The Shadow of the Summer

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By Mary Shay McGuire

evening sun slants
across the June grass
that moment
the sun lowering
sending streams of light
repeating, repeating
each time carrying me back

to Massachusetts childhood
near the wide river
near the Atlantic Ocean
where you run to the sea
watch the tides forever
pulling in, pulling out

that June evening sun’s shadow
I remember—crosses the lawn
the moment I hold my father’s hand
my mother bends taking our picture
as if everything is fine

         
“I write because if seems the way to express to something that I cannot say any other way.” – the author

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The Mosque Killings, Christchurch

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By Michael Mintrom

It’s a small city, all avenues and parks.
Autumn has arrived. The leaves on oaks
have turned red. Some scatter over lawns.

Others are crushed by passing cars.
We breathe in quiet gardens, feel
the earth tremor.

Some weeks, we desire the big world.
But not much.
Then came ‘the darkest day.’

That’s what the Prime Minister called it.
She stood among us and prayed for the dead.
She wore a hijab. She outlawed the weapons.

‘Kia Kaha, Kia Maia, Kia Manawanui’ we say.
Words to face Winter —
Be Strong, Be Steadfast, Be Willing.

         
Michael Mintrom grew up in Christchurch. He wrote this poem to capture the sadness of the mosque killings, and to honor the display of community spirit and unity which followed.

When You See Me Walk

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By Nayana Nair

When you see me walk toward my grief,
toward my past,
with my head sinking down,
with my hands full of my own pieces,
stop me dear.
Come to me.
Run to me.
Call out to me
even when you think I cannot hear.
Hold me back
even when you think I cannot be stopped.
Promise me
that you will try.

Nayana is an engineer and technical writer who also moonlights as an amateur poet. She says, “Writing for me is a process of self realization and an effort to understand what is ever-elusive.”

A New Sense of Place

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By Catherine Coundjeris

The mountain is
New to me,
Looking different
Each moment
In every light.
My eyes
Rest on it
Every day.
Old
And present
Its shadows
Cast into my room
Cold and shining
It stands by
Itself
Pushing back the sky.
Spirits like fireflies
Rise above it.

         
“I am fascinated by the pattern our lives make in the big picture of the universe in which we live. This poem is a tribute to my mother who recently passed away. She inspired me to write and enjoy poetry in all its many forms.” – the poet

Auto-pilot

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By Penny Peyser

Mechanically she moved through groc’ry aisles,
on auto-pilot planned the ev’ning’s meal,
robotically produced for cashiers smiles;
‘t was danger her expression would congeal.
She resolutely pushed her shopping cart,
resisting urges to ram into men
who close resembled he who stole her heart
and carelessly misplaced it yet again.
Too sharply she rebuffed offers of help
to get her heavy bags into the trunk.
Slammed fingers in her door and gave a yelp;
it was official – she was in a funk.
Instead of coming home with face so dour
she steered her vehicle to Happy Hour.
            
Penny Peyser is a writer / actress / documentary filmmaker in love with iambic pentameter. “Rhyme and rhythm make this life much sweeter,” she says.

Riding Motorcycles

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By Dianne Moritz

Driving down Flying Point

Road today, I thought

of you and me winding

up Mount Tamalpais,

dust coating our happy lips.

I’d drape my thin arms

over your hard shoulders

and rush ahead moments:

nestling in pine shade,

deep joy echoing there.

            
Dianne Moritz enjoys capturing brief moments in time, celebrating trials, tribulations, and beauty of life. She dreams of publishing a book of all her drabble.

Converse High Tops

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By Mark Tulin

A worn pair of Converse High Tops
drape from a solitary wire
where the crows balance
and most people ignore.

I see the sneakers hang in the day
and upside down like a bat at night.
Happily and hopefully stuck,
a symbol of teenage revolt.

They look like a size ten.
I wonder what teenager wore them.
They still have tread on their soles,
just frayed around the edges.

It must have taken the kid hours to do,
choosing to immortalize such a thing.
Wanting to be free like a sneaker,
looking down at the world from a solitary wire.

         
Mark’s poetry and stories are his most effective ways of expressing himself. His upcoming poetry book, Awkward Grace, will be out in early 2020.