The Great Return
by Paul DeVito
She flew such a long distance,
I thought she might not return,
but on Sunday, early in the morning,
I heard her distinct song,
she had left her eggs in the nest,
and now she was at my window,
I opened it and let her in,
she flew around the cage
that she used to live in,
and around the room,
she flew with such vigor,
then suddenly she alighted on my book,
to rest and watch me,
her feathers bright blue,
a gift in her beak I noticed,
she placed it on my book
and flew back to the window,
then out with a rush,
I was so curious I looked
and could not believe my eyes,
a bit of tobacco from far away.
Bio: Will update soon.
by R. Scott Yarbrough
The cold morning snap surprised
the trumpet vines blooms. They fell.
My sister placed one orange flame
on each finger and pretended
to be a witch. Dad
whistled. We jumped in the bed
of the truck. We were late for school.
The engine shuddered, the fan screamed, stopped.
The recent litter of kittens had sought
the warmth of the engine compartment. None
of the four survived. We were taught
not to cry in the driveway. My sister
cried in the driveway. I cried in the closet
while I got a shoe box
to bury them in. At school, I pictured
them all day locked in that dark box,
all crowed together like back
in their mother’s belly, safe.
When I got home, I dug
out the flower bed and buried each one,
careful to leave their front paws
out resting, reaching across the fresh soil.
My sister put the trumpet blossoms back
on her fingers and touched
each of the paws with an incantation.
Mother cat watched from the Azalea bush,
curious, she brushed against my sister
who rubbed her with the tips of her trumpet fingers.
The new litter pawed their souls from the earth
into the mother’s belly then spilled out
four months later with bodies: their trumpeting
mews calling for mother’s milk and Spring.
Bio: R. Scott Yarbrough has published poetry, short fiction, and drama in The United States and Canada in over fifty national literary journals. His work has appeared in The American Poetry Review, The Hollin’s Critic, Puerto Del Sol, Descant, The Nassau Review, and others. His Spring publications of 2012 include The Evansville Review, Bluestem/Karamu, and The Concho River Review. Yarbrough is The Honored Texas Piper Professor of Literature of 2001 and Editor of Forces Literary Journal of Arts and Literature. His full-length collection A Sort of Adam Infant Dropped: True Myths is currently available just this Spring under Ink Brush Press and includes “Trumpet Vines.”
by Kay Kinghammer
In my neighbor’s garden sunflowers glow,
While black-eyed susans wink,
And bachelors’ buttons bare their lapis lazuli souls.
Fertile and flirty, they dance with each wandering breeze.
Standing spindly in sparse crab grass,
My dandelions nod, losing patches of soft down,
Revealing an unbecoming baldness.
They drift toward earth, tempted. –
They touch; sink deep roots, home at last.
Caressed with the tenderness of pollen
I could lean to the sun,
Sprout pistils and stamen,
Lure a lumbering bee.
Clothed in fragrance and glory
All the sweet williams
Would long to live with me.
After a brisk autumn day
I’d be drowsy, ready to rest in my rhizome,
Packed with potential for spring.
Bio: Kay Kinghammer writes story poems. Audiences enjoyed her spoken word performances at Seattle's Bumbershoot and the Whidbey Island Poetry Festival. In August, 2013, she will be reading at the Fermoy Poetry Festival in County Cork, Ireland. Current publications include Granny Smith Magazine, and Prospective – A Journal of Speculation.