Western Voices: Kathy Ellis

Kathy Ellis is an English as a Second Language and Cross-cultural Communication Trainer. Kathy always felt that writing was missing from her life and answered to the pen of poetry four years ago. In the last few years, Kathy has published poetry in Peninsula Poets, Reach of a Song, and Oracle Magazine. Awards include: third placement in Georgia Poetry Society Educator’s Award, Honorable Mention in Georgia Poetry Society Founder’s Award and Poet Laureate for the Atlanta Spiritual Living Center Atlanta in 2015. She also self-published her first book of poems in 2017. Kathy holds a Master’s in Education with additional graduate studies in Spanish, linguistics, culture, and conflict. Kathy has lived in six countries, traveled to 40 and now resides in Atlanta, Georgia. She runs an international bed and breakfast and houses two multilingual cats.

Kathy’s book can be purchased at: Create Space or Amazon under the title of Primero

Octaves from Above

Wistful and carefree,
Flutes voice shyness in orchestras.
Chime their boldness in Mexican songs.
Flutes of gold, silver, jade, and bone
Touch octaves like hummingbirds weaving                       
Among blossoms of honey.
Flute notes channel vibrations
For the Queen Mother, Confucius,
Mayan farmers and cats in alleyways.

Flautist James Galway revels in Cleo Laine’s jazz.
The heavens open. My musician mother
Sits with me during such performances.
She was the music.

All the Dancers I Have Loved Before

Yank out the rusty metal,
running down my spinal cord
spreading its darkness from neck to hips.
Frida Kahlo begs for release from her “Broken Column”.
Ice releases water to flow
into her skeleton and mine.
She commands me,
Baila, gringita, con tu alma.”

…Paul Taylor and I
share our liquid and light in Esplanade.
Our dancer wings fly away,
transcend into the cheeky sky of golden cherubs.
We are that good.

I limber with such finesse,
Isadora Duncan is distracted from her drama.
My spirals across the stage flow
into soft currents and summer breezes.
She thinks I am that good.

Gene Kelly trampolines with me
beyond the burden of gravity.
Nothing like that feeling
of an oak tree full of branches.
Strong. Forever lasting. Wise in execution of movements.
He makes me look that good.

Cradled in Alvin Ailey’s winged arms and tapered legs,
we dance praises
of the trinity of mind, body, and spirit.
We dance heavenly good.

The suave. tap. shoes. of Gregory Hines,
the daring. taps. of Michelle Dorrance
move like sonnets on fire.
My dream taps until flowers wilt in my hands.
Not so good.

Suddenly in the cluttered avocado-green kitchen,
an uplifting force of white light
infuses my joints.
Ricky Martin hot salsas my dancing soul
like there is no mañana.
So caliente.

The Names Carry On

Untold memories exude from the simple stone
that rests on top of the gravestone.
The Indian Mission Cemetery
haunts and echoes of years gone.

Crescent moons, sunrays,
raindrops under white-blue clouds,
painted on weather-worn crosses.
The buried lie witness to
silver lakes full of bass,
deer herds,
laces of lichen,
velvet moss.

Ojibwa hearts carry on—
Chief Blue Cloud
Baby Nedwash
Hole in Sky
John Michigan

Drafts in the remote cemetery
move deliberate and free—
The dream catcher captures stories
as it hangs from the nearby tree.

Small flags upright in the damp humus
wave to war heroes
from these proclaimed forests
of long-ago chants and broken arrows.

A stone is not just a stone—
When the blood of a stone
flows truth of a forgotten past.

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