Poetry: The Winding Road to Felicity by David L O’Nan

The Winding Road to Felicity

(from my book Before the Bridges Fell)

Thousands gather to watch the band play one last song.
An electric strike splits to the bone.
One more cigarette before the rapture.
Winding roads collapsing from the refugees waiting to be captured.

All we can wait for is the feathers to -
Begin falling from the clouds.
To be caught by the calloused hands.
Gasoline streams down your arms,
And the bleeding eyes aren’t very far.

All the lights just want to burn us while –
We are still angels.
The corrosion begins skin deep.
Pulls magnetic to the heart to erase emotions.
And the man you are, you’re far from being smart,
Or even a start to the skipping record of your addictions.

So, you drove from Springfield to the bowels of a nameless river.
Looking for diamonds and skyscrapers and effervescent nightscapes.
All you see is your scuffed shoes, your dirty face in a dirty puddle reflecting all.
The ugliness caused by your fears.
Dirty yellow hair that makes all the breath from the downtown swoon.
And you can’t even be happy when Felicity is knocking on your walls.
To call you into the golden tower.

So naked is this green moon, 
and all the eyes in this town match it soon.
They are too late when the straight roads twist
around and break the chariots.
Pushed by the militant stars.

The drugs can’t keep you whipped like 
all the ladies with their perfumed scent.
And all the poetry in your brain 
is all bruised up washing in the valleys of your skin.
And baby. The gravedigger is hard to
find on a midnight chase in the darkened 
aisles and alleys, filled with spit and sweat of disgruntled spirits,
waiting for their grace.

But their grace is the molten heat.
Traversing from your fingers to the nerves that beat your
last sane thought.

Look at Rapunzel lose her strength when the wicked road
cuts away all her hair.
As she lays cold on a bathroom floor in ripped towels.
The glow in her skin is the same as a struck match, and her
body becomes as limp as the daisies. The diseases funnel
together and drink her mentally,
And all she has left is a dying car and enough money to buy a beer.

Winding road, vivid and hedge apples scattered.
Can’t drive. The wagons just splinter apart.
And all is a little bark, and an endless cut from a broken heart.

I am going to watch these visions materialize,
from the fog from that hidden river from roads that never scattered
past the point of just being glass and gravel.

Now the band comes out to play.
Clashing cymbals through the infernos of a damnation play.
Watching the virgins and the Adams dance with the Scarlet dressed Sodom
And Gomorrah revival.

The cigarette ends and I try to walk away.
Only to be picked up in a twilight maze.
Walking to and from my groping vision.
In the swinging shadows I see my whole life’s reflection.
Winding roads to Felicity.


https://tinyurl.com/yckj66hk  for a copy of Before the Bridges Fell




Bio: David L O’Nan is a poet, short story writer, editor living in Newburgh,IN he has lived in Evansville, Indiana, Henderson, KY and New Orleans, LA. He is the editor along with his wife HilLesha for the Poetry & Art Anthologies “Fevers of the Mind Poetry and Art. and has also edited & curated other Anthologies including 2 inspired by Leonard Cohen with original artwork by friend of Leonard’s Geoffrey Wren. He has self-published works under the Fevers of the Mind Press “The Famous Poetry Outlaws are Painting Walls and Whispers” “The Cartoon Diaries” & “New Disease Streets” (2020). A compilation of 4 books “Bending Rivers” a micro poem collection “Lost Reflections” and new book “Before the Bridges Fell” under Cajun Mutt Press. He is a Best of the Net Nominee for his poem “I honored You in Pennyrile Forest” in Icefloe Press. David has had work published in Icefloe Press, Dark Marrow, Truly U, 3 Moon Magazine, Elephants Never, Royal Rose Magazine, Spillwords, Anti-Heroin Chic, Cajun Mutt Press, Punk Noir Magazine, Voices From the Fire, He has interviewed Comedian Paul Gilmartin from Mental Illness Happy Hour Podcast, Brett Siler head of Rebore Records, Ron Sexsmith, Anne Casey, Jessie Lynn McMains, Ron Whitehead, Austin Lucas and more. He has read in public for nearly 20 years in Southern Indiana, Illinois, Nashville, New Orleans & Kentucky. Including tribute nights to John Lennon, Bukowski, Feminist Poets, & Jeff Buckley. His website an be found at www.feversofthemind.com which details info on both upcoming projects & with Anthology submissions info. Twitter is @davidLONan1 and for the book @feversof  Join Facebook Group: Fevers of the Mind Poetry & Arts Group . Facebook Author page DavidLONan1 and goodreads page is https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18366060.David_L_O_Nan Latest book is “His Poetic Last Whispers” a combination of The Cartoon Diaries (only on kindle now) and my books “Our Fears in Tunnels” & “Taking Pictures in the Dark”

Poems from Bob Eager

bio: Bob Eager has appeared in Oddball Magazine, Indiana Voice Journal, Tuck Magazine, Vision With Voices,  and Adelaide Magazine, ASU Canyon Voices. He has published two books Flipside of The Familiar and Darkside Relapsing.

Call It a Momentary Lapse in Deja Reve

Difference between Deja Vu the feeling you have been there before
Premonition usually has a negative context fear that something bad will happen!

Question is it a Precognition which means seeing events into the future  ESP reckoning.

Depends on experience…

Dreams and Reality Separate!

Simple case of Deja Reve : you know of it before because you dreamed it!

A Vision created…

Reality and Imagination could be from REM or some other lucid concept of sleep
Dreamed it Before?
Snapped out of it in the Reverie of the Moment!

Deja Reve has woven its way into reality from a state of  utter complacent lucidity?


Falsehood Blindsided and Shellshocked Accusation

Isolated incident defining one single moment-

One day Target blindsided;

And Shell-shocked 

Misunderstanding of One Moment,

Dictated by A Supposed victim 

This Does not determine validity

Only A Perceived Perception.

Memory Falsely expressed 

Exaggeration of circumstances

Fake phony accusations spew….

And Sugar-coated lecture

Of Misinterpretation-

Create an alternative narrative!

Struggle through manufactured Adversity,

Narrow minded investigation;

Who Are Worried More For Liability… 


Finally proven untrue by conducting oneself with virtuous clarity through the
Entire Legacy of  incident!

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Shaindel Beers

with Shaindel Beers

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Shaindel: Before I could write, I would tell my parents stories and ask them to write them down. I count this as my first writing. As far as first influences, I read anything about horses as a kid and anything about animals, in general. When I got to be high school age, I really liked the Romantic Era and Victorian Era poets. This is probably because I found my mom’s college textbooks around that time and fell in love with them. When I got to college, I fell in love with Milton and wanted to be a Milton scholar. This didn’t happen, but I think I’ve always appreciated any writing about the outdoors and nature. 

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Shaindel: That’s an interesting question. I don’t know if I would say that I have a “biggest” influence right now. I think I’ve found myself? At least, I hope I have. I’ve published three books, I try to read widely. There are a lot of authors I like, but I don’t consider any one of them a “biggest” influence. Nature? Maybe? I mean, we all live in it.

Q3. Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing/art? Have any travels away from home influenced work/describe?

Shaindel: I grew up in a small Indiana town that was completely changed by NAFTA. At least, that is my perception of it. I hope that my work is always working class and rural with an appreciation for the outdoors, nature, and social justice. I’ve lived in a few different places in the U.S. — Indiana, Alabama, Illinois, Florida, Oregon. I hope that I have a broadened worldview. I’ve traveled to the British Isles twice long ago (like over twenty years ago). I used to have a radio show called “Translated By” where I interviewed translators of various literary works. I feel like I learned a lot from that. Even if I haven’t been to a lot of places, I have tried to read a wide variety of work from all over the world.

Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

Shaindel: I don’t know if that is for the author to decide. Readers take meaning from our work, and there’s no way to know who you have touched unless they tell you. I hope that my poems have helped people. I heard once from a woman that a short story of mine helped her understand her daughter who passed away from cancer. That amazed me because she had been so close to that event, yet my story, which I had made up, meant something to her. I hope I have more of those moments that I just don’t know about.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

Shaindel: I think when I was ten and first wrote a poem after a traumatic event as a way to process it, I knew. I don’t think we choose. I think art and poetry is a way of moving through the world that is chosen for us.

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

Shaindel: I guess I would say reading, hiking, running, swimming, cooking, and volunteering at the animal shelter.

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?

Shaindel:

I don’t have anything new coming out for a few months. Here is my author site: http://shaindelbeers.com , and here is the first poem from my most recent collection: http://creativewritingatleicester.blogspot.com/2018/06/the-imprecision-of-language-poem-by.html. This is my most recent flash fiction piece that has been published that is available online: https://orcalit.com/the-lake/. I would love to lift up other writers. I’ve recently read amazing work by DeMisty Bellinger, Gary Percesepe, Courtney LeBlanc, Christina Strigas, Megan Alpert, Lynne Schmidt, and Julia Bouwsma. I’m also the Poetry Editor of Contrary Magazine, http://contrarymagazine.com  , and our latest issue is AMAZING. Please read the whole thing. 

Here are the Twitter handles for this group: ” I’ve recently read amazing work by

@DeMistyB

@GaryPercesepe

@WordPerv

@christinastriga

@megan_alpert

@LynneSchmidt

@BouwsmaJulia

” And Contrary is @Contrary on Twitter

Q8: What is a favorite line from a poem/writing of yours or others?

Shaindel: That’s a great question. I love so much work from the Pre-Raphaelite painters. I love that they were doing paintings inspired by poetry, for instance the interpretations of “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” by Keats. My favorite version of this is Sir Frank Dicksee‘s painting.

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

Shaindel: I guess all of the writers who have come before me. I really am grateful that when I was in undergrad, I got to meet Joy Harjo and Eavan Boland and realize that poets are real, living people. There have been so many others, but I am eternally grateful to them.

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Anne Casey

with Anne Casey:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Anne:

I wrote my first poem at the age of eight – it was a terrible thing about spiders. But, it’s no exaggeration to say that that poem changed the course of my life. When my parents read and reacted to it, I had this epiphany – how my idle scribblings could convey an idea from my head into someone else’s. It was a mind-blowing experience and I was immediately hooked! That was the first step on a 30-year career in writing and publishing.

My first influences were definitely dead old white men poets – Yeats, Kavanagh, Keats, Shelley… but that was because theirs is what was presented to me as poetry as a child. It was when I was 11 years old that I had another earth-shaking moment of discovery with poetry… Emily Dickinson: “If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry“. When I read her poem, ‘Because I could not stop for Death’ for the first time, something exploded inside my head! I felt I had found my spirit-twin. I read everything I could find of hers and still I return to her over and over.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Anne: Ooh that is an incredibly tough question The answer would probably be different if you asked me again tomorrow! I read widely and deeply. I read at least one poem every day, and every poem impacts me… in fact, I would say that all art and artists I’m exposed to influence me to some extent. In terms of my current work, I would say that nature and family are my greatest ‘influences’ – in that these absolutely permeate everything I write, particularly in my latest book, ‘the light we cannot see’ http://www.anne-casey.com/the-light-we-cannot-see-1.html , just out (this week!) from Salmon Poetry in Ireland.

Poets whose work has profoundly affected me include late Irish poets, Eavan Boland (I will never read her poem, ‘Mother Ireland’ without tears) and Seamus Heaney (“To set the darkness echoing”); Maya Angelou (“Caged bird” and “I will rise” after which I wrote a tribute feminist poem); and Australian poet and translator of poetry, Peter Boyle (his work slays me every time!).

I also have to mention musicians whose work is incredibly poetic like Tom Waits, Nick Cave and Australian chart-topping hip hop artist, Tuka (with whom I was very fortunate to do a poetry and music collaboration for his last album ‘Nothing in Common But Us). I’m also very excited that world renowned chamber music composer and harpist, David Yardley is setting one of my poems to music for his new album, ‘The Lost Codex of Avalon’ which is being recorded with the Sydney Chamber Choir for release in December this year. David’s music is extraordinarily inspiring.

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing? Have any travels away from home influence your work/describe?

Anne: Now there is another absolute zinger of a question David! I come from the wild and breathtakingly beautiful west coast of Ireland. I grew up in a little seaside town called Miltown Malbay. My Mum had a shop there which was a real hub for the local community and my Dad ran a trawler off the coast of Clare, so I grew up between the counter and the sea. My poem, ‘Come and find me’ (recorded here by the Irish Poetry Reading Archive at James Joyce Library, University College Dublin) describes the scene outside my bedroom window growing up.

Maybe it was the sea-wind carrying stories from far away, but I always had itchy feet growing up. I travelled a lot and emigrated to Australia 27 years ago. I love it here. I go for a bush walk every day with our family dog. That daily immersion in nature has certainly influenced a lot of my poetry. My latest book, in particular, includes a lot of ecopoetry inspired by the Australian environment – you can read some of those poems from ‘the light we cannot see’ here.

Q4: What do you consider your most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

Anne: When a poem comes to me, it is always instigated by something that has been rolling around inside my head for a while. So, in that sense, everything I write is meaningful to me. My first book, ‘where the lost things go’ was which signified my return to poetry writing after a long absence – was prompted by my mother’s death. That book was my attempt in some way to capture those things I valued most from my growing up years in the west of Ireland, things that I saw as slipping away each time I returned to visit from Australia.

My second book,'out of emptied cups'  while also speaking to my ongoing (mild) obsession with death (...Emily and me!), took a more political stance. It interrogated what it means to be a woman in a world where the female body still preordains so much for the person it contains. What I was really trying to do, I guess, was to weigh up what it means to be human, a consciousness contained within a shell that dictates so much of what our experience of life will be.

So, it should come as no surprise then if I tell you that 'the light we cannot see'... yup... death has its wicked way in there too... from the devastating ecological impacts of the climate crisis to our own family losses during this time of COVID. That's not to say that my work is morbid – quite the contrary really, I'm always striving to find "the light we cannot see, but know lies ahead". 

All of that is my very long-winded way of telling you that the thing I find most meaningful, and what I strive for most in my work, is to find the beauty, the sacred, the eternal in the everyday, even in those everyday parts that might otherwise drag us down.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer/poet?

Anne: Definitely that epiphany moment I mentioned at age eight! I knew then that all I wanted to do was write. When I was leaving school, Ireland was in deep recession, so I knew that being a creative writer wasn't going to pay the rent and put food on the table. So, for the past 30 years, I've earned my crust as a journalist, editor, legal author and media communications director. 

In recent years, I've been able to find more of a balance between those aspects of the writing world and my creative side. This was greatly helped last year when I was awarded an Australian Government Research Training Scholarship to pursue a PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Technology Sydney. It's been an incredibly rewarding experience so far – full of many more epiphanies, particularly thanks to people like my extraordinary supervisor, acclaimed Australian author, Gabrielle Carey and truly inspiring and generous-spirited scholars such as Bhuva Narayan at the university.

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

Anne: Is it terrible if I say I love reading poetry?! My guilty secret is that I also love to read crime and conspiracy thrillers – I think I have everything ever written by Dean Koontz! I also love Irish crime writer, Dervla McTiernan's work. These days I'm consuming a vast amount of historical writing – for my thesis, which is on 'the second-wave impact in Australia of the Great Irish Famine'. I've previously written essays for leading national daily newspaper, The Irish Times, around this topic: The Lock Up and Baby Eliza.  

I also love bush walking, beach walking and snorkelling – you just have to pick up my most recent book to realise that when I don't have my nose stuck in a book or a computer screen, I'm revelling in nature. It's not hard to figure out why – having grown up in one of the most beautiful places on earth and now living on the edge of the stunning, but sadly endangered, Flat Rock Gully Reserve in Sydney. Here' an ecopoem I wrote about that issue last year. 

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects you'd like to promote?

Anne: Thank you so much David – as I mentioned above, my latest book has just come out from Salmon Poetry in Ireland: 'the light we cannot see'. I'd love to hear what people think!

Links: 
My website is anne-casey.com
Social media: @1annecasey (please do say hi!)

Q8: What is a favorite line from one of your poems?

Anne: In these half-shattered times in the world, I think a little wisdom from Tom Waits wouldn't go astray: "'Cause the dreams ain't broken down here now, they're walking with a limp".

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

Anne: Honestly, there are too many people to mention – I owe a huge debt of gratitude to every family member, friend, editor, teacher, mentor, writer/poet/artist who has inspired and encouraged me. Heartfelt thanks to everyone who has purchased, read, and taken the time to respond to my poetry, or indeed poetry anywhere. You'll never know the value of a kind word at the right time.

BIO:
Anne Casey is an internationally award-winning Sydney-based Irish poet and writer. A journalist, magazine editor, legal author and media communications director for 30 years, her work is widely published internationally, ranking in The Irish Times' Most Read. Author of the critically acclaimed books, out of emptied cups and where the lost things go, the light we cannot see is her third collection of poetry published by Salmon Poetry. Anne has won poetry awards in Ireland, the UK, the USA, Canada, Hong Kong and Australia. She is the recipient of an Australian Government Scholarship for her PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Technology Sydney.    anne-casey.com   @1annecasey






Poetry: Narcissism Taxi Cab Parades by David L O’Nan

Narcissism Taxi Cab Parades

photo by David L O’Nan

While listening to Tango Whiskeyman by Can

I was picked up during the middle of a Buffalo Trace Wild Turkey run, on a windy day going across our bending bridges. They're oblivious  are not talked about. How our world could end when they shall fall. Most of this hideous breath former wunderkinds want to live young, rich & dangerous. Driving erratically and uncaring of a permanent damage. They haven't a thought of salvation, salvaging, or empathy. Oh, they want freedom to ring only in their ears.

Picked up by the slick backed balding haired man. Is he a stranger? "You, alcoholic and worshiping yourself" I'm mute yet screaming. I've been loved, but my love now is mute when you're in control. The parade, oh it is a happening! Bubblegum, candy, rusting, raining, popping bullets into the windshields, and watching us frighten into skeletons.

The drive continues as clouds clash fucking harder! Thunder so angered its bleeding crimson all over our minds. The weaving concrete seashores. Are we in for a flight or a swim? All I see is a saint to himself, cigarettes don't take away your whole anxiety. Have another drink. You were anyways.

Your yolk, eases and oozes, blood with madmen living inside. My broken stems, well are your broken stems. The same blood circulates, the greed we share in dire moments. Mine in desperation and yours permanently scarred into your soul. Yours covered in liver spots. Mine are just imagining the cars dodge from your metal dances off the cliffs.

The drive is me, a mummy. In stitches. Your chains rattle the trunk and I feel your hoarse voice bubbling fire. I don't know your impulses, and you, definitely don't know mine. I can draw a picture of death much scarier than you. You aren't perched on top of that mountain. You are hanging onto a balloon as the axes fly by to knock you to the waters.

It is fun watching the devil weave around and lose his power. Can I enjoy a ride to a demise? An unknown, a simple smug look into a blurry mirror.

Bio: David L O’Nan is a poet, short story writer, editor living in Newburgh,IN he has lived in Evansville, Indiana, Henderson, KY and New Orleans, LA. He is the editor along with his wife HilLesha for the Poetry & Art Anthologies “Fevers of the Mind Poetry and Art. and has also edited & curated other Anthologies including 2 inspired by Leonard Cohen with original artwork by friend of Leonard’s Geoffrey Wren. He has self-published works under the Fevers of the Mind Press “The Famous Poetry Outlaws are Painting Walls and Whispers” “The Cartoon Diaries” & “New Disease Streets” (2020). A compilation of 4 books “Bending Rivers” a micro poem collection “Lost Reflections” and new book “Before the Bridges Fell” under Cajun Mutt Press. He is a Best of the Net Nominee for his poem “I honored You in Pennyrile Forest” in Icefloe Press. David has had work published in Icefloe Press, Dark Marrow, Truly U, 3 Moon Magazine, Elephants Never, Royal Rose Magazine, Spillwords, Anti-Heroin Chic, Cajun Mutt Press, Punk Noir Magazine, Voices From the Fire, He has interviewed Comedian Paul Gilmartin from Mental Illness Happy Hour Podcast, Brett Siler head of Rebore Records, Ron Sexsmith, Anne Casey, Jessie Lynn McMains, Ron Whitehead, Austin Lucas and more. He has read in public for nearly 20 years in Southern Indiana, Illinois, Nashville, New Orleans & Kentucky. Including tribute nights to John Lennon, Bukowski, Feminist Poets, & Jeff Buckley. His website an be found at http://www.feversofthemind.com which details info on both upcoming projects & with Anthology submissions info. Twitter is @davidLONan1 and for the book @feversof Join Facebook Group: Fevers of the Mind Poetry & Arts Group . Facebook Author page DavidLONan1 and goodreads page is https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18366060.David_L_O_Nan *just released the book ‘His Poetic Last Whispers’ a combination book of “the Cartoon Diaries” (only available on kindle now) and a few selections from Our Fears in Tunnels and Taking Pictures in the Dark.

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