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Showing posts from 2016

Underground, a prose poem by Jared Carter

Underground by Jared Carter       The two children – abruptly shoved off the platform into the path of an oncoming train – are not in that instant crushed by the wheels, but instead dissolved against the event horizon of a black hole suddenly materialized out of another galaxy.       Its unknowable surface accepts each of them. The girl becomes a dove caught by the softest, lightest of nets, the boy a silver fish trapped in a riverbank weir.       The subway tunnel with its overhead coffers, the platform, the people standing along the edge, the train braking to a stop – all of this translates into long filaments of irretrievable data.       Agamemnon announces that the wind has risen, and the Achaeans can now set their sails. Bio: Jared Carter’s sixth collection, Darkened Rooms of Summer , was published in 2014 by the University of Nebraska Press. He lives in Indianapolis

Gravity (A Solstice Poem), by Jeffrey Owen Pearson

Gravity (A Solstice Poem) by Jeffrey Owen Pearson When asked what he would miss while travelling in space, the astronaut said, gravity. And though we reach for the stars, and though it yanked Icarus out of the sky, gravity is like that mother who flicks our ear to put us in our place. It’s that thing that pulls the sun, now at its farthest station, back toward the earth. That dark hand that reminds each plant and animal and man that winter is a time of earth and root. That godlike thing who doesn’t see but watches everything we do and brings us together where we belong. Bio: Jeffrey Owen Pearson’s poems have appeared in The Best of Flying Island, So It Goes, Reckless Writing 2014 Anthology, Tipton Poetry Journal, Flying Island, and Maize. “I have fallen asleep again reading Homer” placed third in the 2014 Writers Digest Poetry Awards. Pudding House Publications published his chapbook Hawaii Slides. A member of the Midwest Writers W

The Desert, a prose poem by Jared Carter

The Desert by Jared Carter       Prolonged exposure to extremes of sun and heat can cause madness, even death, yet there is said to exist one group of nomads who roam the desert unceasingly. Of its members, who have never been studied, only one thing is known.       Before leaving each campsite, they mix quantities of sand with colors extracted from native wildflowers, and spread out a series of vast, intricate diagrams. Such patterns are obscured by the wind within minutes after the tribesmen ride away.              The purpose of these designs is unclear. Thought to be prehistoric in origin, they have never been sketched or photographed. Over the years, the wish to examine them has lured a number of expeditions onto the desert. Their fate is uncertain, for none has ever returned.              Certain adventurers are reported to have withstood the heat and the mirages until they have stumbled across dunes streaked with faint colors. Of these, a few are alleged to have survived, and

When they marry, they make ..., a poem by Mary M. Brown

When they marry, they make their own vows and their own wedding cake the cutest couple a hyphenated name a trip to Jamaica a strict budget including a hefty mortgage payment a promise to each other never to fake it— — which they break— two children and one who doesn’t make it a nice dinner every Wednesday— steak and baked potatoes or crab cakes a few martinis, gently shaken a decision to relocate mostly for the sake of the children a valiant effort to educate them a modest take in the stock market readjustments along the way and some healthy 401(k)s arrangements for a parent’s wake a quiet cabin at the lake a mess or two— but no grave mistake                     — by Mary M. Brown Bio: Mary M. Brown lives and writes in Anderson, Indiana, a Hoosier not by birth but by long residence and disposition. She taught literature and creative writing at Indiana Wesleyan for many years. Her work appears on the Poetry Foundation a

2016 Pushcart Prize nominees

Congratulations to the the 2016 Pushcart Prize nominations from the Flying Island Island online journal, a publication of the Indiana Writers Center. FICTION "The New Girl at School Talks About Guns," by Robin Lovelace (March 21, 2016) Click here. CREATIVE NONFICTION "Square of Love," by Charlie Sutphin (March 30, 2016) Click here. "A Room of His Own," by Jay S Zimmerman (Oct. 21, 2016)  Click here. POETRY "Five Star Hole," by Grambi Dora (March 29, 2016) Click here. "How to Be a Cop's Wife," by Lindsey Warner (June 6, 2016) Click here. "What to say to a refugee," by Mary M. Brown (Sept. 26, 2016) Click here.

Crèche, a prose poem by Michael Brockley

Crèche by Michael Brockley This year you build a Nativity scene with a green Tyrannosaurus Rex leering into the stable. Its buck teeth glisten whenever a car turns down your block, and its torpid tail reminds you how fragile your knowledge has grown. Batman straddles the roof as if he has rappelled down the side of a Bethlehem skyscraper. The Native American Thunderbird from your bolo tie affixed to the roof serves as the crèche star. This is the year the redhead left you for a stuntman she met at Sundance. The year your veterinarian injected pentobarbital into your last dog’s thigh. You position three Darth Vadars on the straw while Homer’s son bangs on a Lego drum. A rhinoceros and a one-eared kangaroo shiver across the dying campfire from the dinosaur. Frigid or fearful. You’ve never figured it out. Conan the Barbarian kneels at the fire, feeding it scraps of Hershey Kiss wrappers. Discarded holiday ribbons. His battle ax strapped across his back. Wile E. Coyote peeks from be

Spending Thanksgiving Day Alone, a poem by George Fish

Spending Thanksgiving Day Alone by George Fish Yeah, well, that’s a real turkey! Yep, far more wobble than gobble! And when Thanksgiving Day dinner is a sandwich made festive for the holiday with four slices of bologna garnished with a whole two slices of Muenster cheese and a good dollop of horseradish mustard— well, that’s clearly a turkey that ain’t a turkey! Yeah, you who’ve been there know exactly what I mean. Bio: George Fish is an Indiana freelance journalist and poet whose work has appeared in several national and regional publications and websites, especially those of left and alternative publications. He has been described as "knowledgeable in an unusual variety of fields." In addition to short stories and poems, Fish has also published extensively on economics and politics; popular music, especially blues; and humor. He also does Lenny Bruce/George Carlin-inspired stand-up comedy.  

Sword of Maturity, a poem by Frederick Michaels

Sword of Maturity by Frederick Michaels Hand hammer forged, purified in myriad layers like innocent childhood wishes folded into Xbox dreams with young adult ambitions, welding YouTube to Facebook. Grown-up visions shaped by iPhone and LinkedIn — quenched in disappointment, reheated in reality’s fire, rehoned to a sharper edge, polished to a brighter future. Sheathed in scar tissue, oiled by hard-won success, hardened by experience yet, soft as Corinthian leather, her childhood wishes shine like those in innocent eyes. Bio: Frederick Michaels writes in retirement from his home in Indianapolis. His poetry has appeared in Flying Island, So It Goes Literary Journal, The Boston Poetry Journal, Branches magazine and Lone Stars magazine, among others. A number of his poems are included in the anthologies Reckless Writing 2012 and 2013 (from Chatter House Press, Indianapolis) and Naturally Yours (edited and self-published by Stacy Savage and Kathy Chaffin Gerstorff).

Favorite Author, a poem by Lylanne Musselman

Editor's note:  Kurt Vonnegut was born on Nov. 11, 1922. Favorite Author by Lylanne Musselman Pall-Mall smoker, satirical joker, technology hater, Kilgore Trout creator, POW survivor, witty writer, selfie screenprinter, granfalloon spinner, generational uniter, political divider, famous Hoosier, mustache wearer, advice giver, life observer, Saab dealer, blues stealer, wampeters definer, reading reviver, so it goes sayer, controversy diver. In a reading rut? Get Vonnegut. Bio:  Lylanne Musselman is an award winning poet, playwright, and artist. Her work has appeared in  Pank, Flying Island, The Tipton Poetry Journal, Poetry Breakfast ,  So it Goes, Issue 3,  among others, and many anthologies.  In addition, Musselman has twice been a Pushcart nominee. Musselman is the author of three chapbooks, with a fourth forthcoming,  Weathering Under the Cat,  from Finishing Line Press. She also co-authored  Company of Women: New

In Guernsey where the ghost, a poem by Mary M. Brown

In Guernsey where the ghost of Victor Hugo rides the narrow streets             like a roller coaster, we go to Eucharist at the old Town Church of St. Peter              Port, discover that the Very Reverend             Canon is retiring soon, the after-service cookies and tea designed to mark the day                       in an understated way. We are welcomed, but reluctant to intrude. Later             we learn that Hauteville House is closed                         today, only a placard outside the modest             island home where Hugo wrote. There the same deep violet wisteria that we noticed climbing the stone of the great church             shrieks with delight, falls fast and violent from the locked iron gate                       —by Mary M. Brown Bio: Mary M. Brown lives and writes in Anderson, Indiana, a Hoosier not by birth but by long residence and disposition. She taught literature and creative writing at Ind

Traveling, a prose poem by Jared Carter

Traveling by Jared Carter Other musicians take their instruments along. On cross-country flights you see fiddle players who had to buy an extra ticket for the Stradivarius in the seat next to them. They look nervous. It’s different playing piano. Each time you come to a new place, the piano is already there, browsing in the middle of the pasture, a long way from the fence. It’s black, usually, but sometimes roan. Once in a while it’s a buckskin. It’s usually up in years, too. It’s been there a long time, it’s earned the right to graze anywhere it wants. Not like those cows, down by the river, under the cottonwood tree. They move with the shade, all day long. When the sun moves, they move. Not until.  Worn steps lead up to the stage, to the flats of last night’s scenery waiting to be moved back to storage. Underneath the fake-wood flooring the actual surface is concrete. Gray corridors lead to dressing rooms, with doors you have to stoop to get through. There’s

A Room of His Own, Creative Nonfiction by Jay S Zimmerman

A Room of His Own Jay S Zimmerman It was an orthodox Jewish funeral, though my father was never orthodox, and I can’t remember the last time he was in a synagogue. In fact, I don’t ever remember him attending since my Bar Mitzvah. Our family celebrated all the typical Jewish Holidays and, except for my youngest sister, a Lubovich devotee committed to an orthodox Hasidic lifestyle, we were a fairly secular family. So, I was rather surprised to be standing here. The day was typical south Florida, hot, sticky and bright, and I stood in my suit, sweating, shovel in hand, staring down into the grave. The sound of the earth covering the coffin filled my ears as I lifted the shovel and watched his new white pine home being covered in a cascade of black dirt. I was burying my father. I heard a large rock thud against the wood and saw the top portion of the un-nailed coffin jar loose and move slightly off center. His arm around my shoulder, the mortuary director whispered in my ear, his

Puck, a poem by Chrysa Keenon

Puck by Chrysa Keenon Wander away with me, Don’t let them call you back and Take my hand, little lamb. I can show you where the magic lies, In the green puffs of smoke and haunting tones Listen to me, love me, Breathe me;  I might  Bite and hold firm. But you’re mine now. My prisoner of delight. I can make you bloom like a flower, Help you see galaxies untouched by mortal men Dance with me, you will feel No pain or worry Inhale and Let me into your blood And soon you will be part of me, too. Bio: Chrysa Keenon is a student at Taylor University, studying Professional Writing. She has been published in various newspapers and magazines, including Changes in Life, The Echo, The Fictional Cafe, and Evangelical Church Libraries. She spends the time she is not writing reading and perfecting her knitting skills.

Whose Eyes Are These?, a poem by Norbert Krapf

Whose Eyes Are These? by Norbert Krapf Whose eyes take me in, in my pre-dawn study? Where does that light in your eyes come from, young Miss Ida? I’m listening to a song titled “Not Dark Yet,” but truth is, it’s been dark a long time. You know. You been there. You look at me and you don’t. You look at me, but you see something way beyond.  Who knows what you really see? What you see may lie beyond you, the history of the Pinkston Settlement founded by your great-great-grandfather Emanuel Pinkston, freed slave from Georgia. One side of you was free, the other side was a Kentucky slave. You got one eye for each of your sides, Miss Ida. That’s how you look at and over me but I don’t know what you see. Seems to me you see nothing and everything at the same time but I can’t see what you see in me. Bio: Norbert Krapf, former Indiana Poet Laureate, is a Jasper, Indiana, native who lives in downtown Indianapolis. His most rec

Annihilation, Creative Nonfiction by Charles P. Sutphin

Annihilation  by Charles P. Sutphin                                         According to the Sufis, you need to fall in love with something without a soul in order to experience transcendence: Pursue the “hidden treasure” and you will find your god and better still—release.  In Berkshire County in the northwest corner of Massachusetts a trail crosses a swamp that borders my yard. The circularity of the path provides a mandalaic course for me to exercise body and mind—as well as spirit: deer rustle through bracken, hemlocks whisper in the canopy as their brethren, struck and fallen, transform into dirt. Over the course of years I fell in love with a piece of wood assigned to the bottom of the forest floor. Planks crisscross the trail and elevate hikers over water in the spring and in the fall. In original form, these pieces of wood tower toward the light, now they lie felled and carved   . My board spends most of the year submerged in muck or frozen ice-tight against the e