Three Poems by Greg Field

Posted in Greg Field with tags on November 17, 2019 by Scot

Headstone

the air said goodbye
light strained credulity
granite streamed crystals
voices sounded like ice cold
water trickling down a body
shimmering in elegant silk
see the skin behind as if
the material’s molecules are
transparent like curly white hair
the eyes see through
the goodbye, the water, the silk,
the way a gargoyle incessantly
whispers to the world
from its perch in the sky

_____________

The Odd Invitation

 

It’s your turn,
stretched and unbalanced
above the waves.
The boat’s ribs, branches
of the good tree
housing the dim light
where you squint
into the chart held down
by smooth stones
now shifting in accordance
with wind and sails
heeling the boat into dark water.
Through the hull,
you hear the absence of air
and the click
of the odd invitation.

____________

 

Sweet Nothings

It is good to hold nothing
in your hands, As such it is
not a burden, because it weighs,
well, nothing.
To gather sweet nothings
as in, to collect hot whispers
directed into a warm ear,
is good. The words don’t go
in one ear
and out the other,
but tumble into the throat
and slip into a kiss.
There is nothing wrong
with nothing. You can see
how harmless nothing is
by looking into a mirror—
threaten nothing
and what will it say,
what will it do?
You can argue with nothing
and storm out the door triumphant.
On a day gray leaking
from low clouds you can
count on nothing—you can bet
your life on nothing.
But then, there is always something,
and something can always go wrong.

NEGOTIATIONS by Kevin Peery

Posted in Kevin Peery with tags on November 17, 2019 by Scot

They say
the devil
stays in
Cleveland
when Chicago
won’t take
him home

So
I’ve been
sittin’ here
alone
at The
Greenhouse
Tavern

Wonderin’
just how
much
I’ll have
to bluff
before
we begin
negotiations

Two Poems by Paul Corman Roberts

Posted in Paul Corman Roberts with tags on November 17, 2019 by Scot

BLACK PLAYA

Staring in real time at
the mobile neon city
with still corners
and wormholes to Bakersfield
cascading down
waterfall tabulas of light
something is burning
in real time
and like the man once said:
this is the best we could do
their there sweet Narcissa
so in love with our gaze
so skilled in the gazing
the fact of the gaze
become more than the fear
staring back at us
in real time.

____________

 

STAIRWAY TO NOWHERE

top to bottom a pattern
we all know like our DNA we can’t
see where it ends or begins.

It could be steampunk
it could be art deco
it could even be practical
for all we know

I once saw
a very intense man
climb halfway up
to provide himself
a three hundred sixty degree perspective
for six straight hours
but it wasn’t true panopticon
a twisting insistence of the structure
gave a compromised
distorted field of vision and honestly
how could any god want anything more?

1/64th of an inch think risers don’t look
as if they could support a chihuahua
who broke into the coffee stash
but with pure sheet metal
and rusty looking screws that look
not only like they could
but like they want to draw blood

All centered around
a hollow black tube
that flies forever through the floor
the ceiling
the roof and no evidence
this structure is not
the center of the room
no evidence it is not the center of the entire Golden Gate
theater building or the center
of San Francisco
or California
or the planet
or even this foci
of the solar system
so it’s okay
if you want to get a little bit closer.

Three Poems by Cameron Morse

Posted in Cameron Morse on November 17, 2019 by Scot

The Problem

The problem with me is I have no imagination.

If the world wants to be a box bush,
I let it be a box
bush.

I know only a handful of birds and one of them is
tilting like the Road Runner
across the cul-de-sac.

The American Robin is the only kind of Robin
I know the name of.

Tell me something. Why are you writing about birds?

If the world wants to be cold wind in the grass,
I zip up the collar of my Columbia.

Let it rattle oak leaves in the blown-out rosebush.

The problem is I have no one else
to love but you and I’ve been loving you
like the devil since the day I was born.

____________

Déjà Vu

Winter already cold in the bones, the struts
and the sheetrock. With the boy
in my arms I step down, the doorway
open and the yellow stocking cap
on the walnut roll-top. I don’t need to be convinced.

I have already lived this, already eased
his warm body into my right hand and reached
with my palsied left. On the day after
my first seizure, rain wriggled on the windshield.
The road lassoed and fell into the mist below.

Our headlights showed us to the gift shop
above Pikes Peak. We were on vacation
the day of my first seizure and it took a whole day
for us to realize the vacation was over.
It was time to take me home.

____________

Cheating On My Diet

You tell me you’re going to look
for a support group for widows
because I’m cheating on my diet.
I don’t care about my life.
I leave oil in the pan, on the plate,
and I need oil to slick my blood,
to starve my cancer cells. I need
olive oil and coconut to cross
the blood-brain barrier and barter
for my life. Chimney smoke in brisk
evening air. Aviary birdsong in the treetops.
Turtle doves roost in dimming branches,
and crows sift through the shattered glass
of sunset. The idea of dying terrifies me.
The idea of going where you cannot.
So fill my cup, film my lips. I’ll sicken,
I’ll puke, anything, anything ….

 

 

Cameron Morse lives with his wife Lili and son Theodore in Blue Springs, Missouri. His first collection, Fall Risk, won Glass Lyre Press’s 2018 Best Book Award. His latest is Terminal Destination (Spartan Press, 2019). 

Two Poems by Steve Brightman

Posted in Steve Brightman with tags on November 17, 2019 by Scot

Mathematics Is A Losing Game

Whatever
the proper

length of time
is for carrying

the weight of
another’s sins is.

You don’t need
a numerator

or a divisor
to know this is

the answer
to the ugliest

riddle the world
has to offer.

____________

 

Were They Standing Next To Each Other, Light From The Sun Would Have Hit Them At The Exact Same Second

I read tonight
that Jean-Paul Sartre
and Ariana Grande
are the same height,
exactly five feet
from the surface
of the earth and
I was going to write
a poem about one
of the houses
I grew up in, but I’ll
be damned if this
isn’t a poem itself.

MESSENGER by Bob Savino

Posted in Bob Savino with tags on November 17, 2019 by Scot

(for Greta Thunberg)

you told them maybe they listened but
did they hear? did it pierce their hearts?
you told them and they felt lava spurting
from a live volcano yet did that matter?
shaking with the fire of pain and outrage
you told them by every cell in your body
some heard the gush of glaciers melting
you told them and others started tasting
rain forest ash blown ten thousand miles
you told them with a voice of dying coral
you told them and this planet shuddered
to its innermost core boulders cracked!
you told them and now all was out there
freed beyond shameful excuses and lies
you told them—just 16 years yet timeless
a witness pure and severe as Antarctica
you told them since that’s why you came
a prophet sent by our childrens’ children
an avatar of Earth’s primordial wisdom
you told them from the brink of disaster
standing alone before the so-called wise
did you budge their needle toward light?
did they begin to wake or discern a clue?
you told them! and it’s all you could do
speaking truth to power from your soul.

 

 I was a co-founder of the original Prospero’s Pit Open Mic, and have done numerous other readings of my poems at various venues in Kansas City for many years. I’m currently a member of The K.C. Mystic Poets Society, which meets in Westport once a month. I’ve published six books of poems, the most recent being Caresses And Wounds from Spartan Press, 2018, Jason Ryberg, editor.

 

Three poems by Jenn Knickerbocker and Jake St. John

Posted in Jake St. John, Jenn Knickerbocker & Jake St. John with tags on November 15, 2019 by Scot

Eres Tú

I have left
the flesh
of my heart
along the roads
I travel

Searching
for you
vulnerable
and exposed

I tremble
at the
mere thought
of you

I have walked
miles of sunshine
and rain
simply to catch
a glimpse

It is you
that makes me
catch my breath

It is you
that creates
each smile

It is you
that carries
my heart
in porcelain hands

It is you.

____________

 

Perception

Struggles
to grasp terrain
on the way up
lead to a resolution
being stronger
on the way down
morning still has me
grabbing my head
not knowing
east from west
north from south
or why you’re not here
even when descending
upon the lush green
one cannot see
the road ahead
when their eyes
are sheltered
and fear the view.

____________

Sense of Being

My eyes
have traveled
the curves
of the earth
restless and weary
as they search
for purpose

My fingers
have navigated
the skin
of history
coarse and exposed
as they try
to grasp reality

My tongue
has tasted
the mouths
of oceans
articulate and accessible
as it proclaims
conscience and character

My ears
have heard
the songs
of mountains
majestic yet serene
as they filter
melody from noise

My nose
has inhaled
the perfumes
of forests
brisk and invigorating
as it defines
my soul and being

and my heart
has been
captured
by you.