Note of Gratitude to the Mad Ones : 12.02.20

Note of Gratitude to the Mad Ones : 12.02.20
If you tuned in to Mad Swirl Open Mic​ this past 1st Wednesday (aka 12.02.20), you know that Mad Swirl Open Mic once again virtually whirled up the Swirl and got the Mad mic opened for all you Mad ones out there! This month we had ourselves a Cool-Tide Swirl-a-bration! Tis the season & we maximized[read more]

The Best of Mad Swirl : 11.28.20

The Best of Mad Swirl : 11.28.20
"Art is the skin of the soul." Alex Grey ••• The Mad Gallery ••• what do you see? - Madelyn Olson To see more of Maddi's mad new cast of diverse characters & canvases, as well as our other former featured artists (51 in total) at Mad Swirl’s Mad Gallery! ••• The Poetry Forum ••• This last week in Mad Swirl's Poetry Forum... we[read more]

Mad Swirl Merch Holidaze Sale

Mad Swirl Merch Holidaze Sale
Extra! Extra! Read ALL about it! Mad Swirl Merch available just in time for the holidaze! The whole mad swirl of merch begins right here, at our online store! If you haven’t already got yourself some mad threads to sport, then you’ve come to the right post. What's new? Mad Facemasks!, Neck Gaiters!, Zipped Hoodies!, Fun Socks! We still[read more]

I rise

Quarantined evenings,
father ties knots on fresh handmade kites
under the small light bulb on the terrace.

He touched those 40 years ago
in the open fields of his village
and flew the kites on full moon nights.

I don’t have many memories with him.
I don’t have his stories.

The sky is
milky, pashmina*, opal stone,
blooming mogra* of my mother’s heart.

I cut my finger, I let the sunset enter and stay there.
Father releases the kites and for the first time
I rise…

*mogra- a type of jasmine flower, pashmina- hand crafted cardigans of Kashmir

Recently Published


This urn is yearning for a memory’s ashes
that I had scattered far from my hearth
amongst a heap of cigarette stubs
in a frequented pub
where our eyes[read more]

Interchange of the masters

I am ever cautious of the cat-
lying on your lap along with its hidden claws.
If I am not wrong at all
you too are watchful of[read more]

3 Haiku: ice-cream, mangrove, squirrel

ice-cream wrapper…
midnight sorts
love and parting

mangrove tree
tied by roots…
saws snarling

I am stuck…
scampering squirrel
flips travel brochure

– Jharna Sanyal[read more]

Wall of Mendacity

Wall of Mendacity

When your father’s angry, his mustache bristles. Words fire fusillades. You’re too weak, what good is art, you need to fuck around, use people, don’t trust anyone. When he’s in a good mood, he proclaims you his light. You build walls of mendacities. First you make up fictitious girlfriends, prestigious fake awards, even fake fistfights. You add bloody detail for his enjoyment. Sometimes, you wish you could confront his philosophies, a verbal marksman. His words are still embedded within you, though. You can’t extract them like wounds and you don’t have strength to accumulate new[read more]
A Dreaded Conversation

A Dreaded Conversation

Willie Ortloff knew Pamela Sunshine was going to crash through his front door in about a minute and a half and begin asking questions — questions for which he had no satisfactory answers.  He dreaded what was coming. Willie ran a straight shop. His work was immaculate and he had ethics. That ought to mean something. He had the only underground tattoo parlor on the Lower East Side. The City of New York frowned on it. In fact, tattoos were against the law, just like you couldn’t name a saloon a saloon. But[read more]
When There's No Stage Left

When There's No Stage Left

In a theatrical afterlife, the shades take over the performance halls, while post-pandemic audiences move into the limbo of the virtual.  When the theater is dark, critics and reviewers have nothing to report. A Drama Reviewer's pages remain blank; there is nothing to review when nothing is viewed. Reviewer is unemployed, like the actors, directors, designers and stage hands. He sits idle in an abandoned hall, watching shadows flit across an empty stage. Life is attenuated in pandemic times. People pull apart, solitary. With social life suspended dream-life comes closer. Ghosts[read more]