Introducting Scarlet Clover

Introducing Scarlet Clover Publishers!

On Monday authors of Blue Feather Books, Ltd., received an email. The nearly decade-old publishing company is to be dissolved.

For me it was very sad news. A book company would be lost. On a personal note, I grieve for what made Blue Feather Books special – Emily Reed, and the staff of Blue Feather Books, cared. Em cared about the authors and about the readers.

Emily took a chance on my book about a sixty-year old woman finding romance in Appointment with a Smile. She took another chance on a book that was uncomfortable – it talked about two war. There were Hippies and a Concentration Camp – good and evil of life. Careful Flowers might have gone unpublished if not for Em. She is a hero to me, and I thank her and wish her the best.

I wish Em, and all the authors of BFB a happy future. Speaking of authors, and the world of publishing – there are so many magnificent women providing today’s Sapphic literature. I’m so very proud to be part of this ‘golden era’ of words.

Ann Bannon wrote a few books that changed many of our lives. Emily Reed reconstructed a publishing company – and gave so many of us an opportunity. Beth Mitchum created not only her own brilliant work, but she’s promoted women’s poetry and fiction with her amazing publishing company, Ultra Violet Love, and Sappho’s Corner Series.

Blazing the way in the enormity of Sapphic literature, these leaders have forced the best in us. As writers and as readers. Each book written makes a commitment to the future. So I thank all those who read and who write. I also thank the Reader – they support our cause.

For me there is no competition. I truly admire each of the publishing houses, and the authors. We all make one another better, and stronger. So let’s keep constructing words, and our love of the scrambled alphabet. I wish you all good fortune.

Monday, after reading the email that took a little part of my heart, I became determined to contribute in some way to Sapphic writing. I put a dream together in my mind. I’m a technologically imperiled. Uncertain how I could realize this dream, I talked with my mentor and dear friend, Beth Mitchum. She has always encouraged me. And that was when Scarlet Clover was born.

The name, Scarlet Clover – well, yes, it is after my dog, Clover. The scarlet part – well, I know that red clover comes in varieties. Scarlet (the most intensely red), crimson, and pink. My sister loves the Scarlet Clover.

Fields of Scarlet Clover are not bashful.

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Tender Territory

TENDER TERRITORY

Awaking to life’s kiss is a tender territory.
The blink of night’s shade lifts.
At the horizon’s edge, lips are half-opened, and awaiting.
A unfurling smile is a great effervescent swath of light
directing us toward our day.
This globe loans us fervent magnificence,
Steeped in intensity – lands, oceans, and skies rally.
Without pretension, nature enchants.
A chunk of forever is actualized – and becomes our very own.
We, the eavesdroppers, the voyeurs, the surveyors, and guests –
we debark from the cavernous wombs of destiny.
We, the passengers, those cosmic terrestrial folk,
those newly-minted life forms –
we eagerly spur our spirits.
And we thrust our bodies toward life’s love affair.
We interlace with both the finite and the infinite.
Once held inside a cradle’s miracle,
we now skip across the edges of earth,
and swim from shore to shore across the seas,
and wing a path through the air.
We canvass our salvation.
Migratory, with great compulsion to search, we drift.
From our start,
we have been shackled by those obtruding our freedoms.
For territory, we have fought, and been protective guardians.
We have influence, as good devotees of all.
We have crossed a thin rope – from canyon’s sides.
Within the arms of love,
we have also been cuffed
within the musculature of greed and hate.
We seek always to locate others – and ourselves.
For we are links of a golden fob,
chaining us to the luminous dial of existence.
Yet terra, sea, and endless space
have been sullied, trampled, obliterated, and destroyed.
We’ve committed betrayal, adultery, and murder of our planet.
We poach treasured gifts.
With gluttony, we’ve siphoned one another’s prosperity.
We’ve pilfered one another’s bounty.
Earth’s eternal crest is ablaze with immense splendor.
It asks nothing in return; demands nothing.
We clench tightly to each woven wrinkle of territory.
We drain the waves as seas lift and curl.
We poison precious morsels of air.
This home, our shelter, has long embraced us.
With crevices, curtains, and plush ecstasy as our coverlets,
we are clothed by all that is the globe.
We are nourished by each aquatic caress,
each shawl of vegetation,
and each breath pressed inside us.
Uniquely formed, tangible and intangible gifts are borrowed.
Our spindly planet of semi-hollow magic carries us
through the vastness of the heavens.
Our appetites are satiated with wild, salient views –
our internal treasury.
Nutrients for our imagination are rarely depleted.
We have made of earth our pincushion, punching bag,
and our experiment.
We unveil and forfeit the riches of this planet – for profit.
Weeping, I wonder why we haven’t understood our acts.
Our interchange might have been the reunion of our souls
with a tender territory.
We might have realized the truth earlier.
Earth is our lover.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York

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Please check out my poetry in the latest, best-selling Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series:Wet Violets, Volume 2; and Roses Read, Volume 3. Edited by Beth Mitchum, the books are available through http:ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please consider the Lambda Award Finalist (2013) Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through www.bluefeatherbooks.com. Or order through Bella Book Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.

And watch for the latest fiction release, this month – Careful Flowers!    

Abandoned in a Manger & Going to Hell Might not be such a Long Trip

There is no need for an introduction. No allegory, No hidden meaning. Just two of my narrative poems.

ABANDONED IN A MANGER

The infant was left for dead – forgotten by fate.
Music of her mausoleum birth was a choir inside the vacant cathedral.
Infancy happened within the tabernacle’s stench of decaying timber.
She was beneath the crunch of crumbling plaster.
Her birth announcement was scrolled by times deformed signature.
Within a sacred, musty darkness, she’d arrived.
Garbled in her robe of shadows and solitude, she was.
A dank, breaking day chased her chanting sobs.
She was whelped there in that corner – there, squint your eyes – there.
There, where bloodied, second-hand swaddling decomposes.
Rotted cloth ovals merge with rotted lumber.
Clumps of viscid afterbirth once clung to planks of termite-infested flooring.
By now the straw has disintegrated.
It was told how she’d been left for dead – history’s homily corroded prior blessings.
A stranger wailed an operatic solo of pain when joined by the infant on that morning.
It became a duet of weeping, or was it the lamb gently baa-ing?
No matter, she had heard what she’d heard, and felt what she’d felt.
Stabbed in half, her umbilical tether was carved.
A handheld paring knife has sliced.
Concern was gone when severed – but then, she was left for dead.
She was only alarmed by a chilling breeze as it snuck through a boarded window’s crease.
Bright stars paled toward a maiden day as she struggled in death’s opposite direction.
Living was a flashy lure in front of her surrender.
Life lulled, twilight provided white vespers, as she continued.
Her entombed heart ticked its shallow drumming, while limbs batted shivering flails.
Silhouettes were cast, as if they were a dozen thrashing hummingbirds.
Wizened flesh would not become a delicacy to be ripped by gnawing fangs of roving rats.
Their scurrying feet played hurried hymnal scales over keys of mosaic glass.
And chords lifted from rusted tin.
She was alone in the audience.
Newspaper accounts would verify the birth – no psalmody was added.
Breath would not be pilfered by oily rags that corked her mouth, it was reported.
But had her gag been gathered away by a phantasmal savior?
Had her moans expelled the obstruction from a raw and choking throat?
Was death repelled by a sneeze of survival – the facts were unknown.
This condemned building was not earth’s altar emptying itself of answers.
This house of worship once was filled with a genuflecting parade.
It was not muted with rubble, and leaning walls were purged of truth by time.
A wrecking ball, with chiming globe, demolished the hollow, skeletal structure of her origin.
Investigations reveled she was left for dead.
No room at Metro General; no room – no room at all.
No room at Memorial Hospital; no vacancy – no room.
No culprit and no crime remained.
A commission of sin had faded into ethereal oblivion.
Wiped away by season was the evidence that rain had melted.
Gone is the blessed holy water, gone – all gone.
An offering lingers, embracing yesterday’s secret creed.
What canonicity solves the attempted murder?
What answer locks itself beneath the scriptural grace?
She knew the chant was there – she knew the prayer by heart.
Worn away by years, blaring city squalls seem out of tune – but she hears them yet.
She recalls a time when they were together alone for the first and last time.
That time when she was nearly murdered by the song of sadness.
That time where her eyes turned blue and she was abandoned in a manger.
Among yesterday’s debris, she was left for dead.
She often listens in on the lyrics of her birth.
She sees the video replay, and touches nearly worn-away fear.

GOING TO HELL MIGHT NOT BE SUCH A LONG TRIP

Going to hell might not be such a long trip, the street person contemplated.
With pulse beating, and through a wheezing gulp of air, she waited for the next installment.
Although lassoed to a problematic life, she searched escape.
Or perhaps more correctly – she retreated.
The thin, haggard woman recognized one thing early on – death is a brutal poacher.
We are, she considered, a wall of people buzzing around our own existence.
We don’t select ear caning, or being placed on a rack.
No fire is friendly fire.
Rights are not secured by past glories.
And fate contributes to what we are – and we make us who we are.
Our calling cards are locked away – lost as we turn out our pockets.
The emptier the pocket, the more precarious the days.
Although life is provisional, earth is no guaranteed cornucopia giveaway.
She wondered if the wheels on her chair would rotate fast enough.
Racing the red light always left her breathless.
Just as fear had left her a few years ago.
Her lungs were as dry and empty as they’d been on dusty marches.
Those processions included exploding bombs – buried with alacrity and precision.
Now, as she gasped for air, she acknowledged she was only combating a traffic light.
And an angry driver telling her to go to hell.
Hell was a location she already knew intimately.

COPYRIGHT Poetry of Kieran York

Please check out some of my other poetry in a collection called Wet Violets, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series, Volume 2. edited by Beth Mitchum. Books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through www.bluefeather books.com. Or order through Bella Books distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.