The Best of Mad Swirl : 03.15.14
••• The Mad Gallery •••
My life is told on the pages of a book but lived in mid-air (above) by featured artist David Arthur-Simons.
••• The Poetry Forum •••
This last week in Mad Swirl's Poetry Forum...we walked wistfully to romp erroneously through papaya conversation; we leaped through a lusty fog, licked the love from a jumping frog; we picked through the pieces of push-button love to a fault; we tip-toed passed the epidemic wrath of a woman scorned; we permitted a poem to peel skull-skin, crack cranium and climb in to rearrange the furniture; we charmed snake, didn't dodge venom, fevered into a blue phase; we wrapped up all into the caul of day born well. Well done and well come, we make it like we take it. ~ MH Clay
Just in case you missed it, here's a taste...
its morning in the trees
with winter coming frosty breath
and the falling leaves
warm kisses planted here and there
near some cave by some river
and some man
smoking a cigar and fishing
the smoke for the tail of a dream
with far away eyes and a faded vision
chasing the sun down the other side
of the hill
out of breath and daylight
two children straying
from holding hands
in a giggling heap
on a beach by a fire
in the rhythm of the moon waves
licking toes wet ankles and knees
write the story of the tide
while the stars sing
from the mountain top
looking down on the sunrise
- Jesse Doughty
(2 poems added 03.15.14)
editor's note: Ah, what a day! Like any other; but, described by a poet, not like any. Poetry makes life unique! (See another by Jesse on his page - a day of rest.) - mh
Wall of silence sits pretty between us
And we carry on,
Without a step out of line.
Noises we make
Are no conversations
They were the first casualty
Even before I lost sight of you.
You are probably glad
That I am on the other side
Out of sight and mind
And sigh with relief
When I do not reply
To your half hearted calls.
Such walls do not grow overnight
They are cultivated and nurtured
And I see the roots of this one
A mile long.
Are you still watering it?
I see the wall growing taller and thicker
Or it’s my tears that won’t stop
As I lean against it
And dream of floating over
To the other side
Where you are.
I mourn the loss of
What was never mine.
Draw pictures on sand with my toes
And let azure in my veins
Bleed into them
It seeps into my skin
Rises with each breath
Did the venom I spew, turn you blue too?
- Nalini Priyadarshni
editor's note: A new spin on the blues - read it and weep. - mh
Dancing over graves
The poem shot out wings
became a vamp in a feather stole
stilling the breath
before the body could lay claim to it
ran her soft tipped words over erogenous spots
in a ghost that shot red coals from its sockets
and pounced to its feet
She pulled away its covers
jabbing with a supple tongue
at a swarm of Achilles’ heels cowering underneath
The specter now disrobed found a mirror
ogling at its goose bumpy treasures
but nothing to fear or is there?
She taunted, she teased, she pole danced around its spine
her impenitent figure striking a pose that lingered
after the night has been thrust into a bookshelf
The ghost in a feeling frenzy
grabbed at whatever came close
opening its loneliest hideaways, un-sutured bullet holes,
and its echoless coulees for her
She dropped her cape, climbed inside and began
- Reena Prasad
editor's note: Never seen a poem wreak so much (happy?) havoc on a ghost of a mind. Wreak away, wreak all! - mh
I Am Fascinated
by bioterrorism. The idea that scientific research has
advanced to the point of producing a tangible embodiment
of the inherent desire inside every scorned female. To kill
a man, a thousand men, with a single touch. To initiate
the most intimate peristaltic chain reaction. To spread contamination,
destruction with a kiss.
- A.J. Huffman
(1 poem added 03.12.14)
editor's note: Whew! Look out, Fellas! If she bottles that, you have reason to invade; a genuine WMD. - mh
A Button To Fix It All
She sees the past in her dreams
and says things like we've always been.
Yet she will scream across the table top
and then lament about love's many faults.
In those oceans she calls eyes
Is a silken cradle of lies,
I remain the same
- her bless-ed little fault.
I see the future in my way,
heartbreak and debris block our place
It's now approaching fast
the future now becomes the past.
Yet in my hand is a lovely thing
a button which makes dreams complete
gives us one more chance to repeat
Clicking on it paints a trail
that leads to where you waited
leads me to where I wish fate had
I fell in love before we ever met
I fell in love before the causeway set.
- Michael Atreides Lair
(1 poem added 03.11.14)
editor's note: These days, the best adhesives stick forever. Best to stay solvent... - mh
A thick tar
flows through my veins
steaming and reeking.
like a wet, sticky frog.
Your New Year's wishes
each word is
My Sweet Heart,
your tongue is too froggy
so it pulls me long
in a mossy moment
A thick slush comes
out of me
and drenches you
a hungry earth-worm
- Bhargab Chatterjee
editor's note: We couldn't stand to see if they smoke, after. Too froggy, indeed! - mh
There’s no electricity in Kathmandu city
Sitting with the woman who cleans monasteries
Silver-throated by embers
Endowed from that cackling stove
The rain is of a poet's dream
Dashing at the window sill
She sits still
Tongue knotted, inquisitive
I walked along these hills
Lit by quarter moon
Dark stars and the wind is chaos
Caked with wet dust
I arrived here
For milk tea refuge
Native café we share in
No dialect pertaining to comprehension
As men chuckle, conspicuous
Women fry eggs, coy and curious
I, silent, sip this tea
She takes her peek at me
I speak erroneously
They love it
- Sunya Chavi
editor's note: A typical day in this poet's neighborhood. We love it, too! - mh
••• Short Stories •••
Need a read? We got just the fix for you! Here's what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone has to say about this pick-of-the-week short story, "Bestial" by Owen J Traylor, "Some people try to pretend they’re Iago, some make pretty like they’re Desdemona; but really, we’re all dogs, following orders and trained by what we think is good and god. If that doesn’t make you want a cup of something strong to drink until someone else figures all this out, I don’t know what will." Here's a taste to whet your beak…
“‘Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is bestial. My reputation, Iago, my reputation!’ (Shakespeare, Othello Act 2 Scene 3, Cassio speaking to Iago).”
Kevin finished reading aloud from the dog-eared book of quotations on the table in front of him, and took a mouthful from his pint of bitter. He looked across at his drinking partner Ron, who as so often seemed lost for words. After a few moments’ silence Kevin continued:
“That’s what makes us different from animals, Ron,” said Kevin, as ever formulating his opinion as an incontrovertible fact.
“What’s that then, Kevin? Money? Animals don’t have money, do they?”asked Ron, his inability to follow Kevin’s line of thought (or anyone else’s for that matter) Kevin found both amusing and irritating by turns.
“No, you daft apeth, not money! Reputation! And conscience! We humans worry about our reputation and we have a conscience. That’s what animals lack, so without a conscience we too would be bestial, as the great Bard says.”…
You wanna keep readin'? Of course you wanna! Get the rest of your read on here!
••• Expanding the Madness •••
About a month ago Mad Swirl launched a GoFundMe page. The purpose behind the fundraiser is to "Expand the Madness o' the Swirl World”. Here are just a few of the projects we’d like to accomplish:
• Publish print anthologies of Mad Swirl poetry, short stories, and art: Our online presence is great and dynamic, but we want to publish something in hard copy, too; one every year. Sometimes it’s nice to hold a book in one’s hand, isn’t it?
• Release a Web 2.0 of the MadSwirl.com: We want to make our site more interactive, make it easier for all Swirlers to make comments and have creative chats about all of the mad poetry, short stories, and art that our mad poets, writers, and artists bring to the Swirl. We will have editor’s Forums for interaction between our editors and all Mad Swirlers. We could do a lot more with a more open architecture. Interested?
• Swirl-A-Bout: We have held live events, beside our monthly open mic at the Absinthe Lounge, here in Dallas. We would like to have more of these AND take them on the road. We are currently planning execution of a new concept: This August 2014, Mad Swirl will attend the 3rd Annual International Poetry Festival in Fermoy, Ireland. We intend to create a documentary about this experience; seeking the heart of poetry in the facilitators, participants and spectators of the Fermoy Festival. This will be the first of many documentaries to record such experiences in a format that can be shared with Mad Swirlers around the world. How cool is that?
• Webcast Mad Swirl Open Mics: We would like to share our monthly open mic (and other special Mad Swirl features) with Swirlers worldwide. With the right equipment, we can make that happen through a medium like Ustream for all to “tune in” at no charge to you. Sound good?
To help the mad cause (aka DONATE), please visit our GoFundMe page here.
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Short Story Editor