Sovereign Clarity for Imaginary Visitors & one other by Christina Murphy

Issue 2

Sovereign Clarity for Imaginary Visitors

A bird calls me
A bear who eats with a silver spoon
A few couples walk off into the dark
A child crying in the night

A large stock of past lives
All they could do is act innocent;
And how are the rats doing in the maze?
At least one crucified at every corner

Evenings of sovereign clarity,
Extraordinary efforts are made;
For imaginary visitors, I had a chair;
Everything you didn’t understand

For those troubled in mind,
Give me a long dark night and no sleep;
If you don’t see the six-legged dog,
Go inside a stone

Heavy mirror carried
Here’s a woman’s black glove
Hanging by a thread
I believe in the soul; so far

It looks so dark, the end of the world may be near
It’s just a boarded-up shack with a steeple;
It seemed the kind of life we wanted
Lover of endless disappointments

Millions of empty rooms with TV sets turned on
My shadow and your shadow on the wall
Night is coming
My guardian angel is afraid

On a gray evening
Old men have bad dreams;
Once I knew, then I forgot
One night as I was dropping off to sleep

Source Text: Source Text: This poem is a collage of first lines from Charles Simic, New and Selected Poems: 1962-2012 (2013)

The Painted Horse of Appearances

Seems like a long time,
That awful deceit of appearances;
Taken as a whole, it’s a mystery
The brightly painted horse

Time’s hurrying me, putting me to the test
To grieve, always to suffer;
To find a bit of thread,
Watch it spin like a wheel

The time of the year for the mystics
At least one crucified at every corner;
You give the appearance of listening
There may be words left

Yellow feathers—
They were pale like stones on the meadow;
With the wind gusting so wildly,
You must come to them sideways

You were shaped to a fine point
You were always more real to me than God
Because I’m nothing you can name
I had a small, non-speaking part

Source Text: This poem is also a collage of first lines from Charles Simic, New and Selected Poems: 1962-2012 (2013)

Christina Murphy’s poems appear in a wide range of journals and anthologies, including, PANK, Dali’s Lovechild, Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal, and The Great Gatsby Anthology. Her work has been nominated multiples times for the Pushcart Prize and for the Best of the Net anthology.

The Hush Vine by Jessica Van de Kemp

Issue 2

Edges, making a life
with knives. Each night,

the white rooms enclose spirits.
Curtains nod at shadows.

Wet midnight in those houses.
Upwind, the moon signal,

slip pity. Hear climbing
premonitions like burning teeth.

Edge magnetism attracting a violet.
Driven like axes, felled sound.


Source Text: Don Domanski. “The Rouged Houses.” All Our Wonders Unavenged. Second printing. London, ON: Brick Books, 2007.

Jessica Van de Kemp (BA, B.Ed, MA) is a 2014 Best of the Net nominee. Her poetry chapbook, Spirit Light, is the second release in a new series from The Steel Chisel. Her poetry appears most recently in: The Wayfarer, Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal, Naugatuck River ReviewWritten River, Vallum, Hello Horror, Unbroken Journal, Halcyon Magazine, and the Switch (the Difference) Anthology from Kind of a Hurricane Press. The recipient of a BlackBerry Scholarship in English Language and Literature and the winner of a TA Award for Excellence in Teaching, Jessica is currently pursuing a PhD in Rhetoric at the University of Waterloo. Website: & Twitter: @jess_vdk

Both Captive and Fugitive by Tom Snarsky

Issue 2


The needle of a shattering word:
Hawthorns, used to castigate under the name of
Our minds as though they too were events,
External factors, a new and terrible meaning.

Cuckolded husbands, without being ideographic,
Needed simply to be read backwards;
To such beings, such fugitive beings,
The continuous weft of habit could not be sure.

Empfindung and Empfindelei bifurcate as they grow.
Reciprocal torture, nothing reprehensible.
Mirror of perfection – reformed thief, a subject
Of that love, untruthfully maligned, complying.

You Know That Noise by Jamison Crabtree

Issue 2

There is a zen koan; “this book
of love poems says nothing.”

After his girlfriend left
Noah Cicero had a tragic flaw:

Noah Cicero’s life.

This isn’t an argument.

According to people, this planet has a lot of people;
I have been watching Noah Cicero’s life.

According to people I don’t know, at times I am sorry.

She started texting while Noah Cicero was meditating.

Noah Cicero sent:

Noah Cicero sent:

Noah Cicero sent a pigeon running through NoahN Cicero;
sent this book of poems.

He told her as they walked away,

Source Text: First lines from Noah Cicero’s Bipolar Cowboy (Portland: Lazy Fascist, 2015)

Jamison Crabtree is a Black Mountain Institute PhD fellow at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. His first book, Rel(AM)ent was awarded the Word Works’ Washington prize. Find it at

Architecture of the Hills & one other by Owen Clayborn

Issue 2

Architecture of the Hills

the architecture
of the
parliament of the
earth hills
change with
every move within
the atoms dance
my feet dance like
marine love
loved from
limbs of mystery and force
directed far below
sigh drifting with the hands
waves of clocks
of lost love
stars moons
draw compass marks
on the surfaces of
heaven and the mountains
groaning swell.
feet and the
seas are
not mine anyway.

Source Text: The Independent, 21st September 2014


Humanity is doomed
Humanity is a virus
Humanity is overrated
Humanity is our power
Humanity is good
Humanity is in decline
Humanity is an ocean
Humanity is a cancer
Humanity is not concerned with us
Humanity is a plague
Existence is not a predicate
Existence is resistance
Existence is futile
Existence is meaningless
Existence is pointless
Existence is pain
Existence is reasonable
Consciousness is defined in the text as
Consciousness is to unconsciousness as
Consciousness is defined as
Consciousness is rooted in the
Consciousness is defined in your text as
Consciousness is dependent upon stimulation of the
Consciousness is best defined as
Consciousness is an illusion

Source Text: Google autocomplete search

Owen Clayborn is a British-American writer of short and full-length fiction, as well as poetry. He currently lives on a rainy island in the North Atlantic.