Duck Soup

by Robert Lang There is no sadness in the city where movies are our lives: Duck Soup. Beauty concealed with yelling and gold streets.   We’re skipping our feet down the golden pavement, and we swing our arms with outsiders to the station, and our jolly outlook mirrored as police beam back, and his honest eyes lie behind his safety rifle.   We bask in the warm hostility of the A train speedily reaching West 4th, but there is no sadness in the city where movies are our lives.   Minstrels sift through radiant crowds, each pair of eyes fleeting … Continue reading Duck Soup

Deep Fried

by Steven C. Babin     Super fried chicken, where are you today? American fried like sweet apple pie. We all sit disguised behind the deep fried, National symbol . . . crispy, crunchy, mmmmmm! I was a pilgrim in this great nation. I was born in this land a foreigner, I was born in this land an outsider, The soil that is mine does not reflect, My birthright, my tender hearts deep regret, My country tis of thee, was not for me. Fry me in the fryer with all the rest; Make me forget, no more life to regret. … Continue reading Deep Fried

Mother’s of Suicides

by Anne Whitehouse The mothers of the suicides wear downcast   looks years later. The skin of their faces sag, the corners of their mouths are etched in expressions of permanent discontent, hollows of sadness form around their eyes.   Their sons took their lives at home, in early manhood. One hung himself in the garage; his sister found him. The other waited till the family left for a reunion he’d refused to attend, arranged himself in an armchair, and slit his wrists. It was a hot week, and the smell from the apartment alerted the neighbors.   Worse than … Continue reading Mother’s of Suicides

Brother-In-Law

by Tracy Blanchard   He would be a torturer Was one of the first thoughts I had Of my brother-in-law If he had been born in the right country At the right time The way he handled the dog Giving it a bath Standing over it like a member of the Gestapo As it squirmed and whined under his roughness His entitlement to inflict suffering on everything around him. Even on his nephew, Whom he beat when he was left alone with him. This caused fights between him and my husband, Who both grew up in a house of shrieks … Continue reading Brother-In-Law

The Suicide

by Tracy Blanchard   He met her on her birthday When she turned 26 and Was loud and beautiful In leather pants and tennis socks. They danced all night and he gave her The cowboy hat his mother bought For his senior prom, Austin Texas, 1969. It suited her. She had a deep shining diamond core that Cut his heart. At 40, he thought he was silly to fall in love, But fell in love anyway.   He bounded bright and hopeful up her stairs And knocked on her door, Fistful of lilies trembling with excitement: This new love. She … Continue reading The Suicide

It’s Me

by Tracy Blanchard   I am not your girlfriend The young girl whose body you were first To open In that way That all female bodies will open Eventually Some sooner than others. My body was opened by another A long time ago And then prised open more and more By many other others. Sometimes I loved them. Sometimes I didn’t. Sometimes they loved me. Sometimes they didn’t. It’s a long history Complicated and even if I tried I could never tell you the truth, Neither the humiliations Nor the acts of nobility. I know I will want to show … Continue reading It’s Me