Honors · Memoir · Publication · Well Versed

Such an Honor

Well Versed 2021: A Collection of Poetry and Prose accepted three of my poems. One earned Third Place in Poetry and another, Honorary Mention. The anthology can be purchased on Amazon. Thank you Columbia Writers Guild, judges, and editors!

Honorary Mention

From Your Son

     In Memory of George Floyd (May 25, 2020)

I am through, Mama.

Across shackled seas

These chains & ropes

knuckled tight to hanging trees.

Hate, a masquerade

under white, hooded robes,

disguised constraints,              

a force of captivity

in black and white terms

from fields to farms

to racial divide.

Our souls, handcuffed                 

to plows, to prisons,

as crosses burned,

sisters raped,

brothers gunned down

for opening their own gates.

But no one can cut our stride,

nor can the blue shield

take another knee

to choke our certitude

to force us to salute servitude.          

Mama, see how

our crest of unity rises.

The world resounds     

our gospel songs

of grief released                      

from collapsed lungs

just so that

we can

breathe!  

Third-Place in Poetry

Picasso Dreams Broken Glass

      In response to the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol (2021)

Thrust down with a fumbling hand

in the light of the slumberous moon

crashing into the crater in my chest

all that pain of after death, the broken glass,

the splintering cries of those who gather by the gate

& wonder where to go & who to see

& ask if there’s a place for their guns

or something organic to eat,

but why cast onto me

this surreal art of disharmony:

jumbling discordant shards,

the jagged insurrections of clouds

& murders by crowds,

& those who rage, their fire snuffed out

by wet whimpers

& so they drown in grief,

but why pursue me, as though I

could decode this absurd collage,

take on the lake-effect breeze

of a dense fog that steeps

in a mind that cannot sleep,

much less dream of rainbowed gardens.

Why seek me to recast their shattered sorrow,

scattered chaotic clutter,

their Felliniesque costumes?

I don’t know the half of it.

Healing · Memoir · My Father · October Hill Magazine · Poem · Publication · Writing

Estate Sale

I have a new publication in October Hill Magazine, Spring Issue, page 92. The title of the poem is “Estate Sale”. You can also read the poem here, (but the format is not correct. I don’t know how to fix it.)

https://www.octoberhillmagazine.com/archives

Estate Sale 

“When someone is missing, their possessions take on meanings.” 

– Claudia Emerson (1957-2014)

How the day lays the gray fog into rain
That presses on fallen leaves with bent stems.

Am I ready to sweep them into bags –
Gently used jackets, old woven mittens?

Tell me who needs this apparel of trees

One leaf still clings, my father, not yet braced

To give up his old toys, schoolbooks, first gun.

He wrote a memoir that ended with me.

Perhaps he thought I would know my story,

Or he didn’t want to get it all wrong.

A sole leaf still being written on bark,

He cleaves to the long branch of his mother.

An ancient oak, pruned to keep her health up,

She cannot stretch her limbs out to the clouds.

Instead, her girth grows thick, her stature short,

A broad support for plumage & branches,

To which father maintains a firm handhold.

I gather their china, albums, & garlands.

I wash her face & dress her in twinkling lights. 

Father lets go as I head to the sale.   

 

Healing · Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry · Poetry

A Blessing for You — PhoebeMD: Medicine + Poetry

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor Dear Friends, most of us would agree that this past year has been extremely challenging if not tragic. Many of you have documented your pain and grief in poetry, fiction, and essays. St. Patrick’s Day is today and Easter is coming up, so it’s a good time for us to transmute…

A Blessing for You — PhoebeMD: Medicine + Poetry

Thank you, Phoebe, for publishing my blessing!

Healing · Micropoetry · Poem · Writing

A Blessing

Dear Friends, most of us would agree that this past year has been extremely challenging if not tragic. Many of you have documented your pain and grief in poetry, fiction, and essays. St. Patrick’s Day is on Wednesday and Easter is coming up, so it’s a good time for us to transmute our sorrow and fear into blessings. It’s spring, a time of rebirth as we see the daffodils blooming. Although daffodils are sometimes pelted by one last snowfall, they are resilient. Indeed, spring is full of promise as four-leaf clovers await our search for good health and fortune. The fourth leaf, luck, adds to the trinity, so even if we fail to find the four-leaf clover, we are truly never alone. With love, I offer this blessing.

May you be blessed.

May good luck follow you always.

May you be healthy and thus wealthy.

May your heart be filled with grace

not grief.

May your home be filled with love,

not languor.

May your days be filled with mystery,

not misery.

May your back never bend in storm.

May friends and family gather at last     

in your welcoming arms.

Feature Image: by artistlike on pixabay.com

Image of the daffodil: by MrGajowy3 on pixabay

Free Verse Revolution · My Screaming Twenties · Poetry · Publication

Issue I: available for download — Free Verse Revolution:

Issue I: hebe (the fountain of youth) is now available for download! Get your copy of our first issue here. Our issues are free to download but if you wish to donate in receipt of your copy, you can use the Donate page. Currently, donations are used to pay for the domain and for the […]

Issue I: available for download — Free Verse Revolution:

I am pleased to share the first issue of Free Verse Revolution: A literary magazine. My poem “The New Girl” is on page 58.

Dark Poets Club · Publication

The Visitant


untitled image

Dark Poets Club (London, England) accepted three of my poems. Today they published “The Visitant”. Thank you, Dark Poets Club, for liking my work! (I put this poem up on my blog in the past. Dark Poets Club accepts poems from a blog because they feel poetry should be shared widely. Give them a try!)

https://www.darkpoets.club/post/the-visitant

Free Verse Revolution · Poetry · Writing

Issue I: contributors — Free Verse Revolution:

We hope you are as excited as we are about the release of Issue I: hebe (the fountain of youth)! To tease you a little further, below are the incredible writers, artists and photographers whose work will be featured in our first issue. The cover reveal will be released this Sunday coming at 2pm GMT. […]

Issue I: contributors — Free Verse Revolution:

I am excited to be able to contribute to the launch of a new literary magazine!

Ekphrastic Poetry · Healing · Original Collage Art · Poem · Poetry · Writing

Soar

To all my peeps… some of my poetry and art for the new year! Happy New Year! May 2021 lift us to new heights! To soar!

May 2021 lift you out of depleted soil.
To soar. To soar in sun.
Free. Free in sheer air,
Where you dream. Dream.
Not despair,
Not dread.
Not drown in storm.
May you rise. Rise.
Rise!

Collage art and poem by Barbara Leonhard extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

Healing · Original Collage Art · Poem

Holiday Blessings

May your holiday season

be filled with sweets

May you be blessed with good health & wealth

May the new year be magical

as your mystery unfolds

May the new year be loving

as kindness kindles transformation

but most of all

May all dreams be fulfilled, my friend,

but allow for surprise around each bend

May you find peace in your heart

though the world be apart

May you find solace in loss

& a healer in grief

May you be courageous & fierce

in the face of fear

May your heart open

to the dizzy impossible

May your way take you

to the quiet now

as birth awaits you there.

♥️♥️♥️

poetry & collage art by Barbara Leonhard