The Best of Mad Swirl : 10.29.22

by October 30, 2022 0 comments

“Either move or be moved.

Ezra Pound

••• The Mad Gallery •••

“Breathe II” ~ Jada Yee

Mad Swirl is thrilled to welcome a new artist to the Mad Gallery, Jada Yee, with some fascinating and intense collage pieces. Yees’ collages feel so personal to look at, almost like you’re taking a glimpse right into her heart & mind – the combined chaos and beauty that lives inside all of us if you’re willing to look deep enough. Each piece seems riddled with meaning and we reckon you could spend a good long while looking at each one, deciding just what it means to you. ~ Madelyn Olson

To see all of Jada’s beautifully chaotic collages, as well as our other resident artists (50 and counting!) take a virtual stroll thru Mad Swirl’s Mad Gallery!

••• The Poetry Forum •••

This past week on Mad Swirl’s Poetry Forum… we summer switched to scratch an itch; we devil knew through bitch’s brew; we fumbled a try with the fun-guy; we stumbled whole to fill a hole; we saw the cut of light to be a bird in flight; we embraced our gets with no regrets; we pain deterred through a catheter. Like the man said, “Sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” ~ MH Clay

Out of myself by Timothy Pilgrim

A slender tube slithers my way,
stops to siphon, drip.
Any deep breath might cause collapse.
I retreat, moan, don’t gasp,
probe memory to recall if immunity
for idiots is out of the question,
if phone trees hate all the lines
running through, branching off.
At the end I am relieved
it is not some patriotic catheter
sucking a lifetime from me.

October 29, 2022

editors note: Don’t dare disconnect, just try to relax. – mh clay

Bildungsroman by Sanjeev Sethi

I got myself another skin. It is available
in bazaars of the bloated.
It failed to bolster me.

I wrapped myself in shield of words.
Read the script inscribed on scroll
of my prelapsarian phase.

Upon reflection, I favored thought
not thews, song not shekels.
This has its own fatigue.

October 28, 2022

editors note: Who can guess where you’ll get? Should you revel or regret? – mh clay

Becoming A Wild Bird by Yahuza Abdulkadir

because days roll
off the sleeves of your shirt
and turn you into a cloudy night,
you learnt not to forget the sun
that burn your skin in a hot desert,
where your legs
touch the dark memories buried
beneath them.

you don’t tell a storm how to
break a home, you wait at midnight
to see how its light cuts
into your mother’s body,
teaching you how to gather the pieces
of her flesh.

and still, you don’t know how to
peel the yellow juice out of mango fruit.
only that you know
how to cut the language on your tongue
into different layers of sorrow.

here, you are
becoming a wild bird, flying in-between
the cluster of black trees.

October 27, 2022

editors note: Avian survival skills in the mad metropolis. – mh clay

Trying to Fill That Hole by Skaja Evens

Nostalgia influences dumb choices
A familiarity that may as well be red glass
You ain’t seeing those flags, sugar

It’s a momentary bandage
For the gaping wound that is loneliness
Afterward, that hole is a little bigger

We tap the glass, on the chance of distraction
Where instant gratification can be had at any moment
For the price of your dignity

When there’s no reason to think tomorrow might be better
Right now’s bad choice looks pretty good
Packaged as a tall, dark, and handsome mistake

October 26, 2022

editors note: Bigger hole, bigger shovel. It’s still dirt. – mh clay

Pam & the Ceramic Octopus by John Dorsey

at first i think about
what it might be like
to kiss you
to press your body
up against
a silent sea monster
in an empty community garden
on a warm summer night
to ravish your tongue
like a rustbelt nightcrawler
until i drew blood
just to get you to stop talking

but even the shrooms
can’t make your mouth melt away
fast enough
in the dizzying heat.

October 25, 2022

editors note: A fumbled try with the fun-guy. – mh clay

Swerve again by Mike Zone

Cackle into the microphone
Inhaling bitch’s brew
steam from our bodies heaving within cannabis mist
you said you saw the devil in a dream
looked him in the eye
through smoke and mirror disjointed bizarro reflections
bowed before your loins
shards of glass upon the floor
grasping butterfly hands
“I believe…
I am the devil
and so are you”

October 24, 2022

editors note: Devil Vision; your service to stream your dream. – mh clay


a cooler porch day
with the fans filling wind up
while summer gets hot

the forest hides deer
in a bushy woodland space
tucked in our backyard

rachel is pretty
sits meditatively here
while i itch and watch

October 23, 2022

editors note: As summer passes, we recall the heat and wildlife we had to scratch. – mh clay

••• Short Stories •••

If you need a cup’o’hope this morn, Bliss by Contributing Writer & Poet KJ Hannah Greenberg just might fill your cup to the rim!

Here’s what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone has to say about this pick’o the weekend:

The world is good, sure, but we can make it better. We WILL make it better, or at least we’ll feel better about what we build.

Here’s a few sips to get you on your way:

“Home, Whenever, Always” by Tyler Malone

Seth wasn’t convinced that actualizing his ancestors’ birthright meant humanity would maintain nirvana. His was no dreamworld; it was filled with school and household chores. Quadratic equations and dirty kitty litter boxes marred felicity.

Besides, he had asked Sandy, Derek, and Rob, during playground time, if they had ever felt the oft-referenced beatitude. Sandy complained of an extracted tooth, Derek groused about having to share his room with a younger brother since another baby had been added to his family and Rob hemmed and hawed, until pressed, to acknowledge that he hated Social Studies so much so that he had thrice skipped that class.

Nonetheless, their homeroom teacher, Mr. Myrtle, and their respective sets of parents continuously ranted daily about how fortunate the young ones were to be living with infinitesimally small amounts of air, water, and land pollution and an even lower divorce rate. Shrugging, Seth tossed a pebble into a chalk circle. It almost hit the center…

Get the whole cup of “Bliss” right here!


If you’re looking for a read to ease some midweek boredom, don’t let Yawn the title of Contributing Writer & Poet Susie Gharib‘s story fool ya!

Here’s what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone has to say about this pick’o the weekday:

Time goes and takes us with it. Breath-by-breath, laughs to yawns.

Here’s a bit of “Yawn” to wake you up:

“Just Changes, No Rearranging” by Tyler Malone

It all began a few days after the nuptial day. He repeatedly yawned every time she started a conversation. She never intimated her annoyance at that recurrent incident to him, but kept a vigil over his sleep hours and his mood swings. She changed her domestic schedule to enable him some extra sleep. She sorted out bills and repairs without consulting him. She cooked his favorite meals, thinking that yawning could be related to dietary unease. When things got worse, she consulted a physician, who advised her to introduce more interesting topics. Thus, she patiently embarked on a long process of self-education: politics, history, and motorcycles, his favorite subjects but to no avail. The turning point was an invitation they received from one of his friends, for they rarely dined out or received visitors in their own house. She was keen on observing the rate of his yawns to see what topics appealed to him. To her shock, there was not a single yawn during the entire discourse. As soon as they arrived home, an enervating series of yawns began to orchestrate its soundtrack to her faltering words. Tears erupted from her eyes and she buried her face in her hands, sobbing like a disconsolate child.

“What is it? Did you not enjoy their company?” he asked.

She shook her head and headed to the bathroom to cool her indignation ceremoniously…

Get the whole nappy story right here!

••• Open Mic •••

Join Mad Swirl this 1st Wednesday of November (aka 11.02.22) when we’ll once again be doin’ the open mic voodoo that we do do at our OC home, BARBARA’S PAVILLION and from our Mad Zoom Room (broadcasted via FB Live)!


Starting at 7:30pm, join hosts Johnny O and MH Clay as we will kick off these open mic’n Mad Swirl’n festivities with some musical grooves brought to you by Swirve (Chris & Tamitha Curiel, Gerard Bendiks) followed by our usual unusual open mic!

Come one.

Come all.

Come to participate… (RSVP at our Facebook event page or send a message to

Come to appreciate… (join us LIVE at Barbara’s Pavillion- located at 323 Centre St, Dallas -OR tune in to our Facebook LIVE feed starting at 7:30pm)

Come to be a part of this collective creative love child we affectionately call… Mad Swirl!


The whole Mad Swirl of everything to come keeps on keepin’ on… NOW! Every second, every minute, every hour, every day, every week, every month, every year, every decade, every EVERY there is! Wanna join in the mad conversations going on in our Mad Swirl’s World? Then come by whenever the mood strikes! We’ll be here…


Johnny O
Chief Editor

MH Clay
Poetry Editor

Tyler Malone
Short Story Editor

Madelyn Olson
Visual Editor

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