Better Some – by C.J. Miles


Today is a day of false starts: burnt eggs, expired yogurt, the insides of my mother being pulled out of her. My brain got itself lost, and I’m not asking for it back. I don’t ask my mother if she wants those parts of her back, but I imagine pieces of her stumbling around town with a shovel, planting a seed and growing a mountaintop.

I am lost in a city, waiting for a forest to find me, dreaming of being stuck in a kiss so wet it makes the moon blush. I am explaining love in multiplication to a cloud so low it is calling itself fog. No bridge ever jumped off itself, I tell it. Never not rest your head in a lap of mistletoes.

Find me in a field marked Field, tying your shoes you always forget to put on. My mother is next to me, three thousand miles away, planting seeds and waiting, waiting, waiting for a mountaintop that will never come.




C.J. Miles lives in Iowa with his wife. His poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Forage and Eunoia Review. He can be found on Twitter at @cjmilespoet

Psychic – by David Henson


She picks up the dead’s lingering
confusion like jazz
tuned by the one-in-a-million
filled tooth. She sees

their faces floating in the skin
of grease on her soup.

Some nights she awakens feeling
their lost hopes
spidering over her breasts.

Some nights the dead phone her
dreams with heavy breath,
beg one last chance
to turn on
courage, disrobe
all they should have said.

A dim room,
joined circle.
Her eyes roll back:
candles flicker; hands squeeze ;

her tongue twitches,
The dead failing again
to find the words.




David Henson lives in Peoria, Illinois, USA with his wife. His work has previously appeared or is upcoming in Pikestaff Forum, Ascent, Literally Stories, Eunoia Review, and others.


Wildcatter – by Gerry Fabian


I pull the car
into this Oklahoma bar
in the middle of somewhere
off Route 40.
I like the way Oklahoma
rolls off the lips
when spoken slowly.
That’s it.

Right now,
I crave a cold bottled beer,
medium-rare steak
and whatever song
is playing on the jukebox.
That’s it.

Halfway through the steak
and one last gulp of the beer,
you slide across the red vinyl
booth seat.
I hear your legs squeak
to a stop.
I know that sound too well.
That’s it.

‘I’m a wildcatter’, you say
with a tense, tempting smile.
Twenty years ago,
I would have gambled on this.
Now, the blood drippings of the steak
and another cold beer hold more interest.
‘Ain’t no drilling happening here!’
I don’t look up.
That’s it.





R. Gerry Fabian is a retired English instructor.  He has been publishing poetry since 1972 in various magazines, his web page is here, and he edits Raw Dog Press. His novel Memphis Masquerade and poetry book Parallels are available at Smashwords.

Song – by M.J. Iuppa


Soon, our old crabapple
will flower, thick and snug,
a crown of fiery pink.

It will sing with bees.

One quick look at it
from the kitchen window
will lift morning’s fog.

A sight we can’t get out
of our eyes, even after
petals have fallen—leaving

a loose circle on the lawn.





M.J. Iuppa lives on a small farm near the shores of Lake Ontario. She is Director of the Visual and Performing Arts Minor at St. John Fisher College. Her third full length poetry collection Small Worlds Floating has just been published by Cherry Grove Collections, July, 2016.

tonight I dream of trains – by Jim Bennett


locomotives whistle in the night
the smell of soot ammonia iron
the hot oil of a workshop

the sound of pistons flanged wheels
that turn and grip the track
the brilliance of signals

the rattle of the crossings
maintenance gangs in sidings
shunters yards and rolling stock

the backs of houses pass
like a hand cranked film
moving one frame at a time

as sure as Newton’s apple
this is Einstein’s train its speed
relative against the landscape




Jim Bennett has written 74  books and numerous chapbooks and pamphlets in a 48 year career as a poet.  Jim lives near Liverpool in the UK and tours giving readings of his work throughout the year.  He is widely published and has won many competitions and awards for poetry and performance. He runs one of the world’s most successful internet sites for poets.

bifurcation – by Nick Allen


people without shadows

in the mid-winter   easterly lying   northern fjord
of Seydisfjordur   the sun never scratches the rim
of the mountains and the people must walk
without shadows   alone under the milkwater sky

shadows without people

in the not so long that people don’t recall
a man made sun blasted shadows from people
leaving them abandoned on the walls and steps
of Hiroshima town   mute in the silence of horror




Nick gets most of his sustenance from double espressos and malt whisky, and after a lifetime of denial is finally willing to admit his poetry habit in public. First published through the Leads to Leeds project run by Helen Mort, his poems have also appeared in The Cunningham Amendment, Pennine Platform and the Waterworks Anthology, and online at New Boots and Pantisocracies and In Between Hangovers.

This is a love poem – by Matt Nicholson


I wrote your name,
in chalk, on stone,
beside the black water pool
that reaches down into night
and where light is extinguished
and all heat, neutralised.

And I drew a heart,
on stone, in chalk,
beside your name,
on the edge of that pool
where water sinks to deepest black
and where night is manufactured
in the stolid stare of eternity.

And I wrote ‘forever’.




Matt Nicholson is a poet from the East Riding of Yorkshire. He writes and performs just about anywhere that people will let him, and his debut collection, There and back (to see how far it is) is to be published in October of this year by The King’s England Press.