Poems and Paintings by Tamizh Ponni VP


The Reflection

This day began like all other days

Taking a long hard look

at the magnificent piece of polished metal 

Both the subject and the object 

broken and losing their sheen.

Neither a fabricated expression

nor a vinegar,soap water spray

could restore their lost elegance.


Years and years ago,

grandeur and glamour were all it rendered.

While squandering all the precious hours

when the only mess to fret about

was a lonely zit on his swarthy chin.

Times have changed

Predicaments have evolved

Priorities have shifted

Lessons were learnt

Now there’s just one disappointment

standing as a sombre visual

running over the rococo’s surface.

Something wicked from the unknown realm

sneered at him unkindly,

‘What a pathetic travesty of youth!

Just a shadow of his former self.’

He is weak, empty, craving for care

But dark as the vast abyss

A camouflaged narcissist!

As the cracks of the fractured glass

branched out to bedeck the boring plane

perfecting his diabolical facade,

the world will never get to know

one frightful naked truth

that the mirror and its muse

were beyond repair and forever scarred. 




Moon Girl

Her imperfections looked flawless from afar

Though bonded against her will

to the breeze and black clouds.

She glowed under the borrowed light

Truly sun-kissed

The lone orb of the night

Earth’s solitary satellite

When lonely hearts yearned for closeness,

they gazed up to her and the stars 

in the stillness of the angelic night 

thinking about their first and last,

calling to mind, their bittersweet past. 

She became the transmitter of

hackneyed phrases and lovelorn messages

concocted with worthless words and bogus emotions

at least for the most part.

Oceans, Mountains, Peaks and Valleys,

Shelters and streets, big and small

were embellished with her silver glaze.



Darkness played a primary part

Appearing quiet and queerly nonchalant,

it didn’t need her acceptance 

for she’s busy basking in her vainglory.

Pride consumed her long ago.

Although it’s an acquired beauty

with distance and luminescence

concealing her greyish grotesque craters,

there’s no one to stop this radiant shrew .

Through periodic manipulative reshaping,

her beauty takes different forms

like an oriental dancer’s curves

shimmying to the Arabic tunes.

A perverse version of Hide and seek

remains to be her preferred pastime.

She rides and rushes through the skies,

disregarding the world below,

airily asserting to the whole lot,

“I am the only precious thing you’ve got.”





Tamizh Ponni worked as Design Facilitator in an International School, Bengaluru, India. Tamizh sees learning as a never-ending process and with technology integration, it gives her an interesting dimension to knowledge acquisition and skill-building. Tamizh spends most of her free time painting, reading, writing articles, stories and poems, playing keyboard and watching documentaries/movies.

Poems by Joan McNerney



“A” train

brassy blue


bleeds upon rails.

blue, white flashes

leap forward.

they move, they move

constantly they move.

close your eyes

watch points

like stars

think now

how insignificant

you are

compared to train

speaking for itself

stars known

in no language


thru tiger’s eyes

brain in

constant action


to what we do not know

plans of distant stars

galaxies floating by as

“A” train

silver worm

bursting through

big belly of city






That summer I wanted to

take off all my clothes.

Be naked under the sun.

Tango all over warm grass,

so warm, warm.


Noontime perfumed berries

and lush grass.  Beneath honey

locust through hushed woods

We found this spring,

a secret susurrus disco.


My feet began two-stepping

over slippery pebbles. 

Threading soft water, the sun

dresses us in golden sequins.


Your hand reaches for me.





As if you could come so swiftly

unnoticed like butterflies tapping

wild flowers with soft yellow wings.


Appearing before me quietly

while morning mist curls through

coolness of mint-green spring.


You walking over roads through

fields where tree shadows make

heavy slants against the sun.


As alive as day…saying my name…

filling me up with the taste of you…

kissing my mouth awake again.


By touch and whisper how we would

imitate long leaves weaving, undulating

and finally surrendering to silence.



Joan McNerney’s poetry is found in many literary magazines such as Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Poet Warriors, Blueline, and Halcyon Days.  Four Bright Hills Press Anthologies, several Poppy Road Journals, and numerous Poets’ Espresso Reviews have accepted her work.  She has four Best of the Net nominations.  Her latest titles are The Muse in Miniature and Love Poems for Michael both available on Amazon.com and Cyberwit.net

Poems by Amitava Nag


City Crimes


As we sit back, distant and lazy,

the omnipresent crowd all around us

waiting and watching not as vultures,

but as crows,

circling with disrespectful tyranny,

We all turn to respectable criminals,

respectable – as our dresses allow us to be,


Just like the coins,

occasional notes, crumpled, treasured

in the tin box of the street beggar in the cities,

I count the essays,

website references, Google coins

the importance of paper –

the command of the impotent,

as cities turn to papers,

and lust wither without a sense of living.


In the cities, the beggars wait at a place

and walkers circle unknowing,


The cities grow towards the south

the cities grow in the north,

the cities arise and grow taller and taller

out of our needs and desires,

an expression of its own folds,

the cities become crimes that we always dream of committing.





Everything has a name


How absurd is it that

Everything has a name,

Every body part –

the tiniest tentacles,

the largest gland,

the vilest bile,

not a single left for my imagination,


Even the birds, mammals, reptiles,

my favourite fish –

Their sounds, how they look, what they eat,

Filling colours in children’s books

Robbing them off fairy tales,


Now, as I grow old,

I wish not to know the names,

To detach myself from the pleasures of equilibrium,

the tranquil sangfroid at the time of being lost,

For once not to believe –

everything has a name,

nothing is me.



Amitava Nag writes poetry and short fiction in English and Bengali with anthologies published in both the genres and in both the languages. Amitava also writes extensively on cinema and has authored 6 books till date. He has been the editor of ‘Silhouette’ film magazine since 2001.

Poems by Lara Dolphin


What do you hear when I say, ‘I love you?


a trombone played with plungers and mutes

the wah woah wah of Mrs. Hagemeyer, nee Othmar


do your eyes blear as phonemes fly by

and words devolve into meaningless globs


I say it again and again hoping to get through

but the phrase begins to lose all meaning


still, I persist

to reach you where you are


knowing that if language is the only homeland

then we are far from home




In Search Of The Wondrous Whole


we fools rush in

traversing the sward

trampling the pasture

missing the trees for the forest.

We miss the smalti

gold leaf hand cut

mounted on glass

covered with crystal hand blown

fused into pure reflection of light–

in pursuit of imagery

overlooking the art.

We simply don’t see

or taste as the case may be.

Moving from the luminous

to the ridiculous,

our nine-year-old smelling curry,

scurries through the kitchen

through clouds of coriander,

cumin and mustard

onion, garlic and oil.

Pinched nose,

breathing through her mouth,

she hurries from the house

into the yard

and the wider world

where the numinous is laid bare

in wildflowers and weeds.


Ode To A Can Opener (A Lovelace 2.0 Sonnet)


Can opener, inspire my meals tonight

How do I love the way you cut and turn

Most helpful tool, you grab and grind and bite

Unlocking tasty food for which I yearn.


Let me compare you to a grapefruit spoon

You are more toothy and more curious

If you’d create a meal for me this noon

my workday would be less laborious


It is a fine utensil you can see

Surprising me with new and splendid food

Originating yummy treats for me

That always meet my wishes and my mood


If this be more machine than living thing,

I never wrote, nor songs did ever sing.




Lara Dolphin is an attorney, nurse, wife and mom of four amazing kids; she is exhausted and elated most of the time

Poems by Allison Whittenberg



I am held

           Not by a mother’s tender embrace

           I am captive in a ship slicing through the ocean

I am held

           Not by a lover’s passion but bound,

           Manacled by people with strange language, hair, and skin

I am held

           Not transfixed my mind races,

           Searching to escape this spell.

I am held

Not for a crime

But by decree.

I am held

           Not to be released at ransom’s payment,

           But to be contained by another owner, then another.

I am held at fifteen years old, and I will be held

                                                For life.



The Cult of Sylvia Plath


Name ten living poets

Give me ten lines of contemporary verse

How about ten syllables

Want to buy a vowel?

Truth works

Like a magnet in reverse

It pulls us away from it.

The average person would rather watch E network’s documentary on Harry Styles than delve into archetypal memories’ permutations,

Rosary beads of

Words of ideas

And words ideas

And idealized words.

Poetry remains outside.

Poetry is for eggheads.

Poetry is irrelevant.

Poetry is buried.

Name ten dead poets





you greedy motherfuker

seems like

you’re always around


with your miscarriages

lurking defects

lingering complications


and the light

the way you up and leave everything


like the ending

of a good miniseries






A Whittenberg is a Philadelphia native who has a global perspective. If she wasn’t an author she’d be a private detective or a jazz singer. She loves reading about history and true crime. Her other novels include Sweet ThangHollywood and MaineLife is FineTutored and The Sane Asylum