Mike Callaghan

Agent Orange

Agent Orange

 

Everybody and Responsibility

Everybody and Responsibility

 

A Narrow Road With a Crack Up The Middle

A Narrow Road With a Crack Up The Middle

 

Mike Callaghan

Mike Callaghan is a photographer whose recent photo-work considers considering the intimate cycles of identity, self-preservation and mortality in a moment when frameworks of relationships are at once prominently visible and exhaustively hidden. His work has appeared in a number of exhibitions in North America and Europe, including at Griffin Museum of Photography (Massachusetts), Marin Museum of Contemporary Art (California), Reece Museum (Tennessee), Soho Photo Gallery (New York), Manifest Gallery (Cincinnati), Gallery 44 (Toronto), Propeller Gallery (Toronto), Elysium Gallery (Wales) and PhotoIreland (Dublin). Mike’s work has appeared in a number of publications, including ZYZZYVA, Der Greif, BlackFlash, Drain, Crooked Teeth, Barzakh, Otoliths, Black Mountain Press and The Shanghai Literary Review. Mike earned an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute.

Zac Hall

Crystals

Crystals

 

Zac Hall

North Dakota native, Zac Hall, has a passion for cattle ranching and capturing the naturally stunning beauty of the Northern Plains. His ranching background and passion for agriculture give him a unique perspective as he uses a camera lens to share this beauty with the world.

The Proxy Tunnel

I.

There’s a chance everything has been assumed incorrectly.

There’s a chance I’ve gotten it all wrong.

Misplaced the dangling modifiers.

Left decimals out of column.

Commas forgotten, and misfired chromosomes

flipping an entire species on its genealogical frontal lobe.

Prophets tried to warn.

Seers and shaman returned

carrying markers of indemnity, lived experience

suffered and survived, until now

becomes instinct, systemic acceptance

defining the limits of beauty and love.

 

II.

Compressing time compares

particle versus wave, proxy tunnels

navigating both like wormholes

linking process and form.

Conceptual technology owes its existence

to the human body, the internalized

network of firewalls, end-stops, cul-de-sacs

of private intentions needing protection

from fear of the anonymous hack.

Conjunction subordinates proper speech.

By all indications, pop stars leave the myth-

making to poets and teachers.

Take a straw poll of life’s greatest fears.

See how many answers feature

bridges and tunnels connecting us,

and all things.

 

III.

I carry weight around unknown,

height a cradle-fantasy of remembered baptism.

I am never smart enough to think like a foreigner,

an outsider accustomed to facing nature

in its raw nakedness, beauty balanced and awe.

Some tastes require jugular sweetness,

warm country tabernacles surrounded by thick night.

Preachers wed desire with a mother’s faith,

common metaphor saving its best for last days

of character-selling, shelter-space limited

to flesh and imagination.

 

IV.

Sanctuary splits me confused, me not smart enough

to skate across thin layers of meaning.

Not understanding but knowing the difference

between here and not here

simultaneously.  Nowhere to be found

depicted in watercolors is too diluted

for aristocrats and the general

practitioners of the Sacred Arts,

the Primal Magic of self-doubt,

paranoia, and its shady base

of operations in poetry.

Patrons pay my expenses, photograph my receipts.

Desire allocates, critiques my inner algebra,

formulas setting parameter for stammer

too elastic to eliminate its brittle shell.

After questioning, beauty accepts

quiet comfort, knowing fear remains

the only modern ignorance left to eradicate.

 

Marc Meierkort

Marc Meierkort is a writer and educator who has taught high school English for 19 years. He is a graduate of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale (B.S.) and National-Louis University (M.A.T.), and he currently lives in Chicago’s suburbs. A Pushcart Prize nominee, he has recently had poems published by The Main Street Rag, Columbia College Literary Review, The Nassau Review, Inscape, and Spectrum.

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