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Coffee with a Ghost

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photo by Sara Mosier

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Sara Mosier is a student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln pursuing my degree in English and Creative Writing. Her poems “Cabin” and “Cabin Re-visited” have been published in Illuminations from Southeast Community College and Laurus Magazine at University of Nebraska.

Storm

by Hollie Hardy

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The nightscape is a skillet of coffee shops
Bone-split patterns of jagged light
A swarm of incorrect sky

Nor can the go that green gives be ignored
These flesh vessels, their slippery delights
Your willful promiscuity

We are wet hair, soul-drenched
Infused with liquor
We are the sound of rain on roof

Here is a uterus I just know you’re going to love
Unyielding, purpling, the unraveling of the throat

In a storm that doubles as longing
How we flutter and thrust and ache

Gnaw at the angel’s bloody hammer
Strain against the rope
In this garden of little let-downs

Until at last we curl in sleep
Like private animals, guardians of tenderness

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Hollie Hardy can teach you to survive anything. Her first collection of poetry, How to Take a Bullet, And Other Survival Poems, is currently looking for a home. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University, and teaches writing classes at both SF State and Berkeley City College. She is a core producer for the Beast Crawl literary festival in Oakland, co-host of Saturday Night Special, An East Bay Open Mic, co-curator of Litquake’s Flight of Poets, and a former Editor-in-Chief of Fourteen Hills: The SFSU Review. Her work has appeared in Eleven Eleven, sPARKLE & bLINK, The Common, Parthenon West Review, Transfer, Milvia Street, and other journals. She lives in Oakland, California.

photo by slideshow bruce

EPIPHANY, EXTENUATED

by Craig Kurtz

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Since then
I’ve seen a succession
of evident
& pending.

Instead
unedited inferences
are increasingly
fragmentary.

Time is contiguous
to ubiety,
merely posited.

I can’t pinpoint
when
I’m still in it.

Since then
I’ve been guessing
w/ less hubris
than questing.

Consider
transitions divisible
by interpretations
remediated.

The ratio of suppose
narrows
circumstantially.

I used to think
“it”
would be at first sight.

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Craig Kurtz lives at Twin Oaks Intentional Community where he writes poetry while simultaneously handcrafting hammocks. Recent work appears in Out of Our, Randomly Accessed Poetics, Penny Ante Feud, The Bitchin’ Kitsch and others. His first record, The Philosophic Collage, 1981, was reissued by BDR in 2012. He has been a staff writer for Perfect Sound Forever since 2003.

photo by Alan Cleaver

Over Cocktails

 by Chris Crittenden

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what we say

gets greasy and slips,

 

awkward cogs

in the group machinery.

 

tongues wag

a dog that fawns,

 

that crafts false questions.

 

we talk about talk,

talk to sniff out

 

the lies buried

in each other’s bones.

 

one nod fuels minutes

of blab and profess.

 

pretty laughter when

someone drops a quip.

 

surely the talkers

must fail to know

 

the holes in their mid-

lives have been gushing

 

for a very long

time.

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Chris Crittenden writes from a small town on the coast of Maine, fifty miles from any traffic lights. He blogs as Owl Who Laughs and is pretty well published.

photo by auspices

Un-friend Me

by Cassandra Dallett

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You ever know someone

so stupid

they try to keep all their ex’s as friends

well I’m that someone

collecting and feeling sorry for them

when they crumble into pieces on my exit

but refuse to blow away

I have two clingy ex’s right now

it’s unbelievable the hope

they hold after being thrown out

both of them a year apart

with big black trash bags full of their shit

I mean I washed that grey right out of my hair

but they still want to be friends

allude to things I said before

a life time passed for me

before when I gave a fuck

they sit in homeless shelters

and sleazy hotels

replaying our time together

carefully edited by them

to let them believe certain things

about themselves about me

overlook the sex not even being any good

the escalation of the fights near the end

the words that signal a place of no return

still the texts roll in on special occasions

the misplaced memories

the land grab of love.

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Cassandra Dallett occupies Oakland CA . She writes poetry and memoir of a counter culture childhood in Vermont and her ongoing adolescence in the San Francisco Bay Area. Cassandra has published in Slip Stream, Enizagam, The Criminal Class Review, and Sparkle + Blink among many others. Three  chapbooks are available at Amazon.com: “Every Other Week”, “Mud Pond”, and “The Problem With Text Messaging.” 

photo by woodleywonderworks


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