National Poetry Month
2017 Sprinkle of
Napkin-Pocket Poems
Poems will be added throughout 
the month of April

To Celebrate National Poetry Month in April

Sprinkle your pocket 
poems all over the land, 
in library books, in cafes, 
on buses, in church, at the office, on trains, planes, attached to your email, anywhere you can tuck a poem to be found. 

What are pocket poems? Short-short poems that 
fit on a scrap of paper, a napkin, or cut in squares, small enough to fit in a pocket.  

Email me your best short pocket poem, and I will 
share them on our website for the month of April.

National Poetry Month 
is a month-long, national celebration of poetry established by the 
Academy of American 
Poets. The concept is to widen the attention of individuals and the media—to the art of 
poetry, to living poets, 
to our complex poetic heritage, and to poetry books and journals of
wide aesthetic range 
and concern.  

Poets' Quotes

“Be certain that the inescapable…the brilliant bitter irony that "National Poetry Month" begins on April Fool's Day is not lost on this benevolent fool. I imagine, and if I listen just close enough, I hear a shared chuckle: Chaucer, Shakespeare & Plato perhaps ...

Guilty as charged.” 

I remain,

A Merry Prankster in deeds 

              John J. McKenna


Sleep reaches for me
with its sweet claws, ready 
to lift me out of this 
heavy reality, like a griffin, 
to carry me over the roofs 
of mercy. 

Life, with your grimy 
talons, I love you still.

​—Beate Sigriddaughter

It used to be you had to sign 
a contract with the devil 
before he could make off
with your soul. This seems 
to have changed.

—Beate Sigriddaughter

​The River

Here, take this caress, breathe in 
this juniper scented mist, and remember
the river does not flow because it is loved.

—Beate Sigriddaughter

I can turn over
A new leaf if I have an 
Oak tree beside me.

—Iris N. Schwartz

4 Lunes while on a weekend get-a-way

a late blooming day
the sun stalls
advances slowly 

a lone man beach walks 
his hat drawn
I wave from above

two daughters and I
munch and chirp
birds on vacation

cruise on the river
dolphin fins
spin in the water

—Judith A. Lawrence


Pears hang
like amber tears,
heavy, ready to drop,
on the motherly lawn of summer.

—Iris N. Schwartz


I aspire to the crisp simplicity
Of an apple in October:
Child-fist small,
Equal parts sweet, tart,
Snap. Rubicund dappled
With palest gold.
Promise of autumn:
Grown. Plucked. Eaten.

—Iris N. Schwartz

​Feeling Blue

Questions with no answers
broken heart with no cure
battle with no victory
loneliness with no end

what more is there to say?

—Bruce Majors

Old Songs

Nothing ever dies
it only changes 
into something else
like old songs
that blow gently 
into new ears
to find new meanings

—Nalini Priyadarshni 

Applecart by Judith A. lawrence

I have only just begun to fathom
those cracks and tears in me
and what kintsugi we make
when your love seeps into them

—Nalini Priyadarshni 


I hold you in the hollow of my palms
like one holds a murmuring dream
that grows virile on moonless nights
and rides into dawn on sleepless lids 

—Nalini Priyadarshni 


One part of herself she kept close,
Gave to none. 
These strands she crocheted
Into doilies of lace, 
Joining circles looped white
Fingers quick 
In the slow waiting days.

— Emily Leider

Ghosts of Many

In the city controlled by the tyrant's might,
every fourth of June when the sky is moon bright,
the ghosts of many march in Tiananmen Square,
and in death, as in life, cry out in despair.

—Frank Zahn

The reactive life
of a troubled soul
bogs down in process
and precludes its goals.

—Frank Zahn

Years aloft like Sooty Terns
A poets words desire
To land upon a nesting ground
Where untold sonnets may inspire

—Theresa Loder


They straddle their shiny iron horses
Decked out in leather and trim
Some older than dirt but still love to flirt
With the freedom the ride always gives

—Theresa Loder
Cloudy Day by Judith A. Lawrence
Full Bloom by Judith A. Lawrence

Full moon reveals clouds
endlessly scuttling across
the sky
At times heavily
they fall into valleys of
this night
Obscuring mountains,
the Virgin & sleeping homes

& deep within this silence
a crack forms
with a jolt
of Pachamama             
                                     —Lorraine Caputo


From the corners of time
my mind’s watery frame 
willing to take in/absorb 
any old thing
you toss my way: 
Gently please.

—Susan Tepper


Overnight the place had changed
Dramatically –
Long halls dingy with dust and
the low light of decay.
I searched all the doors for 
your name coming up blank. 
You never warned me.

—Susan Tepper


the man across the street
bought a Hamm radio last week.

he now talks to a friend in Finland
I hear he has another friend in Singapore.

I wonder when he's going to talk
to his neighbor next door.

—Mark Antony Rossi

​Salto Bosetti (Iguazú)

Like liquid milky
quartz & topaz, the water
rushes, tumbles through
this emerald jungle, its
mist living slivers of pearls

glittering under
celeste-turquoise sky inset
with brilliant citrine

—Lorraine Caputo

Two  Petals

Two petals fallen
from a white rose rock in the
breeze of this cool night

—Lorraine Caputo


I have never been bereft of joy
misery gathers me into her
like a rain cloud does the river

while in the stormy grey
I sing songs in praise of solitude
for I have learned 
I am too heavy to hold for long
torrential release is certain

—Priscilla McGreer

The note

On the napkin
the number I called
change my whole life
love, married, children, house
and then the divorce
all because
of the number I called

—Mathias Jansson

Not So Famous Fables- 2

An oldish man in 
dark, dark trousers 
sits on the flour frosted chair
near the tandoor,
lights a hand-roll.

Those cool bells
of temple tolls
for him. For him.

—Kushal Poddar

a scanty feast

my heart grew cool
like a pie in the window
and hardened for division
a fraction owed
a portion taken
a sliver saved
to gnaw on
lonely days

—Priscilla McGreer


Bend the spoon
you will choke 
trying to eat.
This obsession with magic.
I suggest a rabbit
out of a hat
which you reject
stating emphatically: I’m vegan.

—Susan Tepper


I never see you. 
Last week you popped up
in a vivid dream.
It must have been
a happy one because
I woke up smiling.
Though Wiki tells otherwise.

—Susan Tepper

Not So Famous Fables- 1

I ask every cab
to take me to the city's heart.
Drivers have
different directions.

Oh your love!
City grew too many organs
to contain its red.

—Kushal Poddar

Light Is My Partner

A pigeon moans
as a finger of sun
strokes its feathers.

Through the sieves of my hand
your body of light.

—Kushal Poddar

Sail Boat by Judith A. Lawrence

I sit with crossed legs
beneath the shade of a tree
and vanish
in my shadow
which can’t be seen

—Llewellyn McKernan

​The Art

of poetry
is the heart
of earth

—Llewellyn McKernan

​A Poem

is written
by one pen
but many hands

—Llewellyn McKernan


is more patient
than a tree
waiting for the wind
to blow

—Llewellyn McKernan

Genie Bottle

The pond’s bottom is full and round,
its neck long and tapered
corked with violet
water hyacinth.
Below the ripples, nymphs dream 
of becoming dragonflies.
Silver fog mists over the pond
to grant the day’s wishes.

—Cheryl A. Van Beek

Rain Chimes

A squall turns the hibiscus
upside down, into a bell, 
makes its stamen a striker,
chiming softly 
to the rhythm of rain.
Its petaled lips peal,
spilling secrets in the grass.

—Cheryl A. Van Beek

King Anhinga

Their sun is cloaked by his approach.
When he lands at the pond
twelve turtles turn their heads,
crane their necks to see 
crystal prisms drip from the fan
of his black feather cape.

—Cheryl A. Van Beek

Heart on Their Sleeves

Heart shaped, bitten-lip red,
strawberries taste of candy tang,
childhood summers
and teenage lip-gloss.
They pucker with seeds
they show off like jewelry.

—Cheryl A. Van Beek

waking from strange dreams
the images linger on
follow through the day

—Judith A. Lawrence
Skies weep for the end of worlds,
but no, not today, not today,
the crow cries three times three,
decries "It's only rain."

—Rose Aiello Morales ​- 2017
Those Shackles 

In the morning vagueness 
father shackles his favourite tree,
gifts it a fence bracelet.

And freedom doesn't go anywhere.
It knows the power of staying.

Father! I whisper. Let's go.
He hears me not. His ears are full of chirping.

—Kushal Poddar

What We Dream About

When we do dream
are children with
normal bellies 
who’ve eaten their fair share.

—Susan Tepper

Morning sweeps
a sidewalk.
Rustles seek a pocket.

Untimely rain
covers a grave

and fences build a fort.

—Sana Tamreen Mohammed

Dreaming in a Poppy Field by Judith A. Lawrence
Sign InView Entries
Sky lantern

From far,
the sky lantern appears
as a speck of fire
that rises up to the night sky.
Next morning,
you find them gone.
The spark, the stars, the dream.

—Sana Tamreen Mohammed

Everybody Needs A Home

There is a trail in the wood
that meets a road
that meets the trail.

And so I run through sunsets
howling into nights.

—Sana Tamreen Mohammed


The future rises
like dawn from a husk of darkness.
And the light is a low wattage bulb.
Somewhere a rooster unpacks sleep
from the trunk of its voice.
We wake, yawn with all of our past tomorrows
tumbling from our breaths, mistake them for morning.

 —Loretta Diane Walker  


Wind favors dance
The corners of my mind
Plucked at the crossroads
Some for the very first time

Wind favors dance
Along the page 
To find a place 
Then to rearrange

Wind favors awakened
In that dark silent place
Crocheted to perfection
Like a piece of table lace

Theresa Loder

Night Ritual

The horizon is a wall.
Each night the moon pole vaults over it.
Each night the stars tell it you can’t.
The wind turns its head.
A mesquite opens its muted mouth
while darkness swabs its dry throat.

 —Loretta Diane Walker  

​Invitation to a Poem