Thursday, November 01, 2007

Issue 24

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Mark Lamoureux
Lois Marie Harrod
Sam Silva
Eve Rifkah
Christopher Barnes
Roger Singer
David McLean

Mark Lamoureux


[Untitled New York 1979-80]

The eye-cloth
& the death-cloth
& the cloth of this knowing
     mended by
the same scissor that
chimes the dead angles
     the human geometry

wheel of torsos      visor
     slits of the armored
dusk where the eye
who holds the key
to this (rib)cage?

         Not I

     not the furrows
     of the brow
     or the mirror of the lake

Dear Francesca,

Say I could be happy on the first warm day of spring wearing a new leather jacket, or eating leaf-colored gelato in Nafplio. Say I am happiest when I am furthest from home. A word that you would not speak. Our bodies are our homes. I am no longer welcome there. I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea. Say someone has the wrong idea. Say whenever anyone has the wrong idea, a fluttering silver fish dies.

[Sloan Providence, Rhode Island 1976]

Not to know
the terror of the noonday
         the sun that is
         a stain on the wall

     marred tapestry
     of the idle in the

             of the hourglass

the spyglass
     the glass eye of the recorder

     image lifted like
     rice      paper

     from the affront of this
         this breathing
         in strange places

this laurel wreath
     of strangers
         drags the oracle

     by the mane

the fishes' eggs without number
     the city's mouths
         without number
we must count
all the berries          on the wreath
         to enter

this house

         with no use for us

[Untitled Providence, Rhode Island, 1978]

In the noontime
I sewed the spine

I broke
the pastel crayon
     at the seam

         The book written &
         the book sewn

     with the sliver of bone
     with the thimble of blood

with the eyes shut tight
     against the semblance

in the wall the semblance
that walks the hall from
where I have departed

to not be called back
to where the books seem

     to be speaking
     to the air

     to you
     to me

to the narrow seam

Mark Lamoureux: My work has appeared or is forthcoming in such places as The Denver Quarterly, Fence, Conduit, GutCult, Coconut and other print and on-line journals. My first book, Astrometry Organon, is due to be published by Spuyten Duyvil/Meeting Eyes Bindery in 2007. I teach English at Kingsborough Community College, and run Cy Gist Press, a micropress focusing on ekphrastic poetry.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Lois Marie Harrod

“A Small Parenthesis in Eternity”
     Sir Thomas Browne

The morning came
like a faded photograph
sucking the color
out of the trees.
Everything lost its motion
except a woman
moving through the gray.
She remembered
the child in a story
where everything stopped–
the filcher, the raker
the candystick maker
fixed like statues
around the square
so that the child
could slide among them
restoring what
had been lost, the coin
to the old lady’s wallet,
the red leaf to the oak,
the forgotten oil to the peppermint.
And the woman wondered
whether such stillness
was a common curse
or a cheaper blessing,
what should she lift
from this moment when
the world’s heavy commerce
seemed suspended, no gravity,
the letter unopened
on her desk, the baseball
inches from her son’s glove,
her husband’s car still
on the road
while the steel whistle
fluted on as if
breath were endless.
Then a raindrop fell
and that was it–
a sycamore shivered,
a mosquito lifted
from his larva,
a window opened,
the woman resumed her life
in a moving world,
no longer able to readjust
where she had been.

Lois Marie Harrod's chapbook Firmament is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. Her Put Your Sorry Side Out was published by Concrete Wolf in 2005, and she won a 2003 poetry fellowship, her third, from the New Jersey Council on the Arts. Her sixth book of poetry Spelling the World Backward (2000) was published by Palanquin Press, University of South Carolina Aiken, which also published her chapbook This Is a Story You Already Know (l999) and her book Part of the Deeper Sea(l997). Over 300 of her poems have appeared in journals including American Poetry Review, Blueline, The MacGuffin, Salt, The Literary Review, Zone3. Her earlier publications include the books Every Twinge a Verdict (Belle Mead Press, l987), Crazy Alice (Belle Mead Press, l991) and a chapbook Green Snake Riding (New Spirit Press, l994).

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Sam Silva

Vampires of the Daylight Hours

Cigarettes....a dull perfume!
And pills and wine populate that tomb of mine.

Drakul slumbered in his box
in ages when the Sun shown pure
and spread his wings to fire the night
to drink blood in eternity pulling up my socks
a thousand years beyond the stake
which slew that nightly terror there
and let the darkened hours endure
with little more than ghostly crimes

leave daylight more the kin to Hell
with wretched voices in my head
making blood a sour thing
...muddy, muggy, slow as lead!
An evil daytime...speckled white.
That pus, those boils,
sick voices ate
...oozing from a broken brain
whose jaundice is mortality.

The vampires, in these modern times,
have no names nor nobility
but seek a sunlight more obscure
than any haunting terror's dark

and in the office or the park
hypnotized by cold TVs
communicate their blasphemies
in ways that half the brain denies

and sink their teeth in like a shark
yet leave no elemental mark
except that madness trembles

till their broken victims finally choose
with booze and pills and cigarettes
in dimly viewed electric light
to leave the voices to their cause
...each ego to that ego's debts
and terminate the light of day
and stay
awake at night....

Sam Silva has published well over 150 poems in print magazines including, but not limited to Samisdat, The ECU Rebel, Sow's Ear, The American Muse, St. Andrews Review, Dog River Review, Third Lung Review, Main St. Rag, Charlotte Poetry Review, Parnasus...most (but not all) of these magazines are now defunct. For the Past four years his magazine portfolio has grown by and large on line including Rio Del Arts, Megaera, Big Bridge, Views unplugged, Comrade Magazine, Ken Again and at least thirty others. Over the years four small presses have published a total of nine chapbooks by Sam Silva ...these, being Third Lung Press, M.A.F. Press, Alpha Beat Press, Trouth Creek Press. Brown and Yale Universities solicited many of these chapbooks for their libraries. These chapbooks were well received in newspaper reviews by Shelby Stephenson, Ron Bayes, Steve Smith, and the late poet laureate of North Carolina Sam Ragan. Silva has ebooks available without cost at, and, and at two dollars a piece at and well over 300 poems archived in online magazines. He was nominated a total of seven times by three small presses and has a full length collection of poetry called Eating and Drinking based on a royalties contract signed with Bright Spark Creative available for order at any online bookstore and has two other full length poetry books available at . Three spoken word CDs of Sam Silva's have been marketed through CDBaby.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Eve Rifkah


The kid thought invisible
             walking no man’s land
             behind the houses lining Capen St.
             through  the woods – not real woods
             scattering of thin trees and underbrush.
The kid thought journey
             path from one backyard
             behind others to dead end dirt road.
Kid walked this trail
             not sidewalk – not in sight of
             all those curtained windows
to friend’s house
             the younger kid
             whose parent’s wonder why
             fourth grader plays with second
             wonders what’s wrong with this kid.
It’s the little house, the kid likes,
             on the dead-end – besides the over grown field.
The kid lives in an apartment in a house of six
             apartments      dreams of living in a house
                          no sounds of doors opening
                          slamming shut          no sounds
                          of footsteps up stairs down
                          voices behind the walls.
The kid wants green and sky outside the windows
             not brickwall back of market
             gravel driveway cuts between
             cars crunch crunch outside the kid’s window
Kid wants air to breathe

Eve Rifkah is editor of the literary journal Diner and co-founder of Poetry Oasis, Inc., a non-profit poetry association dedicated to education, promoting local poets and publishing Diner. Poems have or will appear in Bellevue Literary Review, The MacGuffin, 5 AM, Parthenon West,,, Chaffin Journal, Porcupine Press, The Worcester Review, California Quarterly, ReDactions, Jabberwock Review, Southern New Hampshire Literary Journal and translated into Braille. Her chapbook At the Leprosarium won the 2003 Revelever chapbook contest. At this time she is a professor of English at Worcester and Fitchburg, State Colleges and a workshop instructor. She received her MFA in Writing from Vermont College and lives with her husband, poet Michael Milligan.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Christopher Barnes

Last Letter

Farewell seasprayed world
Bleak, sticky love
Will have me no more.

Ships, trains,
Radio signals
That dart questions
Into night’s nets
Are circus tricks
For me to endure.

Over, caught,
I’m glad, if I could have ever
Been called glad.

My innocence
Shivers unproved. I’ll
Doctor to my own salvation.

Of my wife I say nothing
Appeal only to the ghost,
Her voice singing
The cracks of my living.

Pentonville for a short
Unlighted stay, walk
To the hangman’s rope.

         H.H. Crippen

Christopher Barnes: In 1998 I won a Northern Arts writers award. In July 200 I read at Waterstones bookshop to promote the anthology 'Titles Are Bitches'. Christmas 2001 I debuted at Newcastle's famous Morden Tower doing a reading of my poems. Each year I read for Proudwords lesbian and gay writing festival and I partake in workshops. 2005 saw the publication of my collection Lovebites published by Chanticleer Press, 6/1 Jamaica Mews, Edinburgh.

On Saturday 16th Aughst 2003 I read at theEdinburgh Festival as a Per Verse poet at LGBT Centre, Broughton St.

I also have a BBC webpage

Christmas 2001 The Northern Cultural Skills Partnership sponsored me to be mentored by Andy Croft in conjunction with New Writing North. I made a radio programme for Web FM community radio about my writing group. October-November 2005, I entered a poem/visual image into the art exhibition The Art Cafe Project, his piece Post-Mark was shown in Betty's Newcastle. This event was sponsored by Pride On The Tyne. I made a digital film with artists Kate Sweeney and Julie Ballands at a film making workshop called Out Of The Picture which was shown at the festival party for Proudwords. The film is going into an archive at The Discovery Museum in Newcastle and contains my poem The Old Heave-Ho. I worked on a collaborative art and literature project called How Gay Are Your Genes, facilitated by Lisa Mathews (poet) which exhibited at The Hatton Gallery, Newcastle University before touring the country and it is expected to go abroad, funded by The Policy, Ethics and Life Sciences Research Institute, Bioscience Centre at Newcastle's Centre for Life. I was involved in the Five Arts Cities poetry postcard event which exhibited at The Seven Stories children's literature building. In May I had 2006 a solo art/poetry exhibition at The People's Theatre why not take a look at their website

The South Bank Centre in London recorded my poem "The Holiday I Never Had", I can be heard reading it here

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Roger Singer

The Coal Man

Wagon wheels
Press the soil
Like fingers on clay
Molding a path
As the coal man
And his horse
Find the driveway.

A Santa bag,
Scared by use
Is hauled rudely
Like homeless bones
As the canvas sheath
Bulges wildly with
Bituminous jewels.

A leather cap
Appears pasted
To his thick head
While a cigarette
Fades at the corner
Of a tired mouth,
While walking heavy.

Arms muscled wide
Stretch easily
Like crawling vines
On a fence
Broadly reaching
Owning the space
Without restriction.

Bits of blackened
Coal tumble
Into a waiting bin
Sounding like
Angry rattlesnakes,
As the horse looks
And the man coughs.

Roger Singer: I began writing poetry when I was in the military many years ago, for relaxation and to express my thoughts in an abstract form. I enjoy the challenge poetry offers, unlike the articles I have written, which are straight forward. Poetry allows the writer to step to the side from general thoughts, thus creating a miniature story which in and of itself can bifurcate into other levels of literary form.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

David McLean

trees and the madness

once the trees
seemed to know their meanings
for me, and have chosen
them themselves

but now we are madmen
and have chosen that madness
and we live behind walls
where demons share the sunlight
with us
as it records a day dying gratefully
on the floor

the trees have forgotten
everything and mate mindlessly
promiscuous, selling their virtue
to the wind and birds
that pimp for them,

and we are mad as the blood
that remembers our passing:
we just love it and want it,
whatever happens

David McLean has been submitting for the past year and has had about 300 poems accepted by 129 magazines and webzines. A chapbook a hunger for mourning with 53 of his poems has just been released by Erbacce Press. It is available for purchase and download at He has a blog at

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Monday, July 02, 2007

Issue 23

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Image (Copyright © 2007 Charles Frederickson)

Matthew Burkett
Julie Clark
Deidre Elizabeth
Mario Melendez
Patrick Frank

Matthew Burkett


she was a one hole story
a barhopped lamb with wax on her earrings
misspent sunglasses on the glass of an endtable
that only reflected nosehairs and oily pores.
she wound up dead
every time I touched her.

lamps with no lightbulbs, tables with dirty napkins--
all pink eyes, smokestained lips,
a white map charted on her stomach
where she left room for retaliation.

naked, she asked me to paint her
make her face blue
let her see what she's like inside
let her feel the things that drown but never float
back up.

I said nah.


this is the age of the bodily compromise,
the gradual ceding of temperament
to entities of fiction and purpose,
the age of the first step of becoming a cyborg
the age of the return of phrenology
the age of dotdotdot someone-or-something will
complete it--
of course the age of debt. citizens are numbered
like only soldiers and prisoners have been in the
well-irrigated obsolescence, forbearance, etc.

Matthew Burkett Julie Clark Deidre Elizabeth Mario Melendez Patrick Frank

Julie Clark

Mixing sweet and salty

Picture this:
Dried tears in the salt shaker.
Sprinkle some in.
And this smooth lifeblood,
like honey, let it fall into the pot.
Tastes good.

Just let me think of death as a gift,
cry, or not, as I please.
It's not like you always need my lies,
but sometimes you do.

Hurt myself?
No, uh uh. LOL
I'm cooking.

Sexual Side Effects

Rusty urges nuzzle up to me,
iron hot, chained.
I want in,
I go out.
This is oh so
running in place.

Matthew Burkett Julie Clark Deidre Elizabeth Mario Melendez Patrick Frank

Deidre Elizabeth

indications for psychotropics

a gravel road to a house in the mountains
lime stone filling the tread

the dirt road that continues on past
a pot hole filled with ice in april
the grass strip in the middle

traveling across a ridge line
following a thick layer of fog
toward the interstate fence

construction equipment in a clearing
with overgrown foliage
leaky hydraulics
tires low on air
rusted keys in the ignition

and a trout stream
that only i can see or hear

Daughters of Lilith

Ask us, hell is at the edge
of the universe. Light, stars
what are they? Below absolute
zero, no movement or thought,
shiverless, silent, and burning.

Mother we pray without ceasing,
mercy, we leave the swords to rot
in last night's pizza and gin. Show
the acts that cure these marks
on our arms, between toes,
under tongues.

Restrain the beast that strikes
the evil sickening us - quell
the tremors. Keep flesh from
our mouths. Give us fresh fruit,
cool water, a stroke on the arm,
your desire to be human.

Deidre Elizabeth: i suffer from severe depression. i take the maximum allowable legal dose of wellbutrin and cymbalta as well as 3mg of risperdal for my depression.

Matthew Burkett Julie Clark Deidre Elizabeth Mario Melendez Patrick Frank

Mario Meléndez

Poetic Art

A cow grazes in our memory
blood escapes from the udders
the landscape is dead from a shot

The cow insists on its routine
its tail drives away boredom
the landscape revives in slow motion

The cow abandons the landscape
we continue hearing the lowing
our memory grazes now
in that immense loneliness

The landscape leaves our memory
the words change name
leave us weeping
on the blank page

The cow grazes now in the emptiness
the words are mounted on her
the language makes fun of us

Translated by Ron Hudson

Mario Meléndez (Linares, Chile, 1971), studied Journalism and Social Communication. Outstanding among his books are: “Autocultura y juicio” (with prologue from the National Prize of Literature, Roque Esteban Scarpa), “Apuntes para una leyenda” y “Vuelo subterráneo”. In 1993 he received the Municipal Prize of Literature in the Bicentennial of Linares. His poems have appeared in different revues of Hispano-American Literature as well as in National and Foreign anthologies. Mr. Meléndez has been invited to numerous Literary Conferences including: The First and Second Conferences of Latino-American Writers, organized by the Society of Writers of Chile (Sech), Santiago, 2001 and 2002, and the First International Conference of Amnesty and Solidarity with the People, Rome, Italy, 2003, at which he was named Member of Honor of the Academy of European Culture. At the beginning of 2005, he was published in the prestigious revues “Other Voices Poetry” and “Literati Magazine”. During that same year, he won the Harvest International Prize for best Spanish-language poem from the University of California Polytechnic, Pomona, in the United States. Parts of his work have been translated into Italian, English, French, Portuguese, Dutch, Romanian, Farsi and Catalan. Currently, he is working on the project “Fiestas of the Itinerant Book”.

Matthew Burkett Julie Clark Deidre Elizabeth Mario Melendez Patrick Frank

Patrick Frank

We Will Be Okay

We sat in the church parking lot and the minister

never showed up. We drove to a pancake house and on

the way I told a lot of jokes. Then we drove around

Eastern Connecticut looking for yard sales. When I

stood up for you at work, you said, a coldness

disappeared inside

Soon I will play basketball at twilight. You will

practice walking meditation. Whatever happens on the

job, we will be okay

Patrick Frank: I am a published poet-songwriter and essayist from Middletown, CT, USA. I have served as a counselor and advocate for the poor in New England, the South, and on the Zuni Indian reservation in New Mexico. I am now working with mental health clients in Connecticut.

I am Bipolar and have been in treatment of this disorder since 1999. I have also experienced homelessness.

I have been strongly influenced by international poetry and Eastern philosophy. I published a periodical of Eastern forms of poetry, and aesthetic philosophy, Point Judith Light, during the 1990’s.

In my work, I strive for clarity, depth, a microcosmic aspect, and a kaleidoscopic effect. I focus on the sense of mystery that is embodied in ordinary experience and reality. I would like my poetry to be accessible, while avoiding superficiality.

My creativity is stimulated by dream material, music, great cinema, physical activity, and exposure to nature. I often touch upon social justice themes, the experience of poverty and homelessness, sport, and my work with the disabled. I also explore ethical challenges that lead to personal growth.

Matthew Burkett Julie Clark Deidre Elizabeth Mario Melendez Patrick Frank

Friday, March 02, 2007

Issue 22

Dorothy Mienko


You call it a walk in sun
I call it frightful rowing

But I do it anyway
in spite of my ghosts

I row twenty foot-
steps away from home

keeping pace with skeletons
past the gently-graying mums

beyond the hot pink whirligig
twenty steps closer to the terrible

horizon and just barely breathing
with my hands worrying the chaplet's bead

and in my chest like a nightmare --
one trillion banging dark birds

Party Shoes

She can wear red stilettos
With rhinestone straps
So perfectly

That you might never notice at all
How stark
The white of her dress is

How she inwardly trembles
Ghosts and buried stones
The crash in her fear

Of being held down
By hands too tight

But isn't it beautiful
And don't you think it's amazing --
How perfectly she wears them

Dorothy Mienko's poetry is published online and in print. She has received four pushcart prize nominations and has written two books of poetry; What I Notice Now and Quiet Illuminations. Dorothy is the editor of Beside the White Chickens and of the anthology Women of the Web.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Barry Seiler

Days on End

When it comes to me or I go to it
Meeting it halfway or more, as it prefers.

When I arrange myself horizontally,
Head hooked on one end, legs dangling over

The other side, kicking, as a child might
Into the chemical blue of a pool.

When I think this is me, is all, swimming,
Stroke by stroke toward dinner.

When I’m there, just there, on the comforter.
In my crib, so to speak.

When out the back window the airplanes
Ascend from Liberty Airport

And the sun sets behind the thin vapor streaks,
And the light stretches from here back to

Its large mouth, and drones on
Its long apology.

Barry Seiler's most recent book is "Frozen Falls," published by University of Akron Press.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Lisa Gordon

Keeping Whole
(for Sam Silva)

Can I rest in your vision for a moment,
bathe some of my favourite things
in the light of the moon you champion,
a full globe where weather is
the rambling heart of the matter.

Sky turns black, stars come out -
the east & west hemispheres dipping
into the well of what's never lost -
feelings of coming home in all shapes & sizes,
your name your name your name.

After a night of the kind of sadness
everyone has felt, the pinning up of
drying roses, deep in the basement
of the soul looking once, & once again:

I stay round here listening for echo.
I am in a state of shedding, yet not quite.
Innocence in the form of stern nature
reorganizes everything I've ever thought.
Love digs in.

Lisa Gordon has had work published in a variety of online & print journals. She resides in Montreal with her husband, & is currently working on a booklength manuscript.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Stephen Mead

Blithe Spirits

"If we reorganize lost noises,
maybe we can create music."

Cheng-Chong Yao

It takes, admittedly, a little arrogance,
desperation, this arduous task:
to siphon pain, veins of nicotine,
those death gnats, that lead,
& become an astral kite.

Afterwards, space is egalitarian,
the earth a postcard depicting weather scapes,
countries blotted by mere one gloved thumb.

Now breath is better, meaningful,
air, an intention light redesigns.
Shadows track sound,
celestial pitches, invisible, conducive
to entire sky chords.

use noise. Channel a vacuum. Let arms
intertwine, fly, forming flutes. First disbelief
must be suspended, next, energy, finally, anguish:
a sling shot to shoot from, foolishly faithful.

Oh harmonic dharma all ridicule sneers upon,
we have no more interest in pettiness or evil,
those jaded snares, while here we rise widening,
spirituous fifes amid seraphim:
what an astronaut hears.


It's rather a shocker, to nature & even myself,
the fact that I've survived.
Most figured, & I don't mind saying it,
that I'd die young, one of those frail
neurotic types for whom, to be borne,
the world is too much.

The thought could make one nauseous,
but all I can do now is laugh & laugh,
wondering just who in hell is left
for me to celebrate this with.
The cats, I suppose, Duchess, Periwinkle,
& old slant-eyed Redcoat with his left ear
half missing.
I've nineteen altogether,
their life spans a collective karma
for the incarnations I've gone
through, who I was during this decade, that,
each, more or less, a bit of a scrap pile.

Fingering the tatters, everything floods
back, the chain smoked years waking up
to stumble over bottles
or into arms—-—
Ricardo's, Jack's,
those throwing down lifelines while, in actuality,
searching for their own, the mattress going, "Dao! Dao!",
'til I decided friendships were the best intimacy.

Then, as you know, I fell into leaf-letting,
demonstrations, & the lot, even 24 hours
in some cold piss-stenched jail.
In between there were letters, books, the cinema,
wash days, picnics,& every odd job imaginable.

I remember feeding Suicide Bernie
coffee one long night for hours.
I remember C.C's cancer ravishing flesh the way famine does.
"Oh good." I think Izzy said on the death of McCarthy.
"Where's the mercy?", asked Shirl
on whatever occasion, the 3rd world, our own street,
she came up against the cruel.

But, as I've alluded, they're gone,
gone except to me, cradling,
crinkling, smoothing such lace
mentioned now 'n then to the curious
visitors who trickle in.

"What was it like?" or "What should I do?"
Questions like that.
Once in awhile, as if at a river, I see a bright
thread, a flash of this unattainable masterpiece
where their reflection is mine, rippling superimposed,
first puzzled, then, placid, but, come on,

at ninety, once in awhile is still pretty fair odds.

Stephen Mead is an artist and writer living in northeastern NY. His work has been presented extensively online and in print. His merchandise can be found via

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Michael P. Workman

If, By Your Own, Then

Or I am a poem without a person,
Or I am un poisson,
Or I am The Mothman,
Or I am the light of a hidden arc,
Or I am a causeway,
Or a bauhau
Or a lemon tick beagle with jubilant movements like a mote of simple
dust in
the eyeliner of a Virgin with a steel sombrero and day-glo pantynose
Or I am Father of Thee, oh strange sons, oh beard and Shams, oh leaden
weight protect me from Pluto,
This the ungulate wrought of iron specks cast by Promethian odes and
tempered with the tonguelettes of Nubian gorge and Sphinxing
Isis by some somber curve of desert dune like the breasts of Spring and

APPLES! Have you seen the apple? Or the oubliette? Either are our lost
hidden advance-way.
Apples! Apples by the cistern that some man or woman grew from the
by white pine trees when I was a dizzy dancing boy!
Apples and the delicious adventure of chaos, apples and Erisian
Apples and the cascaded shadow of Seneca and the lonely wing of
Apples and the basketball that resembles an APPLE AN APPLE
AN APPLE that befell old King Newton in his sleepdream reverential
apples and the math that HINTS merely or parallels the truth which
must shake off of themselves, of themselves, if these truths are
self-referential it is because you have not TASTED THESE APPLES
it is because the poem of truth is a stream,
and a stream is divine eternal advancing and until you JUMP
oh until you SWIM
until you by your OWN grace
by your OWN sanity
by your OWN compassion
by your OWN equanimity
by your OWN Walt Whitman
by your OWN Kerouac
BY your Own Christ and Diogenes,
Nietzsche, King, Comrade, Buddha, Lennon,
by your OWN sweet bootstraps gravitate into this fathomless, golden and
unending creek
if by your own fall into,
or jump,
or simply pass perspiring by on a hot summer's night,
and screaming like a falling star into our Cosmos, require some cool
by your own you must learn then to swim.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

T. Lewis

Hunting rounds

My hairs get crossed when there’s too much light in the sky.
Hard to aim your rifle if you’ve got nothing to look at.
Toward that end, I propose that we remove ourselves and
count on starting over at the crack of dawn tomorrow.

And count on starting where my eyes get crossed outside.
There’s a calmness to the outdoor landscape I can’t tell in words,
but it’s hard to aim your rifle if you’ve got nothing to look at.
So let’s get out of this rain and get back -- the others are waiting.

I can’t aim too good when there’s so much light in the sky.
There’s a calm that makes it awful hard to get out of this rain.
Toward that end, the outdoor view is calling me to disappear.
At the crack of dawn the others will have nothing to look at.

Get crossed at the crack of dawn, calmness of the outdoors.
We remove your rifle and start all over when we get back.
Let’s get out of the light in the sky, it’s awful hard to disappear.
I can’t tell, but count on starting at the end and going backward.

The others are waiting. so let’s aim awful hard and call outside.
There’s an outdoor landscape that’s nothing to look at, get out.
Go backward from the rain and aim your rifle with the crossed hairs.
Tomorrow you can count on me starting at the crack of landscape.

T. Lewis enjoys graphomania in the warmer months of the year, and slows down when the leaves start to die on the trees. He maintains two poetry blogs -- and -- and has been published in Listenlight and the 2007 St. Paul Almanac. "At a reading, whatever you say in between your poems is often more interesting than the poems

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Olga Lalić-Krowicka

translated from the Polish by Sarah Luczaj

I Handed Over To You

I handed over to you the spark of my own conscience,
the gift of a name and a cosmetics bag.
I handed over the tree from the Van Gogh painting.
You screamed that it wasn’t mine. It is. Oh, how could it not be!

We divide the paintbrush in half, the soul too, and the ear.
I gave over to you the power of my hands,
the stream in the quietening of my mind.
One thing I did not hand over.

The sculpture from the emptied
square of power
with its eyes wrapped in sheets.
She fell asleep while I was thinking.


I love that pain. I’m his mother.
I’ve carried him from birth. Nine months
is a drop in the ocean. My first cry
with blood still fresh... his first
dusk. I treat his skin with a burgundy sky.
I bathe him in my face. I dress him
in comfort – tomorrow you’ll be older, more
mature, more distinct...oh God, how,
how not to leave him now. He exists, after all,
out of sheer innocence. Who else will I hold
when my last autumn rustles the tree...

Olga Lalić–Krowicka is a poet and translator from Croatia, half Serbian and half Polish. She moved to Poland during the war and now lives there and writes in Polish. She has been widely published in Poland, Croatia and Serbia. She uses schizophrenic experiences in her work.

Sarah Luczaj is a poet and translator from Britain, living and working in Poland since 1997. Her poems and translations are widely published in US journals e.g. the APR. She works as a psychotherapist.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Joel Fry

A Widower

Your comfort educated me
for ten years. I understood all
you supposed from the first
month we dated until I understood
your death. You kept me loving
the life we endured.

I am old now at thirty, always
after the funeral and the flowers,
older than most of what I see, older
than the wealth bound in my bones,
older than I imagine when I sleep
in the whispering of my wishes.

My desire to see you approaches
a spacious center, a warm room filled,
a secret overheard.

Still, in all I know of the green
world expanding, fading into the
forest that becomes memory after
the day's movement ends and a pause
surrounds the winter retreats of my den
and bedroom, I understand.

I will always peer into the flickers
of this vanishing life, into the fleeting feet
still naked, the strangers that survive acquaintance,
the livelihood abandoned in the pursuit of living.

Joel Fry: I live in Athens, Alabama, and I work as a mental health worker in Decatur, Alabama. In my work I try to improve the lives of the mentally ill and mentally retarded. I have had work published in the Melic Review, Stirring and Eclectica.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Dave Ruslander

Ice Queen

You’ve proved your tenacity.
Why must you continue to struggle
through this whiteout?
Each step saps your strength.

Look at my cerulean kimono and long black hair;
floating on this breeze of diamond dust.
Come, Itchi-san, sit by me for a moment
my breath will warm you.
I’ll make fire from ice to still
your shivering bones.

Don’t fear my obliquity.
Give yourself to me, everything will become clear,
you will be powdery and pure.

As my curls unfurl eternally,
your eyelids grow heavier.
Rest your head in my lap and relax.

Don't fiddle with your watch
for I have all the time in the world.

Dave Ruslander suffers from Mixed State Bipolar Disorder. He has been writing poetry for about seven years and has published a book of poetry and original artwork that attempts to describe the nonverbal language of emotion associated with mental illness. For more info on his book send an email to

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Anna Forsyth


I sip slowly on warm chai.
Feel an inner glow.
The day before, my blood had gone cold.
Spiritual anemia.
My soul leeched of its iron.
But between then and now,
I have remembered.
I have chosen chai.
I drink deep of the antidote.
Warm life
seeps through the protective fabric
around my heart muscle,
as I sit entwined in a lover's knot.
Feel the unbroken protection of arms.
I can see the reaper's shadow
out of the corner of my eye,
but it brings no terror.
Because I know that valleys have ends.
And I cannot forget
the shepherd's crook.

Anna Forsythis a freelance writer and editor, specialising in education. She has a keen interest in consuming poetry and producing it.

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes

Keith Nunes

I grew up disturbing the equilibrium

I grew up with a penchant for disturbing the equilibrium
In peace I saw confusion – uncertainty, ambiguity
It was torture to watch the eager side with the ineffectual and
Bruise those who sought to testify against the flow
You can’t be at one with a universe that
Wants to chisel you down to a coffee table
So fuck them - I’ll be who I want to be!
I’m standing for this – and that - and whatever I want to
Fire off about
It matters little – they’ll butcher you baby, take your socks off and burn you
I’ve been left with a translucent soul and backward steps
Running off the rear of my house
In bitter northern winters people like me die in crystal cold rooms
We are treasured statistics – we extract the once-in-a-while sorrowful shake of the head
We are mourned collectively, not individually
So I sidle in the dark away from the disingenuous
Cling to wet walls and scrape butter off knives
I can’t beat them
So I walk around them
Screaming my bloody head off
Hoping no-one will join me

Keith Nunes: I live in Tauranga , New Zealand . I've lived with depression and anxiety most of my 46 years and am still using medication, seeing a psychiatrist and a drug and alcohol counsellor. I'm a recovering alcoholic. I find writing and reading poetry helps in many ways. After 20 years of newspaper journalism I stepped aside 18 months ago and took up house painting. This gave me time to concentrate on poetry and have since been published on several online journals (Flutter Poetry Journal, ScribeSpirit, Snorkel, Blackmail Press) and in Valley Micropress in New Zealand .

Dorothy Mienko Barry Seiler Lisa Gordon Stephen Mead Michael P. Workman T. Lewis Olga Lalić-Krowicka Joel Fry Dave Ruslander Anna Kaye Forsyth Keith Nunes