Elizabeth Bishop

“Five Flights Up

Still dark.
The unknown bird sits on his usual branch.
The little dog next door barks in his sleep
inquiringly, just once.
Perhaps in his sleep, too, the bird inquires
once or twice, quavering.
Questions—if that is what they are—
answered directly, simply,
by day itself.

Enormous morning, ponderous, meticulous;
gray light streaking each bare branch,
each single twig, along one side,
making another tree, of glassy veins…
The bird still sits there. Now he seems to yawn.

The little black dog runs in his yard.
His owner’s voice arises, stern,
“You ought to be ashamed!”
What has he done?
He bounces cheerfully up and down;
he rushes in circles in the fallen leaves.

Obviously, he has no sense of shame.
He and the bird know everything is answered,
all taken care of,
no need to ask again.
—Yesterday brought to today so lightly!
(A yesterday I find almost impossible to lift.)

Elizabeth Bishop

“IN CONCERT” by Alexis Rhone Fancher


the couple sitting in front of us
got up abruptly, moved down an entire
row to vacant seats.
die-hard Madeline Peyroux fans, he said.
why? was I loud?
you were an asshole.
really?
yeah, you kept talking, and hooped and
hollered after every song.
I love her. I’m enthusiastic, I said.
you were an asshole, he insisted.
yeah? well, you shouldn’t have given me that
4th vodka rocks, I said.
I don’t remember pouring it down your
throat.
you twisted my arm.
maybe. but you were the asshole.
really?
mmmm.
did I embarrass you?
no. I’m with you, baby.
thanks.
for what?
for loving me when I’m
an asshole.
de rien, cherie, he said.
All Rights Reserved
© 2010

“Edge Of The World” by Jaymie Thorne


sitting on the edge of the world
watching winds capture curtain
i began trying clouds on for size
blowing by as borrowed distress
some looking as wild horses alit
dragging me with the stampede
to high clouds of icy desperation

on clear days forever bloomed
with hope of eternal existence
encircled by a nimbus of faith
cradled in arms of belief until
again a mustang would charge
leaving me to teeter and sway

i no longer pilfer heaven’s robe
gales blast then blow across me
no struggle has been harnessed
with repeating choice to remain
sitting on the edge of the world

Jaymie Thorne

All Rights Reserved

© 2010

“2009” (journal entry) by Stephen Kalinich


Grace will direct your inner path

if you open up to it.
Sometimes it takes letting go

of old mind sets
and trusting spirit to move you forward.
I believe you can create a plan for your life
that allows spontaneity

and freedom
and still has purpose and meaning…
something you have a passion for…
Have courage to face the changes
and let go of attachments
and leave it to the infinite unseen.

I wish you all the best.
Love,

Stevie

Art by Stephen Kalinich

and John Robertson

All Rights Reserved

© 2009

“Thief Underneath” by L. K. Thayer

Photo by VC Ferry

I didn’t know
under the spit
polish and the
starched collars
the fancy footwork
and long hours
the morning glories
and midnight rendezvous
that he was a
thief

underneath

I didn’t know
through the passion
and the high brow fashion
the cash and the carry
that I should be wary
of all the disguises
of someone behind

a hidden agenda

that played with my mind

I didn’t know
he was a thief
underneath

all the mesmerizing
and cannibalizing
devouring not showering
showering me with
hot kisses and pale

promises

of togetherness
and bliss
of tenderness
and this
is what I find

a thief
underneath

a crime of passion
so strong
gave him my rights
and my wrongs
gave him my ins and my outs
my fears and my doubts
I uncovered a lover
against my beliefs
fell to my knees
and had to release

gave him the beat

of my heart

that finally tore us apart

didn’t know

he was a thief

underneath

L. K. Thayer

All Rights Reserved

© 2009

“Trust” by L. K. Thayer

Photo by VC Ferry

when trust
gets

twisted

in a knot sometimes
and devours
right

from wrong

like a cannibal
at a table

for two

it’s time to
pull back
and take

a second look
at the person
who

answers
to your name

sleeps in your

pajamas
and wears
the same size shoe

ask them
when are you

willing
to give them

you

don’t keep them
guessing
let the curtain
rise

the time is

now

to
shine

L. K. Thayer

All Rights Reserved

© 2009

“The Purple Dance” by L. K. Thayer

Photo by VC Ferry

I am reminded

of the white dove
that sat all night
perched

on the lattice
of my balcony

how many times
have I looked over
Shady Acres
and gazed

up at the sky
at the pregnant moon
full circle

watching over
watching

and waiting
for the next sliver
the next slice
the next shift in tide
the ebb and flow
like a

goddess cycle

the wind chimes
sing their melancholy notes
as Spring
lets the Jacaranda trees know
that it’s time to dance
their purple dance

the white dove knew

that I needed it’s presence

it was sent

as a reminder
that

all was in
God’s

hands

L. K. Thayer

All Rights Reserved

© 2009