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Poetry Pg. 2


                                                                      Editor's Pick 2nd Place!
The Gathering
      by Brent Fisk

Grasshoppers arc over an electric fence,
disappear into sorghum and thistle. Grandfather,
pale in the heat, nods off beneath the canopy.
Battered fish seethe in amber oil.

The last white blossoms all but spent
on the leggy switches of blackberry bramble.
Near the burn barrel a basketball weathers.

In the kitchen with her youngest girls,
Grandmother peeks at her husband through the curtain.
I wonder how they feel
about math-- the years adding up
to endless subtraction. Death so close,
hidden like the fine bones in fish.

An airplane's shadow slips across the field,
a sparse flock of starlings lifts and settles,
mirrors the dreams that play across
my grandfather's face.
 Bio:  Brent's work has appeared in Southern Poetry Review, Cincinnati Review, Prairie Schooner and Southeast Review among other places.
 Loss of  Innocence
          by Sargam Garg
Cherry, Blueberry and Raspberry shine as
gems in my bowl, Nature kisses me and turns
me into a king.
The tree outside my window waits for my
judgement and I decide not to chop his
life with my axe.
The flowers smile in their coats and praise
my decision. The wind is the court poet who
sings my glory.
When I shoot a deer that had lost his way,
my kingdom turns into autumn and Nature
empties my bowl.
And then she shrouds my world in white to
moan the death of innocence. The bullet
went through the deer's body via my heart.
Bio: Sargam Garg is an Indian poet based in the US. In the past year her poetry has appeared in over 15 magazines and e-zines.

 The Lie

     by  Bob Bradshaw 


A beauty, she gathered up boys as easily
as she pinned up a bun of hair
above her pale neck.


Her boyfriends never knew acne,
and always drove muscle cars.


Our dates greeted us at our doorstep
with wilted flowers.


If I dropped my books in the hall
they were trampled by stampedes
of upper class men


but if Terrie dropped even a sheaf of paper
every boy in the hall scrimmaged
to pick it up for her.


She went off to some famous university
while we sat in the backs of classrooms
at community colleges.


Beauty isn't everything, our teachers said.
Dedication is what matters.


But we knew they were speaking
from prepared notes,


that even Heaven was overcrowded


with former beauty queens.


Bio:  Bob is a big fan of both the Rolling Stones and afternoon naps.  Mick may not be gathering moss, but Bob is.  Recent work of Bob's can be found at Eclectica, Orange Room Review, Slow Trains and Loch Raven Review