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Showing posts from November, 2021

M.J. Arcangelini

At Raquette Lake (1973) For Bette Fireworks seemed like a great idea to Celebrate our new-found friendship; The 20 year old hitchhiker and The middle-aged birthday girl. She had some stashed at the cabin. The moon disassembled and reassembled Itself on the surface of the lake as we Approached with the recovered fireworks And the remaining half of a half-gallon of vodka. She lit the wicks in turn and then jumped back. There was the sizzle, then the fizzle as Each one hissed at our disappointment. We left them, useless, near the dock, and set out To peek into the windows of Unoccupied neighboring cabins To critique their interior design. The bottle going back and forth, While we passed the cool night with Gossip, giggles, and secrets revealed. As morning eased into the landscape The lake emitted a blanketing mist which Crawled across the yards, a persistent Nudge sending us at last to our separate beds. M.J. Arcangelini  (b.1952) has resided in northern Cali

C.W. Blackwell

Wharf Lights This evening starts without fanfare. A sheet metal sky invents us in a palette of gray-blues and muted greens as if we inhabit rooms full of cigar smoke. Couples on benches sit stenciled against the bay, their stillness is a photograph mounted and hung in a glass frame. The wind blows half-smoked cigarettes between the wharf boards, a woman catches them, stumbling in the tide— her eyes have no color, teeth like faded tungsten. Even the lit cherry flares like a scene in a Billy Wilder flick: a hot and colorless fleck in the shadows. The scene turns. Now wharf lights go flickering down the platform in a panoply of blue electric arcs. Sea lions bark in the cross-piles and octopuses whipsaw from their depths. Our eyes blink in sapphire codes, the lights invent us anew. It is what we’ve been longing for: to wake in bluish colors and drink and laugh and screw in that neo-noir glow beneath a blanket in the still-warm sand. C.W. Blackwel

Howie Good

Pertaining to Darkness If I look back, I see snakes and coffins, and if I look ahead, I feel myself walking on corpses instead of on the ground. There are deserts where there once were oceans, the stench of gasworks where there once were visions. Come night, shadows have sharp teeth and retractable claws and creep toward me without making a sound. I have slept for one-third of my life, and when I’m awake, I experience time as illegible colors or as thoughts I wish I never had. & Used paper face masks litter the ground. How’s that allowed? Even the crows on the wire must be wondering what the fuck. A series of incidents doesn’t necessarily add up to a plot. I want to shake this person and that person and tell them, “You can’t be lost in your own world all the time.” & I was sitting up in bed reading a book called People Love Dead Jews when I came across a passage quoted from the memoir of a Jewish sonderkommando. His responsibilities at Auschwitz concentration camp included dis

Yuan Changming

Last Meet with My First Love: for Yi Ming meeting you face to face you seem to hide yourself behind a fog in another world separated by the pacific in between you often look like the flower blooming on my window ledge have a blue dream and you will see a little cloud drifting around like me near that borderline I have packed you up tightly into my backpack, the luggage I cannot consign, or sent by mail but carry it with me close to my chest you are neither light nor heavy, but you will occupy a solid space in the closet of my heart Yuan Changming, with  Allen Yuan, runs . (poetry subs are welcome year round). Credits include eleven Pushcart nominations besides appearances in  Best of the Best Canadian Poetry  (2008-17) &  BestNewPoemsOnline , among 1,869 others worldwide. Recently, Yuan published his eleventh chapbook Limerence, and served on the jury for Canada's 44th National Magazine Awards (poetry category).