Linda M. Crate – 2 poems

I’M MAGIC

 

If you’re looking for me

you shan’t find me

because I’m magic,

and you don’t believe;

I suppose a healthy dose of skepticism is

to be expected from one who doesn’t

even hold his religion

sacred

let alone his love—

you hunted me like a wild animal

with your wolf fangs

you dragged me to the ground and made me yours,

and I let you;

but I puzzled over it all—

because while I knew love was painful

I didn’t think it required this much blood,

and so I changed and became stronger

I was always a wild creature;

but now your gilded cage can’t even find me

let alone hold me.

🍃

 

A SOUL ON FIRE

 

You put your hands

into my cosmic cookie jar,

but my stars were not

yours for the taking;

they burned you on the sharp

edges of their wildness—

always I was “too” something:

too fat, too uptight, too anxious, too provocative

or I was not enough:

not pretty enough, not provocative enough, not brave enough

you could never make up your damn mind,

and so when I look back at the pictures

I can safely say

that I’m happier without you;

and your icicles so sharp and so cold as the hell fire

in your soul.

🍃

Linda M. Crate is a Pennsylvanian native born in Pittsburgh yet raised in the rural town of Conneautville. Her poetry, short stories, articles, and reviews have been published in a myriad of magazines both online and in print. Recently her two chapbooks A Mermaid Crashing Into Dawn (Fowlpox Press – June 2013) and Less Than A Man (The Camel Saloon – January 2014) were published. Her fantasy novel Blood & Magic was published in March 2015. The second novel of this series Dragons & Magic was published in October 2015.  Her poetry collectionSing Your Own Song is forthcoming through Barometric Pressures Series.

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Linda-M-Crate-129813357119547/

Novels: http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Magic-Linda-M-Crate/dp/1508572968 & http://www.amazon.com/Dragons-Magic-Linda-M-Crate/dp/1517126312/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1456149250&sr=1-1&keywords=Dragons+%26+Magic+Linda+M.+Crate

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorlindamcrate/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/thysilverdoe

Stanley Kaplan – 2 poems

DOUBLE DAMNED

 

I spurn your sentiments,

and you spurn mine.

I situate myself side saddle 

on that hayseed horse.

I, a woman cultivated

and created to consider

the sound points and the

puny pronouncements,

of he, the man in my life.

 

But she wonders how this

and that happened to me

and mine.

O saraband and stately

pavane, what precipitated

this passion, this poignant 

participation in the daily 

doings?

I will be double damned if I do.

🍃

REVENGE

 

Hollywood, who,

no why, no way to 

exchange this day for that.

Like Bill Sprat, who had

no fat,

on his fancy belly, we

who watch, wish him no

well.

If not hell, a half one

situated on a southern

ridge.

🍃

Stanley Kaplan has published work in a number of journals and anthologies, including, Onthebus, Chiron Review, Midstream and Quiet Courage with others forthcoming.

He lives in New York City where he paints as well as writes. Stanley is the recipient of a Pollack- Krasner Foundation grant.

Guidelines update – Use of pseudonyms

​Bindweed Magazine is currently open to submissions for Issue 3 (publication in October, November and December). But before submitting, please note the following addition to the submission guidelines:

🍃 If you wish to use a pseudonym, please make sure you mark your work with PEN NAME: and LEGAL NAME: If you don’t mark work clearly in this format, and work is published under the wrong name, the Editor reserves the right not to make any corrections upon publication.

🍃 If the Editor receives any emails from contributors demanding any changes after publication from an author who has not followed the guidelines, work may be withdrawn at the discretion of the Editor. Bindweed is a labour of love at the cost of time and effort to its publisher. Here at Heavenly Flower Publishing, the Editor appreciates good email etiquette.

Hope to read your submissions soon,

Leilanie 🌺 

Ken Seide – Fiction 

ALIVE

My girlfriend was brushing her reddish hair, more strikingly red than usual, brushing it in the mirror when I came to say goodbye to her father.

                “Lee,” I said not wanting to startle her. She didn’t hear me.

                I know her hair is red but I think of it as gold, the color I perceived when I first saw it ten weeks before, running past her to a coffee shop, not wanting to be late for our first meeting. I had yanked on the locked coffee shop door, turned around, and beheld her.

                I watched her brush her hair in her father’s home, mesmerized. “Lee,” I said. I was almost pleased that she didn’t hear me. I got to watch my beloved caress and care for herself, like David gazing at Batsheva.

                I didn’t think I was going to see her father again. Only inner family members had been lately let into the room where he would die, and I wasn’t in the family yet.

                I stepped into view of the bathroom mirrors reflecting each other so she could see me behind her. But she didn’t. “Lee,” I called again, this time starting to get frightened.

                I had seen him four days ago. And a week before that, when he was still standing frailly and conversing softly and taking short walks in his home but also knowing that his life was coming to a close, I sat at his dining room table on his sixty-first anniversary and asked for his permission and blessing to marry his daughter.

                The fear hit me, because when do two lovers not hear or see each other?

                When one of them has left this world. Which one of us had died?

When else can one lover not hear or see the other?

                When one lover is only a vision, a projection of desire and fulfillment before one’s wishful eyes.

                She finished brushing her long hair and splashed water on her face, framed by reddish  spirals. She turned and finally saw me, startled.

                “I was cleaning up for you,” she said. “So I wouldn’t look haggard.”

                She stepped forward and kissed me deeply and I knew then as certainly as I know anything in this often painful world that we were joyously alive and real and corporeal.

                She took my hand and led me into her father’s room, her careful step over the oxygen line, and then mine, another advance in our sudden but not surprising journey.

🍃

Ken Seide

Ethan Taylor – 3 poems

THE MAN ACROSS THE STREET

The man across the street
Has cut his hand on glass again,
Has called the day a whore again
And spilt his thoughts on war.

The man across the street
Has pulled the road to him again,
Has spat his teeth for them again
And found he had no more.

🍃

A PARTICULAR EVERYONE

The breaking of eggs escapes me,
Warned me, taught me,
Showed an old man a peach
And called it flat.

On behalf of a particular everyone
Sugar spoils the wine
And eternity isn’t so sweet at
Their temperature,

But neither is love.

🍃

THE LAST

Let him remember his mother
And the last of the blackboards
On the fourth of every month
Riding night’s final poem,

Falling, as you did, into his promises
To quit his job and marry young,
He can spin his appetite across the fence
And leave it for the tender crows.

He is no longer affably sick,
He bites his legs and other organs,
The last of the puppets sit with an old man now,
He cannot sit alone.

🍃

Ethan Taylor is an Actor/Poet living in London, UK. He has been published in both online and hardcopy literary magazines including ExFic, Message In A Bottle, Snakeskin, Lighten Up Online, Peeking Cat and the Poetry Shed. He is the Artistic Director/In-House writer for the theatre company Who Said Theatre and his plays The Old Friend and Taking An Age received five-star reviews at London venues. He is also a series writer for the website Channillo.com.

Website: www.ethan-taylor.com             www.whosaidtheatre.com

Andres Botero – 2 poems

DNA THROUGH THE EYES OF SEVERAL ARTISTS

The DNA double strands run parallel to
A river, it is a unfathomable body of self-contained water,
A place for vessels, pirates and odd creatures,
That is DNA through the nature’s eyes, but DNA through the
Artists’ eyes could be an evocative blue or a quixotic and cozy red.

For Dali, DNA are stairs ascending to heaven or maybe descending
To hell, electrical ribbons, electrical bullfighters that are interconnecting
Hearts to a human bullring, a railroad from which the wagons of life
are been transported to the next winter.
For El Greco, DNA is prolonging its shape into elastic figures; it is
Elevating its shape to a superior being, because from a
Superior entity it comes.
For Picasso, DNA is the essence of the cube, it is a geometrical space
with four sides, four angles and four letters,
Simple letters that can combine each other forming a complex
Hereditary language, an arithmetic waterproof code which is
Revealing astonishing messages.
For Matisse, DNA is full of colorful possibilities, moreover it has its
Black and white areas, those gaps are taking the mutations’ names.
For Seurat, DNA is a point in the space, a simple and complex
Point, an endless point within a point.
Points that come together are becoming a nucleus, a zygote and a specific organ.

DNA is nature while art is nurture; art is nurturing the
Divergence’s power.

🍃

BIRDS AND CHAOS

Birds are anarchists because they do not
Fly following patterns, maybe that is an erroneous
Judgment at the murmurations’ time.

Birds were born yesterday under a clear
Knowledge that resides inside the eggs, but
eggs come from similar birds able to hold
Their breaths until that creation’s moment,
A creation’s moment can be understood as
“Original”, singular figures can be created by
designers, a fitting dress, a lovely summer’s
Hat, a bridge’s between chemicals elements,
A bond connector, the fundamentals behind
The Van Der Waals forces,
Chaos rules and creates too.

Chaos as birds is enigmatic,
We may know the nest’s essence, which it is
Community, but never understand
The essence’s unity and divinity.
We may never comprehend one or two chaos’ reasons,
Moreover,
Chaos deals in a regular basis with pride and bureaucracy.

🍃

Andres Botero is a microbiologist but in his free time he writes poetry and short fiction. In his poems he combines elements of poetry and biology. A lot of his previous works have been published in newspapers and magazines (articles about science and literature).

Paul Beckman – Fiction

ETHEL WINS ANOTHER BET

I got slapped down today for saying, “Yes, Ma’am” to a diner I was waiting on. She was dressed to the nines and sitting with three other “Ma’am’s and I had no idea what she wanted to be called so I asked her what her preference would be. “I’m sorry. How would you prefer I address you?” I asked and she said anything but Ma’am. So I was fucked, good and fucked.

She was probably in her sixties and I’m twenty five, well groomed, no piercings, tats, and not even a mullet. My posture is good, breath refreshed constantly, I’m attentive to my tables and pleasant at all times.

One of the women from her table went to the ladies and spoke to me on the way back. “You didn’t do anything wrong,” she said. “I’m Ethel; Mary Jane has a problem with Ma’am and would prefer to be called “old biddy” which was a term of endearment used by her late husband. Try it,” she said. “It’ll reflect in your tip also.”

I went back to the table with a water pitcher and asked, “Is everything alright with you ladies and all but “old biddy” nodded their assent so I said, “And how about you, Old Biddy, everything fine here.” The other three broke out in laughter and each dug in their purse and handed Ethel a twenty which she placed under her plate. “Old Biddy” fumed.

🍃

Paul Beckman was one of the winners in the Queen’s Ferry 2016 Best of the Small Fictions. His 200+ stories are widely published in print and online in the following magazines amongst others: Connecticut Review, Raleigh Review, Litro, Playboy, Pank, Blue Fifth Review, Flash Frontier, Matter Press, Metazen, Boston Literary Magazine, Thrice Fiction and Literary Orphans. His latest collection, “Peek”, weighed in at 65 stories and 120 pages. His website  www.paulbeckmanstories.com.

 

Christopher Barnes – 3 poems

STYLE

Jackie Stallone’s Nagasaki vacation
Wobbled crabbed.  The mushroom, belly-flopped by
parachute,
Harbingered air raid ear-splits.
Implosion tarred on a megacritical squeeze,
In one howling flash.
Skin-rips tasselled her limbs.
The crumpled face
Pussed grisly.
Dior’s rig-out blistered.
The elegant Saké bar jiggled, molten.

🍃

HALF-MAST

Captain James Cook was earth-shook
To be weeping at Judy Garland’s final curtain.
Stuffy, rain-splodged beaten tracks,
A wind-leaf, uncomplicated service.
Kill time hearse, three elite Limos.
Wrapped in yellow roses,
The elfin coffin tensed at flashbulbs.
He was a true friend of Dorothy.

🍃

SUNDERLAND

Prince Otto Von Bismarck lopes east,
Stages in municipal yards.
The lift jitterbugs debris
Into a thickset hopper.  Crumpling bulk-heads
Maul slop-reeking bins.
Hours are sedimentary.  Cylinders zigzag, throwback.
Pay’s a miser but back-slapping’s on tap.

🍃

In 1998, Christopher Barnes won a Northern Arts writers award.  In July 2000 he read at Waterstones bookshop to promote the anthology ‘Titles Are Bitches’ and at Christmas 2001 he debuted at Newcastle’s famous Morden Tower doing a reading of his poems.  Each year he reads for Proudwords lesbian and gay writing festival and he partakes in workshops. In 2005, Christopher saw the publication of his collection LOVEBITES published by Chanticleer Press, 6/1 Jamaica Mews, Edinburgh.