Monday, April 11, 2016

What's on your agenda?



Senate Café Haiku

The lobbyist birds
Perch in the Senate café
Peck, then fly away


The Senate café.
Pleaders sit with Senate staff.
Deals get done. Or not.


Cellphone power low.
No meetings since one o'clock.
Guess I don't exist.

by J. David Liss
in volume 5 issue 1





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Monday, April 4, 2016

thou dost be brief



Shakespeare Tweets 
with double apologies to William Shakespeare


#73
OMG I'm getting old.
You know how people say
Summer of youth?
Well I was autumn.
Soon I'll be dead, like winter.
No birds a-chirping here.
If I was a fire, I'd be the
Embers left over.
And soon the ashes of my
Younger days
Will put me out.
Great.


#130
Dude, my girlfriend, though.
Her eyes are OK I guess,
Her lips aren't really that red though.
Her skin's nice,
But her cheeks don't have a rosy glow.
Her breath isn't terrible,
But it ain't any Chanel.
I don't really hate it when she speaks.
She's nice looking, but I mean
It's not like she's a supermodel.
It's cool, though,
Cuz she's my bae.


by Risica Caputi
in volume 4 issue 2

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Monday, March 28, 2016

Post Easterly




Jenny Dump'd Me
with apologies to Leigh Hunt
Jenny dump'd me when we met,
  Bolting from the store she walked in;
Time, that burglar, stole my pet
  Seconds after I had clocked in.
Say I'm happy nonetheless.
  Say that life has not speed-bump'd me.
Say whatever. I confess,
  Jenny dump'd me.

I Eat Grape-Nuts with Raisins
with apologies to Anonymous
I eat Grape-Nuts with raisins,
One of my breakfast habits,
And I make sure I don't confuse
My raisins with the rabbit's.


in volume 4 issue 2

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Monday, March 21, 2016

Darkness





Happiness Anonymous

Why don't you ever smile? Roger's wife complains.
She acts, he grouses, as if she'd just found him cheating.
His sons, on principle, refuse to forgive him too:
who wants a father who can't watch the news without crying?
Yes, kids are abducted into slavery in Sudan,
but, Roger's wife likes to remind him,
this is Levittown, PA. No soldiers
are disemboweling anyone on Sycamore Drive today.

Last week Sylvia's Tyler took his first wobbly steps
and tottered before her like a drunk
who suddenly grows aware he's got a left and a right side
and needs to persuade them to take turns
and share this tipsy planet. Babysitting's difficult
now I'm off heroin
. She can't stop imagining
all that's waiting to harm her grandson.

As if the sun's one true purpose were to tempt him
to throw off the years of sobriety,
Stefan sits with his back to windows. At five
he had made the mistake of playing
too long and, when he got home, found his mother
in a corner, one hand clutching the other like a wounded bird.
He loosened her fist from around the broken glass.

Jesse's only seventeen but he's already counting the hours
he has left to live. Every day he does the math
over again: all that time wasted taking out trash
or trying to comb a part into his hair
or persuading x to equal y. On a day this sunny,
in a land noticeably free of pestilence and plague,
you'd have to be ingenious to find anything to fret about,
but Jesse succeeds.


Why I haven't Killed Myself Yet
It's too messy. I know this for a fact,
having cleaned up after my friend
who, once he'd stabbed himself the first time,
couldn't stop. Clearly he hadn't
realized the squalor he'd leave, blood
on curtains, sheets, and tub.
Suicide takes a single-mindedness I lack.
It's not that I've never been tempted,
or haven't tried,
but by the twentieth pill my mind begins to wander:
who'll pick up my granddaughter from soccer practice,
switch the laundry from the washer to the dryer,
clean the cats' litter box?
My Siamese circle me as I lie on the kitchen floor.
One rubs her head against my chin.
One crawls up on my chest and starts purring.
Yin and Yang don't care about my existential crisis,
they just want dinner.
My friend did what he had to, and then I had to
scour his whole apartment
before his son and ex-wife opened the front door.
Carpet ruined, even the windows smeared.
No matter how diligently I scrubbed and mopped,
I missed some stains. Some went too deep.

by Chris Bursk
in volume 4 issue 2

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Monday, March 14, 2016

Like the flowers every spring...




Still I Reappear
with apologies to Maya Angelou
You may write me down in history
With your new love affair,
You may shrug me off
But, still like love, I reappear.

Do our memories upset you?
Why are you plagued with denial?
'Cause I linger in your dreams
As if we are still together.

Just like kisses and touches,
Given by one's great love,
Just like forbidden thoughts,
Still I'll reappear.

Did you want to see me cry?
Heartbroken and sleepless?
My spirit walking like a zombie.
Drained by craving feelings.

Does my foxiness offend you?
Don't you worry a tad bit,
'Cause I am that fantasy,
You so much want to bed.

You may belittle me with your attitude,
You may erase me with your silence,
You may deny us with your vows,
But still, like love, I'll reappear.

Does my body tempt you?
Does it worry you
That it's me you are touching
In your rendezvous bed?

Bearing the female skills that I was gifted,
I am your woman, a virgin, and a harlot.
I reappear
I reappear
I reappear.

by Gloria D. Gonsalves
in volume 4 issue 2

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