Category: 67. May

Ablaut Reduplication by Alan L. Birkelbach

Things must be in this order then: Opinion, size, age, shape, color, noun. And so on. It is an easy enough thing to remember. Sweet small young round brown bear. The mnemonics of our lives. Don’t say it another way. You will be made…

Finally Setting Questions Aside by Alan L. Birkelbach

To be distrustful of questions is the best way to translate three ravens clustered in front of a house I was considering buying. Even just a few months ago I would have steeped the moment with symbolism. The sheen of wing. Their beaded eyes…

Ten Months After The Divorce by Alan L. Birkelbach

It is a cave we can only see at low-tide, the moss drifting like the hair of drowned mermaids, the sea-stars clinging futilely to the rocks.

What is Significant by Alan L. Birkelbach

Sitting on a bench at the dog park a younger woman, someone who I assumed was intelligent because she was attractive, said to me, “You have a dangerous dog breed.” A single man has to double-consider statements like that. When God leaned over to…

When they would tear books up so they wouldn’t be resold by Alan L. Birkelbach

It was always New Year’s of a sort I guess. That book was last year’s gospel. You can’t read it anymore. Here’s a new and different one. It was like getting dumped in junior high by a girl. Everything had changed! You leaned blind…

Sheep in Space by Kevin Acers

I lose myself in daydreams of a sheep- throwing contest on the moon. Distance wins points. Bonus points are earned for every sheep that lands upright and magically prances away, launching itself with strange floating grace. Is there, somewhere, an animal whose mind drifts…

The Emperor of America by Kevin Acers

Wistfully I long for the day when the Emperor of America forgoes the affairs of state and instead sits all night at his lamp-lit desk absorbed in composing sonnets in tribute to a girl he’d admired as a schoolboy. Sipping peppermint tea, lips silently…

Eternal Ocean by Gavin Austin

I sit on the bench and borrow the view; a small brass plaque spells out your name as I hope you have all your answers now. I watch the waves roll onto the shore: the sea’s eternal gnashing at the land. Your ashes long…

Something I Could Count On by Dennis J Bernstein

There were two thousand red bricks that made up the front facade of the high school I would eventually drop out of. I counted them on a daily basis, as I waited for my step-dad to come pick me up after class. Some days…

From Scottish Dialect by Lew Caccia

Whenever I think, some notion in the cloud or other confluence that floats the mooring will seize upon the wonderful convenience, joukery-pawkery. That bluster, “To duck, to dodge,” has danced into its corner so few adherents. Like a hollow barrel the empty drum thinly…

Eternity Turn by Winston Derden

Consider the cleverness of the Cooper’s hawk who glides disguised the upslope of the roof, crests the ridge, and dives on pigeons perched at the feeder hanging from the eave next door: the crash and sway, the spilling of seeds, the prey pinned against…

Writer’s Bloc by Ray Greenblatt

____Body clenched for months ____with mittens we try to clutch ____the transparent word. ____Humidity wraps round us ____hot towels obscuring the eye ____our achievement a few drips. My inspiration lies as flat as that new rolled field, not a sprig, a twig sneaking up….

What Part of No by Patricia L. Hamilton

Don’t you understand? You could be her grandfather. Falcon stooping prey. Fresh-picked berry, crushed. Fragrant blossom cast aside. Hummingbird wing, cut. Cloak yourself in shame. No excuses. Douse the fire, stir the embers cold. Lust exposed to light: your name a scrap of paper,…

Bat by John A Hicks

At first, I thought a brown dress glove on the floor of the parking garage, its seams raised like tendon lines stiffening the back of my hand. A life exhaled was folded flat, composed like rain-dried leather. The BMW was in my space again….

Blue Ghost by Michael Keshigian

Her eyes and the lake are his memories, cobalt images of clarity and purity, running deep. It was in this cove where the black spotted loon dove head first into the heart of blue, attracting the tender pulse of her affection inciting her to…

What To Do With Intangibleles by Michael Keshigian

Early morning, snow teases the outstretched branches of birch with help from the wind. It is cold, but inside the stove’s warmth cradles the recliner in the lamplight where he reads poems. His fingers, thick and calloused, flip pages enthusiastically. He notices the shape…

Never Date an Egyptologist by John David Muth

This is grand prize for third date. Slowly, I enter relishing the warmth as it permeates. My weight settles: a sinking ship completing its watery descent. Face to face she is deep in thought tells me ancient Egyptian women inserted crocodile dung into their…

Old Acquaintance by Robert Nisbet

The village social, New Year’s Eve, and he’s back from Cardiff, back in the new routine, the old routine he’s hankered for. At ten to twelve, the Okey-Cokey. You put your left leg in, your left leg out, and there she is (hey, they’re…

Untitled Poem by Simon Perchik

This spoon all night on tiptoe listening for the careless splash that will never make it back –the cup half hazelnut, black, half filled so its prey can be tracked in the dark the way one mouth finds another feeds on the voice that…

After Four Years There, I Decide to Get a Phone by Samuel Prestridge

Where people get, no owls stay, a quibbling I picked with night, when further down the road the new guy hauled in lights, a trailer, bull-dozed his land, bought pit bulls, started raising rabbits. No one’s here but me. Still, he posted signs. What…

The Moors by Martin A. Ramos

1 Victrola records scratched and scarred, the letters of van Gogh unread, and poems to be painted, corrected and filed after the words form, gently bidden. 2 I write a calculus for the intellect and find a dust bin for desire. The writing is…

Twisters in Sequence by Martin A. Ramos

In April two lovers sit on a park bench. Pigeons pivot overhead. Kernels of corn at the lovers’ feet. Not just pigeons does their love feed. During the summer months, their love is like the red of roses: vibrant, brilliant. If only roses didn’t…

Object by Bill Richard

like any other object, she said. Don’t worry. They’ll observe you as they would a vase or a tree. A series of angles, planes, light, and shadow. I’m okay offering myself for scrutiny, step warily onto the platform, letting inhibitions slip to the floor…

Juliet Balcony #2 by Kevin Ridgeway

I’m making eyes at the brown haired beauty on the opposing balcony both of us in his and her matching bathrobes, mine at a conservative length, hers mid thigh as she teases me with her cigarette and I with mine and I really think…

The Library by Gillian Telford

You grew into yourself knowing little about life except through books. Each leaf-vein, snake-skin, thumbprint wrought second hand- experience shaped forever, tacked together, then tucked into the bodice of your heart. So many words helped you to grieve or offered balm when all seemed…

A Suspicion of Omens by Michele Waering

Ten magpies—one leucistic—perch on barbed wire above the railway line five either side of a crow a suspicion of omens from my window an honor-guard a statement of strength in numbers a warning a school for omens a lecture theatre awaiting the crow’s wisdom…

Rain Elegy by Maryfrances Wagner

All night the dog whined through strikes and flashes while rain pelted the skylight and sang through our gutters. Morning hung over with lost limbs, petals stuck to the patio, I steered the dog across soggy yard, past runoff. I remembered the summer the…

Tonight by Loretta Diane Walker

 ”I keep having this dream that there is a garden   growing inside my chest, under the bones.”   ~ Melissa Studdard  Tonight is an eye feast: the honeysuckle climbing over pickets in a long chain-link fence, the soft swirl of wind teasing the topmost…

curtains by Rob Walker

curtains of her long-lost love in household chores where dust is found a crossword puzzle of her loss scattered wide on kitchen tiles, withered, seemed like toilet bowls which needed harpic now to shine. groceries to put away. so much to do. so little…

Venus and the Moon by Rob Walker

Marino Rocks Midwinter night we share a glass of wine Atop these seaside cliffs Gazing out beyond the sea’s black hole. Dark cloud clears. The new moon’s shine A sharpened pair of horns. Perhaps a bowl. Beside it Venus in orbit shifts, Rising as…

Boom Car by Diane Webster

The boom car stomps its music up and down the street while inside houses dishes clatter a rattlesnake warning, and cranked-up bass bounces sound waves off T-shirts and blouses of residents watching the car pass a parade full of mad, marching bands.

I Find it Strangely Comforting by Ken Wheatcroft-Pardue

That some patch of dust on that hard-to-get-to shelf yonder could be dead skin cells sloughed off her bent, pain-racked body more than 2 years ago now. Or that some microbial creature still spirals through my twisted, maze-like intestines, a parting gift from her,…

In the botanicum by Jesse Wolfe

Moonlight pools, as if delayed, in the folds of the duvet, her second husband sleeping, lips pursed, as if rehearsing. He spoke in his sleep their first night together. She marvels at how he remembers dreams. Over coffee he’ll describe his sister appearing at…