The Lake
The Lake

Alan Elyshevitz, Generous Peril,

 

 

 

Lot’s Wife

for Anna Akhmatova

 

Autumn is surely the crust of the year,

Its pieces scattered for chickens that

Lurch like matrons with cranky hips.

Anna, you are understandably morose

 

In a nation of fried and boiled meat.

In the pantry of your cottage in exile,

Old potatoes have the obstinate eyes

And callous skin of your ex-husband.

 

Outside, the cackle of falling leaves may be

White noise or the very message you desire.

Meanwhile, for dinner you dream of foie gras

And a smuggled morsel of hope from the city

 

Of your sentiments. By morning the coop may

Produce a few eggs which some say contain the

Biographies of martyrs, for they taste unbearably

Sublime when accompanied by a pillar of salt.

 

 

Further details

Mike Farren, Smithereens

 

 

 

The ex-president’s children

 

You tell me you’re responsible

for teaching a course at a liberal

arts college, in humanities,

to the children of the dynasty

of a Latin American state.

 

They’re innocent and unworldly,

with a genuine love for learning

about ancient civilization –

Greece and Roman nation

and their literature and myths.

 

And their family’s party dominates

the newly-democratic state:

another ally of the West,

so everything is for the best

in the best of all possible worlds.

 

Though what it took to get here,

how many had to disappear

to give them space to settle down

to study in a small New England town

history won’t record.

 

 

 

Further details

Sanjeev Sethi, Bleb

 

 

 

 

Offing

 

The beauty of brackens acknowledges my presence

with a little jig. I smile back like one does to a natty

new arrival in the neighborhood. The Emptiness in

those eyes summons me to shoal them with a fairing

of emollients. A poem isn’t a fable or folktale. It’s

task is to temper with images and ideas that create

one’s fantasy or factuality: like those oeillades.

 

 

 

Further details

John Stanizzi, Sundowning

 

 

 

The Blue Guys Attack

This “attack” happened during my father’s 7th year battling Alzheimer’s disease.

 

It was spring
when I wondered if the crocus
turned your speech blue
or if it was the other way around,
the crocus glowing
because of what you said,
blue against the newly turned sillion.

 

Either way
you said there were armies
of blue guys in the woods
disguising themselves
in unbelievable ways,
hiding behind trees,
gathering their anger,
preparing to descend on us
from all sides
boom! boom! boom!

 

You said
Listen to me!
We gotta get a couple guys
take these fuckers out
before they hit us
‘cause they’re coming
you better believe that.
Matter of fact
they’re here now.
Don’t look.
Don’t! Look!
There’s one right there.

 

And you rose stealthily
from your lawn chair
to sneak up on a flower,
motioning me away
with your hand.
Stay back!
you hissed,
protecting your son.
He’s right there.

 

And you closed in
on the blue crocus
wild and emerging,
to get it
before it got us,
all of us.

 

 

Further details

NEWS

There will be no issue in October. Submissions are now open for the November issue.

It’s not easy getting a book or pamphlet accepted for review these days. So I am starting a new review feature, in addition to the regular review section, which will allow more poets' books to reach a wider  audience. It will be called One Poem Reviews and it will be just that. One poem featured from a new book/pamphlet along with a cover JPG and a link to the publisher's website. Contact the editor if you have released a book/pamplet this year or will be released this year.

Reviewed in this issue