St. Oswald’s Day

St. Oswald’s Day Buying a ticket to ride the first ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge, the ticket seller’s window sign screams: “Leap Day!” I ask her. Then latte makers, the cigar-smoking pug walker, and the policeman with a bomb-sniffing beagle: “What is Leap Day to you? A holiday for card makers?” “If your birthday is […]

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A California Street

A California Street I had a vivid dream at nine, living by the California coast, walking down a wide street, past palm trees and Spanish-style houses. I marveled at the warmth of the sun, the clearness of the turquoise sea and how beautiful the birds-of-paradise were. Then I woke from the dream and walked a […]

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Personify Me

Personify Me The trees speak in Shakespearean sonnets; The tulips write short memoirs. The honeysuckles smell of metaphors and similes, Vines are smirking complex sentences. The sun has these exotic eyes— The moon tells of faraway lands; The ocean never leaves you… Grass has flushed secrets. This earth keeps you stirring coffee. The seeds have […]

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Mongering

Mongering what is the space between the brackets when the sky bruises easy? I am tired of pretending pink where much is grey. There are no lions this side of the fence yet we carry knives, whisper the beasts asleep like he himself. I want to rest the dust, quell the stampede that makes animals […]

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The Clean Bugs, The Dirty Carpet

The Clean Bugs, The Dirty Carpet The trending of past negative scars, the warzone isn’t out there it’s in here, the armed militant swans of the underground resistance have bad credit and worse mannerisms, ghetto apartments inside of the unknown and Terminus City are doorways to the abyss and anti-social personality disorders, funerals for forgotten […]

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Heavy Flowers

Heavy Flowers The hairbrush waits patiently, bedside. The mirror is off-duty. There’s a plane of quilted flowers. Breath is heavy. You feel loosely-built. The soft music of the body rocks you in the room’s warm coat. The world, large and lost, vast and wondrous, diminishes. Years will come, sweep you away. But this is where […]

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Inappropriately Dressed

Inappropriately Dressed I wasn’t dressed for snow, or clouds, or wind, or for walking at all, if I were being honest. But sometimes you just have to give it a go and trudge through the clouds, kick up the snow in passing, challenge the wind with the size of your hat. It wouldn’t dare to […]

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A Boxer’s Bell

A Boxer’s Bell Arty was born in the coal mines, hands blackened by the hardness of a coal miner’s life, a tough guy who learned how to street fight. Like a boxer, he took a boxing stance at the sound of the bell, any bell—even a cowbell or a school bell. He threw left hooks […]

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In The Orchard | 23

23 collected like sweater thread into his script floor gathers elephant trunk smolder knot at the neck and fissure what was discovered not a skeleton key but skeletal completed over the length of a conversation about spouses the weight of the wool is still there though our language is not pictorial but this is one […]

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Nature is Calling

Nature is Calling Grass of mysterious light, Do you become dry from lack of love? Nature has this bearing on all of us, Take out a white paper. Draw the red cardinal bird Singing wet songs for your neighbors. Purple lilacs left a trace of dry dirt But for once They were alive with love […]

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Permeating with Cockroaches

Permeating with Cockroaches the bathtub water runs constantly but only cold now, the cockroaches scurry, a Make America Great Again inspired nationalism pride parade, crossing the Atlantic, in lonely plastic bottles wrapped in corporate ad slogans and drifting hate, a last call to: a last stop in: Morocco Albania Ghana Argentina, suicide seems like an […]

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The Middle Verses

The Middle Verses the past bleeds, a black river the future stretches out, a winding sheet, and all that lies in the sun bears witness to the soft vowels of the earth the sky is a radiant flower a camellia rain falls like petals like broken bones chasms open mountains echo a lost word in […]

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Naming of Parts

Naming of Parts After Henry Reed Spring eased the almond blossoms open and promises of cherries while we named parts left over from winter. Collusion. Taking away, reducing, throwing in the trash legal widgets that keep the water pure, air open to the cherry’s pollen flight. We named parts with words round to our tongues, […]

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Eulogy, Old Pine

Eulogy, Old Pine This plank in my hand feels warm. My fingers, cold. I am alone in my wood shop with pieces of a working class tree who was sticky and rough, who could be prickly when pushed, who whistled, who drank only rain, who manufactured cones at prodigious rate, who sheltered the nesting owl, […]

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Overnight

Overnight Mom’s short-term memory no longer tethers one moment to the next, so I’m at the hospital to stay overnight with her following breast cancer surgery. Though she still has moorings in the distant past, recent events float quickly to a further shore, so my job is to keep retying her to a drifting present. […]

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Kid Pat

Andreas Block is a young transfeminine writer based in the Chicagoland area, pursuing a BA in Creative Writing at Beloit College. They enjoy exploring a wide range of genres in their writing, from poetry to sketch comedy. They are also a performer, having acted in a number of theater productions throughout their collegiate career. Kid Pat Have […]

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In the Orchard | 21

  21 flesh color absence lineation and left alone in favor of foliage clogging foreground my inaccuracies never become forests like this winter helps the artist covet sky less it’s honest a gray third call it good Justin Runge is the author of Plainsight (New Michigan Press, 2012) and Hum Decode (Greying Ghost Press, 2014). […]

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Getting Played

Valarie Smith studied English, Creative Writing and Journalism at NYU before moving to Portland, OR, where she’s worked in corporate communications for many years. In between, she was a subway courier, a literary agency assistant and the manager of the personal ads at an alternative newspaper (and yes, she could tell you some stories). Getting […]

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Welcome News

Cliff Saunders has an MFA in Creative Writing from The University of Arizona. His poems have appeared recently in The Wayne Literary Review, Pedestal Magazine, Wilderness House Literary Review, Pinyon, San Pedro River Review, North of Oxford, and RipRap Literary Journal. He lives in Myrtle Beach, where he serves as co-coordinator of The Litchfield Tea […]

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Deconstruction

Mir-Yashar is a graduate of Colorado State University’s MFA program in fiction. A recipient of two Honorable Mentions from Glimmer Train, his story, “Soon” was nominated for a Pushcart. Mir-Yashar’s stories are forthcoming or have been published in journals such as Fiction Kitchen Berlin, Johnny America, Silent Auctions, City. River. Tree. and Ariel Chart. Deconstruction […]

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bitter tea

Anum Sattar is a recent graduate from the College of Wooster in Ohio, USA. Her poems have been published in the American Journal of Poetry (Margie,) Notre Dame Review, Meniscus Journal by Australian Association of Writing Programs, Lullwater Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Triggerfish Critical Review, Coal City Review and Florida Review. She won the first […]

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The Little People

The Little People Three little people hang out on the the edge of my bookshelves quietly reading the life history of corvids the courtship of red-tails light on yoga a book of Celtic legends and Anglo-Saxon riddles. They cross their feet in zazen, permission granted to enter the narrows, follow the ways of shelf elves. […]

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Gloves

Clyde Kessler, poet and naturalist, lives in Radford, VA with his wife Kendall and their son Alan. Several years ago they added an art studio to their home and named it Towhee Hill. His latest book of poems, Fiddling at Midnight’s Farmhouse (Cedar Creek Publishing), was illustrated by his wife, Kendall Kessler. Gloves You reflect […]

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Exeter

Jacqueline Hampton doesn’t believe in coincidence. When the former biochemist turned high-tech exec discovered she’d worked with not one, but two murderers during her career, she started writing stories laced with poison and humor to remind people that the “things that never happen” – just might. Exeter The bottle explodes at our feet, spraying Denise and […]

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If God & Satan Were Pals

Andreas Block is a young transfeminine writer based in the Chicagoland area, pursuing a BA in Creative Writing at Beloit College. They enjoy exploring a wide range of genres in their writing, from poetry to sketch comedy. They are also a performer, having acted in a number of theater productions throughout their collegiate career. If God & […]

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The Strongest Love

Cliff Saunders has an MFA in Creative Writing from The University of Arizona. His poems have appeared recently in The Wayne Literary Review, Pedestal Magazine, Wilderness House Literary Review, Pinyon, San Pedro River Review, North of Oxford, and RipRap Literary Journal. He lives in Myrtle Beach, where he serves as co-coordinator of The Litchfield Tea […]

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Into the Blue

Jonathan Douglas Dowdle was born in Nashua, NH and has traveled throughout the US, he currently resides in South Carolina. Previous works have appeared or are appearing in: Hobo Camp Review, 322 Review, The Opiate, The Right Place At The Write Time, Blue Hour Review, Whimperbang, After The pause, Midnight Lane Boutique, North Of Oxford, […]

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The Lone and Level Sands

CB Droege is an author and voice actor from the Queen City living in the Millionendorf. Recent publications include work in Nature Futures and Science Fiction Daily. The Lone and Level Sands Earthlings, We regret that you are too late. You call this a “first contact mission” and I understand your excitement, I assure you. […]

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yellow dandelion

Anum Sattar is a recent graduate from the College of Wooster in Ohio, USA. Her poems have been published in the American Journal of Poetry (Margie,) Notre Dame Review, Meniscus Journal by Australian Association of Writing Programs, Lullwater Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Triggerfish Critical Review, Coal City Review and Florida Review. She won the first […]

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Well of Souls

Robert Walton is a retired middle school teacher and a lifelong rock climber with many ascents in the Sierras and Pinnacles National Park. His publishing credits include works of science fiction, fantasy and poetry. Walton’s historical novel Dawn Drums won the 2014 New Mexico Book Awards Tony Hillerman Prize for best fiction and first place […]

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The Bread Line

The Bread Line Bread lines on sidewalk cracks start and end with silent smugglers. Queued, ranks of worker ants scurry to moist nests in fissures, valets to white-rice eggs, nothing matters but next. Ants begin with burdens larger than their bodies. When something needs doing, she does it – skirting roadblocks, swerving to avoid gridlock. […]

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Boot

Clyde Kessler, poet and naturalist, lives in Radford, VA with his wife Kendall and their son Alan. Several years ago they added an art studio to their home and named it Towhee Hill. His latest book of poems, Fiddling at Midnight’s Farmhouse (Cedar Creek Publishing), was illustrated by his wife, Kendall Kessler. Boot This morning […]

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Beginnings

George Tom is a speculative fiction writer from Bangalore, India. Beginnings I crouch on the bitterly cold surface. Although the suit’s climate controlled to the last degree, I want to shiver. My visor helps me see through the incessant blizzard and I can see the team trudging on towards what has brought me to do […]

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Obsolescence

Franco Amati received his B.A. in Psychology and is working on his Ph.D. in Cognitive Science. He lives in New York with his partner and two cats. Obsolescence Leon booted me up today. He needed to transfer some files to his new device. It felt good to wake up again. Took a while to get going, […]

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Socrates Dreams of Intelligent Design

Michael Katz teaches at Case Western Reserve University. He has published a number of fictional Socratic dialogues. His favorites are: 1988 Pherecydes’ fable. Syracuse Scholar 9: 79-84. 2005 Socrates and the wrestling exam. SubtleTea [Online] 2009 Socrates to himself. Philosophy Now 73:52-52 and Vocabula [Online] Socrates Dreams of Intelligent Design CORISCUS: Socrates, why are you […]

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Hello L’Hiver

Kristopher William Locke is a poet and artist born, raised and situated in the Canadian prairies with experience in various mediums including radio, print, web and stage. Readers are invited to join him on the peaks and valleys that exist within, and despite, the flat prairie landscape of his homeland. The result is part of his shared […]

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The Friction Between Things

Wim Coleman is a playwright, poet, novelist, and nonfiction writer. His poetry has been published in SOL: English Writing in Mexico, The Opiate, Dissenting Voice, Tuck Magazine, and Vita Brevis. His play The Shackles of Liberty was the winner of the 2016 Southern Playwrights Competition. Novels that he has co-authored with his wife, Pat Perrin, include Anna’s World, […]

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Venom

Robert Walton is a retired middle school teacher and a lifelong rock climber with many ascents in the Sierras and Pinnacles National Park. His publishing credits include works of science fiction, fantasy and poetry. Walton’s historical novel Dawn Drums won the 2014 New Mexico Book Awards Tony Hillerman Prize for best fiction and first place […]

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Day of the Blackbirds

David Reuter is a New Jersey based poet. His work has been published in The Cape Rock, Existere Journal, Sanskrit Literary-Arts Magazine and Vox Poetica.  He attended William Paterson University’s Writer’s Conference in 2018 and Rutgers Writers’ Conferences in 2017, 2018 and 2019. He has a bachelor’s degree from Caldwell College, works as a paralegal and enjoys practicing martial arts, playing […]

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Heart Gazing

Kailah Peters is an emerging African American writer who studies creative writing at DePaul University. She writes with Poems While You Wait, a team of poets and their typewriters who compose commissioned poetry on demand around Chicago. Her work was debuted in Rigorous Magazine. Heart Gazing Hannah says, “I want to see my heart.” I […]

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Painted Life

Trevy Thomas’s work has appeared in The Coachella Review, Dr. T.J. Eckleburg Review, Forge Journal, Sliver of Stone, Drunk Monkeys, Five on the Fifth, the 2017 River Tides anthology, and in Woodwork magazine. Trevy lives in Virginia with her husband and four dogs. It was easy for her to confess to the loss of old memories. Everyone experienced those. […]

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How to Hover Over a Hackneyed and Hassle-free Armageddon in Scandinavia

Hiya Mukherjee was born and brought up in Kolkata. She writes mostly in her mother tongue Bengali. Her work has appeared in Plato’s Caves Online and Friday Flash Fiction. She co-edits a bilingual and bimonthly blogzine called ‘Agony Opera‘. How to Hover Over a Hackneyed and Hassle-free Armageddon in Scandinavia The Lumerian Institute for Humphrey […]

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Grosbeaks

David Daniel’s stories have appeared in The Vermont Review, Sleet, 101 Words, Everyday Fiction, Crack the Spine, Postcard Shorts, Zombie Logic and elsewhere. His most recent book, Inflections & Innuendos, is a collection of flash fiction. He teaches at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. Early sunlight pinking their wings, they flutter in the eaves of […]

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