Wednesday, March 1, 2023

MARCH 2023 V-8 N-12













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NilavroNill Shoovro

Talking With Poet


MARCH 2023

NILAVRONILL: Why do literature and poetry in particular interest you so much? Please give us some idea about your own perception of literature or poetry in general.

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: I became fascinated with poetry when I was around ten years old.  I got strong feelings from what I read. By age eleven I was writing poetry. No doubt it was bad but one has to start somewhere. I had severe anxiety issues and had trouble expressing myself out loud, luckily, I had found a quiet way to express myself.  Classmates passed my poems around and seemed to like them. I kept writing and improving. My first publication was in our college magazine and I began submitting to other magazines after that.  I learned not to let rejections stop me and kept submitting.  I started being published on a fairly regular basis because I kept writing and submitting. Of course, I read a lot of poetry. I wasn’t interested in forcing myself into antique forms but I was always aware of rhythm and sound, the music of poetry.

NILAVRONILL: How do you relate your own self existence with your literary life in one hand, and the time around you, in the other.

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: Now I have the freedom to live a creative life. Having lived a long while I feel I have more perspective on all the observations that filter through me. When I was working full time as a hospice nurse, producing weekly interview shows, making sculptures and being politically active, I still wrote. My writing was probably more immediate, probably more intense.

NILAVRONILL: Do you believe creative souls flourish more in turmoil than in peace?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: No, not particularly. Turmoil may cause writing to be more intense and cathartic but a writer writes regardless. 

NILAVRONILL: Do you think in this age of information and technology the dimensions of literature have been largely extended beyond our preconceived ideas about literature in general?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: Yes, with the internet we are suddenly available around the world.  I’ve heard there are programs that write poetry but to me, that takes away the reason for writing it. The conjuring and placing of words from one’s own being seems to me to be the reason for writing. You learn about yourself and clarify your views of the world. I don’t think a program can do that.

NILAVRONILL: Now, in this changing scenario we would like to know from your own life experiences as a poet, writer and a creative soul: How do you respond to this present time?


BELINDA SUBRAMAN: I create. In some ways it’s daring to face yourself this way.  To face blank paper and see what flows is also exciting. I paint about as much as I write these days.  It keeps me sane and hopeful about life.  All of my experiences and observations synthesize in surprising ways. I think I grow and heal through the creative process.


NILAVRONILL: Do you believe that all writers are by and large the product of their nationality? And is this an incentive for or an obstacle against becoming a truly international writer?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: As a product of our environment we can’t help but write from what we know.  This is why it is so important to learn of other cultures, to travel, to read and understand other customs.  That doesn’t mean that you will write as if you were a native of another country but it will broaden your perspective and empathy toward other cultures. “Nationality" and politics are often used to divide us. In some ways we are different but, in many ways, we are the same.

NILAVRONILL: Now, if we try to understand the tradition and modernism, do you think literature can play a pivotal role in it?  If so, how? Again, how can an individual writer relate himself or herself to the tradition and to modernism?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: Literature can be a bridge across generations. We will always have traditions which honor those who came before us but it is important to move forward. Everything changes and and it’s best to adapt to the times.

NILAVRONILL: Do you think literary criticism has much to do with the development of a poet and the true understanding of his or her poetry?


BELINDA SUBRAMAN: Guidance is good especially if you start out young. No one can tell you what you meant to say. If a poem doesn’t speak to a lot of people or it’s been rejected many times, it must need work.  Often part of the poem is still in our heads and we didn’t get it down on paper like we thought we did. I think re-reading and editing your own writing after it has sit for a while is the best teacher.

NILAVRONILL: Do you think society as a whole is the key factor in shaping you up as a poet, or your poetry altogether?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: Largely, I suppose.  It helps if you jar yourself out of routine, have new experiences, challenge yourself, travel, study and absorb philosophy. It will give your writing depth and be more meaningful to more people, I think.  That’s what I hope I’ve done.

NILAVRONILL: Do you think people in general actually bother about literature?  Do you think this consumerist world is turning the average man away from serious literature?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: People seem to assume that more people were interested in literature in the “good old days.”  It probably hasn’t changed that much. Granted, before radio, TV and the internet perhaps more people read books but that doesn’t mean they read great literature. (In those days fewer people could read). In general, writers are probably more interested in reading. I suspect it’s mostly poets who read poetry.

NILAVRONILL: We would like to know the factors and the peoples who have influenced you immensely in the growing phase of your literary life.

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: I never had a mentor. I suppose whatever I was reading or whatever was happening in the world or to me filtered through. My biggest encouragement was being published by people who did not know me but liked my work.


NILAVRONILL: How would you evaluate your contemporaries and what are your aspirations for or expectation from the younger generation?


BELINDA SUBRAMAN: The path to publication is easier now. I started publishing a magazine and chapbooks for others in the 80s. We had to put our money down for a press run and as a matter of honor we always sent at least one contributor copy.  Considering it an investment, we may have been more selective in what we published then, but maybe not.  Things have changed so much. There was more burden on the publishers then. Now a lot of magazines charge for reading your work and you usually have to buy your own copy of what you appear in if you want to see it.  I’m still adjusting.

NILAVRONILL: Humanity has suffered immensely in the past, and is still suffering around the world. We all know it well. But are you hopeful about our future?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: It depends on what day you ask.  Suffering and wars are in every generation and people always think things were better “way back when.” True, with massive over-population and the threat of nuclear war, annihilation is always looming in the background. With the proliferation of guns and mass shootings in all kinds of public places, at least in the States, personal annihilation also looms in the background.  So, it’s up to each of us to do the best we can each day, to be kind and responsible for our own actions. As much as possible I try to “Be here Now” and not worry about the past or future. And, keep writing.

NILAVRONILL: What role can literature in general play to bring a better day for every human being?

BELINDA SUBRAMAN: Literature is like taking a trip to another land or another world. It can relieve stress. It gets us out of a rut. It expands our imaginations.  It’s luxury without expense (well, except the price of the book!).

BELINDA SUBRAMAN had a ten-year run editing and publishing Gypsy Literary Magazine 1984-1994. She edited books by Vergin' Press, among them: Henry Miller and My Big Sur Days by Judson Crews. She also published Sanctuary Tape Series (1983-89) which was a mastered compilation of audio poetry and original music from around the world. Earlier is this century she had a podcast interview show that was broadcast on three internet stations. A few of the shows are preserved here: HTTPs:// In 2020 Belinda began an online show called GAS: Poetry, Art & Music which features interviews, readings, performances and art show in a video format available free at  An online journal by the same name is here: Belinda is also a mixed media artist. Her art has been featured in Beyond Words, Epoch, Flora Fiction, Unlikely Stories, Eclectica, North of Oxford, Raw Art Review, El Paso News, Litterateur RW, Setu, Texlandia, The Bayou Review, Red Fez, Chrysalis, Maintenant 16 and many others.  Recently she won 2nd Place in the Sun Bowl Exhibit, the longest running art show in the Southwest (since 1949). She sells prints of her work in her Mystical House Etsy shop.




Joy To The World


Joy rises in a new soft bed.

Crickets and flutes

sing of the night.


Thought is plasma

through kinship

common grounds

freedom to Love.


There is something Holy

about the Land.

You cannot drown

in the Dead Sea

cradled in the salty

womb water

of Mother Cosmic Orb

moving through Eternity.


Future History


throwing out my history page by page

its power dimmed by decades

cleaning out my storage

giving, letting go, parting by a third


awakened to my former hyper life

aware of my hyper now

activities of daily living spiced

with painting

promoting poets, juggling ten sites

writing while the paint dries

playing a drum now and then

interviewing writers or

recording events around me

chronicling, seeding

sharing what I might have forgotten by now

in my diminishing


I only save what quickens my heart or hugs me

as I slowly loosen grip on this plane

readying for leaving


my removable, renewable self

calmed my fear of ending

even before the diagnosis


I ingest the chapters

the history of my life so far

sieving through me

heading to the big blend

the symbolic, hyperbolic

universal aum


Theocratic Authoritarianism


The ghosts of Southern Baptists

whisper judgements in my ear.

A quick pithy realization comes.

Criminals waving “holy books”

rule the world.

We were raised

to accept the plan,

not see what we’re losing

or what we never had,

to blame the wrong people

for the wrong things.


They give us movie myths

where “right” always wins,

where the man is a prince,

the women is protected

and love is everlasting.


But women are struggling

to claim their bodies

as their own

with a threat of prison

if they dare.

They are ordered to bear

future soldiers

but wrap it in religion

and tell us it’s what God says.


Writer’s Block


Like a frozen hell of winter nights

no home, no blankets, no words.


Gravestones stare from the

amorphous chaos of loss.


A feathered serpent hibernates

refusing to move.


It thinks and dreams

remembering snow


and the welcoming of fire

illuminating shadows.


A loving memory cracks the ice

and warmth blooms from the inside.


Your smile reflects in a window.

Gratitude will save you.


Another Goodbye


I can always feel

when someone burns in


tattoos the brain in color

shadows play in cracks


between two worlds

a flock of birds take flight


all the phases and faces

that brought us here right now


one by one we fly

life is heavy with the leavings


BELINDA SUBRAMAN had a ten-year run editing and publishing Gypsy Literary Magazine 1984-1994. She edited books by Vergin' Press, among them: Henry Miller and My Big Sur Days by Judson Crews. She also published Sanctuary Tape Series (1983-89) which was a mastered compilation of audio poetry and original music from around the world. Earlier is this century she had a podcast interview show that was broadcast on three internet stations. A few of the shows are preserved here: HTTPs:// In 2020 Belinda began an online show called GAS: Poetry, Art & Music which features interviews, readings, performances and art show in a video format available free at  An online journal by the same name is here: Belinda is also a mixed media artist. Her art has been featured in Beyond Words, Epoch, Flora Fiction, Unlikely Stories, Eclectica, North of Oxford, Raw Art Review, El Paso News, Litterateur RW, Setu, Texlandia, The Bayou Review, Red Fez, Chrysalis, Maintenant 16 and many others.  Recently she won 2nd Place in the Sun Bowl Exhibit, the longest running art show in the Southwest (since 1949). She sells prints of her work in her Mystical House Etsy shop.





she rides through the autumn

some slender Godiva


she hides in her gossamer veils

the white horse beneath her


rides into the ether

behind her the universe sails


and she doesn’t know who she is

and she doesn’t know what she does


she’s just some lost Godiva

gone naked into the mist


she’s just some lost Godiva

vanishing into the mist


Pinewoods Lament

In a little log cabin in the Rockies

Where squirrels and whiskey jacks play

I long for my home down the valley

And for you though you've gone away.


I remember when you and I were young dear

And our love shone as bright as the sun

We'd lay on the grass near your roses

And I'd feel our hearts beat as one.


Your pink roses still grow wild on the hillside

And the wild flowers bloom every year

And I hear your voice in the pinewoods

Soft whisper that tells me you're near.


Now you lay there peaceful beneath the roses

Where the wild flowers bloom every year

And I know for me you are waiting

As softly I shed another tear.


Through the pinewoods the breeze softly whispers

Calling me to lay down by your side

And I'll be with you by the springtime

Beneath your roses growing wild.


"You took the words right out of my mouth

it must have been while you were kissing me"

                                               (Jim Steinman)


Holding My Breath


Why are you holding my breath

making me wait 'til I can live again

waiting for me is like death

you know I can never be just your friend


What do you want me to do

how can I wait 'til you tell me yes

not knowing if maybe is no

how can you leave me in such distress


Why are you making me wait

knowing full well how much I love you

do you think your love is just bait

you know I am already hooked on you.


Can't you see what you do

don't you know how I feel

oh how you make me reel

from the wanting of you


while you're just holding my breath


Out Of The Inkwell


and then it came to me

I have never known you


I see you like a dream

image painted in light

flashes behind a glass

darkly but face to face


the light dims and you fade

as a film fades to black

mirror world without end

reveals my face slowly


I become that shadow

seen through this dark glass

inkwell that births a clown

face to face with myself


Voices In The Wind


children wait in the walls

walk through empty hallways

are heard in sundown winds

live forever in the woods


come to me each child cries

we wait here for our release

our school is out forever

come to us and set us free


each voice on the wind cries out

bring me home to my people

bring me back and set me free

do not let me stay here longer


a thousand cries ride the wind

a thousand more are waiting

cries of spirits hid too long

waiting in the walls and woods


no priest had the right to erase

no official the power to redact

the spirit of a living child

in a wall or in a field forever


thousands wait in the walls

walk the vacant hallways

cry on the wind for justice

insist to be heard at last


BOB MACKENZIE grew up near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in rural Alberta with artist parents.  His father was a professional photographer and musician and his mother a photo technician, colourist, and painter.  By the age of five, he had his own camera and ever since has been shooting photographs and writing poems and stories.  Raised in this environment, young Bobby developed a natural affinity for photography and for the intricacies of language.  He now lives and writes in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Bob’s writing has appeared in more than 400 journals across North America and as far away as Australia, Greece, India, and Italy. He has published nineteen volumes of poetry and prose-fiction and his work has appeared in numerous anthologies.  He's received numerous local and international awards for his writing as well as an Ontario Arts Council grant for literature, a Canada Council Grant for performance, and a Fellowship to attend the Summer Literary Seminars in Tbilisi, Georgia. For eighteen years Bob’s poetry was spoken and sung live with original music by the ensemble Poem de Terre, and the group released six albums.



The Moaning Of A Leaf


 The moaning of the leaves under your shoes

 makes me cry

 The window did not understand the leaf

 The window did not follow the path of the bird

 The moaning of the leaf on the way to the ground made me cry

 As the moon falls from the tree branches

 made me cry

 White Rain is standing on the threshold of the door

  Black Rain has hidden all my tears in its pocket


Pause Of Gaze


The sky turns into a mirror by a romantic pause of your gaze

     Your pictures keep passing through the elegance of the doors

     An eyelid that does not close when you come

     And night comes from vain repetition to the new creations of the moon

     There is no gravity on earth

     Except repeating our footsteps

     which is parallel

which is the interference of two inverted pictures

With reflecting the unity of two thoughts

That confirms the movement of the roots of life


Marry On The Moon


  The moon breathes in the mouth of me and you

  I am standing at the beginning of a kiss

  And the moon repeats me and you again in a short pause

  Your breath reads like silk on my shoulders

  I am standing at the beginning of a caress

  And the dream suddenly turned in your heart like a bridesmaid

  The moon breathed again

  And the marriage of the myths took place on the moon


ELHAM HAMEDI (Shiraz, Iran, March8, 1967) is an international multimedia artist, poet and curator, a permanent member of the Iranian Visual Arts Scientific Association, with a master's degree in art research from Yazd University, and a bachelor's degree in radiology from Shiraz University, Winner of the  International Literary Award 2022 named "Women For Culture and For Peace" award (MESTRE/VENEZIA), “International Prize for Peace and the Defense of Human Rights “( Toscolano Maderno), one of the poetesses selected for participation in First International Iside Prize (( IX Edition )Literary Arts 2021( Procida-Italy). She is present with her poetic and artistic works in numerous international anthologies and prestigious international magazines and websites, and also Personal and International Group Art Exhibitions.



Some Poems


Nothing, but pearls on the neck

of a beautiful oriental dancer...

Or sabers in the hands of the samurai;

fingers on the trigger

of the soldiers in the trench;

the noose on the convict's neck...

Sparkles on the snow,

and the children's joy

at the dreamless night,

while snowflakes caress the glade

and the slope down the hill...

Mesmerizing elixir

in a drunkard's bottle;

the primordial sorrow

of the unfortunate,

who asks for bread,

under the sky so blue...

Pulsating happiness in the veins

full of dopamine, or

the misunderstood

old man’s last groan...

Theory of relativity

in the program-minded head,

or the sun in the eyes

of time traveler,

who knows,


he sees,



he’ s




there are some poems,

like pearls on the neck of





eastern dancer...

©® Zlatan Demirović


The Stone


I am a stone, and behold, I exist,

out there, and in the dark.

And all those who see me

in the palm of their hands

glistening from the quartz

and those, who think of me

on the farewell when I am launched

from a child’s slingshot into the park...

I'm stone, and I’m here,

on the hardened Balkan soil

where I have witnessed a million years go by

And in the the middle of the ancient world

that is in the dust that drifts

into a glorious sunset sky.

You can call me various name

that you cannot ever tame

Mostar-bridge, guilty tower,

or, simply, stećak-tomb

that bares the brunt of the shame.

All those who believe only in force,

will find me hiding in the white house,

the symbol that lies of being

the world’s greatest power.


which defiantly defies the landscape,

and all the magic white towns, I am.

I'm a message keeper from a million years

of uprise, and disappearance...

Time intend to talk, but how,

as it does not exist

when the words are woven

into a liar’s evil twist.

Because I am that,

saving all the knowledge

for those chosen, yet to be born.

I am a handful of pain

with ashes of suffering sprinkled on me...

I'm a cornerstone and a tombstone

of a culture doomed to wither and die...

I'm even a border stone,

and, if I knew the boundaries,

I would be a man

that walks crippled by his war

wounds that he refuses to atone.

By crystal edge I’m softly splitting

the sun's rays, sending them to the obelisk,

which shows the day time,

on the elegant plane,

where in every particle,

by words, beliefs,

hopes and tears,

from the primary beginning

all have been written

in a language long forgotten

I am a stone, behold, I exist...

©® Zlatan Demorović


While Hearts Are Beating


 While they shoot at each other,

 their hearts still beat,

 regardless of thoughts without tears,

 all kinds of ideas, only fears,

 with the only goal, to hit!


But hearts do not think,

do not guess, rather,

they know very well

and they have power,

while they hold the key to life,

they also connect

with other hearts,

wherever they are

and whichever side they are on...


They beat,

and we are not interested in that magic,


it's how we were taught,

that it's just an organ,

but not the lighthouse

and the only one

navigator through life,

which we must follow,

and without it, we are lost

in the middle of the unknown sea...


In the duality of separation,

through the prism of subjectivity,

for us are visible and separated,

only: "They", "We",

and in the middle of everything,

our lost and vulnerable "I"!


While hearts are beating,

they are still shooting and hitting...


all until


hearts are beating...

©® Zlatan Demirović-USA




ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: Bilingual book writer, novelist, critic, internationally acknowledged poet, and trilingual translator (English, Czech, Bosnian-Croatian-Serbin languages).* The founder of PRODIGY LIFE ACADEMY and author of the PRODIGY LIFE PROGRAM, which serves as a platform for spiritual and personal development.* Founder and Editor in Chief of PRODIGY PUBLISHED USA (publishing, promoting books, self-developing programs, anthologies of world multilingual poetry etc.) * DOCTOR OF HUMANITY of PRIXTON CHURC & UNIVERSITY-Milwaukee, USA (2021) * HIGHER HONORARY DEGEE of ACADEMY OF ART AND CALIGAPHY-EGYPT (2021). * MEMBER of the ADMINISTRATION COUNCIL THE MOMENT INTERNATIONALNEWS-USA * Admin advisor for POETRY AND LITERATURE WORLD VISION, EACRITORES SIN FRONTIERAS. * Winner of the "Arab World Award for Creativity in the World Poetry Field for 2021" organized by the "Arab Media World Foundation London-United Kingdom". * Multiply awarded as a poet, philanthropist, and humanist. * His poetry, novels, essays, and critics have been published and presented in various literature magazines, radio, TV, media streams and participated in many anthologies around the world. * Author and Editor-in-chief of anthology “COMPASSION-Save the world” (130 renowned authors from all around the world in only one poem titled COMPASSION). * Author and Editor-in-chief of anthology “Bangladesh English Poets” (27 renowned authors from Bangladesh), Pakistani English Poets (25 renowned authors from Pakistan) and more than 200 books other authors . * Founder and editor of Prodigy Magazine 2022 Books published: PRODIGY LIFE; 4 STEPS TEACHING FOR SELF-HEALING; GENIUS MINDSET TRAINING; PAIDA LAJIN SAMOIZLJECENJE; POETRY COLLECTIONS 1,2,3 (All published in USA, by BALBOA PRESS, AMAZON, PRODIGY PUBLISHED). Translated into: Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Swedish, Greek, Turkish, Chinese, Russian, Japanese, Hindu, Bengal, BCS (Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian), Albanian, Dutch, Hausa Nigerian, Arabic, Aleut (Alaska), Pakistan, Bahasa-Indonesia, Kurdish, Persian, Azerbaijan, Tajik, Bulgarian, Romanian, Hebrew, Punjabi, Slovenian, Czech, Slovak, Tamil, Uzbek, Kyrgyz, Nepali, Assam, and more, on the way.