Amee Redden

Into the Sunrise of Albuquerque 

The brilliant mass ascension,
five hundred plus hot air and gas balloons,
billowing a multitude of colors and shapes
while gracefully lifting up to the morning sky,
and removing all the air from the spectator’s lungs
as they gaze upward in awe.
The sunrise smiled
and accepted the new friends.

Sharing a Meal with Strangers 

Chance encounters, the prelude to an enchanted evening.
Friends of friends, invitations warmly extended.
Festivities are dotted with good food, good people, and good drink.
A lifelong memory of the best of times with locals.

Going Down with the Sun 

I watch from afar as the brave sail off a high cliff jutting sharply on the coastline, aiming their course directly towards the crescent of the sun. They hang in the air seemingly for an eternity until dipping too close to the turbulence of the ocean waves demands a return to the land. They ride out the last cushion of air to safety, and jubilant cheers from friends.

~~~

Amee Redden started writing at a very young age, mostly stories from traveling with her family. Amee imagines she will one day retire in a place she has come across. This feature is her first on The Short of It.

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Duane L. Herrmann

ANOTHER WORLD

The hills are alive
with coyote chorus
excited tipping
of the young’uns
rolling over prairies
on the winds
as full moon shines
her silvery glow.
This is their land too.

WINTER SUN

Clear cold days
to wake the face:
bright sun
with no warmth
shines
of no mind
for comfort
as winter
freezes on.

RED BLOOD

All have red blood,
and pumping heart.
All cry in pain
or distress.
Though varieties,
life is united
in simple ways –
why can we not see
these unities?

MEMORIES BE

Memories can change
be overlaid,
gain new meaning,
become
a friend they weren’t
before,
but effort,
process,
must be made.

OBEDIENT TO THE END

Daddy said he loved us
with all his heart, and cried,
then said to face the wall – quiet!

Then he brought the little ones
and told them to stand too.

He went up the line
one head at a time…

Explosions.

I ran!

WARNING SIGN

The sign warns:
“Clean floors
prevent accidents.”

Just as truly
it can advise and mean:

      and mean:

“Accidents
prevent clean floors.”
True too!

~~~

The work of Duane L. Herrmann has been published in print and online, in over a hundred journals, more than fifty anthologies, plus seven volumes of poetry, more chapbooks, a history, and a sci-fi novel; all despite a traumatic, abusive childhood embellished with dyslexia, ADHD, cyclothymia, an anxiety disorder, and PTSD. Duane was first featured on June 19, 2020, and again on December 4, 2020. Some of his thoughts were also selected and published in The Sound of Brilliance. His latest feature was posted on June 24, 2022.

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Tahlia Friedmann

March 3rd, 1986

The surgery went quickly; it’s so routine anymore, and her inevitable nauseous onset in recovery was anticipated. The nurses mitigated her discomfort with antiemetics and caring after-care as she began to come out of the haze. 

Her quiet family waited anxiously in the lounge, hopeful for good news. Answering their prayers, the doctor said she’d come through the surgery fine. “You’ll be able to see her soon,” came the reassurance, while the room full of relatives released a collective sigh.

With bandages tightly strapped to her disappeared mounds, the pressure of remaining whole had taken its toll. Her strength had waned during this battle and had challenged her fortitude. It was to be expected. 

The family entered the room. “How are you feeling, dear?” Their worry plastered all over their faces, their love too. “Okay, considering I lost my husband and my boobs,” her attempting a joke. That was to be expected too.

A Refusal to Withdraw

Bad things alert us
Focus energy inward
Living fully free

The Stages

1) Awakening
     a) Sensing
     b) Exploration
     c) Discovery
2) Living
     a) External pressures
     b) Responsibilities
     c) Chasing Joy
3) Ending
     a) Family sorrow
     b) Graceful exit
     c) Peace
4)

A Good Day

I hear the daffodil’s laughter as I walk by. My smile, a hello, and thanks for brightening my day. The gentle breeze steps with me, guiding me along. Its feathery wisps enveloping on my way. Deeply, I inhale the goodness of today, hoping it will last for an eternity. The sun above reassures me, and the birds sail by singing me a love song. I am enveloped by natural grace. It’s a good day.     

With Me No More

Body parts removed
My essence went off balance
But cancer didn’t win

~~~

Tahlia Friedmann has two marriages behind her, and is also a breast cancer survivor. She lives on a farm, and quite likes her life now. This is Tahlia’s first feature on The Short of It.

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Thrills

It sure was a challenge to build the tent at night. The thick trees of these mountains made it difficult, but we had to try or succumb to the elements. 

I tried to erase the doubts about my camping abilities and focused on the task and hand, forcing myself to breathe deeper until my lungs felt full. The oxygen was a tad thin up here.

Bent over, with a stake in my hands, I heard a deep growl behind me. My planted stance remained firm, but my skin instantly got moist, and I felt myself trembling with regrets

Oh, shit.

Stephen W. Buchanan

Atmospheric

The weather changed
and storms roared in
and lightning ranged
o’er thund’rous din
But then you smiled
and for a while
sunshine was mine 

Begin Anew

With twist and turn
and swoop and sway
from stem to stern
I moved today
As I unpack
I know I’ll crack
to see just me

Flower and Flame

Solitude stands
in the shadow
watching the sands
in the moon’s glow
very aware
hope rides the air
and change arranged

Who is to Blame

Fighting demands
that verge on wild
sticky the hands
that hold the child
comforting cries
with little lies
and pleas for peace

Nature’s Presence

Nature has seen
what man has done
the times between
each rising sun
Yet fan or no
a tomorrow
will be set free

Connections Lost

I’ve lost my mind
and lost my way
so please be kind
and stay away
whilst I reset
and I forget
the past I’d cast

Wanting Other

She lies in bed
dreaming of love
wanting it said
she’d had enough
But it’s not true
She’s just had you
The same old game

Crowding the Plate

The door was slammed
My face was red
But I’d be damned
those lies be spread
I made the call
to play hardball
and switched the pitch

~~~

Stephen W. Buchanan shares his poetry at “lf You Haven’t Got A Sonnethttps://muttado.com His work was first featured in 2020 – April 17 & November 27. Stephen’s work was also selected for The Sound of Brilliance.

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Reading of The Language of Woods

My friend, Norton Nearly, recently asked me to submit a reading for his gathering “Poetry Night at the Brewery at JAKL Beer Works”. I’m jazzed to be asked and would have loved to attend if only I were closer, but it was held in Delaware.

This piece was first published here on November 13, 2019, and on Spillwords Press in December 2019.

Radhika Puttige

Sunset

calligraphic swirls
paints the western horizon
scarlet poetry

Anxiety

worry clobbers deep
conquers pragmatic mindset
the present succumbs

Introspection

sounds of solitude
conversation with the soul
rejuvenation

Rage

fractious tendency
emotional servitude
diabolic mien

Blossom

an ombre palette  
iridescent redolence
floral burgeon blooms

Poetry

visceral feelings
lyrical tapestry
inky confluence  

~~~

An avid blogger, Radhika blogs on radhikasreflection on WordPress, which is a potpourri of poetry, prose, and musings inspired by everyday life. She has also published her book of poetry and haiku titled Eclectic Verses. Her poems have been featured in The Kali Project, Spillwords, The Sound of Brilliance, The Indian Periodical, and several other online platforms. Radhika was first featured on The Short of It on May 15, 2020.

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Cheryl Wood

WINTER FUN

Snowfalls
Ice balls
Gets a black eye
Puffy
Toughie
Never would cry

ICE SKATING

Frozen
Chosen
Get the ice skates
Sliding 
Gliding
Happiness rates

LIGHTHOUSE

Foggy
Boggy
Here at the bay
Streaming
Beaming
Light shows through gray

LAUNDRY

Laundry 
Quandary
Dark or lights please
Labels
Ables
Decision ease

~~~

Cheryl Wood is a mom and grandmother who enjoys scribbling some words, hopefully with humor. She started writing in 2015 after a second bout of cancer to keep busy while recuperating. Cheryl’s first feature was on April 20, 2020, and she had her work published in The Sound of Brilliance.

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Reblogs – Carolyn Crossley & Lize Bard

Endings, beginnings, and then sometimes, hope appears…

Shadorma 58 – Autumn by Carolyn Crossley

I left you
in the dead leaves of
my past life
I wonder
what happened to you, are you
happy? I do hope so.

I think of
you when there is a
chill in the
air, Autumn.
The beautiful colours of a season that dies.

Haiku Out of Africa – Lize Bard