This chant worms into my ear,

telling me when I can what I can’t.

Bagpipes – far off

in some dark church – purr

like a quake about to start.

Brings to mind the nursery;

takes me down

the cul-de-sac of Memory Loop;

rhymes my ass

with the Holy Mass.

Lord have commerce with thy mercy!

Turns my skin – leaves

on a fall tree – all satiny.

Makes me ache to

tickle Satan’s ballsack.

Shameful how empty and stupid

this new world of rote,

repeating by heart all the joy

evil out of the script wrote;

while I, head on a pillow, muttering,

yawn myself awake…

to Morgan – Adrienne’s black cat –

just on my chest six kittens birthed.

Willie Smith


There is no death only renewal

Oleaginous his curiosity

The rhizome that grows, stretching out, seeking,

Until that is the earth that feeds it, sustains it, houses it,

Is flooded,

And then the ineluctable rot swells with alacrity,

black mush,

And then it ends,

Not even matter,

It’s dissipation,

 It’s nothing,

And what is she as she goes through one metamorphosis followed by

Another starting with a Korybant one of Goethe’s Witches a Necrophyle a Nymph a Siren a Harpy a Little Old Woman selling wares and it is here where magic becomes magick and it is here where they fear

Unreadable faces like Greek Magical Manuscripts opened to quell the quill the monotony from under the shadow of morning from under the shadow of the big tree and within the glowing penumbra

You look down but really you are looking up.

There are pools of mud and pools of stagnant water and pools of putrid flesh.

There are hills of powder puff that explode and dissipate. 

You are going up but really you are going down.

You are going down but really you are going up.

There is no death only renewal

A.E. Rithmore


drinking alone in the daytime

you stop looking at the clock

on the wall above the bar

you stop checking your wristwatch

you don’t even mind the man

sitting next to you being all touchy

 you don’t concern yourself

with the root-like-fingers

entering the cervices

 it doesn’t bother you

that he smells

of masturbation

and that he could be called de Rais

 and he could have killed twenty-five children

maybe more

and could be wearing a shirt of human flesh.

It is about this time

you suddenly realize

that you are a mathematical genius

and that you no longer need your thumbs and fingers to count

Barry Whitehouse


Mr. Hate’s voice

Mr. Hate’s voice has buggered off, done one, is now on the lam.

You’ll not see it but bychrist you’ll hear it.

He can’t find it anywhere.

It’s dun a bunk, pissed off, is now on the run.

He looks around the bedroom. Nothing. His feet slip into cold slippers. Here is joy. Not joy. Coldness. He brushes his teeth. The ones that are left. More lacunae than calcium. Would say “fuck” and “shit” repeatedly just to expel the silence if he could. He suffers pleasure

bangs and hammers with the hope the neighbors will be entertained. He checks inside the oven. Nothing. He checks inside the fridge. Still nothing.

Mr. Hate turns on the television.

Ads ease the pain and suffering of pleasure

A Politician sits within the television.

Mr. Hate listens.

The front room is pebbledashed with beautiful ad hominems.

Unable to abate his horrid voice he shouts:

                                                                   “There you are.” 

Harry Mytlehouse



Looking directly
into available
I don’t.
Not here,
not there,
I don’t
not know why,
I don’t.
Fear to see,
fear of mirrors;
mirror vertigo?
I don’t
not know why
I don’t.
But for you,
heart, I do
and fear no mirror
I transformed into us.

Gary Minkler 



Dad didn’t teach me shit.

Except how to wipe my ass,

how to throw a rock, drive a nail

and tell a phillips from that other kind of screw.

Dad prized his couple dozen lp’s of symphonies,

symphonic poems, opera picks.

On the leadup to his nightly soak,

he would shake the house

with – cranked – the New World Symphony,

rattle the windows with Ride of the Valkyries,

clatter the crockery with Caruso arias.

My earliest memory is:

in the living room, fantasy sword fighting

to the Romeo and Juliet Overture;

then hiding in my bedroom closet

when the music stopped, and Dad,

through wolfing his pint,

rampaged through the house slamming doors,

punching holes in walls, kicking the dog,

screaming obscenities, curses, damnations,

threatening my mother with divorce,

to see how she liked being penniless

without his daytime breadwinning skills.

Had Dad left the vodka alone,

and done everything else about the same,

I might have come to respect him as much

as the music he so diligently,

if accidently, inspired me to love.

The ogre, as it was, scared me nuts till age twelve;

after which, when I began finding bottles

all over the house, and I grew taller than him,

I hated the son of a bitch’s bastard.

Ever since he croaked,

over twenty years ago,

and I put on the Brahms, the Vivaldi, the Bach,

and I hear the mad old fuck’s rising anger sing,

I thank him, from the bottom of my wretched heart,

for all the light into my life he cast.   

Willie Smith


Honeymoon in Berlin 1987

Spores dance like fireflies, motes of dust burn like magnesium in water, our lungs sweat, our limbs liquify. We shouldn’t touch but carom. When we do we adhere painfully. Then we must divorce like velcro. The skin tears/ me on her / her on me. I can’t keep my hands off her, if I’m not touching her ass, I’m mauling her breasts, I can’t control myself, I’m rubbing her legs, fingering the nape of her neck, tickling her earlobes. – You’re too much, she says, and I concur, but I can’t stop myself from grabbing her, embracing her, falling on her. We blister. Are plagued by welts. It goes on and on/never ending/ and if it does end/ it starts again. It is the same thing, the same damn thing over and over again and there is nothing I can do. I am trapped. I must go through the same journey, along the same path, go through the same rituals. Convolvulaceous fingers with tips like lead trespass upon velutinous flesh. These fingers slip between the cleft, a kiss is placed on the nipple, the belly button is rummaged. It’s the heat, it the swelting heat. You’re giving me a rash, she says. I munch on her pubic hair, lick the sweat from her under arm, gather up the dandruff from her shoulder and eat it like it is powdered sugar.  You are Snow White in the bedroom, I say. You are Rumpelstiltskin in the bedroom, she says. Vagina dentata! I shout. Memento mori! she shouts.

Róbert Hayes


a poem

Go to line three to understand line one

She said to me

I did not fall I was pushed

I said to her

And I went back to line one.

Larry McClure


On the beach the children come and go

Blurring of geography

Awash upon the heaving sea

it dawns the child, aware now of longitude and latitude, adrift yes, adrift, thoughts becalmed, yes, but safe


– He’s dead in the water, said Henry

– I found her quite peculiar in a bohemian kind of way, said Judy

marooned in a bulbous bottle, corked

first of many cracks

combinations of double-bowline-knot, treble-crown-knot, back-handed-well-knot, knot-in-and-out-knot, and jamming-knot

His wandering mind created labyrinths where there were no labyrinths.

A headwind


Smoke and mirrors.

We are involved in a Praxitelean Murder Mystery.

As the marble falls, each particle no matter how big or small will reveal a story

But those pieces that were discarded, if only we could get our hands on those discarded pieces that were tossed onto the rubbish heap, to examine them, what they would reveal, just reveal

On the beach the children come and go talking of Cicero  

Joan Kevinour


Scott Walker

a riot of perfumes

she says

a riot of perfumes

he says

in the room the women come and go talking of Pissarro.

he brutalizes Carmen

she brutalizes L’Arlésienne Suite No. 1.

in the room the women come and go talking of Picasso.

we have syphilis

he says  

all of France has syphilis

she says

in the room the women come and go talking of Miro.

Joan Kevinour