Thursday, November 01, 2007

Issue 24

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Mark Lamoureux
Lois Marie Harrod
Sam Silva
Eve Rifkah
Christopher Barnes
Roger Singer
David McLean

Mark Lamoureux


[Untitled New York 1979-80]

The eye-cloth
& the death-cloth
& the cloth of this knowing
     mended by
the same scissor that
chimes the dead angles
     the human geometry

wheel of torsos      visor
     slits of the armored
dusk where the eye
who holds the key
to this (rib)cage?

         Not I

     not the furrows
     of the brow
     or the mirror of the lake

Dear Francesca,

Say I could be happy on the first warm day of spring wearing a new leather jacket, or eating leaf-colored gelato in Nafplio. Say I am happiest when I am furthest from home. A word that you would not speak. Our bodies are our homes. I am no longer welcome there. I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea. Say someone has the wrong idea. Say whenever anyone has the wrong idea, a fluttering silver fish dies.

[Sloan Providence, Rhode Island 1976]

Not to know
the terror of the noonday
         the sun that is
         a stain on the wall

     marred tapestry
     of the idle in the

             of the hourglass

the spyglass
     the glass eye of the recorder

     image lifted like
     rice      paper

     from the affront of this
         this breathing
         in strange places

this laurel wreath
     of strangers
         drags the oracle

     by the mane

the fishes' eggs without number
     the city's mouths
         without number
we must count
all the berries          on the wreath
         to enter

this house

         with no use for us

[Untitled Providence, Rhode Island, 1978]

In the noontime
I sewed the spine

I broke
the pastel crayon
     at the seam

         The book written &
         the book sewn

     with the sliver of bone
     with the thimble of blood

with the eyes shut tight
     against the semblance

in the wall the semblance
that walks the hall from
where I have departed

to not be called back
to where the books seem

     to be speaking
     to the air

     to you
     to me

to the narrow seam

Mark Lamoureux: My work has appeared or is forthcoming in such places as The Denver Quarterly, Fence, Conduit, GutCult, Coconut and other print and on-line journals. My first book, Astrometry Organon, is due to be published by Spuyten Duyvil/Meeting Eyes Bindery in 2007. I teach English at Kingsborough Community College, and run Cy Gist Press, a micropress focusing on ekphrastic poetry.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Lois Marie Harrod

“A Small Parenthesis in Eternity”
     Sir Thomas Browne

The morning came
like a faded photograph
sucking the color
out of the trees.
Everything lost its motion
except a woman
moving through the gray.
She remembered
the child in a story
where everything stopped–
the filcher, the raker
the candystick maker
fixed like statues
around the square
so that the child
could slide among them
restoring what
had been lost, the coin
to the old lady’s wallet,
the red leaf to the oak,
the forgotten oil to the peppermint.
And the woman wondered
whether such stillness
was a common curse
or a cheaper blessing,
what should she lift
from this moment when
the world’s heavy commerce
seemed suspended, no gravity,
the letter unopened
on her desk, the baseball
inches from her son’s glove,
her husband’s car still
on the road
while the steel whistle
fluted on as if
breath were endless.
Then a raindrop fell
and that was it–
a sycamore shivered,
a mosquito lifted
from his larva,
a window opened,
the woman resumed her life
in a moving world,
no longer able to readjust
where she had been.

Lois Marie Harrod's chapbook Firmament is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. Her Put Your Sorry Side Out was published by Concrete Wolf in 2005, and she won a 2003 poetry fellowship, her third, from the New Jersey Council on the Arts. Her sixth book of poetry Spelling the World Backward (2000) was published by Palanquin Press, University of South Carolina Aiken, which also published her chapbook This Is a Story You Already Know (l999) and her book Part of the Deeper Sea(l997). Over 300 of her poems have appeared in journals including American Poetry Review, Blueline, The MacGuffin, Salt, The Literary Review, Zone3. Her earlier publications include the books Every Twinge a Verdict (Belle Mead Press, l987), Crazy Alice (Belle Mead Press, l991) and a chapbook Green Snake Riding (New Spirit Press, l994).

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Sam Silva

Vampires of the Daylight Hours

Cigarettes....a dull perfume!
And pills and wine populate that tomb of mine.

Drakul slumbered in his box
in ages when the Sun shown pure
and spread his wings to fire the night
to drink blood in eternity pulling up my socks
a thousand years beyond the stake
which slew that nightly terror there
and let the darkened hours endure
with little more than ghostly crimes

leave daylight more the kin to Hell
with wretched voices in my head
making blood a sour thing
...muddy, muggy, slow as lead!
An evil daytime...speckled white.
That pus, those boils,
sick voices ate
...oozing from a broken brain
whose jaundice is mortality.

The vampires, in these modern times,
have no names nor nobility
but seek a sunlight more obscure
than any haunting terror's dark

and in the office or the park
hypnotized by cold TVs
communicate their blasphemies
in ways that half the brain denies

and sink their teeth in like a shark
yet leave no elemental mark
except that madness trembles

till their broken victims finally choose
with booze and pills and cigarettes
in dimly viewed electric light
to leave the voices to their cause
...each ego to that ego's debts
and terminate the light of day
and stay
awake at night....

Sam Silva has published well over 150 poems in print magazines including, but not limited to Samisdat, The ECU Rebel, Sow's Ear, The American Muse, St. Andrews Review, Dog River Review, Third Lung Review, Main St. Rag, Charlotte Poetry Review, Parnasus...most (but not all) of these magazines are now defunct. For the Past four years his magazine portfolio has grown by and large on line including Rio Del Arts, Megaera, Big Bridge, Views unplugged, Comrade Magazine, Ken Again and at least thirty others. Over the years four small presses have published a total of nine chapbooks by Sam Silva ...these, being Third Lung Press, M.A.F. Press, Alpha Beat Press, Trouth Creek Press. Brown and Yale Universities solicited many of these chapbooks for their libraries. These chapbooks were well received in newspaper reviews by Shelby Stephenson, Ron Bayes, Steve Smith, and the late poet laureate of North Carolina Sam Ragan. Silva has ebooks available without cost at, and, and at two dollars a piece at and well over 300 poems archived in online magazines. He was nominated a total of seven times by three small presses and has a full length collection of poetry called Eating and Drinking based on a royalties contract signed with Bright Spark Creative available for order at any online bookstore and has two other full length poetry books available at . Three spoken word CDs of Sam Silva's have been marketed through CDBaby.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Eve Rifkah


The kid thought invisible
             walking no man’s land
             behind the houses lining Capen St.
             through  the woods – not real woods
             scattering of thin trees and underbrush.
The kid thought journey
             path from one backyard
             behind others to dead end dirt road.
Kid walked this trail
             not sidewalk – not in sight of
             all those curtained windows
to friend’s house
             the younger kid
             whose parent’s wonder why
             fourth grader plays with second
             wonders what’s wrong with this kid.
It’s the little house, the kid likes,
             on the dead-end – besides the over grown field.
The kid lives in an apartment in a house of six
             apartments      dreams of living in a house
                          no sounds of doors opening
                          slamming shut          no sounds
                          of footsteps up stairs down
                          voices behind the walls.
The kid wants green and sky outside the windows
             not brickwall back of market
             gravel driveway cuts between
             cars crunch crunch outside the kid’s window
Kid wants air to breathe

Eve Rifkah is editor of the literary journal Diner and co-founder of Poetry Oasis, Inc., a non-profit poetry association dedicated to education, promoting local poets and publishing Diner. Poems have or will appear in Bellevue Literary Review, The MacGuffin, 5 AM, Parthenon West,,, Chaffin Journal, Porcupine Press, The Worcester Review, California Quarterly, ReDactions, Jabberwock Review, Southern New Hampshire Literary Journal and translated into Braille. Her chapbook At the Leprosarium won the 2003 Revelever chapbook contest. At this time she is a professor of English at Worcester and Fitchburg, State Colleges and a workshop instructor. She received her MFA in Writing from Vermont College and lives with her husband, poet Michael Milligan.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Christopher Barnes

Last Letter

Farewell seasprayed world
Bleak, sticky love
Will have me no more.

Ships, trains,
Radio signals
That dart questions
Into night’s nets
Are circus tricks
For me to endure.

Over, caught,
I’m glad, if I could have ever
Been called glad.

My innocence
Shivers unproved. I’ll
Doctor to my own salvation.

Of my wife I say nothing
Appeal only to the ghost,
Her voice singing
The cracks of my living.

Pentonville for a short
Unlighted stay, walk
To the hangman’s rope.

         H.H. Crippen

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.

On Saturday 16th Aughst 2003 I read at theEdinburgh Festival as a Per Verse poet at LGBT Centre, Broughton St.

I also have a BBC webpage

Christmas 2001 The Northern Cultural Skills Partnership sponsored me to be mentored by Andy Croft in conjunction with New Writing North. I made a radio programme for Web FM community radio about my writing group. October-November 2005, I entered a poem/visual image into the art exhibition The Art Cafe Project, his piece Post-Mark was shown in Betty's Newcastle. This event was sponsored by Pride On The Tyne. I made a digital film with artists Kate Sweeney and Julie Ballands at a film making workshop called Out Of The Picture which was shown at the festival party for Proudwords. The film is going into an archive at The Discovery Museum in Newcastle and contains my poem The Old Heave-Ho. I worked on a collaborative art and literature project called How Gay Are Your Genes, facilitated by Lisa Mathews (poet) which exhibited at The Hatton Gallery, Newcastle University before touring the country and it is expected to go abroad, funded by The Policy, Ethics and Life Sciences Research Institute, Bioscience Centre at Newcastle's Centre for Life. I was involved in the Five Arts Cities poetry postcard event which exhibited at The Seven Stories children's literature building. In May I had 2006 a solo art/poetry exhibition at The People's Theatre why not take a look at their website

The South Bank Centre in London recorded my poem "The Holiday I Never Had", I can be heard reading it here

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

Roger Singer

The Coal Man

Wagon wheels
Press the soil
Like fingers on clay
Molding a path
As the coal man
And his horse
Find the driveway.

A Santa bag,
Scared by use
Is hauled rudely
Like homeless bones
As the canvas sheath
Bulges wildly with
Bituminous jewels.

A leather cap
Appears pasted
To his thick head
While a cigarette
Fades at the corner
Of a tired mouth,
While walking heavy.

Arms muscled wide
Stretch easily
Like crawling vines
On a fence
Broadly reaching
Owning the space
Without restriction.

Bits of blackened
Coal tumble
Into a waiting bin
Sounding like
Angry rattlesnakes,
As the horse looks
And the man coughs.

Roger Singer: I began writing poetry when I was in the military many years ago, for relaxation and to express my thoughts in an abstract form. I enjoy the challenge poetry offers, unlike the articles I have written, which are straight forward. Poetry allows the writer to step to the side from general thoughts, thus creating a miniature story which in and of itself can bifurcate into other levels of literary form.

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean

David McLean

trees and the madness

once the trees
seemed to know their meanings
for me, and have chosen
them themselves

but now we are madmen
and have chosen that madness
and we live behind walls
where demons share the sunlight
with us
as it records a day dying gratefully
on the floor

the trees have forgotten
everything and mate mindlessly
promiscuous, selling their virtue
to the wind and birds
that pimp for them,

and we are mad as the blood
that remembers our passing:
we just love it and want it,
whatever happens

David McLean has been submitting for the past year and has had about 300 poems accepted by 129 magazines and webzines. A chapbook a hunger for mourning with 53 of his poems has just been released by Erbacce Press. It is available for purchase and download at He has a blog at

Mark Lamoureux Lois Marie Harrod Sam Silva Eve Rifkah Christopher Barnes Roger Singer David McLean