Micro Poem 27

Night fell

for the innocence

of dawn

right in front of

the moon’s eyes

How impossible is

hiding a new affair

in the sunshine

–Soodabeh Saeidina

Soodabeh was born in Iran and received multiple degrees from Tehran University of Medical Sciences. She has being worked as the University researcher, as a professor for 10 years in Japan, Iran and Canada, and has published about 150 scientific papers in prestigious journals as well as books in both English and Persian. Now, she is living in New York with her husband and 9-year-old son. She is interested in writing science fiction and poems in English, and has published a book of her poems in Persian named “Words for myself”, which you can find here, as well as her Facebook and Twitter.

Dream Drama

The mundane weariness

slips easily into dream state

where adventures become awake.

Last night I changed color — blue to red to green to yellow —

and passed my sleeping

delighting at the technicolor skin

that morphed with each moment.

Action pursues me only in sleep.

In waking I am solid, three dimensional

and happy to return

to a predictable world.

–Christine Emmert

Christine is an actress, writer, director and educator who writes across the genres. Her novel, The Nun’s Dragon, is presently out on Amazon. She has had work published throughout the English speaking world.  Presently she tours with her two plays written for the outreach Program of the National Park Service at Hopewell Furnace.  Her blog can be accessed at christineemmert.wordpress.com.

 

Child

To look on to look on

what name is this?

To look on to touch

what sound is this?

To look on, to cradle

what hurt is this?

 

to have it slip through my hands

and it has gone away like dust

like dust on the cutting wind

 

To look on, to fear

what place is this?

To look on, to believe

what God is this?

To look on, to know

what heaven is there?

 

how can I say

when she has bled

and a life has gone away

with her blood?

–David Susswein

David is a writer that lives at the bottom of England, next to the sea. There in the quietude he plans world literary domination or at least to write passionately and truly. That is all he can do. He’s contactable on Facebook or Twitter.

Camp

By Kylie Goetz

The thing that really bothered her was the alarms.

They went off every few hours; to call the next group into class or the mess or the march. She didn’t actually mind the marches. It was the only time each day they got to wear what she considered real clothes. Even though they were baggy and faded. It was still a welcome respite from the beige jumpsuit of the other 22 or so hours. And it was a chance to be outside, to see the sky. To see other people. The people who lined the streets to cheer or boo as she and her fellow classmates went by in their “spontaneous outpouring of affection and support for the Leader.”

During the meticulously planned spontaneous outpouring only last Tuesday, she thought she’d seen him in the crowd and her heart leapt. What was his name again? She couldn’t remember. But she remembered his face. Her fingers traced it on her threadbare pillow every night before she drifted into the uneasy sleep of one who knows the alarm is about to ring.

When she saw that face, his face, his real face amongst all those strangers, she wanted to shout, to scream and throw up her arms, “Here I am! Here! Come get me,” but she did not. She had seen what happened to those out of formation. They were pulled out of line and loaded into an ambulance. And when they got back to camp they were stripped in front of their whole class before being sent to the Principal. Nobody knew what happened after that, but those people never came back.

So she did not shout to the familiar face. Once she would not have needed to shout, he would have easily seen her. He could always find her, even in the largest crowd. One sunny summer day, during the protests, he’d somehow found her in a crowd of thousands, her blazing red hair had been waving like a flag. She wished she could remember his name…

Now her red hair waved no more. She was blonde. All the women were. The camp required it. It did not suit her freckled pale face. She looked washed out. A watercolor of her former self. He had not seen her, a blonde in the sea of blondes, marching for the glory of Our Leader. Or perhaps he had, and looked away, horrified by what she had become. A Betty. She was Betty 7 now.

Betty 7 stopped tracing the pillow and buried her face in it to dry the tears leaking sideways and awkwardly waterfalling off the slope of her nose. Then she looked up and across to the next cot. Betty 23 was sleeping there. Or pretending to. Had she really been sleeping she would have been muttering. Betty 23 muttered in her sleep. One night she had whispered to Betty 7 that it was her sleep-talking that had landed her here. They weren’t allowed to talk about their lives before the camp, but Betty 7 had guessed that Betty 23 must have been turned in by someone she trusted for something she uttered. Her look was perpetually of one who’d been betrayed. Betty 7 wasn’t sure how she, herself, looked when she first arrived. Hunted, maybe? Defiant, she hoped.

She couldn’t remember.

Bettys 23 and 7 weren’t on the same shower block or Betty 7 would have asked her. Showers were the only time you could risk a question. The block wardens were always busy and the sound of the water ration hitting the tiles filled the air and likely confused the microphones. At least, so they all thought.

Betty 7 knew she’d had a different name. But that was before. When she’d had him. What was it he used to whisper? Phoenix?

Was that her name or just a nickname? His phoenix, he’d said. Always burning with the fire of the right and righteous, she burned so bright her hair was flames, he’d say…They’d lie in bed after an action and they’d talk about how it was, how they could be better. They talked about the forbidden books. One of their friends, the one with the limp…oh, what was her name? She’d told them about an abandoned building she’d wandered into during the Freeze. Glenwood Library it was called. There were so many unapproved books, she’d said.  Betty 7/Phoenix had only ever read four unapproved books. She was so jealous. He got her a book. That’s how they’d met. Back in the before. That’s right. They fell in love over a book.

If she had listened to him, she would not be here. He’d told her to keep quiet and be subversive. Covert not overt, covert not overt. He’d repeat it over and over again. But she couldn’t or wouldn’t. And when he told her to run, to leave him, she couldn’t…She wouldn’t.

Lacking the wisdom to learn from him, she now was being re-educated by those of stricter instruction.

The alarms went off, but it wasn’t the Bettys’ alarm. She thought it might be the Veronicas’ alarm. When the Veronica’s alarm went off, that usually meant that she had enough time for a nap. It was a long wah-wah-wah followed by three beeps. The Bettys’ alarm was more staccato. A beep-beep-beep-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-beeeeeeeeeep.

She closed her eyes,, her fingertips dancing a mimetic ballet on a pillowcase stage, as Phoenix tried to remember and Betty 7 wished she’d forget.

 

When Kylie was five, she wanted to be either a nun or a lounge singer. Luckily (for the church and lounge patrons everywhere) she discovered a love for storytelling around the same age.  This eventually translated into a B.A in theatre from Florida State University and a MA in creative writing from Macquarie University.  You can buy her book here and follow her Word of the Day Poetry Project

Wait

I know I bring you satisfaction.

Mad but you’re masking. Packed? I’m unpacking.

You want to leave. Best believe it won’t happen.

Hold on Ma. Let’s breathe and work backwards.

What is the battle worth?

Your tears coming after words.

You changed all the passwords.

If men are from Mars, and women are from Venus,

And there’s love between us, then let’s go to Saturn.

What do I have to offer for us to prosper?

I got a ring. Let me do this thing proper.

I called your father and I asked about his daughter.

We’ve come so far. Let’s go a little farther.

Two years is a win. We can do a lot more.

Designated dances deserve an encore.

Suited like we’re headed to the Oscars. Can it be?

I know I’m a handful. Lady you can handle me.

Where do we go from here?

Should we just call it quits?

Or maybe start over again?

Don’t tell me it’s too late.

Slow down. Pump your brakes.

Take a deep breath and wait.

–Ryan Lucas

Ryan is poet and music producer who lives in Los Angeles, CA.  He creates to shed light on the pleasure and pain of that comes with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These thoughts and musings encourages the audience to seek only the best that life has to offer and recognize the power within them to be the change the world is looking for.  You can follow Ryan as @RyanLucasDC on all social media platforms or at www.RyanLucasDC.com.

Micro Poem 26

I know you enjoy

watching me

to swing

like a wandered

pendulum

between two eternities

But my dear

I already cut

the hope rope

–Soodabeh Saeidina

Soodabeh was born in Iran and received multiple degrees from Tehran University of Medical Sciences. She has being worked as the University researcher, as a professor for 10 years in Japan, Iran and Canada, and has published about 150 scientific papers in prestigious journals as well as books in both English and Persian. Now, she is living in New York with her husband and 9-year-old son. She is interested in writing science fiction and poems in English, and has published a book of her poems in Persian named “Words for myself”, which you can find here, as well as her Facebook and Twitter.

Alive For…

Small talk

With strangers

On sidewalks and subways

At

Dawn-defying diner counters

I

Catch the choir of

Dejected degenerates who

Drink their dreams and

Suck their spirits

‘Till both bottle and

Body are empty

Nothing there (to You)

Numb shadows on

Naugahyde stools (to You)

BUT

To me

These transients are treasures

Ever alive between the lines

Of my marble

I chisel their busts with

Ballpoint blade

Beer-bellied Davids to

Be later made

A Kerouac’d cliche I

Lie in wait where

Warm beer and cold women waltz

The last dance

At last call

In the last light of

Last night…

Most alive

When I’m beside

Nobody

Who’s suddenly Somebody

New

Aware of the danger

That stumbling stranger

Could someday in someway be

You

–Liam Quills

Liam is a freelance writer living in Brooklyn. His nonfiction work has appeared in a variety of glass-art publications. He can be found, most nights, writing poetry on bar napkins. If you’d like to work with Liam, contact him via email;  mail42442@gmail.com