Time Is A River Without Banks: Ekphrastic Poetry

Time Is A River Without Banks Ekphrastic Poetry Edition1

We are pleased to announce the release of the Spring 2019 Issue.

The poets with work in this Ekphrastic Poetry edition are:

Misky Braendeholm
Adrian Ernesto Cepeda
Tim Dunne
Alexa Findlay
Christopher Hileman
Nancy Byrne Iannucci
Diane Jackman
Mary Anna Kruch
Sarah Law
Betsy Mars
Joshua Medsker
Michael Minassian
Debi Swim
Robert Walton
Martin Willitts Jr

You may download a copy of the PDF release here.

Ekphrastic Poetry Spring 2019

You’re invited to submit to our new issue. You may find us over at the new site at Red Wolf Editions. Happy writing!

Ekphrastic Poetry

Special Thematic Edition 2018/2019: Ekphrastic Poetry


Marc Chagall, Time Is A River Without Banks

My grandfather had a clock.
It flew–the grandfather clock–through
the air, over the river, over the lovers,
over the blue. As it now bridges
time to memory, it’s as ersatz
as memory goes.

So we have another pastoral.
What heaven would have been if
it’s a place with houses and steeples,
and being vociferous with love,
we will look affably upon the
poetic idiocy of a winged fish

playing a fiddle–so music carries time
(ah, aphoristic wisdom), as do souls
like gypsies wandering into the other
before first memory turns opaque,
before the stealthy boatman comes
and takes you far away.

(by Irene Toh)


You’re invited to submit ekphrastic poems for our special thematic edition.

“An ekphrastic poem is a vivid description of a scene or, more commonly, a work of art. Through the imaginative act of narrating and reflecting on the “action” of a painting or sculpture, the poet may amplify and expand its meaning.”

Read more here.

You are encouraged to write to a series of ekphrastic poetry prompts over at our sister site, Red Wolf Prompts.

Please do include in your submission the painting or photograph that inspired your poem. The photograph may be your own or belong to someone. If it belongs to someone, be sure to give credit. You may send in as many poems as you wish.

Read submissions guidelines here. Please note that the reading period will be in Jan-Feb 2019 so do be patient to wait to see if your poems are selected for the issue to be released in March 2019.

Submissions open from September 2018 to February 2019. The issue will be released in Spring 2019.

Starry Night Over The Asylum, By Debi Swim

Starry Night Over The Asylum
By Debi Swim

Is anyone in the village below awake?
It is late, late, sleepers in houses dark and quiet.
How can they rest when overhead there is a riot?

Stars and worlds ringing like church bells,
moon ablaze throbbing in hi-hat jumps
a galaxy of milky white tambourine thumps

I cover my ears against the dissonance.
Why aren’t there people in the streets
wailing in anger for the noise to cease?

Oh, starry night. Oh, raucous, strident, starry night,
your beauty bellows in discordant din
and I, I fall to my knees in your poignant orbital spin.


Vincent Van Gogh, The Starry Night

Process notes: I’ve admired the beauty of this picture many times and written about it but as I looked this time, I thought, this scene is LOUD. A cacophony of sounds, like each member of an orchestra tuning up individually before the start of the concert and I imagined Van Gogh with his hands over his ears. Written in response to Prompt 30, Red Wolf Poems.

Debi Swim writes primarily to prompts. She is a wife, mother, grandmother and happy poet.

Views of Charing Cross Bridge after Claude Monet, by Alan Catlin

Views of Charing Cross Bridge
after Claude Monet

By Alan Catlin


on River
Thames –

Later a density
of fog

first blue-grey
then darker


no longer

Houses of Parliament
Charing Cross Bridge

men in skiffs
swept away

Process: During a three and half year period I wrote little else but poems on Art ranging from Turner to extreme forms of Modern Art.

Editor’s note: Watch this space for poem three tomorrow.

Alan Catlin has published dozens of chapbooks and full length books of prose and poetry on a wide variety of subjects. His latest forthcoming chapbook of poetry is from Night Ballet Press, Beautiful Mutants. He is the poetry editor of the online poetry journal Misfitmagazine.net.