• Inside the Talking Stick – R.F. Wagner, Jr.
• Meet and Greek – Justin Harder
•  Yoko – Mary Getlein
• My Sister, The Painter (For Pegarty Long) – Philomene Long
• A Dying Wish – N. Keryakos
• Escalation – Jim Smith


19:37 Thursday, December 17, 2009, inside the Talking Stick….. A quiet has come over me of late. There isn’t much to talk about. Await My muse, but she has left me. She is gone. For all intents and purposes, I’m done. Well, that might be a little premature. I guess I just went fallow. I am sure That emptiness can be occasional, And sometimes I could use sabbatical. I tell myself that I might need a cure When I’m not really ailing. There’s much more That I might seize upon, if I condone The words to take up residence. Alone With these: my restless quill; my altered state. They’ll  find each other, and facilitate…..R.F.Wagner, Jr., Venice


Meet and Greek

By Justin Harder

I’ll be coming up from alpha
There seems to be nothing after Omega
But You
So come back
And meet me at Mu
We were the beginning and the end,
The first and the last
Future to past
If we can balance in the middle
This mythology
Will be nothing but a riddle


Yoko Ono is still rocking hard at 76
if that ain’t a role model,
I don’t know what is.
We have some amazing stories of performers
who just don’t stop
we can’t stop either –
we still have time – it’s not over yet.
No matter how dumb we might look
we still need to wave our “freak flag”
we still need to get our “ya yas” out
we still need to giggle and wiggle and act like fools –
This kid accused me the other day of looking like a hippie
I wonder why –
still stuck in the flannel shirt after all these years.
Oh well, they’re tearing down another mall to build
a newer,bigger one.
You still won’t find me in it.
– Mary Getlein


My Sister, The Painter
For Pegarty Long

Hers was
The first cry
That I heard
in my first
It was she
Who cried
My eyes open

And now
She paints, she paints
And where her brush
Touches the canvas
The morning sky
Slams into it
A cry of light

–Philomene Long


A Dying Wish

By N. Keryakos

Most people
couldn’t bear to see their futures-
Surprises bring them luck,
good luck. Their past surprises
stand erect like trophies
bearing their names.
They play duets
of laughter and comedy,
and behold the “spice
of life!” but strain their ears,
secretly, to hear good news,
only good news.
Fear resides in bedrooms, dens,
immaculate kitchens,
small ghosts whose shadows
climb their stairs and
ascend into the heavens,
holding of future life
and death. Family
or solitude.
No one dares to chase them.
But nothing would satisfy me
more than to know,
a Future map I would frame
and gaze at each morning,
a priceless gift I could never return.
I embrace the days (if that) ahead.
I accept the coming moments-
They may be my last.
I love the air we mostly
take advantage of. I’m revived
by the ocean’s whispers.
But I still want to know
the place I will be,
the clothing I will wear,
the music that will play
the last time I hear
the clock ticking,
steady as a heartbeat.

By Jim Smith

Our hopes for change
lie dying on a far-off battlefield.
And even before it could be named
a great society is gone. Another American President
has spoken to a military audience
and given them what they wanted
The drums and the bugles
are blowing once again. Sometimes I dream
about that day long ago
when the people rose
and the killers ran, dumping
their toys in the ocean. But today, the troops are on the march.
Escalation means “kill more people.”
The leaders will sit at home
while the greedy, the duped
and the violent do their dirty deeds. A country, called America,
has struck again against the poor,
the children, the aged and sick. Suppose the country
that was escalating
had a different name.
What if it was called Germany
or its name was Japan? How our pundits would wail
and rightly so
against the blitzkreig,
the bombs, the suffering. We would call the aggressors
every racists name
and feel good about ourselves
Today America – “Land of the homeless
and genocide of the Braves”
has learned their lessons well. Afghanistan, Afghanistan
A place on the map.
A home of millions.
Manipulated, bombed
and devastated for 30 years
by Amerika. Once there was an Afghan land
where women had equal rights
and there was freedom
of religion and thought. But our leaders said
they were too friendly
with the Russians.
Let’s give Osama and his pals
the latest weapons,” said Brzezinski.
And the rest is history. They say that terrorists
will come here if we don’t kill them.
But they are not Afghanis.
And those who fight against invaders,
Are they not freedom fighters?
And who are the terrorists
who invade their land?

Categories: Poetry

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