Stalemate, by A. J. Huffman
Segregated clouds clash at the intersection
of daybreak and thunderstrike. A sky
divided. Colorblocked. Light
pressing dark. A perfect portrait of
before a flash. First lightning
then lightening, slightly as everything melds
to an overcast shade
A.J. Huffman is a poet and freelance writer in Daytona Beach, Florida. She has previously published six collections of poetry all available on Amazon.com. She has also published her work in numerous national and international literary journals. She is currently the editor for six online poetry journals for Kind of a Hurricane Press (www.kindofahurricanepress.com). Find more about A.J. Huffman, including additional information and links to her work at
www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000191382454 and https://twitter.com/#!/poetess222.
Life Measures, by Kislay Chauhan
In world, I breathe, measure of own age
An ageless smile, and one empty face
Spectacles of ponds, and that far desert
Where trust and tale have been divided
And burning chapters in front of my eyes
Half book for hell, half for heaven lies
Its patience is dream and power is promise
Perpetual defeat and soldier across battle
Lasted enough to fight, a fight to ease battle
To win something, someone, not proofed
Until sleeping town, a soul, awakes on a faith
Spring after autumn, and life after death
A blackboard of dreams, colored chalks
Endless stories, some broke and some stay
Flying hearts, and bones in sand one day
That’s a fable, a fairy, a root of mystery,
Countless curtains, every page, every hour
The secret morning after evening of war
Every heart translated letters of life
Characters of every way, and that truth
Wrote every time a new story, stood alone
Before a shattered and scattered breath
After broken dreams, a passionate cry
The lord would understand to live and die
Kislay Chauhan is a writer who has degree in Computer Science. His poems have been published in many reviews, journals and magazines. Some of them are: Fowl Feathered Review, The Artistic Muse Poetry, Eastlit, Earthborne, Carcinogenic Poetry, Out of Our, Nano Nostrovia Poetry, Sprout Magazine, and Melbrake. He has written four poetry books: “Takhir,” “The Vague,” “Once And For All” and “The Edges Of The Spirit”.
Flowers Along the Path, by Michael Keshigian
Fickle flowers with your collection of colors,
summer is the season you flourish,
a time when you demand
precise attention from sunlight
and a beverage from the clouds,
lest you wilt with a crusty edge
while the wind steals away
random petals, unlike brethren trees
with branches that bear
the weight of winter’s calamity,
you hibernate, snuggled
beneath a frozen pod of sod
then dance enthusiastically in Spring
beneath lightening and rain
while others seek cover.
You would shrivel
should the clouds abstain.
What schemes do you concoct
in starlight as you ready
to fulfill the drone’s sweet appetite,
secrets hidden well within your corona,
a watchful eye that guards
your fragile disposition.
To those of us that daily pass
your handsome trail,
our troubles buried deep within,
your smile provides a welcome distraction,
your scent an intoxication
that momentarily vanquishes worry.
Eventually, by Michael Keshigian
Staring from the moon
in a dream
I saw people of Earth
from minute cavities,
to dutiful destination
and back again.
Some moved faster
others carried more
and few were prostrate to fantasy.
Yet above each hill
hovered ghosts of intentions
not resting, but preparing
where well meaning will be placed.
Michael Keshigian’s poetry collection, Eagle’s Perch, was recently released by Bellowing Ark Press. Other published books: Wildflowers, Jazz Face, Warm Summer Memories, Silent Poems, Seeking Solace, Dwindling Knight, Translucent View. Published in numerous journals, he is a multiple Pushcart Prize and Best Of The Net nominee. His poetry cycle, Lunar Images, set for Clarinet, Piano, Narrator, premiered at Del Mar College in Texas. Subsequent performances occurred in Boston and Moleto, Italy. His website is at: michaelkeshigian.com
Playful, by Michael Lee Johnson
than a gray
- skeleton wings-
and a green-eyed
and we all
April, I’ve Been Fooled Before, by Michael Lee Johnson
I blink, the electricity is off.
The day has brought
night to an end on top of me.
Lamp oil and flashlights save me
I walk in darkness.
In this darkness I don’t
see my shadow.
When the wind goes still
cold chills down my spine
don’t feel anymore.
I walk in darkness like this
but I’ve been fooled myself before
at Halloween, fears of April thunderstorms.
April thunderstorms have knocked
the lighting out of me;
pulled the electricity out of my sockets, pulled plugs from my condo.
I lie in bed with only this conversation to keep me company.
I feel like an ice cube insulated
around in my words, looking for images
in shadows, quiet corners.
I creep myself out alone.
Here I lie on my back in bed, think, then try sleep-with ghosts, witches, spiders, devils,
all kinds of nasty things.
Nothing brings Christ out of closed wilderness faster than darkness being alone.
I blink, and electricity is back on.
April, I’ve been fooled like this before.
Michael Lee Johnson is a poet and freelance writer from Itasca, Illinois. He is heavy influenced by: Carl Sandburg, Robert Frost, William Carlos Williams, Irving Layton, Leonard Cohen, and Allen Ginsberg. His new poetry chapbook with pictures, titled From Which Place the Morning Rises, and his new photo version of The Lost American: from Exile to Freedom are available at: http://stores.lulu.com/promomanusa. The original version of The Lost American: from Exile to Freedom, can be found at: http://www.iuniverse.com/bookstore/book_detail.asp?isbn=0-595-46091-7. He also has 2 previous chapbooks available at: http://stores.lulu.com/poetryboy.
Michael has been published in over 23 countries. He is also editor/publisher of four poetry sites, all open for submission, which can be found at his Web site: http://poetryman.mysite.com.
Before the Hard Freeze, by Holly Day
on the snow-covered park bench
a last, unexpected moth
is drawn to my warmth. It flutters down
from the trees to where I sit
lands on my knee, stops, as if
burned or confused.
I watch from behind half-closed eyelids
as the fluffy, winged insect crawls towards
my stomach, aims at a warm crack between
the hem of my coat
and the crease of my lap.
I hold my breath, as still as the dead.
People pass by us on the sidewalk
oblivious to this last, tiny moth:
this is just another picture
I am posing for.
Holly Day is a housewife and mother of two living in Minneapolis, Minnesota who teaches needlepoint classes for the Minneapolis school district and writing classes at The Loft Literary Center. Her poetry has recently appeared in Hawai’i Pacific Review, Slant, and The Tampa Review, and she is the 2011 recipient of the Sam Ragan Poetry Prize from Barton College. Her most recent published books are "Walking Twin Cities" and "Notenlesen für Dummies Das Pocketbuch."
The Ghost At Percy's Rock, by Thomas Maluck
trying to look across the bay
instead of down where we'd land.
The sun loops over our heads,
the wind weighs on our eyes,
and we shout as we blink.
Our friends on the railing
wield cameras and cautious words
to narrate our descent,
But we only owe thanks
to whomever moved the rock
at the cliff's edge.
Now up for air,
we enjoy a view
reserved for ghosts.
Just A Moon, by Clinton Van Inman
Now quite predictable in your
Glasshouse gravity that
Once would send even
Merlin to a trance with
Marks and measures
With rings of moonlight madness
But now no more mysterious
Than a bride in July
Your borrowed brilliance
Exposes you as your
Darker side cannot hide
You as they have shaken
The last gumball from your head
And all you have to show
For it are flags and footprints
Under your bed.
Ring of Crows, by Clinton Van Inman
Local only like common sense
And spinal tap
It is time to take your place
Among the lilacs and pell-mell
Patterns of wallpaper
To embrace the frozen stars
Dissolving under Orion’s
Cold winter night and
Half-moth eaten moons
And clever hands mimicking
Seeking desert oases
As fingers run across
Cold stones chiseled
In ancient dialects
To his patinas and bronze gods
Circled only by a ring of stars.
Clinton Van Inman was born in Walton on Thames, England in 1945. He received his B.A. from San Diego State in 1977. He is teaching high school in Tampa Bay but plans to retire this year. He lives in Sun City Center, Florida with his wife, Elba.