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Showing posts from December, 2021

Dennis Mahagin

Deer Lodge And I’m grateful for that autumn morning you helped me out at the dump: it was so cold I couldn’t feel my fingers or my toes! Yet you hopped right in the truck bed, trampling the slick black bags of trash; you kicked the shit out of the tail gate, you kicked the fuck out of of the two by fours, right there where the sun had a name for the coming hail it despised, and it was bent nails, and friend, spent oil and rust; my mom had just died and the season was far too far and long gone. Another Eddy Money song came on the radio; I turned it up to ten again. I was strung out on pills, and kept a couple always melded between the cotton tongue and the roof of the mouth. Smiling sideways at me making the best of things behind my wheel, you tapped on the back window when the wind came up— a sneaking hunch or sucker punch one can only feel, a harbinger, oil-soaked floorboards or anybody’s bullsh

Ryan Quinn Flanagan

Circle K Vapers 3 men and 1 woman. Standing right in the doorway. These Circle K vapers. Shooting smoke signals into the scandalous pot shot air. One foot on the bumper curbing in the parking lot. Customers trying to shoulder past. A face full of smoke for their troubles. Each time the attendant knocks on the glass brings a fresh round of laughter. The metal garbage can overturned so that the guts of the world spill out. Ryan Quinn Flanagan   is a Canadian-born author residing in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada with his wife and many bears that rifle through his garbage.  His work can be found both in print and online in such places as:   Evergreen Review, Live Nude Poems, The New York Quarterly, Rusty Truck, Red Fez , and   The Oklahoma Review .

Kim Malinowski

Comets Pretend we are strangers sharing patchwork blankets on a frozen field. That we aren’t staring at each other’s irises and counting freckles, your wild mane combed by my hand—the conservatory open and winds smelling of frigid freedom and the marvels of darkness where only red lights are allowed. Pretend our lips don’t meet—that you don’t cry out as the first comet streaks. Pretend that awe is for me. Let me capture that shriek of wonder—the darkness, Orion making his trip, and the deep freeze. Pretend with me. Ode of Oath I would protect you from everything if I could—even the sunbeams you flinch from— rays you guide me away from. I would steal your shade, my hand across your five o’clock shadow and hush you. Steal away the smoldering or give you cause to. Let me protect myself—even if you think it’s silly. That is how you can love me. I will lullaby you into history, our hands clasping, damp, flinging. Neither of us are ordinary—we’ll never be boring, huh? An

Mark Danowsky

Affirmations & Last Rites They say Patience is a virtue It gets harder every day I stay down with my demons No one knows me better I speak to lost souls Not just just on dark nights I don’t dance with demons Because I cannot dance with sincerity Tell me what you think about fate And I’ll tell you to listen to your body All this talk about mind-body connection As if there is no danger in it We pat ourselves on the back For self-awareness of a self we don’t believe in I want to paint or pick up an instrument To speak foreign languages The next word is not better It is simply next I’m sticking around for what’s next Since my body tells me there’s time Another tragedy in losing yourself all wrong Is the money you left on the table Please don’t let yourself go Even if you burn all the bridges first Mark Danowsky is Editor-in-Chief of ONE ART: a journal of poetry , Senior Editor for Schuylkill Valley Journal , Poetry Craft Essays Editor fo

Charles Rammelkamp

Hide and Seek “A brother was a terrible thing. He was a lifelong competitor, yet you couldn’t hate him without hating yourself.” - Ian Rankin, Hide and Seek Whew. That was just a dream, just another regret-fueled dream, my parents and brothers long dead. I hadn’t run away from them, after all, hadn’t gotten lost trying to return, running down deadends, lost in places unfamiliar as dreams themselves, groping, time running out the way it does in dreams, almost tangible, fragile and fleeting as sleep itself. Charles Rammelkamp is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books in Baltimore, where he lives with his wife Abby .   He contributes a monthly book review to   North of Oxford   and is a frequent reviewer for   The Lake, London Grip   and   The Compulsive Reader.   A poetry chapbook,   Mortal Coil , was published in 2021 by Clare Songbirds Publishing and another,   Sparring Partners,   by Moonstone Press. A full-length collection,   The Field of Happiness,   will be published