Category: 04. February

Appendectomy Over Axis Waters by Liza Bachman

I snap the blade into the scalpel’s handle . . . Metal tongue, the violator’s shaft, is familiar to my hand . . . . . . . . . the long nails of a vamp should suit me better The brusque soldier, .… Continue Reading “Appendectomy Over Axis Waters by Liza Bachman”

It was spring and the aliens had landed by Liza Bachman

Landed for real this time and not just another tale by Old Man Haggardy of Martians crushing his mailbox or souring his cow’s milk. No, the aliens were here, and here to stay, applying for Social Security and buying double-wides down by the quarry.… Continue Reading “It was spring and the aliens had landed by Liza Bachman”

A Final Note On The Weight of Breath by Andy Buck

napping… one eye (the Left) to the public’s people naked and the Other sliced by shadow breathing inches into the upper arm: of Me, hidden this is me dopey eyed for a buffet of strangers (or “By”) but all at the same time darting… Continue Reading “A Final Note On The Weight of Breath by Andy Buck”

A Strong Desire for Something Filling by Deborah Byrne

I spend time in grocery stores. Eying food, touching the lightness of bread, savoring the dirt smell of tomatoes. I’m a hungry person. Our mother brought home a puppy we couldn’t afford to feed. She locked it in the shed that held ghosts of… Continue Reading “A Strong Desire for Something Filling by Deborah Byrne”

Devil Sighting in Kidron, Ohio by Deborah Byrne

The women stir cauldrons of apple butter in rhythm to screams. They don’t look up as windows shatter and animal howls strike loose the last leaves of a sugar maple. I am told this is how the Amish take care of their insane. They… Continue Reading “Devil Sighting in Kidron, Ohio by Deborah Byrne”

Farthest Thoughts by Deborah Byrne

Mummy fragments were stolen, broken up and crushed into powder, which was sold as an aphrodisiac well into the 18th century. -From The Search for Ancient Egypt No stone husband. No clay lovers. She’s been left with alabaster servants to face the length of… Continue Reading “Farthest Thoughts by Deborah Byrne”

After Fumigation by Dee Cohen

A week after fumigation the Jade plant out front dropped its leaves, small fleshy pads littered the courtyard and I pushbroomed them into piles, the cement stained and slippery with their juice. Within a month the bark puckered and pulled away from the inside… Continue Reading “After Fumigation by Dee Cohen”

Another Country by Dee Cohen

There is a problem with the calendar. Days flip by like cards from a deck and years change number without warning. All those holidays circled in red belong to people that don’t belong to you. Your house is a shell that the seasons bang… Continue Reading “Another Country by Dee Cohen”

Catalina by Dee Cohen

The ocean is strange from this direction, sharp stoned and bottle green. Waves wear down the rusty cliffs and spill out over the coarse sand. You are on the other side, waiting, your mouth a thin horizon of doubt. At night the hills lean… Continue Reading “Catalina by Dee Cohen”

Another language by Solana (Sunny) d’Lamant

When I learn to read, I’ll write in a language which describes in one sentance clear spaces, that will explain the depths of transparent water, that will depict the value of eddies or darkness, that will verify what the wind said through flight-feathers of… Continue Reading “Another language by Solana (Sunny) d’Lamant”

Sylvia’s Fire by Solana (Sunny) d’Lamant

I want to be kissed until I free-fall from pink marble cliffs into the unknown canyons of your mouth. I want to fall into the feathered softness of thick lips like lippows from where I¹ll have to float back to conscious light. Kissed until… Continue Reading “Sylvia’s Fire by Solana (Sunny) d’Lamant”

LINDO BRUCHE by robert klein engler

And now that I have seen what he’s become, I pause surprised! Why he is mortal, too. For just as I have soured, and bent from plumb, So he refused the grace from false to true. There was a time when I was starved… Continue Reading “LINDO BRUCHE by robert klein engler”

Beyond the Foliage by David Harbilas

___A man from a slate quarry saw leaves turn their colors and sensed his imminent death. He paced his bags and drove south, beyond the foliage. ___The trees there changed, so he drove away again. This continued for a while until he came to… Continue Reading “Beyond the Foliage by David Harbilas”

Midnight Snack by David Harbilas

Unfinished arguments left on dinner plates, with a telephone that speaks of adultery.

The Conversation by David Harbilas

__A room talks to itself, the man inside doesn’t answer, and it raises its voice. Down the hall another room hears this ranting and answers in a raised tone. Neither can understand the other,these two rooms speaking in tongues. __After a while, the man… Continue Reading “The Conversation by David Harbilas”

The Critics by David Harbilas

The party crowd under dire lights holding false sacraments, and the laughing couple in the corner with sharp tongues.

La Lumièr (For Carole) by Miriam Kalman Harris

Sometimes it’s hard to talk. Lines of communication grow dusty and sag under the burden of time. I emerged from my study for a breath of fresh air — it gets stagnant in there: papers pile up and I trip over my own debris… Continue Reading “La Lumièr (For Carole) by Miriam Kalman Harris”

Of Headlines and Morning Coffee: A Sestina by Michelle Holland

How persistent is the round morning sun to belong over the rocky pipes of the Organ Mountains? The rays like a bell have rung out each day clear to the west for eons of peace long before our human gaze. Now, we ignore the… Continue Reading “Of Headlines and Morning Coffee: A Sestina by Michelle Holland”

A Dream of One Autumn by J. Anna Jacus

In the late afternoon a woman kneels before another woman’s grave. She is laying down some orange flowers on the dead leaves. She is burning incense. When she is done, she rises and walks southward, past the trees to another grave. There is a… Continue Reading “A Dream of One Autumn by J. Anna Jacus”

The Razor by J. Anna Jacus

My father is dead this morning. I must wash my hair. (Mother says the guests will soon be here.) The water must run from the tap a while before it warms. He must have waited earlier. … Impatient man.

those days… by Tobey Kaplan

It’s people like you who make a difference __________a note sent to the 49er’s Eddie DeBartolo from a child, and appeared on a milk container those days we want to smoke cigerettes or throw away rather than diligently recycle plastic bags as if language… Continue Reading “those days… by Tobey Kaplan”

Joe’s Siblings by Lori Kean

They bake a cake every year and we celebrate you. They know your name and they know how old you would have been this year. They don’t know about the aching that creeps into my arms in the night still. After all this time.… Continue Reading “Joe’s Siblings by Lori Kean”

Hometown Song by Melody King

My hometown ___slick .45 smoking ___burning like a cigarette butt ___wasted in the gutter Ugly ___steel gray smokestacks ___fingering the sky ___with ruthless claws Frustrating ___promising trains sighing freedom ___catch me ___vanishing ghost in the mist Siren’s screaming bass shaking cadillac slammed down to… Continue Reading “Hometown Song by Melody King”

Run for It by Susanna Lang

At the end of its oh so very long string the kite whipsaws its way into the air red-faced and angry that it cannot go where it will like the dark blur of the dragonfly down near the grass

She Really Did by Susanna Lang

She said, My birth mark is the shape of Africa. So now you try: lift an entire continent up in your arms and then walk down the hall, your hips still dancing wide beneath that weight. Now just you try.

Shiva by Susanna Lang

Murmurs a little in his sleep lips push in push out wakes up hungry hungry Can’t be still can’t can’t not cry fist clenched, ankle flexed jerks his head back, holding the nipple still in his mouth ____________In New Delhi the price of milk… Continue Reading “Shiva by Susanna Lang”

Blue Rain by Barbara F. Lefcowitz

If you’ve ever seen blue rain please explain to me when and where. I promise I won’t steal so much as a fringe. Tell me if it was closer to a peacock or prairie-grass blue, the blue edge of elegant paper, blue thread inside… Continue Reading “Blue Rain by Barbara F. Lefcowitz”

Color Key by Barbara F. Lefcowitz

* To burn off the layers of sleep the red poem appears all at once in the scrawl of a dream hastily recalled before its fire dies leaving neither ashes nor a fine black linen rash on the bed-clothes. * An acquired taste, the… Continue Reading “Color Key by Barbara F. Lefcowitz”

rain shadows by Barbara F. Lefcowitz

Long a student of rain I was glad to discover yet another dimension of its many shadows. This time not feathery stripes or braided strands but white-rimmed dark ovals scudding across a page. If I didn’t know they’d been cast by the rain streaming… Continue Reading “rain shadows by Barbara F. Lefcowitz”

Those Left Behind by Barbara F. Lefcowitz

For Jackie Robinson, W.B. Yeats, Schubert, Blake (both Eubie & William), Einstein, Christ, my mother & my Uncle Leo. . .and especially all who waved from the train stations in Vilna & Riga & Pinsk, ca. 1900 After the last wave, they walked home… Continue Reading “Those Left Behind by Barbara F. Lefcowitz”

Lone Wolf @MM by Timothy M. Leonard

everything here comes from somewhere tibetan prayer wheels spinning mantras, thangkas, prayer flags, delicate chinese snuff bottles, old tomb warriors guarding shy women caught in foreign relationships living in clever cities crowded by historical mystery and world children geringsing – magical protective purity cloth… Continue Reading “Lone Wolf @MM by Timothy M. Leonard”

BIG KNIFE POET by Fred Longworth

He was the kind of poet who threatened to commit suicide right there at the microphone if the audience didn’t clap loud or long enough, or if they didn’t drop enough money into the tip jar, or if somebody in the back was jabbering… Continue Reading “BIG KNIFE POET by Fred Longworth”

Conch by Ed Madden

(at a tourist shop on the interstate, north Florida) No, not ruddy, but pale rust cut with yellow-bone of ocean, a chunk of dawn sky. Across the knots and jags that swirl the crown: a gash. No, not the crack of beak or tooth,… Continue Reading “Conch by Ed Madden”

The Walls by m k mcclure

Pickets pay no mind during weekday release. Legally on the ground, he walks away with 50 bucks & a fair voucher in second hand pockets. First expenses: a jalepeño burger instead of chow & sunmart beer instead of chalk….a smoke… In La Libre, he… Continue Reading “The Walls by m k mcclure”

The Sea from San Pedro, Pt. Fermin Park by David Newman

The waves come in optimism, two seagulls mimic nonchalantly & one swoops down, then upwards floating – it’s sea – the air Off the sad horizon a jagged long stretch of mountain leisurely boasting, “it is, I, you’ve no doubt heard of, the California… Continue Reading “The Sea from San Pedro, Pt. Fermin Park by David Newman”

The Fort by Bobby Offerdahl

I don’t know how we got there Or why they let us play that day, But some of the details are still clear Of the fort they built out of Fallen trees and pieces of dry rot tarp fashioned like a tepee. It was… Continue Reading “The Fort by Bobby Offerdahl”

The Longing by Bobby Offerdahl

Trying to find solitude In red and yellow Tumbling fall leaves And a kite flying breeze Blowing in from the west. It’s the fifth year I’ve been on my own Since that fateful day When I nearly never saw This season anymore. Time spent… Continue Reading “The Longing by Bobby Offerdahl”

slow notes found rhythms by Rex Pryor

they move slow 27 days in the state pen and they already know there is no hurry they them and it will be there when they arrive whatever time that may be sure enough they move faster to chow it is scheduled at a… Continue Reading “slow notes found rhythms by Rex Pryor”

The Cut by Shoshauna Shy

Receiving the championship trophy can be bittersweet Just ask any player on the best team for a 60-mile radius how it feels to have the coach call day the season ends Sorry, bud, you been replaced Didn’t want to do it but your timing’s… Continue Reading “The Cut by Shoshauna Shy”

Under the Chapel by Judah Skoff

Under the chapel The priest knelt while The dust collected and Prayer ensued. Over on the beach Under a streak of white Darkness Walked a calm bird Who pecked and prowled Where the raven sun Cried at hearts. The pew with dust and cobwebs… Continue Reading “Under the Chapel by Judah Skoff”

Comfort & Joy by Christopher Soden

For David It was less than a week until Christmas and the friends at my party were feeling rushy and effusive. Laughter brimmed. Singing and spilling and driven, endless, emotional conversations. Luxurious hugs and enormous smooches. Frenetic gags and anecdotes. Fine mist of alcohol… Continue Reading “Comfort & Joy by Christopher Soden”

Continuity by Daniel Sumrall

Air, only a few degrees away from the scent of snow, possessing no echo, other than resonance across slopes tight and coarse like skin, voices. Through the windshield, behind the shade over my eyes, lost distinguishing distancing myriad textures over the land underneath. Highway… Continue Reading “Continuity by Daniel Sumrall”

Memorial Day by Edward Wier

On the back porch In the early evening, Around the old aluminum table with the smell of citronella Under the pine trees, Between the horns of Sousa, During the quieter parts My parent’s voices leak through Like battle cries In contrapuntal dissonance. Mother’s high… Continue Reading “Memorial Day by Edward Wier”

Under the Chapel by Judah Skoff

Under the chapel The priest knelt while The dust collected and Prayer ensued. Over on the beach Under a streak of white Darkness Walked a calm bird Who pecked and prowled Where the raven sun Cried at hearts. The pew with dust and cobwebs… Continue Reading “Under the Chapel by Judah Skoff”