Make it Count

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By MagnumOpusTribe

Each step is yours
take it with care
Each moment in time
touch someone and share
Each new thought
let it create joy
Each hope possible
stop how, what & why
Dare to dream
No matter how hard or far
They are yours for a purpose
Believe; reach for the stars.

Brick by brick
build a life unique;
spread some cheer
break some boundaries

Then comes a time
No matter how high you fly
Life flashes before your eyes,
Make sure each frame paints a rainbow
sunshine thru cloudy dark skies.

          
“I write because I don’t know how not to. A million thoughts collide and they come tumbling out in the form of poetry, short stories or just human experiences.” – the poet

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Fruit Smoothie

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By M.J. Christie

I wondered if my date might think it weird. But she didn’t say anything, just smiled. Even when we settled down to order a fruit smoothie, she remained unaffected. Not the reaction I’d expected, if I’m honest. What woman would accept a man who wears a mask on their first meeting? It’s no ordinary mask. Not like one of those worn at the Carnival of Venice. It’s a gorilla mask. One more qualified to wear at a robbery rather than an afternoon of togetherness.

“I’m curious—”

“Yes?” Finally, she’s going to ask me, ‘why?’.

“Wouldn’t you prefer the banana smoothie?”

           
“Writing gives me focus. It’s a rewarding and sometimes painful pastime but without it I’d be lost.” – the author

A Man Looking

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By Nick Lord Lancaster

Sometimes she notices a man looking and wonders if he recognizes her from her pictures on Reddit – perhaps one where she’s accidentally shown too much face or forgotten to blur out her tattoos. If his glances at her chest, his suggestive smirk and extended eye contact are his way of saying “I know what’s under there, and you know I know.” Or if he’s just another man, probably one who thinks he’s a feminist because he quietly abhors rape culture and wouldn’t dream of physically assaulting or verbally harassing her. Just another man undressing her with his eyes, imagining.

           
Nick Lord Lancaster writes short things and lives in Essex with his wife and two daughters (one human, one canine).

Memories

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By Eddie D. Moore

Dan scrolled through the photos of his granddaughter in his text messages: catching the bus for her first day of school, a birthday party, a late night dinner, swinging in the park, picking flowers and chasing her cat. Every one of them made his heart ache and fill with joy simultaneously. Her smile brightened his days, and her piercing eyes always warmed his soul like nothing else. He had watched that old video of her laughing dozens of times, as well as the one of her singing her favorite song. His only regret was never actually getting to meet her.

           
Eddie D. Moore travels hundreds of hours a year, and he fills that time by listening to audiobooks. When he isn’t playing with his grandchildren, he writes his own stories.

Meeting de Kooning

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By Dianne Moritz

He seemed dazed, rambled on about
too many visitors: McCartney, Jagger,
scouting for good investments.

We’d been invited for dinner, but
Elaine breezed in, grabbed
Bill’s arm, and whisked him away.

We trooped to the studio to view
his work-in-progress … ceiling-high canvas,
with splotches of yellow, wild and full.

I sat in his chair and dabs of wet
paint dotted my borrowed jacket.
“My sister’s gonna kill me,” I said.

Over fettuccine, we toasted de Kooning,
joked about him autographing the jacket,
the millions it’d fetch, and what might have been.

         
Dianne writes to capture and remember the awe-struck moments from her life. She met de Kooning’s assistant the summer of 1984, who arranged a dinner that got side-tracked.

Hotel Saint Jacques

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By Thomas M. McDade

What a wonderful sleep, despite the trash men’s thunderous indifference. The sound of merchants hosing down sidewalks is perfect for dozing and dreaming. In the breakfast room, six students at a table chatter about the handsome gents they met at Octoberfest. Others who chose a trip to Nice wax sarcastic about their fine “tans” and la soleil. The couple beside us plans their day. Raising her voice, as if a tour guide she says, “Château de Malmaison where Napoleon and Josephine resided for starters.” He places his hand on his heart then shoos away a bee circling the raspberry jam.

           
“I write to make use of my life.” – the author. Thomas M. McDade is twice a U.S. Navy Veteran serving ashore at the Fleet Anti-Air Warfare Training Center, Virginia Beach, VA and at sea aboard the USS Mullinnix (DD-944) and USS Miller (DE/FF 1091).

Bird Speaks to Man

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By Martin Christmas

I, garden sitting.
Magpie perches on a bush,
so close I could sense it watching me.

Slowmo, I walk closer,
Magpie perches unafraid.
I could have almost touched it.
Magpie watches me.

Stepping away slowly,
into the house for the camera.
Fully expecting
Magpie to have flown away.
No. Magpie remains, watching me.

I, the junior partner in this trust relationship.
Magpie gives me time for three shutter pushes,
then flies away, majestically.

Man makes contact with Magpie.
More correctly, the other way around.
Magpie gives time of day to man.

We are not
the centre of the Universe.

           
Martin Christmas has been published in several Australian anthologies and overseas in Red River Review (USA) (Featured Poet), and StepAway Magazine (UK). His chapbooks are Immediate Reflections and The Deeper Inner. “To write is like breathing,” he says.