Friday, 30 December 2011

The Spectacle by William Ogden Haynes

My yellow Labrador puppy
abruptly stops
halfway through his dog door.
He eyes the grey early morning sky
and regards the giant snowflakes
as they slowly fall like white doilies
covering the red Alabama mud.
He emerges into the yard
and licks his back
tasting the snow,
then runs full speed
in a large circle,
snapping at snowflakes in the air.
Stopping in the middle of the yard,
head cocked to one side,
ears peaked with attention,
he looks at me through the kitchen window,
wondering how I can stop to make coffee
on such an amazing day.

William Ogden Haynes, AL, USA

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Assembly Required by Michael Keshigian

In bits and pieces
they fall from heaven,
disassembled snowmen,
one flake after the other,
strewn about the countryside,
discovered by those young at heart,
and with a dash
of imaginative insight,
they roll a gleeful creature
in their own image.
No directions needed.

Michael Keshigian

Monday, 19 December 2011

After the Fiasco by Anna Sykora

A few new cells
May breathe alone
And hide inside
Old cracks of stone
Or creep through
Seeping ooze.

It’s survival
Life will choose,
_Forgetting our mistakes_.

Anna Sykora, Hanover, Germany

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Close Calls by Joseph Harker

This planet's going to hell: either wrapped up
in a suffocating shroud of coalsmoke
or boxed away between six thick planks of sin,
maybe starved of liquid capital
or drowned with disease: one way or another.
The End Times are a moveable feast that is always
next year.
given all the times we played chicken on the racetrack
with atoms and nuclei, the bottles of plague
just waiting to be shattered and re-debuted,
comet fragments blowing out boreal candles on a
Siberian birthday cake (rather than smashing into
Berlin or Beijing), it's a wonder
we haven't been burnt to a memorial cinder
We could
keep worrying about either side of the present, but
imagine how foolish we'd feel if we almost
lived our lives, and missed it, just by

Joseph Harker,

Monday, 5 December 2011

Afghanistan by Raud Kennedy

In bed, prolonging the moments
before pushing back the covers.
The voice on NPR, a reporter in Afghanistan,
refers to the spring fighting season
as if he’s announcing the opening
of ski season at Mt. Hood Meadows.
I brush my teeth, minty fresh, extra whitener.
Death tolls from suicide bombings.
Toweling off after showering, it’s total US casualties,
a number that could be the population figure
of a small city. A city of dead young men and women.
The refreshing lather lifts my beard
as my triple bladed razor shaves my face kissable smooth.
Tell me again why we are there while I am here.

Raud Kennedy, Oregon, USA