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Max Heinegg

Sisyphus Poets can't get enough of the boulder. Camus, who may as well have been a poet, said he loved that man in the frozen multiverse can choose to assert private meaning & justify the absurdity of existence, laughing back at the deathless gods, a savory bit of payback. My students call him Syphilis. Stop. I say, You're ruining the mood. Back to the rock: Gluck’s icy, but she rolls it easily. Homer’s is for Ajax to hurl, a ton weight. A millstone only Apollo can save Hector from, for now. I draw mine in dry erase on the wall by the window. Erudite vandalism? More small crimes for daily inspiration! Thinking less of Camus than reading D’aulaires, laughing when I read the husband/wife team wrote of the wily king on his return to the beloved, Fooled him again! Anything to be alive! To bask in the climb like Alex Honnold on the staggering face of El Capitan, smiling, granite-minded, all long handed limberness. Utterly prepared for the fab
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Steven Croft

9 / 12 After the sky fell on the City, swelling its canyons, the talus slopes of smoke and carnage, the names of missing spoken as pleas into camcorders that swish pan to passing sirens, in the quiet towns and muted cities, tv screens blink images against our staring eyes. At Fort Stewart we clean weapons and watch CNN, fingertip smell of gun oil as hand reaches up, rubbing chin in thought, looking into this widescreen scry glass, any news of who did this to the staggering city predicting our future. "100 percent accountability" releasing us, I pass the parade field, sunset making a shadow over ground where a grove of crape myrtles, each named for a soldier, will soon grow, knowing safety can be counted, the months of it limited by news we will receive, that it's finite like grains in a bullet. Across the world, a desert moon none of us has seen yet rises over Sadr City....Now, years and all of our deaths later, I can look up, see it, feel it, its beau

Howie Good

Street of Tears There was a man dragging a grand piano containing a stone tablet of the Ten Commandments down the street, and a woman poking a severed hand with a cane. Black ants emerged from a hole in the palm of the hand. I wished Baudelaire was alive to see it. Any time now I'm leaving for ... I don't know where. Baudelaire fled to Brussels to escape his creditors in France. Meanwhile, advanced syphilis was devastating his brain. He could only speak in disconnected words and phrases that might have been mistaken for poetry. Howie Good is the author of Gunmetal Sky , a 2021 poetry collection from Thirty West Publishing.

Mike James

Memorial Day Some weeks seemed to be More nights than days Maybe darkness was just a hangover So many things you could mimic With your voice Owls and crickets thought you kin How did that all start? One thing happens Something else Then you chop up a picnic table To burn in the backyard You bet on how long certain embers will stay hot You talk about the driveway letter you will write with fresh ash Mike James makes his home outside Nashville, Tennessee. He has published in numerous magazines, large and small, throughout the country. His many poetry collections include:  Leftover Distances ( Luchador),  Parades  (Alien Buddha),  Jumping Drawbridges in Technicolor  (Blue Horse), and  Crows in the Jukebox  (Bottom Dog.) He has received multiple Pushcart and Best of the Net nominations.

M.J. Arcangelini

His Fringe Jacket (1972) He figured he was at least half in love with her, most likely the half usually labeled lust. He was so in love with her that he gave her his tan leather jacket with the long fringe. He wore that jacket everywhere, even when the Ohio summer was too hot and humid for leather. He liked the way it made him feel, the weight of it, the way he imagined he looked wearing it at a rock concert. So when he gave it to her, because she told him how much she liked it, it was like giving her a dozen roses and a 2 pound box of Whitman chocolates. She liked it so much that she took it with her when she moved to the West Coast with her boyfriend. After she left he appeared diminished. In Oregon she soon tired of the jacket, which never really fit her right, and gave it to someone she'd just met. M.J. Arcangelini (b.1952) has resided in northern California since 1979. His work has been published in print magazines, online journals, (including The Jame

David Cranmer

Blue Man, head in his lap, outside my hotel window, healing in the Denver sun. Oblivious, as life bores around him, he frequently scratches both arms. I don’t get his poison, I’m a whiskey drinker myself, but I get blown apart. Pouring morning coffee, I keep an eye out, making sure no one flips him for his sneakers, watch, or a few bucks. As a security officer, paranoia is my natural state, the dull cloak I wear. He’s zeroing out as I’m ironing a shirt. By the designer threads he’s wearing, I’m guessing it’s heroin. His spiral may have him on meth, but his face doesn’t look all that fucked up yet. When he lifts his head, he reminds me of a younger and ultra-slim Warren Oates. Three quarters of an hour pass and Slim finally traipses off, I assume to the room where I’ve seen him go a handful of times before. Soon after, I head to my gig off Inverness West. Guarding an empty office of universal grey and beige. The sun that peeled the toxins from

Brian Glaser

Perseverance          -for Seamus Heaney The sky, where we could not ever live in the sea of the past, now we are on an island there, and everything has changed, the name of God in the swell, in the foreign atmosphere, the final spring of the sun. Brian Glaser has published three books of poems, including Contradictions with Shanti Arts in 2020. He has also published more than twenty essays on poetry. He works as associate professor of English at Chapman University in Orange, California. Twitter: @blendedbrian.