Every Day

featured in the poetry forum July 23, 2017  :: 0 comments

I got my first medical appliance
a water pick
clinically, my teeth are
“moth eaten”
now it’s a daily ritual
along with the AA prayer,
“God, help me abstain…”
the calorie log,
“¼ cup rice, one entire chicken”
the guitar, the gym,
the words
that keep every day
from being my last.

– Jon Bennett

editors note:

How we reason with the reaper for just one more… – mh clay

Paper Memory

featured in the poetry forum July 17, 2017  :: 0 comments

When the colors swirl on a moment
preserving a thought, marking a place in time
a piece of life, that freedom in form
caught on one piece of paper
edited to contrast
an image, color, creating a perfect moment then
a perfect thing now
forever captured for me to hold onto
each paper aligns with one concrete memory
ageless and preserved
how the colors appear and fill in this moment
of my mind, my eyes, transient human reality
embossed, glossed, matted into something tangible
even while not truly understanding how that works
I am in awe of the mystery of it
mysterious proof of life
proof in my hand / proof I can hold
that then I lived.

– Kimberly Madura

editors note:

Why we clamor to be in the Book of Life. – mh clay

a wasp licks the wickers

featured in the poetry forum July 14, 2017  :: 0 comments

I name them all
I name all the
cigarettes
that I burn in
I name them alpha beta or count
them with numbers
Call them the
empty sachets
of laments
a pen carried by a poet
in dim lit hours
as he walks through
the paddy’s form
from where he
starts to talk
and writes of
things as such
through the
greying hair length of a night
Toothing the mouth
of a clay hut near
the
draining end of
the paddy
draped within the
wandering light
of a flickering lamp
a wasp
licks the wickers
of the lamps flame
a fire

– Allan Harold Rex

editors note:

Close enough to lick but not light. – mh clay

Ironic Song of Praise

featured in the poetry forum July 11, 2017  :: 0 comments

This is a reaching out,
an admission that you and I

are just the trial size
of some divine product.

We concede the advantage
to that which nests

in our thighs.
We exhale an ironic song

of praise to briefly enhance
that which irons

its pants on the sidewalk’s
less-than-ideal surface.

For the sake of hanging gardens
and the shadows they cast

after 4:00 p.m.,
for the sake of birds that seem

plentiful, even redundant,
sometimes a nuisance but never

a threat, for the sake of corn
and Christ and pity,

we must keep our zippers well oiled
but stuck in the up position.

– Glen Armstrong

editors note:

Oh, to ache for the sake… – mh clay

Outlaw

featured in the poetry forum July 10, 2017  :: 0 comments

Pale periwinkle stretches on the walls
when light beams through thin clouds.

Lying on the floor, the sheet and sheer
pajamas cling to my calves.

Plastic wrinkles as I move, and you,
sprawled out on the vinyl mattress like a starfish,
scrunch into the fetal position.

Wind blows the motel door wide open,
raw waves glide in glacial movement–
slow but known.

I slide in a cold bath like a slippery minnow.
You pull me out, leaving the unborn under the sink.

– Rachael Crosbie

editors note:

Badly happened or badly done; forget unto forgiveness. – mh clay

Netting

featured in the poetry forum July 4, 2017  :: 0 comments

spastic filter of branches
catching duskclouds,
hammocked slackly up Fisher Hill
for you

bristly blind of snow up to here
curbing your cigarette break,
bound closely around Fenway slush
for you to love

dirty distillation of static
obscuring sweet mommysong,
cradled tautly under car’s radio
for you to love through

– Colin Webb

editors note:

Drag or safety; much to love through every day. – mh clay

Letters to America, Number 3

featured in the poetry forum July 2, 2017  :: 0 comments

America, mind your step
Watch it closer than time
Watch it since you must

America, listen to me
No heart thinks of you like mine
O, what whisper of love!

America, here I come
To loosen your cruel grip
Break the spell of dirty influence
You’ve cast upon holy people

America, stage of hell
‘Despise not sons of gods’
‘Insanity mustn’t be here alone,’ you protest

America, swallow your menacing policy
Of no amity for souls not in your crazy Order

America, O America of Christopher Columbus!
User of men, war-like, power-hunger

America, mind your step
Watch it closer than time
Watch it since you must
Lest another titanic will sink!

– Kufre Udeme

editors note:

Some words from a Nigerian poet. America? Are we listening? – mh clay

One way flight

featured in the poetry forum June 28, 2017  :: 0 comments

I’m booking myself a one way flight,
Packing chips and chocolates
In containers air tight,
Sometimes flying means seat tied sitting,
Soaring high with metal wings,

Or smoking in circles and rings
Forgetting the shallow human existence.

I’m booking myself a one way flight,
I’m carrying our favourite playlist,
Our broken conversations and pending kisses,
I’m dumping traces of you and less of myself
In a bulky bag,
Thinking if I could only take the bag
And leave the baggage behind.

I’m booking myself a one way flight,
To see my eyes less tired and dry,
I’d welcome with wide open arms,
The sulking sea and the sinking sand,
The taste of salt in the breath of the air,
I’ll make new memories like paper boats,
Keeping ours safe in my pockets that are out of my reach
I’ll drown in the alcoholic ocean of emotions
And temporarily survive.

I’m booking myself a one way flight,
To a land where park benches don’t know our names,
From where the Moon looks down at me and still smiles,
I want to touch spaces so wild and insane,
And let lose of all the love I have trapped within,
Waking up to the smell of our home
Where I believe you never left my hand.

– Aekta Khubchandani

editors note:

Recovery Airlines special, all expenses paid (except for the meds and doctor’s bills). – mh clay

The Smile of Emptiness and Nothingness

featured in the poetry forum June 21, 2017  :: 0 comments

Fifteen thousand years ago
You were a king.
And thirty thousand years ago
You were a slave
Your past life was a long scroll of times
And the next life? How short ten thousand years are!
Yesterday is emptiness and nothingness,
Tomorrow is emptiness and emptiness
Where are you at this time?
Emptiness and nothingness, emptiness and nothingness
Buddha halo, the smile of emptiness and nothingness

– Hongri Yuan

editors note:

No pain in nothing; shine up your halo and smile. – mh clay

Burnt Offering

featured in the poetry forum June 19, 2017  :: 0 comments

I await, an altar on the cliff. Desperate
to appease, cutting nimble feet
and nicks until I’ve bled a little everywhere,
I trace my match along
the flinty coastline of your desire.

Come. We make the day,
this blazing instant blinding,
yesterday’s husks blistering to ash.
Fortune and madness in tempest,
a firestorm of ferocious consummation.

By night, we flicker upon waves,
a thousand chipped and tipping pieces
by moonlight, braking and gathering
in endless kisses towards the sky,
rocking golden to and fro.

And at the last, after the too much
and then nothing — for it’s true;
flames extinguish, tempests cease —
and memory is embers,
I will spread your ashes across the sea.

– Aaron Glover

editors note:

All-consuming love burns brightest, fastest. Memory is ash… – mh clay