Vitesse – Shreya Vikram

i run 3

A litany, a promise, a prayer.
Run.
I run so fast, I will tear out of this sordid flesh, out of gilded skin and ivory bone.
I see myself: I am hollow, a pit of red.
I am the colour of blood, the colour of rage. The colour of flesh, the colour of shame.
I am shackled, by these strands of vein. They coil around me, tighter, tighter, I cannot breathe.
I see the cage, clearer than ever, this prison of flesh.
I see this promise, I hear its oath.
Run, it whispers. If you run fast enough, you’ll break free.
And so, I do.

#

I run on fear, I run on fire.
I run for pain, the excruciating burn of desire. I burn for the exquisite absence of thought.
I run so fast, I leave behind my self, I will rust away until there is nothing left of me. Out of breath, out of life.
I want to lose myself, in the purest sense of the phrase, I want to forget, to be misplaced. I want to leave behind this life.
Bone to dust; blood can rust.

#

I see the cage, clearer than ever, this prison of red.
I hear these voices, I trust in their message.
Run , they whisperIf you run fast enough, you’ll break free.
I know I can.
I know I can.


Shreya Vikram is a writer who prides herself on her ability to blur the lines between poetry and prose, intensity and elegance. You can read more of her work at The Midnight Ember.

The Night Before – Salvador Macias

We finally slept a little after the sun rose
It’s reminder of our mortality
Rearing it’s face through the cracks of
Blue and red curtains
Five hours later
We awoke bracing our selves for the ugliness of the day to begin
As slugs and roaches danced below our bed
We lurched dry mouths
and hangover sickness
To a baptism of soap and heat
We stood together
Motionless
Her head against the white tile
Of the shower wall
She kept her eyes closed
As she combed through my wet hair
Scrubbed my back and chest
And I ran my hand across her breast
To keep balance
Washed away was the
Musk of sex
The stink of cigarettes,
Of whiskey specials
And the nonsense of the night before
As we dried ourselves
She asked if I had meant
What I said in the parking lot
After last call
Though I couldn’t recall
What we talked about
I sensed it had
awakened something
Long dormant
Within her
I smiled looking directly into
Her eyes
And replied
” every word baby ”

Sudden Denouement’s First Short Story Literary Prize – Open For Submissions Nov 1, 2018

Since its inception in 2016, The Sudden Denouement Literary Collective has had the privilege of featuring some of today’s most fearless writers. With members that span the globe and editors who share a passion for pushing boundaries, we as a collective have enjoyed reading, promoting, and watching the success of each individual artist as they have grown in their craft and left their mark upon the literary world.

Now, as writers and readers, editors and fans, we at Sudden Denouement Literary Collective are ecstatic to open up the doors to our outstanding, award winning collective, and invite you all in to pull up a chair and tell us your stories.

The Sudden Denouement Literary Collective, and Sudden Denouement Publishing, are pleased to dip our toes into the waters of great literary contests and announce our first ever short story literary prize with a call for submissions from all of you.

Our theme is ‘Things Would Never Be The Same’ and our rules and regulations are as follows:

WHAT: You can submit ONE original, unpublished piece of fiction that is up to 2500 words. There is no minimum word requirement.

WHEN: The competition is open for submissions from November 1, 2018, to January 1, 2019

WHO: Everyone, everywhere

HOW: While the competition is active, submit your piece online through Submittable.

WHAT YOU CAN WIN: 

1st place:
$100 cash
One copy of every book published by Sudden Denouement Publishing
Three guest spots featured on Sudden Denouement Literary Collective
*possibility of publication in Sudden Denouement’s first short story anthology – 2019

2nd place:
$75 cash
One copy of three books published by Sudden Denouement Publishing
Two guest spots featured on Sudden Denouement Literary Collective
*possibility of publication in Sudden Denouement’s first short story anthology – 2019

3rd place:
$50 cash
One copy of two books published by Sudden Denouement Publishing
One guest spot featured on Sudden Denouement Literary Collective
*possibility of publication in Sudden Denouement’s first short story anthology – 2019

Honourable Mentions (2 places)
$25 cash
*possibility of publication in Sudden Denouement’s first short story anthology – 2019.

Check back on November 1, 2018 when submissions will be opened.

Good luck to you all, we look forward to reading your submissions.

-The Editors of Sudden Denouement

 

The Logical Response – Stephen M Crow

The skyline illuminated
Bright razors against the night
Doing what cutters do
Finding humanity in pain
In emotional release

Pinballs crashing on the street
No eye contact to betray
Inch by inch we march
Hand in bitter hand
Into the belly of the beast

The wind picked up the message
Fall leaves blown asunder
Scrambled contrast across the moon
Throwing shadows
Signaling the end of peace

Burning our own homes in protest
Purpose with a side of death
Realizing we must tear it down
As we lay upon these flames
And go to sleep

[Stephen M Crow is a writer and musician who resides in Pasadena, Texas with his wife, Christy, and their children. Interests include cooking, watching horror movies, listening to music, and spending time with his family.]

Day 1 – Patrick Hart

Forgiveness is found in the cooling of blatant heat
A treasure typically reserved
For hunters and priests
Finally shifting in the form of falling leaves
A light reprieve
From hollow hell and dampened glory

The sky awakens to bodies succumbing
To the Cliff Swallow’s song
A disbelief of patience
That strands the torture of constant war, for
Beauty is a season in desire
It is a body bright
Knotted In the fingers of sunlight
And a bored man’s tongue
Can find the fruits of passion
In the throes of this calm union

Roadside Maples dance in irenic fashion
With acorn offerings littering
The feet of wolves nurturing the day
And autumn prints pry fault
From the aging jetty of the mind

Alas, the first of its kind bows
To the womb of a sunrise
As dusk falls
The earth becomes a beautiful woman
Behind the glow of her cigarette
And I—
A statue on a mantel
Watching her glory echo

[Patrick Hart is a transplanted South Georgian writer who originally hails from Hampton Roads Virginia. He currently serves in the United States Air Force, as an air traffic controller.

Like most of us, Patrick draws most of his inspiration from his history. Through his writing, he seeks to dredge bodies from the dark pools of his mind, as much as he desires to describe and define what life is.

If he had to use one word to describe himself, it would be cerebral.]

Find more of Patrick’s work on Instagram and grab a copy of his stunning debut collection War Paint, published by RadPress Publishing

Pull-String Playgrounds – Introducing JL Stevens

All these threads lead to the same endings.
The fabric of pain doesn’t shelter,
and it rains all the time.
I stumble among the defense mechanisms,
and the battlegrounds now stretch
like a list of forgotten names.
The devil may understand the broken,
but he is laughing
behind the cup of indifference.
These fractures are given labels,
beautiful categories,
pinned to the walls like wrists.
I am suffocating on all
the identities they are forcing upon me.
Hesitant to say a word
as the ink falls unwillingly from my eyes.
Every sin that once separated us
is now sold back with a smile.
And the sign overhead says: Play to Win.
We cannot thrive within
these pull-string playgrounds.
Because the game is tied
too tightly to ourselves.

 

JL Stevens is a writer of psychological fiction. She is currently working on her first collection of short tragedies entitled How The Story Ends. You can find her poetry on Facebook under JL Stevens and Chaos of Thought. She loves classic literature and has a deep passion for words. She is going back to school to pursue her degree in psychology and human development, and hopes to incorporate this into her writing.

Discover Sunday: Where Beauty Resides/David Redpath

The bells of liberty
by your stockings rung
The deepest restraints
in my hands … undone
Like a flake of snow
your sacrament melting
upon my thirsting tongue
Quenched in the ocean
of love’s perfection
Down on bended knees
lost in the squeeze
of your wholly communion
To ride the high tide
of hard won freedom
Yet, I’m a captive slave
to your will being done

Your angels singing
a silent prayer
that rents the air
A rosebud opening
to the dawn
of a new morning
The Sun reborn
arising from darkness
The sweetest caress
A portrait in the painting
upon a canvas of wonder
The joining in oneness
The joy outstretching
to your throne of happiness
Fingers and toes
like tender tendrils
of a celestial ebb and flow
Above and below
ecstasy in the throes
My letter of love sent
The walls of containment
imploded and spent
upon your arriving
with the napalm
of no bodily harm
Chiming with the ringing
of your silent alarm
Fair land of contentment
wherever my beauty lies
In the arms of the beholder
forever binding
those loving ties

Wherever
our destiny hides
near or far
always and whatsoever
true beauty abides
Love triumphant
ever the prize
Lovers together
riding side by side
Our universe unfolding
through whispered sighs
Upstanding and victorious
under crystal clear skies
whatever the weather
It is always glorious
through heaven’s eyes
Here and there
as the eagle glides
Yet always near
deep in my heart
where your beauty resides

by david redpath © 2018

Watercolour by Salvador Dali

Discover Sunday: Bonfire Nocturnalia (Linoleum)/Willie Watt

(and) she asks me whether, “archetypical
beginnings
undermine the rest of
the poem?”

or
whether,

“their self-awareness

prevents
the poem
from discovering
something deeper? more
authentic?”

and
I said,

“it’s an academic question.
it doesn’t matter.
none of my poems are self-aware.”

(and) I’m on a mobius strip
magic carpet—

a syncopated wavelength—
and you duct-taped your brain to the linoleum
and wondered
at the way
things became so ashen
so quickly.

I lit your cigarettes
even when you blew the smoke in my face.

(and) the elevator is
going
down,

down,

down,

and it’s like those surreal childhood memories
(the floor is lava)
that you remember
when listening to an old song
for the
first time
in
a
long time.

(and) I’ve suffered through so many
nightmares—
bonfires of nocturnalia—
that the cracks
in the linoleum
allow the oversized
insects
into the breach.

(and) because
I’ve
asked you to kill me,
and because
I’ve
asked you to hate me,
now
might be a bad time to ask you
to make me
something
other than what I am, baby.

save me from the drunken diatribes
and
swaying lines.
save me from the postmodern cynicism
and
high tides.

it’s high time
we grew up
and grew past
these marijuana-colored skylines.

(and) your ghost
is the only thing
that eradicates the roaches nestling in my brain,
that saturates my vanity and sanity in concurrent saline solutions,
that draws blood from the lips of shame and memory and feeds vampiric on its undergrowth,
that wages war on agony
and always
emerges
bloodstained
but intact.

another relapse of reason
and I
can only bypass
the breakdown
when one of your phantoms
is near—

hidden
in the
linoleum.

Excerpt from Swear to Me


Willie Watt is a student, short story writer, and poet from Houston Texas. In his work he strives to capture the many contradictions and as-yet-unwritten phenomena of life in the twenty-first century. Currently an English major at the University of Texas at Austin, he plans to attend a graduate program in creative writing before going on to teach, write, and lecture professionally.”

The Waiting Room/Caterina Gentile

It is a heated chamber
Off of medication
I dream of a gaping vortex in the sky
A whole in the universe and spinning
somethings.
The awkward silence between you and I
Laughter from behind a shut door
We are all the same
A schizo? Nervous? Lonely?
Abused. Abandoned. Depressed.
I wonder what your day consists of
Or what you have to go home to
-or what you don’t-
Or where you came from.
In session, we do not disturb.
Out of session is a different story.

C.Gentile is a poet currently in the process of obtaining her master’s degree in English Literary Studies at Salem State University. She is a self-proclaimed Star Wars nerd, novelty sock enthusiast and passionate lover of Canada Dry ginger-ale products. In her spare time she enjoys watching movies listening to 90’s alternative music and spending time with close friends and family.