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Currently Featuring the 2015 Special Edition

Review Submission/Guidelines for year round submissions

Stop by the "Reading Room" for a New Flash Fiction Story

"Glass Rooster" by Judith A. Lawrence

Listen to beautiful new musical compositions by Sandy Bender. 
To listen click on the musical note at the bottom of the page.


Lilly Press

River Poets Journal

A Journal of Poetry/Prose

Art & Photography

Below - Sampling of  Poetry and Art from the 2015 Special Edition
Sliding Doors/Parallel Lives

To view the entire Journal - Select "Special Editions-Anthologies from the menu above.
On that page click on "Sliding Doors/Parallel Lives-2015 Special Editions."

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Poems by River Poets Journal Contributors
All future rights to material published on this web site are retained
 by the individual Authors and Artists/Photographers

New Musical Composition by Sandy Bender
"Half Sleep"

To listen to musical composition click on musical note below
This page was last updated: April 28, 2015
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Judith Lawrence, Editor
On Her Answering Machine

                 his voice floats: 
living room to kitchen, 
words she can’t quite catch 
like, Dinner ready yet, Birdie? 
Or local news is coming on. 
Should she relinquish 
this connection, 
he would be forever gone.

When I call, 
his familiar voice startles;
Leave a message, he says; 
I’ll call back, he says. 
But he cannot. 
Perhaps he dwells in that plastic case,
spends days humming through wires. 
I hold the receiver like a conch shell, 
want to peer inside 
as child looks for the ocean, 
find some trace of him. 
I seek warmth, emotion, 
am waiting to hear: I love you,
I miss you, or even, goodbye.

                                       ©Ann Howells
All Digital Art on this page by Norvz Austria, a self-taught Philippine digital artist. 
Time Travel

My mother would stay up long past midnight
the soles of her slippers clacking 
against cold tile invaded my dreams,
the hardness of an angry ghost 
echoing through the open spaces.
What was she looking for as she paced the house
turning over ashtrays, albums,
small photos 
in their gilt frames as if asking their names. 
Once dementia stole her yearbook
she quickened her pace
as if by watching grains of whitewashed sand
slip through the hourglass's wasp waist
she could pocket every one
become the slim young beauty in her father's monocle.
Sometimes I glimpse her in the mirror
of sound mind. I know what 
I'm looking for,
yet still I scour the galaxy
crave the weight of something true
a tuft of hay to curl in the palm of my heart
though a clear memory will do.
What I sought yesterday has faded. 
I hole up in the moth-eaten sparrow's nest
in the attic where no one remembers my name.

                                           ©Sandra Anfang

Search to Fade
Blessed Things Ended

You’ve ridden your bike as far from home as you dare.
There is no orient, only the nameless border
of a place no one wants to go.
Untended fields stop breathing at the intrusion.

In the midst of wild barley,
your past beloved slants like a broken scarecrow,
her hands telling you to come no closer.

All around you are scattered examples
of blessed things ended, plant life flattened and twisted
by the weight of music and dreams.

Since you have come this far already,
you take a few extra steps forward,
and now her palms invite you
into a world of flannel and straw

and you spend the dandelion afternoon
consoling each other until the sky darkens
and begins to speak in raindrops—

clearing the horizon
like an infinitude of letters being erased
to leave just a few words that were present all along.

                                 ©Richard King Perkins II
il intro vertere

the face buried within rises
two glistening eyes
and the portal of the mouth
tossing the bunch aside
I find them in water later

                  ©Christopher Mulrooney 

Night Crossing

The dark highway out of Idaho is lined 
with crossing signs for the herds of tumbleweeds 
semis, cars, everything but the trains 
grind to a slow then a halt. 

Lit aflame, they burn down the prairie 
rolling over the mountains into the sea.
maps document the wind with transparent 
layers of red lines, anatomy of blood flow.

Great burred bodies gather behind
wind-bent shacks cowering by leaning fence-lines 
rows sandblasted cars waiting for sale
numbers chalked in the windshield.

Carcasses of deer and machine and glass and refuse, 
litter the road watercolor wash of ambulance lights
the pink of the road where one species
didn’t survive the night.  

                                        ©Jessica Lindsley

Your Last Walk
Double Life

He fell asleep on Essex Street
where he sat in the driver’s seat
of the car service vehicle—
not a very safe place to sleep
with the windows up, oblivious,
dog-tired in the summertime heat
(maybe he held two or three jobs).
Where is the time for forty winks
within twenty-four-seven weeks?

On the same dirty city street—
the smells of oil and car exhaust--
wondering what stranger he might meet,
so much better off than before
when he knew no one save in dreams,
broke, with tenuous connections,
like a blinking bulb in a lamp,
the day after a performance:
should he escape or hatch a plot?

                                   ©David Francis