Saturday, September 30, 2017

Summer Cold by Ben Rasnic

It’s 90 degrees out
but I am holed up inside
with the mother of all colds.

My head swollen
as a blue ribbon pumpkin
at the county fair;

puffy red nostrils
perpetually dripping
like leaky faucets.

Find myself
on a sofa filled with quilts
time travelling to Andy Griffith reruns

sipping chicken noodle soup;
lemon, rosemary & peppermint oils
boiling in the kitchen        

my mother singing off key
to the country music
radio station;

slipping once again
into sweet

Ben Rasnic currently resides in Bowie, Maryland. Author of four published collections (three available from, Ben's poems have been nominated for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Closing Exercises: Summer Boarding School (Wolfeboro 2017) by Robert Demaree

The tents by the teaching grove are empty,
Will be coming down soon.
I walk along the lane
And listen to echoes of the summer.
What has been gained here,
What will be remembered
Of these five weeks?
Friends they may not see again;
The confidence to start afresh
At new schools in different places;
The teachers who persuaded them
They could write, or draw, or succeed.
The teachers will file their reports,
Take their own kids
For a last look at the pond,
Lash kayaks to the tops of their cars

Robert Demaree is the author of four book-length collections of poems, including Other Ladders, published in June 2017 by Beech River Books. His poems received first place in competitions sponsored by the Poetry Society of New Hampshire and the Burlington Writers Club, and have appeared in over 150 periodicals. A retired educator, he resides in Wolfeboro, N.H. and Burlington, N.C.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Off and On Tinty's Racetrack (Plainville, CT, 1952) by Ronald Moran

My best friends, Dick and Roger, asked
me for five bucks so we could buy a car,
purple, with the number 54 fading, sitting
in weeds on Zack's lot next to the pumps
in his gas station, and I said OK before
realizing the three of us had to pay for it
by pumping gas at Zack's, a fee for our
new stock car to vegetate on his side lot.

This was after I found out the car had no
engine and no prospects of ever racing
at Tinty's, our distant goal in buying 54,
where we went Friday nights to the races
on its short track, and where Dick wormed
his way into the pits, trying to con drivers
into letting him take a car out on a Friday.
One did and Dick came in third, more
glory than we could have hoped for then.

Ronald Moran has poems in current or forthcoming issues of Asheville Poetry Review, Southern Poetry Review, and Tar River Poetry. In March he was inducted into Clemson University’s CAAH Hall of Fame.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

The Horrible Thing I Did by M. Stone

Recalling it
makes my stomach take a leap
the way it does when I miss the last step
and lose my footing.

It is the pain of a rough poke in the side,
leaving tender organs smarting,
but later I will find no bruise.

It makes me crave my lost religion
and the stern bogeyman in the sky
who can dole out retribution.

Decades have passed,
and I can only try to atone;
the gravity of the act
will not be erased. 

Now when I am tempted
to fetch a stone the size of my palm
and hurl it at some guilty party,
a person I find more wicked than myself,

the memory of the horrible thing I did
stays my hand.

M. Stone is a bookworm, birdwatcher, and stargazer who writes poetry while living in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in San Pedro River Review, SOFTBLOW, Calamus Journal, and numerous other print and online journals. She can be reached at

Monday, September 4, 2017

the older hispanic men by Justin Hyde

i met
in detasseling fields
& roofing crews

had nothing
or very little

besides aztec grace
& the dignity
of a bald eagle
on their shoulders

something of durango
echoes of pancho villa
in their marrow

men like luis


no pensive

or existential

i stood
in their shade

those lean

Justin Hyde's books and other poems can be found here: