Saturday 23 April 2022

Five Poems by Karen A VandenBos


Where Poets Hang Their Art


No poet cafe or galleries to

hang our art.


Instead, we gather with leaking

pens fanned out in disarray across

ink stained tables where we have

engaged in our own revolution.


It is on the page where we wrestle

with words, dance with lightning,

excavate caves, taste the mist, lift

the veils and hang our hearts.


We arrange words like morning

dew on the petals of flowers

and choose the stars over mud

caked shoes and discarded

lovers and eat the dying moon

for breakfast.



Tasting Kisses


I hope when it happens I am not afraid.


I hope I've lived the life I wanted and

dreamed the dreams that were meant for

me and loved you a thousand times more.


I hope when it happens I am remembering

our first kiss in the darkened hallway

outside your apartment door.


Our mouths hungry for each other, our

tongues seeking new memories, so unlike

the kiss of death that will one day come

unbidden, cold, waxen, unyielding.


I wonder whose heart will break first.


I kissed someone who had swallowed my

future, someone who tasted like burnt

butter and wept on Halloween.


We were meant to be star crossed lovers,

your archer chasing my lions tale.


Our kisses a conversation of sweet

surrender, the moon spilling like milk

across our twisted dancing legs and tongues.


As our dreams tangled like seaweed just

below the surface, Sunday bled into Tuesday

and I knew I had finally kissed someone

who had tasted my song.


(after "I Hope When It Happens” by Diane Seuss)


Chasing Thirst


I thirst after slumber has left me with

tongue stuck to roof of my mouth

and breath that begs forgiveness.

A thirst that asks of me to seek water.


I thirst for stories where I sleep with

herons at the top of trees and swim

to the moon with turtles.


I thirst for lullabies to fill my pockets

and courage to wish upon shooting stars.


I thirst for words that bleed with truth

and for finding altars to rest my thoughts.


I thirst for dewdrops when deserts become

too dry and I weep sucking marrow from

the dust of brittle bones.


I thirst for air that tastes like honey and

for cemeteries to give up their secrets.


I thirst for the wisdom of Druids and

to learn how to bend like the trees.


I thirst for long quiet highways and

writing that takes me home.


I thirst for poems found in broken locks

and winds that smell of magic.


I long to know a thirst so dangerous that

it drops me to my knees and prayer is

the only answer.


Moments With Blackbird


You gave me a cloak of black feathers

and wings to fly.


You taught me about sacred law and magic

and gave me entrance into the great mystery.


You brought me songs to sing in the dead of night

and taught me how to become a master of illusion

with the ability to shape shift and see with

crossed eyes.


You appeared as an omen of change

merging darkness with light and taught me

that all things are born of women.


You used your voice to “caw” me home.


And then came November and you gave to


me nevermore.


Night Travels



spooned together, wrapped

in each others wings

we float through dreams

traveling the night sky.


With birds eye views

we are carried on

the winds of time.


Below us the chimneys

release plumes of smoke

like magic genies.

And the houses pulse

with the life of those

creating stories within.


Here and there a light

shines thru a window

beckoning us to listen

as a mother soothes

her children with a

sleepy lullaby.


The air tastes like

the promise of rain

billowing my skirt

like a parachute as

we soar above the

tree tops that reach

for our souls.


Drifting homeward

over our own little town

we collect stars in

our pockets and kiss

the moon goodnight.


Slumbering, we are

spooned together,

traveling the night sky.


Once upon a time, Karen A VandenBos was born on a warm July morn in Kalamazoo, MI. Her youth was nourished by books and writing. When adulthood opened the door, she was detoured to working in health care for 30+ years and obtained her PhD in Holistic Health. She tumbled into the realm of retirement landing on her feet and was reunited with her creative spark. She can now be found contributing to two online writing groups where she unleashes her imagination and trusts her pen to take her where she needs to go. Her writing has been published online in The Ekphrastic Review and Lothlorien Poetry Journal and some of her photographs have been published in Blue Heron Review.



  1. Exquisite poetry. Congratulations!

  2. Excellent My Friend! I never imagined that my friend who lived two houses away would grow up to be a poet and photographer. I am so proud of you! Love, Cynthia

  3. Beautiful! I was swept up in the image of each poem.

  4. Beautiful, touching, inspiring, moving. I love all of these and will enjoy revisiting them over and over. Thank you for this beautiful collection of heartfelt musings that aim straight for the heart. ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’œ


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