The Corona – a poem by Janet Krauss

The Corona

I like to think of the corona around the sun
its aura extending millions of kilometers into space,
not the vicious virus bearing its name emptying
streets, roads, classrooms, offices , museums ,
creating a slab of silence everywhere, driving
people into their homes close to their phones,
their lives suspended while they wish for
summer to host their gatherings again
tossing garland after garland of marigolds,
zinnias, and impatiens as they celebrate
clasping hands, staying close together,
eyes brimming, echoing the aura of sunlight.

In the mean time I watch a pair of mourning doves
on my porch rail peck at each other’s cheeks
or just sit in puffs of comfort doing nothing.


Janet Krauss, who has two books of poetry published, “Borrowed Scenery,” Yuganta Press, and “Through the Trees of Autumn,” Spartina Press, has recently retired from teaching English at Fairfield University. Her mission is to help and guide Bridgeport’s  young children through her teaching creative writing, leading book clubs and reading to and engaging a kindergarten class. As a poet, she co-directs the poetry program of the Black Rock Art Guild.


Architectonics – a poem by Jonathan English


Across the threshold
into semidarkness alight
with pearly haze,
the outer world stilled
for a moment, so
one enters timelessness.

Moving on across ancient stone
your gaze ascends higher,
and higher still,
until you know your
smallness, human scale.

Silence is here nearly,
only footfalls, fidgets,
solitary, sacred sighs,
sound may be a trumpet blast,
the human voice a noble instrument

In the shadows too
light blazes bright,
the candles in alcoves
arrayed, flaming constellations,
sparkling symmetry.

Too straight for earthly cavern
the path proceeds linearly,
you advance,
all that is past
all else ahead.

The inevitable intersection approaches
line perpendicular to line
as if the earth’s four corners lead
to collision, confrontation;
You approach the center,
stand in the crossroad
all directions visible forever
the convergence of all suffering.

And here at the
the chaos in your heart
staggers and stills,
eclipsed by a greater
than you have ever known,
all reality concentrated—






Planets, stars, spheres,
galaxies, from the beginning,
circling the center,
all are called and recalled
each in its orbit—radiant halo
speaking glory to the ends of space
to the end of time,
a Copernican revolution
it may take you
ages to comprehend.

And you know the center
holds forever, adamantine
record of human error,
Humanity’s Hope
broken and unbroken

Lightly, softly—
you withdraw,
re-cross the threshold, flow
back into time
and human frailty,
still echoes of eternity following after


Jonathan English works as a lawyer in Washington, DC, playing a bit part in our common quest for justice.  He also writes short stories, poetry, and other creative genres, besides writing on law.

On Holiday – a poem by Anna Evas

On Holiday


Damp linen dozes on the line.
.    Nothing perturbs me.

Minnows flit through my blood,
.    my nerves are swallowtails

browsing alyssum.
.    Infused with summer air,

my bones ping like wind chimes
.    freed from a lintel hook.

Gray patinas of salt
.    peel from windows

in the house
.    of one-eyed oblivion.


From wickered trees,
wrens rout my parrot from her roost.

Soft wings round the silence
into a Tahitian pearl.

I’m a throat verging a vowel,
an empty cupful of wine,

a thread
both cut and spooled.


Anna Evas: Published internationally in literary journals such as Irises (The University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor’s International Poetry Prize), Michigan Quarterly Review and, soon, Long Poem Magazine (England), Anna Evas works as a lyricist, recording artist and composer.

THE SECRET OF ARCHERY by Alessio Zanelli – review by Lynn Woollacott


THE SECRET OF ARCHERY by Alessio Zanelli  2019, 72 pp, £12.99, Greenwich Exchange, Available from:  ISBN: 978-1-910996-30-0

The opening poem ‘Leave’ in seven concise lines, brings colour and place, ‘rainbows fixed across the dale / a watercolour sun afloat upon cloud-rags / dry-stone walls and branches whistling in the gale …’ The play on senses and imagery is profound and the penultimate line, ‘pushing forward apace back home in slanting liquid light …’ is evocative. The movement of pushing forward is linked to many of the poems in Zanelli’s fifth collection – a passionate long distance runner, the pace and rhythm echoes throughout these journeying poems, slowing and running, often stopping to take in the views as the narrator reflects of life, present and past, in mizzle, fog, snow and sun in his adopted English language:

Alone in the fog
amid the faded countryside.

No sign of movement
a furlong all around.

Unbroken silence,
then caws of distant crows

[‘Solo Run’]

The narrator glimpses into his past, in ‘The Picture’ a darkness of mood sweeps across two faces, ‘a bitter smile, as twisted as fleeting, / for an instant the impulse to tear it …’ This is closely followed by ‘Twone’ musing on his father, the similarities in appearance contrasts the differences, at times, between them. A crafted concrete poem shaped like an hourglass, the senses play out on childhood memories in landscape, and ‘rapturous wonder’ filters through the centre into pictures ‘crammed into a fancied chest locked up / and never reopened. Like the real one filled up with / old clothes // abandoned in the loft …’ a dusty lot of times gone by.  So that when the first line of, ‘The Pin’ tells us ‘I had been planning routes since I was born,’ we understand there are deeper metaphorical levels at work in the undertones.

A short sequence of dark mystical poems follows, night-time poems, ‘the spool’s unwound // the weaver’s hand’s worn out …’ weaving turns to walking, leading nowhere but to itself. ‘Insomniacs’ brings a sense of being fearful, the journey is shortening. The lovely ‘Witch of Heads Lane’ brings more eeriness, words like, harp, hooded druid, a hexed vicar, add to the mystery. ‘Stardustling’ lives up to its title, metaphoric for life’s journey, jackals, vultures, poisoned watering places, and then the last three lines, ‘Then you will finally be able to pick out / from the cacophonous background chaos / the luringly omnipresent call of stars.’ Running on through the landscapes the pace and range passes through wonderful scene changes, ‘The sun still rises from the Dardanelles / draws an arc to Africa,’ in ‘Mare Nostrum’. Historically in ‘Culloden Moor’ and in Tuscany, ‘anointed with the smell of pines and oleanders / heavy paces beat the time …’

There are many memorable poems in this collection, the sensitive closing poems enhance this, warmth filters through in shards and shafts as Zanelli hones in on mortality and happiness. The poignant ‘Up to Val Ventina’, in rain, in torrents, in footfall, along a lone ascent, erratic snowfall, either trudging or apace and even on the run, Zanelli’s choice of words is beautiful. And the closing title poem balances life in the arrow on the string of a bow, aware that we are often shaped by others and ageing, is a poem that will stay with me. It’s not surprising most of the poems in ‘The Secret of Archery’ have been published by journals across the globe, in this thoughtful, scenic journey.

            The Secret of Archery

Most have it
that they trace their course,
set their targets,
decide when and where
to aim the arrow.
A tiny few realize
that others string the bow
then nock and draw it –
so hard a fact to accept.
All grow old
buying and fantasizing
they’re the masters of their lives,
and they go on and on,
convinced it is themselves
that set and keep them going.
Once gone that far,
nobody can stop them
or turn them away from their mark.
They know no love, no hate,
nothing at all;
they have no real will,
no wishes, hopes, scruples, regrets,
insight, first or second thoughts.
They’re not the brain in this,
they’re not the eye,
they’re not the hand,
they’re not the bow,
they’re not the string.
Yes – they are the arrow.
And the wait, the wait …
the wait once drawn,
while shaking in tension,
is wearing them out
more than the fear of missing.
But much less than the one
of never being released.


Lynn Woollacott

Lynn Woollacott is a reviewer for Reach Poetry Magazine, and has had reviews in Envoi and Ink Sweat and Tears. Lynn has been widely published and won prizes for poetry, and has two collections with Indigo Dreams Publishing. Her historical romance is available on Amazon.

Facing the Ocean – a poem by Janet Krauss

Facing the Ocean

I come to spread my thoughts across the water
not empty the lint of my sins from my pockets
on a High Holy Day or scatter ashes of a loved one
followed by a float of flowers in honor of his life.
I come to sort my emotions , words spoken or written
in comfort or discord, place them at a clear yet near
distance, floating on the buoyant back of the ocean,
so there is space to accept another’s perspective
while I watch shared feelings ride the windless waves
as they fold themselves quietly in to shore.


Janet Krauss, who has two books of poetry published, “Borrowed Scenery,” Yuganta Press, and “Through the Trees of Autumn,” Spartina Press, has recently retired from teaching English at Fairfield University. Her mission is to help and guide Bridgeport’s  young children through her teaching creative writing, leading book clubs and reading to and engaging a kindergarten class. As a poet, she co-directs the poetry program of the Black Rock Art Guild.

Say gravity is grace enough for god- – a poem by MEH

[Say gravity is grace enough for god-]

Say gravity is grace enough for god-
less men—a secular force binding all
things, everywhere, with prevenient power.
inevitably irresistible,
it connect and confines, keeps us grounded.
inescapable, like fledgling photons
attempting to sneak past black holes—parents
sitting on the sofa, watching the door
in the darkest hours after curfew
or eons later, waiting. though weaker
with distance, every prodigal’s within
its parabolic reach—slowly drawn back
home by unmerited favor. a love
unseen. the hope that reconciles all things.



MEH is Matthew E. Henry, a Pushcart and Best of the Net nominated poet with works appearing or forthcoming in various publications including Amethyst Review, The Anglican Theological Review, The Other Journal, Relief, Rock and Sling, Spiritus, and The Windhover. The author or Teaching While Black (Main Street Rag. 2020), MEH is an educator who received his MFA from Seattle Pacific University, yet continued to spend money he didn’t have completing a MA in theology and a PhD in education.

All Because – a poem by Paul Waring

All Because

Put to bed any idea
answers to big questions will come –
reward for life spent rooting
through loose change of thought

in wonder at the way
petrified lakes project mountain peaks
add gloss to winter days
imagined only by Brueghel

ponder how moon floodlights
night as salmon chart, part-magnet,
part-vault, pulled home against
the flow, return the same

questions like tide: ones that ask
who we really are and what it all means –
and the answer to why might be


Paul Waring is a retired clinical psychologist from the Wirral. His poems have been widely published in print journals, anthologies and webzines. He was runner-up in the 2019 Yaffle Prize, commended in the 2019 Welshpool Poetry Competition and has a pamphlet ‘Quotidian’ (Yaffle Press, 2019).

The Lotus Blossoms – a poem by Deborah Guzzi

The Lotus Blossoms

Cupped within open hands, atoms swirl.
Undaunted by eternity, unmeasured,
all that is, or will be, is in the whirl.

The essence of all life is held treasured.
Life flows as I reach out my upturned palms,
undaunted by eternity unmeasured.

The sounds of day ring truly like a psalm.
The sights of night reflect from opened eyes.
Life flows as I reach out my upturned palms.

Rain falls joyous, it improvises, and the sky tries
to grace the offered cup with drink sublime.
The sights of life reflect from opened eyes,

framed by lash, the lens shows an outward clime.
The earth, the sun, the rocks, and rain remain
to grace the offered cup with drink sublime.

Oh, taste a wealth of earthly spice ingrained
upon the scented winds, all nature unfurls.
The earth, the sun, the rocks, and rain remain
all that is, or will be, is in the whirl.


Deborah Guzzi writes internationally. Her poetry appears in Allegro, Shooter, Amethyst Review & Foxglove Journal in the UK – Blue Nib &Automatic Pilot, Ireland – Existere, Ekphrastic Review, Scarlet Leaf & Subterranean Blue, Canada – Tincture, Vine Leaves & Ariel Chart – Australia, mgv2>publishing- France, Cha – Hong Kong – Greece – pioneertown, Sounding Review, Bacopa Literary Review, The Aurorean, Liquid Imagination & others in the USA. Deborah was nominated for the Pushcart Award & Rhysling Awards.

In the Meantime – a poem by Marilyn Grant

In the Meantime
(For Riley)

Sometimes our minds muddle
daily doomsday blasts
untamed pandemics
dystopian fantasies
even dreams go topsy-turvy
a whale lives in the sky
a boy lives in water,
Well, why not?
Our minds can revise any
which way we choose,
tame the tiger,
invite God to dinner.

So in the meantime,
why not look up, pin our
hopes to streaming stars, even
ride their coattails for a while,
ride until the morning dawns
innocent and the sun
behaves like it should,
still melting the frozen fields.


Marilyn Grant has taught writing at Cerritos College and journal writing to Hospice nurses.  She belongs to a weekly Sangha with like-minded spiritual seekers, which is the inspiration for much of her poetry.  Her poems have appeared in Amethyst Review and Avocet: A Journal of Nature Poetry.

Daniel the Prophet Complains to Gabriel – a poem by Janna Schledorn

Daniel the Prophet Complains to Gabriel

In the citadel at Susa on the banks of the Ulai—
or maybe the ram stands on Wall Street, the goat
blows across the Seine—barn stock rampage,
terrorizing stars, casting down sanctuaries.

Barricades collapse—cathedrals and towers
a vapor, a black wall, a steel and granite pool.
When will it end?
…………………………………….It is not just kingdoms
that will rise and fall, but your temple, your song.

Religion faithless? Hymns with no words?
Whispered rosaries, hollow doctrines, hollow
men? The great twin horns—doubt, despair
—shove us to our sick bed.
…………………………………….Get up, man. Worship
this way: in spirit, in truth, a Shepherd, a Lamb.


Janna Schledorn’s poetry has appeared in Adanna Literary Journal, Revelry and other journals. In 2016, she won the Thomas Burnett Swann Poetry Prize from the Gwendolyn Brooks Writers Association of Florida. Poems from this series have also appeared in Presence: A Journal of Catholic Poetry.