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Archive for the category “Poetry”

Seeking Solace by Callum McLaughlin

seekingsolace
My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Callum’s Seeking Solace is a lovely, lyrical book, filled with musical language that lifts the heart and opens the eye. Many of you know I adore poetry, going all the way back to my childhood, so I’m always happy when I have a chance to read a new collection. This one was especially moving. My favorites include Light Bringer, Rise, Will You, and Annual. I lean toward the uplifting aspects of these, though there is a lot to be said for the impact of some of the darker themes in other poems. Overall, this is a wonderful collection that I’ll be reading again and again, I’m sure. And I’m looking forward to more from Callum, who puts his soul out there for all to see.

Do yourself a favor and check out Seeking Solace today!

Seeking Solace

Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

red_heart

Thought I might share a poem today, about love missed out on, never acted upon. We all likely have someone we remember, wondering what direction our lives might have taken had we pursued that relationship. Just a little thought from Sara Teasdale. Enjoy.

The Look

Strephon kissed me in the spring,
      Robin in the fall,
But Colin only looked at me
      And never kissed at all.
Strephon’s kiss was lost in jest,
      Robin’s lost in play,
But the kiss in Colin’s eyes
      Haunts me night and day.

 

Happy Halloween!

halloween

October Siege

October.
The siege begins.
Enemies among us
Everywhere!
With evil grins,
They lurk,
They skulk,
They glare,
Sharp fangs bared.

October.
Hide inside.
Nighttime danger
Everywhere!
With shining eyes,
They menace,
They taunt,
They torment,
Mouths opened wide.

See how they glow!
Deadly, gap-toothed grins
Midst curves of vivid orange!
Silently screaming with devilish glee,
They lounge on nighttime porches,
And march up darkened drives.
Casting yellow light from watchful eyes,
They search for unwary victims,
For slow and easy prey.

Big ones, tall ones,
Skinny ones, or round.
Colored like the fiery sun,
Or the moonlight pallor of alien visitors.
They line up on fence posts,
Stair steps, and windowsills.
Peering out . . . or peering in?
Looking for who?
You!

October.
Watch your step.
They’re back again,
Everywhere!
With wicked intent,
They scheme,
They hunger,
They haunt,
Pumpkins on patrol!

Boo!

   – Marcia Meara

Star-Gazing by Marcia Meara

perseids

The Perseids . . . 
Lying back under 
The ink-blotted sky,
He tries out the words.
They tickle his tongue.
The Per-see-ids. Those
Pinpoints of brightness
And streaks of fire,
Lighting the night
In a spectacle
Older than he can 
Possibly know.

Look Dad, he cries,
Look how many!
I see a hundred,
Maybe a thousand!
I see them, too,
Dad says,
And together, they laugh, 
Delighted.
Joy shared, 
And excitement 
Doubled.

Come see the meteors,
Dad said, as he
Shook him awake
Just before dawn.
He crawled from the tent,
Rubbing his eyes, 
Then staring in wonder.
With the sky still a midnight black,
And bright stars wheeling overhead, 
The fireworks came.
Racing toward Earth,
One after another,
The Perseids. 
The miracle of hot August nights.
A late-summer light show
That electrified his soul.
His young heart transfixed
By the sight of the universe,
Lit with streamers
Of flame.

A meteor shower,
Dad tells him again,
But he knows nothing
So beautiful has a name
So ordinary.
Stars, he thinks, pulled loose
From the fabric of the sky,
And flung toward earth, 
Trailing silver and gold,
And bringing pieces of Heaven
To those watching below.

He holds up his hands,
Cupped reverently, 
To catch one of his own.
To be blessed by 
This summer magic.
He holds his breath, waiting
For the illumination
Of his soul to begin.
Falling stars,
Falling from the
Summer sky,
For him.

-Marcia Meara –

Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love

Poem of the Day: Attitude Really IS Everything

rose

Still deleting emails. I’ve deleted over 18,000 by hand since 8:00am. I had to stop for a while, and get my head straight. Thought this might be a good reminder to keep a positive attitude.

Attitude Really IS Everything

No!
Yes.
You can’t!
I can.
Why?
Why not?
It’s all wrong!
It’s all right.
You shouldn’t!
I should.
You won’t!
I will.
It could be bad!
It could be good.
It’s too late!
There’s time.
You’re too old!
I’m still here.
You did it!
I did.

   – Marcia Meara

Summer Magic

Poem of the Day: The Rope Swing

Blue-Ridge-Mountain-Club-Hole

One more from the Mac at Ten section of Summer Magic. Hope you can feel  all the exuberance of a young boy spending the afternoon at a mountain swimming hole.

The Rope Swing

Sailing up, up into
Blue summer sky,
Hot rope rough against his hands,
He shouts with joy, and lets go.
For a crystal moment,
He hangs suspended,
Frozen in time
Like a fly in amber.
All awkward angles–
Shoulder blades and
Elbows, and
Knobby knees,
Painted against the sky,
Heart filled with fierce joy.

Dropping, down, down
Into clear green water
Cold on his skin,
He sinks to the silty bottom
And sits suspended
In an alien world,
Watching  the silvered flashes
Of tiny fish darting to and fro,
Startled by his sudden appearance.
I am a fish, too, he thinks,
And holds his breath
As long as he can.

Finally, he rockets up
Through a stream of
Tickling bubbles,
Breaking the
Surface of the water
With a loud whoop of
Childish exuberance.
All thoughts of becoming a fish
Forgotten as he
Scrambles out,
Shakes the water from his hair,
And, grinning, hitches up his
Baggy shorts.

He’s ready
To do it all again.
Flying through the summer air,
Dropping into the cold water
To commune with fishes
Silvered in refracted light.
Then leaping to the surface,
A boy of ten once more,
Laughing through an endless summer
Made perfect by a cool green pond,
And an old rope swing.

     – Marcia Meara –

Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love

Poem of the Day: Summer Magic

blue-ridge-parkway-autumn-mountains-sunset-nc--boundless-dave-allen

Thinking about my sequel to Wake-Robin Ridge has me remembering how much I loved the idea of a little ten-year old boy who grew up camping in the mountains with his dad, every summer. The first part of my chapbook, Summer Magic, is called Mac At Ten, and celebrates those years of innocent childhood, as he learned to love those mountains with all his heart. Here’s one of those poems.

Summer Magic

Crawling quietly from his tent,
His dad still lost in slumber within,
He sits down alone on the granite slab,
Coltish legs drawn up to his chin,
And arms wrapped around skinny knees.
He gazes toward the pale horizon,
Watching the sleeping valley below.
With breath held in anticipation,
He waits for the magic
He knows will come.

There! A thin curve of molten red!
A far away sliver of fiery light
Breaks the horizon.
Rising slowly,
It bathes the tops of the rolling hills
In a brilliant spill of gold.
Mother-of-pearl dawn
Gives way to butter yellow
Morning light.

In front of his wide, blue eyes,
The world awakens.
Magic arrives and
Day is born,
Again.
He smiles to himself and wraps
His arms more tightly
Around his knees,
Shivering in private delight, and
Holding the beauty
Close within,
Having already learned
Some magic is
Secret.

  – Marcia Meara –

Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love

Lending Fate A Hand

scrapbook_heart_red_4_scrapbook_frame

Lending Fate A Hand

Standing near the shop,
I watch.
People rush in and out,
Jostling, hurrying.
Carrying steaming cups
To offices nearby. 

I wait for the right one.
Finally! He exits and
Heads toward me.
My heart stutters
With pleasure
As I admire him.
He’s tall, wide-shouldered,
Very blonde.
A Viking in Armani.
Yes, I think. Oh, yes.
He’s just as perfect as
He looked yesterday.

With careful timing,
I step into his path,
And we collide.
Oh! I’m so sorry!
He stops, surprised.
Then bends to pick up my purse.
Handing it back, he smiles.
My fault, he says.
I should have been paying attention.

We stand for a moment,
Assessing each other,
Then I laugh awkwardly,
And flash him a look
He can’t mistake.
His eyes widen slightly,
His smile, as well.
And I know.
He’ll be here tomorrow,
Ordering latte, and
Looking for me.
I’ll be waiting.

     – Marcia Meara –

Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love

Astigmatism by Amy Lowell

For all those, including myself, who might be tempted to think their view of what’s right or beautiful is the only one.

39559728qouiYT_ph

Astigmatism

by Amy Lowell
To Ezra Pound: with Much Friendship and Admiration and Some Differences of Opinion

The Poet took his walking-stick
Of fine and polished ebony.
Set in the close-grained wood
Were quaint devices;
Patterns in ambers,
And in the clouded green of jades.
The top was smooth, yellow ivory,
And a tassel of tarnished gold
Hung by a faded cord from a hole
Pierced in the hard wood,
Circled with silver.
For years the Poet had wrought upon this cane.
His wealth had gone to enrich it,
His experiences to pattern it,
His labour to fashion and burnish it.
To him it was perfect,
A work of art and a weapon,
A delight and a defence.
The Poet took his walking-stick
And walked abroad.

Peace be with you, Brother.

The Poet came to a meadow.
Sifted through the grass were daisies,
Open-mouthed, wondering, they gazed at the sun.
The Poet struck them with his cane.
The little heads flew off, and they lay
Dying, open-mouthed and wondering,
On the hard ground.
“They are useless. They are not roses,” said the Poet.

Peace be with you, Brother. Go your ways.

The Poet came to a stream.
Purple and blue flags waded in the water;
In among them hopped the speckled frogs;
The wind slid through them, rustling.
The Poet lifted his cane,
And the iris heads fell into the water.
They floated away, torn and drowning.
“Wretched flowers,” said the Poet,
“They are not roses.”

Peace be with you, Brother. It is your affair.

The Poet came to a garden.
Dahlias ripened against a wall,
Gillyflowers stood up bravely for all their short stature,
And a trumpet-vine covered an arbour
With the red and gold of its blossoms.
Red and gold like the brass notes of trumpets.
The Poet knocked off the stiff heads of the dahlias,
And his cane lopped the gillyflowers at the ground.
Then he severed the trumpet-blossoms from their stems.
Red and gold they lay scattered,
Red and gold, as on a battle field;
Red and gold, prone and dying.
“They were not roses,” said the Poet.

Peace be with you, Brother.
But behind you is destruction, and waste places.

The Poet came home at evening,
And in the candle-light
He wiped and polished his cane.
The orange candle flame leaped in the yellow ambers,
And made the jades undulate like green pools.
It played along the bright ebony,
And glowed in the top of cream-coloured ivory.
But these things were dead,
Only the candle-light made them seem to move.
“It is a pity there were no roses,” said the Poet.

Peace be with you, Brother. You have chosen your part.

Star-Gazing by Marcia Meara

2005_perseids

The Perseids . . . 
Lying back under 
The ink-blotted sky,
He tries out the words.
They tickle his tongue.
The Per-see-ids. Those
Pinpoints of brightness
And streaks of fire,
Lighting the night
In a spectacle
Older than he can 
Possibly know.

Look Dad, he cries,
Look how many!
I see a hundred,
Maybe a thousand!
I see them, too,
Dad says,
And together, they laugh, 
Delighted.
Joy shared, 
And excitement 
Doubled.

Come see the meteors,
Dad said, as he
Shook him awake
Just before dawn.
He crawled from the tent,
Rubbing his eyes, 
Then staring in wonder.
With the sky still a midnight black,
And bright stars wheeling overhead, 
The fireworks came.
Racing toward Earth,
One after another,
The Perseids. 
The miracle of hot August nights.
A late-summer light show
That electrified his soul.
His young heart transfixed
By the sight of the universe,
Lit with streamers
Of flame.

A meteor shower,
Dad tells him again,
But he knows nothing
So beautiful has a name
So ordinary.
Stars, he thinks, pulled loose
From the fabric of the sky,
And flung toward earth, 
Trailing silver and gold,
And bringing pieces of Heaven
To those watching below.

He holds up his hands,
Cupped reverently, 
To catch one of his own.
To be blessed by 
This summer magic.
He holds his breath, waiting
For the illumination
Of his soul to begin.
Falling stars,
Falling from the
Summer sky,
For him.

 -Marcia Meara –

Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love

Showers by Marcia Meara

rain11

Showers

Drip-drip.

Huddled and sighing
Inside the tent,
Boredom a damp presence
Keeping him company,
While Dad naps
To the sound of the rain.

Drip-drip.

Comic books scattered,
On his rumpled cot.
Superheroes as powerless
As little boys, while
The day spills water
Over all his plans.

Drip-drip.

No fishing today.
Those shimmery trout
Are safe in the stream.
No hiking alone,
That’s the rule.
What’s left to do?

Drip-drip.

Quietly, he crawls outside,
His stifled squeals
Turning to laughter
As the ice-cold water
Tickles his back.
This could be fun!

Drip-drip-drip-drip.

Rain falls harder.
He splashes wildly
Through silvery puddles,
Arms flung wide,
Laughing louder, and
Doing a rain dance all his own.

Drip-drip-drip-drip.

Awake now, Dad laughs, too,
Tossing him a bar of soap.
He grins at this new idea.
A rain shower? 
Why not, says Dad. May as well,
Once your rain dance is done, that is. 

Drip-drip-drop.

   – Marcia Meara –

Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love

Indian Summer by Marcia Meara

Just sharing a poem from my Summer Magic collection. Enjoy!

Indian Summer

He sees her standing 
Below the falls,
Carefully balanced
On the slippery rocks,
And laughing
In the hazy October sun.

Only yesterday 
The ice-rimmed pool
Mirrored angry gray clouds,
And a wind out of the north
Chilled his bones.
Today, a warm yellow sun
Has eaten the frost,
And resurrected the ghost
Of a summer already laid to rest.

She’s wearing shorts, 
As if she knew 
There would be a reprieve
And dressed accordingly.
Dampened hems, and a
Misty sheen on 
Her long, slim legs
Bear testament to 
The wind-blown spray.
Her loosened hair is a 
Sable cloud swirling
Around her face, 
Smelling faintly
Of August nights
And tupelo honey.

She turns toward him, 
Radiant and joyful, 
Filled with a wonder
Most have long lost.
Her smile invites him
To let go of autumn,
To share the sunshine,
To be reborn in this moment.

Surprised, his mouth 
Curves in response, and
His soul cries,
Yes, oh yes!
Desperation gives voice
To need long ignored.
Yes, he says again,
This time aloud. 
I want the sunlight,
The warmth, the wonder.
Show me, teach me.
He takes her hand, and
Lets the sunlight
Flood his heart,
Thawing the frost within,
Setting him free.

   – Marcia Meara

 

Thank You!!

My heartfelt thanks to everyone who took advantage of the free promotion for Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love. Sure hope you enjoy it! 

FREE Is GOOD!

Last day! Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love is free for download on Kindle. Free is good, because…well, it’s FREE, and you don’t pay for it, and stuff. 🙂 Get it? Well, then go GET it! 😉

Summer Magic

Moccasins

One more for the night, also from Summer Magic: Poems of Life & Love. This is from the Mac At Ten collection. Hope you enjoy it.

Moccasins

Sneakers on,
Laces tight,
Crunching noisily
Along the path,
And wishing…
Wishing for
The silent tread
Of the Cherokee
Who walked these hills
Before him. 

Sighing,
He flings himself
Down on the rock,
And stares at the
Campfire.
I could sneak up on deer,
He tells his dad,
If I had moccasins.
I could walk
Quiet, quiet,
Down each trail.
Now I clomp,
Clomp, clomp!
They know I’m coming.
I’ll never see them
Before they
See me. 

Dad smiles.
Here, son.
Your mom said
To give you this. 

He takes the package,
Curiousity rising,
Even as he tears the paper.
What’s in here, dad?
What did she send? 

A flash of brown,
Soft In his hands.
He breathes in
The warm smell of
Leather,
And laughs with joy!
Moccasins!
How did she know, Dad?
Oh, look how soft they are!
I will be silent now,
Quiet as a mouse.
How did she know
I wanted these
So much? 

His dad smiles.
Moms are like that, Mac.
Moms always know what
Their children want most.
And Moms always want
Their children to have their
Heart’s desire. 

He watches his son
Tearing off his sneakers,
Sliding narrow feet
Into soft, brown leather,
Face aglow with delight,
Current dreams having
All come true.
And he wishes his son’s
Happiness would always be
As easy to come by as
A new pair of
Moccasins.

– Marcia Meara –

Lending Fate A Hand

Thought I would share one of my poems tonight, just for fun. Enjoy.

Lending Fate A Hand

Standing near the shop,
I watch.
People rush in and out,
Jostling, hurrying.
Carrying steaming cups
To offices nearby. 

I wait for the right one.
Finally! He exits and
Heads toward me.
My heart stutters
With pleasure
As I admire him.
He’s tall, wide-shouldered,
Very blonde.
A Viking in Armani.
Yes, I think. Oh, yes.
He’s just as perfect as
He looked yesterday.

With careful timing,
I step into his path,
And we collide.
Oh! I’m so sorry!
He stops, surprised.
Then bends to pick up my purse.
Handing it back, he smiles.
My fault, he says.
I should have been paying attention.

We stand for a moment,
Assessing each other,
Then I laugh awkwardly,
And flash him a look
He can’t mistake.
His eyes widen slightly,
His smile, as well.
And I know.
He’ll be here tomorrow,
Ordering latte, and
Looking for me.
I’ll be waiting.

     – Marcia Meara –

 

Noir Erasure Poetry Anthology

noir-anthology

New Release

Silver Birch Press’s latest anthology is out! I’m very excited about this one, because it features something that was completely new to me (and maybe to some of you), erasure poetry. The trick with erasure poetry is to take a page from a book or other printed material, black out or otherwise obscure most of the text, and leave behind words that create a poem. It is not as easy as it sounds, believe me. Those darn words don’t cooperate, and many times, are not where you’d like them to be to make your poetry work. But it is SO much fun, and I find myself hunting down examples of this art form online, and being amazed at the beautiful and unique ways poets have found to obscure the unwanted words. There will be more posts on this subject matter later, because I’m fascinated with it, and want to share some links with you. But for now, I just want to say how much fun it was to create a poem for this collection. 

Silver Birch Press has done a wonderful job with the book, displaying the blacked out page on the left, so you can see the source, and the printed poem on the right, for easy reading. In this particular book, the idea was to create your poem from a source that would fall into the noir category, such as the writings of Raymond Chandler. The cover, by artist Guy Budziak, depicts actor William Conrad from the 1946 movie, The Killers. Check out his work at Film Noir Woodcuts.

The 122-page anthology features the work of 46 writers from around the world:  Jeffrey C. Alfier / Beth Ayer / Jenni B. Baker / David Barker / Kathy Burkett / Candace Butler / Freda Butler / Kim Cooper / Subhankar Das / Andrea Dickens / Barbara Eknoian / Chris Forhan / Laura Hartenberger / Paul Hawkins / Deborah Herman / Sandra Herman / Mathias Jansson / Jax NTP / Rosemarie Keenan / Wm. Todd King/ Joseph Lisowski / Renee Mallett / Adrian Manning/ Karen Margolis / Catfish McDaris / Marcia Meara / james w. moore / Sarah Nichols / Winston Plowes / David S. Pointer / D.A. Pratt / David Rachels / Jonne Rhodes / Van Roberts / Daniel Romo / Tere Sievers / Gerald So / Sherry Steiner / Caitlin Stern / Scott Stoller / Thomas R. Thomas / Mary Umans / Melanie Villines / Mercedes Webb-Pullman / Richard Wink / Joanie Hieger Fritz Zosike

Being such a lover of urban fantasy, I chose Simon R. Green’s book, Hell To Pay,  as my source material. The hero of his Nightside books is a trench coat-wearing private eye, and the writing has a definite gritty noir feeling to it–noir from the Twilight Zone. 

Hope some of you will check Noir Erasure Poetry Anthology out. I think you’ll be surprised at how much fun it is.

Noir Erasure Poetry Anthology

If you decide to place an order with amazon, clicking through from my links will give me credit.  If you are enjoying  my reviews on Bookin’ It, it’s a great way to let me know!  Thanks

 

Summer Magic FREE Today!

Summer Magic_

Got up a bit late this morning, sorry! But for those who may have missed the earlier post, my book of poetry, Summer Magic, is free today, tomorrow and Monday. Hope some of you will take this opportunity to download it. Nothing to lose, right? And you may discover it is something you enjoy. If so, hope you’ll consider leaving a positive review on amazon. Thanks!

Summer Magic: Poems of Life and Love

Summer Magic FREE November 2 Through November 4!

Summer Magic_

Since I have been at the hospital with my mother daily and haven’t been able to post anything new, I thought it would be a good time to run a promo for my chapbook of poems. Summer Magic will be available for free download Saturday, November 2, Sunday, November 3, and Monday, November 4. Hope some of you will check it out. The verses are very special to me, especially those that are about MacKenzie Cole (from Wake-Robin Ridge) as a boy of ten, exploring the fun of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s free. You can’t lose! 😀

Summer Magic: Poems of Life and Love

Haiku Reflections by Geraldine Hartman

haiku reflections

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

I confess, I don’t know much about the art of haiku, but I do know a lot about words, and Geraldine Hartman uses them in spare, but beautiful, combinations to evoke a whole host of seasonal images and emotions. You wouldn’t think a mere three lines–just 17 syllables–could say so much, but if chosen wisely, this book proves they certainly can. Fall is my favorite season, so I was especially entranced by the crisp, cool images presented in that section of the book. I could smell autumn in the air with every haiku!

Haiku Reflections is put together beautifully, too, with color photographs at the beginning of each season, and that adds a great deal to the entire presentation.Geraldine is a blogging friend of mine, so I can’t be entirely objective here, but If you love poetry, even if you aren’t familiar with haiku, I think you will really enjoy this lovely book. I sure did. It’s a good introduction to a very old art form.

Summer Magic Has Gone Live!

Summer Magic_

Exciting news here today! My little volume of verse (also called a “chapbook”) has gone live on Amazon.com today. Wow. Two books live in less than a month and a half. I’m feeling pretty good right now, for sure. 

Summer Magic is a 44-page collection of seventeen poems. Part One of the book is called Mac At Ten, and features the main male character from my novel, Wake-Robin Ridge, as a little boy, camping in his beloved Blue Ridge Mountains, where he sees the magic in all that nature has to offer. From tales around the campfire to watching the sunrise, he knows instinctively that he is in a special place, and he throws himself into the pleasure of it all, with reckless abandon.

Part Two concerns itself with a variety of topics…whatever was on my mind on any given day, pretty much. Life, death, summer and autumn, betrayal and abiding love. 

I thought this little book would be the perfect opportunity to learn more about Kindle’s new Cover Creator, and I will be doing a post on that another day, as part of my series on self-publishing. I think it probably worked well enough for this project, but I’m not trading in my graphic designer yet, by any means.

Hope some of you will enjoy Summer Magic. I had a wonderful time writing it, and am already at work on another collection of poetry.

Summer Magic

Bookin’ It News!

bigbook1_e0

Good morning, Fellow Book Lovers! Just wanted to touch base quickly on two bits of news, both related to my new novel, Wake-Robin Ridge. Then it’s back to business as usual, with two new book reviews I hope to get up today.

First, if you purchased an early copy of Wake-Robin Ridge, you might find some typos that seem to have been generated by Book Gremlins during the upload process to Kindle. I think they slipped into my library in the dead of night and made nasty changes to punctuation and a few other things, while I slept innocently, dreaming only of my immense satisfaction of having finally finished the book. I’m sure–sure, I tell you–that those errors didn’t come from me! No, no. I won’t have that! At any rate, gremlins or no, I just want to let you purchasers who downloaded before 9/2/13  know you are entitled to a free, corrected update, and I definitely want to see that you get one. Stay tuned to this blog to find out more on that. Or email me privately, if you wish.

For those who haven’t downloaded the book yet, (notice I say “yet” … :D) it has been re-proofed, and I think it’s looking pretty good now. You should be safe! Download away!

The second bit of news is that I’m going to establish a separate page here on this blog for “Author News” on Wake-Robin Ridge, Summer Magic, and any other writing I publish in the months ahead, for those who want to track give-aways, news on new releases, and other things related to the writing part of my life now.  That way, I can keep the original part of this blog set up for those who are more interested in book reviews, and yet still have a way of sharing writing milestones with you.

Hope this will work out well for everyone. More as things take shape! Now, as you were, folks. Back to your Labor Day Weekend. Hope it’s a good one!

Reverence by Julie Cadwallader-Staub

fireflies

 

Reverence

The air vibrated
with the sound of cicadas
on those hot Missouri nights after sundown
when the grown-ups gathered on the wide back lawn,
sank into their slung-back canvas chairs
tall glasses of iced tea beading in the heat

and we sisters chased fireflies
reaching for them in the dark
admiring their compact black bodies
their orange stripes and seeking antennas
as they crawled to our fingertips
and clicked open into the night air.

In all the days and years that have followed,
I don’t know that I’ve ever experienced
that same utter certainty of the goodness of life
that was as palpable
as the sound of the cicadas on those nights:

my sisters running around with me in the dark,
the murmur of the grown-ups’ voices,
the way reverence mixes with amazement
to see such a small body
emit so much light.

To read more by Julie Cadwallader-Staub and other poets and authors, check out Summer: An Eclectic Anthology of Poetry & Prose, published by Silver Birch Press.

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Strawberries by Tamara Madison

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Strawberries

Fragole, fresas, klubniki, fraises—
is there a term that names them better
than strawberry? I think of sunshine
and straw hats, picnics, boating parties,
a barber shop quartet, homemade
ice cream, grainy and sweet, everything

warm, wholesome, innocent, old fashioned.
Near my house there’s a strawberry field
that begins its work in spring, the stray seeds
emerging unbidden in neighboring gardens,
on walkways, from cracks in the sidewalk,
the clean white petals yielding pale-green

hearts that swell, redden, and fill
with so much happiness to give in their sweet-tart
flesh, the fertile seeds that linger in your teeth
and remind you of a gentle time only moments
ago when you tasted the essence of summer
on your grateful tongue.

NOTE: Have you ever read anything that TASTED so good? I love this yummy, summery poem. To read more by Tamara Madison and other poets and authors, check out Summer: An Eclectic Anthology of Poetry & Prose, published by Silver Birch Press.

summer_anthology_cover_medium2

Summer Night, Riverside by Sara Teasdale

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Summer Night, Riverside

In the wild soft summer darkness
How many and many a night we two together
Sat in the park and watched the Hudson
Wearing her lights like golden spangles
Glinting on black satin.
The rail along the curving pathway
Was low in a happy place to let us cross,
And down the hill a tree that dripped with bloom
Sheltered us,
While your kisses and the flowers,
Falling, falling,
Tangled in my hair….

The frail white stars moved slowly over the sky.

And now, far off

In the fragrant darkness
The tree is tremulous again with bloom
For June comes back.

To-night what girl
Dreamily before her mirror shakes from her hair
This year’s blossoms, clinging to its coils?

     –Sara Teasdale

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