Featured Poems

Every Day

by on 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

UNSTAMPED POSTCARD

by on July 22, 2017 :: 0 comments

One
Split tan shoe
One
Ripped blue shirt
One
Patched green jacket
And some super glue

All of them
More than enough

For this Monday
For a month on Friday
For this ticket backwards

For never in
A million years
Will bones laugh back
Or skulls make cracks
About a lack of success

Like this bus
The wheels turn quicker
Ever quicker still

From there to here
And back again

Like this bottle
Like this tobacco

Like this unstamped postcard

editors note:

Destination the same. Wish you were here! – mh clay

Silence

by on July 21, 2017 :: 0 comments

I sit here tracing these words across this screen
Looking for other possibilities
That can slide beyond the measures of reason
These days my day’s measure is spent
Searching possible futures
That leave me stranded here
In this distant present:

Measuring each word written
I sit in a shady place
And pace each line away
Writing a last refuge
A prisoner pacing the yard
Each word a step
In this battle with meaning

Experience will remain
A mixture of loss and gain
I am torn between a head
That reasons
And a heart that knows

I trace borderlines
Weighing possibilities
One past with another
Looking for connections
Still experience remains
Wrapped by silence
I will not let this rocky world
Shatter me.

editors note:

A little shredded, but never shattered. We make what meaning we can. – mh clay

RESPECT, LOVE, PURPLE FLOWERS

by on July 20, 2017 :: 0 comments

I kneel in gravel, no tears, just
fascinated with six tiny purple petals
poking through light snow. I don’t know
their name. I have arrived
here limping through decades of searing
masculine entitlement and much
benevolent contempt. Six tiny petals
like sunbeams, like foxes, like stars,
reminding me—I need no respect, no
love to exist. My splendid body,
like a purple flower, does its miraculous
thing, even as my soul limps on
in disbelief, knowing how
lovely it would have been to dance.

editors note:

Can’t steal the shine from the stars we are; we CAN dance. – mh clay

PRIMARY SCHOOL SHOE THROWER

by on July 19, 2017 :: 0 comments

I was an incredibly angry young man
Those times at primary school were hell
Plagued by a restless energy and a sense
That I was never going to fit in
Not with these people; my contemporaries
Just left me wishing they were dead

I was always in trouble as classes never
Interested me and the playground
Was ruled by the football crazy sporty types
I was never going to be one of them
But there was too much time just hanging around
Until one day a new kid arrived
A fat bloated youth of my own age
And that first lunchtime we went at it
Fists and feet flying until both of us had enough
But by that point all the kids were watching
Cheering for the new kid making me realise that
‘Shit, they all hate me’

A few weeks later and I saw him again
Hanging with the sporty types and
Something deep down inside just clicked
And I lost it; I ripped my shoe off and
Flung it with all my might right at
The stupid fuckers empty head. It hit
Him hard and he fell to the floor and
Moments later I was in front of the Head
One shoe lost but still full of hatred and youthful
Exuberance realising that I hated school
Since then my hatred has blossomed but
Now I realise the price of shoes and the
Fact you can’t buy a single one, even as a replacement.

editors note:

Fling hard words instead and keep your shoes on. (Happy Birthday to Bradford; today’s his day!) – mh clay

TRUMP AS A FIRE WITHOUT LIGHT #193

by on July 18, 2017 :: 0 comments

We know the cut, but we don’t yet know the scar. We were never pretty, but this, this one is going to be an identifying mark. This will be what the world remembers about us for a long time.

editors note:

One American poet’s POV; our collective embarrassment. – mh clay

Paper Memory

by on 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