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Showing posts from January, 2018

DECIDUOUS WOMAN by Laura Demelza Bosma

Deciduous Woman When the heat falls out her bones moan. As she loses sap her bark crinkles. Her leaves color a grandmother’s witches-dress. Her brew of a few drops is drunk and given back in the hooting of owls. Her heat felt by wolf-children at her roots. For each spirit there is a chamber in which oneness is included surrounded by the uniqueness of individual sparks. Painted flamed before killed by individual snuffers. Just a girl might think the smith is a drunkard. Chewing on licorice in the city she loves you. You are in her embrace while she leaves you. A small branch cracking off. Some dry rags of witches-dress in fading color still adorn you. *   *   * (Excerpt from  The Call of the Ink Bird  (Nov. 2017, Tandava Press) Photography by Greg A. Hartford Laura Demelza Bosma  (1986) is a Dutch singing and painting poetess living in Austria where she gave birth to three lovely children. She is author of The Call of the Ink

WARRIOR DANCE by Erin Larson

As a certified yoga instructor, I find myself infusing the spiritual teachings of yoga in a lot of my writing. After writing and titling this piece, a dear friend read it and noticed that the camber of the lines seemed to follow the rhythm of the “warrior dance” sequence, which is a series of poses often guided in a vinyasa flow yoga class.  Whether this was intentional or subliminal on my part, I’m not sure, but it does add another layer to its reading and interpretation. Warrior Dance Erin Larson I am a woman, A warrior I am strong I am powerful I deserve to BE! And for that I will apologize no more I am not sorry for: The state of my house Wanting bread with my salad, Leftover night, My amateur prose. I am not sorry for screen time that I may cook dinner in peace I am not sorry for opening my mouth, My imperfections, My stretch marks My wild crazy moods Contrivances be damned! I will not squeeze into a mold that does not fit no

SONNET FOR PEACE by Nannette Schweig Hoffman

Sonnet for Peace For peace we feel cool water foam the shore, we watch the circling bird’s relentless soar. We mimic the giant spider of the sky— With joy she spins her gilded ray, we try. For peace the cello sends its voice afar, Directs each nerve to seek a distant star. Each string vibrating its rhythmic flow, Pulsating chords of harps with accents slow. God gives us the choice to love, the will to live, The self affirmed to nourish and to give. To risk with courage many noble deeds, So that fear of conflict wilts before it breeds. For peace I need you close, not distant And your heart a little less resistant, Together we’ll hear the outrage of injustice cry: Combat all hatred and raise faith’s banner high! (August 1969) Nannette Hoffman : Nannette was a fine artist, teacher and poet, who passed away on December 9, 2010 at the age of 81. She was a native of New York City and had lived in the D.C area for 40 years before moving


Compassion is Everywhere Jarred from a reverie, I do a double take and ask to pull over. There she is, Quan Yin, Kannon, Avalokiteshvara, on a small factory lot: She of Compassion, who feels and absorbs the wailings of a world in pain and suffering, who vows to remain here, among us, until all this pain is eradicated. She calls out like a beacon on an ordinary countryside road grey on grey, brightening the very real world around her. She reminds me: I, compassion, am everywhere; do not wait until the perfect time and place to find me. Do not wait for ideal conditions, when everything is poised to take flight. Look at where I am: placed by the side of the road by an artisan, perhaps the most beautiful version of who I can be right here, right now. Carved from human hands, but this is not what you see, because we know the transcendent beauty that comes from hope and aspiration; we feel in our bones what is possible and so beauty comes to find us. Let us be nourished by the wisdom we

I AM PREGNANT WITH HOPE by Cheryl Anne Bratman

All dreams hold meaning... While it is true that all dreams hold meaning that can be riddled out if we do the work, occasionally I will have a dream that contains a clarity I awaken with and immediately have a sense of at least a facet of its meaning and message. The following piece is the child of such a dream. The title is the declaration I spoke aloud upon waking.  I am Pregnant with Hope Cheryl Anne Bratman Shining Light Bright One Hope Embodied  Rolling Within  I carry You small as I am  All Splendor contained warm in the Womb nourished in the Depth of Feminine Mystery Fragile Flesh knit round Bone grown from Divine Unity  The Very Sun  in skeletal form The Celestial Sea to flow through  Tiny Veins  Guiding Stars to cast the Glance  of Highest Compassion  through Human Eyes so clear and bright as to split the dark night  of every soul and lead Us Home All This Wonder tumbling and tickling  inside; fill

DEPRESSION by Veronica Carpenter

Depression Here goes my vulnerability A heart on a sleeve The typical person who looks at me May not see the same me that I live with daily The mind in the air, swirling with possibility When the darkness rallies/gathers/swirls When I am left to solitude This paper-thin garb unzips Here comes depression           No I don’t want to advertise So flash a smile Those who are close get to see Through the veil, it’s really not that thick Circumstances in life like to stab at the rib Stumble, fall behind the door Shut out the world Feelings well and weigh down Strength hidden deep in the core So deep that sometimes it’s forgotten Here comes the darkness My old friend Sweeping through my every move  Doubts, fears, un-named masked men Oozing like honey, sticking to everything Patience is required to get on this ride There is a cycle but its pattern is unknown Slowly my gift will unwrap itself Stay on the path Coming back to t

SWEET GRACE by Amanda Almond

In those moments that you feel you are alone in this world, the struggles of life can get so compounded, so heavy... When you feel that you can go on no longer, there is solace in knowing that you are seen. There is One, much bigger that can hold you and give you that warm sense of belonging that provides the peace to keep on… There are many moments, as a mother of 4 young girls, that I feel the isolation and solitude. I can crumple under the pressure, too weak to continue. My  husband works long, hard hours and is gone from home for long stretches of time, the kids may go days without seeing him. It can get downright hard, but I cling… Photography by Elena Shumilova Sweet Grace Amanda Almond My mind shouts in a barely audible whisper that only Your ears can hear. My heart angers as my eyes struggle to hold back tears  lest anyone see the pain. My soul yearns for comfort as it trembles. I have no strength left in me. I need warmth as I shiver in t

KALI'S DANCE by Rhea Ruth Aitken

  The New Year has already made its mark on us... Its strong energies bringing us face to face with our lives, changes and truths, promises and resolutions.The full moon on New Year's Day was a special and powerful portal for me. I walk a magical path and love to acknowledge and honor the changing seasons. The moon and its infinite cycles of light and dark holds a special place in my heart and soul, as does my usual practice. I set and dressed my Altar for meditation and guidance, calling for a Goddess to serve my highest purpose for the year ahead. I turned a card - Kali - why wasn't I surprised! She had already been dancing around me, pulling at me to let go and renew, walk new cycles and be courageous enough to change so much in my life.  Kali, the powerful Mother, urged me in no gentle way to be the destroyer of my comfort and open myself to more, even though it was as yet unknown. Tough love from a feared and revered icon of feminine power perhaps but I h