(after Chelsea Hotel #2, and other songs by Leonard Cohen)
If you remember the Sixties
you were not there, some bore said
later, at a clever dinner.
The Sixties, yeah.
We were there
and we remember it well.
I went down on you
while the limousines still waited
and the afternoon light
fell, slatted gold
on our emboldened bodies.
Now that we are both
I think of you more often.
And you, Suzanne.
You are all hot flames to me still.
And your light still gets in.
And not one of us is mentally aching now.
Bio: Ivor Daniel lives in Gloucestershire, UK. His poems have appeared in A Spray of Hope, wildfire words, Steel Jackdaw, Writeresque, iamb~wave seven, Fevers of the Mind, The
Trawler, Roi Fainéant, Ice Floe Press and The Dawntreader,
After..., Re-Side, Alien Buddha, The Orchard Lea Anthology (Cancer) and The Crump’s Barn
Anthology (Halloween). .
You were full of answers about
what happens to the heart,
as though you’d spent a lifetime
breaking the end off a question mark
and using it to punctuate
all the sad stories you would sing,
or letting it fall on a roulette wheel
that never bounced on the black.
But can’t we at least agree on this:
that the heart is led by nothing
except itself, that it kept taking you
by the hand and setting off
to the heat of Hydra, to a home,
giving you the permission
you needed to put down your pen
and pick up your guitar, to speak
in a timbre so low you sounded
like your heart was in your throat,
yet never letting life happen to it,
beating but never bystanding?
The heart kept occurring to you,
even when you tried to forget it
those late nights in Montreal,
or amid monastery meditations.
Even if the heart was acted upon,
it was you who felt what ensued
time and again, you whose music
allowed us perceive what transpired
every time we listened, and listen
to this day, limited by the distance
between any artist and the audience
that experiences the art. Who knows
what really took place, what love
you gained and lost. What happened
is secondary to the song — so long
as we feel close to the heart of it.
Bio: : Shane Schick is the founder of a customer experience design publication called 360 Magazine, His poetry has appeared in literary journals across the U.S., Canada, The U.K. and Africa. He lives in Toronto. More: shaneschick.com/poetry. Twitter: @shaneschick Subscribe to my 360 Magazine newsletter
It's Getting Darker
I searched for salvation
I yearned for the light,
Looking for the stars
In the cloud covered night.
I fold my prayer like origami
And stuff it in the crack,
A missive to the almighty
Asking if the Flame is ever coming back.
I close my eyes, reaching out
Caressing the cold aging stone,
Trying to touch the ancient past
My soul has come to call home.
The Temple is in shambles
The Mercy Seat is lost,
2,000 years of homelessness
Trying to tally up the cost.
Looking past Mt. Moriah
To the light of the rising sun,
Warming windblown faces,
Dreams of a suffering undone.
The Messiah isn’t coming,
To save this damsel in distress,
It’s an uncomfortable truth to which
We cannot fail to acquiesce.
The clouds are growing darker,
But the deluge will never come,
The promise made on rainbow light
Will never be undone.
I yearned for salvation,
Searching for the light,
Is there nothing here to greet me –
Save the unending darkness of the night?
Bio from 2019:John W. Leys has been writing poetry since he was 14 years old, inspired by the lyrics of Bob Dylan and the Beatles. In addition to posting poetry on his own blog, he is a frequent guest contributor to poetry-blogs such as Blood Into Ink, Free Verse Revolution, and The GoDogGo Cafe. His first poetry collection The Darkness of His Dreams: Poetry was published in July 2019. He currently lives in Redmond, Oregon with his wife, son, three dogs, and two cats.
Darkness of His Dreams (Blog) darknessofhisdreams.wordpress.com/ Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/eliyahu5733 FB: facebook.com/darknessofhisdreams/ IG: https://www.instagram.com/johnleys/ GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/jwleys Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/johnwleys
I currently have one book published that is available on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1733364501
in madness and sorrow
turn from the depths, child,
and bathe your face in sweet light
let the current be your baptism
instead of your death
emerge clean, shining
know this darkness is not forever
beyond shadow, there is always light
for one does not exist without the other
give the river your sadness
but not your soul
your beauty is needed here
your joy brings joy to others
an ending means a new beginning
but not this kind of end
there is more for you here
than what one man could take away
let another you come forth
make the water your mirror
what do you see,
when you search for yourself there?
Brother night, take me -
Let me feel the coolness
Of your hands on my fevered skin
Sweet darkness -
Drop your midnight veil
The harsh light of the sun
Burns my eyes Sears my lungs Scalds my heart
Pour on me the countless raindrops
That become the flood
Let darkmoon silence
Hum in my ears a mute ritual
Float me womblike in
Comfortable ebony air
My lacquered bones holding
Prickle my stomach
Pierce my skin
I pull them out one by one
Careful not to spill my own blood; watch
The glitter spread on towels
Mind my step
Crushed hearts are sharp when
Only stars light the way
Each shard wet with the broken promise
Of an empty vessel
For Leonard; You Freed Me
Someone else brought your words to me,
but I was mesmerized from the start.
Who was this stranger who seemed to know
all my secrets? Where had you been,
on those endless nights I needed to feel
Where were you when everything I wanted
to say was choking me, and the wellspring
threatened to drown the flame
that burned behind the bushel
of my heart?
No matter. A rare gift, pulled
from a shelf with a quiet hallelujah
and my life was never the same again.
The world needed beauty and dignity
and quiet strength, and so did I.
You gave me hope; showed me
the beauty in my cracks and taught me
how to love my damage.
Poems from Amanda McLeod in Fevers of the Mind Issue 1 (2019) “Inclimental Anger” “Day With Perfect Storm” “Anchor” “You Are My Sun, Except When I Am Storm”