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Showing posts from 2023

Flying Island 11.24

Dear Flying Island Readers: Welcome to the 11.24 Edition of the Flying Island Journal! In this edition we publish poems by Rebecca Pyle , Samuel Franklin , Eric Chiles , and Marla J. Jarmer . Inspired to send us your fiction, poetry, or creative nonfiction? For more info on how to submit, see the tab above. Thank you for reading, Flying Island Editors and Readers

After a Week in Chartres, a poem by Rebecca Pyle

  After a Week in Chartres Become absorbed into ideas about how a house is really a boat Which is stopped And a car is a boat Which is limited and heartbroken, Separated from sea And you will begin to want the house and the boat Which both break rules of how a house or a boat should be. Can you not be childish and be a grownup? Yes, you can. You can eat pan and pain and butter and fromage and apricot jams. You can walk till your legs are both muscled and weary. Your smile May be dependent upon knowing many things unbuyable are  Missing And will probably never be found again. They are like land You cannot reach because the sea is too big and pretty and hungry And too in love with its reflective capabilities, its dance eternal With the sun. What has the sun always been to you? The middle fiddle of the blender, The machine which whirls us all into submission, acquiescence, glitter,  Says our physical wounds will heal and our brains will rise above, our  Novels about loneliness are nothing

There is Sunlight, There is Wind, a poem by Samuel Franklin

There is Sunlight, There is Wind I  We begin as vegetables,  climbing up from seeds  like pumpkin vines atop  the wooden garden trellis. All winter we’ve waited,  tubers in the frozen earth,  dreaming of leeks and apples,  the breeze in the flowering pear.  II There is an acorn within me,  skipping madly between my ribs. O once I was wild grass, ecstatic in sunlight,  the music of oak leaves like lute notes toward which I stretched and bristled. There is an acorn within me,  reaching tannic feelers through the tips  of my fingers. The roots are nuzzling down,  down, through the soles of my feet,  speaking in the earth, listening to moles.  III The dusk-sun warps among the buds  of the grasping oak, the long fingers  touching the belly of the sky, shivering.  Our hands splay against the radiance,  becoming blades of yuccas.  Winds wing like doves in our hair,  O there is sunlight in the wind, rain is kissing the bursting trees.      Samuel Franklin is the author of two books of poetry:

Erratics, a poem by Eric Chiles

Erratics Polychrome Outlook, Denali National Park and Preserve The bus driver points out the cottage-sized boulder stranded miles off and thousands of feet below in the alluvial plane between the winding rivers melting from two glaciers. Sometimes glaciers break off huge chunks from mountains, he says, and when they recede, they drop them in the middle of nowhere. All alone out there, they're called erratics. He needed this trip to breathe air into the doldrums of his divorce. All this wild openness. All this emptiness  —the occasional ptarmigan, moose, grizzly or caribou. A red fox trots next to the bus, a snowshoe hare dangling from its mouth. The bus driver stops so they can watch the bitch carry dinner to kits bouncing around the den. It just reminds him of what he wanted, of the glacial chill that had descended upon their marriage, deserting him in a tundra of oneness.  What, he wonders, had precipitated her hiss that she had had enough, that she was leaving? And days later th

Saturday Morning Catechisms, a poem by Marla J. Jarmer

Saturday Morning Catechisms Sometimes it was cattle, And sometimes it was horses, but It was always a row of Old men in their pearl-button western Shirts and Levi’s, Smoking cigars and pipe tobacco, Making it impossible for me to breathe, Braids sweaty and itching under  My Dekalb seed corn cap,  A Peanuts Magic Slate from the Hi-Lo Grocery And a flat Pepsi watered down by Ice long-melted to occupy me. Sometimes it was the errant ash Of your Camel alighting on the Back of my hand, The scent of corn still green in the shocks  Flowing in through The vents as we flew down A back country road,  Johnny Cash in the speakers,  You at the wheel,  Me, shoes off, feet barely reaching the dash, Head hanging dog-like out the window, Hair tangling back behind me, Wondering what it would feel like  To press the Camel’s cherry tip into my flesh. Other times, it was in the cold mists of March, Tramping down aisles of still-dead grass Of a farm two counties over, Peering into the isles of someone’s lif

Flying Island 10.27

Dear Flying Island Readers: Welcome to the 10.27 Edition of the Flying Island Journal! In this edition we publish poems by Tawn Parent , Roger Pfingston , Chris Dean , and Mary Wilder Daily and creative nonfiction by Nan Jackson . Inspired to send us your fiction, poetry, or creative nonfiction? For more info on how to submit, see the tab above. Thank you for reading, Flying Island Editors and Readers

Plaid Blanket, a poem by Tawn Parent

The Plaid Blanket I cover my son with the fuzzy plaid blanket  I bought spontaneously on Christmas Eve,  spying it out of the edge of my eye at the grocery checkout, of all places. Something bright  to break up the chilly whiteness of the hospital bed and offer a scrap of hominess in the stern, ringing room. The fleece provides warmth  that the thin, sterile hospital blankets can’t match, no matter how many you pile on. At home the plaid blanket lives in a shopping bag, packed and ready for when fever sends us running to the ER. Then I lift the folded softness from the brown bag  and stretch it across the foot of Eli’s bed  in the children’s cancer ward to claim this rolling metal island as our own. When the blanket becomes soiled, I hurry to the hospital laundry, scrawl his room number in marker on the hard lid of the washer. Inside, the blanket  has a heyday, sharing its colorful fluff with all its neighbors as they churn together in the sudsy water. Pants, shirts, and socks emerge 

Drought, a poem by Roger Pfingston

Drought Not the melody we expected at the creek’s edge, rather an ugly  silence clogged with sheets and tubes  of sycamore bark, the stopped drift  of sweet gum balls and cottonwood fluff, mud-dried globs of twigs and leaves, feathers, thin bones of whatever, and always the human dross.                           Easy to cross this un- wanted shortcut while preferring the long  way around to the singing duo of rock and water.       A retired teacher of English and photography, Roger Pfingston is the recipient of a Poetry Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and two PEN Syndicated Fiction Awards. He is the author of  Something Iridescent , a collection of poetry and fiction, as well as five chapbooks ,  the most recent being  What’s Given,  available from Kattywompus Press .  

house, a poem by Chris Dean

house I want to go back To days when An empty box and pallet  Made the perfect house With grandma's old curtain As a door. You would sit on your hat box chair At our milk crate table  While I served you imaginary tea From the pink plastic cups Mom found at the dollar store. We could talk about your day at work, You complaining about your boss While I wiped my hands on My pretend apron. Then, when boredom set in, We'd leave our sleeping rubber baby In its shoe box crib in the corner And go catch lightning bugs Or play tag And ours would be the happiest home On the block until The street light came on Or it rained.       Chris Dean , a writer from Indiana, began writing poetry in 2018. They were the featured artist for May at the Columbus Area Arts Council Monthly Open Mic Night. Their work has been published in The Whiskey Mule Diner Anthology