Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Brown Bear Grazing

by Kersten Christianson

Paws reach for salmon-
berry branch, rough tongue brushes
against spring greens, cane
and bud.  Verb:  to consume, eat
of the earth’s deep good.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Home Woods

byTaylor Graham

Standing off my dog in the swale,
a young pointed buck. Morning too dim
to say how many seasons he’s circled
us in his rounds, and bedded down
under the buckeye’s twisted limbs. Bent
grasses, weight of sleep and waking.
My dog’s on guard-dance with what lives
among us. The buck advances
by inches, drawn magnetic to our north
fence. One sprung haunch-leap over
the wire’s wild side; dawn caught antler-
gold for a moment, gone.

Sparkle of the Mica

by Tricia Knoll

Running the arroyo as the sun rises,
too many perfect stones to pocket
in no-pocket shorts.

Horse hoof prints sprawl under the sun,
and prickly pears hang over the eroded lip.
I dodge boulders and cowpies.

The miracle this morning –
a slab of weathered pinyon
shaped like a fish with a glass eye

swimming the drought arroyo.

Forest Fire

by David Subacchi

The smell of burning pine comes first
Before black smoke columns
Twisting  upwards
Appear on the horizon

And even at a distance
A warmth is felt
Warning of danger
And flushing the cheek.

Summer brings
The picnic people
Discarded smokes
Bored souls

Experimenting
Under cover
Of the timber
Cathedrals

Lighting candles
Before wooden images
Igniting passions
Mistaking trees for gods.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Soon, Blueberry Moon

by Kersten Christianson

Soon
those blue-
berry moon picking
fingers will stain bright
violet hues.  You forage in the light
of the berry moon, drop fruit in a Folgers
can fastened by rope, buffered by the curve
of your body.  Pulled into the dream of a bear
sharing its abundant crop, blue shadows
in wild moonlight, the moon so round you could reach
into the night sky
and pick it.

Little Dry Canyon, Late April

by Tim Staley

3 lean coyotes blend in
to the blond canyon.
Their heads are low
between their shoulders.
No people are here.
A weak little wrinkle
of water and light
wags the floor.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Coloring Book

by Chris Butler

Color outside the lines
with magical markers
to create new hues
of bruised black and blue,

graffiti city property
by spraying paint
onto walls, ceilings
and cracked sidewalks.

Trace your veins
with a razor blade
for a perfect shade
of red.

And scribble every
color together for a
perfect double vision
rainbow.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Prelude

by Trivarna Hariharan

In the branches
      of a blossoming
amaranth—

there is a bird
     chafed by whose
song,

even stones
    begin to move
like rivers.

Lines

by Deborah P Kolodji

fallen cone
from the sugar pine
broken clouds

A Love Poem for the Giant Sequoia

by A.K. Kelly

when she comes at you in full force,
take her beauty in strides.
when you go, leave her as she was.
​in fact, ​leave nothing of yourself.
remember that in between all the wonder, in between
all that you experience when you are with her,
she exists without you.
she lives permanently in a wild and free place.
while you, you only belong temporarily.
the most painful truth for her
is also what she desires most--
to look inside when it's over, and find
no lingering trace of you.​

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Rio Mora Valley, New Mexico

by Jari Thymian

inside
forest service greenhouses
thousands
of two-inch seedlings
hope like wind through mountains

a stump
in the ponderosa forest
the thin
tree ring of my birth year --
invisible from the trail’s peak

deep, deep
scars in her wide trunk
even
in death her branches twist
skyward with strength

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Lines

by Deborah P Kolodji

the lake filled
with four thousand stars
stillness

White-bellied Sea Eagle

by Ion Corcos

Broad wings slow,
white breast swoop,
over grassland, dunes,
and rugged beach.
Feet thrust forward,
it dives, nears
the ocean’s surface,
snatches a fish
from the splash;
in its talons, the fish
to a rock ledge;
silver scales,
and red, stripped flesh,
against stone.

Leaving Lake Havasu, Arizona

by Stefanie Bennett

If the sky had a voice
I envisage

We’d buckle under
The bent-over
Exit wounds
Just as
The willow
Does
In bright water...

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

becoming your job

by C. Z. Heyward

it was time to leave

wings of the sparrow
loping through juniper berries
caress my lids into submission

she's nesting
as I've fed her soft grain
as an afterthought
one pint at a time

zoophilous screams of the quartet
wane on down the boulevard

I jump in a taxi
less I'm seduced back inside

He asks me
Where to my brother

In the moment
it was only cue I needed

I ask him
What brings you here

Bad dreams
his reply
About my children
orphans all them


I ask
civil war

Worse
Poachers

How worse

Their mothers can't fight back
Because elephants can't shoot rifles

Orphans have nightmares
Crying well into the night
Then through the sunrise
And sunset

He tells me

He bedded with them
No more than straw
And a blanket

but the screams of infants
fell like mourning stars
in between the cackles of hyenas
Feasting on the flesh of their mothers

So he left
No longer able to soothe
innocence mutilated

he's trying to remember to forget
but he's like them now
nothing is forgotten

Delicate in this Storm

by Megan Merchant

The rain sheets. Mud lips over blacktop,
washing out our road.

I wake before he stirs, before he warms
an arm around my ribs, adds breath

to this hour in which I am leaning
against in order to forgive.

I crack an egg and in it
a spider,
a sprig of aster,
a split-yolk moon.

I whisk each omen until it yellows—

a bruise where blood
pooled weeks before,
but has hued toward healing.

From my window, an unkindness of ravens
slink between branches.

They hold out for a softening,
or opening of light,

their black feathers show no hint of damp,
no heavy, or glisten.

A Walk in the Park

by Chris Butler

The old
go for a brisk morning
walk in the park
covered in tombstones

in the greatest waste
of real estate space
since causing
golf coursed curses,

to forget their long lost
friendly neighbors or
to remember
where they are buried.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Butcherbird

by Ion Corcos

A lizard
lies impaled
on a snapped twig,
its dead body
slight in the silver
of the bark, the crevice
of the branch
a larder.

Black sap stains
the pale bark.

Butcherbird shifts
low on a tree,
searches
the woodland floor,
ready to pounce.

It does not sing.

Grey legs push
into the air,
wings outstretched

to land soft
on the floor.

Stabs the ground.

Thunder strikes
the nearby hills.

A lizard hangs
splayed in beak.

Watchful,
the butcher sings,
echoes
between trees.

Out(side)

by M.J. Iuppa

Sitting quietly in our canoe, we
cast our thoughts upon the pond’s

mirror caught in consolation
of clouds, searching for

the hole in its puzzle,
the hole in the monument

of another day. We’re
broken by desire

to make life, some-
how worthy of

its consequences.

Sunset Over the Chesapeake

by Ben Rasnic

A golden glow
emanates from white sails
& the breaking waves
against the fading sky.

Burnt orange spawns
atomic rings of fiery
red and vibrant
yellow veiled

in watercolor mists
immersing
into the deep
blue horizon.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Three Photographs
Jim Freeman


Blue Ridge North Carolina

Day Lily

Sunset from the St. Simon's pier

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Brand New Home

by Dan Fecht

A hermit crab traverses the sands
Of driftwood
On a beach of sea debris.
Crab has a new shell; old root beer soda cap