Mad Swirl Open Mic : 06.03.15

Mad Swirl Open Mic : 06.03.15
Join Mad Swirl this 1st Wednesday of June at 8:00 sharp, when we will swirl it up madly in the LIVE way that we do every month now for OVER 10 years! This month we are featuring Irish poet, writer, & McMad man, Brendan McCormick (via Skype)! If you haven't had the pleasure to catch[read more]

Then They Came For You...

Then They Came For You...
First they came after the fringes... Those that Joe and Jane Citizen seem to deem as the dregs of society. The executioners lied in wait at the gates, itchy fingers on their triggers. They knew their presence would create tension in the ranks. As they flexed their militarized muscle, flaunting their automatic weapons and armored vehicles[read more]

The Best of Mad Swirl : 05.23.15

The Best of Mad Swirl : 05.23.15
“Radiance in Blue” (above) by featured artist Brett “BA” Ardoin. To see more Mad works from Brett, and our other contributing artists, please visit our Mad Gallery. “Although idea and form are ultimately paramount in my work, so too are chance, accident, and rawness.” ~ Martin Puryear ••• The Poetry Forum ••• This last week in Mad Swirl's[read more]

Sunrise after the Solstice

the stars are gone with the black

without a trace
without footprints to follow

where they fly

starlings are already bright at their perch
singing spells to raise the casing of day

watercolors, salmon and pink, paint
impressions of mountains and cloud-scapes

dreams waiting to be awakened and real

nearby, lumbering shadows flee my room
deserting to the silent hallway

soon, the sun will intercede
the sky be crowned

pure, firm, fearless like fire wild

and there, the slivered Moon, once her own
glory will lose her iridescence

yet, stay at her post

as if she were called to be matron
the sun’s sole pale attendant

– Michael Parker

Recently Published

Summer pome

My summer pome,
like sunlight off the pavement
hurtin your eyes,
but the trees are singing
and kids in the park
playing ball
and smoking
like mad.
Sometimes I remember
so much about my[read more]

Johnny Never Came Marching Home Again

But he did return.

He arrived in a box with a star spangled​
and blood striped flag, draped with care.

When Johnny didn’t come marching home[read more]


*[Enter a] Laid back “Chia-Pet” from way back… (Face plant)
I ate off of con men like “no trade back” place mats.

From Gabe’s moon’s orbit[read more]



Toys. That’s what the roughly painted graffiti read. Crumbling bricks that had once served as a retaining wall provided the so-called canvas. It was a hard-core fact that most who wandered past the beat-up apartment complex that perched like a dying whale just off I-70 in the Granite City neighborhood, not exactly one of St. Louis’s finest, figured the graffiti was merely the product of some twelve-year-old’s unimaginative imagination. No, it was far from that. Toys. And plenty of small children. Easy. Right? Unsurprisingly, the biggest clue to the one-word[read more]


for Dr. David Hillman My best friend wears the head of an ass. It’s not an easy situation, but it’s one we can deal with. The head of the ass gives him access to the super-temporal realm, i.e., makes him a total nutball. He is, without question, great at parties. People are sad here in the developed world these days, we’re whining about ideologies, and war, and all the other uglies. Not enough smoothies... we know it’s tough. But my friend, with that donkey head, he is the antidote. The pharmakon! He is[read more]
A Whistle

A Whistle

So many evenings, while sitting at his desk, typing, the poor, hungry writer heard a whistle. And it was an exceptionally skilled whistle. The lips captured to a tee the sliding up the scale, then suavely sauntering back down the scale whistle associated with paying a compliment to a hot lady. Put your lips together and blow. Easy, for dreamers. No, only Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra mastered such a whistle intuitively. Everett always heard the whistle at night, pitch-black nights, above a quiet neighborhood. Furthermore he had a hard[read more]