Sipping Raindrops

By first light, we would
Taste rain in the wind
And watch clouds putter
Into frowns between sprinkles
We might even catch the moon
Pale and naked in his nightclothes
Either up too late or too early
For bed, suspended in the blue
Powder blush of daylight
And later, long after dusk
We’d delight in the peace
Of a colorless night lulling us
Into slumber hammocks
Until the moon would return
To chase us inside with his bright
Beams of confidence, flooding
Rooms through open windows
Like bold interrogation lights
sisters looking out window on a rainy day


I am an artist, hospice nurse and fiction author of two published novels, The Permanence of Waves and When Color Fades (LangMarc Publishing 2011/2013). Cien Pamieci, the Polish translation of When Color Fades was published by Proszynski Media (2013). My poetry has been published in Verse-Virtual poetry journal (2017) and by Transcendent Zero Press in Harbinger Asylum magazine (summer 2017). Sipping Raindrops, is from my collection called Raining Pears on Sunday.

Photo by Lane Erickson

Ineffable Whisper of Introspection

In the quiet of the early morning,
Walking with my horse before
The sun climbs to the high heat
Of a summer day,
I step through the
Ineffable whisper of introspection,
Weaving along my own path of thoughts,
Both miscible and immiscible, wondering…

Where does the field of waving grains start and
the trail of dark ants end?
Where does bird song start and
The sweet smell of ripening figs end?
Where does the glow of sunrise start and
The sound of hoof on packed earth end?
Where does the taste of rose petals start and
The touch of thick mane on fingertips end?

When is it time
To simply turn to the lodestar and acknowledge
The harmony that connects all the senses?

By Heather Gelb

White horse watching sunrise


Heather Gelb grew up hiking through the Colorado Rocky Mountains. She feels most fulfilled leaping from hilltop to hilltop, as she writes in her recently published memoir about her spiritual and physical journey from the heart of Africa to the heart of Israel, Hilltop to Hilltop. Her poetry has been published in such diverse works as Poetica Publishing, Stepping Stones, Jellyfish Whispers, Deronda Review, Green Panda Press, and Dead Snakes.

Photo by the author

Forest Bathing

Intermittent cheeps and squawks
an occasional long trill comes at dawn
in mist and drizzle.
An ancient oak stands on the west bank
in a courtyard protected on three sides
by walls of the church and bell tower,
open to the Hudson River and sunrise.
Two centuries before Holy Cross
and the brothers came, this tree stood,
a third century has passed in company
of chants, prayers and meditation.
Twisted and gnarled old limbs
laden with moss fur and gray green lichen
carry a green memory of summer year round.
Woods buffer the water, the approach to the grounds.
A meadow rises up the hillside from the river,
its sloping banks, arms of land around the monastery.
Twigs flower with fronds of gold rust and lime,
new buds gentle my forest bathing
this rainy day that holds the sun cloud wrapped
and keeps local boats docked.
A rackety clack and whistle of the shoreline train
mixes with birdsong in the grand silence
broken by the resonant gong of the bronze bell,
a call to matins at the monastery. I go
and chant in morning with the brothers.

By Ingrid Bruck

bare oak by monestary


Ingrid Bruck lives in Pennsylvania Amish country, a landscape that inhabits her writing. A retired library director, she writes short forms and pieces. Current work appears in Unbroken Journal, Eunoia, Peacock Journal, W.I.S.H and Entropy. Published poetry appears at ingridbruck.com

Photo by the author

Waking Bear

upon waking
do not be fooled
by these four white walls
do not be deceived
by the carpeting and the computer
do not forget
and fail to feel
these wild mountain meadows
that surround you every day

do not let
electrical switches
dim the disk
of alpine fire
as it wheels between
great shoulders of fir

do not be muted
by schedule and agenda
for your heart wakes
wild and free
for your holy heart wakes
so wild and free
and ready to investigate
whatever fancies
the winds of this day may bring

always remember
that wherever you sleep
there lies an animal in your bed
the green-eyed beast of you
smelling like willow and spruce

do not lose
your morning bear grace
even as you brush your teeth
and snatch up the car keys

stay close to your fangs
and let the twin wisdoms
of belly and snout
heed the heart
of your nectar’s calling

for nothing can unmake
what these mountains have made
the squirrel and the jay are part of you now
the wind and the lake and the lightning
you carry in your bones
limestone and cedar and spring water
have fashioned a creature
to whom walls are illusion
and a single whiff of possibility
is more than enough
to begin the day

By Rich Mertes

Great bear roaring on top of grouse mountain


Rich Mertes is me, and I’m particularly fond of writing poems that serve as personal prayers. That is to say, I write things that I recite frequently–with the intention of bringing my consciousness back to what I consider to be the heart of life’s matter. This particular poem–“Waking Bear”–is based on the annual, solo pilgrimage I take to a place where I commune with wild bears. I recite it most mornings before getting out of bed, just to let the walls fade away for a moment and remind me of the underlying spiritual landscape. I’ve been writing poetry for a few decades–also teaching elementary school, and nature awareness at a wilderness school. Most recently I’ve been working as a somatic therapist.

Photo by Lijuan Guo

A Summer Walk

A morning walk in early summer glory
damp, golden excitement in
glittering green fields.

A calliopsis of little wildflowers
unfold red poppies, blue cornflowers,
white forget-me-nots and yellow cowslip.
A perfect painter´s palette.

The sky is clear, an eggshell blue
like Veronica´s flowers.
Wakened finches chant their morning song;
My heart hears, picks up the rhythm
in an overture crescendo.

I am alive.

By Marjon van Bruggen

woman walking in poppy field


Marjon van Bruggen has written poetry since she was seventeen. She studied at Amsterdam University Andragogic and followed writing and poetry courses on-line with the IOWA State University, US. Her work has been published in I Am Not A Silent Poet, The NY Literary Magazine: Anthology August 2016 and December 2016, and Sometimes Anyway: Pride in Poetry Volume II.

Photo by dolgachov