Balloonitarians (with backstory) from Judge Santiago Burdon

photo from (flaviospugna)

Backstory to this poem.

I was attending a Grief Support group dealing with my severe grief over my daughter McKenzie's death in a car accident caused by a careless driver. The Therapist group leader announced that next Saturday we will be attending a multi-group event to release balloons into the sky in memory of our loved ones that had passed.
I told the group leader I wouldn't be attending the event. She attempted to change my mind telling me it was time to face my grief and this event is designed to release that grief. I explained my reason by telling her this story;

Years ago when my daughter McKenzie was at the age of just nine. We were enjoying a carnival in Tucson with the entire family. McKenzie began crying for no apparent reason. When I asked why she was shedding all those tears.
She pointed to the sky where I noticed a red helium balloon sailing into the blue Arizona sky. 
In a sincere voice she said: 

"Look at the balloon flying away.
Now a Seal or Sea Tortoise is going to die."

 I explained my reason to not attend the event by telling the Group Leader the story. I'm not sure she understood.  I never returned to the group.



Balloonitarian Groups believe when death comes to visit a loved one, the string attached to the balloon of life also containing the soul is released, then slowly there's an ascent delivering them higher into the forever sky, drifting wherever the gentle breeze carries souls,  all  sins are forgiven as they diffuse from the balloon along with the noble gas escaping into the boundless atmosphere, leisurely, lazily moving downward, finally coming to rest somewhere on the surface of the Mystic Ocean, bobbing back and forth to the gentle rhythm of waves, where soon a seal or possibly a sea tortoise, will swallow the polymer remains of the balloon whole, causing it to choke to death.

A Winter Story “The Silver Sixpence” by Victoria Leigh Bennett

photo from (_Alicja_)

The Silver Sixpence

A Wit: “Why is it when people blow their noses, they always take a good look into the handkerchief? What are they expecting to find there, a silver sixpence?”

          It was winter again; I had a snotty-nosed cold that came and went and kept me from fully enjoying my time out-of-doors with my brother, called “wee Bob” by my Uncle Joe, the bon vivant of the family, even among us children.  It was the chilliest winter I could remember in all my ten years, which might not have been long, but I was an outdoor girl.  Yet I had some hesitations about being in the freezing, bitterly discontented wind, the pelting, hard snow, especially the wetting sleet.  Wee Bob just stared gloomily out at the weather from the living room couch back, shoved up against the windowsill where it was, as he was only five and was not allowed to go out without me.  I was the big sister, the guardian angel, the one who beat the stuffings out of the boys down the road if they picked on him.  Not that he was not known to slap a snowball at one of them from behind one of the huge drifts we had this year–strangely early for the end of November and December’s advent—to whiz a miraculously accurate bullet of snow for a five-year-old at a foe, then duck down and grin up at me. At that point, I stood up and posed atop a white mound, daring our opponents to fire back.  And fire back they did, but only half-heartedly, just to “keep up the side” before going on about their own snowball or snow fort business.  But for now, it was off-again on-again for the two of us going outside, as the vagaries of my cold and my mother’s varying edicts about the weather and her own convenience with the household chores convinced her that it was good for us to be outside, or not.

          After a week of grousing from Bob and complaining from me, my mother decided that it was probably best to let us have our head, before we drove her round the bend and there were three of us out of sorts.  On the Saturday she decided to let us go around in the magnanimously fluffy and non-pelting (for a change!) snowflakes falling decorously and softly in their little swirling dances down the mounded white lawn, my Uncle Joe was sitting at the table beside her and my father, having his tea.

Now, my father and mother were having coffee; my mother claimed not even to know how to make a proper cup of tea, or how to buy it, temper the pot, manage the kettle, measure the leaves, any of it. But as Uncle Joe was her brother, and he appreciated the perfect cuppa, he just gleamed wisely from behind his out-of-date moustaches when she said these things, which caused my father to roll his eyes. One of those repeated little family dramas which get their replays with variations every few days or weeks as a form of togetherness.

Uncle Joe, in his general visceral communicativeness and sociability, had even caught my cold, and he was now whuffling and snuffling over the hot, steaming brew and trying not to sneeze.  We were shrugging into our clothes to go outside, and moved aside, a bit leery of the upcoming explosion, but not to much avail: when Uncle Joe sneezed, though it was into his handkerchief—a grand affair with his initials embroidered on one corner and made of some fine absorbent linen—the sneeze was an equally grand affair.  Though none of us had been covered with anything untidy or germy, we all felt that we had.

Unfazed, my Uncle Joe blew his nose into the cloth and then looked into it for a few seconds, giving it full attention.

“Oh, God, Joe, that’s gross!” my father laughed in protest.

“Besides, it’s rude and so—and—the children—Joe, do you want them to pick up coarse ways?”  My mother equally countered her brother’s frank interest in his own physiognomy and its products.

“Ah, but, it’s just a silver sixpence!” insisted Joe, upon being so attacked.

As a worldly-wise ten-year-old, I sneered.  “Oh, it is not, Uncle Joe.  You’re joking us!”

Still not up to all the rigs, wee Bob shouted, “Let me see, let me see!  I’ve never seen a silver sixpence.  Where did you get it, Uncle Joe?”

The question was, of course, whether wee Bob even knew what a silver sixpence was.  I had little idea myself, though “pence” suggested money, and “silver” meant treasure.

“And won’t you look at that, from 1942, back during the war, when so many coins in Great Britain were made of silver because it was cheaper than other metals in use!” Exclaimed Uncle Joe.

“Spare us your numismatics, Joe,” my father laughed again, “you’re teaching my children bad manners!”

“Ah, and if they’d learned to sneeze properly and clear their airways, then Margery there wouldn’t still have the tail-end of a cold with wee Bob looking like he wants to get it from her any day!”  Joe rejoined.

“I’m well, and we’re going outside.  See you later, Uncle Joe,” I responded, making signs to wee Bob to hurry up about it before any adults could change their minds about our going out.  And we deserted our favorite uncle for his adultlike near-betrayal of us.

Outside, it was just the most perfect day!  It was cold, true, and the wind was chafing our cheeks quite red by the time we’d been in the whiteness for five minutes.  But the fort from a few days ago was still standing in the backyard, proof that my power in the neighborhood hadn’t waned, due to my carefully dissembled illness, and our sleds were outside the basement just wanting to slip down the hill above the fort into our waiting “stop” zones there.  We watched for victims from behind the walls of our fort, made extra tall with the help of my father on one of his days off, and gloated over the pile of as-yet-unthrown snowballs buried in a hidden pit in the fort’s most inside space.

“Ah, here it is now!” spoke a loud, booming voice behind us, making us both jump, I falling into the snow on top of my sled and wee Bob shrieking loudly enough to alert our foes.  I shushed him and turned to Uncle Joe, who was now standing in the rear of our fort, holding aloft a bright silver coin in his fingers, turning it this way and that to catch the sun, which humored him as we had not, coming out from clouds previously clustered gray around the skies.

“A silver sixpence!  A silver sixpence!” shouted wee Bob, as if acquainted with the phenomenon all his life.  “Can I hold it?”

Even I, however, though proof against the fiction of its having come from Uncle Joe’s nose, was not dead set against a look at it, or even a feel of it.  Always telling myself, of course, that as it had in no wise come out of his nose, it wasn’t unclean to handle.

We inspected it, and Uncle Joe, departing, tolerated an obligatory couple of snowballs thrown at him as we watched him walk away.  Once again sneezing and blowing his nose vigorously, then turning to see us looking, he held up the handkerchief as if it contained further treasures.  Then, we entered into the day with earnest abandon, managing to harass and drive from the yard three or four fellow snowballers brave enough to venture into our territory.  By the time we were chilled through and ready for cocoa and muffins, we’d forgotten all about Uncle Joe and his cold and his handkerchief and my parents’ distaste for his joke.

“Yes, I need to talk to the cashier at the main window.  I don’t think you here at the client desk can help me.”

“But maybe I can, uncle, maybe I can.  What is it that you are needing?”

“Uncle.  No one has called me that who wasn’t really related to me for a long time.  Not since Vietnam and my travelling days, after that.  I’ll tell you, it gives me a turn.”

“Do let me apologize for it if it seems to you a discourtesy; it is a title of respect in my country. I have not been here long, and so am a bit raw around the edges, maybe.  How can I help you?”

“Oh, I didn’t mean it bothered me in a bad way; just brought back something of the past.  Well, the fact of the matter is that I’m in the way of playing a bit of a joke on my little niece and nephew.  And I need some particular silver sixpences from Great Britain, I guess they call it U.K. now.  But ones from about, well, from exactly 1942, as many, maybe, as would come in a roll of quarters, about forty.  Wait, excuse me a moment—a-haw-a-haw-a-haw! Huff—huff—huff—whachooo!”

“You must take care of that, uncle, sir, that is a dreadful cold you have!  It sounds like the flu, and a sore throat, and I hope not Covid all combined! Please forgive me for being frank. You shouldn’t be here trying to transact business with a condition like that.”  The kind voice paused.  “But in any case, unless you have much money for this joke, dear sir, it will be too expensive at a bank, especially.  I don’t even know if we could get it for you, in fact I rather think not.  Forty silver sixpences, costing probably around $22 each, no, too much.  Have you sought out any coin collectors?  Also likely to be pricey.”

The old man was nearly finished wiping his face.  His eyes were reddened and watery, and his face likewise rubicund and moist.  His forehead was pale, though, and looked sweaty.  But he faced the bank manager, determined though bleary-eyed.  “Look, my friend, I’m old.  I’m feeling on my last legs. I—”

“Don’t say that, uncle, you have only to take care of yourself!  Anyone who could consider spending so much money for a joke upon two children must surely be able to get good medical care. Do you want me to call someone for you?”

“NO! Let me talk, it’s hard enough through this…this…anyway, I need to find about forty, we’ll say, silver sixpences.  And the reason I want them from 1942 is because I want them real silver, but not as expensive as the most valuable ones.  You’re right that my resources aren’t limitless.  So, do you know of any coin collectors I could contact? Is the bank supplied with any, in touch with any?”

“Not that I am aware of, dear sir, and I think that—but you know, there is a street in the city, a town-within-a-town, I do recollect a junk dealer, not so much junk as old things, though he’s called a junk dealer.  His name, I believe, is Daniel Mattheas Willford.  My cousin once bought a dining set from his collection that seated twelve, an antique set, and was not cheated and was well content.  Just one moment, if you please, I will call my cousin at her place of business.  If she is able to answer the phone, I may be able to get the address and phone number for you.  Do you want a cell phone number or the store number?”

“Store number, please.  But likely, I’ll drop by.”

The manager went away and returned again after what seemed to the old man like only a minute, but a prolonged minute, a minute in which shadows came and went in the bank, in which he wished he could sit down across the aisle on the other side, except for not wanting the manager to think he had left precipitately.

“Here you are.  And please, dear uncle, think a little more of yourself and a little less of selfish children.  Children have the rest of their lives. You are old, and must take care of yourself.  Come again, when you are well.”

          “But it’s out of the question, Peter, he’s got some sort of lung infection or something, and is at death’s door!  Literally, at death’s door!  We can’t take the children into his home, however many doctors he has there with him!”

          “He only has the one and the attending nurse as far as I know.  But I mean, he made it his last wish to see them, and you know how he is, it’s probably for something between them and him, just as a way of saying goodbye.  And he is their favorite uncle.  And your own brother, after all.”

          Even though I was sitting in the dining room, I could hear them arguing in the kitchen; not that they were trying to keep it down, especially not my mother.  But my father lowered his voice and spoke calmly and soothingly, and as usually happened when he did that, he won his point.  As it turned out, we went to see Uncle Joe for the last time that very night, in the middle of a blinding snowstorm that my father had real difficulty seeing to drive through, the wipers going fast as fast, but still making nearly no headway against the white splats dotting the windshield and road before us.

          When we walked into Uncle Joe’s living room, the fire wasn’t lit as it usually had been when we visited during the winter, and it was cold and damp there.  My father looked towards the various decanters on the sideboard that Uncle Joe had usually regaled him with, but after staring for just a moment, both he and my mother went to whisper quiet words to the nurse, who true to the sort of old-fashioned form so typical of Uncle Joe’s life, wore a neat hospital-style uniform of starched white, with a small cap on her head and her hair neatly pinned up in a French bun behind.

          “Sit down and don’t mess with anything, Margery, Bob, and when it’s your turn to see Uncle Joe, we’ll come and get you.  He won’t be up to much talking, and he has lots of germs, because he’s sick and is getting ready, we think, to die.  Nothing like the colds you get, you don’t have to worry about dying, we’re here to take care of you.  But just don’t get too close around the bed, don’t crowd him, okay?”  We nodded and sat nervously, not even saying much to each other while they were out of the room.  Bob did get up once or twice and stroll aimlessly around just looking, but he was not breaking the rule not to touch, either.

          Finally, my father came back alone.  His eyes were sad, his black lashes a little wet, though I hesitated to conclude that he had been crying.  “He’s able to see you both now, kids.  Don’t expect him to talk too much, though you know how he is.  Smile at him, try not to cry.  Let him know you love him.”

          So right away, of course, as soon as we went in and had a seat side by side to one side of the bed and Uncle Joe was grinning his odd grin at us, wee Bob said, “We love you, Uncle Joe.  You know it, right?”  I was partly annoyed because he’d gotten in the word first, but also because it seemed so stupid and obvious and direct.

          “And me, too, Uncle Joe.  I love you, too,” was all it left me to say.

          Uncle Joe nodded rapidly at us, tried to speak, but started coughing and my mother shook her head at him and said, “Save your voice, Joe.”

          It was sort of awkward, there didn’t seem to be much to say, just thoughts about dying and not dying, and wondering how he felt, which would have been morbid somehow, under the circumstances.

          Suddenly, Uncle Joe himself broke the ice.  He was watching us, a little sad, wanting to say something, still smiling, though not full of jokes as usual.  But his face brightened and he gesticulated to the nurse.  She handed him a small bag of something, and he pulled a clean handkerchief out of his sheets below his chin.  Then, a wondrous thing: this sick man wrapped the something up in the handkerchief and tossed it to me.   It had weight and substance and with my best summer baseball glove hand, I caught it.  It was a drawstring bag with things inside, and though my mother darted to take it away, I palmed off the handkerchief it was wrapped in on her and huddled with my brother wee Bob over the bag itself.

          While we were pulling the bag open, we heard a croak.  We looked up.  It was Uncle Joe.  Sure enough, he was speaking to us.  It was faint, and cough-riddled, but we stopped what we were doing and listened.  “I had a lot of sneezes, kids.  I collected them for you; a lot of silver sixpences!  Twenty each.”

          I knew it was a trick, but it was winter magic, all the same.  Wee Bob, though, was taken in entirely.  He became very distressed: “But Uncle Joe, please, let’s put them back up your nose, please, let’s put them back!”

          “Why?” wheezed Uncle Joe.  “Why such a dirty ol’ place?”

          “So that you can get well and be with us again, and have your tea!”

          Uncle Joe laughed then, a horrendous sound in that narrow room.  “Here you go, Bobby, you get the last one, mine, just for that!”  And he flipped it over to Bob.

          And with that, he was gone, expiring in a coughing paroxysm as my father herded us from the room. 

Bio: Victoria Leigh Bennett, (she/her).  Greater Boston, MA area, born WV.  Ph.D., English/Theater.  Website:  “Come for the shadows, stay for the read.”  In-Print: “Poems from the Northeast,” 2021.  OOP but on website for free: “Scenes de la Vie Americaine (en Paris),” [CNF in English], 2022.  From Fall 2021-Spring 2023, Victoria will have published at least 31 times with: @olympiapub, @Feversof, @HooghlyReview, @TheUnconcourier, @barzakhmag, @bullshitlitmag, @AmphoraMagazine, @press_roi, @thealienbuddha, @LovesDiscretion, @themadrigalpress, @winningwriters, @cultofclio.  She is the organizer behind the poets’ collective @PoetsonThursday on Twitter along with Dave Garbutt and Alex Guenther.  Twitter:  @vicklbennett & @PoetsonThursday.  Mastodon: &  Victoria is ocularly and emotionally disabled.

Poetry from Michael Igoe – January 2023

Socrates Said He Fled Sex

We may have known                                                                                                                            the familiar erasures.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Of frog carcasses                                                                                                                             rendered at sport.                                                                                                                                                   We've been found,                                                                                                                                                      knee deep in envy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              witlessly imagined                                                                                                                            for crying out loud.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         It’s the loss of power                                                                                                                               that oddly overcomes                                                                                                                       in a distant homeland.                                                                                                                                            He had sought the power,                                                                                                                                                     speaking from one cheek                                                                                                                                                              thought himself thwarted.

Stretch of Imagination

Our pecan inlaid table                                                                                                                             on the parquet squares                                                                                                                                   behind a derelict piano.                                                                                                                              Competing in infancy                                                                                                                               in a manner of stages.                                                                                                            Forgiving the mess                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        about they brought                                                                                                                                        the dime store items                                                                                                                                           same as in the Bible,                                                                                                                purloined on purpose                                                                                                                           completely breaking                                                                                                                                                                                                                                in the backyard mud.                                                                                                                            They dug with hidden claws                                                                                                                     at most all their Gethsemani.                                                                                                                                Yes, I walk gently,                                                                                                                             but in giant strides                                                                                                                         gifted by grinning                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             through every age.                                                                                                                                 A song you hear from the throat,                                                                                                                    one not of the spirit but the flesh.                                                                                                                            A phone forever rings                                                                                                                          I’m sure I waste water                                                                                                                                  when I sweep a basin.                    

2 new poems by Michael Igoe (October 2022)             

New poems from Michael Igoe                                                                                       

Poetry from Austin Kuebler : New Metropolis

photo from pixabay

New Metropolis

This is from Austin’s upcoming collection “Notes to Margaret and Songs for Marguerite”

I have to resurrect dissatisfaction
And peace that comes with the push
Without a crown.

I am looking at the replays but not the game
I am sorting through the budgets but focused on the cash
Even though it has been burned before it was made.

I am restless, not distracted,
Running heavy, used to the heartbeat hard,
Bruised high, no time to heal, no recovery
But a move to break out…one day
Believing the chips I throw will count,
Will still amount to the shift a generation away.

I see it Margaret
I see your gang, color blind
And somewhat kind
But can you all make the moves to de-rig, unwind, re-wire and move the old along?

How will you keep the fever balanced and laugh under duress?

I, I am just coming out of it and will mount the resistance line soon, spring high and be dissatisfied
My troubles may dissolve-or not-
My waiting will be over
My contribution will be sound.

I can see it now and I have some time
When the doubt at city’s dawn has been lifted,
the mist has sifted through the open iron gates and risen
The streets will be cleared for peace in the morning sun

The New Metropolis.

You will be walking in a smart camel overcoat, with no caffeine of course,

Bio: Austin is a songsmith, musician, writer, poet, coach, manager.

Book Reviews from Spriha Kant: “Woman: Splendor and Sorrow: Love Poems and Poetric Prose” by Gabriela Marie Milton

Review of Gabriela Marie Milton’s Poetry Book 
“Woman: Splendor and Sorrow: Love Poems and Poetic Prose” by “Spriha Kant”

The beautifully gracious and wise poetess Gabriela Marie Milton needs no introduction so obviously, there is no room for any doubt that this book is mesmerizingly beautiful and has deeply heartfelt vibes. This book is a cradle of two clusters— Love Poems and Poetic Prose. 
A fragment of words from the poetry “Henrhyd Falls (Annwn)” of the Welsh poet “Matthew MC Smith” contained in his poetry book “The Keeper of Aeons” is fit to evince the beauty with which this book shimmers and this shimmer has a thrust to mesmerize its readers:

“glint in glacier-ruins 
  where minnows flicker 
  in golden shallows”

The poetess has used personifications, similes, and metaphors in both poetries and poetic prose in different expressions.
She has adorned her few poetries and poetic prose with personifications, similes, and metaphors like a bride with jewel ornaments. Displaying a few jewel ornaments below:

“your voice moves stones in a lonely graveyard 
  to bury the tears I cry”

“Shadows tremble on the silence of the tombs like 
  virgins under the touch of their first lover.”

“A pink conch tolls the waves announcing the homecoming of   
  the chrysanthemums”

“stars rise over old memories of purple seas 
  like cherry buds”

“when cotton candy sunsets sing 
  I’ll deliver myself 
  in the arms of Morpheus 
  and ever”

“During the nights 
  in which the moon is glossy and crisp like the crust 
  of a country bread, the woman’s body gives birth to 
  mountain chains and fragrant valleys.”

“I know he loved me. Yet his mind was too pedestrian 
  to understand.”

In the poetic prose “Of Wounds,” the poetess has personified the feelings of humans from a pessimistic angle. Through this personification, she pointed to human vices and the extremities of the adversities pushing humans towards vices. The words she used for pointing to the extremities of the adversities are like melting furnaces for kind hearts.
Quoting below the stanzas consisting of the personification of feelings of humans by the poetess:

“The Envy wears red lipstick and high heels. She 
  dances naked on a wooden table. At every turn, 
  she spreads poisonous confetti in the air, and she 
  lowers her eyes. I try to decipher the meaning of her 
  gestures. I cannot.”

“The Greed, with her childbearing hips, indulges 
  herself with poor souls who live at the margins of 
  the city. The children are hungry, and the mother is 
  long exhausted. The beds are cold, and the moonlight 
  enters the rooms through broken windows.”

Contrary to the pessimistic angle of the personified feelings of humans, the poetess has also shed a light on an optimistic angle. Showing below the optimistic face:

“Love and sacrifice are the consummation of all acts 
  that lead to the warm meal that one hands to an old 
  man who dwells in the streets during cold winters. 
  They are the sum of all unknowns. They are the 
  fingers that draw the light of stars in the darkest of
  the skies.”

Each poem is a love poem with an ambiance of its own like chocolate with different flavors. 

The poetess in her poetry “The Ides of October” added the flavour of the love of a mother by showing beautifully and in-depth how a woman reaches the seventh sky on giving birth to a baby. Replaying below one of the scenes containing a dialogue spoken by the poetess on the behalf of every mother:

“When I see cocoons of the larvae, I think silk as 
  soft as the hair of the child.”

The poetess in some of her poetries has added a philosophical flavour. In one such poem “You and I,” the poetess wrapped a new cover printed with her words around the fundamental nature of existence. Showing the cover below:

“a baby star looks down 
  impermanence of flesh”

In some of the love poetries, the poetess has added a gloomy flavour by including melancholy, hopelessness, helplessness, loneliness, regret, suffering, and tragedy in personal life and by also concealing the portion of the world submerged in the murky sea beneath the layers both through her few words and/or stanzas. 
These represent the sensitivity, compassion, and awareness the poetess has.
Quoting below a few words and stanzas representing the sensitivity, compassion, and awareness of the poetess: 

“I am neither a gift 
  nor something you can keep 
  I am the syllable forgotten on your lip”

“Eyes become the locus where the desert and the sea 

“I return to find the pardon of the sands 
  to kiss your dust left on your mother’s hand”

“your tired feet have walked the desert 
  thorns and thistles scarred your skin 
  squirming in a mire 
  enraged by liars 
  your nights of passions 
  felt like the apocalypse”

“Your face grows washerwoman skin.”

“kerf cuts your words left in my heart”

“I am as insignificant as a drop of blood floating 
  through the arteries of night. 
  Lost at sea the loneliness of sandcastles.”

“Roberto’s guitar sells cheap dreams by the sea 
  young girls are ready for harvest like flowers of lust”

“For three thousand years, sung by the poets of this 
  the naked shoulder of the mountain reigned in 

“you, my adulterated love 
  I light your fire 
  blindfolded I seek a buyer 
  for all my sins 
  for this September blood that I resold 
  and for the girl who once was me”

The poetess has added sensual flavour in some of her poems. She has picturized the sensuality beautifully, however, the expression differs in each sensual poem. Showing below the whole scene picturized in one of the sensual-flavoured poetries “Love Numbers”:

“We laid in the grass, shadows of poppies playing on 
  our faces with the same rhythmicity of the waves 
  on tranquil days.  
  At times we could feel the pulse of the new grains.
  The line of my décolleté – as you used to say – nothing 
  else but the demarcation between inexorable 
  sins and the blushing tones of the sunsets.”  
The poetess has recited a few of the prose in the form of a leaf with very few tiny dews. The leaf is the story and the dew is a tiny tinge of surrealism. 
Showing a few words from one of the dewy leaves “Autumn Reflections” below: 

“You waited for me at the end of the road. I felt your 
  hungry fingers unbuttoning my raincoat. 

 The children approached. Their little voices 
 pinched my brain like needles. Their thin bodies reflected 
 in your blue eyes.   

I asked:  

 Can you see the children? 

 What children? 

 The children dressed in white. They are in your eyes. Why can’t   
 you see them? 

 Your fingers continued to unbutton my raincoat. 

 Lord, I must have been born on the day of children 
 who cannot be seen and cannot be heard. 

 I choked.”

There are a few tiny glints of woman empowerment in this book though but the poetess transmogrified into a tigress in the poetries “On Women’s Writings” and “Feminine Submissiveness.” She in her transmogrified form stripped the critical issues of feminism and woman empowerment nude through her daggering words echoing as bellows and roars from her spirit, influential to ignite the fire in her feminine readers’ hearts to not let any of their glass ceilings go without smashes. 

Apart from all the previously mentioned peculiarities, this book has a lot more in it.

This book does not need any recommendation from anyone as the words in this book are fully presentable in themselves.  

Bios (Gabriela Marie Milton and Spriha Kant):

Gabriela Marie Milton:

Gabriela Marie Milton is the #1 Amazon bestselling poet and an internationally published author. She is a 2022 Pushcart Prize nominee, the author of the #1 best-selling poetry collection Woman: Splendor and Sorrow: | Love Poems and Poetic Prose (Vita Brevis Press, 2021), and the author of Passions: Love Poems and Other Writings (Vita Brevis Press, 2020). She is also the editor of the #1 Amazon bestselling anthology Wounds I Healed: The Poetry of Strong Women (Experiments in Fiction, 2022).
Her poetry and short prose have appeared in various magazines and anthologies. Under the pen name Gabriela M, she was awarded 2019 Author of the Year at Spillwords Press (NYC). Her piece “If I say I love you” was nominated for 2020 Spillwords Press Publication of the Year (Poetic). 

On July 6, 2021, she was featured in New York Glamour Magazine. Her interview can be read at the following link:

Spriha Kant:

Spriha Kant is a poetess and a book reviewer.

Her poetry The Seashell was published online at Imaginary Land Stories for the first time.

The poetries of Spriha have been published in four anthologies till now:

Sing, Do The Birds of Spring

A Whisper Of Your Love

Hard Rain Poetry: Forever Dylan

Bare Bones Writing Issue 1: Fevers of the mind

Spriha has done six book reviews till now:

The Keeper of Aeons by Matthew MC Smith

Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow by Jeff Flesch

Washed Away: A Collection of Fragments by Shiksha Dheda

Spaces by Clive Gresswell

Silence From the Shadows by Stuart Matthews

Breathe by Helen Laycock

Spriha has collaborated on the poetry The Doorsteps Series with David L O’ Nan.

Spriha has been a part of the two events celebrating the launches of the books till now:

Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow by Jeff Flesch 

As FolkTaleTeller by Paul Brookes

Her poetic quote “An orphic wind storm blew away a sand dune that heaped all our love memories upon one another.” has been published as the epigraph in the book Magkasintahan Volume VI By Poets and Writers from the Philippines under Ukiyoto Publishing in the year 2022. 

Spriha has been featured in the two interviews till now:

Quick-9 Interview on 

#BrokenAsides with Spriha Kant on the

Spriha has been featured in Creative Achievements in 2022 on

The links to the features of Spriha Kant are: