“What is straight? A line can be straight, or a street, but the human heart, oh, no, it’s curved like a road through mountains.” ~ Tennessee Williams
••• The Mad Gallery •••
••• The Poetry Forum •••
This last week in Mad Swirl’s Poetry Forum… we reminisced o’er a parking lot kiss; we lamented affection lost in another; we briefly expounded on love confounded; we served up love to a devouring lover; we kissed a crazy, then were left alone to turn to stone; we were made lonely and sad by a classified ad; we surrendered our volition to a love like demolition. What a love-ly week! ~ MH Clay
Beautiful like Demolition by Jen Bochenko
Everything I’ve ever let go of has claw marks on it. ~ David Foster Wallace
I am a one woman wrecking ball
I am the Genghis Khan of love
I am Gozer the Destructor
An unabashed motherfucker
A woman to get rid of
I am Death, the Destroyer of Worlds
I am Time which destroys all things
I am one who destroys all hearts
And rips them all apart
Thread you with these puppet strings
I will crush your will
I will steal your soul
I will drive you into an early grave
Death is all I crave
Leave you rotting in a hole
I will wreck your hopes
I will wreck your dreams
I will wreck your innocence
My presence is that intense
Live life in all extremes
I am a beautiful mess
I am tragedy
I will draw you in
With original sin
Leave Eden with you always hating me
I am a beautiful mess
I am tragedy
I will capture you
With this enchanted view
Make you fall in love with me
I am the Queen of Hell
I am a sweet siren of the sea
I am the Wicked Witch of the West
And this is me at my best
You said and I believe
March 26, 2016
editors note: Full disclosure here; eyes open, shields up. – mh clay
Love me by Athena Stickseed
In an alternative rag’s alternative
personals, you paid for this: Heat-seeking
missile — and received three cash offers,
two replies, one consisting of a phone number
for the women’s rape crisis center, the other one
garbled word salad ending in the obligatory
call me, and a full-court investigation
by The Department of Homeland Security.
You took on the schizophrenic. You
won. Why does the small head always take
the big-headed down like oxen
felled by an elephant gun? You only say you
need love. The test drive runs you like
a perpetual motion machine, though you prefer
battery-operated bunny rabbits that choose
the incredible vibrating hand of Wing Wang Dung.
This is always Greek to you. You wrote
another: Love me — for a credit card deposit
(imagine that) of sixteen bucks just because
those you use are nothing but the best
automated teller machines: the in, the scan,
the out, the get out, I’m done. You got one
odd reply — from the Iron Wheel Missionary
Baptist Church. You circled “Missionary”
and sent it back postage due, but the alpha mail
returned three years later. Something about
enough and never enough never meets at dusk.
March 25, 2016
editors note: Love by classified ad. Caveat emptor! – mh clay
The Statue by Chrissie Morris Brady
He takes her hands in his
she is warm to his touch
and smiles though she has tears.
He leans forward and kisses her
tasting her mouth, salt on her
face. He is hot, she is soft
as his tongue is aflame, his
stomach ablaze. Snow falls
as she steps back, smiling again.
There are flowers to gather and
snow flakes to catch, she mustn’t
miss her bus.
He stands as she withdraws her
fingers from his fire she turns
to go, he is rooted to the spot,
water running off him as she
catches snowflakes in her basket
and poppies in her hair. She sings
softly a lullaby to herself. He is
planted where he stands, watching
as her hair fills with crimson, her
basket with cool white. Slowly
she makes her way, as his blood
turns to stone in him and he
will never move again. She steps
aboard her bus, she gazes toward
the statue that she touched. It is time
to return to the asylum.
March 24, 2016
editors note: Stone cold love or hot delusion? Get back on the bus! – mh clay
THE MASTER OF NOWHERE by Gina Nemo
I decked those walls
With lots of honey
Paintings of yesterday
Licking my way back
To sweet sanity and tears
So I could go on
Falling for your
Screwdriver of pain
Evil driven torture
Scary waterfall nights
Exploding into my
Love lost under
A pillow of time
Ripping out my guts
Yelling at the walls
Begging a higher power
For yet another year
Of hell on top of hell
You won with words
Dear master of nowhere
You made me die inside
Like I was supposed to
Born and bred to eat
Hungry for love
I let you devour me.
March 23, 2016
editors note: Sometimes love is dog eat dog. – mh clay
Untitled 2 by Anila Zaidi
From a distance,
your adoration confounds me
Not like the Great Pyramids of Egypt
Not like the Stone Faces of Easter Island
Not like God himself
Like this sock, missing its pair
March 22, 2016
editors note: Together by choice, not by static cling. – mh clay
The Longest Kiss Goodbye by Michael R. King
I saw it in your eyes the moment it happened
When the light shining upon our time started to dim
Escaping through the edges of an elemental kiss
Neither one of us knowing it might be the kiss goodbye…
Now, it has come to this-
Finding a way to let go of what we know
Holding back the desires to touch, to clutch
Affections galore to be given freely, no more…
I want you to know that it will just be a show
Continuing on, as if our time is not gone
There is no way I cannot Love you each day
You know me – I will always dream away.
March 21, 2016
editors note: Dreaming to shape a harsh reality into the opposite of goodbye. – mh clay
Thanks for Lunch by Logen Cure
I remember you always paid for me
in cash, every time, untraceable, clean.
You bought my lunch that day, and several beers
you drank like water. It had been a year
since I’d seen you. You were just the same —
your crooked smile, your dirty charm, unchanged.
I can’t recall which lie I told that day
to see you, but I remember I prayed
we wouldn’t run into someone I knew
who’d want to know just why I was with you,
across the table leaning on elbows
and laughing. After a year it still showed.
You looked at me like you thought I’d taste good,
like you’d find out if you could,
if I’d let you, if I could forget her
long enough for these things to occur,
these things you said had never left your mind.
You never liked her, said she was unkind,
said you could treat me the way I deserved.
That day, with you, I was looking to swerve.
I let you kiss me in the parking lot
like it didn’t matter if we got caught.
March 20, 2016
editors note: Forbidden love; a secret desire to be caught in the act. – mh clay
••• Short Stories •••
Need-a-Read? Good, ‘cos we suggest you have a close look-see at this week’s featured tale, “Regular Maintenance” by Justin Eells. Look under the hood, check the fluids, kick the tires, and scratch your head. Better yet, hear what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone had to say about this ditty: “People should like ovens. When was the last time you traded an oven for a newer oven? Love what you have. Love it until it’s useless, then love a new one. A shiny one until it’s no longer shiny.”
Read this teaser and see what you think:
Over the weekend my wife’s Honda wouldn’t start. I went out to the garage to tinker under the hood but I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. Monday morning, she said she was taking my Pontiac to work and I could walk.
The bus stop was just around the corner from our house but I had to get off at the transfer and take another bus, so walking probably would have been faster. I was a half hour late to work and spent most of the morning online in my cubicle, looking at how-to sites, trying to figure out what was wrong with my wife’s car. When we were dating I told her I used to be a mechanic when in fact I used to be a service technician at an oil change place. She found it sexy that I knew my way around a car, and I wanted to satisfy her expectations. Her car had never had any troubles before that I knew of.
When I got home that evening I was surprised to find my Pontiac was not in the driveway. In its place was a big silver Audi.
“Honey,” I said when I walked in the door, “whose car is that outside?”
“That’s George’s,” she said. “He let me use it.” She was wearing a silk dress I’d never seen before, looking ready for a cocktail party or a dinner date.
“Who’s George?” I said.
She looked at me with a smile, but she was not smiling at me. “George is a man I work with,” she said.
“You took my car to work this morning. Where is it?”
“Couldn’t get me to where I was going,” she said, “so I had to trade up.” I waited for her to say more, but her smile told me her mind was not in the room. I shook my head and went to the garage…
Wow, there might be a bit more going on in this one than you initially thought! Get the whole diagnostic lit check here!
••• Mad Swirl Open Mic •••
(original photo courtesy of Bobby Hilt • firebirdimages.com)
Join Mad Swirl & Swirve the 1st Wednesday of April (aka 04.06.16) as we continue to swirl up our open mic madness at our NEW Open Mic home, Dallas’ Underpass Bar!
This month we feature Dallas Singer/Songwriter Kelly Nygren! Her groove is sure to move us in the most mad-licious of ways.
Come on out, one & all. Get a brainful of Swirve, share in the Mad Swirl’n festivities, & if the spirit is movin’ ya get yourself a spot on our list. Come to be a part of this collective creative love child we affectionately call Mad Swirl. Come to participate. Come to appreciate. Come to swirl-a-brate!
The whole Mad Swirl of everything to come keeps on keepin’ on… now… now… NOW! Every second, every minute, every hour, every day, every week, every month, every year, every decade, every every EVERY there is! Wanna join in the mad conversations going on in Mad Swirl’s World? Then stop by whenever the mood strikes! We’ll be here…
Short Story Editor