by Barb Brooks
I killed you yesterday.
Left a bucket of water without a lid
in the garden. Did you go in for a drink
or perhaps your daily bath? Feathers
waterlogged, you tried to escape. Water
and gravity won. Found you floating
like a brown leaf. I hadn’t seen you at the suet.
with your mate. I heard her trill but there was no answer.
Today, I watched the wren dig into the suet;
take the same flight path to the brush pile.
I lost count of how many trips she made.
I was certain she was feeding a fledging
without a partner. The fallen leaves
against the fence were boiling, she popped out;
maybe she had an insect in her bill; she was too fast
for me to really see. I won’t disturb your effort
to feed your young. I killed your mate.
Bio: Barbara Brooks, a retired physical therapist and author of “The Catbird Sang”, “A Shell to Return to the Sea”, “Water Colors” chapbooks, is a member of Poet Fools. Her work has been accepted in Avalon Literary Review, Chagrin River Review, The Foundling Review, Blue Lake Review, Third Wednesday, Peregrine, Tar River Poetry, Silkworm among others.
REGARDING THE HEART
by John Grey
The heart figures itself
for more than just a muscle.
But look at it.
Or listen to it –
beat after beat after beat after beat.
It sees itself as something other
than a blood-pumper.
A Keats. A Shelley.
It’s even had me convinced.
Year after year,
I spoke of the heart
with such reverence,
as if it was the core of my better nature.
But now I see the heart for what it is.
It’s just part of what keeps me going,
for good or for bad.
It has as much to do with love and poetry
as the liver and the kidney.
And far far less than the often undervalued mind.
I should tell the heart
where it really stands
in the romantic scheme of things.
Somehow, I just don’t have the heart.
Bio: John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Sheepshead Review, Stand, Poetry Salzburg Review and Hollins Critic. Latest books, “Covert” “Memory Outside The Head” and “Guest Of Myself” are available through Amazon. Work upcoming in Ellipsis, Blueline and International Poetry Review.
by James B. Nicola
In the moment
In the moment
we almost do
We may not be able
to become one with the universe
make a new molecule
of that, but we
come each other or pretty
is like sex,
that something be
come of Us,
or pretty blessèd
an ear, bending
an eye, makes
a moment Ours
and Us as One
and the Moment
a bit of
if but for a moment like now
Whoever you are
who has made it to
but now the turn
and it's time to go
unless you'd like
to start at the top
and try this (un)damned thing
In the moment we almost became each other We were almost as One.
In the moment that is we almost do the same
Bio:James B. Nicola is a returning contributor to Greensilk. The latest of his seven full-length poetry collections (2014-22) are Fires of Heaven: Poems of Faith and Sense and Turns & Twists. His nonfiction book Playing the Audience won a Choice award. He has received a Dana Literary Award, two Willow Review awards, and eight Pushcart nominations—for which he feels stunned and grateful.
a beautiful husband
by Nanette Rayman-Rivera
Kiln headdress hair pretty as Bird of Paradise flank plumes
Bounces when he walks and he walks all day and night
My heart travels with him but he doesn’t see
He used to see, he used to beg me to walk on hot sand
Caterwauling on Coney Island
He cried gray on the rain
When I told him I loved him too.
Me, giddy on the grayness of New York City
Jose, a reliquary for love and its lava
He dared to throw me on the Battery Park grass and top me.
Unapologetic to cops he was caught
In the chestnut woodland of my thighs.
I heard it was impenetrable from cops
This case of him gone missing
Who wouldn’t understand that he was choking
On the phone,
Who wouldn’t understand that he never
Touched his bank account,
Who wouldn’t understand that he loved me
They made me pay
For his dying-to-bite bee-bee berry bing
His Hispanic manhood
Unafraid to write me poems
The words phlox (our souls are united)
And peach blossom (I am your captive)
Flourishing inside me.
Sweetness before he sleep-walked
into a rose-shaped courtyard
On the way to burning his handprints on the street
Geeking, the colossus of his lips searing like pox
Then reddened like dead roses
They wouldn’t understand
That choking when drugged
He may as well have taken a bullet.
I thought my love would shield him
As trestle shields the train
As big love and hearts too big to break
Should shield us all
2 years later to the day of
August 31, 2020
In my bookcase
I find one of his poems
Sunflowers eyes are not as pretty as yours, mi bonita esposa
When I see you, the orchids of your lips are beckoning me by degrees
Your skin silky and lambent verifying you are real. Your bullet hips send me
Bio: Nanette Rayman-Rivera, author of poetry books, Shana Linda Pretty Pretty, Project: Butterflies, is a two-time Pushcart nominee, Best of the Net 2007, DZANC Best of the Web 2010, winner Glass Woman Prize for prose. Publications: The Worcester Review, Sugar House Review (mentioned newpages.com), Stirring's Steamiest Six, gargoyle, sundog, Berkeley Fiction Review, Editor's Pick prose at Green Silk Journal, Pedestal, ditch, Wilderness House, decomp, Contemporary American Voices, featured poet at Up the Staircase, Rain, Poetry & Disaster Society, DMQ, carte blanche, Frigg, Oranges & Sardines. She lives with her puppy, Layla.