for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

Spangled Seasons


Under hazed New York

spheres, spring sousing Riverside, earlier

cocooned in the Moor shedding off

mover’s trip, bundled molehills against

walls –once sparks we strung

onto a nebulae over

nights on Federal Hill—you and

I trudge on.


Trails we looped

between Chesapeake,

Susquehanna and

the Hudson, Venus sputtering

on Pennsylvania woods these,

too, we tucked abreast in

memory, if Manhattan

spares us.


Our cherry

noon-s have leaped into infinity

from finiteness; as well warbled

peace from cypress groves at

Inner Harbor, dandelions mirroring

our masquerade, a yucca spurting

by the window squirrels flying

a trapeze on pines mocked,


ends of days orioles

griped about—we plucked to

spangle our seasons. Soon mere

revenant: Baltimore winters we

skidded, wincing but

un-bruised.  I posed for you

that summer cicadas plunged

into passion deaths, smearing


wind shields Fells Point’s

mists we eluded fogged.

Tall suns now spear

mornings at the Moor, we flex

our years on West Broadway: summers

on a mountain lake maybe, a bowery at

Brooklyn Gardens in the fall, sunset

behind Grant’s tomb perhaps, or by


Shakespeare’s lagoon, divining

on its surface the play

of wind on our



Poet of the Week, Poetry Super Highway, Nov. 1-7, 2010

May 25, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment



Shredded blooms,

hair parted in the wind,

the pavement wavering—

my cane unwilling

to step with me.


Light shimmers ahead

I swear I am on solid land.

But the air has turned into water

and I suddenly shed tears—

but I’m not crying.


The girl behind me

races a breeze and she stumbles.

My cane falls but I remain

suspended between air

and water uncertain—


I think I’m flying,

flying with the sparrows:

could they be lost?

Or falling wingless like the moths

from a pink tree.


Oh, my cane tiptoes

back to me winged, its crook a hand,

growing fingers, prodding me

to rise. I rise, stilled                                           

between white air and water                           


—the ground at least, has

ceased spinning.


by Alegria Imperial (Canada)

Honorable Mention

Passager Poetry Contest, 2007


also featured at Charlotte diGregorio’s blog for writers

May 24, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“we do not bleed like nightingales when felled singing”

(four of thirty-one one-line poems in my recently published book, “we do not bleed like nightingales when felled singing”  at books)

a drizzle tinkling in parched pools

the wind-shaken birch piping old pains too late to replace

a cypress hedge nursing hoarseness since long ago

when the waning moon a pregnant sea receding in the swell


May 4, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

a beggar’s prayer


in the name of God who offers love,

who lets wings soar for free

like a sparrow i pray


i beg not for bread

for my spirit has no use

for crumbs that turn dust

in my quarantined existence


i beg not for words if thrown

like refuse—what seed

if it were stone could grow

on a mulch bed?


but I beg for eyes that open skies

hooded by grease,

a warm brew to douse my morning

to wash off the grit of my waking


i beg for arms the size

a home calls a hug a grip

to break the iceberg calloused

eyes have encased me


i ginger step to beg for a smile

on the slopes of indifference

where cheeks wall me in

to the emptiness


i beg for an answer to my prayer

the way God cups a broken sparrow

the way He lets a spirit soar

without begging


Sketchbook, ‘Let Us Pray’, 55 Sept-Oct 2011


April 15, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

the day lily (parallel)

we wonder about paradise

                                           waiting for sunset

as if a beggar

                                                   the day lily

from far away

                                                   a whimper


Sonic Boom issue eleven 2018 (parallel)


March 28, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

denouement (a sequence)


salt wind

in an empty shell


wave splatter
the sting of her tears


a gull’s cry

knee deep

in foam


her tipped toes

lingering on the tide- line



her argument


as in the afterlife

crusting on sand bars


contrary to guidelines

a sliver of her flesh



in the gloaming

a curdled refuse


bones: journal of contemporary haiku,  March 2018

March 27, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

a sky I can’t find

my eyes on foliage-d sky withering at zenith

river-crossing a breeze wipes off my fate line

mom’s nestled cheek in a boy’s breast my lover’s roost

a fissured boulder at sunset could be me

night’s gritty breath a sky I can’t find


one-line haiku Under the Basho 2018

March 27, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment


A heartbreak is contagious. Been sleepless at its onset since I received this news in my mail as John Martone’s (Santoka) response to my Nov 15 submission for otata’s #49 issue:

“Dear Friends,

At the end of this month, otata will publish ebooks from David Miller and Romano Zeraschi. Suffering from an onset of heartbreak, otata will be unable to issue her 48th number. She extends her regrets to all who have contributed over the past four years. The email account will go on hiatus as well. In the spirit of Santoka’s last verse, please check the website in the future, in the (perhaps unlikely) event of a return.” — JM

I am really heartbroken having found in John’s “otata” my dream of a poetry journal. My first appearance in June of 2016 started a monthly run until last month with #48 October 2019. Two highlights kept me going though each submission just bounced me higher and higher—these two were both published for Christmas: “post perspective (on that night)” in #26, February 2018 and “reconfiguring if that night will come again” in #36 December 2018.

The first gained me this pennant:


It’s a masterwork.
The most splendid piece in 24 issues.
— John…/post-perspectives-on-that…/

The second this thrilling note:

You again?
You again!
(How otherwise?)

The Christmas poem reminds me of Dylan Thomas.

and a third:

Dear Imperial Joy,

This morning you conjure Dan Raphael but are a species all your own. I especially love that eel, that sky, that whale; the archaic imponderables of the second poem.

You are not losing your grip, you’re freeing the world.

#31, August 27, 2018

December 4, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

To Mary Margaret, “nothing but fine rain” (reflection on an ‘angel’s passing’)

It must be the constant grey sky, the moist air, the tearful silence of still leaves, and the passing away of a niece, Mary Margaret, at 29 years old, invalid most of her growing up years from an undetected source of her seizures–an angel to us all–that midly paralyzed me with a meltdown. Being old, I saw through my life as in a screen: what did really matter and what matters most. I believe she had the perfect answer with her illness having shorn her of the false sun sparks that I could be guilty of racing to catch. The weeks following her death lead me to an overdue clarity of the truths I failed to recognize, hence, left untended. I hope that with my thinning bones, I could still carry a metaphorical watering can to bring them back to life. Would that these three haiku were enough for now…


fall twilight

on her grave nothing

but fine rain


on her tomb

tiny hands sweep

leavings of sparrows 


candle drippings

on her epitaph-

a broken word

November 17, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

summaries (a sequence)

earth’s raiment showing

if coquetry
a verb dandelion fur

thigh-high mist the graveyard sea wind-lisps

vexed with what to wed

brain murmur definitely scarred

the monkey tree’s appeals

page 10

in a hyena’s lock jaw all the why’s

page 11

shattered ear possibly the gist of all paralysis

page  12

bones #18 November 15, 2019  (a journal of contemporary haiku) 


November 17, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment