A Night of Much Pea Soup
by Mike Corum
A heavy fog rolls into town— fog as thick as pea soup.
It isn’t really a town, it’s my attic. It isn’t really fog,
it’s pea soup. There is so much pea soup in the attic,
it streams through the ceiling vents until my entire house is
flooded in warm soup. I don’t want to see this go to waste—
I invite the entire town to bring over spoons and oyster crackers.
Since they live in my attic, they quickly join me. Soup spills
into the swimming pool; everyone decides to go skinny dipping.
I ask them to avoid eating in the pool—oyster crackers make
the otters too playful. Someone doesn’t get the message.
Before long, the otters break out their karaoke machine, sing
WastedAway in Margaritaville. Jimmy Buffett catches
wind of the party, flies his private jet to my place to join in.
Everyone gets a free Hawaiian shirt out of the deal. By now, I
am full of pea soup and very tired. The otters are wound up
from the oyster crackers. Jimmy Buffett agrees to keep them
entertained. This is entirely my fault. I should have spoken
more clearly about the crackers in the first place.
Bio: Mike Corum is completing his MFA in Poetry at the University of Nebraska. His poetry has appeared in Yellow Medicine Review, Uno Kudo, Wordland, About Place Journal, vox poetica, andThe Iowa Laurel. He is a native Iowan with deep roots in his state. He is especially proud of his three grown children all making a go of careers in the arts. He enjoys the art and magic of storytelling and attempts to capture this wonder in his poetry.
the egg lady
by Douglas Polk
the egg lady lived a few miles outside of town,
along with the coyotes and deer,
every week a trip made,
two dozen eggs,
none speckled or brown,
grandma thought those inferior,
I loved the smell of the country,
the odor of wide open spaces,
swept by the wind,
not only an egg lady,
a widow witch doctor,
she could cure city folks' ills,
the people trapped by the concrete,
and the cars,
when she passed on,
a community wide tragedy,
eggs from the store,
and aches and pains left untreated,
the weekly trip,
missed by one and all,
cranky and mean,
on the weekday the trips once made,
eggs thought unhealthy now,
but not ever by the egg lady,
who lived a few miles outside of town.
Bio: Douglas Polk is a poet living in the wilds of central Nebraska with his wife and two boys, two dogs and four cats. Polk has had over 300 poems published in over 80 publications within the last two years.
by A. J. Huffman
the lone squirrel flies from tree
to tree, using branches as trampolines.
No hesitation, no fear. Driven
by the all-go-no-quit fanatical
motivation of every life-
saving hero. That one more acorn
could make the difference in his
family’s survival of winter.
Bio: A.J. Huffman has published five solo chapbooks and one joint chapbook through various small presses. Her sixth solo chapbook will be published in October by Writing Knights Press. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee, and the winner of the 2012 Promise of Light Haiku Contest. Her poetry, fiction, and haiku have appeared in hundreds of national and international journals, including Labletter, The James Dickey Review, Bone Orchard, EgoPHobia, Kritya, and Offerta Speciale, in which her work appeared in both English and Italian translation. She is also the founding editor of Kind of a Hurricane Press. www.kindofahurricanepress.com
by R. Joseph Capet
the crocodile's maw
gaped across his flowing tail...
Cipactli eats the worlds in rounds
and vomits up his broken scale
which weighs alike the noble sun
and the hare-marked moon's belated leap,
the lofty vigils of eagles' eyes
and the depths of serpents' lidless sleep.
Impartially the beating heart
of Jaguar crouching in the mud
balances the highland deer's
slack-veined, cold, and senseless blood.
From one straight beam are hung the flesh
of lowly slaves whose blood flows freely
and the tender meat of a high-born maid
well dressed to serve at Ochpaniztli.
At parity rest careful sages
who spend their weary days alone
and heedless princes to whom death,
age, and sickness are unknown.
In equal pans are weighed the gold
of Quetzalcoatl's empty throne
and pounds of leaden musket shot
buried in the temple stones.
Who are we who hang by chains
that never tip their faulty measures?
Offspring of the unjust gods
who count us all alike as treasures.
Bio: R.Joseph Capet is a poet, theologian, Esperantist, Interlinguist, and 25th cousin 12 times removed of Louis XVI, in addition to his duties as poetry editor for P.Q. Leer. More of his work can be found by reading decomP, The Montreal Review, the American Journal of Biblical Theology, and other journals, as well as by visiting www.rjosephcapet.com and following @racecapet on Twitter.