Monday, November 25, 2013

NEW! Three poems by Naomi Tarle

Naomi Tarle


not light of foot 
or of tongue 


when you visit the river— 
treadle up the stitch 


mr. fly, you are all push    

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

NEW! Poem by Travis Cebula

Travis Cebula


no thank
you you're
to your

Monday, July 22, 2013

NEW! Two poems by Jason Labbe

Jason Labbe

Two poems


I have a blue sliver of hot aluminum.
I have a hot blue sliver in my middle finger.
Just below my knuckle I have a flash
of blue glinting as though the weather 
were fairer than the fluorescent light
of my basement, warmer than the terrible 
voice mail I have informing me 
of the latest sighting. You’re back in town 
and your drunken face is all sunken in.
I have a sister who warns me of you.
I love my sister who hates the smell
of your lies and thieving as much as I do.
I have taken a year to take inventory.
What I have left I have bolted to the floor, 
except this sliver of blue aluminum infecting 
my middle finger. I have a workshop 
in my basement and a father who taught me 
how to design, fabricate, and assemble 
a precision machine. I cut and mill 
and turn and drill. Soon I will complete 
the Blue Machine to protect us from you.
My middle finger finesses my micrometer,
it adjusts the tooling when the dimensions 
from the blue print slip out of tolerance.
My middle finger is primary as the sliver
and grows bluer because I strangle it 
with a silvery blue ribbon, all nice and curled
at its ends. Here, have it and keep it
forever. The rest, everything else you see, 
is for me. But my blue, it gleams for you.


My sleepless ice dwindles 
into the warming arctic, my every 
bit of plastic particulate swirls 
in the North Pacific, my gulf’s green 
suffocates on the dark-slicked banks—
A power line whips the sidewalk
but the images stay up on my screen
shaking so much it’s going to shatter.
The devices stop communicating.
A muscle car calendar scatters from a patio
and the pages catch in the maple 
with the wail of the sirens. 
The thinnest diseased limb snags me, 
I won’t decompose.
The flash flood through the side yard
is white noise at my knees,
I will go on to poison even stardust.
I am one hundred ninety pounds 
of preservatives, antibiotics, and caffeine
rain-soaked and panicking for shelter.
I was too late to board the doors, I forget 
the warning and press my chest 
against both sides of the picture window.
My last locatable belief was in the shift 
from weird grey to the lightness 
of a pickup truck, now all I know is
I would bury this berserk wind 
and collect the neon Chemlawn clippings 
blowing through the blown out
cellar window, my next spring
gone well before the first snow—
My affinity for unseasonable weather
cools. I collect and count the wet blades
and strip away the pesticides 
with my teeth. O my polar ice cap
creeping toward a lower river, O
my crowning ozone a hundred tons 
of satellite wreckage crashes through,
O my beloved house whose roof 
ripped clean off takes out the pages 
but not the siren in the maple.
My roof takes off the top of the maple.

Monday, July 15, 2013

NEW! Poem by Jillian Mukavetz

Jillian Mukavetz

say it again, on your knees

to fall in love in dreams is rare
the architecture
a handkerchief coughs into a man
tears in your eyes
say it again, on your knees
to fall in love in dreams is rare
moving without moving

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

NEW! Two poems by David Blair

David Blair


In peacefulness, true. They were getting along,
just like the two Koreas. Denying each other
foodstuffs once in a while, every once in a while
moving some stuff around, shooting some stuff.


A season of beautiful raincoats
and squirrel phones,

their haircuts, skirts, and suits
always better looking,

to relationship negotiations
and other quail feathers,

dinner plates,
work stuff, couples

carry on their heavy work
the way the coyotes hold anvils,

the subway on one level,
slim streetcars up here,

walls, ceilings, tunnels
sprayed with fire repellant,

against fire, but not mud,
catacombs, a Venetian future.

Isn't it romantic,
and won't it be?

Yes, and yes.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

new issue of Verse

The new issue of Verse (Vol 29 #s 2 & 3) is out, with portfolios of poetry and fiction by

Joanna Howard
Jasmine Dreame Wagner
Sarah Goldstein
Shannon Tharp
Lance Phillips
Adam Strauss
Matt Reeck

The 225-page issue is available for $8 (price includes postage). Send a check to Verse, English Department, University of Richmond, Richmond, VA 23173.

Monday, March 11, 2013

NEW! 3 poems by Gina Barnard

Gina Barnard

Three poems


Nudge my nose just under
your ear, sometimes we slather
too much praise, like mayonnaise.
After tea, the bed is still warm
with you, mayonnaise.


You eat a sweet potato so fast your chest fills with cement and you hiccup to catch your breath.


dug its head into the back of my thigh
sliding down
stairs in the bedroom, the old house.


A pinch--
a yearning.

Monday, March 04, 2013

NEW! Poem by Jess Novak

Jess Novak


I’ve been talking to this girl online—Jack calls her 
Internet Crush Katie, but she’ll be Real Human Being Katie 
soon enough, & that’ll fuck 
everything right up. 

In the smartphone pictures she sends me, 
her breasts burn white, overexposed and chewable;
like a model in a Bacardi ad, she throws 
her head back, perpetually laughing, 

surrounded by girls, more girls, so many girls, 
girls who are all
just my imaginary type, girls who flaunt
cool band t-shirts & expensive haircuts, 

girls who might text me cute things: 
let’s watch ice cubes melt
or let’s poke bugs with sticks together.
Girls who wouldn’t ask why the porn I watch

is so weird or call my mom when they haven’t heard 
from me. I bet they wouldn’t still be friends with all my old friends
so I don’t get to see them. They would never remember 
to tuck in the sheets.