Dirty little hammers

gritty, my old friend. hello, ‘ello you fucking scratching things. i remember the walls and the pain of it but i couldn’t cut you out. we can bless each other in fallacy, but i refuse to not feel rough tears and forensic emotions we buried in a box of scarred fears. we reuse those old habits as if half smoked cigarettes will really satisfy. it’s still nice to pretend we know how to care but more than I can bear, this burden of dropping homes and skipping stones across blurred visions that surround our losses. Bare that broken heart and collapsing mind, evangelical evocations ring clearly in and out of this place. i smell the hate that drives this damage and it makes me stupid drunk with paranoid afraid. who the fuck am i to say anything anymore? what’s speech, when what’s said is a stain, stigmata we’ve carved into our hands. cold steel barrels are deep dark mouths hungry for your empty bliss. i’d give it all back to find your tears on a letter in my pocket. days of yore yawn ahead and i have rinsed, repeated, repented. find us slowly, or not at all. we are still digging our way out of the morass of nonsensical predispositions. I find all of this pain fucking objectionable. i’m tired from the fall and i will call out for help, by God. i have to believe i know i’m not alone. so touch the scars and remember where to find that haven we’ve all dreamed about. Tattoo your words on this world and grab it by the throat, but gently, as if a lover. it’s the only way to stay sane when broken. i wanted you to know that i lost, but found some twisted form of peace. i’m grateful that it was you. you know me though, i will refuse to stay down. i will arise and remember that broken can find fixing when acting on a love that’s been gone too long. arise, that’s a good place to start. pick up that dirty little hammer and do your worst boy. needles and preparation. i’m finally ready for absolution.

image courtesy of Pinterest

An old punk trying to make sense of what I see and hear and think and feel. Words pulled from the ether. Introverted agoraphobic explorer.  Hockey and food junkie. Constantly recovering from this human condition. Find more at http://www.ramjetpoetry.com

Doping in shadow

by Oldepunk

doping in shadow

is it love or just thirst

I’m feral, impotent

turn, turn, turning

I am a quark

I am nothing until


all the feels, like Lana,

so wretchedly exquisite.

razor-bladed surroundings, blank

faces pass so fast they blur

into Van Gogh ukiyo-e

hey you, still life

scrape away this Vernier scale

leave mass alone to ponder

weight, levitate

expensive conversations

feed the souls of our lonely

bottom feeding in retro

too young to know better

too old to care

bite into that scripture

mad dog driving

rushing home to….screen

divert, deviate, masturbate

unchained, infringed

so many fences

out of dollaz

but take no quarter(1 of 4)

doping in shadow

when you get this down, push

no matter the cost

is it hate or just hunger

you are unbroken, potent

let us begin

to explore(abhoreadore?)…..love or hate

thirst or hunger

in the end, we will


introduce me to your

particular kind of damage

I like to hurt.

let’s do it in the light.

you can carve

your scars onto me

so you don’t feel all alone

An old punk trying to make sense of what I see and hear and think and feel. Words pulled from the ether. Introverted agoraphobic explorer.  Hockey and food junkie(snob).

Editor, Contributor and supporter of Sudden Denouement, a literary collective.

image courtesy of Pinterest

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.

Like a Storm – Sarah Doughty


“And I wanted to believe in fate —

I wanted to believe in us.”


You said there was no such thing as beginnings and endings. Nothing came into existence or disappeared like a puff of smoke. Matter changed shape, becoming something new — never beginning, never ending. Always changing and evolving. Like ice to water. Water into vapor. Vapor into rain. You said the same thing about us. You and I didn’t become we. Somehow, we always were. I thought it was romantic. That you could think fate brought us together.

And I wanted to believe in fate — I wanted to believe in us. I did. But then everything changed. Just like you said. How could we have been destined — as if we were always one — if we could be pulled apart so soon? Was it some cosmic lesson we both needed to learn? Or was it just you? Playing me for a fool. We were like a storm, you and I. Blowing in from the sea and ravaging the coastline before fizzling out into nothing. It may still be an evolution of change, but if that’s not a beginning and ending, then I don’t know what is.


[Sarah Doughty is the tingling wonder-voice behind Heartstring Eulogies. She’s also the author of The Silence Between Moonbeams, her poetry chapbook, and the acclaimed novels and novellas of the Earthen Witch Universe. Good news, they’re all offered for free, right here! To learn more about how awesome Sarah is, check out her website, stalk her on Goodreads, or both.]

Writin “Burnin Down the Box” – Nathan McCool

I’m real sick of all the normal talk in this town.

So dig this:


I stroll into a convenience store wild-eyed

as any nightmare; and I trade

a satchel of moirai eyes and could-be prophecies

for the cheapest, darkest beer I can pry

from the cooler’s scary fingers

at this late hour.


By the time I get home my heart’s bluebird

is already drowning.

Just a damn lightweight these days. Or so my fates say.


As usual, the violin and the guitar have been into

another tuning fork fight over why the

power for the amp won’t come on.

And one of em popped a string before

cracking the other’s head.

It’ll get nursed with apologies splattered on

a pill-shaped pillow tonight while I

find the loneliest room in the house

to write a very long metaphor in story form

on the ethics and morality

of the mass acceptance of social stigma.


I cast Lemmy’s Rickenbacker as the main protagonist.

I pit it against an angry village of cereal

all armed to the teeth in a riot

and ready for another attempt to march

on a Frank Zappa album.

(Damn cereal never stood a chance.)


As I go to write the musical score

I stretch wide above the piano;

drunk, lanky, and weary

like a dope fiend scarecrow

in the fields around Greenwood, MS

waiting to croon with Robert Johnson.

I lean in and tell her,

“There’s a wolf in my heart for you, baby.”


I write a real slow song and end it like this:

“Sorry dad,

but I really ain’t no prodigal son.

I ain’t nothing to be proud of

when the day is through.

But you and mom are gonna be alright

and I’m sorry I won’t make it home again.

But there’s just a lot in life I gotta do.

And if you won’t cry when you think of me

I’ll smile when I think of you.”


And then I nestle myself way down into

the hole in my acoustic guitar.

Down where the light never reaches.

And I do what anyone does

when they don’t believe in a damn thing

and they got no one to pray to…

I wait for nothing.


[Nathan McCool is actually so cool, I can’t stand it. You can find the haint, dusk, and sizzling of his concrete snares on Instagram, or at his blog, Mist of Melancholia.]

Wake Me When It’s Over- Nicholas Osborne


my boots are caked with mud and shit, and
likely other elements I’d soon withhold from mind;
I squat, with lumbar pressed into a man-dug ditch,
confined to this gashed earth we call a trench;
it’s damp out and my breath puffs precede me—
black smoke from a coal stack—sipping with mechanical
lips whatever lukewarm liquid sloshes in this old tin cup
I hold in palms that used to quaver, when blood
more innocent still coursed their length and width.

I’ve been told my hands look like a those of a pianist;
now just blunt and bloated stubs, with nails dipped in
midnight pitch—crescent slivers from the dark-side
face of a waning gibbous, so deep begrimed that I’d
need to hatchet-hack the digits off to separate
myself from this smut—the dirt that’s thick and
wet, and doesn’t wash off, though I could scour
my skin until I mined to bright white bone; it’s a hell
tar that bubbles up from whatever pit’s below, mixed
with melted rime from last night’s winter, puddled in the
deep, manifold impressions of confused and wayward boots.

and I don’t shake anymore—my nerves so frayed
they couldn’t pass a shadow in between them;
on edge so many shapeless days and nights that
‘scared’ has lost its meaning; I’ve forged my old fear
into a new-minted apathy I pass for courage—not
phased a twinge at the prospect of dying alone,
secure in the knowledge that my head will
tip from my neck soon enough, like what’s happened
to every other horizontal boy right over the ridge:
all dressed up and uniformed, posed like
alabaster storefront mannequins, showing off
their Sunday church duds to the ruptured sky;
splotched first here, then there with blooming crimson
flesh petals—a wild rose garden, sown in silent furrows.

I don’t’ think I’ve slept in weeks, but I tire more
of waiting; waiting for that looming sound to drill my ears
with jackhammer voice and ear-bleed whistle shrill,
demanding that I rise and drop this mug of sick—let it lay
forever lost, stamped into the muck and mire, to be
excavated by some shovel-wielding archaeologist, who sifts
where once I squatted— a few futures from now, in days when
time’s dementia has stolen the remembrance of my name.

girded with my brave indifference, I’ll wrap hands around my
gunstock, and sighing, mount that slimy slope,
where the only way out is over—the only way out
is out—when it’s a relief to finally expire, with nails in need
of manicuring; and I can exist as another cold fixture in
a larger human mural—a hunk of polished porcelain,
shaded thoughtfully in red acrylic that accentuates
my cheekbones; when this fucking waiting ends and
that brass tube screams its guts out, I can charge;
dead or free, or amputee—at last, I’m going home.


Nicholas Osborne

My thoughts sometimes stub their toes on a pen.

Sister – Olde Punk

– sister

Sensations allowing migrating figures to justify the atrocities that follow in the wake of the beast that dwells in the heart of a man who smiles, takes your hand, makes monolithic promises then tears at those things that are valued by those of us who are powerless rulers of a carefully disguised brothel where makeshift occupations keep you mundane and weak and afraid of those who are aware that life is more than toiling in exchange for paper to in turn barter it for air and water and shelter, things that are necessary to survive yet we are forced to strive in a greying hell that makes the demons fat and they molest the angels’ dog’s feelings causing a conversation on theology between ignorant deified bigots over a game of chess…..

we forgot about retributions

and neglected to court them

however, do not feel as though

we savored your loss

after, the taste of the air was unusual

and I found it not pleasing at all

queer gestures harangue the faces

that manifest out of misty mornings

while we await answers from those

who pretend they are ignorant

of the crimes they have perpetrated

O Lord Almighty

observe that blissful naiveté

when did we lose ours?

companions cure the irritations

that accompany the finale

of your fantasy

you beautiful bastard, your sister

walks into perfected ruin orchestrated by your own hands

peace in pieces pleasing none of us

shine the tiger light into my void

respect what you may find there

for it is fragile.

To await nothing is to be eternally patient

Morrison’s Confession to St. Peter



St. Peter greets his next soul at the gates, and asks for his name.  This particular soul shakes his long hair out then looks up and says:

“As long as there is something to hold onto

there will always be hope, struggle, curiosity

As long as I still draw breath

there will always be adversity

until there comes a time in life when I can no longer see

I will know there is something that cannot be taken from me

As long as there is a mother to bring life

there will always be fertility

As long as there is a father guiding

there will always be integrity

As long as there is a son to raise

there will always be prosperity

As long as there is a daughter to praise

there will always be felicity

until there comes a time in life when I cannot be me

I will know that there is something that I cannot see

As long as there is someone to teach

there will always be university

as long as there is more than one way to interpret the lesson

there will always be controversy

As long as there is a student to make a stand for truth and justice

there will always be a revolutionary

As long as there is a brother with which to share

there will always be honesty

As long as there is a sister to love

there will always be family

and the dream of equality

When there comes a time in life

when these are things I can no longer see

I will know that this is what will be the death of the free”

Jim pauses, looks around, and then says,

“By the way, mister, where in the hell are we?