Julia Ferrari                                         

Trees sway under a grey sky

Wind pushing leaves 

Cooled by shade

Light and dark all day

I hear my voice softly even-ing out.

Smoothing out its tensions,

Its fears.

The path as tightly wound as the brittle ice 

That surrounded me,

Inched me in,

Almost ended me. 

But now snows have melted

And the fragile world has thawed

Turning shades of pale and deepening green

Covering every inch in vibrating textures

gently moving

gently alive.

  Julia Ferrari

 ( © 6/14/18)

Listening to vibrations

Charles Monette                                         

eight suns equal releases in an instant

shockwave spreading

spreading out from two black holes merging

signal sent seven billion years ago

rattling laser detectors

LIGO VIRGO’s super-sensitive-gravitational-wave-detection-system

gravity’s pull so strong

matter had collapsed on itself

now nothing, not even light escaped

formation unknown

some billions of times the mass of our sun

picked up by influencing their surroundings

7 billion years ago,

two black holes in their end stage moments

spiraled inward to collide

earthlings picked it up

detected a faint blip from space

lasting 1/10 of a second… a split second

dead stars demising in space,

out beyond the known dark

‘bout 150 billion trillion kilometers away… faraway

a quirk, a quark, a quantum leap… a question

ripples from the death of a star

laser light disturbs their waves emitted

Einstein relatively thrilled, enchanted

laser interferometer instruments listening for vibrations

hearing a beep let go allegro 7 billion years hence

our red and blue holes collapse on themselves

hear the streets’ vibrations

needing light to escape

Facetime goodbye

Charles Monette                                         

Mom spirited “the lady of the Lamp” for 37 years

white on white uniform, “doing the sick no harm”

immaculate… always on time

Loved to waltz with dad

gliding, weaving arm ‘n arm ‘round the floor

at Roseland…

So many years ago…

her smile would light his eyes

his eyes would smile back

Now her living was assisted; gentle help

to get along at Bradley house

dad’s eyes had closed long ago

One day, a quiet invasion turned upheaval

staff and nurses running ‘round spellbound

locking up, locking down

A virus had hitchhiked on a suitcase

multiplied, spread amok, all the rage

temperatures rising

Mom caught a chill, then a fever

coughs followed, continued,

soon shortness of breath

They drove her to the hospital in the ambulance

she wondered why all the fuss

“just a cold, or my allergies”

Mom’s breathing labored thru the night

decision was made to intubate

breathing in, mechanically deep, breath out weakened

“We’ll make her comfortable,

check her pulse,”

nurse’s red puffy eyes ended her shift

An hour later Abby called, “your mom is failing, best get down here”

rushed, run, rushed in, stopped by the glass… by the door

“you can’t go in hon, can’t risk the spread…”

“If you want, you can call her on the phone,

You know, Facetime,

I’ll hold the phone up close

Would she like some music?”

“Well, it’s funny, but she loves Joan Baez singing

Dylan’s, “Sad eyed lady of the lowlands”, it’s a waltz

Can you hold her hand? 

brush her hair… while I talk

Tell her I love her, things are gonna be okay

Mom, it’s me

Sorry, I can’t get closer

I love you mom

I love you now

Love you all these years

You are such a good mom

Mom?  Mom…

Mom, I love you”     

*** play ‘Sad eyed lady of the lowlands’ Joan Baez singing Dylan

A Gift for the Season

Jeri Rose                                         

If God reveal to you

how holy Being creates

what you know

as reality so you

can see even your sight

is creation all part

of making happening

in time you are in

though no time relevant

to that revelation.

Does your breath intake

a gasp? Your heart

beat firmer for awe

an electric neural net

activate in your skin?

Your personal recognition

of unity in a floor underfoot

and all around

and even the air between

nothing outside

the balm of spirit

bathes you forever.

‘Boy child’

Charles Monette                                          

fishermen of Peru & Ecuador first named him

unusually warm waters disrupted their catch

he would come every two to seven years near the religious holiday,

stay for 9 to 12 months… a ‘boy child’ who warmed the waters

as if the sea had a fever in the central & eastern tropical

Pacific Ocean… above-average oscill ocean warming

low level surface winds, easterly winds… weakening

at times blowing the other direction… westerly winds

normally cool water was nutrient rich, (plankton, krill, sardines)

supporting diverse marine ecosystems… fishermen’s fisheries

sea lions basked in the warm sun, wind and water ‘round Palomino Island

till a little boy swam them away to higher trophic levels of a food chain

fish too dispersed, swam to cold… to follow their food beyond Lima…

fishermen’s nets emptied… the boy child wet, wild, unwont, unruly again

El Nino is his name…he came at Christmas, tepefying sea-air coupling,

playfully unleashing food chains in the deeps of the Eastern Pacific

hands stirred, softening oscillation’s inertia …upwelling phytoplankton,

depriving zooplankton of its food, flattening the thermocline

presaging large scale changes in sea level pressure

across Indonesia, Australia, and the tropical Pacific

Nino’s tongue sprayed the bounding main to heaven; trench waters rose to drench, return a verdict of torrential rains over northern mountains

mudslides followed

drought sucked dry the land that rains had left behind

NOAA’s buoys among boys measure temperature, assay currents,

gauge the wind across the equatorial band

  7,471 scientists agree: the boy child will come again, Phi spirals will warm waters, fish will fish elsewhere, man will wonder & wallow in mud

             Look for El Nino, the ‘boy child’, Christmas 2020

Encase the world in iron

Charles Monette

Encase the world in iron

our lungs on life support

widespread deforestation

ashens widespread desolation

widespread, why Bernie’ d say, “that’s HUGE”!

raging fires ignite bitter disputes

humans bellow-blame-flames… deniers loot

international crisis… quick convene the gang of 7

distill Macron hysteria, ‘raise a glass, give a toast to heaven’

we’ll talk after lunch… of oranges

why this is preposterous, sensationalist,

exaggerated environmental collusion

wildfires up 84% ‘cross a once great Brazilian nation

still ranchers denude, farmers’ clear-cut profits soybean cultivation

burns like a panic… this widespread climate collusion

Amazon, (not talkin .com), gave 20% of Earth’s oxygen

now dioxide’s absorption drains down a leaking carbon sink

shall we disrupt commercial interests? earmarked sustainability?

or just encase the world in iron to increase longevity

not fearing waters’ heights, just widespread calamity

A robot picked my strawberry today

Charles Monette

A robot picked my strawberry today

grasping light brown hands slid into irrelevance

the robot’s squeeze was uniformly gentle

clean and fast and antiseptic

a light brown heart was bruised today

maybe there’s work among asparagus

drinking water with the almonds

gathering ‘neath a sun-brimmed hat another day

embracing the land of free possibility

its cost too dear to know

a robot picked my hope today

grasping hands slid without relevance

And still

Phil Innes

spitting snow

right into the eye


not nearly a courtship


far before thought

afore flirting

not heavy heated russian romantic snow

with massive chords

nor pragmatic

vermont economies

though through eyes

which witnessed

way back

somehow a surviving

memory and pattern and

surviving innocence

and still an option

and still


Phil Innes

Thus from faint, a stance

The card of the Sun

And again by Moon’s inchoate fonts

Again by Twenty One

Cracking reasons’ strangling charm

Let fall more cards

Let sound dextrous alarums

Ultima thule

Charles Monette

somewhere out beyond Pluto

at the canescent center of stars

clumping marbles compact to ride on wind

man does a fly-by of purest exploration

precious data beaming

astrophysicists’ agog as if it were the clue

who/what are you?

bowling pin gone, snowman of the galaxies

hurtling asteroids stuck together

Ultima & thule, NASA’s named you

static electricity, gas & space dried mire

sucked in a vast vacuum

two spheric lobes combed together

farthest, oldest cosmic body

reflecting light like garden dirt’s dusty miller

New Horizons’ icy beyond distant suns

white glove smooths over empyrean’s window sill

dust jacket removed

just 4.5 billion years ago, a cloud of frozen pebbles conjoining

slow motioning slow, resting on each other

somewhere beyond Pluto

Walls Have Ears

Alan Rayner

Walls have ears

I’ve heard it said -

An inner sensitivity

That reaches down to subatomic core

Far beneath their superficial hardness

Where silence calls

In endless refrain

To heed its deep-felt yearning

Behind the din of every thing

We too have ears

With which to hear this inner, noiseless calling

Beneath the clamour of everyday demand

For our attention

Whether we hear the silence or the racket

Or both within each other’s reach

Depends on whether we use our ears

Partially or fully -

Or block them off

Behind a wall of self-sealed privacy

That chooses not to care for them

a rainbow swirling jet stream

Charles Monette

a rainbow swirling jet stream

whirling light green yellow, pink and blue

turning, pointing on the periphery of ocean warming…

a gurge twirling at center stage

atmosphere’s steering currents swerve…misbehave

disrupting weather extremes, supercharging the climate of change

slower jet stream slows, resulting in more wavy peaks and troughs

extreme jet stream patterns resonate with quasi-amplification

driven by temperature contrasts, ever-shrinking contrasts

deep excursions south of summer collide cool-air, outpour rain’s nimiety

altered stream retreating north forms hot heat bulging domes

last summer’s record heat …and dry spells

Argo-floats mirror oceans soaking up excess heat in murkiness

startling studies require an aggressive mitigation fleet

coloring coral reefs in tropics, Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets

warming exponentially…. Doctor Livingstone, I presume?

now a rainbow swirling jet stream starts, stops, splits

a narrow meandering current of air flowing fast in various directions

systems stream, flow & vanish from Saskatoon to St. John’s Bay

our earth set to warm even faster than predicted

[image: Lilly Pulitzer ‘Jetstream’]

You Can’t Do That

Charles Monette

infowars spout conspiracy

new broad brands of bigotry

go on ban me, I’ll sell survival gear

to help you live next year in fear

but baby, you can’t do that

free speech baby, I’m selling potent testosterone

take it to the dance, you’ll need a chaperon

heh be careful, be wary of ‘ploying your snuff

okay joker, my base be buying some more stuff

a timeworn populist tactic, rant & rave, soothe the static, create havoc

why not tube it?

chance a book thrown in your face ‘a glitter

twitch until you twitter,

lookout gawker, best surveil all that you can see

extreme unction, proper-gander, amidst the fakery

make some money, always aim to make more money

watch out cause media will dip & flip & lie honey

please behave, come on, comply to the universal standards

be not a haggard, nor a laggard, who staggered in the ballad

baby, you can’t do that

far-right fellows hitchhike aimless through the galaxy

twisting truth, make up laughing what they want to see

opaque-hungry, hateful mongers, power stuff our voting booths

google smiles, threats some fines, hides ‘hind a gap tooth

who’s to edit in the sky? oh baby, you can’t do that

hell to swelter

Charles Monette

a snowball from hell freezes the Senate floor

fake climate antagonists’ jigs up, cold once more

fossil fuel industries outspend clean energies

tis the season of significant melting

windows of the firmament allow rain from the sky

rogue icebergs calve, tsunamis wave high

Greenpeace glides o’er earth’s gases green

go forth man… resurface the earth and subdue it

Celsius meets Fahrenheit, blacktop bubbles dry

Chino, California 120.2 degrees, climate’s corpus delicti

hectares burn, polly ‘ticians still spurn

extreme heat stuns nations… Japan to Norway

compost gets lost ‘midst organic renewal

god’s spirit dances, waters’ face flows cruel

7th day’s rest awakens to let there be light…

warmer air, drier land warns somethin’ ain’t right

scorching heatwaves’ droughts, floods, fires throughout

‘that ain’t cool’, heaven’s sapphire shouts…

even Plato’s cave offers little reprieve

All in the plan, this land was made for you and me

to Mother Teresa

András Adorján

’92. máj. 15.

Thank You  God Who Lives Inside Us

Thank God, thank you Kubát János

And all of living and dead idols

Thanks for Gandhi, Barcza, Liszt

All the muses’ inspiring kiss

Thank You for my troubles, misery

Thank You for the pushes towards humility

Forgive me for being just a man, silly

You’ve created me this way, (can’t) You see?

Thanks for crushing my vanity, pride

In return I got a humble heart

Let me be worthy just once more or say twice

Let me be sincere, confident, nice

Let me radiate your shining inner light

When our Father Sun is out of sight

Let me be your instrument, please

Play your melody through sinful me

Let others receive your call by me too

Let me join your Army of Peace, would You?

Put down the sword of the anger, we’re blue

Do not punish us, yourself Our Father of truth (You true)

Yes, you heard it well, we’re really you

Who created who how could we knew?

There’s no telling, there’s no proof

Who is us (and) who are you

[editorial note: the writer is a chess grandmaster and candidate world champion, resident in Budapest, Hungary]

I set myself afire

Charles Monette

On David Buckel

like a black gold gushers first appearance

oozing inhabitability via air, soil, water and weather

I set myself afire

like a Vietnamese Buddhist monks meditative protest

immolating the ravages of war

I seek to ignite awareness

Most humans now breathe air unhealthy

unthinking corporate fossil fuels enrich the wealthy

I combust to grow the green

Prospect Park, yesterdays headline blazes

remember my arguing LGBTQ landmark cases

now alls left my coaly ashes

I volunteered for an added value community farm

coordinated for senior organics recovery

I plead our only planet, do no harm

my early death reflects many early deaths

what are we doing to ourselves?

pollution ravages we burn like savages

I am David, some say my death is heartbreaking

my suicide note? A hopefully earthshaking 

my final flame breathtaking

I am a symbol burned to Prospect dust

my call to humanity, I felt I must

I set myself afire

Reportage below by Carla Herrerie, Queer Voices, Huffington Post

David Buckel, a prominent LGBTQ civil rights attorney, fatally set himself on fire at Prospect Park in Brooklyn, New York, early Saturday morning, April 14th, 2018.  He was 60 years old.

In a suicide note left near his body, David said he had used a fossil fuel to ignite the fire and wanted his death to symbolize what humans are doing to earth.

Pollution ravages our planet, oozing inhabitability via air, soil, water and weather. Most humans on the planet now breathe air made unhealthy by fossil fuels, and many die early deaths as a result my early death by fossil fuel reflects what we are doing to ourselves.

Rest in peace David Buckel

I’ll stay here till I get here

Charles Monette

fingers on strings,

low E and high

note holding on till it’s gone

fretting a left hand

strumming, back beating the right

slow motions getup, magic in sight

moving from outside

a sound hole in the center

touching composition, no impedimenta

strings ring, sounds sing

badges of callused tips repetitious

attack the dance, let go of cautious

if you hear it’s off thru a tap of the floor

find a grin in your grimace, now close the door

pickup & pick it, play guitar once more

backbeat now, E & A’s humming combine

bass coming back to a ‘fore-mentioned-line

as you strum, use your thumb ain’t it fine

I’ll stay here till I get here… just

learning the action, playing what will be

whatever checks out doesn’t belong to me


Phil Innes

No more black nights on

Forgotten promontories

Other vigilance

Whither the Storm?

Todd Vincent Crosby

When warmth gives way to bracing wind

and sun’s fair gaze has turned away,

gather the net, prepare to fend the

craft from Triton’s chilling fray.

Starboard, windward, port or lee?

Which quarter now commands our gaze?

Shall turbulence deny us now

deliberate passage of the days?

Trade comfort of the stoney heath

for chance among the rolling fetch,

Free of tender love and restless grief

Hope and hunger a ceaseless catch

Autumn’s veil conceals not fear nor sorrow

yet cleanses away a soul's dark night,

That dawn deliver on the morrow

a crescendo… winter’s blinding light!

75 at tea

Todd Vincent Crosby

a fine grit covers this shabby old couch

pouffing up as i plop my fat ass down on it

its grey green canvas, dusty as my skin now

replete with the troughs of old age

i lean my head back finding that old familiar indentation

And you are there before me,

infinite in your youth, tangled hair a mess

energetic, so full of life‘s timeless beauty.

we whisper sun dappled oaths barefoot in the orchard,

a full moon and its crickets bearing us good fortune.

whatever the future would withhold from us

it could never deny us laughter

Yet all too soon mischievous minstrels found willing ears

to woo us 

with promises of hotter tropics 

and bluer seas.

But how could the skies have been

bluer than those we had reveled beneath? 

or another ocean 

contain the immensity of our joy?

Indeed these long years, laughter was not denied me

echoing off these farmhouse walls

evening, morning, noon and night

the laughter of children… of family… of friends.

What wouldn’t i give to walk again with you

dottering down this misty country lane, leaning in close

sharing a knowing glance 

a chuckle at some private, distant joke. 

Under the moody November twilight

your blue teapot perched on my plant stand

a steaming, fat, blue parrot

Miles and Coltrane suspended in vapor

I hope that life has brought laughter

to your house… upon your loves

and that you have not lived with desire

to rewrite the drama of life’s final act.

Such a sweet melancholy to see you again in all your glory,

before i knew you were to be gone so soon.

i smile, assured that if that moon, and those crickets 

had spoken true,

you would have loved living in this old house

peaceful and solid,

infused with scents of leather and bergamot

with me savoring the chilly evening that once left me shuttering

an opportune moment for a steamy cup of tea!

Walking… Thinking… Talking… Singing…

playing with my dog

even if the dust has gotten 

a tiny bit out of hand.

All souls’ elegy

Charles Monette

unbearable dreams… all the departed were present

wild and wanton, their spirits gasping the air

the eve of All Souls’ Day, dreaded beliefs recurring

as mirrors imitate the wintry grey of bones

passing graveyards dark silhouette

death’s acceptance rejected anew

wandering souls searching the wind

disrespect running deep in the ground

to be thus remembered under a gloomy November moon

rain falling, rituals’ rabble rife

dry water’s life splattered o’er remains

meaning gone from the garden’s grow

genteel blathering clouding memories…

yet a distant time, a distant place draws near

moans of the dying congeal sedulously

muffling the striking of a pitch-black clock

years passed along with days

troubled souls seeking marigolds, the sweet bread of the dead

unsettled aching in the hereafter

a patch of pain, regret… why, why, why

tonight…walk the road’s center… beware of encouraging the dust

of disturbing phantoms’ shadows resting alongside

for peripheral chills will envelop one’s spine… raising hackles 

flashing terror’s mischief, a spur to run

eerie echoes, otherworldly rattles lack relevance… yet

add to the scare of the chase… catching up… falling behind

running off, outracing grown up ghosts

traditions slipping, screaming for a delicate plain

daring in daylight

hurrying back to bury somebody at the cemetery’s edge

perhaps a priest’s prayer will banish ghostly faces

exhorting them to their place… to await midnight’s exhumation

lopsided red-streaked-gray marble, water and a candle

an oblong tombstone’s engraving chiseled out

nameless as an unknown soldier’s

epitaph shrouded in secrets

stumbling bones stuck in mud’s asylum

hungry ghosts grabbing, unwrapping life’s promise once more

disappointments’ confusion leaving the marrow of emptiness

as if fine one moment and dead the next

[A note on the image]

Aladar Korosfoi-Kriesch

All Souls' Day --1910 Oil on canvas, 51,5 x 72,5 cm

Hungarian National Gallery, Budapest

(It is a Hungarian tradition to go to cemeteries to honor the dead)

You cancelled your vacation

Charles Monette

you cancelled your vacation, said it was a waste of time

you didn’t ask me to come along, so I didn’t cancel mine

said you’d rather go to the carbon conference

though a governor on your pedal slowed deliverance

a pick-up artist curing smelly compost on the curb

you lost your drive, now drive less… unperturbed

two times a week buys pricey green organic groceries

take a bean, walk a block… second hand store sells ivories

recycle that glass… that plastic… redeem it like never before

hey reuse it, refuse it, metamorphose into a see-through door

all that garbage… all that trash… all that shit galore

soon be floating… polluting… Cousteau’s ocean floor

take your time, saunter slinky as you walk away

look back once, close your eyes as if to say

a shake, a shrug, a pissed off tattoo demeanor

should’ve fought to hold you, found two words, ‘I love Lena’

out of this world, you were trippin out my world

neither differences genteel, non commutable…nor easily unfurled

Cape bikin, Maine coast traipsin,… old friends lyin on a windswept beach

hot sands’ blain, hidin out in Cockaigne… never within reach

dancing-dizzy, spinning, whirli-gigging love’s confusion

falsetto-falling, famished on brink’s recision

white flag surrender comes to you wide-open

as in a gray love story filmed by Bergman

Malvern Hill

Charles Monette

It was the sixth and last of seven days

The battle for Malvern Hill, July 1st, 1862

McClellan and Lee locked horns in Herrico County

Virginia… up a piece from Poindexter’s farm

Disjointed assaults on the nearly impregnable Union position

Yanks up on Malvern Hill, the favorable ground

Slopes cleared of lumber, greater visibility downhill

Lee orders attacks directly… instead of flanking…

Artillery would clear the way…

Tragic miscalculation

Deadly fire rained thunder down on the Confederates,

Slaughtering them in their charge

5,300 rebel casualties without gaining an inch of ground

Blue bled too… 8,500 in all

Despite the victory, McClellan withdrew

To Harrison’s landing on the James River

Gunboats now protected his army

Malvern Hill lay soaked in blood, pockmarked

Bodies lying there still

[The image: Watercolor by Sneden]

Cicero's Hands

Mike Murray

A man of letters, a man of riches

He didn't have to burn those bridges

He lived and played with the men who held the sword

There was safety, but there was right

And in the stillness of the night

In the troubled times, his hands held only words







Asma's poem defied the danger

She warned, "Why mind this stranger?"

The stranger claimed to speak God's voice alone

Then the voice commanded slaughter

"Who will rid me of Marwan's daughter?"

When it's time to speak your mind, think of Asma's poem

There's big payback to check out

You're gonna end up sticking your neck out

When your life is on the line, you're all alone

When you call for folks to ponder

The crimes of those they honor

When you turn that bridge to burn think of Asma's poem


In their hearts, your words rings true

But they'll still come for you

When they hear the big man say you ought to be banned

All those battles to be won

Will they mean much when you're gone?

When you turn, that bridge to burn think of Cicero's hands


When it's your turn, your bridge to burn think of Cicero's hands

When it's time to speak your mind, think of Cicero's hands

When it's your turn, your bridge to burn, think of Cicero's hands

published with permission, copyright 2017 Mike Murray

overflowingly so

Charles Monette

thoughts dying in clouds

focus within reach

abruptly pushed over edge

thoughts wander, wonder over water

never landing

burning out

cosmic relatedness

all relates to all after all

random stirrings of memory

mind soaring, soaring beyond

imagination gliding

a splash of color scalds the earth

inspiration’s shaking foundations

stirring up rough dirt

far flung falling… an abysmal feeling

unreliable winds pelting exalted thoughts

blowing tree tops… life’s fluctuating fray

jump startled by thunder’s explosive cracks

vaulting over reckless danger

assiduously revised

I come to you… a spur to writing

Other voices

Charles Monette

March winds have quieted

Too soggy to blow

They sigh away to churn the sea

Listening for words of beauty

Some never heard before

Looking, hearing for a different way

Forsythia’s early yellow

Bell-shaped flowers, shrubs of an Olive family

Offer easy to appreciate full throttled blooms

Counting on spring to lift the gloom

Renew assurance with each green grass blade

It’s a young loving time of year

Moody moods’ last brood dissipates

To a chickadee’s call

Rivers swell muddy with snow’s last white

Something to remember me by

Winter’s baton passes grudgingly

Robins perch proudly, atomic tangerine

Did we expect any other?

Coming down with the rain

Wet showers circling… soaking a tree

Lichen brighten, stamp okay

Blue purple crocus open to day

This spring’s beauty ever slightly unlike

Venus Smiled

Charles Monette

3 straight years, Earth is getting hotter

3 records set in a row

NOAA cooking the books

NO Antartic, Artic melting away

Chinese plot… I think not… do they want waterproof?

feel the swelter, helter skelter… Phalodi… Africa 123.8 degrees

drought, starvation,… no water to grow to drink

emissions of heat trapping gases, greenhouse gases

carbon monoxide

planetary warning planetary warming

threat to the natural world

El Nino swoops in… hot energy, water vapors release

2016 the hottest year 3 straight records in a row

trouncing past records, rising temperatures warm the globe

our constantly changing planet

Artic oceans 20-30 degrees above normal last Fall

seas ice sunset

startlingly rapid coastal erosion

some connectivity… an accelerated era

hot data records 3rd straight in a row

do you feel it?


cold water, hot water, no water, high waters, waterboarding

water color, waterfowl, waterway, waterworks, waterlogged

water pollution, waterproof, waterfront, waterfall

watertight, water under the bridge, water cannon

water wiping out the bridge Waterloo, water,

water everywhere, nary a drop to drink 

war-uh, watery, water



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