Melissa Severin (Chicago, USA): Poem Explaining...


There’s a pattern to this: targets
overflow with arrows, a flood in need
of fields, a mouth wide, black and full of steam,

a coffee cup without coffee, an oil slick
confined to puddles under streetlights, the future
ice cubes still water in the tap.

Here’s a hint: take the eclipse
and anniversaries—divide by three—
steal salt from blood,

somewhere there are tonsils to scavenge
and mason jars buried in front yards,
full of doldrums, beat back

bells that chime better names for old lovers,
use the card catalog and consult a surgeon
who’s taken a shot, one who’s been stabbed. At least once

practice being suffocated by stars,
wear a snake as a charm
bracelet and break thin ice; swim underneath.

The solution’s mortared in crowned molars,
in the full tone of drop-D, songs without words
to sing, a look when no one’s looking,

Ouija boards and wish bones. For clarity,
look at a wrist, the pulse twitch
of veins, vibrations, rivers

dammed by skin. Could it be more obvious?
It’s in the hand, the palm of the hand,
hands were made for this:
hold on.

© Melissa Severin 2007

Lina Ramona Vitkauskas (Chicago, USA): Two Poems

After Scalapino's That They Were At The Beach

Chewing a mum, the morning pollution
adding myself to the photograph,
trancing through the algorithm
of Klimt's ingrown hair;

the velocity of monuments,
of caterpillar sunshine,
each brave larynx, each sole
near the breath; don't hurt yourself;

a phoenix in sickness, a carbiou
placed inside the leaking alibi,
my furious curls clenching
the postulates of traffic, of night.
you are this if I am this,
a validated wasp, a pattern of
canteloupe fire. each layer of
modern compression that death drinks,
leveling the pendulum like medication.

with Roman candle and green bean laurel
girls weep at the moment of preservation
chattering, do you ever feel
as if you just fell down a well?
I added myself to this photograph,
a plastic soul, a patient,
and to all of the violet water
at the window
rising for no one.


the shock of your vanilla carbon;
eggs in a cough as a Bosc

corrupt monitors with Naval
Hospital damage poisoned you

a puzzle, an asteroid, laughing
about Dennis Quaid in cars

I decomposed. My mother stuck
her fingernails into my occciptal lobe
in the dark to soothe me.

ammonia stone of clean woman.

© Lina Ramona Vitkauskas 2007

Larry Sawyer (Chicago, USA): Four Poems


We notice ordinary things like flower pots
filled with sighs and closets dripping
monsters. Is it time yet to depart
from the cloistered probability
that our study of cognac has yielded no
transparencies other than what we
imagined? Here in the future our
wings are mere footnotes
ancanthus medallion, ribbon of sky,
facts smile from posterior gardens.
There is a spy called wonder who watches our
habits. There is a virtue to the geometry of
sleep for a friend is a ruddered thing requiring
citations and phosphorescent rooms.


Inbetween our faith incontinent
wheezes like a newly invented
instrument upon which we play
the hills from here to there.
Pretty tombstones like teeth
and not like teeth chew the
moon looking down upon this mess,
humans racing to and fro without alibis.
Capsized in the desert they will find us
crouching in the gutters of time
explorers of the inner side of nowhere.


As if there was a man who wore the
mask of a man and that man
noticed behind the mask that there
were shadows covering the earth
like semesters. The man realized he
had a lot to learn. So he studied the
tongues of the shadows as they
spoke a language he'd never heard.
At night they sang the most
intricately embroidered songs.

Perhaps there was a refrigerator in the
sky that he rode to forget himself,
this man who exhaled librarians.
Day and night he read the
silence, cutting his throat with
syllogisms. Butterflies burst forth from his
calamari as he ate it. He noted these
details lazily and continued with his
reverent stroking of the sun.


Dare we not say you are gauche
gazing out from between the bars of the television screen
betwixt lip jobs Pamela Anderson pouts
the beach beneath her feet
all the world her magazine, she coos
trying to suddenly remember her line
as the sun licks the horizon a final time and descends
“Way to Pamela, Pamela Anderson!” someone
on the beach shouts. Pamela Anderson cannot
figure out if it’s condescension she’s
hearing or sarcasm. She raises an arm
and waves back yelling jubilantly,
“Thank you, anonymous beach person!”

© Larry Sawyer 2007

Andrew Lundwall (Rockford, Illinois, USA): Three Prose Poems from Pinocchio


i found the empty life lasting beyond waiting being filled (going over) - you hear my voice in your queue of heading - you operated yourselves with the fear hidden on the floor of space like being slept - a robber down my stolen book where page divides early childhood with a sulky song - crimes beyond colours go disgust-exciting to educate me who is sadly not long - fire-place-stained life span you is older the evening maintained - here-smiling the miracle notion around fires of gutter dancing and alive you hear my voice - do you hear my voice with glacial friendliness because it does not believe everyone nowadays - i have felt the sea's sad fact that there is room for improvement - pinocchio's cliff of the silver screen coming to contact you screaming to you - there are works for you surplus on the black pavement of space - notion fires on in the angle of a closed book - i have felt friendship pools invested in plowing appreciation - transience laughing to dance my voice in the tail of the sun it sees the red and black color of possible screw longitudinally


gepetto sunset master lied about his childhood - cave eyes stood imploringly - secret hands plot false voluptuousness make something right risking violation - masks bonily fray the shadow of voice - scratching minutes - say pattern the night when goodbyes wither - o her mouth silently names broken eyes misaligned - tongue ends gathered green stains of forget utensils do the signs


the sunflowers all bloomed silverly - discover angel eyes lamenting trees inside voice - deep broke song trees - trembling hands' clairvoyant blues - breathless sharp red fare of information - dreamless little eclipse of bleak oak face confined to carpentry named thanks for fuel approached extreme of recreated childhood - his moonlike bleeding tongue works that last time following the say seed through speechless grief - sighs no refuge for wooden sickness

© Andrew Lundwall 2007