Of Emoji Images And Insinuations – Poem by Ndaba Sibanda

It’s the Little Things

Our modern means of communication are little things that can say so much! Ndaba Sibanda captures this in the delightful poem below!

Of Emoji Images And Insinuations

Maybe photos speak louder than words
Think of smiley symbols, emoji symbols

Different icons for different network users
On one’s media platform, on one’s page

Think of animated emoji reactions to a post
For instance there was a story of one celeb

Who left his better half for a fresher beauty
I saw pouting, laughing, weepy or dazed faces

And a few comments like: “This won`t end well”
And “The beauty is a classic, the man a clown”

Then one “reactor” had a photo of a teasing kid,
She had a body that was being fanned and toweled

One post had a beating heart icon …was that love?
The other chap had another idea: a thumps down!!


A 2019 Pushcart Prize nominee, Ndaba’s poems have been widely anthologised. Sibanda is the author of The Gushungo Way, Sleeping Rivers, Love O’clock, The Dead Must Be Sobbing, Football of Fools, Cutting-edge Cache: Unsympathetic Untruth, Of the Saliva and the Tongue, When Inspiration Sings In Silence and Poetry Pharmacy. His work is featured in The Anthology House, in The New Shoots Anthology, and in The Van Gogh Anthology, and A Worldwide Anthology of One Hundred Poetic Intersections. Some of Ndaba’s works are found or forthcoming in Page & Spine, Peeking Cat, Piker Press, SCARLET LEAF REVIEW, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, the Pangolin Review, Kalahari Review, Botsotso, The Ofi Press Magazine, Hawaii Pacific Review, Deltona Howl, The song is, Indian Review, Eunoia Review, JONAH magazine, Saraba Magazine, Poetry Potion, Saraba Magazine, The Borfski Press, Snippets, East Coast Literary Review, Random Poem Tree, festival-of-language and Whispering Prairie Press.
Sibanda’s forthcoming book Notes, Themes, Things And Other Things: Confronting Controversies,Contradictions And Indoctrinations was considered for The 2019 Restless Book Prize for New Immigrant Writing in Nonfiction. Ndaba’s other forthcoming book Cabinet Meetings: Of Big And Small Preys was considered for The Graywolf Press Africa Prize 2018.
Sibanda’s other forthcoming books include Timbomb, Dear Dawn And Daylight, Sometimes Seasons Come With Unseasonal Harvests, A Different Ballgame and The Way Forward.


 Let`s Get Cracking! – Ndaba Sibanda - WordPress.com

Enchantment and We All Got Crowns – Photography by Tracy Whiteside

It’s the Little Things

There will be no way that you can see today’s little things without immediate coos! Tracy Whiteside designs entrancing photography and today she shares with us her baby photoshoot. The cuteness of these little lovebugs along with her artistry makes for nothing but happy hearts!

We All Got Crowns


Tracy Whiteside is an internationally published Chicago-area photographer specializing in creative images for humans and things that go bump in the night.  Her work can be seen in over 60 different publications in just the last year.  This is a bit of a departure from her usual style but being unable to work in the studio as much as she would like has made her a bit stir crazy. 


Check out her portfolio at https://www.tracywhiteside.com/.  A photographer for over 16 years, Tracy works in many genres.  You can enjoy her irrational mixed bag of images on Instagram @whitesidetracy

DARK ART: https://www.tracywhiteside.com/

FANTASY: https://tracywhiteside.myportfolio.com

Bicycle Ride & The Four Minute Long Song – Poetry by Banqobile Virginia Dakamela

It’s the Little Things

Banqobile Virginia Dakamela defines so eloquently amazing surviving and thriving techniques in her poetry below! The world holds its chaos, but through the struggle we can learn something new and embrace our uniqueness within it.

Bicycle Ride
The word lockdown smelt of despair and uncertainty
The looming emptiness ahead held no excitement

The bicycles came just in time
But along came agony

Knees and elbows scrapped
Ribs bruised
Faces tear streaked
The first ride
Was the worst
Their fall was my ache
Their tears my heartbreak

They screamed,
” Mama come watch!
We can ride without falling.
Send us to the shops
Or wherever you want.
We can now fly as we cycle. “

Discovering riding styles is the new order!
As l watch the trail of dust
Two helmet clad heads disappearing
I can only smile and
Think of what new tricks are in store

The four minute long song
The four minute long song
Is a four decade old love song

In the lyrics we promised to love
In the harmony we exchanged sweet embraces
In the melody we kissed tenderly
In the keys we vowed to stick till death

But then promises we failed to keep
Embraces we turned into fights
Kisses to insults
Vows broken and dismantled

The four minute long song plays still
The lyrics, harmony, keys and melody are still sweet
In its rendition I find reason to smile
At the sweet memories of a love once inconquerable


Banqobile Virginia Dakamela is a Bulawayo born writer. She has authored Lolungileyo Liyamtshonela Ilanga which features in the short story anthology Vala Singafohleli Lesisilo edited by Barbara Makhalisa. Some of her writings have been featured in Ponder Savant, Piker Press, Hawai’i Review and Better Than Starbucks. 

Afro Girl & Other Embroidery Artwork by Jackie Bluu

It’s the Little Things

I know that you will be just as smitten as I am with these embroidery pieces by Jackie Bluu! Embroidery is an artform that takes a unique kind of patience and precision. Jackie Bluu harnessed this precision to create these wonderful expressions of life!

Afro Girl


Jackie Bluu is a poet and writer living in New York. She received a BA in Anthropology at SUNY Purchase and a Masters in Publishing at Pace University. During the week, she works full-time as a book publicist at Columbia University Press, and on weekends as the editor of FishFood, a literary and arts zine.

Jackie has been published in Emotional Alchemy Magazine, Jawbreaker ZineAwakenings and Laurels & Bells Literary Journal.


You can find more of her work, mostly poetry, on her Instagram page, @jackie_bluu.

FB – @authorjackiebluu

Web – jackiebluu.com

Her chapbook ‘Facing the Beast’ was published in January 2019.

Open-Mouthed and Relatively New – Photographs and Poetry by Alan Bern

It’s the Little Things

Alan Bern boldly takes the simplest of items and finds a way to express the preciousness they hold! His photographs and poetry inspire that everything has value.

Artist Statement:

Photographs often capture and present moments. To collect these moments and for the great good health of body and mind, I take walks— yes, I walk my neighborhood streets and also beyond— and I capture moments, sometimes with the camera on my phone, sometimes with a few words, and sometimes with both. Snap snap. I regularly walk in my neighborhood where I have lived for 95% of my life. And, yes, it’s often awfully familiar, but there is always something new to see. An empty paper cup among the plants; plastic-wrapped newspapers posing as footsteps on a rock stairway. Snap snap. 

Poems, too, can capture and present these moments— especially short poems such as haiku and haiku-like poems. I capture and presents such moments in both my photographs and my poems, and sometimes I combines the two in what are called photo-haiga.* At other times I merge both into longer narratives that may tell a story, but more often present a flow of images and words that magnify and transmit thoughts, feelings, and dream-traces. 

*”Haiga [paintings] are typically painted by haiku poets (haijin), and often accompanied by a haiku poem.” en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haiga— with Alan’s photos standing in for the paintings.


Retired children’s librarian Alan Bern’s poetry books: No no the saddest and Waterwalking in Berkeley, Fithian Press; greater distance, Lines & Faces, his press with artist Robert Woods, linesandfaces.com. Alan has poems, stories, and photos published in a variety of online and print publications from which he has won awards. Recent photos published: unearthedesf.com/alan-bern and https://wanderlust-journal.com/2020/07/01/around-the-few-blocks-nearby/. Alan performs with dancer/choreographer Lucinda Weaver as PACES and with musicians from Composing Together, composingtogether.org.

A Mid-summer Dream – Poem by Yi Jung Chen

It’s the Little Things

Yi Jung Chen sends us words of entrancing sweetness to hold us up through these times. With validating the struggle, she also keeps our eyes on seeing the persistent good that still surrounds us.

A Mid-summer Dream


Snuggled on your shoulder,

we sit on the sand and watch the seagull fly.

The sun rose over the horizon,

the gentle breeze caressed our hairs.

Holding your hands and strolling along the forest trails,

the aroma of the cypress prevails in the air.

The gnomes may greet us somewhere,

leaving us the joy of hidden surprise.

Covid-19 taking the world by storm,

Solitude raid my soul.

Communicating with you on line,

we kiss each other on the webcam,

shedding tears of sadness.

Leaning out of the window,

a sparrow standing on the utility pole,

tilted her head and gave me an inquiring look.

In her eyes, 

a door flung open,

the wave of euphoria keeps hypnotizing me into

a sweet dream.


Besides teaching pupils of learning difficulties at Dounan Elementary School in Taiwan, Yi Jung (Jolene) Chen used to cooperate with other teachers for writing illustrated books in Chinese, English and Japanese. She also earned her doctoral degree from Graduate Institute of Education in National Chung Cheng University. In her leisure hours, she also wrote poems in English, Chinese and Taiwanese language. Provided given the opportunity, she would like to have her poems published by a reliable agent and shares her poems with people around the globe.


tarde_de_quarentena (quarentine evening) – Digital Artwork by Affar Oppip

It’s the Little Things

Drink in the hues and shades of this incredible piece of art from Affar Oppip! Bask in its warmth and let it fill you with hope.

tarde_de_quarentena (quarentine evening)

Looking at a beautiful sundown after a sunny day is something that really makes me happy during these hard times. The orange and magenta tones in the sky gives me a mix of nostalgia and hope.


I’m Affar Oppip, artist based in São Paulo, Brazil, and I produce glitchy and web-aesthetic digital art since 2013, the same year that Brazil got into a deep political crisis that stills until nowadays. On my artwork I try to express through digital errors the impressions, expressions, visions, paradoxes and contradictions of a metropolis like São Paulo and also themes related with brazilian society.

Scribbles & Two Haikus – Poetry by Tonmoi Das Kashyap

It’s the Little Things

For your Sunday viewing pleasure, I present three little poems from Tonmoi Das Kashyap! They capture the feeling of life in this strange pandemic summer.

Tonmoi Das Kashyap

The concentric circles
Had nothing much to say
Just indicating the restlessness
Printed on the blank paper.
The wind blowing
with the sea waves
hitting the rocks at the shore.
The same wind making it’s way
Through the window
Blowing the curtains
Touching the concentric circles
But to no effect.

Tonmoi Das Kashyap

Summer evening
chorus of the crickets
a bee joins the party.

a masked selfie
for instagram.


Tonmoi Das Kashyap is an emerging poet and short story writer. His work has been published in 29 Anthology, Literary Garland, Pondersavant, The Daily Drunk, Trouvaille Review, Litehouse, Burgundy Balloon, Haikuniverse and several other national and international journals. He is planning to start writing his first novel soon. He lives in Assam, India with his parents and brother.


My Father – Poetry & Other Artwork by Ann Privateer

It’s the Little Things

Ann Privateer shares with us an intimate moment with all of the sting and beauty that accompany it. She also fills her life with many styles of art and gifts us with some of her artwork and photography! Go take a look below!

My Father

Had a heart attack
One night when I
Was 16. I ran bare foot
Across The street to get
Our doctor neighbor
I can still feel the gravel
It was too late, an ambulance
Came and took his body.
For one year Mama left
His work clothes on the hook
Where he hung them.
Sometimes I’d go into
Their closet and hug
His clothes, breath
His scent and cry.


Ann Privateer is a poet, artist, and photographer. She has been writing poems since her college days, has received Photography awards, some of her recent photos have appeared in Third Wednesday, and she enjoys painting once a week outdoors with
other artists.

Rainy Days & Little Roses – Photography by Sandra Nguyen

It’s the Little Things

No matter what pulls at us in life, there are images all around us that are small gifts to our spirits if we take the time to look. Sandra Nguyen captures this so perfectly in these photos. It’s the easy to miss beauty that is available to us, if we only take the time to look.

Rainy Days

I love rainy days. It makes me drop everything I do at the moment and just listen to the rhythm of nature and reflect on life. The photo was taken in mid December last year…..looking out of my bedroom window

Little Roses

I received these two roses from my little nieces, age 4 and 2. They picked out the flowers themselves, although their parents paid for them. But I think the gesture was really sweet. The roses remind me of how delicate and beautiful life is. For a moment they add color and breathe new energy into my life….just like my nieces. The photo was taken in early July this year. The glass vase stood on my black nightstand and I took the picture looking down at the roses. 


Sandra Nguyen is an author of literary fiction and poetry. She has been published in anthologies and online. She lives and writes in Sweden.