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The Graceful Elephant

by Jennifer Reedy, 2022

I am old
I am not skinny
My thighs are too thick for my calves
My belly hangs over my pants
I don’t care
I put on my pink canvas shoes anyway
I am learning ballet
I plie’ and bend
Yet struggle to rise and releve’
There’s fondue, to melt, like cheese & chocolate
Tondue, to stretch
Saute’ to jump
Music plays and my sore body creeks and pops
It’s exhilarating!
I strive to be as graceful as an elephant.

One Moon, Two Nights

by Anne Kelly-Edmunds, 2022

September’s full moon
dressed in harvest hues
rose about the eastern horizon.
She beckoned brightly as I drove.
I followed until she lit
the foot path to my home.

October’s Hunter’s Moon
shone midnight bright
through out windows.
She woke me with the call:
Come out of doors.
Feel the moist air on your skin,
the damp earth beneath your feet.
I followed, witnessed her shining
arc towards the western horizon.

In Spring

by Anne Kelly-Edmunds, 2022

Tight buds open,
        arch toward freedom.
Crimson wishes bloom,
        unfurl with hope.

Beach Walk

by Charlotte Heotis, edited by Peter Heotis, 2022

I strolled along the sandy beach
My tracing the ocean could not reach
But when I look behind
There were only the sands of time.
So, it is with earthly things
We come, we go
Tears only memory we know
Rage and torment are for naught
And only peace and love not forgot.


by Linda Sleszynski, 2022

At long last
Difficult to be
Can’t Concentrate on just being
The worries haunt
The memories taunt
Nature is called forth
Heart rate slows
These years have been a test
So much unrest

Not Long Ago

by Linda Sleszynski, 2022

Not long ago
did I feel the possibility of hope
as Spring I knew was coming
and my dear snow-crusted city
would turn from shadow to light
and gray to blossoms of crocus and narcissus.
The others did not want to hear of my worry
of the madmen
and the threat.
Still I held that silent ache.
It gripped me in its embrace.
Each day would I move my eyes
to circle my apartment,
this symbol of my adulthood.
I scanned my treasures
as well as my necessities.
What to take
if there were no choices?
What could I bear to leave behind?
Always did my gaze fall upon
my most treasured possession;
an antique perfume bottle.
It was my grandmother’s
and my mother’s befor eme.
It had the delicate curves of a woman;
the color of red currants,
and a faint scent
remained inside its depths.
As the threat
and my ache both expanded
each day I added another necessity
to my suitcase:
wool socks, gloves and hat,
two hand-knit sweaters
and thick tights,
some toilet items
and fruits and nuts.
Would I be a coward for leaving?
The others wanted to stay
with their guns
and fight if it was needed.
At the first sign of fire in the sky
I carefully wrapped the perfume bottle
in package paper
and among my woolens
I protected it.
I wrapped myself warmly as I could think
and began the long trek to the border
praying they would not think lower of me
for leaving.


by Charlotte Heotis, edited by Peter Heotis, 2022

Life is a tapestry
Woven with many threads
Light and bright
Dark and white
Of silk and knobby tweed
What every fills the need
Each weft and warp
Adds to the scene
Revealing the weaver’s theme.


by Anne Kelly-Edmunds, 2022

Even as multi-hued leaves release
         twirl toward earth
two bright blue
      morning glories bloom
open to October’s cool light
         protectively cup
yellow throats rich with songs
       welcoming this day

Just In Case

by Adam D. Fisher, 2022

Fred, whose car broke down,
didn’t have money to fix it
and lost his minimum wage job
because he couldn’t get to work.
Then, because he couldn’t
pay his rent, he was evicted
from his basement apartment.
Now he lives in the woods
off Rogers Road in a spot
among the bushes so he can’t
be seen even in winter.
He’s made a bed of old quilts
he found in a dumpster;
keeps a sharp knife under
his pillow just in case.
He collects bottles to make
a few dollars, stole a bike
he uses to get around
and ask for work,
eats in soup kitchens,
washes in their bathrooms.
Finally he got a job
as a night cleaner in an office.
He washes the floor,
empties baskets and cleans
the bathrooms.
At least it is warm.
Soon, he’ll save enough
to rent a basement apartment
but he won’t get a car—
won’t take a chance
on unexpected bills.


by Charlotte Heotis, edited by Peter Heotis, 2022

It was not north nor South
Neither east nor West
T’was where they met
This is a place of rest
It was not black nor white
Nor any shade in between
It was a blend of all
Just, one to be seen
It was there I met my enemy
I saw him eye to eye
We speak of keth and kin
Realized he like me
Hold all so dear
It was better to be friends.
We vowed right here and now
No more shall be war
That nothing here was his or mine
but all upon the earth was Thine.
So at a crossroads
Where all do meet
The cross is born
On all men’s feet