Rust and Moth Submission June 17, 2022

BIO: Rhonda Bronte Brown is a retired counselor/teacher who lives in Arkansas. Her published poetry appears in Better Than Starbucks Journal, the Trouvaille Review, and Haiku Seed Journal in February and March 2022. Find her online at
1.	Moons of March Sing!
        (Spring Moon, Worm Moon and Sugar Moon)

Sky looks down on earth with the dark eye of a new moon. Spring buds pop their heads and Winter snaps, not yet. March winds howl for seasonal winds that breathe change. Terrestrial tides collide and winter gives way. March moons call for a zephr to disperse seeds far and wide 

Worm Moon signals the nightcrawlers to rise, stir the loam, breaking free the frozen earth. Spring Moon coaxes sleepy seeds to shed winter’s shield and stretch their roots in fertile dirt. Under the Sugar Moon trees bud, enticing the sweet maples to release their sugary sap. 

"Zephyr, carry the seeds far and wide. Loam, provide their needs. Seeds, shed those winter coats. Nightcrawlers, dig underground moats. Clouds, let loose your showers so the earth can bring forth bouquets of flowers!"

A morrowless day
arriving on the equinox
perfectly balanced.  

2.	A Pastoral Cacophony Published Nov 2022 Better Than Starbucks Journal

As morning's first blush slips through the mizzling mist, dawn's chorus begins. The woodland world wakes, nestlings fluff their feathers, squish together and listen to their twitter song. 

Blackbirds sing a low mellow tone blending choral notes to a dayspring chant. Red-breasted robins' antiphonal tweets, twitters back and forth. A cool zephyr breezes through the budding trees, and a hermit thrush adds a rhythmic woodwind harmony. 

Chee-pippety-chee-chee, Jenny wren joins in with a light peppy lilt, stepping up the beat. Colorful warblers echo a descant as tiny rainbows shimmer in twilight’s dew. A cappella chorus in one voice sings a spring aria. 

A blue jay's catcall 
signals a tail twitching taunt,
kitty in the weeds. 

The aria ends with the soft adagio from a mourning dove. 
coo-COO-coo, coo-coo.

[Optional NOTES: Antiphon: alternate singing by two groups. 
Adagio: A tempo having slow movement; restful at ease.
Lilt: a pleasant gentle swinging rhythm, a characteristic rising and falling in the tune.]

3. The Afghan Thirteen 

The pulse is weak, 
life's last vapor vanishes. 
Death grins when 
breathing ceased. 

Thanatos’ grim triumph- 
of the Afghan thirteen, 
fallen, betrayed from within, 
and left behind. 

A country's demise 
at the hands of a few. 
America's heart bleeds.
They will not be forgotten. 

Hope hurts. Hope heals! 
Hope shatters the grip of hate- 
the past and present repeat. 
1776 to Aug. 26, 2021.

In memory of the men and women who died in service of our country and the freedom loving Afghan people. 

Sgt. Johanny Rosario Pichardo, 25, of Lawrence, Massachusetts, assigned to 5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade, Naval Support Activity Bahrain.

Sgt. Nicole L. Gee, 23, of Sacramento, California, assigned to Combat Logistics Battalion 24, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

Staff Sgt. Darin T. Hoover, 31, of Salt Lake City, Utah. His military occupational specialty was 0369, infantry unit leader.

Cpl. Hunter Lopez, 22, of Indio, California, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Cpl. Daegan W. Page, 23, of Omaha, Nebraska, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Cpl. Humberto A. Sanchez, 22, of Logansport, Indiana, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Lance Cpl. David L. Espinoza, 20, of Rio Bravo, Texas, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Lance Cpl. Jared M. Schmitz, 20, of St. Charles, Missouri, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Lance Cpl. Rylee J. McCollum, 20, of Jackson, Wyoming, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Lance Cpl. Dylan R. Merola, 20, of Rancho Cucamonga, California, a rifleman, decorated marine.

Lance Cpl. Kareem M. Nikoui, 20, of Norco, California, decorated marine.

Navy Corpsman Maxton W. Soviak, 22, of Berlin Heights, Ohio, assigned to 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, Camp Pendleton, California, decorated Navy Corpsman.

Staff Sgt. Ryan C. Knauss, 23, of Corryton, Tennessee. Knauss was assigned to 9th PSYOP Battalion, 8th PSYOP Group, Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.

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