poetry takeover

jazz is by Peter Carlos

jazz is
    (for Michael Castro)


a call out
and a response
jazz is
e-motional
jazz is
ex–pression
jazz is
exploration
jazz is
hot
and chill
and cool


jazz is

              Peter Carlos

 

 

About Peter Carlos

Peter Carlos has attended the Bread Loaf Writers Conference in Vermont in 1976 and 1979, where he studied under Mark Strand and Robert Pack. He graduated with a M.A. in Creative Writing from Middlebury’s Bread Loaf Graduate School of English. His poetry and photographs have appeared in American Poetry Review, Image, River Styx, The Oakland Review, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, among other small literary journals. He is author of a chapbook, Praise the High Grass, and a book of poems, Dreamfish. He is the Program Chair of Cinema Arts at Lindenwood University.

Untitled by Jeremy Weeks Joyner

In a tall jeweled tower I ask questions of the stars
Late grows the hour
As Jupiter passes mars.
The heavens whisper secrets
My hourglass is flowing
Another night spent sleepless
The window of time unknowing
Hunt for hidden magic
Prayer for fading lights
Truth is always tragic
With failing absent might
Spells like lightning fly
Across stone cobbled floor
Goblins shrieking begin to pry
Upon immaterial door
High the price of sorcery
A trap long set has sprung
Demons made clever forgery
Now the final song is sung.

 

About Jeremy Weeks Joyner

Jeremy Weeks Joyner is a poet, philosopher and ordained minister. He lives in central North Carolina.

Plowshare by Jeremy Weeks Joyner

 

The war was over long ago.
Discarded, engine rusted.
There are flowers now, Where men fought.
Watered by the blood of brave men and fools.
My aim is true, no longer.
Barrel fallen and powerless.
I, forgotten sentry,
From a world that was once burning.
There are flowers now,
Where once was only mud.
Armor, melted by fire and steel
Hotter than the flight of Icarus.
The ridge ahead, marred, now green.
Grass covered and silent,
The cannons evaporated.
No tanks should tread among these flowers.
Silent Behemoth,
The world quaked at my roar.
But that was long ago.
There has been too much pain.
My final task,
To guard the flowers
That men may war no more.

 

About Jeremy Weeks Joyner
Jeremy Weeks Joyner is a poet, philosopher and ordained minister. He lives in central North Carolina.

Untitled by Jeremy Weeks Joyner

Through a glass, darkly
The necromancers stare
Seeking forbidden wisdom
Spells float on the air.
In this wretched palace
No kings upon the throne
Abandoned pestilent kingdom
Horror haunted halls of stone.
Dead crawl from their graves dancing to an unseen tune
Unaware of their thralldom
Preparing the timber hewn.
The evil sorcerers incantations
Summoning an undead gathering
Corpses pondering lost freedom
Whose call is it they’re answering?

 

About Jeremy Weeks Joyner

Jeremy Weeks Joyner is a poet, philosopher and ordained minister. He lives in central North Carolina.

Velvet by Will Collins

At work
The phone rings.
I have an ache in my head,
18 patients asking for pain pills
and solutions.
I’m only 25
What do you want?

“How’s William?”
she asks on the other end.
I’m fine,
But she doesn’t mean me.
It’s William down the
Hall room 124,
His heart is weakening, fingers and toes
Cold,
Breaths choppy and sometimes don’t come at all
With a gurgle in his chest
Of what end of life
Sounds like.

I tell her in fewer words
“No change in condition,”
I say,
“We are managing his pain,
His anxiety.”

The voice on the phone thanks me,
“He’s a very distinguished man,”
she says.

I pause,
What to say,
How to respond,
What does a textbook say about it?
Just comfort her?
But I want to know
What he did,
What he made with his life.

“I don’t know why I said that,”
she cuts in.
“Just wanted you to know”
We end the conversation.

Later,
I walk into 124.
He’s pale, lifeless.
You can tell he’s gone
“It’s expected they say,
It’s hospice.”

The supervisor
calls it at 1:38PM.
I put a glove on to close his eyes to sleep,
Use a stethoscope to hear what nothing sounds like
On the other side,
Remove the catheter,
Open his mouth to check for dentures to make note of.

He’s so cold.
Gums like ice.
No dentures,
Teeth straight, white, well kept,
No jagged edges or chips,
All his own.
“He was a distinguished man,”
I mutter to myself.

I wish I could have asked
The voice on the phone about him.
A stretcher takes William away
Under a red velvet blanket.

 

About Will Collins

Will Collins is currently a nurse in Toms River, NJ, living with his three dogs who are a handful.  He graduated Richard Stockton University of NJ before becoming a nurse with a major in Spanish language and culture and writing.  When not at work, he can be found writing, skateboarding, and hiking or bird watching. His poetry is currently not published, so he says this is an exclusive treat!

She’s Dying by Will Collins

She always lies in the dark
Skin that once fit her like a beautiful mask
And protected her like armour
Is giving way to bruises,
And holes gape from her skin
Down to the bone

Her eyes closed but
She was still in there.
Her chest moved with each breath
Shallow but quick
As she began to slip away.

Morphine in the corner pocket
Of her mouth helps ease her into
Vast nothingness or somethingness
Whichever,
Depending what you
think.

I told my manager I couldn’t make the call
Because I might cry.
I went into her room and opened the curtains for once
But of all days it was gray.

I don’t know what crossed my mind–
Even the most radiant sun’s rays
Cant ressurect a dying flower.

I was hoping,
Just thought for once,
The answer didn’t have to be in a pill
Which came from a textbook–
Standard operating procedure–
‘This is How You Help Them Die.’

 

 

About Will Collins

Will Collins is currently a nurse in Toms River, NJ, living with his three dogs who are a handful.  He graduated Richard Stockton University of NJ before becoming a nurse with a major in Spanish language and culture and writing.  When not at work, he can be found writing, skateboarding, and hiking or bird watching. His poetry is currently not published, so he says this is an exclusive treat!

Water by Will Collins

As a nurse
I learned that amongst the bone scaffolding
And water balloon organ mechanics
We are mostly water

I have been so fluid in my life.
A chameleon drowning who’s
His own worst enemy

Writer turned estimator turned mailman,
Turned nurse turned cubicle dweller,
Riding a bank account too weak for
More student loans
And a resume too broad to
Fit the next mold
While searching for greener pastures

I’ve always been the stream
That flows effortlessly through
A keyhole to grass greener
Only to be the same shade of
Jaded when I step foot on
The dew soaked lawn of another
Early morning prospect

I am made of water,
But even so,
there may never be a day’s work
I find that doesn’t feel like work
And quenches the thirst of this
Dripping mess body

 

 

About Will Collins

Will Collins is currently a nurse in Toms River, NJ, living with his three dogs who are a handful.  He graduated Richard Stockton University of NJ before becoming a nurse with a major in Spanish language and culture and writing.  When not at work, he can be found writing, skateboarding, and hiking or bird watching. His poetry is currently not published, so he says this is an exclusive treat!

The Pains by Jennifer Carr

Oh no! It’s happening again –
My chest tightening
the tissue dying
The coronary artery
suddenly becomes blocked
stopping the flow of blood
to my heart muscle
damaging it
The pressure like an elephant
sitting on my chest
Heart beating faster and faster
as the window of opportunity
to breathe
narrows
as I become
more nervous
Medical professionals call this a Myocardial Infarction
Lay people say a good ol’ fashion Heart Attack
I just want this pain to go away

 

Oh no! It’s happening again –
My chest tightening
from the tears, the triggers
the angst, the anxiety
The innocent mind
suddenly becomes blocked
stopping the flow of happiness
The damage, the deficits
fragmented memories of trauma
setting off a chain of events
like a ton of bricks on my chest
Heart beating faster and faster
as the window of opportunity
to breathe
narrows
as I become
more nervous
Medical professionals call this a Panic Disorder
Lay people call this crazy – some say anxiety attack
I just want this pain to go away

 

 

About Jennifer Carr

Poetry written by Jennifer Carr. Jennifer lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico and enjoys spending time with her partner and two children. She is an EMT and firefighter. When she is not working at the local hospital, she spends way too much time writing poetry. Her poetry has been published by Triumph House Poetry with a Purpose. Her poetry has also been recognized by ZenUnleashed, Fanstory, as well as several newspapers. She loves flying by her own wings and looks for any opportunity to soar to new heights. Don’t forget to follow her on Twitter, @PoetryHaiku13.

How I Finally Became a Mom by Jennifer Carr

Seasons came and went
As did 15 years of my life
During that time I was told
Some people are not born to be a mo
That I was not born to be a mother
I heard that lie so many times
I convinced myself of that truth
Like inmates convicted for crimes
They believed they didn’t commit
I was not better than those convicted
Those convicted in her eyes
Incarcerated in her crippling care
The cage that clipped my wings
The yard I yearned to feel the sun
Stopped my dreams in mid flight
No longer was the sky the limit
I could not see pas the bars
She enslaved me in
And yet, I loved her
And would have died for her
In fact, I almost did several times
After death comes rebirth
Then comes that newfound hope
Hope which brought courage
Suddenly I had not fear
It took me 6 months
Of carefully laid out plans
To plan my escape route
But it paid off
It all paid off
I broke free from that cage
And learned to fly once again
No more solitary confinement
Today, 7 years have passed
And the greatest gift
Besides my freedom
Is the sounds of small fee
Running around
With their blessed hearts
Because they have made me a mom
That’s right, I was born to be a mom
God knew all along
He would bless upon me 2 children
When the time was right
After I was able to leave
My jail cell behind me
Because the sentence time
Wasn’t mine to have to serve

 

 

About Jennifer Carr

Poetry written by Jennifer Carr. Jennifer lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico and enjoys spending time with her partner and two children. She is an EMT and firefighter. When she is not working at the local hospital, she spends way too much time writing poetry. Her poetry has been published by Triumph House Poetry with a Purpose. Her poetry has also been recognized by ZenUnleashed, Fanstory, as well as several newspapers. She loves flying by her own wings and looks for any opportunity to soar to new heights. Don’t forget to follow her on Twitter, @PoetryHaiku13.

Shorts by Jennifer Carr

The Volunteer Firefighter

Tones awaken my ears
Dreams on hold at 3 a.m.
Dispatch gives the details
On the next call as
I kiss my wife goodbye

 

The Matador

Tired of fighting
life’s bulls
one after another
please
take this red cape
away from me

 

Breaking Free

Years passed
till one day –
courage found
to break free
from the cage
Now a backbone
with wings

 

Feeling the Heat

Her touch
Shows no mercy
Just like an arsonist
It only takes striking one match
The orange glow of gluttony in her eyes
Setting my whole world on fire
The flames dance in delight
Burnt in my mind
Her touch

 

About Jennifer Carr

Poetry written by Jennifer Carr. Jennifer lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico and enjoys spending time with her partner and two children. She is an EMT and firefighter. When she is not working at the local hospital, she spends way too much time writing poetry. Her poetry has been published by Triumph House Poetry with a Purpose. Her poetry has also been recognized by ZenUnleashed, Fanstory, as well as several newspapers. She loves flying by her own wings and looks for any opportunity to soar to new heights. Don’t forget to follow her on Twitter, @PoetryHaiku13.