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Archive for May, 2013

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By Bekah Steimel

You were one of those
measure twice
cut once
kind of people
I never measure at all
I just guess
and start chopping away
on occasion
I hit my mark
which is why
you are no longer
taking up space
in my life

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Cold Planet

By Jami Kali

95 lbs is
three raccoons in winter
one/sixth a large adult male black bear or
seventy-six thousand feathers.

It’s one-fifth a bale of cotton,
close to three and a half gold reserve bars
(independent from political interference) and

the average carrying weight
of an infantryman stationed in Afghanistan
give or take some.

95 lbs is
all of Gandhi during fast
but less than half Michelle Obama
(during her nutrition programs for childhood obesity).

It’s just a number
equal to the number
of weight watchers points
in two quarter pounders with cheese, three big macs,
a nine-piece chicken nugget, super sized fry,
and a chocolate shake.
(Warning: Your daily allowance should fall
between nineteen and twenty-five).

95 lbs
big and small
is the sum
of me
on a cold planet
on a bitter day
in January.

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Ryan Quinn Flanagan

It was not for the cabin boy to look out
life preservers –
and a woman screamed
and then a twisted ukulele
and the wings of flightless birds
sat dishwasher still at their own deadpan
uselessness
orange monks with serene kabob heads
chimed bells, tiny bells
rung through distant mountain peaks
and there was wax
there was wax, I swear,
sticking my finger in my ear
I released all pressure.

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By David Tomaloff

how I sent you flowers on your birthday,
& you tried to eat my name.

I don’t understand
birthdays,

is the thing I am trying to tell you.

help me, Shawn–

tell me why you disbanded Whitesnake like that;
tell me why you broke up with CCR just like that.

I want to know what love is.
I want to unravel in a storm in a parking lot;
any parking lot–
that is to say that any one of them will do.

if Michigan is a place, then I am glad you are in it.
I am glad to hear you love Michigan, Shawn–

I don’t know exactly where that is.

if Michigan is in America, Shawn,
or if Michigan is American,
then I think we need to talk about it more,
need to be better Michigan Americans.

but I want to know why you hate America, Shawn,
which is to say, specifically, Ke$ha–

because Ke$ha is somewhere in America, Shawn.
because Ke$ha is alive & American somewhere.

in Ke$ha, we are taught, we are somewhere
over the map of it–
let’s draw a spot on the map of it,

Shawn, let’s begin to learn to live,
or let’s begin to live like Michigan,

or let’s begin to unravel
in a metaphor
for a storm in a parking lot in Michigan,
in America.

let’s remember like DJs to turn it up.
let’s remember the are in we are who we are.

let’s remember to roll our ars.
let’s see that poetica.

I want you to froth-chug the anthem;
Shawn, I want you to love the whatever.

may all of our future mornings
be outsourced to Diddy–

Shawn,

let’s make the most
of the night
like we’re going to die young.

I love you both.

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By Mark Young

To add spice to the
mix, layers of
orchestration—in
that present-day sense
of the word. Real
answers from real
people to unreal
questions. Why is
the lone masterpiece
of Soviet construction
fiction hung on a nail
on the wall? Who
offers evil in polymer
& stainless steel
housings? How
can I learn to stop
singing with my nose?

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By Michael Ashley

It turns
the trees against the sky,
a giant hamster wheel in our home,
dainty fingers come away
from the mechanism,
It turns
a meal in the light
of a microwave oven,
a dead pig on a spit,
oars in the row lock,
It turns
the milk in my fridge,
the bread in my metal tin,
that knot in the pit
of my empty stomach,
It turns
over time
good, bad, ugly, beautiful,
eventually
It all turns

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By Neil Ellman

I killed a whale on the way to work today
I swallowed the moon
I shot an arrow into the air, it fell to earth, I think
I struck out in the bottom of the ninth

I saw an angel at the zoo

I was face-to-face with God on a slice of toast
I fell asleep in the middle of a dream
I played the clown who swept his shadow with a broom
I suckled at the breast of a wildebeest
I laid a platinum scrambled egg

I made love to her behind the monkey house

I kissed the buckle on Orion’s belt
I solved the riddle of the dwarf and bird
I climbed to the top of a mammoth’s head and into its ear
I spoke to eternity and it spoke back

I watched her leave with sawdust in her mouth

I spoke at length with a dragon in its lair
I found the tooth of a coelocanth in a can of beans
I took a bubble bath in a mermaid’s tub
I dove without air to the bottom of the Mariana Trench

I never knew her name.

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