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Daily Verse

Week 3, February  2024

Image by Martino Pietropoli

Light & Shadow
by Carolyn Crossly 19th February 2024

Tropical Flower

where we are cracked and broken,
light gets in and it's energy heals
but it can't help but leave
the shadows of scars.

sunlight creates shadows
they follow us about
until it rains, then they are gone,
back into their body-hosts.

our shadow side needs to be
confronted for it is a part of us
it makes up the whole person
then light and shadow are one.

Image by NEOM


Haiku on Light & Shadow

by Govind Joshi 20th Feb 2024

Screenshot 2024-03-03 at 1.58.14 PM.png

clouds and sunshine
on the mountain
shifting shadows

lemon tree shadow.png

spring afternoon
shadow of lemon tree
making patterns in yard path

streetlight highlights painting on a wall.jpg

summer night
the street lamp lights
painting on the wall

Image by Pawel Czerwinski

Ascetic Muse
By Anju Kishore  21st February 2024

Flower Outline

What clouds a sunbeam
on the turbulence of my mind
Doesn’t it long to pierce
my brooding chest
like heartbeats

yet hesitant to spill

into the fair breast
of imagination
Doesn’t it await the union
with a sleeplessness
that defies

the lullabies of the night
Doesn’t it await daybreak
aching with sweet confusion
yet fear it too
for who knows
the shaft

may be smothered
out of an obstinate

denying the wakeful mind
a confessional dawn

Potter wasp.png

Towards Mutulaism

by James Penha 22nd February 2024


The wasp and I have arrived at a truce. I no longer threaten it with a newspaper or insecticide; it makes sure to avoid me on its way into the hole it found in the apron of the table at which I eat my meals on the verandah. Wikipedia leads me to believe it’s a potter wasp. I can’t tell its gender or if it has dropped—or is inspecting—larvae in that tunnel, yet I’ve become protective of the family or the idea of it. I sprayed Baygon into the hole when I first spotted it. I regret that now and hope the wasp’s visits signal that any vespine offspring in the cave survive. The wasp arrives often, circles my arms and legs and lands on the apron before crawling into the hole. Some weeks ago when we first noticed each other, I thought I might use a bit of steel wool to block the hole as soon as the wasp entered it. Even had we never bonded, how could I have considered inflicting such horror on an animal that never threatened me? It is the reputation of the wasp, the terror I was taught as a child to feel in the presence of its forebears, that engendered my awful desire to imprison and to kill. Never again. The wasp and I are here for each other.


my big brother once

gave me a rabbit’s foot—

charm less

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Flower Girl

As Water Feeds the Day

by Pauline Peters 23rd February 2024

When earth and darkness come together,

let no one disturb their tryst,

gentle are their hands in the making.

With their palms they shape dark children,

earth coloured and alive,

their blood rich and potent,

heady as Syrah wine.

Theirs is the dance of the soul-drunk,

they leap on hard soled feet.

Leaves unfurl, the sun wakes,

then rises from the ground.

The children of darkness welcome the sun,

her light yeast for their bread,

the bread of the sun which feeds them

as water feeds the day.

Biographies of Poets

Expat New Yorker James Penha (he/him) has lived for the past three decades in Indonesia. Nominated for Pushcart Prizes in fiction and poetry, his work is widely published in journals and anthologies. His newest chapbook of poems, American Daguerreotypes, is available for Kindle. Penha edits The New Verse News, an online journal of current-events poetry. Twitter: @JamesPenha

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