Issue 37 – Rengay

Witching Hour

plastic surgeon––
the neighborhood’s best
carved pumpkin

Dracula’s missing

front tooth

first date
during the horror flic
our embrace

full moon

the werewolf caught

with his fly undone

all trick no treat
the she-devil’s grin

nobody dares

to touch it––

candy corn

Bryan Rickert, USA & Terri French, USA


broken steeple boy . . .
I’ll read the Bible
if it has unicorns

seeking nourishment

a grub from Shrek’s ear

Jupiter jig
his left knee healed
on the way up

reflecting on . . .


in rainbows

ceramics play
kids fire up the kiln

end of night

candle’s tears

stopped in their tracks

Geoff Pope, USA & Robert Kingston, United Kingdom

Just Desserts

snow capped mountain
my Oreo cookie

our white chocolate soufflé

at Café Jacqueline

devil’s food cake
the conversation
turns sinister

with my cherry blossom


a whipped cream kiss

first time we touch
the scent of cinnamon

dipping my finger

in the chocolate fountain

and into his mouth

Jackie Chou, USA & Kath Abela Wilson, USA

Getting Away

get-away weekend
we each carry
our own baggage

the back stories we polish

for show and tell

airport shuttle
so many stops
that aren’t ours

seeing parts of the city

not in

the tourist brochures

our carefully planned itinerary


having to let go

and move on

Julie Schwerin, USA & Angela Terry, USA

Even in Toronto

small-town girl
dreams of Toronto
even in Toronto

the CN Tower

taller than my soul

afternoon shower
arm in arm on Bay Street
Burberry and St. Laurent

water, water, everywhere . . .

halyards clanging

by Lake Ontario

summer in the city reflected
in the museum’s crystal front

at the Hockey Hall of Fame

my boy keeps asking

to see the Zamboni

Naomi Beth Wakan, Canada & Michael Dylan Welch, USA


broken finger
little girl misses
her bike

homebuilt trolley races

we take turns at crashing

birthday party
half blown balloon
flies away

wave roll

the kayaker spitting

out sand

ice cream lands
on a bald head

moon launch

the astronaut’s Band-Aid

loses it sticky

Zoe Grant, New Zealand & Ron C. Moss, Australia

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Issue 36 – Haibun, Gembun, Rengay & Sequences


Answering Machine

Dad rings to tell us it’s prostate cancer. He’s phlegmatic; says that at his age he’ll most likely die with it than of it. We talk around the subject; he puts mum on. She’s worrying about us worrying so she’s overly upbeat. I tell her that we’ve sorted the passports and we’ll see them soon. We agree it’ll fly by.

The cat is still asleep in its patch of sunlight. Way above, the honey buzzards are still circling. Music still drifts from kitchen to garden. Nothing is different. Everything is different.

winter evening
in the shade of
his second shadow

Alan Peat, United Kingdom

Visiting the Past

Running along the length of Korea are majestic mountains. Covered in lush forests filled with aromatic Hinoki trees, they provide a comforting escape from the rush of city lives. For millennia these mountains have stood as sentinels, calmly watching the flow of time and the journey of humans.

rain forest café
the waiter in a zebra shirt
and leopard pants

Carol Raisfeld, USA


. . . When everyday is like yesterday
in dreary predictability
I seek succour in memories,
drown in nostalgia
savouring every lick, until its
sweetness too evaporates
until I turn to words
for sustenance, each stroke
relished and gourmandised
and hope reigns eternal . . .

stretching the day beyond her means tram stop

Madhuri Pillai, Australia


the dregs of nirvana

Thursday rain
he serves me leftovers
on the chipped plate

Kelly Sauvage, USA & Agnes Eva Savich, USA

minutes on the meter

high anxiety
the abyss
of an unfinished poem

Kelly Sauvage, USA & Robert Moyer, USA


Two Straws

50’s dance party
getting into
the swing of things

a trombone player

directing the band with his slide

her poodle dog skirt
from the thrift shop––
never been worn


a soda

with two straws

he waits for a slow dance
to ask her

In the Still of the Night

taking the long way


Angela Terry, USA & Julie Schwerin, USA

Om Shante Shante

a poker chip
nestled in the stone
Buddha’s palm

free from desire

Tao roulette

disgruntled patron
suing the casino
for bad feng shui

lost among slots

the endless chimes

of ten thousand things

losing streak
bad karma catches up

carpet maze

the way out the door

is within

Terri L. French, USA & Kat Lehmann, USA


Land of the Free

electric gate
Your Kind of Community
in glowing white letters

picket fences
a white man shadows
the black teen

thud of footsteps
one bark answers

ID check
the black teen’s shadow
slips out of the gate

Chen-ou Liu, Canada

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Issue 35 – Rengay & Split Sequence


Deep Storage

in an old cigar box
three generations
of buttons

keys just in case

of a lock

one year gone
adding his tools
to my box

found letter

the steamy rumor

that no longer matters

the hand-me-down
cat’s eye marble

wrapped around

an aperitif glass

the war is over

Bryan Rickert, USA & Kat Lehmann, USA

Back to Normal

traffic congestion
finding no space
to reflect

crossroad winds

never coming back

display window
all the mannequins
with masks

city drifter

the close of a song

from an upstairs window

sidewalk flowers
tracing the past


between then and now

dust and ash

Hifsa Ashraf, Pakistan & John Hawkhead, United Kingdom

All Fingers and Thumbs

second date
her lipstick
stuck in the tube

borrowing a dress

that almost fits

bitten down nails . . .
the pantyhose

strappy heels––

three steps

before her ankle twists

a wet patch
where the roll-on missed

his text . . .

staying in

mustard-stained sweats

Lew Watts, USA & Tanya McDonald, USA

Split Sequence

How the Wind Moves


whistling kettle

no way left to hide

the truth

on the fire escape

knock on the door

our neighbor says she hears
every word

loud coos of pigeons

unclipped wings

the freedom to be

GRIX, USA & Christine L. Villa, USA

High Desert Blues

homestead hardware

hollow core

a door hangs on

by its good hinge

the last bounce

desert trampoline

a truck tire

gives only so much

of rusted bedsprings

hipster makeover

curating lost dreams

as their own

Peter Jastermsky, USA

To Be or Not to Be

suicide hotline

we tell each other

one more lie

bruised moon

the same platitudes

I don’t know why

I keep trying

shallow sunrise

as yesterday

dying light

will anyone catch

the falling kite

Susan Burch, USA & Vandana Parashar, India

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