Friday, May 31, 2013
Concert at Bernie's
When Bernie wakes at 6 a.m.
there's a piano on his chest
and Erroll Garner's playing "Misty."
Sinatra's on the headboard
and Krupa's in the corner
painting on the drums.
The music is magnificent.
Once the song is over
Bernie chants his morning prayers,
shaves and showers and limps to work
for another day at the gherkin factory.
The foreman, Mr. Simpkins, is an ogre
nonpareil, a sumbitch unsurpassed,
who stalks the catwalk all day long
with megaphone and stopwatch.
At 5 p.m. the factory spits Bernie
and his cohorts out the door
so Bernie limps to the Hot Wok Shack
and buys a carton of Egg Fu Yung
and heads back home to wait for dawn
so he can hear Erroll play "Night and Day"
while Sinatra does the vocal and
Krupa punctuates the piece
softly on the drums.
Bernie spends each day in hell but dawn
is always a concert from heaven.
- Donal Mahoney 2013
Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
Posted by Justin Lowe at 8:04 am
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
to see the head
grow a tail
a new head
five simple hearts
one by one...
- Breda Wall Ryan 2013
Nights we lay still as hares
in our grass form,
balanced the rising moon
on our toes,
finger-tipped with stars.
Tonight you sit alone
in the screen’s blue glow,
tea cold at your elbow,
while I watch
light years between us.
- Breda Wall Ryan 2013
Breda Wall Ryan has been shortlisted for several international literary prizes for fiction and poetry, most recently The Fish Poetry Prize, and won the UCD Anthology Contest(poetry) 2011. Her work is published in anthologies and in journals. has won or been shortlisted for several literary prizes. A member of Hibernian Poetry, Dublin, she has an M. Phil. in Creative Writing from Trinity C ollege, Dublin. She has completed a short story collection, The Hardest Winter and Other Stories and a poetry collection, The Woman who Toasted the Owl.
Posted by Justin Lowe at 10:05 am
Monday, May 06, 2013
The image of you in my head is nothing but a compilation of pixels.
Squares filled with shades to figure
out what they’re actually there for once you’re completely zoomed out.
I long to zoom myself back in and get lost.
Your technicolor checker board of
“I’ll tell you later”’s
“I don’t wanna talk about it”’s
make for a gift wrapped Capricorn horoscope served on
a gold platter.
Inch back to me because inches provide a way
for everyone to understand the size of something.
Like the top joint of your thumb or the 2.54 seconds
it took you to leave your apartment balcony.
Just talk to me like you would into a tin can.
Tell me you want to play.
Let me teach you the abacus of my breath.
Each bead that gets pushed is another heartstring
I’m still stuck on the other side.
- April Krivensky 2013
April Krivensky attends the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign pursuing a major in Creative Writing. She loves her Dorgi, a good joke, and eating toffee. She lives in Orland Park, IL.
Posted by Justin Lowe at 12:21 pm
Sunday, May 05, 2013
Too Much. I Know.
Listen, friends. I probably either didn’t care about you or even like you
for a long time. Sorry about that. Inevitably, there was a moment—
something you said or did, or just exposure over time— when
I realized I was wrong, again, and we should be friends. Forever.
There is almost nothing that can undo this now,
whatever your wishes to the contrary—sorry again.
And while I’m good for a laugh or two, this moment marks
the beginning of everything getting generally worse for you.
I’ll forget your birthday, text too often, email too much
fail to ask important follow-up questions, make you read my poetry,
tell meandering anecdotes at a displeasing pitch or volume,
defend the person you are angry with, interrupt your story
with one of my own that is vaguely related, and maybe better.
But probably worse.
I’ll be decent at unimportant marks of friendship of my choosing,
like remembering your aunt’s quirks, and terrible at any that really matter.
But I’ll think kindly about you more than you’d suppose.
I’ll manage to suffocate and fail you with my love, simultaneously.
All this, I think you know. You are not too many in number,
but you are not alone. So, be irritated, perhaps, but not overwhelmed.
I can’t help it. Because once I’m finally done casually disliking you,
I can’t fully comprehend your importance to me.
- Katyhryn Guelcher 2013
Posted by Justin Lowe at 8:42 pm