John Rowe

John Rowe

JOHN ROWE has poems appearing in a variety of small press journals and anthologies. His latest chapbook is Beyond Perspective from Finishing Line Press. Connie Post says: “The poems in Beyond Perspective will take any reader to a heightened level of introspection and awareness. John Rowe has found a delicate and perfect way of blending the imagined world with ordinary life.” John‘s previous poetry chapbooks At My Wit’s Beginning and Winsome Losesome showcase his tendencies toward whimsical word play and a minimalist approach. He is a co-host of the monthly (2nd Fridays) Last Word Poetry Reading Series, held at Nefeli Caffe in Berkeley. For many years he’s served as president of the Bay Area Poets Coalition and associate editor of BAPC’s Poetalk journal. Website:

Before the Harvest, Before the Storm

Here now

before the harvest

the farmer walks

along the rows of crops

Field mice,

with whiskers twitching,

stick their heads

out of earthen holes

Wind pushes

swollen gray clouds

closer overhead

What else stirs

before the storm?

The smallest to the largest

heart of every being

alive in micro- and macroconsciousness

with a steady unsteadiness

or an unsteady steadiness

as it’s all a matter

of timelessness

– John Rowe (2016)

I Say

I say

quietly to myself:

these thoughts

are as loud as

a cat fight

I say

aloud to anyone

who will listen:

come gather here

where the music,

a symphony of silence,

is about to begin

I say

with gesturing

arms & hands:

if I were a bird

I’d fly away right now

from this town square

I say

as a spirit unseen:

do you really believe

I am only

the wind?

I say

as an afterthought:

before we go any further

let’s recognize

that we’re always

in this together

I say

to the poem:

I thought I

could control you,

but you took off

and moved on

without my say

I say

in the moment:

this moment,

yes this one,

is truth revealed

– John Rowe (2016)