old,
but then, at that moment, we doubted those words
Read the poetry of Ann Neuser Lederer
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"Ain't Mine Blues," By E. H. Ford: Poem And Video
ain't mine blues ☊
gettin up sunday
mornin comin down
blue dress, black thighs
ain’t mine; ain’t mine.
blue dress, black thighs
mornin comin down
mornin; comin down.
gettin up sunday
ain’t mine, ain’t mine
blue dress black thighs
blue dress; black thighs.
getting up sunday
mornin comin down
ain’t mine ain’t mine
ain’t mine, ain’t mine
gettin up; Sunday.
"The Party," A New Poem From Marsailidh Groat
I press my face to a window, my breath clouding the
glass, warm with confusion,
and watch the people inside.
Their marble faces morph before me, laughter grotesque
as they sip champagne from goblets rimmed with
And why not? We all crave beauty. I love the feel of
luxury against my skin.
Should I try, with all the might of a child learning to run,
to break this frame, this veneer?
And, if my skin should not tear,
take a sip, sharp and new, like the white wine in my
poured by my grandmother; a taste I didn’t understand?
I came here from a simpler place, clumsy and honest;
the affliction of youth.
Did I learn this vulgarity, hone it, till I became an insider
I still tremble;
but not as much.
Here, a face turns to me,
warm, welcoming. Cold, calculating.
Come in, it says, enjoy the party.
Read the poetry of Marsailidh Groat
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VerseWrights Welcomes Poet Helen McCarthy
Bone dry stems stand tall
Amid new growth – skeletons
At spring’s waking-feast.
Spring shoots from cold ground,
Shyly, like a welcome guest
Silence howls and shrieks
Muffling life’s small echoes, like
Fingers black with earth,
Serene and proud my mother
Planting the summer
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A New Poem From Poet Debbie Strange
Idlers and sidlers loiter behind the neighbourhood bar.
Trash tumbleweeds skitter down the lurking alley.
Plastic bags shroud the staggering fence.
Old news roots around in the gritty gutters.
Glinting shards of thirsty glass stab the oil-kissed
Ominous shadows proposition pale circles of light.
Graffiti gargoyles scream silent profanities,
but not as loudly as the savage with brutal boots
stomping a writhing head into blood’s dark pool -
dealing death on the hostile street.
Distant sirens keening.
We drive by.
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Two Short Poems From The Pen Of Liam Porter
Tune in, they said,
but all I found was static.
scrunched up musings.
A ball of wrinkled, jagged paper
rolling around my head.
I twist and turn,
search for clarity
and try to escape
the train of thought,
dopplering as it sped
that scratchy, hissing fizz
screaming ever louder
through my mind.
But I am on,
a different wavelength.
Would that lovely silence come,
if I simply pulled the plug?
For I am out of tune.
Scratched Out Day
I have scratched out,
layer after layer.
until each task
was finally, done.
But those long hours
have left their pulpy,
soft, sappy residue
under my fingernails.
So, I sit at my keyboard
to scrape it all away.
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A New Poem from Poet Mark Windham
A Regular Customer
We all recognize him — tips well,
never rude or demanding, nothing
complicated in his order — when he
comes in, by himself late in the afternoon.
He sits at a table facing the sea
and takes his time ordering. The food
may be different — today it is oysters –
but he always drinks red wine.
The surf holds his attention, and I
often notice him following the
progress of the beach walkers as they
fill the void between land and waves.
It is rare for him to have more
than two drinks, always saving
the last swallow for a toast
to the sunset before he leaves.
Today, there is no sun,
and the storms in his eyes
are a perfect match to those
on the horizon.
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Marie Anzalone's Love Song At Morning
what I write
My mouth says good morning.
My fingers type good morning.
My hands write good morning.
and what I mean by good morning
could not be interred in a hundred years' writing
by all the best novelists in Europe and North America.
you might as well try to fit a quasar inside of a light pen.
When I say good morning, I mean that this day
I awoke smiling because your feet walk in my world
I placed my hand upon my heart and imagined it, yours.
I drew breath and thought I tasted you in my air
I ran my hands down my sides using your fingertips
I touched between my thighs and was warmed by your heat.
I remembered dreaming pink roses and wanted to paint them
in oils, in dewy soft understated brilliance, for you.
As with so many other things I could find to tell you, if I tried.
How inevitable annihilation is less scary if some part of you,
would remember me; how golden light and morning mist make me want
to be lost in a forest primeval, with you.
How sometimes I am so certain you are there, I feel your
shift off the mattress when I return to this world. And how
none of this is anything I could ever actually say to you.
So instead, I simply write, with a fond mental caress:
good morning, my friend.
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A New Poem From Poet Sarah Russell, "Reunion"
For fifty years
she wrote to Yolanda
in foreign prose,
sharing secrets as she once did
walking home from school.
Argentina and girlhood
a lifetime ago.
Reality: three kids, then grandkids,
a troubled husband, an aging mother,
an Arkansas farm.
Yet every letter promised
that someday she'd return.
Now they are on the tarmac
stooped, with the uncertain step of age.
Words catch in their throats
as their hands caress the other's cheeks,
wipe away the other's tears,
and their eyes see only
the girls they were –
their secrets safe.
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We Welcome Poet Michael Allyn Wells To VerseWrights
Visions in Red
In the night of my many sighs
I see the roofs of our village
rushing with red.
I sit along the way
to see my wedding day
I am both in my own view
but along the way as well,
my bouquet in hand
but I smell nothing
though the taste of copper
is strong in the air
like I'm sucking on coins.
My groom stands over us all
and ladles the blood of every Passover
on us all - even the Jew we call the Christ.
I am clothed and yet nakedly vulnerable
before my groom, before God,
before the whole of the town.
[This ekphrastic poem is based on the painting The Red Roofs, by Marc Chagall, 1954]. Click on the painting for a larger view.
VerseWrights Welcomes Poet R.H. Mustard To Our Pages
The wind arrives
late at night,
across the highway
of my dreams,
like snow drifting
in my headlights,
the most hesitant
it's a warning
we will never quench
our enormous thirst,
will keep driving
into the heart
of the desert,
our parched lips,
only a hollow.
We drive for hours
for newly built homes,
in the mirage
as we draw near.
White lizards scramble
across the road, so
we're just an illusion,
like all the others
who came before.
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New Poems From Poet Bauke Kamstra
Walking through the trees
a bird hopping
from pine to spruce
selling dreams of
In the city
the dark broken by
except those few
I've saved for you.
the bowl of salt
that was once
the small shadow
of a hawk.
Read the poetry of Bauke Kamstra
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Leslie Philibert: Two Poems About The Poem...
What is Happening to You Now
Light from this page; the bleached wood
Reflects; the cornea bends the wisdom, the
Iris breathes each syllable and the retina sees
All.Each phrase runs down the optic nerve
Like a scalded cat in a greased alley.
A banged-up neuronal room closed, locked
And strange. What you started to read a few
seconds ago has fallen apart and then been
Joined again. Lights over the horizon;
a reaching out, a new moment; a healing.
The Lost Poem
Shoved in a jacket, a folded heart
a breakage of notes about the body fascism.
Nach Auschwitz ein Gedicht zu schreiben
ist barbarisch. So sing then a song about
Oswiecim, about the ice on the Sola,
about Silesian firs, tell me the story of a
train hanging under the stars, late from Hannover.
Tell me in hushed words about a hole in a roof,
about rushed concrete, about the sinking to ash.
Then throw this poem into the Sun.
No paper can carry this weight
Read the poetry of :Leslie Philibert
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A Welcome To Our Newest Poet: Kendra Ballesteros
The Night We Heard
The Wolves Howl
I took his little hand &
led him to the back porch.
Moon shining bright -
frothy, misty sheen of
of clouds floating
Both in awe
Standing in our moment
we heard the call.
Not just one.
We heard them all.
He looked up at me
smiling as bright as the
He reared back his head
letting out a throaty
Letting out my own.
P to the
S keeps getting me
trippin' on the
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Rowyda Amin's Mock Epic Poem, "Barbies, Please!"
A golden bird keeps you
from crossing the fourth wall
of the Dreamhouse.
Swivel-necked Barbies, do not worship
the bird and its glittering solvents. Bury it
in the centre of the earth.
O shining calves!
O breast-precious transmuters!
Put on your pink space suits.
It is dripping golden
feathers that smolder.
Do not be afraid of mirrors.
Find the bird and beat it beyond
the death of stars
with your tennis rackets and skis.
Wear your Malibu sunglasses,
and a sidelong glance. Beat
the glowing trail from your stick-on carpets.
You’re the line in China, Barbies,
do not wait for your Kens,
your princes without fear.
The fury of the air!
The golden rain outshines
your chandeliers and tiki lights.
Hear the crash
of your pink elevator.
Kick off your plastic mules, Barbies,
and run tip-toe
down the spiral staircase
before you singe.
Barbies, can’t you hear, outside,
the Dream Horses
prance restless in their pen?
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jacob erin-cilberto's Latest Is A Metaphorical Struggle
Posing for a Poetic Portrait
the clever metaphor
went to work as usual
hoping for a wisp of genius
to procure a spot
with new contract
a raise in pay
and a chance for promotion
to a new poem
but went home that night
still riding the cliche train
pretentiously written off
as just another lame attempt
at applicable aptitude
by the uninspired poet
to advance without qualification
to a level suitable for framing
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Two Short Lyrics From Poet Kim Talon
The Curl of Dark
Hours are numbered the same
but the light is uneven
dark curls around day
and holds tight
Sun bows her head
letting candlelight battle gloom--
and valiant flame-keepers
pierce the darkness
like stars in a night sky
All of the words I did not say
things I could have—should have—said
if only I could shape consonants and vowels
but I'm stuck in the silence before language
unable to summon knowledge of speech
swallowing the unspoken
choking on shards of the words I did not say
splinters of remorse and regret
Read the poetry of Km Talon
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VerseWrights Welcomes Poet Charles Bane, Jr.
It defies logic so
Beautifully, this love.
Fall my love and I will
Rake the leaves.
For My Son
I will not waiver or protest
that the wait is hard to bear;
The parent-to-be is patient
for the child he cannot see, knowing
that eternity is rounding unknown
seas to fishing nets. My
beloved, I wait. I stand upon
the beach, my arms are wide, you
must swim to the sound of me
and lights undreamed. We shall be
coins of sides alike and sleep together
in the shade. You are the growing
length of me that lays
upon a floor of leaves
and says, there is no end to light
or closing of the day. There are only
clarions that pierce the dark
with mirror songs like these.
Read the poetry of Charles Bane, Jr.
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Heather Feaga Offers Two Lyrical Poems
A love a taste
Holding the kiss
In the reds of her skin
Her fingers gather
Across his arm
Over her hip
Tight warm hills
Shed their cotton
Breathing in sun
Dropped to him
Like a sliver
I will sleep
In the crevices of night
Like the night
I will slip
Into her shallow openings
I will seep the colors of day
Across the tips of my fingers
I will discover
How to move you
I will blindfold you
And lick you clean
Read the poetry of Heather Feaga
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