Poetry and short prose about the musical life and the lost words of youth, about the places where love might be found or misplaced and dreams not quite made and celebrity encounters and being short on funds and the necessity of bus rides and bus stops and homes and the small moments that resonate and, of course, cats.
I’m not sure why I like trains. I don’t collect models I don’t care about design or form I know the basics of how they work Like any vehicle. Lots of movies feature the old coal-fueled kind But the story captured my attention Not the train.
I walk from my building to my car Parked near railroad tracks Where a train passes daily, several times, both ways Blocks traffic Blares its horn, deafens nearby pedestrians Shuttles cargo and people from there to here.
I’m not sure why I like trains. I used to watch one go by our house With Dad Race across the carpet to burst outside Stop at the wire fence to the vineyard next door Only one, once a day, sometimes at night. On sunny days we’d worm through the fence Walk the tracks Grass and wildflowers poking up Between the metal rails The wood slats pitted and grooved from rain.
But the train stopped at one point. They mended the wire fence I grew up Left And now watch a dusty train barrel on sizzling Singing tracks My pumps pinching my toes
Carol Edwards is a northern California native transplanted to southern Arizona. She lives and works in relative seclusion with her books, plants, and pets (2 dogs, 4 cats, + husband). She grew up loving the fantasy worlds of C.S. Lewis, Peter Beagle, and J.R.R. Tolkien, and she harbors a fondness for Greek mythology. Her recent poetry inspirations include Emily Dickinson, Robert Bl, and George Herbert.
I would wear you like a mood ring but I fear you would still be just as unpredictable I lose myself in the obsession of your colors your mood ever-changing upon my hand I could only hope to understand your needs but with each color that blends into it I realize I could never fully grasp you but I think I’ll keep it with me for reference although the color is like mixed paint brown upon my finger.
The voice erupts and rumbles a God behind glass but he comes at a price and we are indebted to the bright light that blinks or the collection plate being passed around I watch the boy holds up his dollar sticking it into the machine as he shifts side to side and awaits his fortune I guess we all look for answers some on a boardwalk, a carnival, or on a pew.
Ashley L. Cooke is an English undergrad at CSULB. She lives in Long Beach CA. You can find her work at various online journals including Rye Whiskey Review and Bold Monkey, she was also poet of the month for Moontide Press.
Joe Szalinski is a writer & performer from Pittsburgh, PA. He attended Slippery Rock University for his undergrad in writing & literature. Since returning to his native Pittsburgh, he’s been busy performing comedy, acting, making music, and writing. His writing, both creative and academic, has appeared in Defenestration, The Howling Press, The Short Humour, PS It’s Poetry (an anthology), and RockScissorsPaper.