Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Tequila the First Time by Steve Passey

I ask her to marry me all the time and
she never says yes.
She tells me she wants to get married but
she feels in control of at least one thing
in her life when she says no.

She’s forty-nine years old and
she tells me she’s never tried tequila.
I buy tequila.
She does four shots and
she tells me that she likes it a little,
she likes it a lot, and
maybe next time she can do six,
then she lights up her bong and rips some MK Ultra.
It’s not as good as Northern Lights she tells me,
but it’s still pretty fucking good, and
she can have multiples when she’s high.
She’s taken her clothes off now but
she doesn’t want the lights on.
I tell her no forty-nine-year-old woman
should have an ass like that and
she laughs, and
I think that not many forty-nine-year-old women laugh like that either.
We lie down but she’s up in five minutes to throw up.
Tequila, man. You need to be careful with Tequila.
She comes back and
I didn’t hear her brush her teeth, but whatever, because
she asks if she can suck my cock.
I say nothing but I am thinking about her ass.
I lie on my back and
I am glad I am not too drunk, and
I don’t care that the lights aren’t on but
I would really like to see her in the light.
She does that for a while and
then we make love for a very long time with her on top.
The soles of her feet are warm,
hot even,
against the back of my calves and
I am happy in the darkness with her and
glad I was there the first time that she tried tequila.

                             The End

Steve Passey is originally from Southern Alberta. He is the author of the short-story collections "Forty-Five Minutes of Unstoppable Rock" (Tortoise Books, 2017), "Cemetery Blackbirds" (Secret History Books, 2019), and many other things. He is a Pushcart and best of the Net Nominee and is part of the Editorial Collective at The Black Dog Review.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

cycles by Leisha Nicole Stanek

when I don’t have anyone to occupy my space
or time, or mind, my bitch grows.
and I swallow her hard between swigs of
granddad and turkey.
the bartender doesn't want to entertain me
and I don’t want to go home. alone.
heat out of nostrils billows as throat closes.
I’ll probably cry.
and I’m pissed because I feel this way;
it’s only been a short while.
but I’m contemplating a 180, so I don’t have
to always rewind into the reasons of decisions
I’ll be blamed to have kept. for too long.

Leisha Nicole Stanek
Midwestern woman wandering, writing, welcoming the shared energy of humans to piece together our purpose. Collector of art, books, tattoos and men between sheets. If whiskey laced coffee were a permissible and actual form of daily hydration; tomorrow it would begin.

Heaving in Heaven. By Gwil James Thomas

Oftentimes as juveniles 
the Patel brothers and I would be 
riding our bikes around 
the neighbourhood and we’d spot 
Duncan, or Drunk Dunc’
as he was colloquially known - 
slouched on a bench, wall, 
or passed out in the park grass.

For a while he was in cahoots 
with Cider Head Sue, 
then one day she’d disappeared 
and people said that Drunk Dunc’
had killed her with a chainsaw 
before selling her flesh
to the local kebab house for wine - 
which of course was utter bollocks. 

Our parents warned us to 
stay away from him and that,
that was what happened to 
a man without a job - 
but at the same time Drunk Dunc’ 
always seemed happier than them,
as he swigged away 
and enthusiastically sang songs 
from bygone years - 
to the point that sometimes 
it was as if Drunk Dunc’ 
was about to heave in heaven - 
but what I didn’t know then 
was that drinking like that rarely came 
without having at least once 
taken a detour through hell.  

Gwil James Thomas is a novelist, poet and inept musician originally from Bristol, England. He is a Best of The Net and Pushcart nominee whose work has appeared in publications such as 3 Poets, 3AM, Mythos Zine, Paper & Ink, Low Light Magazine, Cephalo Press and also here. His two most recent poetry chapbooks are In The Barrel of a Beautiful Wave (Holy & Intoxicated Publications) and Writing Beer, Drinking Poetry (Concrete Meat Press). He is currently laying low somewhere in Northern Spain.

Monday, January 20, 2020

The House on Heck Avenue. By Cord Moreski

Nobody in town seems to remember    
the people who used to live here.   
The chimney has gone through the roof    
and the broken front steps lead    
to a torn screen porch that looks   
like some forgotten burial ground.    
One evening when I was a kid 
I sneaked inside and searched around.  
But all I found was a Bible with a broken spine    
and a bottle of Johnnie Walker    
shattered on the living room floor.   
There the only light    
in the entire house vanished   
into the night through a crack    
of a boarded picture window    
as if it was never going to return again.   
As if hope itself was a constant reminder    
of the one that got away.

Cord Moreski is a poet from New Jersey. His work has been featured in As It Ought To Be Magazine, The Silver Birch Press, The Pangolin Review, Philosophical Idiot, Eunoia Review, The Rusty Truck Press, and several other publications. He is currently working on a new project for late 2020. You can follow Cord here:

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Painfully sober (self-aware) poem By Alex Z. Salinas

Not a single sip these 30 years.
Sprouting white hairs don’t care.
Bitter coffee begs (dregs) daily.
Bad hearts run on both sides.
Gimme grease, salt, women,
Stunning (death) sentences,
Metaphor & cream puff stanzas.
The unwritten speaks, listen—
I’m with you always…always.
Ghosts & rumors do the Dougie.
They make extraordinary friends.
They move into your apartment,
Watch you vacuum every Friday.

Alex Z. Salinas lives in San Antonio, Texas. His poetry has appeared in the San Antonio Express-News, As It Ought To Be Magazine, The Dope Fiend Daily, Duane's PoeTree, and in the San Antonio Review, where he serves as poetry editor.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Afterdark By Jonel Abellanosa

I could recreate darkness in a lit room,
like screen saver in my closed eyes.

I nicknamed the intravenous opioid
bumblebee, because my desire to fly
left buzzes in my ears, sounds 
making me think of electricity.
Cough syrup would make my body
boneless as the emotion in timelessness. 
I’d taught myself the reflex,
automatic feel of mushroom
from the bed, my skull a habitable
planet. Memory is a gibbous moon,
making me remember decades later
every image, pearls of weightlessness.  
I’m still the sunflower 
without the bumblebee.

Jonel Abellanosa lives in Cebu City, the Philippines. He is a nature lover, an environmental advocate, and loves all animals particularly dogs. His poetry collections include, “Meditations” (Alien Buddha Press), “Songs from My Mind’s Tree” and “Multiverse” (Clare Songbirds Publishing House), 50 Acrostic Poems,” (Cyberwit, India), “In the Donald’s Time” (Poetic Justice Books and Art), and his speculative poetry collection, “Pan’s Saxophone” (Weasel Press). He loves to self-study the sciences.

Friday, January 17, 2020

Paris Notes by John Drudge

These are the footprints
The paths we walk
These broken stones
Beneath our feet
Across the bridge
Toward the bank
To sit and smoke
And talk and drink
There are things
And places
That move us
That make us bend
And twist through time
One thing then the next
One way to go before
One day curved into eternity
And then suddenly
No more

John works as a clinical social worker and is the president of a national disability management company. He holds degrees in Social Work, Psychology, and Rehabilitation Services and has studied philosophy extensively.  He is an avid traveler and a long-term student of the martial arts holding a 3rd degree black-belt in Kempo Karate. His diverse educational and experiential background gives him a broad base from which to approach many topics in his poetry. John currently lives with his wife and two children in Caledon, Ontario, Canada. 

Tequila the First Time by Steve Passey

I ask her to marry me all the time and she never says yes. She tells me she wants to get married but she feels in control of at least one...