High Steel Flyers
by Tom Sheehan
We rode the steel
all day long, monkey grip
in the morning on the climb up,
breakfast of steak
and eggs hanging in guts
hanging in the perilous airs,
lunch calling orders
when the first hungry rivet
sank hotly into its 100-year bed.
Wind and rain are
belly achers, beat on bone,
wear like erosion in the mind,
of distorted thinking,
feed your body to brittle ethers,
the long drop.
The sudden stop’s what hurts,
suffering gravity, universal gravitation,
not getting home
at night, frosted on the ground
like the maple’s final leaf of summer
is taken by fall.
I’ve been the lone point
of connection as two sides joined up
from disparate ways,
as if a truce had been signed
between the infernal opposites.
I’ve seen men fall
fledglings from the awful nest,
their helmets flying punctuation parts,
small rain of tools
discharging from their belts,
racing them down, all the way down.
When Flack Lawson flew
he went like Lucifer, knowing
some hot jazz was hard on his ass.
Bio:: Tom Sheehan has published 28 books, which include the western collections The Nations, Where Skies Grow Wide and Cross Trails published by Pocol Press, and Six Guns, Inc., by Nazar Look. 2 and three titles issued in 2016, ... The Cowboys, Swan River Daisy and Jehrico. He has multiple work in following publications: Rosebud, Literally Stories, Dm du Jour, Danse Macabre, Linnet’s Wings, Serving House Journal, Eclectica, Copperfield Review, La Joie Magazine, Soundings East, Vermont Literary Review, Literary Orphans, Indiana Voices Journal, Frontier Tales, Western Online Magazine, Provo Canyon Review, Vine Leaves Journal, Nazar Look, Eastlit, Rope & Wire Magazine, The Literary Yard, Green Silk Journal, Fiction on the Web, The Path, Faith-Hope and Fiction, The Cenacle, etc. He has 30 Pushcart nominations, and five Best of the Net nominations (and one winner) and short story awards from Nazar Look for 2012- 2015. He has been named Writer-in-Residence at Danse Macabre. His Author's Page, Tom Sheehan, is on Amazon.
Sheehan served in the 31st Infantry, Korea 1951-52, and graduated Boston College in 1956. His books are Epic Cures; Brief Cases, Short Spans; Collection of Friends; From the Quickening; The Saugus Book; Ah, Devon Unbowed; Reflections from Vinegar Hill; This Rare Earth & Other Flights, and Vigilantes East. eBooks include Korean Echoes (nominated for a Distinguished Military Award), The Westering, (nominated for National Book Award); from Danse Macabre are Murder at the Forum (NHL mystery), Death of a Lottery Foe, Death by Punishment, and An Accountable Death. In the Garden of Long Shadows and The Nations (2014), and Where Skies Grow Wide (2015) were published by Pocol Press, and Six Guns, Inc., 2015, by Nazar Look. He was co-editor of A Gathering of Memories, and Of Time and the River, two collections about home town of Saugus, Massachusetts, both 400+ pages, 4500 copies sold, all proceeds from $40.00 each cost destined for a memorial scholarship for co-editor, John Burns, director of the English Department at Saugus High School for 45 years. After conception of the idea for the books, and John asked for material by former students, and with a proposal of actions and schedules prepared for a local bank, ten of his former students signed a loan for $60,000 to print two books not yet written!!!!
Truce To a Dying Soul
by Kim Hazelwood
Sirens screaming predawn
Smoke plumes bounce and billow,
Smoldering old place on Main Street,
Beautiful historical district antique.
On the coldest day, finally felt like winter.
You watch from a window riveted for hours
Glued to the Gloom.
Fascination for the firemen fighting, so skilled
With the science of destruction,
The seduction of combustion,
Gallons of water sprayed past infinity,
Begging truce to a dying soul.
The Inferno, the beast
Took six hours to bring down
Everything lost with confetti ashes falling like overdue snow.
In the end, a reduction, a heaping rubble.
The persistence of a fixated fire,
Not fair, not fair,
Just last night,
With all its might,
The old place
Was still standing there.
Melancholia of such a sad shame
It digs down deep where your heart
Falls from the clearing sky.
Bio: Kim Hazelwood is the editor of this litzine. Recent publications include: Peace is Bliss from When Women Awaken, War issue.She and her husband have snuggled up in the Shenandoah Mountains, with their daughter and two cats and one dog.