Editor’s Note: April is National poetry month. In celebration, we’ll be bringing you poetry from some of our favorite local and regional poets.
We are ephemeral.
Like the glass pearls of the rain that melt together and transform their world
and are absorbed again into the rough and buckled breast of the earth
or rise as vapor hanging silent in the air.
Like the brief candle we are out in an instant, and in our place the wild cycle continues with not a
memory of this short reverie.
impossible to recreate
a divine, fleeting mystery
like a shooting star, an iridescent pulse in the velvet black ocean of the sky
existing only for one brilliant
Blink and you’ll miss the miracle.
What can you do with such a sacred gift?
Except taste the sweetness in every breath
and sing with the crimson honeysuckle as it climbs the fence in the last days of spring?
Forgive yourself for every wrong and let love in like a river
wild and winding and deep and strong.
Let the pot boil over.
Open the windows and listen to the rain.
– Andrew Bellacomo
Andrew Bellacomo is a writer and video director living in Albany, Georgia. He has been
called to storytelling his whole life and draws inspiration from history and the natural world.
In his work he often finds a yearning for a deeper understanding of what it means to have a
sense of place and how we might live in greater harmony with the earth. He considers the
marshes and the sea islands of the Atlantic coast his spiritual home.
Polar Bear revised 4
12 Step Meltdown
I used to be a polar bear
and then, (snap!) just like that,
I quit, cold turkey. In the straw
poll after, learned that most of us
had loved the life.
But in the end
it became too much.
The never-ending lust for fat and skin,
and—oh, the clean up! Forever fighting
to clean blood and grease and guts
off my snow-white coat.
Having to wait a year or three for sex—
unseemly brawls, those were— followed by
fast-forgotten tussles on the ice.
But it was more the swimming
more and more
that got me in the end.
I still attend the program,
though not as often as I should.
Mostly I am nostalgic for the smell
of wet fur and seal breath, and l long to hear
that click click click of tough toenails
on the polished, faux-marble floor
of the icy, air-conditioned
Eddie Bauer store where we
hold our meetings after hours.
It’s not unlike our padding of old
across fast-melting ice-floes.
If we’re inclined, we can always
pull a 40 below
fake-fur-lined parka off the rack.
We talk. Sigh some. Commiserate.
Invariably one of us will say,
“There’s nothing anymore
like those old
– Doris Wright
In addition to poetry, Doris Wright writes short stories and has
written a novel. Awarded second place in the Short Story America
2018 contest, her non-fiction story was accepted for the 2020 Catfish
Stew anthology and one of her poems will be published in its 2021
anthology. “Surviving the Sequester” was published in Beaufort,
SC’s Lowcountry Weekly. Another story, “Buried Along With Her
Name,” was awarded second place in the Sea Island Spirit Writers
6th Annual Short Story Contest, and she has been a runner-up in the
Wow! Women on Writing flash fiction contests.
Doris, who has a degree in English, has taken graduate courses,
participated in writers’ workshops, including the N.Y. State Summer
Writers Institute, and Colgate University’s novel, short story and poetry
workshops. Now retired, Doris and her husband, Don, enjoy
traveling, writing, reading, and exercise. They have visited China,
and many European and African countries.
Purple flames of muhly grass nod for your hand
delicate to not trip the marsh of the mind.
Did you turn off the stove? Delaying
orbit to the mundane, a pair of redheads—
woodpeckers kiss through pine
while I bend like a bark acrobat,
bury my face in sunflowers, narrow-leaved,
a pose that defies our hesitations.
Seeds underground taste smoke where we stand
so still, the embers could sprout onto our toes.
Tursu, tursu, you laugh and brush away ants that
bite like patience. I want to touch
each bite which should have been, carry the sugar and
sting of you on my tongue.
The bees in your eyes sensing, buzzing
that ripples my blood, shakes a heron loose from his shadow
and sends all our small birds fluttering like paper
on fire with the words You’ll love again.
– Ozan Suer and Emily Davis-Fletcher
Ozan Suer: Poetry embraces us like a perfect pair of loose pants
that offer unrestricted freedom. Like the pants worn when I performed
traditional West African dances against the marble floors of Teatro
Manzoni, in Bologna, Italia. Like the red loose pants that called to me
in an open market in Morocco, ancient as civilization itself, adorned
with goat pheromones, making me one with the history of humanity
and with all goats on my subsequent journeys.
Emily Davis-Fletcher is continually amazed by the magic of
poetry and loose pants. She earned her BFA in creative writing from
Stephens College and her MA in women’s studies from the National
University of Ireland Galway. In 2018, Emily was selected to read at
the Cork International Poetry Festival; and her poem Sow Calling
was a finalist in the Sublingua Prize for Poetry 2019. Emily has
taught several writing and poetry courses in partnership with the Pat
Conroy Literary Center. She facilitates an online, weekly poetry
workshop, Moon and Sun Poets, with many of the poets featured in
this issue. For information about joining our poetry group, please
email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Mid-Morning with Rena
Rena lives at the end of her rope—a physical location of Levick Street at Coleman
Avenue. A scarf around Rena’s neck identifies her presence to herself. You may know her.
Rena’s blouse is neither tucked nor flee flowing. A mind can’t make itself up for a cup of coffee
or a doughnut. She scuttles lifting her flat feet two inches off the ground for every step.
Rena’s daughter gave her a present five years ago. This cloth is her constant companion—
whether worn ‘round the neck, at her waist, or as a turban. Rena’s walk is granite monotony.
Her scarf repeats mangled fringe. There’s no spirit left in the threads. Rena sees the Dunkin’
Doughnut sign ahead. The swooping plastic tub chairs beckon—smooth as a creek bed’s rocks,
slippery in a fake way. Rena’s eyes aren’t in contact with other windows to the souls today—
messages in a streaked mirror. Sparkles and sugar mingle on the scarf. Today Rena wears it
knotted next to her chin. Tomorrow Rena nods. Midway through this nod Rena feels stonewalled—
her halfway taut story.
– Robin Dare
Robin Dare lives aboard ‘Liberty Call’ full-time with her husband, Rob, and, her dog,
Stella. Robin earned her MFA in poetry from Rosemont College, Philadelphia, PA. She
published her book of prose poems, Transponder’ with Rank Stranger Press. Her poems
have appeared in Diagram, Sentence, and Mid-American Review