LIKE THE BIRDS ON THE WIRES. 3 Poems from Bradford Middleton

LIKE THE BIRDS ON THE WIRES

 
As I walked I would occasionally

Look up, up at the sky, up where

The birds ruled, home there to the

Lucky, those who can move in the

Blink of one eye. 

 
This time though the view was kind

Of different; the birds had all

Congregated, like musical notes on

A line, along the telephone wire that

Keeps us in touch with the outside world.

 
It was then I thought is that how

Leonard Cohen came up with the

Wonderful lyrics to 'Bird on a Wire'

By looking up, up at the sky, drawing

Inspiration from a natural phenomenon.

 
FALLING DOWN THE STAIRS

 
There were times when I would live

A life, a wild time, and would often

Find myself falling down those stairs

At the last resort out of my mind,

Always always out of my mind and

Late at night as that was when this

Beautiful gift always got me best

And sometimes it would be 3-15

In the morning and I’d be falling

Down those damn stairs out of

My damn mind feeling like a cat

At the end of his ninth life.

 
LIKE THOSE OLD DAYS (with my radio on)

 
I sit here tonight and it

Almost feels like the old-times as

My radio builds up to one of the games of the year

As old footballers talk of teenagers

Turning up to training in brand new

Shiny Mercedes-Benz as I sit here

Writing a life so far removed from

Their gilded existence it just goes to

Show you how capitalism has gone so

Terribly wrong… 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
BIOGRAPHY
 
 
Bradford Middleton was born in south-east London during the summer of 1971 and won his first poetry prize at the age of nine. He then gave up writing poems for nearly twenty-five years and it wasn’t until he landed in Brighton, knowing no one and having no money, that he began again. Ten years later and he’s been lucky enough to have had a few chapbooks published including a new one from Analog Submission Press entitled ‘Flying through this Life like a Bottle Battling Gravity’, his debut from Crisis Chronicles Press (Ohio, USA) and his second effort for Holy & Intoxicated Press (Hastings, UK). He has read around the UK at various bars, venues and festivals and is always keen to get out and read to new crowds. His poetry has also been or will be published shortly in the Chiron Review, Zygote in my Coffee, Section 8, Razur Cuts, Paper & Ink, Grandma Moses ‘Poet to Notice’, Empty Mirror, Midnight Lane Gallery, Bareback Lit and is a Contributing Poet over at the wonderful Mad Swirl. If you like what you’ve read go send a friend request on facebook to bradfordmiddleton1.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Life. A Poem by Amita Sanghavi

Life:

The tear,

The sigh,

The twinkle in the eye.

The whisper,

The wrinkle,

The silent, true story

You and I survive.

Amita Sanghavi writes poetry, teaches at university and loves to visit art galleries and museums.She teaches English at Sultan Qaboos University, Muscat Oman. An is MA from Lancaster University, UK, she is pronounced Ambassador of Poetry to Oman by World Poetry, Canada and Representative of Immages&Poetry Art Movement, Italy and Affilate Researcher at CELCE University of Leeds, UK.

Her poetry book “Lavender Memories” and two edited poetry anthologies were published in 2018, 2020 and 2021 respectively. Her latest book s ‘Astad Deboo: Poetry in Dance’

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

My Voice. A Poem & Artwork by Kelly Sargent

My Voice



I am Deaf. 

My fingers speak. 


A coiffed paintbrush in my grasp, 

my voice streaks turquoise and magenta 

across a parched canvas. 

Vowels coo through thirsty linen.


Click-clacking keys with my mother tongue, 

I chew hard consonants

and spit them out. 

Sour, a scathing sonnet can be at dusk.


Fingertips pave slick exclamations, 

punctuated by nails sinking low into clamminess.  

I sculpt hyperboles.

Kelly Sargent is an author and artist whose works, including a Best of the Net nominee, have appeared in more than forty literary publications. A poetry chapbook entitled Seeing Voices: Poetry in Motion is forthcoming (Kelsay Books, 2022). A book of modern haiku entitled Lilacs & Teacups is also forthcoming, and a haiku recently recognized in the international Golden Haiku contest is on display in Washington, D.C. She serves as the creative nonfiction and an assistant nonfiction editor for two literary journals. She also reviews for an organization whose mission is to make visible the artistic expression of sexual violence survivors.
You can find her at https://www.kellysargent.com/

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

VERISIMILITUDE. 5 Poems by Askold Skalsky

KEYS IN A ROW  
 
Perhaps someone
will play a melancholy
keyboard piece as I am
leaving, and, stopping
to listen, I’ll have a vision
of what is to come if I
linger, if I walk up
to the player, wait,
then ask some pertinent
question with an eager
mien, the seconds gone
when I would have been
outdoors in the clear,
the moment interrupted
with a careless insufficiency,
the scattered patterns
of my life converging
into a broken string,
a clappered wheel
on which the hours
tick and dance to
their inoperable end
 
***
 
to be released from a long
slow slough, much of it
impenetrable like the circle
of a dream manifest as reality,
frightful and avoidable,
a bag in a corridor laced
with shadows and squalor,
which the mere eye of me
is afraid to undo
 
***
 
moving through
the veins, a fire-
ball with dim
obbligatos and
dark copper
bangs, like old
radiator pipes
when the steam
hammers at high
velocity into their
joints, warming
the room and
almost waking
the sleeper from
his sleep
 
***
 
here in this morning’s morning
self-forgotten sullen twang
comes a star gilded and silver,
climbing still like the pine
branches tipped with needle-
frantic green, yes, caught
like a tiny chip on the great
waist of some spectre surface
emerging into the dissolving dark.  
 
LANDSCAPE IN FALLEN LIGHT, WITH CHILDREN
 
Just an unimportant place,
radiant and ordinary,
deserving the utmost scriptory,
with golden quags
up to the knees,
the sun blotting the lough
like streaks of silver haze
settling in a quay.
No need for a raveled sky
of quizzical significance,
the wrangling heads
foundering in the streets,
questing the unending sop
of memory and imprecation
to put life into the big words,
immiserating the ivory dungeon,
as one antinomian calls it,
reduced to bah, to babbling ooze,
slightly ecstatic now and then,
what is preserved
when meaning is deflated,
page after page, of invisibility,
of pity for hope lost
in hell’s sunken bolgias,
or the faces strapped
to the skullbones
of the starving young. 
 
 NOW THEN, THE OPEN EYE  
 
August’s close
but I already feel
the solitary cold,
a sleepless place
and zero of the night,
like an infinitive
without an end
and half reluctant
to begin. But solitude
is just a postlude
to the now where all
the wrongs set in,
a moment’s atom
out of kilter,
out of being true,
where finally the heart
may intermit its beat
with careless equanimity
or grave abandonment
like a nimbus
with its watery crystals
of deep ice,
washing the sorrows
from your face,
from all the lineaments
of being you.
 
 
VERISIMILITUDE
 
                   After a passage from a novel by Virginia Woolf
 
Somewhere in the middle
I recall a brewer’s cart
and the genial narrator
describing the gray horses 
that had upright bristles
of straw stuck in their tails
like sprouting plumes
above the small brown daisies
peeping from their haunches’ clefts.
And a woman, seeing
this slipstream brook
of burblings through her mind,
immediately brightens,
and sorrow drops away
like a feathered colander
sifting the prismatic richness
of her life, kindling with equine
pleasure an infinite hubble-bubble
of mysterious commotion
out of the  pernicious flurries
of gone time, a lollop on horsetail
streams with straw-thatched coronets,
whimsical and vagulous,
like sea-green sprites,
bedraggled by happiness
and blessed with silly dreams.
 
PROBLEM, SOLUTION, ETC.
 
Her academic pedigree
was impressive--Swarthmore,
Columbia and the Sorbonne.
But toward her hundredth year
she confronted her biggest source
of perplexity and vexation,
the state of being weary
and restless through lack of interest,
and began her day
with crossword puzzles,
then the game shows on TV.
Did she return to these
as the day continued to impair
itself by attrition?
Ramakrishna used to rebuke
card-playing oldsters—
Had they nothing better to do
on the verge of their greatest change
of outward form or appearance?
Are crosswords any better?
Should Kurtz have done puzzles
in the dark,  filling words into a pattern
of numbered squares in answer
to correspondingly numbered clues
to prevent facing the abyss
before him, the memories in him?
What is a six-letter word
for a painful emotion
compounded of loathing and fear?

Bio: Originally from Ukraine, Askold Skalsky has published poems in over 300 online and print periodicals in the United States, Canada, England, Ireland, mainland Europe, Turkey, Australia, and India. He is the recipient of two Individual Artist Awards in Poetry from the Maryland State Arts Council, and is the founding editor of the literary magazine Hedge Apple. A first book of poems, The Ponies of Chuang Tzu, was published in 2011 by Horizon Tracts in New York City. He is currently at work on several poetry projects, including a poetry cycle based on Gertrude Stein’s Tender Buttons. A book of poetry, Shapeless Works of Partial Contemplation, is due to be published by Ephemeral Arts Press in November.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Three Poems Telos, Tabula Rasa & Algor by Carl Scharwath

Telos

Two evening lovers’ echoes
In you forgotten dreams and
memories of essence.

Touch wordlessly in a greater optimism.

Waves of summer morn
Under a cloudless sky with
flickering lights of desire.

Turning like a dancer alone on the stage of life

The evening leaves turn after 
Their first death and sleep
In the place of forgotten Gods.

Does it break you apart to see the expectation so muddled?

Tabula Rasa

I saw the ethos of a
generation destroyed-
mourning the philosophers
In their artful vision.

The sense datum clouds
with cries of the 
nymphs welcoming 
new world dawns.

Mentality is, in its way forming,
a sign of hopeful intelligence.
Knavish roadblocks obstruct
triumphant returns to Arcadia.

A sterism fills my sight
As the false memories
Of a partial Utopia
Flood my soul.

Algor

Like a winter landscape fearful
Of revealing what lies underneath
And I-one minute
Adrift from myself.

Opening up to you
Is as easy as breathing
In the quest for completion
Of a new threshold.

Poetry is a constructed conversation
On the frontier of dreaming.
I cannot help but freeze-and
Scrutinize the ideology doctrine.

Carl Scharwath, has appeared globally with 170+ journals selecting his poetry, short stories, interviews, essays, plays or art. Two poetry books Journey to Become Forgotten (Kind of a Hurricane Press) and Abandoned (Scars Tv) have been published. His new book “The Playground of Destiny” (Impspired Press 8/21) features prose, poems and photography. His first photography book was published by Praxis in Africa. His photography was also exhibited in the Mount Dora Center for The Arts and Leesburg Center for The Arts galleries. Carl is the art editor for Minute Magazine (USA,) has a monthly interview column with ILA Magazine, a competitive runner, and a 2nd degree black- belt in Taekwondo.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

LAKE TITICACA. A Poem by Lorraine Caputo

 LAKE TITICACA

I.
The fuchsia-orange sun
  is cresting the Eastern cordillera
Its colors seep through muslin clouds
  & sheen upon the icy lake


II.
Across the altiplano between
  maroon worn-ribbed mountains
    & bright turquoise waters

Shaggy-roofed adobe homes
  land parceled by stone walls
In swampy pastures graze
  sheep & llama, cows &
    long-haired donkeys

The weekly market at
  Benemerita Zepita
Pollera-skirted women sit upon
  dwarf grass, surrounded by
    their herds of livestock

Beyond the distant shores
  of Titicaca the snowy
    Andes horizon


III.
On this bank of the deep
  cerulean lake edged with marshland
A woman, child to back
  tends her sheep

Totora boats anchor
  amidst golden-green reeds
A small boy beats
  fresh-plowed earth
    with a hoe

On the far side
  dark copses speckle
    parch hills
Ghostly into the clouds rises
  that snow-capped range  

Wandering troubadour Lorraine Caputo is a documentary poet, translator and travel writer. Her works appear in over 250 journals on six continents; and 18 collections of poetry – including On Galápagos Shores (dancing girl press, 2019) and Escape to the Sea (Origami Poems Project, 2021). She also authors travel narratives, articles and guidebooks. In 2011, the Parliamentary Poet Laureate of Canada honored her verse. Caputo has done literary readings from Alaska to the Patagonia. She journeys through Latin America with her faithful travel companion, Rocinante (that is, her knapsack), listening to the voices of the pueblos and Earth. Follow her travels at: www.facebook.com/lorrainecaputo.wanderer or https://latinamericawanderer.wordpress.com.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Go Forward & Elephant Riding. Poems by Maki Starfield

Go Forward


The book I got for the first time was the Bible
"In the beginning was the word..."
I was attracted to this word

Adam and Eve met in this world and the human world began
Even if the stories of those two people are over, our life will not end

From yesterday to today
Connected like a horizon
I will move from today to tomorrow

Upon this heaviness…
O wind, go forward!

In the heart,
Let's change the darkness of the Bible
Into sparkling stars

Endlessly flowing, spreading
My words before it


Elephant Riding


I experienced elephant riding in Thailand for the first time
Raising his nose, the elephant opened the sweaty nose widely
Just before I was about to leave
I put the money in the nostrils at once.
The elephant took it and handed it to his master.

Obeying him, the elephant just carried the next customer
and started walking out
Held by the reins by his master
The elephant doesn’t think about running away from him

Goodbye
This is the first time I met him, and I should think I will not meet him again
But I don’t need any kiss from him

Goodbye

Maki Starfield

Poet, painter and translator.Born in Ehime, Japan, 1972. MA from Sophia University, studying International business management and TESOL in Canada. She recently has published in the second poetry collection, In Love A Sound. https://immaginepoesia.jimdofree.com
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

King Kong vs. the Green Witch. A Poem by Richard L. Weissman

King Kong vs. the Green Witch

Shuttered in that arched ceiling house with oversized window eyes,
fear frozen as ten foot high Green Witch and King Kong square off
neath crabapple tree beside the scotch heavy station wagon.
Flared feminine nostrils bull out white choking smoke
as accented witch hurls broomstick spears at Brooklyn's hairy ape.
Uncertain who to root for
I cower neath my cottony get,
and pray for peace.

Even now
some nights that five-year-old boy revives
ever cowering neath warm get
as warbled voices of the long dead king and Green Witch,
throw rock centered snowballs
down from sad rooftops of this life.
Amplified through sterile echo chambers,
their cold white straitjackets bind me to safer letters,
as pained hourglass grains drift relentlessly south.
So I wake and puke up vanilla conformity
echoing art house dramas or MGM movie plots,
neutering unknown verses
till they sound like every mediocre show on thin air.
Whispering,
"Picture this... it's easier,"
in hope that peace will come to this mental house divided
if only I write as they want.

 

 
Bio:
 
Richard L Weissman has written fiction since 1987.
In 2000, his theatrical play, “The Healing” was selected by Abdingdon Theatre for a staged reading Off-Broadway.
Richard is the author of two Wiley Trading titles. His second book, Trade Like a Casino was selected as a Finalist for the 2012 Technical Analyst Book of the Year Award.
 
In 2016, Mr. Weissman completed his historical novel in the tradition of magical realism, “Generations”.
 
In 2020 his poem, “Mountain Bird and Loquat” was selected as the grand prize winner of the Florida Loquat Literary Festival.
 
In addition to hosting, “In Our Craft or Sullen Art” – a biweekly poetry radio talk show, Richard participates in live spoken word events throughout the U.S. https://richard-weissman.com/
on Facebook: @magicalrealismnovels
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)