2 Wordeater is the biannual literary and creative arts magazine of Joliet Junior College. Print and e-zine issues are published in May and December. The staff will consider all original media, including poetry, plays, short fiction, songs, audio, video, translations, essays, creative nonfiction, art criticism, book reviews, autobiographical prose, interviews, storyboards, comics, photography, and art for publication in the next issues. The magazine includes work by Joliet Junior College students, alumni, faculty, and staff. A student editorial staff determines the content of issues. Prizes are awarded by faculty jurors in each issue. Wordeater exists as a forum of creative expression for the Joliet Junior College community, including students, alumni, faculty, and staff. It celebrates the diversity of ideas, beliefs, values, language, media, and people of its community. It seeks to promote artistic, personal, and political expression, democratic values, and social justice, including fairness and equal opportunity, rights, and access. Wordeater rejects censorship and attempts to reflect the artistry and lives of its community, while embracing JJC s Core Values of respect, integrity, collaboration, humor and well-being, innovation, and quality. Wordeater Staff Graphic & Web Designer Graphic Designer Production Assistant Faculty Advisor Wordeater History: Sara Schwartz Nicole Garriott Kat Boehle Adam Heidenreich Cover art by Nicole Garriott Layout by Adam Heidenreich Special thanks to Amanda Quinn Alumni Relations The Wordeater 40th Anniversary Special Edition This edition represents Wordeater s forty years in print. The four Wordeater Advisors were each given about a page per issue to exhibit their respective eras, 125 issues in all! It was impossible to include all that was worthy, so we included only all that could fit. We also didn t credit all of the fine artists who drew, painted, and photographed the remarkable magazine covers represented here by mere thumbnail images. So, if you were a contributor to Wordeater and aren t mentioned by name or didn t have any of your work reprinted, please accept our apologies. But also revel in this anthology s expression of beauty, artistry, emotion, intellect, humor, and wisdom - the kind that has come to define Wordeater! As current stewart of the brand, I can t express in a sentence or two how enjoyable it has been to read, scan, edit, and cut & paste my way through 125 issues of history, so I won t. Likewise, I wish I could relate to you some of the rich, humorous, and touching stories shared with me by Wordeater s founder, John Stobart (a.k.a. Loudmouth McCracken), on his weekly Wednesday morning visits. It is gratifying to know I also have so many of my own stories to tell! John, Bill, Stacey, and I agree the best part of being Wordeater Advisor is meeting the wonderfully talented, creative, and diverse people who become contributors, editors, staffers, and performers for Wordeater. Only a fraction of their names appear on the ridiculously crowded pages here, but our collective wish is to celebrate all of them and see the spirit of Wordeater live on for another 40 years! -Adam Heidenreich 1972 Wordeater is established by John Stobart. All issues are printed in 8½ x 14 format with a mimeograph machine. As many as four issues are published per year for the next 20 years! 1987 Wordeater #57 is the first 8½ x 11 photocopied issue Wordeater #84 is the first saddle-stitched issue with cover John Stobart retires from the English/Foreign Languages department. Issue #106 is his last as Faculty Advisor Bill Yarrow becomes Faculty Advisor. The John Stobart Award for Poetry is established Stacey Murphy becomes Faculty Advisor. Wordeater first appears on the web Adam Heidenreich becomes the present Faculty Advisor. Wordeater #118 is published in 5½ x 8½ format The first Wordeater e-zine is published at Wordeater celebrates 40 years with the Wordeater 40th Anniversary Special Edition and the Wordeater 40th Anniversary Celebration! Issue #126 is also published.
3 Wordeater Joliet Junior College 1215 Houbolt Road Joliet, IL wordeater.org wordeater.org Submission Guidelines Wordeater is always accepting submissions for its next print and e-zine issues. Wordeater is published in May and December. Wordeater accepts poetry, prose fiction, creative nonfiction, essays, reviews, art, photography, comics, music, spoken word recordings, short films, and other multi-media for publication consideration. All written work must be word-processed in Word (.doc) or Rich Text Format (.rtf) and submitted through the online submission form at wordeater.org. All multimedia must be submitted in appropriate formats either through wordeater.org or CD/DVD to Adam Heidenreich (C-1063). All work must be original and unpublished. Artists retain all rights to their own work and may publish it in other media. Submissions may include a brief About the Artist biography (100 words or less), a digital photo, and a link to a web page for promotional purposes. This content will be included if the work is chosen for the e-zine. Works will be judged anonymously by the student Editorial Board. There is no limit on the number of submissions, but it is suggested artists submit only a representative collection. Except for original artwork, submissions will not be returned. Editorial changes may be made for readability and presentation. All work must be submitted through the online submission form at wordeater.org or sent to Adam Heidenreich, Assistant Professor of English, Wordeater Advisor (C-1063), in appropriate digital format (CD or DVD) or with instructions for scanning or digital photography. Wordeater sponsors many events! Check wordeater.org for information and facebook for media.
4 Once Upon a Time (1972) Within a space (Contemporary, JJC magazine), sweet and good Natalie W. punked a piece of s-word with the f-word made famous by the recent President of the USA, Tricky Dixon. Consequently, Terrific Ted Thompson (Advisor) and Courageous Carl Daubach (Student Editor) resigned when JJC s Administration slurred the reputation of this coed and the good taste and judgment of the Contemporary Advisor, Editor, and Staff. Contemporary died from this wound, ending a three year run of respectable annual production. And JuCo students held a sit-in to protest their anger over such censorship in an American college. Led by Bruce McCallister, Etha Griffin, Marilyn Fumigall, Bob Early, Rick Jovanovich, Norm McNett, Don McKeaver, Joan Warren, and Bredan Ward, a meeting was arranged and faculty member John Stobart was drafted to start up a new literary magazine. The group struggled to find some focus other than simply to rebel. But they did want to yell and Oh, hell, yes they wanted revenge for Thompson and Daubach and sweet Natalie. And Bruce McCallister emphasized that the new magazine ought to be a BIG VOICE on campus, that it ought to be playful and idealistic, but also full of protest and noise and anger, sort of a more belligerent and satirical and imaginative magazine without too much concern for appearances - more like the Yippies and Elvis and the Beatles and Bob Dylan. This group then, over a few weeks, came up with a leader for such a publication and named him Loudmouth McCracken from Bruce s inspiration. Stobart insisted that anger and disgust should be in the mix with mirth and respect but that no verbal obscenity or pornographic content, not even hell or damn or ass would be allowed if he were going to be the faculty sponsor, a protocol that had contributed to the Subterranean Sideshow s success a few years earlier. So Loudmouth was born and he was a Gargantuan Monster consuming zillions of words and spouting his own words to the contributors and reader and staff, which somehow had come up with Wordeater to replace Contemporary and sort of continue the panache of Subterranean Sideshow with an appeal to a popular audience, as well as a more literary and visual art audience. In the course of the next 125 issues, Wordeater s layout moved from mimeograph to print to e-zine to slick paper and color illustrations. Gradually, so-called dirty words, salacious scenes, and violence became a part of the mix, but Valentines, laments, sentimental memories, humor, and honor remained stables. Loudmouth sparked Wordeater s contributors and readers over the years, but gradually he faded away as JJC endured and prospered. But like Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy - like Paine, Jefferson, Poe, Hawthorne, Melville, Twain, Whitman, Ginsberg, Sandburg, Brooks - Loudmouth - and Wordeater - remain - as of 2012! Loudmouth McCracken 1
5 Norm McNett Father and Son 4 Marilyn Fumagalli Metallic Autocracy 4 Debby Schmidt Nostalgic Overture 4 J.J. Richards Generation 4 Sheryl Weber Haiku 5 Coleyn Morgan Haiku 5 Charles Winans Haiku 5 Carolyn Hunt Awake at Night 5 Tom Roach Bull-Jive in Taxicabs 6 Tom McCabe A Poem Written About Them 6 Tom McCabe I Ms My Baby So Much 6 Etha Griffin The Forested 7 Mark Benigni Irony 8 Geoff Canady A Lesson in Pragmatism 8 Louise Converse Manhattan Chowder 8 Jacque Bebar Cradle 8 sharon mccartan on washington st. 8 Jim Youngquist I Break Bread 9 J.K. Oltman James Joyce 9 Sharon Marizza Peanut Butter Sandwiches 10 Bill Pavlich Good Morning Americans 11 Sharon Marizza Safari Summer 12 Pam Heavens Memories 13 John Puddicombe Money Deals for Four-Stroke Wheels 13 Beverly Stuben Saga of the Suburban Housewife 14 Cosmic Bob Cross-Examination of Eve 14 Patty Leach Darkness Surrounds Me 15 Bonnie Sayko Summer Sunshine 15 Bonnie Sayko Jamaica Mary 15 Bonnie Sayko The Fisherman 15 Michael Markwell To Emily Dickinson 16 Michael Markwell On Being Born 16 Bonnie Sayko Wondering 16 Bonnie Sayko Joshua s Horn Blues 16 Chris Schroeder Magnum Force Nonsense 17 Nancy Lockhart Déjà Vu 18 Ross Stewart Stoned Straight Thought 19 Michaele Bradshaw Song of a Heroin Addict 20 Nancy Lockhart Camouflage 21 Nancy Lockhart Omission 21 Nancy Lockhart Pseudo 21 Nadine Gonda Coffeebreak 22 Nadine Gonda For Renee 22 Phyllis Doyle That Face 22 Louis E. Brick Holding You 22 Cheryl Bersano Freedom of Verse 23 Francine Tolf Unfulfilled Dreams 23 Robin Boltz Sonnet 23 Gary Magruder Epitaph to a Winter Love 23 Molly Burns Untitled 23 Nancy Lockhart A Little Thing 24 Doug Emory Radical Historical Blues 24 M. Boldman 5:30 am Central Standard Time 25 Karen Riel Old Strip Mines 25 Pat Mulder Final Exam 25 Nancy Lockhart To Whom It May Concern 26 Pat Mulder My Ideal 26 Elaine Blohm The Mistress 26 Steve Siedler A Message to K. 27 Mary Martin Shadows 27 Holly Trevisan Adam 27 Michael Vollmer Lucky Twenty-One 28 Judy Belfield Inamorato DaVinci 29 Judy Belfield I Put My Soul on the Canvas 29 Janice LaFevers Façade 29 Michael Vollmer Your Hello Smile 29 Mary Martin Enfin 30 Adriane Saylor Love in the Raw 30 Judi Benco ABC s of Imagination 30 Mary Ann Gilman Never the Same 30 Myrt Finn Rendezvous 30 Jeff E. Davis Run On 31 Nancy Lockhart God, God 31 Nelson Roderiguez Shell Shock 31 Robert Newsome The Captured Squares 32 Debbie Gibson A Valiant Vesper 32 Pat Mulder The Shadow Knows 32 Coleen Fabrycki No Orchard 32 Maureen Whitmer Of Sodom and Gomorrah 33 Julie O Connell Love fell over and broke itself 33 Janet Valek Screw Conformity 33 Val Bruech The Cocktail Hour 33 Beth Hawkins The Game 34 Adriane Saylor A Sea-life 34 Irma Kump Old Brownie 35 2 Sharon Odehnal Revolution 36 Sharon Odehnal Let Me! 36 Diane Francis Creative Typing 36 J.D. Guse reservations on punk 37 Charles Hinton Dead Plant s Lament 38 David Moore Arizona Blues 38 Melissa Wessell Life According to Newton 39 Mike Stillman The Big Book of Shoelace Repair 39 Ernest McCabe Easy as Swattin a Fly 39 Belfield, et al. Vicious Cycle 40 Judy Belfield Tell Me of the Gentle Wind 40 Judy Belfield Neutral Genius 41 Ann Ominous How Do You Like This Essay 41 Nancy Lockhart The Stone Eater 41 J.D. Guse My Thoughts 41 Norma D. Plume Shadows Dancing 42 Adriane Saylor In Memoriam, We 42 Bob Frederick January 16, David Moore On the Fringes of a Final Agony 42 Judy Belfield The Bastioned Barons 43 R. Walser Yale Dry Faces Fill 43 Teri Moore Shades Of 44 David Moore A Carnivorous Fantasy 44 Ernest McCabe The Fall and Decline of the Springtime 44 Judy Belfield The Cosmic Continuum 45 Chris Moore Past Love Present 45 Bev Garcia Downs and Ups 45 Val Breuch Time for Him to Leave 46 Maureen Mueller The Romantic Pen 46 Dan Zahorcik Dreamer 46 Randy Varju Unblinking Eyes 47 Leonard Lutke Bang Bang, You re Dead 48 Dave O Brien Another Line of Cars 48 Nancy Lockhart Who Shall Remain Nameless 48 Dave O Brien Watching 48 Sandra Reardon The Golden Years Affair 50 Dale Inman The Day They Came for Me 51 Kim Baxa Another Sunset 52 Kim Baxa Until the End of Night 52 Judy Belfield A Chat with Leonardo 52 Shelbia Chandler Tonight I Sit Here Lonely 52 W.A. Kahle Christmas on Ice (December Chill) 52 W.A. Kahle Originality Please 53 Judy Belfield Grudge d Art 53 Dawn Christman Pink Smiles 53 Kevin Duncan Sir Gum Ball 54 Lindsey Bianchi I ll Burn That Bridge When I Come to It 54 Nancy Lockhart Go Back to Your Little Room 54 B.E. Stewart Remorse 54 Pat Mulder At Nine 55 Judy Belfield eenvee 55 Pat Mulder Conjugated Tango 55 Jerry Keir Unapprehended Inspiration 55 Jim Sherbrooke The Wake 56 Shelbia Chandler I Know I Should Forget You 56 Judy Belfield Refrain 56 Elizabeth Russell Ancient Egypt 57 John Stobart & Dan Howard Sissy 58 Laura Boron Under the Brightness of the Moon 61 Steve Siedler Playful 62 Ronna Oldham Don t Trust Me 64 Joel Stepanek Robert 65 Barbara Pillasch Haikus 67 Joel Stepanek No Other Year Quite Like It 67 W. A. Kahle Summing Up 67 James Burkey No Time for Poetry 68 M. RamZ What the Mirror Hissed 68 James Burkey Blank Verse 68 Alice Scinkovec Them s the Breaks 68 Jacque Kuriger Neighborhood Scandal 68 Ruth Gray Cat Fur 69 Jacque Kuriger Daybreak 69 Jacque Kuriger Morning Elixir 69 Jacque Kuriger How Smart Are You? 69 Ellyn Bryce Sunday Feelings 69 M. RamZ The Sea Cradle 70 M. RamZ The River Drinks Rain 71 Jacque Kuriger Grizzy B 71 Ellyn Bryce Sea Scape 71 M. RamZ When in the Fall My Leaf of Love Turns Red 71 Daniel E. Howard Hair Color in Relation to Mythology 72 Jon Batuzich God Toddles 72 Judy Belfield Before Kindergarten 72 Joe Talluto Porchlight 73 Val Heaton Being Used 73
6 James L More An Early Morning at the Deer Stand 73 Elise Wylie Boucher Bridge 73 Liz Hand My Momma Loved the Sun 74 Jenny Nelson The Silence 75 Nels Nelson Forward 75 Erika Nelson The Harvest 76 Dave Cenan Black Metal 76 Alice Pecararo The Visit 77 Amy Jo Cannibal Man 77 Erika Nelson Sperm & Smoke 77 Nels Nelson Drunk 77 Liz Hand Take Some for Yourself 78 Bob Loewe A Nose is a Nose 80 Anna Danbury Toxic Cow 80 Elise Wylie Boucher Curio 80 Elise Wylie Boucher Nocturnal Song 80 Kim Vollmer Silent, Upon My Chest 80 Amy Jo The Deal 80 Elise Wylie Boucher The Truth Is 80 Rich Goberville Innocence 81 Nels Nelson Big Boy Now 81 Jacque Kilka If 81 J Ardith Cox Silence 81 J Ardith Cox Home-I-Cide 82 Bob Loewe Flattery 82 Paul Pritchett Experiment 538-4A 82 Nels Nelson From Documentary 82 Jay J. Kaylin Murgleflurgleflickitytickitytat 82 Shelly Cawker Childhood Memories 83 Shelly Cawker Carina 83 Barbara Pillasch Another Day 84 Carol Spinabella Tattermalion 85 Jeff DeGrave Every Snowflake 85 Jeff DeGrave Never Could I Ever 85 Jeff DeGrave Fear 86 Jeff DeGrave Boy, I m in a Pickle 86 Shellie R. Smith Tribute to Dr. Seuss 86 Shelly Partilla Sipping Sweet Tea 86 David Tierman The Creative Writing Witch 86 Maria Mellinger The Smell of Patchouli Oil 87 Jeff DeGrave Spanish Haiku Trilogy 87 Maria Mellinger Try to Remember 87 Jennifer Jay What Depends So Much 87 Steev Custer While Searching for Sagittarius 87 Glen Terry Two Minute Warning 88 Maria Mellinger Poet With New York Post and Pen 89 Maria Mellinger Fourteen 89 Linda Steger Lisa 90 Shelly Partilla You Thought I Thought 90 Lyubov Mir Only the Sky 90 Justin Gale Unending Detention 90 Steev Custer I Have My Vices 90 Jonathan Wolff Gangland Suggestion 91 Christian Bernal Wicked Smile 91 Jeff Hicks The Evil Inside of You 91 Tony McFadden Second Chance 91 Mark Darwyn Sin for Life 91 Tina Szegedi Survive 91 Amy Guertin I Remember So Much 92 Derrick Hassen Take My Hand 92 Jonathan Wolff Stiff Embankments 92 Heather Morrissey Mask 92 Donica Rampa He s Not the Keeping Kind 93 Laura Offrink Vanishing 93 Lynn Klemkeksel To Appreciate a Fire 93 Laura Maxwell Old Garden 93 Laura Maxwell Black Bird 93 Janine Passehl Think 94 Kathy Jones Lessons in Acting 94 Mary Frances Lund Black Gold 94 Rienna Sills Passing Thought 94 T.L. Chapin The Drunken 95 Irma Kump Clay Hearts 95 David Weese A Christmas Promise 95 Debbie Paulsen Humility 96 Paul Vollmer Trapped 96 Christian Bernal Gapping/Across the Night 96 Bob Czernik First they came 97 Nancy Lockhart Notations at a Chicago Cancer Clinic 97 Jim Sherbrooke The Wake 98 Nancy Lockhart Masculinity 98 Carla Taylor The Pilot 99 Dojna Corzine Distractions 99 Erin McCauley Mr. Hyde 99 Latoya Graham Attitude 99 Erin McCauley Waterfalls 99 Mary Brown The Love Affair 100 Joseph Burza Creating God 101 J. A. Carroll Henry the Happy Pornographer 101 Nancy Aydlett The Abortion 102 Gale Tolf Sonnet to Francine 103 Carla Taylor Drawing Life 103 Krissi Dunn Baptist Devils 103 Francine Tolf Tiger lily 104 Bob Misiurewicz The Season of Neglect 104 Francine Tolf At the Joliet Train Station 104 Sarah Forsythe Untitled 105 Brad Dornick Tales 105 Bob Misiurewicz Behind the Bastion 105 Mark Davenport Drummers and Lovers 105 Ralph W. Mlaska Ode to Nam 105 Brad Dornick You and I We re Free 106 Amy Nichols [I am holding california ] 106 Amy Nichols [When the jays fly back ] 106 J. Cavallero 4 dash Anonymous Mark and Craig! 107 Michael Sieder The Blank Page 107 Brad Dornick Rain Dogs 107 John Stobart A Call for Poets 108 Cheryl Elwell A weird trip 108 Erica Coffey [The round ] 108 Ann Sluis A Jester s Walk 108 Ann Sluis Let Me Go 108 Lola Gish The Everlasting 109 Lyubov E. Mir My Chosen Land 109 Lola Gish Chick Nasty 109 Lola Gish Tourniquet 109 Amy Riley The Song of the Sea 110 Erica Gallagher Angel and Devil 111 Ken Biggs Ambush 111 E.L. Gallagher I Love to Write for You 111 Erin M McGrath I drip with honesty 111 Rebecca Sailor Limits 112 Mary Fran Lund-Overcash Ravinia 112 Mary Fran Lund-Overcash Remorse 112 Amanda Colby Inamorata 113 Marissa Frattini Baggage 114 Becca Smith The Common Opera 114 Christie Smart Ed 115 Gina Knight Beatnik 115 Jeff O Malley The Lost Revolutionary: A Confession 116 Kevin E. Orf Certifiable 117 Sarah Vines Supplication 117 Bill Firesheets At the Corner of 5th and Dumas 118 Candis Welch Grind 118 Steve Shields Flesh 118 Jessica Peron Our Nightly Sins 118 Paul Stephenson A Long Journey to War 118 Ian Wright Parade 119 Serenity Tomala Porcelain Doll 119 Irving Manuel Gamboa Fountain of Thoughts 119 Kristen Rohder Brittle finger tree 120 David Doran symbols (all that s left of shattered faith) 120 Edgar Souza Esperando 120 Aaron Smith The Bird-Man s Concrete Master 121 Kristin Moya Carcinoma 121 Charyce McFadyen Somewhere There is a Poem 121 Jake Vidovich A Good Man 122 Felissia Cappeletti Quarantine 122 brian smallwood freedom train 122 Lucas Sifuentes Calix Meus Inebriams 123 sam bull my body, my mind 123 Alyssa Hughey Two Bachelors 123 Mitchell Kristie Lying Within Numbers 124 Lauren Kruis The Devil s Dance 124 Taylor Bowen Echo 124 Da Omen Sundance 124 Steven Garrison Subgroup C: Lawyers, poets, and priests 125 Shawn Faust Universal Jargon 125 Da Omen Wordeaters 125 Favio Lopez Dance With Me 125 Kara Ponce The P(OE)M Gang 126 Stephanie Hiller Fogged 126 Erick Shaffern My Piano Keys Are Broken 126 Miranda Gothard Warning Label 126 Emily Likins A Poem Written while Cleaning Rooms 127 Jonathan Bulthuis An ode to my Amygdala 127 Adam Johnson Yellowstone 127 J.M.U. A Careful Brush 128 Mike Bonifacio The Blowout 128 Aaron Wiley Hill-Top Ballet 128 3
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124 The Bird-Man's Concrete Master Aaron Smith Carcinoma Krystal Moya Roadmiddle twitch-fucks Sully even the soul-gray birds Grey maybe That will hop Hop Hop between your feet Won t even fly, being so occupied with bipedal breadcrumbs and all Certainly, or possibly They feel the strained tunnels inside the body And the no-blood skin rain-tingle With every shuttering eyelid and fluttering thought Pulled by a trillion spider webs with those bulbous, boatblack bird eyes they see windows shutting And day-semen shirts ugh With every shuttering eyelid and fluttering thought Pulled by a trillion spider webs While the cosmic web masters are mired in concrete Like the new ancient trilobites spiral sun blades slice sweet girls from Ipanema scantily clad, baked, crispy epidermises with peeling dragonfly wings decorating their shoulders and noses. cobalt mounds of flesh malignantly peak from their Thong, th-thong, Thong, Thongs while blissfully lying on microscopic glass. I ask an Amazonian if she wants my burger No. She s being healthy. and precedes to slather Crisco on her breasts. hop Somewhere There Is A Poem. Charyce McFadyen Somewhere in the depths of my soul there is a poem. A poem that transcends all frowning judgments and negativity, pieces together every shattered heart, and loves unconditionally. There, in that sacred place I call the essence of my being, there is a poem. A poem that makes me beautiful in the honest eyes of love and places my worth beneath the soles of my feet, binding it with my every step. This poem flows from my lashes and into my hands making emotions more precious than gold and faith my hero. This poem carries me into the tenderness of peace, where utopia is genuine, and I am one with natural creations. At times when I unconsciously think with my heart and love with my mind this poem will shield me from unwanted harm, protecting what I sometimes neglect. Somewhere, there is a poem so true, so divinely healing; it uses its lyrical prose to comfort and console. This poem will rise from the cavern of my creative core and embrace lonely children, restless mothers, and dying men. Somewhere inside who I really am there is a poem. It will glow like fire. It will pour like rain. When my inner child and acquired wisdom releases this poem, destiny will have found me, place its hand on my shoulder, and tell me to rest. 121
125 2008 Quarantine Felissia Cappeletti The boy is sick. They lock him away in a room with a sign on the door. Q u a r a n t ine. He watches the shadows of seasons slink on the warped wood floor. Ma stands in a wilted apron a foot from the side of the bed. Holds her kerchief up to her mouth. Closes her eyes. Bows her head. Kid sister s fingertips lean through the door frame. Like a ghost s, are soon gone again. Pa has a hard stone face. He says, Next crop will be difficult. Doc has rough, fast hands. Sterile eyes, which he drags over the boy as he sighs. A Good Man Jake Vidovich And the boy cringes under his own pale face. Watches his hands change their shape. The ceiling a sky. Steel nail clouds. Storms of wooden shafts. Watched til the eyes are gray and full of gnats. That s when the clouds started leaking into his small warm head like too much cream poured into too little coffee. I m grinding my teeth till the roots bleed and the gums run dry it will only be a couple of weeks before a good man loses himself so keep running don t stop keep running never stop I m clenching my fist smashing it against the wall till I see my bones it will only be a matter of time before a lost man cries for help so keep shaking don t stop keep shaking never stop When will all this noise stop a clear conscious is all I need so I can finally breath when will time catch up to me because I m feeling its effects and I m having a hard time with it I ve got the wheel and intoxicated senses till I can t control this car no more because its only a few hours before they pull the plug on a broken man so stop breathing just stop stop breathing just stop In pastel sheets of sick slick shifts of brick chiffon, suddenly with slow. deliberate. chaos fever hunts reason in a forest of nerv(ou)s trees crying to be tended tenderly and turning dark under exhausting synapses and blown cranial fuses. Black (overtaking the w)hole. Dark (what does it) matter in the - the collapsing universe behind two dulled satellites, revolving in lazy ellipses around convulsing nostalgia. Sweat like condensation on pallid, warm cheese stays clinging close to the flesh and being sucked to reek in the warm cotton sheet. The crow of the cock unsettles his small thoughts. --a rock thrown into a puddle of seagulls- Quietly, conscious survives the night. Waking up somewhere it does not belong. In the same cold-colors room which has eaten so many of his young days. Gotten drunk on the crazy red wine sky over post-meridian dreams. Having no voice, he can ask no one to stay. The boy is sick. They lock him away. freedom train brian michael james smallwood i thought that ticket of mine was golden until that plane hit the 2nd tower & there we sat in dismay & confusion thinking about our brothers unable to move or speak isolated & [shell]shocked by the images piercing our consciousness 122
126 2009 Calix Meus Inebriams Lucas Sifuentes Ask me about wonder. Ask me about the glow in the dark Slurpee machine. The drip drip gurgle up of mechanical syrup Pure sugary sugary slop Lovely ooze to slurp up The Transcendent convenient store With an atomic snack counter Bright pink cigarettes that blow Filthy orange smoke rings The burning Clementine flavored smog Roller hot dogs that wiggle around Fluorescent meat dancing under The clean bright bulbs Ask me about wonder. Ask me about the untold tales of the bottomless trash bin. The giant green dragon that belches Up free clothes and gently chewed bagels Harboring secret treasures in dim alleys A multiplex of hidden Styrofoam caves Lying beneath a thin veneer of greasy paper Crushed foggy glass Cheap worn out sneakers Moldy hunks of disintegrating plywood Exuberance manifested in the back of Chinese buffet Bubbling beneath the slowly falling rain Awaiting their second cycle of life Ask me about wonder while the gods are at leisure And man has made a playground of digital bureaucracies An intangible land of synthetic joys that echo the divine Ask me about wonder while we can still summon god from a machine And watch a plastic bag blow in the wind as if it were a dove. Two Bachelors Alyssa Hughey two bachelors sat on a late Sunday morning in their dimly lit living room light held back by blinds dusty, quiet, yellowed like each one s chair in which they sat comfortably quiet yellowed. One was the son of the other the older with much more lost a wife, a job, a life, while the son took care of his mother. The tv blared loudly on the other side of the room filling the empty space with noise as the kitchen sink filled with dishes. Zombies moved through the room breaking windows, smashing chairs, on their black-and-white television screen. Only their eyes moved following the bodies of the living dead. Much is to be said of zombies, thought the one. I need another beer, said the father of the son, as they sat comfortably quietly yellowed. my body, my mind sam bull My body is in one of those states My mind is wide awake, my mulses torn, my fibers ache my brain buzzes as it makes baking, broiling, foaming, frothing this poem pops out the grey-matter oven a cake of many layers, but only one color this poem 123
127 Lying Within Numbers Mitchell Kristie Echo Taylor Bowen THIRTEEN! She was screaming now. I should have told her twenty-one; that was the truth. Babe, but that was before I met you! Again another lie, nineteen and twenty had been two months into us dating. Well what was I then, Miss high and mighty? She told me one. The number was more like 5 and yet exactly like 0 You see she only counted those who she cared about, And no matter how hard she tried she couldn t fuck herself. The Devil s Dance Lauren Kruis She keeps tempting the rain from the clouds, Laughing and cursing at each drop, Renouncing dew. Carrying on with Rebel Red seeping through her veins Casting away uncertainties and broken promises like bones. Danced like a heathen and stepped on his glass house, Shards like skeletons digging their own holes into her skin. Singing a morbid lullaby as she kisses the sky farewell, Waves daggers at her captors, Before plunging herself into the abyss. Soul screaming up like whistling rockets. Left his ear drums bleeding. Sundance Da Omen Broken hearts in the dark Before daybreak Looking for one To romance There is none So I dance With the daughter Of the Sun Honey mooned me In the twilight Wearing a white dress Ultra violet rays Made dark loveliness A divine pilot On the.chicago. Skyline Moving to the groove Of my heartbeat Stepping to soothe Burning bare feet On tip toes I stare into fiery eyes Blinded by glare As the snow drips I kiss her lips She eclipse Singing song in season Hips swing From fall back to autumn Sundance surpasses stardom The stars swirl around My mind Clearing the dust that collects in the darkened corners, corruption or darkness Overtaken by what can be called Enlightenment, severity of the soul. A closed lock clicks and echoes through my Thoughts.. I close my eyes. my spine tingles. I feel my heart My breath is still My walls, they fall. I break the bottom of crumbling veins, I slash my hate on the brief despair that has set on the dissonance in my heart. I scream. My eyes fill with the blood of consciousness and rebirth. My awakening has begun. I open myself for the first time, my inspiration mysterious. There is something. A presence, A feeling Surrounding me like a million sun rays gliding and caressing, flooding me and glowing. I shiver. I smirk. I know what s to come. 124
128 Subgroup C: Lawyers, poets, and priests Steven Garrison Let s hack the language, crack pens open upon the pages, let the ink run free and graze in Pavlov s mazescuz we ain t astronauts, but if all we have is words and spaces, maybe we can trace upon the truth, run rings around the ages, and cut crosses into our spines, and dribble lines. Maybe try try try, to do what comes natural. For the feelings are mutual. And sometimes all you have is words and air, and a few chords to scream out despair/joy life is nothing without joy/nothing. Make it honest, make it comfortable with the dirt and the worms, cuz we re all going to know life, and life is lots of dirt, clean shirts, and a few gray days. An explosion is the time to feel, so let s light roman candles and flick light upon the despair, make it honest, make it a day s work in the devil s lair. And when you can t breathe come up from your humble homes, and write the last rites and write, but if you can t, it s ok, we ll find somewhere else to play. Maybe in between the lines of another day Universal Jargon Shawn Faust 2010 Wordeaters Da Omen Word eaters read and digest sweet breath, while reciting scrolls of iced honey glazed cinnamon rolls. We write recipes and eat our words. #2 pencils are chop stick utensils. You re served what you deserve. Eat your sentence in repentance. Fowl language tastes like free range chicken, Breeding poetry the lyrical lamb is sacrificial. Ham is penned pork pitch forked Excreted by pigged out gluttons who Can t button their genes but can consume Food for thought and eat out your heart From the urban organic Garden of Eaten From potting soil to pots and pans Man shall not live off bread alone You are what you devour our Beverage of choice is boiled Alphabet drink Voices speak In tongues stained with Bloody ink. Dance With Me Favio Lopez All I m asking for is a chance Sway with me, move with me, just dance We can feel the beat and get know each other Ask me questions, get deep, and make me wonder Enjoy my company as I enjoy yours Their parts weren t supposed to fit together. He was last year s model and she was this year s deluxe. They met secretly in the tinfoil forest and under a blanket of barbed wire, sparks flew as their steel lips pressed together. Soon the forest resonated with the clanging sound of their ironclad gears grinding against one another. With a little oil, his parts slid nicely into her custom fittings. As their hydraulics pumped in unison, his unleaded sweat collected with her premium into a pool beneath them. Rust flew in a storm from his outdated body and with a deafening scream from her air horn, they finally detached. Guide me through your mind, take me on a tour Get to know me in the time we have, it ll be worth it I ll be sincere, genuine, have my trust? Earn it Our dance will feel as an eternity, I ll make it last I m not asking for much, just a dance As they powered down in their hidden meadow of nails, they watched as black emission clouds drifted past their blue coal-fueled sun. He was about to speak when he noticed an antifreeze tear trickle down her platinum cheek and he knew that it was too late to tell her that his warranty had expired. 125
129 Warning Label Miranda Gothard The P(OE)M Gang Kara Ponce My love for poem cannot nicely fit into a box, or be shoved under a pillow for safe-keeping P and M tip toes, through locked key holes as dead ends pan for gold in streams of consciousness This medication absorbs duality and may permeate creative insanity, saturating literal objectivity while reducing obscurity; mediocrity may ensue but may be counteracted with caffeine, nicotine, and dopamine; delayed but anticipated gratification may induce serotonin should all stifled insanity permeate another s duality, through the absorption cellularly. *Do not die while under the influence of this medication* Antonym and synonym fight over who gets to ride shotgun and the word shotgun explodes across the page (leaving the words in a mess) Mess itself is buried beneath a mob of lines and irregularities that have never quite been sorted, sordid how dealing with imaginary characters could go so awry Queer, it seems, to love poem at all I ll down the bottle and bury the thing Under a semblance of order (Under a tall semblance of order)...and never lose sleep o er their rise from the grave -Who cares for zombies anyway? Fogged Stephanie Hiller Blasted berry vines drip frequently between your trips Where thoughts become a backordered brunch. I ve built a rocket brimmed with skin to teach your rights to fly electrocuted touch as thin; layers bruised a compromise. Bleached picket fenced teeth couldn t blind my fright Lemon dyes and candied strives speckle your guard your declaration. Fogged and free, your windshield beads- Despite the emerald gale. I ve paced your gallery of position, Hours upon layers, optimum confusions. Pieces chosen quite well as Evidences of our love kneel, when fine red carpet feels of black. On occasion, puddles interact our steps. A hand swings round the cheese, while wine tricks liberties. Don t lull the mirror, rest in wake of it. Your eyes are heavy in shadow, as mine are dimly lit A splendid funeral; Proceed, full force- as forty winks oblige My thoughts are simmered solemn filled Your slumber shall decide. My Piano Keys Are Broken Erick Shaffern My piano keys are broken Now I ll never be Otis Spann I ll never slide big greasy fingers Up and down big greasy keys Of white and black I ll never make sharp stabs That come from above my head And crash down below my feet Sending chips of ivory into the air My piano keys are broken Now I ll never be Bill Evans I ll never have an occasion To wear a tux, or slick my hair I ll never make my piano weep I ll always be beyond blue Never kind of blue My clothes won t smell like cheap cigarettes My thoughts won t vibrate like two notes arpeggioed My piano keys are broken Now I ll never be Herbie Hancock I ll never manipulate tones or minds I ll never spread my arms like Jesus or Moses Atop a set of sparkling porcelain I ll never sweat or faint or live or die I ll never escape through some auditory portal I won t take off, I won t even sit down I ll only cry, and play the blue notes All because My piano keys are broken 126
130 A Poem Written while Cleaning Rooms in the East Wing of the Lake Yellowstone Hotel on July 16th. (or) always write poetry at work it s the only time you ll get paid to write poetry Emily Likins I feel my own weepy words wobble amongst the influence of the external; searching for their place on my pen. I find the question is not how to presume but where to begin My rhythm ruptured with three sharp raps and an almost always unanswered announcement: hello, housekeeping The cheap tricks of alliteration illuminate my own creeping insecurities As I scrub toilets and clean up after messy strangers visiting my second star on the left; where there is no such need for pixie dust, or magic, or distractions from the surreal. Sitting atop a supervolcano, hoping everyday it blows so I need not return to reality; contemplating mortality and the temporary in the technicolor visions during my utterly Divine Moments of Truth inspired by the sunlashes, reflected in sandy sketches; incited by the unreality I believed to be That I believed to be 2011 An ode to my Amygdala Jonathan Bulthuis Horrible component, impetus of action; reptilian, under-evolved, craven, worthless, and insipid organ! Bastion of doubt, second guesser, coward! Wakefulness without your interruption is an explosive, transcendent, bursting state of cognition in which I revert to my essential, vertical-light-self, and burn out across the inhibited avenues of the world with electric confidence. But that rarely happens. Like now. You censor every word that forms, and I bark out stunted sentences and end up with a shitty poem. impossible and irresponsible and therefore inevitably wrong. but the roaming buffalo are somehow slowly releasing me from my self-inflicted birdcage of disaster, like a pillow stripped of its case, receiving redemption from an avocado bowl as an osprey soars overhead and I devour my (barely) Edible Daily Rations and I can finally Believe in the impossible and the improbable and I can finally feel inspiration saturating Me, like soy sauce filling my marrow. Somewhere in pockets full of bears and perfect towel folds, reading toilet paper like tea leaves, I became freer than a small child of four, speeding my descent; no longer a spawning salmon. After all, I m simply swimming down the Lucinda River, hoping for the malaise to lift before I lose myself in the Mardi Gras celebration that is My own delusion. Yellowstone Adam Johnson We bathed in hot earl grey by a geyser at Yellowstone National Park. We howled under midnight clouds and placid moonlight, while venom rain soaked the tops of our heads and poison burrowed into our bronchioles. Films of sap unraveled from the trees, fire ants came rushing on all sixes, worms floated up from their holes in the soil and crawled, contracting muscles to avoid the pools of venom rain crashing down on them. We stretched, our muscles- tight and elongated, and dunked our heads, becoming one with the warm sensation of ginseng. And I m sorry Mr. Prufrock, but once you measure out your life with these mountains, coffee spoons just won t cut it. 127
131 A Careful Brush J.M.U. Colors and words are thick, voluminous, and moist. They take on shapes and textures and are read by the ears, hands, and eyes one language. Even emptiness, or a lack of substance speaks. The men and women in their ironed shirts and pants know this, have known this all along. I can t... she starts to say. We stand together on the cement balcony of the apartment. I watch the surge of headlights below, seven stories down. She steps forward and touches my arm; I look at her and wait but she says nothing, and I am not a mind-reader. What is it? I demand. Say it. She retracts her hand as if bitten and her jaw clenches. I grab her by the wrist and twist it. Go on and say it! I tell her again. Say what you have to say! I wait. There is just our breath between us, little twin clouds that dissolve into the noisy city air. I pull her closer, so that our faces are nearly touching. She screws her eyes shut and sobs. It is a short, soft sob a sob she covers quickly with her free hand and when she opens her eyes again they are shiny and tired. She is tired. I can t, she says at last. Her voice is like a leaf in the wind. I can t say it, she says; and I let go. Get out, I say. I said, get the fuck out. She does. I wait on the balcony. She calls her mother to pick her up and packs clothes for her and Marie-Èlise. Marie-Èlise is already asleep and has to be carried outside in her comforter. They are gone, and I am alone. Marie-Èlise calls the next morning. I cannot find the phone and stumble to the machine, my eyes bleary and burning as she leaves her message: Papa, she cries. Papa! You won t believe what happened! A bird flew in the window and Grandma killed it with her shoe! It was what? What did you say? Oh... oh. Oui, Maman. Papa! I love you; I have to go now. See you soon! She hangs up. I kneel in the dark and see her there, hear her sweet-candy laughter. I would like to hold her again, but my hands are wet and dripping. She watches me, waiting. Shh, I whisper. Don t tell Maman. Then, brushing the bottles aside, I put my hands in the puddle and push my head under. The Blowout Mike Bonifacio Hill-Top Ballet Aaron Wiley A valiant sea Of blue branched jays Dance on the beams Of the ballad s rays. Violet pedals join in, Fluttering their feet- Lush pools of sin Bathe their tumulus seats. These mounds stand tall- A noble arching greet, Where dancers tumble and fall, Then sing with the wheat Where the dew carries note Of its subtle toned beat And the spiders devote Their little spindling feet To form groves, nodes, And Spain s borders To ascend the tune up-hill Once more To ready, readily, The buoyant repeat. All the while, A cloud drags his feet. Alluringly sweet: The lullaby of the ground, Has the flora and fauna Systematically found. Our wounded chevy cavalier hurtles down the asphalt ribbon blaring songs of freedom from two blown speakers, while in the white city ahead steak-fat failed financiers and crappy car company autocrats dictate the prose of their bailout birthday presents to the commando in chief. Then a tire blows because these tires blow and we find ourselves stranded in the wine-dark night wondering who it was that said imagination is a good servant and a bad master. 128