Photo by J.D.C.IV from inside Cajun Mutt Press Headquarters, Newark, Illinois
Finally, OCTOBER, my favorite month!!! I can feel the magic in the air. Not too hot, not too cold, the leaves are beginning to change color, and Halloween is coming! How could you not love this time of year? I love Halloween because it’s the only holiday you can be your weirdest true self, and nobody bats an eye. Here’s to the ghosts and ghouls, cheers!
We have another great lineup! As usual, enormous thanks to the writers and readers. Without you, C.M.P. wouldn’t exist. If you’d like to submit some work, send 1-3 poems to email@example.com along with a bio and author photo. No need for documents, you can just paste them into the email. It takes me a while to answer everyone so please be patient. This is another reason I do not take simultaneous submissions. Sometimes the one I want is accepted elsewhere by the time I can get to it. I have a few more spots to fill for January, then I’ll be reading for February, so get those subs in because spots fill quickly.
Also, y’all keep your eyes peeled on October 15th for our next book release, 𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘈𝘥𝘷𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘦𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘉𝘳𝘢𝘪𝘯 𝘔𝘢𝘯 by Ron Whitehead! I’ll have a proof copy in my hands soon so I can post a couple teaser pics of the interior. It Is So Bad Ass. My best editing/formatting job to date and brother Ron’s words SHINE on the page!!! You will not be let down.
Write On! J.D.C.IV 🤟💀
Cajun Mutt Press Featured Writers, October 2021
Slalom by Sanjeev Sethi 10/01/21
Cheery-Eyed Jackdaws by Daniel S. Irwin 10/04/21
Just Take it Easy, I’m Here to Help by Todd Sullivan 10/06/21
HALFWAY CRAZY by John Tustin 10/08/21
Another fight in the street, who’s winning? by Ryan Quinn Flanagan 10/11/21
Cold Open Window by Patricia Walsh 10/13/21
Today I Saw My Other Self by Donna Dallas 10/15/21
I FOLLOW YOU INTO NIGHT by Strider Marcus Jones 10/18/21
Hotel Room Poem by Daniel Holt 10/21/21
Facebook Afterlife by Charles Rammelkamp 10/22/21
The Unwritten by Ann Privateer 10/25/21
Black Moon Paradise by Judge Santiago Burden 10/27/21
Sitting on a misted street With frigid wind And soaking leaves,
The years I’ve roamed the nights I’ve played, Hide -n- Seek: In shallow graves
The years draw on; In this chilling calm, Where all is dead And no one’s home
With pumpkins lit Will these wicks still hold?
To keep us from the frozen ghosts. . .
Are we safe and sound, Tucked in at home?
On a night all-souls, conjure theirs. . .
We’ll see to the mischief While we make our own, As I think of a place, For the resting bones.
I will tell you in the dark That my family, Is now dead and gone, No more home No more wrong, No more place To keep running from; Now I’ve found, in my head, All my friends Come out to play; Without eyes Without face, I Let them dance I watch them rave; As orbs shine on Their crooked spines, Decomposed They twitch and smile; Ebon skin Grayed & peeled, Shedding all With every spin, In their silence Losing dress; They breathe so softly On nape of neck.
Waiting for Halloween
At night I write Till the morning comes Waiting for Autumn Hoping Summer’s done. Regretting Winter Hating Spring, Dreaming Fall, As my everything. Light the candles In lantern frowns, Your loving face, I’m carving now. Raise a toast, Welcome ghosts, Open doors, To floating orbs. Let them in As a chill of wind Greeting past As a friend. See the face I left in flame Dreaming you, How faint your name. Yell aloud; In thunder now, It rains for you When I’m calling out. Pictures perfect Pumpkins chosen, Rather rest in peace Than to never know when; You’re coming back Guessing days, I light the wick So you’ll find the way. Lost my life Lost my home Waiting for: Orange, red, and gold.
Frogg Corpse is an author, actor, vocalist, and poet from Louisville, Kentucky. Frogg recently published a guest blog for 48 Hour Books on the importance of documenting dreams to improve writing. In 1999 Frogg Corpse was one of the youngest poets and members at that time in the International Society of Poets. In 2011 Frogg Corpse wrote a memoir titled: “The Mourning Hour” which in 2012 was showcased at the London Book Fair. Also in 2012 Frogg Corpse worked as a haunt actor for Waverly Hills Sanatoriums’ haunted house. Frogg also auditioned for season 12 of American Idol in Chicago. In 2013 Frogg Corpse served as a background actor for Magician Criss Angel’s Spike TV show BeLIEve while living in Las Vegas and also was cast in a supporting role for the film Las Vegas Story featuring Eric Roberts. Also in 2013 Frogg Corpse Auditioned for NBC’s The Voice twice in Las Vegas and in Los Angeles. Currently, Frogg has a poetry book coming out soon called: “A Quick Guide to Suicide: Poetry to die by” with dark artwork by artist Vitaly Illyn also known as Barandash Karandashich of Russia. Copies of Frogg’s book The Mourning Hour are owned by MTV Jackass Star Stephen “Steve-O” Glover and comedian Jim Jefferies.
Big and dark and full of wrong angles Varying shades of blood and fear The girl looked out with a blank expression She had a red scarf pulled over her Disappeared through the open doorway Face our words in moonlit guises Like Halloween devices the shadows Negotiate her skin at the skyline Her eyes as big as candy-glazed Fruit and crazy like an organ player’s Playing hopeless on the air like prayer Breathing words, I am not you, she writes All lights and mirrors I don’t know So were any of those ageless Realm of the meanings of things real? What if this isn’t a mask?
Monster for Breakfast
She makes breakfast. The eggs are red. Like something rusty. She chats at no-one. The sleeping figure past the partition wakes. The bacon cracks the pan. Biscuits, jam.
When the creature rises behind her She is in shadow. She turns And holds out a plate with a smile. She has a look like secrets.
He is flesh-gum, sinister with rot And maggots, trammeled bone And misshapen skull and dead Eyes round in tears. All those years.
Stephen King Is My Daddy
That old rock and roll boogeyman. I’m jealous of the kids he kept. He left me in a graveyard In North Hollywood in 1986, Behind a tombstone covered in moss, During his promotional tour for A book about dead kids. I didn’t see the irony.
I was six. It was half-past midnight. He left me with a finger-bone That he said was good luck. I stuck it in the corner of my mouth Like Huck Finn would a piece of straw.
I never knew my mother. I heard different explanations for her absence. She was shanghaied onto a gunboat in China, Pressed into service as a pirate. She was repairing prosthetic limbs in Zaire, Under the tutelage of an old watch-maker. She leaped from The Eiffel Tower and was in A French institution, recovering, Twenty-two broken bones and a semi-serious Opium addiction. She lost all her teeth And then her tongue fell out too.
It was all true. Last I heard she Was looking for some tower And wasn’t even in this part Of the space-time continuum. I suppose it should mean something, But it doesn’t.
I made time in the graveyard reading epitaphs. I made up poems about people buried there. Got hungry. I had to eat something other Than the corpse-fed earthworms I fingered from the soil. Though the worms weren’t bad. They tasted like skin.
The cemetary was so big I couldn’t Find my way out, it covered half of Hollywood, It was like a wilderness preserve, I mean, they kept wolves There too, and a forest full of ghosts.
Dancing with zombies at night, sleeping Underground. I had my first kiss with a walking Skeleton. I’m still not sure if it was a boy or girl. We’re still dating, all these years later. We communicate Through a complicated series of jaw-clicks.
Adam Ai is a Puerto Rican and Basque poet, and U.S. Army veteran from Los Angeles, California. He has previously been published in Chiron Review, Kanstellation, Thorn Literary Magazine, Ninshar Arts, South Florida Poetry Journal, Art Times Journal, Ancient Paths Literary Magazine, Pink Plastic House, Abstract: Contemporary Expressions Magazine, The Pointed Circle, and Xenith. Connect with him on Twitter @AdamAiPoems.
Coming soon from Cajun Mutt Press,The Queen & Her Devil: A Sacred Journey Through Love and Contractsby Rani Whitehead!!! We’re aiming for a Halloween release on this one so keep your eyes peeled. You can also find her other book, Fracture Point, on Amazon. Published by C.M.P. January 7th, 2020.
“Rani Whitehead is a poet of major proportions, a gifted light who has lived the life she words. Her writing is balanced with an honesty that, for some, is frightening. Her latest offering, A QUEEN AND HER DEVIL, a sacred journey through love and contracts, is an amazing piece of work and will ultimately find its place among the country’s best literature. Rani Whitehead’s poetry, although solidly her own voice, reminds me of the poetic journals of Anais Nin. You will, once you start, have trouble stopping reading Rani until you have devoured her whole book. You will sense you have just received the gift of her deepest secrets written with a beauty that’s not seen often except when flowers bloom. She’s a writer to be reckoned with and I have a strong feeling we are going to see a great deal more of her. That is a good thing. Her work is substantial.” —Lee Pennington
“Deeply inspirational from the first moment, Rani Whitehead writes, early on, “I will melt for you / I will become molten lava / Destroying all in my path to hold your eyelashes between lips that whisper / Your longings /My longings.” Imagine the sheer boldness, the True Poet’s ability to catch the words, catch the emotion. It’s like this all the way through The Queen & Her Devil. In honor of Mahakala & Mahakali (a manifestation of Shiva and his consort). Rani opens the gates and the words rush out, standing behind the gates, waiting their turn. In The Queen & Her Devil, “a sacred journey through love and contracts,” as in earlier work, she has such a lot to say. It stampedes, it pours, it reaches us, and we are always moved. I think, How can she find such a different way to say a universal truth? But she finds a new angle, her own. Everything about her writing is her own. From the moment I became aware of her poetry, I sat up, straightened my back, and told myself, Now that’s really A Poet (which I don’t often say). That’s someone with the old magic, the old grace, and depth of The Poet. Though of a very different type, her words are as inevitable as those of the true classical poets. She speaks to us as directly as Neruda, straight in the eye. But most of all, she digs so deep—till she cannot dig any further. And it is in digging for us, holding every stone and chunk of dirt, every root and stem and blossom, she reawakens our own passions and desire to Live. That’s it: Be Alive. She writes as if we are not listening—uncensored, except by Art, and Life, and Truth. Her memories and imagination bring us hypnotically a storehouse of living bundles of Life for our savoring. I know that she will be around a long time, and I expect great things, marveling that her body can hold the intensity. Indeed this book shows us it can.” —Margaret A. Harrell (Author of The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic)
“Have you ever had an all-consuming love? Have you ever felt a connection so deep that you were sure that their breath was your breath? That their heartbeat was your heartbeat? That every ache and pain they felt was felt tenfold in your bones? Have you ever felt the conviction, the undeterred devotion, to another soul so intensely that you are sure that the Universe birthed you both from the same womb at the beginning of time? Rani Whitehead’s latest book of poetry, “THE QUEEN AND HER DEVIL, a Sacred Journey Through Love and Contracts” is the story of one such love. With a mastery of pictorial words, carefully chosen and placed, she paints fantastic images of the magic and the chaos of finding a soul mate who has not yet found himself. Grounded and ethereal, tethered, and righteously free, Rani explores the duality between navigating contracts with another soul and nurturing a newfound devotion to her truth. The road Rani travels in this collection of poetry is bittersweet. We are given an intimate view of every sunrise and sunset. We ride with her to the mountaintop, high with victory, and to the shadowlands, where we nurse our travel-worn and blistered feet. And as the contract with her love bends and twists and ultimately dissolves into mist, a glorious and steady warrior is birthed, soft and strong, and true. It was an honor to walk with Rani on her journey, both in this lifetime and in this collection of poems. Her raw vulnerability IS one of her greatest strengths, and she does not hold back. Rani gives her written words, and ultimately us, the greatest gift… the naked truth of growth and resurrection through love lost and love found. Bravo, friend.” —Peyton Turner (Author ofRise Up From Ash: Follow Your Intuition, Save Your Life)
There’s a symphony of autumn perfumes in the air. The changing leaves turn trees into opals. Shadows seem to follow you closer. Ghosts press in around your skin a little tighter. October is here.
A time for dancing flames, mischief, and pumpkin spice fucking everything. All the strange and unusual people feel normal this time of year. I, myself, am strange and unusual. See what I did there? You’re not one of us if you didn’t.
Yes, if you couldn’t tell, this is my favorite month, and below you’ll find the lineup. If you’d like to submit some writing send 1-3 poems to firstname.lastname@example.org along with a bio and author photo. I have a few spots left to fill for January, then I’ll be reading for February.
Also, keep your eyes peeled for our next book release, The Queen and Her Devil: A Sacred Journey Through Love and Contracts by Rani Whitehead! Paberback available around Halloween.