Sonja James

for Michael Glaser
Say the tiny argument
wrapped in tissue
& presented to the world
is an argument for peace.
Once unwrapped by
the gentle pacifist of a boy
who leads the crowd
to the public square,
it will grow heavy
in the hand until it is passed
along from one curious
onlooker to the next.
Moving from hand to hand
as in the game of "hot potato,"
it will then be light like a sponge
& just as powerful:
cleansing trigger happy fingers,
drying sweaty palms.   


for my sons
that inhospitable stance,
thrown to the wind.

Rushing now.
Not taking
time to think.

To leap
without looking.
Yes, careless.

it works—
accomplishes the feat

of spiting
maternal exhortations
to be "careful."

Call such blatant disregard
"youth." Then, call it
"the days fly by."

Summon it.
Study it.
Let it break your heart. 

Sonja James is the author of three collections of poetry: Calling Old Ghosts to Supper (Finishing Line Press, 2013), Children of the Moon (Argonne House Press, 2004), and Baiting the Hook (The Bunny & the Crocodile Press, 1999). Her poetry has appeared in FIELD, The Iowa Review, Innisfree, Court Green, MARGIE: The American Journal of Poetry, Crab Creek Review, Kestrel, 32 Poems, The Journal, Beloit Poetry Journal, Verse Daily, and Poet Lore, among others. Among her honors are two Pushcart Prize nominations. In 2007, she was the co-winner of the Sotto Voce Award. In addition, she has contributed book reviews to The Montserrat Review, Smartish Pace, and The Journal. She has two sons and resides in Martinsburg, West Virginia.



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Indran Amirthanayagam

Nan Becker

C. Wade Bentley

Gigi Bradford on Hailey Leithauser

Patricia Davis

Stephen Devereux

Gail Rudd Entrekin

C.M. Foltz

Anton Frost

Paul Grayson

Hedy Habra

Patricia L. Hamilton

Maryanne Hannan on Suzette Marie Bishop

Donald Illich

Sonja James

Judy Kronenfeld

Hiram Larew

Jeanne Larsen

Sean Lause

Mark Mansfield

Laura Manuelidis

David McAleavey on Terence Winch

Mark McBride

George Moore

Christopher Norris

Barry North

Andrew Oerke

Al Ortolani

Jef Otte

William Page

Rebecca Parson

Beth Paulson

Patric Pepper

Simon Perchik

Heddy Reid

Oliver Rice

William Rivera

Joseph Saling

Dave Seter

Felicity Sheehy

Robert Joe Stout

Paul Tayyar

Jennifer Wallace

Robert Wexelblatt

Anne Harding Woodworth on Jody Bolz

Katherine E. Young

Sally Zakariya

Burgi Zenhaeusern















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