The Best of Mad Swirl : 06.15.24

by June 16, 2024 0 comments

I am no Poet here; my pen’s the spout where the rain water of my eyes run out.

John Cleveland

••• The Mad Gallery •••

In Perpetuity ~ Andrea Damic

To see all Andrea’s hypnotical & mesmerizingly mad symmetric works, as well as our other resident artists (50+ and counting!) take a virtual stroll thru Mad Swirl’s Mad Gallery!

••• The Poetry Forum •••

This last week on Mad Swirl’s Poetry Forum… we reached essential existential; we filmed no fails to be good at sales; we cut our clues by a butcher muse; we near out-thunk a yearly funk; we looked for a dealer who’d also be healer; we made no motion, just held a notion; we had stories to choose upon hearing the news. Our stories lead the way; we follow, leavings trails of ink. ~ MH Clay

I have news by Brendan McBreen

I have news
but perhaps
it isn’t for you

there are people out there
who see broken playground swings
and continue walking
that they ever saw anything
which wasn’t
an immediate concern
to themselves

not to be harsh
some people
just are

there are people
whose thought processes
cannot be likened
to spastic hotel room flies
but true

there are people
for whom love is not so distant
people who do not
every present moment
dwell in their lost past

there are places
perhaps fictional
where the emotional lives of others
are not perceived to be
the entitled entertainment venue
of onlookers

there are places
where a kiss
is just a kiss
and kisses
are celebrated
as symbols of love
without judgement
or baggage

the moon is unattainable
and it is just as well
because there are some people who would own it
keep it hidden away
all to themselves
never allow it to reflect sunlight again

there are some people who will crucify themselves
and claim it was you who made them do it

but then there are others
who get distracted by the cricket in the ivy
watch as it takes in the day’s heat
then curls deeper into the foliage
presumably for a nap

June 15, 2024

editors note: Find your news. Be the news. Naps for everyone! – mh clay

Notionality by Sanjeev Sethi

Unkempt lawns
admit guests
to homes without hosts.
Skin untouched by skin
circulates its soreness.
An eager eye notes its noise.

Mind-pop flies me
inside your cote.
Attire impedes the famished.
In hungriness inclinations
are peeled of pretense.
The mind is the finest bed.

June 14, 2024

editors note: Keep your notions to yourself and nobody gets hurt. – mh clay

FINDING ANOTHER… by Bradford Middleton

I’ve moved from one to another
To another to another for years
Now, decades long, and with one
Threatening departure I knew it
Was coming again soon BUT
Somehow, this time, I thought I’d
Exhausted all options until I walk
On in one of my old haunts, one of
Those bars on the street of ill-repute,
And sure enough minutes later I’m
Stepping out with another. We’ve
Dealt now 3 times & each time
Has gone like a dream & this time
Around his stuff hit good & nice
& didn’t batter my poor old brain
& make me feel bad
& make me contemplate the impossible
That one day I’ll stop looking when this
One tells me the news he’s moving on.

June 13, 2024

editors note: Butcher, baker, candlestick maker; if you don’t have yours now, you’re going to need another. – mh clay

Autumn by Julia Vaughan

Crickets screech in the night
In the ceiling, piercing
Competing with my tinnitus
Lying awake for hours
Hot days, warm nights
Legs out, legs under
Arms tucked in, arms flung out
Pillow’s too hot

Mind’s floundering
Jumbled, jelly legs running through a marsh
Feet momentarily bogged
Deep fear of being caught
I know; I know whoever’s there, chasing, gaining
Why can’t I ever see who it is

Frightened of life passing me by
Too many forks in the road to make sense
Too many choices, did I choose the right ones
Fear of missing out
I can’t do everything
Choices for healthy minds and healthy hearts
Compromises and expectations
Putting others first. Always.

Is this what’s chasing me
Leaden feet, concrete thighs, unable to run
Searing throat, gasping for air
Or just a silly, random nightmare

Too hot under the summer duvet
Turning cool at 3am
Duvet’s too heavy
Then not warm enough

June 12, 2024

editors note: A seasonal scratch of insomniac’s itch. – mh clay

The Muse, The Butcher by Guest Poet T.F. Jennings

I gather my ideas
and place them
tenderly at her feet
like a fresh kill.
Ink and bone.
Future and flesh.
She tears at the skin
hollowing the bones;
a wild butcher
cutting away the meat.
She works against the grain,
shortening the muscle fibers.
Slicing thinly and methodically
while the juices ooze
into a syrupy puddle.
Then sliding across
the makeshift slaughterhouse,
she hands me a small slab
and absconds with the ravaged remains.
I clutch the viscid gift
like a wounded hatchling
and begin stitching
it into song.

June 11, 2024

editors note: For those compelled to do the bloody work. – mh clay

Kasbah Films by Guest Poet Kevin O’ Neill

come out fighting, let me
see your war face, it
lets me know you, nothing

that you see, tell me
about the wreck, fog’s dirty
trick, this one is mine

nothing’s fair in this world
left my home, lost my
baby then myself, can you

tell me – shattered bone replaced
five weeks of subterranean breathing
do nothing with rebellions till

they start, prepare for a
delay in cash returns – the
calculator broke down then the

pen – is there anyone that
you can stay with – nectarines
good soup makes a good salesman

June 10, 2024

editors note: Now playing at the theater in your mind. – mh clay

Committed, There’s by Steven Minchin


here – No Other
Remember here

June 9, 2024

editors note: If you can’t pay attention, it’ll cost you now. – mh clay

••• Short Stories •••

We hate to disturb your groove but if you’re lookin’ to be a-mused, Teresa to Mom by Contributing Writer Stephen Page might be the story you’re needin’!

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

We grow old and love grows cold.

Here’s a bit to get you started:

Overcoming Overgrowing ~ Tyler Malone

Teresa pressed the green circled X on her phone, “Hello.”

“May I speak with Jon?”

“Oh, hi Betty. He’s working.”

“Well, you can tell him Mother is on the phone.”

“Sorry, Betty, he asked me never to disturb him when he is working, unless someone is having a medical emergency or is dying.”


“He says, every time I disturb him, I am an artist! Disturbing me while I am working chases away my muse. It cuts the thread between us, finishes the conversation, incompletes my creation!”

“Well, I am his mother.”

“Yes, Betty, we love you, but…”…

…but, get this whole read right here!


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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