Over and Out

| Filed under

Contributor: Donal Mahoney

- -
Harley turned 70
the other day
and died

riding his motorcycle
through a pink dawn,
an old Suzuki

not a Harley.
He hit a fireplug
and soared,

a missile shot
over the handlebars.
He never made a sound

landed in
a rose garden
but never knew it.

Heart attack
while airborne,
never felt the thorns.

- - -
Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

The End

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Contributor: Holly Day

- -
it’s not that I missed you when you left
it’s just that I couldn’t stop thinking about all the things
you left behind, all the dependent
little creatures in your house, left to fend for
themselves, trapped in their fishbowls
behind locked and closed doors

I keep thinking about your goldfish, picture them
floating lifeless in their bowl, the long-nosed
dolphin fish I picked out for your
tank, the baby iguanas posed on their perch
waiting for
their handful of crickets, the cats you adopted pawing
frantic at the doorknob
waiting for you to come home. I wish

you had left me a key.

- - -
Holly Day's newest poetry book, Ugly Girl, just came out from Shoe Music Press.

Mindless Patter

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Contributor: Ken Allan Dronsfield

- -
Chartreuse mountains of clouded fountains
where the purple ships sail horizon bound.
Fitting seas for the gentle solar breezes;
The loveless found while sleeping sound.

Flow through days in a cold splintered haze;
stealing in the corners of a mindless patter.
Seeking revenge for life's unreasoning ways;
an enchanted breath through pictorial matter

I can't feel the pain through disheartened disdain;
exploring my path while dishonoring all wrath.
I seek a reprieve to a raucous soulless reign;
a lost purple fantasy or wandering psychopath.

- - -
Ken Allan Dronsfield is a Published poet/author/digital artist from Oklahoma. He enjoys writing, walks and his cats, Merlin and Willa.

Rising from the Grave

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Contributor: Richard Schnap

- -
My father once told me
That he believed I was going
To join a cult

He turned out to be right
For I passed through many
Over the years

The one with the uniform
Of faded blue jeans
And tie dyed shirts

The one where everybody
Wore black leather jackets
With matching pants

But as the days passed by
I grew tired of singing
Their dead anthems

So I learned a new one
Whose music and lyrics
Were mine alone

- - -
Richard Schnap is a poet, songwriter and collagist living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His poems have most recently appeared locally, nationally and overseas in a variety of print and online publications.

Worrying & Writing

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Contributor: Paul Tristram

- -
Worrying and writing
is all she seems to do these days.
But it’s better than drinking
and ‘Kicking Off’ every 5 minutes
like it used to be before
this inspiration and energy
balmed her frantic mind.
Her husband has a beautiful smile,
she’s only noticed this again recently.
Colours crept back into her life
almost blinding her senses
with their lucid, fucking freshness.
Emotions, Moods, Past, Future
whirl like uncontrollable children’s
spinning tops within her essence,
it really is quite giddying at times.
Yet, she is learning to reign
those stampeding mental horses.
With the typewriter keys
taking control of the dance
more fluidly with practice,
changing the speed, pitch and rhythm
to suit her very own unique flow.

- - -
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 books ‘Scribblings Of A Madman’ (Lit Fest Press) http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1943170096 ‘Poetry From The Nearest Barstool’ at http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1326241036 And a split poetry book ‘The Raven And The Vagabond Heart’ with Bethany W Pope at http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1326415204


| Filed under

Contributor: Sheikha A.

- -
between us

the sparks could have been flying
fishes – tail and head premature –

a million fishes dived out into the air

into a pool of pale liquid marble

showing them waves of a quench
able thirst

only a thousand feet of drop,
the frilled fins unneeded

the ballet legs unnecessary

the levitating redundancy

crescendo palpable

drop inevitable

- - -


| Filed under

Contributor: John Tustin

- -
I hold your toes,
Kiss them in the dark.
Every part of you is so pretty,
Even the sadness in your heart is beautiful.
I run my hand along your leg, your thigh,
Then my palm touches your palm.
We remain there:
Your big toe (so small) pressed to my lips
As you hold my thigh in your left hand,
Folding our right hands together.
I love your parts,
I love your whole,
I kiss the sole of your foot
As you wrap your legs around me
And we hold the moment still,
Perfect, glorious
Like a hummingbird
In midflight.

- - -

Pygmies and the Dalai Lama

| Filed under

Contributor: Donal Mahoney

- -
I don't know the answer but
perhaps the Dalai Lama knows
the final resting place of pygmies

who live in jungles unexplored
and never hear a sermon from
a preacher, rabbi, or imam,

who live in huts, eat fruit and nuts,
think disappearing jets are birds
their arrows cannot reach.

What happens when they die?
I don't know the answer but
perhaps the Dalai Lama knows.

- - -
Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

Haiku Sequence

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Contributor: Joyce Joslin Lorenson

- -
Tokyo mist
a steady drip
from tiled roofs

riding the train
rain meets us
at the station

patter of rain
on our umbrella
counting koi

at Buddha's feet
the sun dips
behind Kamakura hills

fragrant moon
through sliding shoji
the smell of new tatami

- - -
Joyce Joslin Lorenson lives in Rhode Island, grew up on a dairy farm and records the daily happenings in nature around her rural home. She has been published in several print and electronic journals.

Dept. 56

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Contributor: Kristina Jacobs

- -
It's Misc.
That's miscellaneous for us courageous spellers
Random, randomness
Everything and the kitchen sink

Dept. 56,
uncategorizable leftovers
It's the 000, 111,
999, 1234
of the Universe

things with no place to go,
have to go somewhere
though they're a motley crew

- - -
Kristina Jacobs lives in Minnesota. Her latest poetry chapbooks are: Inside Invisible and Dawn After Dusk.

If Envy Was A King

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Contributor: Teddy Kimathi

- -
If Envy was a king,
he would kill everyone in his kingdom.

He would kill the cooks,
for he can’t cook as well as they do.

He would kill goldsmiths,
for he can’t make jewelry as well as they do.

He would kill poets,
for he can’t write poems as well as they do.

He would kill hunters,
for he can’t hunt as well as they do.

He would kill diviners,
for he doesn’t have any sacred calling as they do.

He would kill painters,
for he can’t paint as well as they do.

He would kill his guards,
for he can’t guard as well as they do….

If Envy was a King,
he would kill everyone in his kingdom.

- - -
Teddy has poems in Inwood Indiana Press, Shot Glass Journal, Leaves of Ink, 50 Haikus, UHTS (Cattails), BlogNostics, Tanka Journal, Paper Wasp, Three Line Poetry & Literature Today. He also has fiction works in Beyond Science Fiction, Jitter Press, Paragraph Planet, & Every Day Fiction.

In Memoriam

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Contributor: Debbi Antebi

- -
his dimples
small caves of happiness
opening up to his soul
inviting careful onlookers

his long lashes
curtains to his eyes
highlighting his smiles
shadowing his thoughts

in the absence of all else
only these two remain
he’s gone, but still l try to figure out
where his dimples and lashes went

- - -
Debbi Antebi (@debbisland) exhales oxygen while writing poems. Her work has appeared in Leaves of Ink, The Poetry Jar and Modern Haiku, among others. Follow her at debbiantebi.wordpress.com

I Died Today

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Contributor: Ken Allan Dronsfield

- -
I think I died today.
Staring at the bare walls;
a knife, a fork, a bottle and
candle lay before me.
The raucous sounds of blaring horns,
screeching brakes and people shouting;
all rise up from the sweltering streets
below, through my open window.
The smells and hell of the city
permeate the entire room and
the fan in the corner quit a day ago;
but, I think I died today.
I laid on the old mattress,
sweat running down my face.
I dozed off and awoke
in a field of green grass,
with white crosses all about.
I stood and watched friends of old
toss roses of red into the dark hole,
landing upon a casket. I think I'm there,
tucked inside wearing my dark gray suit,
white shirt and hated tie...Oh yes,
I think I died today, I just don't know why.

- - -
Ken Allan Dronsfield is a Published poet/author/digital artist from Oklahoma. He enjoys writing, walks and his cats, Merlin and Willa.

Hot Breath of a Primal Yes

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Contributor: Scott Thomas Outlar

- -
When I weep
it is in primal acceptance
of life
exactly as it is…

all the suffering
all the joy…
all the failures
all the successes

It is in the moments
of our greatest downfalls
that we create the visions
of what we will be
once having risen again
and readied ourselves…

for war
for peace…
for blood
for breath

- - -
Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry and fiction can be found. His chapbook "Songs of a Dissident" is available on Amazon.

It's Many Miles from Easy

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Contributor: Donal Mahoney

- -
It's many miles from easy to the end.
For some, the end is dawn. For others it's
the nightfall of imbroglio because

the end depends upon your ticket
and every ticket's punched one-way.
No round-trip tickets, save perhaps

for some who claim a mulligan,
who say they need another chance.
It's true that some may need a mulligan

if they leave without a destination,
while others know which port
they'll dock in. Or so they say.

When they arrive, however,
and find no hula skirts or leis,
they may gasp and cry, "Who knew?"

while somewhere in the clouds
a blinking neon sign proclaims
it's many miles from easy to the end.

- - -
Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

The Nest of Love

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Contributor: Indunil Madhusankha

- -
The giant mango tree on the rear lawn
towers above the window in my room upstairs
Beneath its canopy, laid on a limb, there is the bird nest
A small family – the mother, father and the son
In the evenings, when the sky turns primrose
with the golden moon peering above the distant hills
I hear some tweeting sounds coming from the nest
Then I rush towards the window
I see the tiny bill – wide open, rising above the nest wall
saying a thousand little things to its mother
who pats the baby head with her soft slender neck
In a while, the father’s shadow emerges from the distance
with some wild berries clipped between the mandibles
fluttering his wings more hastily seeing home
As he lands on the nest, the mother welcomes him
tenderly kissing his sturdy neck
Then both start cuddling their son
They chop the berries with their beaks
and feed the baby with the bits
who gulps them down
while relishing the very warmth.
Oh, I am so happy that I have been
lucky enough to witness this nest of love!

- - -
Indunil Madhusankha is currently an undergraduate in the Faculty of Science of the University of Colombo. Even though he is academically involved with the stream of Physical Sciences, he also pursues a successful career in the field of English language and literature as a budding young researcher, reviewer, poet, and content writer.


| Filed under

Contributor: John Tustin

- -
I beg the stars
for one night with you.

I beg the sun
for a single day.

I beg the clouds
to cover for us.

I beg the ground
to bury us side by side.

I beg the wind
to carry us toward the other.

I have spent my life
collecting debris,
ensnared in webs,
vigilantly destroying myself.

I would swim the ocean naked for you.

I would dance through the fire for you.

I would bind you with my misanthropic and perfect love.

I would give up years for you.

I would give up music.

I would give up concentrated thought.

I would give up dreams and concepts
and computation and analyzation.

I would even give up
these words
all the others
not yet
to a page.

- - -


| Filed under

Contributor: Sheikha A.

- -
Recanting the shepherd boy’s steps
from the Plaza of Tangier, we would stop
the world from moving forward for him;

the sheen of the sword that refracted
in his mind – the intent embedded –

the sixty sheep he faithfully reared
but knowing to sell a lame one
didn’t necessarily mean deception;

now, amongst the endless dunes
of an untameable Sahara, unlike his sheep,
the caravans have loaded. The goad

During rest, the caravans breathe
fitfully, unknowing of what lays ahead –
having yet to greet the desert properly;

but a storm silently unfolds
in the mind of the shepherd's,
the words in books: a cryptic treasure,

but Coelho’s night is prominent
breathing within the sand of the vast,

not as clear as the crystals rubbed,
nor as complacent as black and white

but the sand stirs under a moon-breeze
often camouflaging as a white sheet,
the silence faithless, mornings fateful
and journey endless:


- - -


| Filed under

Contributor: Ken Allan Dronsfield

- -
Before I go,
look deep into my eyes;
see my life slowly drain.
From soft white snows;
to those fiery eternal flames.
It's with you, my dear friend,
I shall always remain.
As I prepare for final rest,
lay me gently on leaves
under that old dying tree.
When my spirit flies
from the husk left behind;
my memories shall fade away.
I now welcome death;
absent of agonizing lament.
For life slowly evaporates;
and is oblivious of love.
This long life spent;
in torturous torment;
will welcome the journey
home; high, high above.

- - -
Ken Allan Dronsfield is a Published poet/author/digital artist from Oklahoma. He enjoys writing, walks and his cats, Merlin and Willa.

Waterbugs, Roses and Me

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Contributor: Donal Mahoney

- -
Waterbugs scurry
when the light snaps on
at midnight in the bathroom
the way this woman's eyes
dart when I see her
dancing with a nice man
but not the right man.
He's shorter than I am,

has a neat goatee.
She always knew
my interest would last
once I had gamboled
in the garden of roses
she had been planting
one rose at a time
for a devil like me.

- - -
Donal Mahoney has been married for a long time.

Vague Presence

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Contributor: Richard Schnap

- -
He caught the scent
Of a flowery perfume
That vanished as soon
As he smelled it

And the quiet whisper
Of a subtle voice
That echoed and then

And the soft caress
Of a delicate hand
That stroked his skin
And then faded

And when he turned
There was no one there
Just a shadow that seemed
Darker than most

- - -
Richard Schnap is a poet, songwriter and collagist living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His poems have most recently appeared locally, nationally and overseas in a variety of print and online publications.

Focal Point

| Filed under

Contributor: Scott Thomas Outlar

- -
There is only so much truth
to go around
among the various cults
where such a thing is scarce.

The truth of God is righteous,
but the cults of dogma
are dead weight
in the human psyche.

The truth of scientific fact is sweet,
but the cults of theory
are a poison
polluting indoctrinated minds.

The truth of sovereignty is holy,
but the cult of collectivism
is a government decree
that is destined to die hard.

The truth of love is a lullaby,
but the cult of hatred
is a sad song
that soon shall be silenced.

There is only so much truth
to go around
in the decadent institutions
of this world…
let them burn

The truth is eternal
in the kingdom found within
and always rises
in the end…
reveal the revolution

- - -
Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry and fiction can be found. His chapbook "Songs of a Dissident" is available on Amazon.


| Filed under

Contributor: Sy Roth

- -
Threads appear in an unraveling broadcloth.
The being warps and woofs its way through time
inflicting opportune wounds on them lest they forget.

Here and there a playful dance
joyous romp binds them to the thread .
The cavort to the festival of their own creation.

They dance to the long memories
lost in a dance, a hora-tune of diminution.
It embraces them in a deluge of talmudic dissertations,
dips them like sweet apples and honey
in the blood of the martyrs, to a spirit
or bathes them in the bitter herbs of tendentious existence.

He cast them to the vast, dark stygian waters
the wonder of vexation
as they trundle on in their death march following the white-robed molochs
who guide them to the turgid waters of Acheron.

They should run—
run along with the murky sirocco winds that swirl around them
that whisper sweet nothings in their air—
acquire your own repentance.

They bleat out the plaintive words of memory—
tishkoch yemeni—
stockpile a mountain of words
the hungry void with their homage to the spirit of one .

They top the tank of their own hungry void
with sibiliant, silent, camel-ridden prayers.
Follow the shifting trade winds to the hills and valleys of their own destruction.
May their right hands wither if they forget.
They cannot.

- - -
Peaceful conundrums traipse through doleful musings. I am a retired educator and is trying to answer his own questions after posing a million.


| Filed under

Contributor: John Tustin

- -
i am compelled to find you.
i am compelled to arrive
and fling myself at your feet.
i am compelled to find your body
like a moth finds light;
like a worm finds darkness;
like a slug finds wetness;
like hatching sea turtles strive toward the ocean.
i am compelled to touch your outstretched body
and taste your body.
your body as brave and delicate
as a laden branch.
your nipples that stand like autumn
and applaud for me
as my flesh screams in torrid agony,
your mouth that lies agile and tastes
like sugar and peaches.
your eyes that implore me and explore me
and reveal me.
your legs that wind their way up my back
and attach like vines on the church wall.
your eyes that betray tandem supplication and defiance.
i am compelled to hold tight your wrists
and thrust my force, my weight, my self
on you and in you
and we scuffle like that,
attached at the thigh and waist,
sticky and dripping,
eyes interlocking,
and my waist will never leave your thigh.
my perspiration is for you, my climax is for you,
my tears and my open kisses,
my love and my fleas and my sad abandoned chrysalis,
my jail cell and my damp wilting flowers,
their petals falling and glistening for you.
and i am for you, my eyes are for you,
and i am for you, compelled onward by foolishness
and kismet.
i am compelled to find your body,
explore it and adore it,
anoint it and adorn it,
obtain it and contain it,
and put myself into you
and pull myself out
feeling better,
being better,
compelled to do it
until i can’t do anything anymore.
until i can’t do anything
but lie fragile in your arms
and wait for my own body to succumb to a heaven that will not compare
to the feeling in my stomach when you approach,
the fullness of my heart when you are there,
the emptiness of my heart when you are not.
compelled to lie there
until i admit that the earth is just some
blue and green and brown thing
that God put down
so you had a place
to be.
and i am here
to be
with you
so you will not
be alone there.

- - -

Tube Rose

| Filed under

Contributor: Nikhil Nath

- -
On the obituary
of a tube rose

the guided

burns a hole
in the map

of Africa,
while coffee

waits in
a pot

memories and

submerging in
a hurricane

of logic
swimming on rhetoric

- - -
Nikhil has been writing poetry for eighteen years. He has been published in various magazine in India, the USA and the UK. Nikhil Nath is his pen name. He lives and works from Kolkata, India. “Write rubbish, but write", said Virginia Woolf. This is Nikhil's maxim for writing.
Allegro, Aji, Ink salt and Tears, Laughing Dog (Poem of the Month), Ehanom, Ithica Lit, Germ Magazine, Leaves of Ink, Linden Avenue and Pif Magazine have recently accepted his work.

These Songbirds Left Behind

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Contributor: John Grey

- -
Too late, sub-zero is upon them.
Feathers, wings, screech silent.
Beaks chatter in flight.
All these songbirds have is wildness and instinct.
No use in frozen sky, the seasons' hindmost.
Like bats, they long to cozy up in caves.
Like frogs, ache to be mud-packed for the season,
pond-buried, slowing their heart down to survival pace.
The tuneless blue-jay has no sweet song to protect,
fluffs up as snow falls, wind blows.
Woodpeckers hammer the hardest bark
for hordes of mummified insects.
Chickadees chip on frozen berries.
Nuthatches skate down icy bark.
Starlings forage in splintery grass for hayseed.
The songbirds find flimsy reprieve under drifts,
chirp a brittle soundtrack to their own starvation.
An unwitting, unwanted, fast has begun.
No warble when they're stark against the landscape.
Their souls fly south but birds remain,
all beauty, no sustenance.
On high, bare branch, crows are undertakers.
At ground level, they're graves.

- - -
John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Perceptions and the anthology, No Achilles with work upcoming in Big Muddy Review, Gargoyle, Coal City Review and Nebo.

A Moment in a Desert Scrub

| Filed under

Contributor: James Robert Rudolph

- -
The oleanders, they’re most beautiful here, he said;
It’s the drought, they suffer, she replied absently,
her eyes soon slits,
narrowing, shielding,
against this elemental place.

A roan dust settles,
stasis, the mastication of a locust warns,
the vigor of its slow
disciplined climb up
a beheaded blond grass stem now
balances undulating segments,
pupa pudgy.

Oleanders in the lurid colors
of healthy organs,
for only fresh anatomy,
something taken from within,
could dot the sky red
in this place of
brown and ochre and brown.

- - -
James Robert Rudolph is a retired psychologist and teacher having returned to old haunts in northern New Mexico after a busy career in Minneapolis. He is attempting a resurrection of poetry and playwriting interests and finds Santa Fe a rich, if not always willing, muse. Creatively he aspires to the crafting of work that expresses honest experience in beautiful language, complex or simple, as serves the work’s purpose.

The Human Condition

| Filed under

Contributor: Donal Mahoney

- -
Did I forgive her, you ask?
What a silly question.
Why wouldn't I forgive her?
The mother of my children,

she's been dead for years.
Our long war died with her.
Did I attend her funeral?
I'd have been a distraction.

But I pray for her,
the repose of her soul.
She belongs in Heaven,
no denying that, up front

in a box seat after all
she's been through.
If I'm lucky, I'll find
the side door to

Heaven unlocked.
I'll sneak in quietly
and if Peter doesn't
throw me out, I'll sit

in the bleachers.
The question is,
will I wave if she
turns around?

- - -
Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

Commercial Free

| Filed under

Contributor: SB Moore

- -
This is your uninterrupted
stream of me, my thoughts,
my words, my ways.
No one will be breaking in,
as they often did, to try to sell
you phones or juice, or whatever
they sell in some of those
commercials that don't make
sense. But then you will find
that this ceaseless river may
be too much person, too much
real, that we like our escape,
so enjoy a brief commercial
about some bike tires, and we
will meet again thereafter.

- - -


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