Jill Jones

What You Said ‘Then’

‘I’ll begin, and then became aware’
‘naked streets’  |  ‘beautiful men in florals’

‘shapes as cast-offs’  |  ‘petals blown apart’
‘in the power of smokes and powders’

‘plague is the colour of pale blossom’
‘distant cars’  |  ‘her long shiny thoughts’

‘I lunge at my anger with all my commas’
‘boys don’t cry’  |  ‘yeah, not half’

‘the scraps, scales, fur’  |  ‘ghost flames, feathers’
‘a wall is not a wall when it’s not a cage’

‘still miming life’  |  ‘a suitcase is an exit’
‘a cup is an instance of heaven’

Andrew K. Peterson

HEAD SOUP
after Alfred Jarry

Orchestrated madness
demands countermelodic mendacity

: Re-collective Orchestra & Debbie Allen Dance Academy
perform Starburst live from the Hollywood Bowl

Interruptions, new continuities
to slaughter the charmless
indiscreet oligarchic bourgeoisie

: Pere Ubu serves Putin
head soup
made of radioactive wind
blown thru Ukrainian wheat

The banquet years — an empty plate

: Seven Keys for Seven Doors
To Seek a New Home
by Brother Jack McDuff

Sarah Sarai

A Vegas Vegan

I never promised you a statistician,
although I fantasize on becoming
a poet of actuarial tables,
a poet of the odds, a true Vegas
vegan with an eye keen for
a sun longing for love and,
like a Greek god who mis-
understands the penalties,
melting into the imperishable
west of the sunken and the found.

Charles J. March III

Pillaged Den

Nothing’s ever finished
Everything just gets done
Never cease fighting
Recursion & futility
Consume silently
Alone in your room
One bite at a time
Mindful of someone else’s big screen TV
Nobody in regret
A prisoner in your own home
Move to Stockholm
Sweet

Thomas Hibbard

UNOBSTRUCTED KISS

 
              O fragrant and pure sweet petals!
                                     - Tibor Tollas
 
strange Napoleonic gentle borderlands  

each night the gypsies along the river

flickering in front of Mount Hoverla

lately, a starving child appears

or a dark-haired man with his concertina

retreating into the remains of a shattered airport

all those cars parked in the forgotten parking lot

mundane disproportion of a father’s smashed mouth

kneeling on an alpine cliff, praying

in this dejected Sabbath slaughterhouse—

where everyone anticipates living forever

or is this planetary cauldron the beginning

with the “little cities” and their Cossack  

Frankenstein tumbling, walking amongst the willows

and doctors treating the tender carcasses

reality is possibility, the dreams of true experience

where the hours pass slowly and indecisively

in front of the connubial half-brother from KGB:

the incredible song of nightingale’s sorrows

Mark DuCharme

from Complicated Grief
Conjunctive Batman Thrills

I looked at the set & was spilled
By its startled eyes
Elk rhythm blunders
Economies of bird-in-cage

Rattled sentences blossoming
Once upon a shadow
Or anything else you’d likely spoil
Like a cage of lost children

Here is one: think meager
When the scrawl of night sits down in wonder
Or blunder. It doesn’t matter which. If intrigued
Please complicate noontime shadows

Scrawl penitent as a rook in lamb’s clothing
Vindicate corruption with corruption in a letter of 3,000 words
Find new ways to say goodbye
Or wander off in shadows, ’til the heat of night bleeds

Mark Young

from 100 Titles From Tom Beckett


#76: The Sedimentation of Sentimentality

Armageddon arrives; & the
messages glide off every Hall-

mark greeting card, merging
as they meet. Then, collectively,

this mess of mangled messages
slides toward the nearest water,

silts up the rivers. Continues to
move, further downstream, has

learnt from lava. Blocks the deltas.
Water no longer / reaches the sea.

#10: Poem Beginning with a Line from Charlie McCarthy

When I get smitten, I stay smut. It blasts
the wheat in the ear, makes everyone I
come in contact with seem less wooden
than I am. Perhaps that's why it took me
several days to get used to our very limited
accommodation. Forget spending a few
minutes in a relaxed state — I had to buy
my own tung oil since none was provided.

Then water started dripping from the apart-
ment above. That meant the light wouldn't
work. Now the dark place I was in be-
came darker. I felt a hand, an arm, reach
up my back. My mouth fell open. I couldn't
speak; but still a voice spoke out. "i've got
a good mind inside me to…" it started out.
"Then why don't you use it," I interjected.

Michael H. Brownstein.

THEN  

if radiant energy
if the prism with well-lit blossoms
if a tambourine sparks the scent of orange-blue

walk with me through the forest of log cabins
near the path of the river of gold
into the cave where diamonds echo vibrations of taste

this could be a maybe
this could be a possibility
this could be the silent laughter

in the end what if
if could be anything else
but the if it allows itself to be

Vernon Frazer

No Room at the In


fretting pineal 
the flume hotel transit 
disposed 
its torpor militia

breaking a somnolent rumor 
from its disport habitat
a worn boomerang vocalist
caught the horned legions

reversing the bearskin
to ghost their venom pageants 
declines frontage 
under the madwoman habitat

the next dreamer
temples a sentient breath
precision simmer
elicits a resuscitator tonic

replication
lowered its climb ladder
its stain fin
sentenced to bromide

Cameron Morse 

The Vision

In the vision of myself as electricity
encased in a black rubber
sheath, there are wires in the walls
of my body. Lightning bolts
drop from my fingertips
and the jerky squirrels
in my yard are seized by lightning,
the epileptic squirrels.
How this energy is in hell is this
fireball harnessed how it
could be held if needed.
Power lines lasso my horizon.
Transformers on the march across Kansas
drag their heavy lines and for once
I am lacey light. My lines are sails that lift
in the tender morning air.
My webs invisible in this light.

Diana Magallon

Butterflies

To add
more fractions. 
Do you know 
why you are doing this? 
Tricks like the butterflies should be avoided. There are several reasons

2/5 + 1/5 
is simply 3/5  
this is your new denominator
 that becomes your new numerator.
Tricks like the butterflies should be avoided. There are several reasons

I like my trick and it works,  
tricks like butterflies should be avoided. 
Have you seen similar behavior? 

Tricks like the butterflies should be avoided. There are several reasons



Russian translation by Gleb Kolomiets

Бабочки

Сложить 
больше дробей.
Ты знаешь,
зачем делаешь это?
Следует избегать трюков мойр. На это есть несколько причин.

2/5 + 1/5
просто 3/5
это твой новый знаменатель,
таким стал твой новый числитель.
Следует избегать трюков мойр. На это есть несколько причин.

Мне нравится мой трюк, он работает.
Следует избегать трюков мойр.
Тебе уже встречалось такое поведение?
Следует избегать трюков мойр. На это есть несколько причин.

J. D. Nelson

the cherry coke brain waves

alone with the nothing of the old world
I’m stuffing my skull with new brains

in the glove of forgiveness
the new world is a clean hand

the machine of the head
the eye of the rainbow

the bible of the broken clock
the berry named for an apple

milk mulch is some serious ammo
I have the power to be the soft ape

what does the skull say?
o nocturnal earth!

Glen Armstrong

Among the Forgetters #57


This is a city that never unzips
its pants.

A sad city in need of a good
scrub down.

A repressed city. 
Everyone owns a copy.
A statue.
A war

hero whose pirouette in the thick
of battle
 
hardens and cracks 
off into history.
I love the idea

of juxtaposing colorful flowers
with gun barrels,
but they say

I am a little 
too loving,
 
too trusting.

I love the juxtaposition of dancing
and snakes,

of public art and rigor mortis 
in theory,

 in theory

Nathan Anderson

Oh this monkey (paw)


poinsettias on the bridge of your (nose!)


a break from the hopeful fuel


achoo
achoo
achoooooooooooooo



not these
not these steps again



pearl coloured against the (glass)

a tile and a chrome flute


aakkkkkkk
aakkkkkkk
aakkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk


bbbzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzttttttttttttttttttttttt
bbbzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzttttttttttttttttttttttt
bbbzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzttttttttttttttttttttttttt (tttttttt)


plu
plu
pluuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu


ba
ba
baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa


hu
hu
huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu


da
da
daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa



you've got the itch so (scratch) it

go on
go (on)
(go) on
(go on)


good 

Charles A. Perrone

Fashionable Words 11-13-20

I was almost fifty years old when I added the word sartorial
to my supposedly-superior vocabulary. If I am not mistaken,
I was wearing on that occasion the legendary T-shirt and jeans,
or something of that sort or of those means.
Nicely-tailored lexical item that I was fortunate to befriend,
for it even provoked rumblings in the well-worn memory banks.
So, like, I was truly a motley teen, in myriad ways.
I even had a sartrian phase, though I would've spelled it Sartrean.
I'd barely begun to shave on a daily basis, yet I was reading,
what was the title? ... The Transcendental Ego I do believe.
Uh, no, sorry, that should be The Transcendence of the Ego.
Get beyond it and for that matter your self while you're at it.
There's a difference, a coated voice says, you dressed-down dope.
Next, little hope for you, averred a former college roommate
upon our unplanned reunion, you still take the prize
for worst-dressed person in the room and in the class.
And on did he babble about some disheveled playwright from Spain
named Alfonso Sastre who sewed together versions of Irish plays
and came to publish dramas in New York even though in Spanish
plus a few scissored translations with such endearing titles as
"Death Thrust" and "Tragic Prelude". Morbid stage mood indeed.
At least you've avoided that level, mumbled, decades later,
my exquisitely-clothed physical therapist while he tried to sort out
my real sore maybe torn tendons, as I lay in my grey jump suit,
adding that I was lucky, sort of, not to have aggravated the sartorius,
a connective upper-leg muscle about which I learned
absolutely nothing in my philosophy, drama, and anatomy courses.

Julia Rose Lewis

All those Barn Swallows

Guttereal leaves
the nickel lavender sky lies down
to let to rent to make loose and
lax.

Some jello family:
a fox and a horse with navicular
and tardive dyskinesia
see parking lots.

I am mud and he is lavender
resulting in lemonade
to be held a good deal
tapering all the way down.

The lens can be Indiana
if first electronic toll collection
system or super moon or prime.

The silken negatives say so
fifty meters is fair play
in the seal land
waxing artifice and rock calls:
there there reason.

It is only a lepisma saccharinum
moon
I learn even in a nocturnal light.

Sardine is no synonym for navy
fleet
I fear
I have I left the sunflower test
too soon do you know
how your drinking water feels
if it is the nearest I have ever
found myself to meditation.

II

Not another archive
a sponge and a spy and a nickel lyric
calls purgatory a parking lot.

They were silver platters even
if there were a grey sieve let me
be an anchovy
for the shark knows there is a
better fish under the door.

She is certain as the ocean
looks on the iphone.

Let me be asbestos beside the
ficus sacred and wood
finish and food glaze as if willowing
to shell layers.
So the lobster residual says
to star the varnished days
all that lay like shellac because
in the morning they were
expensive computers; my mind to
your mind and mica flaked
compositions.

If silver wishes safety pins
paperclips and
mint torpor
a nickel lyric calls it
tough-skinned wishes all the way
down a shell lacking a hotel
if skinny funnel then it is not a
mint tornado
let me be asbestos.

III

A fried egg riding
pegasus with a dished face verifies
that andalusite is not
a recognized breed.

The theater recalls itself to itself
it is related to sillimanite
as sugareal
released itself into the wild
hollow is not a horse
that color of water rice.

Some jello family is
some jello family
I can find a lifetime
if performative then fall limnology
is silken lies all the way down
then put the first shirt over your head
then the second
then the giraffe is given
a third feral love
then do you know how your drinking
water feels?

If you will believe pyrite mica is
glittereal
mucus sells itself
music calls
as for being allergic to gold
naturally it is not magic.
Once upon a time there was a
singing mint
and a hotel leading to being
gulped down;
do not wait for the poet voice.

In the sense sudden high bid
dead battery and
time hammering the grey jumper.

Icing the state of Washington
into horse trading before
green does not grace
the steeplechase:

it feels like fucking barn swallows fucking.