Scoundrel Time

Three Poems By Ashley M. Jones

Mary, Don’t You Weep, or, Mary Turner Resurrected When Mary Turner threatened to press charges for the wrongful lynching of her husband in Brooks County, GA on May 19, 1918, she was strung upside down, her...

CHOOSING ALTERNATE FACTS, FEBRUARY

An iris dares to bloom. Six wasps chastise a window from inside, ignore an open door nearby. For hours. They walk the window. One by one, four mount The rod I level to the pane, Lift out the door. Two more...

Bog

And when they come at last to pull him from his throne of gold, what waits for them has neither name nor shape, is something huge, amorphous, all but still—until it moves, its sides begin to ooze like a...

After Math

Geniuses The boys always planned to be geniuses. Papers spread over the tabletops, numbers on screens. Their gaze has missed something. The girl in a box in the darkness of the closet, hands folded, trinkets...

fall awake

fall awake we are walking to find the sunset children of the West need to watch the colors change to know we exist we braid the flags of our mothers into our locks we tie ourselves to our histories to keep...

Runt

Soon there will be an eclipse ploughing a dark swath across the country from Portland to Charleston, everyone is waiting to see what kind of hole will be punched in their universe, everyone is buying smoky glasses from Walmart to hide squints and...

The President is Missing

We think he is somewhere in the White House, but we cannot find him. He was last seen wearing his robe, watching television in the presidential sitting room, flipping through news channels, pausing occasionally upon seeing his likeness. Many of us...

Sweet Talk: Refugees and the Language of Community

“Hi sweetheart. I’m on my way. Can’t wait to see you.” The WhatsApp message appeared on my phone, just after my plane touched down in Athens, Greece. A moment later, I heard another ping and looked down to see “I’m here out of the door number four”...

Two Poems by Peycho Kanev

__________ Creating in Reverse This world is created by language and everlasting light of nouns and gerunds coexisting within the shell of silence. Even the tiniest miracles can happen under a snowflake— If anyone asks if you lost your faith tell...

The Body Confesses

We were so young, my sister and I, both of us still wearing dresses that showed our grubby knees. I don’t know why we joined the crowd that followed our father, who was acting again on one of his “feelings” when he led us to the abandoned...

Waiting for Them To March on Us

As we link arms (mine far from steady) she tells me, before sunrise every morning her grandfather would gather twigs, and slowly he would begin to spin and as he spun, his arms would rise, head lifting, back arching, all spiraling up while he began...

Poems By Reginald Dwayne Betts

Secrets At two a.m., without enough spirits Spilling into my liver to know enough To call my tongue to silence, Miles learned Of the years I spent inside a box: a spell, A kind of incantation I was under; not whisky, But History: I robbed a man...

Invisible Theater

  Not long after the Loma Prieta earthquake, our collective decided to stage an Invisible Theater performance in the atrium restaurant of a grand hotel in San Francisco’s Financial District. When Eva and I walked in, she nodded to our brother...

Two Poems By Tony Hoagland

DINNER GUEST The dinner guest goes upstairs to use the ladies room, and after she has washed her hands, just out of curiosity takes a peek in the medicine cabinet- where among the Nyquil and Ativan and dental floss she sees a bottle labeled Male...

Two Poems by Martha Zweig

Beauty Sleep  Kwitcher bitchin, dad snorted. Shut yer yap up. I hated the salt stinging my cheeks, it curdled my sass. Little blue gas flames itched in the kitchen. A pudding seethed, the better to set. Pulpy crushed gripes folded in. Bard: the...

You Don’t Know Until You Test It

  If a Cheerio rolls under the refrigerator, I think I’d stick my hand under to get it out. It’s scary what’s under a fridge, believe me. And I’m human. But I wouldn’t hesitate. I see it all the time from my sky box at Yankee Stadium. A foul...