Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Liz Moran: Telling the Bees (for JoAnn)

Your emptiness
depends upon the bees.

June 22, 2020 · 1 Comment

Loretta Graceffo: Music is a living thing

We are all your children
If you hear us, join us now
We’re gonna strike because the waters are rising
We’re gonna strike because our people are dying
We’re gonna strike for life and everything we love

June 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

Michael Simms: Variations on Vallejo

They killed you in Memphis on a Thursday.
On a balcony with your friends
You held your hands on the railing
And looked over the long field
Into the next life.

June 20, 2020 · 6 Comments

Charles Bukowski: Odes to Los Angeles

man mowing the lawn across the way from me
don’t you see the young girls walking down the sidewalks now
with knives in their purses?

June 19, 2020 · 2 Comments

David Huddle: Villanelle for Lady Day

Billie said, “If I’m going to sing like someone
else, then I don’t need to sing at all.” Let’s
just say I was white and knew how to conform.

June 18, 2020 · 2 Comments

Molly Fisk: God Speaks to the Rope Swings of Summer

in his gentlest voice, reminding them
about change, about fallow fields and the quiet
everything needs to grow stronger

June 17, 2020 · 1 Comment

Peter Schireson: Last Night in the Freshness that Followed a Summer Rain

How we looked into each other, how we danced through vampire nightclubs,
our intentions green and full of desire…

June 16, 2020 · 2 Comments

Elizabeth Kirschner: Because the Sky is a Thousand Soft Hurts

Never forget how easily we love what survives to be loved.

June 15, 2020 · 1 Comment

M.A. Sinnhuber: In this Time

propel yourself forward—
as in airplane force
or Air Force or forceps
forcing a baby to be born

June 14, 2020 · 2 Comments

Video: “Black Boy” by Richard Wright

The American Place Theatre – Literature to Life Stage Presentation of Black Boy by Richard Wright.

June 14, 2020 · 1 Comment

Jose Padua: Reflections on a Lesson that Would Soon Be Made More Clear to Me by Gil Scott-Heron

In 1971 I’m
thirteen years old
watching a big
Vietnam war protest
on television

June 13, 2020 · 6 Comments

Majid Naficy: Under One Umbrella

The geese do not fit in one pond
The seagulls on one lookout
Nor you and I under one umbrella.

June 13, 2020 · 2 Comments

William Shakespeare: Sonnet 18

Sonnet 18 is the most famous and most quoted of Shakespeare’s lyric poems; it is a celebration of youthful beauty which concludes with an ironic joke about Shakespeare’s own burgeoning fame.

June 12, 2020 · 2 Comments

John Samuel Tieman: In Praise of Rage

So here’s what this old white history teacher learned
from Kelvin and the Black kids in the ghetto school.

June 11, 2020 · 11 Comments

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