Featured Poems

Your Violet Hair Ribbon

by on August 22, 2019 :: 0 comments

Last night you slept with your head on my chest
My nose in your hair.

While I dozed the violet ribbon upon my wrist
Broke and fell off. This morning I searched for it
But could not find it, anywhere. I tied a new one
To my ankle. Hid another in my journal cover.

Did you have the same dream I did last night?
You with your head on your husband’s chest,
My wife with hers on mine.

editors note:

A ribbon of deception; identities mistaken, lovers mismatched. So hard to awaken… – mh clay

The Ashes In My Wake

by on August 21, 2019 :: 0 comments

It’s easy to forget
Sometimes
How I got here.
I look back at the
Broken hearts
I’ve left in my wake and
All of the bridges
That I set aflame on my way to this
Haven. I mourn
Sometimes
Because those bridges supported me,
Hadn’t they?
At some point.
And what a monster I must be
To have hurt so many
And still live in peace.
But then I remember the scars.
Splinters that jabbed my palms,
Uneven boards that tripped me,
And the constant fear of being
Allowed to fall.
Those bridges hadn’t supported me.
I survived them.
And I have to remember that I did not
Burn
Out of malice. I burned them,
So that I would not look back.
I was not granted this sanctuary.
I earned it.

editors note:

Sometimes, a burned bridge is best. – mh clay

here is

by on August 20, 2019 :: 0 comments

here is my hand, tossing you the
keys in slow motion and your
borrowed car slipping into the
parking lot along with the rainwater.

here is guilt, sliding into a booth:
would you do it again?, i can feel
your mouth asking from across the
table every time it sips from your cup.

here is what i wanted to tell you:
i owe you poems like i owe you
a second chance or love: i don’t
but here i am showing up on paper

here is the end of the road, really:
are you happy now?, watching syrup
pool in the circular grid of your waffle,
perfect in a way we never achieved.

– M.P. Armstrong

editors note:

Bitter and sweet; syrup for the end of the road. Sigh! – mh clay

One of those bohemian arrangements.

by on August 19, 2019 :: 0 comments

we had sex
only once,
in the bathroom with her friend outside.
and we were standing up, balancing her ass
on the lip of a frigid sink, and her tit
hung from my mouth
like a dog
with a dead pheasant. afterward
they both left
while sunlight was warming the morning, streetcars starting,
the bats all going
to bed.

next time I saw her
was 11pm
and she was back again
with her boyfriend. he was 60, she was 22;
one of those
bohemian arrangements
which make everyone who sees them
uncomfortable – but she said she liked him anyway
so what else could anyone
say?

and then suddenly
it was 4 months later
and I was in boston visiting a friend,
and she called and told me
she was tired of him and tired
of drugs, and wanted out of it. I told her I’d call
when I was back in toronto,
and I did,
and got no answer. saw her again
a while later one night.
I offered to buy her
a cup of tea.
she said no. I left toronto
soon after that
and forever. it was one of those hot
and dried out summers
and the evenings
all full of air.

– DS Maolalai

editors note:

A hard thing to see (if you’re 22); a wishful thing to be (if you’re 60). – mh clay

Gold Civilization in Prehistoric

by on August 18, 2019 :: 0 comments

Fifteen million years ago,
there was a civilization of gold on the earth.
The sun wrote the words of gold,
the moon wrote the words of silver;
all things on earth had its own language.
Where do the gods live now?
They have never disappeared,
they house still on the earth,
just you aren’t able to see them.

Translated by Yuanbing Zhang

editors note:

In the beginning, there was gold; and gold wrote… – mh clay

In Case of Emergency

by on August 17, 2019 :: 0 comments

I spent days in the streets of the
city and
nights sleeping on a bench
in Longfellow Park
(some fucking poet he must have been)
and woke with the back of my head
flat as the bench.

I drank whiskey to help me,
to sleep and
for other reasons;
tried to keep an eye open
for demons,
had a job but
like Jesus
nowhere to lay my head
because
there were no rooms in the city
to rent
until one night
one opened at the Y
and I filled the preregistration form out
but
after being told by the clerk
to fill in the space labeled
“in case of emergency, notify”
I crumpled the form up and
threw it at him across
the desk,
because who the hell was he
to tell me what to do?

Later,
back on my bench,
I realized that
I must be nuts.

editors note:

It comes with strings attached, but none to you. Bench bound, again. (We welcome Wayne to our crazy congress of Contributing Poets with this submission. Read more of his madness on his new page – check it out.) – mh clay

a game of chess

by on August 16, 2019 :: 0 comments

i see the
desperation
in your eyes

i’m sure if
you could
creep closer

you would
smell my
fear

two hopeless
romantics

waiting for
someone to
make the
first move

too often
this becomes
a game of
chess

so much
to ponder
before every
anticipated
move

i’d rather
play risk

editors note:

Roll the dice and go for Greenland. – mh clay