Between the Yardstick and the Mile / Ken Wilding

Between the yardstick and the mile
The Rumor animates fields of Anemones.
It feeds the fish that drinks the rain.
It turns the plumes of broad winged hawks,
Huffs into sails of lonely ships.
It warms the tomb with candle flame
And further than this star.
All things breath in its trace,
Taste with its tongue,
Belie the exigence of form.
And in a book I read,
The wounded heart was freed
Upon a day when the rain fell up.

Can one dream of what can never be?
Is it outside of human possibility?
Words and words thrown at the corner
Where no one stands.

– Ken Wilding / Spring Lake, Michigan

Prompt: Lesson in Elegy

Read the poem “Your Birthday in the California Mountains” by Kenneth Rexroth. Write an elegy the way he does, misleading the reader that the subject of the elegy is still alive. Address the poem to the person who died. Keep it simple, clear, straightforward, and honest. From In the Palm of Your Hand by Steve Kowitt.

Elizabeth Kerlikowske

A Member Responds: Niagra Falls in Winter – David Jibson

Walking Through the Hollow / Ben Snider

 Walking Through The Hollow

No birds call, no crickets sing
No wind blows through no trees
No words echo, no flowers spring
No self has no value here
No heart beats, no pains sting
No way up to no way down
No way left for my being
No way right, no way wrong
No way out of no seeing
No feet on no ground
No me to know the meaning.

Ben Snider / Arcadia, Michigan

The Bold News of Birdcalls / Edward Morin

Headshot.cropped_by_Toddmorin_frontThe meadowlark, belting his song from a post on this book’s cover, is recognized across the country as a harbinger of spring. Enlivening the ambiance of this poetry collection, familiar birds represent the character and mood of its four sections: noisy jays, melodious wrens, steadfast robins, tranquil swans. While birds populate many of the poems, hardly more than a handful have birds as their subjects. The poems’ subjects derive from wide ranging personal experiences often narrated as dramatic situations, usually with something emotionally important at stake. Settings are urban and rural, delineated in finely tuned sensuous detail. Some poems are sonorously lyrical, others ironic or assertive.


 

Publication of Edward Morin’s The Bold News of Birdcalls is good news not just for birders and other celebrants of the natural world, but for all poetry lovers. I love Ed Morin’s sense of place; he is a real Michigan bard, and his evocation of many familiar Michigan places amounts to a North American version of what the Irish call Dinnṡeanċas, “place lore,” the recitation of which is one of poetry’s most ancient and revered obligations. All this is accomplished with human warmth and a rare sense of empathy.”
Richard Tillinghast, author of twelve books of poetry and five of creative nonfiction, most recently Journeys into the Mind of the World: A Book of Places.

Birds flutter, feed, and swoop through these poems: motifs that knit together subjects as closely-observed as a decaying Hallowe’en pumpkin, armed robbery at a paint store where the speaker holds short-lived employment—a narrative that had my heart in my throat!—and elegies for early-passing friends, colleagues and poet-pals from the speaker’s younger years as a university instructor. Academic politics of the corporate university also grip our attention, as does some professorial ogling! The unforgiving contrasts of northern Midwest weather serve both to warm and cool the tonalities of poems filled with self-questioning, forgiveness of others, and compelling human stories.”
Carolyne Wright, author of This Dream the World: New & Selected Poems, and lead editor of Raising Lilly Ledbetter: Women Poets Occupy the Workspace


Paperback: 102 pages
Price: $18.50
Publisher: Kelsay Books (January 7, 2021)
ISBN: 978-1-952326-70-7

Available from Kelsay Books and at Amazon.com.