cattails in a bag, carried home on my back
best eaten in the winter, & we’re ten weeks
from the last frost, & the coming on of weeks
& weeks where vaccinations become
engagement rings, become christmas in spring,
become brushed hair & earrings & dinners
outside where i can see you
i can see you now, still, when i close my eyes
& hear your voice through the phone, remembering
how you make me laugh, hanging my feet
out the window, like it wasn’t just a year ago,
eating grapes on the porch steps, putting
crushed beer cans in the mailbox, or
talking grit from the backseat of your car
lunaria in a manila envelope & nightshade
from the dumpster; cockscomb in an altoid tin,
& the decision to stay through summer
& the voracious need to start a garden,
& the ache to be outside alone
& the dream to be inside this body
like i am inside this body
the dog, pissing on the hardwood doesn’t have a name,
& even if no name comes, there will be tomatoes,
& this summer the only fear i will have
is how i will keep track of all the vegetables
& flowers, seedlings in egg cartons,
tugging at my shoestrings, & what light
will i bury them in
all winter, i walked under a murder of crows,
crossing the bridge after work & a week of
single digit weather; when this city spends
over half the year in gray, the crows
taking my breath against the blue sky,
only half knowing the summer will take
the tens of thousands of them away
then, when the dog stops barking,
when the crows stop coming,
how will you know
i am almost home
Danica Dagenhart is a Pittsburgh-based writer, maker, & educator. they are a recipient of The Alex Rowan Award for poetry writing, & their work has been featured in TriQuarterly and Pretty Owl Poetry. you can find them on Instagram @motherweather.
We paid the price.
The chances of victory
can be measured
a miracle out of which
all the chances grow.
Without Any Sound
Silent afternoon. Silence is more expressive.
I feel something is beaming in my blood. Light.
Some strength inside my nerves wants to be free.
I feel fever. I feel I have a key to every door
in my life. Silent afternoon is telling me,
nobody here, nobody there,
nobody under the sun can give me
either the key or the door to close or open,
except myself. I see now —
nobody ever figures out
or tells me directly what’s life all about.
I will put the gun down, who stands
beside me matters more.
David Dephy — A Georgian/American award-winning poet and novelist. The winner of the Finalist Award in the 2020 Best Book Award National Contest by American Book Fest, the finalist and shortlist winner nominee of the Adelaide Literary Awards for the category of Best Poem, the winner of the Spillwords Poetry Award. He is named as A Literature Luminary by Bowery Poetry, The Stellar Poet by Voices of Poetry, The Incomparable Poet by Statorec, The Brilliant Grace by Headline Poetry & Press and An Extremely Unique Poetic Voice by Cultural Daily.
About one month or two ago,
on the walk we take almost every day,
when passing by a well-known bridge in my city,
I noticed, not without some sorrow,
that there was a family living under it,
at a corner they had cleaned on the riverbank.
I was filed with sadness, for sure they were homeless,
or, at least, temporarily, having as roof
the lower part of that framework.
Yesterday, while walking with my wife, we perceived
that there was something different, a few more people,
in addition to the family we were used to seeing.
A couple of bonfires lit better the area,
they talked and were very comfortable,
laughing and happy, it seems we even heard
something like a clink of glasses.
My wife was surprised and did not understand,
but, suddenly, I did, and told her:
there is no doubt, they are having guests today
and are having fun.
Then, we became aware that, really, since a while,
we have not enjoyed much the same this pleasure.
Edilson Afonso Ferreira
Mr. Ferreira, 78 years, is a Brazilian poet who writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Widely published in international literary journals, he began writing at age 67, after his retirement as a bank employee. Has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, and his book Lonely Sailor, One Hundred Poems, was launched in London, in November of 2018. He is always updating his works at www.edilsonmeloferreira.com.