“Farewell Johnny Mack” by Neil Smith

Johnny Mack Brown may Be in the ground   but I remember his All American self rein whipping his palomino   Reno   to go faster   faster Through the canyon   past the cacti In hot pursuit of shady guys With really bad mustaches.      

“Learning by Heart” by Janet Ford

  The radiator hissed and hummed and hammered as we solved and spelled in kept silence; among the drip-cans, rain pinged like answers dropped through cracked ceilings. Here we would learn who we would become.   In a loose gray dress and all her ease, Miss Rivers took the floor, flagship of our ragtag fleet. […]

“Leatherwood Falls” by Brenda Kay Ledford

  Blanche packs a picnic: tomato sandwich with mayonnaise, a moon pie and RC Cola.   Horseback riding through rhododendrons at the Fires Creek Campground, wood smoke wafts on a breeze.   Campers roasting hotdogs and marshmallows over a fire. Bullfrogs blow their trumpets,   white-tailed deer drink clear waters. She fords the stream: Leatherwood […]

“Silver Needles” by Tom Scheve

  Silvery needles on Pines of green swaying gently on winds unseen Whispering songs through limbs up high, soothing sounds that fill the sky. Yet those needles of silver and green that glisten brightly, can’t be seen by minds cluttered with useless thoughts, making the miracle all for not. Clear your minds and enjoy with […]

“Leukemia” by Mark MacAllister

  Given snow in the forecast I called on my Midwest skills topped-off the fuel tank for more weight between the wheels bought half a ton of plastic-bagged construction sand to load over the rear axle and then headed to the hospital to pick up my father   newly-diagnosed he met me at the curb […]

“Design: A Seminar, 1982” by Jeanne Julian

  Interestingly enough, proportion has been around since the fourth century B.C. says Mrs. Baedeker.   So far, we’re mostly alert, here in the Lenox Hotel’s Dome Room, illuminated more for waltzing than for learning layout.   Blue light rims the circular ceiling like some big gas range burner turned low. In this difficult gloom […]

“A Sunday Afternoon” by Ann Carol Koermer

  On a Sunday afternoon, when the cold air seeps in through the cracks in the wall, I sit among the purples, reds and blues waiting for you to call. You have left you say to a place where I cannot go. It’s your revenge or idea of an independent show. So, I wait alone […]

“Mother and Son” by Penelope Cottrell

  Skin to skin, heart to heart. Big Heart slows, Little Heart thunders, frantic.   Voices, crying, laughter – a cacophony around Little Heart, fresh in a brand-new world.   Little Heart knows Big Heart, his old world’s rhythm, the only familiar sound among the others.   Tiny ear against chest, cloudy eyes struggle to […]

What is a Poem?

This is the question Tom Dow asks his students.  He asked again during the March WMO’s lead-up to National Poetry Month. Three poets, Anne Kissel, Judith Stanton, and Mark MacAllister provided their answers before reading one of their poems.   They addressed this question in different ways. Anne Kissel said the question made her wonder: […]