Cohen, Cave, and Joy Division Crash This Bar

by Nathan McCool


I gather up abandoned bottles kissed with

cherry lipstick and cigarette scents – bring them to my lips and eavesdrop on the white noise inside.

“Come on back in, one more time, for the encore of “The Butcher Boy”; come in for

the closed viewing of PSR B1919+21.”

And this is when the boredom of barrooms

comes alive.

Right at the moment I emit pulses

that tell the masses I am not part of them. I’m sending you a signal, you tiny, little world.

See me here spinning and burning in my own

mind. I hop on stage to sing you a melancholy ballad and follow it up with “Tower of Song”.

That’s where I am. Another hundred floors below Hank Williams

and screaming to tell you,

“It’s the loneliest down here.”


Nathan McCool is a member of Blood Into Ink and the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective. You can find the haint, dusk, and sizzling of his concrete snares on his blog, Mist of Melancholia.

WRONG TWIN’S LULLABY

by Basilike Pappa

It said sleep / the voice said / slide into / me / like a fish / in water the voice said / dreamless / I’ll catch you / just sleep it said / you’re tired and / it’s time to / sleep.

Like this / it said / the voice said / close your eyes / slide / let go / see? it said / like this / come to me / easy / you’re tired / just sleep.

That time / it said / remember? / that time in the sea / the water closed over / so close to the shore / but that current / that sneaky tricky current / it said let go / the voice said / like fish / you’re tired / sleep / easy like this / don’t blink.

And you thought  / why not / easy / the water quiet / like a sheet / it said now sleep / and the world will wash you by / stay still / finish it / go down / deep / a stone in water / so easy like this / like sleep / heavy dreamless / sink.

Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow / it said like this / no more of this / just sink / slide / sleep / for a moment it was easy / to let it all go by / bead after bead after bead / meaningless string / remember? it said / you don’t but I / remember how wide-eyed / you escaped me.

Close your eyes it said / that time that street / remember? the voice said / it was me / slip of your feet / in the rage of its machines / don’t blink / stand still / and the world will crush you by / like a wave / like a current / in a sneaky tricky sea / don’t cheat / now sleep.

And I’ll catch you / said the voice / why not believe in me / it said tired / don’t think / slide / dreamless deep / ready? sink! / for a moment you were ready / but you cheated / backwards step / you caught yourself / quick / no sleep / through my arms you slipped.

It said sleep / the voice said silk / let go / and the night will pass you by / why not / easy / and I swear it’s not me / now and forever deep / just my twin / not me not me / not the voice in the sea.

Why not believe in me / in my arms / I’m my twin / like this: see? / easy / close your eyes / come to me / don’t think / sleep / never pushed you in the street / try me / the voice said silk.

To the voice I said like fish / through your arms I’ll slip like this / voice current / hair seaweed / I am wide-eyed / you’re no sleep / no end of cheat / to the voice I said don’t speak.

Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow / I said I like this / yes! more of this! / be quiet now / like a sheet / I don’t know what it means / but I know how it feels / sun on skin / daisy fields / sitting idle by a stream.

Quick / I blink / backwards step / I catch myself / you can sing your lullaby / all you want but never me / never in your dreamless water / I slide / I slip / easy: see? like this / there are parties I can’t miss / if I’m late don’t wait / eat.

Always sweet / a sheet of silk / but your singing goes six feet / under daisy fields I think / so don’t

speak / don’t sing / quit / here’s my finger / ready? Sit!



Basilike Pappa lives in Greece. She likes her coffee black, her walls painted green and blue, her books old or new. She despises yellow curtains and red tape. She can’t live without chocolate, flowers and her dog. Places she can be found are: kitchen, office, living room. If she’s not at home, I don’t know where she is. You can find Basilike up late with a notebook in the Silent Hour.

Photography by Jimmi Campkin (jimmi campkin.com)

The Fallacy of Mankind – Patrick Hart

Through my nose,
I took everything I could
To make the ache
In my head stop

There were yellow whales
And pipers wearing polka dots
Pretending to be God
The devil held a sword
Like the archangel he was
And threatened the weather

Isn’t it something
When the thunder of a father
Is challenged by the tide of a son;
Yet free will bought mankind the moon?

I challenged traditional thought
By letting the animals in my stomach out
Vampires in white cloth told me my penance
Led to something called a blood clot
And every voice in the room
Sanctioned by love
Was suddenly divided
By their bindings to strength
Empathy
Or necessity

I learned
That color matters
And that humanity classified everything
Including the intangibles
So we could create crowns
For crowded rooms

But when we simplified faith
We lost his name
And now his face only shows
In the most Ungodly Place(s)

Give me happiness or death
But dammit, let love rest

 

 

[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.

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.

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

Quietly incessant

by Oldepunk

I wasn’t always sure

About the noise in the background

Incessant, like the peeling of

A grimace in rush hour massacres

Pounding out the march of time

To rounded pupils and bloodshot

Veins that wrapped around conclusions

They claim names remain inane

I see some new faces on the pavement

air is thick with mistrust and ash

I know it’s not safe to breathe

There’s really no other alternative though, right?

Nodding on Himalayan chiba

Absorbing good news vibes

While the bad news bears play to lose

In the side streets, side stepping

Johnny law and copper johns

Did you hear that meth is a thing again

Don’t call it a comeback, it’s company certified now

Cheaper and harder than generic opioids and gin

Sundays and shit coffee and stale pastries

Freebasing the shame on the nails of

Mary Magdalene and asking if maybe

She was the one this whole time

I once knew a girl who looked like

My vision of the wife of a Messiah

Except she dressed like Lilith and wakizashi

She wrote me a Gospel unlike any other

My faith in her will be

the dirt of my grave

She spun up a speedball packed

With that Chelyabinsk fentanyl

Cooked herself the last supper

she ascended while surrounded

by a dozen other prophets

in a broken down rectory on

North Brother Isle

I would share her Book but I haven’t the words

To quite define the Spirit she conferred;

faith restored in self.

I regret I could not return the favor

Perhaps that’s how angels get back

Where they’re supposed to go

I tattooed Psalms of her movements

Upon the palms of my daughters hands.

Holy things can come in the strangest

Places that hum quietly incessant,

Prophecies behind a junkies teeth

_______________________________________________

Oldepunk writes in Texas with a pair of kids and cats.  Hockey junkie and music aficionado.  Read more at Ramjetpoetry.


Steel the Whisper

by Aurora Phoenix

 

 

there is a steel band

slicing through my tongue

as I struggle to break the whisper

give voice to the rumbling rise

of my inconvenient truths

the world is burning

/it melts/

from the lava erupting

in my ston-ed heart

I felt the gripe

of your slimy eyes

infest

/molest/

my lushly fruited hips

your hand tells me

to hold my tongue

/clenched as it is/

above my future

clamping down my self-regard

you rest on the laurels of your discontent

as red, rusting

fades

there is a roar

/building/

in this chatteled vessel

the dam in my throat will burst

behold!

what ushers from these lips

—————————————————————

Aurora Phoenix is a wordsmithing oxymoron. Staid suburbanite cloaks a badass warrior wielding weapon grade phrases. Read more of her confabulations at Insights from “Inside.”

The Shining.- S.K. Nicholas

The soothing sounds of the waters of her womb and the sight of fresh snow to ease the dull pain of a hangover not unlike so many that have gone before. Stovington blues and a horseshoe nebula just below her bellybutton. Below. The great below. Like the guy from King Crimson, Adrian Belew, and those fingers of his that work a guitar as if it were a wet clit upon a bed of leaves slipping down the stream of life. Leprosy and the stagnant waters of a womb that’s seen plenty of action but never known true love. Tennis balls down fallopian tubes and the steps it takes to walk to the moon and the feel of a searching tongue gliding around my crown until it’s time to taste a strange wonder. Strawberry kisses and the blah blah blah of a poorly heart caught between the thumb and forefinger of an ex-lover who’d be better off dead. A witch in a bathtub and scratchy pubic hair that gives me a rash and this neck is yours and what’s yours is mine and this wine is here and I am there and the lights of elsewhere shine bright for a while before drifting as they so often do. Damp hair and painted toenails and stretchmarks that speak to me of birthmarks and the shame of a woman who doesn’t want to be a woman because men are like the gunk between sweaty toes and yellowed nails broken from attempting to dance the dance of life but failing miserably. Maybe another glass of the good stuff followed by sketches of bruises between milky legs and the tears that cling to a slight chin before dripping down to the nip nips and the right buttock or maybe the left I can’t remember and I don’t quite care. Lake. As in Greg Lake, the guy from King Crimson who sings Moonchild to me in my dreams. More womb. Free drinks at the bar before these bony fingers of mine slide all the way in. Bourbon in the glass. Some reflections. Mostly old. Many faded. Leaves. Cobwebs. Deadlights. Inner fears and redemption that never comes. A pack of matches to light a fire between us. A road that comes and a road that goes, this way and that, from beginning to end, always, and forever. Yours sincerely, some kinda illusionary.


S.K. Nicholas is the creator of Myredabyss.com, as well as author of three collections of prose: A Journal for Damned Lovers Volumes 1, 2, & 3 (available on Amazon.) Additionally, Nicholas is a member of the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective.

Gallifrey Is Gone

by Nathan McCool

gallifrey

My home is at the heart of nomadic wandering.

If you were to understand

this kind of isolation, you too would

have to be the lone survivor of

ancient desolation.

All the wars now are fought endlessly

among my triple brain stems.

These wars that will take all my love.

These wars that time and dimension

cannot escape.

These wars that will leave me alone –

the last thing walking in the shadows.

My dearest friends, my greatest loves…

You know me. But you can not know

what is in me. That I see everything

at all times;

even at the ruination of the world

and the resurrection of my body.

How the beating of my two hearts

elapses in the lacuna where dual suns shine;

echoing with all the death in my wake that could

engulf all of time and space.

For all my love and good acts,

there is perhaps an even

greater vulnerability.

Because I’ve seen it all.

And I can tell you that I am alone.

Gallifrey is gone.

 


 Nathan McCool is a member of Blood Into Ink and the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective. You can find the haint, dusk, and sizzling of his concrete snares on his blog, Mist of Melancholia.


 

To Quote Walt Whitman

by Mick Hugh

 

whitman

Are there pastorals in a pixel?

I’ve heard it said so.

That a perfect moment holds life’s memories…

yet the playback waits for death.

 

No better than the world

in a meek man’s hands:

show me the roses growing naturally in the graveyard,

or a romance with a wick for the years.

 

We can get high enough

if we run the old Buick

with the garage door shut.

 

We can get high

walking the Lincoln Tunnel,

or gasping for breath

from a Newark overpass.

 

A thousand office faces

find their dreams in computer screens,

still glowing when the day shuts its lights.

Wither the aortic valve,

just from a lack of use.

 

Lazy eyeballs,

cataracts,

myopic Coke-bottle glasses.

The smoke-stacks in a Cezanne.

Mesothelioma

in the gold mines of a wedding ring –

are we done yet?

 

Febrile seizures on a death-bed

awaken his famous past:

canyons in the skin

that ran the red of roses.

 

He’d take his books for walks

till his legs got lost,

down by the waterfront,

down Washington Street.

 

The clamor of half-built high-rises,

soot of the tent towns

under the highways:

the fast clacking of sharp shoes on the sidewalks,

a briefcase to withstand the bullets.

 

Strange creatures that lurked down the streets,

mange and tendon and quiet whisper.

The dog with chopped ears

pawed the Plexiglass shell,

and whimpered,

as the clerks and the lawyers brisked past.

 

A daisy grew in a pavement crack.

A daisy grew and the seasons churned

on a playback twice as fast.

Stop.

 

Stuck at a stop in the traffic-thronged street was a truck,

hauling concrete to the next empty lot, being filled.

The driver could barely be heard:

the hum of idling traffic,

the overpasses rumbling above;

 

beneath the sounds of airplane thrust

and the debates of World News Tonight,

the truck driver,

red faced,

barely heard,

shouting out,

“I loafe and invite my soul, I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass!”

 


Mick Hugh is a writer for Sudden Denouement, and the groundskeeper at Mick’s Neon Fog.


 

Sudden Denouement Welcomes Patrick Hart

We at Sudden Denouement Literary Collective are thrilled to introduce you, once again to Patrick Hart, and also to give him a very warm welcome into the collective.

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Patrick Hart is a writer from Hampton Roads Virginia, currently spending time in Valdosta Georgia with his wife and dog. His day job is serving in the United States Air Force as an Air Traffic Controller. His passion for writing has been present for as long as he can remember, but it really presented itself as songwriting during his youth. When he left his drum-kit for a different career path, he realized that that he was lacking an outlet; that outlet became poetry, and Instagram became his venue. “Untrained, but untamed” would be an appropriate way to describe his breadth of work. Patrick sets out to write about the truths we all have inside of us that we typically turn a blind eye too. He’s down right dogmatic about his attempts to step into the ring with melancholia, mental health, anger, and loss. His writing is self-serving when it’s therapeutic, but he skewers himself in the public eye to welcome connection.

He says, “We must write for ourselves first, but through that, and in this glorious day of technology, we can let others know they aren’t alone in their emotions. Writers and readers are typically a conglomeration of outcasts, and we’re not as rare as we might think in our darkest moments.”

Patrick Hart has an unhealthy craving for marshmallows, and good music. He collects vinyl records because they symbolize commitment. For more random facts about him, and to keep up with his writing, you’ll have to follow his IG account @workinprogress13

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Five Years and Counting – Patrick Hart

Today I am rolled over
Mauled by bitter sundown
And the amalgamation
Of sterile interaction and dulled colors

What did I miss?
Was it the phone calls?
Or the way you would have to clinch your jaw
To utter “God” through your teeth?
Was it the rusting way you would say goodbye

I was too busy honoring your strength
To acknowledge your misery

I remember the parking lot at 8pm
When you left us for Alaska
You told me to look after my sister
(Which I’m failing at)
Was the ground vibrating and I missed it?
If you come back,
I swear to God that I would feel it
I would stop you

So, today I am worn
Like the carcass of trees
And the cigarette burning
So closely
I am dried wood
I am dyed wool
And I am weak enough
To light the whole thing myself

Pennywise, smokes, and Jameson
Today is about recognizing that love
Comes in many forms
And sometimes we dirty our hands
With devotion to the glacier inside
And man, you burned so goddamn bright
That the ice melted too soon
And I forgave you long ago,
But it scares me to admit
That I understand you
That I understand ‘It”

There’s a lack in the air
Hands reach up from soft soil
As my head ascends
My body repines
Fawning eyes used to hold me
Until the things inside
Became a sadness you couldn’t teach
It has been five years and counting
It has been five years and…

© Patrick Hart 2018

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Grab a copy of Patrick’s stunning debut collection War Paint, and you can thank us later.

Sudden Denouement Welcomes Jason Kynge

We at Sudden Denouement Literary Collective are ridiculously proud, and entirely honoured, to introduce all of you (who may have been living under a rock) to Jason Kynge, and we are thrilled to welcome him into the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective.

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Jason Kynge is a poet, a Viking, a wanderer and a writer; he is a lost soul searching for truth and for love, and the answers we all seek during these turbulent times in our ugly world. Jason Kynge is the ringer of truth in a hall of bells struck by the mighty. Never one to mince words, Kynge’s work takes an axe to every modern day “contemporary poet” who flood the social media landscape with cries of “love her wild” and “broken is beautiful”, and he leaves them all bleeding in the wake of his shadow. If you haven’t read Jason Kynge, buckle up enjoy the ride; you can thank us later.

We look forward to featuring Jason’s latest work, but until then we are happy to share some of his best blasts from the past, and we invite you to follow him on Facebook and Instagram, and encourage you to pick up a copy of his self-published debut collection Skeletons and Wine.

Skeletons

Modern Day Savages – Jason Kynge

Fuck fuck fuck….. Oh yes you read that right….because sometimes that’s the only word that is fitting for this life….and the things that happen in it….what were you expecting….some grouping of words…eloquent perhaps… not this time….anyone on the frontline of living will get it….this is for them.

As we look around at all the bullshit we are forced to swallow….give me your opinions….give me your vitriol….give me your righteousness….feed me your holier-than-thou…..so I can chew it up and spit back my own truth….I’m not interested in how you exist….who are you to say how I’m supposed to live….I’m not the only one.

What you see behind me is an army….modern day savages….tired of all the lies….exhausted from the world we’ve been sold….prostituted politics….puppets with money strings….out of touch with reality for millions while illusions are sold….we all see the slight of hand….and we are raging….your entertainment sells us love and tries to tell us we must suffer for love….because that’s how you prove yourself….by the amount of pain you carry….that’s how you know it’s real….generations now hurt and left confused….but….but….it’s supposed to be like this….look what I’m carrying….Atlas would be proud….Sisyphus even pities us….why….why….why….pretty packages in delicate paper like Christmas morning….here….you should be excited for this….but we are waking up….like children in the morning….and we see….something is off….this isn’t right….this isn’t life….we are meant for so much more….love….is more than what you pimp….and it’s time we stop accepting less that what we deserve….in life….in love.

All we are doing because of what we are told is creating monsters….myself included….but these devils don’t go bump in the night….they go bump in our bed….just to spawn the next one….endless cycle….work….work work work….doesn’t matter if you hate what you’re doing….it’s what you’re supposed to do….how else will the rich get richer….never mind that chain in the cubicle….or the assembly line….they have vacations to take….it’s for the good of your fellow man.

The ladder to the top is built on the fallen backs of the working class….but it’s okay….here is a distraction….it’s no longer gladiators in the coliseum….it’s reality television….but if you listen closely….you can hear it….it’s the bass from the speakers building….it’s the crowd stomping….it’s millions of voices behind me….all gathering in one huge sound….that we are done….we are fed up….we are no longer bleeding for you….the world is in love with wars….well you’ve started one….and you are not ready….because we are coming….the disillusioned….the tired….the weary….every race….religion….sex….gay….straight….transsexual….fuck your labels….we are simply people….one people….and we are done….we are ready to be happy….to love….to live….to lay waste to your ideas of what should be.

Make no mistake….we are awake….we are coming….we are no longer alone….and you….the powers that be….the way things have always been….well fuck….you should fear us….and if you don’t yet….you will.

© Jason Kynge 2016

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Flirting With Danger – Jason Kynge

Oh how I want to write something that will uplift the masses….offer encouragement….but I can’t….that’s not where I’m at….where I’m at is flirting with danger….I know this because I’ve been here before….many years ago….I didn’t think I’d be back….but I am….dancing with nostalgia….flirting once again with old demons….my familiar friends….the ones that never leave me….only slumber for a time….my Rip Van Winkles…..seems they’re the only ones that don’t….everyone else always leaves eventually….no this isn’t some woe is me bullshit….it just taste like truth….sometimes I’m the one that makes them run screaming for the hills….the ones I talk to and help would be surprised to know that yes I can push people away….I’m an expert at it….you may not even see it coming….but when that mood finally embraces me….nobody is safe….no….not even you….I will drive you away with pitch forks and fire….maybe I think it’s just being prudent….because they’re going to go anyway….may as well give them a reason….or be the reason….why do I do this….I’ve asked myself many times….I think it’s fear of rejection….you can’t reject me if I’m not there….and if I’m the one pushing….maybe….maybe it won’t hurt as much….

I was shown long ago that people leave….the ones that say they love you the most….are going to hurt you the deepest….so began my pattern….arm’s length was where everyone was kept….don’t come too close….I bite….stay back….I broke my rules last year….and let someone in….and I was happy….my God for the first time in a long time I was genuinely happy….but what happened….they rejected me….or that is how it felt….after I poured my all into it….( that’s a lie)….but I really tried….and it wasn’t enough….but I get it….that story has been told….it really wasn’t as good as my romantic heart wants to paint it….I guess it likes to color it a certain way to give it more meaning….don’t do that….it’s not real….but it gave me an excuse to put walls back up….back to don’t get too close….

I’ve been like that abused dog….I’ll flinch if you try an pet me….probably growl….I have a great growl by the way….it’s sexy I’ve been told….but I will….when deep down I just want to feel your touch….I really do….just hold me….whisper in my ear….tell me I’m a good boy…..a few have tried….but I’ll push them away per my training….then complain about the ones that ghost….

I’m a delicious fucking contradiction….I want what I can’t have and brush over what I can….for all my talks of love I really can be a huge fucking cynic….mainly because I know people….and let’s be honest….a lot of them are selfish assholes….wait….so am I….I don’t believe in karma though….it’s a good thing otherwise we are all screwed…..deep down I still hold on to that idea….that desire….for the one….that’s going to step in and shake the universe….maybe it’s not true….and it’s just a comforting kiss when I’m alone at night….oh I’m alone because I’m still waiting for the one….maybe The One is a bullshit concept….and if I put effort into some of things that have shown up it would be good….in all honesty it probably would….but I still want more….I want that thing they write stories about….again maybe it’s not true….and I’ll become the crazy cat guy….

What if I’ve met her and she’s just too damn stubborn and scared to let me….so she pushes me away….couldn’t really blame her….makes sense the one for me is going to be a pain in the ass like me….dammit….I guess it boils down to that….I’ve seen people settle my whole life….seen nightmares….even done it myself….so I’m willing to risk being alone….because I want magic….I can’t accept anything less….but it’s not easy….it’s one of the hardest things I’ve done….because I want her there beside me….I don’t care about what the scholars and people smarter than me say….I don’t want to be alone….I want my love and to be loved….she’s just taking a really long damn time to get here….seriously woman….can you walk a little faster….because sometimes I wonder if I’ll be able to hold out and wait….

I got really low the other night….really fucking drunk….and really low….only one person knows just how much so….I think I was losing my mind….it’s always like to wander off anyway….so what snapped me out of it….hope….our favorite four letter word….that what if tomorrow she stepped into the light….and I wasn’t there to greet her….yes yes I know we don’t need someone to complete us….I don’t ever want to be fucking complete anyway….I’ll always be growing and learning….but goddammit I want someone there while I do….someone I can watch grow the same way….I’m not even sorry about that anymore….so….what must I do….I hold on….and I embrace those days when I don’t want to be light and love….

I embrace my cynicism like I will my lover….because it’s a part of me too….when I finally find her I’ll be that much better for her….so the question….how do I deal between here and there….it’s not easy….and I’m not always going to want to do it….but I’m going to have to feel everything….even the things I don’t want to…..the hurt….the anger….it’s the only way….life isn’t rainbows and daisies all the time….it’s dark and dirty and raw and it hurts like hell sometimes….without it though we aren’t as well rounded….because she’s going to have those kinds of days….how could I ever expect to be there during that….her rock….if I too hadn’t survived….to be able to say….I know where you’re at….and I’m not afraid to join you….because at the end of the day that’s what love is to me….it’s being there….good and bad….real and dirty….life.

© Jason Kynge 2016