Submission Guidelines: Send unpublished poems in the body of an email (NO ATTACHMENTS) to nvneditor[at] No simultaneous submissions. Use "Verse News Submission" as the subject line. Send a brief bio. No payment. Authors retain all rights after 1st-time appearance here. Scroll down the right sidebar for the fine print.

Saturday, March 21, 2020


by George Salamon

“Ms. [Summer]Mossbarger ate nothing. She skipped breakfast and lunch, taking her first bite of food—food-pantry fried chicken—at about 5:30 p.m. All she consumed from the time she awoke that morning until she ate dinner were sips from a cherry Dr Pepper. “I’m not going to let my kids go hungry. If I have to just eat once a day, that’s what I have to do.” Ms. Mossbarger, a disabled Army veteran, does not work, and Jordan Spahn, her husband, has seen his work as a carpenter slow. Photo Credit: Tamir Kalifa for The New York Times

"Senator Richard M. Burr sold hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of stock in major companies last month, as President Trump and others in his party were still playing down the threat presented by the coronavirus outbreak and before the stock market’s precipitous plunge. . . . At least three other senators sold major stock holdings around the same time, disclosure records show.” —The New York Times, March 20, 2020

"Coronavirus and Poverty: A Mother Skips Meals So Her Children Can Eat. Americans with tight financial resources have fewer options as they navigate coronavirus closures and layoffs." —The New York Times, March 20, 2020

'There's gold in them thar hills,' so they
Said in the days of the gold rush, now
The gold's in them thar halls of Congress,
Where, if you're on the right committee,
You can be a millionaire in a tizzy.
But in other parts of the land of the free
A mother skips meals so her kids can eat.
Both stories ran in the Times the same day,
Where we can learn one more time that
Money talks while all else walks, right
Down to the shelter or out on the street
Where you'll suffer the stings and arrows
Of discarded needles, an empty belly
And the loss of all hope.
America? America!

George Salamon lives and writes in St. Louis, MO, at the center of our nation's heartland.