Twelve Untitled Haiku / Senryu / etc.

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Contributor: Robert Beveridge

- -
manacled hands take
the skull from the pit; cop digs
where he points next

* * *

I raise the silent
bottle the sad river flows
behind your green eyes

* * *

leaves fall
your poems written
between their veins

* * *

hunger
burning pain
dead dog

* * *

flash of brilliant light
catches lovers in the act
cop knows her father

* * *

eighty-four steps
in fallen leaves: beyond
the electric chair

* * *

dirty needles freeze
clink against solid sand
winter in Jersey

* * *

clock hands spin, the wait
for a message slow to come,
maybe never does

* * *

all tools have two sides
hammers can shatter but they
can also fasten

* * *

car's back seat, tinted
windows afford minimal
privacy...don't care

* * *

back against the wall
head bowed in supplication
one more day in wait

* * *

blonde waterfall
your spring spray draws me
I douse myself


- - -
Robert Beveridge
makes noise and writes poetry
Akron, Ohio

Wasteland Carousel

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Contributor: Scott Thomas Outlar

- -
So neat and tidy
outside the city
with two trashcans
at the top
of every driveway.

One full
of fake plastic bottles
promised to be recycled
anew.

But ain’t it true
that the messy trash
is what always
comes back around
when you forget
to clean up
your karma?


- - -
Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.com where links to his published poetry, fiction, essays, interviews, books, and live events can be found.

Ode To Silence

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Contributor: Goff James

- -
In silence
Alone I sit
Upon the headland’s rugged cliffs
Where twilight’s fingers linger long
Captured by my weaving thoughts
Immersed within the setting sun’s
Descent beyond the aching sea

In silence
Alone I sit
Listening to the mournful music of
The rhythmic lapping waves echo ‘neath
The restless call of gulls full winged
With awe filled wonder I watch
The bees upon the heather dance and sing

In silence
Alone I sit
As the clifftop chorus gently fades
And drifts beyond the slipping sun
Carried high on evening’s perfumed breeze
Into the furthest cooling corners
Of the closing of the day

In silence
Alone I sit
Gazing at the rising crescent moon
Veiled in mellow lustred clouds
Heavenwards my weary eyes I lift
Offering to the waking night
A simple thankful prayer


- - -
Goff James lives in Wales. His interests are gardening, painting, photography, reading, travel and writing. His poetry reflects whatever seems to catch his eye at any one particular moment in time.

Old Man’s Sea

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Contributor: Sunil Sharma

- -
on a solitary patch
of the beach
with bent palms
whisper things
in his attentive ears

the old guy walks regularly
morning and evening
doing the routine for years,
he
calls the breakers
by names and
smiles at the
orange-hued bosom
of the waves
as buddies!

An odd relationship of a tiny guy
with
a sea, dark-blue, mysterious

a mortal searching for gods and
a sanctuary, in a touristy place.


- - -
Bio: Sunil Sharma, a writer-freelance-academic from Mumbai, India, has published 19 books, solo and joint. He edits Setu:
http://www.setumag.com/p/setu-home.html

Master Poet

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Contributor: Bruce Mundhenke

- -
You are the poet's Poet,
Yours is the greatest poem,
Full of beauty,
Filled with wisdom,
Perfectly it scans,
Majestic in its power,
Epic in its scope,
Brilliant in conception,
You placed it on the page,
An eternal message,
A gift of love and hope.


- - -
Bruce Mundhenke writes in Illinois, where he lives with his wife and their dog and cat.

DRIFT

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Contributor: Pat Ashinze

- -
nothing makes
a man look stupid
like wanton misery
and consistent failure.
And love.

i tell you, dear reader -
not because i have drunk sour wines;
not because i have seen the sky bleed;
not because my memories have grown
grey beards and have become arthritic;
i tell you this to show you the vanity
behind having an human existence.

if you see a man crying, run!
his soul is filled with shadows.
his memories are Unclad and silty.
run! - before the heaviness spreads and
makes you a city beneath the earth.

truth is: the mind of every man is filled with grief:
consisting of sorrows that sting like desert arachnids and
hurt like the jests of blasphemous demons.
we hide our pains behind our teeth everyday,
praying in dense notes for death to run away,
waiting for God to show his face in the clouds.

another truth is that happiness requires sacrifice.
it is the reward for hearts
that have chosen to ignore pain
and learnt to live in a world
filled with dangling windows,
punctured destinies, broken stories,
false friends, envied pedestals,
desolate cities and empty rooms.
happiness is not for cowards.
be illumined.


- - -
I write from Ilorin, Nigeria. Writing is the way i empty my mind of its load of colours and shadows. I write fluidly but poetry is my favourite genre. Writing is the only way i can talk without being interrupted.

Crossing The Ocean

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Contributor: Bruce Levine

- -
Crossing the ocean

Is more than just miles

Or depth to the bottom

It’s battling sea monsters

And waves that try

To scuttle your ship

Only love can conquer

The daemons setting their sights

On the rarest of feelings

When truly aroused

When the heart and the soul

Join forces and become one

To take on all comers

And conquer the darkness

Like a knight in shining armor

To rescue the damsel in distress

And carry her off to Neverland

To live the plethora of youth and joy

That only true love can bring


- - -
Bruce Levine, a native Manhattanite, has spent his life as a writer of fiction and poetry and as a music and theatre professional and is published on and in numerous internet and print journals. He lives with his rescued Australian Shepherd, Daisy. His work is dedicated to the loving memory of his wife, dancer/actress, Lydia Franklin.

Alone

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Contributor: Jane Briganti

- -
Never by my side
always alone am I
In the beginning
there were signs
but I chose not to
acknowledge them
I buckled-up on the
roller coaster ride of love
with eyes wide open
throwing my hands in the air
surrendering to whatever
would come
He was handsome and gallant
I was naive
I wanted the fairy tale
and he provided the book
Together
we would fill the pages

Those early years
passed quickly
filled with passion
and anticipation
Gloriously wild and free
life revolved around
him and me
My Knight in shinning armor
he came from over-seas
Everything about him was
memorizing, tantalizing
And then just like that
on a nondescript day
he dropped the bomb
the ultimatum
In retrospect,
not an easy decision
for a starry-eyed girl

Follow him and live over-seas
or accept the unthinkable
Already in love, infatuated
wanting the fairy tale
afraid to lose the future
I followed
Surrendering my goals
along with everyone
and everything I knew

I would become a wife
without ever being a bride
Young and married by the law
no wedding, no reception
and in the end
no recollection


- - -
A Native New Yorker, I've been writing poetry for as long as I can remember. It is my hope that someone may find solace in my words.

Pushing For More

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Contributor: Vaunna Fostertagg

- -
Give me a taste of purity
give me a taste of that happiness
that can't be found
in champagne bottles
in slaying stacks of paper
in drunken nights under neon
in beds that smell of stranger's sweat
in fists and back-alley brawling
in sharp smiles
and sharper knives
and secrets
that destroy families
quips
that tear down towers
and leave men standing in windows
contemplating the drop
to the distant ground.

Give me a taste of the joy
that comes from the ice
when children would eat sweet larvae
from the raw pelts of reindeer
and chew walrus fat
knowing that days were good
that life was rich

Give me a taste of the joy
that came with ancient gratitude
an acceptance of all that is
all that was
without ever once
pushing the envelope
against danger
hoping for more.


- - -
Florida native with a heart of gold, sometimes.

Chance Encounters

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Contributor: Jun Lit

- -
The young man sweeps the mat of dried leaves,
all that decades-old bamboo clump has littered.
The tops and canes are green and fresh,
the over-matured culms are browning.

I am the old uncle watching,
feet raised on the extended arm rests
of my chair rocking,
a mug of brewed coffee on one hand, I’m sipping
just as in my childhood, aroma captivating -
to relieve the joints of uric pain, I’m trying,
to re-live the vibrant guitarist strain, I’m wishing.

The broom stick and rake he sways
with precise moves and muscular grace;
as accompaniment, the chirps of birds, the wind plays
as chickens cackling like backup singers race.

Breaking the seeming trance, the rooster crows,
"cock-a-doodle-doo" - loud and proud, the hens he wows
and I stare at this old boy - or the young man, he grows
He glances at me, then bows,
as I see my past, the youth that Sun did arouse
and he sees his future, as years thin and grey the brows.
Aging is inevitable, I know, he knows
And again, enjoying the day, the rooster crows.


- - -
Jun Lit (Ireneo L. Lit, Jr.) teaches biology and studies insects at the University of the Philippines Los Baños and writes poems about nature, people, and society

Flat Roads

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Contributor: J. L. Smith

- -
We dreamt of far away lines of flat roads,
some hills to make it interesting,
some turns to give us some decisions,
paths to debate,
outcomes in which to blame.

But, together we took a detour
with neither of us consulting the GPS.
Blood in our veins
directed our course in off roads
made of vines of compromise.

Instead of our destination,
we got nowhere.
Now, we are lost
and we have only ourselves to blame.


- - -
J.L. has published two collections of poetry: Medusa, The Lost Daughter and Weathered Fragments. Follow her on Twitter @jennifersmithak

SHORN

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Contributor: Dee Allen

- -
Getting the head
Shorn with a blade,
Hairless to the touch
And smooth, was how
Kenyan and Tanzanian
Maasai men historically
Prepared for battle
Against approaching hostile
Nearby tribes. Nowadays,
Maasai women strip
Themselves of wooly hair
For cleanliness and
Drawing the straying
Male eye on her.
As an African man

In America, applying
A good razor
To my stubbly
Scalp, lathered in
Thick white cream,
Backward and forward
Before the bathroom mirror
Over a face-bowl

Keeps the creeping
Ravages of grey
From settling in
All too soon--

My face,
All sharp corners
And high cheek-bones,
Receives the same treatment.

My ritual
Wards off age
For the time being.
Youth and
Cleanliness maintained with razor strokes.

This is me
In warrior mode
Preparing for battle
Against encroaching hostile
Western society.
_____________
W: 8.16.18

- - -
African. Italian. Poet.

The Contented Sow

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Contributor: Quirby McNallain

- -
Eating bacon
Staring at the pig
her succulent piglets
wondering
why we render such wonder
in paint and paper
while keeping life contained
in such tiny boxes
nowhere near as ideal
as the contented sow
smiling
at the burnt bacon
on my greasy plate.


- - -
My parents were quirky, and that's how I'll always remember them. Longtime resident of Sparks, in Nevada.

Drunken Advice

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Contributor: Uralave Minsraim

- -
Don't fix what ain't broken
Yeah
I wish less was broken
I wish the whole system
wasn't broken
wasn't a heap of trash
better left outside
ignored
where the rain could wash it clean
or the fire could cleanse it
or someone new
could carry the whole thing away
and make something useful
out of the mess
I sometimes call
my life.


- - -
I go from one meeting to another in an endless chain of absolute importance.

Despondence

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Contributor: Jane Briganti

- -
What in life did she really know
it's not what it all seems
Now all covered by the snow
buried are her dreams

A blanket made of icy white
lies heavy on her soul
Passing is each day and night
life has taken its toll

Beneath the bitter cold
tears of sadness fill her eyes
What she believed was real in life
was nothing more than lies


- - -
Born and raised in New York, I've been writing poetry ever since I can remember. Only recently have I felt a desire to share my poetry with others. It is my hope that someone may find solace in my words.

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