La Madrugada: calm before sunrise,
unblinking eye at the rim
of day awakening with warblers,
a breeze of first color creeps
over stucco, somnambulant gray
turns powder blue.
Wind chimes stretch, yawn,
tree tops nod yes, yes,
a yipping yorkie wakes two squirrels,
their tails spiral maple bark, argue
and plunge – lawn dolphins –
from darkness into dawn.
A baby’s howl sunbursts shadows.
Buenos dias, noche. Night
forgets we ever dreamed or slept.
~ Alan Robert Proctor
Mr. Proctor’s poetry, fiction, and/or creative non-fiction have appeared in New Letters, Loon, Chautauqua, Kansas City Voices, I-70 Review, Crosstimbers, Off Channel, and Hanging Loose among other journals. Alan was twice a Reader’s Digest national poetry finalist, and a winner in the Whispering Prairie Press 2012 Rex Rogers Formal Poetry Contest. His novel, Adirondack Summer was released in 2013 and his hybrid-memoir, The Sweden File: Memoir of an Expatriate is soon to be published by Westphalia Press.
Guest Editor James Benger is husband and writer. His work has been featured in Coal City Review, Comma,Splice, Hoarding Words, Kansas City Voices, Kiosk, Periphery, Runaway Pony, Thorny Locust and To the Stars Through Difficulties. His ebooks, Flight 776 and Jack of Diamonds are available from most digital retailers. He lives in the Kansas City area with his wife.