Monday, October 3, 2022

Teel James Glenn


I know what's real
I know what's not
The colors swarming
My skin is hot
I didn't do it (or at least I think)
I cleaned up the blood
'twas in the sink
So let me out,
Loose my bonds
Before they dredge the out back ponds.

Teel reads "Insanity":

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Teel confesses: "This may be my answer to the unreliable narrator in so many stories...Or might be an admission of guilt. I will not tell. It is, however, was inspired by the ‘twist ending’ of so many Twilight Zone and EC comics and obviously by my love of Poe’s "Tell-Tale Heart" (which I have performed several times as a monologue)."

TEEL JAMES GLENN, winner of the 2021 Best Novel from Pulp Factory Awards, 2012 Pulp Ark 'Best Author of the Year.' Epic ebook award finalist. Derringer Award finalist, P&E winner 'Best Thriller Novel',"Best Steampunk Short", Multiple finalist "Best Fantasy short stories," Collection" Member HWA, MWA, HNS, IATW, Private Eye Writers of America. Visit him at

Saturday, October 1, 2022

Best of the Net 2023 Selection

As editor of The Five-Two, I get to choose six poems published July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022 for Best of the Net 2023 consideration. Since every poem I publish is one of my favorites, I like to give The Five-Two's audience three of the six picks:

  • You can vote by commenting on a poem's post or Liking its YouTube video.
  • Your comment can be feedback on the poem or just "Best of the Net 2023."
  • Deadline: The three poems receiving the most comments and Likes by Wednesday, September 14, 2022 will be submitted along with my three picks.

Here are the six nominations submitted September 29, 2022:

The complete anthology contents will be announced by the end of January 2023. Good luck to all.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Robert Cooperman


In high school, we’d sometimes
be rushed from the building:
a bomb threat sirened in,
some kid unprepared
for the midterm or final.

Running past our frowning teachers
and the vice principal glaring
divine retribution, we’d laugh
our heads off: the rest of the day ours,

the bomb squad taking hours,
with their sniffer dogs,
before giving the all-clear,
though always the unlikely chance
a psychopath with a grudge
had planted a bomb near
the chem lab or in the cafeteria.

Now, vacationing in France,
we read the email:
your campus evacuated,

“In an abundance of caution,”
at a bomb threat on this first day
of summer school finals.

“Probably some kid too busy
partying,” we think, though
always the fear of nut jobs
pissed off they no longer
rule the whole world:

the bastards too stupid
to realize too much of it
is still theirs.

Gerald So reads "Bomb Threat":

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Bob confesses: "After self-quarantining for two years, my wife and I finally visited her family in France this summer. While Beth was scrolling through her e-mails, she found one about a bomb threat called into her college campus, back in Denver. Thankfully, it was a hoax, but it brought back memories of when kids in my high school would call in threats if they hadn't studied for a big exam. And the chance to take a swipe at the vicious-idiot right wing was too tempting to resist."

ROBERT COOPERMAN's latest collections are Go Play Outside (Apprentice House) and Reefer Madness (Kelsay Books). Forthcoming from Kelsay Books is A Nightmare on Horseback.

Monday, September 19, 2022

Charles Rammelkamp


I was already at the top of my career,
moving on from the striptease ghetto
to a full-fledged burlesque act,
to the Ziegfeld Follies, Hollywood,
the New York World’s Fair,
now I could pursue my dream
of being a successful writer.
Gypsy Rose Lee was already a star!

When I moved into 7 Middagh Street
with Carson McCullers, Wystan Auden
and my friend George Davis,
I was all fired up to write a murder mystery,
The G-String Murders, the murder weapon
a chorus girl’s G-string.

When I didn’t have to attend a meeting downtown
or make an appearance at a charity event,
or attend a Broadway opening,
I spent afternoons in my third-floor rooms
working with George on the plot,
the death of Lolita La Verne and the rest.

But the trouble with writing?
It’s hard work, and not having a contract
with a publisher was like being all made up,
ready to go on stage...
and not knowing what theater you’re playing!

So just before Christmas, I told George
I was going to Chicago to join Mike Todd
I worked on G-String in my dressing room,
writing revisions while starring
in several shows a day at Todd’s Theatre Café,
collaborating with my editor, Lee Wright.

But you know what? It paid off!
After The G-String Murders came out,
by winter it was the best-selling mystery
since Dashiell Hammett’s The Thin Man!

Charles reads "The Intellectual Stripper":

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Charles confesses: "I’ve recently become interested in the lives of the famous burlesque stars of the first half of the twentieth century – Sally Rand, April March, Candy Barr and the rest. My research took me to Sherill Tippins’ book, February House, about the time Gypsy Rose Lee, Carson McCullers, W.H. Auden and others lived in a house in Brooklyn together, in 1940. Gypsy’s story was fascinating! I had never heard of The G-String Murders before, but it sounds like a gas! I’m getting a copy!"

CHARLES RAMMELKAMP's latest poetry collection, The Field of Happiness, has just been published by Kelsay Books. Rammelkamp is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books. He contributes a monthly book review to North of Oxford and is a frequent reviewer for The Lake, London Grip and The Compulsive Reader. A collection of flash fiction, Presto!, will be published in 2023 by Bamboo Dart Press.