Emma Geller is a poet, singer, and actress from Boston, MA. Her passions include cinema, listening to Elliot Smith, and drinking too much coffee. You can find out more about Emma on Instagram at em_me_line.
I envision the dissipated souls stretched across the bay, side by side, above and below to form this heavy mist. The emanating sounds bring me scenes of buoys singing in the sway, tugboats voicing arrivals, flapping wings sculpted by wind.
Hints of light conjure a purée of diamond soup being stirred gently over a pot of steam. More and more gems rise to the surface, shine with a brilliance only muted fog can enhance.
As the soup stock simmers down, brightness spreads upward toward unpeopled park hills, signaling to sounds they no longer have to bear the onus of stage props alone.
Evie Groch, Ed.D. is a Field Supervisor/Mentor for new administrators in Graduate Schools of Education. Her opinion pieces, humor, poems, short stories, recipes, word challenges, and other articles have been widely published in the New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Contra Costa Times, The Journal, Games Magazine, and many online venues. Many of her poems are in published anthologies. Her short stories, poems, and memoir pieces have won her recognition and awards. Her travelogues have been published online with Grand Circle Travel. The themes of travel, language, and immigration are special for her.
A Bowerbird Implodes Above the Bank of Whys Elegy for B.M.
To win a rose more riveting Than truth ajar, like burghers Of Calais, you broke your angst Into a million angels. Buried Now, in skies above the cross- Eared witnesses the sorghum Boxed the day you died, you Schlep a new horizon, a glissando Like the sinking Arizona, for The Washingtons without A frozen Delaware. Self-pity Has the potency of God and devil’s License; soggy franchise of Triceratops and sophomores. Midwives for these ancient aches Are human, dignified and spent; As flippant as the battleship Akagi: Parvenu and parvovirus, each Refrigerates our childish zeal and Piles tears on sex appeal. So virilized, The valley’s terror and boredom Had a fetor Jacobin; you said, “The brain is just a tail that’s Outside-in and on a curious end!” Too often brusque, my foibles Caught the wish’s end, the banal Albanism at its meaning’s point, Like Joseph Goebbels; but, if God’s Forgiveness is forgiving God, A viable alternative is art. To Rampage blithely in the haunted House Madonna, with her savage Purity and stray deceits, remakes With outdoor apprehension, is to see The robot teasing dawn – “Your Skeleton is gone! You’d better go And chase it!” – knowing dawn just Couldn’t face it. If I scrape The inconvenience off my tongue and Pick the pageantry from winter’s fur, Conception might occur; the rainstorm In a grain that famishes bouzoukis. Tikkun olam, in league with Periodic Acid-Schiff, paroles your good and genius; Wingman every time my glory fails.
Jake Sheff is a pediatrician and veteran of the US Air Force. He’s married with a daughter and six pets. Poems and short stories of Jake’s have been published widely. Some have even been nominated for the Best of the Net Anthology and the Pushcart Prize. His chapbook is Looting Versailles (Alabaster Leaves Publishing). A full-length collection of formal poetry, A Kiss to Betray the Universe, is available from White Violet Press.
The seats are all vacant and my rum-shaken morning legs need a rest.
The laundromat waiting area sometimes doubles as a staging area for crackheads and bums as they ponder how to spend the rest of their day. I grab the attendant’s spray bottle and wipe a chair down to avoid transferring the sweaty residue of the last crackhead onto me.
Across the street, a sidewalk sleeper is rousted by the 7/11 clerk – GO! LEAVE NOW! He staggers over and plops across from me – coughing up tuberculosis into his cloud of stink – his flying spittle spangled with flecks of red. A trembling sip from a paper bag calms his coughing fit.
My foot lands with a slap thud on the tile when I uncross my legs and jump up. After all the care I took to wipe clean the chair it seems like such a waste to lose it. Now I’ll go stand in front of the drier – entertained by the circular tumble of my socks.
Hugh Blanton combs poems out of his hair during those moments he can steal away from his employer’s loading dock. He has appeared in The Rye Whiskey Review, Dope Fiend Daily, As It Ought To Be, and other places. He lives in San Diego, California.
It must be the old hippie in me: camouflaged in a sports jacket and whistling a show tune, when I’d walk past beat cops, carrying a lid to a friend’s party.
But entering our favorite breakfast place, and seeing three cops forking in eggs and laughing at a story one of them has just told,
the old fear bubbles up, and I’m holding an ounce of Panama Red, or that crumbly Lebanese hash I loved, the aroma beckoning like the arms of a belly dancer.
I can’t stop glancing over, fixated on the nights I prayed their brothers wouldn’t suspect I was high as the pigeons roosting on the cables of the Brooklyn Bridge.
“What’s wrong?” Beth’s forehead creases concern over her menu. And as quick as I got stuck in that time loop, I snap out of it: old enough to see the police as allies, and anyway, they’re decades and decades younger than me.