Ponder Away – Conclusion

We have reached the end of our first online open-mic. It has been even better than I imagined! A big thank you to all the incredible artists who participated!

But don’t be sad, because there is much more to come! Next month we have Love Starts With You, a series on receiving love first for ourselves before we give to others. The submissions are open until February 1st, 2020, so go check it out to participate: Love Starts With You

Mia Savant – Ponder Away

Melancholy Lullaby

Lyrics:

At times I want to hide

In the shadows of my mind

I know it there

I know my breath

I know the air

Sometimes I want to cry

Cuz the only thing that I can rely

on is pain

Maybe that makes me a little insane

I spin in circles

I spin in circles

As I search for the answers to life

And I cry myself to sleep because I

Never get it right

I guess I’ll just hope

For sweet dreams

Tonight.

At times I want to give up

When the going gets too rough

I want to close my eyes

And stick to pillow talk

And lullabies

Sometimes I want to scream

But I don’t cuz no one is hearing me

Like a nightmare that you can’t touch

You know it’s not there

But it hurts so much

I spin in circles

I spin in circles

As I search for the answers to life

And I cry myself to sleep because I

Never get it right

I guess I’ll just hope

For sweet dreams

Tonight

Dreams where nothing’s required to be

Dreams where it’s enough to be me

Dreams With no mistakes

Dreams where I feel I’ve got what it takes

At times I want to fight

Against the world

Against the night

I want to do my best

I guess I need a little rest


Artist:

Mia Savant

Kushal Poddar – Ponder Away

Australia, 2019-2020

When winter went into ember
wherein you lived your sleep?

I had a flaming kangaroo hopped between
my eyes, and I had none

until my aunt called me to tell the news.
The cold sat on our porch.

The beer bottles left for recycling spacies
refilled themselves with undyed.

Aunt turned up the news. The wildfire
crackled in the newsreader’s throat –

world just dipped south. Kaput.
I opened my sight to the life leaving lives.

Where were you? Did you see
winter fluffing the orange and red?

Our porch spread across the other dimension.
White covered our trash in another world

where I had two eyes sewn beneath,
and winter, alive, weaved a quilt of fables

for those miracles that could have been.


The One Arrested And Later Left At Our Doorstep

The missing one is restored to her apparition,
disoriented, oozy-blood,
smelling like a marsh; two days’ve passed
since the protest fired up from the gully to the alcázar.

We ask the silence to nurse her.
Tim answers the media in waiting.
We blame the throne obviously.
The air stinks of conspiracy.

The missing one, reinstated, exists in flickers,
now here, now beside the basin, a hologram,
a substance, now a totem archaic,
now a numen, Jesus.

The protest flows with the paradigms.
Tim and I ask her what happened inside;
she seems to miss herself if only by a smudge of soul
or some slogan half finished.
Silence bandages her; strings her together.
MediaMedia disappears to attend another somewhere.


Monkey’s Paw

A teargas shell tore off my bro’s hand;
since we called him a primate in childhood
we kept the hand, nicknamed it ‘Monkey’s Paw’,
presented it before every guest in our house,
cherished their shriek; the severed limb
just wouldn’t rot; the second hand revolutionists
often borrowed it for their demonstrations,
but no one asked my sibling what the paw
meant to him. Probably a missing link
in the evolution chain between Adam and Cain.
He wouldn’t have answered anyway, rather
scratched his arm’s end the way one alley cat
scratches the blind bricks when cornered
in dire need of some magic.


Artist:

Kushal Poddar authored ‘The Circus Came To My Island’, ‘A Place For Your Ghost Animals, Understanding The Neighborhood’, ‘Scratches Within’, ‘Kleptomaniac’s Book of Unoriginal Poems’, ‘Eternity Restoration Project- Selected and New Poems’ and now ‘Herding My Thoughts To The Slaughterhouse-A Prequel’ (Alien Buddha Press)

Follow the Artist:

Author Page – amazon.com/author/kushalpoddar_thepoet

Twitter- https://twitter.com/Kushalpoe

Shannon O’Loughlin – Ponder Away

Us

We were young
Just learning how to love
Our friendship grew
Into something new
We belonged together
You knew it from the start
You stole my heart
Then I fell apart

And now after all these years
I look at myself in the mirror
The woman staring back at me
Misses what we used to be

Hate and love and broken trust
That is what’s become of us
But something pulled me back to you
And now I don’t know what to do

So here we are
Kissing in the dark
Too late to undo
I’ve lost myself in you
I crave you like an addict
Been starved, unsatisfied
You’re helping me remember
What it’s like to feel alive


Red

I reach out for you but you’re not there
I’m crying, grasping at thin air
I feel it underneath my skin
Your lack of love is creeping in

I’m seeing red
You’re in my head
I lost everything we never had
I missed all our memories
While you never once missed me
I’m your nothing
And nothing hurts more than nothing


Wild In Me

What can I do with this wild in me?
Where can I go to spread my wings?
I want to run, to breathe, be free
So I run, then it starts running me

How do I stay up here so high?
How can I stay in this open sky?
I fear the fall as I struggle to fly
The abyss below is consuming my mind

My aching wings, they’re giving in
My feet crave solid ground again
I’m falling, rushing through the wind
Back to the black I’ve always been

How can I feel when I’m buried so deep?
Twisted up in the words I’ll never speak
The darkness takes me, my body is weak
So I fall apart until I fall sleep

What can I do with this wild in me?
Where can I go to tame the beast?
I want run, to breathe, be free
Free from the wild inside of me


Artist:

Shannon O’Loughlin is 29 years old and has been choreographing, teaching dance and coaching gymnastics for over 12 years. She started out as a competitive gymnast before training in hip hop, breakdance, contemporary, tap, jazz and ballet. Shannon also danced and performed through college at UAA. Her choreography has been featured in halftime shows, dance competitions, auditions, talent shows, gymnastics meets, cheer competitions and dance recitals. She has also choreographed numerous productions for Valley Performing Arts and helped judged local talent shows. Shannon always tells her students, “I learn more from you than you do from me. You are helping me learn how to teach you in a more effective way during every class”. Shannon enjoys writing, watching documentaries, playing guitar, dancing everywhere and doing her make up!

Bruce McRae – Ponder Away

A List of Shadows
A Secret Garden
The God of August

Artist:

Bruce McRae, a Canadian musician currently residing on Salt Spring Island BC, is a multiple Pushcart nominee with over 1,500 poems published internationally in magazines such as Poetry, Rattle and the North American Review. His books are ‘The So-Called Sonnets (Silenced Press); ‘An Unbecoming Fit Of Frenzy; (Cawing Crow Press) and ‘Like As If” (Pski’s Porch), Hearsay (The Poet’s Haven).

Linda Ferguson – Ponder Away

The Art of Being    

I want to hum along the faded corridors and slip into

the diva’s dressing room, to flick my wings inside

her kimono’s silken sleeves,

I want to leave my tiny footprints in her spilled face powder

and wear her silver eye shadow like a pair of iridescent shoes –

I want to get a glimpse of my flash and glimmer in her bright mirror

then buzz through the shifting heat of the auditorium,

to circle zip dash dive the sweet sticky hairdos

of the ladies in their capes and pearls –

I want to land on the smooth black knee of the flutist

then soar to the tip of the conductor’s baton,

where together we stir the air, gathering a basilica

of notes then releasing them to mingle and pulse –

I want to burrow in the thick folds of the velvet curtains

and skim through the dust suspended in a beam of light

as I shape the perfect curves of figure eights

to the beat of the applause rising from the theater seats

my belief this is the way things are for everybody:

art and motion, ecstasy, ovation, encore!


Artist:

Linda Ferguson

https://bylindaferguson.blogspot.com//

Ruth Kozak – Ponder Away

MIDNIGHT MUSE

My Muse comes after midnight

nudges me awake.

Whispers urgently,

“Get up! Write!”

I curse her,

stumble across the dark room,

search for matches,

light the candle wick.

Where has she been in the daylight?

How many hours did I wait for her

listening for her voice?

“Where were you?” I ask.

“Was it your voice I heard

while I daydreamed in the sun?

Or was it only the sound

of sheep bells on the mountain?”

“Write!” she demands. “Write!”

If I wait til morning

the words she whispers to me

will be extinguished

like this candle flame.


Artist:

W. RUTH KOZAK is a published historical novel writer and travel journalist who sometimes writes poetry. Several of her poems have been published in anthologies including the most recent, “Precious Moments on the Beach” in Limitless, an Anthology Charity Project by McGrath House with proceeds going to refugees and immigrants.  Ruth plans to publish a book of poems written during her many stays in Greece titled “Songs for Erato”. She is currently working on a YA historical novel titled “Dragons in the Sky” in which some of the chapters are written as Bardic verse.

Jay Gandhi – Ponder Away

Wondering wanderer

when at home, I imagine the Himalayas:
the yellow tent to buy from Decathalon,
the UGG Men’s Butte Snow boot.

when in nature, I think:
if my Dad has taken Ecosprin 75 mg,
if my Mom has got an eight hour sleep.


My problem, my solution

You cross my mind
while I eat roasted almonds.
I begin counting the pieces left
in my right hand paying close attention
to the size, color and feel
of each almond. I try to name
the taste & listen to the crackle —
smell the roast.
I visualize the smiling face
of my 3-year old niece,
followed by how the sun rises
in the gullies of Ghatkopar.
I imagine the sound of the rain
on the Himalayan mountain.
After that I count back from 100—
only the multiples of 7 & 3
and on the numbers like 63,
I utter “a double”


Pedestrian meditation

I look out from the 8th floor window
to count the number of buses
which halt at the bus stop

All the buses roar in,
dash out: there is an urgency

Everyone wants to reach somewhere

They want to meet someone;
someone wants to meet someone else
and someone else might just want to visit me

Focus Charlie! Focus

my bladder is screaming,
acids are churning the stomach,
eyes are getting weary—

Here comes #399;
Nirvana isn’t a piece of cake


Cold Diwali

(i)
these days I am writing
a thesis about how bats
& owls survive the nights.
I think it would help
sole rangers like me

(ii)
there are coloured tablets
in my medicine case which
create different rangoli
every time; this Diwali
they are the only colours


Children have left the house

the timid streams gather courage,
bustle as they build momentum.
they start to join at the junctions
and begin to soften all the rocks
one at a time. sandstone is becoming
quartzite. granite is becoming gneiss.
milk is slowly curdling and the
tributaries are forming a river.
a river which is uninhibited,
it has no colour, no nationality,
no race, no religion. it breaks
all the boxes, crashes mental dams,
while it houses the salmons and eels,
it is the home for fishes and flies,
a place for hippos and rhinos
but has no place for a thought
of flowing backwards.


Budding Romeo

Today I’ve visited the home of my beloved
It seems as if I’ve visited the entire city

Black tea created such an atmosphere
I’ve sensed my partner in just a few moments

In the shining diamond around her neck
I’ve seen the stone which hypnotises

I’ve felt such a peace and relief
that I’ve seen the fear of loneliness tremble

In the slightest of her smiles, I saw a boat.
Trust me, I could visualise the full sea


kaka

A portrait is locked in my wrist.
My 2B Natraj pencil chokes
on the Fido-Dido sketchbook.
Muse’s forehead has many lines:
first line is a prayer for his wife
battling breast cancer,
second line denotes the loans
taken to send his son abroad,
third line is for the pregnant daughter.
His hair is grey but doesn’t
appear so when oiled.
The oil seeps through the head
and tries to dissolve the turmoil.
No Old monk. No Jack Daniels.
Each day when he returns home,
his wife opens the door
and greets him daily;
that moment is Nirvana—
the precise reason to stay alive.
His knees no longer bend
but he still tries to do so
when bowing to the God.
Even Picasso would tremble to get
the layers and wrinkles right.
But I have taken up the challenge
and the running title is kaka.

=====================================================
kaka 
is a respectful way of summoning a old man in Gujarati Language


Badlapur Local

In a first class compartment
there are blue seats with
soft cushion.

In a second class compartment
there are brown seats made
of wood.

some people discuss
the features of the Apple XR

others are contemplating
the next step to be taken
because the water supply
would be cut by the time
they reach home


White

She loved vanilla,
eggs & snow.
Every night she
tracked the cusps
of the moon—
she died today;
she was wrapped
in whites as she
traversed the clouds.


Rubato

More than 10000 pieces of broken mirrors
are stuck together for the installation.

Some pieces are dull, some are luminous,
some from the crashed wardrobes of a big shot
while others from the remains of the dashed cars.

they reflect with different intensities
but create the Large beat—

Earth hums songs on this very beat


Artist:

Jay Gandhi is a 33-year old accountant from Mumbai, India. He writes free verse in English. Most of his poems derive their inspiration from human inter connections. In free time when he isn’t reading poetry, he practices guitar, enjoys the peace that Yoga Asanas brings and walks for long distances.