The Birth Of Tala By Kari Astillero

The Birth Of Tala

The moon, the wind & sea tides each other
as we sweep colors across the room.
We pull another roll of pickled film
out from our mouths & retrace
our memories in negatives,
a motion of dead
like smoke
rising from its prey.
Then it coils around our ears whispering,
a force that makes sky starts gathering
heavy as if grapes to a basket,
to a winery,
pours to our glasses,
then back to our mouths again.
Some shadow play of Petrushka
but not with puppet string but
noose; a funeral rehearsal.

We witnessed this event bloom to a swirl.
Sirang plaka, paulit-ulit.

My doctor’s theory is that we are sick
& inside our heads we are dreaming;
outside are the events caused
by delirium within the dream.
The tests says we fell into slumber—
sleep is how
we slowly enter        the black hole
shredding us apart
like hanged dead fingers.
This space where fever rises
& outside we quiver, we scream.
A synchronized loop of two
breaking through for
a bigger event, to its opposite—

the reversing
of sleep:        exit.
Of blackhole’s vomit to the rupture
of new form against its shell.
The dream,        the head
cracking open with liquid silvers
and clouds of dusts. There,
from the void a new soul
will emerge skin like
the first light of morning—
the waking of us, birth of tala.

By Kari Astillero


I am Kari Astillero, a Filipina residing in a city of busy people somewhere in Philippines and a Journalism major. Mesmerized with the universe and a star-stuff who is in love with poetry & nature, I wish to have my own published book of poetry someday.  A non-conformist and mostly alone drinking coffee while reading, writing or thinking (sometimes daydreaming).



In the morning I feel your ghost
wrapped around me like the sheet
off my bed. There is no leg to trap
my ankle, the empty basinet of your
space next to mine. I silently hope
that I left those bobby pins in your pockets.
Think of me when you fish them out
with your fist, let my hair strands
remind you of the time you hand-fed
me apple slices. That was the summer
of your coming back, where I tripped
over your crooked smile and realized that
I’d missed you like a plane landing. I want to
rip that memory into a hundred tiny pieces.
How my heart lets you loose like balloons
in the grassy fields of my chest. How I scrub
the breath of your laughing off my shoulder
with the lint brush. I have never seen a door
that doesn’t look like you leaving. Look
at me writing this poem. Even here I
don’t mean anything I say. Except that
I still want you. That whatever is in me
still loves you deeply. It is a light I can’t
turn off. I clap my hands and nothing happens.

By Karese Burrows


Karese Burrows is a 22 year old graphic artist and poet from The Bahamas. She has been published more than once by Words Dance Publishing and has works in the first issue of Penstrike Journal. You can read more of her words and the words she loves from her tumblr

after this we changed the channel to baseball By Haley Clapp

after this we changed the channel to baseball

did you hear about that muslim guy who killed all those faggots?
my little cousin doesn’t know
my little cousin doesn’t know
at age 11/his voice chirping
like the whine after the BANG
and the blinking shock//I wonder if
he would call me that/if he learned
that I had died//he doesn’t know
how could he know when his father
spitting/tobacco calls the mover
a shine/when he calls his best
friend gay – a joke – his mother
laughs//when my sister, warning,
paints a nail red/don’t start, he’s
too young to understand.

By Haley Clapp


Haley Clapp is a recent Indiana University Bloomington graduate and fledgling queer poet who will be attending King’s College London in the fall for her MA in Critical Methodologies. She has served on the Editorial Board of various IU publications, including LABYRINTH and The Undergraduate Scholar. She loves sad songs and horror movies and hopes to end up somewhere in the world between literature/art and academia.

What Henry Ford Said By John Stupp

What Henry Ford Said


Henry Ford said
machines wreck themselves
and somebody wrote that down—
around the clock we worked
as summer help to undo
what union men created from September to May
foremen screamed whistles blew
millwrights electricians tinsmiths
came running
as production lines sputtered
and the plant went silent
we were city boys herding sheep by mistake
our ears buzzing
they had to catch us before wolves found the  missing engine blocks
alone in a high pasture
looking for a place to rest

By John Stupp


John Stupp is the author of the 2007 chapbook The Blue Pacific and the 2015 full-length collection Advice from the Bed of a Friend both by Main Street Rag. Recent poetry has appeared or will be appearing in Drunk Monkeys, Cactus Heart, Vending Machine Press, Icarus Down, Weirderary, Wordrunner eChapbooks, SHARKPACK Poetry Review, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and on the radio show Prosody. He lives near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

A STORY TOLD A MILLION TIMES By Patricia Camille Antony


the story is the same everywhere
it begins and ends
with bodies
in our streets, & in our beds.
history stolen & rewrote
by the oppressor
it begins with slaves
shackled by blood
we see it everywhere
shackles on unborn children
shackles on the fever killing us.
the streets are littered
with our inheritance
we carry more bullets
in our genealogy than names.
the roads are overflowing with
even in our college suits
& doctorate degrees
we are still beggars for hope
here,with our broken backs &
swindled culture
we have bought the key
but the locks have changed.

By Patricia Camille Antony


Patricia Camille Antony, or Camillea as she prefers to go by, is a writer of mixed heritage. She has been published in Persephone’s Daughters and Scrittura Magazine, and is the author of the chapbook Heirloom. Camillea can be found tucking love notes between the pages of her journals, or in the crevices of souls. If you are in need of some free love do stop by her Tumblr blog: maelinoe.

Upon Seeing the Official Seal of the State of Indiana By D.A. Lockhart

Upon Seeing the Official Seal of the State of Indiana

Once the thought of Indiana
included bison leaping
over felled trees as if fleeing
the inevitable. Sun above
southern hills and solitary man
hacking at the base of the next
victim. When buffalo roamed
every bit was to be measured
in the humid darkness between
trees and the chatter from survivors
of ongoing eastern genocides.

Now, walking the central canal
this night flush with xenon light
and shallow cement bottomed
waterways of koi, that thought
is followed by wide sweeping
vistas of brick and stucco
that crowd this transplanted sense
of what a crossroads must be like
and the notion that these pathways
and the wide mainly vacant
roadways above have been built
with those bison in mind.

By D.A. Lockhart


Born in Chatham, ON and raised in Windsor, ON, D.A. Lockhart holds degrees from Trent University, Montana State University, and Indiana University. He is a graduate of the Indiana University – Bloomington MFA in Creative Writing program where he held a Neal-Marshall Graduate Fellowship in Creative Writing. His work has appeared in the Windsor Review, Sugar House Review, Hawk and Whipporwill, Straylight Literary Magazine, and Construction among others. He is a recipient of Canada Council for the Arts grant for Aboriginal People and Ontario Arts Council grants for his poetry. He is a research consultant and is editor-in-chief for Urban Farmhouse Press based out of Windsor, Ontario, Canada. He is a member of the Moravian of the Thames First Nation. His first collection of poems, Big Medicine Comes to Erie, will be released this fall by Black Moss Press.



When I remind you about the ocean I don’t
mean about our hypothetical
honeymoon in some island overseas. When
I remind you about the ocean I mean
the voice of our fishermen whose tanned
backs recorded the history of sun,
horizon, sweat, chlorine, and oil
companies that poisoned the water.
When I remind you about the ocean I don’t
mean those deceased writers who
over romanticized it the way they glorified
raindrop or sunset. When I remind
you about the ocean I want you to remember
those who drowned during war, those
who suffered before your grand
cruise, those who swam to save other’s
lives but never got back to the shore.

When you say I remind you of the
ocean do you not know that I came from
an abyss where the darkest chasm is

By Innas Tsuroiya


Innas Tsuroiya (b. 1997) is an Indonesian writer girl and aspiring filmmaker. Her work has appeared in Flapperhouse, Sea Foam, Thistle, among others. She can be contacted via personal site ( and twitter @innazous.