July 31, 2008

four months of pure joy

money was running short
winter had been mild
spring was around the corner
and we were celebrating
four months of pure joy

i had docked in so many ports
you had had enough summers wild
bring your stuff over
and we can live with papers pending
that's an idea i always toy with

if this is the beginning of the rest of our lives
then let it roll roll roll
our friendship, the best joint-venture ever
making plans of making art and tell the world
that it is all so real when we are together

shoneal calhoun (New York, NY, 1981)

July 30, 2008

she is now dating some brazilian guy

for Amy, with love and regret

chinese food wrappers spread on the floor
spicy nachos, empty bottles, ageless lint
and tucked between the cushions
your goodbye letter, damp

inked in blue, written in a shake
you were still doing coke when you left
i am happily unemployed still
i am stilll a mess like you were with me

i could have never become a father
and while i tried to come to terms with myself
i know i felt with you that itch
i think i was in love

she is now dating some brazilian guy karl told me
and i cried in front of the tv
that's why the letter was wet
stained with the grease of the nachos and the hot sauce

i just wish you well
i hope you are clean
and have plans of having a family
that's what you always really really wanted

ron kenan (Colchester, VT, 1972)

July 29, 2008

summon me, the undertaker

make it free, break the verse
unleash the poetry within
forget the i, i, i
but use it if you need it

in dreams i dreamed of poetry
verses dictated in the middle of the night
i jotted down some words
but in the next morning the handwriting was unreadable

so i try fall asleep
and summon the poet back
i hear his voice but now
he is up to something else

the recipe for shortcake i believe
and i tell him i don't need that
and he goes again: make it free, break the verse
unleash the poetry within

will tognetti (Groton, CT, 1979)

July 28, 2008


a whole band playing in my head
the brass section is blowing
the drummers are knocking
i want to throw up

then ten minutes later i lost it
i don't know where i am
talking to a lawyer
but talking to myself at the same time

this is no dream
it's not confusing, it's scary
the lawyer, my drunk self
the mambo band playing loud

i throw up
pain again
gimme pills

pills and alcohol
the mambo
my friends

gimme pills
let me dance
dance mambo
i throw up (and the sun is up again)

i guess it's sunday

linton marks (Gothenburg, NE, 1987)

July 25, 2008

victoria's secret

i wonder what victoria's secret is
because it's been quite a few years now
and yet is hard for me to forget about her
she appears in my dreams, in my msn contact list
i wonder if she remembers everything just as vividly

once she e-mailed me something
about couples growing apart
then getting back together
a short paragraph from some psychology scholar
that pictured us pretty well

while i still wonder i came up
with a theory of my own
me not being a scholar of any kind, just a layman
i miss her just as i miss my youth
and i can't go on with this quiet mess inside my head

john anderson (Des Moines, IA, 1975)

July 24, 2008

america at a loss

i read an interview where ryszard said
look at art and you'll see what a society is up to
not exactly like that
(ryszard, you know, put his ideas in a much more elegant way)
but that was the concept, basically
(he was polish, a great journalist, a better thinker, look him up in wikipedia)

so i look at art in america
and i find julia allison
janet jackson half naked
televised singing contests
fifteen million dollar cascades
films that are content being just flicks
faster and more furious
and at the barrell's bottom
dirty and malnourished
i see poetry agonizing

(a century ago, someone said that "nothing but itself can harm american poetry")

empires don't last forever
we learnt with rome
these days, it seems
they are use and throw away

i look at art in america
and see america at a loss

julian bailey (Tucson, AZ, 1977)

July 23, 2008

purple sky

you had the nerve to walk up to my door
the day of my father's funeral
you didn't ring, you knocked and stood there
as if you had exactly planned every movement

it was not late, maybe four in the afternoon
but it was already dark, the glooming purple sky
that's how it is in anchorage
that's how winters are

lately i recall that visit of yours
more often than i would want to
the darkness, your silhouette behind the double door
it echoes in my head, the double knocking, the aftermath

i can reenact your every sigh, your every word
play it in slow motion, fast forward to the very boiling point
                                                                                /of the water for tea
rewind to the awkardness of me opening the door for you
                                                            /as if nothing had happened
remain still in the exact moment where your smile
                                                                    /became a smirk

it all happens like that lately
below the ominous purple sky, and the darkness
that's how it is in anchorage
that's how winters are

blake lamont (Anchorage, AK, 1985)

July 22, 2008

the year of the boob

surviving this year olympic
with a gigantic phone bill and you in beijing
remembering that day you sneezed
and all the goo ended up in the folded napkin
though a bit remained at the tip of your nose
and yet you looked outstanding

i wear your name on a button pin
on my lapel, ever since you train
i watch the news and tivo them for you in case you are breaking
any record or it's just you there anyway
getting medals from those cute asian girls
i get so jealous, for god's sake

free verse, roman verse, no verse
that's what people in the poetry community
are all blogging about
small boobs, natural boobs, lindsay lohan's boobs
that's what people in the chatrooms across america
are all talking about

maybe poetry should address boobs
big boobs, operated boobs, swollen boobs
maybe you should send me a picture of your boobs from china
while i stay awakened
from my memories beshaken
by that last image of you, your boobs, your messy hair
and on tv you look all pixelated

a. m. lussick (Orondo, WA, 1974)

July 21, 2008

sick and tired

live happy with extra large, extra salted
point and shoot digital cameras
marvel cell phones
and racy magazines

live happy with your hybrid car
your decaying middle class conscience
your rotten christian values
and digital satellite tv

i am sick of it all
sick of your dumb tv shows
of your cheaply made porn
i am tired of the rampant mediocrity
i am tired of the mobsters who run this country

andrew hoyts (Naples, FL, 1979)

July 17, 2008








brett o'hare (Lewes, DE, 1983)

July 16, 2008

one hot winter day

one hot winter day was preceded by a hot winter night where i was afflicted with some sort of allergy access, allergy maybe to the abundant quantitites of alcohol i ingested that same night before i submerged myself into myself and had dreams of horses running wild, dreams of a story written by a dead novelist and dreams that made me swirl across the bed, hallucinations not worth mentioning of your sweet and generous bosom and things of the sort. so today, another hot winter day which was preceded by a hot winter night i will wait for you, your bosom and the novelist to appear in my dreams and erase you all with a sudden movement of my eyelids

edgard carlile (Newport, RI, 1970)

July 15, 2008

black hole

poetry will not fix that hole
it will only make it bigger
big enough you can squeeze yourself inside
and teleport you into another world
once you are there
feeling weird already
—after all you are in some other world—
that same hole will suck you
like a heavy duty vacuum cleaner
it is the end of the poem
the last verse
and you are deployed
in this world again
end of the ride

max hammond (Pittsburgh, PA, 1977)

July 14, 2008

my mom would faint if she knew

everyone's doing acid
blowjobs are the new making out
foursomes arranged on facebook
sometimes get posted online

we are all having a good time
at least in my school
and yes, we know drunk driving is not cool
but why listen to you, mom

i read your diary and know
you did in a single night
more awful shit than me
than me and my friends combined

you screwed up big time
you had me when you didn't want to
so why listen to you
tell me

anita jones (Nampa, ID, 1990)

July 12, 2008

Atwood wins Prince of Asturias Prize

Canadian author Margaret Atwood was on Wednesday awarded with Spain's Prince of Asturias Prize for literature. The poet, novelist and literary critic won Britain's Booker Prize in 2000 for her novel The Blind Assassin and the Arthur C. Clarke Award for science fiction in 1985 for The Handmaid's Tale, which was later made into a film by german director Volker Schlöndorff.

Further reading:

Canada's Margaret Atwood wins Spain's top literature prize (AFP)

Margaret Atwood wins Spanish literary award (AP)

Margaret Atwood's "The Journals of Susanna Moodie" by R. P. Bilan

July 11, 2008

the promise

a port, the pier, no pipers
the promise, unfulfilled
and peter, where is him?

put your mind at ease
train the body, excel
look good, be hot

the billboards shout it all
all the time, and you get those in your cell phones too
pass me the salt, then the pepper, and a scalpel

if we are already under mass hypnosis
why don't we just have fun?
no salt, give me some beer

climb in your car and drive to the other part of town
find peter and that crazy party of his
and let's dance, dance, dance

chantal robbins (Baltimore, MD, 1985)

July 10, 2008

head on fire

now you've seen the world how many times now
your voice echoeing, your singing loud
enough is enough you said, you wanted to settle
and i happened to be there, right there

the young lad from overseas ready to hop on the van
and conquer the world
my head was on fire, your head was red
i felt we belonged to each other and i feel like that today

i wanted to be the next thomas stearns
you were already you, gorgeous, fun and so smart
who was i to have the privilege
of being entertained like that

who was i to be there, right there
in the crossroads of our troubled hearts
riding every ride in disneyland
there are no answers, don't look for them now

my head is still on fire
i wonder what color yours is now
i guess you are shining more than ever
a bad memory i have simply become

tom s. legrand (Portland, OR, 1976)

July 9, 2008

no fame, no glory
(let alone the money and the girls)

i got into this business looking not for fame but for glory
which are often confused but they should be not
by "this business" i mean poetry, of course
what, you thought this was art?


unfortunately for me i did not get glory nor fame
let alone the money and the girls
which i thought were the perks of being
a celebrated author

i got none of that
and that's ok
i'm still in the business
alive and well

not living in dublin
but right here in frisco
where i smell the breeze of the pacific ocean
and that's my daily pulitzer prize

if i also had you
then i would become so happy
i could afford abandon this business
there would be no need for poetry if i had you

peter hsu (Los Angeles, CA, 1971)

July 8, 2008

peanut butter

for Mary Ann

in this brave age of darkness
nothing seems to be reliable
but i thought your heart was
and it was not

now, really
come think about it
nothing is reliable
in this world of drunkness

not even peanut butter
i heard they make it now
out of some cheap beans
and then have it artificially flavored

so going back to you
i wish i had read the small print
on your label
had there been any

you are like cheap peanut butter
sweet but soulless

a fake

greg boghossian (Ann Arbor, MI, 1981)

July 7, 2008

i didn't see that coming

i didn't see the pain
i didn't see the loneliness
i didn't see my mother dying, my brothers aging
i didn't see that coming

i thought being young was a state of the mind
believed an independent life need not any money
waited in vain for a change within
walked the extra mile for you and your crazy ideas

but i didn't see that coming

i didn't see fatherhood
i didn't see myself trapped in debt
i didn't see my friends walking away from me
as much as i didn't see me walking away from them

i didn't see the end of love
i didn't see the spirit numb
i didn't see the drive so sparse
i didn't see the mind going off road
desperately seeking long lost causes

i didn't see that coming
and i didn't see you coming
and while i perfectly know and understand
there is no use regretting
i regret it all

bruno smith (Providence, RI, 1974)

July 4, 2008

loud and obnoxious

c'mon mr. roberts
exit peacefully
go away

you have turned me into someone despicable
so i beg you please
go away go go go

he's so loud and obnoxious
fat egotistical pig
they whispered, these two girls
and i heard them

c'mon mr. roberts
let me be me again
fly out of my head
let go off me

i beg you please
how did i become this beast
that looks back at me
from a dirty window pane

a.j. bates (New London, CT, 1986)

July 3, 2008

the wind

i have not seen but your acts
heard your many assumed names
breeze, gale, hurricane
to me you are just the wind

i was left behind your tract
the land you left untamed
wisdom, pale mischief
you provoked to me, unhinged

if it were your season
i would expect you
in my best winter clothes

for 'tis not i will long you
looking forward to the waving
and pray this time is not good-bye

louise keller (Russellville, AL, 1981)