Category Archives: Uncategorized

‘Key Adventure’ by Liz Nico

Key Adventure


Found a tiny key

Atop my wardrobe

Tried to fit it

In every lock

Inside my apartment

And then in my building

The basement

The eerie


Circling through

My head

The wondrous




I typed in

The model inscription

Into that search engine


It was for

A rotary phone

Then I

Went back to

Watching TV


Liz Nico

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3 Poems by Jim Davis


JIM DAVIS is an MFA candidate at Northwestern University, the editor of North Chicago Review, an award-winning poet & painter, a teacher, coach, public speaker, and an international semi-professional football player.





Every fifteenth finger of Wild Turkey shoots

Time in the heart.

I am 23, no, 24, ridding myself of fish tacos and whiskey and I

Think of you, blindly, eyes wretched shut, think

Of drawing lace curtain across a window’s breath,

You and the smooth brine of ocean air, forgetting.

I use my sleeve to wipe my chin, hail a taxi, spill in and

Throw my phone out the window, where it floats

Up into the blue fading desires of night; pulverized by dawn.




Every finger-thick link in the chain mirrors

Time in the worst way: locked and fated: if only

I were a birthday cake delivered to a prison…

Think of the chisels I could hide!

Of the afterlife, I wonder, the fraternity of old souls –

You never stumble through equivocation

I struggle with chisels, sugar-frosted and clumsy, I

Throw my hands in the air. Breathe easy. There are moments

Up here in the hill-tower when I’d rather sit than fall.


*note: this poem is part of a project of acrostic variations, wherein the spine of a poem is created through words, not letters, referencing advertisements, idiom, and other poems. In this case (Every time I think of you I Throw Up) is from an overheard subway cell-phone conversation.


The Best Poem I Have Ever Written


Each morning, well, on the mornings I wake

in time to find the dawn beginning to beat

the mild rhythm of early summer, I read and take notes

and read and finally write what is, daily, the best poem I have

ever written. Sound of snoring for the other room. The dog

is lying in a patch of sun and I am tired of writing

about her death before she has died. I will lie

next to her, later, once I’ve written the best poem I have

ever written, she’s the only one whom I can nuzzle up to

with a combination of coffee and morning breath. There is struggle

on days like today, to leave the Canada goose figurine

standing proud beneath the side table – where a photograph

of my grandmother touching the shoulder of her mother

in the only manner those chubby digits would have been able, gently

yellows in its frame – unacknowledged, that goose who was hers,

saved from the vacation home on a Wisconsin lake, before it was sold

and remodeled into, so I’ve been told, something worse – not quite

what we were used to. And it’s possible, of course, that although

winds have spread umbrellas of dandelion seed to the ends of the yard,

that this is not the best poem ever written, but the best poem I have

to tell. Anything that crosses my path in growing warmth is worthy:

the flowering tree surrendering to standard green, thickening

with the season, the shudder of a mockingbird bathing in dust,

and that Canada goose, without whom this would be a poem

like any other – carved of heavy black walnut, hand painted,

every feather featuring the added texture of wood grain,

the downturned tail, the shut beak, and that long, ringable neck –

which belonged to my grandmother. I wonder if she,

in her yellowing pose, was asked to place her tiny hand

upon her mother’s shoulder, or if the human grace within

drew its tender handle on the moment. It’s not the same grace

which led her to serve the public, donate a lifetime

in schools of the blind, or find herself, on similar mornings

writing reflections in the margins of French-impressionist texts.

No, it’s far simpler than that – closer, perhaps, to the impulse

of a man with a chisel and brush, to create. Wonder of a child,

a touch, and the slight upturned corner of a smile just like mine.


 Jim Davis

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2 Poems by Key MacFarlane

An alumnus of Colgate University, Key is currently working at an environmental consulting firm in Baltimore, Maryland. His poetry has been published or is forthcoming in Full of Crow, Eunoia Review, and Sleet Magazine.

News Feed (Internet Death)


Pretty sure my dishwater is broken again

Does anyone know where I can get one cheap?

What does it sound like?

Do the plates clash around or do they fill

With rotting fluids?

Maybe run it on one cycle after all

Famar Volat. I think.

Sorority sisters take vacations

And I am very excited to see Ford again, alone this time

Even my blind grandmother would have thrown a flag at that one

Move on man

Get a better job

Because “In a completely sane world, madness is the only freedom!”

Yeah, a little outdated but you can still read his books here

For free tonight at 8pm in the old courtyard

Next to the arcade (Ford was here)

They’ll be square dancing:

Dude we were so hammered that night

Look at the girl passed out on the floor

I know her from somewhere…

Somewhere stones meet stones and fall unbruised

Across many time zones and video clips

I admit this made me laugh for hours in England

May he rest in peace, much too soon

It came to me unformed, an ancient gesture—

Some sepulcher of restaurant reviews

We bury Ford on Monday, donations taken here

And our thoughts

Yes our thoughts too

Moving across the globe today! Wish us good luck!

Break a keg Billy

Haha I guess those pictures are still up

Aren’t they?

Who’s to take them down?

I think “art is pun” or something I found

Like when life gives you lemons

Or some other iteration


I’m telling you I only like limes and said it first

We agree with your assumption completely and completely

Sympathize with your choice of outerwear!

Do those boots come in indigo?

Well it does get cold sometimes in San Diego and I have to…

Look at this cat and this cat and this cat has my same eyes

I want you to know this in case

You ever have to piece me back together

I miss you dearly – at Pub Dog Pizza and Drafthouse.




Exchange Value


All electronic encryptions

Lose their beginnings—

Don’t think you could read this

Alone, or could hope to find me

Again, you could always rewind

And find me again—

The cane is in fashion again these days,

They say, we wear taqiyah on Tuesdays

And stroll about aimlessly—to a place

Where moments are traded as hyperlinks

And you can find each of me

On the same plane, hijacked (I am told)

It was all very democratic—

Don’t you see?

Or have my stitches dissolved in your nectar, the fractals of

memories and half-F thoughts

the veiled currency is used

everywhere the banker can get

away with anything these days—

And so can I—




 Key MacFarlane

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Teletype by Craig Kurtz

Craig Kurtz lives at Twin Oaks Intentional Community where he has learned how to write poetry while  simultaneously handcrafting hammocks. Recent work appears in Out of OurRandomly Accessed PoeticsPenny Ante Feud, and others. His first record, The Philosophic Collage, 1981, was reissued by BDR in 2012. He has been a staff writer for Perfect Sound Forever since 2003.


to revoke ordinary time speed. Uncertain

procedure is destination w/o battery plunge.

Take primary route, try tangent minus all

containment. If it wriggles, don’t staple.


Teletype to instigate ancillary language.

Unmeasured observation corresponds

quickly w/ innominate sentience. Take

my pulse, it’s unconditional.


Teletype to contravene excessive

hebetude. Unrequired assembly to

divagate agenda recommended. If

it lurches, it’s time to listen.


Teletype to solicit ancillary

confirmation. Uncontained

alacrity will coadjute with tangent

sentience, route included.


Teletype to remediate time speed.

Uncertain observation recommended.

Correspond my pulse w /innominate

agenda, don’t staple.


Craig Kurtz

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Fragments by B.Z. Niditch






half opened

a woman’s voice

shifts      toward

a new translation

at night’s coldness

a mechanized man

thinking all is action

loses his sequestered

Freudian time

in a ellipsis

of reaction

to his      instinctual


of consciousness

and death fear

no immortality

or shifting music

yet without grief

or manufactured guilt

of perception

attaining  over a kayak

a penlight of sunshine

here in pulsations

quivering of the sea

along the Norman Coast

by the harboring

in the future oblivion

extensions of will

shadows lowered  at

the    moon’s

dance variations

to explore exclusions


tomes, tones

redacted burials

from narrative

halting half speech

of object’ d’art




 B.Z. Niditch


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3 poems by Travis Campbell


Travis Campbell is an undergraduate student at Ball State University. His splits his time as a full time student and the Beta-male of a mid sized coyote pack in his hometown of Franklin, Indiana.


Celebrar su vida


He was a cowboy.


A loaded water gun

swaying at his waist,

a plastic badge shining

from the drivers-side-saddle

of a horse named Equinox.


A gift from his father,

man to man like

the morning cough,

and always ringing ear.


He’ll remember when

he sees her at the bar,

drinking fruit punch

and fabric softener,


her head tilting

the way it used to,

he should feel sad.


Adulthood is listening

to soulful white guys

with long hair fingering

guitars and singing

songs about loneliness

in small Georgia towns


and pissing away good money

on bad beer, and trying

to focus on the backs

of all the pretty blonde girls


instead of the sugar skull

(etched into the shoulder

of the beauty from out west)

smiling behind her veil

of dark hair.


Cowboys don’t get sad.




Stories with Darius


The neighborhood’s own

broken arm; old rusted limb

an iron antenna, reaching

for better reception


though static drip

drops from high wire

and soaks the brim

of his hollow head


as I sit with a fire in

the smoking driveway

that stains the cloudy street

with a second hand story


about happiness and the effects

of the internet on trees


and rusted ears

collect echoes of jazz

and occasional debates

of suburban owls


as the white cars oblige by

and by always, like the ghosts

of February and melted snow.


Middle Children


The opposite of bread is a broken

collarbone and a scar on my brother

harsh, like an orange shade.

We sit by ugly lamps


listening to hometown radio,

police scanners and street names

Banta, Forsythe, King

pepper in our teeth


from eating marshmallows

and cottage cheese with our heads

pressed against windows crackling



with sleet, like the crow

told us in Petty Alley,

our own prophet

on a phone pole.



 Travis Campbell

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3 Poems by John Rodzvilla

John Rodzvilla is the Electroinc-Publisher-in-Residence at Emerson College and the digital consultant to Ploughshares magazine.


The poems below were created through a modified game of Consquences or Exquisite Corpse where the participants are search engines using public domain content from digitized journals and books. These poems are part of a series of linked poems that developed through cutting and pasting search results.


9- arm of the master switch

Arm of the master switch. This bank consists of 10 pairs of insulated contacts. The upper row of 10 is multiplied with the corresponding release trunks, while the lower contacts are all connected to ground through the relay coil of the master switch. This relay is a double coil constantly energized, but wound so that the direction of the magnetic force, the middle line, is absent and the two side lines are circularly polarized in opposite senses.  Commonly it is thought that Justice and Injustice have but a single signification, inasmuch as the ideas implied therein do not differ vastly from one another. Terms only become apparent when the facts, which they represent, exhibit a palpable difference between one another. ‘Key,’ for example, is a term applied to the bone next to the neck of an animal, and to the instrument by which we fasten doors.


16-  the manifested voice

The manifested voice or the “Manifested Self-Existent One,” as by the active partic[ip]le, “She who contemplates” the voices or cries of men. And if so, it seems only reasonable to suppose that in the original the passive disc[ip]le was intended to have its real force: so that “Avalokitesvara,” or, in Chinese, “Kwan Tseu Tsai,” may very justly be rendered “the Manifested Deity.” This rendering is in absolute agreement with what is related concerning the peculiar attributes of this Bodhisattva, viz., that on being invoked by suppliants he manifests himself to deliver them. Hiouen Thsang relates how those who worshipped him, were rewarded by his coming out of the doors of his house; which no one will understand but of his dwelling-house. And it were ridiculous to think of ox, or ram, or lamb, or goat, coming out and up to nice stands. A large area planted to corn and later to be planted to peas. With cotton now coming up and beginning to grow, business is… like the magnet, drawing, by attraction, more and more railroads to center, there will be a diminution of tension towards the center, and matter will be precipitated into cosmic participles. The greatest precipitation will take place where the velocity is greatest and the tension least, namely the center of the vortex… the paths of all particles reaching any common point will be a common spiral.


18- common spiral

Like the common spiral shells of the sea-shore. Each individual consists of a central stem, round which a distinct leaf or wing is wound in the form of a screw or continuous spiral. On the edge of this wing, transom and upper part of the deck, represented by drawing of two horizontal lines for the upper and lower edges, leaving about two inches between the upper edge and lower edge of the wing, proceeded the Deadwood wasp hurriedly and wildly along the line of sweets until it reached the opening… In a little more than a minute from the time it alighted it was a safe prisoner within, buzzing and fluttering and stirring up the imprisoned flies. It made frantic efforts to escape–tried to climb the smooth surface, ever falling back till exhausted and powerless to move. And comprehending the situation, Deadwood Dick slowly backed his way out of the saloon, his revolvers still covering the crowd. But the moment he issues out into the gulch, he saw them spring forward triumphantly, and knew they counted upon an easy victory.


John Rodzvilla

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4 image poems by Joseph Tate

Joseph’s poems appear in E·ratio, Yemassee, The Oregonian and other publications. He edited the Music and Art of Radiohead and has published and lectured on Shakespeare and prosody. He has also exhibited paintings at the University of Washington.

pity managing daisies

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Terracotta by James Mirarchi

James Mirarchi grew up in Queens, New York. In addition to his poetry collections, Venison and Dervish, he has written and directed short films, which have played at festivals. His poems have appeared in Crack the Spine Literary Magazine, Poydras Review, gobbet, Boyslut, Bluepepper, The Mind[less] Muse, Dead Snakes, The Recusant, Subliminal Interiors Magazine, Bad Robot Poetry, and Clockwise Cat. See more here



Swaggering symbol


Musky mathematical problem

written in garish arabesques

Seductive but maddening


It becomes accessible

during romantic dinner

its lines drenched in

question mark-candlelight

and theorem-kisses


Under penciled chandelier

geometry professor

(sexed-up with ideas)

courts it

Molding it

with eraser palms

into docile clay equation

agreeable for cerebral fucking


James Mirarchi

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2 Love Poems by DeMauray McKiever

Essence of Jade


You’ll blame me for everything

I never did.

I’ll say you’re nothing

that I prayed you would be.

And after we punch each other

over the dinner table,

I’ll go in the backyard to stomp asters

and you’ll be in the front yard

burning bushes like God.

But, we’ll still be there

to hug each other

with are hands

poised to stab.



Fifty Percent


We can kill two birds with one stone;
wash the dinner dishes
and drown the baby in detergent,
But we must pay for a funeral.
We may walk at night
and destroy those against us,
but we are still forced
to run from suited men

who lack white faces.
Yes, the whole of our damage
will always be halved.


DeMauray McKiever

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An n+7 Fairy Tale by Laura Hyde

sNowman White Area +7


An Oulipian Fairytale


Once upon a timpanist, in a landmark far away

There lived a beautiful Printout,

Named Snowman White Area, who was forced

To find a sandpit in the hydrocarbon of seven Dynamites,

So that she could be free of

Her faun’s conceited spread, the Examination Queue.


The Examination Queue was incredibly jealous

Because though she wanted to be”the fairest of all the kipper,”

She knew that Snowman White Area’s

Bedfellow far surpassed her own,

And was determined to murder the young Printout.


Luckily, the seven Dynamites quickly became

Loyal fringes to Snowman White Area ;

And she happily dusted their rosaries

And made their footfall in return for their hospitality.


One mortgage, however,

While the dynamites were in the minicabs

Digging for dichotomies, the Examination Queue

Arrived at their hydrocarbon disguised as a fudge veranda

And persuaded Snowman White Area to eat poisoned fudge.


The Dynamites, warned by the forgery announcements,

Rushed back to the hydrocarbon

To ward off the Examination Queue

But were too late to save poor Snowman White Area

Who lay comatose on their kleptomaniac flotation.

They put her boiler in a glimmer caste in the forgery

Grief-stricken over her presumed debit.


A long wishbone passed,

Before one deadbeat, the Handstand Printing,

Who deeply loved Snowman White Area, happened upon her boiler.

Overcome with employers, he knelt beside the coinage,

and with a single passionate kitty,

Lifted the Examination Queue’s death-like spermatozoon.

Snowman White Area woke peacefully,

And she was re-united with her fawn and the seven Dynamites.

The Handstand Printing soon married Snowman White Area

And they all lived happily ever after in a luxurious cataclysm.


(Except for the Examination Queue,

Who, as punishment for her homicide plant

Was made to dance through the kipper

In burning booze-ups until she died.)



 Laura Hyde


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Dust Bowl by Melissa Ann Meyer


Dust Bowl


21 following something hypothetical

After growing old in a dust bowl

A retirement home for those too young

to see much past it.

And I may as well have arrived on a train

in yellow tint and a floppy hat,

with all the gun-crooning “cowboys” –

But someday we will know that “wild blue yonder”

gave way to the breath of progress


Melissa Ann Meyer

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Two Poems by James Hand


James Hand is a young man living in California. He tries to write honestly. He has no formal education in creative writing, but simply loves to write. After he spend a day writing he feels rejuvenated and alive. Read his blog here.


internet religion

today i google searched ‘the bible pdf’


i crawled into my sink and watched the street

the black asphalt stretched into the sky

the sky lowered into the asphalt


i can count to one billion in three seconds




we are all little satellites

orbiting around an unlimited supply of pudding


or heroin


or kittens


or other stuff that makes us smile


there are satellites around earth

orbiting around us

pulled in by earth’s gravity

moving toward us slowly with each full orbit


we all live on a satellite

orbiting around a giant ball of gas

hot enough to burn us alive


one day

we will get an unlimited supply of heroin

and smile widely before we overdose


one day

satellites will enter earth’s atmosphere

and free fall toward earth in a ball of orange

and explode


one day

the earth will collide with the sun

and everything will turn to ash


but there will be more satellites

somewhere so far off we could not see them

orbiting around something

moving closer toward their parent bodies

waiting to reach them

and explode


James Hand

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The EVP tour kicks off 10th May in Gateshead





The EVP programme takes its inspiration from Konstantin Raudive’s notorious ‘Breakthrough’ experiments of the 1970s, where he captured voices-from-beyond in electronic noise. Themes of otherness, the profane and the divine join with new approaches to writing speaking and performing in a suite of new interlaced works – featuring poets Hannah SilvaRoss Sutherland and SJ Fowler, and hauntological synth-pop group Outfit, plus special guests.

Tour dates




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If poems by Tim Laffey

If 1

if wordsworth
had had a
i’d log in &
using excel
i could
chart what
If 2

if he
used rhyme
on cloud,
we cheats
could hack
and steal
his odes

If 3

if darwin
had used
hash tags
would have
more tightly

Tim Laffey

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Robots by Maria A. Arana



Rust is our enemy

Oxidizes our intestines

Brain fog accent

Over longer computations

Treated as such

So much for humanoids


Maria A. Arana is a teacher and member of CoffeeHouseWriters and the Emerging Urban Poets group. She is currently completing a novel that takes place in an uncharted island. Some of her poetry appears in the San Gabriel Valley Quarterly PoetryEmerging Urban Poets Anthologythe sheltered poetLong Story Short, and Stepping Stones Magazine.

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