James Downs 

Refining the moment

Reach out a quavering hand to touch rock 

bird bones may be Hollow… but they are heavy 

colors of Fall are proportional to colors of Spring 

there’s a giant in the Sky prepared to roar 

find yourself in company of No less than three 

Genealogy tells only part of a truthful tale 

a ditch only means higher Ground on other side 

lumbering black bear can run straight uphill 

make a face by scrunching up your Mouth 

thin valley gets Darker quicker than a plain 

Markets for homegrown gods shine out 

when you leave one place you Enter another 

ghosts of Today become memories of tomorrow 

bighorn sheep re-introduced to wild Sierra Mountains 

Wave upon wave caresses winding California coast 

You cannot escape Yourself even if you tried 

Refining the moment… reach out a quavering hand  

bird bones may be Hollow… but they are heavy 

James Downs 

J.P. Linstroth Indiegogo Campaign

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Production costs for the publication of the Book of Poetry: The Forgotten Shore by J. P. Linstroth

J. P. Linstroth is an Adjunct Professor at Barry University.  His main academic research interests are: cognition, ethnonationalism, gender, genocide, history, immigrant advocacy, indigeneity, indigenous politics, indigenous rights, memory, peace, peacebuilding, racism, and trauma. Linstroth, steeped in the classics, has found the route through literature to the Greek ideal. Click the link above and join him in getting this book published, receive your copy of this work of art. 

Excerpt from:


O Aphrodite, Hephaestus and I are brothers…
Whence mine own arrogant, conceited, pompous…
His humble, vulnerable, masterful craftsman…
Mine own frivolous and vain…
His deferential, respectful, and diffident…
And yet, not without confidence…
I have known other women all the same…
It is only for you have I rapt attention…
O my Brazilian Aphrodite, née Portuguese conquistadores, née Amerindians, née
Afro-slaves, not to mention—other Europes intertwined…
You Aphrodite flowering laurels, anthophilous, Nature’s bounty…
You Aphrodite, so nimbly you disrobe—apodysophilia…
So too hydrophilous from seaing foam, effervescent, emergent on azure waves…
Giant cockles, envied all…
Your cynosure assured as no other, without contention…
And so you must choose, my radiant ebonied tresses, gorgeousness, delightful, elegance…
Full breasted, more alluring than Hera, more ravishing than Athena, more charming than Artemis…
Neither Helen of Troy, nor Nymph, nor Muse may compare to thee, thy beaming,
twinkling, goddess from the sea—only know me, only me…

BLESSINGS AND CURSES poems by Anne Whitehouse

From our 20th Anniversary Anthology

poems by Anne Whitehouse


There is something to be said
for being a renter,
of watching over a place
without the obligation
to improve it.

The Native Americans
made it a practice
to leave little trace of themselves
on the landscape.

Few of us can bear
to travel so lightly.
Yet this is our condition:
to occupy this life,
knowing we will
be parted from it,
but not when.

At sunset my shadow stretches
over the sea as I ease myself in
for the last swim of summer.
For thirty years I’ve immersed
in the cold waters of this cove
and felt cradled by sea and sky.
In their ever-changing immensities
I sense the unpossessable sublime.

I sink my restless thoughts to silence
so I may cleave to my true purpose.

Tethered, words enter the mind
through the eye or the ear,
to make of themselves
the weightless structure
apprehended wholly or in part,
like a shape shifting in the mist,
reverberant as a song,
to be taken up or forgotten,
like spent desire, or sunlight
shining on water, a fading reflection.


Joe O’Connell

From our 20th Anniversary Anthology

Dingle Day
poems by Joe O’Connell

In Flanders fields
Did Bob Seeger and the Silver Bullet Band
Buoy us up on a Spring morning
With a driving force,
Ebullient, hoarse and sound,
Prophetic energy about nothing much really
Or everything
That a young sub-prime man should feel,
The world and its promise wheeling under his heel.
In rushy Kerry fields, actually,
Were these musical propellers felt,
The sun winning supremely over the fluffy clouds
For attention received unsolicited
Like a fancied one,
Its power and beauty constant,
Immutable and impermeable to any move,
Indifferent to the machinations
Of an earth bound offspring.
That fairies, or pucai, don’t exist
In the glaringly obvious physical sense
Is utterly besides the point
To any celtically attuned
Centred and diffused
Through the pale, cold autumnal
Halloevening thin air
In damp, mushroomy, rushy fields
Amongst meditative bovines,
Mysterious sheep, wild-eyed goats
And furtive little beings,
Who, surprised, turn their independent eyes
Almost, yet somehow more than human,
Towards yours questing,
Knowing something, arrogantly conveyed,
That your quest will never find.


From our 20th Anniversary Anthology
poems by DAN  THARP
We dropped his ashes from the bridge
into the Canadian River below;
left our words upon the breeze and
watched the current
sweep him away…
followed soon by two car
                and an empty can of beer.
Morning Colors
Morning colors
play upon the clouds –
in oranges, reds
and pretty pastels –
And were I to feel
the morning breeze
play about
as it would please;
brush up against
my skin and tease
the longing of
my heart…
then I would see
you standing there;
the morning colors
in your hair.
Forgive me if
I’m unaware
of others
standing near.

Diana Festa

From the forth coming 20th Anniversary Anthology

The Gathering
poems by Diana Festa

After Umberto Eco’s
The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana
The soil’s peculiar smell,
fog filtering into clusters of trees,
rain on pavement,
the earthy odor of artichokes,
sweetness of sage, salt in sea air,
pungent tea leaves steaming
in blades of sun–
the planet is saturated with scents.
But there is the desperate loneliness
of parallel lines, unscented, untouching
in a firmament of curves and corners,
seeking solace, a whiff of life
in fragrances.
I navigate among them
in sun-drenched breeze from the desert,
mountains that repeat mountains.
Every step holds
traces of forgotten aims—
and oh, the fear of not finding
the way home.
I do not know how to land
on solid ground, or change my course,
how to leave my parallel-line solitude,
the weighty suspense
in the allegory of loss.
Selective Recollections
Happy families are all alike.
Tolstoy: Anna Karenina
Little gifts, a Limoges saucer, a Murano flower—
a cumulous of objects in cumulous of years.
I forget who gave the saucer, a vase, a pitcher.
There were letters, often so lovely
they may still be warming pages in some books.
But most went, buried
with days of the past, love notes, dried flowers.
When I left the old house, I walked away
from a cabinet where faces stilled
by the camera smiled in distant sun—
the children, the man I loved.
I hold a convergence of lights in my memory,
and there is no room for photographs
with their unchanging mien.
Remembrance makes its own choice,
elective instants within recurring images.
What do I remember of you?
A myriad instants—
walks at the beach in paling dusk, dinners
at our favorite restaurant, afternoons
by book stalls along the Seine, rocking train rides—
nothing extraordinary,
the simple story we shared,
the quiet pace of our days,
the rhythm of our breathing.