LATEST ARTICLES

He was a celebrated Italian castrato singer of the 18th century. I am a middle-aged-white dude-high school English teacher in full Hail Mary mode, going long on the MFA, seconds left in the game. He was one of the greatest singers...
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Sunday, you rotten bitch everything is closed and there's nowhere to go even if shit was open Roger's wasted so is Zack some guy is blowing his lawn clippings into the street my wife is sick but she doesn't want to admit it the cops are trying to make their traffic ticket quotas and...
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For those of you on Facebook, we've started a group so that publishers can post calls for submissions and writers and artists can post publication announcements. Here it is:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/submityourwork Why are we doing this? It's an experiment, like everything else, and...
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Doggerel

My dog is a sonofabitch. In his mind I am dog separated from my mother as a puppy when we tug a white sock. It’s a dog eat dog world but not in my house. I don’t want to put whines in his mouth but in his eyes I see myself reflected – a muttonheaded- birdbrained-dingbat- turkey-jackass for keeping him out...
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During the period of creating the Agnosia photographic series, I was inspired by visual agnosia. Visual agnosis is a disorder of knowing familiar things and their meaning, people, or spatial relationships. A person suffering from visual agnosia cannot recognize...
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Fledglings leave the nest, the nest is an egg, its shell cracked open. We tell our children stories about the heat of the sun & of melting wax. They smile & watch us slowly dissolve inside our longings to enter into the light after we have taught them to apply the...
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I left my window open. Moonlight knocked over the dresser, flung socks and secrets like a thief scared away mid-theft. A fly rummaged my body. I survived bombs meant for I know not who, mistook my beating heart for unexploded ordnance. Whose war...
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I break my hard shell shield from sharp cold, find soft shoots and grass to eat in the warm. As I grow out my young selves into old I eat tougher stems, and my wings take form. My stomach hears sounds. droplets from...
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DEADMAN

All I think about is killing you. With my .38 caliber pistol barrel stuffed into one of your nostrils, that you dig and pick. The bullet trajectory angled at your brainstem. A one shot explosion, an extermination, splattering toxic brain bits. Then I will remove your fingers...
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Booda Wot Doddy

https://soundcloud.com/rc-james-user841120068/booda-wot-doddy nobody knows where it is I been but you can bet I’m goin’ back again booda wat doddy booda wat doddy wadda bop den when your number comes round   oo wop a dee bop baby the riddim woman rides that sound she got a hoodoo eyeball drive...
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another night of nothing the TV is giving me a headache the fans are blowing in fact the fans aren't just blowing they're blowing up minutia is flying everywhere I hate every second of this I begin to understand nothing is an illusion there is always something something is happening to me tonight though...
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Most days Shuffling behind him, collecting his socks, She regards his three heads and Two left feet, bedhead breath, beer belly, Broken bones and battered plans And sighs. Wraps a great blanket of judgment Around him, burrito style, And calls it love Or something. Until today. Alone out on the...
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The Artist

the day i first declared myself The Artist you laughed so hard we both wet ourselves it was autumn of some year and we left behind a smoking crater that was once Paris i knew i was The Artist when the drawing i had just finished of you naked on a red bedsheet compelled...
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Of all the forgotten faces let me be one. Like the wind felt but unseen. Like the dot that never grew beyond any dimension. An epiphany of voice, thoughts and feelings. A regurgitation of moments that never stilled.
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a tiny chinese woman in sumatra moves from shanghai so she can be poor there instead makes me a stir fry with onions & bok choi, ginger & ants— tiny ants that taste just like pepper somewhere between our broken indonesian and my very broken comprehension, we...
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If I had more time— neither family nor job, neither errands nor sense of duty— I would visit every week, light, free of all this weight which presses me to the soil, the way a low-flying plane flattens a field of fragile wheat: praise the interval between...
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The Danger

we all face is the falling— that gradual descent between young energy warm spunk and the weary bones eaten by each and every day the heap is not a bad place from here I can see lights those supers and below the murmurs of discontent the stirring ashes churned by their...
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You like those poems Americans write where some lines are just one word Emphasis And nowadays it’s all the rage to write poems with slashes/which really have no/ purpose/that a line break wouldn’t achieve. And as for rhyme… No one’s allowed to use that except Performance Poets who force in rhymes where they’re not/needed making their poems cheesy as fuck like a duck who’s outta...
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oh we talked gravel yesterday how they sent a substitute that I had not ordered the wrong colour explained I quite like things come random that all was well with the path yet not the politics it is suggested i don’t go down that road nor...
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I used to tell people hey, I got published and they would always ask did you get paid? invariably the answer was no so now I just keep it to myself I go out on the deck with a cigarette and an energy drink smoke and sip my...
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L-Scape—Series

 
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I stretch before an open window, shaking off a sticky ache, a symptom of two days and nights of flitting from one party to another. Ecstasy evaporates, leaves an empty halo around my head. An inner hush heralds the arrival of my narrator, who knows...
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I tagged Barbara because she is obsessed with protecting wild herds. Not sure why I included the descriptor prom date on my post but Donny replied, You are the best Jenn. You always have been. Storm of interpretations commence: maybe he regrets maybe he wished maybe he still... What did he...
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you're gonna meet death out there somewhere you could die in a place where someone else has pissed or where no one has ever died tra-la-la & boom man going by on his bicycle piano in his apartment he plays at night all the way to dawn sometimes tra-la-la & boom tra-la-la & fade a man...
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I hang my tired shoes on a power line above the height of tireless hopes not to fall down again not to be worn by a naughty kid whose life-long running has never quenched her thirst for playing
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Sometimes I go by the name of Avideco She tells me that it sounds like the old ice cream brand Avidesa I tell her that it means Greedy in Esperanto She thinks that I’m ridiculous I agree with her 100 per cent
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the pigeons do their dancing bits right here on the street and call it life. If you stay still on Sundays you can hear the flute music at the underpass where they meet, pigeon angels singing to the winds   wearing purple feather vests their golden eyes raised their beaks waiting for crumbs
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Just out and soon available on Amazon (w/ 2 of my poems), the "While You Wait" anthology. This was commissioned by our local poet laureate who got a large number of local medical folks to put this in their waiting...
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They got me because our canteen over-quenched civilian curiosity They got me because two hands on your saddle horn I lost the reins My name is not his name, his eyes are not your eyes. They got me and they will do it...
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Richmond shakes his head disgustedly. He taps the filter end of his cigarette on the corner of his gnarled wooden table. He sticks the thing in his mouth. "Bukowski didn't start writing prose until he was in his forties." Richmond's eyes are wide; he inhales...
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It is possible I reached my full potential when I wasn’t looking or thinking straight I may have left my ideal self behind in a jail cell under a bare light bulb when I rushed outdoors thinking I was free
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Sojourns

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https://soodabehpoems.wordpress.com...mOS23IMdQKutp0ONzSycm4PuLhto9bFN7XkBuN8DNpZGo The book is available on amazon:
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The passwords of my Bank accounts shall get buried with me & no skeletons will remain. My self-centred children might guess the names of my dream girl (Deepika Padukone) & childhood crush (Martina Hingis) but will never be able to know about my special character. They shall keep...
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please tally all the languages in the world sojourning linguists at last count 7,117 are spoken a ton of different tongues the # of poems incalculable my hypothesis to formulate our thoughts we grind & encase our notions like sausage inside the skins of words & inside the skin of a poem meaty &/or plant based words return to thoughts unground
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A first today. I cried at work. Been plenty angry while working jobs. Never bawled. One positive— I work at home. My daughter is five, traumatized—melts down in daily transitions— screams, throws chairs. Classrooms evacuated while in blind red rage. This is her normal, accustomed to the colours of her brother’s lingering, pre-adoptive trauma. Her teachers...
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For Kelly, whose tomatoes never made it to Rachael Forgive me I have taken the tomatoes I was supposed to pass on to your friend I have dropped the cherry bombs Into an innocent cast iron pit Thick with garlic, green pepper and buttery yellow...
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So, I finally did it ... published a "book" of my poetry. Please stop by and have a look, and maybe even read a poem or two. Thanks to everyone who's been part of this epic journey. Totally Disconnected Website
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This selection of photos comes from Paul’s ongoing photography series, Limited Light. The series was born from a desire to photograph artists in a way that captured the essence and emotion of their art, rather than focusing solely on...
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a sharp pain shot through the ground in a room without windows car doors slam buddha arrives from indiana with feathers in her hair every month staggers in with lettuce turning brown sky is clear wind is blurred it's a perfect day I kissed buddha several times as the sun squatted behind the forest it's time for...
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the best poems rattle like a tin can down an empty street they hang from lamp-posts in the dark heads shaven tar holding feathers from some exotic bird the best poems hitch a ride home at 2 a.m. belly full of beer heel missing from one shoe and not...
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Mirage

I saw myself up ahead on top of this sand dune waving to me. Now I’m here nowhere in sight. I might have known. These footprints that don’t exist here where I am standing would have been the same size as mine if they did. It’s strange. I was actually glad to see myself. I seemed so happy to...
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OkCupid

Longhaired strongman divorced weary of seeing the horrors in the world has hung up his jaw-bone-of-an-ass seeks a Delilah for fun & bondage will gladly turn your grind stone & attend to your place of worship.
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in the present extreme                                                             I want it all                                                                   to go away                   all variations of viability mainstream or otherwise     artistic principalities   as a means                                including extreme shall be considered                                                                                         pray for me mom                                                             in the present fetter of time                                                                          searching for jesus on a belgian slope                                                                   4 soldiers lie frozen the way watercolor captures light curl and sleep                                  on the...
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8m6HUU-70A
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Canary Diamond

Did you know that in the will he made before he lost his mind, he left it to me? I cried when I read the old bequest, as if there had been a subtle restoration of regard before the bullied revision. These gaudy heirlooms...
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i want to strip off my cheap clothes wander out to the back lot of my rented, North Hollywood apartment dig my feet into contaminated soil slowly sink, ankles first lastly my mouth spilling coins my own, weird little fucked up wishing well
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the ghost in my house is me​ it’s my dog or cat or nothing, someone I cant remember who said—it’s nothing, you heard nothing nothing brushing past me nothing in blind spots nothing misplaced it doesn’t feel like home; I think that’s good so I might leave I think I...
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the wind was blowing the tiny flowers over and whipping against Wendy they were all too fragile to be there
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lacking a young imperfect secretary but with a handful of straw I walk into the bone night great Italian girls wave to me from their upstairs windows so beautiful that when they place a cigarette between their lips 20 men show up from nowhere with opened lighters flicking...
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHGneCMNLsg https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jzt2UOALrGc
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Links

Enough, the Centenarian's story ends, The two, the past and present, have interchanged, I myself as connecter, as chansonnier of a great future, am now speaking. ("The Centenarian's Story" from Drum-Taps, Walt Whitman) When I was a boy not very long ago they interviewed ex-slaves for...
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the sign on the door says Believe in Jesus Christ Be Saved. By God, I knock and score enough for me and my friend Ben, the suicidal Chihuahua, to get tranquilized alley-wise over by the Walgreens. between dumpsters lie wicked dreams: deposit me in the passenger seat of didion's bright stingray screaming down early...
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Information is just another way of keeping people down. If authority can't justify itself it must be dismantled. Multiple causality becomes the ultimate finality. start by asking what does jesus know about the second coming of 9-11 including mossad's expertise in controlled demolition and global pandemics (won't...
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Troubles

picture and picture of my bare pubescent bodies blur a tanned and pink magic lantern show sick stomachs flat or deep and all my numbered ribs marked off one when I was nineteen, between my two hips a third protrusion gentle roundfort green body deformed in that...
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Asian Hybridity

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Salander Café Racer

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i was on the tv show PAN Connection...for 1 hour...which is probably 56 minutes more than necessary...but it is what it is. anyway, i got to talk about my new book SMALL TALK as well as my more than...
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Sweet Pea

“I want a cat.” “You want a cat that will sit on your lap,” mother intoned. This is so metaphorical, I thought. It wasn’t even a question; to her, a pet was to be loved by. “We’re moving through time,” said Donnie...
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after the miscarriage I dreamed I was leaning against a yellow doorway peering through the half-open Dutch doors alphabet squares and blankets were draped in a pseudo-cubist's take on dali I had an idea which one was mine— something about the nap-matted hair half-hiding her wild...
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As I watched the sea of Hong Kong millennials fight with helmed authorities armed to maim or kill, blue face masks worn also to cover up identities, bottled water handy to wash off the sting of tear gas, placards of bold Chinese characters...
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family stories of Allen generally include the phrase what was he thinking? and a trip to the ER roller skating on the front porch— he stopped himself with glass panes of the garage door prying a jammed piece of gravel— his fingers crushed in the gears of the...
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i tasted myself on him the way a cat’s tongue rakes through fur or a pinched reflection in the corner of my eye resembles homesickness time wraps around itself, stuttering frames of old movies, a promise of water after a long ride settling onto silk breathing syncs into tandem while morpheus...
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Gaslight

You convinced me that migraine was the throbbing ache of the mind, so I believed you, telling myself nausea was a dead butterfly in my belly and vomiting acid air was the resistance of my innards because I did not listen to you, nodding too, without asking...
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Trailer Art

Artist Statement: Years ago when I was 17, my parents hit rock bottom. I went out on my own and ended up living in a trailer park with a boyfriend. I lived there just a couple years before moving...
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I follow, as she careens her cart through Mauna Kea Mall, tossing in cracked cups, mismatched sheets, biographies of people no one remembers. "Why must you rescue beltless bathrobes?" I pant. She fades suddenly, and I’m  awake and sweating, wondering who that was. Might have been Aunt Margaret, an artist,...
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Commencement

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like a murder of crows sitting upon the branches of a barren tree, ---squawking so my words rest upon the black lines of a white page, ---squawking
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there's clippings of bad poetry all over the deck where I thought up and discarded many lines I have to stack them up and put them in the dumpster before they end up in a poem
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primrose says I will be her lips bean says I will be her thighs broom says I will be be her clitoris meadowsweet says I will be her fingers burdock says I will be her arms. nettle says I will be her tongue oak says...
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Carpe Diem

Where can we live but days? Ah, solving that question brings the priest and the doctor in their long coats running over the fields. ("Days," Philip Larkin) I stopped near the house of my dead parents, down a thin lane pinned by the wind to vegetable fields, where unwalked footpaths, like...
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JCW3T3xZZwc For Lawrence Ferlinghetti When I ate a croissant in bed, flakes of brown crust fell upon my pillow, fell atop the sheets, and made the white down comforter resemble a speckled trout whacked upside the head, eyes akimbo, ready for the pan. Once it was me awaiting the pan, grunting...
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he takes a sky tram up the columbian mountains noticing the neighborhoods crumble deeper every meter they rise above the city center until sheet metal walls and roofs become brick balanced on top of mortar-less brick finally her stop he assumed she must be poor but not this kind of poor there is nowhere to sit he presents: strawberry...
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Persuaded by my wife to return to our marital bed so she does not have to get up every two hours to monitor my struggle for every breath and let her see the progress of my virus symptoms. As I try to sleep on...
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L-Scape 9–Trip

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Wave Function

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Dance for the day The location is only known to the few who care to take a long walk mostly uphill. One hears much that is derogatory about Morris Dancing, and yet, adjacent to this spot, is where people dance...
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Don’t shoot the artist

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# 43

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LEGO Flowers

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Time for change

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Novelty

Just for now, let us narrow the picture, postpone those conflicts, see art in a bullet dormant in its chamber, allocate the quiet of cancelled epithets for poetry and benediction, consider other reasons to raise a hand, expand definitions to include the absence of, imagine we have finally met some cosmic...
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The moment Galileo Galilei innocently gave the Books the proverbial finger, it was clear, there and then, that we'd all end up in therapy. Even Atlas was screwed, as his contract had to be renegotiated and weight redefined, but he, too, was limited and couldn't rise...
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I get the sequined jeans. In the window I catch a glance tight stretch denim, flared legs, my palms press down my bottom and damn look at that I do have the hips of a woman! Historically disguised by androgynous Levi's, these low riders with...
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A crude black crayon drawing could be anyone. But the only other significant color is blue, in one eye. Heterochromia, the Internet offers. Etched in the back of your mind thereafter, the word rises every morning as you brush teeth, just as the Houston Marriott where you met appears in snatches of...
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10:08 a.m.

I'm retired the clock belongs to me now
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Today is more than just one cup of black coffee after another. Today, I have enough melancholy stacked on top of more melancholy to climb up a sad stairway, out of my down-in-the-dumps, here - into what could be the snow covered...
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Regarding a Corpse

Regarding a corpse at the bottom of a ravine, I wonder if it’s mine. I wonder if as it tumbled, sinews tearing like tissue soaked in another’s tears, it felt my pain. I wonder if there is relief in not- feeling, not-being: absence. I see no headstones, nothing to...
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feather-sized flakes spin then faint on the grass we look at the sky, wondering eggshell facts melt on our faces life isn’t quite irresistible nor do you have to be suicidal to stare in death’s eyes the offending knives the slatted square rooftops we might have made rounder...
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7TT6R5OryGU There was no sign of a woodcutter in the tin shack raised from the red earth, the black wood of an archived forest. Dismembered trees haunted the air, ghosts in the pungency of cut pine. A tepid cup sat by a soiled plate and a...
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Laneville-muted sunlight, good sex, bipolar, playing Jay-Z in the morning pissing off the people below me. Laneville-crappy bars and not in a good way, buildings like prisons, walking the streets, so alive unlike now in my catacomb spirit. Laneville...
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this game's going down in history randomly craved poetry is best take the enamel right off your teeth I saw a great grandmother reading it in her minivan she imagined Kerouac in his cold northern grave and smiled as she stuck a poem in the ignition and...
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Before you lost what was left of your mind, did you have any idea that the scales of betrayal you kept even with your thumb would tip so far against you? We tried to recalibrate them for the rest of your life. No, we...
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Abstract Terms

I am fascinated by the notion of representing abstract terms with abstract art. —Michael Acker
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Group Art

Perhaps you miss folding the May blossoms, sakura, creeping phlox, chrysanthemums; maybe your fingers are itching to fold cicadas, damselflies, moths you can hold; endure the gloom so when we meet again, no one is gone, a folded pine or crane.
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Getting Help

I try to keep an appearance of a well-manicured lawn but my moles keep showing up hungry, silently heaving sod. And I gotta lot of them so I never leave the yard stomping the heaves so they don’t kill the grass. My wife thinks I’m crazy and wrecking...
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Wishing my penis could detach itself and crawl off somewhere far away from me She insists she understands how I feel especially the moments one is tempted to snip it off with a pair of scissors or cut it off with a knife "You should not do that" she orders "Let it be" But I tell her whispering words of...
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Meth(odical) Fog

The cove is in a fog; out on the beach a meth head beats his dog. No one sees a thing.
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UMWELT Series

 
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some days, a squirrel jumps up from the oak's branches above the grandma's balcony and tells us how to pour our grief in a cup of lily of the valley, how to inspire a penniless gypsy to build a shelter out of wool, how to crawl into the air like the relaxing...
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Quacks

nothing’s really wrong I’m just laying in bed in the middle of the day because I’m tired I'm thinking about all the stuff I could do that I don’t want to do some people may mistake this as a reaction to my depression there’s always a doctor...
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Thutam Nguyen

you're just a stupid child she coos in broken English, mixed in with some French swirling around in there like strong Vietnamese coffee you will never understand and she’s right I never will I have the same dull blue gunmetal eyes as my father who flew F-4's over lush countrysides dropping fire: American fathers always pour lighter fluid over 4th of...
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He doesn’t know where to start so he looks into the styrofoam cup to find a reflection he has become proud of staring from cold coffee it holds. A reflection just as nervous as him. So, after a long, deep breath he begins. Even when it...
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I need dense text heavy panting flowers thrown in the creek I wanna go back to Cochranville for a week when it’s summer and I can sleep down in a row of corn I need sleep I need the smell of you frying bacon for...
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Galapagos tortoises

I went to Regents Park Zoo Sat on the bench at our old spot Watched the Galapagos tortoises Dolly, Polly and Dirty Dirk According to the resident herpetologist Dirty Dirk is uncommonly randy For a tortoise in captivity Though I’ve never seen any evidence of it Polly...
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Chigguns’

everything hinges on death their own black heart locks the armed chickens within their copper jacketed cage of bitter fruit wood ankle deep in the litter of mass killers
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Chun II

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I fear losing my strangeness, my hands and feet dissolving, my distinctive features bleeding into a bleary rabble. The patient man perched on his balcony, who waits for the clan, the tribe, or the chaotic crowd to decide his future, he makes me hum...
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My stockpile is such that when I open a drawer I brace for an avalanche of toilet paper. In the kitchen are enough cans of beans to last a months-long struggle, for my son to pass the hours building beautiful steel pyramids. I’ve strewn fat...
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it is a thankless task sweeping together the parts of a person dismantled by the wind gauging by feel and heft if everything is there the limbs paired the feet engaged that they might carry the assemblage through another day it is the endless toil of hands callousing on rope and...
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non profit phone bank job in hollywood that I found, on craigslist in December when I was living in Van Nuys down on my luck i guess you could call it a desperation gig and i shaved my face took a shower got the job for a couple of days and i...
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Lockdown 2021

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i heard a scuttle in the bushes and listened sensed an angel suffering from a fall the sounds my body makes when standing still gravel crunched as the postman turned leaving a bank statement and a 2 for 1 offer on pizzas under the bushes i saw where...
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Unopened

There is a tumble of ribbons and words forming bows and twirls, wrapping my thoughts into pretty little packages. I line them up one by one on the shelf to gather dust. One day you will come— eagerly pluck them down, blow them off, admire each little gift before removing the...
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ebbing

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Quietus

He’s old now, very old living in a recliner reading his favorite book about death feeling like an eaglet in a treetop nest curious about what jumping does.
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Safe Text

She wondered how an old boyfriend spent New Year’s Eve, if he was there with his wife being nice, or maybe mean saying her clothes looked slutty or how she came on to the grocer, making gossip in their small northern town. But now she knew. It wasn’t much different than...
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I explore gender fluidity in my art, assuming a fictional identity as a female, although I am mostly a straight Asian male, who occasionally fantasizes about becoming a woman. My life is a struggle between two wolves inside of...
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OAF friends, if you ZOOM, I'll be one of three poets featured on Flying Out Loud, a Zoom series out of Kentucky, Jan. 11, 7 to 8, EST. If you want to attend, let me know, and I'll send...
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2021

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New Year, resolutions rising from reverie running outdoors with a smile singing and skipping into very concrete streets resolve to pay credit card bills, student loans, interest on interest, visit sister and mother at last, drive a little slower stop drinking, drink slower, wear a jacket,...
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Waiting Room

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Wave Function

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Waymarkers

Today I stop to photograph a backroad milestone which reclines in fescue and rough dandelions. The miles ahead, the miles behind. Simple numbers all declaring how far we’ve travelled from our source, and how much further we may go along our crooked, shrinking, course. Perhaps some poet...
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Raphael

the Archangel with the power to heal, hovers over the roof of my house. He’s been up there since you left. I went to a Catholic school. I tell myself my guardian angel was happy to be reassigned. Raphael keeps my house safe inside, me & the dog tame, neither of us...
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Ethnic Cleanser

Removes unsightly people whose grease and dirt spoil your landscape. Cleans as it polishes, replaces their awful smell with fresh fragrances. Their profane beliefs with fresh air. Their noisy children with heavenly quiet. Our history with revised pages. Preserves our pure culture. They are an infection that will...
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Henry was brilliant; at least he had me believing he was. He read at the Coffee and Cruellers, the place with the sawdust and peanuts on the warped wooden floor. He offered a cupful of courage and got me to read a few there....
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My father remembers ancient banyan trees. He sees ghosts in the tall temple grass, smells rain on abandoned sugar cane. He watches the ocean and waits. Lately, he sees a tall ship in Honolulu Harbor, silent and crewless, and my father thinks it is there for...
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Do Not Resuscitate

He was positive at 96 approved for hospice care on O2 and morphine to make labored breathing comfortable. His last thought was walking from the maternity ward 67 years ago holding that tiny casket. Remember me? asked the cherub child. Hold my hand. When the next breath didn’t come he...
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Umwelt

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mixed media on paper, 21,2 x 29,9 cm, 2020  
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1/4 kg

Looking at a man selling tomatoes my intellect begins to play a game— are there enough in the fridge? If there are too many & I buy, Maria will get mad at me. If there are none & I don't buy, Maria will still get...
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    All animals are equal,     but some animals are     more equal than others.         — George Orwell I guess I am the lowly spokesbird that can reveal anything there is to know about our jungle, no spin, no hyperbole. The...
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Pattern of Life

They call it Pattern of Life The high resolution images Data, collected by satellite Analysed to spot the unusual To predict what happens next Make a preemptive arrest Find Jimmy Hoffa See if McDonald’s is open If the algorithm suggests Where I might be in spring Can I sign up...
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I once tried to kick in the screen of a 21” color tv wearing my Tony Lama shit kickers. The boot’s heel & slick sole slid off the smooth glass like I was dancing a one legged boot scootin’ shuffle. I was drunk on my ass on...
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For Christmas, I received: A six-pack of Budweiser, with a note from Dad. Start young, preempt disappointment. An arched eyebrow and muttered menace when I didn’t thank him. Another story about Mom. A reminder I had her eyes. Rent and termination notices to burn. Dad...
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Click any image to open viewer.  
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Widow

  the waves brought it right to her feet that old improbable message in a bottle. She took it with her kept it near but did not want to open it to spoil the mystery of her selection. Resting in the garden she dreams starfish dreams opens her hands like fans of coral feels her...
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December

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These days all we do is swipe. right for double cheese burger, left for pasta with white sauce. Gone are the days when Pav-Bhaji would be home delivered after hours! Zomato is a smooth criminal— it has killed the thrill of chase but nothing can substitute...
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my heart beats less in November it has nothing to do with love ice crystals in the morning sun the dead leaves around my feet tight shoes gloved hands last year’s down jacket it beats so much faster in July when I can’t stop the sun’s honey from...
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Publishing a book is important, whether self-published (without imprint) or cooperatively published (with imprint). Yeah, you won't get rich or earn a lot of money from the book sales, but you will open the door of publication opportunities for...
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Ambition

The directions on the shampoo bottle: “Wet hair thoroughly before applying.” Someone got paid for that? Why not me? Here’s my resume. Published Poet. Will work for food.
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I try on a suit to look handsome for the stars, ask the mirror what I have gained and what I have lost. I mourn the death of those yet to die, seek an urn to hold the ashes of what might...
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My Son, My Son

We sit on the stoop for hours. A few passersby, one wearing bright red kicks, Hey man help me out. You wave a royal dismissal. Red-kicks nods, fades into the sidewalk. Craving closeness in any form, I squeeze closer, my shoulder to your shoulder. You...
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You pointed out a spot along the fence in the pasture and recounted how you once snuck up behind a coyote and just to see if you could, roped him, deftly snuck the expert loop of your lasso around his neck. (After, you...
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here's a new batch for you. I know that i erred when i couldn't resist and sent several times when you specifically scowl on excessive submissions. I guess i was overly anxious, yearning a slot in your very fine journal. I'm not really obsessive, nor one...
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He’s addressing the nation on CNN. How do you know he’s lying?  His lips are moving.  Four years ago, the joke was funny.  Now, we shrug, at a loss for words.  Dante damned corrupt politicians to the Eighth Circle of Hell, Stone Ditch Number Five. Even a singing cowboy, back in...
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The petrifying things that haunt me include waking up one day to realize I have become that person who enjoys the OMG Facebook games that make cute acronyms from the letters of my name my wine glass empty spit marks down the barely reflecting mirror a book mark in the...
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When she says my name it feels like my skirt flipped up To check for underwear Under where my brother hid when I was born, There are now mousetraps and cricket tape and He was waiting To tell my name to the slippery red...
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Performance

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MINOTAUR

Am I impressed? I suppose. The bull’s head, the horns, the way you puff up three times your size. Still you’re the same old, same old. Considerate. A bit of a slob. Some drool, green as mint, on your side of the pillow.
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Come What May

We are cognizant of the black hole at the heart of all expectations, yet our love feels like an orbit; slow and elliptical around a private sun. I, male, seem flighty as though driven by the panic of self-propagation. While you, the woman, sufficiently immune to the shadows of destruction, are committed to the growth of...
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A violet aura fades to indigo along the skyline. The drug of anger, and euphoria, are extinguished— everything that gives me purpose is extinguished. Extinction appears, on the twilit road, dressed in a hooded, knee-length raincoat; implacable as a stop sign, they point across the...
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Ocean City, NJ, 1967   Meggs arrives wearing dangling earrings and attitude   Afternoon walk: Nefertari and Ra
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Pilot Light

My mother waited up late for me early Sunday mornings chain-smoking cigarettes off the pilot light, her gas flame-blue shadow cast across the kitchen as I came up the back stairs from the porch; All the other rooms slept. Cigarettes burned, all the other rooms tossed and turned. Darkness never felt so good.          In...
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BEAR STREET

"The creature that does nothing will get dafter! And dafter! And dafter!" A man alone keeps screaming as he walks towards Leicester Square where at 8 am barely a soul is stirring where no creature will hear him.
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Four by Marcel Herms

King (in his own world) De deskundige Selectieve verontwaardiging Counting the days
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The wrong side of history belongs to people who eat candy corn one color at a time. Scientists say the twelve ingredients include sweeteners, artificial colors, animal skin and bones and little red insects from Asia. Those on the wrong side of history reject this ingredient list as liberal...
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Compose it now, as a guarantee of surviving this turbulent age, take it out for reassurance when you need it most, like a fifth of vodka, or memories of an appaloosa mare, calling to you from across the pasture. Recollections of the moon rising over the...
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1. there is a strange hill at the cliff’s edge​ verdant and delicious​ smoothly curved​ from the distance​ ​ it is not a hill, really​ not stone flesh​ with hairs pricked up​ green to the follicle​ ​ branches​ push up under the surface​ creating a hollow​ hill of trees​ ​ we hide us in it​ I am...
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Ars Poetica

I don’t use a washcloth in the shower. It’s probably bad for me. Not exfoliating, I mean. I bet someone has died from it. Somewhere, I read that dust is 70% skin, which means when you walk into the...
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Chun (series)

"Chun" is a series that I am working on in which I depict myself as an Asian woman, although I am a straight male, in order to explore gender fluidity and to express my love and appreciation for female...
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Silence chauffeurs loss, I call it—God— another conundrum unsolved. A discreet chill lingers to speak, a farewell from the arctic concludes: if millions of anything dies it isn’t equally tragic. Primates are most vile; what could Jane Goodall see in chimpanzees? Maybe as humans, we are of different genera,...
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something in the moonlight like one long goodbye I never heard there's just the upholstery staring at me the long death of the day click and drag on a cigarette have you ever cut a flower on a summer evening when it's not too hot and smelled...
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“Dick Hertz and Connie Lingus, phone call.” That was always me. I’d call the restaurant and tell the hostess: “Huge emergency!” I always told the waitress, “Cock tail, huh?” A wise guy. Smart-ass. And I’m still that way. Melania’s embarrassed to go out with...
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Mel took off to Cleveland last winter cramming everything she really needed into a hatchback Honda Accord: herself, her purse, a fluffy Alaskan Malamute Koda. Her blue 10-speed Peugeot got left behind— that bicycle rests against the wall of my garage to this very day tires gone flat now dust covers frame. I saddle-up...
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Fire Moon Rising

California, 2020 North, South, and Central, wildfires under a quarter moon threaten the entire state. The fire moon looks down on them red as it rises into the night. The Devil, I think, grins there tonight as I walk along the street, avoiding late-summer heat and smoke-- the evil...
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.salvation

. there are things made bright bled folded autumn arrives and the yellow eyes close sunflowers jiggle then lean upturned dirt chokes-up children's fingers birds dive on a belch of wind : i want to go .
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An apple orchard; slim pathways on the hill in the near distance have turned blue in dawn light. I tell blonde Alice I’m going to head out to take photos. Where? She asks. I say anywhere they jump out at me, and she laughs as if I’m chasing rabbits. The valley we’re...
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Michael B. Carroll Jr. I’m not mad. I’m angry We are not a threat to your America. I’m not mad. I’m angry… so angry that I could explode, spontaneously, like an unstable gas. Don’t you understand that we yearn and fight to prove that we...
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They pile us on a field. Try to identify us, contact loved ones. I think of older sister Nancy. She must be coming. She could joke about my love of Polo shirts and say I love you. Call me a man-child, but with...
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October Surprise

We have tons of hammers but not enough shoes. Really, isn't it the same for you? We'd be just fine if all that's required is beating out the gold leaf of our down time until it covers this comedy of fright. We might...
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Father

I am ashamed of my schism, my contortionist brain and tongue. Told status is a ticket to love. Take hurried notes on how to be righteous. Worship Satan at my school. Eat full-metal propaganda. I should be enough–one day. I am a contradiction. Confess on knee through a...
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Misery Chic

just            don't            fucking talk to me            don't try to buy me            a drink just           don't engage          ...
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-after "Einstein’s Dreams" A man and woman walk hand in hand down the Grabenstrasse. The street is quiet on a Tuesday afternoon. An aproned man shakes a rug over the sidewalk; scraps of dust and paper settle on a pair...
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My virginity is still lost somewhere in Athens, Greece. After serving my hippie time for marijuana possession I admit I was happy that prisons exist. I didn’t need rehabilitation then like so many of those assholes. I must have driven drunk a thousand times after my...
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The artist Ann Chernow was born in 1936 and grew up in New York City. She has worked extensively in the mediums of lithography, silkscreen, etching, and colored pencil as well as oil painting. Known as “The Queen of...
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Childless

When my son died I was devastated by the colossal waste that was his mind. That rare nonjudgmental visionary kind. My flattened affect belied a manic hemispheric need to understand his death. When my son died I became less human. Existed anesthetized by pills and booze and doubt. Garish makeup my disguise...
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Pig Latin

Aisyday is a collector of things. Hats and canes. Handbags. Scars. I can't be sure. I am certain. She saw me as hard tissue. A door left ajar. What I said. Honest. Insecure and reaching. A ringing nerve along her jawline. Me. Jarring and disobedient. Always. Her...
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baby Christmas trees in a field little bump in the backseat driving past them but most of my life I’ve been intense no wonder I’m crazy no wonder my little pill bottles have eyes but I’m the one who’s always watching I’d like to give you...
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I refuse to die in a bunker, even if it’s with you, my dear. I want the slow death of struggling for light, hand in hand, through the tremors and the flames. Do you recall when we thought things were okay? I am thankful to...
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In the port of Saint Petersburg wavy-haired mathematicians exhale vodka and sanctions-ringed cares and caviar and smoke-circles and vodka, questioning the nature of consciousness, until they lose theirs. In the port of Saint Petersburg nests of Greek-column-roofed cloud-tickling fortresses where crane-drivers bask in the sub-arctic majesty pull mothers with...
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Comforted by the rough of the stucco wall, my back leaning on the hint of dew as I watch the moon hide out of shame, alone now, struggling to finish the day, trying to unearth all blues in the black of the...
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who sit with understanding. Focused, iridescent eyes attend to your wet ones. Well-timed hops on your lap, headbutts; well-placed paws, chins by thighs on couches. Furry steps tap out you are not alone. We got this: anxiety, infertility, marriage, adoption, parenting, childbirth, divorce, depression and death. When it is time, they become...
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hammer apple peacock tank poached | raisin leather defunct traction capstan | boulder frack inflate piss ratchet | your anus above me like a faucet up a tree | your ice lolly a placard for your love of contrast | catapult invert potato reputed curving | palace slippery inkwell rebate stone .1
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For the umpteenth time this mangled year she asked me why I was crying mama what’s wrong mama the coffeepot was sputtering vainly promising my restoration on yet one more in a long line of mornings too familiar to my desperations what was I supposed to...
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Lazy Pencils

Some Pinky pencils live longer as they remain hidden in the dusty pockets of blazers that no longer fit. Then there are unconcerned ones that idle in a pen pot and their only job is to make managers look busy. Some hibernate on dressing tables, others remain in...
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Kiss from God

A small shiny insect crawled methodically across the clean, white sheet of paper, trying to crawl across before I stained it with my useless words. So arrogant and determined in his steps. I am grateful it was not a spider. So very grateful it was...
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Witnessing

It was by no means coincidence that a tortoise the size of a manhole cover walked out of the open desert and into the path of our car. I believe in the goddess of close calls now and built her a hand polished shrine by the...
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for Trish Saunders First off, it isn’t Mr. Trump. It’s Mr. President. Alright? You want my tax returns? I’ve 5 accountants working on them full-time, but you can’t get even one to squeal on me? You don’t deserve it then. I’ll give you one big clue....
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Coupling

Strangers We never shared the same space; circumstance kept us apart. We passed so close I’m sure we must’ve touched on some level, but life went on unaware, invisible threads. Friends I got you to laugh in the middle of our tragedies, and you let me cry until I...
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no vacancy

so full of yourself with no room available before you implode
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By the Maple

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My grandmother asked. I was six years old and thought she had met Abraham Lincoln. An old beach photo caught her in sandy ankle boots and cinched waist, her long hair blowing free of its pins. She had lost her husband in France to shell shock and later to...
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Liberated Me

I buy my own groceries, fix my own meals, wash my dirty dishes: what more could a woman want? She might want a stiff erection, that's what: something I last had back at the turn of the century. She might want a man to give her...
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Edwin

Edwin was going bald in high school. Don’t ask me to describe him. Just take my word for it. He was not handsome. The popular girls didn’t want his cooties. When he laughed his buck teeth bucked. His thick glasses made his eyes look fat. It’s no surprise that Edwin was a...
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Her Knickers

gust on a carousel, revolve in Summer sun as she kals to her mam on her doorstep. Blown me nose on more material. says her mam. Cheese-wire me arse. They're comfy, mam. 'sides lads like 'em. Off you mean. When they've got it on 'em. Both snort...
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I won’t accept death delivered in prose. Darkness fell twice tonight; can we still know what’s real? Give me your hand and we'll compose ourselves. Do you recall, not long ago, when one could mourn but not despair? When pain made sense? I’m tired....
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Rick

was this old friend of mine who gave me my first and only award for poetry. it was near 3 in the morning and we were drunk on cheap vodka, complaining how we couldn’t get published anywhere and never won any awards for our work and we were standing on this corner ready to call it a night and he...
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Finish to Start

I kissed her cheek and whispered, "Good to see you." Snore opened to smile, her eyes looked up. "Hello!" she said like a girl. Then I went into a room with her back on the day I was born.
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Gesamtkunstwerk—Series

Click any image to view full-screen.
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Bedtime, Children!

Beware the old witch who eats lost children. Snuggle closely, my good little ones— warm and tasty from your bath. I will tell you fairy tales of abandoned children shivering alone, selling matches, big bad wolves leering at innocent girls, and naughty little boys growing...
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Watercolors

Owl at full moon, fairy, rose Bumblebee and Dragonfly in Love
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