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Poetry 4 Fall 2023
After Basho
     by Royal Rhodes
Herons  -- a lifeless kind
of garden ornament
weathered bronze
cannot hear as we
do the bullfrog
broadcast poems
to listening birds.
I slept badly
crossing a bridge
of dreamless dreams
a journey to nowhere
I open my mouth
from my throat vibrates
a frog on an old pond.
A trickling waterfall
apologizes for troubling
the water mirror
the moon touches
the surface as if
looking for someone
who resembles itself.
Here we can work
out our salvation
with diligence wanting
what is changeless
not knowing it is
not what we want --

a splash but no frog jumps.


Bio:  Royal Rhodes is a retired educator who lives in rural Ohio. His poetry and art collaborations have been published by The Catbird [on the Yadkin] Press in North Carolina.



An Old Married Couple

      by Nancy Byrne Iannucci


Oh, the endless bickering,

over which twig to place where.

It makes my cat’s teeth chatter.

Those little motors 

in those dainty chests,

pumping and pounding,

until their nest rests

like a halo atop my wreath,

twisted and stitched

to a tailor’s precision

like arguments

never happened.


Bio:Nancy Byrne Iannucci is a poet from Long Island, New York who currently lives in Troy, NY with her two cats: Nash and Emily Dickinson.  San Pedro River Review, 34 Orchard, Defenestration, Hobo Camp Review, Bending Genres, The Mantle, Typehouse Literary Magazine, Glass: a Poetry Journal are some of the places you will find her. She is the author of three chapbooks, Temptation of Wood (Nixes Mate Review, 2018), Goblin Fruit (Impspired, 2021), and Primitive Prayer (Plan B Press, fall 2022). Visit her at www.nancybyrneiannucci.com  Instagram: @nancybyrneiannucci