3 Poems by

On Going Back


Will I take a trip back

to my place of birth,

a country called Kenya.

Famed for its coffee fields

and year-long hot weather.


Will I leave the frosty winter

to journey near the equator

and let the sun seep into my skin,

the aroma of fresh beans

borrowing deep into my nostrils?


I always return to this place

In my thoughts when alone.

My home is harsh and icy now.

Leaves dry up and tumble down.

The skin on my hands turns flaky,

but I have spring to revive me.

© Khadija I Gure


Tug of War


A game that brought me enormous amusement

As a child, my friends and I played even in the mud

We pulled until we found victory or got dragged

Mud slipped between our bare toes


In my new school in the Midwest

Students wore shoes to play in gym class

Our shoes squeaked as we got dragged

We didn’t feel the sun or mud on our feet

© Khadija I Gure




I can’t be blind to what I eat

The meat I put in my body makes

me think about the live body of the

animal on my plate

It makes me think about the way

he or she trotted


I think about the sound my food

made on a daily basis

A sound that most likely spoke

to a certain emotional state

My plate is still warm and steaming

But my hunger has turned to a bitter

kind of cold


One that matches the blizzard outside

my window

I run my fingertips over the goose

bumps on my arms

© Khadija I Gure

Two Poems by Dean Fraser

Fractured And Broken

Is my fracking blues song…the creative process never ceases to astound me. Why is it a blues song? It grew that way…


Well I woke up this morning

Oh yeah, I woke up this morning

Been having this weird dream

At least I thought, can things be as they seem?

They wanna drill the Earth, fractured and broken

Are we supposed to believe a word these people spoken?


I got the fractured Earth blues

Oh yeah, the fractured Earth blues

Thinking what’s the use?

Seems someone’s gotta loose


Lookin’ around on the net

They’re doing it everywhere, what we get?

Earthquakes and tremors, flaming gas instead of water

Let’s tell ‘em what we think, it’s really time we oughta

They’re making their decisions profit before health

Changing geology forever and counting their wealth


I got the fractured Earth blues

Oh yeah, I got the fractured Earth Blues

Thinking what’s the use?

Seems someone’s gotta loose

How can we stop those insane actions?

Fracking apart the ground, chemical reactions

Make our voices heard loud and clear

Every time that new drilling rig starts to appear

Peaceful protest, reasoning don’t work with these guys

Harder their job, less profit they make, let’s open their eyes


I got the fractured Earth blues

Oh yeah, I got the fractured Earth Blues

Thinking what’s the use?

Seems someone’s gotta loose

© Dean Fraser


Embracing Nature, Only Natural




Urban environment

Disassociated from nature

Only nature encountered

A green blur

Seen from car or train windows

Rushing on by

Us humans have a deep

You could call it primeval

Existing right there in our DNA

Connection to nature

Our nature to be found

Within nature

Zombie-like existence

Living a half life

All too disconnected from nature

Truly wild areas


Somewhere to be scared of

Living 24/7 in completely artificial environments

Killing creativity

Deadening intuition

Then comes the need

Real nature is encountered

Take some of this artificial Comfort Zone out there as well…




And I see them

Those walking deep within ancient tranquil forest

Climbing high upon a mountain

Canoeing upon tranquil river

Headphones on

Plugged into music

Maybe I miss out here?

My music collection stays at home

Rather than joining me on walks

In nature

Parallels drawn in my mind

Painted in words

A concert

Favourite band or symphony

Wearing a motorbike crash helmet

Ensuring only half the experience

Coming away disappointed

What was all the fuss about?

Sensory underload




To exercise in nature

First choice every time

Walking or running

Tai chi or meditating

Purest natural setting

Far from only taking exercise

Oh, such more than ever taking exercise


On every level

My best ideas

Poetry or life

How often one and the same

Those ground-breaking ideas

Popped into my head

As they usually do

Way out in the wilderness

Or in the middle of deserted ancient Neolithic site

And very rarely in the middle of a busy city…

© Dean Fraser


5 Poems by Ankita Anand

Against the dying of the light

When empty rhetoric boasts
You have to brace immodesty
And raise a few toasts
To a nobody like yourself, and to the noble souls punished for their quiet honesty.


i have
for my country.

from the calluses on my feet
to the etched sun on my face,
bear witness to it.

and while i realise
that all i did were selfish acts performed for myself
because so many of our interests are tied together,
and while i know,
it is a mere drop
from the ocean
i am capable of giving, hope to give,

I shall not stand at ease and pay attention
As you spout forth on how I should love my country, how I should bay for others’ blood to prove the purity of mine
But remind you that I have held by breath to be able to hear its cries
When you were busy talking down to it.

© Ankita Anand




The sun trapezed over my knuckles

When I picked up warm wheat

By fistfuls

Put out to dry by my grandmother

After it was washed and scrubbed.


It would leave in me

Heat, imprint, smell.


Now our packaged flour

Slips right through

The gaps between my fingers.


Those birthed by the earth

Do not hold each other any more.

We maintain sanitized contact

Mediated by steel and plastic.

© Ankita Anand




“Oranges are expensive all around this year.”

When the fruit seller said this,

I quietly accepted his price.


No, I am not so naive

That I wasn’t infected

By a glimmer of suspicion.


But my apprehension about being duped was negligible

When faced with the fear

Of losing my ability to trust.


© Ankita Anand


Heroes must fall

No room for those who perform
“nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love”
And, at times,
Are human enough to err

We’d rather sculpt heroes,
Carry them high above our heads
So we can pretend we can’t reach them,
Can’t do what they do.

As the burden grows heavier,
And we, as they,
Falter under the weight
We drop them by the wayside as sinners.

© Ankita Anand


Modern day presidential



Hands are crucial.


Hurricane hands

Grabbing pussies,

beautiful pieces of ass

Building walls

Tearing through gloves,

insisting on getting themselves dirty

Trashing women cards

Fidgeting around nukes

Ruling the world

Rocking own cradle


© Ankita Anand


5 Poems by Ethan Goffman

Out of Touch in Trump’s America


My friends and I

clinging to part-time and temporary jobs

are so hopeless

that we don’t even grope and harass women.

What a bunch of losers we are!


© Ethan Goffman


Seeing Melania Trump on TV the other day, I realized with a gasp that she’s beautiful.  I’d never really noticed.

It’s as if Princess Leia had married Jabba the Hut.


© Ethan Goffman


A Thanksgiving Prayer


We give thanks, O Lord

for the land we stole

from its rightful inhabitants


allowing us to dine

on this righteous feast

of indigestion.


© Ethan Goffman



Proverb on Turtle’s Back

We did not borrow this world from our children,

We stole it from the Native American ancestors.


© Ethan Goffman


A Strange Dream


I had a dream,

or read in a science fiction book

or saw a movie


In which a black man

with a Muslim name

was President

of the United States


But that couldn’t have actually happened, could it?


© Ethan Goffman


Ethan Goffman has published only one poem, in Mad Swirl.  However, he has ample publications as a staff writer for Mobility Lab and the SSPP Blog, and as a freelance writer for The Progressive, Buzzflash, the Baltimore Sun, Grist, EarthTalk,and other publications.  He also has one book, Imagining Each Other: Blacks and Jews in Contemporary American Literature (SUNY Press, 2000).

5 Poems by Allison Grayhurst


She rises from the flower-pot soil,

sad as a caged Queen.


Her hands, fixed behind,

pushing her head towards

the moon.


Her lips as still as

trees after a storm, lying flat


and bloodless. She does not

let her hair down, or her

firm skin flex.


She has seen what lies underneath

where worms and millipedes crawl.


Half of her still there –

the other half, awakening

struggling up, away from the tar-sand



Feline Dream


Winter comes like a blank page

dropping over the city.


Houses glow in

T.V. light,

dulled and eerier.


Somewhere my mind has lost itself,

trekking through this burning time.


I see the eyes of animals in every place.

I see a kestrel cribbed in the sky, beating

against clouds and taunting crows.


I do not know what I am:

I live the nights through like a cat,

soothed by poetry

and the moon-white


of solitude


under stones.


© Allison Grayhurst


Missed the Mark

I felt I could almost run

the passage.


But the mist and

the naked days

of winter’s burning


made my head heavy and

a purpose too slender to follow.


A twisted brightness came crashing

through the ghosts surrounding.


Nothing but a comforting

numb held my feet to the ground.


I thought my blood was more

than words. I thought to claim

my flesh anew.


But love shifts like coastal waters

and only the drumming tides

of error and time

can guide me now –




© Allison Grayhurst


No Wedding Day

Held up by the strings

and the ragged chains

of expectation.


This is the

last vein to burst,

the last root

to dry.


Keep your milk

and music for

the moon – mother

of dreams, mother

of personal metaphor.


The marriage ring has taken

its final curve.

From now on, only

a gypsy smile,

only a trumpet blow

for the wanderer’s freedom.


Clouds cave over the sun

like a fist. Children play on

the green-pink hills

as all disappointments line up

on the wave of their laughter

to be killed or



© Allison Grayhurst

Step Through Summer


Dying for my thoughts to fade

into an amnesiac slur, not judge my

convalescent love.

Waiting for sleep to

move to a higher

octave, away from guilt, blame and

artful blindness.

The light that falls forever

into the gullies

of souls and skulls – comforts

but cannot heal. The wind too cannot

give like a compass burn.

I pace the floors, longing

to surrender what I have

to the summer flowers,



© Allison Grayhurst

Allison Grayhurst is a member of the League of Canadian Poets. Three of her poems were nominated for “Best of the Net” in 2015, and one eight-part story-poem was nominated for “Best of the Net” in 2017. She has over 1150 poems published in more than 460 international journals and anthologies. Her book Somewhere Falling was published by Beach Holme Publishers, a Porcepic Book, in Vancouver in 1995. Since then she has published sixteen other books of poetry and six collections with Edge Unlimited Publishing. Prior to the publication of Somewhere Falling she had a poetry book published, Common Dream, and four chapbooks published by The Plowman. Her poetry chapbook The River is Blind was published by Ottawa publisher above/ground press December 2012. In 2014 her chapbook Surrogate Dharma was published by Kind of a Hurricane Press, Barometric Pressures Author Series. In 2015, her book No Raft – No Ocean was published by Scars Publications. More recently, her book Make the Wind was published in 2016 by Scars Publications. As well, her book Trial and Witness – selected poems, was published in 2016 by Creative Talents Unleashed (CTU Publishing Group). She is a vegan. She lives in Toronto with her family. She also sculpts, working with clay; www.allisongrayhurst.com
Short bio: Allison Grayhurst is a member of the League of Canadian Poets. Four times nominated for “Best of the Net”, 2015/2017, she has over 1150 poems published in over 460 international journals and anthologies. She has 21 published books of poetry, six collections and six chapbooks. She lives in Toronto with her family. She is a vegan. She also sculpts, working with clay; www.allisongrayhurst.com 
            Collaborating with Allison Grayhurst on the lyrics, Vancouver-based singer/songwriter/musician Diane Barbarash has transformed eight of Allison Grayhurst’s poems into songs, creating a full album. “River – Songs from the poetry of Allison Grayhurst” released October 2017.
            Some of the places her work has appeared in include Parabola (Alone & Together print issue summer 2012); Elephant Journal; Literary Orphans; Blue Fifth Review; The American Aesthetic; The Brooklyn Voice; Five2One; Agave Magazine; JuxtaProse Literary Magazine, Drunk Monkeys; Now Then Manchester; South Florida Arts Journal; Gris-Gris; The Muse – An International Journal of Poetry, Storm Cellar, morphrog (sister publication of Frogmore Papers); New Binary Press Anthology; Straylight Literary Magazine (print); Chicago Record Magazine, The Milo Review; Foliate Oak Literary Magazine; The Antigonish Review; Dalhousie Review; The New Quarterly; Wascana Review; Poetry Nottingham International; The Cape Rock; Ayris; Journal of Contemporary Anglo-Scandinavian Poetry; The Toronto Quarterly; Fogged Clarity, Boston Poetry Magazine; Decanto; White Wall Review.  


















Two Poems by Rizwan Saleem

Rain on you


Of all the ways that lovers do

Dreams and thoughts of touching you

How I could turn into rain

And pour myself onto you

My gray clouds float to your presence

Steal sunlight from the sky, and prickle your skin with a frosty breeze

Ignite Goosebumps on your slender arms

A premonition of what’s to come

No I won’t pour, nor drown in a biblical deluge

A light drizzle would simply do

For the unrequited desires that I seek from you

Evanesce my being, I fall down to

I’m whole now in a million drops

Delicate like sparkling dew

My first splashes on your raven black hair

But you are still so unaware

Oh my paramour but there is more of me

So much more too of you

The first for any man, I rejoice in my descent

How a fall can be from one heaven to another

And drips of me on your forehead

Your turn your face above to see

The Cimmerian nebula that carry me

I slither down to your sultry cheeks

Fuchsia with surprise and elation

Smooth as polished marble

Of a temple made for a religion arcane

Known only to me

And sizzle in wicked delight

Trills to your lips

The warmth of your breath fleeting

Rapture so abundant

That is in rain

A peek of your pinkish tongue

Wanders out to seek a taste

A drop is captured in curve

And let slither back in its sepulcher

Inside you I float, running in your life blood

We are one

How I wish I could ebb through your veins

Like an addiction without cure

Drops of me all on you

Soak your clothes through and through

Your curves accentuate my lascivious fervors

As I caress you further

To the flats of your torso

I slither and crawl

Tickle and feather, my touches to arouse

Till your legs so neatly parted

Almost finished what has been started

I slide and slide lower still

To your thighs and knees

Shaped with such feline grace

Your ankles, till

Your feet and toes

So perfectly formed

The places they take you

But steps so far from me

So slowly I roll

To my final demise

Soaked now by grass beneath you

I am life now in another form

Fertile with your redolence

I await another turn in eternity

To love you again

© Rizwan Saleem






My eyes wander

Over every face that I see

So that I may catch any resemblance of you

I breathe in the air

Not so for the need to live

But so I may catch somehow your fragrance

Perhaps gone astray from where you stand

I revisit the places close to your home

And reach out to touch clefts, least you ran your blessed hands on them

Over some point in time

My mind is spent in devising nefarious plots and schemes

To give me one good reason I could call you again

I run harder and harder

Kick start my dead beat heart

I open my chest to let in air

Dizzy with exertion

There is no art painted like you

There can be no perfume that can replicate your heavenly redolence

No feel in this life that can match your healing touch

No pain worse than your absence around me

© Rizwan Saleem

Rizwan Saleem is a Banker based in Dubai UAE. The thoughts and expressions detailed in his works are of his various escapades suffered through life, and of the profound surprise of having survived long enough to pen them into words. His poems and prose have appeared in anthologies Twenty Seven Signs by Lady Chaos Press, Self Portrait Poetry Collection by Silver Birch Press, E fiction India, Scarlet leaf Publishing as well as Colors of Refuge (an initiative for UNHCR)

5 Poems by Darrell Herbert

As I pray into the unknown
Depression is a disease
Not a choice
We love, we hate
We die far too late
Anxious, no anxiety
Smoking loud as my moves move silently
Insecurities hang with the birds in the trees
But, this is a reflection of me, me
But, this is a reflection of grief
Going through things no one sees, sees
Lord forgive
If something happened to me
God forbid
I’ll die alone with everything you said
Cigarette burns, cigarette chock
All of a sudden your water broke
You ask why, why do I continue to pretend?
That’s because it always seems to end

I Am Asking You A Question
The United States of America taxpayers send Israel around eleven million dollars a day, yes I said a day
We don’t want more wars, we want schools and hospitals
If the rich want war go pay for it, and even more importantly, go fight it
Don’t send young people to new wars just for profit, life is priceless…you fucking idiots
Let’s raise the issue of how inmates are able to become college educated while they are in prison
I was appalled that Leslie Vanhouten, one of the members of Charles Manson’s gang, had earned a Master’s degree in prison with taxpayers money
This is a woman who stabbed a person fourteen times and stuck a barbecue fork in a man’s stomach because it was “fun.” There are educators, veterans, and people who work for the state who are struggling to pay back loans or postponing further education because of the high cost
There should be some sort of incentives or programs for teachers and state employees, especially if cold blooded killers can earn Ivy League educations in jail
We have free education now in the way of compulsory education up to the secondary level
Our society cares little about our schools and the educational culture as a whole, I have mixed feelings
I didn’t realize he was part of the 0.01%
For God knows how long we are outsourcing jobs by the thousands because our education system is fucking trash compared to the rest of the world
It’s funny how we can’t provide free education in the United States of America
Land of the free, right?
And the home of the brave, right?
We took religion out of schools, but every jail cell in America comes with a bible
Be mindful of where the real lesson is taught
Right now we are paying taxes for building more prisons and fighting in wars and there is no problem
We have all of these prisons, good, you did good research, good
What, what, what, what, how do you know that?
I completely disagree, you’re pointing to Greece because it fits your argument
We have Finland, we have Brazil, we have numerous countries that offer free college education
Germany has free college education and free health care
The United States can not provide free education to its citizens, is that what you are telling me now?
I, I, I am asking you a question
Help me understand, help me understand
I don’t want to talk about Germany, we’re talking about the United States, who are about to spend a trillion dollars on nuclear weapons
You’re refusing to answer my question, you’re refusing to answer my question
That is the reality, is that what you are telling me?
Do you not agree Neil?
There is money, there is money
When you say raising taxes you want your viewers who are crunched financially to feel like taxes are going to be raised on them
When I say raising takes I’m talking about the Walton’s, I’m talking about the Cox’s
I’m talking about the 0.1%, the roster

Are You Insane Like Me?
By the way
Only ten percent of heroin users become addicts
The people who become that way almost always have preexisting issues
It’s not cool to glamorize opiates

The Perfectionist
The perfectionist is imperfect
She looked in the mirror yesterday,
Hatred! Mirror breakage.
Silent being—
A screamer in silence
Outside her bedroom.
During the morning phase
Her insecurities are awakened –
She dies inside.

You Are At An Disadvantage  
It’s sad how we don’t push harder for positive change in this country
We probably love pain like if it was candy, a sweet he’ll that troubles us all
So many people in our community are dealing with so much trouble like not being able to go to school to progress
Not being able to have a better standard of life due to political greed, and many of us ignore the signs very melancholically
We ignore a homeless person on a train
We are the people who have the biggest count in this country, yet we are nothing but walking corpses, or like the object in grammar, those who receive the actions by the subject
Elites of this country, we are the reason why they are even at the social statuses that they are, yet we do not realize the power we have in our hands to break away from such a corrupted system
In today’s society, social networks have been the case for us not testing all our limits for relevant issues, yet we do not limit ourselves for cyberbullying
Will we realize that past revolution gradually as we move into a modern world like ours today, were actually effective?
I am extremely disappointed to say that we are disjointed and unmotivated for things that really matter; we are just putting enough effort here and consequences always rise from decisions like this ones
Is America going to help us ever?
We need to make sure that he doesn’t get into the White house, that’s the other solution
Picking cotton in the fucking corn fields

Heed Not to What Comes Glittering – Emmanuel Joseph

Heed Not To What Comes Glittering

Heed not to what comes glittering
Keep an eye peeled of yourselves,
if comes its embrace
upon your souls,
in its alms, where lovers meet.
Let go, not wholly of your hearts,
if comes walking its lips
from the heart’s basement to its peak,
unleashing your desires
flaming in you like stars.
Stay awake in your dreams,
if seems glittering into reality
that which methinks are nothing,
when borrowed the stories of mine.
Be not easily drawn
in your youthful ages,
so readily with widely-opened hands,
into its domain,
for its smile ends in a void
where bygone lovers have ebbed
to the tides of time.
Love, is not as defined,
so heed not to what comes glittering.

© Emmanuel Joseph


Emmanuel Joseph was born in the eastern part of Sierra Leone, in the bread basket called Kono District, and schooled at Koidu District Educational Center where he sat to the National Primary School Examination. He is reading Politics Science and History at the Athens of West Africa, Fourah Bay College, University Of Sierra Leone.

Since he became a poet, he has been part of the race of contemporary poets of contemporary issues affecting humanity. His poetry ranges from all corners where the surge of pang seems to live, ranging from love, humanity, abandonment, loneliness, and hopelessness.

Belonging in more than hundred writing forums, his writings capture societal issues left to die in the spine of human memories. He has published many poems and has been translated in many publication sites, literary magazines, blog, and journals at home and abroad

8 Poems by Zeki Gumus – Translated from Turkish




I didn’t steal the spring flowers

which fill in my heart from you

I wanted to protect your love

by the natal love


No word has remained to write

if you want to know my love

take a glass of red wine

look for me at each taste remaining on your lip


Don’t be afraid

If you say “I haven’t experienced the love”

extend your hand into my cellar with hope

I will suffer for your sin



©  Zeki Gumus






Yüreğime dolan bahar
çiçeklerini çalmadım senden
doğuştan gelen sevgiyle
korumak istedim aşkını

Yazılacak sözler kalmadı
aşkımı tanımak istersen
bir kadeh kırmızı şarap al
dudağında kalan her tatta beni ara

Korkma karanlığı sunmam sana
sevgiyi tatmadım diyorsan
mahzenime umutla uzat elini
günahlarını ben alırım


©  Zeki Gümüş




Nobody opened his door

didn’t lay a bed and a quilt

near his hot stove

didn’t give a glass of tea

the fears which we raise by our own hands

the hopes at a side of our hearts

were waiting for friend voices to wrap

the clouds were crying while we were going away

empty streets when we looked back

loneliness filling in our eyes in darkness


©  Zeki Gumus






Kimse kapısını açmadı

sıcak sobasının yanına

yatak yorgan sermedi

bir bardak çay vermedi

ellerimizde büyüttüğümüz korkular

kalbimizin bir köşesinde umutlar

saracağı dost sesleri beklerdi

biz giderken bulutlar ağlardı

dönüp baktığımızda boş sokaklar

karanlıkta gözlerimize dolan yalnızlıklar



©  Zeki Gümüş



A contratrian flower was blossoming there

blossoming on the mountains which I haven’t seen

it was warm as a galanthus


A flower had been blossoming there

I felt neither its odour

Nor its warmness on your skin


©  Zeki Gumus






Orda aykırı bir çiçek açardı
görmediğim dağlarda açan
kardelen kadar sıcaktı

Orada bir çiçek açarmış
ne kokusunu hissettim
ne de tenindeki sıcaklığı


©  Zeki Gümüş



If the life which you had lost doesn’t come back

By the raising of the primitive screams

Don’t cry by turning in upon yourself

With the reflection of the light impinging of your face


While the bygone contrarian feelings

Are transitivizing, don’t stay silent

You can’t any friend to you except yourself

Come on, get up from the mud, don’t cry


©  Zeki Gumus






İlkel çığlıkların yükselmesiyle

Kaybettiğin yaşam geri gelmezse

Yüzene vuran ışık yansımasıyla

İçine kapanıp gizlice ağlama


Geçmişte kalan aykırı duygular

Şekil değiştirirken sessiz durma

Sana senden başka dost olmaz ki

Haydi kalk çamurdan ağlama


©  Zeki Gümüş



I have wanted freedom for years

I have raised longings up to the sky

I have scattered hopes to the stars


Now, I see that those fed feelings

The resistances which I had lived are at the past

The freedom had remained far away


©  Zeki Gumus






Özgürlük istedim yıllarca

Özlemler büyüttüm gökyüzüne

Umutlar saçtım yıldızlara


Görüyorum ki beslenen duygular

Yaşadığım dirençlerden geride

Çok uzaklarda kalmış özgürlük


©  Zeki Gümüş



One night

in a rainy weather

I had been enlaced to the quilt

the sky had been a line for my eye

by a black dream


One moment

who knows on which roof

who knows on which chimney

I had remembered the sparrows

which had hidden between the cold walls


A few hours later

the clouds had stopped crying

with the first warmness of the sun

at that moment, three sparrows

carried the hopes to the blueness, freely


©  Zeki Gumus






Bir gece

yağmurlu havada

sarılmıştım yorgana

gökyüzü çizgi olmuştu

siyah düşle gözüme


Bir an

kim bilir hangi çatıda

kim bilir hangi bacada

soğuk duvara gizlenmiş

serçeler gelmişti aklıma


Saatler sonra

güneşin ilk sıcaklığıyla

ağlamayı kesmişti bulutlar

o anda maviliğe üç serçe

umutları taşıdılar özgürce


 ©  Zeki Gümüş



This time, the hope has blossomed

inside me with the spring

spot by spot


My eyes have carried life

to the roses which were

bursting into bud  in the dreams

every daybreak


Daffodil, carnation

there are how many flowers

which of names I don’t know

shoot up to my longings


I have written the poems last night

have lighted up a cigarette

have hurled the verses to the stars


©   Zeki Gumus







Umut  bu kez içimde

baharla çiçek açtı

benek benek


Gözlerim düşlerde

tomurcuklaşan güllere

her seher can taşıdı

damla damla


Nergis karanfil

adını bilmediğim

nice çiçekler var ki

boy veriyor özlemlerime


Geceden yazdım şiirleri

yaktım bir sigara

savurdum dizeleri yıldızlara


©  Zeki Gümüş



This time, the hope has blossomed

inside me with the spring

spot by spot


My eyes have carried life

to the roses which were

bursting into bud  in the dreams

every daybreak


Daffodil, carnation

there are how many flowers

which of names I don’t know

shoot up to my longings


I have written the poems last night

have lighted up a cigarette

have hurled the verses to the stars


©  Zeki Gumus







Umut  bu kez içimde

baharla çiçek açtı

benek benek


Gözlerim düşlerde

tomurcuklaşan güllere

her seher can taşıdı

damla damla


Nergis karanfil

adını bilmediğim

nice çiçekler var ki

boy veriyor özlemlerime


Geceden yazdım şiirleri

yaktım bir sigara

savurdum dizeleri yıldızlara


©  Zeki Gümüş


Zeki Gumas is a socialist and poet from Turkey. He has been published in publications such as The Wagon Magazine, Typoetic, Poesia, and Belleville Park Pages. 



“Hour of the Wolf” by John Sullivan 

Hour of the Wolf

by John Sullivan


triage in Seattle at Broadway & Pine,

 2nd night of the WTO (1999)


at 3 AM – a dying time for the people   so a lot do die    this hour

like a custom      so it’s said: like hard time in the cry room   for little baby Who’s

like a hot wire    buried in the wound     of all them little Who’s


(and so, the Why-so Big Who crawls into bed

with dying creatures:  sin-eater  raven  empty

eyeless   Big Who says “I’ll see you later,”

Big Who says, “look backward, look ahead, look

away,”  Big Who also says, “your ghost is only

yours, so what’s the rub-a-dub, and why

you all so goddamn guileless?”)


old man, dark-skin     cold-cold rain falls down

on an old man     face-down     in the street

shock grenades     dumpster barricades full of flame

tear gas drift   into neighborhoods     tight around

the little Who’s throat   coughs hard    deep   choking on it


(policia = heroina    sprayed onto a stucco

wall in Barcelona   back-a-days, the Big Who

sprayed me, shot me up with: What?  With What?

“And so we all evolve alone,” or so says the

Big Bad Who)


dark-skin old man    drops like a rock   like a rubber

bullet hits him    whoosh of gas   final-flat-wallop

sharp ooof!   of breath    hits an old man   right above

his right   eye     throbs it   does    (probably)

a deep gash above his right eye, throbs    (probably)

drops him down, prone    (probably)    crawls, he   sure, he tries   (probably)

toward sanctuary    at the bus stop


(The Big Who says “my art infects your life,

so suck it up” – that voice of The Big Who,

all up in my head   your head

our head(s), together    when

the Big Who says move it, you gotta’ go

do it, Big Who says “Move!”  or Big Who’s

gonna’ hurt you bad     hurt you bad

lay a long-time hurt-you-bad on you)




two girls     one dark-skin, too      one less-so, maybe white

maybe not    drag the old man    dark-skin gash   above his right eye

throbs (probably)    flat knocked-out (maybe)    drag the old man onto

a bus stop bench   to sanctuary   (at Broadway & Pine)


one girl pulls off her sweater     props    his head on her sweater    for sanctuary

from the cold-cold rain     the other girl     covers him up   with her coat, covers him

up     in the cold-cold rain    with her coat    for sanctuary    and turn, they do

together    jump back    into Broadway    into  flash gust     deep slash    of grief

this anger night      to fight The Cops    again


(“Now I see you, again,“ says the Big Who

to me, says the Big Who, to you.

“Now, I see,” says the Big Bad Who,

“but I lie a lot, too.  It’s what I do.

I’ll see you later on, again,”

says the Big Who to me,

says the Big Bad Who to you.)


The Cops!  The Cops!   squads    of feet, flying    of boots     shouting, battle-bats

gizmos of pure pain    and Big Creature will to use them     right!      in Houston

New York City    Jakarta      Moscow     Beijing     Minsk     L.A.   Seattle    D.C.

in Barcelona, Spain


so what little Who would not run when The Cops say: Stop?


or what little Who, instead, juts her jaw      stares straight ahead       straight at The Cops,

says: Bring It!


(“ain’t no cold-cold grave

gonna’ hold my body down,”

“in your dreams,” says the Big Who,

again, straight up, to the little)


or what little Who else says    no mas     says    scare me   you may –    you do

in fact  –  but another little Who is here   to freeze   to shiver     to wait

for the big hit    in fear?    in mad resistance?    to wait for what the little Who

never wants to get     it ain’t no    gift at all     to wrangle    inside and out

little Who with little Who   with other little Who’s


and yet, another little Who says, yet again: “O-please don’t let my ghost survive me,

do            not”


(so pray, now, maybe so

so pray, now, for sure-O

so pray, now: to some kinda’ Who-so-ever?

and ever, for little Who?  all the little

Who’s?   and Why-so?)


Listen!  Listen up!     The Po-Lice make a great roar    square jaw

heavy brutal teeth     a hell-gate unto     Po-Lice beat their bats

on their shields      make a roar      no words: just big thick hard sound

like sharp rock    cracks against     no relief     against your head     big fear?

big resistance?    up in your head      club you back – club you down   The Cops

unleash a great   tribal   roar: their boom-boom-boom cuts open

night    and grief


(Big Who’s gonna’ tell you,

Big Who’s gonna’ tell you,

when Big Who says move it,

you best go do it:

“I’ll see you later,

I’ll see ya’all, once

again,” so says the Big Bad Who)


    © John Sullivan