Sunday, October 21, 2018

Volume 39 Cover Reveal


Featuring Worcester artist Robert Munford and the winners of the Worcester County Poetry Association's Annual Frank O'Hara Prize and College Poetry Contest

We're excited to reveal this year's cover showcasing Robert Munford's "The Kiss." 

The manuscript is now in the hands of the printer and will be out later this fall.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

From Volume 38: "Wool Hats " by Elizabeth P. Glixman



Wool Hats
By Elizabeth P. Glixman

It’s time to close the windows,
take out the wool socks and blankets,
hunker down as if it is war.
The enemy is at our front door
holding the grenade of wind, rain,
and cold in his hand.
The hats are on the bed
knitted in autumn colors like the last leaves
lying on the ground beneath the maple tree
outside the bedroom window.

Wasn’t it May yesterday
when I shook the hats.
Pieces of crumbled leaves
and weariness fell on the bed
from cradling heads.
I put them away with moth-proof
packets of herbs.
They became closet prisoners.

New clothes, new generations appeared
Swimsuits, dresses, t-shirts, and cargo pants.
Today these clothes of freedom are in jail
for the raw winter.
The orange, raw-umber red hats are in the light,

ready to cover heads.
The lambs of the spring are not yet born.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Open for Poetry Submissions

We are open to poetry submissions now through January 31, 2019. Visit our Submittable page to submit. Fiction writers, we will be open for submissions again January 1 to January 31, 2019. We look forward to reading your work!

Sunday, August 5, 2018

From Volume 38: "Blackberry Season " by Joannie Stangeland



Blackberry Season
By Joannie Stangeland

When the house pours its yellow light
into the day’s long wake, we become
swimmers treading water, dusk an ocean

here in the back yard. Slowly we float
to the sound of ice in a glass of tea or gin,
guitars on a neighbor’s radio,

dandelions unwrapping like anemones,
urchins, a spiny seed for every thought
planting again this unasked-for harvest

drifting as the smell of blackberries
settles, holds the last of summer close
and deep enough to make us heady.

Here with evening falling into our arms
we know we’ve stayed inside too often,
felt strangers to our own hands,

the fortunes we can’t read on our palms,
our wishes charted to some other porch
where cleaner windows gleam, gold islands.

The wake behind the last boat thins
to plain water and salt. Robins nest in the eaves,
and we founder on our wooden chairs

in the swells of that purple scent,
begin our stories again, starting
Once upon a night with so many stars

Sunday, July 8, 2018

From Volume 38: "White Walls" by Julie de Oliveira



White Walls
By Julie de Oliveira

My mother looks beautiful
As she wipes down long lengths of
Cold marble with glass cleaner.
She smiles as she dusts underneath
Picture frames of sunburnt,
Blue-eyed, blond-haired children
Building sandcastles a thousand summers ago.
She knows this house so well,
She knows exactly where to cross
On its creaky waxed wooden floors
As not to make a sound as she steps,
The only sound is the swish of her mop.
She scrubs the insides of their oven
With her dry cracked hands
On her feeble God-fearing knees
As I do their dishes.
Making sure to speak
In our native tongue,
She tells me what she would’ve done differently;
Peach walls, not eggshell;
Suede, not Italian.
Cristo and the last supper and
Arroz efeij√£o, not mac ’n’ cheese.
The constant in and out of our family,
Neighbors, and people we’ve never met
But welcome with open hearts anyway
Because we understand the lonely,
A cold bed, and a foreign country.
Less space on white walls; more family.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

From Volume 38: "Cleaning the Bathroom " by Jennifer L. Freed



Cleaning the Bathroom
By Jennifer L. Freed

His towel, hanging rumpled on the bar,
holds the ghost of his hands.

His Pears transparent soap.
Two strands of silver woven through his comb.

The hamper—full
of his clothes. Can you carry them

down to the washer, hang them
on the line?

And then
can you fold them smooth against your chest

and let them go
to Goodwill? 

In the shower, dandruff shampoo
he thought he’d try. 

On the door, the empty
hook. When

will you wash your hair,
stop wearing his robe?

Sunday, May 6, 2018

From Volume 38: "Atlas of the Known World and Surrounding Regions" by Andrew Gent



Atlas of the Known World and Surrounding Regions
By Andrew Gent

The squirrels have built a palace
in the crook of a tree
high above my bedroom window.
Hanging gardens, stately
antechambers, harems
and exotic bazaars,
all hidden within a clump of leaves.
I see the dignitaries
come and go,
preening and twitching
like leaders of the great
industrialized nations of the world.
In the neighbor’s yard,
two members of parliament
argue the finer points
of the Sumerian calendar
while the blue jay
calls them names.