Red Tides – Christine E. Ray



blue and white capsules
ingested daily
devour my melancholy, baby
always ravenous
they strip protective coating
off vulnerable neurons
leaving them raw
the faintest whisper
or intimation
that I fail to please
am not enough
makes irritation rise a
red tide
up my spinal column
forcing fluid rage
into hollows
ossification has crudely
carved into each
lupine claws extend
gruff growl grows
low in my throat
and I am prepared
in that heartbeat
to shred tender flesh-
yours or mine-
clean to the bone

You can find Christine lurking about Brave and Reckless and Indie Blu(e) Publishing.  She is the author of Composition of a Woman and The Myths of Girlhood.

Rhyme Lapse- Nicholas Gagnier

Think I need a new kind of dream.
I used to think
it was wife and
house and kids,
two cars and
white picket fences.
I used to think
fulfillment was some
kind of
cookie cutter but I prefer
to smash the dough into imperfect spheres and watch them
rise like a kid willing to burn
both palms.
Only difference, I put
weed in them now.
Yeah, think I
need a new
strain of ambition,
because I’ve
been finger
lickin’ the
blades of
knives just to
taste me
something worth the
blood rolling
off my tongue.
I’ve fallen out
of love with
rhymes and
relationships that
benefit no one.
There we go,
we call that
relapse, and
rather than
get my
fix of
coupled sounds,
I’ll break down in
my car listening to
the five o’clock news.
I ain’t a
one-trick pony,
just a workhorse of
self-doubt in dire
need of a new fucking
dream, and no
love poems can
placate me
Look, I quit drinking
and im a manic
goddamned mess but im
just holding it together
until it all
falls apart
because gods fucking dammit,
sweetheart, you
know it will, because
i can’t
live without
the chaos

Nicholas Gagnier is a Canadian writer and poet. He is the author of Leonard the Liar and Founding Fathers, as well as the creator of Free Verse Revolution, and co-founder of Blank Paper Press. Nicholas is an avid poet and his next release, All the Lonely People, will be available in 2019.

Figments of a Mania – Henna Sjöblom



I saw her in the dark of my eye

stretched out on a polyester blanket,

puffed-up cheeks and threads of pink bubblegum stuck to her hair
the /maggot-eaten/ stockings barely covering up the /cigarette burns/ along her legs
riffles trough the pages of the /holy/ bible, decides she doesn’t have time

patient may sometimes experience feelings of irritability,                   grandiosity, or an increase in sexual desires

I masturbated to the image that night
and called /my own/ name as I came, arrogant god that I am,
wrapped up in my own, gluttonous plane of existence
I would grab a stake and drive it trough my uterus
So that my guts would spill out, drenching your immobilized body
beneath me
and you would cry out /in bliss/
knowing the

true exemption

of being defeated

before I was holy, I used to know shame
I made up lists of people I /couldn’t/ touch
sanctimonious beacons of chastity

I later took pleasure
in tearing apart                  patient tends to be outgoing,

easily angered,
I defile
I find desirable

each day, my idols grow smaller

                                                     or could it be that I am growing bigger
It’s hard to see from inside the Taurus’s jaws
so I do as advised, save my apologies for another day
and succumb to the feeling
of walking on thin, crystal ice
waiting for the finned shadows
inevitably about to snatch me back to the depths
from which I arise,
the /drowned/ queen of the two-faced


[Murder Tramp Birthday, previously Malicia Frost, in real life known as Henna, a hobbyist writer and an aspiring novelist from Finland. She enjoys surrealism, sci-fi and horror, and her writing often deals with mental illness. More of her works can be found at her personal blog.]