Monday 24 December 2012

3 Poems by Alan Botsford

a mamaist journey

The word I heard

The word I said

The word I felt

The word I saw
Was law.

The word I remembered
Lifted as a bird.

The word I sang
Gave wings.

The word I loved
Stood neither below nor above.

The word I entered
Tempered me

And took me everywhere
The sound of the temple bell went.


Nobody wants to go down
There. The pearl
Mirage all but
Faded from view.
Fathoms of an ocean muddied
With oil slicks, garbage, and soap
Detergent churning suds ashore
On waves of desire,
Tides of longing, as breath conspires to be held
Long enough for the blood
To go coursing, palpable pressure
In the veins felt, until…
Oxygen surges back into your moon-split lungs.

I Shot the Poet

Shot him in the foot
Now he can’t walk
Shot him in the chin
Now he can’t talk
Shot him in the groin
Now he can’t take
The ladies for a spin
Shot him in the shoulder
Now he can’t carry
The world around any longer
Shot him in the eye
Now he wears a patch
Shot him in the back
Now he’s slow to trust
Or become too attached
Shot him in the heart
Look at his dust
All got up and never,
No, never out-classed.


Alan Botsford is the author of mamaist: learning a new language (Minato No Hito, 2002), A Book of Shadows (Katydid Press, 2003), and Walt Whitman of Cosmic Folklore (Sage Hill Press, 2010), a hybrid of prose, dialogues and poetry. His work has appeared in several anthologies and in many print and online journals such as American Writing: A Magazine, BlazeVox, Confrontation Magazine, Cortland Review, Ekleksographia, Mickle Street Review, River Styx, and Yemassee Literary Journal, among others. He lives in Japan where he is a professor of American Literature at Kanto Gakuin University and serves as editor of Poetry Kanto, Japan’s longest-running bilingual poetry magazine. His website is:

Monday 17 December 2012

3 Poems by Kevin Immanuel

Medical Marijuana Industry Is Unnerved by U.S. Crackdown UKIAH, Calif. — An intensifying federal crackdown on growers and sellers of state-authorized medical marijuana

Tethered and said

Semi make up

jump for
Prototype skies

It seemed like it could
Be her

T-Mobile and AT&T Edge Closer to Scrapping MergerWASHINGTON — AT&T and T-Mobile USA edged closer to scrapping their proposed merger

Usual modes
Just ask apply prescient
Dominance vaults op

Laugh along the red flag

Slumber not rainfall
Dance straight very

Under new

Sarkozy and Merkel Push for Changes to Europe TreatyPARIS — Under the pressure of financial crisis and with the euro currency at stake

It’s a trap
It’s a trap
It’s a

Nice ice celebrity cell

Her piercing eyes
Were typically
Sublimely anger
And love

Total drug slugs


Kevin Immanuel has studied art at five universities in Canada, Europe, and the United States. Published in seven poetry journals, including The Text (UK), Grain (Canada), The Filling Station (Canada), Ditch (Canada) and The Graphic Tales of Mr. Todd and Associates (Canada), Immanuel explores experimental poetry. 

[Editor's note: In the above-featured experimental poems, the titles are, according to the author, taken from the New York Times, Global News articles.] 

Monday 10 December 2012

1 Poem by Paul Sohar

Non-Euclidean Geometry Lesson 

Rectangular is the god
of those who hate one another;
his blunt weight first flattens them,
and then his sharp corners crumple them
into schizoid patterns of
puzzle pieces clinging together
in an funeral monument.

The god of those who love
one another shines in a circular form
like a big bubble until it starts
rolling over picture frames
and doors and becomes
a spinning blade sawing off
unphotographed nights.

The god of the indifferent
appears in a point of infinitesimal
dimension piercing the wall of silence
letting invisible light shoot
through like sand driven
by a desert storm;
eyes can smart and drizzle
even in total darkness.


Paul Sohar ended his higher education with a BA in philosophy and took a day job in a research lab while writing in every genre, publishing seven books of translations. His own poetry (Homing Poems) is available from Iniquity Press. Latest book: Wayward Orchard  (Wordrunner Press: 2011). Lyricist to G-D is Something Gorgeous a musical produced in Scranton, PA (2007). Winner in 2012 Lincoln Poets Contest. His magazine credits: Agni, Gargoyle, Kenyon Review, Rattle,  Seneca Review, etc. 

Friday 7 December 2012

Solicited Poems by Mark Smith-Soto

Lost and Found

The way objects wait, how their patience shames
us! The loved comb lodged behind the console, years
yawn, presidencies tumble, irreplaceable dogs die
one after another after another, and still, still
behind the console, the same straight smile greeting
the dust of yet another winter, grooming each
disheveled morning with gentle teeth, the same
teeth that drew dark parallels, perfectly spaced
rivulets, the length of her long hair back when
she wore it long and pecan brown—why did
we have to find you when we already mourned
you? Ah, there you are! she cries, as if the years
meant nothing now, and all she had to do was
blow it clean and draw it through her hair.


Where is the beginning of this
thread I’ve found wound into my hair
on waking? All morning pulling at it,
gently, gently, wanting not to break
the story of it, tugging at a meaning
that would not mean completely, even
as noontime beamed with explanations.
Now evening relaxes at the core, and I
find I have unspun half of myself
into my hands, the thread a web, my
mind gone to gauze in a strange light.
Where is the end of this unspinning?
What is this freshness in the air?
What are these wings?

Night Watch

Chico whines, no reason why. Just now walked,
dinner gobbled, head and ears well scratched.
And yet he whines, looking up at me as if confused
at my just sitting here, typing away, while darkness
is stalking the back yard. How can I be so blind,
he wants to know, how sad, how tragic, how I
won’t listen before it is too late. His whines are
refugees from a brain where time and loss have
small dominion, but where the tyranny of now
is absolute. I get up and throw open the kitchen door
and he disappears down the cement steps, barking
deeper and darker than I remember. I follow
to find him perfectly still in the empty yard—
the two of us in the twilight, standing guard.

[published in Poetry East]


Mark Smith-Soto is Professor of Spanish and editor of International Poetry Review at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.  He has published three prize-winning chapbooks and two full-length poetry collections to date, Our Lives Are Rivers (University Press of Florida, 2003), and Any Second Now (Main Street Rag Publishing Co., 2006).  His poetry, which was recognized with an NEA creative writing fellowship in 2005 and has been nominated three times for a Pushcart Prize, has appeared in Antioch Review, Kenyon Review, Literary Review, Nimrod, The Sun and many other publications.  In 2010, Unicorn Press brought out his work of translation Fever Season, the selected poetry of Costa Rican writer Ana IstarĂº.  His most recent works are Berkeley Prelude: A Lyrical Memoir (Unicorn Press, 2012) and the chapbook Splices, due out next year from Finishing Line Press. 

Thursday 6 December 2012

1 Poem by Lisa Aldridge


When the d becomes b, I dug my bug, I dig the big, and dog the bog.  When d became b I knew it, but I couldn’t do anything about it, so I went beer dancing.


Lisa Aldridge is a writer who miraculously tears herself away from writing long enough to teach her sociology students.  She has had poems published by the University of Arkansas Press and the online literary journal, Lunch at Giverny.  She received the Samuel C. Dellinger Award for academic writing.  She also presented her research and writing “Pregnant Women Can’t Make Pickles” at the Scholar’s Symposium at the University of Central Missouri.   

Monday 3 December 2012

2 Poems by Denny E. Marshall

Night Songs

Her lips were like silk sheets
Wrapped loosely around my mind
Aboard a magic carpet
With our hearts intertwined

Super Nova

Stars drop from the sky
Like raindrops
With all the storms in my life
That can surround me
I am still blessed
With your warmth
I find myself sprinkled
In your light 

Denny E. Marshall has done art and poetry for years, but just started writing fiction and articles in 2011. Recent credits include cover art for Unspoken Water 3 (The music issue) and Dreams & Nightmares 93, interior art for Night To Dawn 22 among others. His first article titled “Rejection Is A Good thing, Stop Whining” is online at Eclectic Eel on the All About Art page. More of Denny’s previously published works can be seen at

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