Emerson Little

Withered Weeds

Withered Weeds

 

In the Forest of the Night

In the Forest of the Night

 

Emerson Little

 

Emerson Little is pursuing a degree in Digital Art and Media Production at Whittier College. He works as a student photographer for the Whittier College Office of Communications, photos editor for the Quaker Campus and video columnist for the Fullerton Observer. His photos of the southwest have appeared in the Sagebrush Review, Greenleaf Review and saltfront. Emerson’s passion for landscape photography has led him to specialize in the strange and the unusual.

After We Are Dead

After we are dead

Throw out the papers

And spend all the cash.

The memories

are ours,

not yours;

They ended

with the lapse,

of that final,

pulsing synapse,

Shredded and torn,

blasted and shorn,

Leaves that faded

and fell

and decayed

Like all before

From Nebuchadnezzar,

to Christian Dior.

 

So throw out the papers

And spend all the cash

Our memories

are now

naught but trash.

 

A book of rhymes,

You can save,

a doll

or a toy,

That letter you scribbled

on notebook paper

in deepest regret

For ripping the curtains off the wall

and tossing your mattress on the floor,

Til your progeny

Shall throw out your papers

And spend all your cash.

 

But wait!

Along the way

Raise a glass or two

to me

and you,

And have a fillet

with a nice

Beaujolais.

For a joy it was

to be,

to hear,

to see,

Have been,

lived free,

Breathed, walked,

and run,

And all that censored fun.

Depressions,

we savored

and wallowed in,

And despair,

Could not compare

to what is not,

Or pain endured,

for when it passes,

And fear,

for when it’s fled

once we are dead.

 

Life was good,

and after ain’t bad;

It was the dying we hated,

But when done,

was done.

 

So throw out the papers

And junk all the cars,

Rip up the photographs

and sell the manse,

All that is there

is done,

the memories but dust.

And us?

We’re nothing now,

That shall not fade

and pass,

along with tears

and sorrows

and gas.

 

So celebrate

and procreate

What is, was, will be,

for evermore:

An unseen adventure,

an open door,

The drawing of straws,

the roll of the dice

by relict gods

uncaring of odds.

 

And whatever you do

Before you’re dead

Tell ’em all

to throw out your papers

And spend all the cash

For there’s

nothing here

that lasts.

 

James Garrison

 

A graduate of the University of North Carolina and Duke Law School, James Garrison practiced law until returning to his first loves: writing and reading good literature. His novel, QL 4 (TouchPoint Press 2017), set in the Mekong Delta during the Vietnam War, has won awards for literary and military fiction, and it was a finalist for the 2018 Montaigne Medal. His most recent novel, The Safecracker, a tongue-in-cheek legal thriller, was released in Ebook and paperback by TouchPoint Press on September 27, 2019. His creative nonfiction works and poems have appeared in online magazines and anthologies. Sheila-Na-Gig nominated ‘Lost: On the Staten Island Ferry’ for a 2018 Pushcart prize. jamesgarrison-author.com

Listening to the Radio at Night

Late Tuesday night, deserted London street, London Gold,

October blues, dense night feeling, vocalese on the radio,

jazz scat-singing trilling chirruping, counterdawn of dusk,

over the City, night will gently break, and a light caul of sleep, (night calls),

black cool, like a cloak, cover all, down on a young man’s cheek,

nachtmusik cuts to crooning sax solo then piano/guitar

trade riffs, swap solos, lights stranded in windows glow through the night,

eat into the dark by an acid of pale orange-yellow electric light

leaching into the night’s fallows, wash of pastel-pale, dissolving

shadows to shed them elsewhere more densely, outcasting a penumbra

of shifting lights, segues to strings, intro to the ballad, lush sheen

of string section, the junked lover in the song is singing

of how she’s staying up all night getting high on black coffee

and nicotine, hellhounded by whisky chasers around the rim

of a Guinness glass, switch to the catguts of Robert Johnson’s

liquor guitar wailing over his long-lost lady, black soul

crying over the Hackney nightime rooftops, with luna riding high

on skeins of black nightcloud, God’s nightlight, cut to radio 3 notturna

quiet London street, a radio, a lit window

 

 

Andrew Shelley

 

Born 1962 in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, England, the winter Sylvia Plath died. Began writing in 1973. Bits of his juvenilia survive in the magazines  Sepia, Pennine Platform and Northern Line and in the pamphlet Chaos (Kawabata Press, 1979). Went up to Cambridge in 1980  to read English. Graduated with a First in 1983. Poems of his won prizes at University. In 1984 he lived in London, working as a literary journalist, reviewing for The Sunday Times and The London Magazine. 1985-6: Lived and wrote in Greece on Ministry of Education Scholarships, teaching English Literature occasionally. In 1986 he went to Oxford to write a doctorate on Beckett, which was awarded in 1991. Held a Research Fellowship there from 1991-93. On completion of this he became a full-time writer, teaching only occasionally. Many publications, including poems, essays and articles in magazines.  Books include Peaceworks (The Many Press 1996), Requiem Tree (Spectacular Diseases, 2002), Thornsongs (Unarmed Chapbook, 2007), Love Enough (Pulsing Vulva, 2008), Openacity  (Drunken Guru, 2009), Bread Bullion (five thousand mile paper mine, 2012), True Moral Loaves (five thousand mile paper mine, 2012). ‘Undercoming’ is a text/visual collaboration comprising the books Lightwriting (Gabbling Goblin,2007) and Happy Apples (Cuddly Shark, 2008) and an exhibition, ’Word of Eye’. Two collections – ‘Spit Bricks’ (1997-98) and ‘Idiot Scripts’ (1999-2005) – have appeared in their entirety as individual pieces in print magazines and online but remain unpublished as books. Other yet to be published books include ‘Defining Statements on an Autumn Afternoon’ (2011-13), ‘Dying For Friday’ (2014-15), ‘Letters to the Lost One’ (2015-16) and ‘Things to Say to Jilly’ (2017) . Recently completed projects are a short book, ‘Done For Love’ (2017-18) and a pamphlet, ‘As They Broached the Goldmine’ (2018). Both are as yet unpublished although sections of the latter title have appeared in the journal Tears in the Fence. Most recently completed projects are the pamphlets ‘Everyman’s Land’ and ‘Soldier’s Block’. Lives and works in North East London.