Two Poems by Suzy Devere


like a serrated knife
when you're under it


black handle like a mountain
crowding out the sun

but next to
or on top of

it glistens and shines.

it's a beautiful
modern day woman's
blessing and disguise.

still, underneath?

well, it's bloody down here.


the forever inarticulate
try desperately to use
demanding words with
syllables they can

the forever inarticulate
imagine themselves to be
beyond the rest of us
in word and deed

to them
we appear to scrape
their crumbs

if only they were learned
enough to realize
we are picking up
in earnest
meaning nearly
through their misuse

meaning that
slides away


so we wait
for their

we are


Three Poems by William Keckler


You look like the sort of person
who gets fucked
in a pink motel
with a miniature golf course
in front
and swimming pool
out back
by a scary tarp
since they found
the dead guy
floating in it
with a knife in his back.
And the water
has a pink tinge
all these weeks later,
oddly sweet
because it matches
the motel's pink,
your lipstick
and almost pretty bag.


Never trust
a pink motel.


This strange outline
of an animal's body.

Or just part of a body.

Why does it last forever?

It feels like my soul.
It looks like an animal.

Fossil fucks.

Eighty year olds
hunt for them in dreams.


We're all archeologists
of our own fucking.

all apologies by Ross Vassilev

well, bad things would happen
and I’d take it out on others
and there’s no righting past wrongs
and it’s no good saying I’m sorry
but I am
and there’s nothing I can do about it
but as Bukowski once said
someday, we’ll all go home together.

bob kaufman by Steve Calamars

wooden hearts
crawling with
and wet cement
brains drying with
the footprints
left by a
jazz poet
who clogged
our ear-canals
with his poems
like pipe-bombs
and left our
souls smoking
in an implosion of
paper wasps and
piano keys—

Two Poems by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal


Are you pleased to meet me?
I certainly don't feel the same.
You come here with questions
I already answered again and
again. You don't bring me a
cup of coffee or a roll. You
don't offer me a cigarette or
bring me the morning paper.

I don't want to talk to you.
You could go on your way.
If you come over next time,
bring me a pack of cigarettes,
some hot coffee with cream,
no sugar, and a jelly roll.


I marveled at the silence of
stars in the moist night air.
I counted all the stars in
the sky until I was sick and
tired. I heard crickets chirp.
I smiled and applauded. All
the stars in the sky winked
at me when I rubbed my eyes.

Two Poems by Jonathan Butcher

Time Is Money

I awake to hear radio news of yet more
empty pockets being emptied further, whilst
shop counter tills overflow with increases.

I rise and make tea with the last tea bag
in the packet, hold my breath full of morning
frost, and out stretch my fingers that creak
like kicked in doors.

And from the window I see failed faces that
linger in shop doorways, that seem to lean
closer than before, their breath as hot as lava
in couds of lie filled mist.

Their slavering drunken yells fail to evoke fear,
only annoyance, as they crawl through gutters,
as natural as scratching an itch, as breathing
congested air.

And the tiny patch of grass in the concrete yard
soaks up any tranquility left, absorbs it in the
hardened ground, converts it into steam.

Easy Shadow

Once again his head drops and offers that
mental shelter, and he prays at least today
will pass him by.

He has learnt to keep his mouth shut, his
tongue now redundant, a slab of dried meat,
that learnt it's lesson long ago.

And he sees them approaching, the grins
and gleaming eyes, ready to project their
package of misery (and they never seem
to take a day off).

And his voice and clothes and walk and
hair and eyes and teeth and nose are all
to blame now, a collective hindrance, that
only serve to fuel the ever glowing embers.

And to touch that green horizon, with fingers
that roam free from this shell, hardly seems
worth the bother.

Two Poems by Mike Meraz

Enough Cigarettes To Last A Week

the uselessness of the pen.
enough cigarettes to last a week.
the ability to go to the cafe
anytime I please.
I am a man of simple means.
I do not expect much.
I do not ask for much.
I find a universe of wonder
in the simple things,
like this blank piece of paper,
filling up,
giving meaning
to my life
and yours.

Workin’ For The Oldies

the oldies sit in the
highbrow restaurant
talking about
marvelous things.

I walk by in
old shorts,
Wal-Mart shoes
and uncut hair.

I am a writer
hoping one day
to be the subject
of their conversation.

Getting Old by Stephen Jarrell Williams

He thought
he would wear holey jeans and T-shirts
through the forever of his days,

walk barefoot
smoking cigarettes cockeyed,

charm women under a pastry of stars,
never getting tired and never going to die.

staggering down the hall to his greasy apartment,
opening the unlocked door burping,

two neighbor gals
taking a steamy bath in his tub,
their best years down the drain...

He pees into the tub between them,
laughing, the party of the old continues...

The three of them in bed with lights off,
each remembering years ago,
drip of tears on soggy pillows.

Magnificent Decay (For David Lerner) by Kevin M. Hibshman

Kamikaze air and the ghost of Rimbaud haunted and hunted you down
in sweltering, diseased-ridden San Francisco during the last gasp
of many angels.
I'd be pleasantly relieved to know the two of you had finally met.

Your lumberjack spirit, clumsy as ever, rushes in, knocking shit over.
Delighted to witness something else being dashed to bits.
It's that kind of life followed by the same kind of death. (anonymous?)
No one can hope to survive holding more than their breath.
Sweating it out under the heat lamp of "progress" until those last,
sweetly agonizing
moments collapse.
Face down again, pal.

I must confess I never knew you as flesh yet I was instantly
transfixed by the impossible
love your poems attest to.
The bright darkness, limitless depths.
Poetry became a hole you would never crawl out of but I thank you as
the muse demanded your death,
I feel blessed by your burden.

september evening by Steve Calamars

raging bull muted on
the television set and
dostoyevsky screaming
in my brain
as i leave a tiny room
on the second floor of
an old apartment building
and run 6 miles
thru rich streets
with poor social skills and
worn sneakers
the miles fall beneath
my feet and i climb the
flight of stairs back to my room
my mind still racing and my
thoughts sprinting
across the page
malicious as
missiles and
molotov cocktails—

Necklace by Karime Limon

I'm in my bed
my chin pressed into my pillow,
my heart pounds against the mattress
and the glow of this window
lights up my hands and face.

I think about him out there,
I wonder where he is,
I pretend
he's on his way
to meet me
and I grow nervous
and scared.

I even plan my outfit
and hair
to look perfect for him,
like his doll.

I feel that pain inside,
of missing his presence,
how lonely it is without him,
and not knowing
if I'll hear from him tomorrow.

the tears flood and blur my vision,
dropping out like little pearls,
formed and compressed
between the heart and the soul

I'll collect these pearls,
and make a necklace
to wear
when he arrives

Table of Discontents #5 by Russell Streur

Systemic flaws
Landscape barren
Outlet mall
Fast forward
Fault lines
Mass starvation
Other targets
Cloaked in secrecy
Learning in the dark

“Seeking truth,”
the incendiary said,
“is completely futile.”

Not enough water
New laws.


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