Laurel Bastian

P. Edward Cunningham

Timothy Gager

Alexandra Isacson

Kristin Lueke

Jal Nicholl

Paul Sacksteder

Peter Schwartz

Doug Tanoury

By Laurel Bastian, Oct 26, 2009

The tools:
           A stethoscope.
           A dowsing rod.

           Thirty years we’ve searched without sleep
in the blue, in the kidney-rich evening,
unpinning the coroner’s song,
           our timepiece always
turned before the last grain
drops, our name exhaustion.
           Conscious mind, front man
of the five star band, you freeload.
As if you don’t know the fields
           of dead we eat for you,
the small bones we stack like twigs
and neatly bury. Us cog, us secret verb,
           us dark star center.
Us insomniac, us hunter.
Us ceaseless in macabre burlesque.

           You. Who do not intercede.

Laurel Bastian has work in Margie, Puerto Del Sol, Nimrod, the Cream City Review, and other publications, was a finalist for the Ruth Lilly Fellowship, and runs a creative writing program at a men’s correctional facility. Visit her at


The Yellow Train Car
By P. Edward Cunningham, Oct 19, 2009

The trains are moving like slow fog today. Rubbing against the earth like throbbing rabbits. Each car hurts badly and only one is afraid of the dark. Some cars carry coal and some carry invisible children. Two transparent youths begin fighting because both wish to ride in the long train’s yellow car. The larger child kicks the smaller child in the face and he falls off the train. And he rolls into a parking lot featuring occasional clusters of cactuses. As the larger child takes his seat in the yellow car, he watches as buzzards strip the invisibility from the smaller child. The yellow car tightens as the large invisible child jumps up and down exclaiming, “I am king of this here train.” The train moves into the mouth of a moaning tunnel and the large invisible child continues screaming his title. The train exits the tunnel and runs off a cliff. Plunging toward the ground, the train’s king grips his invisible arms.

His invisible arteries swell

P. Edward Cunningham resides in an area of Pennsylvania named after a beaver. He co-edits Radioactive Moat and he’s a contributing writer to Open Thread. His work has appeared in or is forthcoming in DOGZPLOT, Read Some Words, Neon, and Ghoti/Fish. His book of essays, This Boy/This Broom is forthcoming from BatCat Press. He blogs at


From the Weekend
By Timothy Gager, Oct 27, 2009

a hair left; later
found on my pillow
acts like the faucet
shut off, turned on

the water heater whistled,
did you hear it,
the wind through the trees?

Was it the woods, your laugh
Saturday, when a lonely guy
at the bar asked us
what we did
and I said, I killed cows.

Timothy Gager is the author of seven books of short fiction and poetry. The poetry chapbooks, These Poems are not Pink Clouds (Propaganda Press) and this is where you go when you are gone (Cerena Barva Press) were released in 2008. He hosts the Dire Literary Series in Cambridge, Massachusetts, every month and is the co-founder of Somerville News Writers Festival. His eighth book, Treating a Sick Animal: Flash and Micro Fictions is due out from Cervena Barva Press, Nov. 2009.


Young Girl in Profile in Renaissance Dress
By Alexandra Isacson, Oct 20, 2009

For Princess Bianca Sforza who married and died months later at the age of 14 around 1496

Leonardo releases caged birds—
with the flight of his hands
bone & feather wings arc into
the veins of the black amphelite sky.
He layers sfumato smudges on yellow
vellum to color Bianca’s gown.
Her head haloes in a circlet
of sacred geometry knots &
criss-crosses her hair and sleeves.
She is the amber-eyed Milanese
spectral vision—flashed with Christie’s
of New York camera obscura
catalogued: German early 19th century.
The hammer slams down for $19,000.
Leonardo’s palm and thumb caresses
Bianca’s flush neck and smudges
her forehead with fingerprint whorl—
blessing like St. Jerome in the Vatican.

Alexandra Isacson is graduate of Arizona State University with degrees in English and religious studies. Her poetry and prose currently appears in such places as Wilderness House Literary Review, DOGZPLOT, PANK, Scapegoat Review, FRiGG, and elsewhere. One of her poems has recently been nominated for the Best of the Net anthology. Please visit her here:


The way the room remains
By Kristin Lueke, Nov 04, 2009

not so flat
as your strange need

for erasure—
the way rain weighs

the rain’s way


Do not expect
the wait.

The clouds
are every day’s

(in any case)

old records on
a floor

our sea
expands across.

Kristin Lueke received her MA in Humanities at the University of Chicago, where she completed a chapbook she should try to have published called The Troubadour Detours.


Sacred Mystery Poem
By Jal Nicholl, Nov 03, 2009

What sex is this
Dolly, & then lastly

it did fish
out of

dwelling in temperate
soil the people intrepidly

the same who they were

its prompts
liveried wiccan empowered & willing
himself a woman

once again, can
you elucidate which

gender that mannequin

Jal Nicholl lives in Melbourne, Aust., and works as a secondary teacher. His poetry has recently appeared in Arena Magazine, Otoliths and Overland.


A Family History
By Paul Sacksteder, Oct 30, 2009

for Tom Bedford


I own a phantom collection of wonderful marbles
such great predictors of the past
this one made from stone
traced with a finger wraps forever
painted the color of
dirt and sepia


where are the boundaries of such memories
should we not spill out past
the borders of our own territories
I never want you to end here
not with your eyes averted
and your hands in your lap


the history of families
is a difficult thing
a face is an imagined world
if you’re not looking
and the ground will not pull away
without the division of cells and cells and cells


this will outgrow all of us
a reverberation
released from ancient vocal chords
the soft curvature of the true horizon
was never even apparent
can’t you remember
the texture of skin
the smell

Paul Sacksteder lives and works in the strange town of Las Vegas, Nevada. For the last four years, he’s been a composition instructor and completed an MFA at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. His work has appeared in Why Vandalism? and Absentmag.


By Peter Schwartz, Nov 05, 2009

come pepper the ordinary
earn salt with your hands
camouflage’s dirty work

but the trenches are glowing
and it’s there that you’ll find your
most indigenous mountains

your fauna and fixtures
your dry salvation, there you’ll
learn movement doesn’t

need punctuation, there you’ll
give up that precious separate
the catalog of wrongs

you carry like a scarecrow
everywhere you go, there
you’ll see how the heat

of every possible sequel
burns into the ozone with
or without you, there

you’ll learn that
truth is only truth
by residue

Peter Schwartz’s poetry has been featured in The Columbia Review, DIAGRAM, and Opium Magazine. When not dreaming of literary conferences he’s writing or taking photos or thinking of who he should get for the next issue of DOGZPLOT, where he is the art editor. Learn more about his work at:


St. Christina the Astonishing
By Doug Tanoury, Oct 30, 2009


Doug Tanoury began writing and publishing poetry on the Internet in 1996. He founded Athens Avenue, an international group of Internet poets that write together and support each other in writer’s colony fashion. Doug’s work has been featured in the New York Times Online, Yahoo! Internet Life, The Detroit News and the Detroit Metro Times. Simply typing TANOURY into any Internet search engine returns results that reveal a large amount of Doug’s recent electronic publications. Doug is the founder of Funky Dog Publishing, which specializes in poetry publication in both electronic and traditional media. Funky Dog Publishing has published both electronic and paperbound poetry chapbooks. Doug’s publication credits include Writer’s Digest, Poetry Magazine, A Small Garlic Press, The Denver Quarterly, The Pittsburgh Quarterly, Zuzu’s Petals, Pif Magazine, Plum Ruby Review as well as many others. Doug has published seventeen electronic volumes of poetry.