Haiku At Poinsett Bridge No. 1

by Matthew Banash

Crows laugh in the elms
At jokes I don’t get-
Caw caw caw

Sun Storm

by Michael H. Brownstein

Today is Friday, tomorrow the beginning of next week,
An angry grumbling of earth, the heat a shower of shame,
Rising water, a plastic death to the ocean, things look bleak.
Today is Friday, tomorrow the beginning of next week.
Where is the Cuban Coney, the Sardinian Pika, the prairie leek,
The Jamaican Monkey, the Bulldog rat, the prame?
Today is Friday, tomorrow the beginning of next week,
An angry grumbling of earth, the heat a shower of shame.

Ant's Prayer

by Inguna Brože

Lord Almighty called man
Please listen, if you can-
Don't step on me,
Don't crush a snail,
Don't burn us alive
We want to survive,
Don't pin a butterfly on nail,
Don't catch a bird
To hear it sing,
Don't try to clip its wings,
Don't, don't, don't...

A Dry Country

by David Chorlton

The vultures claim their portion of the sky
each day, and surrender it
with grace when the pines on the mountain
draw light through their roots
and a glow
spreads from inside.
You can see them from the porch
of an old house, built before convenience
when the miners arrived thirsty
and left without finding
what they came for. The roads
they used have outlived them,
still winding up and around
to where a shaft begins
its descent into darkness, still turning
to the dust a truck kicks out
on a day when the light is so dry
you can peel it away from the suede
colored slopes and watch
Whitetail Canyon erode.

Forest Light

by Suzanne Cottrell

Hiking Holly Point Trail
Sunlight streams through
Slippery Elm, Black Walnut,
Water Oak, Bitternut Hickory


by Taylor Graham 
A Great Horned Owl. Three hoots repeated
at intervals. A school lesson, mantra, a warning –
a message to solve. That owl's no stranger,
a local presence. We live with it like thunder,
or dynamite muffled by hills.
It stooped soundless to take our lamb,
leaving no more evidence than water
siphoned from a pond. A change in pressure,
an absence; algebra of regret. Spirit
of a lost one. A second voice joined the first,
call and response.
Then silence, the long history of night.

A Hard Rain

by Maury Grimm  

A hard rain. Łizhiní calls the girls together under the currant bush. For a while there I feared hail, but it is blessed rain.

The coop run is about finished and there is still a door to make and hang, but that will be for another day. My hands hurt incredibly from pounding nails, pulling wire. A blister forming at the base of my finger and I managed to hit my finger with the hammer once, but it is not so bad.

The wind blows the rain into some windows so I shut them, think about what to make for an afternoon meal, what is easy. Some asparagus soup in the reefer, maybe a sandwich. There is plenty to make a salad as well.

The sheep are now in part of the pasture that has been untouched. It was a sight to watch them rush in, joyful at the bounty.

The work of men, and then the work of women. And then it goes on.

Sa Pa Vietnam
Joan Hofmann



by Sandy Hiortdahl  

Some bright June morning,
Mockingbird will call you, too,
beyond the known world.

At the Edge of Sight
~ Old Quebec City

by M.J. Iuppa

Where sky meets water, blue
mountains rise— moving
across the horizon in shifting
clouds that curve into fortress
walls— mortar made to keep
this old French city contained
in its glass globe.

A ray of light catches fire
on the cathedral’s steeple.
A gray pigeon flies under eaves.
A man stomps his boots before
opening the heavy door
to morning prayers. . . .

And, your cupped hands
shake—unable to control this
universe—it snows, and snows,
and snows.


by Roberta Beach Jacobson

each generation
the river's name

A Promised Meeting by the Riverbank

by Taufiq Abdul Khalid  

Bring your bigotry and your hooded hate,
And I will find us a spot on the riverbank,

Bring your usury and their collateralized tears,
And I will find us a spot on the riverbank,

Bring your religion and other excuse for hubris,
And I will find us a spot on the riverbank,

Bring your guns and trophies of the hunt,
And I will find us a spot on the riverbank,

Bring your carbon credit and other deceits,
And I will find us a spot on the riverbank,

Bring your good and your bad,
Your cloudy skies and your sunshine,

Bring all your rights and your wrongs,
To a spot I will find on the riverbank,

In the Garden of mercy
Where we all belong.

Droughtland Smoothie

 by Elizabeth Kuelbs
Beat sun up. Blend 2 cups fresh
ash, 1 billow smoke, 1/4 manzanita
bone, 1 heat-scarred flight feather, hawk
or owl, 2 tablespoons doomy noon
twilight, 1 chlorinated
bee, ice.


Hairline to navel (ignore sunburn tenderness) unzip skin.

for lush tumble
of mist, of river, of willow, wait
for singing oak canopy, for poppy, for mallow, for
coyote mint. Wait in the dark
for rain.

No Signs of Intelligent Life

 by Todd Mercer

Beam me up, Scotty. I’ve seen enough.
This place is devoid of civilization.
Get me the fuck out of here, before
the prevailing madness mires me in muck.
The locals keep voting to abolish
the locals. They think it’s in their interests.
Something went wrong at the schools,
learning is no longer possible.
People like this cheer for meteors
that are streaking straight toward them.
They can’t foresee the destruction,
only focus on the shiny light.
How they’re still here even this long
is a stumping mystery.
Rumor has it the same citizens
used to want what’s good for citizens.
Little proof remains. So who can say?
They must have somewhere to go
after here’s obliterated. No panic
at irreversible damage from
intentional decisions they have made.
They could fix their society and ecosystem
for free, but they reject the effort,
they suspect a darker motive.
Stupid people lack the means to self-assess
and to alter course. Beam me up
and set a course for basic rationality.
Enlightened self-interest prevails
on the higher quality planets. This was
an asylum before the funding ran out.

Burlington, New Foundland
G. Tod Slone


Nevada Mind

by Karla Linn Merrifield

I flick sere judgment on horned lizard tongue
wildness uncoils across great white basins.

I rattle a snake’s great desert tail
in the great ranges of sagebrush lines.

I, reptile, speak, coil the wild greatly.


by Jamie O’Connell


/ waves blued
by fire /

black pebble sun
splits sea /

/ how sun
feeds sea /

bones, flesh

(Corn) Husk In The Wind

by Randall Rogers

It's true in the end ashes do look best.
Or the new beautiful
compressed-bone art deco white oval
I saw advertised on TV the other day.
Creamy it looked like a bar of Dove soap.
A large burial mushroom pod
where your remains sprout
new fungi (or fun-guys!), perhaps? Heh-heh
So many options,
so much to look forward to
getting old, croaking, and being buried in
the quaint little cemetery
around the church
of the small town
on the prairie
in southern Minnesota
where all the farms
are neat and orderly
and there are towns
like Truman
where industrious Germans and Swedes
mow their lawns on Sunday
now that weed's legal
and there's decent internet
it's okay to live there.

Dryness Acrostic Middle

by Clinton Siegle

I am the dry years turned to beauty
dried plants turned ashes of grass and trees to desert beauty
rain not forthcoming waterlessness area's deserted beauty
yearly no rains creating the areas to beauty
non open clouds draining plant's beauty
ever forever a parched beauty
season of a dryness beauty
season of whether desert beauty.
Never changing beauty.

Land Inventory

by Janet Sunderland

The county appraiser sent a questionnaire
and a topography map, wants me to update
our family farm value, asks about changes
to acreage or productive capability of the land.

Ignore the appraiser’s flat gray map, see,
instead, the sapphire sky, white-striped
like zebras in Grandpa's National Geographic.
Airplanes flying high to Africa or China maybe.

Walk the field of milo - stacked red heads
flaming on emerald stalks. With one swift swing
of the machete, sever a sunflower’s head,
wipe sticky black resin from the blade –

The map won't show Great Simba, now rotted
to a termite's meal, won’t capture hazy afternoons
we picked gooseberries, or our clamber up
the peeling bark to ride a gray husk to India.

Legends lie hidden in the appraiser’s map—stories
held by the wind, borne by cottonwood seeds, flung
free, as we were all flung free. Memory our property.
I sign the questionnaire; affirm no changes to the land.


 by Laughing Waters

suddenly drops
red camelia's flowers
covering ground
fresh snow

Anonymous Papyrus Fragment, Ancient Messene, Date Unknown but Later Than You Think

by Vassilis Zambaras

Fields we had
[        ]
[        ]


[ now?]
[        ]
[        ]
[        ]

[shredded wheat]

Ely[sian?] with honey
[        ]
[        ]
[        ]
[        ]

Bees combing long
[        ] [flaxen?]   

Hair [       ]

[         ]
[         ]
[         ]

To your knees   

[the rest wholly eaten away by moths]

Christi Kochifos Caceres