Month: June 2017

Via Lactea

Via Lactea

Puerto Maldonado, Peru 2003 There are more stars in the southern hemisphere, I’m convinced. All the grand small things of the night hum and whir with life, a bat streaks past my blind face and the river swells after nine hours of rain. Javier raises 

Almost After Appearance

Almost After Appearance

Between a bay and a beach, a gale built from gray to gray: an evident, flatiron figure. Eastern, experimental frames, carrying a conventional crew of chance, developed during dead-rise displacement, furling forward, from a frolic to an extraordinary, almost forgotten example of exaggeration. Courtesy adrift, 

Captive Raptor

Captive Raptor

for Anna-Lisa Hillenburg

The kestrel clutched our ranger’s padded fist,
its rust-streaked cheeks jerking quizzically
from girl to girl. We listened drowsily in mist
before the thunder broke, before we leaned
beneath that tiny canopy to keep
at least our shirtfronts dry. ‘Imprinted’ means
she can’t survive outside captivity,
the ranger sighed, then continued streaming
through camp. That night I dreamed inside the storm
both girls cawed to help a beak rip out
its handler’s eyes, swallowing his warm
and tendriled nerves. Like Oedipus without
a trail to stagger bleeding on the loam
they flew into the dark to speak with stones.


Adam Tavel is the author of The Fawn Abyss (Salmon Poetry, 2017) and Plash & Levitation (University of Alaska Press, 2015), winner of the Permafrost Book Prize in Poetry. You can find him online at https://adamtavel.com/.

Falling Sky, Hope Smoldering

Falling Sky, Hope Smoldering

Initial reports claim a white scar streaking the desert sky, sonic boom and wind, broken glass in Vegas over 300 miles away, a shockwave so sudden gamblers drop their drinks and remorseful addicts repent on Flamingo Ave. Star- watcher websites crash from the volume 
of 

anti-antiphonal

anti-antiphonal

in the interests of overthrowing monopolised assets like male, God & I this poem would like to begin at the end there is no guarantee that the beginning will be there when you finish so if you can entrain odd sympathy and stop the clock 

Pit Stop

Pit Stop

“There must be quite a few things that a hot bath won’t cure,
but I don’t know any of them.” -Sylvia Plath

In Kootenay County, B.C. at the Halcyon Hot Springs,
we pillage our backpacks in search of swimsuits

and towels. Our blanched Alaskan skin glows pale halibut
under pyred sun. Giggling we bound like white-tailed

deer to the pool’s edge, plunge foot, leg, body into beryl
water. We slide into the tonic unaffected by afternoon

temperatures. Rie, our daughter, is frosted with sunscreen,
trussed with enough flotation to shoot like a champagne

cork around the jetted swim channel, nothing but giggles
and wind; skylarking and shenanigans. Later, elbows

propped upon pool’s deck, road tripped muscles warmed,
limber, I watch the waves joggle Upper Arrow Lake.

Daughter in the spray park, husband in the mineral
soak; if I could sleep in water, I would.


Kersten Christianson is a raven-watching, moon-gazing Alaskan. When not exploring the summer lands and dark winter of the Yukon, she lives in Sitka, Alaska. She completed her MFA through the University of Alaska Anchorage (2016).   Her book of poetry Something Yet to Be Named is forthcoming (Aldrich Press, 2017).

Violent Intruder Defense

Violent Intruder Defense

Columbine was a big deal. Gunshots indoors do not sound like what you think they sound like. You will get to experience that today. Let me show you a bullet through paper. Tell your children. Children, put your backpacks between you and the shooter. Paper 

glory

glory

my cousin’s neck is craned into the shape of a decade his open mouth spread wide enough for his laughter to spill out & stretch its fingers into the fog of summer he is choking on the same story of me & my skin that 

The Basement

The Basement

there was a painter who would paint
on a large canvas. and then when the
painting was finished the painter would
paint over it in grey, and in white and in white,
layer after layer in white, and every
painting was a storm, a story of how time
changes things and you must start over.


Oscar Montes is a poet living in San Antonio, TX and is a student at San Antonio Community College. His Poetry has appeared in Bitterzoet and Voices de la Luna.

January Storm

January Storm

In my sleep, my throat was cut again, in that sleep my skin was whiter than our walls, when in waking it is more red, a constant blush of shame. When I woke it was to my daughter’s cries. She has words now. Spaced throughout