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 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
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.
It’s nice to be me
when you do not know
what the time is
at any shade of day.
When the dreams
the leaves of scorn
blown by the bluster
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 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.
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 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.
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
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 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 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 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.