Archive for May, 2011

Doing Time by Pris Campbell

Posted in Pris Campbell with tags , on May 19, 2011 by Scot

Midnight. The whomp of a police ‘copter.
I drift up from a dream, sink back,
ask the Dream Man if there’s a support group
for Vietnam wives, marriages dead,
not their husbands.

But you appear, wearing dress whites
from our Pearl Harbor wedding,
wife in red satin on your arm.
I forget the Dream Man, slink away,
Birkenstocks slapping the pavement
in my haste.

I thought you were lucky in your
supply ship assignment.
No jungle
No upriver
No Napalm
Shelled once, your letter screamed
‘They were trying to kill me. They were
trying to kill me!’

I never saw the war in your edginess after
or in the wall you erected between us.

I was too young then to know that it takes
only one knife at the throat, one car wreck,
one rape to change a life and that the wall
you built was your prison, not mine.

Drunks In Heaven by Christopher Robin

Posted in Christopher Robin on May 15, 2011 by Scot

She mentioned
That she’d read somewhere
That people who drink
Can’t get into heaven
and I don’t really go for
That crap
But I replied:
“I want the drunks to go
to Heaven too, geez…
I’d feel like an elitist..”
And anyway,
Who would write the poetry?

-taken from Who Will pay The Royalties for The voices In my Head And Other Poems.

Politics by Neil Ellman

Posted in Neil Ellman with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

Although she didn’t know
The difference between
A Socialist and socialite
My mother would sing
“The people’s flag is deepest red
It shrouded oft our martyred dead
And ere their limbs grow stiff and cold
Their blood had died its every fold”
With the joy of the child
She was when she learned the words
Her father taught to her
After he crossed the ocean
With thousands of others like himself
On a freighter
And not a dollar to his name,
Joined the union
Picketed for just a dollar more
And voted as he was told—
And so did she.

the fountain of youth by Carl Miller Daniels

Posted in Carl Miller Daniels with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

the train
left at 7 a.m.
everybody aboard was unconcerned.
they’d eaten cranberries for breakfast,
and rejected the canaries.
sniff at stuff they don’t eat,
but could, if they
wanted to.
pond scum is really just algae.

Two Poems by Helen Losse

Posted in Helen Losse with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

The egg that flew out of the bush

striking the window of Carol’s car,
shatters in memory.  Carol drives

straight to the police station,
where an officer agrees to

follow us back home.  The white lilac
from which the egg flew

belongs to Mr. & Mrs. Ross,
our classmate Sherry’s

but grows close to our purple ones,

planted on the parking in front of
our houses on Jackson.  That part of

Jackson is now modified with
the word South

so delivery men and mailmen
won’t confuse now with then.


Ode to Niceness, Low & High

It all started with an essay,
and after that, the toe-image

cleaving from Susan’s flats.

The essay was all sandals v. shoes.
I think sandals are a subset of shoes.

I remember the night I first
met Susan, whose toes cleaved.

You might not know Susan,
but believe me: better her toes show

than her…. Um, . ..
Susan’s what you might call

a “lightweight upstairs.” Now
I’m not one to spread rumors,

and I don’t think a pedicure
answers life’s deepest questions.

But if a woman has nice-enough toes,
she might consider sandals,

likewise she might consider
a low-cut top, if her niceness grows

a bit further from the ground.

Sleepy Brooklyn by Gary Beck

Posted in Gary Beck with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

The streets of time are silent.
Across the expanse of Brooklyn
a midnight silence hangs.
The sly noises of late residents
trying to conceal after-hours wantonness
rasp clumsily on somnolent streets.
The slumbering residential streets echo
dying footsteps of a reckless night wanderer,
returning after his fellows have gone to bed.
The distant blare of a car horn
temporarily stirs rem addicts,
who recede into oblivion.

Riddance by Randall Johnson

Posted in Randall Johnson with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

A lowdown saffron moon
does not forgive a thing.

Tide rising on the beach
won’t take the fall for this.

Don’t blame some distant tribe;
you don’t belong to one.

You claim the things you want
just like a wild dog.

Forgiveness isn’t mine
to grant, not that I would.

Forgetting wastes the truth;
I’m saving what remains.

Black Ice by C. Derick Varn

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

The remains of sidewalk
snow melted black against
the contours of larger darkness:

the bruised black of my
thigh gives stinking warmth,
beyond the power to heal

or hurt comes the knowledge
spread across the pavement
and the ground.  Sticky

stillness of night into further
night, and I have come
to the breaking, and in

breaking, we know. In
such cold, the ice of river
cracks and rolls into

the larger stream
as blood spiders
its way through

the warrens of my
skin.  The woman
with me does not laugh

nor nurse.  Brushing
my hand aside she
speaks to the nothing

that is: it takes more
than fucking to keep
yourself warm and

more than good footing
to stand straight
in precarious blowing snow.


Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

Love has finally come to me
in the form of a deluxe box
of hot buttered popcorn
with an appropriate douche
of salt.

All of the ancient sex goddesses
from my fantasies have materialized
in creamy white morsels curiously sculpted
into the soft mounds
of corseted breasts.

It is intermission of the film classic
“The Blue Angel”
and my tongue maneuvers itself
inside the box as if it were making love
to Miss Marlene Dietrich.

God Damn It, Brother By Joel Ferdon

Posted in Joel Ferdon with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

I want to
Go to a gas station and buy
A cheap pack of cigarettes like we used
To do. Smoke every last one in the pack, and then try
To smoke the pack itself while slurping and sloshing

On coffee. Come on, you remember
The days in which we would drive
For miles and then drive some more, and get out
In the middle of nowhere and just
Scream. Scream at the moon, its yellow mug
In the sky giving us a bit of fighting laughter.
Remember, we would scream at the passing
Cars and throw broken beer
Bottles at windows, and then run from cops like

Kids running from drunken, toothless fathers. What
Happened? Did the man finally come hunting and howling
For you with lights blaring and sirens
Radiating? I think you lost yourself down

Along the ninety-one freeway going about a hundred and five in a
Sixty five while giving the middle finger to every damn
Speckled window and aging man. Damn it, brother, why can’t you
Come back to where I am now? Why can’t you comb
Your hair and look like James Dean, trim up that beard
And look like Maxim magazines most wanted man? I could hit you

For being Drunk at eleven o’clock in the morning. But I won’t. I’ll just
Write poetry about my brother, and how I want
To hit you so bad that my fingers
Bleed in a sense while typing this. God
Damn it. God damn it, brother.