Thursday, November 24, 2016

New Zombie Logic Press Painting By Jack

My guy Jack, aged six, did this painting a few months ago, and I thought that's an awesome painting. Last week he gave me the painting because he said I didn't have one of his paintings at the Downtown Office. He then instructed me to post this at the Zombie Logic Press fan page. It is one of my favorite things in the world. 


Thursday, November 3, 2016

Outlaw Poems By Alfonso Colasuonno

Alfonso Colasuonno writes poetry, short fiction, and for the screen. Alfonso is the co-founder of Beautiful / Losers Magazine (beautifullosersmag.com). He graduated from Beloit College with a BA in creative writing. Alfonso currently lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

Gutter Punk Poets on the 7 Train 

We talked about GG Allin 
He was a nice boy
Reserved, modest
When he wasn't on stage
Showing off his dicklet
Fighting like some mad bull
Cutting himself
Sticking needles up his cock made of hard candy
A master showman, no more no less

He met GG at a party
Awkward, of course
Standing near a stairwell
Not saying anything to anyone
Not looking at anyone
Almost bashful, that sensitive boy
Then he got knocked down a stairwell
By a misplaced shoulder

And I told the junkie on the 7 train
That same story after
He played that same Oblivians song
I heard him play that other time before
The one I mistook for a Social Distortion song
And we spoke about Reigning Sound 
And I mixed up Jack Oblivian and Greg Cartwright
He had a zine, of course
And I felt self-conscious about my khakis
Peppermint shirt, polished dress shoes
1960s Mad Men facade

And when I saw that punk on the 7 train
Busking on the subway once again
Oblivians on acoustic, again
I shook his hand
And we talked about Henry Darger
And Dead Moon 
And the Sonics
And Norton Rex

And for once, I didn't feel false.

Poet Alfonso Colasuonno



Clubs and Coke

He adopts the term
One percenter
Without the slightest bit
Of irony in his voice
And tries desperately
To hide his past
Defeats and miseries
He readily enjoys
His new life 
At the discos
Dancing to chillwave
And doing lines of blow 
With the models
In the bathrooms
Of the clubs
That he used to pass
And not bother
Even trying to get in
And I've known him
For a while
And I really want to ask him
How does it feel?





A New American Prayer

I should stop pussyfooting around and admit it to you, my love, I'm compelled by some strange force to travel across this smallpox-founded land, a nation born on blood, weaned on bones, to visit every nook, to poke around every cranny, to talk to our disparate people, to connect, to find out just what this country truly is, that question we've asked for centuries, who are we, who are these people...I came out the womb a gypsy, destined to a wanderer's life, to partake in fare at greasy spoons, and sleep next to you in cheap motels, wake up to syndicated television and the juices of your sex dry on my stubbly face, and we'll go for a smoke after we rub the sand out of our eyes, and then take a shot, and another, drive for miles on end, past the mountains, past the deserts, past the vast expanses of empty space, stirring in our mutually agreed upon silence. I'm a writer, honey, but I never wanted that; I dreamed of CB's and sixteen wheelers when I was young, the road always knew my name, dear. I didn't know Kerouac back then, this beast was intrinsic. I'm restless by nature; my demons cannot be exorcised.



Shotgun Blows

You remember that scene in that Hemingway novel where that old fisherman reeled in the lady fish cause the gent fish led her feed first because he loved her and besides that’s just what fish do and that old fisherman just reeled her in, and she fought and fought to no avail, and she died, and he just swam around, broken, his world upended, with no one to swim with, and she was gutted down, and he was gutted down.

That Hemingway was an interesting guy, you know, just the real swashbuckling type, a man, a real man, you don’t see that much from the writer types, and he went on his adventures, warring, and hunting, and fishing, writing, corresponding, womanizing, not much like a writer type at all.

Sometimes we all break, and if it could happen to a man, a real man, a man like him, well, hell, what hope is there for any of us?



Fortunate Son in Pennsyltucky

The men are all quite loud
The Latino is the loudest
The white man is loud too
The lilt of Appalachia in his voice
And his friend’s Spanglish
Converge like a symphony
At the McDonald’s on Main

The three of them talk about sex
The quiet guy
Latino or white, I can’t tell
Doesn’t say much
When he speaks, it’s loud
And it doesn’t sound like Appalachia or Latin America
The white man laughs,
“You like your coffee like you like your women – black”
The ambiguous guy asks,
“Your girl got out of prison yet?”
The Latino laughs,
“She already out”
“She got white hair?”
“No, she blonde”
“She got no hair?”
“No hair?”
“No hair down there”
The white man laughs
And so does the Latino
I lose track of the conversation

A slack-jawed boy
Next to his slack-jawed grandmother
Asks for my grease-stained Monopoly pieces
“Thank you”
I turn my eyes
Mutter a haughty “You’re welcome”
And empty my tray

I put fifty cents in the jukebox at the bar
Whisper into my beer
It ain’t me
It ain’t me
Even I know that’s a lie.



Hipster on the L Train Performing a Soliloquy 

I’m so fuckin’ happy, dude
I just moved into this sweet two bedroom in Bushwick
The realtor said it was in East Williamsburg
But I think he was just trying to make it sound all classy and shit
I don’t know why he was doing that shit, man
I mean, the neighborhood is getting some buzz
There’s a ton of chill people around doing shit, making art, living life
People like us, man, young people
I mean it’s not so sketch anymore
The homeless guys
You know the type, right?
The ones that sit on milk crates with their shirts off
Drinking 40s outside of the bodega
Well, I don’t know, man
I don’t think they’ll be here forever
I mean, shit, 1850 for a two bedroom?
Dudes like that have to be slinging some yay or something to afford that
Hey, I almost forgot, do you know that bar on the corner?
I went in the other day
It’s sweet, man
It’s nice to have a place like that around
I mean it’s all nail shops and cheap clothes and 99 cent stores and storefront churches, and fuck, man
I mean how ghetto can you get?
But, yeah, anyway, this place is pretty cool
They have a fucking cheap ass PBR and Old Crow combo for five bucks 24/7, dude
And they even have shit from Norton Rex on the jukebox
And, fuck man, the bartender last night was this totally smoking redhead in a Crass tee
I swear she wanted to hook up or something
She was downing shots with me all fucking night
It’s a fucking shame that I had too many or some shit like that
I’ve got to pace myself, man
But, hey, at least I didn’t get all whiskey dick on her
Fuck, it’s crazy out here
You gotta come out here, man
Bushwick needs you!



Section 8 

Pills that make you face another day at work.
Pills that make you not take another insult to heart.
Pills that make you alert - counteracting other pills.
Pills that counteract those pills - so that you can fall asleep
In order to take more pills to make you be able to face another day at work.
  
The gears continue spinning
Their clockwork motion, uninterrupted
Like BMWs in LA traffic moving steadily along the freeway
Driven by doctors heading to offices to prescribe pills
Doctors with second homes in La Jolla - paid for by Pfizer.

Patients stare glass eyed at doctors
New excuses given to obtain more pills
Handed out with beneficent nods and careful handshakes
Prescriptions with controlled substance warnings
Handed to knowing Russian émigré pharmacists
Who take their cut of the profits.

And when those pills stop working? 
More pills will be waiting in hand.
And what then?
Group therapy with illicit addicts, ex-cons, and patients
And a warm bed at Bellevue
With the eventual hope to be released back into society
This time with stronger doses of pills.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Two Poems By Andrew Hubbard

Andrew Hubbard was born and raised in a coastal Maine fishing village.  He earned degrees in English and Creative Writing from Dartmouth College and Columbia University, respectively.

For most of his career he has worked as Director of Training for major financial institutions, creating and delivering Sales, Management, and Technical training for user groups of up to 4,000.

He has had four prose books published, and his fifth book, a collection of poetry, was published in 2014 by Interactive Press.

He is a casual student of cooking and wine, a former martial arts instructor and competitive weight lifter, a collector of edged weapons, and a licensed handgun instructor.  He lives in rural Indiana with his family, two Siberian Huskies, and a demon cat.



Confirmed


I lie in long grass
With the spotter behind me.
He smells.  Probably I do too.
“Don’t be a judger,” my wife would say.

We are watching the doorway
Of a pretty, bamboo cottage
Eight hundred yards dead ahead.
I’ve adjusted the rifle on its tiny tripod for the distance
And a fitful breeze from the east.

The light couldn’t be better.

Mosquitoes and firebugs bore in
There’s nothing to do but take it.
It’s 100 degrees.  I hydrate
From a backpack and pee
Into the special pants they give us.

The worst thing is the time.
We know that going in, but it is very difficult.
Eight hours, then ten, then twelve,
Fourteen.  At about eighteen
He appears in the doorway
I know him by his medals.
Why are they so stupid to wear their medals?

The spotter with his sixty power scope
Says, “target confirmed, take him.”

I squeeze the trigger as though I were touching my wife.

The rifle whispers, “phut.”
There is an agonizing, eternal, two-second pause
And then the man’s arms fly out sideways
And he hurls back into the cottage darkness.


“Confirmed,” says the spotter
And we shimmy a mile back
To the river.  I have R and R in Bangkok
Where the most beautiful girls in the world
Cost fifty dollars a week,
Introduce you shyly to their family, 
And cry when you leave them.

By then the nightmares have stopped
And I’m ready to do it
One more time.

Poet Andrew Hubbard



Not Hiring


When TJ Maxx closes
And re-opens as Payday Loans
You know your town has a problem.

The want ads used to fill three pages
In the local paper.  Now—
Barely one.  I stopped reading them
Three?  six? months ago.  Most of the jobs
Are commission only, or they don’t exist,
Or they have a catch, like you have to take
A thousand dollar training course,
Or buy a franchise.

Thank god my wife works!
At the donut shop downtown.
She got the arthritis in her hips.
It hurts so bad, on her days off
She usually doesn’t get out of bed.
But the donut shop won’t give benefits
So what are we gonna do?

The wife, she found a way
To steal donut dough from the shop.
She brings home a two pound baggie
Almost every day.

She jokes, “thank god I’m so fat
I can hide the bag on me
And nobody thinks nothin’ of it.”

At first we were ashamed.
Now we’re just glad to have the dough.


She found some way to bake it up
Into loaves of something like bread.
We eat it with lard.  Or crabapples
I get from the run-down farm across the way.

I used to spend my days
Watching television and shooting pool.
The television is long gone
And the poolroom is out of the question.

Now, I swear I don’t know
How the days go by
But somehow each one ends
And then another one begins.

I used to worry a lot,
Now I don’t even care
Enough to worry.

































Poetry By A.J. Huffman

A.J. Huffman has published thirteen full-length poetry collections, thirteen solo poetry chapbooks and one joint poetry chapbook through various small presses.  Her most recent releases, The Pyre On Which Tomorrow Burns (Scars Publications), Degeneration (Pink Girl Ink), A Bizarre Burning of Bees (Transcendent Zero Press), and Familiar Illusions (Flutter Press) are now available from their respective publishers.  She is a five-time Pushcart Prize nominee, a two-time Best of Net nominee, and has published over 2600 poems in various national and international journals, including Labletter, The James Dickey Review, The Bookends Review, Bone Orchard, Corvus Review, EgoPHobia, and Kritya.  She is also the founding editor of Kind of a Hurricane Press.  www.kindofahurricanepress.com.


Of Martinis and Madcap Religion

            -- after Last Martini, artist Michael Godard

An olive, a pretzel, and a handful of garnishes
walked out of a bar and into a local church.  The stained
glass mistook the pimento pit for a stigmata,
shattered instantly.  The others
gathered the pieces, built an arc
over the hot tub, decided to stew in their own liquid
sin until the sun came up, or God decided to peel
their skins off.

Poet A.J. Huffman


Jade

You keep me, like a jewel, in a box,
lucky, priceless, but full
of deathly curse.
If you touch me, I win.
If you sell me, you lose.
So you choose to bury me
between your bed and the floor.



My Mother Should Have Named Me Catastrophic

Despair is my favorite color. 
I tie it like a bow in my hair.
My smile is a noose.  I do not try
to disguise.  Touch
me three times, and I will find
a million ways to make you
cry.



Electric Spiders

reign from terror strings dripping
nightmare shades of fried.  Velocity
stutters its own
                          language.  Panic
is a precedent.  Dance dissolves
revolves around the center cell.  Just
don’t call yourself.
                                Fly . . . 





Welsh Poet Lynn White

Lynn White lives in north Wales. Her work is influenced by issues of social justice and events, places and people she has known or imagined. She is especially interested in exploring the boundaries of dream, fantasy and reality. Her poem ‘A Rose For Gaza’ was shortlisted for the Theatre Cloud ‘War Poetry for Today’ competition 2014. This and many other poems, have been published in recent anthologies including – Stacey Savage’s ‘We Are Poetry, an Anthology of Love poems’; Community Arts Ink’s ‘Reclaiming Our Voices’; Vagabond Press’s, ‘The Border Crossed Us’; ‘Degenerates – Voices For Peace’, ‘Civilised Beasts’ and ‘Vagabonds: Anthology of the Mad Ones’ from Weasel Press; ‘Alice In Wonderland’ by Silver Birch Press, and many rather excellent  on line and print journals.

Welsh poet Lynn White



Frogs That Can Fly

Three rooks flew over loudly
croaking.
The frogs below were intrigued.
“How do we fly?”, they croaked
in reply.
“How do we fly?”
“How do we swim?”
croaked the rooks in response.
“If you fall from the sky
we’ll teach you to swim,”
united and loud the frogs croaked
in reply.
“ So tell us, please, won’t you,
how do we fly?”


...................................

Bobbley Things

Those knobbley, bobbley things 
are marching forth across,
covering the sidewalks 
in a pavement proliferation
of ever wider strips,
ever steeper ramps,
ever stranger cambers
determined to catch you out.
I know that they are only really designed 
to trip up those who can’t see very well,
but they are a problem for everyone
those knobbley, bobbley things.

I wonder, was the man designing them 
bitten by a vicious guide dog, out of control?
Or perhaps he was floored by the too eager 
waving of a white stick?
I think something has caused him 
to bear a grudge.
But it can’t be justified.
when they are difficult for everyone
those knobbley bobbley things.

And yes, I know it’s a ‘him’.
No woman would endanger 
her high heeled strut
in such a way.
They are a male invention,
those knobbley, bobbley things.
Man made and increasingly
creating problems for everyone.
Seemingly unstoppable
in their forward march.


.........................................

The Stack of Stones

The stack of flat stones
was piled much higher once.
It formed a rough stairway
all the way to heaven,
till someone took it down
to pave their patio.

......................................

Oranges


Little paper people
eating oranges.

Big paper people
eating oranges.

Brown paper bags
full of people

eating oranges. 



Poetry By Glen Armstrong

Glen Armstrong edits a poetry journal called Cruel Garters and has three recent chapbooks: Set List (Bitchin Kitsch,) In Stone and The Most Awkward Silence of All (both Cruel Garters Press.)


The Woman with a Thousand Heads #14


It's like drinking gin 
that drinks you back.
She says your name 
and it glistens, still moist

from being reborn in her mouth.
It’s like being startled
by a silence that’s always been
there instead of a sudden

loud noise and jumping
into each others arms,
but your arms are now the same
arms in the manner that a Mobius 

strip turns two surfaces 
that never meet into a single path.


Poet Glen Armstrong


Slash for the Lowlands #8


Mars is now a little closer.
The bubbles that you blew never
popped, and I took Hell for that,

your breath like a floral grenade.
It was as if I’d used the word “she-goat”
repeatedly or replaced

the term with a number of lexemes
that all wore the cruddiest of plastic
Halloween masks, their DayGlo colors

barely designed, their elastic bands
detached to either the left or right.
It was as if I’d done all of this

to defame you and our relationship.
I see now that bubbles take breath hostage,
and words shamelessly beg for sweets.
     •

Depending on the season, what is most important may not be most relevant. The reveal would have us believe, but belief is a commitment, revelation a rarer animal, a more complex threat.



On Time


Please be on the superficial. 
Please be on the fashionable. 
Please be on the waterfall.
Please shut the door.

Please be on the public road.
Please be on the head
of a politician.
(Not our leader but that other one,
the one who causes trouble
on the nightly broadcasts.)

If you need to be on Jessica,
please use something.
Enough is enough already.

Grandmother feeds the birds.

Please be on the surface.
In the varnish.
Reflecting.

I swear I have a mind
to celebrate,

but please be on the mindful.
Please be on the hour.


Outlaw Poetry By Paul Tristram

Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography 
published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids 
instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight; this too may pass, yet.
Buy his books ‘Scribblings Of A Madman’ (Lit Fest Press) http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1943170096 
‘Poetry From The Nearest Barstool’ at http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1326241036
And a split poetry book ‘The Raven And The Vagabond Heart’ with Bethany W Pope 
at http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1326415204
You can also read his poems and stories here! http://paultristram.blogspot.co.uk/


For Fuck Sake!

“Oi! Stop being a cunt here, mun.
Do us all a fucking favour
and ban that idiot sat over there
who keeps crying into his beer
whilst mumbling ‘Debra’
under his breath like a fucking loser.
That’s the 20th time he’s put on 
‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’.
I swear… one more fucking time
and I’m a head-butt the pool table
into quarters
and lamp the twat with the largest piece.
He’s ruining ‘Giro Day’ for all of us!” 

© Paul Tristram 2016




Amphetamine, Alcohol & Anarchy

He’s a one man affray.
A walking blinking, blinding
slot machine
upon trouble-seeking legs
and the jackpot is Mayhem.
An insult for each question,
scornful fists as answers.
There’s no heart upon his sleeve
only bloody gang colours.
Doesn’t comprehend 
queues or patience,
the only waiting he does
is for drug dealers,
the off-licence to open
or duty solicitors to turn up
at the police station.
Doesn’t give two flying fucks
for the rules & system,
has a code all of his own.
Takes life as it’s thrown at him
and throttles its irritating throat.
Laughs at Heaven, Hell & Valhalla
and every other thing
not here… right now… before him.
Juggles ‘Playing It Loose’
& ‘Keeping It Fast & Tight’
with perfect animal instinct.
And when Her Majesty
hasn’t got him at her pleasure,
he’s wherever the noise is in Town.

© Paul Tristram 2016




Aggressive Walking

I was talking to that new guy
up on the 3’s
a couple of nights ago
in the canteen queue.
Yeah, with the scars, 
that’s the fucker.
He’s a sandwich short of a picnic
that one, ain’t he.
Fucking out there like… Pluto!
Does a lot of snarling,
a bit disconfuckingcerting
when the cunt’s 
standing right up behind you like.
Anyway, I played it safe
and swapped places with him.
If someone’s getting it
from behind
then it’s gonna be me
holding the shank & blindsiding,
know what I mean, mate.
We got to nattering,
as you do like.
Well, in between him
arguing with himself?
I asked him what he was in for?
I was more than a little curious.
He answered ‘Aggressive Walking’
can you Adam & Eve it?
Is there even such a thing?
And he claimed to be a repeat offender.
Mad as a bucket of frogs, that one,
stay well clear if I was you, son.

© Paul Tristram 2016




Horrible People Smile Too

But it’s not their faces (Either one of them!)
that you should be concerned with.
You can’t ask a nasty Bastard
to listen to sense and reason… they have none.
Or expect a sneaky, snaky, cowardly scumbag  
to start playing fair… they don’t play fair.
Don’t be drawn in by false flattery
it’s just part of their deception.
What’s going on beneath that calm, friendly surface
is a different story all together.
They are leading you ‘Down The Garden Path’
with sweet, insincere butterfly voices,
setting you up tidily for an unpleasant fall.
You are a victim in the making,
they are tuned into your niceness, honour,
sense of justice and fair play.
And they are going to try to use 
your own strengths and good character against you.
By trying to put out that ‘Light’ shining in your soul,
why? because they have no substance of their own.

© Paul Tristram 2016




The Last Laugh Isn’t For You, Fuckface… But It Will Be About You!

The best end to a prison phone call
I ever heard was 
Tommy Two Ribs from Ystalyfera
growling 
“The last laugh isn’t for you, Fuckface
… but it will be about you!”
I’m waiting to use the Landing’s
dog & bone next, I laugh and say
“You know them things are monitored?
Careful how ye tread.”
“Fuck ‘em, I’m just finishing up
an 8 for malicious wounding, mate…
what they gonna gate-arrest me
for threatening words & behaviour?
A Mickey Mouse public order offence?
What’s the most can happen, eh?
28 day imprisonment cooldown.
You’re having a laugh ain’t ya,
I’d do that standing on me head
and have to ask for another 28 days
just to get me back on my feet again.
Nah, fuck ‘em and their bollocks, son.
That wasn’t no threat anyway…
it was clairvoyancy,
I was doing the slag a favour.
Besides, I should be getting him nicked
not the other way ‘round…
cunt didn’t cross a gypsies palm with silver,
I’m the victim here… I’ve been robbed!”

© Paul Tristram 2016




The Bareknuckle Bantam’s

You can try fighting a force of nature
but that shit’s going to get you down.
As heavy as a New Orleans Summer
and thirteen notches up from grazing.
The bars around here are splinter palaces
come Friday and Saturday night.
Pool table change, beer money,
switchblades and old school brass knuckles.
There’s a pecking order everywhere,
downtown gangland lines are being crossed.
The Boys in Blue are screeching
grown up schoolyard battles 
upon every major inner-city corner.
Everyone’s high and drinking ‘Gun-Ho!’
and ‘In Like Flynn’ 40oz bottles.
Dressing razor-sharp, tattooed colours,
turf-strutting with your 25 man pride.
It’s the modern day gladiator arena,
barbaric, caveman and bone to bone.
It’s where you earn your rank and legend
where a warrior’s scars are traded blow for blow.

© Paul Tristram 2016