The Best of Mad Swirl : 08.30.14

”Art is beauty, the perpetual invention of detail, the choice of words, the exquisite care of execution.” Theophile Gautier

••• The Mad Gallery •••

Die-Cut 2 (above) by featured artist GM Spear. To see more Mad works from GM, and our other contributing artists, please visit our Mad Gallery.

••• The Poetry Forum •••


This last week in Mad Swirl's Poetry Forum... we saw through his fall to his moss covered wall; we placed hand in glove, mimed bustle with no bus; we reclined upon a wedding bed, alcohol images, blood flowing red; we directed our focus to sex and a crocus; we tested wrath's limits to plumb the depths of love; we ringed by areola the center of our desire; we shook in the shadows, found full of light (or what comes after). Everything and nothing this week; pockets filled with pilfered penchants to carry into next... ~ MH Clay

Just in case you missed it, here's a taste...

Met him psychosis

Of the time of school and times tables,
Of numbers counted from zero
To an end, a ten, a twenty, a thirty.
An introduction to the idea of no end
Was all numbers plus the latest one,
And on, and on you would walk down
The dark tumbling roads towards a home
With a wild birthday cake of sparkling candles
In the black sky, and then comes the shaking,
The unmentionable fear, the crying,
The muddying of knees, the mind slipping
A gear and reckoning with forever
For a moment stretching without end
And the body, all earthly and born,
Broke into pieces of an early death
While some other state mourns the boy.

Whistling in the dark fighting off floating
Nothing always surviving in the end.
Raggedy arms clutching at air. Some
Skin feeling the roll of wet shock - the body
Raising a flag of surrender to the end
And for a moment you lifting away,
Changing into some other universe,
Uncounted and unperceived, a place
Beyond the lick and sweat and electric
Shocks of the brain seated on warbling neck.

Some nothing resting at peace beyond
The screaming, loving, laughing, fighting.
Some nothing full of the everything that would
Come and the everything that would go away.
Some part knew of an end and the other,
That lost place of no mirroring self, that
Place of no worded understanding,
That place walking into that boy that night
From every place that never was born
In the shadow of this sun and her afterlight.

- Brendan McCormack

(5 poems added 08.30.14)

editor's note: "I'm so full," said the boy. "Full of what?" asked another. "Irrelevant question!" said the boy. (We welcome Brendan to our crazy confab of Contributing Poets with this submission. Read more of his intrinsic madness on his new page - do it! I said so!) - mh

All I Want

All I want from
the world is

your smile
in times of agony

bottle of
one cigarette
in my left hand
in the other
and your nipples
illuminating the room

while I am laughing
in our

- Peycho Kanev

(1 poem added 08.29.14)

editor's note: Yes, we can write our verses by that light. (We welcome Peycho back to our ranks with this accepted submission. Get a refresher of his madness on his poetry page - check it out.) - mh

Lover’s Tussle

I won’t kiss you ’til we quarrel;
I want to know that you fight fair
and strong and long, with love;
so the worst of you accords
with your best that I adore.
Let us tussle, then rebound
refreshed for tempests
much more kind,
not less profound.

- Craig Kurtz

(2 poems added 08.28.14)

editor's note: I'll die for your love, if I can survive your wrath. (Another good one from Craig on his page, profundities from a glass-mashed moth - check it out.) - mh


We enjoyed
the symmetry of walks
and peeled sex
without caring
what does damnation
exactly mean.
A fucking phone call
changed the gravitational field
of her facial nuances
like the election manifesto
of a ruling party.
Wrapping up the mornings
in old newspapers
and putting them
into our trousers' pockets
we sucked South Avenue
grabbing with our fingers
until the juice of crocus petals
drips intricately from its twig.

- Bhargab Chatterjee

(1 poem added 08.27.14)

editor's note: Love's juices flow like infatuation with a flower. (We welcome Bhargab to our crazy congress of Contributing Poets with this poem. Read more of his madness on his new page - check it out!) - mh


Half a white pearl, oyster from the sea
Never a whole, largely symbolic
Of the encompassing restlessness.
Inside me is an ocean
I bear the same weight, and lightness
It is the oddest of combinations
But I find a balance.
The lull of the pill inside me
On the crevices of my plague.
It colours its effect, I am emptied.
I lie quietly in my sheets
The dreams of blood fizzle in
And out, like breezes in a field.
The second is pink, to counter thoughts
It kills my suicide and makes me silly
Like a woman on shots of alcohol and men.
When I am not white, I am bright red.
It matches my skin in its clumsy cycle.
There are voids, depressions.
Filled, come furnaces.
Who was I before our matrimony?
I am a disaster.
The waves pull in and out.
I am the atmosphere.

- Alainah Aamir

(added 08.26.14)

editor's note: Vows, "for better or worse." We suffer both, either way; like atmosphere. - mh

Big City Din

Then it was snow. Morning dove telling its story, same old same old.
A cat last seen. Where-
abouts. Scented air
distinctly not of rain or its infatuation with metal.
For when the glove is not on, it mimics:
pause; not being a hand.
Balls from sycamores drop, fuzz to be kicked around.
Aren't any buses today, just their sounds.

- Philip Kobylarz

(added 08.25.14)

editor's note: Sometimes, all we need is the noise. - mh

Ghost house

Passing through
The country
The sight of a
Worn out house
Missing to master
Who, is sinking
In the quicksand
Of material modish

Who will see?
A fallen slate
Leaking roof
And plastered
Moss, of: a wall.

- Hem Raj Bastola

(2 poems added 08.24.14)

editor's note: Material Man's lasting legacy; something for the cockroaches to climb. (See another new memorial on Hem's page, check it out!) - mh

••• Short Stories •••

Need a wicked read? Yeah, thought so…

This week's featured short-short might make y'all look those bundles of firm stiff twigs bound together on a long handle a whole lot differently after you read "Riding a Broomstick" by Johnna A. Hammerman. Here's what Short Story Editor Tyler Malone had to say about this pick-of-the-week short-short story… "It’s a good thing witches don’t wither when they’re wet, because if they knew what was on most of our minds all the time, then the dry survivors will have nothing left but puddles and raging broomsticks."

Here's a feel, ya' know, to get your juices flowin':

...Enter Deborah, my witchy friend. Deborah, by Catholic or even Protestant standards, has been riding brooms, so to speak, since she was fourteen-years-old. And fourteen is a “holy number.” one associated with Jesus Christ. Go figure.

Broom number one: Deborah, who is no Wiccan, no pagan, no anything really, even though she goes to church every Sunday and prays and prays for the betterment of the world, has been a Christian since she was a young girl. And by day she basically adheres to the Ten Commandments; but at night, especially after she discovered sloe gin in college, Deborah is riding broom like any natural woman who happens to be single. In college, Deborah was legendary for her “holy sex.” and the boys on campus knew that just a little alcohol or wine could turn Deborah into Fanny Hill, the famous prostitute of one of the very few novels generally considered definitely not “young adult” in nature, an almost age-old novel about a prostitute in the eighteenth century, a harbinger of the so-called Enlightenment—when men and women actively broke religious sanctions against profligate sexual activity.

Deborah rode a broom like a dog. And the boys loved her for it. Not only was Deborah a lovely young woman, but Deborah was a screamer, a moaner and a yeller all at the same time. Yes, Deborah loved “riding broom.” At least when her inhibitions were down.

And, of course, men totally enjoyed “saving” Deborah from her adulterous relationship with Jesus Christ...

With a tease like that, bet'cha you can't stop there 'til you get full reading satisfaction. Well then get your self off here!

••• Open Mic •••

Join Mad Swirl this 1st Wednesday of September (aka 09.03.14) at 8:00 sharp, when we will swirl it up madly in the LIVE way that we do every month. Get to the Lounge early, dig upon the musical musings of Swirve and this month's feature, Dallas Poet R.A. Hernandez!

After our feature set we urge you stick around to get yourself a spot on our list... first come, first on the list! Which means... get there early!

Come one, come all! Mad poets, musicians, actors, singers, circus freaks and Elvis impersonators... come-n-strut-yo-stuff. Come to participate. Come to appreciate. Come to be a part of this collective creative love child we affectionately call Mad Swirl. RSVP (via Book’o’Faces) on spot on our mic list here!

AND, as you may or may not know, every 1st Wednesday we get all giddy with the swirlin' madness. Here's the line-up for the rest of 2014!…

October: Kerseymere
November: Karen X
December: Paul Koniecki


The whole Mad Swirl of everything to come keeps on keepin' on... now... now... NOW! Every second, every minute, every hour, every day, every week, every month, every year, every decade, every every EVERY there is! Wanna join in the mad conversations going on in Mad Swirl's World? Then stop by whenever the mood strikes! We'll be here...

Carefully Executin’,

Johnny O
Chief Editor

MH Clay
Poetry Editor

Tyler Malone
Short Story Editor

Madelyn Olson
Visual Editor


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