Michael Lee Johnson


Painter and Poet (V2)


By Michael Lee Johnson


with steel balls

and a wire brush

wishing he was

wearing motorcycle leathers,

going wild and crazy,

stares cross-eyed at the

Sistine Chapel ceiling-

nose touching moist paint,

body stretch out on a plank,

bones held by ropes from falling-

delirious, painting that face of Jesus

and the Prophets

with a camel hair brush;

in such a position, transition

a genie emerges as a poet-

words not paint

start writing his sonnets,

a second career is born-

nails and thorns

digging at his words,

flashing red paint:

it’s finished.


Rose Petals in a Dark Room (V3)

By Michael Lee Johnson

I walk through this poem one step at a time.

I walk in a mastery of this night and light

my money changers walk behind me

they’re fools like clowns in a shadow of sin,

they’re busy as bees as drunken lovers,

Sodom and Gomorrah before this salt pillar falls.

In a shadow of red rose pedals

drunken lovers walk changing Greek and Roman

currency to Jewish money or Tyrian shekels-

they’re fools, all fools, at what they do.

Everyone’s life is a conflict.

They’re my lovers and my sinners

I can’t sleep at night without them

by my bed grass near that sea of Galilee.

Fish in my cloth nets beget my friends, my converts.

I pray in this garden alone sweat

while my disciples whitewash their dreams.

The rose has a tender thorn compared to my arrest,

and soon crucifixion.

It’s here this morning and this night come together,

where this sea and this land depart,

where these villages stone and mortar crumble.

I’m but a poet of this ministry,

rose petals in a dark room fall.

Everyone’s life is a conflict.

But mine is mastery of light and neon night

and I walk behind these footsteps of no one.


Rain (V2)

By Michael Lee Johnson


In the rain,

this thunder

on his way home

he rebelled.

He a disco dancer,

single Friday night award winner

on the floor.  High school dropout.

He drove off the road edge.

He was drunk, Jack Daniel’s

was his driving instructor.

Jack Daniel bottle left at grave.

It never rains in a dry casket.

Shelter under this roof,

no worries about cops-



Waltz, Footprints in Snow (V2)

By Michael Lee Johnson

December 24th, I find footprints in this snow, yours frozen, our broken dreams.

Will your lawyer Grinch my wallet, fleece me while I pray to Jesus Christ tonight?

Even the devil stoked in flames has standards, jukebox baby.

Even Jesus suffers with the poor, feels lonely on winter moon distant planets.

Don’t torture me, let me drive you home in our old Mack dump truck.

Hear these sounds, new records on this old radio.

Care to dance a new waltz

renew, no mirages just free no chains−

or drift back to those old vintage footprints−

fog covering over old snow?


Michael Lee Johnson lived 10 years in Canada during the Vietnam era and is a dual citizen of the United States and Canada.  Today he is a poet, freelance writer, amateur photographer, and small business owner in Itasca, Illinois.  Mr. Johnson published in more than 1072 new publications, his poems have appeared in 38 countries, he edits, publishes 10 poetry sites.  Michael Lee Johnson, has been nominated for 2 Pushcart Prize awards poetry 2015/1 Best of the Net 2016/2 Best of the Net 2017, 1 Best of the Net 2018.  189 poetry videos are now on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/user/poetrymanusa/videosEditor-in-chief poetry anthology, Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1530456762; editor-in-chief poetry anthology, Dandelion in a Vase of Roses available here   https://www.amazon.com/dp/1545352089.  Editor-in-chief Warriors with Wings:  the Best in Contemporary Poetry, http://www.amazon.com/dp/1722130717.

Do not forget to consider me for Best of the Net or Pushcart nomination!



If ever at all, if only once

If you were

To have such a chance

Just keep driving

Drive forward

With no need to take a shoulder check

Despite so many beside you

Despite so much ahead & behind –

Along this new highway, your car

(Like your body or thought)

Will adapt its shape like a stream

Of water running its own course

From past to future, amidst

Programmed sapiens, through

The flow of data

Until at the meeting point

Between yin & yang

Between 0 & 1

Between history & imagination

Yuan Changming  published monographs on translation before leaving his native country. Currently, Yuan lives in Vancouver, where he edits Poetry Pacific with Allen Qing Yuan. Credits include ten Pushcart nominations, Best of the Best Canadian Poetry (2008-17) and BestNewPoemsOnline, among others.    

Brother Against Brother

Bio: This is a new poet to me.  Moonlight Prisoner is also on Deviant Art.

John Anthony Figelton

The Reader


He would sit on his daughter’s bed,

Reading tales before she’d sleep,

About the frog that turned into a prince,

Or the fairy folk of Hazel Weep.

She would listen so attentively,

Even to those old ones she had heard before,

Then, as her little eyes slowly closed,

He’d slip quietly out door.


Later he read in that little church,

When her mother passed away,

He choose the passages himself,

Reading them in his own exclusive way.

The Book of Psalms –with words of hope,

His sad voice strong, so all could hear.

‘Lord bring her to your holy mountain,

Send her light and your faithful care.’


Now she sits by her father’s bed,

Reading from his favourite books,

The poems of Yeats and Robert Frost,

 “The Soldier,” by Rupert Brooks.

Over the years, the table’s turned –

As so often is the case

The listener becomes the reader,

Waiting for the other one to sleep.


©John Anthony Fingleton  (Löst Viking)

John A

John Anthony Fingleton: He was born in Cork City, in the Republic of Ireland.  Poems published in journals and anthologies in Ireland, UK, USA, India and France as well as three plays produced. Poet of the Year (2016) Destiny Poets International Community. Poems read on Irish and American radio as well in Spanish on South American broadcasts. Contributed to four books of poetry for children.  Has poems published in numerous national and international journals, reviews, and anthologies. Poet of the Month (March 2019) Our Poetry Archive.  First solo collection ´Poems from the Shadowlands´ was published in November 2017, which is available on Amazon. Web https://lostvikingpoetryjohnanthonyfingleton.wordpress.com/


Last day of National Poetry month

I hope you wrote a poem, shared a poem, read a poem, submitted a poem or just became more aware of poetry.

Tell me what you did 😊

Here’s what I did:

1. Wrote some poems and haikus

2. Was on a poetry podcast with Dr. Micheal Anthony Ingram.

3. Worked on publishing my book of haikus and poems.

Scratching The Surface probably comes out sometime in May.

4. Showed off some new poets and posted poetry prompts.


Erica Jong Day

You can get The World Began With Yes here


Erica is on tour, promoting her new poetry book. Here is a poem that Erica sent me a message about while I was writing it.

Calendar poem

No revising
this one.
No revisiting
that one.

Try to
new words
old problems.
Try to
save the
good ones!

will be
poetry person
book people.

Check out her page at http://www.ericajong.com today. I hope you find something you like 🙂





Ken Allan Dronsfield

Let me publish this again. I mistakenly put Ken Allan Dronsfield’s poem on my own page and not on Poetry Pasta. Which is great for me because I love Ken’s poems.  Not great for him because no one looks at my page.



Sonnet 99, The Ebb and Flow


From atop a great stoic redwood tree

dragonflies fantasize of summertime;

of early warmer mornings, balmy winds

dodging gray flycatchers and green bullfrogs.

The grass is greener right beside the pond

a wolf pack howls, worshiping the full moon

the barn owls love a midnight stellar show

baby goslings enjoy the fresh sunrise.

the deep rivers and great bays ebb and flow

deer and elk enjoy the salty-sweet grass

wildflowers sprinkled upon rolling hills.

from within that great forest wakening

a cicada sings his mating sonnet

within the ebb and flow of life’s circle.


Ken Allan Dronsfield is a disabled veteran, prize winning poet and fabulist from New Hampshire, now residing on the plains of Oklahoma. His work can be found in The Burningword Journal, WestWard Quarterly, The Blue Mountain Review, Literary Orphans, Harbinger Asylum, EMBOSS Magazine and more. A proud member of the Poetry Society of New Hampshire, he currently has three poetry collections; “The Cellaring”, 80 poems of light horror, paranormal, weird and wonderful work. His second book, “A Taint of Pity”, contains 52 Life Poems Written with a Cracked Inflection. Ken’s third poetry collection, “Zephyr’s Whisper”, 64 Poems and Parables of a Seasonal Pretense, and includes his poem, “With Charcoal Black, Version III”, selected as the First Prize Winner in Realistic Poetry Internationals 2018 Nature Poem Contest.  He’s been nominated three times for the Pushcart Prize and six times for the Best of the Net, 2016-2018. Ken loves writing, hiking, thunderstorms, and spending time with his cats Willa and Yumpy.