|| AUGUST 2020 ||


is dedicated to

all survivors


hate, abuse, oppression, and injustice.


Banana Bread

By Shufei Ewe

420 sifts by quickly,

everyone is still getting baked––

the powder just looks different.


9:47  |By Stephen J Golds

in the morning 

eating breakfast out of a ripped plastic bag in a parking lot of an isolated 

seven-eleven with gut ache and the shakes wondering if she was right after all. 



By Gina Marie Bernard

the very first time, i am twelve—

unscheduled, ill prepared.

blood trickles; i imagine an arroyo.

he grinds my cheek to carpet

and prompts me not to tell.

Sara Dobbie

Kip Knott

Evening Walk after the Divorce

By Kip Knott

Two cops stand over the body of a man

I’ve sometimes given loose change.

They wrap him in plastic. In the body bag’s zip

I hear my ex-wife brushing her teeth.


Atom bomb days

By Tyler Martin

Smoking outside in summer heat

And wondering what an atom bomb would do

To this humble, shitty little street.

Chris G.

The Lure

By Sara Dobbie

Cast your line and I open my mouth,

the hook slides down my throat 

to anchor in my gut, 

and I hear you assuring me 

that I can’t feel a thing.


No, I don’t want Top Surgery

By Shaemus Spencer

I wish I could walk around
Full beard, tits out,
Without being called a goddamn queer
By some old man at the grocery store.
This binder fucking hurts.


you are not a can of beans 

By Mackenzie Moore

good things don’t escape expiration dates— use ‘em while ya got ‘em

you can be: BPA free / certified organic / pasture raised / sustainably sourced

And still be: rotting  / shriveled / tasteless

We The People

By Chris L. Butler

We don’t need your education

We condemn the poison you feed the nation

We reject your financial enslavement

We call it a revolution, not anarchy

We just want to be free


B.F. Jones

Russian doll

By BF Jones

Inside me, there is another me 

Diminished by shame 

Inside the other me there is 

A  very small me 

Shrivelled by disgust.


By Denzel Scott

A male mallard has

lost his same sex pair mate. In

mourning, mounts the corpse.


Chris G.

American Teacher

Words By Elizabeth Bates

Job Description: Teach these students the difference between Arthur Miller and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

(Unspoken) Job Description: Be vigilant in watching for suicidal signals and scars on wrists as a mandated reporter;

Maintain awareness of students who are starving and on the brink of homelessness; and

Prepare to listen to young women who choose to tell you they are pregnant

before they tell their own parents

3:38 Ante Meridian

A Debut By Armando Gonzalez

The dead are piled way too high

Hogs are feasting on flesh and are always hungry

Bleeding fingers search for a lawyer

and there is no light in this grave.



A Note on Parenthood

By Richard LeDue

What you learn from diarrhea 

stained fingernails

can’t be taught. 


homeless haiku

By Julie Easley

Even dogs piss on

me as crowds pass by, in the

night the howls are mine


Lot #84, Miss Betty.

By Damon McKinney

I hate the sound of my voice

Echoing in my ears the failures I’ve endured

The nasally squeals of my inner-coward

It betrays me

I hate my voice.

For Danny in the Elevator
with two stab wounds to the chest

By Teal Fitzpatrick

 Remember, your mother is knitting

a cap from burnt umber yarn and

when it is finished

she will unravel each row

and begin again.



Cities Are To File Chapter 9

By Brandon Noel

Carnival food trucks pop up around the city, 

Jesus has amnesia, wanders through every empty

Sears, beneath a blue paper mask, unrecognized

like the rest of us, keenly aware of each breath now,

I wanna die penniless, a wisp in this world’s smoke.


By Stephanie Jacobs

I’ve been walking through life as a 

high school slut. 

When actually I was the girl

who got raped

and had no idea what to do with myself after.  

Stephanie Jacobs


By L Scully

being polyamorous at twenty

was not all it was cracked up to be

neither bed was comfortable



By Amy-Jean Muller

Please strike the space on my neck with your balled up fist.
The curve where the skin meets my shoulder.
So the place where you bite down
and breathe pathetically
looks more like a bruise and not a mark where your mouth
Pretended to be a Man.




By Claire Marsden


You came and sat down with me at breakfast.

How I wish you’d give me space. I do not know

how to be around you.

Would you like a cup of tea?

Rami Obeid

Sign of the Cross

By Rami Obeid

I hold my wooden cross
Straight from Bethlehem
As I carefully try not to burn the toast in the frying pan

My Dad’s snoring is a lot quieter nowadays
I open a can of sardines slowly so I don’t wake him
And I hope for a better life

My mattress is laden with my transgressions;
Back pain at twenty-one is killer
When you’re pressed for time

Lisa Lerma Weber

for home in quarantine 

By MP Armstrong

when i curl into myself at night

all juxtaposition of boxer briefs and breasts

i whisper to myself

they they they they they

because i know you never will


Rye whiskey, Tuesday, and Shane MacGowan

By Scott Mitchel May

I’ve never been to New Orleans

But I celebrate Fat Tuesday with opium and rye

Flop-sweat at Ash Wednesday Mass

and, Father takes his time with my black cross



By Yash Seyedbagheri

A man of the Middle West and the Middle East,

I wait for the inevitable comments

about my name 

so I make jokes about being the guy you fear on an airplane

sand monkey, towelhead, camelfucker. That’s what you’re thinking.

Lisa Lerma Weber

Ready Player Two

By Reggie Johnson

We are living in a simulation

Our lives are being controlled by player one

No lives left, no continues, no cheat codes

Hard mode

just fucking turn the game off already 


circles / miracles

By Alvin Kathembe

Sometimes it’s difficult to believe in something

as ordinary as a miracle.

The aliens complain that someone

keeps putting crops in their circles.


See Me

By Lisa Lerma Weber

Fuck you and your jaundiced eye

looking sideways, looking down on

but never looking straight

at the soul you would condemn

for shining in colors you refuse to see. 


america the beautiful

By Ashley Ward

we have

tried our hands

at mending. now we’ll

just unravel all

the seams. 

For Your Reference

By Michael Luketich

You ask “Are you okay?” as if

 I were a thesaurus that

upon running out of synonyms

listed antonyms.

Chris G.


By Confidence Jideofor

i do what every woman in need does

i submit          to God

in a bent over …

come in Lord,

              my walls are sound-proof



Caffeine perspective

By Bethan Hay

I wake up to gremlins

but after a coffee they look more 

like my children

And after two coffees

they are actually rather sweet



By Joe Cody

The blood jet is poetry. There is no stopping it.  (Plath, 1968, p. 83)

It is! Mostly, that is, an

Incoherent mess like blood trace spatter on the wall, 

The trial of blood on bridal sheets,

Or secret marks beneath the sleeves.

Joe Cody


By Meagan Johanson

It is whispered at BBQs, over shoulders,

tongue-clucked between warm deviled eggs:

poor thing, a woman unable to bear–

as if proof of mankind would define her,

as if she didn’t bear every goddamn day.



David Centorbi once again presents,

I made it to the Last-Chance highway

but you were

standing on the overpass

holding your

“I’ll Love You Forever”



Boy, oh boy

By Claire Johnson

It’s just boy drama, they said.

What about when he hit me 

Around the head? 

Or slammed me so hard 

I fell off the bed?


let’s just start a commune, they said

By Skye Savage

go off grid, safe from

those Capitalist Pigs.

but I need those pigs to live,

must eat their organs out.



A Full Length Poem By Jenn Zuko

In the beginning, God made coffee.

He got out of his bed

in the primordial soup,

rubbed herrings out of his eyes, and

scratched pesky birds out of his hair.


He collected a pot of cosmic swirl, 

heated it up until the black holes bubbled.

He poured the liquid through grains

made from clay of man.


The smell made him sigh,

“Now, THAT’s a cup a’ joe.”

The first man’s name was

not Adam, nor Eve – his name was Joe.

Joe had brown eyes and liked to bounce off the garden walls.


God then made the other animals, the important ones,

like the cow, cause he liked to pour and stir 

that frothy stuff  into his potent brew.


After his second cup, he concocted another

and this was Eve, stirred up from the dust

of already-used grounds – vacant brain and watery eyes.

She walked around spaced out, confused.

Eve never ate; Joe’s caffeine made her jumpy.


It also made acid slosh around in her stomach.

“Apples would help,” she thought, but

she wasn’t known for her thinking.

Before Joe could turn around,

She’d already bitten into it.


God’s elbows trembled. Supreme Palpitations.

He clutched his shirt, almost ripping it— a scythe through wheat on harvest day;

And the rest is history,

right there in theology, the Word in red, on onionskin pages.


It never was printed that Joe and Eve escaped to invent tea

and pissed God off on the 7th day,

so he sighed the world a hurricane.


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