Grow Through | Emine Beasley

I stretch out my petals and my face catches the sun. It has been a long night since autumn, the moon is too cold for me, the frost bites with no relief so I stayed below the earthen bed until… Until. Until I can drink deep the warm water. Until I can push through the old layers of myself. My shiny new body feels strong. I am reborn to light and awakening. I am excited for the brightness of spring, this collage of colours is my community. We all have a time and mine is now.


Based in the English city of Norwich, Emine Beasley is a life enthusiast. Scientist by day, aspiring writer by night, she has recently started following her passion for the written word. She keeps a small blog here: www.eminebeasley.wordpress.com, and an irregular Instagram here: www.instagram.com/eminebeasley

Selected by the editor as a featured submission, October 2021

Spring Winds | McKenzie Richardson

Winter recedes its frosty tendrils

under the blanket of Zephyrus’ gentle breath

which warms the world under the springtime sun

carrying birdsong on each exhale

to fill the silence that melted with the snow.

 

As the west winds wind and whisper

they whisk away the memories of the chill

knocking on the earthen mounds

to wake the seeds from their winter slumber

in preparation for new growth.


McKenzie Richardson lives in Milwaukee, WI. Most recently, her stories have been published in anthologies from Eerie River Publishing, Black Hare Press, and Iron Faerie Publishing.

When not writing, she can usually be found in her book hoard, reading or just looking at her shelves longingly.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/mckenzielrichardson/

Blog: www.craft-cycle.com

Emerald Afternoons | McKenzie Richardson

Cassie picks another daisy, weaving it into the ever-lengthening chain. As her fingers fiddle with the flowers, she admires the fresh greenery around her. All at once, she notices a face in the leaves, emerald skin nearly imperceptible against the lush landscape.

Sensing detection, the face smiles; one finger slips through the foliage to hover before pursed lips. In the blink of an eye, it is gone.

Rushing to the place it had been, Cassie finds only a trail of morels. She dons the largest mushroom with her daisy-chain, delighting in the secret of sighting a Fae bringing about spring.


McKenzie Richardson lives in Milwaukee, WI. Most recently, her stories have been published in anthologies from Eerie River Publishing, Black Hare Press, and Iron Faerie Publishing.

When not writing, she can usually be found in her book hoard, reading or just looking at her shelves longingly.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/mckenzielrichardson/

Blog: www.craft-cycle.com

Meadowlark Magic | Mark Weinrich

The meadowlark gathers warmth

beat by beat, in its flight from Mexico.

And when the lark arrives,

swells its sun-bright breast

flings its golden voice, winter has

to listen. For when those fluted notes

echo: ice shatters, snow melts,

and daffodils upspring. For winter

has been served moving papers.


Mark Weinrich is a cancer survivor, a retired pastor, gardener, hiker, artist, and musician. He has had over 435 poems, articles, and short stories published in numerous publications. He has sold eight children’s books and currently has two fantasy novels on Kindle.

Selected by the editor as a featured submission, September 2021

But For Clouds and Bees | Mark Weinrich

Winter longs to thrust its frosty sword within

a crisp and starry night to rob the year of sweetness.

But for clouds and bees winter would extend its reign.

 

A symphony of bees, tuning blossoms and mining

fruit, await the nurturing clouds, that descend

like hens with tender under-feathers setting the crop.

 

As the curtain clouds fall, the sweeter seasons

erupt in grateful applause.


Mark Weinrich is a cancer survivor, a retired pastor, gardener, hiker, artist, and musician. He has had over 435 poems, articles, and short stories published in numerous publications. He has sold eight children’s books and currently has two fantasy novels on Kindle.

Persephone’s Desire | Melody E. McIntyre

Persephone removes her mantle of death and adorns herself with flowers. Watching from their bed, Hades wonders how he’ll survive without her. She brought life into his world of death. With a kiss goodbye, she’s gone.

Persephone takes her mother’s hand and Demeter’s heart thaws. The world around them blossoms as they ascend to Olympus together.

They trapped Persephone in a cosmic tug of war over who loves her more. Neither asked Persephone where she wants to be. Her heart is still in the meadows of her youth. It belongs to the beautiful nymph she was forced to leave behind.


Melody lives in Ontario and has loved reading and writing her entire life. Her favourite genres to write are horror and mystery. She has published several short pieces of fiction. She studied Classics in University and remains obsessed with the ancient world to this day.

Twitter: @evamarie41

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MelodyEMcIntyre

Selected by the editor as a featured submission, August 2021

The First Spring | Melody E. McIntyre

The icy planet floated in darkness. The star that had trapped it in its orbit was but a distant sparkle. Other than occasional glimpses of the others in orbit, the planet was alone.

But not completely alone. Something stirred within, waiting for a chance. That moment came when a meteor collided with the planet and sent it hurtling closer to the sun, into a warmer orbit.

The planet welcomed its new home. It could see the other planets and feel the sun’s warmth. As its ice thawed, the life within could now break through the surface and embrace the light.


Melody lives in Ontario and has loved reading and writing her entire life. Her favourite genres to write are horror and mystery. She has published several short pieces of fiction. She studied Classics in University and remains obsessed with the ancient world to this day.

Twitter: @evamarie41

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MelodyEMcIntyre

Kudzu | Bartholomew Barker

Sleeping kudzu drags early spring trees
down with slender gray fingers
revealing forest to the road

I drive past while my memories sleep
through winter and see her vast potential
a dormant landscape to be explored

But by summer I’ll only see a wall of green
and forget the depth of her— hidden
behind overgrown frowns and shrugs

Let me forget the past so I can remember the future


Bartholomew Barker is an organizer of Living Poetry, a collection of poetry lovers in North Carolina. Born and raised in Ohio, studied in Chicago, he worked in Connecticut for nearly twenty years before moving to Hillsborough where he makes money as a computer programmer to fund his poetry habit.

www.bartbarkerpoet.com

Spring is in me | Yuu Ikeda

Rhythm of spring

unravels my sorrow

and wraps me calmly,

as if velvety rain

fills my blood vessels

with its silence

 

I’m in spring

Spring is in me


Yuu Ikeda is a Japan based poet.
She writes poetry on her website.
Her published poems are
“Sinful Silhouette” in <Rigorous>,
“Broken Pieces of the Truth” in <Briefly Zine>,
“A Flickering Light” in <Kalonopia>,
and more.

Little Plum Trees Dancing | McKenzie Richardson

Snow speckled the mountaintop, but here and there sprout signs of growth. In the glow of the moonlight, the plum trees bloomed, their petals the palest of pinks.

Rafu-Sen stood among the blossoms; her face fierce as she prepared for the coming of spring. Many equate flowers with delicateness, but there is a resilience one so lovely must possess if there’s any hope of survival in a world so cold.

White gown rustling in the fragrant breeze, Rafu-Sen set out down the mountain.

The plum blossom does not fear the cold, it blooms despite the snow. For spring always comes.


McKenzie Richardson lives in Milwaukee, WI. Most recently, her stories have been published in anthologies from Eerie River Publishing, Black Hare Press, and Iron Faerie Publishing.

When not writing, she can usually be found in her book hoard, reading or just looking at her shelves longingly.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/mckenzielrichardson/

Blog: www.craft-cycle.com