Something’s Aren’t Important To People by Ben Smith

Noah built an ark
To save the species of
Earth

Because God
Told him to.

If I was god,
and a flood was coming,

I would place
Two ants on a small
Leaf

And push them
Into a creek.

Ants never
Hurt no one.

So small.

Like pebbles
On a beach,

In your shoes,

A diamond on
Your finger.

Ants never asked
To
Wipe out
The human race.

I think
Two
Ants on a leaf
Is fair.

Fair,
And just.

Finally the meek
Would
Inherit
The
Earth,

Maybe do
A
Better Job
At not breaking peoples
Hearts.

But we use
Poor
Lots wife ,
The pillar of salt

To season our meat,
The thick beef
And warm chicken.

The cat of course
Saved.

The marbled
Meat

Flavored by the saved

And now
The
dead
Beasts of the ark.

Noah is the fool now.

Handing out
Menus
For the end of the world

And we eat
Quietly

Without mouths
Closed.

Ben Smith is a half hack writer and runs a dirty website called Horror Sleaze and trash. He has two cats, one wife and too many personalities.

Ben Smith is a half hack writer and runs a dirty website called Horror Sleaze and trash. He has two cats, one wife and too many personalities.

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In A Season Of Useless Prayer by R.T. Castleberry

Every day a difficult smile.
Like a migrant’s prayer through misery,
I practice the craft of sunrise survival.
I watch a feral dog giving birth
at the edge of a grave.
I dream of river geography,
maps away from canyon sand,
a cross posted with names—
Internet aliases, graffiti tags, felony blood.
Lies can make a life.

Tired of confessions,
summer’s heat, fall’s clenching shadow,
I’m soured beyond spite.
I feel like I’m failing,
as if each next breath slits me, cell to cell.
I state my case:
I want to radiate danger,
disregard the petty lover’s séance,
the madness drenching every compass point.
I want a punishment phase that fits.

R.T. Castleberry's work has appeared in Comstock Review, Green Mountains Review, Santa Fe Literary Review, The Alembic, Pacific Review and RiverSedge, among other journals. He is a 2014 Pushcart Prize nominee. He is a co-founder of the Flying Dutchman Writers Troupe, co-editor/publisher of the poetry magazine Curbside Review, an assistant editor for Lily Poetry Review and Ardent.  His work has been featured in the anthologies Travois-An Anthology of Texas Poetry, TimeSlice and The Weight of Addition. His chapbook, Arriving At The Riverside, was published by Finishing Line Press in January, 2010. An e-book, Dialogue and Appetite, was published by Right Hand Pointing in May, 2011.

R.T. Castleberry’s work has appeared in Comstock Review, Green Mountains Review, Santa Fe Literary Review, The Alembic, Pacific Review and RiverSedge, among other journals. He is a 2014 Pushcart Prize nominee. He is a co-founder of the Flying Dutchman Writers Troupe, co-editor/publisher of the poetry magazine Curbside Review, an assistant editor for Lily Poetry Review and Ardent. His work has been featured in the anthologies Travois-An Anthology of Texas Poetry, TimeSlice and The Weight of Addition. His chapbook, Arriving At The Riverside, was published by Finishing Line Press in January, 2010. An e-book, Dialogue and Appetite, was published by Right Hand Pointing in May, 2011.

You’ve Stopped Being My Friend, Friend! by Paul Tristram

You traded in our Brotherhood of many years
for traitorous envy, anger and petty bitterness,
after failed attempts at emulating my personality.
Cutting off your own selfish nose with the dull
blade of your pathetic true nature whilst showing
the entire world what a cringing, whinging Cunt is.
Shaking and crying in vile temper and self pity
to whomever will listen as you rant away and point
your deceitful, crooked, betraying fingers my way.
Explaining and complaining how I have taken all
of your precious happiness and flushed it away
(Which you in fact never had to begin with?)
and ruined your once perfect and contented life
(You were dumped and alone when I met you?)
by parading around the place just being Me!
Following in the shadows of my ex-girlfriends,
sitting around talking shit with wannabe enemies,
selling your soul and making your life (not mine!)
a living hell with your backstabbing lust to destroy.
But we all know how this ends, you only succeed
at destroying yourself completely, karma watches,
you will realize this in time, when it’s all too late.
I will be long gone and surrounded by nicer people
walking and smiling brightly into my beautiful fate!

Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight, this too may pass, yet. You can read his poems and stories here! http://paultristram.blogspot.co.uk/

Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight, this too may pass, yet.
You can read his poems and stories here! http://paultristram.blogspot.co.uk/

I Pray To No-One by Bryn Fortey

Hi neighbour
We haven’t spoken in seven years
But now you’re parked outside my gate
So shift it – now
(And I don’t mean the car)
You’ve lost weight
Since I called you a fat ugly sod
You – in turn
Labelled me a pathetic old man
You had upset my late wife
(God rest her soul
Whichever god she rests with)
During a horticulturist disagreement
(She’d touched YOUR flowers
Which drooped over OUR wall)
Now I smile to myself
When hearing your boozed up partner
Screech and curse you
Do you pray to your god
(Whichever god you pray to)
For her to shut up?
I treat it as cabaret time
And enjoy your hoped for discomfort
Does that make me a bad person?
Who knows
Who cares
Me? I pray to no-one

A veteran of the writing game for more years than he cares to remember, Bryn Fortey edited the well received (at the time) OUTLAW, a post-Beat poetry magazine from the 70s and at the same time had short stories in FONTANA anthologies, among others. After a while away from the literary scene he recently returned with both fiction and poetry acceptances. In 2014 The Alchemy Press published his debut collection MERRY-GO-ROUND, combining short stories and poetry in one book.

Flying Dutchman by Alan Catlin

Somewhere in the desert sun,
or a blinding sand storm, chasing
Hajji, he woke up in a field
hospital, ten klicks from nowhere,
IED’s rattling most of the remaining
hardware in his head loose.
Stateside, he looked like a gone ghost
on partial disability with a ten
thousand yard stare, dead eyes at
sunset, and driving a Chevy pickup
like a madman possessed and owning
all the best weapons money could buy,
Saturday nights in roadside cantinas,
truck stop dive bars, no tell motel
lounges, he drank double Gins with
a splash of Triple Sec ‘til he got
the urge to “shoot him some stuff”,
by halogen head lamps or full moon
lights: coyotes or undocumented
border trash, it was all the same to him.
After the carnage, the spent shells and
desiccated bodies left behind, he doesn’t
so much as disappear but dissolve
like heat waves from a Texas Prairie fire.

Alan Catlin is a widely published poet in the US of A and elsewhere.  His most recent book is “Books of the Dead: a memoir with poetry” about the deaths of his parents.  He is a retired professional barman and the editor of the online poetry zine  misfitmagazine.net.

Alan Catlin is a widely published poet in the US of A and elsewhere. His most recent book is “Books of the Dead: a memoir with poetry” about the deaths of his parents. He is a retired professional barman and the editor of the online poetry zine misfitmagazine.net.

The Last Three Days by J.J. Campbell

i stopped wishing
upon the stars
soon after i was
molested as a
child

my good friends
say i’m damaged

i don’t think they
mean that as a
compliment

i was hoping to
find someone
willing to help
me put myself
back together
again

preferably in her
twenties with dark
eyes and a great ass

you’d be amazed at
the number of people
who can’t see the
humor in that

i sit here alone in
the same sweatpants
i have worn for
the last three days

in my late thirties
and broken

officially no longer
giving a shit

J.J. Campbell (1976 - soon) is old enough to know better. He's been widely published over the years, most recently at Dead Snakes, The Camel Saloon, Horror Sleaze Trash, NewPoetry.net, and ZYX. His last book of poems, Sofisticated White Trash (Interior Noise Press) is available wherever people buy books these days. You can find J.J. most days bitching about things only he cares about on his highly entertaining blog, evil delights. (http://evildelights.blogspot.com)

J.J. Campbell (1976 – soon) is old enough to know better. He’s been widely published over the years, most recently at Dead Snakes, The Camel Saloon, Horror Sleaze Trash, NewPoetry.net, and ZYX. His last book of poems, Sofisticated White Trash (Interior Noise Press) is available wherever people buy books these days. You can find J.J. most days bitching about things only he cares about on his highly entertaining blog, evil delights. (http://evildelights.blogspot.com)

This Body by Julia Webb

//this body laid down/with eyes open/to receive
its pennies/this body laid out ready/for the ministrations
of women/but there are no women/this body laid down/
with its tired bones/will be sealed in some kind/of cheap
and fancy/this body slowed and quieted/will be rushed
out of sight/this body will be cleaned by strangers/who
will try hard not/to think of it later/as they tuck in their
children/this body will not be blessed/this body will likely
as not not receive the pennies/which are its right/this body
will be heavy in death/this body will not be mourned/by one
who longs to touch its sleeping face/or sniff its alive skin//
Julia Webb is a graduate of UEA's poetry MA and a top notch procrastinator. She lives in Norwich where she teaches creative writing and reads books. She is a poetry editor of Lighthouse - a journal for new writing.

Julia Webb is a graduate of UEA’s poetry MA and a top notch procrastinator. She lives in Norwich where she teaches creative writing and reads books. She is a poetry editor of Lighthouse – a journal for new writing.

 

 

Fair Enough by Tyler Gates

So what am I then?
A monkey with a mountain on it’s back?
Or even something less?

Yeah, I can see it your eyes,
You believe me to be nothing more
than a bucket
with the bottom missing.

Something built to fail.

But don’t blame me
blame the scratches in the wall
and those crisp red lines
running perfectly
across my otherwise
boring face.

Because that
tiny moment
when we stood under
a giant Moon
that dripped red
and gasped at each other
finally seeing
with our two eyes
the pieces we’ve long since lost
and the gaping holes
where
they should be.

You were everything
to me then
and I
was everywhere to you.

The ant in the grass,

the woman across the street
chasing after her
drunk husband,

even the mold growing
in the roof
of my
collapsing garage.

It’ll kill me I swear
but help me put
this old horse down
before I too
am lost in it completely.

Besides being published in bathroom stalls across America, Tyler Gates is also the author of the novel Unhinged as well as the chapbook On The Pitfalls of Being a Cockroach in Love.

Besides being published in bathroom stalls across America, Tyler Gates is also the author of the novel Unhinged as well as the chapbook On The Pitfalls of Being a Cockroach in Love.

Peripheral Senses by Sally Evans

There are these peripheral senses, when
you don’t rely on those best known
you think the most informative.
Senses you underrate. The one that makes
you dress in certain ways. The one
when your foot knows where it is going to step.
When an old memory wakens to forbid.
The back-off sense. The sense of an outcome.
The one that makes cats howl and dogs growl softly.
When the blind see and the deaf hear something
beyond your ken. They add up together to inform,
to make miracles happen, when your brain
has not quite caught up with what’s going on.
Always there, an unheard tinnitus.

Sally Evans lives in Scotland and has Welsh connections. She has had several books of poems published including Poetic Adventures in Scotland (2014) and the Bees (2008).

Sally Evans lives in Scotland and has Welsh connections. She has had several books of poems published including Poetic Adventures in Scotland (2014) and the Bees (2008).

God’s Opera by Scott Thomas Outlar

The ping of one empty bottle
clinking against another
beside my bed
as I pull up the Cabernet
to finish off the last glass
for the night
sounds like a symphony
orchestrated by the celestial stars.
Every empty bottle
is a note.
Every bottle
is an accomplishment.
Every bottle is a poem.
Every bottle is a story.
Every bottle is in my blood,
it’s in my mind,
it’s in my kidneys,
it’s in my liver,
it’s in my words.
Every bottle is in me, is of me,
is for me, is by me, is with me.
Every bottle loves me,
like I love it – simpatico
forever
Amen.

Scott Thomas Outlar survived both the fire and the flood - now he dances in celebration while waiting on the next round of chaos to commence.  Otherwise, he keeps things fairly chill, spending the days flowing and fluxing with the tide of the Tao River, laughing at life's existential problems, and writing prose-fusion poetry dedicated to the Phoenix Generation.  His work has appeared recently in venues such as Section 8 Magazine, Dead Snakes, The Chaffey Review, Corner Club Press, Black Mirror Magazine, Dissident Voice, and The Kitchen Poet.  Scott's first attempt at a blog is 17Numa.wordpress.com.

Scott Thomas Outlar survived both the fire and the flood – now he dances in celebration while waiting on the next round of chaos to commence. Otherwise, he keeps things fairly chill, spending the days flowing and fluxing with the tide of the Tao River, laughing at life’s existential problems, and writing prose-fusion poetry dedicated to the Phoenix Generation. His work has appeared recently in venues such as Section 8 Magazine, Dead Snakes, The Chaffey Review, Corner Club Press, Black Mirror Magazine, Dissident Voice, and The Kitchen Poet. Scott’s first attempt at a blog is 17Numa.wordpress.com.