The Best of Mad Swirl : 04.02.16

by on April 2, 2016 :: 0 comments

“I am an artist… I am here to live out loud.” ~ Emile Zola

••• The Mad Gallery •••

“Going Up” (above) by featured artist Chuck Taylor. To view more of Chuck’s mad snaps, along with our other featured artists, visit our Gallery at!

••• The Poetry Forum •••

This last week in Mad Swirl’s Poetry Forumwe gave our best as a proud bird’s nest; we sought silence in the midst of noise; we trod a trail through silence singing, rain on leaves, the springtime bringing; we smelled the trees and flowers sexing; we hailed the moon with the crash of spoon; we asked “what for?” the wreck of war; we danced to the band of our DNA strand. Amino acids placid while birds sing, rains fall and the dish runs away with the spoon. ~ MH Clay

Long Division by Scott Thomas Outlar

Most people,
you’ll find,
can hardly handle,
if at all,
the shit
from their own childhood –

and you expect
the masses
to deal with
thousands of years
of ancestral DNA
swirling around
the synapses
of their sub consciousness?

Come on!…
I came here only to dance –

April 2, 2016

editors note: Here we are; still rockin’ to the hits. – mh clay

Reason’s Lament by Robert Ippaso

What kind of men who cannot stop
Wholesale slaughter in the making;
Where little children cry shrill tears,
While their very world is shaking.

Where’s our compassion, empathy for others,
When guns replace the word;
Why jockey for position
In a race that’s so absurd.

With brother versus brother,
Tearing families apart;
A differing religion,
A rupture of the heart.

Does God not see this wanton murder;
Can one believe that He approves?
Are we so blinded by our anger,
That no just reason can disprove.

It’s not too late to stop the bloodshed,
Let all the warring sides unite,
To end this endless conflagration
And bring the peace so long denied.

April 1, 2016

editors note: So sad that, for many, this is just unreasonable (no foolin’). – mh clay

The Spoon by Tricia Marcella Cimera

You used to tap, tap
your teeth
with this very
while eating
in our dead-calm
silent dining room.

It’s night, the moon
is out. I scrub, scrub
the spoons’
silver face,
then hurl it back
into its place;
I slam the drawer.
The glasses shiver.

March 31, 2016

editors note: Cleanliness is next to raw remembrance. (With this submission, we welcome Tricia to the raucous ranks of our crazy congress of Contributing Poets. Read more of her madness on her new page – check it out!) – mh clay

Adolescent Spring by Linda Barrett

As Winter’s heavy cold fat melts away,
Spring approaches
tentative from under still hard earth
shy and awkward
with its few brave blossoms
crocuses reach up
like clenched hands
tightly holding treasures
so they won’t fall out.
Naked trees erupt in red buds
Skinny boughs shake
In trembling teenager fashion
Red buds slowly unravel
Do they come out in white acne pustules
Or blossoming sexual organs?
Green grass sprouts
reminiscent of beards and body hair
covering once barren skin
The sun shines later and later
nurturing the earth into adulthood
with its gradual and understanding love.

March 30, 2016

editors note: Springtime tempts every plant. Raging hormones, flowers out of wedlock, growth and glory; no shame. – mh clay

Beneath A Cover Green by Dave Kavanagh

Beneath a cover green
forest silence. Loud!
The song of heaving life
the chattering crowd.
The crackle of feet
crunching on litter
The scatter of life
creatures a skitter.
The breathe of air
sighing through laughing willows.
Rain drops down
on chestnut, trifoliate pillows.
A cessation of song
in the canopy
the death of silence
no more cacophony.
Then music of water
singing rapids ahead
relief for burning blisters
burst and bled.
Limp on new walker
hikes almost done.
Trees will give way to.
blue skies and sun.

March 29, 2016

editors note: A march through March; blisters and blooms alike, all new. – mh clay

The Freeway Sounded by A.J. Huffman

like a distant ovation
in an arena where games never ended,
where life and death struggled
to survive, to find meaning in eyes
that blued like evening skies.
The sun reflected
this strange anonymity
against windshields
of cars moving but not passing,
a thousand bright silver bullets
blinking at once,
and I was the silence, the breathing
moment released before everything reopened.

March 28, 2016

editors note: Gridlock in the middle of gridlock. – mh clay

DESOLATE by Ogana D. Okpah

A pigeon rests a grain of
wheat on my head
in the dead of summer,
planting her dreams.
This bird is my heirloom,
a stray bird –
she is my kin spirit.
A peacock, startling
my pride in cowering.
She has the colours,
mournful colours of right.

March 27, 2016

editors note: Plumage presented in the color of right. How proud is that? – mh clay

••• Short Stories •••

Need-a-Read? If you’re feelin’ a bit beat by life (or even if you’re not) then we got a most uplifting peaceful piece for you.

This week’s featured read, “Letter to Myself” comes from Trigg Edwards. Here’s what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone had to say about this ditty: “Fatalism isn’t embracing the horrible and hopeless, it’s seeing the inevitable end and inviting it into your house, kissing it, undressing it, and doing what you please with something repulsive while laughing into madness about what it’s really doing to you.”

Here’s a lil bit of this lit to get ya started:

photo by Tyler Malone

Hello, Nearly Departed:

Death has visited you, but yet you still remain. Death has no sting, only a stench. I am writing you to keep the light of life burning bright in you. I wrote this to myself after I was nearly murdered two and a half years ago. Here is what I wrote for all of you, who like me, have tasted death’s residue, but managed to still remain…

If that doesn’t tempt you to keep readin’, you may wanna check your pulse and if you still got one, reconsider and click here!

••• Mad Swirl Open Mic •••

(original photo courtesy of Bobby Hilt •

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. For proof of that claim, visit her official FB fan page. And maybe even give her a thumbs up while you’re there!

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!

P.S. We look forward to ALL the m-adventures still yet to come! Stay tuned for MH Clay’s “Mad Angstful Rant” comin’ up in May!


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…

Livin’ Loud,

Johnny O
Chief Editor

MH Clay
Poetry Editor

Tyler Malone
Short Story Editor

Madelyn Olson
Visual Editor

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