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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 3: May 2020
Pandemic Micro-Poems (21)
By Various Authors



soap bubbles
my very own rainbow
on a gloomy day




isolation ward
the nurse’s gloved hand
in a dying palm

—Two poems by Marta Majorka Chocilowska, republished here with her permission: “soap bubbles” from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 9 April 2020) and “isolation ward” from Earthrise Rolling Haiku Collaboration 2020: Year of the Nurse (20 April 2020)

ten packs of toilet paper
in his grocery cart—
ass wipe




flattening the curve
we all grow

—Two poems by Terri L. French, republished with her permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 17 March and 4 April 2020, respectively)

what will become
of infectious laughs?




sheltering in place
a fear of long shadows

—Two poems by Peter Jastermsky, republished with his permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 12 and 21 March 2020, respectively)

an imprint of her lips
on the window pane




isolation ward
outside the grass
blue with jacaranda

—Two poems by Arvinder Kaur, republished with her permission from Haiku in the time of COVID-19 (Facebook: 7 and 19 April 2020, respectively)

taking life
one day
at a time
a housefly
i know by name

—One poem by Brendon Kent, from his collection in progress Diary of a Virus, and republished with his permission from Haiku in the time of COVID-19 (Facebook: 4 April 2020)

jewels beyond price...
windows across the valley
flare in the sun




online funeral...
an occasion to wear
my favourite scent

—Two poems by Susan King, republished here with her permission: “jewels beyond price...” from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 7 April 2020) and “online funeral...” from Haiku in the time of COVID-19 (Facebook: 10 April 2020)

for safety’s sake
I walk the streets with a mask
and a leaf blower




nude beach—
he acts like he’s never seen
a mask before

—Two poems by Michael H. Lester, republished with his permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 15 and 19 April 2020, respectively)

road trip
my music request
falls on deaf metal ears

—One poem by Bob Lucky, republished with his permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 14 April 2020)

sakura blossoms
the April breeze scented
with Clorox




talking so loudly
he sprays his words around—
particles of speech

—Two poems by Mark Meyer, republished with his permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 3 and 17 April 2020, respectively)

I trade hand sanitizer
for an ounce of weed

—One poem by Andrew Riutta, republished with his permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 9 April 2020)

On death row
awaiting a pardon—
all of us




Elevator buttons
I take the stairs

—Two poems by Alexis Rotella, republished with her permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 5 and 11 April 2020, respectively)

black pearls and pajamas
my covid couture




the irresistible urge
to touch my face

—Two poems by Marilyn Ward, republished with her permission from Senryu Circle (Facebook: 21 March and 6 April 2020, respectively)

Marta Majorka Chocilowska
Issue 3, May 2020

lives in Warsaw, Poland. A poet and cyclist who loves cats, she’s the author of Seasons in Polish Kigo, president of the Polish Haiku Association (PHA), and editor of the PHA’s Almanac No. 1, Migratory Birds. Her poetry has appeared in international haiga and haiku journals and anthologies, including A Hundred Gourds, Brass Bell, Cattails, Chrysanthemum, Faces and Places Haiku Anthology, Haiku Anthology: Second International Haiku Conference (2015), IRIS International Haiku Magazine, The Asahi Shimbun (Asahi Haikuist Network), The Whirligig Literary Magazine, Wild Plum, and the World Haiga Association Haiga Contest, among others. Her haiku have been translated into Bulgarian, Chinese, Croatian, Dutch, German, Italian, Japanese, and Russian.

Terri L. French
Issue 3, May 2020

is an author, editor, and haiku poet who lives on the road, with her husband and dog, in a home on wheels. She is on the Board of Directors of The Haiku Foundation and served as their Secretary. She is past Southeast Regional Coordinator for The Haiku Society of America and former editor of Prune Juice Journal of senryu and kyoka. Terri served as an editor of the online journal Haibun Today and recently joined the editorial team of Contemporary Haibun Online.

Peter Jastermsky
Issue 3, May 2020

is an award-winning cherita poet and a nominee for Best of the Net and Dwarf Star. His haiku, senryu, haibun, and cherita have been widely published in journals and anthologies such as Failed Haiku, Haibun Today, KYSO Flash, The Aurorean, and The Cherita. He is the author of two books: a collection of haiku and senryu, Steel Cut Moon (Cholla Needles Press, 2019), and a chapbook of haibun, No Velcro Here (Yavanika Press, 2019). Peter lives with his family in the high desert near Joshua Tree National Park.

Arvinder Kaur
Issue 3, May 2020

is a translator and poet with significant contributions to the world of Punjabi and English haiku. Her most recent books include Nimolian (haiku in Punjabi, published in 2013) and Dandelion Seeds (bilingual haiku, English and Punjabi). Her translation of letters exchanged between noted Punjabi writer Amrita Pritam and her painter companion Imroz, entitled Amrita and Imroz: In The Times Of Love and Longing, was published in 2009. under rain trees, her trilingual work of translation published in 2018, introduced cherita by ai li to Punjabi and Hindi readers. Her haiku have been published in numerous international venues, such as A Hundred Gourds, Creatix, Frogpond, Prune Juice, The Heron’s Nest, and The Mainichi Shimbun, among others.

Now retired after serving as an Associate Professor in English Literature and Media Studies at government colleges in India for nearly 35 years, she lives with her family in Chandigarh. Learn more in the NaHaiWriMo Interview with Arvinder Kaur.

Brendon Kent
Issue 3, May 2020

lives in the small countryside village of Botley (circa 890 AD) within Southampton, England. He has been writing short-form poetry for 50+ years, and his work has been published in numerous leading journals worldwide. He is the author of moon on water (Alba Publishing, 2018), a collection of haiku, senryu, and tanka. Brendon is a member of the British Haiku Society and a member and English reviser for the World Haiku Association, as well as the Head Teacher online for international haiku at Haiku University (Tokyo).

Susan King
Issue 3, May 2020

lives in Wales (UK). She has been writing haiku and related genres for 20 years. Her work has been published in a variety of journals, including Atlas Poetica, Blithe Spirit, Contemporary Haibun Online, Human/Kind, and Presence.

Michael H. Lester
Issue 3, May 2020

is a CPA and attorney who lives in Los Angeles, California. His short-form poetry has won numerous awards and has been published in such journals as Ribbons (Tanka Society of America), Modern Haiku, and Atlas Poetica, among others. He is the author of an illustrated children’s book, Cassandra and the Strange Tale of the Blue-Footed Boobies, and a book of poetry, Notes from a Commode, Volume I, both self-published on Amazon.com.

Bob Lucky
Issue 3, May 2020

lives and teaches in Saudi Arabia. He is a regular contributor to haiku and tanka journals in the US, Europe, and Australia, and his work has been widely anthologized. His fiction, nonfiction, and poetry have appeared or are forthcoming in numerous international journals, including Flash, Rattle, Modern Haiku, KYSO Flash, SurVision, Haibun Today, and Contemporary Haibun Online (the latter for which he served as content editor from July 2014 thru January 2020).

His chapbook of haibun, tanka prose, and prose poems, Ethiopian Time (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2014), was an honorable mention in the Touchstone Book Awards. His chapbook Conversation Starters in a Language No One Speaks (SurVision Books, 2018) was a winner of the James Tate Poetry Prize in 2018. He is also the author most recently of a collection of prose poems, haibun, and senryu, My Thology: Not Always True But Always Truth (Cyberwit, 2019); and an e-chapbook, What I Say to You (proletaria.org, 2020).

Mark Meyer
Issue 3, May 2020

Contemporary visual artist and retired educator Mark Meyer lives in the Seattle area and describes himself this way: “ex-scientist/ quasi-artist/ semi-poet/ pseudo-guitarist/ meta-misanthrope.” Now in his seventh decade, he was a neurobiologist in a prior lifetime long ago—and still really misses looking through microscopes.

Mark’s short-form poetry has been widely published, and he is the author of a collection of selected poetry and artwork available on Amazon (June 2020): neo-Nothyngge.

Andrew Riutta
Issue 3, May 2020

was born and raised in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and has lived for 20 years in the Grand Traverse Region. He is the author of a full-length poetry collection, Cigarette Butts and Lilacs (Modern English Tanka Press, 2008), and a chapbook, The Pie in Pieces: Thirty-three Songs from the Midwest (River Man Publishing, 2006). His poetry has appeared in journals such as Blood Lotus, Dunes Review, Eclectica, Frogpond, Red River Review, Ribbons: Tanka Society of America Journal, and Smokebox.

In 2011, his essay “The Myths of Manhood” was published in a collection of essays for National Public Radio, This I Believe: On Fatherhood (Jossey-Bass, John Wiley & Sons). His writing is also anthologized in Take Five: Best Contemporary Tanka (Modern English Tanka Press, 2009); Beyond Forgetting (Kent State University Press, 2008); Dust of Summers and A New Resonance (Red Moon Press, 2008 and 2007, respectively); Taboo Haiku (Avisson Press, 2006); and In the Arms of Words (Sherman Asher Publishing, 2005). He received the 2008 William J. Shaw Memorial Prize for Poetry, and won Honorable Mention in the Michigan Liberal Arts poetry contest in 2006.

Alexis Rotella
Issue 3, May 2020

was honored to be included in the American Haiku Archives as honorary curator in 2019. She is the curator/editor of Unsealing Our Secrets, a MeToo anthology of short poems about sexual abuse which was awarded a Touchstone Distinguished Book Award (2018). An award-winning poet and digital artist, she has been writing Japanese poetry forms in English since the late 1970s. Her work has been published throughout the world, and she is the author of dozens of books. Her latest include Dancing the Tarantella (tanka and cherita) and Scratches on the Moon: Haibun, both of which are available on Amazon and Kindle; and The Color Blue, which was released by Red Moon Press in 2017. Her out-of-print haiku and tanka books, as well as her newest works, can be read on Kindle.

Ms. Rotella’s passions include her acupuncture practice in Arnold, Maryland, and mobile photography. Her mobile art has been showcased in Porto, Portugal and in Florence and Milan, Italy and continues to be featured in many on-line venues.

Marilyn Ward
Issue 3, May 2020

is a retired social-care worker for Learning Disabilities. Married, and a mother and grandmother, she lives in the UK and uses social media to share her writing with others. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and she has her own poetry community on MeWe. Her work has been published under the names of Marilyn Ward, Mal, and Marilyn Dancing Deer Ward. (Though not Navajo herself, she received the latter name as a birthday gift from a Navajo friend.)

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