2:22 PM Zen

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Contributor: Sudeep Adhikari

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Truth, I don't seek you.
I see multiple fields,
and well-rounded structures
happy faces, dejected spirits
and I am alive, breathing
existence and endless conjectures
going tangent at me, at 2: 22 P.M.
a fractal tree, stand on my drive-way
a monotonous caw
carries the sounds of the other-worlds,
spans some moment
nonetheless, an eternity in itself.

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Sudeep Adhikari is from Kathmandu, Nepal. He works have appeared in many literary journals and magazines.

Little Cartons, Little Sacks

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Contributor: Donal Mahoney

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The mug of tea
I drank at dawn,
the tea that drove

me to the train
needs a refill.
At my desk,

I don’t do much
but wait for lunch
when every day

I eat so much
the waitress gawks.
She doesn’t

realize the years
till supper
when I’ll dine

alone again,
bolt everything
that I bring home

in little cartons,
little sacks.
She’s not there

when the couch
becomes my slab
till ten

when bed
my mausoleum.

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Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.


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Contributor: Sanjeev Sethi

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In this stillness I can see my silence
serenade my sight which beckons smell
to dip into this draught of feelings,
resulting in a rash of rhythms --
autograph from forces I have no control over.

Hieroglyphics of hate try to discombobulate.
I have no space for surgeons with insidious
operations. This vow of words is a serape
I wrap myself in. It makes me serene like
in a séance: my Hippocrene.

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The recently released, This Summer and That Summer, (Bloomsbury) is Sanjeev Sethi’s third book of poems. His poems have found a home in The London Magazine, The Fortnightly Review, Ink Sweat and Tears, Sentinel Literary Quarterly, The Galway Review, Otoliths, Off the Coast, Literary Orphans, Café Dissensus Everyday, The Bitchin’ Kitsch, Futures Trading, and elsewhere. He lives in Mumbai, India.

Rome in a Day

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Contributor: J.K. Durick

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From a tour bus everything seems so temporary,
Rome, built in a day, is stuck in traffic right now,

Horns and hassle build moments like this, shuffle
And shift the day this way, hundreds of years,

A thousand or two go by, whole empires summed up,
The work of emperors and popes become anecdotes,

Excesses of the past meet the economy of the present,
An hour in, a fountain or steps leading up this hill or

That, another temple or church, religions blend so well,
Just feel the gods’ presence in this, the irony they loved,

Lines of buses, tourists at the gate, endless cafes and
Gift shops, impatience, summer heat and open wallets

Our history can read us like this, knows what we want
Western civ in digest, just a few hours and then we’re done.

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J. K. Durick is a writing teacher at the Community College of Vermont and an online writing tutor. His recent poems have appeared in Pyrokinection, Record, Yellow Chair Review, Madswirl, and Haikuniverse.

I Don't Play Games, Child

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Contributor: Paul Tristram

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You have not beaten me.
I am not your victim nor anybody else’s.
You did not win at some contest
or sporting event.
You simply set me Free!
Now, excuse me
whilst I learn from my mistake
and happily get myself
back onto the right path again.

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Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight; this too may pass, yet.
Buy his book ‘Scribblings Of A Madman’ (Lit Fest Press) http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1943170096

Blowing your Life

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Contributor: Ken Allan Dronsfield

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Hypnotic stare in a greasy fog
chug on an ice cold frosty beer
driving fast singing 'Slow Ride'
blue light special; a race is on.

Night fun in my old Rambler
jurist hastens with the gavel
blow a nine can get you two
if the count is off by just one.

Staring towards the tall walls,
I'm free just beyond the wires
tower guard glares egotistically
hypnotic stare repels my exhale.

Ten months down, almost done.
good time helps, shaves off a year
positive vibes and prayer helps a lot
swinging to the beat of a 'Free Ride'.

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Ken Allan Dronsfield is a Published Poet from New Hampshire. He enjoys writing from the dark side. His published work can be found at numerous print venues.


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Contributor: Renee' Drummond-Brown

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Sow a seed
Plant a tree
Water ‘n’ Son
Reap the growth
Leave it be
Fend for self
Watch the weed

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I, Renee’ B. Drummond-Brown, am the wife of Cardell Nino Brown Sr. and from our union came Cardell Jr., Renee and Raven Brown. I am the offspring of Mr. and Mrs. Peter C. Drummond of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. My siblings are Delbert D. Drummond and the late Pastor Shawn C. Drummond. I was born in North Carolina, at Camp Lejeune US Naval Hospital. I am a graduate of Geneva College of Pennsylvania, and my love for creative writing is undoubtedly displayed through my very unique style of poetry, which is viewed globally. My poetry is inspired by God and Dr. Maya Angelou. Because of them I pledge this: “Still I write, I write, and I’ll write!”

“Renee’s Poems with Wings are Words in Flight” is flown across the seas by God’s raven. There are several Scriptures that I love; however, this one speaks volumes during this ‘season’: “And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth.” (Genesis 8:7 KJV)

Theory of What Might Have Been

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Contributor: Gary Glauber

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You complicate
what brings us here,
rife with intricate twists.
You smile knowingly,
awaiting camera’s
capture of the fleeting.
Careful worlds collapse,
dreams implode.

In the dream, we ignore the clamor,
the gaping pain gnawing beneath,
will against power,
love versus loins.

This explored touch with benefits,
benefits none.
In harsh daylight,
this babel teeters precariously,
a heart’s phrase gone misunderstood.
Silent symbols
resist explication,
fading to whispers
in eternal swirling wind.

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Gary Glauber is a poet, fiction writer, teacher, and former music journalist. His works have received multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominations. His collection, Small Consolations (Aldrich Press) is available through Amazon, as is a chapbook, Memory Marries Desire (Finishing Line Press).


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Contributor: Michael H. Brownstein

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--because Deborah Lynn loved a tree so much, she gave it a name

Some things come out of no place:
a jerk and a brake:
a flash and a fire:
a text and a heart bends itself in two:
the monster came with the rain,
the night bright blue then gray.
The soil on the hill tripped over itself
and the great black walnut
nesting on our back forty forever
took one tentative step,
then three and when it reached six
blocked its fall against the roof of our old barn.
Roots separating from the ground
where they had always planted themselves
and let its buried essence breathe the flesh of air.
Beautiful things cannot retain their beauty forever
like a mountain pass, a blue green river
the face of youth aging into thinness.
The Asian mulberry tree nearby did not let go of its fruit
and the purple sand cherry in the front yard hung to its seed.
When the madman passed,
the rain slowed to a stroll in the park,
our tree changed the focus of windows,
one limb now pointing straight into the air
as if it were a middle finger and knew how to shout.
After all what holds more beauty
then a middle finger across the palm of sky.

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Michael H. Brownstein is the author of Firestorm: A Rendering of Torah (Camel Saloon Press, 2012), and The Katy Trail, Mid-Missouri, 100F Outside And Other Poems (Kind of Hurricane Press, 2013) among others. He is the editor of First Poems from Viet Nam (2011) and head administrator of Project Agent Orange (http://projectagentorange.com/).

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