Featured Poems

fragmented no. 22

by on September 23, 2020 :: 0 comments

beneath a dead body there is,
also, a dead shadow. the dead
are broken. to go underground
is obedience. to not remember
is to say somebody forgot to
speak. there are days when no
-body speaks or listens. when
nobody prays. when nobody
feels like themselves. -selves
are afraid of holes in the sky.
the decay of living in loneliness
or from not living. to say dis-
tracted is to imagine waiting
for the rain to turn to snow.
if there were a lake it would
crash like a cymbal in winter.
if i were a cymbal i’d wait for
thunder. eyes refusing to see th
-e lightning. what if the shadow
beneath the dead body were st
-ill alive?

editors note:

And, what if the shadow was yours? – mh clay

The Red Grasshopper

by on September 22, 2020 :: 0 comments

One Day
You heard
your name
in the midst of the crowd:
Somebody was calling you

You turned back
There was neither the crowd
nor the sound

An old woman
with a doll in her tiny hands
stood beside you

She smiled and said –
Nobody called you
It was just an echo
of the rustling leaves
in the silent jungle

You were then
A red grasshopper

– Raja Puniani

editors note:

You are it and it is you and what was that sound, anyway? – mh clay

HE WANTS HOME IMPROVEMENT, I WANT DEATH

by on September 21, 2020 :: 0 comments

There’s some damn rich type
Undertaking some home improvements
In the mews house behind
The terrace on which i live
And every damn morning of late
He’s been waking earlier and
Earlier. That damn drill comes
Alive waking every person
Nearby as he begins, sometimes
As early as 6am. Now he’s
Drilling and someone else is
Hammering and yet it’s
Saturday morning and, like me,
Others will be feeling the pain
From a heroic Friday night.

What would happen, i ponder,
If i just went round there
And told him the stark bold
Truth, you are nothing but a
Self-obsessed arsehole. If
That don’t work maybe i’ll
Get that drill and go bonkers
Splatter-core him just like in
Driller Killer. I think of
His neighbours and how they
Must be reacting, how maybe
One of them is dreaming of
Doing something similar to
My scheming little plan.

The last few weeks there’s
Been a kid screaming her
Heart out, dreaming of being
Just like Adele, every evening
Driving me to the clutches
Of the pub or some horror
Flick just to drown it out, and
Now i wonder if she’s the
Daughter of that bastard the
Home improvement guy? If
So, can i recommend now a
Plan for getting rid of all of them?

editors note:

Someone dis-placing their shelter while you try to shelter in place? Homicidal plans in play? Resist, Friends! – mh clay

Child at Dawn

by on September 20, 2020 :: 0 comments

A child’s hand outstretched; the morning air
Sprawled in among the cabinets; a cat
Paws gentle on the windowsill, a broom
Stood in the corner, glass jars filled with grain
The day will be quite warm, the morning meal
Is hours off; each room is full and still
The carpets lie, the clocks speak on the walls
The burden of the attic shifts, and drops
Fall murmuring; the breezes rise and cease
Each bed but one still weighted, linnet song
Deceives the silence, woodsmell dries the air
The ceilings brighten, all the lamps unlit

I promise to forsake no mote of day
For I have had my decades in the wind
The whirl and flux; I seek the moment whole
And unattached, all spark and sin forgot
The child takes a crayon in his hand
No wind can sweep the vision from his soul
Not though he never draw it out; believe
The cherry blossoms in his outstretched hand

– Alan Cohen

editors note:

Believe it and draw. – mh clay

in matching capes

by on September 19, 2020 :: 0 comments

red riding hood and superman
spin together
negotiating who saves whom—
man of steel offers to kill
every wolf in the forest
but red has known
too many woodsmen who believe
blood is the solution to every fear
who wear brawny biceps
like a mask
and she doesn’t want to be around
when he catches
lois and jimmy getting it on
in the archives of the daily planet—
not that lois doesn’t love the suit
but playing second fiddle
to every quake and two-bit super villain
leaves her feeling less than special—
and red doesn’t want to be around
when fifty pent up years
explode

she would teach him
what it means to be human
the kryptonite of desire
to live
so the lack of a caress might sting
like the punch of an exploding star
so anyone might love him without fear
without adrenal aftermath of falling
and caught in the nick of time
red could love him
for twinkle and laugh
if only
he would share a dream or two
if only he would let her inside
his fortress of solitude

editors note:

Ultimate fantasy; super fan gets super hero in super love. (We welcome Alan to our crazy congress of Contributing Poets with this submission. Read more of his madness on his new page – check it out.) – mh clay

Parlous Us

by on September 18, 2020 :: 0 comments

This is not a romance novel.
It’s a short ending
to a long story
you’ve heard before.
Common, lurid tale
of love and something
else.
This is not a whodunit.
Warning:
The processor is unreliable,
the data corrupt,
the files no good.
Screen version:
You run a move
he follows and lust
follows and ends.
He runs
a move
on somebody else.
You could call this a thriller
but not for you.
Defense:
There was an intimacy
to our disorder.
Until he killed it.

– Mickey J. Corrigan

editors note:

How to love, hazardly ever after. – mh clay

LET ME HIDE MYSELF IN YOU

by on September 17, 2020 :: 0 comments

couldn’t take more than we could toke
let me hide myself in you, all i want
is to fall asleep, wake up next to a goddess

the first time i fell in Love

i had a warm Miller high life in my hand
first thing she said to me around the bonfire
after a couple shots of Jameson,
“Would you like a fresh beer?
You’ve probably talked enough for now”
i hadn’t said a word all night except for
Yes, i would love a fresh beer.

did not recognize myself in the mirror
Love changes you in the most horrible ways
while still standing in front of you laughing
naked reminded to brush your teeth

be on my side/be on your side

all women have a favorite wash rag
some for special occasions
men seldom have much use for these things
unless talked into an impossible day of
reconciliation
drag me over your rainbow

I’m used to washing with pine tar roads and bristlecones
hardness sleeps under stars in fields of wheat
covered in sweat and mud a breath away from creation
wash clothes close to a drainage ditch, culvert of sacrifice
please don’t walk away, i need to feel you close
still looking for her eyes through wisps of feral dreams
a bite to know you’re there on neck kiss soft treachery

another pretty face
another chance to dream
guilty of the same old things

stars blink abandonment

beside the old water tower in Denton, NC,
was a trail, road ends you could walk into the woods to an old sawmill when it would snow, dry kindling and sawdust could always be found to build a fire it was one of the most romantic settings frozen branches crashing far off in the distance her body held close hornets nest heart
breath of kerosene take off iron skin and bones raised on Rock and Roll please don’t give up on me. Quite yet.

– Wolf Kevin Martin

editors note:

What can you say better than this, Cyrano? – mh clay