Koi by Eileen Malone

Koi

 

On a dirty pond fermented

with tractor grease and oily

rainbow excrement

 

one extremely ornamental

carp breaks orangely the

surface tension of the pools’s

green glass surface

 

without apology or splash

it opens its mouth to gulp

whatever winged wasp, gnat

or midge that flies in

 

a butterfly flits between us

 

to turn into a butterfly

to emerge wet and new

from its own cocoon

a caterpillar must first

digest itself

 

when you come right

down to it, life is just a bunch

of stuff eating stuff.

 

Eileen Malone’s poetry has been published in over 500 literary journals and anthologies, a significant amount of which have earned awards, i.e., three Pushcart nominations. Her award winning collection Letters With Taloned Claws was published by Poets Corner Press (Sacramento) and her book I Should Have Given Them Water was published by Ragged Sky Press (Princeton).

Photo on 2011-11-03 at 16.52

Fences by Sarah Bigham

Fences

wallsinourheartsmorethanstakesinthegroundarewhatmakeborders

impenetrableimpenetrableimpenetrableimpenetrableimpenetrable

 

Sarah Bigham teaches, writes, and paints in Maryland where she lives with her kind chemist wife, their three independent cats, an unwieldy herb garden, and near-constant outrage at the general state of the world tempered with love for those doing their best to make a difference. Find her at www.sgbigham.com.

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Empty Spaces by Karlo Sevilla

Empty Spaces

That empty space is fine with and in itself; it has no need for or of us.
Or, it has emptied itself of its abundance, upon seeing us close the distance
(threatened of rape, plunder, and the other imperatives of colonization).
It is best if we just walk on the path that cruelly cuts through them,
and just let the sliced and side spaces breathe, and air to pass through
or settle in their emptiness. Our burdens are our own, our own crosses.
Spare the rest of the world the heavy load, as we proceed to our private Golgotha.
Let the empty spaces do nothing more than bear witness to our procession.
Or, nothing more than being or not being, as we plod on to our crucifixion.
Still, our declaration of faith steadfastly remains, “We believe in Resurrection.”
And soon we, who have been running empty, shall perish and ash —
neither in victory nor defeat — into the quiet brotherhood of empty spaces.

 

Karlo Sevilla is a freelance writer who lives in Quezon City, Philippines. His poems have appeared in Philippines Graphic, Radius, I am not a silent poet, Anti-Heroin Chic, Eunoia, Rat’s Ass Review, Wraith Infirmity Muses, an Origami Poems Project microchap, and elsewhere. He also volunteers for the labor group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (Solidarity of Filipino Workers).

K. Sevilla photo

go through my pockets by Kyle Christopher

go through my pockets

 

i want to relapse today,

to plant some pills in the garden

and crash my car into it.

 

the cemetery lengthens,

climbing up the hills and into ditches

where the junkies scrape rain-

water into spoons,

as spring promised, it blooms

to blood in a syringe

like a flower in a jar.

 

the sun sinks like a push

into the inner city,

confusing the children that shoot

needles like squirt guns.

 

my eyes won’t stay open.

come back, come back my friend,

and go through my pockets.

 

i don’t want to be alone.

Kyle Christopher is a recovering poet residing on the west coast of Florida. He has dedicated his life to the arts, and studied creative writing at Florida State University. The message is hope and the promise is freedom.

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At the Hands of Elisha by Ethan Cole

At the Hands of Elisha
In Lesotho, the land has turned to dust.
The endless seasons of corn
have ruined it.
With the rains
the Orange River
always runs brown.
*
I saw a preacher
on the banks
turbaned in a red tongue of flame,
robes as blue as the sky
as green as the dream of the barren earth,
calling out like Elisha to Naaman
wash seven times and be clean.
*
Black and white we entered the water—
with our AIDS and ennui,
leprosy and anxiety,
hunger and child support payments—
seven times submerged
at the hands of the prophet
who didn’t judge us by our ailments.
The water carried away our disease,
our pain and desolation,
that once fertile soil.

Ethan J. Cole is originally from western New York State, where he learned to love stories and magic by walking in the woods and talking to himself.  He continues this path in south west Florida where he lives with his dog Amos.

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