Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Issue 18

James Garry

Christopher Barnes

Jennifer Thompson

Tom Savage

Sam Vaknin

Dave Ruslander

S. Simpkins

Maggie Zhou

Maria Claudia Faverio

James Garry

Sometimes You Belong

You've been laid up in hospital wards
sickening for the wage-prompted smiles
or genuine care of nurses, Nigerian
or Filipino, you belong here sometimes.
Sometimes you belong
and the strip-lighting no longer reminds you
of the naked skies, the sun.
Sometimes you burn your skin
knowing only barricades,
no less a borderline between
the space without,
the space within.
Sometimes the footsteps and the callings
are monastic echoes, sometimes an aerial
in a lightning storm might be liberating.
Sometimes from the font of a bucket
detergent is swept cursive on the floors;
you can will its smell to lavender
and the colour of the walls doesn't matter anymore
for in the end everything
is either white or invisible.

Roadrunner & Coyote

Then the day comes it no longer makes us sad
looking back, remarking upon the covered ground,
that we just ran, called ourselves cosmopolites
ignorant of the terror of our tourisms
the protean fantasy
Alice and the Red Queen, perhaps,
or Roadrunner and Coyote.

History in the Phosphors

You always wore black, I observed,
four years of passing you in corridors
on checkered floors,
sometimes I'd want to say
but I never knew you.
You'd always fade.

Then I came to be with you

shivering by the Thames
wanting bodies
at room temperature
listening to waves,
calm echoes of the embryo,
or sharing ice creams
of cookie-dough and cinnamon -
the obsidian beyond your innocence
the horizontal cries for help
faded now
                 along your wrist.

Why are you scared?
What do you fear?
Why and from whom do you run in your dreams
into the safety of the otaku world?

You couldn't answer. You spoke
as a neonatal lamb would walk
and not really needing to speak at all

for your dark clothes were language,
whispers chosen from a wardrobe.

And by black light you radiated

                         in the phosphors.

The Story So Far…

I've heard Spanish mumbles between motel walls,
I've heard drains pretend to be Koi ponds,
I've read the time from a Seiko diamond watch,
and had a pony bite my hand.
I've had the pleonasm of an A4 page
and shrunk my feelings into SMS,
I've felt lonely and I've felt fulfilled,
felt naked and camouflaged.
I've had the headache of halcyon streets,
swam fully clothed in Kentish lakes,
worshipped at the Other Temple, have witnessed
my hairline recede like a religious faith,
I have lived beyond my means,
longed for meaning beyond this life,
I've flashbacks to a strobelight flickering
in binary of blue and black
had the comedown of two a.m. ambient tunes
feeling loved-up, befriended, and somehow lost.
I've felt fear before a long haul flight;
I've known what it's like to want to hold
that person who will never requite.
I've missed opportunities, kicked myself.
I've tasted chicken Malaya,
talked football, laughed,
promised "we must do this again".

And never did.

James Garry: My name is James Garry, 25, from London. I am a psychology graduate and I currently work in a library. I especially admire the poetry of Derek Walcott and Hugo Williams.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Christopher Barnes

Wish Fulfilment
or Lament For The Rut In Male Fashion

In clock-back stardust
                         they pant.
A lion's share of peacocks?

Windscheffel And Stride's Day Out

Tender-conscienced ones
from Graybine Hospital's storms
bounce into Summerly's Snax.

There's rifts today.
You have untingled the world through lithium,
wished for filtered tea.

A moderato's timbrelling (or a pomegranate
wriggling at the ear). Ah sound!

Windows In The Chelsea

a darker sun sets in the heart
than any that lit
The Chelsea Hotel

I'm crying for Mama
I'm crying for Adonis

tears, alphabets of tears
heavier than overdosing
on kosmic H-bomb blues

where cheap blades hide
under velvet undergrounds
and sleep sharpens
killer TVs slickered
like electric Barbara Cartlands
uncrownable Gorgons of the uncounted hour

someone cries for Mama
someone cries for Adonis

drugstreams in blood dance
bluesing through veins

islands of death, de-tox and shells
corroding rocks, fragmenting lies
and the S & M libido monkey
out of its tree
a brain with instincts
juices and smells
vomited out
riding a shaking-bellied Horse
smelling of southern race riots

no-one's idea of comfort
cowering beneath the naked bulb


before he was her
his wife was whale-buttocked
like a great Lynda-burger
between settee and plasti-grass

mayonnaised in all the domesticity
of a flannelette dressing-gown
they used to even talk

over zoology and the diets of bats
a cherry-menthol roll-up smouldered
in between gulps of comfort
and an off-white frown

sometimes she stood up
zipped his sexuality up to the eye
and hooked together their stays

When Something Is Wrong With My Baby

The evening has a thousand pieces
and we and the songs on the radio
are just some of them.
I unbutton his indulgent shirt, submit
a hand, fasten on the left nipple.
Hum the familiar refrain. We twist
with the lingering purr of music.

An hour is a number of heartbeats,
full motion from the car's heater, a number
of glances. Being gay, he is tremulous
to prove his devotion openly,
the clatter of jackboots
always expected…above the guitar.

Christopher Barnes: in 1998 I won a Northern Arts writers award. In July 200 I read at Waterstones bookshop to promote the anthology 'Titles Are Bitches'. Christmas 2001 I debuted at Newcastle's famous Morden Tower doing a reading of my poems. Each year I read for Proudwords lesbian and gay writing festival and I partake in workshops. 2005 saw the publication of my collection LOVEBITES published by Chanticleer Press, 6/1 Jamaica Mews, Edinburgh.

I have also got a BBC webpage http://www.bbc.co.uk/tyne/gay/2004/section28.shtml

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Jennifer Thompson

Lead a Normal Life
after Peter Gabriel

You rest
above the Pacific's obeisance,
green and white, frigid,
slavering over the rocks
at the tower's foot.
You can see whales from here,
says another patient.
Your mother denounces this lie.
You lie still in your cot,
bag of books and clothes untouched,
head and jaw aching
from the twenty-fourth current
to stream through your blackened brain.

Deaths and flawed resurrections
mark off the days.
Some darkness bars your way back,
blotting out the memory of the night sky
and the cold, salt-laden air.
Your soul lingers in restraints.
Trays pass; you choke over them.
You trace patterns on the yellowed wall,
cringe from the spitting scream
of your inner Stalin.

You want to lead a normal life.
People say, with a certain facile philosophy,
"Well, what is normal, really?"
Not this ache, these walls,
the ocean with its harvested whales
seen through shatterproof glass.
You want to slip between
flesh-and-bone bars.
You want to hold a knife
without longing to cut your throat;
You want hunger, desire,
to want at all.

The Meteorologist

Her mood swelters, oppresses
but does not break.
Hours ago she slung the worn bedclothes
to the floor.
His face is flushed. Sweat trickles
between his shoulder blades
gathers at the small of his back
his briefs are unpleasantly damp there.
The waistband strangles his bowels which
clench a warning.
She drifts from the bedroom
but then just crouches
actually crouches
by the window
not at all like a bird
like a mad naked scrawny woman
hair knotted with curses
gaze fixed on the closed blinds.
She rests her chin on her knees.
He feels her hating the blinds.
The walls themselves glow with rage
As the sun sets
he watches thin bands of light
slide across her cheek.

Three West:
A Psalm

You forced the bud. Yellow stamen-dust
gilds your fingers. I, decked in purple
long to fall.

Your gifts and thefts alike are arbitrary.
You have gathered to yourself all that is good
fruit-heavy and sun-warm
and I -

Steal my spirit, thief. My tears are warm
on my warm cheeks as I pray to be taken
here as I lie.

Jennifer Thompson: I received my Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of California, Irvine, and am currently an assistant professor of humanities at Embry-Riddle University, where I teach creative writing, Holocaust studies, and world literature. I was diagnosed manic-depressive in 1997, and the attached poems represent some of my attempts to come to grips with the disease.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Tom Savage

The Thief of the Heart

The sands of Mecca shape a rose.
The horny unicorn climbs a tree.
They drowned her and carried her away.
But he clasped the rose tree in his right hand.
The Caliph awaits his suitors.
There is no such rank or title.
The moon tips the cypress of proposal our way.
Who calls himself a prince has hunted down
The violinated commandments of the rose.
Seek him our with scimitar-shaped thorns.
A pearl to every guard who fishes on the air.
Through a tigers' tunnel there's a key to seventh heaven.
The rose persists. Turned lilly-white or carnation-red.
Build me an army inside your walls by casting your clothes aside.
At the Cavern of Enchanted Trees
The Valley of Fire sends out smoke signals
On the flying carpet of your tongue
An old man of midnight sees.
At the Abode of the Winged Horse
You can dry off from your fight with that undersea dragon.
If you feed a magic apple to a fisherman, he'll sprout roses.
At the Citadel of the Moon,
We all have but one moment to live.
Out of the clouds comes the courier of the dawn.

-Written while watching The Thief of Bagdad, 1924. Douglas Fairbanks, Sr.

Woman Without Camelias Breathes

If your life is a circus
When is the elephant ballet?

Don't write this line again.
It's already in front of your eyes.

Stars eat their lights out
For the night.

This poem doesn't end here
Whether you like it or not.

The line endings are on strike.
You'll have to invent your own
Enjambments before arrival.

The poem is a young, male lover,
Neither your mistress nor your wife.

This poem is obsessed.
It's author has taken a vacation.

The poem wants you
To make up it's mind.

This poem's double
Refuses to be reborn.

The content insists on
A divorce from its form.
Can you oblige, quickly?

The ink and paper are here.
Just sign them, please.

Tom Savage: I've had eight books published and appeared in many magazines. Ten years ago, while recovering from brain surgery, I committed myself briefly to a mental ward while suffering from involuntary hallucinations partly under the influence of a medication called serzone and partly due to the surgery aftereffects. My poetry has appeared in the New York Times, Hanging Loose, TheWorld, and many other places.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Sam Vaknin


At times, I dream myself besieged.
I rebel with the cunning of the weak.
I walk the shortcuts.
Tormentors clad
in blood-soaked black,
salute as I manipulate them
into realizing their abyss.
Some weep their sockets hollow,
or waive their thorns.
Much pain negotiated.
A trading of the wounds.
My chains carve metal
and I am branded.

The Miracle of the Kisses

That night, the cock denied him thrice.
His mother and the whore downloaded him,
nails etched into his palms,
his thorny forehead glistening,
his body speared.
He wanted to revive unto their moisture.
But the nauseating scents of vinegar
and Roman legionnaires,
the dampness of the cave,
and then that final stone...
His brain wide open,
supper digested
that was to have been his last.
He missed so his disciples,
the miracle of their kisses.
He was determined not to decompose.

Sam Vaknin is the author of Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited and After the Rain - How the West Lost the East. He is a columnist for Central Europe Review, PopMatters, and eBookWeb , a United Press International (UPI) Senior Business Correspondent, and the editor of mental health and Central East Europe categories in The Open Directory Bellaonline, and Suite101.

Until recently, he served as the Economic Advisor to the Government of Macedonia.

Visit Sam's Web site at http://samvak.tripod.com

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Dave Ruslander

Still Winter

Ignoring the calendar,
spring floats into Virginia.
Tiny fingers of chlorophyll
tickle prehensile lips.

Dandelions wink back at the rising sun,
and the first wisps of pollen float atop the pond
before dithered shadows creep over the fields,
and the first thunderclap of spring
sets the horses loping across their field.

The tarnished sky begins to hammer,
the raised seam roof of my barn.
and the chartreuse branches
of a weeping willow sway.

Swamp Song

Pachelbel's Canon: the spirant sound
of a return to Chickahominy.

Blasts from winter's fowling pieces
still echo in my mind
as March flies in on the
backs of Great Blue herons.
They scrutinize potential
nesting spots.

On an unseen cue, they settle
above the gargling streams
where a whistle pig stands
on a gnarled cypress knee
blowing his frustration
at an impenetrable 20-gauge field fence.

Dave Ruslander lives in rural Virginia where true to the quasi-accurate-sweeping-generalization that southerners are slow, he didn't get around to writing until he was fifty. Since then he's learned to mangle language through poetry, short stories, and one novel. His work has been published in: Poetry SZ, The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature, Green Tricycle, Cenotaph Pocket Edition, Retrozine, Womensbeat, MiPo, Melic Review, and many other fine print and digital publications.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

S. Simpkins

Chewed Or Cut

nothing but teeth
wolverine hunger
everything sharp edges
everything nails
                                 broken glass
spikesrazor cutsneedles
knifes & daggersforks
jagged rocks
everybody gets
                                 chewed or cut

S. Simpkins: I'm a 56 year old recovered drunk who writes poetry. I grew up in L.A. then lived (and sobered up) in Hollywood. I also suffer from depression for which I take Zoloft. While the Zoloft has helped, I still wind up visiting those bleak barren landscapes that constitute depression. My major influences have been Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Allen Ginsberg and Charles Bukowski.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Maggie Zhou

i am

i am, she says
largely composed
of dirty dreams
stained, shaking and dismembered

i am, she believes
the mirror girl
built wide, too wide
to be anything else

and the vivisection
she inspects
to be flawed
futile, she sighs

i am nothing more

Maggie Zhou: I am an eighteen year old girl trying to make sense of myself.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Maria Claudia Faverio

Night Musings

Sitting here
at 4 o'clock in the morning
under a mangrove tree hung with stars
and insomniac birds,
I surrender to light
in spite of the early hour,
bargained into shape again.

You are not here,
you unnameable one,
but it is not a loss -
barbed-wire passions have never
excited me too much.

But the pitted moon -
what a beauty!
I could fall in love with it
like Li Po,
hug it,

then feel the compelling
kiss of the earth
and discover the working of things,
their dour splendour.

I could make earth my womb
and untie poems
like birthday presents.

You are not here.
It's not a loss.

Maria Claudia Faverio: I am an Australian poet who lives 80 km south of Sydney. I have just published my second poetry book. I also publish in the journals of the societies I am a member of. Poetry for me is a means of_expression, it helps me to express what I feel inside. I also write fairy tales and puzzles, I paint, play and compose music.

James Garry Christopher Barnes Jennifer Thompson Tom Savage Sam Vaknin Dave Ruslander S. Simpkins Maggie Zhou Maria Claudia Faverio

Friday, July 01, 2005

Issue 17


Image (Copyright © 2005 Jerry Hicks)

The best of 2000-2005


kari edwards
Steve Dalachinsky
Barbara Cicalese


5th Anniversary

Anders - Eros - Issue 11

Danny P. Barbare - Cat in the Curtains (Issue 11), Sleep (Issue 10)

Christopher Barnes - Paradisio's - Issue 12

Dave Benson - The Day Arced In - Issue 3

C.E. Chaffin - A Dying Fall - Issue 3

Steve Dalachinsky - Possessed - Issue 15

kari edwards - They Got Discounted Tickets? - Issue 14

Joel Fry - If Night - Issue 11

Lisa Gordon - Monogamy - Issue 11

Joe Hackworth - Chronic (Issue 8), Introvert Exposed (Issue 6)

Jerry Hicks - How Long War - Who? - Issue 11

Corey Mesler - The Return of the Agoraphobe - Issue 14

Clemente Padin - Love - Issue 12

Steve Tills - Helen Keller series - Issue 13

Sam Vaknin - Prague at Dusk - Issue 3

Colin Van Der Woude -Sunday - Issue 15

Retrospective kari edwards Steve Dalachinsky Barbara Cicalese

kari edwards

If you are interested in being involved

without knowing
estranged from a name
mentioning a visit
a representation
a pointer or a sound
or a voice or a sound
in terms of a gesture
as a voice or a sound
preexisting in a resonant
a representation
a surface
a body understanding
underscoring dark
stitched shut opposition
from parent to prothesis
either this or ever more
as a voice or sound
w/out punctuation
or the other
other paradox paradox
serendipitous deceleration
typical spins for abandoned stains

but a promised
an audible moon
part sublime
locus secret
without plans to dispel pain
a secret clauses
in a sacred clause

an appearance of everything
standing free and naked now
in the mood
surging in
either this or ever more

threw in the manner mostly to retrieve

sure fear . . .
always . . .
without a doubt . . .
which one?
part being, part trapped?
which part?
you remember cold as hell?
scissor sounds everywhere................
later, large drops, deposit accounts. and monetary reserves.
a pin drops, a camels disappears
a real red nose, if you know what I mean?
guns, dogs, god?
flowers, slaves, screaming and yelling all the time.
on and on about this and that?
mostly, blow me down.
enough to kill giant gnats?
maybe, but mostly loyalty certificates, and license beavers.
time shares?
a piece for a price.
it could have been paradise.
but it was mostly bored bombers of the bureaucracies . . .
with baby bombs, smart bombs, and big daddy stereotypes
a stick and a rattle
guns, guts and god
rainbows, low income housing and heart shaped phraseology
never thaw, always preheat or microwave?
no, I'm talking refrigerator and demeter...
leisure and a dull waxing finish....
hot cross buns, bangers and blue ribbon
guns, guts and god

few surprises are left

I found an address
it was crumbing
suffering etceteras
though not murder
murder was the question
those with no prior authorization
without a minimum consolation
without a statistical equalization
already knowing a condition is a hat
and the tale begins
I am divided again
you are a sealed theme
groping for once again
I describe the access number
give away the next page
who arrives first
suffers fishhooks and etcetera

kari edwards, author of iduna, O Books (2003), a day in the life of p., subpress collective (2002), a diary of lies - Belladonna #27 by Belladonna Books (2002), and post/(pink) Scarlet Press (2000).

Retrospective kari edwards Steve Dalachinsky Barbara Cicalese

Steve Dalachinsky

door 1

a door opens
is an airy space of wooden legs
invitation to sitting & dining
the possibility of indigestion & discussion
of furni-

door 2

perceives its
agressive nature
closes it
self to

door 3

i nod not
like asleep
but as a
turn & o
like hand

door 4

we enter
from violence
the room crowded veils
a film en
the shark

door 5

day is
air connecting
(do not hold the doors)
is smooth dream

glish is

do you ever dot your
before you


to night to
view your collection
medio tiempo
at the center of how- to- please
tiempo completo
the law still questioning itself
at the median of howstoautoplease
evacuated meself from this
emerged informed but still un-
delayed between this door
& the other

2. for m.g.
longer stronger
& lost
time is changing
all the time
shadow on impassable door
opening itself within
the light
within the artificial light
X          on auto alert
this cold/spread handling us like
a game of hard scrabble
within the house i live
   on     a     huge cube
         Missing     M

a window is somtimes a way out.

steve dalachinsky nyc 3/08/05 on e train & at experimental
intermedia listening to malcolm Goldstein

hernia doubled ( 6th day )

the bird spoke to me
thru the heavy rain on the hollow cans
a kind of tin/morse

uhuh      um sure      i answered
short peeped phrases

i haven't showered in 6 days
being afraid being stronger than being dirty

sometime's earth's too down to death
moving on thru attractions
circles walking like wolves thru bad histories
inked by iron & quill
upon the legs of strangers
names      streets      players finalized
for the time being
at last century's turn it must have been
quite a time back then      expositions
memory moving foward
like fate undoing itself

i am searching for rules
for the missing piece
indeed the light that precedes the coming
any coming
2nd 3rd
even 1st will do

who ever thought that sitting
would be such an obstacle?
what did methuselah feel when he left
his house?
in manhattan
how many sides are there,
it being like a book of thickened sand
with so many side/trips &
so little shoreline?

the rain on the island quiets a bit
as it echoes itself more& more faintly
into the oncoming hollows
in time
we go back like the # of angels
purported to be shadow boxing at g-d's side

lying flat
the pain is diminished
many long minutes ago
the bird has
shut up
i try to clear my throat using only my throat
knowing that to "cough"
will instantaneously doom me
to an
electric shock

should i drink shelter from the white guard's
jacket that engulfs me & protects me from the
process of curse & noise?

should i seek asylum in the word?

uhuh      um yup      my left hand answers

what a GIFT cemented to the oncoming night:
this diary of hungry nods
wandering thru holidays & characters &
caterpillaring across the noses of gargoyles
without ever leaving my room.

but my bladder is full
& the demon that is my zero tolerance
for discomfort
is insisting          /      I RISE UP.

( need i paint you a picture? )

3/17/05 - bus to boston & 3/18/05 nyc - wind flowers ( water creatures reprise )

boxcars on either side of the tollbooth
bumpy ride for wind flowers
tho in wind undulation is not like a slow motion cartoon

there is gentle & then there is the standard
the moat that protects us from ourselves

proof that water exists
that we are not gentle equipment      as time moves us

that we are indeed, in some meta-sense,
made of NUTS & BOLTS

that the arches that form our bodies
are being constantly re-invented

that lots are drawn way in advance
as some of us indeed move into the category of antique
our ABC's more or less intact but
shaped              slightly different

what i hope for is that tables remain on time
what i expect are more delays

hunts & stabs at……………..
                                                 ham longings diminished

laws & sections of laws re-interpreted

that the one way is many-fold
that ologies & nologies are reformed reliably
yet manifest

RU      ACH HA KODESH              RU ACH HA      KO DESH

bare are these days so full with playing fields

light      a new haven in these overcast days of angels

ru ach ha ko desh ( whispered )

yes - i love angels too
                                 they defy thruways
     their linen wings outstretching like yawns
             their things neatly folded in a corner
                     outsmarting the coroner always

LOVE is still a funny word that holds a KEY
as keys open cracks in the cracked field
defrosting the pond

new latent pelts reform our skins
& we are never belonging
never home
must never forget
we are quiet emergency
alcohol & smoke
must never forget
we are driver & driven
mask & sea & land
on the way to delay without delay
a short break within the breaks
god's breath on water
moot & mote

must never forget      we are luggage      litter      cracks
bag      gage
litter      cracks      lug gage litter      light      clean
bare-branched budding thinkers
squawkers      cry babies
I- pods & seminal fluids made whole
cellmates & cell phone phreaks
blank screens that will never reach 100
carpeting on the roof of the father's mouth

boxcars on either side of the tollbooth

water creatures swimming in the flag/furling CON
of the green smothered Lane
in a green steepled whirl

i have become part of this EARTH
a glass half empty
the perfect Host (until next week's rush)
a forum for medicine
water & gate
                 PASS      THRU      ME pass thru me
RU ACH HA KODESH ru ach ha kodesh      god's breath on water pass thru me

crippled symmetry
(morton feldman performed by s.e.m. ensemble@new york studio school 4/3/05)

     mesh of gold/afloodstars

         this is why crippled the leg always tries to rectify itself
         verify tolerance / total spin cluster / why do you melt of the sheen
                 a double-backed diamond enamored of itself
                             high in the low-tones
             grappling w/ the whole range of whiteness?

why so many bare & pockmarked walls in a structure so filled with its own knowledge
             purpled pomped mallets
             creased blue curtains      exposing the fluted pale
                 lowbreathing carrier of greenglassed arpeggios
             what is wrong w/ this picture                  is there is no picture

but what is wrong with blank space repeating itself?
is blank space truly blank as blank is?
why is there maiden transfixed when there are no maidens left to transfix?
                 a so lid tightly a jar      was this lip a crossed/out patchwork
                                         of genocide's attempt to corrupt itself?
it self  always@the fore of my self your self by self by self one's & left everyone else be

………… damned this nagging notated pang. hands that drew the once blue silence
                 now emptied into emptiness. but what is so bad about blank space?
             what is blank? why are these pocked & primed bare walls considered bare?
                 what is empty or full? what does filled with emptiness mean?

Longing?          patches & spots of color on the earth brown floor
                     like there      a spot of red & here a spill of animal yellow&orange
                         i can swim thru the hole in the broken brick
                                         gnaw thru the metal's facade
                         what there is is more of the same
                 & more of the same is what there is but different
     a crack in the quietude a sneeze a cough a rustle a rumble a low driven mimic
                         a crumble of what-is-where-from
                         & the crippling ringing of LIFE


                 an o.k. survival kit

                         peek into space thru doorless doorway
                         look around      sky itself is the skylight
                         see streaks of pale blue on earth-colored
                         semi-circles of off colored creams
                         pull back
                         hit your forehead with your palm
                             scream OH NO      loudly
                             inside your head
                         wash your hands of the whole affair
                 as your stomach begins to rumble like a coming quake
                             drink turpentine
                         glance at yourself in the bathroom mirror
                                         smile fleetingly
                                         walk into a stall
                             sit on the bowl                      & wait

             a mesh of starlike petals unlock themselves from their grid………

                                                     nothing left      to      follow.

3.                              piano lays out

                 12      17      (drops off the quantum )
30 24/ 30 36
                 54 (?)
                                         working in *8's scale of
                     re mi fa      circular          linearities

                     forced to ignore              26/26/22/36//              or

           42              nothing matters      48/28
           mathematics          reg ///
                     4 / 4 /      8      10      6

           stered      18      -     24     <        60

fence            barelegged belch boo
htdtAfbnmkxysu5ereNB VC567*)(*(* &%
           intently listen

steve dalachinsky nyc

these pink roses
( tchicai, smoker, hemingway, lane @ zebulon , bklyn 4/10/05 )

these pink roses
    some plastic shrine
       @ music's feet
                               unbroken divinity of eye / ear -
       a prophecy     deep from within the skull's roots
                                     controlled miles of flexible oratory
    bouquets of plasticity stretching the petals of the bell
                   this sun     this bursting gaffaw
                                                 parked here at the edge of godsland     any jackson knows
       any queen whoever-shed-her-face-of-water knows
                               any revolutionary zookeeper knows
           any weaver of lace knows

any gone logic device knows
any virgin in search of the mystery knows
these unwaving toxic neo-industrial sad unscented roses
enshrined @ the feet of music know
those at the helm of the ship know
that which guides the rudder knows
uncontrollability in an inflexible space
madmen know
scientists know
the spirits
the married know
the sick
the lame
the intolerant know
somewhere in their inflexibly religious souls
the long gones know it
deep within their long gone elegant
           an unfathomable unity between forest & trees
           first & last hucksters
    even the hucksters know
           the soft walls know
           the high walls know
           the low walls know
           the hard walls know

      "I kill Bad aMericans"     -     a harder groove / the gloss of pearls

this holy heliocent
                               world of round holidays

even the humans know
the war/mongers know
the survivors beneath our soles     they know
twice octoped ghosts know
a sound-tale coming closer to inflexible plastic
the face of water
the quint of power
the laying on of long dawns

           prio priopas achordin
                   prio priopas     acru

   loosen confusion & broaden forms
    loosen confusion     & bro a     den       forms

there's that second before the petals melt
that moment before the shrines collapse
when we realize we are all prophets
& fortune tellers
when we all see what the future holds

the wise ones know
the idiots know
the rootless know
the innocent know
           the innocent know the innocent know..

steve dalachinsky nyc

steve dalachinsky was born in brooklyn some time after the last big war and has managed to survive lots of useless little wars. his work appears in many journals on and off line around the globe. he has several books and cds of which the latest are, trial and error in paris, i thought it was the end of the world, st. lucie eyes on a plate, and the forthcoming chapbook in glorious black and white and the e-chap arivin' in the okidoke.

Retrospective kari edwards Steve Dalachinsky Barbara Cicalese

Barbara Cicalese

Party of six

Running out of gas three lights flickering
sky turning the color of kitchen gaslight
wodden signs advertising
antiques war memorabilia selling
chechian lotus flower backbending
thanks for your patronage
see you next season
following midnight afternoons
toddler snowboots and wine
that tastes like fall all sangria
and sunsets no oak involved
it is rare to see the moment
of this ritual played
on the shamisen
tucked in her back pocket
sharing in the most basic sense
two for us, one for them
slightly drunk and whirling
This is sacred and ordinary.

Kitchen floor

even my grandmother is in on this game
sitting on kitchen floor
i can hear the glow from twenty yards
i can smell the shift in you
and me
maybe the pills are working
mine are the color of birchwood
by now habitual, seasonal migration
seems almost sad
this constant hopefullness

i can hear over a year ago
(has it been that long?)
i wonder if a rose is a rose
and grandmom doesn't care
about the rose or its name
how brutal this becomes
this tenacity to investigate
infinity all while paying
for soda in dimes and nickles

I am, quiet simply, sure
of this rarity


It is always worth the effort
deciphering oranges at midnight
what is nameless in childhood
can often be tolerated on long drives
without points of reference
there are many things the tongue refuses
so i said my name again
to god or elvis in every language
i have
i go back to that hour
dropping stones as i go.

The Taste of Severed Things: A Love Poem

Dusk is a girl
pine needle bed

Not wanting, always
to be public
This is us, in ruins
parts that have survived

Surely mass has intention
filled with small

Some underestimate
how erotic it is
to be understood

sometimes a thing must be created

26 reasons to put on your boots
hours of
labor and intention

Conspiracy of language:

Outrage, Blodstain, Chagrin



A girl becomes a comma
like that.

Barbara Cicalese is currently an English teacher in Pennsylvania. Like most English teachers, she has fancied herself a writer, without ever being published.

Retrospective kari edwards Steve Dalachinsky Barbara Cicalese

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Issue 16

Steve Dalachinsky

Jesse Auchter

George Kerr

Bruce Stater

Colin Van Der Woude


Mark Phillips

Steve Dalachinsky

so profoundly made…..
a scramble after a lecture by kristeva @ nyu added/subtractions
(& mischa mengelberg @ tonic)

so profoundly influenced by
monk (s with habit)
body is met a - ( things & words )
valse valse valse - sad-o-mask kit sic
dreamless dream (only signs sounds sensations)
so round the tick(le) tock on flat wall
disruptive (non-narrative)
divine taps - subject/object asthma //\\ ham sat
this is a ruin & who's to say's not the first time
potter has messed with the pot
to authenticate history
before it had barely be-
come a part of it
suffocated anal(y sis) is/is sissie issue
i-mage = game geni(e)us
that part of sheet that is covered w/music
covers me this somewhat cold night
monitors my rhythms
strings my breath to reflectives
it's impossible to re/lie
integrity exhal(t)ed on the gritty plane
substitutes sorrow immediate
(3x) dada rula dada rula
genius co-lapse other rehto(ld) < art aud >
subs sorrow sub subsumed and tuted "'"""" thoughts ->
\ > immediate source for joy i mediate sauce for joy
celram celram lose their shape
holding the divine w/in an eclipse of magnificence
( cathedral ) narrative = women's dress
i.e. fashion excess(ories)
( stained glass ) zohar hazard i.e. topsy pts 1&2 as in
one unity bursting polytheisms ellingtonias
monstrous signs ( search ) protean forms subject trials
to beat
to eat
to be it
to eat shit
exploring exploding <-> UNITY shatt'ring cont(r)acts avechectic tool
tattered phallus perversed a tale of illusions cat as trophy
co-presence coversion / spacial / temporal
( o rary ) celeste fresh as a rose w/out matter
tho matter is absorbed & merges as in floating I-dents
into a fleshy fol-roost
he is in the world
the world is in him ( a fowl roast - a foul roast )
SELF & OTHER other/self suggest sub/ject you jest
flesh of patient transformed transference of identity
transference & counter transference
conch-et-conch complicated economy censured and sensor/ships
sensing non-sense (ing) the body trans/parent
the body polit(e)ic
body of language
body of businessman conclusions moments interpretive theory-peutics
freud as be-bop doubt fraud as
benev(i)olence permanence of S&M
the max of cruelty & delicacy to mobilize the men struals min strels one
& all
ficial tact gently cutting the endless war of trumphs
I conclude cruelty is a recourse to the words of life the dimension
Men tion MEN MEN MEN men shun
persistence renewed w/in violence when all there is
when all there is is the is itself in ex-is- tence in a
cruel cruel world in a cruel cruel time
where faith & delicacy dwell like a flower
carved into a restless soul.
dada rula dada rula dada rula

steve dalachinsky kristeva at nyu icp orchestra @ tonic 10/04

de kooning ( morton feldman - 1963 )

tis form
an empty sell/out
these chairs from rumbling a morph
created & why a hang tix over
the foreground
when no film's presented
only thin flim

& a counter top immersed in standing
a shallow shadow not unlike a window
that shows the theme red - hem

this count
that reminds one
of choice
of mistake
of the renegade shot in the head

well he's dead now you say
as my leg's start moving away from me

these bodies
they are so vicious &
surely they cannot all be
his women

(this is what the silence tells me)

& of all the things i could tell you now
only this:
                 it is not as song appears
             it is only the time between

steve dalachinsky nyc carnegie hall - zankel hall 11/17/04

eros denied (after a painting by jaxson )

hung sharply      crossed
bone white      squared
the mirky forms of Joseph & Madonna
molded against his body
in mourning.

hang across stretcher
sharp......end.....in pain
         the glassflat ghosts of Judas & Magdelene
     shaped against his structure
for redemption.

light      & infinite fading
     his bones of flesh
                 the backbone of light
         his milky head sharply squared off
         against the denial of his Wisdom &
         weeping & crossing the visions
with kingdom
         the green leaf turned to autumn.

the paling shadows of man & woman
             brother & whore
             mother & thief

     Jesus      Joseph      &      Mary
     Jesus      Judas      &      Mary
all denied
             eternally misunderstood
             shamefully ironically misinterpreted
         broken light in morning
         in need of redemption & care
     in need of uniting the bones with the ghosts..

steve dalachinsky was born in brooklyn some time after the last big war and has managed to survive lots of useless little wars. his work appears in many journals on and off line around the globe. he has several books and cds of which the latest are, trial and error in paris, i thought it was the end of the world, st. lucie eyes on a plate, and the forthcoming chapbook in glorious black and white and the e-chap arivin' in the okidoke.

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips

Jesse Auchter

Persona: Weirdo

No one understands
the strawberries I have for eyes.

Point and cackle and defame.

I see strawberries in their eyes!

It Is Time To

They've been calling me
from the depths with a
lulling telephone
since the depths pried my
eyes wide. Now, I grasp
the gold receiver
like it's a dagger
shimmering, crying
out my worthless name.
Voices pierce my drum.
I hear the garble,
yet it is quite clear.
It is time to hang
it up and me up
so I can lift up
beyond this dirty

Jesse Auchter's poetry and writings have appeared in Locust Magazine, POETHIA, Concrete Wolf, Morpo Review, etc. He loves poetic darkness and cats. His ambition is to be an underground deity, and maybe a decent painter.

I'm a Manic-Depressive with Alcoholism in full remission. I've been sober for well over a year. Wellness is slowly returning.

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips

George Kerr

(for Anita Cochrane)

I got swallowed by a sugar
skull on the Day of the Dead.
A treacled cavern of candled
marigolds where Coatlique danced
in a serpent skirt and kissed me
her last

We sat by Lake Texcoco
and toked on zest of Aztec and time
near a puma with an eagle in its eye,
my ears caught fire.
The lake was sand
and I was afloat on the earth.

Paris passed
then all of Ireland and I waved to
Liberty before I drowned.

After I drowned I stay in the skull
and lollipop the brule like a bee.
And when the jawbone sets the sun,
ambered glops toffy slow and candy me.

George Kerr is from Belfast, Northern Ireland and works as a jazz writer and musician.

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips

Bruce Stater

A House of Porifera

There is a temple of Porifera, a house in the ocean
composed entirely of living sponges
left to dry in the air when the waves receed
and fill with brine at high tide.

It is a simple structure, designed in the form of a tower
with a supporting structure of wooden beams
visible only from the interior when one passes through a window
made available at the monument's base.

From the dandelion covered cliff
it appears to tower as a beacon of lichen encrusted bricks
marking the uncertainty between sea and shore.

Entering its cavern, one feels the call of becoming,
the lure to return to the water encompassed in the warm bath
of amphibiotic memories of the womb.

Inside one feels the breath of the living walls, a change
in atmospheric pressure excerted upon the tympanum
and the resulting congestion of the inner ear.
The crash of the breakers lulls in the muted cavity
like the hollow music of the conch which fascinates children
with its mimetic echo of the sea. The scent of sweaty moss and kelp
left drying in the sand overwhelms oneas nostrils
with the infussion of its pelagic wine.

Returning through the window which opens space and time
to the transforming in-between, one feels that he has been
reborn, remade, reformed, regiven and regifted to life.

In addition to writing poetry, Bruce Stater spends a considerable amount of his free time creating art. He still suffers from occasional episodes of psychosis, but no longer considers mental illness an obstacle in his spiritual journey. He lives in Astoria, Queens with his wife Lori.

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips

Colin Van Der Woude


Shifted minds burglars snitch
never again eyes watching twitch
come and go with everything I owe
she said my writing was good,
but widely misunderstood.


I want you to see beyond my body this time
to be female like you I don't know why
just you in a theatre you mime to cry

I don't want all this undenied attention
to talk of thoughts is to unduly mention

Stealing love from the rich to give to the poor
what's left for the thieves?
nothing to add a tally or score winter's leaves.

Colin Van Der Woude: I'm a 28 year old from Australia who is living with schizophrenia and I use poetry as a creative outlet. I love using words to convey memories and feelings, emotions… I hope to one day have some work published and I'm on a mission to dispel any myths of mental illness.

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips


Seeds in the Bag

there are two reasons
for me
to write
I have something to say
You do
by grace for grace
I beg
or scream
maybe at once
or more
now my mind
Your easel and mine
is the white silence
all the colors of light
my children home
( the easier three)
the oldest okay
and no new pain
shrieking and stabbing
through the old
I simply am
(not waiting)
and You
paint as You will

wanting the flames to hurt

as I slowly pull away
from what
believing I want
You want
beginning to feel
of the wrongness of sin
of the hurt
increasing in my body
(that I can manage
not very well
it is not unholy)
I sit
how long
my will
wil help
with the struggle
to follow Yours
and emotion
will pull me
as I lie
at Your feet
and know that
I will also be aware
that You
to pull me up

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips

Mark Phillips

the Voice on-the-tape

"The brothers were seated facing Joseph…they looked at one another
wide-eyed, wondering what would happen next." Genesis 43:33 [The

In what can only be described as a reality-denying maneuver
he still insisted it was not-my-voice on his answering machine
though I knew it was and had left him the message to encourage
him after life took a merciless left turn down a dead end

He left me his longhand affidavit cataloguing every reason why the
that left him the encouragement about
new prospects,
new opportunities,
a job where he might tickle or clap his hands again,
why the voice on-the-tape could not
have been mine.

For sixty days he painted black the chipper waves from the
little box by his phone.
It must have been a taunt that summer from another someone
haunting him down like ghosts through the cornfields.

The voice was-too-friendly to be real, it couldn't have been mine,
and the demon he created pulled his teeth out by the roots,
tied his hair back in knots and wouldn't let go until
the pain was all that remained of sunset walks and
cabin-side suppers.

But still, the voice on-the-tape was mine.

If I buy you dinner, grill some burgers,
invite you to wine and cheese,
will you then believe the voice is-a-friend's
and not the apparition of daggers in your dreams?

Steve Dalachinsky Jesse Auchter George Kerr Bruce Stater Colin Van Der Woude Jonathan Mark Phillips