Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Paul Christensen: The Pandemic Blues

Everyone around here is sluggish. The young woman who checks my purchases off the conveyor belt dabs her eyes and stifles a yawn. She keeps shaking herself awake as the … Continue reading

July 25, 2021 · 7 Comments

Michael Simms: Heart of Glass

In Herzog’s great visual opera
The hero stands on a cliff
Above a valley where a river
Of molten glass carries
Light to the sea

July 24, 2021 · 4 Comments

Robert Bernard Hass: Oedipus in Thebes

When he left the palace, the streets were nearly empty
Save for the women wailing at the altar, rending air
With sobs and litanies, the smoke from their incense pots
Thick and fragrant, perfuming the shrouded dead.

July 22, 2021 · Leave a comment

Pauletta Hansel: Joy

When we finally sprung my father from the hospital
after days spent staring at the cardio unit’s
cinderblock walls the color of nothing
good, his joy could not be contained.

July 21, 2021 · 4 Comments

Martha Silano: Poem that Begins at the Core

A mother who lived to peel apples,
bake the most exquisite pies. Suffuse the air
with delicious love. A father gah-gah for fossils,
mummies, cow manure.

July 19, 2021 · 2 Comments

Luke Montrose: There may be dangerous components in wildfire smoke

As dozens of large fires burn, a lot of people are wondering what’s in the air they’re breathing.

July 19, 2021 · 2 Comments

Bhikshuni Anyatara: Out in a Field

Then one morning, there I was, an old woman.
Where had I gotten in all those years on the Path?
That night I slept out in a field, and it rained.

July 16, 2021 · 1 Comment

Rebecca Gordon: The Fires This Time

A Climate View from California

July 13, 2021 · 2 Comments

Heidi Matthews: Talk of toxic masculinity puts the blame in all the wrong places

Anti-toxic-masculinity activism is compatible with commitments to protect white female innocence at the cost of Black boys’ freedom.[…] It offloads onto individuals the responsibility for countering the real problems of wealth and power distribution that lie at the heart of gender inequity.

July 11, 2021 · 2 Comments

Gerald Fleming: Work

Today you’ll work in the room behind the barn. For years there’s been a stain on the sheetrock where the rain drips in, and the place smells of rot, and when the other day you yanked off a chunk of sheetrock, thinking might be rotten wood in there, thinking you’d maybe have to replace a few studs, you found, in that damp place, everything rotten.

July 11, 2021 · 3 Comments

Alfred W. McCoy: America’s Drug Wars

Fifty Years of Reinforcing Racism

July 7, 2021 · 5 Comments

Joy Gaines-Friedler: Happiness

What’s between them is a mystery.
The way the leaves that flag in the wind
know to be leaves, or the tree knows to grow them.

July 7, 2021 · 1 Comment

Kari Gunter Seymour: Planting By the Signs

I hear my grandmother’s voice, a divination,
Thick rolls the mist, that smokes and falls in dew.

July 5, 2021 · 5 Comments

Michael Gregory: Two Songs (audio and text)

I went to the drugstore and I looked inside
Saw my good gal had upped and died
Hung my head down and I cried
Don’t want no more war

July 4, 2021 · 3 Comments

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