The arenaceous facet of totality/entity – a poem by V.S. Rakenduvadhana

The arenaceous facet of totality/entity


The sands of stochasticity speckle the ambits of my hands.
Like torrents, the sands bloom in the terra of Pneuma;
They fill the floor, in petaline mounds.

Pansophical,
Ubiquitary,
Perdurable—
The sands are the sea. 
The horizon splinters mitotically,
Into each granule of the sand.
Yet each grain bears a different face.


Many days, I lie motionless upon the sands.
Aphids and millipedes scuttle upon the sands.
Many days crawl along the ridge of my sentience, like a millipede, and upon                                                                                                                                                                                                     the sands.
(Or perhaps, each of those days trudges like a leg of the millipede;
 Dangerously similar to the rest of the herd of legs; upon the sands.)

Many days, my love and I, build temples with the sands.
We borrow and build; and by sunset, we return the temples to the sands.
(Or perhaps, each day, the sands pour the temples into us; 
And by sunset, return the temples to granularity.)

Thelema is a curl etched upon the sands.
Thelema speckles the sands like the sun.
Thelema is a shadow of the grains.


Many days, I sit and count the sands.
Many days, I watch how they can rain, and how they can rise.
Many days I weep at the mounds of gargantuanness.
Many days, I am a crescent waning to the grains of minusculity.
(Or perhaps, each day, the sands count me, and watch the torrential murmur of my veins; 
And how the rise and fall of my thorax ordain the waning and waxing of the horizon,
In my every negligibility and ampleness.)

Perdurable,
Ubiquitary,	
Pansophical—
The sands are fictile flowers
That construct our fractality;
And we are the granules 
That define their infinitude.


The sands of stochasticity surge from my pupils;
They sit imperturbably, with crossed limbs, like ascetics,
Within my cephalic vortices and cortices.

 χάος (Cháos) is hoisted upon the sands—
 Entropy rings with the sound of O(h)m (Ω)—
The snake shaped like a Markovian chain, bit its tail—

The snake exuviates, and its skin is sand.


 

Authors note: Philosophical concepts in the poem
Pneuma: in Stoic thought) the vital spirit, soul, or creative force of a person.
Thelema: The word thelema is the English transliteration of the Koine Greek noun θέλημα (pronounced [θelima]), "will," from the verb θέλω (thélō): "to will, wish, want or purpose."

V.S. Rakenduvadhana is an Indian writer, poet, visual artist, and filmmaker based in Helsinki. Her diurnal energies are also devoted to her work as a neuroscientist. She has had a lifelong nocturnal affair with philosophy, music, and art in its many forms. Her works are now published/emerging in various literary magazines including The Vital Sparks, The Abstract Elephant, In Parentheses, Camas, and Rigorous; while she works on her first novella. Website: www.rakenduvadhana.com   

Gospel of Magdalene – a poem by Letitia Jiju

Gospel of Magdalene


God, quilt me in
winnowing sea-limbs.

	Under this greening 
	thicket of touch. 

Want is syllabled;
it shuns all language

	but whirling noons
	in the drawly moon-

mouth that wishbone us.
God, kilt me unto you

	as night pleats
	into frilled wait.

Let me rake and rake
the ruddy earth to myself.

	Lodge me somewhere
		in its hunger.

Letitia Jiju is an engineer and finance professional who has a penchant for exploring and retelling the divine and the mythological. Her poems have appeared/are forthcoming in Zero Readers, The Daily Drunk, Moist Poetry Journal, Acropolis Journal and Emirates Literature Festival. She serves as Poetry Editor at Mag 20/20. You can find her on Twitter/Instagram @eaturlettuce.

Rags – a poem by Dan Campion

Rags


A flood plain’s a preservative. Look there,
a knob of thighbone bares its umber skull
amid the sediment. Exposed to air
it will not last. We’ll lose this animal
unless we promptly excavate and wrap
the bones in layers of dipped-in-plaster rags.
We’ll swath what we can salvage and unwrap
it in the lab. Seas come and go, time drags,
then suddenly the creature, though extinct,
stands up, recalled to mind, almost to life,
may even find the niche where it was linked
to others; probe around it with a knife,
you’d find connections. Leave that, though, to me.
You’ll grasp in time how circumspect to be.
 

Dan Campion‘s poems have appeared previously in Amethyst Review and in Light, Poetry, Rolling Stone, and many other journals. He is the author of Peter De Vries and Surrealism (Bucknell University Press) and coeditor of Walt Whitman: The Measure of His Song (Holy Cow! Press). A selection of his poems will be issued by the Ice Cube Press in July 2022: https://icecubepress.com/2021/10/01/a-playbill-for-sunset/

In the Orchards of Eden – a poem by Catherine Gonick

In the Orchards of Eden


At an outdoor café, we sip margaritas,
and my oldest friend says she’s done
with all that is dark. From now on
she wants only light. I know she’s weary
of my darkness and weird fear 
that too much radiance could pull
me from earth before I’m ready.

Licking lime and salt from her palm,
she reassures me: It’s spiritual, not
personal. As girls we ate too many
dark fruits. I hear her abandon me
along with the tree that fed us
and am scared to ask if we’ll meet 
again for a long birthday lunch. 

Across the table, backlit by sun,
she’s a shadow with a glowing edge. 
I don’t want to lose her. I want her
with me in the spoiled garden, 
where light and dark are still a pair.




Catherine Gonick’s poetry has appeared in publications including Soul-Lit, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, Live Encounters, Notre Dame Review, New Verse News, Sukoon, and Forge, and in anthologies including in plein air, Grabbed, and Dead of Winter 2021.  She works in a company that combats the effects of global warming. 



Ensō – a poem by Caroline Reddy

   Ensō

  The Ensō shape is complete, 
  in its dance of form and emptiness
  to remind us of this and that
  spinning us inwards;
  wrapping us in incense and breath.
                         
 It is the Ensō that 
 can encircle gritty metallic scraps 
 and dark chocolate-
 or twin flames
 an ocean away 
 awakening when the other is asleep
 but always completing
 the reflection of the other.
   
I wonder if we can rotate 
within the center of gravity,
with no duality 
across time and space.
 
I wonder if we can embrace it all:
even when we have survived wars,
and the death of those we love;
their bodies have absorbed 
a mountain of clouds
and mulch insulating the soil
inside those molecules. 

We can be partners in the process
as we snuggle under the covers
as our moment unfolds
as a karaoke bar plays an old-time song
and a child wonders about a supernova—
and an Ensō.

Caroline Reddy’s accepted and published work include poems in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, Clinch, Cacti-Fur, Star*line, Braided Way, Active Muse.org and Soul Lit.  In the fall of 2021, her poem A Sacred Dance was nominated for Best of The Net prize by Active Muse

Groomed Yard Imaginings – a poem by Kay Kestner

Groomed Yard Imaginings 
 
wishes to be overgrown 
be bud and sprout with  
endless possibility to branch out 
 
but the grounds man comes weekly 
pruning trimming grooming 
distinctly deciding the limits  
of growth and shape and size 
 
sore branch spills sap 
prays for storm to uproot him 
topple him onto the grounds man 
set yard of trees free  
to become great forest 
uncut un-groomed 
beautiful wide-open wildness 

Kay Kestner is a screenwriter, poet, and prose writer.  She is the founder and former editor of Poetry Breakfast.  Kay has led writing workshops through the Ministry of Artistic Intent and The NJ Poetry and Arts Barn.  You can find more information about her work at KayKestner.com.

The Poet at Nine – a poem by Stuart Bartow

The Poet at Nine


knew poets to be wrinkled beings
with crazy white hair who seemed
to possess some power others didn’t have.
At nine he did not write poetry,
was a weak student, but may have intuited 
the world is a poem in need
of deciphering, that poetry might be
the only way to know. He kept busy
catching baseballs, climbing trees,
gazing into the sky, daydreaming.
He could stare into a pond
for a long time watching darters flit briefly
into view, then vanish as if real
even when unseen.

Stuart Bartow lives in the Taconics region of New York state where he chairs the Battenkill Conservancy, an environmental group working along the New York-Vermont border.  His most recent collections of poetry are Green Midnight, published by Dos Madres Press, and Invisible Dictionary (haibun), published by Red Moon Press.

Resurrection – a poem by Jonel Abellanosa

Resurrection

 
Life by a million stitches
how I push myself back up.
Spelling my spirit to stir
in my quickening.
 
Living by a thousand fountains
how I quench myself back to thirst.
Saying love, echo, here
hear me say love.
 
Say a second
isn’t a syringe but a seed, seed
ground I see. Say a minute,
wait, a minute isn’t a joint
but joins, in a minute join
flesh to bone, joint to sinew
and inhale, pull in the draft
of air. Let the cleaned wreathe.
 
Look, do you see past
the shimmer? Touch and see
your face is still my face
but the past has been nailed.
Walk past the rolled stone.
 
Do you know your new name?
Say it after me. Let your tongue
get used to my new name.
Repeat after me. Lazarus.

Jonel Abellanosa resides in Cebu City, the Philippines. He writes poetry and fiction. He considers the sacred an important element of his personal poetics. He advocates animal rights and living comforts. He has three beloved dogs.

Flowers of Hope – a poem by Tom Bauer

Flowers of Hope

We going to blow ourselves up? I don’t know.
Potential’s always there. Even if we crush
the weapons into useless bits of dust,
there could be someone, right? Planning something?
It’s just my brain. The house is clean, perhaps
too clean, the kind of saintly clean which only
virtue can reveal in hearts that know sin,
like kindly ones; born in hell, dwell in heaven.
The desk I’m at is here this now, I know
that much, because I’m here to see it’s so,
but otherwise uncertainty rules the day.
What is the chance that brains line up? That armies
of regret can turn to hope as one and flow
in harmonizing natural displays?

Tom Bauer is an old coot who did a bunch of university and stuff. He 
lives in Montreal and plays board games.

Resurrection – a haibun by Keith Polette

Resurrection 

“Watch out for largemouth bass,” my grandfather said, “especially the lunkers, they’ll eat anything:  frogs, mice, muskrats . . . I even saw one leap out of the water and pull down an eagle whose wingspread was as wide as a paddleboard.  Those fish see everything with their dragonfly eyes.”  That was the day before he left in the hour of the wolf to row to the middle of the lake where he cast his line deep.  Just as dawn pulled itself up over the horizon, like a pink-crested bird struggling out of a trap, a behemoth bass hit his boat and swallowed it whole.  All that was left was my grandfather’s straw hat bobbing on the water like a buoy.  

	before time
	moon-sized mouths
	lurking below

Three days later he returned, smelling faintly of fish, but with a light in his eyes that I had not noticed before.  When I asked him, he would not say what happened, only that he’d been somewhere that was like the inside of a cold coal furnace.  After that, when we fished, we kept close to the shore, pulling in perch and bluegill, walleye and bass small enough so that they wouldn’t break the line.  One evening as we were rowing back to the dock, he said, “In a few years, it will be time for me to take you out to the middle of the lake while it is still dark.  In the meantime, and this will take a while, you’ll need to learn how to breathe underwater.”

	dry dock
	the creak and groan of wind
	in the old boat


Keith Polette has published poems in both print and online journals.  His book of haibun, pilgrimage, received the Haiku Society of America’s Merit Book Award in 2021.