March | 2023

March | 2023

March | 2023

March | 2023

March | 2023

March | 2023

March | 2023

March | 2023

Rose Vos

Before Time Passes

Harbringer of Spring By Lauren Bohannon

A Cold, Cold Christmas

By Sophia Riley

It was the coldest it had been in a long time 

from the frozen thawed chicken coop just south of Tennessee

to the stone-hard lake in Virginia.

Certainly, there were stones there on top of it. 

Little boys, destruction appealing, strained their muscles to 

the very last fiber in their chilled blood and threw things. 

Then again as if they wanted more, another rock would fly. 

And all that to hear the blobbsquabering jabber of stones

on ice.  

Never in my memory did I find so cold a time as then. 

Christmas day with the usual bustle; a smoky house 

was more subtle than usual with cousins to come

and babies to be born on the day of the Christ Child. 

And then out to the chickens I went.

Careful to cover the ears

with an heirloomed hat perhaps. 

Out into that white laced Christmas 

whistling with merriment an old tune like a British sailor 

returning home from the snow frothed sea. 

Out to the chickens and back.

And coming home, nose red, hands clapped for a ginger-snapped mouth 

and George Bailey on his own frostbitten screen. 

To Fly By Elias Huffine

Headphone space

By Samuel Ward

They tell you to put your headphones on 

They tell you you have bad taste 

You shrink back in surrender

Your stomach still in a twist

Voice slowly drowning in your melodies

You stop doing work

You stop thinking straight 

Your mind in a scatter

It gets harder to escape 

As you drift off into your headphone space 

In a different world 

Not like your own 

You do not like it here

In the lands of the headphone

It is a world of your own that isn’t your own 

You stare into this place

Unable to move

You regret your compromise

With a man of no groove

As he thinks only of his selfish needs

You spread farther and farther from your soul 

Unable to love 

Unable to hate

On your one way trip

In your pool of procrastination 

You think of your thoughts 

At a rhythmic pace 

You like how it sounds 

In your far of place 

So you write a poem of your sorrowful fate


By Ella Green

Some days feel 

As bitter and sour as a drop of pure lemon juice on the tongue,

While others feel as sweet and delectable as honey.

Flowers grow,

Flowers die,

Birds sing and fly,


Creatures cry out

In hurt.

Life moves in a cycle

Of aliveness and light, of death and darkness.

Don’t let falsity lead you astray.

What is truly real, anyway?

Are you real?

Is what you wake up to,

And what you go to sleep to,


What is sprouting up,

What is emerging from the earth,

With the real golden light of life?

What human beings 

Are burning 

With a brilliant, never-dying

Flame of beauty, goodness, and passion,

Forever shining?

Life in all its rawness,

In all its hurt and healing, 

Is real.

Before Time Passes By Rose Vos


By McKaine Layne

I stepped outside,

The atmosphere hit me like a ton of bricks.

A constant reminder of the world changing around me.

Leaving me behind in a state with no escape.

So dark and quiet

I can’t escape and everyone walks right by, enjoying every minute.

I seem to have a mask on and no one notices.

Am I invisible to them or do they see me and not care?

I walk right by with tears streaming down.

No one stops me 

No one checks on me 

I am masked with something that I can’t seem to remove.

Hidden from the eyes of those around me.

Just hidden.


By McKaine Layne

The things that are around are a poison to me.

They make me sick to the point of being bedridden.

I look around and am disgusted by the things I see.

The pollution and the world's problems are bigger than mine,

But if you work together then things will be just fine.

That is the problem today,

Not being able to work with one another. 

I won’t be poisoned by the air in the atmosphere or the people around me.

I won’t be disgusted by the things I witness.

I will walk right past and try to get rid of the poison.

If we just ban together and make the world better.

More Liveable. Less Poisoned.

Untitled by Samuel Ward


By Keegan Imami

From antebellum cones

to the hopeful promise of tomorrow,

The Now,

Unfolding in concentric rings

staining the sky,

and old, like my eyes,

desolate and social,

and all fading. 

Inverted perennial icicles 

outliving my soul

and hair;

gothic and twisted


bright and columnar. 

The Overstory,

dulcet drumming of jazz

slip through

the canopy and into

the birds who remember 

it like the silhouette

of a lover

against the dwindling bonfire of early evening. 

I can hear something —

the ants and moss hear it as well —

something germinates beneath 

these flags of the past, present, and future

like a soon to bloom flower

whose hidden spiraling light

has only ever been

heeded by the

whistling foliage:

tough arteries like systems

of giant glowing earthworms

push through the surface

into the soles of my feet,

merging with my blood vessels

and capillaries,

becoming one, 

in green cells

and metallurgic torrents. 

Could the answer to 

the darkness between the stars

lie here, unkempt and wild,

in the rainforests and green underfoot?

The homes of the living.

The homes of the dead.

The homes of the reborn.

I inhaled the unfledged corridors

like a river of perfume,

constantly stepping into fresh storms

while hiding half my being like a fish,

asking myself where in these

foamy tremors

could one discover the affinity. 

I had fallen into the abyss

but you always grew

to take me out;

and that is where it must be:

foamy and immense,

barely freed from the nettles

on the ground charged with secrets

and the earthly color of seeds. 

I do not feel alone with you by my side. 

Anthologies of clear water

around the stones

join the sweet fruit,

earthy vegetable,

and resonant nut

collected in the 

matrimony by

angels of sugar

and raindrops. 

I have loved you

since the beginning of my old rings,

restless and clinging to whatever I can,

but now knowing

you’ll never leave me

like they did. 

Near your feet

The reigning gallows,

where life is born 

and executed

in twirling smokes,

feeding the ground

once more. 

You clasp the murdered men,

the slaughtered pigs

and cows

and horses,

the lonely elk

and doe,

the restless bear,

the falling birds

cloaked in specks 

of mist —

you provide cover

for them


But you’re bullet-riddled,



broken and beaten

and covered in your own blood —

and still despite the


and thunderclaps

and uncontrollable fires,

between the frost

and the stones,

reassuring the sky and the enemy’s palpitating heart.

I wish they could hear your cries.

I wish they knew you like I do.

I wish they knew

the xylem cells

carrying the sweet sap

to the arms of the sky

and the phloem to

the trembling callouses

of my bare feet. 

I wish they knew 

how you developed 

bark and leaves

and flowers

and fruit;

breathing in carbon dioxide

and water; condensing molecules

and rebuilding them into


like the moon,

releasing oxygen back

into the infinite stratosphere

my fingers

can only touch

with help of your

ancient arms. 

I wish they knew

as leaves crash

and trees topple,

decaying into the honey-like soil,

the sugar molecules

break down,

returning the desirable carbon

to the ground;

and how extracting coal, oil, 

and gas for fuel, 

we dig our hands

into the market of greed:

the primordial and pristine

carbon reserves

stored away for Mother Nature’s

own use —

and by burning it 

we tip the equilibrium

allowing greenhouse gasses

to trap tightly in the

pockets of the clouds, unseen

and unrealized,

raising the temperature

of the 


so the arborescence

we don’t end up killing

can’t absorb enough

carbon dioxide

to suffice. 

I wish they knew you slept like they do,

undergoing diurnal cycles

that could measure

when the Sun closed her eyes

and the Moon opened her’s,

glazed and weary,

but ruling in a place

where all we need is

to heed to such illimitable beauty

and kiss our judgments goodbye. 

I bite your delicate fingernails,

alternate, compound, opposites —

fed by the thunderclouds and the

puddles and following shine;

they’ll outlive us,

as they have everyone

before us;

for all returns to the land

and sea

once the end rears

its misunderstood head. 

Your body became a home

for the owls, chickadees, juncos, and bees —

Your arms became pews

for the bears, cougars, badgers, and lizards —

Your trunk became highways

for ants and beetles, snails,

slugs, and fungi —

Your roots became hands to hold

in some unfolding catastrophe,

linking realms of

free waters,

fettered towns,

and the liberation of sugar,

flour, bread, and books. 

Your crown became beacons

for fossils and planets,

the possible and 

absence of impossible.

“Long Life Maker.

I’m here.

Down here.

Thank you for the baskets and the boxes.

Thank you for the capes and hats and skirts.

Thank you for the cradles.The beds. The diapers. 

Canoes. Paddles, harpoons, and nets. 

Poles, logs, posts. 

The rot-proof shakes and shingles.

The kindling that will always light. 

Thank you for the tools. The chests. The decking.

The clothes closets. The paneling. 

I forgot… Thank you.

For all these gifts that you have given.

We’re sorry.

We didn’t know hard it is

for you to grow back.”

Bee Mug by Kathryn Leavengood

 Tiny Dancer

By Mac Kropff

Atop a shelf she lay

She dare not make a sound

For if she makes a peep

Her life comes crashing down

A tiny ballet dancer

A perfectionist in her art

She dances without flaw

Lives, yet without a heart

If only I could be so flawless

If I could never fail

Life would be scores easier

For I would burn a trail

An clumsy dancer I would be

One that would never do right

Never will I be Perfect

So I shall put up a fight

For I am not fit for a shelf

Nor will I conform

The Memory Collector by Rose Vos

Starry String of Pearls

By Ella Green

The most stunning string of pearls

Form the stars in the sky,

But the string has been pulled and stretched

By the Hands of God,

And so each pearl, each star, has been scattered,

Being held in the dark, deep bowl of the sky.

This magnificent bowl is filled to the brim with starry soup,

It overflows with the sparkling liquid of galaxies,  

And all the planets pour out of it.

The bowl is tipped slightly

And out drops Earth,

And the moon slips out too.

Staring up into the dark bowl

Of the night,

I smile,

Relishing in the starry string of pearls

Adorning the neck of twilight.

August | 2023
May Part 3 | 2023
May Part 2 | 2023
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