“Boiling Water” by Julie A. Dickson

Before ant traps, poison, or other means, Mother boiled water, carried the steaming pot outside to the unsuspecting ant hill. To my horror   scalded, and dead ants would float away in rivulets from the sandy pile, my mother defensively said   “too many ants in the world”.  In my child’s dreams   I heard…

“Peace” by Michelle Navajas

and just when you thought solitude is what you need to live and survive what if, it’s but a mere illusion? in fact, there isn’t stillness in seclusion? there isn’t freedom in liberation? there isn’t hope in ambition? ‘cos, no matter what you do the war is in your head the rage is in your…

“A Hopeful Heart” by Denise Fletcher

A Tribute to Emily Dickinson A brilliant girl in a gorgeous gown on her deathbed, Singing her heart out in ecstatic worship.   She shines like Sunshine in the Summer time!   Copyright © 2022 Denise Fletcher All Rights Reserved  Denise Fletcher is a freelance writer and artist. Her byline has appeared in Florida Bards, Poetry…

“Hold on to that Dream” by Dawn Pisturino          

To hold a dream in our hearts is a means of survival – HOPE which buoys the human spirit And comforts the troubled soul; A mighty fortress in which to hide from daily cares; Or a foothold when we stumble and fall. You were my dream in difficult years: A shining arrow pointing the way;…

“Battlefields and Greenhouses” by Nancy Jo Allen

            Mathew Brady photographed the Civil War hiring help to develop and print. Brady had a studied eye for subject matter,   depth of field, sharp focus, composition,   and emotion, we all learned.  I knew him first by his reputation,   for the fact that his photographs won awards.   So as war loomed, Mr….

“Par le train de minuit” by Myriam Descendres

Je tente bien que mal L’œil rivé sur le cap de Bonne-Espérance J’en oublie quoi rêver   Le chemin… le chemin Cette voie mystique   Comme la plupart sont des routes je suis un endroit sinon ce lieu désert   Mon jardin… Ma vigne… Ma lie…   Les trains ici passent toujours S’enfonçant dans mes…

“Southern Rising” by Joni Karen Caggiano

snow lays reticent, a virgin blanket covers nature like a gentle quilt thick white breath journeys on through dated chimney stones black iron stove warms mama making flour bread in iron skillet tiny portions of salt pork, browns smell of fresh coffee clings to walls grits gurgle in pot, red-eye gravy sizzles in sauté pan,…

“Getting Older and Maybe Wiser” by Shalini Narang

On a recent birthday, While collecting wishes from near and away, Amidst nature’s wonders in full sway, I ruminated about life and its way(s). Getting older has many benefits, Rear view mirror shows so many gifts, Decades of memories are a mood lift or shift, People, places and pretexts-so much to which one can adrift….

“Another night, another fight” by Smitha Vishwanath

After four days of sleepless nights Of waiting with weapons In our hands, ready to strike Last night was a win. We got it right And managed to sleep through the night And awoke when our bodies were rested, when our eye lids lifted- not with fatigue, but with disbelief That, we had got our…

“Paper in a Basket” by Camellia S 

My paper broke… I was told to call it a hymn, But oh that day, I really wanted to sing… And so I let my hair down, The walls shook!  “Check your wicker basket! We heard footsteps last night…” Someone shouted! “Oh, all that’s missing is a fruit!” I laughed! But they looked at my…

“Shakers & Movers” by Walter Bargen

Their belt-tightening sexuality, Shakers shaking nothing, drove them to orgiastic fervor in church, leaving their sweet arias behind the barn. They didn’t get past the nineteenth century. No t-shirt popping movers here, no tensed biceps, washboard abs, sweaty brows, orgasmic grimaces of moving, down and upstairs, in and out of the back of the rental…

“Prized Possession” by Jeff Flesch

I look in the mirror and find a reflection, known to none, yet known to all   a persona of nature and of soul, dancing within an interlude, a prized possession – desire   feeding troubles and feeding harmony   a paradox of humanity and of the cosmos   hidden from view yet, a part…

“Winter Wonderland Love” by Cindy Georgakas

Winter chills of love, my warm heart beating, stops.   Love lost, scars protect, Kindling stokes fires.   I read through the empty lines. Verses, stand alone, only for the taking.   Flesh torn open and exposed, nobody wins.   This languished love isn’t for the faint of heart, nor for those who believe in…

“Single Bird” by Julie A. Dickson

On a wire    birds perch together   lined up against gray sky one is alone         away from the group      seems banished from the rest    is it by choice or have the rest          ignored lone bird    in his tiny quest for togetherness  …

“Breathe” by Michelle Navajas 

i can’t breathe, i can’t cry, i can’t even sigh you pushed me hard, down the ground and why? just why? because i am different? my color is different from yours? since when did colors matter? since when did you have the right to treat me like i’m not even half a human? i can’t…

“LET ME FADE” by Madhavi Karri

I have lingered long in the cozy arms Of a darkness so disarming Where secrets hug me Close to their bosom I have reveled long in the snarl Of a solitude so soothing Where broken breaths tattoo Timeless rhythm of yearning Let me fade just a little longer Into the spreading shadows That wait for…

“Phlegm Money” by Patricia Walsh

The grown-up photographs attach the laughter, Being the smiling avenues, radicalised over time, I am caught in an artwork, obscured to some That funny handshake, wet through a critical eye, Transcribing the garrulous rosebud as a tip. I am donating chattels, a token of all possessed, The bilateral failure I am stumbling over again The…

Hidden in Childhood – Full Cover Reveal and Preface — Short Prose

What a great day – when MasticadoresUSA is honoring youth – to share the news of the upcoming publication of Gabriel Marie Milton’s new anthology, Hidden in Childhood. This highly anticipated anthology is ready to launch in late January 2023. I would like to share Gabriela Marie Milton’s post about the book and her preface….

“From Three to Thirteen” by Shalini Narang

The many issues of Masticadores are featuring youth today. I actually started on the 7th with a poem by Nandika Narang, who is the daughter of one of the monthly contributors on MasticadoreUSA. Nandika’s poem for MasticadoresUSA’s tribute to youth was about her mother, so I thought Shalini’s poem about her daughter would be a…