Thursday, April 30, 2015

Andrew Darlington- A Poem


ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IS NO MATCH FOR NATURAL STUPIDITY!!!

Check out my website ‘EIGHT MILES HIGHER’ – ‘The Blogspot for People Who Don’t Like Blogspots’ – latest postings include ‘Brenda Lee: The Real Miss Dynamite’, ABC & Vice Versa music interviews, Kurt Vonnegut 1983 interview, Philip E High UK SF-pioneer interview & full history with rare archive art, ‘The Lost Worlds Of Arthur Conan Doyle: His SF, Fantasy & Horror’, Captain Beefheart Live 1980, Elvis: My Visit To Graceland & Sun Studios with photos, ‘Jeff Hawke: Titan Of The Spaceways’, and moremonthly updates at http://andrewdarlington.blogspot.com

 


A NAIL-BOMB IN
OLD COMPTON STREET
/OR HOW THEY CARRIED THE BAD NEWS
FROM KOSOVO TO MY FRONT ROOM
a wall of dead TV’s
await ignition,
stillborn with genocides,
behind retail store glass
then, to theft light-
fingered? lift smooth
from tempting lure of
crisp-new tabloid stash
hunched by cool dawn
just-delivered
newsagent grille?
but no, I walk on,
those laser-guided lies
will target me
later today
anyway
 
 

Victoria Mineo- A Poem


MOMENTS OF LUCIDITY

The realization that I was in over my head didn't hit me until I walked into the room, and then, all at once it did. It came at me in a wave of unbearable heat and the most pungent smell I have ever encountered.
I paused there in the doorway for a minute, trying to take it all in.
This poor cramped little room. Stuffed to the gills pictures, dressers, and chairs. In a feeble attempt at creating a "homey" feel. And all the while there in the middle of the room; dominating  everything else, stood the hospital bed. Surrounded by machines; some beeping, some buzzing, and one even breathing; all existing for one reason. To keep the tiny, almost memory of a woman, buried deep within, alive.
I approached the bed timidly. Which is odd being as I am not a timid person. But none the less my hands trembled and my brow sweat in anticipation, in fear, not of this frail thing before me, but of the fierce woman she once was. The madness she created.
Upon reaching the bed my fear turned to horror. There, floating in in a mask of weakness, were those eyes. Sharp and all knowing looking straight through me.  Into me, knowing my intentions. Knowing my plans to end it all, and begging please continue.
A nurse approached from behind me, causing me to jump, nearly knocking over a vital machine.
She placed her hand gently on my arm and with her most reassuring smile she said "She seems lost now, child, but she has her moments of lucidity, and in those I'm sure she remembers you."
"I'm sure she does." I replied as I leaned in, kissing a withered cheek. I felt her feeble flinch, and with a feeling of triumph I whisper softly, "I'll leave you with your moments." 

Heather Gelb- A Poem


The Toxic Poet
 
She sits at the worn table
Feeling Inverted,
Uncomfortable,
Tugging at threads of
Self-hate
That poke through
Simmering illusions.
 
She pushes down hard
On the pencil,
Praying
For all the hate
To leave her sick body,
To flow through lead
And pool on pure white
Into a jumble of words that
Transform into forgiveness,
And release the smell
Of a flowering field
Beyond right and wrong.
 
The smell of grace.
 
Relief
 
 
Brief Bio – I find that training for marathons is an ideal time for rearranging all those words in my mind into poetic thoughts and stories.
 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Paul Tristram- Three Poems


Long Face

“Hey!, why the long face?”
“Well, my brain’s been on the rack!”

© Paul Tristram 2010



The Bull’s Horns

She grabbed that Bull by the Horns
after being unanimously advised to
by, you know, all those other people
who had themselves never
actually had the courage to do it.
They watched though,
some through cringing fingers,
others smiling slyly
and the rest with their
‘I’m just following the crowd
and it’s better than watching TV’
look upon their idiot, soulless faces.
She was going good for awhile,
footsteps quick and assured,
balance impeccable and finely-tuned
to her anger and defiance.
But then a Fall, they always Fall,
and she arose just in time
yet somewhat dazed and clumsier,
brave as she had been.
The first ‘gore’ broke her pride and spirits,
and as she reached desperately
for help from the familiar crowd,
most merely averted their eyes down
apart from the true cowards
who returned her gaze with relished grinning.
The end came five minutes too late
and was a lot more appalling than expected
yet, a lot had been achieved this bloody day.
This seething ‘flock of nothings’
would now keep its name without question
and a giant statue would be erected in time.
Not to Her Fire, Fight and Honour
but as a warning to all those who dare
to be different and ‘better’ those
supposedly above
but who actually belong far below them.


© Paul Tristram 2015



Why, He’s A Cad And A Bounder And No Kind Of Sir, At All!

He has had his filthy hands up at least five different skirts
at this otherwise lovely and elegant croquet lawn party
and not just those of the single ladies present, either.
Spiked the Baroness’s teapot with magic mushroom juice,
sending her completely batty and unusually good humoured
they are unsure if she will ever be her miserable self again?
Shot the old Major’s horse in the backside with a pocket catapult
whilst the aforementioned retired soldier was astride the animal
partaking of a glass of port and munching merrily
upon a slice of gala pork pie with Branston pickle and mustard.
Sending him into an handlebar moustached tizzy,
un-scabbarding his sword and steaming off full charged
into the catering tent, swiping off the most fashionable hats
and yelling “Tallyho, Onward for Blighty!” in an angry war cry,
Good Gosh, someone could easily have been decapitated or worse.
He smokes that ‘hashish’ in cigarettes like a bloody foreigner,
drinks vodka and red bull (Of all things!) from half pint glasses
and the Blasphemous Buffoon had the cheek to turn up
his inebriated nose at Dame Margret the Thirds scrumptious crumpets
whilst insisting upon eating the crusts of all the cucumber sandwiches.
My blood is absolutely boiling, we need this Ruffian removed
from the premises before he kills or impregnates something.


© Paul Tristram 2015


Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight, this too may pass, yet.
 

You can read his poems and stories here! http://paultristram.blogspot.co.uk/

Gene McCormick- Poem and Art





The Movie House During A
Dark And Stormy Night
 
Rain drips from the neon edges of the movie house marquee, patters to the sidewalk and puddles, with the entrance to the box office locked for another ten minutes while the corn is being popped and the part-time high school senior candy concessions girl, always at least ten minutes late, lines up the rows of Hershey, Jujubes, Skittles, Bit ‘o Honey bars and more, refills the napkin holder while butter melts for the ‘corn and the cheese melts for the nachos and with its broad selections the candy counter as much as anything reminds that the theatre has come full circle from a vaudeville house when it first opened nearly a hundred years ago to flickering black-and-white silent then sound films, to Technicolor, 3-D, and Surround Sound all the while with heavy dark curtains sweeping across the stage to open and close each movie showing and now, put out of the film business by cookie-cutter modern 16-screen theatres offering the latest show, the old neighborhood movie house is an ornate, fading pop culture entertainment gilded relic back to offering live shows featuring retro revival rock ‘n’ rollers with paunches as big and hair as white as the smiling ticket taker who always, always says Enjoy the show as he tears the ticket in half and hands back the stub in case during the movie you want leave fantasyland to return to the lobby for more popcorn or candy but for now, finger rivulets of rain leach off from the puddles at the theatre entrance and meander to the thick glass entry doors as the buzz of marquee neon is over-ridden by thunder, the sign’s garish colors trumped by shards of lightning.
 
 
 Gene McCormick is a writer who paints without preference for either discipline.  His art is in private and commercial collections and he has illustrated a number of books.  He is the illustrator for Misfitmagazine.net.
 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Melanie Browne- A Poem


I am a Space Slut
(For Momma)

I fly into the future,
4/26/56,
I am a space slut,
I wear my skirts too high,
and just like in
Forbidden Planet,
they tell me it
is "indecent"
I have a robot
make me a new dress,
my robot is cool,
his name is
Robor,
not Robbie,
Robbie is a
juvenile name
for a robot,
I am a space slut,
I kiss all the Guys
on Planet B,C,D &E,
I'm loose I tell ya,
I swim in loose
lagoons,
I drink fancy drinks
that Robor makes me,
I have nightmares
about monsters
and run crying to
my daddy,
I am a space slut,
I make the
astronauts cry,
the new moons
and the stars
cannot destroy me,
I am invincible



Denny E. Marshall- Art







                                                         










Art #1  Dancing With Words
Art #2  Man By Window With Fan
Art #3  Rolling Emotion Stairs


Victor Henry- Three Poems


NEON DREAMS

Those intoxicated times when I drank
All day and into the night chasing demons.
Living on overworked dreams and debauched deceptions
At NEON DREAMS, a hole in the wall dive
On desperation row, a sanctuary for vagabonds and vagrants.

I was the last drop in a bottle of stale beer,
The last shot of Jack Daniels straight up,
The last bottle of Thunderbird on the shelf.
Just another destitute drunk looking for answers,
Tossed into the Dipsy Dumpster of dashed hopes,

Passed out like a down-and-out wino
In an abandoned alley,

the last dead demon swallowed alive.



WITHOUT FEAR OR RIDICULE

He’d been fucked over, deceived, and betrayed.
One moment it was Ying, the next Yang.
The next one after that, Niagara Falls in a barrel.
Finally, he was standing on top of Mount Everest.
But, he didn’t know down from up or up from down.
Or sideways from the sidewalk either.
His life was a clusterfuck, all disorder and disarray.
He had nowhere to go, no friends, no family.
But he didn’t care, because where he was going,
he was going without fear or ridicule.



MR. HAPPY

The instructor announced the night class would read Milton’s divorce tracts, Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, and Hemingway’s “Up in Michigan” during the semester.

Jeb, after a serious night of binge drinking with his friends, his head hazy and hollow, debated if he should drop the 101 Lit class, while his woody, horny and randy, temporarily held captive, sniffed out the talent.

Slightly familiar with Shakespeare and Hemingway in name only, but not Milton, Jeb hoped to discover how Hemingway wrote so he could advance in his job to something more respectable, something with more money. Working for $7 an hour wasn’t cutting it.

Handing out the course green sheet, the instructor encouraged his English 101 students to start working on their term paper as soon as possible, to go to the library to find reliable sources, to gather in discussion groups.

Because his loins were something he knew he could always invest in, Jeb decided to reinvent himself, feign a false front, adapt the persona of an ideal student. As he slowly piled out of class, pretty young nubile woman after pretty young nubile woman exited before him. His textbook, now his Achilles shield, concealed his aroused stiffy. In the heat of the moment, it could smell conquest.

Once again, at the urging of Mr. Happy, he’d enrolled as an aspiring student, an archetypical voyeur to his own bestial and brutish ways, in a class he would never drop out of, or, for that matter, receive a grade in.


Victor Henry is a Dead Snakes contributor, published in various small press magazines, anthologies, and e-zines.
 

Ramona Thompson- Two Poems


Snake Egg

I'm not your child
Not your baby
No mouthpiece
I can speak
And think for myself
May not always act like it
But I am
Full ass grown
A 100 percent woman
Don't need no second mama
Full of drama
Tryin' to raise me

I've made my mistakes
Sure I'll make plenty more
But it's not your place
To watch my every move
Tell me how
To live my life
I'm no little girl
No flesh and blood of yours
So why should it matter?

Just back off
Stay away
Far enough away
To keep intact
These thin bands of our friendship
Coming fast
To the breaking point
Cause you just can't seem
To mind your own
Lost in your plans
Not for your life
But mine

It's a cold world
It's a cruel world
I know all too well
And I don't give
Not a damn
Cause I know I can take it
With or without you
Ms Overprotective
I'll be just fine
One way or another
Leaving this nest
This prison
To prove
Once and for all, honey
I'm no helpless egg
No dependent snake egg
And I never will be
So bye bye

2015 Ramona Thompson



My Black Mamba Mama

Better beware
Her fangs are sharp
Razor points
Her poison deadly
Venomous when it comes to her baby
I learned the hard way
How she loves to crush
Make lifeless
The life's blood of her very own

She crawls
She sneaks
Creeps and lies
Whatever it takes
To get her wicked way
To make an unwilling soul stay
At her side
To attend
Her every second and minute need
She wraps around
And she won't let go
Till the very last breath

She needs way too much attention
Can't make it on her own
So she slitters
Charming, lying
Until one taste that forbidden fruit
Pays her price of a lost paradise
Forfeits their very soul
Just to please her
Just to feel her love
The most dangerous of all harm

She's cool
To the point of freezing
Cold blooded
Nothing in her of a true mother
Only a false liar
Crying avon coated tears
Pleading the case she does not have
Working her way to destroying

The very life from her own body
She gave

Because she hates her own self so very much
In vile disagreement
Her mission clear
To devour whole
The only one daughter
Who now loves her dear
No more
Now that the snake's skin has been shed
And the horrible truth
At last revealed

2015 Ramona Thompson


Ramona Thompson has been writing for more then 20 years. Her past publishing credits include Dead Snakes, Calvary Cross, This Ain't No Rodeo, Howl, and many more.

Fans/readers may find her on facebook or her e-mail reddstar111@gmail.com


Donal Mahoney- A Poem


The Shish Kebab Genocide

The Germans made certain history
would know what they did when
they stacked the Jews in camps 
before putting them in gas chambers.

Not so with the Ottoman Turks 
who slaughtered Armenians
in 1915 and for years thereafter.
More than a million Armenians died.

Today their kin live like Jews
in diaspora the world over.
Had the Turks taken time to chunk 
Armenian corpses and put them

on skewers held over a fire
struck for a festive dinner, 
the world would know today
the Ottoman feast was a holocaust

raging hot as the German slaughter
that claimed six million Jews. 
Today no pope would have to call it 
genocide when others waffle and won’t.

 
Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri. 

Tim Gardiner- haiku/senryu


PRAYER FLAGS ALONG THE PASS


The first three haiku/senryu have been written in remembrance of those killed by the devastating earthquake of 25th April 2015 in Nepal. The last two poems are inspired by a friend’s photographs from a trek around the Annapurna circuit in the Himalaya.


many funeral pyres
ashes
quickly swept away


for the dying
rippling prayer flags
along an empty pass


women weep
by a fallen tower
the aftershock


no-one around
a pair of blue shoes
on monastery steps


trekkers retreat
wandering yaks
have the right of way


Bio:
Dr Tim Gardiner is an ecologist and poet. His haiku have been published in literary magazines including A Hundred Gourds, Blithe Spirit, Frogpond and Presence and the daily Japanese newspaper, Asahi Shimbun. His first collection of poetry 'Wilderness' is to be published by Brambleby Books. He has published many papers on natural history and several books including one about glow-worms.
 

Melanie Browne- Two Poems


Elaine

Elaine was my friend
during the eleventh grade,
when I was
desperate for friends
and too willing to settle,
she loved Duran Duran
had a picture of
Roger Taylor
over her bed,
her parents
were divorced
she was a bit of a
nerd but so was I,
she loved Star Trek
and Star Wars,
Elaine was also
putting me down
and I told myself
she was just being
"sarcastic," but everyone
seemed to be "sarcastic"
in those days,
their parents
were middle managers,
their kids doing Heroin,
I guess no one was
truly happy,
but they put on
a good show,
Elaine moved the
summer before
senior year,
I didn't really miss her,
she came by my house
to see if i wanted to go
to a midnight showing
of Rocky Horror Picture Show
but I had never heard of it,
had never heard of
Janet or Brad,
or Meatloaf,
I told her I was tired,
had a bit of a cold,
and I sneezed to make
it true



Watching "Less Than Zero" with Closed Captions

I turned
the closed caption
on my television
to see if it would help
my autistic son learn to read.
while he was at school
I watched “less than zero”
a show where Robert Downey Jr is
a drug addict and turns to male
prostitution to pay back his debt,
Closed caption is strange,
for example,
laughing is sometimes
called “collective chatter,”
pop music is “rock music”
while classical
is merely “music”
but there are no sounds
when people are making love,
you only get
“indistinct sounds”
there is no
“ooh, ahh, give it to me good,”
or maybe there is
but not in this movie,
also, when Julian
is withdrawing
from the heroin
there is no
sounds for when
he is throwing up
there is no
“ bleeeeech,”
or “uhuuhuuuhu”
but I have noticed
that now
when I am out in
public I still see
the captions,
I see “idiots chattering,”
and “collective nonsense,”
so I think

it may be working

Monday, April 27, 2015

Arif Ahmad- A Poem



Your average Muslim Joe and Mary


Eradicated en masse by the Muslim fundamentalists for not being Muslim enough and siding with the West

Tried unilaterally in the media, embarrassed, condemned, regarded with suspicion, frisked at the airports, many having lost their lives and checked off as collateral damage by the warring West

Often misunderstood and taken out of context

Never for a conflict, we like it quiet and out of limelight

Not expecting anyone to bail us out or elevate our status

Some fault for all this surely lies with us

We are your average Muslim Joe and Mary, the single largest casualty, the silent tragedy of this war on terror

And it is for us to find a way out of this rut

To become a world-class scientist, a politician, an artist, an entrepreneur, a philosopher

Excel at living and never say never


Stefanie Bennett- Three Poems


 
FOLLOWING THE BALLAD ‘GORBANEVSKAYA’
1974 ..........................   
 
 
Imprisonment is never sweet, Natalya...
In or out of the garbage pail.
 
And –, clutter’s affluence finds its keeper
Chisel blue; solid as an amputee’s outlook;
 
Wholesome –: the ensnarement drawn
On the first official day of spring.
 
 
                          -O-
 
 
Shalom –: you’ve run that race of numbers
Fleeced from the capitulated crypt.
 
Now, the agent promises a secured apartment;
Hoar-frost at your beck and call
 
To illustrate those wolverine stuttered lines
Placed upon the page; digital –
 
 
                        -O-
 
 
A mummy’s tomb. Grappling in the dour details
As must be your custom,
 
Leaving party schisms in rags – you’ve re-altered
The thaw. Ah!
 
Peeking through sanity’s lattice, comes
The chuckling, “... Balance yourselves.”
 
 
                     -O-
 
 
We try! Tenacity is not our forum. You pay
For this. You pay...
 
 
 
 
NIET!!!  NO.        
 
 
No –, we don’t play
Spin-the-bottle
Any more.
 
Instead we watch
The day
Explode
 
Its chalice
Of electrodes
Rippling
 
The caustic air, and
A canal
That won’t
 
Stop weeping.
 
 
 
MAZE    
 
 
Things happen, even
The expected.
A blade
That serves...
A voice
That cries
 
“Who am I...”
  
 
 
Stefanie Bennett has published several volumes of poetry and had poems appear with
Mad Swirl, The Camel Saloon, Illya’s Honey, Jelly Fish Whispers, Shot Glass Journal,
Boston Poetry Magazine and others. She has acted as a publishing editor and worked
with Arts Action for Peace. Of mixed ancestry [Italian/Irish/Paugussett-Shawnee] she
was born in North Queensland, Australia, in 1945.
 
 

Richard Schnap- Three Poems


MAIN STREET

On a grey sidewalk
Lie homeless sleepers
Scattered beneath
The blanket of the wind

While in between them
Glide lines of robots
Each one as similar
As the one before

And both of them seem
Unaware of the other
As if they inhabit
Two separate worlds

Where one dreams only
Of mirrors of themselves
While the other one dreams
Of nothing at all


ACROSS THE ABYSS

In a cheap little room
Lit by a bare bulb
A man at a window
Stared out at the night

To see through the darkness
Another like him
Framed by a light
As naked as his own

And he wondered if he
Knew the same burdens
Felt the same sorrows
Held the same doubts

Or if he was only
Another stranger
Whose name and story
He would never know


PILGRIMAGE

I see long lines of men
That all seem alike
Following each other
In a thick grey fog

On a shrouded highway
They barely can see
That guides them toward
A vague destination

And each puts his faith
On the one before him
While the one right behind
Holds a similar belief

That someday he’ll reach
The end of his journey
That started in shadow
But might lead to the same

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Janne Karlsson- Cartoon





"Janne Karlsson is an artist from Sweden. His books are available at amazon and Epic Rites Press. His favorite drink is J├Ągermeister. He lives in a shitty apartment with his son. His poorly updated website is www.svenskapache.se. You can reach him at svenskapache at gmail dot com"

Michael Ceraolo- Two Poems


Bring It On Home to Me

Our Terran forebears called our star
Kepler 186
                  (because
only their sun could be called The Sun;
we will do our best to avoid
such mistakes in naming),
                                       and,
                                              as of
the time of the Calamitous Changes,
called our home planet Kepler 186f

[Note:
           Kepler was a telescope
launched early in the third millennium,
one that greatly aided our ancestors
in discovering distant stars near and far
that might have had habitable planet
in orbit around them,
                                and
also aided our ancestors
in discovering such planets,
                                          so
they provided the crucial first step
on the journey to us,
                                a fact
we will never forget,
                             nor forget to commemorate
We have no record from the time saying
whether or not Kepler was alive at the time,
                                                                or,
whether the telescopes of that time
were alive at any time]

We don't know if any data devices
remain back on Terra,
                                 or
on any other body,
                             or
if any creatures who retain data
remain anywhere either
(we remain hopeful of receiving
communications from others),
                                             so
here are some facts about our planet,
starting with how it got its name:

                                                  though
there was nothing inherently wrong
about the names given our star and planet
by our Terran ancestors,
it wasn't quite right for us;
                                       we,
in the tradition of creatures everywhere,
prefer our own names for things
                                                 So
as an homage to the Terrans
we named our star Voltairine
after Voltairine de Cleyre,
a late-second-millenium
political philosopher,
                               and
named our planet Warren
after Josiah Warren,
an earlier late-second-millenium
Renaissance individual

It takes one hundred thirty Terran days
to complete a Warren year;
                                         and
because Warren has the requisite magnetic field
and is just far enough from Voltairine
not to be tidally locked,
                                    we also have days,
days of sixteen hours' duration
so that it takes one hundred ninety-five
Warren days to make a Warren year
(we knew ahead of time of the shorter day,
                                                              so
on the long journey here our ancestors
simulated the shorter day successfully,
                                                          and
by the time of our arrival here
we had evolved to incorporate
the new day into our circadian rhythm)

Voltairine's light was about one-third of that
reaching Terra from its sun,
                                         and
one might reasonably have thought
the fact that Warren was only about
one-third as far from Voltairine
as Terra was from its sun
would have produced a climate
similar to that of Terra,
                                  but
such a mathematical formula
didn't quite translate climate-wise


[an untitled poem penned by a pioneer poet
about the first sunset witnessed on Warren:

One planet's crepuscular light
is another planet's high noon
And the colors of a long slow setting
differ from those of an hour's setting,
differ in getting here quicker,
differ from those in different atmospheres,
differ from those refracted by different chemicals
                                                                          And
though we will need different words and images
to depict the picture properly,
we had to try to depict it indirectly
while working on creating the necessary new words]


Because Warren is about ten percent larger
and of a similar density as Earth,
we knew there would be increased gravity,
                                                              and
that that increased gravity couldn't quite
be simulated on the voyage here,
                                                 so
it was challenging for us at first,
but we adapted and overcame

And we set about
learning the natural history of Warren,
learning the vagaries of different climates and terrains,
learning how to set up the small societal organization
we considered a necessary evil,
                                               all while
learning the necessary things for the daily business of life
on our new home,
                           and 
creating a new species:
                                    Homo anti-imperii



Mobservation #11

The toughest thing to get used to
was to learn to disregard 
planetary averages
in favor of local variations,
just as it undoubtedly too
the first Earth settlers by surprise
when they faced the fact that
the planetary average temperature
of fifty-eight degrees Fahrenheit
existed nowhere on the planet
 

Denny E. Marshall- A Poem


60 M.P.H. Butterflies

The wind is gusting
Up to sixty miles an hour
Turning dead dry leaves
Into swarms…
Of flying brown butterflies
Dancing off some time ago
Swimming back to life
For a brief reincarnation


Jason Constantine Ford- Two Poems


Spellbound

A mind spellbound by eyes which flicker through the night

As rays of hope which bring the blind to sight.

A mind is sitting – fascinated by

This light which feeds the hearts of ones who try

To find a cure for blindness that contains

The seeds of pure addiction in a lie.

As light dispels the darkness that remains

In view, I see those eyes which never cry.

The light from eyes which rise above the ground,

Immerses me in deepest contemplation.

This light is reaching high as elevation

Of laws defined by power most profound.

My mind is waiting at the noble gates

For healing while the darkness quietly abates.



Jason Constantine Ford, “Spellbound”, “The Messenger” and “One Who is to Come” in The Cannon’s Mouth, Cannon Poets Quarterly http://www.cannonpoets.co.uk/11930.html ISSN 1745-6630, Issue No, 34, December 2009, pgs 14-15.



Searching for Meaning in the Darkness of Night

In the darkness of this night,
I see two images of me
which clash like weapons which strike
without any kind of warning.
As I see the image of me which
claims to be a conqueror of creatures,
a part of me turns away from this form
of pride while another image that is
barely recognizable calls out to me.


“Who am I? Where am I?”

These questions are recurring in my mind
until a dark mist settles over my vision
as I try to find meaning in my life
with eyes that can barely see this world
and where I could belong within it.



Jason Constantine Ford, “Searching for Meaning in the Darkness of Night” in Decanto Magazine / Anthology, Issue 55, December 2011, p49.

Keith Wesley Combs- A Poem


those things she does-.

she creates
paintings out of blood
urine and feces.
it doesn't matter where she gets it
she forms it into
a beautiful work of art.

she cries
while watching silent comedies.
in the middle
of the film she bursts
into tears
and she can never tell me
why.

she plays
gospel music
as she leads black magic rituals
in the candlelight
saying
it'll bring her closer to God.

yet
mostly she holds
tightly onto my emotions.
showing me things I've never seen
before
and probably never will again
once whatever we have together
inevitably falls apart.



Keith Wesley Combs is a union painter who likes to write poetry in his spare time. He likes to write about his life, life in general and all the crazy people he meets on his travels. His poetry has been published in Main Street Rag, Pearl, Carcinogenic Poetry, Record Magazine, Cokefish, Black Book Press, Struggle, Blue Collar Review, and many more with more to come.

Ramona Thompson- Two Poems


Bitch Viper
 
Think you're so bad ass
Little girl
Play acting
In the grown up world
Don't know the meaning of class
All you wanna do is stomp your foot
Act up in a rage
Show your ass
And the true fool you are
 
Low down
Snake in the grass
You're all bark
Got no real bite or life skills
You sell your body
You sell your soul
Just to please a man
What kinda example is that for your son?
 
I got your number
I know the real deal you
The monster
Under the mask
Baby girl you can't hide
You're low
So low
Crawling
Quit standing there
In mock outrage
Trying to sass
The truth is out at last
And now there's no going back
Not for either of us
 
Time to grow up
Back up off that attitude
Cause ain't nobody around here
Gonna take your trash talk anymore
We're done
And so are you
Spoiled fit throwing
Foot stomping
Hulk ragin'
This is the real world
And little girl you're gonna have to learn
Learn your place
As a woman in it
Before it's too late
And nobody wants you around anymore
 
2015 Ramona Thompson
 
 
 
The Dead Snake In My Milkshake
 
I don't know why
You're always so glum
Raining thunder on my parade
Whenever I'm happy
You get angry
Lost in a black rage
Trying to drag me
Ever deepr
Into your darkness
Just like a hungry beast
In a cave
My sadness is your food
 
My life would be
The sweetest desert
If not for you
Always there
Always on my ass
24/7
Pitching a fit
Causing a scene
Devoured by your own regrets
You seek always it seems
To make my life
One giant living Hell
With you cast the satanic queen
 
My dreams have become
A living nightmare
My successes
Sour in my mouth
Your demonic sun
Burns me to ashes
I was a rising Phoenix
Till you cut me off
At the wings
Never before felt so unloved
So betrayed and afraid
 
How can we stay friends?
When more and more
You make me feel
As if you are my worst enemy
Love for you
So rapidly fading
Starting to think
If I ever wanna be free
If I ever wanna be truly happy
In my life
I must cut the ties
And leave behind
No matter how much it hurts
The dead snake in my milkshake
 
2015 Ramona Thompson
 
 
 
Ramona Thompson has been writing for more then 20 years. Her past publishing credits include Dead Snakes, Calvary Cross, This Ain't No Rodeo, Howl, and many more.
 
Fans/readers may find her on facebook or her e-mail reddstar111@gmail.com 

Linda M. Crate- Two Poems


a warning

you taught me everything
i know of beauty,
and how not to become a
beast;
your desires were carnal and primal
animal like impulse
without sincerity or purple prose
you simply did not care
for my heart
simply took everything you wanted under
the guise of charm—
it was a warning i'm certain to not
become consumed by
the same hubris that devoured you to
always remember i have a heart, a
soul, a pulse;
all of which you left forgotten.



sated lust

true beauty
radiates
from within,
and it's something you
sorely lack;
you've got the charisma and charm
outward beauty galore
but somehow along
the lines you
lost your soul and traded it
so you could satiate
your lust
without guilt.

Phil Wood- Two Poems


Walk
 

The meaning of this twisting path
meanders in air, disconnected
from the womb of a mother tongue.

Across the roll of hills
the speaker's breath so hushed with mist
silence pools all solitude in peat.

In the descent of farewell song
a school of limestone rock breaking
the heathered mesh. Whales gulp air,

threads of lichen gilding their heads,
a keening gleam of sea. All glide
towards a single silent end.



Apple
 

Whilst Adam sleeps in dreams of apple pie, she rolls
pastry for a tempting treat, baking golden brown
in tropical heat. With time to bathe, unzips her skirt
and spies her lover dozing summer schemes.
An axe lies lazy by his knee, a glass
of cider by the apple tree, and bees
are humming hexagon themes. With prey
to please, she wears his cotton shirt, descends
the stair and loosens her buttons. A snake
uncoils, all sleek and smooth, an hour to tease. She runs
her hand across his shedding skin, unravels cares
with lips and sighs, to gift an eternity
of sin in taste of apple pie.




Phil Wood works in a statistics office. He enjoys working with numbers and words. He was born in Wales.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Paul Tristram- Three Poems


A Perfectly Captured Fragment Of Lost Love

Like the slightest feathers of aching and longing
dancing and trampolining together
inside a small, fragile bubble of memory,
settling ever so gently upon the impatient surface
of my tenacious and steadfast hand.
Your smile and red hair were here again this morning,
a fraction of a second before I properly awoke.


© Paul Tristram 2015



A View From The Bleak Side

She sits huddled in the cold, derelict shop door front
watching a family exit a posh restaurant across the road,
smile at each other as the older man of the group
rubs his fat belly with a satisfied and contented glow
to his extremely happy, rosy, carefree face.
Then she shifts her gaze to the right as they all join arms
and jaunt and swagger off merrily to her left,
she is not bitter just very desperate and life-beaten.
The smell of pies and pasties coming from the bakery
next door is literally killing her starving, clawing stomach
but it’s the aroma of fresh bread which sends tears
streaming down her dirty and exhausted face,
for she’s sure that’s what a proper home must smell like?
She’d move her pitch further up and away from the torture
except it’s lunchtime again (For the Normal People!)
and this is simply the best place to beg for mercy.
Two days ago, a kind old grey haired lady approached her
and gave her a pre-packaged chicken salad sandwich
and that is the last time that she’s actually eaten anything.
Using that memory once more as strength, she focuses,
frowns determinately and continues……………….to wait.


© Paul Tristram 2015



Wigwam Fuckwit

There were this old homeless couple
both ‘out there like Pluto’
and about as alcoholic as you can get
without actually dying from it, yet.
They lived in a patch of trees and gorse bushes
by the side of a railway just outside the city centre.
She slept in a rusty, beat-up, derelict car
and he in a tepee fashioned ingeniously
from nicked rowing oars from the nearby harbour
with a stolen stretch of diesel soaked tarpaulin,
from the back of a flat backed lorry.
Inevitably, one night they had a raging domestic
and she stormed off into the darkness
only to return when he was passed out and snoring.
To set fire to the material of his little abode,
the only thing saving him was her getting so excited
whilst participating in the pyromaniacal task
that she kept yelling “Wigwam Fuckwit!”
which eventually awoke him and saved his life.
I, for one, will never be falling asleep
in a fuel soaked cloth building after arguing
with my better-half after hearing this little story,
I suggest you heed my advice and do the very same.


© Paul Tristram 2015



Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight, this too may pass, yet.
 

You can read his poems and stories here! http://paultristram.blogspot.co.uk/

David S. Pointer- A Poem


Repetitive Punctuation Squads

Riding polluted waves of
                                    superior
attitudes, the Grammar Nazis
enforced rules sanitized by CIA,
approved by corrupt commerce
wanting definancalizied market
                                             safe
verse for a pre-planned market
collapse steering public opinion
away from political poetry and
unconventional thought not all
Christian-myth tradition based
and bubbling science-for-hire,
circling, red pen collegiality…
needing rules to be exactly the
same every time like old clich├ęs,
recurrently pushing a spiritual
death camp, by signed guard-
tower do-gooders on big grants

Adreyo Sen- A Poem


The Architect

I am but a writer.

You are my architect.

You ford my racing thoughts,
you build bridges between my ideas
and color my landscapes 
with stories about your day.

Your smile is my novel's sun.
It never goes away.

And at the end of a long evening,
your kiss brings Hope 
into all my worlds,
imagined
and real.
 
 

Alan Catlin- Three Poems


slum goddess

Maybe she
thought that
if she main-
lined enough
stuff dressed
like some kind
of resurrected
Warhol queen
and strutted her
stuff up & down
McDougal Street
she'd be anointed
the Official Slum
Goddess of the
Lower East Side
or maybe she'd
get so strung
out, so hyper
no one would
notice or care
what she did
until she dressed
up as some low
budget super girl
and did a swan
dive from the top
              floor of some
closed-for-the-
duration tenement
high rise to see
if the stash of
super balls sewn
into her garments
and bundled in
her cowl would
make her rebound
as high as she
felt, as high
as the moon.


flower children

The look had been
new

fashionable in the 60's

The Songs of Innocence
and Experience          

verses tattooed amid
the Wildflowers and
cosmic symbols

the yin and the yang
of their bodies

though,
now, after decades
of aging
and abuse,

the look was
burned out

heavily weighted
onto the experience
side

downcast
as sun
flowers weary

of time


She looked as if

" who can hear the teeth in the roses
gnash, forecasting winter? old woman
who carries heaven in one plain brown
bag and hell in the other." Jack Evans

an evil higher
Authority had
been playing all
her deep sueno
canciones in a key
of metaphysical
distress, time
signatures so far
over the line
and out there
her extremities
had begun to twitch
in anticipation
of the next series
of notes, you
could see that
she was trying
to hold her hands
out for a 21st
century version
of alms for the poor
but her body &
brain were so
out of synch, it
wouldn't happen
in a million
years, there seemed
no point trying
to aid & abet,
she had already
received her life
sentence & there
was no hope
for a last minute
reprieve.