—Don Feliz, Sacramento
Walking out after April rain
I take a new path past beds
of yellow and red tulps,
you liked to call them,
to show how different you were:
interested in everything:
every person, every time,
a renaissance woman, poet,
activist, leader, friend to anyone
who needed you.
I discover new yards of
purple pansies, exploding azaleas,
white clouds of laurustinus blossoms,
scarlet photinia leaves, redbud
and dogwood trees showing off.
I’ll take your spirit to Holland
on May Day to see fields of tulps…
and sunset beaches, sea-scented
Waves in motion, splash cliffs in
Skies meet the oceans, ripples of
the seas separate the two.
Sands that glisten white and gold
move with currents.
Motions of our earth’s emotions,
and bamboo dreams.
—Olga Blu Browne, Sacramento
MAMA’S LOOKING GLASS
—Olga Blu Browne
Looking glass, looking glass past or presnt
which will it be.
Ghosts of my past, or tell of the future. Who
is it I see?
Is that mama or me? Gray hair and wrinkles,
who can that be?
Is it yesterday, or my today? Looking glass
looking glass, look away.
—Olga Blu Browne
Vanishing history, wrapped in the arms of
Breath escapes like someone lost or once
Ghosts are the only reflection in time,
hidden in the mirror.
Essence of ebony, night lingers here.
THE WHITE GLOVE
—Carl Bernard Schwartz, Sacramento
There it was slapping at my face
I clearly saw and felt its wrath
A challenge had been made
Sealed with a dare
It is all about honor
I must defend my family name
Bowing out is not an option
Stones, blades, guts, honor
I cut into your tough side
You just laugh at me
It is my blood spilling
Higher, higher I reach and cut,
Reach, cut, reach, cut
Until I lose my footing
You laugh at me again
Arisen and refreshed I return
determined this time to finish
Defeat you utterly
You have all the time
To stymie my efforts
To outlast me
It’s not over between us
Victory will be mine
You cannot hide from me
The changing seasons
Melted the white glove away
Leaving a frightened, naked
Tule fog rampant
no edge between sky and ground
life limbo lingers
—Michael Cluff, Highland, CA
Josh, Annie and Bill read to celebrate the release of
Josh's new book from R.L. Crow Press.