From MOTEL 6
These bedbugs make love with you.
They fit. She kept both keys.
Between us, dark matter matters.
The sink perfect for washing underwear.
Michael Martone, born in Fort Wayne, worked there as a night auditor in a hotel. The night auditor’s job is to “balance the house.” He had hoped to write stories those long empty nights. Wrong! Most mornings, around four, he knew, he knew, the house was gravely “out of balance.”
I wanted to be a novelist.
–Helena M. Pugsley
Helen M. Pugsley comes from a small town in eastern Wyoming. They have been passionate about writing since they were small. Helen has been working on The Gishlan Series since 2010 which blossomed from their debut novel War and Chess. Helen is proud to be a novelist.
Avalanched. Pissing for the search dogs.
Burrowing for days. Upward, I hope.
Planning to be spontaneous very soon.
GJ Stratman has been writing for decades and publishing for days, his raw material finally being shaped into a shareable form. He has taught and done practically every type of writing, and his five granddaughters (#6 on the way) keep providing him ample material for future work.
It rains. Flowers land like stars.
–Tameca L. Coleman
Tameca L Coleman is a QPOC singer, multi-genre writer, itinerant nerd and point and shoot art dabbler. They have published or have forthcoming work at Heavy Feather Review, Full Stop Reviews, pulpmouth, Inverted Syntax, Lambda Literary, Rigorous Magazine and more. Their social media handle is @sireneatspoetry.
Tarot reading. A long year ahead.
Mark Danowsky is author of the poetry collection As Falls Trees (NightBallet Press), Managing Editor of the Schuylkill Valley Journal, and Editor of ONE ART poetry journal.
All funerals are now postponed indefinitely.
–Shinelle L. Espaillat
Shinelle L. Espaillat teaches at Dutchess Community College in NY. Her work has appeared in the collections How Higher Education Feels and Shale: Extreme Fiction for Extreme Times, as well as in Two Hawks Quarterly, Minerva Rising Literary Journal, Ghost Parachute, The Westchester Review, Cleaver Magazine and Midway Journal.
Pen line on a map, we follow.
Missed period, the manuscript laid aside.
Cynthia Gallaher, a Chicago-based poet, is author of four poetry collections, including Epicurean Ecstasy: More Poems About Food, Drink, Herbs and Spices (The Poetry Box, Portland, 2019), and three chapbooks, including Drenched (Main Street Rag, Charlotte, N.C., 2018). The Chicago Public Library lists her among its “Top Ten Requested Chicago Poets.”
“4 A.M. Alarm”
Smoke—He wakes, choking. She doesn’t.
Amy L. Eggert is the author of ‘Scattershot: Collected Fictions’ (Lit Fest Press 2015), a hybrid collection that re-envisions the trauma narrative. Additional recent publications can be found in Verse of Silence, Cardinal Sins, Unlikely Stories, and Bluffs Literary Magazine. Eggert teaches English for Bradley University in Peoria, IL.
Then Uncle said touching wasn’t enough.
For years, she anticipated missing him.
Butterflies: the only monarchs I’d obey.
Arizona native Misako Yamazaki is a senior at Arizona State University, currently studying philosophy and English. She is a published author and connoisseur of all things literary. Misako spends her free time reading, writing, and journaling.
His ring inside the glove box.
She has been published in several anthologies: Talking Stick, Dust & Fire, Rivers Meeting Project Published in several newspapers: Park Rapids Enterprise, The Backwoods Journal, Bemidji Pioneer Recognized in several contests: League of Minnesota Poets, Northwoods Arts Council, KRLS Poetry Slam, Poetry.com, Poetry Motel. She has also participated in Judging the Midwest Book Awards.
From students at LCA in Andover, MN
Garbages fill with masks and gloves.
Body in the freezer, half gone.
Only the small hat washed ashore.
I pound, buried in the ground.