A poem

by Valdemaras D. on Unsplash

We are all drawn to the flame
even though it burns us every time

There are no butterflies,
only moths carried so low to the ground

by their singed wings
that they are clipped by blades of grass

Let down,
they fall to the earth,

returning back to the mysterious darkness
whence they came

They disintegrate and lie buried under the soil
waiting to be reborn

and do it all over again

A poem

by Dameli Zhantas on Unsplash

These days are sharp
Keen lines of light,
a paper cut
from the grocery and to-do list,
light honed in
on items left uncrossed
like unstitched wounds —
the marks you made
the moment you wrote down
your wants and needs and plans
in broad daylight
It was that morning
when the sun’s rays
sliced the kitchen into
the sections of a lemon
Then the yellow acid afternoon

Their nights are dull
and alkaline blue,
not a burn but an ache,
more a bruise than a cut,
but they get under your skin
just the same
through the openings you made
and couldn’t close
while you were in…

A poem

by Anxs Pics on Unsplash

Your hands —
great, warm stars
light encased in flesh —
are flying
across the darkness
that is my body
as a giant beating butterfly
Sinews ripple underneath
their surface
as they wave,
and I watch you work
from the ceiling where I float
above the void
that is me
I look at you below,
and I see your attempts to revive,
but I’ve left so many times
Bring me back

Light expanding
under strong muscles moving
as wings,
you come to rest
You land,
thumbs pressed
into the blackness,
checking for a pulse

And finally a flutter,
something beats…

A poem

by Hannah Korn on Unsplash

The chirps of frogs
and the guttural croaks
of toads
that rise up
from their bellies

and the sound
of the cicadas’ buzz
as they shed their skin
while perched on trees,
rustling branches in a breeze

are heard under the hum
of the air conditioning unit —
soundtrack of the South —
in early Texas summer
before it gets still and sticky

It’s when the air still moves
before stagnant August nights
when the black sky
is a blanket
you can’t kick off,

and the only wind
you hear
is through
the rolled down
windows of your car


A poem

by Simon Lohmann on Unsplash

Under the unbearable burden
of breath
lies a space,
silent and unmoving,
a pause between the peaks,
where the river becomes
a pond,
and what swims becomes still
All seems quiet, and
a hush
floats across the top of
the frozen water
then settles like a fog

But something under the ice
still stirs:
a pull
to rise and fall,
a panic pushed down,
suppressed under stillness

Bare boughs
up through a white sky,
branches piercing a lung,
and you fold like the trees
laden with frost
A snap,
a forced inhale with the wound,
and a flock of birds startled
and scatter into the air
An instinctual exhale,

A poem

by Nur Agustiningsih on Unplash

is a loaded word,
ripe with the tendency
of green to grow
and move forward in motion,
pregnant with potential
and the possibility
to spring forth
like a bullet from a gun,
its essence
shooting like a vine
reaching past the roofs
and over the tops of the houses
that were all once home:

the one where the trumpet creeper
crawled up the eaves,
bright orange blooms
spreading towards the sky,
and I found the expression
of family and a future
in the way he mowed the yard
while the blue jays dived
to drive our pup
with a coat of white cotton,
blissfully unaware
as a cloud,
away from their…

a poem

Image by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

In this space
where I try to realize
my sins were only survival,
here, where the walls don’t breathe
with the spirit
of the people of the land
who were wronged —
it was a house
on a site of forced surrender,
the walls sighed with it —
I can’t forgive the fire
that burned it down
I can’t forget how
the earth trembled
when I shook my fist,
making it fall,
and how after the quaking ceased,
the waters rose
to wash me away with my home
And while over and over
again I go back
to die on that hill
where the serpents slithered
underneath the house,
rattlesnakes always return
to the place they were born
to give birth
Here where past the…

Sydney J. Shipp

Expressing in words, the universal feelings inspired by self, nature, and human interactions. Instagram: SydneyJShipp, Twitter: @Sydneyjshipp

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