Saturday, February 21, 2015

32 poets being published in SGVPQ 65

JESUS ALDANA-ALBA
MARIA A. ARANA
JIM BABWE
JACK G. BOWMAN
CALOKIE
DON KINGFISHER CAMPBELL
JACKIE CHOU
BEVERLY M. COLLINS
DAN DIAMOND
ROBIN DUNN
MARK A. FISHER
JOE GARDNER
THOM GARZONE
CARL HARMON
LINDA MARIE HILTON
ROSE ANNA HINES
ANITA S. HOLZBERG
ROBIN D. HUDECHEK
BRIONY JAMES
JEFFRY MICHAEL JENSEN
DEBORAH P KOLODJI
TOTI O'BRIEN
THELMA T. REYNA
BOBBI S. RUDIN
JEFF WAYNE-PATRICK RUSSELL
LING SENA
MICHAEL SHEPLER
MARY LANGER THOMPSON
BRIAN THORPE
TIM TIPTON
LORI WALL-HOLLOWAY
ALESSANDER XAVIER

Friday, December 19, 2014

24 poets being published in the 2015 San Gabriel Valley Poetry Calendar

PETROUCHKA ALEXIEVA
JUDY BARRAT
JACK G. BOWMAN
LYNNE BRONSTEIN
CALOKIE
DON KINGFISHER CAMPBELL
TOBI COGSWELL
BEVERLY M. COLLINS
MARVIN L. DORSEY
THOM GARZONE
CHARLES HARMON
TRISTA HURLEY-WAXALI
GERDA GOVINE ITUARTE
BRIONY JAMES
JEFFRY MICHAEL JENSEN
JAN KING
NORMAN MOLESKO
RINA ROSE
NANCY SHIFFRIN
WANDA VANHOY SMITH
TIM TIPTON
MAJA TROCHIMCZYK
LORI WALL-HOLLOWAY
ROBERT WILSON

Saturday, November 29, 2014

14 poets read from SGVPQ 64


NANCY LYNEE WOO

Lament for a Skin (Ode to a Silkie)

Salt flurry of wind rush
the boy running to his mother
          breathless—
this one moment agape forever.
Eyes like the crest of a wave
sea foam locks
heart stricken for the blue
          she sees what he holds.
Slick black skin, pelt shining
damp of seal—
she grabs it and the music plays.
          Doesn’t even ask
where he found it
but kisses him tightly, yelling
for the others, sun-beaten arms
closing around them like a lid.
Quick, hard love and she
turns to release the door,
as blown about as
          the western wind.
Honey legs tumbling down
to shore, pillow of dress
sloughing down to the sand,
          she catches
sight of a man, shadowy
in the distant green,
          stopping
as his fishing pole drops
toward a gallop.
But she is already at the sea
glistening joy of ocean mist
and her hands are already gone
and her legs are kicking into fin
and her lips are whiskering away
as the light plays upon the waves
and she calls to her children, goodbye.





LORI WALL-HOLLOWAY

Queen Gizmo

Queen Gizmo
sitting in your tree

Looking out the window
what do you see?

Tiny spiders spinning
webs
outside the screen

Speeding cars whizzing
past
what a scene

Barking dogs cooling
paws
in green grass

Can you see them
when they trespass?

Queen Gizmo 
lounging in your tree

Looking out the window
enjoying the breeze



THELMA T. REYNA

Let There Be Light

I flood my rooms each daybreak--
slide drapes, lift shades, swing doors to
do the god thing: bring in light.

Outside, the moon’s a faded coin
on trees and clouds, an old woman with
her luster stripped who knows and waits.

Inside, the sink streaks gold, rays swathe
stone floors, the cat blinks and slinks down
from the tabletop, sun-blind.

My calendar can’t tell me how my day
will go, lauded or denuded, how far my
psyche slides, or if  I shine.

But at dawn, my hands are wands
that banish blackness, for it’s true: what they
say, about god inside, god in each of us, how

we’re
all
god.

SEVEN POET

Xanadu in Bamiyan

A lady laced in lazuli
In a vision once I saw:
It was a Scythian maid
And on her lute she played,
Singing as I sat in awe.
Strum did she so carelessly
And furrow her crescent brow.
Could I revive within me
Her braid lank and visage wan?
To such a deep delight 'twould win me
The crinkle of her crown,
That I would hang a disc in her hair --
That golden dome! those eyes of ice!
And all who heard should see it there
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
Her flashing eyes, her floating hair!
Weave a circle round me thrice
And close my eyes with holy dread.
Admit, she sings, admit you're scared.
For she on nectar-dew hath fed
And savored the Soma of Paradise.
Now stones fall flat, spell is broken,
Scattered like frost, teal blue tokens:
Talismans, amulets, airy moons,
Woven, arranged in gilded plait.
Still stand I, somehow I've spoken,
Mere token that I'll not be afraid.
And still lilts she her reverie,          
A warrior of wounded knees
And bitter burnt offerings.

TOTI O'BRIEN

On Quality

Are you very spiritual? He asked.
I hesitated, ill at ease.
Are you very political? Someone else inquired years ago. I don’t remember my answer: it must have been unclear.
Are you very religious? He insists. I hold my breath.
I can tell anyway, he adds, you are very artistic.
Do I have to be very something? To possess anything in a prominent, remarkable fashion?       
I am very human, I murmur after a pause. A tad too long of a pause.
I’m afraid it sounded horribly banal.
If he knew what it took me to become
simply
that.

DAN LAMBERT

Did You Ever?

Did you ever really love me?
I think these words, and wonder…
Am I being fair to you?
Perhaps the better question is:
Did I ever really love you?

Does love require the convergence of bodies?
If so, then we loved each other intermittently, like seasons
Spring became passion
Summer became love
And Fall has withered into indifference

Does love require the convergence of souls?
If so, then we loved each other three times per day or more
Love was transmitted through the air
And transported from our throats to our ears
With the cold efficiency of microchips

Love buzzed in my ear courtesy of a blinking Bluetooth:
The name now seems so apt
My teeth are blue from missing you

Does love require the convergence of cultures?
If so, then we loved in ebbs and flows
Like waves crashing upon distant shores
Or a pulsing circuit
Connecting and then breaking, over and over

My heart is like that circuit now
Breaking, yes, but also buzzing with unanswered questions
And aching with doubt and possibility

Did we ever really love each other?
Will we ever really love again?
Is love like a current that we tap in to
Or a well that we draw from?
Has the current been breached
The reservoir of electricity damaged beyond repair?
Has the well run dry
Its stone walls drying in the sun?

Have we burned the forest of love?
Salted the earth so it will never grow again?
Did you ever really love me?
Did I ever really love you?
These questions sear my heart
And burn my soul
Forever.

JEFFRY MICHAEL JENSEN

Branches

Dad died mid-morning
it was cat feeding time
Mom watered a garden
full of sticky weeds
I broke all the family
branches in the kitchen sink
Dad almost made it to 65
it was time for the moon
to fill a double bed
I put my head parallel
to a pillow and cried

MARK A. FISHER

meditation

flowing sand
whose whispers fade
into the whistle and moan
of desert wind
wild beneath bright stars
giving way to silence
as night fades away
leaving space
for the voices of birds
and wisdom
as wildflowers chant
in the hum of bees

BEVERLY M. COLLINS

Modern Candor in Coffee shop

Woman at corner table pricked by the
needle of unnatural-selection, shouts into 
her cell phone, “I'm done with on-line 
dating...Those men are bleeping crazy!”

For 7 minutes, her coffee cup cringed 
before a slew of sweeping negative 
generalizations. Her scone twice bitten 
by her mouth and bitter words.

JACKIE CHOU

Winter

Why does winter have to be a sad time?
Even God sheds His tears on such blue days,
With raindrops falling like rhythm and rhyme.

Why does celebrating seem like a crime,
On days when everything is lonely and grey?
Why does winter have to be a sad time?

There are times when I think the fault is mine,
To think that winter is all dreary days,
With raindrops falling like rhythm and rhyme.

Some think that winter is the greatest time,
With Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.
Winter doesn’t have to be a sad time.

Sometimes the ground is slippery like slime,
And the sun has lost all of its bright rays,
And the raindrops fall like rhythm and rhyme.

Winter is a time to cherish our time,
Not knowing when is the end of our days.
Winter doesn’t have to be a sad time,
With raindrops falling like rhythm and rhyme.

DON KINGFISHER CAMPBELL

Sit


In a box
Surrounded
By rectangles

At a desk
Covered
With sheets

Overwhelmed
Amongst thoughts
Pipe steam

Walk away
From paper
Clip ocean

Watch colors
Night lights
Reproduce

Sunlight wakes
Mind while
Underwear hangs

On soft belly
Examine cricket
Grass blades

In lotus
Part of
Lily pad

Gaze under
Illuminated cloud
Pathway

Fly into
Swirling force
Flowing waves

CALOKIE

Here comes Gertrude Stein--

Queen of Pasadena Library’s daily Doo-Dah Parade
          riding
in her “rose is a rose is a rose” float, followed by Walt Whitman
          high-strutting
before Redwood Chainsaw Massacre Marching Band
          chanting
PIONEERS, O PIONEERS!” and Cleopatra in front of Langston Hughes
          singing
AMERICA...” from a Nile River gallery deck over 
          smiling 
Uncle Tom and Simon Legree as they pull oars before Bukowski
          washing
in four-wheeled bathtub with cockroach metamorphosed Gregor Samsa 
          inline-skating
on six legs behind the dirty old man! Fortunately portly clown Falstaff is  
          unicycling
with mucous scooper behind Gregor. Oh my! Emily Dickinson at funeral is
          popping
out of her casket to swat fly she hears
          buzzing
over her--Hey! Ezra Pound’s in a cowboy suit 
          hopping
along over a broom horse with his fascist gun in the West and
          firing
blank verse bullets above a raft on the Mississippi
          carrying 
Jim, Huck and Langston Hughes again
          singing
“ AMERICA.” Can you believe this? Scrooge dressed as Santa is 
          throwing
$1,000 bills from his bag to the crowd while Babbit is 
          fighting
Tiny Tim for one of them. Look--Romeo’s at a balcony
          French-kissing--
Good golly--Mrs. Molly Bloom! Wow! Watch  J. Alfred Prufrock
          measuring 
out his life in coffee spoons followed by Joseph Conrad
          driving
Congo River boat deep into rainforest before who but Langston Hughes on rowboat
          singing
AMERICA.”  Does he ever know his rivers?  And in grand finale, Allen Ginsberg
          directing
the Beat Poets’ HOWL-e-lu-jah chorus!


I LOVE THIS PARADE!

MARIA A. ARANA

Phoenix Song

I stand in middle of quad
3 doors face me
walls as high as skyscrapers
lean over me
blocking the sun
touching clouds
stirred into submission

my forehead squeezes
moisture from my eyes
leaving dry lips
in place of shackles
the doors stay shut
their handles gone
and I’ve lost the key

days pass and my feet
melt into the stone
my body burns wings
scratching the sky with talons
leaving the mark of death
littered across its canvas

PETROUCHKA ALEXIEVA

Before Leaving My Past

Before leaving my past,
I'll open the door of my heart,
I'll throw the key in the grass
Because I already know
I'll never be back: so, I must...

Before leaving my past,
My cloths will be thrown; 
My jewelry and my shoes
They all will be gone...
Going naked to the unknown.

Before leaving my past,
A magical spell I will cast 
With my name in midnight.
I will cover my innocent self
With invisible vale - that's right!

Before leaving my past,
I must touch with  my hands
The sunrise coming tomorrow
Having no regrets and no sorrows
But today... I am just one night away...

Sunday, November 23, 2014

38 poets being published in SGVPQ 64

PETROUCHKA ALEXIEVA
MARIA A. ARANA
JUDY BARRAT
JACK G. BOWMAN
CALOKIE
DON KINGFISHER CAMPBELL
JACKIE CHOU
MARCUS CLAYTON
BEVERLY M. COLLINS
LEE A. COLLINS
VIRGINIA MARIPOSA DALE
MARVIN L. DORSEY
ROBIN WYATT DUNN
PAULINE DUTTON
MARK A. FISHER
JOE GARDNER
THOM GARZONE
CHARLES HARMON
KEVIN HEATON
LINDA MARIE HILTON
ROSE ANNA HINES
JEFFRY MICHAEL JENSEN
DAN LAMBERT
MARIE LECRIVAIN
JONATHAN LEE
ALEX NODOPAKA
TOTI O'BRIEN
SEVEN POET
THELMA T. REYNA
KEVIN RIDGWAY
RINA ROSE
LING SENA
WANDA VANHOY SMITH
MARY LANGER THOMPSON
TIM TIPTON
LORI WALL-HOLLOWAY
ROBERT WILSON
NANCY LYNEE WOO

Saturday, August 30, 2014

18 poets read from SGVPQ 63













CHRISTINE ALEXANIANS
The Rock of Morro Bay

Born of fiery entrails
of ancient mother earth
The rock stands proud
guards the blue waters
Sun penetrates fog
Halo of mystic light
crowns the sacred dome
Flocks of sea gulls
pelicans
solitary falcons worship
at the sanctuary of life. 
image
PETROUCHKA ALEXIEVA
On The 35th Floor

It is almost midnight.
The large summer moon
Throws misty light
Over my shoulders.
It is past midnight.
I’m supposed to be home
At this time, but no…
I am still at the office.

Shall I go?…On the 35th floor
Time is silently frozen.
Below
The city is sleeping,
Taxis and trolleys are slow
Blinking their million lights.

Shall I go?… I locked the door
From inside.
Until the morning,
No telephones, no meetings.
35th floor
Is my insomniac island.
…and It is past midnight.












MARIA A. ARANA
Only Live in Americas


beautiful
tiny ballet dancers
flex shoulders
allow wings to bend
backwards

seem to float
rather than fly
perfectly balanced
in the air

internal
navigation system
help them conquer
skies
whizz by
like jets
stopping traffic

speedy little bird’s
metabolism
stuck in overdrive
heart
beats superfast
(even at rest)

constant feeding
on thousands
of flowers
keeps them on the move

swift
aerial dogfights
have birds
defend flower patch
for survival

they dine on nectar
while hovering
and become pollinators
for plants
           
from long bills
to curved bills
to short bills
like a key to a lock

between flower plant
and bird’s bill
evolution
plays a role
in amazing adaptations

dull feathers
surface observation
but in light
magnificent colors
shimmer
shine

flash
created by special cells
in feathers
not pigment

they can perish
in their sleep
so at night
they lower temperature
vital signs
like hibernation
to save energy

long migrations
track resources
adapt
flexibility
key to survival
as long as habitats
and food sources remain

Hummingbirds
can live in the Americas
for about twelve years
so let out the feeders
witness their brilliance