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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Chrysanthemum Poetry Anthology

We are planning to resurrect Chrysanthemum Poetry Anthology. Please stay tuned!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Sherry Rabbino Lewis ---------------- five poems


Time’s a bucking bronco
furious to shake me off,
still I hang on tight
strictly from pride.

Guess he’s gotten bored with me
wants to test the next damn fool
who’ll mount willingly
to dare the ride.

Whirls me in a tesseract:
Past and Future meld with Now
grandchild fused with child,
and I am young.

Once I rode a horse called Gold
tried but could not make him halt:
missed the flapping reins
whipping him on.

Feared I’d ride forever
but his weary legs gave out.
He stopped, snorted mist
and let me go.


Time’s a different sort of beast:
relentless, cruel, untiring.
We’ll not part gently.
This much I know.


contrails stitched your initials in the sky
first sharp, then cotton fluff, then gone.
My friend said you were saying hi
from someplace northward of the sun.

But she finds comfort everywhere:
In music from a passing car,
or robin lighting on his chair,
she sees a sign from her lost love.

So she insists you’ve come to me
as hummingbird with onyx glare
suspended inches from my face,
or strange cat waiting on the stair.

He would not leave his chosen place
as if his home was always there.
(And smiled at me with amber eyes—
your color when your mood was fair.)

Such moments do not prove you live.
The comforts we create are lies.
If answered once, I might believe
but what I ask you do not give:

Because you never come in dreams,
no matter how I plead and call,
each “sign” is merely what it seems.
The sky is empty after all.


For a time
all appears the same:
the leaf remains attached
by memory.
Only the tree
senses its loss.

So with love:
Long before they parted
the wound had healed.


After days of sun
and arid shirtsleeve heat
we moved geraniums outside,
took covers from the picnic set—
grateful for the end of cold.

Suddenly, at noon
an over-stuffed dark cloud
on its way to somewhere else,
burst loudly, dimpling all the earth
with icy golfball hail.

Finches chirped, confused.
They fled to sheltering trees
shaking winter from their wings.
In moments, all was coated white
and startled silence reigned.

Bright sun soon returned.
The grass glowed  green again.
Then, mockingly, a single peal
of thunder rolled like laughter from
the jokester in the sky.,


Let’s pretend that we believe
that in the sky there is an eye
that sees and grieves,
an ear that hears us cry.

Let’s imagine there’s a Guide
who has a real plan for us.
Let’s jump with joy, forget our pride,
Let’s loudly shout in chorus:

“Thank You for the sunshine!
Thank You for the rain!
Thank You for the beauty!
Thank You for the pain!”

Let’s eat the junk that kills us.
Let’s breathe the air that chokes.
Let’s let the rich ones steal the world
from all us simple folks.

You know what?  I don’t care.
Let them ravish everywhere,
Send the victims to the chair.
Give the guilty ones my share.

I’m weary of excuses
for my fellow man.
I’m tired of the abuses
they commit since time began.

Let’s admit there’s nothing,
no reason for it all.
Let’s be fools together
forget the things we know—

Let’s be joyous fools together
Just relax…and let it go.

Simon Perchik -------- five poems

East Hampton, NY  11937

What you open leans against wood
that is not a door you can muffle
put your arm around the only sound

when you knock on this kitchen table
whose corners were broken off
straight down, still lit, letting you in

circle her mouth not yet the room
left over and listen for the smoke
around the hush from small fires.

Just died and its rain
is already snow, comforts
the obituary page

with moonlight pieces
slowly circling down
as that star-shaped lullaby

small stones still look for
–it’s this morning’s
though over your head the deaths

are hidden in silence
begging for water
that doesn’t break apart

the way each sky
is hollowed out for another
–you make a sea

for these dead, each name
a boat, sails, the spray
midair and out loud.

This tree abandoned at last
flows past as ravines and riverbeds
and can’t fall any more

–it’s used to dirt and those initials
you carried along inch by inch
not in some stone letting you stop

for water –you were buried
in the afternoon, late so the light
could close the lid with leftover kisses

become an ocean, still burning
and between each wave the glint
from a clear silence you took for yes.

To survive you disguise each log
as the aromatic sun the mornings
can’t resist –even when naked

you hide some kindling close by
let it give birth in the smoke
that leaves with nothing, becomes

the emptiness though your eyes
never look up or warm –a fire
is feeling its way to your mouth

with lullabies and the small stone
falling asleep on the stove
–you feed it wood as if your lips

still smell from milk and salt
–an ancient, gentle art now lost
somewhere in those nightmares

set off by an empty dress
and along your forehead the light
begins to melt, wants to stay, keep going.

Even these weeds panic
circle around your fingertips
as if the stream they fasten on

knows only one direction –the dead
still fold their arms, dare you
to raise your hand, ask for salt

clear the ground before the no! no!
stops and in the silence makes room
for flowers and your mouth

sweetened by the warm breath
it still remembers as sunlight
struggling and the pull up! pull up!

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Four poems by Julie A. Dickson

Weather Report

The weather is ridiculous you say?
Back in my day, we had snow up to here,
had to clear driveway by hand,
distribute sand from a pail, all the while
assailed by drifting snow and wind.
Dogs romped through high banks
knocking snow down to my feet,
and when there was sleet,  I just froze,
bundled to the nose in wool scarf
and knit mittens that soaked through
till my hands were bright red.
No Thinsulate gloves, nor snow-blower then;
my jacket got damp, there was snow
in my boots, even though I had bread bags
over my socks, but I didn’t care a bit,
never threw a fit about being cold.
With driveway and walks done, now was time
for some fun, digging tunnels and caves
into heaped up mounds from the road plow.
I wonder how long I stayed outdoors
pretending an igloo was my icy home,
or dragging a sled, metal and wood, up the hill
just for the thrill of sliding down, to trudge
up again until the voice from within
offered cocoa after shucking my wet duds,
eventually warmed in the suds of a hot bath,
I relaxed, knowing school was closed today,
heard the weather report, thinking how cool,
to stay home on a winter day, frosted windows
decorated like lace, a smile crossed my face.

Julie A. Dickson

Long ‘til Spring

Road along the fence lays under snow
fields unmowed half-covered like a fog
no wagon tracks or furrows by the row
cannot discern a hillock from a log

Fronds of wheat reach up as if to wave
those not buried seek the morning sun,
you might describe those stalks as soldiers brave
they stand against the cold with faces dun

A single bird from fence surveys the field
may wonder if some insects have survived,
retreats to oak in hope that branches shield
his hunger, cold now winter has arrived

Field in silence, bird must weather storm
long ‘til spring, he struggles to stay warm

Julie A. Dickson
Exeter, NH

From the Womb

Phantom dark cast shadow,
sketched charcoal streak
marks a midnight story
where stark, cold branches cut
through heavy velvet night sky

Embraces gray clouds,
moonless, endless dark,
no pin-prick light shines
to disrupt blue-black drapery,
covers the window of winter

Dawn drains darkness,
brings lightness to morning sky
like new life born from
the womb of mother earth –
she opens the day to sunlight

A new season unfolds,
tiny litter suckles in the nest
of early spring, preparing
budding brilliance –
trees smile their greeting

Julie A. Dickson
Exeter, NH

A New State

Sad state of affairs they say too often
without means to resolve or demonstrate.
What we’re left with might best be forgotten;
I’m ready and waiting for a new state -
so unrecognizable at this time. 
Is there another choice you might say?
In trouble we are if we follow this line,
I’m ready for change if you name the day.
It seems that people have been misled,
the masses in tatters they wait, for what?
Listen in volumes, to lies being said
I’m ready to hear a new voice, but
who will come forth to lead the nation?
I’m ready for a revelation.

Julie A. Dickson

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

David Fewster ----- poem


by David Fewster

Saw them get out of their Lexus
to pick up their 10 and 11 year-old daughters
fat, affluent, they were out of
a George Grosz painting,
hands on porcine hips, obviously giving the girls
a lecture on the American Way.
Disgusted, I bent back over my book,
a biography of the Marquis de Sade,
and surreptitiously took a slug
from my bottle of Hakusan saki,
fermented in the lovely Napa Valley,
and wouldn’t you like to try it
I was interrupted by the sound
of elephants stampeding up a
It was the couple,
each with a happy, childlike glint
in their eyes,
running toward the park restrooms.
“Geez, they must have to go
really bad,” I thought,
having been in that situation
15 minutes ago, but the bastards
in the Ballard Parks Dept.
had the damned thing locked,
even if it was Sunday at noon,
so I pissed in the bushes myself.
But no, they weren’t
there to piss—
their daughters soon
came up, and it was
obviously a game of
hide & seek, and the
look of joy had been from
the game and their love of it.
And I was abashed.
Where I had been
trying to find evil,
when the surface was scratched,
I only discovered
old hippies who
had not lost the
capacity for
having fun.

What the fuck’s
Wrong with me?

Monday, December 17, 2018

Wil Michael Wren ----- two poems

                                                                                                              Wil Michael Wrenn

Into my soul,
Into my soul,
The flow of life
And death.
I breathe in
And out again.
The breath of the cosmos
Flows through me,
And its life
Becomes my life.
I breathe through it,
And with it,
And it breathes in me.
And when I no longer live,
My soul will depart,
My breath will depart,
And become one
With the soul
Of the universe,
With the breath
of the universe.

                                                Wil Michael Wrenn

I Have to Write
I have to write…
Fragments of thoughts,
embers of feelings
join together,
flare up and overwhelm,
I have to write
to release the pain,
the sadness of brokenness –
broken hearts and souls,
broken hopes and dreams,
broken wings.
Oh, who will save me
from this endless loss
and fill me up with joy,
complete in love
so I’ll never, ever
again have to write
unless I write of beauty,
mended hearts and souls,
hopes and dreams,
and healing wings.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Thomas Hubbard ----- two poems


Back in the car he wipes his eyes,
checks the rear view mirror and
starts the engine….

That old curtain story worked again,
quieting her sobs, bringing her back,
partly, from the fear in her eyes, the
uncertainty she inhabits nowadays…
back to bedsores that heal so slowly…
again he complained, they promised,
but nothing changes… since he
brought her to this “rest” home, the
only one nearby with a vacancy, with
promises of great care, cheery rooms…
providing negligent, dingy spaces, at
a price higher than his income.

So passes another day, another visit,
so comes another evening on the couch,
a night alone in his house of memories…
driving home he detours past the factory,
stops in front of the Second Shift bar,
sits in the car, can’t go inside, no use,
gives it up, motors on to the house,
Into the drive, shuts the engine down,
sits and stares, lights a forbidden smoke,
puts it out, walks to the front door and
steps into the rooms they shared,
rooms where happy voices still echo.

Sitting at the same desk where he
filled tax forms year after year and
worried, in those early months, about
house payments, car payments,
doctor bills, school clothes for the kids…
he runs fingers through his greying hair,
sips the last from a glass of bourbon,
pushes back the chair, stands to
carry the glass to the kitchen for a refill,
which he carries to the couch,
stopping to turn on the TV… world news
while another day fades.

Two pretty girls and a very earnest man
discuss the world’s events and local news
as he stares into nothing….

Fading to Blank

Her voice gallops across air,
big-eyed from the uncertainty,
nearly silent ….

Vapors of fear, questions,
where is this? who is this?
which this is this? and still
comes nobody through this
confusing door which leads,
on the dwindling good days,
to those kitchen afternoons 
watching Mom, waiting as
cookies swell behind the
oven door’s foggy window, or
listening as supper sizzles
in the big cast iron skillet.

Comes no greying man who
claims to be her husband, to
remind her how she sewed
these bedroom curtains so
far back along the hallway of
years, that same hallway
leading to Mom’s kitchen and
schooldays, and the wedding,
the children… the hallway
that can’t recall her name,
that sometimes takes her to
the porch, not the bathroom..

Her eyes watch strangers now,
who come when it’s daytime,
making her exercise, even
bathing her, changing her gown,
gently combing her hair and
telling her she’s pretty… lord,
how can she think about pretty
when thoughts run away like
her naughty children who
never visit anymore, but send
sad-eyed strangers to sit
on the couch and act happy?

Her galloping voice gradually
slows, then halts, quiet as she
vacantly stares….

©2018 Thomas Hubbard