“Appreciation is a wonderful thing:
It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.”
••• The Mad Gallery •••
Rooted Mushroom ~ Tony Gentry
To see all of Tony’s mad pics, as well as our other former featured artists (over 50 in total), take a virtual stroll thru Mad Swirl’s Mad Gallery!
••• The Poetry Forum •••
This past week on Mad Swirl’s Poetry Forum… we took a spin for a twin; we ditched a bitch; we got the gist of a catalyst; we caused a pause; we tanked the bank (had zero balance); we hailed a whale for all our talents; we talked shop with a tear drop. Say, what? (We’ll say it again.) We… ~ MH Clay
Transcendent by Randall Rogers
You’re the same as
don’t you see
living in DNA harmony
smiles held too long
with laughter robust
slow together do combust
particles which wave
insistent to comply
bursting kaleidoscopic ambrosia
the prism within
a tear drop’s precipitous
November 20, 2021
editors note: What are we, anyway? – mh clay
Ambergris by Shalini Singh
It was a story which was told as –
I was an emesis
I was vomited by my mother,
Out of her womb and she died
A tincture of pila paathar (yellow stone) and safed patthar (white stone)-
ambre jaune. She said like a stone
sits in meditation, you must sit still. I asked her,
where do these yellow and white stones come from?
And she said, they are formed.
By sitting still, just like her.
I asked her would she also become
this coloured transparent stone
and she said she was in the process of.
If she sat long enough, she would either be the stone or the ant inside the stone, the amber.
She said she would most definitely be amber.
If mother was etched in marble, father died in a Beryl quarry
And grandmother is supposed to be amber
What would I be?
Float and you shall be Ambergris
November 19, 2021
editors note: We question our origins and our ends when all are in the “process of.” – mh clay
Nest Egg by Ivan Jenson
I should have saved
in a piggy bank
along with quarters
dimes and nickels
because even a
of yesterday’s laughter
would now surely be
worth a million dollars
in the current currency
of curling up in
an easy chair
feeling sorry for
myself for having spent
life without saving up
for a rainy day
like this one
when it seems
I can only
afford a dollar
and a nostalgic
November 18, 2021
editors note: Seeking an investment portfolio that yields positive returns. – mh clay
Pause by Poulome Mitra Shaw
There needs to be a pause in every relationship,
The pause must look like spring
I want to birth tender leaves
Bloom in flowers unknown
Have the bees buzzing around me
Hear the birds sing
Let the shackles of winter slip away
I want to share the nectar in me.
I want to swoon with the moon
Seasons must happen to me.
Waiting in a warm house with winter as my partner
I have nowhere to press my cheeks
And let the accumulation in my heart thaw a bit.
Let my poems grow a warm chest
where I can plant this weather-assailed kiss.
November 17, 2021
editors note: A bloom before flowering. – mh clay
Catalysts by Bhargab Chatterjee
It is not possible to mark all the blurred zones of misunderstandings because their presences
Act like catalysts.
Unnecessarily we always create a passage for a disaster between one unknown and another.
November 16, 2021
editors note: Misunderstanding aggravates angst. – mh clay
crazy bitch by Matt Wall
I placed the 2 bottles
of Sutter Home
on the counter
with the tall 3 pack
asked for my smokes
this old blonde bitch
walked up behind me in line
I hate that shit
last time I drank that
I was sick for days!”
I couldn’t really hear her
because I had earbuds in
but I soon learned
she was talking to me
she was fighting her mid-50s
with reckless abandon
biting and clawing her way
back to her youth
her head seemed to bounce on a swivel
like an inflatable air tube man
large black sunglasses
to hide this morning’s hangover
a tight camouflage mini dress
that did not work
because I could still see her
the man behind the counter
asked if I wanted a bag
I did and thanked him for asking
the old bitch shouted out
while constantly in motion
“yeah giv’em a black bag
so he can hide his ghetto wine
from the neighbors on his walk
the man said there was nothing wrong
with the wine
in fact, Sutter is pretty shit
but it has a high alcohol content
which makes up for it
I looked at her and she
stuck her tongue out
running the fat
dry cracked muscle
along her lips with
white globs in the corners
of her mouth
I headed for the door
“hey! hey boo! hey boo!
come back here! boo!
I’m talking to you!
cocking my knee
to give her a thrust kick
right in the fupa
and she handed me my debit card
“you left this in the thingy!”
I thanked her and
got the fuck out of there
November 15, 2021
editors note: It’s crazy when sometimes, you’re the bitch. – mh clay
Coming Home by Alexandria Biamonte
I didn’t have time to
When you were born.
Three Months Early.
You both had already beaten all the odds.
A one percent chance of survival.
And now, my Jonathan, you’re
Nine weeks later.
Now I panic.
With your older brother
Still in the ICU,
Can I provide for you?
Can I make this comfortable for you?
We’re all learning.
We’ll learn as we go.
November 14, 2021
editors note: Another installment in this poet’s twin saga. Still, no time for panic. – mh clay
••• Short Stories •••
Here’s what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone has to say about this pick’o the weekend:
“Expectations tempered, that’s where happiness has a fighting chance.”
Here’s a snapshot to set the scene:
(photo “Night, Watching” by Tyler Malone)
The border between Paterson and Clifton is a double white line that runs down the middle of Crooks Ave. There was a party on Crooks Ave. one Saturday night. It was not as much fun as Ramon had anticipated. As it wound down, Ramon and a Clifton girl wandered into the cemetery on the Paterson side of the street and Ramon said: Suppose one night there was a party every couple of blocks, from Crooks Avenue to St. Josephs Hospital to the Great Falls Park, across the bridge and right to the border of Haledon?
The girl from Clifton said: Bet there is a party every two blocks, you just aren’t invited to any of them except this one. If you are. She spit beer on a grave stone and practically dared him to fall in love. He resisted, although he did imagine her in the Scarlet Witch costume. She’d told him her name at the party but not a syllable made it through the horrible music and next morning all he remembered was the trail of parties snaking through Paterson.
He told Rosie about that. Rosie said she would go to the parties with him. They started calling it The Night of 1000 Parties. She pulled up a map on her phone and they plotted out where all the parties would be, beginning with the Crooks Ave. blow out (in the huge phone company garage on the Clifton side of the street). For the sake of symmetry the last party would have to be just over the line, too, in Haledon or Totowa.
Rosie did math magic in her head and said they could spend 14 minutes at each of the parties and the sun would just be coming up as they were leaving the last party to go home. Also, the parties would get progressively wilder as the night wore on, although that calculation involved no math…
Mad Swirl’s midweek featured read, “The Greatest Conquest“ by Mihaela Melnic sure is pithy & is sure to get you thinkin’!
Here’s what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone has to say about this pick’o the weekday:
“We’re all sick because we’ve always been sick, or maybe that’s what we tell ourselves as we all die together, finally.”
Here’s some pith to give you something to chew on:
(photo “Rest, Peace” by Tyler Malone)
For years Milton stood there on my shelf with the sword of St. Michael stuck between ivory pages that are dripping with demonic blood. Yesterday, I picked up the black book of Good and Evil and was resolute to read it thoroughly to better understand the military strategies described in there. I bet Milton displayed great wit. Besides, I always loved English humor.
But then, I don’t know how, I opened it at random and my eyes set on a few lines of Book Second, page 63, and who did I find there? Mammon yearning to dethrone the King of Heaven!
Unbelievable stuff. Hot as hell. I closed the book because I needed to ponder a bit. Too much information in one line…
Conquer the rest of “The Greatest Conquest” right here!
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 bein’…
Short Story Editor