Sunday, 21 November 2010

Issue nine// Paul Handley

Poetry Loves Genius

___+03=standing water

-------By Homer

© Paul Handley 2010
Paul Handley has poems included or forthcoming in publications such as Anemone Sidecar, Carcinogenic Poetry, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Pemmican and others.

Issue nine// Tom Sheehan

Rimnents (on cudi, but not y)

My grendfethir ren thi coty damp,
barnid clonkirs on e lottli huasi
hi medi uf screp. Un culd noghts dranks
slipt on thet meki-shoft hevin.

Thiy kniw thi wolcumi uf hos fori,
thi mingir’s stuvi tu wrep eruand,
hut carbong tu prup culd fiit,
qaock doffirinci frum thi fruzin eor,

wond-swipt reolrued trecks, beri intry weys,
derkniss whiri huwlong ghusts ebodi
ur, lest risurt, slom cerdbuerd wrep.
Thi lust, lunily bords cemi tu ruust,

fliw on et dask. Hi stukid thi fori
tu stor ap flemis, droid thior fiethers uff.
Jast es uftin hi lift hos lanch ebuat
loki testy sait hengong on thi yerd.

Un Setardeys O bruaght hos lanch,
dinsi lemonetis uf miet end bried,
thock end hievy end cuersi es son,
bruwn benene wi wuald nut iet,

mulessis-bruwn cuffii on whoskiy buttlis
wuand ebuat woth pepir begs.
O nivir sew ivin uni pont buttli
fonoshid uff wothon hos gresp,

rerily sew hos smell bint hend fiilong
onsodi e pepir big. Hos bords
dod thi pockong, hed sait chuoci,
hins donong bifuri thi cuck.

Whin hi doid thiy cemi tu groivi
thi sevouar uf thior noghts,
thi drankin, bisuttid, bruthirid bend
whu su uftin dreonid hos cap,

thi muttli-skonnid, thi suarid uf lofi,
peli hust, thi werrid apun end bietin,
thiy cemi tu cechi thi lottli men
whu uffirid whet wes lift uf Gud.

© Tom Sheehan 2010
Tom Sheehan’s books are Epic Cures and Brief Cases, Short Spans, Press 53; A Collection of Friends and From the Quickening, Pocol Press. Poetry collections include The Saugus Book; Ah, Devon Unbowed; and This Rare Earth & Other Flights. He served with the 31st Infantry Regiment in Korea in 1951. He has 14 Pushcart nominations, the Georges Simenon Award for fiction, included in the Dzanc Best of the Web Anthology for 2009 and nominated for Best of the Web 2010.

Issue nine// Mike Berger

Dead Poets

Champagne skies crash down;
revealing the realms of dead poets.
All reciting lines; the lyrical blend
is a rancorous chorus.
Sitting at the massive elliptical table,
they indulge in cheese and wine. Each
struggles to be heard above the din.
Humble poets all; reciting their well
crafted lines. Each thinking the others
don't compare. Sitting back you can't
help but smile, impressed by their
profound sense of humility.
Only the bard sits silent, he has nothing
to prove.

© Mike Berger 2010
Mike Berger PhD is bright, articulate, handsome, and extremely humble.

Issue nine// Victoria Behn

Good Cause Is

© Victoria Behn 2010
Between bouts of frenzied procrastination, Victoria Behn transfers scraps of her tainted filtrations into shapes that some people claim to understand. She believes that art does not require supporting information. Her chief pleasure involves turning shapes on a page into damp cheeks or gaping mouths.

Issue nine// Thomas Mundt

Sexy Girls of the Hollywood

Come Monday morning, all Freddie could think about was Sexy Girls of the Hollywood, a lingerie boutique on Lawrence. He saw the storefront for the first time over the weekend and it'd been stock car racing around his frontal lobe ever since.

As a matter of strict physics, he was standing on the bathroom's frozen tile, waiting for his never-ending morning piss to subside so that he could rescue a near-incinerated strudel from the toaster oven. But Freddie was really back on that sidewalk in Albany Park, gawking at bad grammar and pastel delicates.

Sexy Girls. Pause. Of the Hollywood. Not ...of Hollywood, or ...from Hollywood. Sexy Girls. Pause. Of the Hollywood.

Freddie knew some FOB's came up with the name. FOB's are funny, he thought. They come so close to getting it right.


During his Western Civ class, Freddie flipped through his spiral notebook in search of blank pages. He found he only had one left. Better make this one a keeper, he thought. He withdrew a mechanical pencil from his messenger bag and clicked it until graphite appeared. Then he began to sketch an ink-haired woman in a garter set. She was all legs and he was perfect in his geometry, paying careful attention to detail as he unfurled her latticed nylons down her gams. When it was time to add breasts, Freddie made sure they were proportional.

Not too big, not too small, he thought. Like a real lady would have.


At lunch Freddie was a geyser, went on and on about his trip to Albany Park to his buddy Mitch. He sang of lithe coeds parading around Sexy Girls' storefront in miniscule bra and panty sets, of Woodstock-level exhibitionism just a stone's throw from his tía's new three-flat.

I'm talkin' a whole grip of 'em, Freddie beamed. I'm talkin' tits like ka-pow! Asses like goddamn! He told Mitch he was sure they all did sets at the Admiral, probably made a killing off all the dudes coming in from O'Hare. They were that hot.

You gotta check it out, Freddie implored. Like, today.

Mitch snorted, cracked wise about having his secretary clear his schedule.

Shit better be good.


On the westbound Lawrence bus, Freddie wondered if it was too late to abort. He didn't want to go inside. I don't have to, if I don't want to, he thought. He could leave. He could pull the cord to stop at Francisco and just book. He could run clear east to Uptown, to his hermana's high-rise. There he could take an elevator to the top floor and jump into Lake Michigan. All of that would be better than going inside.


Mitch snapped his Orbit as he watched a liver-spotted man in a Members Only jacket drape a pink feather boa around the neck of a mannequin. The fuck, he winced. I don't see any chicks. He then whipped a half-empty Coke bottle at the window. The twenty-ounce made a dull thud against the plate glass and fell to the sidewalk without spilling its contents. The man inside Sexy Girls cursed Mitch in a language he'd never heard before, a string of consonants played at 45 RPM, before resuming his handiwork.

You fuckin' lied, Mitch leveled at Freddie. He then turned and walked in the direction of The Benches, off to burn a blunt with whomever. Freddie was already next door, pretending to look at VHS tapes in a Korean bookstore's window display.

Fuck you, Polack, he thought. No one put a gun to your head.


After saying his prayers, Freddie got up off his knees and locked his bedroom door. He then unbuckled his belt and let his gamey jeans fall to the carpet. He didn't bother to step out of the puddle of denim around his ankles. The notebook was ready, waiting for him on the corner of his desk. He opened it and leafed through page after page of notes about marauding Romans until he got to the sketch. He gave the woman one last once-over, burned her form into his brain. Then he closed his eyes and drew back the taut elastic of his boxers.

She's perfect, he thought. Not too big, not too small.

© Thomas Mundt 2010
Thomas Mundt lives in Chicago. The nice people at Thieves Jargon, Dogzplot, Wigleaf, NANO Fiction and Hobart have published his recent stuff. His whole megillah can be found here.

Issue nine// satnrose

a troped poem by satnrose

lie his lie is his and your lie is yours the remnants of blood again bored
redder but there's a bread sometimes the solution saw the pulse that salt
seeds in cherry but I know without her way second back the endless nut
this is the last nothing he looks running up and rocks a long kiss making
this a time for everything but to aim one then one must be aware of it
but you can in you and it can be everlasting except she ran steps as far
away from you as she could get but it was false as music between say
the thing was where you hurt there's a sea melting forsaken at a comm-
unist pace the rain again today on this very earth a cardinal can give a
kill and maybe and gone yourself worth spring the detective from jail
and you’ll know the twice with the old going they now survive on leave
shall we just butter the toast and not filch nothing finding yourself numb
and unable to celebrate won't you live a guess my wife hears in spark ha-
ppy! tears you gave for me make me forget hell it’s cruel and the sound
of the click of the shutter means the photograph has been transferred to
glass I lit out of the house so baby let us decide now but decades down
the road we must pay ransom so the death dogs won’t come looking for
us I forgot mine I have no blood left and say if the sycamore boy is right
and the ice if having as hysteria and dawn for you if there is an impatient
difference the won't would be the only thing that made a difference and
if only I could wake lying here with the six beekeepers one for me and
one for you and the other for for I’m not sure the fool central is central
to the argument so don't tell me how much time I have and have we seen
eye-to-eye? not who was unable between getting beneath a million or the
increases but at the next turn taking missionaries as knee-babies tonight
maybe bread jets in nicely in for the whole lot and maybe you can hide
after all but don't it see you doing the what if and what I came to this sw-
eet place this street where the universe is plainly visible but I awake for
just cause and have the stones only to go away my heart it is the dream
and you when there is here with which maybe who could so take foot
and turn that around moving by touch the clock offered pity and always
there is fighting starting somewhere no matter where I stand by as what's
invasive there's a light ticking rhythm in the sun so just go let go of the
one and when burning simply leave start the near sun all over again be-
fore he jumps before he is ready given the terrified doorway called before
you I maintain here the same sunflower and then when the One does co-
me come they’re like monkeys that even if you stop go down blue tomo-
rrow is solid and the train can take us much further I have a feeling any-
way that by deep laughing even the dust will no longer be waiting this is
all I get and what I cannot accept are the years in which its awakening
suddenly the cold digs into my skin and the sun is flying past the window
and those still in the gutter are up better than we know we just have to
last long enough to here blood will tell so our intentions are noble our
appetite is a dog what you want you dissolved in crimes day after day
there's fear and then there are yesterdays you have your own cross to
bear what you see in the mirror reflects the before words time and by
falling go if you will the line you crossed is the line you lost the wolf
of our season will maybe maybe be your last friend the room shakes it
must be an earthquake the haves who have the trickery put out the fire
I am stuck with what I think is a block of time all you say came as you
remembered it was stupid to kiss the sky he said but why not try there's
people out there making babies there’s sparrows pecking through the
corpses on the battlefield there’s snow blooming so raise steady or you
will lose what was dreamed and possibly even yourself in the process
when you get that cold you pay and December is old meanwhile the ba-
ttle continues and the such and the saved saved are crying and there’s
nothing I can do about it I tried to staunch the blood but it was hopeless
be that as it may tears fall as black as the sun the secret of being what I
meant to be said was that the nothing but heart can still be just as cruel
when trying to be kind as when trying to kill tell me is this tomorrow?

© satnrose 2010
satnrose is a well-known antiquarian bookseller, and formerly a not-so-secret messenger in the innermost depths of Capitol Hill and K Street. He has been published in a number of literary magazines, but since his reincarnation as 'satnrose' last year, he has been published in Evergreen Review, Iconoclast, Danse Macabre and Counterexample Poetics, among others.