i didnt give up and i didnt forget. im working on a very intricate plan.

I am a poet! I am. I am. I am a poet, I reaffirmed, ashamed.

last night i dreamt about going abroad
and pursuing horses, a pair of kittens,
bunny rabbits, fish, i tried to catch them

but all those hunts ended in rejection.
all those animals just remind me
they they can never live up to my standards
everything i do is working towards
getting my dog out of a bad situation.

you’re already my dog, youre loyal, you’re smart.
youre up for adoption
not sure which one you are…
its going to take a couple of months
but its going to happen
i promise i promise i promise i promise
i am working on it

otherwise i would never have
taken this apartment.
the landlady…well,
i just know i can change her mind about it

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The Loop + The Latch of Your Bra

S. K. Nicholas

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Had this dream where I was in an episode of Twin Peaks. Can’t remember many details, but the regular cast members were moving around me as I walked in circles in a crowded parking lot while smoking a cigarette. The weather was overcast, and you were somewhere nearby, part of the same group I was in. Think we were on a coach trip to the coast and had briefly stopped off for a bite to eat and a breath of fresh air in some retail park. Finishing my smoke, I joined everyone in this clothes store, but no matter how many times I tried getting close to you and striking up a conversation, you kept giving me the cold shoulder. You wouldn’t even so much as look me in the face. After this had gone on for what felt like hours, I grabbed you by the arm and took you…

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A Conversation, Coloured Lonely – Aurora Phoenix and Lois E. Linkens

tree women

it is at night,
when the silence screams the loudest.
when the curtains are drawn,
and the candle snuffed –
the air is burnt,
with the orange glow
of the blackened wick.
a single star
in an empty sky,
a tiger’s eye
in the witching forest,
a lonely car
on the midnight highway.

in the daylight
the silence is shushed
its horns ground down
under the trampling of the day
it finds kindred spirits
lurking in the pauses
poised to pounce
between hither and yon
a rabid Chimera
intent on foiling its captors

it is at night,
when the silence grows its wings;
when it becomes
arms and fingers
that squeeze and squash,
leaving their purple stains
across my skin.
so tomorrow,
i’ll cover up –
for what does loneliness wear,
when it wants to make a friend?

in the daylight
I dress to kill that silence
bedecked with breastplates
silvery self-reliance
protecting mawkish heartstrings
strained to breaking
by the violent plucking
of the silence in the
blue-black night
diamond crusted gauntlets
constrict my fingers
stretching toward contact 

it is at night,
when the ancient words echo;
Plato’s Symposium
rattles through my brain
like bullets fleeing from the barrel.
you are incomplete,
he whispers;
your God-given substance
will not sustain,
your severed arms
are bound to flail
in this darkness,
grappling for a mate
that never comes near.
as i topple on the edge of sleep,
the condescending voice
of old-age wisdom
bends my will across its knee.

in the daylight
learned philosophers
uncloaked
under Ra’s harsh glare –
elderly drunkards
babbling in their cups –
beneath the penetrating rays
hypocrisy illumined.
I splashdown
in the well of loneliness
dug by my constraints
listen as they old-woman cackle
when I savor the dip.
I taste the madness
of love requited
sip from my flask
fractious firewater
eau de fierce independence
with the throatiest of howls
I birth my own
dancing star

[Aurora Phoenix: I spent over 2 decades as a clinical psychologist, prior to the decimation of my world when I was suddenly incarcerated 2 and a half years ago. My writing was born in that caged existence – not a choice but a soul-saving necessity.  I write as Aurora Phoenix at Insights from “Inside”]

[Lois E. Linkens describes herself as a “confused english student,” though one quickly finds a polished, charming poet in her work. She has an elegant style that compliments her keen insight and whimsical sensibilities. It is a pleasure to present her work, and we ask you to take a second to look at more of her wonderful work.]

Tokyo Express: Poem from Machiavelli’s Backyard by David Lohrey on SD Publishing

Tokyo Express – David Lohrey

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Tokyo Express

That man there used to be my father.
I recognize those blue-veined arms on that corpse riding the
train with me from Shimokitazawa to Chitose-Funabashi.
That’s the corpse of my father, I swear to God.

I recognize his receding hairline and his pale skin.
It even has curly hair and wears glasses. That’s dad,
all right, sitting there beneath the sign for special seating.
That’s exactly where he’d sit if he were alive.

Dad saw himself as disabled and in some ways he was.
He was an emotional cripple, that’s for sure.
He flew into rages over nothing.

I once got up the courage to point out there were no other cars on the road but he was cursing. He was ranting. He looked out the window and stopped. When I was eleven, he’d have turned around and smacked me on the head. He was always threatening to trounce me.

Dad was a bully. When I was little, mother asked me to get dad an aspirin to go with his pickled herring and his dry martini. Years later, dad once said, “After two martinis, I’m not afraid of anything.” I like that.

Like a lot of monsters, he had a heart of gold. Like Frankenstein and all his monster friends, he scared the neighborhood children but felt lonely. Like many bullies before him, what he needed was a blind man to make
him a cup of tea. It was precisely because people were not blind that he hated them.

Oh, but how well Edward Albee understood him. What he wanted above all else was love: L.O.V.E. Just like an alcoholic, but he didn’t drink. No, his father drank enough for two generations. He once said, “You think you’re a big shot, but you’re nothing but a big shit.” I like that, too. I used to pick cashews out from father’s dish of mixed nuts. Amazingly, it didn’t make him mad. It amused him.
I did that from his lap.

That old Japanese guy sitting across from me reminds me
of my father when he was alive. The old man there looks
very thoughtful, looks intelligent. My father, too, had that look. I wish I did.

That man’s flesh is as white as a frog’s belly, so pale I can see his blue cheesy veins. I could see my father’s, too. It made him look frail. He’d get cross but with no power. He became pathetic, especially when he smelled of urine.

It’s hard to control other people when you stink.
It’s impossible to run the show when you’ve sprung a leak.
It’s hard to frighten your son when you have to wear pampers. Fear goes but love lasts. Now there’s a line for Machiavelli’s Prince. I learned that from my father. Or is it the other way around?

From the forthcoming book of poetry Machiavelli’s Backyard via Sudden Denouement Publishing.

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Introducing Aurora Phoenix – ‘The Uprising’

there is a primal roar

building within her

founded on the

atoms of dirt

scrounged by grappling-hooked toes

scavenging salvation

from precipice’s

teetering edge

as they curled

in orgasmic throes

of borrowed ecstasy

 

the rumble surges

up exasperated tendons

above scabbed knees

upon which they forced her

failed to keep her

despite repeated bloody

bludgeonings

 

the portending implosion

reverberates cataclysmic

through hallowed

and maligned walls

of her invaded

as yet unvanquished

vagina

 

the latent blast

rises roiling

beyond belly churning

beset with tormented butterflies

swallowed under duress

with teaspoonfuls of shame

taking her medicine

 

the gathering blast

trembles with the

accumulated heartaches

of feminine generations

spasms aortically

spurting crimson

crushed inequities

 

the impending cosmic levitation

upends flustered follicles

as lightening

bolts of righteous rage

flash incendiary shafts

from eyes and lips and tongue

 

the lacerating howl

tears her asunder

unleashes her tether

to a byzantine past

shreds constraints

denudes her quivering

purest soul

 

 


[Aurora Phoenix: I spent over 2 decades as a clinical psychologist, prior to the decimation of my world when I was suddenly incarcerated 2 and a half years ago. My writing was born in that caged existence – not a choice but a soul-saving necessity.  I write as Aurora Phoenix at Insights from “Inside”]

Us – S.K. Nicholas

There’s junk food in my belly and a book on Ian Brady in my hand. Blinking my eyes, the pages are stained with sweat and splashed with spit. Remember when I would take you from behind and how I’d lean over and tell you to turn your face and look me in the eyes? How I’d get you to open your mouth so I could let a stream of saliva drip onto your tongue? You don’t? Well, shame on you. Somewhere in my mind, the smell of stale beer drifts to me across playing fields. It’s autumn, and the leaves are crisp and crumble in my hands before falling to the floor like confetti. There’s a chill kick in the breeze that pains my face whenever I shave. There are bus journeys and newsagents that sell sweets and magazines with free toys attached to their covers. There are coffee shops and pet stores and underpasses where children from nearby schools paint pictures of the world they live in. After a drunken night out in town with friends, I walked home alone and took a leak in that underpass, and as my yellow stream of piss splashed the colourful buildings they had painted, I laughed until my stomach hurt. That book on Ian Brady, I keep it in my bag and read it in the shade of trees and weeds far from the presence of others. His voice is one of existence, and as such, it reminds me that I exist. In silence is where I grow, and yet in your arms is where I’m alive more than ever. I’m not sure how that works, and that’s part of the problem. There’s a cigarette to ease my troubles and to make my head spin. There’s a song that connects us even though so many days have been and gone in between our last kiss. For some, the meaning of words is a thankless one, but for me, God is in every letter. This poetry. This sense of glory. There is nothing that comes close save for the image of you leaving footprints on fresh snow, or the taste of your neck as we do our thing while trying so hard to resist the breaking of dawn. And to think of all those buildings where our ghosts dance in silence, and to think of those fields where I would carry you because it was too muddy and you didn’t want to get your shoes dirty. Those dead cigarettes of mine, they are still there somewhere, along with those empty bottles of wine I would fling into the mouth of the quarry. And that hairclip you lost- that too is there. Everywhere we go and have been, there are artefacts that hold so much meaning the rest will never be able to fathom. What’s gone is not lost, and what’s not lost is with us every step of the way.


[S. K. Nicholas is creator of  myredabyss.com and author of A Journal for Damned Lovershis first novel. He is a brilliant writer and a member of the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective. To learn more about S.K. and A Journal for Damned Lovers read Jasper Kerkau’s interview with S.K. and his review of A Journal for Damned Lovers.]

A New Poem by David Lohrey – After Providence (1977) thevoicesproject.org

mother-and-daughter

David Lohrey, author of the forthcoming book of poetry Machiavelli’s Backyard, which will be published by Sudden Denouement,  has a new poem published via The Voices Project. The title of the poem is After Providence (1977). Please take a second to read and share David’s wonderful poem. It seems that many people are coming to understand what we already know, David is a poet of the highest order. It is exciting to see him finding an audience. David is smart, and kind man possessing incredible wit and wisdom.

http://www.thevoicesproject.org/poetry-library/after-providence-1977-by-david-lohrey