Monday, March 28, 2011

Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal- 3 Poems


I see spiders all the time.
We are all spiders.
We got it on in Noah’s Ark
and multiplied in numbers.
We left great numbers
in Australia and Mexico.
We wanted to learn to
speak English and Spanish.
We did not care for other
languages, but we learned
to swear in every language.
We crawl everywhere
and spin webs. We eat flies
for the protein. We do not
like to eat them when they
are still alive. We’re not pigs.


I have a beautiful mind,
just like the movie,
a beautiful mind.

I am God’s child.
I was bathed in the blood
of Jesus Christ
to protect myself from
the witchcraft of warlocks.

I do not take medication
from the beady eyed
doctor. If anybody needs
medicine, it’s him.

I can read, write, do math.
I have all my faculties
intact. You could test me.
Pencil pushers and computer
wizards can’t prove that
I am a mental case.

I have a beautiful mind.
Don’t you think so?
Have a good day and
tell your friends about me.


I see officers
in monkey suits
shooting at me
with banana guns.

I hear voices that
want to insert
madness into
my mind forever.

They command me to
cut myself and
swallow coins, pins,
and toothbrushes.

The coins will make me
rich once they turn
into gold as
I slip into death.

The pins will bring me
back to life as
the pain will bring
a jolt to my heart.

The toothbrushes will
keep my teeth clean.
The bristles will
tickle me and make me

laugh. The voices will
get jealous and
stop talking their
nonsense all day long.

Luis works in the mental health field in Los Angeles, CA.
His chapbook, Songs For Oblivion, will be published by
Alternate Current Press.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Gary Beck- Three Poems


Wanting you
not in circumspect discretion,
but letting the explosive madness show,
until your knowing, testing,
then letting me take you,
erupting an insane hunger
swallowing you,
chaining you inside me.
a mocking laugh startles me,
stabs in midnight whispers.
I whimper awake,
your head beside me on the pillow,
little girl’s face crinkly with sleep.
I shake you.
I scream your name.
I shatter you awake.
I cry: ‘Do you love me?’
‘Whatta you crazy?’ you yell.
‘I gotta go ta work in the morning.
Lemme sleep.’
You mumble: ‘Dopey sonofabitch.’
Pat me.
Not knowing to caress or strangle,
I lie rigid, staring at the ceiling,
you asleep. I awake.
The alarm rings,
you stretch,
shut it off,
roll on me,
prison me beneath you,
run your tongue along my neck and under my chin.
Whisper: ‘My possessive little boy.’
Your hand takes root on me.
You weld us together.
You moan an ecstatic ghost cry of tremors,
then still.
We doze.
With you melting on me,
the long night fades.

Two Songs of Lust

Blondly erotic
with lost eyes
she chokes from too much wanting.
I feel some pity,
but mostly
would lay hands
upon her body.
She walks by,
a triangle between her thighs
cripples her.
She is soft,
like fingers holding rotten plums.
Her hips are agonized rotations
that summon hands
to roam her body
and I cannot resist.

Zoo Threat

The leopard prowls from wall to wall
cursing the bars with flame eyes,
climbs like housecat to its perch,
yawns elegantly,
full of dangerous grace,
stretches black-spot length,
watches the watchers,
speaks with jungle tongue:
I will get loose.
I will find your children in their lair.
I will pet them with my claws for throwing peanuts.
I will kiss them with my fangs for laughing.
I can wait.
One dark night…. I’ll be free.

Gary Beck has spent most of his adult life as a theater director and worked as an art dealer when he couldn't earn a living in the theater. He has also been a tennis pro, a ditch digger and a salvage diver. His chapbook 'Remembrance' was published by Origami Condom Press, 'The Conquest of Somalia' was published by Cervena Barva Press, 'The Dance of Hate' was published by Calliope Nerve Media, 'Material Questions' was published by Silkworms Ink, 'Dispossessed' was published by Medulla Press and 'Mutilated Girls is being published by Heavy Hands Ink. A collection of his poetry 'Days of Destruction' was published by Skive Press. Another collection 'Expectations' was published by Rogue Scholars press. His novel 'Dark Strains' will be published by Post Mortem Press. His original plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes and Sophocles have been produced Off Broadway and toured colleges and outdoor performance venues. His poetry has appeared in hundreds of literary magazines. He currently lives in New York City.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Colin James- A Poem


My son found the dragon’s teeth amongst
some rocks and fine white sand. He washed
them clean in a tidal pool. A Hermit crab
showed interest followed, scraping with its claw at
the tip then sucking the remnant root.
The boy threw sand disturbing the search
for scales as dense as death. He reclaimed
his find and climbed up on the rocks with me to sit.
We examined the harder than fire inner blackened.
Easily sold to tourists later, paying us much more
to guarantee their safe passage here and back.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Bryan Murphy- Two Poems

Bloody Student Cuts

A viewing platform:  
the world sees him
lotus-knee’d on the flat roof
of the prematurely aged
“New Building” of a tired university
raised beyond its means,
tasked beyond reason,
refused life support, just
to keep a bottom line black.

In front of him, see
a slim spire, city symbol,
split the mountain background,
aspire to higher matters, above constraint.
Built as a synagogue, abandoned
for fear of a fall to earth,
now the nation’s cinematographic mecca,
it hints that human genius may endure,
though all will pass.

A drabber edifice, way below,
lures the protestor’s starry eyes
to meaner aspirations, baser options,
a secure footing in a young man’s world
mediated by televisual rituals
and largesse for a mogul’s minions and mignotte.

Too late the lure. The image
sweeps the world in a different format:
a photograph, stamped even on Web front pages,
portrays the youth as Sisyphus unchained,
calling us to our consciences,
reminding us that even here,
in this good-life cage, or our own lands,
a voice can still be lifted
to penetrate clamour or silence
with “Enough is enough!”

He’s marked, that lad: bad attitude,
immortalised, brands him a future.
One saving pathway beckons from the dark:
to trade his looks and locks with Mammon,
shine them with Saviour’s shampoo, whatever,
then splatter them across the waves of air
to spare us worry over life’s tough choices.

Rule of the Road

It’s only a car - blood’ll wash off -
not even yours. Moment’s distraction,
pressed the wrong pedal;
he was probably drunk, too.
Pile out. Moving - still alive.
Gather up the broken body,
shove it on the back seat.
No arguments! Where’s the hospital?
Get there before police show up.
Leave him to do the forms – who else
would know his mother’s maiden name?
Hope he lives. Hell of a dent!
Still, it’s not as though it’s yours.

Bryan Murphy is a translator who lives and works in Turin, Italy. His own words have recently appeared in The View from Here, Transparent Words, The Camel Saloon, Snakeskin and Pygmy Giant.