Danced with Angels

Dennis Cardiff




I’ve danced with angels —
the horizon and my heart
smouldering and blazing with fire

I’ve heard songs of sirens
crooning, moaning, lamenting
orgasmic cries of ecstasy

I’ve followed woodland nymphs
into secret, sacred circles
of overwhelming abandonment

I’ve flown with the chimera
beyond the astral plane
felt her fire on my loins

Like butterflies, they dance
to each erect, expectant flower
coming with their love



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Shawn L. Bird

We’ve decorated the artificial tree

The fire crackles on the TV

Holiday cards show everyone happy

People gather smiling gleefully

to celebrate festivities

and it all feels like fakery.


If this is meant to be

a season all about peace,

then let me sit here quietly

alone but for fictional company

the only sound, fire crackling,

and I will celebrate contentedly,

avoiding family and all their expectation of responsibility.



I am an extrovert and I generally love being out with people, but when I’m under a lot of stress, all I want to do is sit in heated comfort by myself, and spend time in the company of book friends.  All the obligatory holiday hoopla just makes me grumpy and anti-social, particularly with my dad passing away this summer and my mother suffering a serious stroke a couple of weeks ago.  

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what remains. II advent collaboration.

the sacred road

the wind shifts
and the breathtaking crispness of autumn
then fades
beneath the savageness
of winter’s biting embrace.
the burning embers of life
forever muted
in the end of an insurmountable fight.
for nothing evades
the icy pervasiveness
that strips the trees
and bares one’s soul.
not even the gentle dusting
of freshly fallen snow
can soften the cruel beauty
in such skeletal remains.
blues extinguish
the warmth
of brandished reds and golds
as death greets the year
and the months to come.
and the cacophony of scavenging
are silenced
in the blanket
of such eerie stillness.
cheeks burn
against the wind’s
abrasive touch
and yet,
she cannot turn towards
the wooden warmth
in but the world behind.
there is no comfort
to be found
in the joviality:
treats of remembered laughter
and long forgotten song.
for them –
it is a beginning
drenched in reflection

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