Submission Guidelines: Send unpublished poems in the body of an email (NO ATTACHMENTS) to nvneditor[at] No simultaneous submissions.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.

Tuesday, September 08, 2020


by Janet Shainheit

We keep our eyes peeled, our chins up, our fingers crossed. Feet
planted firmly on the ground.  We keep our heads.  Keep noses
to their respective grindstones.

We earn our keep.  Keep it safe.  Keep body and soul together.
Keep busy.  Keep up the pace.  Try to keep ourselves and those we
love from harm.  We keep at it.  Keep going.
Keep our upper lips stiff.
Keep on truckin’.

We keep secrets, memories, friends.  We keep in touch.
Keep watch on the world, up with the news.  Keep tabs on
what’s what and who’s who.
Keep score.

We keep our word.  We keep strong in troubled seas.
We struggle to keep the flame of truth
on an altar of honor.

Janet Shainheit lives and writes in Worcester, MA. She is a happily retired school librarian, and the grateful friend of poetry and poets.