Sunday, October 23, 2016


Dead Snakes closed back on June 27, 2016. 

Hopefully in the near future Dead Snakes will return.  Perhaps we are not dead, but just hibernating… 

Dead Snakes will remain with the archives open.  Please comment on the poems, photos, and art…  Their creators still visit the site and love to hear from you and your opinions.

I also closed UFO Gigolo and Calvary CrossFeel free to visit them and the archives.

And perhaps UFO Gigolo is orbiting Mars and will return…  And I know my Lord will forgive me for closing Calvary Cross, for only He knows the full story.

I’m still on Twitter as papapoet.

Take care my friends,

Monday, June 27, 2016

Dead Snakes is Dead

Dead Snakes is Dead

Thank you to all the poets and artists and photographers for making Dead Snakes so successful!  It is with great sadness we're closing her down.  Please send your poems that you have emailed in to another poetry site.  There are many great poetry sites out there.

Keep writing and Mega Cheers!!!

Stephen Jarrell Williams

James Diaz- Three Poems & Photo

The best thing about us

This carry on racket
I'll go 
where everyone else goes
I'll be in 
after the light
hollows under  
& you'll know it
when you see it

how more than fist 
and elbow scars
carry us across
the interstate
an absolute miracle 
to still be
alive right now

fucking world
won't go 
according to plan

need different maps
to draw the line
over a pulse so ill kept
so inside of you right now
that the outer skin blossoms like a name
you've kept hid
now stealing into the sun

don't think twice
it's not alright

but we know how to live off of very little
how to bleed without a cut
how to track & trace the things gone missing
shove them into our mouths 
full fisted & weeping

so much of the soul is carry-on luggage
what matters most will not fit
three punches in 
& your body crumbles
a voice from nowhere telling you to “just breathe”

it's been called the best thing about us
not knowing who we are.

Human Stuff

Nothing I hate more 
than having to tell you
change something essential in us
where the light goes
when it's not in your eyes
I have no fucking idea

how many little deaths you'll encounter
before you find the real one

bounced checks are what my mother left me

when it's raining I forget the words for what I've left behind

I hope this finds you unwell
and knowing a great many things you didn't know then

when we loved with knives
and broken curfews
and god is what you called a cab with a busted headlight
drove us home anyway

as it turned out we had no home
dashed from the fare there on the corner
of nowhere at all

I don't forgive you
this isn't a forgiveness poem
it's a “can I borrow 20 dollars poem”
a love song without the love & without the singing

there is fire in me too
you thought my fields didn't know dark days
I came from nothing but dark days

you were always luckier with the light than I was 

you were a half inch taller than I knew what to do with

I was a bad name and I did not know how long it takes to hear yourself when called

it wasn't always shit
just more than we could handle

“human stuff”
my father would say.

The man at the 7-11, leaning in

He said, silence
put yourself in silence
he said, walk it off
until the tail lights deep blue
clings to your leaving 
& every day is more or less
devastation in waiting

until you pull two hearts from your mouth
instead of only one
and you laugh, how life still goes on
after you have forgotten all of the names 
attached to places
you'll never return to 
in one piece

He said, silence
put yourself into yourself
and hold on 
for dear light
is not long in this place

is already leaving without you.

Bio: James Diaz lives in New York. He edits Anti-Heroin Chic and has a few poems here and there like HIV Here & Now, Ink Sweat & Tears and Indiana Voice Journal. 

Paul Tristram- Three Poems

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.
Buy his books ‘Scribblings Of A Madman’ (Lit Fest Press)

‘Poetry From The Nearest Barstool’ at

And a split poetry book ‘The Raven And The Vagabond Heart’ with Bethany W Pope

You can also read his poems and stories here!

Struggling With Alcoholism With You

The day is different now.
It’s just not funny anymore.
Rhythm and pitch have changed
and that crazy desperation is gone.
You spoilt my outlaw fun
with smiles and gentle caring.
Unclouded my messed up head
and I have never felt so ill before.

© Paul Tristram 2016

The Knife Grinder

“Sarge, we have a Mr. Joe Pickering
down at the front desk
and he claims that he wishes to become
a future witness in the identification
of our very own Jack The Ripper.”

“What’s that…is he clairvoyant,
nuts or is this a complete wind-up?”

“Well Sir, he says he’s the Knife Grinder
over on Petticoat Lane…”

“Oh, it just gets better and better!”

“…he says for 2 bob a week
he’ll keep his eyes peeled,
swears he knows the door number,
street name and face of every knife
he serves on his patch…
it’s only 2 bob sir,
I thought it was worth a shot?”

“I thought you were pulling my pisser
there for a minute, young Hawkins.
Send him up and I’ll have a quick word
with this clever little swine!”

© Paul Tristram 2015

That’s Not A Temper? ... This Is A Fucking Temper!

It was like a bomb going off, apparently.
A small greasy spoon in a side street
just off the main drag,
packed to the brim with 11am shoppers.
They were smack bang in the middle
when he didn’t so much arise but erupted,
growing sasquatch size in seconds.
The unbelievable noise that came out
of his bellowing mouth was horrifying.
Like a terrified, hunted horse
sliding through mud into barbed wire.
The unsuspecting audience
flew, fell and stumbled out of their seats
causing a rippling, domino effect around them.
He had her by the throat with such force
and concentration that his own face looked burnt.
In the ensuing confusion and cuffuddle
no one called the police until later.
He was set upon killing her,
murder in his demented eyes
and an evil sharks snarl livid beneath them.
No one but OAP’s and mothers with babies
around them… helpless and awful and agony.
It was the manager who saved her,
he come running from out the back
and panned him good and proper
twice over the bonce with a skillet.
Damned near caved his head in completely,
he died in hospital a few days later,
the poor woman is still sectioned up on F-Ward.
There’s no moral to this here story,
it’s just a little snapshot, if you will,
from the ordinary, everyday streets of Great Britain.

© Paul Tristram 2016

Damian Rucci- Two Poems


I’ve been trying to find the muse
in the forests on Maple Place
in the sea-foam of the Bayshore waves
or in jet-streamed blue skies
the only time I catch a glimpse
of that bitch is through
the orange prescription bottles
that paints these Jersey towns
in amber apathy
I drink with the winos on Broadway—
the old poets who have never written a word
who cast their lines and drink their drinks
waiting for dinner and for
the world to burn


I still have the fifty tickets
in a rubber-band
in the box beside my bed.
They’re from our last
I haven’t had the balls
to look at it yet
but I know they’re there.
I always wonder if I
lift the cardboard lid
will the harmonies we echoed
paint the room in teenage angst?
Will I hear the drunken cheers
of the bar crowds in North Centerville?
Will the vibrations of half stack
amplifiers make earthquakes beneath my feet?
Will my mouth be consumed with the
bitter taste of a day-late-a-buck-short ?
I spark a cigarette,
open the damn thing and wince.
Fifty tickets in a rubber-band.
An old flannel torn at the elbow.
Wooden shards of a smashed
acoustic guitar.
A broken pick.
I take the box and throw
it in the trash.

Damian Rucci is a writer and poet from New Jersey whose work has appeared in the Lehigh Valley Vanguard, Five 2 One Magazine,Yellow Chair Review, Beatdom, Eunoia Review and other journals. He is the author of the chapbook A Symphony of Crows and the host of the reading series Poetry in the Port.

Ananya S. Guha- A Poem

Sky Blues

don't you know
tiredness escapes
when there is no want
the rainbow pierces sky 
like a haunt, with the rain 
fiddling through, looking 
up I exclaim enough is enough. 

Ananya S Guha
Shillong, INDIA.

Ayaz Daryl Nielsen- Three Poems

grandfather’s stetson
rests upon the closet shelf
a firm presence

grandfather’s farm
early morning, late evening
do crickets sleep?

space rock
useful as
a remote rest stop
light years of fecal waste-matter
becoming life-forms upon a place now known as earth

ayaz daryl nielsen, ex-roughneck (as on oil rigs) and hospice nurse, is editor of bear creek haiku (27+ years/135+ issues), homes for his poems include Lilliput Review, SCIFAIKUEST, Dead Snakes, Shamrock, Kind of a Hurricane, and! online at: bear creek haiku  poetry, poems and info

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Gene McCormick- Poem & Art

Venetian Blinds

Flimsy metal Venetian blind strips
can be grabbed and pulled down,
or apart, to see outside without using
the drawstring to properly open the blinds,
rash action not possible when they are                 
made of sturdy wooden slats.

Oak-stained wooden slats added panache
to Frank Capra’s luxury cottage suite
in Napa Valley where the writer-producer-director,
an Academy Award-winner when
many movies were black and white,
locked himself in seclusion to finish
the script for It’s A Wonderful Life.

Late afternoon California sun through
the open-slatted Venetian blinds in the
resort cottage creates a noir pattern
of black and white strips along the floor,
bending up the side wall
in the nook area at the rear
of the resort cottage.
Not a grid; parallel lines.

A person could spend hours opening
and closing the Venetian blinds
just to hear them clack.

Sturdy well-engineered and designed 
oak-stained Venetian blinds are made
of the finest materials and such repeated
use won’t damage them.

It’s A Wonderful Life was nominated for
five Academy Awards. It won one.

Brief Bio: Gene McCormick likes to look through
other people’s Venetian blinds.

Alan Catlin- Three Poems

Natural Selection

I don’t think
I was ever on an
actual date until
I was 25.
Even in high school
we did the natural
selection thing:
craft beers, home
grown and let nature
take its course.
Someone was always
the last one left but
they were rarely
left out completely.
It was all very basic,
maybe even crude
but it worked.
When someone
actually asked me out,
I didn’t know what
to do. It was kind
of a revelation;
“So this is what
dating is all about!”
I kind of liked it.
Even thought I’d try
it again some time.
Like when I was 40.

                                                1 Y

                                                He said
                                                he had a
                                                metal plate in
                                                his head
                                                of the V- Et- Kong
                                                and was damn
                                                proud of it
                                                Hated long
                                                haired Commie
                                                weirdos who beat
                                                the draft and went
                                                to places like
                                                college and didn't
                                                care who knew it!
                                                Thought I looked
                                                like one of those
                                                shifty types
                                                he didn't like
                                                I said I was
                                                one of those 1 Y
                                                crazies "A classic
                                                unstable personality"
                                                The Doctor had said
                                                Bad chemicals  I said
                                                They could go off
                                                any minute so don't
                                                mess with my head
                                                Which was Ok fine
                                                with him  He'd seen
                                                a lot of crazies
                                                during the war and
                                                he knew the terrible
                                                kinds of things
                                                they could do

                                                Self Portrait

                                                "You still look
                                                like a kid"
                                                He said
                                                "I've known you
                                                ten years and you
                                                haven't aged a day
                                                I ought to be
                                                ashamed of how
                                                much older I look
                                                while you just
                                                stay the same"
                                                I said
                                                "I'm the picture
                                                of Dorian Gray
                                                Inside I'm
                                                corroding  eaten
                                                up by whiskey
                                                and disease
                                                One of these days
                                                like Bowie in
                                                The Hunger you
                                                can watch me age
                                                a hundred years
                                                inside of five
                                                He laughed
                                                I guess he thought
                                                I was kidding

Donal Mahoney- Three Poems

A New Etiquette

"One stall for all" is
a new scenario for Wilbur.
Thanks to his wife, he knew

in the past the right thing to do
but now he doesn't know what
"one stall for all” calls for 

after he’s through:
Is it toilet seat up
or toilet seat down?

Daily Paper on the Lawn

An hour before dawn
the paper is out on the lawn
white in the moonlight 

a trumpet dozing after 
long night in a jazz bar 
tired from playing   

but willing to play
a last set for me
not knowing I read    

only sports and the obits 
two riffs in the paper
anyone can believe

A Trip to the City

He lives at the edge of a forest
and loves all the different trees. 
He comes to the city for food 
and basic necessities.
He hates the long drive,
the city even more.

On this trip he crosses 
the street to avoid a huddle
of homeless men gathered  
around parking meters.

Safe on the other side
he asks himself 
do I worry too much
about trees, too little about 
people too hungry 
too poor to hug them.

Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

Bradley Williams- A Cartoon

John Pursch- A Poem

John Pursch lives in Tucson, Arizona. Twice nominated for Best of the Net, his work has appeared in many literary journals. His first book, Intunesia, is available at Check out his experimental lit-rap video at He’s @johnpursch on Twitter and john.pursch on Facebook.

A Passing Tram

Even though the sound of a latchkey child fills the city with want, even though a drink of cold water quenches the need of an epiglottal stoplight, even though a busybody persists in the circumstantial release from bondage of many a chosen warrior; the appropriate may never escape the opprobrium of a broomstick, regardless of the efficacy of action taken freely, in purely spontaneous charity. Such is the often perplexing effect of the world’s balance of events in apparent randomness. Probably turns to certainty only in the wake of now. We may wonder why it must be so, why there cannot be another way, relief from wayward verbiage, conceptual couth, illegitimate onslaught, literality, bogus abstinence, vowels out of whack, formal fall from grace to gratitude to gravitational collapse. Finally, the door is closed, as if by accident, but actually by inevitability, and we are relieved, found by relief, maybe even in bas relief of the source of all that is, imprinted on each passing moment, each commitment of fact. A wayward wanderer straggles by, plunges into the evening heat, leaving us to struggle to our feet. Even so, the voices murmur on, passing through chambers of appointed rounds, dimming lights, emphatically living in counterpoint of prevailing silence.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Stefanie Bennett- A Poem

Stefanie Bennett has published several volumes of poetry & worked with Arts
Action for Peace. Of mixed ancestry [Italian/Irish/Paugussett-Shawnee] she
was born in North Queensland, Australia.
How to address the hollowness
That looks out
From an old friend’s eyes?
Much is demanded of the observer
- Far more than the one
Salvaging the desire.
Affiliations are catching. Just search
Your pockets; you’ll find
But – there’ll be no fire!
Most of us are in this state
Of rehabilitation, constantly
Meeting another’s danse macabre...
People of the earth – there is
A conspiracy to keep us
Leaning away from ourselves:
Believe in the universal petition. Learn
To look into a cripple’s eyes
And say... I know you!
(‘The Branch’ appears in “First Refuge” Poems
on Social Justice Anthology, Ginninderra Press)

Charles Rammelkamp- A Photo

                            "These feet were made for dancing!"

Ryan Hardgrove- A Poem

Answers out there!

and the rains
coming down
like nails on the street
and I’m reaching out
into it
the loud shards of blankness
cutting through the air
rushing to the earth
while somehow floating

hoping something out there
can save all this
save this
constant cycle
the fucking stream
so as not to
repeat every shit mistake
for eternity

but the answers
are never out there
they live someplace closer

they live one place only
deep within us
past all the deception
we are cursed to carry
past the poisonous ego
and the confusion
of self love
and self hate

to search
without first
seeking inward
is the first step
towards completely
deluding yourself