May 4, 2016


Welcome to the May edition of IVJ. Many new and returning friends have dropped in to lend their voice to this issue, so please join us in welcoming them. I believe it is a fantastic issue full of beauty, light, growth, and truth.  To all our service members, past and present...Thank you, and Happy Memorial Day. To every person raising, nurturing, and loving our children...Thank you, and Happy Mother's Day! 

A special thanks to Allen Forrest for contributing his georgous painting for our cover page. 

A Mother's Day Special Essay and an invitation from Elizabeth Brooks: "The Call of the Child"


Sheika A, David Bankson, Mary E. Bone, Douglas G. Campbell, Edilson A. Ferreira, Geosi Gyasi, Joan Higuchi, Damien Irwin, Dr. Emory Jones, Lynda McKinney Lambert, Mankh, Alice Jane-Marie Massa, Carole Mertz, Milton Montague, Shirley Pearson, Sunil Sharma, Tom Sheehan, Casey Vittimberga 

 Allen Forrest


Elizabeth Brooks, Bruce F. Rosen, Bill Vernon


J. Andrew Goss, Belinda Hubert, Jacqueline Masumian, Patric Mauzy, Philip E. Temples

Sheikha A. is from Pakistan and United Arab Emirates. Her work appears in a variety of literary venues across quarter-ways of the globe, that can be accessed on her blog

David is a full-time autodidact with a lifelong passion for poetry, philosophy, and linguistics. His works have been featured online at Thank you for Swallowing, Walking is Still Honest, and I Am Not a Silent Poet. His greatest influences are John Ashbery and William Carlos Williams, though he's secretly quite fond of Shel Silverstein. More of his work can be found at

Mary Bone has had poems published in magazines, journals and newspapers. Her most recent poem was featured at Poebita Poetry magazine. Another recent poetry acceptance was from the Oklahoma Today magazine. My poem, ”Other Warriors”, will appear in  their July/August magazine. 

I live in Portland, Oregon. I am a retired professor of art at George Fox University where I taught painting, printmaking, drawing and art history courses for over 20 years.   I am also the author of Seeing: When Art and Faith Intersect (2002) and Parktails (2012). My poetry and artworks have been published in a number of periodicals including Carcinogenic Poetry, Borderlands, RiverSedge, Rockhurst Review and In the Teeth of the Wind. My artwork is represented in collections such as The Portland Art Museum, Oregon State University, Ashforth Pacific, Inc. and George Fox University.

Mr. Ferreira is a Brazilian poet  published (or upcoming to) in venues like  Right Hand Pointing, Boston Poetry Magazine, The Lake, The Stare’s Nest, The Provo Canyon, Red Wolf Journal, Subterranean Blue, Highland Park Poetry, Whispers, West Ward Quarterly, Indiana Voice Journal, Synesthesia, Dead Snakes and various others. Short listed in four American Poetry Contests, lives in a small town with wife, three sons and a granddaughter and is collecting his works for a forthcoming book.        

"Geosi Gyasi is a book blogger, reader, writer, and interviewer. His work has appeared or forthcoming in Visual Verse, Verse-Virtual, Piker Press, Misty Review, Silver Birch PRESS, Linden Avenue, Expound, Tuck Magazine and elsewhere. He is the author of the forthcoming book, “Geosi Interviews Fifty Writers Worldwide” (2016) from Lamar University Press Books in Texas, U.S. He is the winner of the 2015 Ake/Air France Prize for Prose. He blogs at"

Joan (Kirchgessner) Higuchi, an RN and frequently published poet from Long Island New York was awarded first prize in a category of The Writer's Digest contest shortly after she resumed writing after her retirement twenty-five years ago. Her work had originally been published while she was a student, but was deferred while she and her husband Paul raised their two daughters and she pursued her career. She additionally won the "Miracles" competition sponsored by the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association and successive top prizes in the Performance Poets Association contests. Publication of a collection related to her experiences in the field of Mental Health is in process and her first chapbook of nature poems, "A World of Small Things Singing" (Finishing Line Press) is available on

Damien Irwin currently resides in Fort Smith AR. He is a native of Eastern Oklahoma who grew up in the foothills of the Ozarks. His poetry and fiction have been published in Applause.

Dr. Emory D. Jones is an English teacher who has taught in Cherokee Vocational High School in Cherokee, Alabama, for one year, Northeast Alabama State Junior College for four years, Snead State Junior College in Alabama for two years, and Northeast Mississippi Community College for thirty-five years.  He joined the Mississippi Poetry Society, Inc. in 1981 and has served as President of this society. He has over two hundred and thirty-five publishing credits including
publication in such journals as Voices International, The White Rock Review, Free Xpressions Magazine, The Storyteller, Pasques Petals, The Pink Chameleon, and Encore: Journal of the NFSPS.  He is retired and lives in Iuka, Mississippi, with his wife, Glenda.  He has two daughters and four grandchildren.

Lynda McKinney Lambert is the author of “Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage” published by  Kota Press.  It is a book of poetry and short essays Lynda wrote over several years while spending her summers in Salzburg, Austria where she taught a course in writing and art each summer. She is a retired professor of fine arts and humanities from Geneva College in western Pennsylvania. Lynda  currently authors two blogs on writing, the humanities, art, and faith. She is a freelance writer and her poetry and essays appear in numerous books and literary journals. She also exhibits her fiber art  in exhibitions worldwide; her  art work is in many public and private collections.

Walter E. Harris III (known to fellow poets and friends as Mankh) is a writer, small press publisher, editor, and Turtle Islander. He hosts a the audio show, Between the Lines: listening to literature online.

After earning master’s degrees from Indiana State University and Western Michigan University,  Alice Jane-Marie Massa--still a Hoosier at heart--taught  for 25 years, including 14 years of teaching writing and public speaking at Milwaukee Area Technical College.  Alice invites you to visit her blog:, where she weekly posts her poetry, essays, memoirs, or short stories.  Her writings on Wordwalk frequently focus on her Indiana home of Blanford, her guide dogs, her Italian ancestors, and writing.  Away from her desk, Alice most enjoys long walks with her third Leader Dog (Zoe), reading, container gardening, and the television program Jeopardy.

Carole Mertz has poems in various online publications. Her reviews, essays, and short stories appeared in Arc Poetry Magazine, Ascent Aspirations, Conium Review, Copperfield Review, CutBank, Mature Years, Mom Egg, Toasted Cheese, Women on Writing, Working Writer, World Literature Today, With Painted Word, WPWT, and in Seek Publications. Two poems won Wilda Morris’ Poetry Challenges, Summer, 2015. Carole writes in Parma, OH.

milt montague,, 205 west end ave, new york, new york 10023, was born and raised in new york city, survived The Great Depression, the school system, and World War ll.  Finished college, married happily, raised 3 lovely daughters, retired.   Back to college and after 20 years discovered poetry at  85.  Now at 90 plus years, he has 78 poems published in 26 different magazines in under 3 years.     

Judy Moskowitz is a jazz pianist from New York City .  She started playing at the age of three and attended the Julliard School of Music.   Judy began writing poetry three years ago and has been published on and is a featured poet in Michael lee Johnson’s antholgy Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze, available on Amazon.

Shirley Pearson is a freelance writer and editor.  Her first job out of high school was with Sears, writing copy for their Big Book.  She has continued to write for many publications over the years, taking awards for her stories and poetry. For the past 27 years Shirley has led writing groups and was head of PR for ElderCollege at Terra State College in Ohio.  Currently she is working on two books and writes poetry as her muse allows.  A widow, Shirley’s two cats, her elderly father, daughter, granddaughters and great grandchildren keep her busy.

Mumbai-based, Sunil Sharma, a college principal, is also widely-published Indian critic, poet, literary interviewer, editor, translator, essayist and fiction writer. He has already published three collections of poetry, one collection of short fiction, one novel and co-edited five books so far. His six short stories and the novel Minotaur were recently prescribed for the undergraduate classes under the Post-colonial Studies, Clayton University, Georgia, USA. He is a recipient of the UK-based Destiny Poets’ inaugural Poet of the Year award---2012. He edits the online journal Episteme:

Tom Sheehan has published 23 books and has had multiple work in most of the following publications: Ocean Magazine, Rosebud, Linnet’s Wings, Serving House Journal, Eclectica, Copperfield Review, KYSO Flash, La Joie Magazine, Soundings East, Vermont Literary Review, Literary Orphans, Indiana Voice Journal, Frontier Tales, Deep South Magazine, Western Online Magazine, Provo Canyon Review, 3 AM Magazine, Vine Leaves Journal, Nazar Look, Eastlit, Rope & Wire Magazine, The Literary Yard,  KYSO Journal, Green Silk Journal, Fiction on the Web, The Path, Faith-Hope and Fiction, The Cenacle, etc
He has 30 Pushcart nominations, and five Best of the Net nominations (and one winner) and short story awards from Nazar Look for 2012- 2015. Swan River Daisy, a chapbook, was just released by KY Stories and The Cowboys, a collection of western short stories, is in production at Pocol Press.

John L. Stanizzi is the author of the chapbook, Windows.  His full length collections are Ecstasy Among Ghosts, Sleepwalking, Dance Against the Wall (, and After the Bell, and Hallalujah Time! (  His poems have appeared in Prairie Schooner, The New York Quarterly, Tar River Poetry, Rattle, Passages North, The Spoon River Quarterly, Poet Lore, The Connecticut River Review, Freshwater, Boston Literary Review, and many other publications.  He has new work forthcoming in Raintown Review, Off the Coast, Black Cat Moon, and LIPS.  John has read at many venues throughout Connecticut, including The Sunken Garden Poetry Festival, RJ Julia Booksellers, and the Arts Café Mystic, and his work has been featured on Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac.  He is currently an adjunct professor of English at Manchester Community College.  John is currently at work on two volumes --  Hallelujah Time! – Volume II, the follow up to his recently released Hallelujah Time!  and another book of poems called Sundowning.  He lives with his wife, Carol, in Coventry, Connecticut.

Casey Vittimberga is a California native whose work has appeared in various literary magazines including Polaris, The Walrus, TeenInk and If & Only If. She is the recipient of the 2013 Ardella Mills Prize in Literary Composition and the second place winner of the 2014 Ohio Northern Fiction Contest. She graduated with a creative writing degree from Mills College, moved to the Silicon Valley with her angsty pet rabbit and now works in tech.

Born in Canada and bred in the U.S., Allen Forrest has worked in many mediums: computer graphics, theater, digital music, film, video, drawing and painting. Allen studied acting in the Columbia Pictures Talent Program in Los Angeles and digital media in art and design at Bellevue College (receiving degrees in Web Multimedia Authoring and Digital Video Production.) He currently works in the Vancouver, Canada, as a graphic artist and painter. He is the winner of the Leslie Jacoby Honor for Art at San Jose State University's Reed Magazine and his Bel Red painting series is part of the Bellevue College Foundation's permanent art collection. Forrest's expressive drawing and painting style is a mix of avant-garde expressionism and post-Impressionist elements reminiscent of van Gogh, creating emotion on canvas. 

Bill Vernon served in the United States Marine Corps, studied English literature, then taught it. Writing is his therapy, along with exercising outdoors and doing international folkdances. His poems, stories and nonfiction have appeared in a variety of magazines and anthologies, and Five Star Mysteries published his novel OLD TOWN in 2005. Bill has a non-fiction piece "Better Than Flowers" featured in the September 2014 issue of IVJ.

J.Andrew Goss is an artist and writer living in the wine country of the Missouri River Hills. He is currently an MFA student at Lindenwood University.

In addition to writing fiction and poetry, Belinda Hubert is currently working on a  a collection of short stories about life in the Midwest. Her novel, Shrink Wrapped is available on Amazon. Belinda works as a clinical psychologist in a private practice in Lowell, Indiana.

Jacqueline Masumian, a graduate of DePauw University, is the author of Nobody Home:  A Memoir. She grew up in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio, and has enjoyed careers as actress, performing arts manager, and landscape designer. Her stories have appeared in Mused Literary Review, Brilliant Flash Fiction, and Still Crazy. Her blog is on

Patric Mauzy is an aspiring author from the small town of Arcola, Indiana. When he isn't focusing on his writing he is playing his guitar and making music.

Phil Temples lives in Watertown, Massachusetts, and works as a computer systems administrator at a university. He's a native of Bloomington, Indiana. Phil has had over a hundred works of short fiction published in print and online journals.
Blue Mustang Press recently published Phil's full-length murder-mystery  novel, “The Winship Affair." He has two books due out this year--a paranormal-horror novel, "Helltown Chronicles" by Eternal Press, and a short story anthology in Big Table Publishing, "Machine Feelings."

Elizabeth Brooks resides in Tampa, Florida. She is originally from Trinidad and Tobago.  A lover of life, family, friends, a good book,  lots of laughter and continues to grow in her faith and accept many challenges.  She is a librarian by profession and a part-time reference librarian at Saint Leo University, St. Leo Florida. She continues to enjoy reading and sharing her poems with many, at events in Tampa Bay.

An award-winning writer, Bruce F. Rosen shares the same publisher as literary greats Allen Ginsberg, Laurence Ferlinghetti, and William Saroyan.  Featured on The Today Show and the cover of Personal Excellence and Publisher’s Weekly, he has written for the San Francisco Chronicle and the Baseball Hall of Fame.  His “slice of life” pieces ran on BBC Radio.  His mother, Alma Rose, who was a psychic that read tea leaves for, among others, Marlon Brando, inspired this memoir which is dedicated to her.  This excerpt showcases his best friend from his youth, who lives on, only, in the author’s memories. Please visit his website:

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