Juliette Sebock


My cat has some 
strange skills, 
like working
a door knob 
(if he so
I sometimes
lock the door
just in case,
so he doesn't 
or get
but I worry there'll be 
an emergency
and no will
be able 
to save me
more importantly, 
save him.

Juliette Sebock is the author of Mistakes Were Made and has poems forthcoming or appearing in a wide variety of publications.  She is the founding editor of Nightingale & Sparrow and runs a lifestyle blog, For the Sake of Good Taste.  When she isn't writing (and sometimes when she is), she can be found with a cup of coffee and her cat, Fitz. Juliette can be reached on her website or across social media.

Elisabeth Horan

My Shame

I can't tell you enough things
this need to commute all the wrong
in me --- it's so beyond broke
this inside place, core, which
I'm stuck in --- it's a trap; a hole
a fester gangrene --- every 
minute of hangover couch;
history channel, sweatpants,
diet coke; it's cupcakes, cheetos
and marlboro lights; it's crying
to Selena in the middle of the night ---
como la flor, fuck the neighbor
such a bitch --- such a mess
the time she saw me piss on
the lawn --- I can't tell you how
this began. Run away, run away
run away baby --- looking 
for something ---- coolness
thinness, straight hair, tight pants
longer legs, more guys, cute guys,
bad guys, any goddamn guys.
no one wanted me --- don't you see?
The only virgin on the block, in the town
in the whole world for all I knew ---
drinking drinking running singing dying 
what better way to make them notice me.

Elisabeth Horan is a poet/momma/flower/animal from Vermont. She has books on the way from Fly on the Wall, Twist in Time, Rhythm & Bones, Hedgehog and Cephalo. Poetry Editor Anti-Heroin Chic Animal Heart Press. Let’s be kind and love one another. @ehoranpoet  & ehoranpoet.com

Amanda Crum

Dreaming Of Snow

You can go your whole life 
never knowing a measurement for the soul,
waking up next to the person you think you love, 
and find no fault. 
For decades you go on, 
crashing through your own disappointments 
until you are reminded of the cost of impact.
We’re atoms and stardust, an act of chemistry bound in muscle 
that never had a chance.
Suddenly burnt bacon reminds you of 
all the things you never said,
the dust in your eyes is just the Earth
trying to reclaim you.
Some New Mexico clouds dream of snow,
that feeling of release that leaves them feeling lighter.
You think of this as you shave your head; 
how they can imagine such a sea change
and still live with themselves.
They pay failure no mind and move on 
when the wind shakes them 
to try again a little further down the road.
There, even if only a single snowflake falls,
the asphalt will have forgotten by the time it melts.

Amanda Crum is a writer and artist whose work can be found in publications such as Eastern Iowa ReviewBlue Moon Literary and Art Review, and Barren Magazine, as well as in several anthologies. Her first chapbook of horror poetry, The Madness In Our Marrow, made the shortlist for a Bram Stoker Award nomination in 2015; her latest, Trailer Trash, will be published by Finishing Line Press in early 2019. She currently lives in Kentucky with her husband and two children.

Lexi Cary

The Pit Bull

When I touch the pit bull / I begin touching roads to my past self / I follow them to her belly / scarred and unyielding / birth in the street / lost puppies / headlights / she rested her head on me / thunder blanket / as the present caved / into the past / she rested her head on me / heavy and sleepy / as I took up residence on the couch / her eyes perpetually guilty / I read into them an apology / for not fixing the loveless love / she was found to fix

Everyone wants to know / why I no longer look at the pit bull / but you were there / they say / at two am / alone / in the vet waiting room / with the wailing cats and their wailing ladies / waiting for her to come back from death / as everyone who’s asking / slept / but you were there / they say / to calm her rough paws from canine nightmares / your face something unspeakably motherlike / we assume / to a quadruped baby / trembling from memories / she didn’t understand 

I locked eyes with the pit bull / pulling shimmering pink streamers / from her mouth / as she retched / as they were lodged in her stomach / I told her I can’t do this / I told her I’m sorry / I told her I’m selfish / I told her that I had infused her with my guilt / over the failed relationship / over sleeping late / over working too much / and had made her a totem / of everything and nothing that wasn’t her fault 

when in fact she is nothing more than a belly and four rough paws / a jagged set of scars / I had no business declaring myself her savior / giving myself that kind of importance / for she is just a dog / and I just a flaw /masquerading as an answer

Lexi Cary is a bi writer (w/b)itch and musician based in Los Angeles. Her poetry can be found or is forthcoming in DUM DUM ZineAngel City ReviewAlways Crashing, and Germinal Mag. You can see more of her work at lexicary.com and @_lexicary on twitter and Instagram.

Kristine Brown

Unstrung Pearls

all flesh burned shall peel
in due, sanctimonious time.

a family practitioner provides advice, while the nation's best hospital mails you their annual book. you know the maladies that keep you in bed, and you know, honey and lukewarm water are enough to keep you out of trouble. for one more week. better than a day, you would think.

I was the kid
finding hope in cough drops.

a hefty mortgage two blocks away and a crying lover on an unpainted porch await me every day, and the only words said are illegible, sleepily falling through dozens of gaps we see in a rusted chain-link fence.

today, no one reads cursive.
not the girl who grieves.

On the weekends, Kristine Brown frequently wanders through historic neighborhoods, saying "Hello" to most any cat she encounters. Some of these cats are found on her blog, Crumpled Paper Cranes (https://crumpledpapercranes.com). Her creative work can be found in HobartSea Foam MagBurning House Press, The Pangolin Review, Philosophical Idiot, among others, and a collection of flash prose and poetry, Scraped Knees, was released in 2017 by Ugly Sapling.

Juleigh Howard-Hobson

These Are the Things

These are three things I like: Newcastle Brown
Ale, in a pint glass. Black leather jackets
With studs and paint. Walking alone around
Graveyards. These are two things I don’t forget:
Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures on black 
Vinyl. Andreas Baader was shot in 
The head--not self inflicted: in the back
Of his head--while he was locked in prison
In Germany. This is one thing I will 
Always wonder about: how my own death
Is going to look. Will it be calm, still
And tasteful , just my body without breath,
Or will there be blood and noise and police
And glass and nothing remotely like peace?

Juleigh Howard-Hobson’s poetry has appeared in Eternal Haunted Summer, Riddled with Arrows, The Lyric, Abridged Magazine: The Wormwood Issue, The Non-Binary Review, The Ginger Collect, The Lyric, 2018 Rhysling Award Anthology (Science Fiction Poetry Association), Weaving the Terrain (Dos Gatos), Mandragora (Scarlett Imprint) and many other places receptive to the arcane. She lives in the rural neverland of the Pacific Northwest with a garden of buried stars and deeply held secrets.

Tobias Peterson

Airport Embrace

We were here, watching the forgotten
baggage cart slip away from the teenaged 
couple. It bore a box with beaten corners, kept
from bursting by clear bands of tape. The lovers 
held their wrists to pledge let’s never come or go
and the cart drifted on with its box, toward a band 
of smokers who stood in the terminal’s dark 
skirts. Their breath burnished the vaulting glass 
into cellophane, which they peered through to us 
who leaned there in shame, listening and hugging 
our luggage at the edge of the frozen carousel.

Tobias Peterson holds an MFA in Poetry from Texas State University.  His work has appeared in The Gulf Coast ReviewPhantom DriftFigroot PressColdnoon, and elsewhere. He teaches at Clark College in Vancouver, Washington.

Samuel J Fox

Prayer over a Cigarette

Lord, ruin me with your hand, smitten with growing
something of my turmoil, of my ruination.
Even this ritual of dying, Lord, it is more than enough:
of breathing in a cremation
and blowing out carbon syllables from stars
millions of years from touch.
Lord, I know I am imperfect. You know this because
I run through wheat fields naked as a lark
singing Bob Seeger, wishing the darkness will never end.
I am addicted to the breath. I am addicted to the practice
of nightfall illuminated between my fingertips.
I am addicted to both the failure of the body 
and the failure of the words you’ve learned from us.
Even this, I know, will pass
like vapor in front of eyes that peer through the wilderness
searching for a shape of you in them.
If you are listening, if you too are breathing,
I would pass this flame to you hoping you’d place your lips
over the filter, so that, when it returns to me
I can taste the millions of years you’ve kept on your tongue

Samuel J Fox is a non-binary, bisexual writer living in the Southern US. They/He is poetry editor for Bending Genres, a nonfiction reader for Homology Lit, and frequent columnist/reviewer for Five2One Magazine. They/He appears in many online/print journals and also in dilapidated places, coffee houses, and graveyards, depending. They/He Tweets (@samueljfox).

Jeremy Mifsud

Deconstructed Anatomy

A zipper hangs
between my collar bones.
I pull it down
to my pelvis.

The flesh falls out.
Organs deflated—
            paper thin,
lying on the floor:

My knees shiver,

My mother will complain
about how tough it is
to remove blood from rugs,
but perhaps she’ll understand:
            I’ve never had a beating heart.

Maltese-born Jeremy Mifsud is a queer, autistic writer and poet, currently reading for a Masters in Cognitive Science at the University of Malta. Social ineptitude becomes a catalyst for his art as he weaves unsaid words into poems and short fiction. He has self-published a full-length collection Welcome to the Sombre Days (2018). More of his poetry and fiction appears or is forthcoming in Please Hear What I'm Not Saying (2018), Lucent DreamingConstellate and others.

Jill Khoury


as in falling off the bone / into your lap
bent over itself like a daffodil in winter
new & easily bruised / or given 
over like currency / a wee piece of chatter
hardly registers / dainty is nice in paintings
but it needs a corset to sit upright
stay off it / apply ice until no longer /
as in one who attends so he doesn’t have to
or two tiny lumps of brain sugar / a wild
sunflower to be pressed into the most 
soluble of petals / marzipan kept on high 
shelf because breakable / rose fully blown
and dusted with glitter / as the silence left
after the explosion that makes a nova

Jill Khoury writes about gender, disability, and embodied identity. She has two chapbooks and a full-length collection published with Sundress in 2016.

TC Kody

the incremental decline of civilization

they razed an acre of woods
by my parents’ house
and planted a DMV. 

a forest is considered vacant land
because natural systems tend 
from a state of order to disorder 
and government buildings.
they tore down the DMV
by my parents’ house
and built a sheriff’s office.
rome fell so slowly 
that visigoths in spain were calling
themselves citizens
for centuries after their ancestors
sacked the city.

TC Kody lives in Orlando. Their work has been published in Dream PopVoicemail PoemsButton PoetryRising Phoenix Review, and many others. They have yelled and yawped all over the United States. A Best of the Net Nominee, TC won the first Poetry Slam Incorporated Online Slam and is the uneditor of Rejected Lit. Yes, they would like a hug.

Marlin Figgins

Memphis is the most beautiful of cities.

Ghosts dance & sing the blues along the boulevards though this is often mistaken for marches. The difference eluded me at first.

I had spent some time running away, found myself in the South. I had taken to leaving my bed & roaming the night for weeks at a time. There was no rationale behind this. I was simply running. You may say that I was following ‘the’ ancestors, trying to find myself in their inverted footprints, but haven’t I always known? 

Don’t you, too, know my origin? Don’t you know the name of that river? 
Amnesic Reader, myself the same, even you must know to play in the mud of its banks! 

I needn’t give you my telling; it’s turbid & unambiguous.

The stench of that room of mine had become numbing; I came to Memphis on the last ashes of my wanderlust. The ghosts were all shoeless. It is true. The once-was-still-yet-still-here men & women were all carrying their shoes. By daylight (if you can believe the preachers), the streets were littered with broken glass bottles & cigarette embers. As I had saw it, each street was washed clean. Perhaps by the ghosts’ songs? 

Their Dark feet were studded with glass shards & left that solemn kind of trail that I’d first seen on that pillow of mine or maybe around that once-was Dark child that’s always on the news. The true origin of this eludes me.

This I remember clearly— their feet were moonlit & so luminous.

Knowing my own body a constant ache, I thought perhaps only the spirit could ever truly mourn. I wondered for how long they would go on & sing his blues. I had become obsessed with when (not if) they would turn to ash & more than anything longed to witness this.

Marlin Figgins is a student at the University of Chicago. He is from Detroit, Michigan. Marlin's work has appeared in The Shallow EndsGlass: A Journal of Poetry, and Cotton Xenomorph.

Brice Maiurro

some definitions

a library is a place full of a lot of books that people rarely read.
a church is a community of scared people.

my poems are churches full of scared people.
they go there to pray.
they sit at catholic pews and clasp fingers.

there is magic hidden into comfortable reality.

doctrines do not run clean of each other.

the people stare up at the stained glass
but do not look past it.

they have set boundaries on god.

they pray really hard
and they drink wine and some services they do not speak
and some services they try to speak
and every now and then there is gospel aura
that spills into the church and they dance.

they dance like the queen of cups.

they dance like victory day for America
if it ever gets here.

i digress, they dance like that.

i digress from time.

there is always a queen singing in the church
and where there may be flowers there are just
cups of water and she sings straight black-eyed
into the face of the devil and she speaks not in
hymns but in mantras and she speaks not in
demands but requests and she pushes through
each and every one of those stained glass windows
and the ghost of john muir comes in with the trees
and hallelujah.

do you hear me?

i have given up on american jesus.

i haven’t given up on the holy spirit.

Brice Maiurro is a poet from Denver, Colorado. His poetry has been featured by The Denver PostThe Boulder WeeklySuspect PressBirdy MagazineHorror Sleaze Trash and Stain'd. He is the author of Stupid Flowers and the Editor-In-Chief of South Broadway Ghost Society. His second collection of poems, Hero Victim Villain, will be out this June through Stubborn Mule Press.

Lauren Gilmore


after the fire / you dream about pulling the charred jawbone of an animal 
out of your mouth / & what is home if not the ship we put in a bottle just 
as it started to sink / praying the cork could hold us if we let it / something 
like that / but less alarming / more like walking into a red telephone booth 
to find the book I’d been trying to write / suppose the pages were blank & 
I answered the phone / & it was my father / asleep on the couch / or the one 
dream where the family is alive again / sitting around that beige living room 
& what is grief if not a place to rest / elevator door that won’t close or let us
go / something like that, I say / pointing to the pillow underneath your head 
place where our teeth once turned to gifts overnight / & what is magic if not 
a constant state of tourism / sitting by the spokane river I sink one stone / then 
another / & I am back / watching the thames down itself / thinking to be young
& alone in london / is not the same / as being young & alone in london

Lauren Gilmore is a poet from Spokane, Washington. Her first full-length collection was published by University of Hell Press in 2015, and her work has appeared in various publications, including Pontoon and Lilac City Fairy Tales.

Courtney Peters

Wooden Planes

I’ve been trying to use less metaphors when I write
Instead of saying                     every morning I pick the splinters of you from my lungs in our bed
I have been saying                  I make a pot of coffee for the house first thing in the morning 
Instead of saying                     I spit each sliver onto the side where you used to sleep
I have been saying                  I now see a point to always make the bed 
Instead of saying                     I will continue to wretch until I’ve recreated you from particles
I have been saying                  beginning each day with a long run has been helping me
Instead of saying                     your silence filled a plane that crash landed on the couch
I have been saying                  every time I leave the house I put Frank Sinatra on for the plants
Instead of saying                     that engine is still sitting in the living room, I think it is a live bomb
I have been saying                  the dog still just listens to 80’s hits while I’m gone
Instead of saying                     I think the captain is always calling your name
I have been saying                  I think I am always calling your name

Courtney Peters is currently a student and community servant in North Carolina. She has spent the last three years involved in community activism and organizing to help drug users and marginalized North Carolinians regain agency, with a lot of poetry thrown in. She writes to understand the trauma around her, both done to her and those around her. In her spare time, you can find her bending in a yoga room, buying plants, or spoiling her dog.

Becca Hartman


The double-hung window is painted shut
the first day, & when we scrape it open with
a boxcutter, a razor blade falls out & a 
cigarette butt lies in the pane.
It will be so easy to come of age here.
Chris is yelling about the reno crew and I’m standing
in the remaining August humidity too punchdrunk on
this life to feel real. The outside steps are the same
granite as City Hall and the upstairs rooms aren’t 
quite finished but to me, there’s nothing better than
being part of a story in progress.
And the story progresses--
it’s the first night surrounded by boxes in my undecorated room.
It’s grocery shopping & coming home with lettuce & La Croix &
just ordering take-out from Imperial instead.
It’s left-side street parking after midnight & saying hi on the stoop
to Next Door, who chainsmokes each sundown like clockwork. 
It’s waving to his daughter in the driveway.
It’s when he dies that winter & my roommate listens to paramedics through the wall.
Election day 2016 and I’m pulling my pillow over my head.
The accident mid-winter & the Jeep door caving in.
The break-in mid-spring & the 911 call in the living room.
The radiator hissing & the cat sleeping beneath it.
The church bells up the street & I’m pulling my pillow over my head.
The cat in the papasan chair.
The empty vegetable crisper.
The overflowing bookcase.
The snow-covered streets overlooked by the city.
The red front door.
The road trip to Rochester,
the end of the world.

Becca Hartman is a Leo sun/Libra moon, a college graduate, a vegetarian, and a barista from Buffalo, NY. In her spare time, she is most likely traveling, proofreading friends' med school papers, or listening to Bright Eyes--still, in 2018. Her work has previously been featured in the Rising Phoenix Review.

Adedayo Agarau

ghost city, black waters

the photo booth is also a town of memory     the dead

& the not so dead        their still voices lurking in monochrome 

turquoise blue             yellowish brown dreams         while we sleep            i             

dream of a woman trapping my body a bottle            my voice soared like an eagle

escaping a storm         but the toad in my throat is big           this morning

i wake into dusk          my father’s brother leaves his slippers by the door    & my

mother throws herself against the terrazzo                 there is a poignant truth in

heavy sighs     i count twenty-three stars falling down my father’s mouth   

& the wall holds the dead man tightly            my father held together by the bond

of blood & water         drops a tear                 my father cries                        my father 

wipes my uncle with his handkerchief  

Adedayo Agarau is a student and poet hoping to make the world a little better with his words and photography. He has works up at Barren MagazineGeometry and 8poems. He is the author of For Boys Who Went. His manuscript "Asylum Chapel," is coming to light for publication and looking for a good home. Please connect with him on twitter @adedayoagarau and on Instagram @wallsofibadan, where he documents the beauty and pain of his Nigerian city home.

Baylee Morgan

it’d be funny if it didn’t destroy you 

despite all of the
metaphors for
going to
the fucking jeweler
on a mission 
when he
slides his greasy palm
across the counter
into a
half ass greeting
to his surprise 
i’m looking to purchase
he’ll think well now
what the bloody fuck
did you come 
into a jewelers store
asking to purchase 
eggs for?
how foolish
the metaphors leak
right into
the genesis
oh no
you’re going to
wake up
in their bed
after alcohol
takes the wheel
and drives
looking for what
looking for love
looking for love
in the places you’ll
least find it
seeking validation
from people
who have never even
felt your magic
but we laugh
so funny
wouldn’t go to buy a record
at a drug store
wouldn’t go to the desert
for a drink
but my mind
will wander
into the idea
i need love
from all the people
least willing to give it
so maybe i’d
let my fingers slide across
the pitcher of water
pooling all around
as flames claw at my ankles
i’d grab the gasoline
make it so
the egg man
doesn’t win the award
for the most obtuse
vain humans
craving the acceptance
even from those we like
the least
it is here
it is the one you feed
and here
you feed the beast

Baylee Morgan is a wildfire trapped in a human body writing to reel in the flames, her mind residing in buffalo, new york for a spell. as she is new to sharing her work most of it can be found at bmowrites.wordpress.comor on instagram with the handle @bmo.writes.