The Harrier

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By Edd B. Jennings

Last night,
When I returned from my hunt,
A harrier,
Made his characteristic
Low, undulating sweep
Across the low brush.
When something on the ground interested him,
He stopped in place
In the full hover only the harrier
Can accomplish.
He was out again this morning.
He has his hunt,
I mine.

How Will the Republic Fall?

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By Dan Blum

How will the republic fall?
A raging mob that storms the wall?
Waving Uzi and grenade?
Ransacking through some hallowed hall?

Because we chose of our free will
A false Messiah to fulfill
A vain and haughty dream
Proclaim our greatness on live-stream,
Lead us through a heavenly door,
And poof our nation is no more.

For all we hold most dear, that seems
So permanent, so set
Is in truth as delicate

As a glassy crust of ice
That forms upon an April night
And melts off in the morning light

The Old Pioneer Cemetery

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By Jane Yunker

Shadows drift among the stones,
breezes telling stories,
memories, soft whispers,
to the nesting birds
and the humming bees
that drink the nectar
of wild flowers cooled by dew,
heated by the mid-day sun.

Morning, afternoon, evening,
shadows grow long, fading into night.
No one stops to wonder, to walk
among those who came before.
No one notices the leaning fence,
the rusted gate hanging on a single hinge,
its crumbling corner anchored by weeds
grown tall, tangled with the years.

Only shadows drift among the stones.

     
Bio:
Jane Yunker’s most recent publications include Creative Wisconsin, Oshkosh Independent, Living and Playing Magazine, and the Hometown Gazette.

Anticipation

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By Marsrick

Days of silence stretched between us. I told myself I was holding up, but I was unshaven and ignoring voicemail from work. And she was happy somewhere else.

Ding!

My stupor ruptured open, spraying a mist of anxiety into the air. I darted from the couch to the bedroom, knocking empty bottles off the coffee table. A blinking light, her light, beckoned from the nightstand. One new message. I tapped the screen.

The ceiling crashed down. The walls kissed in the center of the room.

“Free Wireless Carrier MSG: You’re approaching your data limit.”

Keenings

Eiffel Tower Sunset

By Sarah Russell

Someone from the Class of ’61 died today. No one close by, just someone I sent Christmas cards to and read posts by on Facebook about cats and grandchildren. And suddenly I longed to kiss someone.

No.

I wanted to make love that leaves bruises, jump in a lake at the top of the world so cold I gasp, ride the Roue de Paris, get drunk on Bastille Day and watch fireworks over the Seine and sing La Marseilles with strangers.

Instead I sent a sympathy card to her kids that said sorry for your loss.

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By Adam “A.J.” Binash

He folded his wink
Like a Dog-Ear made
To place a Bible passage,
Or a poem
Among convenient founds.

Beside his patched skin,
On his lips
Of herpes sores and pockmarks,
Were marriage proposals;
To wearied housewives.
Lying abridged
Roots-to-rosebuds.
(Or daisies)

But his contentment wasn’t directed toward flowers.

Rather the detergent-washed diamonds
On their fingers
Curled like gunshots
Inside forever goodbyes.

He lamented:
“I have no description for poverty,
But I do know what it means
To be hungry.”

A Delicate Reverence

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By Celia Coyne

The things my mother taught me are not practical. A love of poetry and an appreciation of the sky will not take you far.

I remember her weeping over unpaid bills. The numbers were a foreign language.

Then I remember her showing me how to pick up a bumble bee without hurting it so that it would not sting. The prickle of its legs on my open palm; the furry perfection of it.

There were things that only she could do. Like pill a cat – it would take the tablet from her hand.

      
Celia Coyne’s stories have appeared in various journals, including Takahe, Penduline Press, Flash Frontier, Flash: The International Short-Short Story Magazine, as well as several anthologies.