JOHN GREY – WALLFLOWER

WALLFLOWER

He feels bad for denying his body

to the ones that do not want it.

His hands stay in his pockets.

His lips open only to speak.

Every part of him feels the sacrifice.

Every woman in the club

doesn’t notice that he’s there.

He keeps his eye on the men

who do surrender to their longing.

The other sex assign themselves

to each and every one

of these unabashed lotharios.

He despises how the way they abase themselves.

No way he’d demean himself

by asking another to dance.

His soul is pure.

His conscience, a fountain of clarity.

If any sin tonight,

it won’t be on his account.

When the place closes,

he goes home alone again.

“Did you have a good time?”

asks his mother.

He had an unblemished time.

He feels bad for thinking that’s good.

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Erren Geraud Kelly – BROKE OFF LIKE TRUMP

Broke Off Like Trump

an old hippie sits

on the street in

handcuffs

they stopped him

because of a joint

 

they  used probable cause

to search his truck

and found a .45

they took  him in

though he had a gun permit

the hippie yelled for hours

about a trumped-up charge

 

another football player

takes a knee in the shadow

of the american flag

when questioned by the

media for his actions

he explained ” i’m just a pawn

in the white man’s game,” though he

bragged

in the past about being ” broke

off like trump ”

 

in brooklyn, i once worked on a

moving job on christmas eve

we had to pack up a mom

and 4 kids, cos they fell

four months behind

i told my co-worker

it was the foulest thing

a person could do

but her neighbor bailed her out

the woman told her, she’d

love to point her .38

at the face of old mister trump

 

the headlines read like orwellian declarations

like muhammad ali knocking out

sonny liston

” The Donald,” grabs life  by

the  pussy

he stands with his trophy wife yelling

” i shook up the world…”

this is the penitence we’ll  pay

for not appreciating Obama

 

i wonder could i spend a

few years, not saying the word

” Trump?”

 

an interracial couple

boards a greyhound bus

for montreal

they dont know when they’ll

be coming back

but they know love trumps

hate

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JOEY NICOLETTI – Motherfucking Jeopardy at The Gypsy Parlor Café and Bar

Motherfucking Jeopardy at The Gypsy Parlor Café and Bar

Hayburner on tap. Todd, the bar owner, turns up

the TV’s volume: It’s time

 

for Jeopardy. “Drink and play, Balls,”

he commands. All questions must be shouted

 

at the TV, as well as preceded

by the phrase, “What is motherfucking.”

 

Todd clears his throat, then demonstrates:

“What is motherfucking Donkey Punch?

 

What is motherfucking Enceladus?

What is motherfucking Hiram

 

Ulysses Grant?” A Daily Double. Tequila shots are on

the house, as long as the Jeopardy contestant bets all

 

of his or her money, and asks the right question. Not tonight.

Todd shakes his head. The people seated at the bar boo

 

and hiss. The bartenders laugh as they mix

and pour drinks. Another Hayburner for me.

 

“That guy has no guts, Balls,” Todd bellows. “Absolutely no

motherfucking testicles.”

~

Find Joey on Twitter or Instagram

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ROBIN WYATT DUNN – NEW MEN

New men

We’re designing new men

macerated men

cut to length

arbiter of luck

maker of stage

metal men

flesh men

 

huge and triumphant

unable to remember or feel

 

men made out of iron

and lace

 

men who whistle

and club words off of pages

and the names out of children’s mouths

 

what luck with forgetting

the forgetting men

 

made new and bright

made out of everything you’d seen

from the lighthouse in Windsor and Bohemia

and older places

 

watching them move into the light and out of it

while you shouted their names

to see if they could move in time

~

find Robin here

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Wanda Deglane – 2 POEMS

Goldfish

I didn’t realize I liked girls until I was 16

because my catholic upbringing never allowed

that part of me to ever see the light of day. Nearly every

adult I ever looked up to said, why would we let

the gays marry someone they love when they could

just suppress their feelings and make it easier

on the rest of us, and that sunk in somewhere

deep inside and it snapped out at every part of me

that wanted to explore those untapped feelings,

pushing them far, far down in the hopes i wouldn’t

find them again. It never mattered how far I pushed, my sin

always came bubbling up to the surface, starved and

half-drowned but alive alive alive.

 

When I was 17, I kept my mouth shut. So many lovely

girls around me wrapped hot coils around my heart but

I heard the way they spoke about those muslims

those transgenders those gays and I painted my

damned lips shut with the strongest glue. A boy

approached me then, quiet and subtle, and he snuck

in somewhere I never thought I’d let anyone. I never

noticed how his hands seemed to wander constantly and

how his eyes always lingered on my ass, but his rough fingers

grabbed hold of the corners of my mouth and pulled

and pulled until my secret came prying loose. When

it went flying in the hostile air he caught it with the smack

of his hand and he roared, what the fuck do you mean?

don’t you know you’ll burn in hell?

 

I’ve thought about it forever and ever, I cried, and I know

god loves me whether I like girls or not. and he screamed,

no no no you’ll burn you’ll burn you’re a nasty fucking sinner.

my words fell flat in an endless void, saying over and over

he made me this way he loves me he loves me,

until the void eventually swallowed them whole with bitter, hot shame

to wash it all down. Rotten with hatred,

I watched as my carefully-guarded secret spread like tongues

of wildfire and the eyes of judgment fell on me, cracking

tar-black, hot whips on my head to fold me farther into

the neat box I once came out of.

 

A week later, my family called to me from downstairs,

you’d better come see this, and out my front door

every organ inside me sank to my toes when I saw

streaming white covering every inch of my house,

my home, my only safe haven. What a silly prank,

my aunts and uncles said, pulling toilet paper from

the branches of our tree, overlooking the fact that

17-year olds don’t TP anymore, or at least not for the fun of it.

This wasn’t lost on my parents. Who would do this?

And why? Tears fell quick down my cheeks as I said,

I don’t know I don’t know, only proving that I did and they

said, What have you done? What did you do to make them do this?

 

Wanda, come look. I was called to the porch again to find

a bucket filled with water, two goldfish swimming inside,

lost and scared and unaware they were being used

as the strangest statement of hate. Scooping them out into

a bowl of fresh water, I watched them swim in confused and

endless circles, murmuring apologies as the sky outside

turned violet and gold. Who told you to be sorry?

one fish said to me with a gurgling, deep voice. Will you

keep being sorry as they spit at you forever? I stared at his wide,

gaping mouth as he said, You’re everything their god can only

let them hope to be, and they’ll destroy you for it.

 

So are you going to let them?

Or are you going to tell them to kiss your ass?

~

Paranormal

The ghost who lives in our dorm room is named Kimberly. She died after going head to head with four bottles of vodka one bleak, crazy night in January, 15 years ago. She’s kind of a bitch, but not enough so to possess me and make my head spin around like an owl. She mostly likes to move our things from place to place to fuck with us. Some days, my roommate finds her snacks hidden underneath her pillow, and when we look at Kimberly, she shrugs and says, I was saving those for later. But as far as ghosts go, she’s really not so bad. On days where the air outside is a sweltering 115 degrees, her presence keeps the room comfortably chilly. She spends all our time sitting by our beds and watching as we do homework and occasionally say, This shit is so hard. I wish I could just drop out or pull a Kimberly. One night in January, we all curl up on the couch in the lounge to watch a horror movie about a ghost living in an old lady’s wall, while Kimberly sits next to me. She likes to watch horror movies and take notes on how else to make us shit our pants, but thirty minutes in, we realize this particular ghost is pretty terrible. The film plateaus into a boring lull, and Kimberly falls asleep, her head dousing my shoulder in ice-cold. When the movie finally crashes and burns, I shake Kimberly awake. Hey, it’s over. You really missed out, I tell her, and she genuinely seems bummed. I miss my mom, she says, her voice a pathetic, whispery breeze. I hate this. I hate everything. I miss being alive. I stare at her, helplessly trying to form the right words, but what is there to possibly say? Kimberly gets up and walks straight through the wall into our room. From that night on, our room is especially, bitterly cold.

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