One is Sorrow by Jim Zola

Service trucks rattle by
ladder topped with tools
on a mission to fix whatever is broken.
I catalog roadside trash,
empty bottles empty wrappers,
each a clue.
I’m wintering
or maybe I just like the term.
Counting the days – one, two, many.
When I get there
I’ll know.

My daughter thinks
dinosaurs passed pilgrims
in the hallway
of extinction.
She thinks I wax
the floors
with a rag of my life.

As kids, we tried to get lost
riding bikes into neighborhoods
beyond the boundaries
our mothers set. There was no

particular darkness then.
Just dogs yapping at our heels
as we pedaled like hell
towards the next block.

The body
belongs to no one. My life is orbed by death’s
dark moons. Ring tones turn ominous.
When I die, play gypsy music,
violin and cimbalom.

This morning
while merging onto Wendover Ave,
I watched a Cooper’s hawk
thunk to earth ungraceful
in the overgrown median
in pursuit of something I couldn’t see.

Later crows took over.
One is sorrow.
One foot stuck in a dead squirrel’s guts.

Jim Zola has worked in a warehouse, as a security guard, in a bookstore, as a teacher for Deaf children, as a toy designer for Fisher Price, and currently as a children’s librarian. Published in many journals through the years, his publications include a chapbook — The One Hundred Bones of Weather (Blue Pitcher Press) — and a full length poetry collection — What Glorious Possibilities (Aldrich Press). He currently lives in Greensboro, NC

Thoughts On Dying by Mikel K

His death makes me
vividly aware of
my own mortality.
Where do they bury
people who die
with no money.
It is the type of grave
that I will own.
He was a musician
and he fell on the stage.
It was to be his final
performance.
He left many behind
who loved him.
Play your harmonicas
and guitars frequently.
You never know
when you will blow
or strum your final note.

Mikel K - Copy
Mikel K is a poet and memoirist living in Atlanta, Ga. K was voted best Atlanta Poet three years in a row, by readers of Creative Loafing, Atlanta’s weekly newspaper. He has a BS in English with a minor in Journalism from Georgia State University. He drank his way out of Florida State University one class short of a business degree. You can buy a copy of Mikel K’s book of poetry, Please Allow Me To Introduce Myself, at http://www.pskisporch.com You can buy a Mikel K’s stunning memoir, The Delivery Guy, at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/ mikelkpoet

The Birth of Munch by Kyle Hemmings

It was a cancer sky and a stormy night.
Wind chimes jangled in deep tones then did not speak.
Frightened dark-tossed ravens dropped from the belly
of clouds because the sky was a trick mirror.
That is to say their identities were reversed,
stratosphere to ground soul, their little hearts
were the shape of a witch’s omen. A displaced Maribou stork,
hungry and bill-clattering, ousted Munch from its pocket.
The weight would only bring the both of them down.

The stork eventually died from suicidal tendencies
that stopped being migratory. After living feral
in a forest of need, making friends with the foxes
disguised as lemurs and the toads managing the monarchy
as rabid kings, Munch made friends with the rocks.
After all, they formed a pattern of stepping stones across brooks,
ponds, shallow bodies, etc. From then on, he developed
a fondness for anything hard. The man who took him in,
wingless and a beard full of night, kept der Junge alive
with the fried souls of furry creatures. As Munch aged,
like holes in a cheese, der Vater illuminated his nights
with gangly fingers and the trapped reflections in animal grease.

Then the surrogate father went blind. Then he fell
from the last window in the house. Munch felt love
and pain and all kinds of self-betrayals. In the city,
he acquired a job selling perfumes to loved-starved
ladies imprisoned in their own loneliness.
Many claimed they were from Munich, but Munch suspected
they loved Paris because in urban fairy tales every girl did.
Their favorite scents: fig, cupcake, Indica, tangerine, Pink Martini,
Tibetian Spice. Forest rain. Munch didn’t have the heart
to tell them the origin of that one.

Kyle Hemmings lives and works in New Jersey.  His latest collections of poetry/prose are Future Wars and Split Brain, both on Amazon Kindle. He loves 50s Sci-Fi movies,  manga comics, and pre-punk garage bands of the 60s.

To The Poet On The Stage by John Grey

Sorry but there’s only
so much bitterness and heartbreak
a man can take.
Especially when it’s not mine.

There’s nothing wrong with wailing and moaning.
It’s this tagging it as “art” that I have a problem with.
I get it. You’re in pain.
But so are half the people on the planet.
And so very few of them
ever get to bare their scars in public.

But here you are again,
up there on the podium,
in no doubt that others are keen to hear
from your pathetic life,
tearful inner child,
abomination of a family,
excruciating love affairs.

Whatever happened to
laugh and the worlds laughs with you?
To you, it’s now
cry and you attract a crowd.
Yes, your misery gets attention.
For the rest of us poor souls,
there’s nothing for it
but to weep into our own beer.
And they only serve coffee and soda here.

And then you have the nerve to say
that reading your poetry to others is therapy.
That would make your audience
the only psychoanalysts in town who pay their clients.

I admit that I’ve written to clear my head from time to time.
And I’ve felt the need to get the last hurt down on paper.
In times of old, they called that “hate mail.”
Unlike you, I don’t foist my miserable rage on anyone.
Not unless the trash barrel is a someone.

My problem is I came here for a good time.
Not that I’m complaining mind.
If I did, I’d be you.

John Gray Copy
John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, South Carolina Review, Gargoyle and Silkworm work upcoming in Big Muddy Review, Cape Rock and Spoon River Poetry Review.

 

The Dark Conscience by Martina Reisz Newberry

The dark conscience shimmies its way back to
your house with a vengeance. You’ll spend some quality
time, get re-aquainted. It brings news of
your children, the things they do not/will not/cannot
share. You learn of their hearts lacerated
again and again by the blades of whatever
you neglected. You learn of their fears which
are hot wires from fallen telephone poles, hiding
in wet grass – oh, your children with bare feet.
Rubber-soled shoes are the answer and where were you
to hand them out? No matter that you tried
to combine the skills of a cobbler and a chef,
the failure is all that counts.

Martina Reisz Newberry
​Newberry’s books are NEVER COMPLETELY AWAKE (Deerbrook Editions), TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME (due out in late 2017 from Unsolicited Press), WHERE IT GOES (Deerbrook Editions), LEARNING BY ROTE (Deerbrook Editions), RUNNING LIKE A WOMAN WITH HER HAIR ON FIRE (Red Hen Press), LIMA BEANS AND CITY CHICKEN: MEMORIES OF THE OPEN HEARTH (E.P. Dutton &Co) Her work has been anthologized and widely published in the U.S. and abroad. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Brian Newberry, a Media Creative.

A Ferocious Kiss Of Night-Vision by Mike Zone

She came at me with her mouth
and nothing bloomed nor glistened
but the trees in sun, dull in despair
at the indifference of it all
she injected searing lava into my veins
the arch of the back
the crash of the ivory tower
would’ve sailed ships
through the stormy sea of her name
marooned on remnant’s way
what an awful night
an awe inspiring evening
where two souls become one
through hips and hot springs
coursing through the ferocious wasteland
in reality
isn’t that the passion play?
sensuality, misery, ecstasy and mystery
the almond tree blooms
only to wither away
not by natural rot
implanted by the botany of desire
but a quick nick to the roots
poison tipped- ashes of tomorrow
cooling those river springs
the course still flows
putrid acrid scent
the worst part is…
who wouldn’t want to sail through that name again?
clinging to denial and pale hope
collecting fallen lashes
each one a crucifixion from uncanny amber eyes

mike-zone
Michael Zone is the author of Fellow Passengers: Pubic Transit Poetry, Meditations & Musings and Better than the Movies: 4 Screenplays. His work has been featured in Because Eileen, Dead Snakes, Horror Trash Sleaze, In Between Hangovers, Sick Lit Magazine, Three Line Poetry, Triadae Magazine and The Voices Project. He scrapes by in Grand Rapids, MI

Donna by Hanoch Guy

It’s  a  good  day
End of February, almost  winter end
sixty degrees.
My ashes in a green box.
The pastor’s Isaac sermon
is not wooden.
Almond blossom  woke him up

through the open window.

My daughters and  granddaughter  in white,
their friends in jeans.
Success with the caterer.
The  catered food is much better the

when my husband Peter  died.
I did order cheap.

My family strolls
Along my boulevard ‘s awakening trees.
They sold my scooter
And the climbing gear
But I’m already peak’s air

Hanoch Guy spent his childhood and youth in Israel surrounded by citrus orchards ,water melon fields and invading sand dunes. He is a bilingual poet in Hebrew and English,.
Hanoch is emeritus professor of Jewish and Hebrew literature  in Temple University
He has taught mentoring and poetry classes in the Musehouse center in Philly.
Hanoch has published poetry extensively the US,Israel and the UK in Genre,Poetry Newsletter, Tracks , the International Journal of Genocide studies Poetry Motel,Visions International,Voices Israel and several times in Poetica where he won an award
He has also won an award in the Mad Poets Society.