Guest Poet: Laverne Frith




down deep in those caverns of destiny

where we listened for ancient echoes,

for those infernal drips, and the sound

of unseen running waters.

We tended to hold close to one another as we

meandered the formations: stalactites

and stalagmites, large mounds of bat

guano and other residue unknown.

Hard hats in place, we continued to

swing and swing our lanterns wide,

looking as hard as we could on ledges

and in depressions, searching for

each and every understory we could find.




Over the broad chaparral

the long sadness spreads:

a burning from tip to root—

acres transformed once again.

In time the winds will whip

and whip.

We are reminded

of just how much is confined

to a season; so much shrub

growth caught up in weather

filled with so much chance.

Tumbleweed and sage, mallow

and sorrel: all the workings

of a landscape in a gentle

rise and fall, of vernals

we can never forget.




This pair, rising from their lounging, heads for the sea,

for the waters they can never truly leave for long,

their throats as sleek as polished stone.

They are resolute, as determined as they must be. They

know the kinetics too well, know how survival works,

how the sea, unfailingly, will do its part, as will

the beach with all the rest it promises to provide,

the invitation of the ocean waters

too inviting to resist for long.


Laverne Frith is co-editor of Ekphrasis, is author of chapbooks from Talent House Press, Finishing Line Press, Rattlesnake Press, Choice of Words Press and White Heron. His full-length collection, Imagining the Self, was released from Cherry Grove Collections in 2011. His poetry has been accepted or appeared in many publications, including Poetry New York, Permafrost, The Christian Science Monitor, Sundog: the Southeast Reveiw, The Montserrat Review, Louisiana Literature, Convolvulus, California Quarterly, Iodine Abbley, Perihelion, Maryland Poetry Review, Blue Unicorn and the New Laurel Review. He lives in Sacramento, California.

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