Category: 05. May

Fulfilled by Jennifer Rightmyer

Our first time together. You kiss my berry lips So tenderly. As I unwrap myself From my shell Your hands search My body: Uncovering every hill And valley. My Flesh is like a peach That you devour. Your love Melts in my mouth As… Continue Reading “Fulfilled by Jennifer Rightmyer”

Sentiments in Raw Heat by Tyurina Allen

You stand still, the pom pom of a world. It’s revolver voices loom over the budding announcements, Like black morning coffee. It exclaims nothing of my true disability. The New York birth to the foreign parentage. Whispering voices: “are you transparent?” No, I was… Continue Reading “Sentiments in Raw Heat by Tyurina Allen”

April Afternoon by Nancy Arbuthnot

On this windy April afternoon cherries in full bloom and hemlock bowing and bamboo bending as the zen proverb tells us we should learn to do; on this afternoon I lie on the couch watching clouds pass and think, first, of that almost other… Continue Reading “April Afternoon by Nancy Arbuthnot”

eye on the ball by Sienna Baskin

from the bank where we sit, rain on our knees, its a chalked smudge, but I see it clear. Like a spotlight focused on me. Like an eye, coy. It winks out behind the partner dance of teams, bodies threading, near collision disappears into… Continue Reading “eye on the ball by Sienna Baskin”

Religious Music by Michael Bigley

Walking through the front door, drunk, and the piano waltzes in the dark towards me and back. As today, when she played Monk, her forearms quivering over the last chord, the E way above the root F, clear, repeated. We had wine downtown. Stepping… Continue Reading “Religious Music by Michael Bigley”

poem by Toby Leah Bochan

This poem is about a rhyme. It was written by a small white boy at school, at lunchtime. No. It is about a juniper tree that breaks its branches against a wind blasted from the blind bomb of Hiroshima. A Japanese woman wrote it.… Continue Reading “poem by Toby Leah Bochan”

It is in dying by Alice Bolstridge

_ “It is in dying that we are born” – St. Francis of Assisi How do you help your brother die? I asked the hills along my drive to see him. What do you say? What do you do? Wind rattled the windows, shook… Continue Reading “It is in dying by Alice Bolstridge”

Guy in Paris by Beau Boudreaux

On my last evening with Dominique, we sat at one of the outside tables at Vidanges while les voyou on Vespas wailed through the Rue du Faubourg-St-Honere and spoke again about changing my life: start doing something meaningful — perhaps taking tennis seriously or… Continue Reading “Guy in Paris by Beau Boudreaux”

Piety and Desire by Beau Boudreaux

We should have known. Without a hint the moon darkens on time and I get bored about three or four A.M. You’re off with friends or working in the basement of the house. So I go out to stroll down one of these streets… Continue Reading “Piety and Desire by Beau Boudreaux”

Marilyn and Jonalyn by Deborah Byrne

Twice a month, our mothers went to the Kontiki Palace. Told us tales that made us want to be old enough to date- gussied up in rhinestone strap dresses, shoes dyed to match, going with the greased-back-hair guys dressed in shark skin suits that… Continue Reading “Marilyn and Jonalyn by Deborah Byrne”

Honey by Dane Cervine

Waiting amid rows and rows of cars thick as a beehive waiting for the shuttle that will carry me to the plane that will carry me to the next place I must be waiting in this catacomb of drones each car the armor that… Continue Reading “Honey by Dane Cervine”

Assimilation by Rebecca Clark

The man stands here at the edge of our road crowned by a fur Cossack hat robed in leather jacket pondering the muddy ditch as if the answer runs there to questions that sit in his dark eyes, rimmed by something not yet grasped,… Continue Reading “Assimilation by Rebecca Clark”

MOMENTS by Lucille Lang Day

1. Black waves break in full moonlight, making liquid silver slip across the strand. We step back from the froth, stand in the roar of surf, arms wrapped around each other while all the fires on the beach burn low and I dig my… Continue Reading “MOMENTS by Lucille Lang Day”

I Have Left the Moth on the Wall Alive by Rebecca Jean Dosch

as one of my desperate prayers. I am waiting to be unfolded like a guest towel in your hands. Desire stole away on the four a.m. train, crazed fool. Pressing the bullhorn more than necessary, she shatters the neighbors’ dreams into the icy shards… Continue Reading “I Have Left the Moth on the Wall Alive by Rebecca Jean Dosch”

Front Porch at 1:00 a.m. Monday by marion k. dunn

______instead of sleeping: empty wine bottle reflects the glow from used cigarettes solitary tea rose incenses my arm faint sirens call thin clusters hide dippers in a slow drift Aaron Neville crickets & cicadas freed from little monsters stuck to red brick harmonize instead… Continue Reading “Front Porch at 1:00 a.m. Monday by marion k. dunn”

Ennui by Claire T. Feild

When he scratched his matted gray hair that looked like the throw rug on the floor, the only reminder in his house of his grandmother, the one who raised him with the belief that he was sweet gold, he cried, not the whimper cry… Continue Reading “Ennui by Claire T. Feild”

Sunshine Dried Fuzzy Navels by John Micheal Flynn

Venice Beach Sunday afternoon roof she was completely naked tanned nipple-pierced and blown-out-on-crack surrounded by stud muffins, surfers and gangsta rap wanna-bees she shouted her free speech anthem at a pair of sandaled black women, who as fearful pedestrians wanted nothing but a little… Continue Reading “Sunshine Dried Fuzzy Navels by John Micheal Flynn”

Thoughts Of An Actor Employed As Goofy by John Micheal Flynn

Escape beckons their type. ____Son, nervous on Ritalin mass-produced by Disney ____paying homage to deities. Mother tells him he should not forget ____those others…the unlucky ones. Mother and son pray together. ____A father has never been in the picture. Little in the air smells… Continue Reading “Thoughts Of An Actor Employed As Goofy by John Micheal Flynn”

The Boy Found Floating in Mud by Larry L. Fontenot

He was shaped by the absence of earth, day-dried clay scooped away to reveal the clean smell left when mud failed to kill him. Stranger’s hands drilled into his dying, lifting him like a bridge to starlight. His body arched in homage to fingers… Continue Reading “The Boy Found Floating in Mud by Larry L. Fontenot”

El Parque Central by Kevin Frey

El Parque Central, Antigua Guatemala two young girls in traje crying their mother laughs and comforts them and returns to work selling camisas to tourists seeking some local color the older homeless woman is still on her feet, her thin dirty legs poking out… Continue Reading “El Parque Central by Kevin Frey”

Lampreys by Kevin Frey

And through the gaps between the bodies tightly pressed around me I see others staring at this young white guy as he sucks the lesions on his skin, bites off the festered, clotted blood; scabs on his face, scabs on his arms. Spatters of… Continue Reading “Lampreys by Kevin Frey”

Stowaway by Marcia Griswold

My blood in a tube in a room far away from here from me. Prophylactic hands amputated from sense numb to me decide the recipe of my future. Or not. And the rest of me far away from there this film a worthless balm… Continue Reading “Stowaway by Marcia Griswold”

I Knew a Black Man by J. Wesley Hall

I knew a black man once. He stood laughing darker than night, invisible in the absence of light, seeing only the comic in our gross misperceptions. “What a collection of brown fools,” said he at his recognition of our folly in the foolhardy race… Continue Reading “I Knew a Black Man by J. Wesley Hall”

At the Audition by Tom Harmon

She slid tiny feet into ballet slippers and soared in swirls around the room arms extended body-suited defying gravity. Suspended in that moment I wished my fingers could dance across strings making the old Martin sing songs worthy of her sailing space and time… Continue Reading “At the Audition by Tom Harmon”

At the Audition by Tom Harmon

She slid tiny feet into ballet slippers and soared in swirls around the room arms extended body-suited defying gravity. Suspended in that moment I wished my fingers could dance across strings making the old Martin sing songs worthy of her sailing space and time… Continue Reading “At the Audition by Tom Harmon”

Saturday Morning by Tom Harmon

In simple single water orbs winter fell from the eave _______drop _______plop _______drop _______plop with interminable spells between. We watched and listened _______through windows yawned wide _______for spring’s first breath nursing coffee in the breakfast nook and musings on time’s incongruities: how quickly the… Continue Reading “Saturday Morning by Tom Harmon”

LIMIT by Dale Jordan Heath

She took the stash from a flowerless vase and wiped her streaked face–again, and took the box that stored tiny shoes unraveling pink and blue and Winnie the Pooh bibs amid other what might have been. A suitcase holding little more than a memory… Continue Reading “LIMIT by Dale Jordan Heath”

O’Toole in Heaven by tiff holland

No doubt the God of his childhood will come for him, despite the killing, war another sort of religion, after all, and the profanities, including those impossible for corporeal beings, because it’s obvious he didn’t mean any of it, just trying to survive through… Continue Reading “O’Toole in Heaven by tiff holland”

A Drowning at the Beijing Opera by Li Min Hua

Ravaged, she jumps Miming a horseman, her lover arrives too late; peers down the well; guesses what we just saw: With five perfect somersaults he hurls himself in air, lands on his feet, but leaves us there. The west buries such talent at the… Continue Reading “A Drowning at the Beijing Opera by Li Min Hua”

LUCY by Karen Jobst

Just off-center of her crown was a wound, a ration of scar tissue we’d run our fingers over whenever we called her to sit, or to go fetch a chew from across the floor. She’d been found down by the creek. Her oversize paws… Continue Reading “LUCY by Karen Jobst”

Summer Storm by Karen Jobst

Longer than we could safely stand at the window, rain and hail razed our lot and midway through– the willow’s limbs, some the circumference of telephone poles, had jackknifed over the fence. Half a tree– one side wistful, the other serrated stumps, still had… Continue Reading “Summer Storm by Karen Jobst”

Akko: The Memory of the Prisoners of the Underground by Steven Joyce

Like a Chihuly glass chandelier these lives drawn and pressed in the heat of political fury the artisans of this work neither Brits nor Jews Etzel and Lechi fighters spun like glass this heroism breaks in the dark room in the unrecorded moments smooth… Continue Reading “Akko: The Memory of the Prisoners of the Underground by Steven Joyce”

Flap by Nathan Julian

A tribe of birds gather, drab, on my neighbor’s roof. Clawing shingled ledges, they squat single file on power lines, in the gut of a morning fog. Furtively, the fowls scatter like a winged cluster-bomb at the alert of a squirrel’s frantic scampering; making… Continue Reading “Flap by Nathan Julian”

Undone Paralysis by Brian P. Katz

There is nothing worse than “nothing worse” — the scene of childhood trauma absent familiars and useful fingers throttle the estrangement of face the turtleneck doesn’t conceal. The rip along the shoulder line is cause — I am open to everything. Lay it on… Continue Reading “Undone Paralysis by Brian P. Katz”

Early Signs by Lori Kean

The road ban notices went up sometime last week, forcing the low howl of 18 wheels down my way. And after them will come the gravel trucks, back and forth, back and forth; always another load, another job, all summer long. But for now… Continue Reading “Early Signs by Lori Kean”

In God We Trust by Lori Kean

The copper (or whatever they’re made of these days) glints in the noonday sun, pulling my attention away from other, less sparkling thoughts. I stop and stare for a moment, deciphering and distinguishing, quickly executing my singular health ritual of always assessing worth versus… Continue Reading “In God We Trust by Lori Kean”

The Dead Leaf by Lori Kean

I watched it through the blue-green bar of my upper windshield while waiting for the light to change. It was a Monday. I sensed before it even happened that this pneuma of summer, this once giver of shade and refuge would surrender its instinctive… Continue Reading “The Dead Leaf by Lori Kean”

Vegas by Joseph Kerschbaum

She stands by the velvet rope. Keeps minors out of the casino. Watching her father stand at a table with his back to her. She isn’t dressed like the whores. Yellow sunshine dress. Sky blue shoes. Frail like a twig she begins to twitch… Continue Reading “Vegas by Joseph Kerschbaum”

Ms. Doe by Ron Lavalette

She was old, so they beat her severely. She was old: they kidnapped her, drove her away stuffed in the back of her own stolen car. She was old. When she regained consciousness they stabbed her repeatedly with her own stolen steak knife and… Continue Reading “Ms. Doe by Ron Lavalette”

What the River Knows by Barbara F. Lefcowitz

The river remembers nothing about the string of white pebbles that moments ago gleamed from the edge of the bank where I kneel. Nor does the river recall the splash of the child¹s shoe when it slipped from that bank the feel of its… Continue Reading “What the River Knows by Barbara F. Lefcowitz”

Sweet by Rebekah Love

In the absolute darkness of your front porch I kissed you like I’d wanted yesterday in the gallery as I watched you pull prints of the bull snake who’d climbed the back of the tapestried chair at your old landlady’s house and all I… Continue Reading “Sweet by Rebekah Love”

Bulb by Tom Moore

The first fall it stayed in the shoebox in the closet in the hall it talked to itself about the dog that once ran its tongue along the lid of the box that went away when it heard a sound that never came back… Continue Reading “Bulb by Tom Moore”

the airplane by J.B. Mulligan

Taken for granted: a plane: thin, high, distant, silver. Noticed, then forgotten, like a breath. Or not noticed, part of an empty sky over empty scurrying, or dull, purposed, hungering endeavor. Who thinks of the dreamers, drawers, builders and early fliers? Da Vinci, the… Continue Reading “the airplane by J.B. Mulligan”

woodswalking by J.B. Mulligan

Leaves of the previous autumn are mulch between the trees, the speckled skin of a leopard stretching up the hill to the charcoal rocks, slick and jumbled, and the setting sun. Beyond the rocks, I see an off-white building with a red roof and… Continue Reading “woodswalking by J.B. Mulligan”

5 Haiku Concerning Chicanismo by Daniel A. Olivas

I. Chicanismo? you ask. I do not understand what the big deal is. II. I try, using my Stanford and UCLA degrees, and you shrug. III. Born in this great land, but of Mexican parents, two cultures beckon. IV. So, I say to you,… Continue Reading “5 Haiku Concerning Chicanismo by Daniel A. Olivas”

The Asking Tree by G.L. Pettigrew

The tree wants a brighter sun. The Tree wants clearer,cooler rain. The Tree, its old limbs and buds cut away, want itself shaped and Frost burns The Tree’s tender new shoots in early Spring. High Summer’s heat withers it. It is delicate and tiresome.… Continue Reading “The Asking Tree by G.L. Pettigrew”

“Happiness is an Option” by G.L. Pettigrew

There will be moments When the shrieking banshee storms the fierce beasts are at bay the face of night is no longer black as perdition but freckled with soft stars, light by the moon’s glowing beauty mark And all will be peace. It will… Continue Reading ““Happiness is an Option” by G.L. Pettigrew”

Shovel-song by Eric Plattner

Brain-coral of that time, arrested, mouse- tethered to the ditch, communion- hair-sift, her braid, her braid, her braid. . . You were there, Rosa, un- exhumed: pocket-full of soil and poems– a silence, a crack, a silence– the echo before the echo before the… Continue Reading “Shovel-song by Eric Plattner”

Perspectives by Gordon Purkis

At this distance the crows That are about to fly by the window Are the same size as the A-10 that Was just overhead a moment ago but Now far gone. And “the sound of the men working On the chain gang” clues me… Continue Reading “Perspectives by Gordon Purkis”

AN END TO DREAMING by Joanna C. Scott

…Manila, the eighties _______ Under dawn-bursting mangoes, skies dropping starfruit, _______lean palms slung with orchids like Christmas streamers in a child’s nursery, beside a glazed pool to which frogs _______and thin snakes fled during typhoons and were trapped there next day by two yipping… Continue Reading “AN END TO DREAMING by Joanna C. Scott”

REFUGEE by Joanna C. Scott

(Philippine Refugee Processing Center, Bataan, 1985, since destroyed in the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo) . . . for Roel, my driver He would squat in the shade All day beside a hulk Hoisted off some beach Where boat people had run Aground. Brushing away… Continue Reading “REFUGEE by Joanna C. Scott”

Are You Angry When You Write These? by arthur simoni

I once left one of my poetry journals on the table I was sitting at while I was tipping a stripper on the main stage, I went to take a piss and when I came back a stripper named Laylay had read some of… Continue Reading “Are You Angry When You Write These? by arthur simoni”

AUTOPHILIA by Bradley Steffens

Stood up for lunch, I visit the deli anyway, order, and wait outside. The sun is hot on my arms. I roll up my sleeves. I love to tan, freckles stippling the backs of my hands, forearms, wrists. Hairs brightening. The waiter brings my… Continue Reading “AUTOPHILIA by Bradley Steffens”

Broken Glass by Victoria Tester

On December 22, 1882, an old newspaper reports a demented woman was sent from Georgetown to the Grant County Jail. Sheriff Whitehill is at a loss, poor creature, New Mexico law makes no provision for paupers or the insane. Her name, where she was… Continue Reading “Broken Glass by Victoria Tester”

Descent by Victoria Tester

I come from people who would not forgive. They were Spanish Protestants who ran like hell from Cortrai to Holland and New Amsterdam, damning the Inquisition, and they were the Inquisition. They were Puritans who painted their kitchens _________in Connecticut and Massachusetts the bright… Continue Reading “Descent by Victoria Tester”

Blue Jeans by Kenneth Wanamaker

They might as well be relics from the Middle Ages, Shrouds of Turin paraded through the Vatican, or Fremont Street. Torn faded and fraz- zled in the knee you can barely read the words on the right rear pocket: Levi Strauss Original, Riveted, Quality… Continue Reading “Blue Jeans by Kenneth Wanamaker”

Village Voices by Frances White

I hear of runaway dreams Lost in urban places, spilled Over in halls used as personal Urinals, a nodding head stills, A once promising voice. I hear of deferred dreams Lost on manicured lawns, Spilled over in suburban walls. Shouts of “Daddy’s home” Stills… Continue Reading “Village Voices by Frances White”

A SMALL BOY by Patsy Ruth Williams

A small boy smiles to think he can be anything when he is a man

AN EYE LOOKS by Patsy Ruth Williams

Though an eye looks with a tear, A hand reaches with a smile. You know it’s another year. In life we will persevere And start to walk our next mile. Though an eye looks with a tear, There are things we hold with fear.… Continue Reading “AN EYE LOOKS by Patsy Ruth Williams”

TEARDROPS by Patsy Ruth Williams

I’ll catch your teardrops one by one in a bucket when they start to fall.

Dance of the Trees by Sallie Mattison Young

Verdant willows, xanthic yews, zestful aspens bounce, carefree; dancing elms, festive green, hootchie-kootch in jubilee. kiwis leaping, maples nod, oaks pulse quickly, resonate; spruces tremble, undulate.