Several Poems from Anthologies by HilLesha O’Nan

Blackout

We head towards the East…
To escape the chaos
The sky
Starless
Is thickened with darkness
With no cars passing through
Dare any light shine?
No longer human
They
THEM
Watching
Waiting
To pounce any innocent passerby
Flesh for flesh
There’s nowhere to turn or hide
This is the blackout

Run, Run, Run

We’re surrounded
By a sea
Of trees
And darkness is closing in

Run, Run, Run

We need to hide
Or
They’ll find us

Run, Run, Run

We’re gasping for air, but we’re almost there.
Don’t look back…

There’s no time…
They’re lurking.

The shadows.

Run, Run, Run
Or time will escape us once again.

Drive

Drive, Drive, Drive
I’m on a mission to nowhere
I was lost
Until I found you
And now i’m here
With my foot on the gas pedal
And no destination in mind.

I was forced to breathe
When you ripped my heart out of its cavity
And only left me a box of memories
At my doorstep
No goodbyes
Just a box
Of memories

There’s a long road of possibilities ahead
And i’m going to
Drive, drive, drive
You out of my mind
My memories of you
Are going to be 5,000 miles behind me.

The Pale Horseman

Pale as ice
The horseman took out his sword
And wielded it across nation to nation
Striking the young and old
The healthy and sick
The poor and the rich
The humble and arrogant
As well as the innocent and guilty
He will continue to ride

Without remorse

A Brush of Death (cap) (an ode to Shirley Jackson)

Their green and brown caps
Glistening after a Fall rain
Merricat plucked one of the mushrooms
And brushed it against her lips
A brush of
Death
Cap
She inhaled its slightly ammoniac smell
Calmingly,
And briefly slipped into a trance like state
Merricat? Merricat?
The “spell” broke as her name was called
Merricat quickly plucked each mushroom
One by one
And threw them in her knapsack
For she had to make tea
For Constance
That she will send her
10 feet deep in the boneyard.

Marybelle

Marybelle
Her name means star of the sea
Rests beneath a sea of stars
Each night

Dare anyone who tries to disturb her slumber
Beneath the mortsafe
With its cage-like wrought iron,
And her headstone as if guarding it
A garland of roses are beautifully –
Etched in the sandstone.

Her name and epitaph
Deeply carved
Have defied the test of time.

Marybelle “Dingy” Rose
1834-1853

“We shall find you in the grey
Summer Garden amid the rain wet roses
Stir of wings, and the morning hills behind you”

The Price of Being Alice

I’m at the thrift store…
It’s Dark
And no one is in sight
I’m looking for something for the house

Instead, I stumbled upon an oddly-shaped
Ceramic of a white rabbit that is inspired by Alice in Wonderland

$3

And then I spot an Alice ceramic

$20

Why $17 more?

Being Alice comes at a cost yet
It doesn’t cost much to be the rabbit.

Its noted that the rabbit is the one that sparks the curiosity
After all,
It is the rabbit that leads Alice down the rabbit hole.

Alice runs after the rabbit,
Searching for it
Endlessly,
In Wonderland
This symbolizes her quest for
Knowledge.

It is the End (as we know it)

Internal wars raged on
In their minds.
Until they could no longer be contained
And spilled onto the streets –
With a parade of hatred.

Hearts became calloused
As children cried out
In their cages
FREE ME!

And those in needing to feed
The beast
Of hunger
Wearily held up their signs
FEED ME!

Yet they were unheard
Unseen
The forgotten
And that Summer they dropped like the flies
Buildings burned
Bridges collapsed
Mountains crumbled
The oceans dried their tears
Stars fell out of the sky like confetti
And the sun went out like a birthday candle
As if the world made its final wish

Off the Edge

There is something ominous
About the cold, grey skies yet –
The angels harmonize
Beautifully
All of a sudden
There is a suffocating stillness –
In the air and I feel like i’m being
Pushed off the edge.

HilLesha O’Nan is a blogger, writer, photographer & marketer. She is co-editor, suggesting ideas for Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest & Fevers of the Mind Press. She runs the blog tothemotherhood.com for over 15 years. @HilLesha on twitter

Poetry: Dear, he who must not be named (T/W) by Faye Alexandra Rose

I say I don’t, but I remember that night.


There were eleven lights in the ceiling and five trains went past the window. You told me to
be silent. Not one word or your violence would speak a thousand. It turns out you wrote a
novel all over my skin was a map of the places you had been uninvited. Watercolour bruises I
could not dilute with bleach. I cried to the police reliving that moment once again. The
examination was filled with swabs and humiliation as a male doctor went near my wounds. I
feared men for a long time after, I would even flinch at my brother’s touch. I’d often see red
and lash out, like a bull I would charge at whoever told me “I would be okay.” I can’t even
look in the mirror without seeing shame! I scrub my skin until it bleeds and please don’t
patronise me with so-called kindness! I’m damaged, disgusting, drowning in pain, I can’t
bear to wake up and feel this again, I –
realised I still have breath in my lungs. When I shut my eyes, I feel at peace. I’ve learnt that
quiet thoughts speak volumes. That love doesn’t shout, it whispers. That hands are to hold
and not to make fists with. That for a moment I was hollow, a woman who would wallow in
self-pity until I remembered who I am – A lioness with courage. So, to ‘he who must not be
named’ watch me as I push out my chest and fear the roar that comes from its depths.

Faye Alexandra Rose is a UK based writer studying English Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Worcester. Her work has been published in several online magazines such as; MookychickThe Drabble and the online project Poetry & Covid. She is also a Poetry Editor for small leaf press – a magazine dedicated to giving a voice to undiscovered writers. She can be found on Twitter: @FayeAlexandraR1, or via her website: fayealexandrarose.wordpress.com

Featured image from Unsplash.com from Neonbrand

Re-post Poetry: The Healer by Robert Frede Kenter (in Avalanches in Poetry)

I am a healer

I have healed many wounds in my time

with a magic wand

and a black Stetson hat

I healed

the wounds of poets and statesmen

with dark amber potions and herbs

I healed the painters of houses

with canvas bags of secret wines

I healed the scars of hatred

on the back of Montgomery street

with a needle and thread and scissors

I starved the healer

whose cane was crooked

and dropped him into a pit

I filled the abyss with dirt

and stitched it up with rain

I walked along the avenue

and was prayed to

Robert Frede Kenter is a writer, visual artist, editor and publisher. Recently guest editor of Burning House Press (July, 2019). Work also in Anti Heroin Chic, Mookychick, New Quarterly, Grain, cough, Dandelion etc. His new book,  Audacity of Form, is available at Ice Floe Press (2019). Tweets at @frede_kenter

@icefloep for IceFloe Press

*This was first published in Avalanches in Poetry: Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen* 

Spotlight on the Poetry Question & Chris Margolin

If you’re a poet or writer, you need exposure.  Especially, if you’re an independent writer, or work or run a small press.  Luckily, for us, there is a website that has been expanding exponentially the last few years giving us more exposure to the best independent poets and writers out there today.   The Poetry Question provides the concept of asking “How will you Poetry today?”  The man behind the beginnings of the Poetry Question is Chris Margolin.

He shares a passion for visualizing the future of poetry and giving a voice to poets.  Whether it would be the unique interview in which you answer the poetry questions on influences, favorite books, authors, influences.  Detailed info on why these works or writers have deemed such an influence on a writer. The site has been excellent and expanding their team on reviewing Poetry Chapbooks and novels & novellas.  

Within the last year, Chris has worked hard on adding a small press to give another avenue for writers to put out chapbooks.    So, with that introduction, we shall ask a few questions to Chris Margolin of “the Poetry Question”   http://thepoetryquestion.com

Hi Chris, thanks for giving us at Fevers of the Mind the opportunity to learn more about The Poetry Question and the exciting future of the site.

Thank you for having me! I’m a fan of Fevers of the Mind, so this is an exciting opportunity for me. I’m honored.

  1.  First off Chris, when did you come up with the idea of the Poetry Question? The original concept?  When was the moment that hit you and said “Hey I need to help small press poets and self-published poets”?

I’ve written a lot about the foundation of The Poetry Question, but I appreciate that your question focuses on Small Press Poetry and Self-Published Poetry. The site went through so many different iterations. It was an educational site – I’ve taught for almost 20 years – in the early days. Then it was a music review site. Then it was a general book review site. Then I started going to The Portland Poetry Slam in Portland, Oregon. My first night there was like finding a new religion. My introduction couldn’t have been more epic: Clementine von Radics, Alex Dang, Brenna Twohey, and the legendary Andrea Gibson. I bought every book on the table that night. That was it. These were stapled together like the zines I used to buy in high school. They were beautiful. And they needed to be seen. There wasn’t much of a choice at that point. Voices needed to be heard, and I couldn’t find a website that focused solely on small press or self-published poetry. So, it seemed like the obvious choice and direction.

  •  I know that you have decided to put out a few chapbooks, how has that experience been like that for you? What about going into the Press business has been rewarding, and what has been more challenging?

This is one of the most rewarding, important, and scary accomplishments in my life. I have no idea what I’m doing. I’ve always just been on the review side of things. I had dreamt about putting out other people’s poetry, but never thought it made sense until last year. Our daily readership went up faster than I could have ever imagined, and it just felt right. Holding a submission period, and knowing that people – without the use of Submittable – were actually sending me their words was jaw-dropping. I never expected to get submissions. I had over 75 in a month. It was such a validation of what I’d been working toward, and so humbling to know that so many would trust us with their manuscripts. We are just a few weeks from the release date (Jan 15) for both Jennifer Roche and Van G. Garrett’s respective books, The Synonym Tables, and SCRAP. They have been so kind as I stumble through this process. Can’t wait to see what happens!          

  •  I’d like to know more about the Power of Poetry section of the site. What about this section really has been a huge help with especially younger writers to understand how to be an effective writer, and how you can work at your craft to expand even when it seems the writing world is against you?

Isn’t the writing world always against us? Look, the reality is that we a lot of us started as bedroom poets and writers. We wrote middle school novels and song lyrics and poetry and tried to either hide it from everyone or share it with the world. But those words meant everything to us. They were our therapy. Fortunately, it is still our therapy. But that looks so different for everyone, and I wanted to hear their stories. I wanted everyone to hear their stories. I don’t really know if there’s an “effective writer.” I think there is an effectiveness in everything we put down on paper. It might not resonate with everyone, but it may change someone’s life.

  •  This has been a challenging year for everyone, and I’m sure for you this hasn’t been an exception. During such a year of darkness, where have you found the small beams of light that has given you a creative uplift for your ideas with TPQ?

This is a softball question. I sign into my twitter account every day, and I get to read the works of hundreds of poets each week. I get to ask “How will you Poetry today” and hope that maybe that will remind someone to write or submit or edit or read or share or whatever they can do to spread the word of Small Press Poetry. I get to be the bullhorn for poets who might not have an outlet to share their work. That’s one hell of a beam of light.

  •  Please give us more info on how to reach your site, your social media, what one needs to do to submit to the Poetry Question for a review of their new book & more. Also, when do you expect your first chapbooks to be released, any hints on what to expect from these?

Everyone can find us at thepoetryquestion.com. If you’re interested in submitting a book for review, there is a link provided on the site. We don’t get through everything that comes our way, but we work hard to review all that we can. The first two chapbooks will be released on January 15th, 2021. Jennifer Roche’s The Synonym Tables tackles the changing of language over the last 75 years. With a deep focus on our current world issues, this one feels more poignant now more than ever. Van G. Garrett’s SCRAP takes you round by round through perseverance and the art of survival. He is a legend, and I am blown away that he was ever interested in submitting to TPQ.

  • Any shout outs you’d like to give to any poets, small press, co-workers with TPQ?

This is a tricky one for me as there are so many poets and presses I’d love to shout out. Here are a few poets to keep in your sights: Chris Butler, Taylor Byas, Beth Gordon, Danielle Rose, and Jason Crawford are all beyond inspiring right now.

Chris Margolin is the founder and EiC of The Poetry Question, the only site in the world to focus solely on small press and self-published poetry reviews. Beyond his work in poetry he has taught high school and middle school English for almost 20 years. He lives in Vancouver,Washington with his wife, daughter, two dogs, and seven chickens

Fevers of the Mind Poetry Blog

 

   *Want to promote older poems or from one of your books please acknowledge when doing so, so we can credit all that needs to be credited*

*On our blog we will put up content from our Anthologies and books. This content will come and go periodically when space is needed*  

*Currently only accepting submissions to this blog.  If accepted your poetry/posts will be promoted through social media *mainly twitter/facebook* for about 6 months.  Some will be up possibly longer.

 *Will accept previously published work as long as poetry/writing/art has not been in a print copy Anthology or a Non-Self-Published book* If previously published please acknowledge in either the word doc or bio indicating the lit mag, blog, self-published book, etc that the piece was first published in*

*Work must be respectful.  No abuse, no racism, radical views, inclusive is the only way.  No pornographic themes.    Thanks.  

*If accepted I will let you know by e-mail or twitter within 1 month from time e-mail was sent.  I will give you an estimate of when the poem could appear on the blog.  If not accepted I will not be sending e-mails to acknowledge and don’t be discouraged just send another poem.  

*SUBMISSION Themes* (please put in subject line the theme # you are looking to contribute to.  entries go from blog to print anthologies 

Themes include: General submissions, love, anxiety, depression, growing up, hometowns/departures, the pandemic, Black History, inspired by black poets & musicians, Inspired by Leonard Cohen, LQBTQ, Submissions from discontinued/defunct magazines (have to be unknown status for over 6 months), Visual poetry, art, photography, Social Justice, recovery, struggles, survival poetry, trauma, abuse, ptsd, physical health, other mental health, General interviews for promo opportunities, Old Country poetry (influenced by old school country/outlaw country), protest poetry, inspired by Dylan, Ochs, John Lennon, Tom Waits, Bruce Springsteen, Joni Mitchell, Patti Smith, Lou Reed, Jimi Hendrix, inspired by other poets & writers (specify in writing), Poetry about life & country (non U.S.), Feminist poetry, Inspired by Plath, Anne Sexton, Inspired by Instrumental Music (Miles Davis, Phillip Glass, Dirty Three, John Coltrane, Harold Budd, Brian Eno, Cluster, Sigur Ros, Mogwai, Tortoise, Booker T & The MG’s, etc), Beat Poetry, Inspired by Kerouac, Burroughs, T.S. Eliot, Baudelaire, Bukowski (to an extent), Ferlinghetti, Dylan Thomas, Poetry inspired by a dream, Free Verse, Short Stories, Old Hollywood Figures/Scandals Poetry, Poetry inspired by artwork (please include name of piece & artist the inspiration was from), 

Follow me on Twitter @DavidLONan1 and Fevers of the Mind  @feversof  and on Facebook: DavidLONan1

For More go to Amazon and look for the Fevers of the Mind Press Presents the Poets of 2020 Deluxe Edition paperback & kindle  Split editions Volumes 1 & 2 from the Deluxe edition available on paperback (look for post on Fevers of the Mind Press Presents the Poets of 2020 to know who are contributors in each book), Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest Volumes 1-3 available on paperback and kindle. Also there is a Poetry Only combination book of Volumes 1 & 2:  Avalanches in Poetry: Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen available on Paperback & Kindle.   My poetry books (David L O’Nan) New Disease Streets (November 2020) The Cartoon Diaries (2019) Taking Pictures in the Dark (February 2021) also available on Amazon.  For my Amazon Author Page (may not have all listed at first)  I have had work published in Icefloe Press, Royal Rose Magazine, Truly U, Dark Marrow an offshoot of Rhythm & Bones Lit, Ghost City,  3 Moon Publishing, Elephants Never, Nymphs Publishing, Heroin-Chic & more. I have edited 5 Anthology editions & have poetry, prose, short stories, photography in Fevers of the Mind Poetry (&Art) Digest/Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen.  A Best of the Net Nominee for 2021.