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ModPo & Experimental Poetry

Thousand Dollar Handbags, Hundred Dollar Lives


the thrusters to nowhere are always


flights never cancelled

expected ETAs



the chubby kid

on the front lawn

playing cops and robbers

with himself


knows what I am talking




from one side of the lawn

to the other

taking shots at


Ryan Quinn Flanagan lives in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada with his other half and mounds of snow.  His work can be found both in print and online in such places as: Evergreen Review, The New York Quarterly, Word Riot, In Between Hangovers, Red Fez, and Horror Sleaze Trash.

it is time to try and tell you what happened to me


her eyes? cat’s paws

batting the string

that holds me together

so I sing

no longer a package

no longer a thing

just breath moving

through everything


the thin tissue-paper

covering my grief

lifts like a torn scrap of nothing


I am exposed...


She sharpens her claws...




Seamus Duggan is an Irish poet and blogger, a winner of the Goodreads Newsletter Poet of the Month, October 2013, an original BTSer from Shelfari days, and an all around good guy, and oh yeah, a respectable musician.

           Silent Poems
              by Anthony Watkins
         Games Poets Play
              by ModPo Students

Frost's Blue-white Morning

Acquainted luminary Watchman

Unwillingly came

Before frozen other

He promises

Darkness, but

Like ingredients

Blue-white morning

One because

On as way

Robin Cohn of Boca Raton, Florida and is a poet who enjoys experimenting with both traditional and non-traditional poetic forms, but doesn't like to leave too much to chance.


This is a poetic mash-up of lines randomly generated from four Robert Frost poems. The lines were then un-randomly chosen and edited. 

Condensing the Astral


within the dream calling to you

you hear the ultra-sentient particles

vector at the speed of light

its conscious infinite


within the dream calling you

imagine a tipping point

you are endless, the dream reborn

you and I are dreamers of the cosmos


the journey to exist can be difficult

you hear the ultra-sentient particles

refined, they vibrate at a crossroads

where you and I are beings of the grid


of this sensual quantum soup

where to begin? The planet calls to you

vector at the speed of light

you hear waves expanding in its midst


that align us with the quantum soup itself

conversations with other storytellers

lead to an unveiling

its conscious infinite tipping point.


Carol A. Stephen


Poem was created for a prompt to create a new form. The lines were revised from an earlier erasure poem draft  originally found in generated material from the Bullshit generator

Reach by Kathleen Martin

i reach and stretch

and reach farther still

even on tiptoe and

pulled out of myself

i can't get there

maybe i'm not supposed to touch

maybe reaching is what it's all about

or maybe i just need to get a ladder

Kathleen Martin


I lost myself somewhere
along the lines on shore
doing things out of
the greed or the lust
and the responsibilities of life
seemed like a monster to me
losing myself to the unknown
do I run away
or stand in the crowd
not of the people but my own thoughts
for I have no interest whatsoever
in the things once seemed exciting
and all I want to do is 
start afresh
leaving behind the ashes of the past
secured and peaceful
just like the feel in the mothers lap
for her love is unprecedented and pure
and may God forgive all of my sins
so that I can Begin Again

Deepak Garg 

Better than Starbucks began wholly as a creation in my mind. Now the wonderful collaboration of four dedicated editors is creating a monthly magazine that I could have only dreamed about when I was starting out as a one person organization.


Having said that, there are no direct connections between U Penn, Al Filreis, KWH (Kelly Writers House), ModPo (Modern & Contemporary American Poetry), or any of the actual affiliated programs to ModPo and this magazine, other than I have been a part of ModPo for several years now. There is, however, a strong spiritual and intellectual connection between BTS and ModPo.


If I had not gotten involved in the larger community of ModPo, I don't think I would have restarted a literary publication. I am certain I would not have added a Formal & Rhyming Page, and probably not a Translations page. I have a pretty narrow preference for poetry, but the course and the people at ModPo have expanded my view of poetry to the point that I decided if I could find good people to help me do it, we would make BTS as broad of a source of styles and genres as possible. We have been fortunate to establish a team of talented editors and are in the process of an ever expanding quest to find poetry wherever it may be.

Thus, it seems fitting that we dedicate a page to my fellow students at ModPo, and/or anyone who wants to share experimental poems. The thing about experiments is, they often fail, but as the point is to learn, not to create perfection, even failed experiments in the lab or on this page, will offer something for us, if we will find it. and when the experiment doesn't fail... well, you will see! - Anthony Watkins

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