• Aftermath by Heather Pilder Olson

    Earth tilts on its axis.Disease takes away life.We’re still here, we are tryingto rebound after strife. Pandemic post-mortem:What’s the latest report?How’s the weather today?Are we coming up short? After pandemic, we’ll fix it in post.I just want to tell you: I love you the most. Take this chance to re-setto rest, to reflect.Find ways to do better,treat the Earth with respect. Did you notice the birds,rabbits up on the hill?How the animals thrivedwhen the humans were still? After pandemic, we’ll fix it in post.I just want to tell you: I love you the most. What is that thingthat you most want to do?Where will you go next?Who will travel with…

  • Nostalgia is a Taxidermist by Christopher Allen

    Nostalgia, the original taxidermistStuffs skewed memories into happinessHides imperfections of pain under varnishRevives distorted stories from barren time.Nostalgia bronzes the few remaining butterfliesand prepares to glue shadows of solidarity. Familiarity is the head mounted on the wallIt stares at the jumpy microbes in your souland begs for one last cigarette to self-combust. Nostalgia, the decorated taxidermistTraces the shapes to immortalityWhile it plucks off strands of animosity;Nostalgia sculpts pride from muscles of tradition. Nostalgia, the avant-garde taxidermistPlasters heredity into redacted erasPlants modern ideology into extinction. Nostalgia captures the breath of perfectionAs lavished desires break frigid glassAbsorbing fingerprints of tasty dreams.   Christopher Allen believes poetry is a defibrillator for the mundane.…

  • Two Love Poems by Mariesa Bus

    And Hera sent gadflies in pursuit Tethered to the tree, Iocould speak onlywith her great eyes.And so I never wroteyou many letters, thoughwords rose up throughmy fingers like unbornBraille, though I strungsentences by their feetlike dead pheasants,it was too late—words were not privy tothis new language.             While I loved you,             I remained a beast. O heavenly powers, restore her! 1852: the Studio of JohnMillais, her cavernous earsholding echoes underwaterlike sea caves, Lizzie Siddalhears the muted rattleof her own shallowbreath, holds stillin spite of her shivering,as she has practiced.The last time her eyesstrained to see downthe length of the tub, toeswere…

  • In the Bellows by Mariesa Bus

    Foggy-breathed and hand in hand with you, I am aware that as we watch over our sleepy city like a set of mossy gargoyles the trains below are not bustling, but laboring in the slow and judicious way of sheep through the slaughter chute, old women in museums, the trauma in our bloodlines. You are silent and near me, a hermit returned from the mountain whose thoughts I savor like honey at the bottom of a tea cup. Your deep voice is a beginning: the pinball sprung and rolling, and it is an end: drunken ghosts in an old saloon, shot down, reliving their quarrels unceasingly. In the middle, we…

  • Two Skinny Poems by Tyrean Martinson

    Shift After eight attempts, the poem begins toShiftWeight.WordsConsideredShiftPlaces,Refract,Distort.ShiftTo the poem begins after eight attempts.   Apertures of Thought Refraction bends light and thought asitpassesthroughanglesitrevealscolorspectrumitbends refraction and light as thought. * * * * * * * * Learn more about the “skinny poetry” form in The Skinny Poetry Journal* * * * * * * * Tyrean Martinson is a word hunter. She forages for words both sweet and tart in the South Sound, usually in the outskirts of Gig Harbor. Normally, she writes in the weird worlds of fantasy and science fiction, but she likes trying new poetry forms for fun and frustration. An old-school blogger, she can be…

  • The Banquet of the Holy Spirit by Seattle Poet (anonymous)

    The stars have sputtered into dust –Frail points of light,In droves devouredBy a swirling mass of black.Orion’s arrows flit no more,And the darkness strips the bear of his hide –The hand of God has swept the skies of all their light,And by his hand, the Sun and constellations die. Yet the blood moon shines in all its garish red –Though no sun remains to be eclipsed.The night has disemboweled the light of day,And its ravenous visage be drenched crimsonIn the viscera of its slaughter –Gaze you now upon the gore-stained face of God,Peering down with a penetrating stare,Upon frozen earth and flaming seas,From a blackened, stellar veilOf damned, digested souls.…

  • Polar Route by Kael Moffat

      Beneath silvered scraps of cloud, the sprinkled towns of north Quebec and Newfoundland huddle like embers of a banked fire whose clicks and pops are swallowed by distance and the whine of brawny engines.   I press my fingers against the inner pane and feel the ghost of sub-zero air just inches away and wonder about prayers rising into the night, evaporating from shards of glass and eviction notices or springing like flowers from permafrost. I close my eyes as if I could hear them all.     Vladimír, who sits to my right, told me as we cruised above the Arctic that he speaks Czech, Hungarian, English, German,…

  • It’s the Journey by Elizabeth Beck

    FOCUS On the blur of leaves crunched and curling, the way the autumn sun wavers the road, transforming each highway rise into flooded streams. FOCUS On the music cutting in and out as the signal boosts between the summits and drains to static or settle on an old time religion gospel preaching something like Christianity, with a bitter twist. Better not. FOCUS On the waysides and rest stops with bright shouting tastes available for just a little more than what clinks between the fingers in your pocket. Settle for the dribble past the chemical build up on the water fountain. Touch your tongue to the crumbling steel. To continue reading…

  • Two Poems from “The Things That Gathers” by Lucas Smiraldo

    Featured are the poems Johnny Damon and For People Who Have Considered Suicide When Resurrection is Enough Johnny Damon Johnny Damon was dead. Nine times, nine games his hair was moving his feet were flying but everyone in Boston would whisper, Dead man swinging and they knew Johnny Damon was dead– To continue reading selections from “The Things That Gather,” click here.  

  • Infertility Goddess by Heather Pilder Olson

    I am an infertility goddess. You can’t wear me around your neck like a totem. You can’t rub my belly for good luck. I spent 10 years of my life trying to have a baby. It didn’t work. I didn’t get the happy ending you expect. I never read What to Expect When You’re Expecting. I was never expecting. But I want to tell you my story: I want you to hear me. We often stay silent. It’s time to get loud. To continue reading Infertility Goddess, click here.