Solidarity With Ferguson By A.Clark

Solidarity With Ferguson

no justice, no peace
because a white man who shoots people en masse
is given sympathy, excuses, a name, a face,
a story,
whilst an unarmed black boy riddled with bullets
who lies on the street for four hours,
who puts his hands in the air and says
“don’t shoot”
is labelled DANGEROUS.

no justice, no peace
because who needs dystopia in books
when it’s on our tvs, in our news
in our streets,
when we care more about stolen
goods than stolen lives and when
people say “we all bleed the same colour”
but ignore the fact that not everyone
will be made to bleed.

no justice, no peace
because we are told to be calm,
to be accepting, to be peaceful,
to show care and to show restraint
when none of this was offered
to mike brown.

no justice, no peace
because unity isn’t about ignoring injustice;
because restraint should be exercised by
those who hold the power, not
forced onto those who live in fear;
because our anger shouldn’t be
worse than their excuses, because
the law isn’t colourblind and
it shouldn’t just serve those who
act in its name.

no justice, no peace
because a boy was killed, and the
colour of his skin made it legal.

By A. Clark


A.Clark is a 20 year old anarcha-feminist studying sociology in Cambridge, UK. They really like dogs and think that selfies are revolutionary. More of their writing is at

Ancestor By Maria Ng


They tear the village
off my scalp and leave
me defenseless. Bare,
bloody, and now I’m extinct.

Centuries later, I am
one million Januses.
My daughters and sons
don’t remember my name.

It’s Esperanza, Jamal,
Wei, or Ashley. Married
with Smith, Chin, Johnson,
or Gonzalez.

My blood stains were dried on the land
beneath all of your feet, and so
I evaporated and I only speak
on stormy days.

I watch over my kids from the sky
as a dust particle. In the ocean as algae,
crying oxygen for ship wreckages
that contain the remains of my children.

I’m embracing you in piles when
they set you down in a box.
Praying for you on your
first birthday out of the canal.

Loving you with the memory
of my own blood dripping
down my  nose and when
his sword ripped my belly open.

While I rotted away in my ruins,
I was counting the future
generations that will come
after me.

Knowing I will live
again and again.

By Maria Ng


Maria Ng is a New Yorker living in New Jersey. She spends her days writing, blogging about books and zines, and going to college. She often writes about mixed identity (Afro-Latina and Chinese), memories of family, living in New York, fearing of what’s going to happen in the future, relearning and forgetting languages, and lonely fictional people that are merely reflections of herself. She has an existential crisis every few months or so and is still unsure of what to do now.

She considers writing a form of healing, protest, and sometimes a violence towards your own self. She writes poetry but wishes to be a novelist. She doesn’t like to remember high school, especially the horrendous fiction and poetry she wrote for her creative writing class.

She has previously been published in Rasasvada, Paper Crown Magazine and some other zines.

The Preacher’s Daughter Who Loved a Boy Like Religion By Shelby Asquith

The Preacher’s Daughter Who Loved a Boy Like Religion

The preacher’s daughter
tasted like peaches.

Peaches and that dust that
hangs from back roads as

cars pass like a red haze
of not knowing. She had

bruises on her knees, but
not from what you’d think.

There was a boy. There always
was. His name was Gospel if

there was ever such a name.
He tasted like railroad tracks.

His mind was so much bigger
than her. She thought one

night that she might drown in it.
He would sometimes point up

at all the stars in the sky and he’d
say, “Some of those are already dead.

We’re looking millions of years into
the past.” And she’d look at him

and she’d think that maybe
she’d like to be one of those ghost

stars if it meant
he was looking at her

By Shelby Asquith

Once Bitten, Twice Shy By Jones Howell

Once Bitten, Twice Shy

on the fourth of july there are fireworks
inside and out. someone is hissing in the corner
about the ‘trashy bitch all over him’ and i wince,
as if i have broken some kind of law against
talking to sweet doe-eyed boys who don’t put their hands
anywhere you don’t want them. we are sitting
in a circle with upside-down playing cards and something
is being said about doing it in the ass. boys and girls
are laughing and i don’t know how to pretend
that any of this is fun.

two weeks later there is porn on the laptop screen
and a woman is screaming. he’s slapping her face
and her eyes might as well be glass when he rams
into her. i cross my legs as tight as they will go.
i wonder how many times i have had glass eyes.
i’ve always dreamed of rapture but all i get
are dry hands and no lube, a stinging between my legs
and a burn in my cheeks saying this can’t keep

they call girls like me vanilla.

what they don’t know is that i used to grab my boyfriend
by the shirt collar, push him to the wall and bite
his lip. what they don’t know is that i used to make him

they call girls like me prudes.

what they don’t know is that a different boy spent two years
going in dry. what they don’t know is that he made me bleed
and made me choke and now i cannot lay my hands on a boy
without shaking.

without praying, pleasebegood pleasebesoft pleasebekind

it’s a different apartment but the people and the game
haven’t changed a bit. there is a silent tantrum
on the balcony and the boy is showing me a picture
of his cat. we have both been hurt but tonight we aren’t
thinking of pain. someone holds up a camera and we smile
but he doesn’t pull me in. i think i might be flying. someone
turns the screen toward us and in between the solo cups
all we can see is hope.

By Jones Howell


Jones Howell is a graduate of the Northwestern University Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Judd A. and Marjorie Weinberg Creative Writing (Fiction) sequence. She grew up on the Maryland waterfront, went to school by Lake Michigan, and now calls suburban Georgia home. She misses the sea. She has been writing, in some form or another, for over ten years. She maintains a poetry blog at

Syntax By Lydia Havens


Trauma does not wear a name tag.
Every time I try to tell a therapist
or a friend or an audience what
happened to me, I cross off a
new term in permanent marker.

Saying the word “abuser” has always
left my heart in a cold sweat. Adding
a determiner only makes everything
worse. My abuser. That just makes
every window inside of me shatter,
makes all of the dogs howl, makes
every train blast my eardrums into
a new millennium.

I am always looking for the quickest
way to tell someone who needs
to know. How fast can I say,
I was 13 and looking for a friend
online? Or, I was afraid to tell him

Or even:

I dont know what his hands felt like,
only what they could type out
in a room only lit by the green light
of a laptop screen. But he knows
what my body looks like wearing
nothing but the mirror. He could
identify every part of me on a table.
How does that make you feel?
Because it makes me feel like I need
to be believed.

Goddamn it, I wish I could be
a good survivor. I wish I could
have a memory that is not full
of broken cameras and area codes.
If every word I use to try and
explain my past makes me want
to recoil back into the comfort
of flight-or-freeze, how will
I ever get past the beginning
of it all?

A determiner makes everything
worse. My abuser.

The thing is, I don’t want to think of him
as mine, because he always thought of me
as his.

By Lydia Havens


Lydia Havens writes and lives in Tucson, Arizona. A part of the literary non-profit Spoken Futures, her work has previously been published in Drunk in a Midnight Choir, Words Dance, and Textploit, among other places. In March 2015, she was named the Women of the World Poetry Slam Youth Champion. You can find more of her work on Tumblr,, or on her website,

New gods By Lindsay Maruska

New gods

I am queen of cats and moon, headlight lamps
and sidewalk weeds; we stopped our odes to
the everyday and altars fall to crumbled dust-

this world goes ever on and all the kings
are buried deep; we must crown ourselves if
we hope to keep the sacred numbers strung-

the holy revenants will turn to dust,
diamonds cracked around grinning bones;
I will be the queen of crows of feathers stuck

in chain link fences-

I cannot do this on my own; drop your wreathes
for interred things; the dead listen but they can’t
speak and the wishes they know how to grant

won’t mean much to us these days; we need
kings and queens of streetlamp games of spinning
tires on abandoned bikes, we need princes of

abandoned chalk-art, lion tamers for the night that
falls in smoke and burning leaves, the season turns and
radiant heaves of light left down for the dying time-

we’re all we have to light the fires, all that’s left
in sweet-spiced mist; we need gods of cobwebs
and corners, gods of forgotten baseball bats gods

of all the lived-in things we pray to wordless,
and complete- the sacrifice cannot drain; come
crown yourself in tin-foil circlets-

we need gods for these latter days.

By Lindsay Maruska


Lindsay Maruska is a thirty-year-old forever student who is pursuing a second MA degree while raising one child and five dogs. She is interested in modern mythology and the intersection of regional gothic and social commentary on industrial ruin.

Running Away From Your Problems: For Fun And For Profit By Raquel Isabelle de Alderete

Running Away From Your Problems: For Fun And For Profit

listen, i’m bad at speaking without my mouth
sounding like a flock of buzzards, a hungry halo of wings
overhead, but listen

i’m sick of being the apocalypse generation, i’m sick of
global warming and 6/6/06 and 12/12/12 and
september eleventh
i’m sick of the flinch that lives like a
slug inside of me, either a bullet or an insect
who is scared to come out of hiding
both are correct and both are why
i am dying

i’ve got a wagon out back hitched with all our dreams
and it’s gonna pull us along like oxen, i mean
we’re gonna chase the stars until they get tired of running
you know our ancestors used to hunt that way
i said, way back before we developed 18-wheelers
that swallow the bodies of trans teenagers
we used to sprint our prey down into the dirt and
howl with laughter and thank our kill for filling our
ripe young bodies, so

you and me, let’s get off of this planet where
i can’t breathe and in sixth grade somebody
chewed the left part of my soul off – it’s okay, i
learned about it in anatomy and it turns out
you don’t need that much to really feel
complete and
we’ll live off of dandelions and oxygen – it’s okay,
the doctor says that the heart murmur will
go away if i just stop listening

i don’t want to carry this anymore. i don’t want
our hands covered in blood. i don’t want the
universe as our judge. i want to close my eyes
and make peanut butter wishes into jellybean wells and
laugh at the silliness inside of myself and not wonder
if we’re all going directly
to hell

so i know that a coupla years ago we started
having to be scared about small things like
riding trains or going to see action movies or
texting and how in particular
your grades and your parents and your
house with a snowed-down goofy-smile
caved-in roof
are all set of teeth that are
wrapped around your ankles,
but you can shake it off, okay, and if you can’t,
cut it off,
and if you can’t,
carry it with you

put away the falling skyscrapers that live in your spine,
stow your fear of planes and of strangers and of
high-up places, let’s just leave

let’s build our own cities where marathons aren’t scary
and where people don’t sink on cruises and where
nobody burns down the libraries before we can read through them
and where art museums are never an open wound and
no kid has to worry about whether they’re safe when
they go to school

listen, i only got so much time before i remember
all of the responsibilities that are tied like
seaweed around me. you know, i distrust the ocean
because they hide things in it, and i hate
waiting because if you’re around long enough
the jellyfish find you and wrap you in lightning,
but i like the idea of a new beginning
and maybe i’ll even try beaches again

listen, i know when i speak it sounds like
maybe i’m a little disorganized and
all i want is a world where worrying isn’t
second-nature but
send us a spaceship i’ll call mother earth
and tell her that we’re all grown up and it’s
time to leave home where our cousins
are burning children in cages and our fathers are
invading nations and our sisters are all
weeping, open-acid faces
come away somewhere none of this
is happening and last night nobody asked me
why they are even alive and the night before that
i didn’t think about one day living paycheck to paycheck
and the night before that i didn’t wonder about
if i’m ever gonna really make it

please. can’t we bury our problems where
their bodies won’t stink can’t we live out there
on saturn’s rings can’t we be like old
homo erectus
running so hard
nothing can catch us.

By Raquel Isabelle de Alderete