Desire

Babo Kamel

Desire

She’s showing leg, hoisting her skirt until the black garter tongues at the hem— a flicker of silk, humming, humming in the bones. She’s calling

the way the dead call to each other when they discover how transparent they’ve become. You can see right through her

to the open-throated moon in […]

Gretel Asks

Jane Yolen

Gretel Asks

Is it the child we remember, the one in the rundown house, where dark and cold are bitter companions, feeding her brother with an empty spoon?

Is it the girl in the black forest we remember, singing a hoarse lullaby to her shivering brother, calling down angels for warmth?

Or […]

Absence

F.J. Bergmann

Absence

We searched the whole world, but found no remaining life. They must have gone extinct just before our arrival: linens still dangled on clotheslines; coffeepots and reactors were still hot. Besides household furnishings and appliances and small collapsing mounds of ashes, the only trace left was an array of symbols on […]

Here

Bruce Boston

Here

We find our hero in the midst of azure dreams of lust

and glory that will take him ten years to eradicate from his

psyche until it portrays a world so blank and turgid

it could birth any universe, monstrous or miraculous.

After that, every summer doldrums was anticlimactic

as a […]

Here, the Children of Dark Night Have Their Dwellings

Peter BG Shoemaker

Here, the Children of Dark Night Have Their Dwellings

Here, no rosy-fingered Dawn, no wine dark seas, no Troys or Trojans, Athens or Athenians, Spartas or Spartans. Only dark Night, and cloying memory, fastly held.

We were brave once— a storied land of heroes— men of sinew and sword, sharp and […]

I, Frankenstein

 

Thadra Sheridan

I, Frankenstein

I assembled this body from pieces I scavenged from the graveyard across town. I transported arms and legs, fingers, torso and head in a duffel bag by city bus. Once home, I locked myself in dark quarters, arranged the collected parts into a shape of my liking, then fastened […]

The Wizard’s Race

Elaine Stirling

The Wizard’s Race

I

As virtuous men pass mildly away, And whisper to their souls to go, Whilst some of their sad friends do say, “The breath goes now,” and some say, “No,” —John Donne, “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning”

Wizards do it backwards, the bumper sticker reads on the Corvette convertible, weaving […]

Conspiracy Theory

 

Tim Staley

Conspiracy Theory

My wife says I can’t talk about it here in this unchained Mexican restaurant full of strangers, a full 63 miles north of Juarez, 93 miles from the Trinity Site, it’s un-American, she says. My tostada is a travesty: más tortilla, poquito meat erratic bean placement over salted, under spiced. […]

Convent

Chloe N. Clark

Convent

After the devil came, dripping into rooms like rain through sagging ceilings and after we spread out his skin,

rubbed it raw with salt, just like Mother taught us,

we found we could not sleep alone. Every sound the sound of his feet tapping against the floor

oh how hooves […]

*

Simon Perchik

Hiding on this tiny rock its light is falling arm over arm brought down as hammer blows

and mountains clinging to the sun the way mourners will gather and aim for your forehead

–it’s not right for you dead to lower your eyes once they’re empty –they have […]