AIR CONDITIONING
Jiv Johnson
9.14.21

DOGS DYING IN THE DRY SUMMER, IN AUGUST I WENT BACK HOME AFTER MANUAL LABOR. SCANNED /POL/ FOR FUNNY DISCOURSE. ALL MY FRIENDS ON DISCORD LAUGHING. JOE BIDEN SUCKS. MONKEY WITH A GUN IN A REBEL ENCAMPMENT, AK BARREL SPINNING, PEOPLE DODGING BULLETS, LAUGH REACT THE GIF. THERE’S NO TALIBAN HERE. NOTHING TOO BIG ON THE MIND. GOD IS ABOVE AND JESUS IS LORD. 

GRAVE DIGGER
Cory Bennet
9.13.21

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
I HAD TO THINK HARD.
30.
THAT’S NOT WHAT YOU SAID EARLIER.
WHAT DID I SAY EARLIER?
18.

CAREGIVER
Manuel Marrero
9.8.21

I’M PUSHING WOMEN OUT OF WINDOWS, STARVING MYSELF TO WRITE, TO EAT, DOING EVERYTHING FOR ART, GIVING YOU EVERYTHING. HEROES, VILLAINS, MARTYRS, INSURGENTS.

EXCERPT FROM  KETCHUP
Sam Pink
9.3.21

FRANK LOOKS UP AS THE BLUE SCREEN GIVES WAY TO A SOAP OPERA. AND THE VOLUME IS INCREDIBLY HIGH AS THE THEME MUSIC SWEEPS THROUGH THE BAR. AND FOR A MOMENT, THERE IS THE DEEPEST BEAUTY IMAGINABLE. YES, YOU HAVE NOT EXPERIENCED BEAUTY UNTIL THE THEME SONG FROM A SOAP OPERA PLAYS AT TERRIBLE VOLUME IN AN EMPTY BAR. IN THE DUSY SUNLIGHT. SWEEPING AND COMPLETE.

PHEROMONE DARK AGE
Michael Borth
8.30.21

FORTUITOUS AND FAT, GOUT AND GASTRO, LITTLE KIDS RUNNING WITH FLOWERS IN THEIR HANDS, FRACTAL PEARL, SCALLOPED, AND YOUR MIND RINGS BEFORE THE PHONE DOES. CERTAIN PORCHES OF ILL-REPUTE, THE DAWN IS ORANGE IN TWO CHAMBERS AND EVERY FIFTH TRUNK IS HEAVY WITH AUTOMATIC WEAPON. THE VIDEO OF CORD CUTTING, THE ACID OF THE ER DOCTOR, WALKING STRAIGHT INTO THE WATER LIKE A FALLEN SKY.

ATIVAN WORKS
Myles Zavelo
8.27.21

I AM LIVING WITH OTHER MEN IN LOS ANGELES NOW. THIS IS A STEP-DOWN FACILITY. THEY MAKE DECLARATIONS HERE. THEY SAY THINGS LIKE...ANOREXIC BITCHES ARE BETTER FUCKS THAN BULIMIC BITCHES. THEY DON’T SAY WOMEN.  THEY LIKE RUB-AND-TUGS. THEY’VE GAINED WEIGHT ON ZYPREXA AND SEROQUEL AND CLOZAPINE AND DEPAKOTE. THEY HAVE POOR TABLE MANNERS. THEY HAVE BLOWHARD DADS. SOME HAVE COMPLIANT MOTHERS. THAY ARE SDSU GRADUATES AND USC DROPOUTS. THEY HAVE ACCESS TO THE VERY BEST PORNOGRPAHY. THEY ARE PSYCHOTIC UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF MARIJUANA. THEY SUFFER FROM BODY DYSMORPHIA. THEY DISCUSS THE POSSIBILITIES OF FASTING. THEY LOVE COLLEGE BASKETBALL. THIS IS ALL PART OF MY TREATMENT. WHAT I WANTED, ASKED FOR, AND GOT. BECAUSE I NEEDED SOMETHING... SIFTING THROUGH A PLASTIC CONTAINER OF CHILDHOOD EPHEMERA, I FIND A PHOTOGRAPH OF MY HIGH SCHOOL BOYFRIEND. WE MET WHEN I WAS 14 AND HE WAS 17. HE HAD BLACK HAIR, AND I WAS OVERWEIGHT. TO WOO ME, HE WROTE MY NAME IN THE SAND AT THE BEACH AND TOOK A PHOTOGRAPH OF IT, WHICH I HUNG IN A FRAME ABOVE MY BED. SOMETIMES WHILE I MASTURBATED, I FANTASIZED ABOUT US EATING FRENCH FRIES, THEN FUCKING ON THE SAND. I HAD NOT YET LOST MY VIRGINITY, BUT WE HELD HANDS IN MY HIGH SCHOOL’S BLEACHERS, AND CONTINUED HOLDING HANDS UNTIL HE CHEATED ON ME WITH SOMEONE CLOSER TO HIS AGE. PROBABLY SHE WAS A SLUT WHO HELPED HIM EJACULATE. WHICH, IN RETROSPECT, I WISHED I WAS.

BORN IN BLOOD
Lindsay Lerman
8.23.21

THE FIRST TIME I DID MDMA AFTER HAVING A BABY, I WAS BROUGHT BACK TO THIS NIGHT. OR MAYBE IT WAS DAY. THE LABOR TIME. THE NO-TIME. THE ALL-TIME. THE OUTSIDE-TIME. THE TWELVE PLUS HOURS, THE NOT-KNOWING, THE FEELING TOO INTENSELY.

2 Poems
Sophia Le Fraga
8.20.21

IT WAS A SAD AFTERNOON
BUT EVERYBODY TOOK
A PICTURE.

DA VINCI!
Shanti Escalante-De Mattei
8.18.21

WHAT PARTS OF YOU DID I GLIMPSE AMONG THESE BOYS? LIKE LOOKING AT THE PROGENY OF A LONG AGO LOVER BUMPED INTO ON THE STREET // SOMETHING SUTBLE IN THE FACE SEARCHING FOR THE PART I CHERISH EXCEPT, MY ABSURD LIFE, THE LITTLE JOKE OF MY EXISTENCE--I AM DOING IT BACKWARDS.

3 POEMS
Excerpt from SUNSHINE AND MOLOTOV COCKTAILS
Cavin Bryce Gonzalez
8.17.21

YOUR TINY HANDS WERE SO DELICATE THAT I FELT THE URGE TO SMASH ALL OF THEIR BONES WHENEVER I HELD THEM. I SHOULD HAVE TAKEN THE OPPORTUNITY WHEN I HAD THE CHANCE. THEY ARE MY FAVORITE THING, YOUR HANDS. IF I TOOK THEM WHEN I HAD THE CHANCE THEN I COULD HAVE HAD THEM FOREVER.

FARTHER, FATHER
Max Tullio
8.15.21

...AND THAT HE WANTS HIS PARTIES TO BE LIKE THAT AND NOT LIKE THIS AND ABOUT HOW THE MOVIE WAS DIRECTED BY THIS GUY WHO ALSO MADE A MOVIE ABOUT CARLOS THE JACKAL WHO WAS “LIKE, THE SEXIEST TERRORIST OF ALL TIME” WHICH ANNIE THINKS IS A HARD CATEGORY TO QUALIFY AND THEN SHE THINKS ABOUT THE SON OF THE BIN LADEN FAMILY SELLING HIS MANSION IN LA THAT LOOKED LIKE THE BEVERLY HILTON HOTEL WHERE THEY HOST THE GOLDEN GLOBES AND THEN SHE DANCES A LITTLE BUT IN A KIND OF FUNNY WAY THAT’S JAGGED AND STILTED AND SHE BECOMES SELF CONSCIOUS THAT SHE’S DANCING LIKE HER FATHER. AND NOW SHE’S THINKING ABOUT HER FATHER.

EXEUNT
Sean Kilpatrick
8.13.21

A GOD THAT LOVED YOU WOULD NUMBER YOUR DAYS MORE OPENLY // THIS PRAYER LETS US SEE IN OUR SLEEP

REFRAME (WORK/HOME)
Crow Jonah Norlander
8.8.21

IT USED TO BE A PET PEEVE WHEN SHE CALLED HERSELF A DOG MOM BUT NOW THAT I’M A HUMAN DAD I’M LIKE SURE EVERYTHING’S MY BABY

WULLAHWAHZOUT
Joseph Grantham
8.7.21

WHEN YOU SMACK YOUR LIPS IT BRINGS ME BACK TO WHEN I LIVED IN NEW YORK CITY NOT FAR FROM THE HOLLYWOOD SIGN

WITIN THE EYE OF THE ENTITY
Blake Butler
8.7.21

NO ONE IN HEAVEN HAS SURVIVED. IF THEY DESERVED TO, THEY’D STILL BE DOWN HERE. AS AM I. OR AT LEAST I’VE WORN ON LONG ENOUGH IT’S NOT UNQUESTIONABLE TO IMAGINE I MIGHT CONTINUE GROWING OLD FOR LONG ENOUGH THAT I MIGHT FINALLY COME BACK AT THE BEGINNING. AND I’D STILL DO IT ALL OVER JUST THE SAME.

PRAY HISTORY
Theadora Walsh
8.1.21

SOME PEOPLE REMEMBER GOD WHEN THEY ARE IN A HOSPITAL BED. THE NURSE TOLD ME THAT MORPHINE WOUL BE JUST LIKE THE FIRST TIME YOU TRIED MARIJUANA. SHE HAD HEARD FROM
PATIENTS. SHE HERSELF HAD NEVER DONE DRUGS AND NEVER WOULD DO DRUGS.

BY THE WATER BY THE SEWAGE PLANT
Terrence Arjoon
8.1.21

FOR YOU LOVE WAS MILK.

SILVER SCREENS
Emmalea Russo
7.26.21

SEEN THE ANGELS. WHEN OTHER FORCES MOVE FROM BLACK AND WHITE TO TECHNICOLOR AWAY BLOWS OUR PAPER MONEY. YOU WRAP ME IN YOUR WINGS OF DESIRE TRENCH COAT.

LOST HILLS
Nick Plett
7.21.21

YES OFFICER, I’D LIKE TO REPORT A BITCH SLAPPING. HE HAD LUNGED FROM THE SEAT OF HIS CLUNKY FORD F350 AND SPUTTERED INSULTS LACED WITH SPITTLE AND VENOM AND DISDAIN FOR YOUNGER GENERATIONS AND SELF-HATRED AND HELPESSNESS AND ALL THE BOILING PARTS OF LIFE SPEWING INTO THE HOT AIR LIKE VOMIT AND THEN HE HAD REACHED OUT AND SLAPPED ME. SLAPPED ME LIKE THE BITCH THAT I WAS.

OBJECTS
Rebecca Teich
7.20.21

THIS ISN’T ABOUT METAPHORS; THIS IS ABOUT OBJECTS.

A D I D A S
Ted Dodson
7.18.21

I TURN AND MY ASSHOLE TURNS WITH ME. AWAY IS MORE CONCEPTUAL THAN BEING HERE WITH YOU.

BLOOD RUN
Leo Johnson
7.11.21

I’M PLUGGING MY EARS. STILL FORGETTING TO REMEMBER. TAUGHT TO LET MY KNUCKLES BLEED. NOW LET THE WAX DRIP. AS I TIGHTEN THE ROPE.

REMORA
Zoe Dubno
7.6.21

WHY IS ALL THIS DUST EVERYWHERE? WHY IS THE ROOM FILLED WITH DUST? WHY HAVE ALL THE FLOWERS TURNED TO DUST? THEY USED TO BE RHODODENDRONS AND WHERE IS MY MOTHER? THERE IS A VASE AND IT IS FULL OF GARBAGE AND THE TOILET RUNS FULL. IT HAS OVERFLOWED AND THERE IS WATER IN MY MOUTH. THE LIGHTS TURN OFF AND I AM SURROUNDED BY SNAILS. HOW COME NO ONE ELSE IS HERE AND WHY AM I STILL COUGHING? WHY AM I BREATHING IN THIS WATER? WHAT HAPPENED TO ALL THE DUST?

FUG
Nathan Dragon
7.5.21

THIS MORNING HE DROVE TO ONE OF THE STRIP MALLS AND BOUGHT A RADIO WITH A PLUG FOR AN OUTLET. IT CAN ALSO TAKE BATTERIES IF AN OUTLET ISN’T ACCESSIBLE. HE THINKS HE SHOULD’VE GOTTEN BATTERIES AND HE MIGHT BRING IT OUTSIDE TO THE FAR END OF THE YARD AND LISTEN TO MUSIC AND BURN SOMETHING.


THE COP RUBBED THE MAN AGAINST THE TOMATO GUTS. THE COP PUT THE MAN IN THE BACK OF HIS CRUISER. THE COP CLOSED THE DOOR OF HIS CRUISER. THE COP DROVE AWAY WHILE FIRING HIS GUN OUT THE WINDOW. AN HOUR LATER A TOW TRUCK CAME FOR THE CAR AND I WENT HOME. I ATE TOMATOES. EVERY TIME I BIT INTO A TOMATO, IT KILLED EVERY COP IN AMERICA. I KILLED EVERY COP IN AMERICA SOMETHING LIKE TWENTY OR TWENTY-FIVE TIMES.

BASELESS STATUE
Skylar Hauge
7.5.21

LIFE IS LIKE A BOX OF CHOCOLATES. IT WILL KILL YOUR DOG.

GOOD BOY
Madeline Cash
7.5.21

AS THE SEDATIVE WAS ADMINISTERED MY SISTER STARTED TO CRY. THEN MY MOM STARTED TO CRY. I COULDN’T TAKE MY EYES OFF THE DOG MURDERER’S TITS. ONLY THE MORE AROUSING THAT THEY WERE OBSCURED BY SO MUCH POLYESTER. I WONDERED WHAT SHE DID ON WEEKENDS. WHEN SHE WASN’T EUTHANIZING FAMILY PETS. SHE PROBABLY LAUGHED AND DRANK AND DANCED--READ IN A NOOK BY THE WINDOW OR SOMETHING. CASHEW WATCHED HER WITH HIS DROWSY, ALL-KNOWING STARE. HIS ANGEL OF DEATH. PERHAPS THE COMPANY HAD ORCHISTRATED IT THIS WAY. THEY WANTED THE LAST THINGS THE ANIMALS SAW TO BE BEAUTIFUL.


THINK ABOUT YOUR ODDS OF GETTING MURDERED IN THE FIRST PLACE. OK. NOW DIVIDE THAT BY 100. PRETTY GOOD, HUH?

TRANSGRESSIONS
Giulia Bencivenga
7.5.21

MY POETRY IS CARDIOVASCULAR AND VERY GOOD FOR YOU. HEALTHY IN THAT WAY THAT FAILURE IS HEALTHY. CARDIOVASCULAR IN THAT ITS SCOPE IS TO AERATE. THE NEGATION THAT COMES WITH IMMANENCE. THE BEES THAT CIRCLE A ROTTEN QUEEN, THE HEAT OF THEIR WINGS COOKING HER ALIVE.

A VERY GOOPY RENDEZVOUS
David Fishkind 7.5.21

ALEXANDER RETIRED SUPINE ON HIS FEATHERY ROOST, AND I HELD UP ONE OF THE PAPER LANTERNS TO HIS TABLET, ENUMERATING THE MANY IDIOSYNCRASIES AND UNPARALLELED INNOVATIONS OF THE FRESHLY PATENTED WEAPONS TECH. WHEN I LOOKED UP, MY WHOADIE HAD ENTERED THOSE SEIZING THROES DISTINCTIVE TO THE LAND OF NOD. CAREFUL NOT TO MAKE PHYSICAL CONTACT, I COVERED HIS FACE WITH THE GLOSSY BEAM OF THE GESTALT.

SPRING FEVER
She D
7.5.21

MY FRIEND WAS RECENTLY IN AN IHOP TRYING TO RECEIVE A FREE BIRTHDAY BREAKFAST AND SHE STARTED A CONVERSATION WITH A WOMAN. THE WOMAN SAID SOMETHING LIKE, “DON’T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ, HAIL TRUMP!” MY FRIEND SAID, “I’M A COMMUNIST.” THE LADY SAID, “SO YOU DON’T BELIEVE IN FREEDOM?” WHAT A GOOD QUESTION.

A DESPERATE MAN
Jeanetta Rich
7.5.21

IN MY DEFENSE HE WOULD SERENADE ME AT MY WINDOW. THAT WAS THE TIME I FORGAVE HIM FOR STEALING MY LAPTOP.




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