Torment for a Moment’s Sin

PENANCE
by Bernice DeLucchi

Like a Sphynx, you sit

in granite silence

and ponder my sins,

self-righteous piety carved

in your stony smile,

your eyes pierce

like blue-lightning

through to my soul,

I lay naked, stripped bare

displaying the layers

of my shame

for all to see,

an unwanted, discarded

sacrifice at your feet,

nothing left to offer

but my tears,

falling like pearls

from the gods,

in pools of regret,

Unyielding and unforgiving,

you sit high on your

mighty podium,

stoic in presence,

and I wait

sobbing for your Judgement,

nothing –

A deafening silence,

haunts and torments me

Is this my penance

to serve

for daring to feel

alive, just for a moment?
—–
Bernice DeLucchi is a South African woman who loves to create. She has always written short stories but recently began writing poetry. She paints as well.

Love’s Little Universe

human resilience
and the fine art of privacy

by John Grochalski

there is so much love gone wrong

on these trains
on these streets

on any given day of the week
there is a different drama being played out

some bad actor crying into her cell phone
some pouty boy shouting into his

so much love gone wrong
and played out in the public sphere

human resilience
and the fine art of privacy
being taken over by impulse and need

you see them screaming at stop lights
or shouting down the aisle in the grocery store

relationships ending between
the frozen foods and the processed meats

between tire rotations
or in line at the DMV

so many of us willing to bear ourselves
so nakedly out there

the thin line between cell phone love and hate
available for public consumption

as if we are the only ones within
one hundred miles of each other

creating and destroying
our own little universes

crowding out and contaminating
the one we’re leaving behind.

—–

John Grochalski currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, where he constantly worries about the high cost of everything.

(I am) Illumined Identity

She, Her, Me
by Rosemarie Wilson

I am the creator’s daughter,
a spiritual being
blessed with a keen third eye functioning as her voice of reason;
a child of the atmosphere
bearing blood of her people that spilled throughout the land.
I am hope,
patiently waiting for comforting chords sung in harmony by every creature that has breath,
tickled pink by peace filling the void left by chaos.
I am bilingual,
fluent in several dialects known to man,
well versed in the native tongue of our ancestors.
I am
she,
her,
me;
family in every sense of the word
the sister who nags her siblings,
first, second and third cousin holding her kin down,
the aunt standing in for mom.
I am Fort Knox,
a confidant that knows but won’t tell;
the friend who won’t violate the code
or give up the key.
I am a girl playing hopscotch,
a woman doing Double Dutch;
a lady held in high regard–
the sweetheart
who became lover,
soon thereafter declared wife.
Mother of gifted stars,
companion to the world,
I am queen;
a bread winner,
head of the household
yet submissive when Mister takes charge.
I am tough
the weight of earth lifted by these hands,
its burdens
buried beneath my smile
then carried across continents on these shoulders.
A frugal spend thrift wearing size 10 kicks,
stepping lively in the name of decency,
I am a heroine;
clumsily graceful,
yet beautifully built because I said so.
I am confidence deprived of arrogance
wading with humility;
love surrounded by hate,
joy
and pain
when the sun shines
or if it rains.
I am forgiveness with compassion for our souls
housing not one insidious bone
inside a frame that fails to turn green with envy.
I am she,
who loves her
because we
can only be
me.

—–

Rosemarie Wilson a.k.a. One Single RoseTM is an award winning poet, spoken word artist, singer, actress and playwright who has self-published three poetry collections, two chapbooks and two spoken word cds. She performs nationally and internationally and is the host of the “Spotlight,” an award willing open mic poetry series at Manila Bay Café, 4731 Grand River in Detroit, Michigan every 1st and 3rd Friday. For more information on One Single Rose, please visit http://www.onesinglerose.com.

The Call of Caged Changes

A bogus nation.
by Daniel Wetter

That’s known to throw the faces,

that they don’t like
inside the lowest places.

Prisons and graves overflowed with
wasted,
potential.
Mental forces undergo no changes.

If we don’t like it,
then we fight with rage.

In exchange for our freedom
we might die today.

The sun always comes out on a brighter day.

Ignited is the spark that inspires flames.

The fire is alive and your minds ablaze.

It’s hard to feel alive,
when your life is caged

Released and unleashed this is my domain.

My disdain for you is unkind but hey,
we’re living on a globe where hope became,
worse than smoking dope
or slanging cane.

But thats the way she goes,
nope I won’t complain.

But I can kill the giant
and overthrow the slain.

———————-

I’m Daniel Wetter and a I’m current student,video editor, and writer in Chicago. I feel like the film and video experience I have had, growing up on rap and hip-hop, as well as life experiences, have concocted themselves into the flow, delivery, and soul that my poems continue to have.

Shards of Flat Scribbles

Give In, and Join The Crowd!
by Ryan Hardgrove

I fill up these notebooks
with all these words
but what’s the use?

the sky is blue
and everyone knows it
sometimes it’s gray
and everyone knows that too

deep into the night
saddled at the bar
the autumn crowd
is typically a bit more boisterous
it’s easier to lie to yourself
when the weather is pleasant

a barroom pal
lands the stool next to mine
mumbles something about a dart game
and too many 50 cent tacos
he drops a couple pills
into my cramped pen hand
I toss them into my mouth
without inspecting them
and bite down hard once
before swallowing the bitter shards
with a mouth full of flat beer

after the pills kick in
and enough beer is swallowed
the barroom gets real easy to accept
all the faces seem happy with me
at first they were wary of my pen
and head-down-scribbles
but now they seem to recognize me
as one of their own

they all know it’s no use
all these notebooks full of words
they know just as well as I do

but it’s easy
to look around the barroom
when the windows turn black
with autumn night blankness
and we are all roasting inside
amidst endless golden taps
and warm purring neons

it’s easy to forget
about the notebook and the pen

I think I’ll hunt down my barroom pal
for some more of those pills
maybe order a few tacos

——————

Ryan Hardgrove is currently wading through his late twenties as a feckless bartender and responsible father. He is also a writer and a musician. He lives in Pittsburgh, PA with his common law wife and their son.