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  • 08/05/14--17:51: A.J. Kaufmann - One Poem
  • Naked Bar-Do

    Sitting in the sand, wrapped in
    wind unwinding
    brain branches pine brainy
    beach crazy

    who would like a wife
    in addition to singing moles
    who wouldn't want to hide from the world
    in coastal trees
    & acid laced 7up

    sitting in auroras entangled
    before the morning light
    sitting clothed in airiness
    over the fresh bonfires glow

    where are the Slavic girls

    fun Sunday nudists

    whom even anarchists chase away from the beach

    hear the
    sirens already, war
    article of clothing commando
    -disappears- the corpse from the beach
    there, in the naked Bar-Do

    A.J. Kaufmann is from Poznan, Poland. His work has previously appeared in ditch, Carcinogenic Poetry, Clockwise Cat, Red Ceilings and many other, mostly on-line, journals. He's the author of "Siva in Rags" (Kendra Steiner Editions, 2008), "Broke Nuptial Minds" (Virgogray Press, 2009) and other poetry chapbooks.

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  • 08/06/14--14:37: Scott Vanya - One Poem
  • As Calliope and I Crawl into Bed Together

    As Calliope and I crawl in to bed together,
          it is with reckless
          I write this.

    Only 20 minutes to birth
          this bun in the oven,
          and she will wait
          not much

    And I know, she has had
          many other
          besides me,
          as I have had
    as well as her.

    Yet, none of them,
          Kali (see "Oblivion"),
          Death (see "Despair"),
          and the many things
    I have imbibed and ingested;

    as she and I crawl off to bed,
          so do you
          sleep with love
          and joy
          just waiting to be born,
          to be hatched
    from out of your flesh.

    And it will not be long,
          'fore she and I
          cast aside
          all the sheets
          and really
          get down to it.

    The love-making art,
          where the rhythms
          and pulse,
          pound and earth
    come rising out of us
          we entwine all
          of our-
          selves together.

    "Sleep now," she says.
    "You have done well," she says,
           "to honor me.
           and for you
    I will do the same."

    And even
    if there be
    no followers
    it is she who
    sits beside me as I write.

    We giggle a bit,
    and forget our loneliness,
    for soon we are
    to crawl off
    to bed together.

    And 'fore
    she and I do
    "Make The Wild Stuff"
    I leave you
    with these
    few words
    to perhaps
    coax a smile from your face:

    In all the world
    and uni-, multi-, or omni-
    there is only 1,
    only 1 you.
    And if you are to hear
    what inside you
    wants to be heard,
    you must sing at the top of you lungs:

    "I am only beginning now to understand,
    I can not die,
    and all The World
    my joy."

    Scott Vanya is an Austin, TX area poet. He has been writing for a long time and favors sharing his work at open mics where he performs extemporaneously and plays guitar. His work has appeared in Walt’s Corner, Manna, Perigee, Chicago Literary Review, Mobius, Cosmic Trend, Pitchfork, Romantics Quarterly, Artisan, Pegasus, The Neovictorian, and The Blind Man's Rainbow. He is author of poetry collections, Free for an Unlimited Time, Conduit's of the Sublime, and CarryAway Seeds. He operates Open Mics Austin, a blogsite that archives various Austin area open mics and performances. 

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  • 08/07/14--09:30: Trish Saunders - Two Poems
  • Belief Systems

    At 13, a terrifying and holy age,
    I believed life offers tentacles for greatness
    to everyone.

    It doesn't.

    I am older now than Bobby Kennedy, Gilda Radner,
    Martin Luther King, John Lennon.
    All my poor dead heroes--
    why did I picture you as lanterns in the sky?
    You are the blackness behind the stars.

    Catalog of Obsolete Lonely Sounds

    First, the old-fashioned dial tone,
    zenith of nothingness.
    Who invented that?  

    the not-quite silent radio 
    after Country K.A.R.L's
    sign-off prayer.

    blues singer fading to needle hiss
    as the victrola winds down
    in an empty room.

    at the tone the time will be
    three a.m.

    Trish Saunders worked as a journalist, technical editor, and caregiver for her parents before she began writing poems. She lives in Honolulu, Hawaii.

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    Family Housing

    I was born near the end of the runways
    On a Cold War, California
    Desert Air Force Base
    Phantom jets and F-105's
    Thundered overhead, and I slept as a baby
    Secure in my bed

    Clean, small, communities with familiar paces
    Retreat played every afternoon
    We stood up for our flag
    We'd ride our BX bikes anywhere,
    Pretending they were sleek, fighter planes
    In family housing

    New schools, every two or three years
    That clean, small town was movable,
    “Brat” was an endearing term
    We wore it with pride, like uniforms, like decoration

    Still, today, sometimes
    Life seems to make more sense
    The other side of the “100% ID check,
    Deadly Force Authorized” signs

    Where we all drive slow, in four door cars,
    And pickup trucks
    Family housing

    Where everything still stops
    For those bugles at the end of the duty day

    Where jet noise or turbo prop drone
    Does not scream “War” to me,

    But whispers of home.

    Water, BloodThe border is not chain link and wire
    Not concrete, steel, or guns
    It is the water that flows from snow melt
    And that nurtures sandia vines in the fields
    It is blood of the Earth
    Sangre de gente
    Spilled blood, life blood,
    Family and Faith

    The border is not history
    It is hope
    It is not yesterday
    It is today

    Never Work with Food
    (Field Workers in California)

    It is still about field workers in California
    But, it's also about fast food employees in Texas
    And packing plant laborers in Kansas

    Dogs, treated with more dignity
    Than those that manufacture
    Supermarket brand pet foods

    It isn't always about food
    Not always

    But, food is a damned good place to start
    Thinking about the 21st century
    Wage Slave

    How many families did you keep in poverty
    Shopping at the grocery store today?
    How many shitty jobs did you take away
    In tiny, speed-trap towns
    With your sheltered insistence on
    Gluten Free
    Non Hormone
    This or Gentrified That
    From a clean, well lighted, place?

    The Red in Red State Union busting
    Is the blood leaking onto our dinner platter
    The Fire sauce at Taco Bell,
    It polishes the floors at
    The Whole Foods corporate office in Texas

    In dirty slaughter house jeans or
    Pressed Wall-Mart Street suits,
    The stench is the same

    It is still about field workers in California
    Suffering and inequality are the diet of this nation

    Hate and fear, served for 99 cents in a paper wrapper
    White, male, privilege on the table every Sunday
    After church

    Where, we are taught to be prosperous;
    That, to be successful means
    To never work with food.

    PW Covington has been a fixture in the Texas Spoken word and Indie Lit scene for almost 20 years. His work has appeared in regional, national, and international journals, and he has published two collections of poetry. Covington recently released his first novel, titled "Dear Elsa,." PW lives in rural Lavaca County with his bulldog and tends family ranch land outside Cuero, Texas.

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  • 08/11/14--07:55: Grant Tabard - Two Poems
  • Primrose Hill, at Dawn

    The city appears out of the fold,
    like a great ghost leering over the horizon
    seeking imperfection in the cut of the sky.

    Purloined cloud vestments caress the tips
    of the grazing dawn, strange marriage vows
    encased in the blushing cheek of the sun.

    A paradox of vision that scares the viewer,
    the subconscious sighs,
    a systemic fear of beauty, it'll swallow you in heartache.

    A Bridge Over Moving Cars

    Weightlessness ringing
    a freedom ethereal,
    a space suspended

    hitched on the back of
    electric piano notes
    burnt from shadows that

    linger under a
    fortress of zephyr blankets,
    an illustrated

    manuscript of fog.
    Harmony in the roar, a
    montage of columns.

    I am smoke beyond
    the clouds, I am the Lord's breath
    above moving cars.

    Grant Tarbard has worked as a computer games journalist, a contributor
    to football fanzines, an editor, a reviewer and an interviewer. He is now the
    editor of The Screech Owl.

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  • 08/27/14--08:39: Joseph Saling - One Poem
  • When I Sleep I Dream

    When I sleep I dream, even though
    I can’t close my eyes. But in my head,
    I go away. Sitting at a piano
    on stage, I'm illumined
    by a single spot,
    and I can’t see beyond
    it's cone of light. I know
    the theater's full. I can hear
    the whispers and coughs
    and the hush settling over all.

    I raise my hands toward the keyboard.
    They don't reach. I feel myself
    move backward, rising from the stage,
    but the music plays anyway.

    I move farther away and then
    I’m aware again of everything –
    the nurses, the janitor taking the trash,
    those three at the foot of the bed
    who never stop staring.
    Those three I can't tell about the dream.
    They don’t know I dream because
    my eyes don’t close and they can’t see
    me go away. And they don’t know
    when I come back or that I never left.

    They talk to me. I see their lips move.
    I feel them touch me but I can’t tell them.
    I need their touch. It's the only way
    I bridge the gulf between
    their world and me. But I can’t
    tell them, and they can't hear.
    And then I dream again.

    There is another way to make it stop.
    I won’t know when it happens.
    I imagine it will be much the same
    As the dream. Perhaps it is the dream
    but instead of keys, I’ll reach for their faces
    and never touch them. Just float backwards
    listening to Debussy, rising up.

    Joseph Saling's first book of poems A Matter of Mind is available from Foothills Publishing. His poetry and stories have appeared widely in such journals as The Raintown Review, The Formalist, Poet Lore, Ohio Journal, The Bacon Review, Nothing No One Nowhere,and Carcinogenic Poetry. He lives in Metro Atlanta with his wife Sandy and their dog Yeats where to pass the time between poems, he writes stories, paints with acrylics, works on a novel, and makes a living as a freelance health writer and editor.

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  • 08/28/14--06:54: Caitlan Johnson - One Poem
  • Hephaestus


    This is a weapon.

    It was not forged in the fire-pits,
    left to rot by Hades,
    but instead originated here in my
    clouds--the small domain I rule
    without much interference.


    This is not my weapon.

    It was built for Zeus.
    What would he do if someone
    absconded with his lightning?
    I would suffer. We all
    would fall, stricken.

    Caitlin Johnson holds a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Lesley University. Her work has appeared in Boston Poetry MagazineClare Literary JournalEternal Haunted Summer, FortunatesMomowarePembroke MagazineVagina: The Zine, and What the Fiction, among other outlets, and is forthcoming in Baseline Literary Arts Journal and Stoneboat Literary Journal

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  • 08/29/14--09:00: Abigail Wyatt - Two Poems
  • Our String Bean Girls

    We have forgotten the ways of slow growth
    and the harvest that derives from careful husbandry:
    how the wintering earth shrinks and hardens,
    protecting the new growth at its heart.
    Our new spring crop, our string bean girls,
    they are seeded and watered under glass:
    their pink and purple kernels and pale green shoots
    induced to scarlet brilliance too soon.
    How painful to watch their leggy growth,
    as they tremble on the edge of early fruiting.
    Blessed is the harvest that ripens with time;
    we, we tear them early from the vine.

    Dangerous Truth
    (for the Kabul women’s poetry club)

    'both personal and political’
    it always is

    poetry is personal
    everything is political

    even here, in the cosy west,
    they lie in wait for us

    ‘they’ would have us believe 
    that the war is over

    they would have us 
    put up our bright swords

    'writing poetry is a sin'
    but once our mouths closed on it,
    once we had tasted 
    its clear, sweet juice
    then we were lost to their authority

    now many of us write in secret
    ‘we talk to the paper’
    we talk freely
    our hearts speak
    it is better than the silence
    that is death

    A Pushcart nominee for 2013, Abigail Wyatt writes poetry and short fiction from her home near Redruth in Cornwall. She has been published in more than eighty magazines and journals and her poetry has been widely anthologized. Her website is at

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  • 08/30/14--08:00: Stefanie Bennett - Two Poems
  • Anti-Politic's Thumbnail    

    Whoever's prophet material
    Had best seek counsel
    From the nation
    Of the 'northern lights':

    No velure head-hunter need apply -

    No Moulin Rouge mudslinger -

    No tyrannous protoplasm
                          Batting an evil eye -

    Lucidity epitomises
    The cold ground's
    Imminent banter -

    'Where man ends
    The flame begins'   *

    And we will never
    Put Prague
    Or Jan Palach
    Back together, again.

    *Miroslav Holub

    Tolstoy: Renunciation 2

    Best forget why he's here
    And from where he came;
    If his step thundered
    The blunt black bloodstone
    Of gunfire
    Amid the roses...

    The Crimea wasn't a parking-lot, then.
    A September suburb
    By a double
    Or nothing

    Now, eavesdroppers
    Find him
    And beating
    Tellable ploughshares
    Into words -,
    Into a peace

    That shatters.

    Stefanie Bennett has published 18 books of poetry, acted as a publishing editor and worked with Arts Action for Peace. Of mixed ancestry [Italian/ Irish/Paugussett-Shawnee] she was born in Townsville, Qld., Australia. Stefanie's latest title 'The vanishing', Walleah Press is due at year's end.

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  • 08/31/14--09:00: John Grey - Three Poems
  • These Odds
    In its old age, the universe
    has become these people I know,
    physically close, emotionally
    at their far reaches.
    In the motion of their recession.,
    their red shift, they have turned
    into spectral lines of cold faces,
    crimson wavelengths of unflinching hearts.
    Conversation now is the constant
    ratio between speed and distance.
    Love can be calibrated to 17
    kilometers per second for each
    million light years someone has
    moved away from me.
    The way they explain it,
    75 perfect of everything is hydrogen,
    25 percent is helium, and we're
    whatever's left.
    We float about, heavier, more
    complex than the primordial stuff around us.
    That we sometimes meet
    is mathematical chance, scientific randomness.
    But yes, sometimes odds will have their feelings.
    Catching that Train
    This train takes daily trips back to my adolescence.
    It stops at the school dance. It waits for me
    while I disembark, kiss Marianne.
    And it doesn't even get jealous
    when I ride the limo for a while.
    I appreciate that it won't correct me
    when memory and reality part ways.
    If I say I aced the test, then it drops
    me off in that classroom,
    feeds me answers
    like a Persian serving girl with grapes.
    It doesn't talk me out of bad times.
    If I want the day the old man
    lost his job at the foundry,
    it won't let me out a week before.
    It's been to a sister's cancer a thousand times.
    But never does it criticize
    my request for that tearful station.
    I can alter events, massage dates,
    manufacture good times.
    My ‘74 pickup runs fine.
    The hot date is even hotter for my presence.
    It's a train that accedes to
    my navigation and my scenery.
    I steer. I shovel coal into its belly.
    With all this hard work,
    I deserve the truth.
    And, if not that, the lies.
    The Road Out
    The house is a highway,
    silent but for the one car,
    hands on the wheel,
    foot on the accelerator,
    roaring out of boredom or solitude -
    you imagine the speed beyond the speed,
    cutting through dimensions,
    an intangible and problematic echo
    of your journey -
    you let go your fear
    like a child in a field
    celebrating the electric storm above
    or deep in dark woods,
    as one with all things gathering -
    fleeing rooms,
    past anything tangible,
    each mile is cracked open like a shell,
    dumping everything solid,
    all that could slow you
    ripping open the future
    like loafs of fresh bread -
    shouting your own name
    that number on the speedometer,
    breathing gas fumes to live by,
    feet rocking,
    hands slapping,
    forgetting where you come from
    and the long road back.
    John Grey is an Australian born poet. Recently published in Slant, Southern California
    Review and Natural Bridge with work upcoming in the Kerf, Leading Edge and Louisiana Literature.

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    The Fairy Castle

    It’s sad to watch
    the wizards as they 
    duel with their lightning sticks.

    Let’s hide behind the giant stones.
    Let’s run away into the night.

    The vines will embrace us.
    The leaves will kiss us.
    The water will speak to us
    in whispers.

    The snake said to put down the knife.
    It is better to go around something
    than actually have to confront it.
    This is how you escape 
    from the labyrinth
    that always takes more
    than it gives.

    The wizards will never stop fighting.
    Only the moon cares about us.
    Only the moon.

    We will bide our time with the day.
    We will make a deal with the circle.
    We will never have to go back.
    Our family is a pack of wolves.
    It is once again the age of Aquarius.

    Sea Breeze

    A large question mark is sometimes better 
    than a little one, I guess.

    The sun is up, and I’m finely starting 
    to get warm again.

    Tunes sparking on the stereo.
    Atoms are moving.
    Time like a bandit is sitting on top of the fence
    and smirking.
    It makes the same kind of sense.
    Leaves moving through the apocalypse.
    Some guy is drawing a line in the dust
    and pointing at it with a daedal index.

    Scotch tape is better than tacks
    or so the landlord thinks.

    Life is kind of like a teeter-totter.
    It’s good when someone else
    is on the other end.

    Michael Brautigan is a freelance writer, poet, literary scholar, and activist who graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in English.  He has been published in the Milvia Street Journal, Blink-Ink, Undergroundwriter, and Collective Exile and has been an active member of online writing groups such as the New Surrealist Institute, World Poets Society, Inter Dada, and Poetry San Francisco. 

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  • 09/03/14--12:57: Roscoe Matthews - One Poem
  • Dry Heat

    the fever persists
    the body reacts
    none of this is new
    i need a drink
    i can't have one,
    it's been twenty seven
    and a half sober months
    and still i find myself headed
    for the car and on my way
    imagining which magical
    concoction i'll order first,
    instead i drive around the block
    back home to the quiet life where
    my liver thanks me, my family thanks me,
    my sheriff thanks me and for another day
    the ship sails through the storm unscathed,
    better off for having been reminded
    of the challenge.

    Roscoe Matthews is a former filmmaker, real estate broker, and forklift operator.  He is currently a visual artist and poet. Matthews received his education from New York University.

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  • 09/07/14--07:30: Robert F. Gross - Two Poems
  • Death Sentence 

    Let’s all agree that we’ve had more than enough of words

    And the savage orders we all impose on words.

    The felonious heart, scarred and worked over, condemned
    To the tool shop, gear shop, sweat shop of words.

    Grinding out the witless drill of not quite good enough,
    Not quite what I meant to in the hatchet job of words.

    The chain gang conviction to a hackneyed meaning
    Sweating shackled beneath the warden’s eye of words.

    Crack-brained schemes crafted in solitary, silences sharpened
    Into caesuras, breaths pried between thick blocks of words.

    The lock-step procession of penitential formulations,
    Confessions forced out across the fortress of words.

    The shoulder-to-shoulder lined before the firing squad 
    Against the wall blindfolded with a cigarette of words. 

    The slip in your bloodstream, fall and rattle into silence:
    Nothing so dead as the aftermath of words.


    Once they get what they want 
    we stop hearing about him

    they get the bow and he looks
    like death warmed over

    relieved of command and of course
    it never heals—that wound

    festers worse than ever stinks
    to high heaven—such a sucker

    to swallow the standard issue 
    war time scams—camaraderie

    and healing—the con games 
    of the generals and gods

    he’s kept in his tent while 
    they put a new face—clean-shaven, 

    eager-beaver, bright-eyed killer—
    on the Master of the Bow 

    keep this one confined to quarters 
    off the midway of History

    cause it’s bad for morale
    when the poison won’t come out 

    and you gag him—you’ll have to—
    when he screams

    Robert F. Gross is a nomadic writer, performer and theatrical director. Over sixty productions at the Bartlett Theater (Geneva, NY), the premiere of Kelly Burke's Zelda (London), Julius Ferraro's Micromania (Philadelphia), poems in The Camel Saloon, Epigraph, Dead Snakes, Danse Macabre, Sein und Werden, Philosophy After Dark. . .

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  • 09/08/14--12:01: Donna J. Snyder - Two Poems
  • Shortest Distance Between Two Points

    Fragments of photographs on the page
    A walk along an uncharted path
    The shortest distance between two points
    not necessarily desired
    A third point and we have a plane
    The deus ex machina follows an earth eater
    Graveled stone and mutilated plants
    Masticated ash and dust falling from the god’s mouth
    But matter can never be destroyed
    only transformed
    And it’s your duty as one of the chosen to walk
    through this random chaos
    Transform this momentary experience
    through the mere act of observation
    This hybrid moment
    Part uncertainty principle
    Part The Misfits
    Give me a moment
    Show me your eyes
    Let the lies fall out of your mouth
    Pieces of sky
    Put my fingers on your scars
    Piece together the fragmented photos
    Give me this moment
    This hybrid moment
    Your consciousness
    My consciousness
    The shortest distance between two points
    Connect the dots                               

    Flayed Skin Spirals

                            “Think you’re escaping and run into yourself.”  James Joyce

    Throat chakra knotted in barbed wire clots words
    Strangled blue energy becomes blackened blood
    Emanations of green become brown fetid detritus
    Clenched fist in the chest
    Sternum crushed to powder
    A brutality ash gray
    Smell of suppuration leads to suffocation
    Flayed skin spirals in meaningless glyphs
    Corpus nothing but a hole
    Vortex of broken glass
    Jagged metal mesh leads no where
    Banal emotions horrify the voice into silence
    Panic leads to eviscerating dread
    A mouth gagged with cliché
    Flesh-stripping sorrow
    The no more
    The no more

    The no more      

    Snyder is the author of Poemas ante el Catafalco:  Grief and Renewal, released by Chimbarazu Press in 2014.  Her chapbook, I Am South, was published by Virgogray Press in 2010.  NeoPoiesis Press will publish her collection, Three Sides of the Same Moon, in 2015.  She publishes often in VEXT Magazine and Red Fez and is a contributing poetry editor for Return to Mago.

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  • 09/09/14--08:30: Ben Newell - One Poem
  • Sunny Side Down

    Fearing a DUI debacle,
    I call a cab to pick me up at my apt.
    and deliver me to the bar;
    I tell the driver that I feel lucky,
    lucky as in some sweet thing
    is going to take me home,
    adding that this is it between us,
    good luck and be good as we’ll
    never see each other again;
    he laughs and hands me his card
    because he knows better—
    Sure enough, four hours later
    finds my ass pressed into the
    passenger seat, wasted and hoarse
    from too many cigarettes and
    trying to talk over the band;
    it’s just as well; there’s nothing
    to say in this confusion, staring at
    the meter, analyzing yet another
    poor performance, already dreading
    the next noon; that’s when losing
    really hurts, stretched out beneath
    a hangover sun shining just for

    Ben Newell is a fortysomething library clerk in the Jackson, Mississippi area with poems appearing in Carcinogenic Poetry, LUMMOX, Negative Suck, Nerve Cowboy, Yellow Mama, and other underground publications.

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  • 09/11/14--07:00: Marianne Szlyk - One Poem
  • Evening on Chinkapin Street
    The men are talking
    about evolution, about relativity,
    about earth science and epistemology--
    how do we know what we know.
    On a nubby blue couch,
    I yawn, and the world blurs.
    The night, half-heard words,
    chirping music, and
    the body, that ragdoll,
    are all part of a dream
    while the men are talking.
    When I’m sitting with you,
    our words turn the night to ocean.
    We’re stranded in a lighthouse.
    No, we’re safe in our sanctuary
    where small oranges glow in glass bowls,
    their scent and color brightening
    this salty, mildewed room.
    Finished with the visit,
    we each take an orange
    and go out on the porch.
    I break off a vine branch.
    Its last leaf rides the dry wind.
    Dark cats depart the house.
    I say goodbye to you drily.
    There is no more ocean tonight.
    Marianne Szlyk is a professor of English at Montgomery College and an associate poetry editor at Potomac Review. Her poems have appeared in Poppy Road Review, The Blue Hour Literary Magazine, Pyrokinection, Poetry Pacific, Storm Cycle 2013: The Best of Kind of a Hurricane Press, and elsewhere. Others are forthcoming. She edits a poetry e-zine at

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  • 09/14/14--08:00: Tom Hall - One Poem
  • Sonnet: And bridges

    The very dew of life lies soft and low,
    Its faint humidity is mist to mind.
    All of love’s senses must converge and grow,
    As saplings that find and bind, a life intertwined.

    Comes in from Nature as that is the base,
    Upheaving the thick paint, pastels and a dove,
    In the flush of your cheeks and the hue of all races,
    Its the Northern Lights unleashed to color our love.

    The most beautiful thing you will ever behold
    Is the face of your child just a few hours old,
    It’s a moment in life that can’t be foretold,
    Six loves intertwined and made manifold.

    Crack the shell of self love to another,
    Bridges to each other, mother, son or lover.

    Tom Hall recently retired from a career as a grant writer. Educated in literary criticism, but has always wondered if he might be one of "those that can". He is honored to be published for the first time by Carcinogenic Poetry.

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  • 09/18/14--15:49: J.J. Campbell - One Poem
  • Hot Phone Sex on a Tuesday Night

    it was the unexpected
    words from nowhere

    almost like things
    just fell right back
    into place after many
    long months of silence

    not that i'm complaining

    it certainly makes me
    smile to close my eyes
    and imagine you getting
    ready to straddle my face

    as locks get checked
    and blinds pulled

    some chemistry is just
    meant to be
    J.J. Campbell lives and writes on a farm in Ohio. He's been widely published over the years, most recently at Fuck Art, Let's Dance, The Camel Saloon, Jellyfish Whispers, Dead Snakes, and Pink Litter. His latest book, Sofisticated White Trash (Interior Noise Press) is available wherever you happen to buy books these days.

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  • 09/24/14--09:51: Michael Ceraolo - One Poem
  • from The Degreening of America Book Two

    "A man can patent a mouse trap
    or copyright a nasty song"
    if he gives to the world a new fruit
    that will add millions to the value
    of the earth's annual harvest
    he will be fortunate
    if he is rewarded by so much
    as having his name connected with the result"
                                                        -Luther Burbank (1849-1926)
                                                         developer of over 800
                                                         new strains and varieties of plants

    And though it wouldn't benefit Burbank,
    it would be just a few years later
    that the situation was rectified,
    the idea that someone could patent life
    was given government approval
    with the passage of the Plant Patent Act of 1930
    (Title III of the egregious Hawley-Smoot Tariff)

    "This will,
                   I feel sure,
                                   give us many Burbanks"

    the act,
                and future amendments,
    gave us Monsanto instead-----

    Michael Ceraolo is a 56-year-old retired firefighter/paramedic and active poet who has had one full-length book (Euclid Creek, Deep Cleveland Press) and a few shorter-length books published, and has a second full-length book, Euclid Creek Book Two, forthcoming from Unbound Content Press.

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  • 09/25/14--07:30: Gary Beck - Three Poems
  • Urban Asylum

    The demented trudge the streets,
    some salvaging cans, bottles,
    laboring for normality,
    in the madness of city life.
    Others rave to themselves,
    or passing strangers,
    frightening them
    with mumbling incantations
    from men possessed by demons,
    abandoned by their meds.
    Most homeless are inconspicuous
    hoping to survive
    a hostile environment.
    unconcerned with the balance
    between euro and dollar
    allowing hordes of foreigners
    avid for tourist experience
    to aim intrusive cameras
    at degraded spectacles.

    Housing Crisis

    I got off the plane,
    my wife was waiting,
    crying, glad to see me,
    told me through tears
    the bank foreclosed our house
    while I was in Afghanistan
    bringing democracy to tribesmen
    who lost their homes in battle,
    while I lost mine
    serving my country.

    Approaching Storm

    Once the cry,
    'Rome has fallen',
    echoed in Europe,
    Africa, Asia,
    no one mourned,
    save a few Romans,
    as civilization
    crumbled away,
    leaving darkness
    for those dependent
    on the empire.

    When America falls,
    China will not assume
    the burden of policeman
    to unruly nations
    that value sovereignty
    before humanity,
    the hope of peace.

    Gary Beck has spent most of his adult life as a theater director. He has seven published chapbooks. His original plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes and Sophocles have been produced Off Broadway. His poetry, fiction and essays have appeared in hundreds of literary magazines. He currently lives in New York City.

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