Young monk and old monk in the orchard picking peaches, sunny and plump, ready for canning.
Carrying bushels to the wagon cart, the young monk asks the old monk what to look out for when growing old.
The old monk pauses and says not much. Life stays the same for the most part. Monks work and pray but an old monk works slower and prays faster.
But not to worry, the old monk advises. He admits he's going deaf but that's just an inconvenience since God uses sign language. Peaches like these have no need to talk. Donal Mahoney firstname.lastname@example.org Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, USA and has had poems published Ancient Heart Magazine and other publications in the United States, Europe, Asia and Africa.
they are all trimming their lawn even while the children cough and rasp they are all edging their yards even while the people down the street worry about their cash flow they are all painting daisy and marigold portraits in their backyards, sipping sangria and talking about their glory days while the coast dips into the ocean, while the lava builds up in their love lives. JD DeHart, a writer and teacher from Tennessee.
You confuse me, weaving webs of the most intricate threads. Magic lingers upon them like dewdrops, like teardrops that fall like waterfalls, unchecked and unguarded, beating against your doors. I beg you to let me in and show me the fire I saw burning faintly in your eyes. Or was I mistaken? Was it not a secret shared with me but a mere chance encounter of eyes you failed to disguise in time; and the glimpse I stole was not you baring your soul, but instead, an accident you have since worked to rectify. In which case, forgive me for having crossed the line you drew between us. Let us return to distant gazes and graze upon our fields of thought; alone in our togetherness, comfortable in the silence of never knowing, and never needing to know.
“Disgracing the National stage,” is how the critics-cum-sages deemed the disas- ter. Who reads the Business Post anyhow? The morning after the death of pizzazz. Irrational heartrace- an unwelcome rerun- ti-titi-tum- fourteen hours straight, no sign of abate, owed to eleven everlasting seconds of silence. Age- ing in an instant my opening-night- hopeful face, painful pinpricks of sweat, snot, skinburst bubblewraps, belying freeze-dried tongue and Gobi desert gob. Which. Will. Not. Speak. Somewhere- a line striving for utterance, dying to fulfill its function. Someplace- smothered, submerged in subconscious quicksands, absent, abstract, somehow lost in face-space. Is it something I can ever trace? I remember thinking. A line crafted by most skillful hands, from where brains abound, and are enwrapped in feels. Lost in Translations… Meanwhile, unimpressed and restless, gawking hawkeyed, the overpaying theatre attendees. Vulturine in the stalls. Envulturing in the circle…
Cue tumbleweeds through dust filled wind Cue stage-manager half-truthfully excusing ‘technical malfunction’ Cue career-killing bad reviews Queue never again the paying public to see me Cue trapdoor opening, me swallowed whole, emblazing my soul in the gallows below Cue… queue… ‘What’s my CUE!?’
In those eleven eternal seconds: a flashpause of serenity. A memory. An episodic apparition…
Summer. I’m a footy-mad kid, and truck-driving dad surprises us. A visit. Caterpillaring kerbside up the Cul de Sac- armed with spirited tales of slanted people with limpy accents- dad and his manly monster mobile. I dive out in front, a new ref’-conning trick, a self-trip, but concealed. Hoodwinking whistleblowers is the name of the game. But on that day, seeing father’s face displaying the pain I feign, two insights I gained: That he loved me at that age, and all’ the world’s a stage.
I often imagine the white ceiling swallows me. I melt into its whiteness, pure immaculate surface, melting inside it would also mean spreading my blood and all my organs onto the snow-like painted area, large square unstained above the bed, the sofa, the settee, the floor boards on which I often lay, day-dreaming, anticipating other nightmares to come, to form, to be grown, more to escape from or jump over to feel within the norms.
I attend the absorption and all my body stretches until it blows out and a blood red patch as large as I would end if I crashed from the top floor of the world highest building ever formed splatters, morphes, moves and moulders into an inconceivable mirror reflecting the worst imaginable thoughts stacked from the beginning of my life.
Walter Ruhlmann, France
Walter Ruhlmann works as an English teacher, edits mgversion2>datura and runs mgv2>publishing. His latest collections are Maore published by Lapwing Publications, UK, 2013, Carmine Carnival published by Lazarus Media, USA, 2013 and The Loss through Flutter Press, USA, 2014. Coming up in 2014, Crossing Puddles through Robocup Press, and Twelve Times Thirteen through Kind of a Hurricane Press.
Ancient Heart Magazine is here again! Now based in Sydney, Australia. After a number of years of publication I decided a while ago to give it a miss. But, poetry being poetry, I couldn't keep away and now here we are again; all new and bright and fresh. In a slightly different format, namely that of the blog.
Submission Guidelines: Leave a comment on the latest blog post/poem containing one poem, your pen name, home town, country and optional email address. In due course your poem may or may not appear on the blog/mag. I will not enter into any correspondence or acknowledge receipt of submissions or feel obliged to answer any other queries. I just want to get as many great poems as possible out there.
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