POET'S CORNER by Jeff Hartzer
Poetry Happens
It has been a distinct pleasure to organize the first ever South Valley Ink Poet’s Corner Poetry Contest. POETRY is ALIVE and WELL in our Enchanted Land. Thank you to all contestants. We had over 130 entries with poems from all over the state of New Mexico as well as from Arizona and Washington State. From these entries a WINNER’S CIRCLE of six poems has been selected. One of these poems is printed here; the remaining five are included in this issue of the South Valley Ink. Many thanks to those who participated in the first ever POET’S NIGHT OUT at the AirDance ArtSpace on November 12th.





To Learn the Blossoms

When will I see the wildflowers?
Every winter when snow melts,
winds warm, earth becomes green,
there’s my promise to learn the blossoms,
to watch bees mumbling
round heavy, tumid flowers.
When resolve drowns in the thaw.
Work demands my attention,
and I am centered on deed.
There’s no time for foolish
dawdling about with no purpose.
When I raise my heavy head
from the desk, push aside papers
harsh sun has dried daisy, pansy,
vervaine, Indian paintbrush.
Hooks, points, thorns are
all that remains.
Lone wasps stagger round bitter seeds
guarded by vengeful nettles.
Too late.
My loss is all that remains.
“Oh, they were probably nice.”
I aver.
And plan to really look
next spring.
There’s plenty of time;
anyway it’s crazy to believe
it could be
in a flower
I’d find serenity.

D. L. Bachelor ©2004


Arenal Morning

Summer scent of alfalfa.
Rose-splashed eastern sky.
Barred-rock rooster
warns his world about
the evil of this day.
Crows light on the
cottonwood tree,
then flutter away.
I stare at the tree, at the
sky, at the tin-roofed shed
in the chicken pen. As
I remember yesterday's
picnic, I am glad you
didn't get grass stains
on your white linen suit.

Ann Applegarth ©2004


Foodway Philosophy

I smiled at the crumpled
woman in the checkout line.
"It's gonna rain," she said.
"You know, my back kills
me right before a rain.
Three kids, honey.
That's what ruined my
back - do it every time.
Had to work all those years,
thank God my back held
out. Had a doctor check
my kids' backs soon as
they was born. You know,
doctors don't usually do
that, and they should. I
save a lot of money now
on chickens - bought a
sharp knife and cut up my
own. Ought to get yourself
a good butcher knife, saves
money, you know. And, honey,
get your babies' backs
checked. My back
kills me three days
every time it rains."

Ann Applegarth ©2004


Unknown Father to All

Six children into this world did I seed;
Each as a token of unknown reason;
Father's love I did not think they would need;
Find God enhanc'd my denial's season;
The bottle is no longer in my hand;
Numbing regrets of middle one's betrayal;
Pain I gave freely and alone I stand;
Missing touches of my children so frail;
Reaching I forgive myself most of all,
Bidding theirs would cause pain's grip to dissolve.

Elizabeth Sarah Layton ©2000


Phase Through Eternity I

Give rise whirling, swirling winds
Whistle 'round the state I'm in.
Cumulus competing with nimbus mind,
Ravens hunt; they nimbly find
Nothing left from harvest,
Ravenous scurrying about,
Scavenging all who are weak...
Cries the dawn in the morning,
Haze fills her head;
Trees spreading morphine,
Leaves conceal her bed.
Wicked the arroyo rushing
Through season's gone;
With blankets lies covered
The death we're upon.

Danielle LoPresti ©2004



What You Could Not See

Everything inside of me
What you could not see
How much I cherished you
And everything I saw you do
You put fire in my soul
Made me feel like I was whole
Not good enough, could it be
What you could not see in me
Passion, heat burned itself cold
Would you've listened, should I've told?
Scared and alone it hurts to be
Another thing you will not see

Kelly Feidler ©2004



To Grandma

I stand here in my universe
Counting stars so ancient
Breathing the air so infinite
My feet feeling the earth so vast.
I stand here waiting for things so new
Things abstract and concrete
Things you taught me, Grandma.
I remember still ... you know.
I remember you said ...
Rejoice when birds give unselfish songs
Each day before light breaks behind the mountains.
Rejoice when the sun, sleepy and tired, seeks
Behind the hills strength
To spread on this land his fatherly warmth.
Celebrate when the fields
Turn the color of hope.
Be strong when days turn to dark.
It is a time to pray, to meditate, to rest.
You told me not to be afraid.
I remember, Grandma, I remember still.
I feel your presence, Grandma
When I'm sad
When I'm joyful
When the wind blows
When the rain falls
When the sun fills my soul with hope
When words bring life to my senses
When the words of your lullabies
Kept the joy in my childhood.
Grandma, thank you for being you.

Pablo Tello ©2004




check in at the Main Stage for a complete index for all issues of the POET'S CORNER

To visit Jeff Hartzer's weblog, click: FRESHCHAOS.com


Written by Jeff Hartzer , The Poet's Corner appears monthly in Albuquerque's South Valley Ink.



Jeff Hartzer, MEd. presents a unique view of poetry as a magical gift waiting to be opened . Jeff is a poet, writer, teacher, and the Executive Director of the AirDance ArtSpace. ( 1-505-842-9418).

For suggestions about your poems, send them with a SASE to:

The Poet's Corner

Post Office Box 25892

Albuquerque, New Mexico 8712





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