R.M. Cymber



blood slither, vomit, road shoulder, broken


antlers, up a hill, looks eighteen, frosty grass,

shivers, entrails, air like needles, hyper ventil


late cameo in glass, commuter, brake musing,

nausea, back road helplessness, call the police?,

grounded, mom’s breakfast, sausage goo,

failure, puffs of air, coalescence, coughing,


another payment, another day, another dollar,

dad’s glare, bruises, schoolhouse rumors,

irresponsible, grandma’s prayers,  doctor visit,

whistling wind, ashen clouds, naked trees



Looking Through a Hole in the Brick of the Bingo Hall


I see an excited man standing, everyone else sitting,

in the fourth row through the tobacco haze


He looks at his card, finger tracing,

eyes looking up down up down while a

toothless man somewhere in the back lifts

a bottle to his lips


The plastic balls click in the drum like

forgotten change at the laundromat


The man, hand raised, shouts over

four laughing ladies and the room

hushes to hear his case


R.M. Cymber

R.M. Cymber is a  graduate student at Fontbonne University in St Louis, Missouri. Some of his works are featured in Scrutiny Journal, The Provo Canyon Review, and Crack the Spine Literary Magazine. His poem “Manna” was nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize. He is also an editor at River Styx Literary Magazine. Currently, he is writing poetry and short stories.


The power saws of my childhood

sneak into the wind, great whirling


motors spitting dust, soft

and clinging to the hair of my arms,


transforming me from child

to Nordic beast, wild curls of blonde


lumber blurring my edges.

My father’s leather-pouched belt


hovers by my ear, smelling of nails

and sweat, and the chalk of a snapped line


hangs in the long air behind me, marking

the path from here to the place


where I once placed fallen screws

in a blade-scarred hand, certain

what I offered

was needed.


Alice Pettway

Alice Pettway’s work has appeared in over 30 print and online journals, including The Bitter Oleander, The Connecticut Review, Folio, Lullwater Review, Keyhole, and WomenArts Quarterly. Her chapbook, Barbed Wire and Bedclothes was published by Spire Press in 2009, and her full-length collection, The Time of Hunger | O Tempo de Chuva, is forthcoming from Salmon Poetry. Pettway is a former Lily Peter fellow, Raymond L. Barnes Poetry Award winner, and three-time Pushcart Prize nominee. Currently, she lives and writes in Bogotá, Colombia.

Quite Mad

It’s nice to be me

she wonders

when you do not know

what the time is

at any shade of day.


When the dreams

bring down

the leaves of scorn

blown by the bluster

of those

that know what they do.


It is so nice to be me

on my own

to walk the trails of private gardening.


I rustle round the grass

like a whisper.


In the blue forget-me-nots

that flutter in my company


Who needs people?

if you have sown

the pretty pinks

to keep the head warm and cosy

in its bed of confidence.


I am so special I know

there are places to fly

to say the crazy things I say.


Nigel Ford

Nigel was born in 1944 and started writing age 14. Jobs include reporter for The Daily Times, Lagos, Nigeria, travel writer for Sun Publishing, London, English teacher for Berlitz, Hamburg, copy writer for Ted Bates, Stockholm. Several magazines in UK and US have published his work, including Nexus, Outposts, Encounter, New Spokes, Inkshed, The Crazy Oik, Weyfarers, Acumen, Critical Quarterly, Staple, T.O.P.S, The North, Foolscap, Iota, Poetry Nottingham, and Tears in the Fence.

Rabbit tears

On the way to see lavender flames and bloody cow tails,

a bunny runs from beneath my car, tears in his eyes as if he had heard me

screaming  inside my room minutes before

Some mornings I weep instead


Ashlie Allen

Ashlie Allen writes fiction and poetry. Her favorite book is “The Vampire Lestat” by Anne Rice. She is friends with the Green man and some other weird creatures.

Peycho Kanev



When we were together, we were not.

I was alone with you and with all the animals,

all the cherry blossoms, Chrysanthemums and

the rising sun. Is this Japan? But I’ve never been there.


Daylight is just the messenger of the secrets of

the night’s hidden and utter darkness.

Moonlight is just the reflection of the ashamed sun

and nothing else.

Twilight – the hermitage of the unholy things

squatting in the mud, waiting for dark and godly hours.

Love is a turkey when every day is Thanksgiving.

Love is cow in the slaughterhouse, bending down its

head to the ax.

The mountains stand tall and proud, talking in dead

language with the birds in the sky, resembling unknown


Rivers flow with no time left, to the edge of

the horizon.

Logs split back into logs in the deep and still virgin


And then silence descends.


When we were together, we were not.

We tried to be something else,

but that was impossible,

because we were already completed,

and silence that descended was the end of everything.

Or it was the new beginning,

just like that moment when the orchestra conductor

stands still, before the first note of the symphony,

with its baton in the air, above his head,

and then he swings.



What is This


This is not the thing I want,

this is not the thing I don’t need,

this is not the thing that it thinks it is.


I sit on the writing table and think

about it. But at the same time I can not

think, therefore what?


The wine is decanting, my Gitanes sits unlit

in the ashtray and I watch trough the window

how the misty sadness is clearing over the grove.

I tend to take everything as it is, to make some

sense out of it, some shapeless meaning.


And I remember now how when we were with

together, everything around us would cease

existing. Maybe this is it. This everything.

The Cosmos, the Universe, the stars and nothing

else, just pure pleasure, when everything comes

to light. And it, of course, was standing between us.


And then, in fact, there was nothing but pure silence.


Peycho Kanev


Peycho Kanev is the author of 4 poetry collections and two chapbooks, published in USA and Bulgaria. He has won several European awards for his poetry and he’s nominated for the Pushcart Award and Best of the Net. His poems have appeared in many literary magazines, such as: Poetry Quarterly, Evergreen Review, Front Porch Review, Hawaii Review, Barrow Street, Sheepshead Review, Off the Coast, The Adirondack Review, Sierra Nevada Review, The Cleveland Review and many others.

The Department of Otolaryngology

The perpendicular marks on the carpet,

Below my blistered boots, mark my path to this

Place of auditory affirmation.

The noise from the tv tells me to stop

The silence and listen to

Talking mocking teething media personalities:

I feel the hereness of hearing and for this reason,

All is perfect.


The questions my mind beckons to

Consciousness are neither new nor old but

Persistent: this steadfastness feels normal—

A salutation of life and auditory awareness.


The fortunate falls we face and fear

Hear no cries of regret but rather,

Cries of confidence that propel new-

ness and resilience.

Like the spindly carpet from the waiting room floor,

I stand still and sally my silent awakening.


Joey Kim

Joey Kim is a Ph.D. student in English at Ohio State. Her research interests include British Romantic poetry, Romantic Orientalism, gender and sexuality, and postcolonial studies. She is particularly interested in the intersections of theories of sexuality and Orientalist literatures. She earned her MA in English literature at Ohio State as well, and is currently reading for her PhD candidacy exams.

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