Weaning

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By Lee Robison

In the slow, urgent cadence of cattle,
the black cows
move again across a landscape
of yellow grass and snow
to where they last heard
the familiar bawl,

dumb to all but ache—
whether of teat or heart
we men cannot know,
though we watch

and have had familiar loves
that for a summer of time were
but are now but silence.

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A Narcissist’s Repine

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By Colleen Doty
I sent her an apology
of sorts
a note, attached to email
scrabbled from my heart, while on the plane
to my holiday home on the Solomon Islands.
I saved the note, as I do,
with all emails where people have wronged me,
filed alphabetically by last name.
I considered the wording as I cycled the boardwalk,
(I don’t like the word “dike”),
I need to clear the air, extend
an olive branch
to resolve this five-year conflict.
How can she not want to talk?
Idealist, environmentalist, with her
perceived women’s rights issues —
We’re family
after all.          
Colleen lives with her husband and two kids on Galiano Island in the Salish Sea. When not writing stories she works as an historical researcher and grows open-pollinated seeds for seed banks.

The Old Music

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By Philip Hess

Have you ever been to a bonfire
Of acoustic guitars, strings pinging
Like when your spokes went out?

Once I went to a piano burn,
Keys and pedals already stripped,
Just the hulking dark shells set ablaze.

Another time when I lit an old drum,
The taut leather across the top
Swelled way up before bursting with a bang.

And whenever I torch a pile of scores,
I think of broiling wienies in the smoky flames
On a conductor’s stand turned skillet.

The Very Short Poem

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By John L. Malone

I’ve got a poem for you, a very short one, he promised with a garrulous grin, and then, in a long-winded introduction in which all the masters of brevity were cited from Basho to Lydia Davis, he proceeded to demolish all notions of shortness. The poem took ten seconds, the intro five minutes.

         
John Malone is a South Australian writer of short stories, flash fiction and poetry.

It’s Come to This

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By Dianne Moritz

Once
she sipped daiquiris
by the pool
high above Hollywood
gazing down at the peasants.
Eucalyptus
shade dappled
her soft, tanned skin
as she kissed his lips
under the California sun.
There
he made promises
to love her forever
and ever and ever
until the twelfth of never.
Today
she lives in the east
writing … remembering
dreams of long ago
when now was all
everything she wanted to know.

        
Dianne writes from her home in New York and misses California every day. Her poems have appeared in Earth’s Daughters, Long Island Quarterly as well as online in Adelaide Literary, The Haiku Foundation and Haiku Universe.