Tuesday, 23 February 2016

A poem by Joe Hess

Rough Passage

Returning from the airport, I realized
I’d vocalized a vision of brown-eyed babies

too soon. It was our last conversation.
While the brownstones and pumpkins passed

back in Brooklyn, the cabbie turned the dial
to find a song that wasn’t Tracy Chapman’s,

“We Got a Fast Car.” I cut my wrist smashing
a bar mirror where someone wrote:

The richest are those who need the least.
During that fall of ‘89, I could feel love

dismantling while Berlin was on the brink
of unification. I remembered how you

taught me, I am hungry, in German, and I’d
jokingly respond, Ich bin hunger.

About Joe Hess
I received an MA in Poetry from Miami University in 2012 and an MFA
from Ashland University in 2015. I published two poems in the anthology
Off Channel, comprised of the 2009 finalists from the Mississippi Valley
Poetry Contest, and recently had a poem accepted by Marathon Literary
Review. I live in Columbus, Ohio.

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

A poem by Mark Russell

Coroner's Court

I was sent to cover the story
on a slow Wednesday afternoon
in erratic T-line and open-neck shirt:

A garden centre, less than busy.
Midweek, school holidays, warmed glass
drying the plants, heating and furniture.

The outdoor section has compost and topsoil,
sheds for tools, pottering, hiding,
ornamental ponds, a tempered aspect.

It is possible to spend more money
than you plan on days like this.
It is possible to learn a new Latin name

for a special rose, possible to drown
in less than a few inches of water,
especially if you are young, say three or four.

There are no small parts, it is said,
just small actors. No small stories, just 
some awful adventures.

Mark Russell has published two pamphlets, Saturday Morning Pictures (Red Ceilings),
and Pursued by Well-being (tall-lighthouse). His poetry has appeared recently in The
Rialto, The Interpreter’s House, and Bare Fiction. He leaves traces of himself at: