Untitled poem, by Simon Perchik
My father was a weaver
-by the dozen, threading spools
the way all silk flows into the sea
-this horse must be thirsty
tugging straw loose: each strand
gushes along the ground
-he shaved with a soap
that floated and the foam taking hold
some iron-gray streak: his mustache
-the horse doesn't hear
and this paper bag
bronzed the way all bells
count outloud and looking up
mean nothing now.
Even on the night shift
he worked each stream till the cloth
slowly rolls into pasture
into oak fence rails :the loom
somehow jams in the distance
needing parts, adjustments, rest
-he would lift the small bag
to his huge head -the light
was never close enough -he ate
and the wrinkles around his mouth
as if he was calling for more water
-even now, even this page
wants to be folded again :the bag
filled with a sandwich
smelling from grass
trying again to root along his throat
-this old horse
half blind, half deaf, half dead
-a miracle to a child
leaning against the rotting fence
filled with apples, with rivers
that carry off forever and the skies.
Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review,
The New Yorker, and elsewhere. For more information, including his essay
“Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” and a complete bibliography, please
visit his website at www.simonperchik.com.
Onto the Night, by B. Z. Niditch
fallen out of sleep
in restless illusion
and you,Andy Warhol
wait for the factory's gate
crashing to start rolling
the film's cinematic
ex con artists
in a cinema verite
proving they can act,
in the Sixties with
when art was deconstructed
in our time.
B.Z. Niditch is a poet, playwright, fiction writer and teacher.
His work is widely published in journals and magazines throughout the world, including:
Columbia: A Magazine of Poetry and Art, The Literary Review, Denver Quarterly, Hawaii
Review, Le Guepard (France), Kadmos (France), Prism International, Jejune (Czech
Republic), Leopold Bloom (Budapest), Antioch Review, and Prairie Schooner, among others.
He lives in Brookline, Massachusetts.
Flight Path In Reverse, by Gregory Gunn
Translucent, whisper-quiet wings
of a grounded hummingbird,
cataract black eyes unclosed
like a pop-eyed platy fish, monetarily
no parasitic portions to become rancid
just breakable brittle sheaths of gossamer.
One could easily fashion a miniature
mandolin from such a frangible frame,
elfin Chinese lanterns, cast into costume
jewellery and dangle by candlelight this
diaphanous stellar gaze, in silver or some
other cherished emblematic metal,
which places on the tongue down-in-
the mouth words and senescent
absinthe that chases away some
of those lingering troublesome spirits.
Born in Windsor, Ontario in 1960, Greg grew up in four small towns throughout Ontario before moving to London in 1970.
An electronics technician graduate of Fanshawe College in 1982, Mr. Gunn began writing extensively and has done so for over thirty years, he is most passionate about poetry. Other interests include music, astronomy, philosophy, photography, foreign languages, and gardening.
Recently, Gregory has had or will have poems published in Inscribed Magazine, 20 X 20 Magazine, The Toronto Quarterly, Yes, Poetry, Word Letting Magazine, 1000 Acts of Kindness, Ditch Magazine, Ascent Aspirations, The Light Ekphrastic, Carcinogenic, Steel Toe Review, Cyclamens and Swords, and Carty’s Web.
Also published are five collections of his selected poetry.
Dropped By A Peacock, by Donal Mahoney
I can no more justify these poems
than can the pyromaniac
his conflagrations. We both
stand back, the pyromaniac
in his alley, I on my hill,
each of us loving
the leap of our flames.
His are gazelles but mine
are just feathers
dropped by a peacock.
Donal Mahoney, a native of Chicago, lives in St. Louis, MO. He has worked as an editor for The Chicago Sun-Times, Loyola University Press and Washington University in St. Louis. A Pushcart Prize nominee, he has had poems published in or accepted by The Wisconsin Review, The Kansas Quarterly, The South Carolina Review, The Beloit Poetry Journal, Commonweal, Public Republic (Bulgaria), Revival (Ireland), The Istanbul Literary Review (Turkey), Pirene's Fountain (Australia) and other publications.
Seasawing By Twilight, by Clinton Van Inman
Seesawing once by twilight
Next to a sportive sea
I learn to drag my gender
Between the moonlit tides
While my cramp doubles
In her helix. I learn
To jump like a dog
Before a Frisbee.
Upon her wind blown beaches
The gulls have picked
All my bones clean. Now
Cockled women dance savagely
No more than girls
The washer women now too
Play in shallow waters.
Clinton Van Inman was born in England and is a graduate of San Diego State University. He teaches at a high school in Hillsborough County, Florida.
Monkey on His Back, by Kurt Shinian
There is a man in Minneapolis, Minnesota who walks through the metropolitan area with a live monkey on his back. Local legend has it that he started doing this after his young son passed away.
Maybe tonight I will see you sleeping
in your bed, blanket drawn to your chin,
a red moon coming through your drawn
shades. It’s been two years, John
but you’re never in your bed.
I stand here by your dresser
and remember our last days together,
how the monarch took a ride
on your shoulder for half a block.
It moved its wings like birth.
Every time I smell cinnamon I see you
with a waffle dripping syrup
all over your shirt front.
I’m sorry I yelled at you.
You never did like sleeping in the dark.
It scared you.
I can’t help but wonder
what light you see now,
if any at all.
There’s something about standing
here in your room. I think about
the days you’d take my hand
when we went for ice cream,
how you’d eat it on our stoop.
Do you remember how we’d stand
on the landing and race up five flights?
I’d always rest on the third
and let you pass me.
I miss the way you’d look back at me.
We lost each other, John.
I lost you.
Once we waited for the bus to come
while the snow fell on Christmas Eve.
You were so young,
tired, asleep on my back.
Your breath kept my neck warm.
I kissed you on the forehead
and called you my little monkey.
Kurt K. Shinian lives in Fairport, NY. He has taught in the SUNY community system for over ten years and is a graduate from Brown's writing program.
Dreamy Embrace, by Ron Koppelberger
Cloaks of cotton and sheer skies of bespattered down,
In beauties eager bloom, by the birth of salient sugars
In sweet breaths of starry-eyed quest,
the desire in favorite degrees of twilight passion,
in tender eyes and perfumed strands
Of corn silk shadow, designs of noble embrace,
A wish in dreamy affection and scarlet wherefores and the
Flames of amber eyes in
Tempests, where the wind blows by revelations
In firefly promise and sun glow
Ron has been published in The Storyteller, Ceremony, Write On!!!, Freshly Baked Fiction and Necrology Shorts. He recently won the People’s Choice Award for poetry in The Storyteller for a poem titled "Secret Sash". He is a member of The American Poet’s Society as well as The Isles Poetry Association.
The Little Paper Soldier, by Ilya Prints
(Inspired by Bulat Okudzhava)
Once little soldier lived in the world,
He was an honest, brave, and fair.
In hand he firmly held a sword, … but
It was a toy made out of paper.
The truth and justice moved his thoughts,
He looked at all as brothers, …alas,
In real life, the truth for some
Proved truthful lie to others.
He wanted to defeat the spite,
To bring light into living, …alas,
Along with good, in real life,
The evil feasted being.
He would be glad to fight with foe
Not for the sake of glory, …alas,
In real life, what’s right? What’s wrong?
The line between them blurry.
His dream was to remake the world,
to make the people happier, …but
He was suspended by the cord,
A toy made out of paper.
And once, he did not hesitate
To rescue in the fire,
And he was burned, just been - and burned,
And the paper toy expired.
He’s burned, but friends composed a song
Of the little paper fighter,
Who dreamt to make this crazy world
A happier and kinder.
Ilya Prints is from St. Petersburg in Russia and currently lives in Boston. Prints enjoys writing short stories, fairy tales, and poetry.
Even as Evening, by Michael Lee Johnson
Even as evening
dust loose from their yellow-
a robin pulls
the last red worm
from the moist,
into fresh fall night-
Michael Lee Johnson is a poet and freelance writer from Itasca, Illinois. He is heavy influenced by: Carl Sandburg, Robert Frost, William Carlos Williams, Irving Layton, Leonard Cohen, and Allen Ginsberg. His new poetry chapbook with pictures, titled From Which Place the Morning Rises, and his new photo version of The Lost American: from Exile to Freedom are available at: http://stores.lulu.com/promomanusa. The original version of The Lost American: from Exile to Freedom, can be found at: http://www.iuniverse.com/bookstore/book_detail.asp?isbn=0-595-46091-7. He also has 2 previous chapbooks available at: http://stores.lulu.com/poetryboy.
Michael has been published in over 23 countries. He is also editor/publisher of four poetry sites, all open for submission, which can be found at his Web site: http://poetryman.mysite.com.
The Project, by Michael Keshigian
He felt as if he were born
to the sawdust and nails
of writing, working daily
in hours of solitude
to construct an architecture
which at times
seemed like a pointless task,
devoid of shelter for any dweller,
a paper house
easily toppled in a stray breeze.
On many afternoons
he abandoned the work,
to view the project from afar,
somewhat defeated yet relieved
once he soaked his head
in the light of the sun
which cleansed the metaphors
from his brain,
allowing a bit of respite
while the half house
toppled in a sigh of wind.
He could hear the creaks
of settling rubble.
once separated by nouns and verbs,
were now splintered by light
in puffs of dust,
carried off with a gust,
floating until an alternative blueprint
penciled in his head,
a new rhythm of nails
that bond another design,
motivating him back to his desk.