Archive for June, 2022


Posted in LYNNE SAVITT with tags on June 28, 2022 by Scot



i miss you still more
than any dead lover
who went before or
after you died morning
buttercup light faded &
i try to recreate hopeful
dawn to love the breath
i’ve been gifted but there
are days like my 75th birth
day so full of anxious grief
spent in pet ER among tiny
helpless animals adored by
owners who paid $300 for
mister nibbles their hamster
we dropped $1200 on our dog
who couldn’t catch her breath
& can’t keep food down today
she lays like a broken bird in
her soft beige nest & I struggle
to dig the joyful moment we
promised to find each day no
one to laugh with abt crooked
cocks or boring husbands plates
of gorgeous creole shrimp bottles
of pinot noir latest movies novels
poems views from bridges at dusk
our love of music &sam elliot how
we adored the tiny things & now
i stroke my radiated chest wanting
to share tales of our cancer of our
babies& their babies bright triumphs
sad failures how we loved emails
twice a day & now I never check
grandkids only text & everyone I love
is gone i miss you still & always will

Rob Plath

Posted in Rob Plath with tags on June 16, 2022 by Scot


daisy in thunderstorm

early june
12:16 am
sitting on
green couch
listening to
rain storm
my napping
cat’s eyes open
when it thunders
but placing
my palm
on the knobs
of her spine
her sweet lids
close again



at last

i played the reel
of my birth
in reverse
suddenly the screaming
turned to silence
the hot coat of blood
was erased
red stitch by red stitch
the purple-blue
noose-like umbilical
unbraided itself
the cocoon turned
into a single cell
my mother’s & father’s
skins unfused
from one another
& moved to opposite
sides of the bed
& above a brooklyn rooftop
i was starlight again



this will be you one day

today alone
in the cemetery
i bent to watch
a group of ants
carry a corpse
of a spider
towards their hill
while another group
moved grains of earth
away from the mouth
of the mound
so the corpse could fit
down the hole
& i thought of humans
walking over this scene
or stamping it out
& how ultimately
this is their fate
no matter what they do
& i laughed
as the spider corpse
disappeared down
the hole in the little hill
like it never spun silk
or drew blood
like it never was at all

Cameron Morse

Posted in Cameron Morse with tags on June 16, 2022 by Scot


Eight Years Five Planets

Even after eight years, I still forget
to breathe before reading my
brain scans, I still have to sit down
while being told the results. My
stomach does somersaults. I can never
remember the difference between
FLAIR and enhancement. Walking
barefoot under streetlights, I am
looking for the chaplet
of five planets 30 minutes before sunrise.
Rubbing sleep from my eyes, I don’t know why.
I should have put on my shoes. The chapel
collapses on a roomful of congregants. Polaris
looks lonely. My sister asks my opinion
on baby names in a text message.



Hour When

Brush off the spider webs
of the first thing in the morning.
Wipe out the webs
in my beard. This is the hour
when the dead begin to live again.
Thunderheads hang above
the orchard, a huddle of silent mourners.
I beg for the breath back
in my chest, my knocked out wind,
with no one out here
but the rabbit to field my request
with its long ears cocked; the crybaby
cricket strumming the fine-toothed
comb of its hindquarters.


Tornado Siren

The siren chases us down the stairs
I’m far more likely to die
falling down than ascending
the spinning spiral case
of storm clouds called a tornado
God may have lowered
with me in mind, should I
have stayed in bed: He’ll never get at me
down here on a bottomed-out sofa
in the cock-roached basement.
All I’ve ever wanted is to be torn
from bed at midnight and transported.






John Clayton

Posted in John Clayton on June 16, 2022 by Scot



The old clay bricks blend in with the rusty brown tin roof.

On sunny afternoons Turkey vultures like to perch on the peak because it is easy to hitch a ride on the breeze coming up hollow. The exhausted goldenrod glisten silver in the Autumn sun and hide the shallow well where a family of twelve got water for cooking and cleaning, except in August when the well would go dry and water had to be carried up the hill from the spring. The old house only has two rooms and a lean-to on the East side. The doors have rotted off but the green roll roofing on the sides has held up pretty good. Between the house and barn is the garden spot. It went a long way toward feeding all those kids and among the rocks, the dirt is still black.

Mom and Dad died years ago and at least 3 or 4 of the kids have passed too. All the kids grew up and got the hell out of Dodge. There was nothing here for them on this hard scrabble farm, where the soil is thin and rock ledges run right to the surface and blink in the daylight. Like most of the Ozark youngins, they left Maries County seeking fame and riches. For years they were all gone. They have started drifting back in, some with pensions earned in more progressive places and others with not much more than Social Security. At least it’s cheaper to live here than most places. There’s nobody left that gives a damn about this old place, except maybe, me, and I didn’t even grow up here.

Marc Janssen

Posted in Marc Janssen, Uncategorized with tags on June 16, 2022 by Scot



—After “Surrender” by Jon Anderson

Do you remember that happy
Hippy dream?

On a starry midsummer night explode all the weapons in outer space
A sky explosion
A safe sky explosion
A safe psychic, psychedelic joyful sky explosion!
What a sight that would be
What a relief.

Sniggering realists laugh at the idea
Now peace is a punchline.
How sad they are
These bleary cynics whose dreams have remained so small.



Marc Janssen lives in a house with a wife who likes him and a cat who loathes him. Regardless of that turmoil, his poetry can be found scattered around the world in places like Pinyon, Slant, Cirque Journal, Off the Coast and Poetry Salzburg. His book, November Reconsidered was published by Cirque Press. Janssen also coordinates the Salem Poetry Project, a weekly reading, the annual Salem Poetry Festival, and was a 2020 nominee for Oregon Poet Laureate

Helen Losse

Posted in Helen Losse with tags on June 16, 2022 by Scot


My Dark Woodland Retreat

I arrive at Foxtrot Park
just after six,
lock the car,
and slip keys into my jacket
pocket. The trail from
Parking Lot A
follows the river.
Tree trunks are black
against a marine blue sky.

Near the shore
reds and purples
dance on water.
A rippling current
beneath the footbridge
sings a verse from
a lyrical ballad.
A sudden breeze
cyclones the smell of algae.

The path suddenly turns upward,
becomes rocky.
Fewer ferns from its edges
tickle my legs.
I stumble in half-light,
cut my knee
on a jagged protrusion.
Sharp pain pulsates
not from my leg but my heart.
Thoughts of Jesus
hanging from His cross
help me hone my prayer.
God bids me wait in unlit shadows —
alone with Him
for as long as it takes—
for the Spirit
to set my heart ablaze
like the noonday sun.

Curtis Hayes

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on June 16, 2022 by Scot




I would fire up my motorcycle at 6:30 every morning.
it was a quick ride
to one of the last working sawmills in Los Angeles
where I would run rough lumber
through a ten-ton planer for nine hours a day.
the machine was an Industrial Age survivor
once painted green, now weathered but still solid,
with the year 1907
cast into the framework in large numerals
by the long-shuttered LA foundry that had created it.

sticking to surface streets,
I would glide through the morning air
lucky to leave the hell of the choked freeways to others.
my route took me past a bar called
The New Deal Saloon,
ramshackle, sun-bleached
and open for business at 5am.
the front door was always open
and I could usually make out three or four
dark outlines
seated at the bar, lit by a juke in the back of the room.
I felt bad for them,
slumped, broken and smoking discount cigarettes,
still young enough to assume
that they were different than me.
I’d tell myself that they were regular guys
just off a swing shift at one of the South Bay refineries,
except the refineries were miles away
and my route was mostly past
shut-down defense plants
and boarded-up machine shops.
every morning I’d approach the New Deal and
slow down a little bit to get a look inside,
telling myself that I would never be one of them.
it was obvious that inside that dank room
The New Deal was always the old deal.

at the mill I’d pour a cup of coffee
and start pushing trees.
no one wore work gloves at the saws,
they could catch on a blade
and pull your hand in with it.
the old men at the mill would hold up their hands
as they shuffled by
and with a kind of salute
they’d show off
their missing fingers and disfigurements.
no one had to open their mouth and say
“Be careful, kid.”

The New Deal was finally bulldozed into
splinters and sticks.
the gravel parking lot
with its 50 year saturation of piss and puke
is now jammed tight with cheaply built condos.
soon after, I split from my job at the mill,
with all my fingers intact.

I began drifting from one thing to the next,
working hard,
still hanging on to the great lie
and unaware that the graveyard shifts
and the early morning drinking
were waiting for me
only a few years down the road.



Curtis Hayes has worked as a grip, gaffer, and camera assistant in film production. He’s been a truck driver, a boat rigger, a print journalist and a screenwriter. He is the author of the non-fiction top-ten NYT bestseller, I Am Jesse James, and his first poetry collection, Bottleneck Slide, has recently been published by Vainglory Press.


Luis Cuauhtémoc Berriozábal

Posted in Luis Cuauhtémoc Berriozábal with tags on June 16, 2022 by Scot



Invisible Wings

Time will spread its invisible wings
and slap them hard across your face.
We will not feel anything but
tomorrow we will feel ancient.

We are heading toward the future.
It is what I hear many people say.
Our minds will slip into darkness.
Soon we will be reeking in a grave.

Time will fly past on bloodied wings.
The splintered rivers will fill
with our tears. We are absolutely
helpless in time’s game of chess.

Hold the one you love with all your
might. Poverty is around the corner.
Time is not a bird with lovely wings.
It comes to age you as you dream.

Linnet Phoenix

Posted in Linnet Phoenix with tags on June 16, 2022 by Scot



To the Men…

who have told me
for decades now
not to mention
what they said or did,
not to discuss
their bad behaviour,
not to repeat
their dirty secrets,
not to share
their toxic truths

not to shatter
the carefully-crafted
illusions painted
of their victim status,
not to share
my side of the story,
condemn the coercion,
not to stand up
for myself
and SCREAM aloud,
a tiny voice roaring




The sharp intrusive
tang of wild garlic,
an always reminder
of where I am,
where I once was.
Sitting miles from the place
my memories belong,
transported by a fragrance
through the fabric of space and time
to the wooded edge
of a nameless field.
Part of my heart
remains there still.
That day I sat
down by her side
I kissed her goodbye,
I held her while she died.

Jack Henry

Posted in Jack Henry with tags on June 15, 2022 by Scot



climate change

i read messages from friends
on the east coast
nyc and boston
and rhode island.


i listen to dogs
bark at nothing.
i sit on my front porch
as a slight breeze
rustles my beard.

coffee is still hot,
sun bright,
i note the temperature
at 53 degrees and smile,
as Big Sur burns and
mountains tumble
to the sea.



it’s sunday morning
i should be writing
but i am sitting at a computer
in my darkened room
dozing off
as a large orange cat
purrs in my arms
and his brother
watches while
cleaning his toes



beginnings of war

fighter planes scream overhead.
we huddle in basements and subways.
eyes fill w/dust.
bombs and missiles
destroy our democracy.

the autocrat in the East rides his stallion
into battle.
tanks rumble down city streets.
boots slap against
cobblestone and brick.

mamyte, kodėl mes mirštame?

mommy, why are we dying?

eyes look to the west,
out beyond border fences.

niekas neateina, mano meile.
mes esame savi.

no one comes, my love.
we are on our own.