Monday, January 25, 2021

Robert Cooperman


Man, this really pisses me off,
not being able to use this baby
on Traitor Pelosi and watch
the bitch dance the spastic chicken
when I zap her with 50,000 volts.
Blotto, baby! Blotto!

She and the other traitors
hid and ran, bunch of damn cowards,
but the Pelosi jackpot would’ve been
sweeter than the Wife’s apple pies—
when I convince her
my blood pressure ain’t that high—
for the medal Trump would’ve
hung around my neck!

The talk of the neighborhood,
hell, of the country, saving us
from those Democrats so smug
to steal the election: Trump,
the rightful winner!

But we couldn’t flush them out,
so nothing to do now
but march away, fists raised
in victory, while I text the Wife
to tell her what a great day
it was for the country.

I shove my taser down
the front of my jeans,
and my fingers dance
to send the Wife a message,
and I feel the slightest buzzing
in my crotch, like the Wife’s
getting me in the mood.

Gabriel Hart reads "Taserman":

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Bob confesses: "As soon as I read that one of the neo-Nazis who'd attacked the Capitol and the Constitution I had tased his genitals and suffered a heart attack and death as a result, thereby doing us all a favor and taking himself out of the gene pool, I knew I had to write about that genius of Darwinian self-destruction."

ROBERT COOPERMAN's latest chapbook is All Our Fare-Thee-Wells (Finishing Line Press), his latest love letter to the Grateful Dead. Forthcoming from Kelsay Books is Reefer Madness, half about his misspent youth, half about the Colorado Girl Scouts' decision to okay selling cookies in front of pot shops.

Monday, January 18, 2021

Charles Rammelkamp

JANUARY 6, 2021

“She was a real piece of work,”
Josh shook his head.
“I remember one time
she chased down the road
after a woman
who’d dated her boyfriend,
here in Annapolis,
rammed her car!
This was a year or so before
she divorced her husband,
moved out to San Diego.

“Had an American flag in her yard,
military plaques and such,
you know, a real rightwing shrine.
She’d been in the Air Force,
worked at the nuclear power plant.”

Josh seemed lost in memory
but re-focused, addressed the reporter
sitting next to him,
pen poised over a notebook.

“So yeah, no surprise she was there
with the mob storming the Capitol.
I heard the last thing she posted on Twitter,
before she was killed,
was an American flag and thumbs-up emojis
alongside the comment, ‘Jan 6, 2021.’”

Charles reads "January 6, 2021":

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Charles confesses:"Initially, I feared the person who was shot at the Capitol during the insurrection that President Trump incited may have been an innocent staffer. Later, I found out that Ashli Babbitt was a fervent Trump supporter and a Second Amendment enthusiast, apparently killed by the Capitol police officer in self-defense, while she tried to break through a barricaded door."

CHARLES RAMMELKAMP is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books in Baltimore. Two full-length collections were published in 2020, Catastroika, from Apprentice House, and Ugler Lee from Kelsay Books. A poetry chapbook, Mortal Coil, has just been published by Clare Songbirds Publishing.

Monday, January 11, 2021

Max Thrax


Shutters up
On the shop
Four days
Out of seven

No one
Goes in
No one
Goes out

Even the mice
Are gone
Scurried across
The street

Its receipts
Only found
On the ledger
Of a Macau syndicate

Max reads "Free Delivery":

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Max confesses: "Traces of organized crime are all around us, even if we don't see them. I wrote 'Free Delivery' about my old neighborhood in Boston, where fronts and fake businesses were fairly common and, far as I know, still are. A murky, twilight world that inspires much of my work."

MAX THRAX lives in Boston, Massachussetts. His stories and poetry have appeared in Bristol Noir, Punk Noir, Versification, and Shotgun Honey.

Monday, January 4, 2021

Frederick Shiels


One day late in 1966 in drowsy Hattiesburg,
Phillip Oliver, nineteen, shot
his step-mother four times
in the face and chest with a ten-gauge,

tossed what was left of her
in the back of the family’s Ford pick-up,
drove out to an empty lot
on the edge of town, unloaded her,

emptied a five gallon can of lawn mower gasoline
and dropped Ohio blue-tip kitchen matches--
two lit as a fuse for the rest— on her,
backed away quickly.

He then drove to the police station
downtown and told everything. That’s
how the newspaper reported it,
at least, that’s how I recall it.

Funny thing though,
it was also reported that
quiet Phillip, cutting lawns and
doing odd-jobs, just out of high school,

said he "didn’t mind the lady,"
they had argued a bit that particular morning.
His father remarried a little quickly, he thought—maybe,
and that was that, or so I remember fifty-five years later.

We drove by their red-brick ranch house
on Adeline St. with a shudder every day for months,
then less so, as a For Sale sign went up in the front yard.
I always suspected that the buyers would be from out of town.

Gerald So reads "Driving Past the Oliver House":

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Frederick confesses: "I was seventeen when Philip did his deed. His house was four blocks from mine. I drove past it every day. That was enough.”

FREDERICK SHIELS is a historian, professor and poet. He has published in New Verse News, Deep South Review, Hudson River Anthology, Westchester Review, and elsewhere. His poetry was recently included in a book solely devoted to Hieronymus Bosch's "The Garden of Earthly Delights." He lives forty miles north of New York City. and has also published five books on historical International Relations, including Preventable Disasters: Why Governments Fail.