Icon(oclast)

by Timothy Bearly He is the grit in the otherwise well oiled machine. The monkey wrench— in the wooden gears of the loom—endeavoring to splinter the cogs. The in-​​vitro injection for the barren minds that cannot conceive. Impervious to indoctrination, he is the unabashed child that scoffs at the naked— less endowed—emperor, and gazes back in truculent defiance at the despotic preceptor who promulgates “thou shalt” or “thou shalt not”. Pouring salt upon the lionized oleaginous gastropods, he reveals that they are indeed organic, carbon based—not divine! Thus they—the charlatans and impostors— have him burned at the stake, drawn and quartered, and tar and feathered. However, … Continue reading Icon(oclast)

Shadows of Our Former Reflections

by Billy Harfosh We never signed up for thisBut this is what we haveCrossing paths In the shadows of our former reflectionsNow,I drink and when I drinkI laugh at the godsNow, You, full of yourself and your heated leather seatsAnd your shiny jewels And we used to shareThe shadows of our former reflections No one here to chronicleThis rare encounterNo one but your eyesAnd my eyesAnd now,I stare at youRemembering the shadows of our former reflections For thisAnd only thisI plead guilty Continue reading Shadows of Our Former Reflections

Brazil

by Tracy Blanchard He split you in two when he made love to you And then nailed you together again. He spoke his language to you And fed you his food, Kissing the belly where it lay. And when you were with him, You were no longer a foreigner But had a country, a nationality That was him.   Most nights found you Wandering down the dirt road In the Brazilian heat Wearing the crown of Perfumed flowers- “Lady of the night”- That he made for you.   In the middle of the circle of fighters You faced his wife, … Continue reading Brazil

Butter Sandwiches

by Jonathan Warren   The roads in the great state of the stars at night shine big and bright deep in the heart of lie straight and impossible watch for rattlesnake signs long fat rolls of cigarette smoke tumble with the trash and the crickets in the ditches next to no coffee after noon gas stations and unending one-way streets blow the stagnant heat that knocks you down on thorns nothing but god damn thorns instead of grass telling you to move on, the mothers out here watch suspicious televisions and air conditioners stay on the long uneven highways continue … Continue reading Butter Sandwiches

It’s Mine

by Lowell Jaeger   I survey boundaries, stake the markers, lay claim to this piece of ground.   I build walls.  A fortress, my corner of the hive. I lock the gate. Bolt the doors. Draw curtains tight.   It’s mine, I say.  It’s mine.   Blind worms burrow, heedless of limits I’ve scratched in the dirt.   Jays raid the orchards. Wind blows leaves and foreign trash from outside acres.   Blackflies and mosquitoes mock me. I swat and swat in vain.   That’s me, stringing barbed wire, hammering red-lettered signs. It’s mine, say the fenceposts. No trespassing. It’s … Continue reading It’s Mine

Mania

Mania by Ray Succre  The ceiling fan turns, a man speaks, cups clink and there’s a spill, the traffic spatters by out front, the bay shrieks in gulls and clicking crabs, this ugly plastic pen with all her parts, toilets flushing, sinks running, cars parking, doors closing, seats moved upon, stood from, sat down in, the wind on asphalt, the Earth under curbs, the sky above fuming cranes, the days.  By twenty-eight humans wiring across their lives, eating, I’m near all I can see and hear, a member of all this, my head in my hands in the acrid gasoline … Continue reading Mania

GRANTS 12/08/08

GETTYSBURG REVIEW CONFERENCE http://public.gettysburg.edu/academics/gettysburg_review/conference.html — Join a community of writers in a bucolic,convivial,and historic setting for a week in May. Small workshops (maximum of ten people each) will be led by award-winning writers who have dedicated their lives to the teaching of poetry and prose. Two partial scholarships available in each genre. ===== AWP WC&C SCHOLARSHIPS http://www.awpwriter.org/contests/wccscholarship.htm — $10 APPLICATION FEE Writers’ Conferences & Centers is conducting its annual competition to provide scholarships for emerging writers who wish to attend a writers’ conference, center, retreat, festival, or residency. The scholarships will be applied to fees to attend any of the … Continue reading GRANTS 12/08/08

Ponderings from Massanutten Ridge

Ponderings from Massanutten Ridge  by Sean Patrick Leary   When a man with peace in his heart is told by a man of violence that they will revisit their encounter and one will need to take the life of the other, is it right for the peaceful man to dampen his soul with the study of violent arts?  When a nightmare filmstrip plays on a loop inside a man’s head and the broken volume control is set to amplify and echo: pain, agony, frustration, and anger, how can he look out at those with him and project Love?  How can … Continue reading Ponderings from Massanutten Ridge