JUST BECAUSE A LEADER IS MAD DOES NOT MEAN YOU MUST FOLLOW HIM

A Poem by Michael H. Brownstein

Putin tries to poke holes into the body’s work of a nation
but the body’s work of the nation cannot be poked through—

gut-shot punctuation, terrorist renderings, vocabulary of madness
and Russia bleeds fire, cruelty, vocabulary of an insane man’s mind.

He walks into the noise more than once,
and now he must exit from the room:

You do not have to follow a leadership lodged in evil.
Following orders is not a defense.

How do you fight a courageous people, Putin?
You do not. Geocide is murder. Murder is murder.

You Save Me

A Poem by linda m. crate

bluebirds sing in your eyes
sun stars in your locks
magnolia lips dance their kiss
the birds of you nest
their song in my ears
the eggs of psalms hatching
some song i can scarcely remember;
you awoke in me a need
to cleave the bitterness
hanging it into pomegranate
sunsets that know nothing more than melancholy —
you washed over me hymns of light,
rivers of bliss:
You broke me out of the stone.
Let me sing a song of thanksgiving
and let’s harmonize a better medley
for all the world to hear.