Poetry

  • A closeup of browned leaves on a tree branch
       By Xavier Bordes
    Photo: Claus Grünstäudl/Unsplash Maybe it will be like the end of a yearwhen you find yourself alone in a deserted roomlike a statue at the end of a public garden pathfaced with bare autumn after the...
  • A blunt ink and water painting of a man offering a bird's head to a large bird figure
       By Ashur Etwebi
    In the Presence of the Simurg, by Ashur Etwebi How Can You Recognize a Blue Morning? How can you recognize a blue morning?The sea to his right, the desert to his left. What voices does the m...
  • A hand mirror is open, its dull face open to the reader, on a table
       By Mehrdad Fallah
    Photo: Ria Alfana/Unsplash   A Conversation from Far, Far Away * No linedear friendconnects here, where I am,with where you are.Isn’t it strange that I’m talking to you? The question you handed meh...
  • A garden surrounds the memorial to Celia Sánchez in Cuba
       By Alice Walker
    A garden surrounds the memorial to Celia Sánchez in Cuba. Photo: Clara Sanchiz/Flickr But there we were a small contingentwaiting for Her.A nun showed up first,of course,this being hundreds of years...
  • The sun shines through plants alongside the Han River
       By Hwang Tong-gyu
    Pampas grass on the Han River. Photo: dnlspnk/Flickr Wild Geese At the northern edge of the Han RiverI saw field-cannons marchdown the snowdrifts of the valley. Wild geese flew low.I woke to see mys...
  • A close up of tree seeds opening to the world
       By Kedarnath Singh
    Photo: Momoko Morita/Pixabay The Earth Shall Remain I’m surethe earth shall remain,if not elsewhere,it shall remain in my bones;as a wood louse lives in the trunk of a tree,as a weevil lives in a see...
  • An abstract photograph
       By Ivy Alvarez
    Photo: Lizzie/Unsplash Nag-aagaw-dilim Filipino idiom meaning twilight (literally, snatching darkness) Hold the flashlight and I’ll raise my hands, make these shapes for you to gues...
  • The flag of Ethiopia spray painted on a brick wall
    Photo: Pixabay / David Peterson A Sound Flag: United States of America by Eric Ellingsen Author’s note: The flag is part of Poetry Jazz: Wax...
  • Many pieces of luggage, all spray painted uniformly with a metallic sheen, stacked into a wall
    Photo: Pixabay / Kaserei   Friends and Enemies by Cia Rinne (stockhausen’s childhood) the french were our enemiesand the e...
  • Light from a sunset reflected in water
       By Mihret Kebede
    Photo: Pixabay / Kaz   የጸጥታ ወግ  በጸጥታ መኃል…. አርምሞ ለሰማ ጸጥታ ወግ አለው…. ሚኒሊክ እንዳለውአሁን እኔና አንተ… አሁን አንተና እኔ ካወራው ሁላ የትኛው ተወዶ… የትኛው ተጠላ ?፤ይሄ...
  • A painting of opera singer Leontyne Price
       By Kevin Simmonds
    Bradley Phillips, Leontyne Price (1963), oil on canvas, 127.6 x 92.1 cm, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, gift of Ms. Sayre Sheldon, npg.si.edu Weather Event: Leontyne Pri...
  • Jaz Graf, Between What Was, 2018, toned cyanotype and serigraphy on paper, 25 x 33 in.
       By Monchoachi
    Jaz Graf, Between What Was, 2018, toned cyanotype and serigraphy on paper, 25 x 33 in. [Listen to the poem in the original Creole]   And the musicians played tunes of madness               ...
  • Close-up of the blue sequins on a dress
    Photo: Hans Braxmeier/Pixabay Blue Soca Fugue  He thought it would be a good idea to invite Andie.I’ve always loved men who swim in the ink of their ideas.I loved that brown suit of skin he wore.The...
  • Stacks of shipping containers in primary colors
    Shipping containers in Barcelona, Spain. Photo: Rubén Bagüés/Unsplash Merchant Ships And then they are fleetswakes,excessesof ships in the night. Among swells of mistset looseby the mouth of the abys...
  • The bloom of an exotic flower
    Photo: Hans Benn/Pixabay Delirica II You speak (while walking) psalmsof flame,a luminous design ofchamber music.The forbidden fruit in your traintempts warriors and far-flung mariners.You speak the m...
  • A black and white photograph of tangled roots at the base of a tree
    Photo: Matt Artz * so many deadtheir eyeballs are filling this vessel gravevesselgravevesselthe earth is a slow fire re: counting the dead: I have a strategy in placeI HAVE A STRATEGY IN PLACE   * l...
  • An observation tower rises out of the swirling froth atop a sea wall
       By Yi Sha
    Photo: Momoko Morita/Pixabay Suitability The typhoon has arrived.Wind force 12.It is merciful. From this city,it has taken only one person away,the one with unkempt hair.The one who wanders all day a...
  • An extreme close-up of a thread passing through the eye of a needle
       By Nazem Elsayed
    Photo: Andrew Magill/Flickr The Blind Thread If only I were the rubbing of shoulders in crowded places,the sympathetic applause,the neck that turns to change the view and move a life.If only I were t...
  • A painting of three fishes stacked on one another, composed using a kind of brutish pointillism
       By Salim Barakat
    A detail of a painting by Salim Barakat Translator’s note: Salim Barakat’s language is intimidatingly dense and complex, flaunting a vast and daunting vocabulary. His texts possess...
  • A painting of a woman's face, composed of mostly angular lines
       By Hero Kurda
    Ismail Khayat, A Girl, 2015, Sulaimani, 40 x 27, acrylic paint and colored pencils on paper You in Me On the shore of the warm seaI standMy heels kiss your shoresI lift my dress to my knees...
  • A painting of a woman's face, composed in angular lines
       By Sherko Bekas
      Photo: Ismail Khayat, A Girl, 2015, Sulaimani, 40 x 27, acrylic paint and colored pencils on paper. Answer After Halabja* suffocated,I wrote a long complaint to GodBefore...
  • A pencil drawing of two distorted faces juxtaposed beneath what appears to the edge of a wave with another figure that could be a rock or a bird in the upper right hand corner. The whole image is a circle.
       By Abdulla Pashew
    Ismail Khayat, Sleeping, 2013, Sulaimani, 33 x 33, pencil on paper. Soccer I see Kurdistan as a soccer field, independence as a ball, plump with air. From the beginning of our existence, run...
  • A photograph of Yu Xiuhua writing on a laptop
       By Yu Xiuhua
    Still from Still Tomorrow (2016), dir. Jian Fan, produced by Youku Tudou, Inc. Crossing Half of China to Sleep with You To sleep with you or to be slept, what’s the difference if there’s any...
  • A black and white photo of train tracks stretching into a high-contrast distance
    Photo: Public Domain Pictures/Pixabay Empty Trains The mornings departand arrive without you.Empty trains.Your spirit flashes now and thenon the hem of a sky foundering in light.Sentences fog the ste...
  • A photograph of a landscape, with a dilapidated looking pond in the foreground and acres of ground stretching out behind it with a cemetery in the distant background
       By Chantal Bizzini
    The cemetery as seen en route to Landes, Canappeville, Eure, France. Photo by Chantal Bizzini   Author’s note: With this somewhat old-fashioned title, I actually intended to talk about the...

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