Posted by: tsopr | February 22, 2014

Denis Emorine, French Poet

Denis Emorine is the author of short stories, essays, poetry, and plays. He was born in 1956 in Paris and studied literature at the Sorbonne (University of Paris). He has an affective relationship to English because his mother was an English teacher. His father was of Russian ancestry. His works are translated into several languages. His theatrical output has been staged in France, Canada (Quebec) and Russia. Many of his books (stories, drama, poetry) have been published in the USA. Writing, for Emorine, is a way of harnessing time in its incessant flight. Themes that re-occur throughout his writing include the Doppelgänger, lost or shattered identity, and mythical Venice (a place that truly fascinates him). He also has a great interest for Eastern Europe. Denis Emorine collaborates with various other reviews and literary websites in the U.S., Europe and Japan both in French and in English. In 2004, he won first prize for his poetry at the Féile Filiochta International competition. His poetry has been published in Pphoo (India), Blue Beat Jacket (Japan), Magnapoets (Canada), Snow Monkey, Cokefishing, Be Which Magazine, Poesia and Journal of Experimental Fiction (USA). His texts also appear on numerous e-zines such as: Anemone Sidecar,Cipher Journal, Best Poems, Mad Hatters’ Review, Milk, The Salt River Review, Istanbul Literary Review, Like Birds Lit,Wilderness House Literary Review, Sketchbook ,Literary World and many others. Emorine’s webpage:

Featured Poetry of Denis Emorine
(Six untitled poems translated from French into English by Flavia Cosma)

Il y a si longtemps que mon nom
Ne m’appartient plus
Pulvérisé par l’Histoire.
J’erre entre Moscou et L’Oural…
Je hurle à tout vent
La mort m’a choisi
Comme prochaine victime
J’en fais le serment
Je hurlerai ton nom
Une fois encore
Avant de m’abattre aux portes
Du monde

There is so much time since my name,
Rendered dust by History,
Ceased to belong to me.
I wander between Moscow and The Ural Range…
Hollering out above the wind
Death has chosen me
As its next victim
But I swear to you
That I will shout out your name
One more time
Before falling, crushed
In front of the world’s locked gates

A Ilona W.

Le chemin se reflétait dans tes yeux.
Dès que je prenais ta main,
la vie recommençait.
J’aurais dû inscrire ce trajet en toi,
faire quelques pas dans ton écriture.

Il n’est plus temps.

J’avais peine à te suivre.
Il y avait entre nous la douleur d’un poème
que nous retenions sans cesse.

ma vie vacille avec ta main sur mes yeux.

To Ilona W.

The road mirrored itself into your eyes.
Life started anew
The moment I took you by the hand.
I should have marked this journey within yourself,
Taken a few steps in the realm of your writings.

There isn’t time any more.

It was hard for me to follow you..
The sorrow of a poem stood guard between us
And we clung to it with no let up.

And now
My life flickers under your hand covering my eyes.

A Marek Smierc

A la fenêtre, adossée à l’orbe du temps,
cette femme te désigne du doigt.
Tu n’essaies pas de la dévisager.
Elle porte la mort sur le front.

Tu voudrais parfois succomber à sa prière
céder à l’appel jailli du fond des âges.

Un homme est entré. Il lui fait face,
s’interpose entre vous deux.

Tu te retires sur la pointe des pieds.
Cet homme,
tu sais que
c’est toi.

To Marek Smierc

Standing at the window, leaning on the orb of time,
This woman draws your body’s shape with the tip of her finger.
You don’t even try to scrutinize her ;
She has the word Death inscribed on her forehead.

Sometimes you would wish to succumb
To her prayer,
Let yourself go toward this call emerging from the bottom of ages.

A man enters the room
He is interposing between you two.

You retrace your steps
On tiptoes.
You know
This man
Is really you.

A Anne-Virginie

J’ai parfois du mal à te rejoindre,
mon amour.
Mes yeux chavirent loin de ton horizon.
Tu avances vers moi
mais je ne te vois plus.
Et pourtant je n’ai pas oublié tes cheveux
qui se refermaient sur moi
ni le berceau des mots qui nous accompagnait
dans le soleil.

Mais il y a la mort qui avance.
Je voudrais qu’elle me désigne en premier.
Un jour, je te regarderai enfin dans les yeux.
Un sourire étrange aux lèvres,
tu me tendras la main et
au moment de la saisir,
la terre tremblera…

Ce sera tout mais TOI

TU vivras,

To Anne-Virginie

I am having a hard time sometimes
reaching you
My beloved.
My eyes sink someplace beyond your horizon.
You come forward, you get near,
But I don’t see.
I didn’t forget your flowing mane
That covered once my face
Nor the cradle made of words
That went with us everywhere
Under the sun’s rays.

But look, Death is coming our way ;
I so wish it’s going to choose me first.
One of these days I will gather the courage to look into your eyes
A strange smile lighting up my face ;
You will extend your hand in my direction
And precisely at that moment
The earth will shake.

That will be ALL

But you,
You will survive.

A Hédi Bouraoui

C’était un jour comme les autres
même la mort oubliait nos noms.

Mon amour n’était plus de saison
je le suivais pas à pas
dans la ville dévastée.
Les enfants n’avaient plus de membres
ils me souriaient pourtant.

Je ne voyais rien
ni leurs yeux suppliants
ni les grondements de la guerre.
Le sang coulait dans les ruelles ouvertes
je trébuchais sur les pavés disjoints.

C’était un jour comme un autre
mais la mort oubliait nos noms.

J’arrivais toujours trop tard
à l’Est, toujours à l’Est.

Quelqu’un cognait aux vitres des maisons béantes
et je ne voyais rien.
Mon amour n’était plus de saison
je te suivais pas à pas.
Les enfants ne souriaient plus
le sang inondait leurs yeux ouverts.

To Hédi Bouraoui

It was a day like any other day
Even death had forgotten our names

My love had been fallen
Out of style
I followed it step after step
Through this devastated town.
While children without limbs
Kept smiling at me.

I wasn’t seeing a thing,
Neither their begging eyes
Nor the rumbling of the war
Blood was flowing openly on the streets
While I was staggering there
on the broken pavement.

It was a day like any other day
Even death had forgotten our names

Arriving always too late
To that place toward the East, more and more to the East

Somebody was knocking at the windows of yawning houses
But I wasn’t paying attention
My love had been fallen
Out of style

I followed you step by step

The children missing their limbs
had stopped smiling
As blood flooded away
Their open wide eyes.

A Anne-Virginie

Je reviendrai de l’autre côté du monde
Pour te contempler encore une fois.
Il me suffira d’étendre le bras
Vers toi
Pour prendre mon envol dans la nuée
Des mots.
Du moins j’aimerais le croire
Encore une fois
Mais j’enlacerai seulement une poignée
De terre
Un fragment de rêve
Ou une parcelle d’illusion

Les mots ne me répondront plus
Ils ne regarderont plus dans ma direction
Comme à l’accoutumée
J’aurai beau claquer des doigts pour attirer
Leur attention
Les implorer d’une voix douce
Le monde cessera de répondre à mon attente
Il coulera entre mes doigts morts
Jusqu’à la fin des temps

To Anne-Virginie

I will return from the other side of the world
To contemplate you once more ;
All I would need would be to stretch my arm
Toward you
And I’d be able to start flying in a cloud
Of words.
At least I hoped this will happen
One more time

But all that I hold now in my arms is only a fistful of earth
A fragment of a dream
a slice of an illusion.

The words won’t answer me,
They wouldn’t even look in my direction
The way they used to in the past
I’d snap my fingers in vain to draw their attention
I’d implore them with a tender voice
But the world would have stopped
Answering my prayers
Flowing through my dead fingers
Till the end of times.

Copyright © 2014 Denis Emorine

Posted by: tsopr | February 18, 2014

Nicholas Damion Alexander, Jamaican Poet

Nicholas Damion Alexander, Jamaican PoetNicholas Damion Alexander is a teacher of English and Philosophy. He is also a poet. His works have been published in The Jamaica Gleaner, The Jamaica Observer, Caribbean Voice magazine, sx salon, The Caribbean Writer, Poets against war, Auckland Poetry, Lake City Lights, The Weary Blues, The Rusty Nail, The View from Here, The Cynic Online, Snow Monkey Online, Poets Online, UnitedWorld Poets, The First Cut, Cartier Street Review, The Black Collegian, Angelfire, Mr. Africa Poetry Lounge, The Black Collegian, Nazar Look, Truml and the anthologies: So Much Things To Say, Meditations on Divine Names, Spectral Lines, Men in the Company of Women . In 2008 He was awarded a fellowship with Calabash International Writers’ Workshop. He has also been featured on e-Buffet’s online magazine: “Postcards from the people of Earth”, B-Gina Review, Squid Inc.

Featured Poetry of Nicholas Damion Alexander

After Rain

After the rain: the gnawing of crickets,
sun-scorched leaves.

A bird harrowing far away inside
the drier hemisphere of your mind.

Earth wet with the after rain
dankness of blessing

Snails sliming slowly through the thick
forest of this cerebral haven;

their silvery trail said to hold healing within.

You watch it grow like shrub
in the fertile ground of your heart-

days well spent, shivering in the dew
and drop of Golden Hill’s schizophrenia-

the glitter of this bipolarity
lighting dark days.

My Mother’s Salt

My mother cooked with salt,
flavoring our lives
with the spice of her choice . . .
A white grain from the sea
that added new worlds of taste
to children made of mixed spices.

My father loved his pepper
heating up her pot
with its red flames,
that little masculine bulb
men use to show bravado
about nothing.

We ate of Mother’s salt
all of our lives till we grew
old enough to insist
she travel to the sea
of her spice, away
from the red heat
of our father’s pepper.

Today, fifteen years on
my mother has stopped
cooking with that spice
as white as my father’s skin.
And we have grown accustomed
to his hot spice,
hardly remembering
her love for little white grains
drawn from the sea.


Inside a leaf, there’s a star,
Inside a star the reflection
Of leaves glittering silver droplets of rain.

Inside the snail’s shell a world
Of mystery unfolded, a mystery
Of esoteric secrets unlocked.

Inside the lizard’s trombone, the battle
Cry of victories established
Upon the war grounds of history.

Inside a pebble, the pain
Of generations dead, dying
And still unborn to a world of suffering.

Inside the mist, the purity
Of nature floating over nature,
Unpolluted by the smoke of cities.

Blood Rain

Today the rain dropped like a woman
whose water has broken…splash!

A heavy gush of liquid pelted earth
and all around the city, feet dashed,
while I sat counting the lines like sand
on the shores of a beach-

each a distinct nation giving birth
to another; new minds to teach

the ways of a world gone insane,
rushing to its doom-a flood

of anxiety streaming in the hearts
of citizens who fear the sight of blood

and yet, are plagued by its crimson stain;
walking the streets on days like these

when the rain in droves starts
to surge behind a catastrophic breeze.

Valley Song

The valley is a wonderful spectacle
of color: pink poi, red hibiscus,
golden sunflowers; all arranged masterfully
as if by an expert florist.

When the sun shines sincerely
on leaf surface, it sparkles
like a coin; giving the valley a sheen
synonymous to piety.

You marvel at the miracle that is Nature;
the awesome opening of the flower
the brilliant bleat of the goat-

a sound that energizes the valley
like the splendid scrapings of crickets
straight through the night.

          (for Mellissa)

This is Rome, converted home of the gods,
seat of the Papacy, and of the Renaissance,
place of the Leaning Tower
and the sword of Antiquity,
artifact of artifacts, house of the divine
imagination, where heroes wrestle gods,
push boulders up infinite hills.

We pray, hands clasped,
in Michelangelo’s depiction
of St. Peter’s Basilica, marveling
at its baroque architecture.
Then, off to the Sistine Chapel
to view the outstretched finger of God,
the magnificent Vatican Museums;
then to the Coliseum,
to witness the spectacles
of Classical Mythology:
gladiatorial contests, mock sea battles,
animal hunts, executions
and battle reenactments.

There’s a sense of history here
in this partially-ruined monument
devastated by earthquakes and stone-robbers;
today used as fortress and shrine-
a symbol of the resilience of its people

and our love,
a monument shaken
but surviving the ruins of time.

Old Paradox, New Verse

A heavy mist rises
out of the valley
like gun smoke, rifling
the air, setting off a time piece
of timelessness.

The sound of dew dripping
from leaves, but no dew felt.

This unmetered rural wetness
that meets me most mornings
ever since I’ve transported
to this mystic realm.

This meditation, this poetry.

A thousand unspoken words
inhabit these fat, yellow-green leaves;
these long limbs.
These crooked Einstein branches.

The figure in the cane
whose greetings each morning
without language haunt me.
The sunless days and moonless nights
are the old paradox
of my new verse.

Copyright © 2014 Nicholas Damion Alexander

Posted by: tsopr | June 29, 2013

Melissa Fry Beasley, American Poet

Melissa Fry Beasley Melissa Fry Beasley is a Humanistic poet of Cherokee origin, who resides in Oklahoma. Through the written and spoken word, she examines the gap between the ideal and the reality involved in living in our world during this time. Her work is both personal and subjective, yet she does not turn aside from the political and social issues of her environment. She is a woman who seeks to express her individual perspective and needs while accepting the diversity involved in questions of gender, race and culture. Melissa believes that change is necessary and deploys her writing to reflect her personal experience in the wider socio-political context. She’s a columnist at Yareah Magazine and is the Literary Editor for Churn: an Art, Music, & Fashion Magazine. You can find her work in print and online in Indian Country Today Media Network, The Native American Encyclopedia, FirstPeople.Us, Working Effectively With Aboriginal People, Churn Magazine, Big River Poetry Review, Daily Love, Leaves Of Ink, The Alzheimer’s Foundation, Poetry Bulawayo, Stepping Stones Magazine, Moov Magazine, Tuck Magazine, The Dandelion Farm Review, Lake City Lights, Galatea Resurrects, Eos: The Creative Context, Ken*Again, The Shot Glass Journal, The Fib Review, Dog On A Chain Press, The Political Poet, Enhance Magazine, A&U Magazine, The Glass Coin, Poetry Pacific, Yareah Magazine, Cuento Magaine, NativeTech, Native News Today, and others. She has two chapbooks forthcoming.

Featured Poetry of Melissa Fry Beasley

I Carry In My bones

We lie under a dream
in endless months of harsh weather
skeletons too close to skin
always swallowing unnecessary syllables
eating doubt until bloated
trying to leave hunger behind
punishment proportional to the
distortion of boundaries
In the slow caress of years
weight is doubled
by the burden of others
we worry over scarcity
& leave a trail of broken things
in our wake
shedding ourselves of meaning
like dead skin
what we see is only a substitute
for what is real
despite our pretensions
for how fallible we are
unassailable discordance
as we yield more eagerly
to our humiliations
no matter how we started
we end up somewhere else
the arborescence of innocence gone
a great feeling of loss
which I carry in my bones

I Am Made Of Secrets

I have come
with the same heat
as the sun,
same cold as emptiness.
I am those before me.
This soil is my ancestors,
and I am made of secrets.
Sickness in silence.
Things we become
when the light has gone.
Black and blue
like butterflies on fingertips,
or birds eating some dead thing.
Men are made of consequence.
Strong hands will close
reluctantly into fists
when there is no other way.

Running From Here

The universe has given me nine lives
and I’ve surely used at least 8 ½.
My father taught me that thoughts
are like people & must be buried properly.
Fears always manifest themselves
to the one who creates them.
I see when spirit is food
and what entity is eating you,
surrounding you until you’re heavy

Looking up toward the mountain
where I worship inside you
I fail to see flowers blossoming at my feet.
These stars of earth, graceful and sylphlike.
Silent influences unconsciously felt.
Thorn where your voice should be,
in this dark of dissolving faith.
Old solitude upon which we feast
while we fade like old sheets,
as a lonely sun slips behind scumbled clouds.

In Lonely Rooms

& empty beds
We watch as the weary sun
Slowly sinks into the embrace
Of a rusted horizon.
Some days this
Is as near to God
As I dare tread..
In this heartbroken country
Where light came
Until it was lost,
Everything withered.
Broken trees
Fingers of
Our Lord
Reaching for things
Done and left undone.

These are not the wrongdoings
Of the compassionate.
This is the place
Children learn to know shame,
Grief born of guilt,
All bad things
Don’t come to an end.
Inside it rains
Like you have not seen,
Runs down walls
Like the blood of The Lamb
Preaching love to nonbelievers.

It was not that the stars had fallen down
But we had forgotten to look up;
Distracted by sounds of the living
Like hisses in the wind,
In a land of strange tongues
I cannot understand.


Too thin children
Run wildly on spindly legs
Seeming barely large enough to carry them.
Hopping carelessly from heartache to happiness
Not noticing the shade and shadows in between.
Chocolate smeared on faces like warpaint
Feet as black as an endless night
In rural Oklahoma
Smiles beaming brightly as morning angels
Singing praises to the dawn.
Sunflowers and starbursts have nothing on this.
Belly laughs and shortcuts
To places I haven’t been for so long.
Who knows where their young minds carry them
This day or any other?
Worlds far and away,
Lands of plenty,
Past dimness of dreams
Into the
Living light
Of endless possibility.
How I would love to soar on gossamer wings
Of undaunted childhood
Walk through fields of purity
Not yet jaded
By the realness life becomes.
I long for the days
Joy could be bought
From the back of ice cream trucks.

Last Forever

Nothing lasts forever
but nothing really ends
Day in vain
attempts not to be
consumed by night
You do not miss me
when you sleep
For I wake
into your dreams
Freshly cut symbols
of life and death
Lies like rose bushes
with thorns that prick
Only in silence does truth speak
about words that hide in light
Reach for the stars and
drag them down with you.

Love’s Knocking

When we live in these fallen beams of moonlight
Wrapped together in love and nocturnal darkness
Night winds turn and sing
As we unmake ourselves
In the roadways of searching
We took to get here

Black coal of dream
Live coal of life
Dark honey sticky to the lover’s lips
Released from being stone and wool
Or the damp bowels of earth
Not for deserts alone warming
Nor rivers carving through snow

Rest in me
Let us close our eyes
As yesterday goes falling away
And we open the door
To love’s knocking

Poets Melancholy

Into hiding again
Locked away
In dirty houses
With partners wondering
Why nothing gets done anymore
Sleeping sitting up
But only in the afternoon
No more or less
Waiting to hear
If my blood is good enough
To be spilled upon your pages
Fucking and dreaming
Waiting and always writing
Tablets in every room
On every surface
Each drawer
In case something strikes
You must get it down
Moments preserved
Like faded photographs
Burned onto pages
Into memory
Forever suspended

Real Or Behind My Eyes

You are still here
Real or behind my eyes.
Always near.
Even when the time has come
To let you go.

Light burning
From stone gardens
Meant to guide you home.
All things
Come into existence
Then cease.
Attachment etched deeply
In ruins
That remain.

A cold winter must pass
Before sun’s rays warm
These narrow straits
Between the living
And the dead.

You are still here
Real or behind my eyes,
But always near.
Sleepwalking lost
Through dark hallways,
Wet streets,
Empty rooms,
Edge of daydreams,
Night dreams.

The cold displaced
Quietly lead
Mourners no more.
Candles flicker and lick
Showing you the way back home.

If Only I knew I Might Serve You In The Temple
3rd Song For Yancey Red Corn

Together we lay wrapping each other in sleep
though love is awakened in our hearts,
bodies are lost in each other.
I am hoping this night has a tongue
as long as eternity.
We are worlds stitched together.
A patchwork of mouths, hands, and spirit.
You are tears of joy pouring forth
mighty as rain, nocturnal hush of dew
beneath my feet in a night
of the bent bow moon.
Between us we forget the darkness.
Stars are driven back
by the early light of dawn.
As we slowly rise
from a dissipating slumber
and you put constellations
around my neck.

Copyright © 2013 Melissa Fry Beasley

Posted by: tsopr | March 20, 2013

Leilanie Stewart, Northern Irish-Filipino Poet

Leilanie StewartLeilanie Stewart is a Northern Irish-Filipina writer and poet. Her poetry has appeared in literary journals such as Neon Highway, Erbacce, The Journal, Inclement, Decanto, Weyfarers, Sarasvati, Graffiti, The Robin Hood Book and more is forthcoming in Tips for Writers and Nostrovia. She currently lives in London with her husband, writer and poet, Joseph Robert. More about Leilanie’s writing can be found at 

       Featured Poetry of Leilanie Stewart

Cycle of Rebirth

I’m sitting
writing a poem
about a woman
who wrote a poem
on the Underground.

Her poem
left me feeling sad-
all about a woman
who miscarried a child
in her concrete womb.

I’m sitting
in a train on the tracks
stuck in the blackness
of a concrete womb-
a tunnel,

ferrying me on
into a netherworld
from which I hope
I can escape
into the light.

don’t deliver me
into the realm of Hades
I’ve eaten my pomegranate seeds,
all six of them,

I’ll use them
as the Ancient Egyptians did,
a symbol of fertility
biding my time to return
to a world of new life-

in spring.


As I lie here
in this vegetative state
dictating to myself
in my head, I realise
there is no true silence
while the flesh is warm.

My mind ticks over
but my body can’t keep up
thoughts dissipate
into the ether,
knowing one day my body
will follow.

Until then, I lie
trapped by carbon
my limbs perfectly still
but the metaconscious
racing, the definition
of quiet, is unknown.

This is the soppiest I can get

The world was full
Of upside down teardrops
You turned them around
And made them into hearts
You stuck them on
A sheet of cloth
I wore them proudly
It’s the toughest fabric I know
Because you wove
A part of yourself into it
Just for me


Psyche got punished
for wanting to know the truth,
wanting to see the face of her husband.

She was banished from the Kingdom
the moment she held
a candle and knife over Cupid’s head.

It’s always been the same, ages before, ages since
that we should live our lives in blissful denial
accepting the hell imposed on us as a slice of heaven.

But not me. I’m with Psyche
climbing that mountain to fill her urn
with the purest water coming straight from source.

The Opposite of White is Black

The lighthouse
has had enough
of sharing light with ships
that would be better off
crashing against the rocks,
sinking into a stygian abyss,
simply because
they carry cargo from
one port to another
and never question
their orders.

Standing on a lone promontory
the lighthouse knows
erosion will soon cut it off
The fog will roll in, surround it,
on its limestone stack.

Tomorrow will not be the same
but that’s ok
life is better for the lighthouse
in the dark; tainted,
than on an easy ride
over a glassy bay.


He said that
he’d got her sussed out-
that he’d hit
the nail on the head,
predicting her every move.

He claimed he
was a humanist,
though he’d mixed up
his vocabulary
and really meant
when he said
that she should
learn her place-
in the kitchen.

Then again,
maybe he was
neither of those things.

Myasthenia Gravis

When I was younger
people used to ask me
why I didn’t smile much
and I’d tell them I had
myasthenia gravis
rather than admit
that I had one too many
worries on my brow,
burdening me, forming
the skin on my forehead
into wrinkles, pushing
the muscles of my cheeks
into loose hanging jowls
that slowly dripped over
my chin, making me
into the lapdog for the
people who put the frown
on my face, in the first

Lapis Luzuli

Don’t ask me why,
but I hate the word ‘lacunae’;
it sounds vulgar,
like a derogatory term
for a part of the female anatomy

Now, if I were to decorate
this ‘depression’, or lacunae
with lapis luzuli, suddenly,
it would be transformed
into a ritual fit for any Pict.

A Matter of Perspective

I finally had my stigmatism fixed;
not the one in my eyes,
but the one on my soul;
the one through which I saw
all the people in my life whirl by
in a kaleidoscope
Funny then, that amidst the gale
of relationships I thought I had
got straight, in my head,
I was missing the point
and all the colours were blurred
They blended into a muddy mix,
the red platelets breaking
into a stream of yellow plasma
staining everything around me

Bell Curve

Most people live their lives
as grown-up toddlers;
ego-centric souls
interested only in concerns
that involve them, while all the time,
never thinking to delve deeper
than the surface of their own skin.

What is beneath the epidermis?
A blackened, wizened spirit
or a bulb that has never flowered,
never been nurtured, never seen daylight-
never had a chance to grow.

If the latter is the cause,
then the life was nothing more
than a shallow existence,
of a grey shade, floating,
from post to post, barely leaving notches.

How sad.

Copyright © 2013 Leilanie Stewart

Posted by: tsopr | March 20, 2013

Samantha Seto, American Poet

Samantha Seto is a writer. She has been published in various anthologies including Ceremony, Blue Hour, Soul Fountain, Ygdrasil, and Black Magnolias Journal. Samantha studies creative writing and is a third prize poet of the Whispering Prairie Press.

Featured Poetry of Samantha Seto


Breaking before our eyes into a sound,
as whoosh and swish of the ocean tide.
In constant as rhythmic strokes
branches crack and are thrown into the stream.

I stood among the trees and watched,
immobile in the cooling shade,
the leaf surfaced, face up beneath the bridge.
Woooh, the wind howled.

Cut limbs falling, the crack they make,
each dropping from its trunk as though for once
the last branch of winter made us trim.

Lost for violence of mid-air branches,
soft current dragged on as wind chimes
blew at the stretch of the dam.

Wading water into land, downward
as the deep blue sea, at times where
the light reflected a bend.

Slowed the surface calm waters,
evergreen trees lined the banks of river,
as natural forces contained the seed of life.

Nature Awakening

The fading moon, and she emerges
from quiet woods above the cliff.
We love swimming in the clouds,
along the high cliffs and deep in valleys,
we chase the scattering of flocks,
roaring anger of the rising river water
from a rocky, sandy bank.

The cloak is lovely, divine heaven,
in your proud kingdom, I am worthless.
My eyes follow the light that reflects you.
In the shadow if the bending willows,
we meet and dance at once.

We are going to die. The spell is cast.
Our souls are blind to our fate.
Gazing into midnight, we are hopeless love,
with our illusions and dreams of childhood.
The happiest day of life is first to leave us.

Lives of Infinity

This lonely hill was always dear to me.
I hear the wind stir these branches,
I begin comparing that endless stillness
with this noise pounding in my head.

The eternity comes to mind,
dead seasons, lives of forever bound,
so my head sinks, tears drift to the ground.

The eternal, all-commanding nature
was created for me to suffer.
The earth gods have denied hope,
my eyes would never shine, they whisper.

I race blindly through the grasslands,
memories pour out of the sky.
Evergreens tremble in the wind,
dirt beneath the melancholy earth.

Near the Sea

All is purplish-blue:
at heavy surface of the sea,
as tides swell and turnover.
Opaque water lines the green benches
the lobster pots, scattered sea lions
among the wild jagged rocks.

The beach shore has translucence
like the small old buildings with emerald moss
growing on their veined walls.

The big fish tubs are lined
with layers of beautiful herring mermaid scales,
wheelbarrows are plastered with red paint
holding creamy coats of mail,
small black flies crawling in salt on them.

On the hill behind the houses,
in the bright sprinkle of mildew on grass,
is an ancient wooden ship-wheel,
cracked, with two long bleached handles
and some melancholy stains, like dried blood,
where the ironwork has rusted.

Moving Apartments

We wrangled noiselessly.
It’s not as if a recorder needs to hum.
The clocks taught us into existence.

In the painting of a mock funeral, we intercept traffic.
Our dog stayed, we have our housing flexibility.
Broke amounts gamboled and stolen.
While wealth peels off, a tiny button falls off tablecloth.

My father closes the door,
scared he will wake me from sleep,
a thesis in congested paper web in my headache.

Above a small stiff sheet of white bedroom.
In painting impracticalities coming nearer out of time.
Fixed or moving furniture of step by step,
he takes off with his boxes.

It came to me then.
It was time for the move but my dad didn’t suit plans.
From the summer on the coast to the west winds.

Copyright © 2013 Samantha Seto

Posted by: tsopr | March 20, 2013

Norberto Franco Cisneros, Mexican-American Poet

Norberto Franco Cisneros has been published by the Indiana University Journal Chiricu; Avocet Review (Avocet Press); Snow Jewel (Grey Sparrow Press) Ilumen (Mouthfeel Press) and many others, including countless e-zines. He has been a featured poet in several venues. He has been a Featured Poet in several venues and has been a finalist in two International Poetry Contests. He is a writer of poems of all genres; also writes short stories and has currently completed his first novel which is currently being considered for publication by a publisher. Mr. Cisneros came out with his first chapbook “Heart Split in Two” last year; and received excellent reviews.

Featured Poetry of Norberto Franco Cisneros

Elegy to the Hunchback Mind of the Stone Walker

The Historical Stone Walker sings gravedigger songs.
The midget rides a frail Dalmatian dog, horses bray at pastel colored ghosts conjured by the hunchback mind of the Historical Stone Walker. The Walker skips from stone to stone never falling, he never falls.
In cockfighting as in life one cock slashes the other cock on and on until one dies. In the background John Lennon’s Imagine reverberates in silence in overfilled churches, mosques and synagogues, but devoid of humanity. The dancers dance the Horah to a Palestinian dance step beguiling frogs in heat, stimulating all beasts to copulate simultaneously. Phalluses of Cro-Magnon meat meander through hairless vulvas slithering from genital to genital coercing lesser minds into libidinous ecstasy.
Lights shine on metal drones obsessed with people dying, screaming in pain, in limbo, in perpetuity, with spiritual values suspended on the swastika of hope (their cross of nails).
War embraces profits and only profits overturning the balance of good humanity. Loud repetitive ideologies that don’t persuade, but confuse, tell lies that swallow the truth and create chaos sucking the marrow out of life leaving behind, misery and death.
It is said strange apparitions and false prophets will appear at the End Times and snow will fall in the desert; evil with many illogical voices distorting Nature with promises of God and gold will lead Dead Peasants to their own destruction. Gabriel’s golden trumpet will play the final note before the irreversible end, which the whole world will hear.

Take heed, you who worship profits. Consider your comfort today. Are you sure there’s a tomorrow? The Stone Walker flits from stone to stone inscribing the Maya warning. Do you sense the suffering, the misery? Do you feel the fear? Do you smell the stench of decaying bodies? Do you have an inner gnawing telling you tomorrow will never come.
The Apocalypse is happening now!

Love is Nature is Love

The brook follows the path of least resistance
It does not confront obstacles
It embraces them
Nature knows not war

The landscape is tranquil, peaceful
Nature likes it that way
Rolling shades of green sprinkle the velvet hills with
A myriad display of colorful flowers taunt the multihues of the rainbow

The eye follows the brook’s unimpeded meandering path
A Monarch jig-jaggedly flies in glee
Its life will shortly come to an end but
That’s Nature’s way too

Clear. clean water caresses the rocks underneath it,
Whispering sweet, gurgling, purling sounds
Its watery arms embracing the smooth stones
As it fills the cracks between them

A dark brown and brittle dry leaf
Detached by a tender wind floats
Softly landing on a fallen twig
It remembers where it came from

This is Nature making love with passion
Subtleties which go unnoticed to the human eye
Are nevertheless relevant in their spirit
As life unfolds its evolution.

When we make love – Who sees us?
Sometimes we don’t even see each other
We often forget that love is tender, giving,
Nurturing, healing and compassionate
Nature knows this.
Our hearts know it too, yet we squander
Our humanity frivously.

The Changing of the Guard

On a chilly night, under a dimly flickering light, the never ending wet street, stoic and abandoned, chided me. My knees weakened by despair, with my heart out of wishes and my body out of good health, I played notes on my ole friend, my trumpet, but the melody hid from itself. It seems reality appears more honest at this time in a man’s life when despair and the absence of a good tomorrow confront him. He reflects more candidly on truths:

“A life is born, a life lives, a life dies and in between,
the haunting now is forever present, and
finality does not come easily or quickly.”

Beyond the end of the sad street, I saw a lone figure whose translucent skin housed the fires of Hades. It emerged from a swirling mist of cloudy gray, its nostrils flared and snorted, his slobbering mouth spewed a stale, sulphuric smell that sickened the soul. He, the shadow of life, dressed in a long black overcoat and a Fedora that covered the top of his face down to his eyebrows, carried a scythe that sparkled sliver and was sharp.

“I want you.”

He pointed at me ominously.

“Twenty millennia ago,
I was chosen to take up this task and my time is up.
You will take my place when the sun rises.”

“Why me, twenty thousand years is a long time? I’m old and in pain.”

“You were chosen.
There is no rest for you until your time is up, but
Your pain will be taken away.”

I blinked and he was no more, unperturbed, I understood what had just transpired, but I did not pickup the scythe only my trumpet.

Slowly, I walked towards my future as the brightening horizon flamed golden on the hills against the azure sky, with great anticipation, I began playing my trumpet and I knew, as long as my trumpet was with me, I would last the twenty thousand years, for I realized, it is music not death that transports the soul.

Copyright © 2013 Norberto Franco Cisneros

Posted by: tsopr | February 22, 2013

Lakeview: Call for Submissions

Lakeview Int’l Journal of Literature and Arts

Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts

(Click on the image to go to Lakeview)

We accept Poetry, Short Fiction, Research Papers, Book/Film/Art Reviews, Interviews, Photography and Visual Art

Please do send your work to, along with a brief bio note in third person (maximum 150 words) and a photo. You can use the same email address for your queries.

Make sure that you send your work, bio note and photo as three separate attachments. The text of your work should be in Times New Roman 12 point font, double spaced.

If we have special features with guest editors, you may have to send your work directly to their email address. We will mention that here when necessary.

The editorial decisions will be taken in consultation with the members of the advisory committee.

We have two submission periods:

March 1st to May 31st for the August issue (wait till July for the editorial decisions)


September 1st to November 30th for the February issue (wait till January for the editorial decisions)

Follow the submission guidelines under each section:

Poetry: You can submit up to 6 poems. There is no minimum or maximum word limit, but we will be comfortable with poems that run between 10 to 40 lines. Form poetry and free verse are welcome. We may choose 3 or 4 poems, depending on the quality and the space we have.

Short Fiction: You can send 1 story, ideally between 1000 to and 6000 words. Novel excerpts are also welcome, if they are stand-alone pieces. We are not totally against genre fiction, though we may show some preference to literary fiction.

Research Papers: We have space for just a couple of research papers in each issue. That means, your paper will have to be original, powerful and relevant. Use the MLA 7th edition format. We welcome papers related to literary theories, creative writing, cultural studies and film theory. Word limit: between 3000 and 6000 words.

Book/Film/Art Reviews: Please do get in touch with us with your ideas before you start working on a review. We need reviews on work that is currently relevant. Word limit: between 800 and 2000 words.

Interviews: Please do get in touch with us first, with news regarding the transcript of the interview you plan to send us, and proceed only if we show some interest in it. Word limit: between 800 to 3000 words.

Photography: We look for work from both established and amateur photographers. You can suggest a photo feature if you have a bunch of themed photographs. Otherwise, we select 2 to 4 photos from the 6 to 10 photos you send us.

Visual Art: We look for unique works of visual art. You can send up to 10 samples, and we will select 2 to 4 of them.

Special Note: Alan Summers from our advisory committee is the editor for The Special Featureon Haiku/Haibun for the August 2013 issue. However, he has informed us that he has already received the sufficient number of entries. You can contact him at for any related query.

Posted by: tsopr | January 9, 2013

Darrel Alejandro Holnes, American Poet

Darrel Alejandro Holnes’ poems have previously appeared or are forthcoming in Kweli, The Caribbean Writer, Callaloo, The Best American Poetry blog, and elsewhere. His degrees in creative writing are from the University of Michigan, and the University of Houston. He has received scholarships to Bread Loaf, Cave Canem, and various residencies, most recently to VCCA, and currently resides in New York, NY.

Featured Poem of Darrel Alejandro Holnes


He drums loudest when she’s around, silence too sour a sound for seduction.
But heavy drumming deafens her

and fangs drag across his chest                   as she saves herself by eating
                what’s beating            her            to death
but keeps his carcass for company—
                 sweetness in the quiet
explosion of arteries, in the quiet
                                digestion of cartilage and bone—
perhaps a mute melody
                               perhaps a melodious murder.

Swallowing notes in lumps of flesh
                    she savors stopping heart-breaking rhythms,
until guilt, like a drumstick,              strikes her belly,
                    guts      drum up a dirge.

Here is how we make music
               even when we cannot stand its sound,
love bellowing, found or lost.

Surrender to palpitating
                                             rup-a-pum percussion,
                 open aortas only able to bleed wanting songs.
Drink, or lend your ear                         and raise your voice; to be living
                  is to sing the inescapable choral hymn:

                  r-r-rup-a-pum                                         boom,

r-r-rup-a-pum                                crash,

                 r-r-rup-a-pum                                          boom,

r-r-rup-a-pum                              smash!

Copyright © 2013 Darrel Alejandro Holnes

Posted by: tsopr | January 1, 2013

Happy New Year 2013!

a very happy New Year 2013 from ours to yours!


Posted by: tsopr | December 10, 2012

Ranu Uniyal, Indian Poet

Ranu Uniyal -Ranu Uniyal is a Professor of English at Lucknow University. She has an MPhil from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She was awarded Commonwealth Scholarship for PhD in English from Hull University, U.K.

Her main research interests are in Indian literature, Women’s writing and Post colonial literatures. Her research papers and book reviews have been published extensively in India and abroad. Her English poems have been translated into Uzbek, Hindi, Urdu and Malayalam. She is Associate Editor of The SPIEL Journal of English Studies (Lucknow).

She is the author of Women and Landscape: The fiction of Margaret Drabble and Anita Desai (Creative Books New Delhi 2000); Poems Across the Divide (Yeti Books, Calicut 2006); Raja Rao’s Kanthapura :A critical study (co-edited )Asia Book Club, New Delhi 2007); Women in Indian Writing : From Difference to Diversity (Prestige Books, New Delhi 2009); December Poems (Writers Workshop, Kolkata 2012).

She is currently working on a book of poems in Hindi. She is also one of the founding members of “PYSSUM” a charitable organization for children with special needs in Lucknow.

Featured Poetry of Ranu Uniyal


My silence
can never beat
the rhythm of
your stare
I discard
all my virtues
for your love’s sake.

Ahalya to Ram

I was once young and beautiful
Until I turned a stone and hid my forehead
On the clumsy grass hallowed and brown
I stumbled and lost my form and face
I turned my speech into ashes and withheld my sighs.
How easy to hurt the woman who was cheated by gods?
Deceit and pride did anger invite
Such shame and loss is mine.
Aged with envy, and unmindful distrust
He crossed my legs and left me with a curse
Until the gods intervened
And I came back to life.

But was it the same husband that I aspired for
The same house with its cropped up mats
No I choose to be a stone than a mate
To a man whose eyes believed what he could not see
Yes I’d rather be a stone that leaves neither aches nor flutters.
I carry within a heaviness that has curled with the weight
Of their angry feet and elsewhere sticks like an old habit.
Without form without face and ashes for speech Hey Ram!
I am now quite uncomfortable with the knowledge
Of knowing a curse would soon fall on her who
Stands beside you in these troubled times.

Radha to Krishna

Come Krishna and be my self
Dressed in a woman’s attire
How beautiful it is to see my
Longing for you as I comb my hair
In front of the mirror

Come Krishna and be my kohl
Black and brimming with light
How wonderful it is to read my
Ecstasy as it beholds the joy of
Oneness with you

Come Krishna and be my anklet
Silver embossed and naughty
How full of tease the tinkle is
Knowing it will meet you on the
Banks of Yamuna shielded by cows

Come Krishna and be my scarf
Ladled with shades of red and green
How restless as the wind it flows
Delighted with fragrance of Jasmine
Feet rush in haste to travel with you

Come Krishna and search me now
Not by any name a whisper or a song
How futile it is to call me by any
Name now that I have lost myself
Please let me know in case you find me

Woman To Woman
(Kamala Das to Judith Wright)

You tell me of a sorrow
That was mine
I brushed my hands
The rough edges of my nails
Had another sorrow and underneath
It was all wet, wet with a sense of despair
Are they all the same the men we loved?
The one who promised and walked away
And the one who married
And the one whose seed I held inside
With such unholy patience and longing

You share with me a joke
That is yours
I laugh with you
It is another tale of a woman
Who like us
Did odd jobs, a house, a husband and a child or two
Or none what difference would it make?
Yet in place and she danced to the tune
Until it soured her bones and soiled her blood.
But she smiled and hugged her tears as if
Nothing at all had happened.

There she was at the bus stop,
At the post office
In bed and the kitchen
Beside the computer and the bath room
Unlike Clytemnestra unlike Draupadi
Unlike Medusa unlike Anusuya
Kicking her angst afraid
It would not just eat her inside out
But follow her like a ghost and then
They would all know
These smells of the sweat
Only dead possess.

Copyright © 2012 Ranu Uniyal

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