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Poetry 4 Spring 2020




   by  Holly Day


The cicada lands on the rail of the balcony, thrums and whines

joins the surrounding insect chorus in a song

that rises and falls in volume and pitch like waves of electricity


so loud that the traffic disappears under the aural onslaught

so loud that we can barely hear each other talk

so loud that there is nothing to do but succumb to their song

sit meekly on the back porch, eyes closed

enveloped in the sticky warmth of summer.


The next morning, the early morning rain catches the cicadas

floods them into puddles on the sidewalk, tumbles them

from the trees to the ground, their wet wings

too heavy for flight, their night song spent. 



Bio: Holly Day’s poetry has recently appeared in Asimov’s Science Fiction, Grain, and Harvard Review. Her newest poetry collections are Where We Went Wrong (Clare Songbirds Publishing), Into the Cracks (Golden Antelope Press), Cross Referencing a Book of Summer (Silver Bow Publishing), and The Tooth is the Largest Organ in the Human Body (Anaphora Literary Press).




Burning the life away

by Patrick O'Shea

Fires burn brightly across the Amazon, as trees, plants, and animals disappear along with the indigenous

That have been killed by those who want their land,

Business will boom if it is to do with Mr Bolsonaro, he boldly says that if the awful climate activists and

Conservationists stop setting fires there, Brazilians can be a rich band,

That the lungs of the earth are perishing seems not to be of any relevance for this man and his business

Allies, who seem not to care about the people who live there, or anywhere,

Open the Amazon to all, destroy the forests for soya bean to feed cattle, remove those troublesome

Original inhabitants and kill their food supply, who will really care,

There is no doubt that others in the world are acting for self-interest, the simple self-interest of hoping

That their children can still breathe,

That the “lungs of the world” will not collapse due to the bacterial assault of greed and more greed on

Those who live in the world and do not want to very soon leave,

There is also stated that those in the world who complain about the situation are interfering with the

Brazilian sovereignty in a colonialist manner and way,

Yet one can also say the if the Brazilian government continues on its present path, that they are in fact

Interfering with the world’s sovereignty over life today.


The fires are burning life away, not for just those who live or did live in the Amazonian rain forest, with

Smoke covering the land and removing hope for alleviating climate change,

Weather everywhere can become so uncertain due to increased disturbance in the separation of water

In the atmosphere, drought and floods entering a destructive range,

No, Mr Bolsonaro, it is not all your fault, we are all guilty of neglect and that includes me, we have just

Ignored how fragile is our world of wonder, how much we can lose,

All the discussions over the change in weather apart, we cannot simply destroy the world in the name of

Profit, and condemn children to live in a world where they cannot choose,

Cannot choose for a day without torrential flooding rains, or seeing the desertification grow across the

Formerly arable lands, or knowing hungers growth as crops fail,

We struggle now in this present world where there are already clear signs of change for the worse, even

Though some may say this is unnecessary, a senseless rail,

I who have lived in this world for some years now, and have seen some of the majesty and beauty of this

World we all live in, feel a pain in my heart, a burning sensation,

Mr Bolsonaro, and your economic allies, with your short-term profit ideals, you see our home burning,

You know so much is lost at our cost, as some burn the life away in your nation.






Bio: Patrick O'Shea writes from  Rijswijk, Holland, about the world as he sees it, and tries to understand it. He sees the world as presently going through so many changes, and not all of them are benefiting humanity. He strives to create a manner that people can begin to question or at least not blindly accept events as they now occur. He hopes that these may touch on others, and their lives and that they may add to the world.






      by James G. Piatt


The heat of the noonday sun

Warms the earth, and colorful 

Flowers shed their scents into the 

Air. I find a place to sit under the 

Shade of a sycamore tree, to smell 

The sweet fragrances, and muse 

About how wonderful life can be. I 

Realize that the earth though more 

Scarred by each day, still exists 

Every new morn, telling us that there 

Is always hope.


Images of beautiful opal colored 

Dreams, glimmer in the pulses of 

Liquescent moonlight, while stars, 

Bright specs penetrating the ebony 

Cloak of sky, dance to the wonders 

Held in God’s hand. Remembering 

This, I try not to forget that all the 

Evenings given to me were precious, 

And all of tomorrow’s nights can be 



Bio: James is the author of four collections of poetry, “Solace Between the Lines,” (2019), “Light” (2016), “Ancient Rhythms,” (2014),” and “The Silent Pond,” (2012). He has had over 1,400 poems (four of which were nominated for Pushcart and Best of Web Awards), five novels, seven essays, and thirty-five short stories published. He earned his BS and MA from California State Polytechnic University, and his doctorate from BYU.