Month: May 2019

Pfft

Pfft

You trip into my tongue / I want to keep you there forever / Speak for me / Fill me with your balladry / Your saliva will grow fresh fruit / Under my stuttering gum /   Anastasia Jill is a queer writer living in 

Jim

Jim

Jim’s hands shake As he sits in his plastic chair, His bald head speckled with white hairs, His eyes big and blank. I see him but I don’t see him often He keeps relapsing, disappearing I think about how it’s likely No one will find 

re: deconstruction in D minor

re: deconstruction in D minor

we will start
with something obvious something
like why is love simply |||||||||||||||?
why can be an adverb
a noun an interjection
& probably other things
it’s shifty this one
why begs for a reason
re: Hachikō the Akita Inu who
waited every day
for ten years at the train station
for Hidesaburō the professor
after he had died
or re: the electrical socket’s look
of surprise or dismay
depending on where it is

is on the other hand is
a state of being of existence
a continuation
re: Hidesaburō could not
cup is in his palms
do you see the conflict
of interest here?
re: think how your eyes slide over
these words how your brain makes
sense of these words & wanders
how your bones feel settled
into your skin
think of how some draft
has brushed your face
now or at some other point
Hidesaburō is the opposite of is yet

love is both noun & verb
re: both my darling
& let’s fuck both a score of zero
& how you might feel about the beach
in Old English lufu & lufian
do you see how love changed
how it evolves?
re: Hachikō the Akita Inu who
waited at the train station
for Hidesaburō the professor
before he died

while simply is easy simply isn’t fickle
simply the adverb loves to adjust
& correct to make
too fine a point of things
simply is only & mere
re: your soul and its formation
re: how your soul will either blink
off one day or be chucked
into some other flesh
forgetful
of the precarious
nature of doors
re: when he died
in front of his students
Hidesaburō the professor felt
himself loose and disappear

even though ||||||||||||||| implies synthesis
||||||||||||||| is a noun that is
both detour & silent promise
both indirect route & I’ll show
you ||||||||||||||| toes the line between
Big Sable Point & Eddystone Rocks
do you see how ||||||||||||||| folds onto itself?
re: the moment your mother puts you
down for the last time
re: Hachikō the Akita Inu waits

of course it ends with a ?
a ? marks an unknown puzzle
a ? lays the chain link code
between your hay-packed tongue
& your heavy hands
do you see how a ? is exactly impossible?
re: the secret fear you’ll turn
into a ? when you die
re: Hachikō the Akita Inu died of cancer
re: Hachikō the Akita Inu lives
with four bamboo barbeque
skewers in his stomach
because he is a dog
& the skewers
tasted like meat

 


Nicole Mason is currently an MFA candidate in poetry at Western Michigan University and is the poetry editor at Third Coast Magazine. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Midwestern Gothic, Slipstream, Roanoke Review, Atticus Review, and others. She lives in Kalamazoo, MI with her husband and their three ungrateful dogs.

Amtrak as a Red Wheelbarrow

Amtrak as a Red Wheelbarrow

The average blink lasts one-tenth of a second, as fast as we lapse past each tunnel light. In the train car we’re in, zipping through New Jersey, I’m reading William Carlos Williams and falling in love with some boy’s eyes like molé sitting beside me, 

Hypothetical Zombie Vacuum Salesman

Hypothetical Zombie Vacuum Salesman

What if the dead came back in the tune of your favorite song? What if they turned up on your doorstep selling vacuums and matchboxes that looked like bibles, their bodies shaped like your mouth when it presses against my skin? (Is that still considered 

familiar

familiar

I whistle out into the night & it comes to me. a creature that already knows my intentions. its feet fit nicely into the divot made by my collarbones. it is like me: accustomed to dim light & hiding its talons. I am teaching it to speak. juniper, I tell it. calamity. it is ravenous & I am responsible for feeding it. it eats small mechanical parts. sudden laughter. soft hair from the napes of men’s necks. it grows restless indoors so I show it wild blackberries. bury it in a pile of leaves. it stores breezes of all different weights in its lungs. I drive it to the coast for a taste of fog. take it on a run so it can savor the crunch of a winter morning. one day it nosedives from a hemlock & I stitch its wing up with embroidery thread. it alights on my finger when I call. it has started to hum at dusk. nightmare, I pronounce for it slowly. femur femur femur, it murmurs back. it has two sets of eyelids. it knows to hold prolonged eye contact only with me.

 


Karah Kemmerly grew up in Northern California but currently lives in Corvallis, where she is pursuing an MFA in poetry at Oregon State University. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Spectrum Literary Journal, The Tulane Review, and the Plath Poetry Project.

Powdered Water

Powdered Water

Dream a quenched love, gambit akin to chess, poured into a narrow hallway from some tall glass—a gauntlet, say. Not gantlet, two lines, men with sticks beating cuckolds, lechers, liars running by. Also, gimlet nearby—tool to glide inside a pretty package, bore the hole deep 

Endnote

Endnote

Dear child, I feel as if I only learned the stolen ways of silence, the trickle of a stream near frozen, I only learned that boiling water seals the deeply broken bones that cascade in open rebellion against the sworn shape of a body. The