Monday, February 8, 2021

Tom Barlow


The hen to the beetle, the fox
to the hen, the stole to the fox—
predation is everywhere. What a

wonderful world, where
the daisy chain of harvest
makes a joke of love. Remember

our walks along the banks of
the river? Where little feasts could
be found taking place all around

us, turtles and grubs, spiders and
flies, men with nightcrawlers
importuning panfish? And this is the

master plan unfolding, we were taught,
one mouth into another into another
and another and another and so I lie

here awake tonight with a hunger
gnawing away at me. As far as I can
tell, in this world anything goes and

I know you must be hiding nearby,
you can't have fled that far yet,
so when the sun rises over Brooklyn

I'll be coming for you.

Tom reads "Anything Goes":

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Tom confesses: "I've always been attracted to the ghoulish, and have written often about how unfair all this Darwinian reality is, that we must prey on others in order to survive. If there were a God, couldn't he/she have managed a little kinder world, one where food appeared out of thin air and every species procreated at just the replacement rate, so we didn't have to have a war or a famine or a plague to take care of the overburden?"

TOM BARLOW is an Ohio writer whose work has appeared in journals including The Stoneboat Literary Journal, Ekphrastic Review, Voicemail Poetry, Hobart, Tenemos, Redivider, Harbinger Asylum, Heron Clan, The Remington Review, Your Daily Poem, and many more. See more at

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