POEM: Marjory Wentworth

Holy City

Let us gather and be
silent together like stones
glittering in the sunlight

so bright it hurts our eyes
emptied of tears and searching
the sky for answers.

Holy City


Let us gather and be
silent together like stones
glittering in the sunlight

so bright it hurts our eyes
emptied of tears and searching
the sky for answers.

Let us be strangers
together as we gather
in circles wherever we meet,

to stand hand in hand and sing
hymns to the heavens and pray
for the fallen and speak their names:

Clementa, Cynthia, Tywanza,
Ethel, Sharonda, Daniel,
Myra, Susie, and DePayne,

They are not alone. As bells
in the spires call across
the wounded Charleston sky

we close our eyes and listen
to the same stillness ringing
in our hearts, holding onto

one another like brothers
like sisters, because we know
wherever there is love, there is God.

Marjory Heath Wentworth, Copyright 2015


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POEM: Wendy Lee Hermance

My Mulatto Onion

On the second slicing
I noticed her aureole,
red blurring translucent white lines,
Not red, not entirely white.

The skin of copper slipped
Off a purple shoulder.

My Mulatto Onion


On the second slicing

I noticed her aureole,

red blurring translucent white lines,

Not red, not entirely white.

The skin of copper slipped

Off a purple shoulder.

Unflinching on the bleached cutting board,

Lavender smiled up at the knife.

Not bitter, and not sweet,

crisp, by God, as God meant crisp!

Lifts mankind’s avocado, beans and cheese,

a tomato collaborator!

This lovely human mess.

This burrito is complete.

This smallest world we know, the palate

is delicious withdisobedience.

Wendy Lee Hermance, copyright 2020


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POEM: Walter Bargen

Manifest Breakfast

In a house buttressed by books and slanted morning light
slicing across the grain of the kitchen table, Lieutenant Colonel
George Armstrong Custer’s 1876 orders to pursue the Sioux
Cheyenne, Sans Arcs, Blackfeet, sits beside…

Manifest Breakfast


In a house buttressed by books and slanted morning light
slicing across the grain of the kitchen table, Lieutenant Colonel
George Armstrong Custer’s 1876 orders to pursue the Sioux
Cheyenne, Sans Arcs, Blackfeet, sits beside an emptied bowl
of Grape Nuts. The document is randomly punctuated with crumbs
from half-burnt toast, difficult to read the general’s elegantly looping
Nineteenth Century signature and the limits of force
given Custer’s command.
My wife has printed over in her typewriter-meticulous style a grocery
list
of olive oil, cilantro, garlic, tortellini, supplies for this evening’s
company,
but not the 7th Cavalry last seen surrendered near the banks
of the Little Big Horn.
There’s also a lengthy paragraph to herself, notes on rehabbing
the upstairs bedroom and the rest of her destiny. She’s scribbled
calculations, an attempt at reviving a diminishing back account,
and an addendum to the Christmas card list, and it’s only February.
This morning my wife sits down to rewrite Custer’s orders
to pursue the Sioux.

Walter Bargen, copyright 2007


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POEM: Wendy Lee Hermance

Bicycle Ride

In the mornings I’ve noticed
smells are sharper.

The trash is not yet set out.
Nothing is ripened by the sun.
The air is fresh, untarnished
by exhaust fumes

Bicycle Ride


In the mornings I’ve noticed

smells are sharper.

The trash is not yet set out.

Nothing is ripened by the sun.

The air is fresh, untarnished

by exhaust fumes.

A thin, polished mahogany man

with fuzzy, Malcom goatee

bicycles by, his white t-shirt just

pulled from plastic, I see. Passing, he

nods, perfuming the air

with a trail of Cashmere Bouquet.

I ride a half a block in his blessing.

Orange Monarch butterflies fizz

over garish, yellow lantana out

front of the Comfort Inn Motel.

The powdery pollen

flutters up my nose.

On the pier a morning fisherman

in pressed khaki slacks casts

his hook in flaccid water. His cologne

is heavy with sandalwood and musk.

He´s hoping to pull a wild fish

thrashing, its blood and guts

still satisfying on his hands.

Before the dew is stolen,

when the world is round again,

the cyclers trace its image

with looping foot-to-pedal.

Before the march of atrocities begins,

it´s good to see a butterfly´s wings.

It´s good to wish for one full day of peace.

Wendy Lee Hermance, copyright 2020


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