Ice Melting

can’t we see that,

escorted elected barbarians

in bed with morphine drips,

confused, hapless, wanderers

like brad pitt trying to explain

strike out to walk ratios,

mormon from utah ending

two year mission to watts

trying to explain the green

stain on her white denims


glass of catawba

at halftime then

too drunk to sing karaoke

in nantuckett harbor after

stepping out after midnight

with crazy mad childless women

six hours a night

in casino back bars

doing a glacial hip hop stomp


the heavy razor edges

a classic southern Sabbath softening

to melodic sounds of bluegrass

away the crush, the glory

forgotten, erased, and discarded by

blowhard blackheaded rascist twits

who will read nietzsche in prison

just metaphors of martyrdom well placed

on the tantric twitter or

the everyday falsetto of facebook

played like a banjo

at an ozark pig roast


Dan Jacoby

Dan Jacoby is a graduate of Fenwick High School, St. Louis University, Chicago State University, and Governors State University. He has published poetry in the Arkansas Review, Bombay Gin, Burningword Literary Review, Canary, The Fourth River, Steel Toe Review, The American Journal of Poetry, and Red Fez to name a few. He is a former educator, steel worker, and counterintelligence agent.. He is a member of the Carlinville Writers Guild and American Academy of Poets . Nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015. Nominated for Best on the Net for Poetry in 2019 by Red Fez. His book, Blue Jeaned Buddhists, Duck Lake Books, is available where fine books are sold.

The Pale Horse

The night the trees in the orchard

dropped their peaches,

the ground shook,


and a nurse told us it was almost time.

His breath was little then less.

With drooping eyes, he tried


to speak that day and night

when our whole world was stacked

against a disappearing sky.


We prayed his color,

somewhere between chlorine

and chlorophyll,


would pinken when dawn arrived,

turning blackness to rust and pink

and then, clear blue.


Taking turns warming his hand,

my daughter and I switched seats

and shared memories


we hoped he could understand.

But nothing could stop a breeze

from blowing from the four corners


of the room or a blare

from seven trumpets

calling to the sea to wash it crystal.


Teresa Sutton

Teresa Sutton’s fourth chapbook, “Ruby Slippers for Gretel,” (under different titles) was a top 50 finalist in the Wingless Dreamer 2019 Chapbook Competition and a semi-finalist in both the 2018 Concrete Wolf Chapbook Award and the 2018 Quill’s Edge Press Chapbook Competition. Her third chapbook, “Breaking Newton’s Laws,” won 1st place in the Encircle Publication 2017 Chapbook Competition; One of the poems in the collection, “Dementia,” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. The final poem of the book, “Confiteor 2,” was honored with second prize in the 2018 Luminaire Award for Best Poetry. Sutton taught for 10 years at Marist College and 29 years as a high school English teacher. She has an MFA in poetry from Solstice at Pine Manor College, an MA in Literature from Western Connecticut State University, an MS in Education from SUNY New Paltz, and a BA from SUNY Albany.

Skin of the Days

I pulled the sheet over the hole again,

laid stones along the edge to stop

the wind from slapping it against the sky.

I didn’t want to see

how far down I’d have to leave him.

He’d showed me what I needed to know,

how to brine the meat in salt and garlic,

how to mix dill in the vinegar,

keep the cucumbers and carrots

crisp through months of snow

when I’d be alone

and no one would come up the mountain.

He taught me to talk to the mirror,

look in my own eyes, say I’m afraid,

the only way to pierce the cloud,

make it bleed your worry.

He’d always say there’s no one

who’ll get in the hole with you;

make your own mind.

For months I tried to shove the ache

back in the hole, wanted the days

to pile like shells into years,

cover it, settle the patched mound

‘til it was a flattened hill of my dead.

Every morning the steel on stone voice

cuts the air when I cook the oats,

raisins and molasses,

stare out the window at the snow,

roll his words in my mind.

Even now I whisper the rules:

throw salt over your shoulder to blind the devil,

be ready to say you’re sorry,

watch a man’s eyes when he talks

if I want to know

whether you can believe him.


Mark Anthony Burke

Mark Burke’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in the North American Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Sugar House Review, Nimrod International Journal and others. His work has recently been nominated for a Pushcart prize. See:

Listed at Duotrope
Listed with Poets & Writers
CLMP Member
List with Art Deadline
Follow us on MagCloud