Earthquaking in Song by Jamie O’Connell

kite slices
paper air

teeth sink in sand, city
sinks in recycled
tidal waves

broken melody
falls from branches

we totaled our meadows, our
leash-less forests

ladder me
into a
collapsing star

make the sails current mourning,
the trash island
you can’t dream away

 

 

Jamie O’Connell currently lives in the Bay Area, where she received her MFA in Writing from California College of the Arts. Her poetry can be found in Menacing Hedge, Troop Zine, Newfound, and Forth Magazine, and her multimedia work has been exhibited in College Avenue Galleries in Oakland. She spends most of her time with her majestic zebra-striped dog/direwolf, Daisy. Visit her site here: http://www.jamieoco.com

facing opposition, comfortable death, anxiety and the news by Jess Kangas

the red and white stitching on my worn in broken wool is like a globe, but when i look at it i also see the shape of my sapphire ring, and i love the way its clarity forms in light, but to go from coat of lamb to stolen jewelry, i pass by red lines on ghost skin that are harsh like railroad tracks, but some seem crazed, not formed, like black lines in a wassily composition, or comets passing through, and they symbolize everything, maybe in ten years each line will be worth ten dollars, but the bills are up and i’m coming down, if only there was money left, but what’s of money when you worry of planets aligned in black vapor, gravity pulling our bodies apart, the fatter ones will take longer to have each piece pulled into nothing, but only by flashes of time, and then of course there are the books on my slanted shelf gathered in lime feather boa that need to be packed so i can recover in buffalo or watch you from above.

 

 

Jess Kangas is a strawberry siren poet located in Buffalo, NY. Her poetry is rich in sound, structure and secrets.

 

 

Wheatfield under Thunderclouds, 1890, Vincent van Gogh.

Heo Nanseolhean (1563-1589)* by Tanya Ko Hong

Heo_Nanseonheon.jpg

If women have han in their hearts—

To be born a woman
To be born in the Chosǒn Period
To be the wife of a husband

— frost will come in May.

Father let me study poetry with my brothers
until I married Kim Song Lip and I put it aside.
Waiting for my faithless husband, father said

Write a poem

ask yourself,

Who am I?

 

 

Tanya (Hyonhye) Ko Hong, poet, translator and cultural curator, has been published in Rattle, Beloit Poetry Journal, Entropy, Cultural Weekly, Korea Times, Korea Central Daily News, and elsewhere. She has an MFA in creative writing from Antioch University Los Angeles, and is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently, Mother to Myself, A collection of poems in Korean (Prunsasang Press, 2015). Her poem, Comfort Woman, got honorable mention in the 2015 Women’s National Book Association. Tanya is an ongoing advocate of bilingual poetry, promoting the work of immigrant poets. She lives Palos Verdes, CA. http://www.tanyakohong.com

 

*Heo Nanseolhean (1563-1589), born Heo Chohui, was a prominent Korean Female poet of the mid Chosǒn dynasty.

First published in Paris Press Spiraling Poetry.

Gotta Wonder about the News by Paul Belz

Some dude, named bank robbery suspect
sits in his car, a slug in his head,
stares at San Francisco, doesn’t see.

Did he remember dogs at his end,
or think about black tailed deer, and that osprey’s nest
he found on his last hike? Maybe he hummed Coltrane,
Lady Gaga, Michael Franti, Bach.
He might have owned a parrot who greeted him, Hi, love,
and nuzzled his scratchy cheek with its feathered head.
Maybe he cooked a righteous stroganoff,
beef bourguignon, sauerbraten, baked Alaska,
sweet potato pie and never robbed a bank.

His name’s just suspect. No one knows
if he worked with homeless children,
lead workshops against rape, cared for his mom.
He’s dead, like Clyde Barrow, who may have liked cats.

Exploring Muir Woods by Nicole Michaels

No one can stand in these solitudes unmoved, and not feel there is more in humans than the mere breath of his body. – Charles Darwin

Lowlight plants like dolls in period dresses,
kneeling at the brown-barked legs

of giant kings, and not kings so much as
armored scouts, their plumed heads

towering in a canopy over the understory,
their knighted roots

flagging the herbaceous ground.
A coat of arms decomposes in the humus,

guarded by a standing snag
where there is not enough sun for wild roses

by pools and dragging falls
clustered by a thousand ladybugs

who whisper from spotted escutcheons.
If we could nap somewhere,

if we could curl up
in the lichen with the deer

well off the park’s groomed path,
wouldn’t we dream of timbered castles

where we gather after hunting dragons,
our strange but battle-ready steeds

tethered to the mist,
dappled chimeras

swatting at jays with tails of fern
while a boar roasts whole on a spit.

 

 

Nicole Michaels is a Marin County, CA native who makes her home in frontier Wyoming. She is a working poet with a degree in English from Stanford University where she studied under the late Diane Middlebrook and chose an emphasis in feminist studies. She spent some time in the American South as a journalist for small papers.

The Day Glenn Miller’s Plane Disappeared by Trish Saunders

Here’s the secret about war.
It’s such a bore–
government shacks,
rats and roaches,
harsh shampoo
if you can find it,
staticky radio
tuned to cooking tips, and
worst of all, the community clothesline
with mountains of shirts and sheets
ready to pin up beside a stranger’s underwear.

Worse even than that: sad-sack shirts and pants
abandoned on the line,
gimpy limbs
that shimmy and shake in rough winds
or hang in the rain, till the
chaplain’s wife unpins them,
to send back home with a letter.

But once, his band played the island
and oh dear God,
we danced to String of Pearls.