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THE DARK TOWER
   “This cold night will turn us all to fools and madmen.”
   ―William Shakespeare, King Lear

Shadows shift in a dark tower
Where Roland came, boyish and ruddy.
A princess doomed, an empty bower,
Shadows shift in that dark tower.
The fate of kings who’ve lost their power,
In bones and entrails, blind and bloody.
Shadows shift in a dark tower
Where Roland came, boyish and ruddy.

SLEEPING BEAUTY
   “Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.”
   W.B. Yeats, He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven

Through mandrake groves and tangled vines,
Though thorns and midnight howls …
How silently the moon pines.
Through mandrake groves and tangled vines,
Enchanted love, intoxicating wine.
Briar’s rose and midnight owls,
Through mandrake groves and tangled vines,
Though thorns and midnight howls …

LOVE DRAUGHT
   “Love looks not with the eyes but with the mind”
   ―William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Beneath a bank where violets grow,
Where fairies dewdrops seek—
Through oxlips and musk-rose, a river flows.
Beside that bank, where violets grow,
A midnight witch, Titania bold. Her lantern glows
Amidst sweet eglantine. Her lover sleeps
Beside that bank where violets grow,
Where fairies dewdrops seek.



Anna Cates resides in Ohio and teaches college writing, literature, and education online. Her first collections of poetry and fiction, The Meaning of Life and The Frog King, were published by Cyberwit Press, and her second poetry collection, The Darkroom, by Prolific Press. Her collection of previously published haibun, The Golem & the Nazi, recently appeared via Red Moon Press, and her collection of religion-themed poems, The Journey, via Resource Publications.
Current Issue
17 Jan 2022

The land burns so hot and high tonight that Let can see its orange glow even from the heart of The City of Birds. It burns so thick she can taste the whole year’s growth of leaves and branches on her lips. It burns so fast she can almost hear the deer and cottontails scream as flames outrun them and devour them whole.
I writhe in bed with fever, chills, chatters and shivers. The near becomes far as the far comes close.
No one gets married before going to space.
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