3 poems by Doug Stuber

Cowboy Social Club, Near Price, Utah

Perfect nesting holes,
eroded dots, line up like
train windows
ready to pull out,
down the canyon to

Glenwood Springs,
hauling basalt and
gypsum, sulfur and
copper in
trade for Doc Holiday’s guns.

Two hundred train cars
worth of ore for one dead
slinger’s guns,
but that’s what it’s worth
to retire weapons,

old or new,
wild, wild, West, indeed.
Crazy old lady
spent her gun money fixing

a haunted
house in San Jose over
and over,
to drive away ghosts
from all the guns her

father made
that killed souls, good and evil,
(oft’ by Springfields) that
ushered in our mess.

Brine Kit

Breathe, swallow, carry two slippery-boxed
pies the Tuesday before familial accent
adds the din of sins past so thick
it sprays stench into antique wood.
Shrunken, frozen pomegranates signal
the ground is ripe for future success:
being large-German-glass-ornament-sized
fruits to sour the gums, test fillings.
Feather-tipped sea oats shake, November
winds tug leaves onto the frosty surface.
Sleepy afternoon robs time, the most
valuable commodity when it’s running out.

Leaning bush remains,
friends scurry to reunite
keen on connection.

One Part Awareness

They tie ribbons to tap
the Healing Tree for luck.
When a child falls ill, the
community conjures ancient
rituals and prayer to support
all kinds of difficulties. We
now do almost nothing by
group design, so Bob
strode regally through a random

Galway scene: huskers aplenty,
diverse acts, most good, visions
of floating ribbons danced over
the heads of guitarist, juggler,
Joni-style lyrical balladeerette,
imploring an ear for poverty, injustice,
or church controlled women subjected
to slave status, then evil is transformed,
lured from the dark by lit movement,

trust, touch. Ruined castles on Lough
Comb, the eugenics of a fresh breeze,
mock river dance, real river dance,
infused by the luck, though acquired by
the good cheer of those Bob doesn’t know,
lifts him to the highly creative plane where
love flows, surrounding the summoned
with the healing they desperately need.
Appearing stage left, Maree McGaw

Doug Stuber founded and is one of five editors of Poems from the Heron Clan. The anthology is about the diversity of ideas from poets around the world. He taught creative writing and English in Rochester, New York, and at Chonnam National University, in Gwangju S. Korea where he edited the Gwangju News. Chronic Observer his ninth poetry book, was published in 2019, by Finishing Line Press. For 20 years in numerous bands he toured as a bass guitarist, singer, songwriter.

feature photo by Clem Onojeghuo

Poetry by Amandla Med T. Castro : Winter Solstice

Winter Solstice

Press the attack, panic!
As you hear your demons
Congregate at the attic
searing eyes, long talons

The longest night fell upon
the lone and unwary
man whose soul siphoned
in the shadows of memory

With which the lanes
were occupied and bleak
where the dark remnants
were at their peak

Lo, and behold the spree
of night and shadows
dancing through the alley
as we speak

The night sinks deeper
The subtle aria of retort
We all blink, we all fought
direly praying for a restful sleep

The cold delves closer
The whimsical dreams of rapport
We all think, we all thought
of all the memories there is to keep

photo by McGill Library (unsplash)

Several Poems by Igor Goldkind

Let Your Mind Go

If you love your mind just let it go.
If you lose your mind don’t worry
It will find you again, eventually.
Trekking across the tundra;
Scaling the icy ridges
Crossing a vale of tears.
At midnight, in the dead of the night,

Your mind will tap you on the shoulder and say
‘Here you are’!
Sitting all alone in the last place I looked.
While I am merely moonlight
Pausing to reflect upon still waters.
Make sure you leave your back gate unlocked,
The next time you let your mind run free.

Rumi’s Mirror

The reflection of a reflection is your reflection
Upon the mirrored surface of a pool,
Being slowly filled by the very source of the life
You reflect upon.

Now jump in the pool!


Thoughts are merely pebbles
Being gently washed by a passing stream.

You are the stream.

Thoughts are merely pebbles on a beach
Being gently rounded by crashing waves.

You are the waves.

Thoughts are merely pebbles in the sand.
Being gently worn away by the passing wind.

You are the wind
My words escape on.

Words are merely thoughts
Being gently read by a passing eye.

Yours are the eyes
That can read these thoughts.

All work is ©Igor Goldkind from his forthcoming collection
Take a Deep Breath

For All of Us

All of us
Not just one of us
But each of us.
Is but a tiny droplet on the face of this world.
Wash your face and wash your hands of
Your fears of this.

We will survive
The enemy maybe invisible and has us surrounded
But we are all of us
Surviving each of us together.
This is how we adapt to survive.
We all now are refugees fleeing disaster.

The Tree of Life

In the centre of the valley of death
Grows the tree of life.
The bones that feed the roots,
Spread its branches
Upwards to touch the fishbone sky.
Awakening is opening an umbrella.
Just as it starts to rain.

The Stars

There are few shreds of dignity left
When you drown face down in your own back street gutter.
You can cry out as loud as an archangel’s horn if you like
It won’t do you any good or any harm either.
You still can’t stop the wind or turn back the tide
Fate is nothing personal.

It’s just the universe catching up with you, then passing you by.
Your dream of yourself is evaporating
Forming the clouds that obscure the night’s sky
The stars are leaving you now, one by one.
This is the last moment of your own self-awareness.
Your last chance to figure out what the fuck is going on.

Very much like the moment you first awoke,
Only your mother’s smile is nowhere to be found
And all that remains of limitless love is your fading memory:
The sound of her voice calling you to come home
In the far distance
From where the stars had gone to mourn your passing.


Igor Goldkind is an author, poet, and independent scholar. At the age of 14, Igor served as a volunteer Science Fiction Coordinator for the now wildly popular San Diego Comic-Con. It was in this capacity that he met Ray Bradbury, whom he asked for advice about becoming a writer. Through Comic-Con, Igor also befriended Theodor Sturgeon and Harlan Ellison, two of his major influences. He worked in the British comic publishing industry and is best known for having coined the Graphic Novel genre as a global publishing genre. In 2016, his award-winning multimedia novel published by Chameleon Publishing IS SHE AVAILABLE?, broke ground in combining Poetry, Comics, Jazz, and Animation setting a new bar in electronic publishing. He continued to blend poetry with art in his new r work TAKE A DEEP BREATH, Living With Uncertainty, an illustrated collection of essays, poetry, and short stories confronting the pandemic in personal terms. Igor writes and lives in the San Diego, California but misses the UK.

Fear the Night by Nadine Vandergriff

Forever bound,
Eternal lights,
Affixed upon the ground,
Reaching nowhere,

Till white knuckled,
Hearts reaching,
Ever silent beams.

Nervously penetrating,
Indistinguishable shadows,
Gently parting ways,
Hushed whispers seemed to echo,
Things are truly not the same.

Bio – Nadine is a Texas born native, who began writing at an early age. She currently works for a non – profit book store, and spends most of her free time, writing, and with her 2 children and pets.


Poetry: The Denouement by Devika Mathur

The Denouement

Nights might die out here,
the gloominess spreads like a black spot,
Fallen embers,
Of things bruised,
Of things forgotten.
The eyes are tired now, two tiny homophones of life
an ugly quietness
small frenzied madness.
The hands hesitate to move, forward and backwards
Watching the blades of life,
There is a duality,
There is a sad existence, occurring,

Devika Mathur resides in India and is a published poet, writer. Her works have been published or are upcoming in Madras Courier, Modern Literature, Two Drops Of Ink, Dying Dahlia Review, Pif Magazine, Spillwords, Duane’s Poetree, Piker Press, Mojave heart review, Whisper and the Roar amongst various others. She is the founder of surreal poetry website “Olive skins” and writes for https://myvaliantsoulsblog.wordpress.com/. She recently published her surreal poetry book Crimson Skins available now worldwide.insta- @my.valiant.soul

photo by Tyler Balser (Unsplash)