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I’m not gonna eat Keats' eye after all and use it/to see who will read me when I’m dead

Amanda w. Book Yellowed

Swallowed Whole Recently, on vacation, I saw a blue heron catch and eat a fish. In its middle, the fish was a good deal larger than the heron’s slender neck. Looking out subway windows, sparks fly, light up graffiti tags in this dark, rat-infested tunnel I am hurtling through. Ideas leap to mind: violence, poverty, being born with very little real opportunity. I’ve been taught these ideas. The heron brought the fish on land, pecked into it repeatedly until it was good and dead, then somehow managed to swallow it whole. Can I have an original idea? It all feels collaborative, this living of life. My original ideas are the smallest of perceptions. I’ve been taught, too, the importance of graffiti as urban art, street culture expressed. I’ve rounded many [...]


On This Side

Maria Gillan Color 5x7 new

Watching the Pelican Die On TV, I watch the pelican with its mouth wide open, its wings and body coated with oil. Is it screaming? I do not hear the sound and since this is a photograph, I don’t know if it was caught in that mouth-stretched howl when it died or if it’s howling in recognition that it cannot survive the thick coat of oil that bears it down. The ladies who take care of you when I’m gone tell me you are having trouble. “His hands,” they say, “his hands.” When I come home, I see that your hands have turned black at the tips and I see that the ends of your fingers have been eaten away. I watch the dead bird in the Gulf floating on [...]

Did Whitman play it safe? Ginsberg? Anne Sexton? Adrienne Rich? No, they didn't and that’s why people remember their work.


It was night: disorienting. Outside, the stars inside the snow were glittering, and you could hear snow and ice melt all around you if you listened. That was a rough winter. Every winter is rough.




The arrogance of triumph comes to inhabit these poems. And their final meaning is nothing less than a luminous joy the poet can affirm even in the midst of loss.


Prayer for Topaz, 1942 Dear God, Mom said you are busy and don’t have time to listen to a little 8-year-old Negro girl from North Carolina and her foolishness, like praying for a box of candy. That would be selfish. But if it’s really important she said, then I should take it to you in prayer like the preacher says on Sundays. I’m not asking for anything for me. But I’ve been hearing the kids at school talking about some place out west called Topaz. At first I thought they were talking about a spot to get rings and flashy jewelry, but Margaret’s big brother, Ed, who’s in 5th grade, says it’s something like a jail where they put Japanese people. I didn’t believe him because he’s always trying to [...]

MIchael Hettich, Lobby Bar, July 16 (2)

Hettich’s is a poetics of external and internal metamorphosis and regeneration.

Ned at Atomic Books Aug '13

First Thaw


Fanelli writes about fates that he himself has escaped, but he is unwilling to turn his back, to say: “I’m out of here. You’re on your own.”

diamond years

It’s very rare for a visual artist to so completely translate or, more precisely, transcribe her visual sense into words.

Loren Kleinman HeadShot

At Fifteen I measured time in cigarettes. Underneath the underpass I popped reds and dropped blues next to sucked off Popsicle sticks. I straddled the concrete curb and anointed the night with love. I was alive— snorting coke in abandoned homes where pigeon shit painted the floor white. I ripped off loose wood and climbed to the top of the roof. I wanted to feel the air against my cheeks and fuck. I wanted to break in half. Fold like heaven and hell. I was at war with myself. At fifteen, I hummed paradise, became those streets that tied into other streets, became my own country. How I talked. I could've been anyone. I was incurable. _______________________________________ Loren Kleinman's poetry has appeared in journals such as Nimrod, Wilderness House Literary [...]

tony sunroom

There'll Be Heartache

I loved them without hope--the way it should be.