Singularity Poem by David Jackson

Trillions of galaxies and
each one unique,
all filled with solar systems and
each one unique.
Every single person is different,
every rock, every bird,
every one of us
everything in the
is a singularity.
There will never
That is a
Good luck
Be safe
Be kind
Be you

Melcome | Poem by Jessica Skyfield


to my echo chamber.

I’m having fun, (right now).

And that’s what it’s all about, right?


Behold the meaningless rantings of a mad(whoa)man.

Sliding slipping sagging

as time warps and wears

picking up speed on the downhill slide.

Infinite neural networks

these/those/them/there/their/they’re sliding glass doors shut

but I can still see back through;


It’s cold outside.

Scaramouche is fandangoing

and nothing truly



at all.*

*Actually, everything matters/everything’s matter and this is just a coping

mechanism for reality because everything is so big and I am so little and

the forces that exist are so great and I don’t feel strong enough…said hurriedly with flushed cheeks and zero free oxygen anywhere.

But I’m trying.

In Ordinum ist Progress.

(What esoteric concepts!–whose order and progress towards what?!)

Literally all our plundering is in the name of progress, so…

& of course I moved to the state whose motto is Ad astra per aspera.

ad nauseam per Astrae, 

blundering through inumerable difficulties

tale as old as Time.

Hit me where the wind blows

& know that endless questioning is nothing but to beg for sorrow.

Adapted ahead of print from JP Skyfield’s Condensed Chronology.

About That First Love and other Poems by John Grey


It did not feel like they had told me.

Less emotional, more like somebody

gifting me a brand new red sports car.

Hormones, I barely understood.

But horsepower was a cinch.

I didn’t lose my heart.

It was more a great flap in my head.

And it wasn’t war of course.

Not unless I wanted the other side to win.

It did strange things to conversation.

When I spoke to the girl,

it was like offering her a bite

of my candy bar.

Words had to taste delicious.

Or she had to be prepared to make a sacrifice,

devour them spit and all.

It was dividing myself in two.

One half still threw footballs.

The other was careful none landed

unsuspectingly near her.

And she wasn’t even the real thing.

First love was just rehearsal for second love.

And all I knew of second love was

that one of them was me.


He rode in on a
glorious steed of Rilke,
alighted like pick-pocketing
Wordsworth from
a crowded shelf of prose.
He was dressed in a fancy, glittering suit
of Flaubert and Fitzgerald,
though his weapons were Russian novels,
“War and Peace,” “Crime And Punishment”.
he sure had me covered.
When the villains arrived…
Grisham, Clancy and
some Harlequin hired hands,
he was waiting for them
with Racine, Pushkin and Cervantes.
It was all over before you could say,
“For Whom The Bell Tolls.”
No, he didn’t take me in his arms,
but he did recommend I read
Durrel’s “Alexandria Quartet.”
We would have rode off into the sunset
together but, luckily, there was
a Starbucks next door.


It’s Saturday night, a glitzy nightclub,

and I’m feeling useless and lonely

until I spy an attractive woman

sitting all alone at a nearby table.

I’m thinking to myself,

this is the angel who will restore me

to the very pinnacle of manhood.

She has long blonde hair

and I appreciate the way she tosses it.

And her eyes are surely blue

though the cross-breed lights,

the boogieing shadows, won’t yet concur.

I stand and stare in one motion.

A few confident steps,

some of my best one-liners,

and before you know it we’re dancing…

we’re a couple even.

If only it were that easy.

If the angel, precious as she may be,

weren’t just some replica of myself –

embarrassed by the past,

concerned for the future.,

and stuck here in some kind of perverse present

of money worries, family issues

and relationship anxiety.

My nerves fail me.

I return to my forlorn drink and chair.

The dance-floor is a throbbing, buzzing hive

of men and women.

Those guys andme-1can’t get over how alike we are.

And the women —no different from her, surely.

Before the approach,

I wonder how secure they were in the knowledge.

Did they imagine perfectly matched twosomes,

here, there, in all directions?

Are we meant to be together, that’s what I want to know.

The song that’s playing keeps implying yes.

And yet it’s not one I know.

She’s not singing along.

I’m not either.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Stand, Washington Square Review and Rathalla Review. Latest books, “Covert” “Memory Outside The Head” and “Guest Of Myself” are available through Amazon. Work upcoming in the McNeese Review, Santa Fe Literary Review and Open Ceilings.

The New World Order | Poem by Ray Miller

The holiday romance is wintering

in the blankets of her bestest buddy.

There’s an empty ring in the silver tin,

and candles light the depths of her study,

where she’s practising pole dancing and  TEFL;  

she’ll throw a dart in a part of the globe

and chase the arrow for some precious metal

while her lips and her legs remain in vogue.

It’s closing time in the gardens of the West,

we can’t afford the servants any longer.

She’s in a tipsy state and a flimsy dress,

bent over at the wrong end of a conga.

Foreign eyes are leering at your daughter

in the queue for the new world order.

“Ray Miller is a Socialist, Aston Villa supporter, and faithful husband. Life’s been a disappointment”

Fifties Feature | Poem by Linda Straub

fifties feature poem

“50’s Feature”

by Linda Straub

Mother wore an off the shoulder dress

that swirled ’round her slender waist

and kissed a starched crinoline.

Father’s hair was ebony black,

a series of soft waves rolling down

his scalp, breaking on a rocky spine.

I sat in the back of their ’57 Chevrolet

eating popcorn and watching

James Dean on the Drive-in screen.

A squadron of speakers hung

from car windows where crackling

voices of movie stars faded in and out.

Sleep snuck up from behind

and stretched my weary body

across the wide back seat,

where my last sight

on that Summer’s night

was my Father’s wavy hair

dressing my mother’s bare shoulders.

Notecards | Donald Goines | High Dive Board | Poems by Peter Mladinic

Boobs in a Church


“Boobs in a church.” The frat boy

“Boobs in a church.” What did you say?

in the front row looked at me, I at him.

out nouns in magic marker: umbrella/

Monday night, Freshman Comp. I’d passed

courthouse; rabbit’s foot/ tunnel; wallet/

gym. Boots/ church, her prompts.

From the back, her high-pitched voice,

boots sounded different. A slim neck,

hair pulled up, dark eyes, flawless skin,

petite, shapely, she had to be there

as did I, if I wanted a paycheck. Spring,

April. Fountain pen/ swimming pool.

A stolen pen, the pool members only.

Tennis racquet/ nightclub; penguin/ ring.

There were animal cards. In an open door,

Saturday morning, mortgage-free, two

baths newly remodeled, I wonder where

she is. Outside our room, Discover

the Last Frontier, an astronaut tiny in

a galaxy poster on a board. The astronaut

helmet comes back silver. How did I get here?

How does anyone, where they are?

Toothbrush/ stadium. Wilbur brushes his

teeth in the bleachers. Fourth quarter

fervor. He clutches the wrong end.

In his hand, soggy bristles. A buzzer

sounds. A ball bounces off a rim. Crest

clouds the water in his red cup. His

Nighthawks walk off the court, their third

consecutive loss. Two other cards,

mirror/ cemetery, belong to a Suns fan.

Donald Goines

He had a really lucid essay on injustice,

about Black people getting screwed over

by the bail system. It wasn’t a rant, clear,

ordered, it made me think, he’s dead right.

He was always dead right, a prophet really

for troubled times in cities, car jacking,

mugging, armed robbery, much of it done

by people strung out. He knew that life.

He could have inherited his father’s dry

cleaning business. But he went in the army

and in Japan got stung out. Anyone wants

to preach the nightmare of strung out

should read one of his novels, Black Girl

Lost the one title comes to mind.

But he had many, and that his murder til

this day is unsolved, is tragic. He died,

literally, at the typewriter, someone broke in

to his apartment and shot him,

some paid assassin. He’d made enemies.

Try as he did, he couldn’t shake the life.

A croaker before that word was popular,

in prison he read Iceberg Slim and wrote.

He could have gone to a good college.

Self taught he lived what he wrote and he

wrote well. Dopefiend has a passage:

a young woman hangs herself on a shower

rack in a motel bathroom. It’s riveting.

The ugly truth of what drugs did to her.

(stanza break)

What drugs did. He had a choice,

more so than the woman whose life ended

in a restroom. He and his father died

only a month apart. Only his father,

of natural causes. Pimp, junkie, storyteller,

Black man, he wrought true fiction,

a world happening far from the tidy house

set back from the white picket fence.

High Dive Board

I’ve got to go to the tip and spring a little

and not look down, and feel the spring

go from toes to chin, then not just jump

but dive and maybe not bellyflop but do

a dive that wouldn’t win the grace-agility

award but at least pass so I’m no longer

a high dive virgin. I’ve got to dive. After

I’ve done it I can know, in my body, grace

or my imperfect grace, that differs from

placing the palm of my hand on a spike

of a gate that marks off the living from

the dead, at Gates of Heaven where you lay

six feet under, who once walked to the tip

of the board and bounced a little before

diving beneath the blue water’s surface,

emerging with a gasp before swimming

to the pool’s ledge, climbing out shaking

water drops on stone, you and your shadow

in afternoon climbed the ladder’s rungs

to dive again; and now your remains lay

near a sign: rest in peace. I’ve got to make

the dive at least passable so when I’m out

of the pool I can say I did something

you once did, again and again and do

no more, never to look up at white clouds

in blue sky before toes make that spring,

all of you shutting out what’s below:

girls in their fallen straps on blankets

in green grass, and toddlers holding hands

of their mothers in the pool’s shallow end.

Only you and the sky at the board’s tip,

you making it spring, then diving, no more

dives for you. It’s my shadow on cement,

moves with me, Jan, as yours moved

past the girls on blankets, the guards

in chairs, the swimmers and sun tanners

past all of it to the ladder, your wet feet

on the rungs, hands on aluminum rails,

you climbed to where it was you and sky.

Peter Mladinic’s fourth book of poems, Knives on a Table is available from Better Than Starbucks Publications.

An animal rights advocate, he lives in Hobbs, New Mexico, USA.