Reflection in Double Glazing
In this place
they trade souls
which some believe
and I say
“what sort of creature
to the parallel panes of glass
an image of the speaker
reflected one against another
against the night
in a series of frames
that stretch into the past
until the task is done.
It is the horror
of the empty glass
as a background
and the executioner moon
above a stretched horizon
extended like a neck,
of everything that is cruel.
It is cruel,
Martin Porter lives in Somerset, UK. He has been published in New Zealand, USA, and UK. A Pushcart nominee and Best of the Net nominee, he writes poetry and micro-prose. He was a member of the New Zealand National Flash Fiction Competition committee from 2016–2019.
Fake Blood and Rubber Bats
Out of the subterranean refuge
where the modern lepers
are burning both ends of a roman candle
under the irony of their silver spoons
came the cacophony of laughter
which led me to this Svengali
holding court with his wizened gloom
then this methuselah spoke
with a mouthful of
“my immortal fatigue
will gladly usurp your
always dying inside your head
until life leaves you
save for the specters under sheets
the only ghosts I knew
came out on Halloween
if you asked me about the macabre
I’d probably go on about
fake blood and rubber bats,
but after seeing that vampire down below
lamenting about an elusive grave
as if he couldn’t smell
that everyone in his congregation were all on death row.
First published in Terror House Magazine.
Eddie Brophy is a poet and blogger from Massachusetts and has an MA in Poetry. His poems have appeared in several literary magazines. You can visit his blog at: https://eddiebrophywriter.weebly.com.
online dating (2019)
she was so beautiful
I ignored it
when she said
the government had
while she was in the pen
perhaps I was lonely
so I ignored it
when she said
she thought I was a fed
sent to play her boyfriend
it has ended now
so I don’t need an answer
to which of us
is the magnet
and which is
the fridge door
Luke Kuzmish is a father, husband, software developer, recovering addict, and writer from Erie, Pennsylvania. He has published four chapbooks of poetry, the most recent being Hurry Up Wagon, and has also been published in online and print journals.
After Hamlet Died
From the carnage in the court of Denmark
only one man survived.
What became of Horatio?
I suspect he became a bureaucrat
in the service of Fortinbras.
He, after all, knew where the bodies were buried —
And he was a courtier to his bones.
If Ophelia had lived, they might have
married each other,
as survivors often do,
but she, in his mind,
was covered with sodden lilies.
So he lived for his work
and grew old,
a relic of another age,
dying at last full of honors.
All his life he had nightmares
that saw everything soaked in blood.
Gail White is the resident poet and cat lady of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. Her books Asperity Street and Catechism are available on Amazon. She is a contributing editor to Light Poetry Magazine (lightpoetrymagazine.com).
The zodiac cursed me,
sewed my mother’s love into a star
and banished it to a galaxy so many light years away
that I will be a memory of a vaseful of ashes
before it ever shines on me.
It should be enough to spin on my own axis,
to spiral around the cosmos following my own light,
so why do I feel I have been plunged into perpetual night?
Christine Liwag Dixon is a writer and musician. She is currently working on her first novel.
The Emptiness that Marks Us
Thousands of years from now, the dead bodies we leave behind
will have turned to lye and eaten their way through the earth. Great caverns
will spread beneath our cemeteries as bodies melt through caskets
as empty and huge as the cathedrals crumbling above ground.
Small creatures will find their way into these caverns, their descendants
slowly becoming blind with each new generation. Pools of water
filled with eyeless fish and newts will spread through the tunnels
perhaps still carrying traces of embalming fluid and lead.
Holly Day’s poetry has recently appeared in Asimov’s Science Fiction, Grain, and Harvard Review. Her newest poetry collections include In This Place, She Is Her Own (Vegetarian Alcoholic Press), and A Wall to Protect Your Eyes (Pski’s Porch Publishing).
A Waterfall 1910 by John Singer Sargent (1856–1925)