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Poetry 3  Fall 2022


obituary for a jack-o-lantern

          by  Marc  Darnell


o jack you wore a grin derived from pain

you lived eight days with only three teeth

gutted by the biggest dullest spoon

the waifs could find

since mama said do it on your own

my soaps are on I'm one third through

this cigarette give back my lighter


you never asked for triangular eyes

no tongue just this tea light

that singes the top of your head


godly gourd

horseman head

pulp cauldron

icon seared into our brains


your brother and sister

made good pie bubbled

to a gray sick delicacy


you brought as beacon

the darkest children with cravings

zorro with his crammed pillowcase

bloody princess so minute

orange trump urchin with his grocery bag

batman with a plastic replica of you

frankenstein in tears to an empty bowl


now you soften, a tire losing air

autumn ants devour you

the porch possum topples you to ground

tonight's first freeze embalms you


sour orange in morning sun

new saint on all saints day

but no aura

no grave

now brown




Bio: Marc Darnell is an online tutor and lead custodian in Omaha NE, and received his MFA from the University of Iowa, and has published poems in The Lyric, Rue Scribe, Verse, Skidrow Penthouse, Shot Glass Journal, The HyperTexts, Candelabrum, The Road Not Taken, Aries, Ship of Fools, Open Minds Quarterly, The Fib Review, Verse-Virtual, Blue Unicorn, Ragazine, The Literary Nest, The Pangolin Review, and elsewhere.


Sublime Intervention

        by   Richard Weaver


Mrs. Millipede takes her brood for a day

at the shoe store. The clerks had not seen her

coming, else would have locked and darkened

the lights, before cowering in the stockroom.

Some pedes want only left shoes, some only right.

Other alternate every other side with coordinated

color schemes or rainbow patterns. A few have

brought along Pantone charts and insist

on a continuous spectrum.And since no millipede

ever has exactly 1000 pedes, counting and recounting

goes on into the night, boxes piled high to the moon.

And, as always, no two will share a shoehorn.

Each must have his or her own. All the while

Mrs. Millipede sips from her flask, enjoying

her long day out with free babysitters in situ.


Bio:The author hopes to one day again volunteer with the Maryland Book Bank, and return as writer-in-residence at the James Joyce Pub. A few recent pubs include: Mad Swirl, Misfit, Umbrella Factory, Deep South Magazine, Triggerfish, & Spank the carp. He’s the author of The Stars Undone (Duende Press, 1992). He also provided the libretto for a symphony, Of Sea and Stars, performed 4 times to date. He remains one of the founders and former Poetry Editor of the Black Warrior Review. Latterly, his 170 prose poem was published.



Invasive Species

     by Robert Beveridge

those little yellow hellebore
petals look pretty good
until you let them off the chain
and in turn they let loose
the black tendrils that have
been kept under wraps
for years and years


Bio: Robert Beveridge (he/him) makes noise (xterminal.bandcamp.com) and writes poetry in Akron, OH. Recent/upcoming appearances in Cordite Poetry Review, Stardust Haiku, and GAS: Poetry, Art, and Music, among others.



     by Diane Webster


In a meditation of sand 

a thrown rock grooves 

flight to a stop, 

disrupts human patterns 

for life of its own plowed 

through grains of ancestors 

patient as Zen masters waiting 

for rock to crumble to sand 

to join commune 

tidy as sand 

raked for contemplation. 


Bio: Diane Webster's goal is to remain open to poetry ideas in everyday life, nature or an overheard phrase and to write. Diane enjoys the challenge of transforming images into words to fit her poems. Her work has appeared in "Home Planet News Online," "North Dakota Quarterly," "Eunoia Review" and other literary magazines.


Autumn Anticipation

       by Carolyn Wolfe
Soft Season
Of mists and rain
And leaves finding their true calling
Artists all,
Painting themselves
In vibrant hues.
As the winey scent
of too ripe apples
fills the air
with cider sweetness,
we fill our kitchens
with gifts from the Harvest
And dream about what comes next…
We know
Winter will soon follow
with all its spectacle
And splashy Christmas lights,
Their glow saturating the snow
in true dance hall splendor.
So, as we welcome Fall
Our pace becomes lighter,
Picking up speed
As the Holidays rush to meet us
Like honored guests arriving
at a party
far too soon.
And anticipation
becomes elation
as the days shorten
the nights lengthen
and we have our first taste of snow
Autumn with its first chill
Heralds in the joy of Winter Holidays
With every leafy breath it takes…

Bio: Carolyn Wolfe is a free-lance writer, published poet, and author of 11 books, four of which are illustrated children's books. Those include, "Am I YOUR Pet?", "The Drowsy House," "The Bedtime of The Sky and Other Sleepy-Bye Stories" and "The Unhappy Little Dragon, Lessons Learned. Her books for general readership include: "Miracle Paws, A Love Story" a story of rescue and light romance, and "The Moonsparrow Collection" which is a collection of her short fantasy stories. Ms. Wolfe has also published three collections of her original poetry" Notes From the Shadow Self" and "Making Waves," and "April Snow, A Journey Through Grief" as well as an adult Sword and Sorcery novella, "Blade's Magic" which is about dangerous magics and an attraction that spans two worlds. Her latest book, “Tales Told Under The Darkened Moon" is a collection of dark fantasy stories, that have a hint of humor, a hint of dread, and little bit of shiver for all fans of ghost stories and tales that go bump in the night. 

Ms. Wolfe lives in the Shenandoah Valley with a houseful of her own rescued, animal companions. Her books are primarily available on Amazon.com, but can also be found online at Barnes & Noble and Books-A- Million websites. For more information please visit: http://wolfecarolyn.wix.com/carolyn-storyteller