Symbiosis – by Seb Reilly

Twisted vines grow from earth

spiralling around our ankles

shows how far we’ve climbed from the dirt

when we’re still held here.

 

It hurts

but we’ll never see clear

no matter how much concrete we pour

to hold back the green

maybe this should have been foreseen.

 

But it probably was

long ago

before we fought against the natural flow

and now we are stuck

covering muck

trying to stop the grass sprouting forth beneath us.

 

It’s like willing the rain to wait in the sky

or telling the tide to be late to arrive

we’re not gods or kings

we have no power.

 

We’re just trying to argue the point

with the place that we live

all to save face

so stand still and let the vines grow

around our ankles

it’s their land

you know.

sebreilly

Seb Reilly is a writer, fiction author and occasional musician. He lives by the sea with his family and two cats.

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A Poetry Collection – by Derek Collins

my body’s clean  but my heart is empty

gorging and cleaving
down to the bone
all yr leftovers
left all alone
milking and bleeding
outta the stone
all my leftovers
congeal on their own

all answers are echoes

can you hear vanities piercing scream?
I think that’s the sound that haunts yr dreams
I think that’s the noise that makes you cry
I think that’s the shudder that makes you sigh
it looks like concrete smeared in shit
it tastes like sandwiches filled with grit
yr squashed like a slug on silent sun
and lets be clear it don’t look like fun

she held me under

when she took me home today
the sky was turning grey…*

Justine n Juliette

“I’m gonna strip her to the bone.. ”
Justine decided, cherry nails stroking
her strap
“send MY sister MY demo,a
year later she’s shaking her fat arse to
suspiciously simllar tunes?”
her suspiciously similar sister arrives,
announcing:
“I’ve come to steal yr fading light”
Juliette’s black nails caress her
dagger

spine

in these granite corridors
bleached in light
all the tiny pigs legs
creep through the night
from yr rumbling spine
they drain yr milk
my spider- babies
will soon bleed their silk
an approaching closure
receiving nectar
from the flies arranged
in rotting spectres
they cut the flesh but
leave no scar
they burn its matter
to feed the stars
as it rakes its lungs with
tales to tell
of silent questions in
in silent hell
the inner-light remains
uninvolved an impulse
blind and unresolved but
its itchy masque of fleshy
tatters reveal the roots
of these twisted matters

the sheathed index

I walk on mirrored angles
broken light insists
I must cross these frozen borders
and upon strange circuits
they melt but persist…*

derekcollins

d+sea is a word wranglin
music manglin monad,
an art-damaged oddball
washed upon the lonely
shores of a post-addictive
consciousness.
an amateur recluse lost
in a cold town counting
his dying dreams whilst
he watches the stars slowly
start to fade.

Chocolates – by Divya Rajgarhia

Chocolates melt in our mouth and suffuse us with joy

Joy that sometimes takes our mind on a detour from the mundane

Mundane chores that cloister our mechanical lives

Lives lived for earning money and security

Security, which eludes us and becomes a shadowy bliss

Bliss sought after in the cacophony of loud parties

Parties, which give us an illusion of camaraderie and friendship

Friendship forged to fulfill specific needs

Needs keep us striving to perfect ourselves through our journey

Journey, which never ceases until our last breath

Breath is what defines our life and our existence.

divya

Divya, is an English  teacher, teaching middle and senior school for the last 11 years. Passionate about  Maya Angelou’s works, she likes to spend time with her daughter. A firm believer of teaching and learning being a two way process, she strives to make a difference in the lives of the students she interacts with each day. Born and brought up in the city of joy, Kolkata, Divya loves travelling and exploring new places.

Something More – by Damien B. Donnelly

Something More
If I asked you
would you sever the skin
from your body
layer by layer
and blanket me
in your living flesh?
Maybe the nights would feel warmer.
If I asked you
would you bleed the blood
from your body,
value from veins
and feed me
with the liquor that lives in you?
Maybe the pain would taste different.
If I asked you
would you ease your eyes
from your body,
sight from sockets
so I that maybe
I could understand your vision?
Maybe the emptiness would look like less
and less
endless
the end of less and less.
I never asked you
but you fucked me over
anyway
to pleasure your flesh,
to boil your blood,
to darken your eyes,
I never asked you!
Maybe
I should have asked
for something more!
damienbdonnelly
Damien B. Donnelly is a Dublin born pattern maker who has worked for various fashion brands while developing a love for writing since learning the alphabet. Owner of poetry and photography blog at www.deuxiemepeau.wordpress.com, published online by FireFly, The Fable Online, published in book form with Original Writing’s Short Story Anthology ‘Second Chance’ and EyeWear Publishing’s poetry anthology ‘Nous Sommes Paris’. Left Dublin at an early age for Paris, ditched Paris for Love in London, dumped London for the flatlands Amsterdam until circling back to Paris. Often heard singing in the shower but most popular in the kitchen baking hip expanding cakes.

A poetry collection – by Jeff Bagato

Research on the Line

Scholars do the damnedest things
selling cocaine cola as psychological
freshwater for clearing palate and
bowels, a marvelous display
of erudition slips effortless into Red
Skelton cross-eyed hayseed, back
stabbed & backwater, at the slightest
wave of dollar green breeze from cough
drop millions—fortune telling science
can quicker see the meaning of love
than the mushroom cloud growing bold
under term paper panty-raid glass
cabinet fascinations—
it’s a smoke that won’t dope,
invented with glee, a particle
reduced down from the whole
that once used to be a brass
mind, a trap snapping on a stack
of smile buttons with a Washington wig
over the upper crust—smile
now and be counted—smile
and look familiar—movie star
tooth job rolling out professorial
like sun flare from a gradebook grin—
smile ‘cause it doesn’t hurt, smile
to take the edge off, smile come
running up tight as short hairs
pulled high and mighty
to be neighbor of the beast

Hidden Curriculum

School is a place where brains
lie bleeding over slabs of lined
white paper hole-punched within
an inch of their lives, drooling
for school lunch and laughing at
gym teacher crotch grab
every five minute interval—
Please relieve me of my dollar
when I step into color coated
candy aisle back of the school bus,
vendors spitting TV coordinated
light show thru textbook windows
and incarcerated lives—Please
represent me the have-to-have layouts
of doll flash and saran wrap sissy
mobiles—the ones that rev & stretch
& loop the loop one step from poking
out eye and going blind—Please
barbital or give me death—Please
run the dollar show gantlet thru
principal’s hairpiece parade—
Please show up candy clowns
on hallelujah donut bicycles,
crisp-creming hall carpet
with wonderland glitter from the
five and dime; Fifth avenue sneer
runs like make up on a cigarette face,
one puff and you’re deadly, kiss
me cost of living grandly—Please
look into my soul
and tell me
if it
hurts

At a traffic light, looked up

Hobo’s face appeared in the clouds
purpled up before a storm,
his eyes angular and flashing
with the sun behind,
and his grin was crooked—
nose stood out in relief
as a few rounded edges
moved out front
into a bulb

your light comes down
in lines upon us,
from your shining mouth
and eyes bright under
a dark brow

The cars draw his laughter,
his surprise—so small,
obscure this life, so much
less a miracle than the beholder

He never spoke to me,
though I waited

His eyes slid away, left
following right, nose
flattened and mouth puckered
up as if to shit,
imploded and the
face was gone

the light was green—
we had to go

If the world can get me to sleep

If the world can get me to sleep,
it is sure it can get me to die.
And I am tired.
It doesn’t matter.

The citizens don’t see;
they don’t see the roots of trees
touching their feet.
They have turned off all nerves
with a big electric switch
and have become hermetic
chambers, filtering all
air and water and light.

We disappear in air,
water and light;
we have always shared
molecules with our food
that will become food.
We never exist, and of course
we do—we begin, we end,
we live forever.

I am fading into sleep,
drugged by some urge
to grow numb and deceitful.
I am fading into sleep.

My thoughts vanish under the wheels
of a car, and become worthless
next to electricity.

I am tired.
It doesn’t matter.

jeffbagato

A multi-media artist living near Washington, DC, Jeff Bagato produces poetry and prose as well as electronic music, glitch video, sticker art, and pop surrealism paintings. Some of his poetry has appeared in Empty Mirror, Futures Trading, In Between Hangovers, Otoliths, Your One Phone Call, and Zoomoozophone Review. His published books include Savage Magic (poetry), Cthulhu Limericks (poetry), The Toothpick Fairy (fiction), and Dishwasher on Mars (fiction). A blog about his writing and publishing efforts can be found at http://jeffbagato.wordpress.com.

Submission – by Michael Marrotti

You would’ve

thought

I was attending

a funeral

by the sight

of tears

swelling up

in my eyeballs

 

This breakup

was unexpected

this death I

could never

have predicted

 

This life

which was mine

equipped with

altered perception

is now buried

with my dealer

inside that casket

 

Each day I

slowly rise

from the depths

of that burial

dirty as can be

endeavoring

to get clean

 

I used to be more

than grey skies

in the forecast

liberated from

flu like symptoms

catapulting

over obstacles

 

There was a time

when I would kill

murdering the pain

came easy

now with your death

and departure

the resource of

my pleasures

have been beaten

into submission

 

michaelmarrotti.png

Michael Marrotti is an author from Pittsburgh with a chemical imbalance and lack of patience. His writing has propagated the small press like chlamydia in Beechview. He’s been faithfully volunteering at the Light Of Life Rescue Mission for the past three years now, the man believes in action. His chapbook is available here: https://www.amazon.com/F-D-Approved-Poetry-Michael-Marrotti/dp/153907577X

And if you need to reach him: michaelmarrotti@gmail.com

A poetry collection – by Jason Visconti

I Can’t Write Anything For The Wind

How will I hymn a song
for an audience that will not come to gather?

How will I love into the words
when a man can’t acknowledge its adventure,

the heave and then the whisper of its orchestra,
where chords will drill the trees or lick the awnings?

How will passion report through the air and aisles
when that subtle tuck of collar is all that’s reconciled?

How will I vow anything from the words I choose
when the wind hangs a man from a common noose?

 

Why Going Into The Past Won’t Work

The years will grow dustier and dustier,
by now they’ve almost slipped from the book,

and your encyclopedia of woes
is packed thick with the unnecessary,

and the movie you’re watching is fiction,
its cameo has failed like an ousted candle,

but its flickering pictures
shall shine like a moon in your night.

Beauty Has A Scar

Gardens are orphans if you remember they bloom alone,
color is just a sigh in the wind,

always fetching the center of our gaze,
and holding on with the tooth of a wolf.

And they sign to your eyes with the charm of a doll,
so many words stifled in the mum of the mouth,

eavesdroppers to the low vows of fences,
a sun sitting on its perch bearing natural burns,

while the caretaker consumes herself with the matter of dirt.

***

Jason has been published in various poetry journals, including most recently “Allegro Magazine” and “Ink Sweat And Tears”.He loves the poetry of Billy Collins, Pablo Neruda, and Sharon Olds. He stumbled across his love of poetry by losing his mother at a very young age and developing a need to express himself.