for want of the moon by Nicolette Daskalakis

Loose lips slit wrists
on the dashboard of our bathroom floor
darling these bodies are too heavy to hold,
this skin we wear
for disguise
is only covering the night.

You can’t remember the stars
for want of mirroring the moon,
I’m here to tell you
you’ll never shine
like her,
in the scattered dark.

So sew up your wrists
before the stars spill out
from your pretty little veins
that glow
in the dark.

Nicolette Daskalakis is an award-winning filmmaker, poet, and multi-media artist residing in Los Angeles. She received a BA in film production from the USC School of Cinematic Arts and a minor in Intermedia Arts from the Roski School of Art & Design. Her first book, “because you’re now banging a French girl,” was published in 2015.

Online Poetry Class Begins Today

Register today for The Poet’s Toolkit at, a Five week online class

Attend as many or as few classes as you like: $20 per class or $75 for all five weeks

This five-week course will focus on several of the most integral craft elements of poetry writing and is suitable for writers in any genre. Whether new to the craft or a long-time practitioner, this online class will help you bring focus and new energy to your poetry.

Each lesson will center on a particular skill and will include sample readings and discussion of the week’s craft element. A selection of representative poems meant to spark lively discussion will be included as will a number of fun and engaging writing prompts.

  • Week One: Vivid details and Sensory images
  • Week Two: Creating surprising similes, metaphors, and other figurative images
  • Week Three: Narrative to imagination (moving from chronology to association)
  • Week Four: Reinvigorating syntax and sentences
  • Week Five: Serious fun with serious revision

Facilitator: Lisa Hase-Jackson, MFA, passionately believes that great writing comes from active imagination and a careful eye, two characteristics easily cultivated through playfulness.


Squall by Jennifer Lagier

All day the sky teases –
bubbling storm clouds,
then sunlight around dinnertime,
dark squall finally
blowing in from the ocean.

Gusty deluge whips redwoods
into a drenched frenzy,
rust-colored needles cast down
to become one more startling hue
in a soggy compost pastiche.

Night brings banshee winds
that lift and rattle
windows and shingles,
command a second quilt.

By morning, this cabin,
a water-tight golden ark,
shelters and warms,
offers a good book, crackling fire,
hot cup of coffee.

Jennifer Lagier has published ten books of poetry and in a variety of literary magazines and anthologies. She taught with California Poets in the Schools and is now a retired college librarian/instructor. Jennifer is a member of the Italian American Writers Association and Rockford Writers Guild. She co-edits the Homestead Review and maintains websites for Ping Pong: A Literary Journal of the Henry Miller Library, The Monterey Poetry Review, and She also helps coordinate the Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium’s Second Sunday Reading Series. Visit her website at:


Time Is Running Out (to register for The Poet’s Toolkit)

Hello Poets and Writers!

This is just reminder that registration for The Poet’s Toolkit is still open. The five-week class begins on Monday, October 17 and will cover important craft elements every writer interested in sharpening their skills will appreciate. Cost is only $75.00 for all five weeks or $20.00 per class for those who wish to pick and choose. In either case, you will have access to the course material beyond the five week session.

For a full description of the class, including a week-by-week schedule, see my post on Zingara Poet: The Poet’s Toolkit

Winter Resignation by KB Ballentine

A shower of snow, ice dust drifting.
Hands so cold they burn, and hot pink memories
of bougainvillea, musk rose burst
into my mind. You, sitting in a grass field, head turned
away from me, the first clue.

Wind picks up, and I tug your old sled
up the track-scabbed hill, lift our son’s small body
onto the graying wood. Watch him laugh and tip
into a pool of space before he, too, speeds away.

KB Ballentine’s work has appeared in numerous journals and publications. A finalist for the 2014 Ron Rash Poetry Award, she was also a 2006 finalist for the Joy Harjo Poetry Award and was awarded the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Prize in 2006 and 2007.  Fragments of Light(2009) and Gathering Stones (2008) were published by Celtic Cat Publishing. Her third collection, What Comes of Waiting, won the 2013 Blue Light Press Book Award.

Announcing Publisher for New Mexico Poetry Project!

I am happy and excited to announce that Dos Gatos Press has agreed to publish the print anthology companion to the 200 New Mexico Poems project. Contributors can expect an email from the editors over the next few weeks requesting permission to include their poems.

Dos Gatos Press is comprised of Scott Wiggerman (a 200 NM Poem contributor) and David Meishcen, who founded the press in 2004. You may all be familiar with their annul Texas Poetry Calendar which they have been publishing since 2006 when they took over its publication from Flying Cow Productions. In 2008, they released their first trade publication, Big Land, Big Sky, Big Hair: Best of the Texas Poetry Calendar. They have also published three collections by individual poets—Circumference of Light, poems by Bruce Noll (2016); Letting Myself In, poems by Anne McCrady (2013); and Redefining Beauty (2009)—now in its third printing—poems focusing on former Texas Poet Laureate Karla K. Morton’s struggle with breast cancer. Among Dos Gatos Press’s proudest achievements are two remarkable books of poetry writing exercises—Wingbeats and Wingbeats II (2011 and 2014), co-edited by David and Scott. Finally, they have published two installments of Poetry of the American Southwest—Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems (2016) and Lifting the Sky: Southwestern Haiku and Haiga (2013). Having called Austin, Texas, home until the spring of 2015, they call Albuquerque their home.

A nonprofit, tax-exempt corporation organized for literary and educational purposes, Dos Gatos Press seeks to make poetry more widely available to the reading public and to support writers of poetry—especially in Texas, New Mexico, and the Southwest.


My Eco Crimes by Juan Morales

Forgive me for running the tap too long,
houseplants murdered, paper
towels and paper plates,
brand new light bulbs dropped, the shabby
pens lost,
and house lights left on when no one was home.
Sorry for the now-extinct mice
I killed for living in my air conditioner.
The flowers cut before they went to seed
the fruits and veggies I didn’t get around to eating
or bottles and cans too lazy to fish
from the trash. I apologize for leaving the crust of my bread,
for pitching
tin foil after one use.

But I’m not sorry for
the smokes I smash out after a few drags
during the countdown toward a polluted future
I will miss
days of excessive living
with soap or washers and dryers or
radios or wallets or gas stations
from a time when I thought
recycling was good enough.

Juan Morales is the author of the poetry collections The Siren World, Friday and the Year That Followed, and the forthcoming collection, The Handyman’s Guide to End Times. He is a CantoMundo Fellow, the Editor of Pilgrimage Magazine, and an Associate Professor of English at Colorado State University-Pueblo, where he directs the Creative Writing Program and curates the SoCo Reading Series.