December 26, 2005-January 1, 2006: Johnmichael Simon and Anitha Menon

week of December 26, 2005-January 1, 2006

Johnmichael Simon and Anitha Menon

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Johnmichael Simon

Bio (auto)

Born in England, Simon grew up in South Africa from the age of ten He has resided mostly in Israel since age twenty He lives in Mevaseret Zion, a suburb in the hilly area surrounding Jerusalem Simon was the winner of the Reuben Rose 15th Annual Poetry Competition, sponsored by the Voices Israel Group of Poets in English for his poem “To Hold the Notes” and his poems have won commended status in both the Tom Reid and Margaret Reid competitions His work has been published in various internet publications including: Meeting of the Minds Journal, The Poetry Victims, The Coffee Press Journal, The Other Voices International Project, Literari Magazine, Voices Israel poetry anthology, Boheme Magazine, Manifold Magazine, and Harvest International He is a member of the Voices Israel Poetry Society.

The following work is Copyright © 2005, and owned by Johnmichael Simon and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Mundane Working Class Childhood

Pennies for ices spied underneath a lollipop shop fridge
in Northampton Yummy yum drops
Walking home from school and spending the bus fare
on donuts Licking sugar off my blazer sleeve
Desperate Dan, Popeye and Olive Oyl, Shazam, Over the Rainbow
Pennies from Heaven  Literature and Music revealed
Twelve sided three penny bits, brassy heavy, comforting
slipping with a clunk into a piggy bank Florins were even more satisfying
Bashing in my locked money box with a hammer and spending
the lot on twenty police whistles Genuine as Bobbies’ helmets
My uncle from Argentine who added twenty seven pounds to
the two bob I had saved up to buy a record player
Picking apricots from a tree in a vacant lot in Johannesburg
and selling them for a shilling a bag  Door to door salesman
George Orwell, Aldous Huxley, Isaac Asimov, Velikovsy’s Worlds in Collision
and Madame Blavatsky’s Isis Unveiled Time passes, pages turned
Feeling Pamela Duckworth through her bra in my Father’s Oldsmobile
parked on Northcliff hill She smelled like peanut butter sandwiches
Beer, wine, champagne drunk from a tumbler, gin and tonic, brandy and Coke
whiskey and water, whiskey on the rocks Being carried home, the humiliation
Gate crashing a wedding reception and pretending we were guests, of the groom, of the bride Filching a whole cooked turkey  Milk of Magnesia
Collecting my matriculation certificate from our perverted headmaster I, dressed in a flashy sports jacket with a packet of fags peeking out of my breast pocket Retaliation
Receiving my first wage envelope. 
Goodbye childhood, hello life, courtship, marriage, mortgages, kids and other indiscretions Licorice allsorts

Bat Dreams

We fly in dreams
and urge to roam
waken on tepid nights
when Christmas beetles
crawl, Cicadas sing
and vagrant bats
vanish and re-appear
between the shadows
of the mulberry leaves
and the diminishing eaves
of crouching rooftops

We soar into the
crescent moon
pale as a sleeping brook
draw lines of spangles
over empty highways
spread wings over continents
span silver wishes, drink time
like a white river
rushing to dawns end

How thin the membrane
that cuts thoughts
into what men think exists
and what bats sense
on their screens
a shimmering world of sound
and the ache to roam
oh the ache to roam
through the silken web
that ties the sky to the ground

And plunge helter-skelter
into a well of silence
like a black hole of knowing
roaming the byways
of a bat’s imagination
the most exquisite
freedom there is

Watching Trains

A Swiss watch
opens itself curiously
going round
circles against circles
teeth against each other
an almost silent
encyclopedia of dance
in little bites,
little bites
rings inside rings

like a toyshop,
a train passing a siding
again and again
and a small body
glued to carpet
elbows propping chin
counting the seconds
in hundreds
hundreds and thousands
until closing time
pulls him away

Anitha Menon


I am Anitha Menon, living in Kerala, India I am a college teacher I have published poems on the net-coffeepress journal, seeker magazine, I love painting and use the medium of acrylics, watercolor,glass I love poets like Neruda, Seamus Heany, Octavio Paz.

The following work is Copyright © 2005, and owned by Anitha Menon and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

One morning

You want the plumber
For the motor Theres only air, no water
In the tank The taps in the house
Hiss empty nothings Kitchen and bathrooms
Have the look of
Deserted factories Frowning impatience
From mother
Who has the
Bus to catch
And, I tangly
Unwashed hair
Before I read
Freud’s “Interpretation Of Dreams”
Plumber’s wife
Informs that
He’s gone for confession But, soon, mercifully,
He pedals down
Sets to work fervently Gets water flowing Blessed be God!!
The motor
Purrs contentedly Alls well
With my world

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