Categories
Insomnia Poetry

night reading mode by Cynthia Arrieu-King

she gestures toward a pink cloud inside digital forest wallpaper and says:

this is my cloud. it contains all my data

 

uncle moon sees the white screen in my glasses

and he kicks on night reading mode–

 

everything white turns black, saves energy, and the print turns white.

small van icon moving alongside the round white switch

 

happening inside the diaphanous

the radical / frieze of clouds

 

a conscience / collective unconscious / collective

it stirs smaller, repeats its circuit ceaselessly

disconnects from variation

disconnects from vary

A polar bear walking backwards through a door repeatedly

 

gets rid of “I” and moves branches

sighs along the crunch

the ball dropped to the street doesn’t bounce

a dead path, footsteps stopped mid-stairs, an immovable string on a guitar

Cynthia Arrieu-King teaches creative writing, literature, and general studies. Her poetry books include People are Tiny in Paintings of China, Manifest, and Futureless Languages. Her poetry book Continuity is forthcoming from Octopus Books and her book of experimental memoir The Betweens is forthcoming from Noemi in 2021. 

Categories
Anxiety Poetry

Landmine by Anisha Narain

I call to myself from the front porch   /   I don’t hear an answer   /   I am a house with rotted guts  /  a flickering garage light  /  I would rather swallow fireflies to spark the abyss in my stomach than pills  /  self-medication  /  your memory is scorched earth  /  a place I return to unwillingly  /  I ask myself  /  what is this past  /  running rampant  /  flash before my eyes  /  hummingbird heartbeat pulsing faster  /  than the time it took  /  to take cover against the blow  /  shelter is pointless when you are  / everywhere  /  which is to say I can make  /  a landmine of any voice  /  I juice myself like  /  a ripe lemon  /  stir bittersweet lemonade under a  /  blunt sun  / the landline shook my foundation today  /  your breath on the other end  /  I taste the singe of every time I howled myself  /  hoarse like it’s stuck between my teeth  / chew it like raw meat snap a wishbone in my cheek  /  pretend I swallowed the longer side  /  I slip back to your nails screeching  /  against sand  /  hung up hotline dial tone beeping  /  farther and farther in the distance  /  I am racked and wretched  /  wrung out  /  a towel beneath a tire  /  I keep the colander inside my mouth  /  how easy is it to tell a stranger that you are not only a lit match  /  but a bonfire  /   warmth to house cupped hands  /  I strain to remember  /  how much of me to burn  /  I bet you still like the smell of gasoline

Anisha Narain (she/they) is a queer Tamil-American poet and creator studying computer science and creative writing at the University of Illinois. They have poems in or forthcoming in perhappened, giallo lit, and 433 Magazine. In their spare time, they like to sing, act, and add to their collection of quirky jewelry. Find them (always) on Twitter and Instagram @anarain00.

Categories
Bipolar Poetry

Prescriptions and Dread by Stephen J. Golds

Prescriptions

 

These pills, they don’t work. 

They kill me, resurrect me into 

a walking fragment of memory

half remembered on 

a Sunday Morning.

 

They ask if I’m taking my meds? 

I seem tense, they worry.

I want to say that 

being tense 

is better than 

being past tense. 

 

Dread

 

The gut ache that doesn’t ease, 

the dishes unwashed in the sink,

the laundry murder 

shapes on the floor. 

Windows left open for the rain. 

The fever in the night,

all too black & too bright. 

The telephone unrung.

The bills sealed by the front door. 

Waiting on tomorrow 

like it’s the goddamned

firing squad.

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Stephen J. Golds was born in London, U.K, but has lived in Japan for most of his adult life. He enjoys spending time with his daughters, reading books, traveling, boxing and listening to old Soul LPs. His novel Say Goodbye When I’m Gone will be released by Red Dog Press in October 2020 and another novel Glamour Girl Gone will be released by Close to The Bone Press January 2021

Categories
Bipolar Poetry

spiraling by Sarah Huerta

i spin my disorder into words, ever present in everything i produce, in every plant i rehome and inevitably kill, in every relationship ended because my extremes were too extreme, every burnt out lightbulb in my small apartment, every acquaintance scared of my highs and every sibling scared of my lows, every picture i paint with too-vibrant colors, haphazard brushstrokes ending up on walls. i used to write that dating while bipolar is like throwing a brick through a window tirelessly over and over i used to write that being bipolar is a life sentence i used to write everyday i write everyday with my disorder.

it never leaves, never ceases to hunger, never leaves never leaves me us it never will.

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Sarah G. Huerta is a Chicana poet from Dallas. They are pursuing their MFA at Texas State University and they currently live in Texas with their cat, Lorca.

Categories
Poetry Trauma

Same by C.C. Hannett

We sit at a diner / Two West Coast ladies / Once known for sophisticating the Monaco / We sit at a diner / Two West Coast ladies / I’m a recent swat / My wings no longer fashioned with petal pinch / I wear pink instead / My apologies to you / Your Stingers for Antenna, loaded with triggers / I should have told you why I gave up the lamp / It was a zap machine / You’ve always known /  I’ve always been a nonbeliever / My apologies to myself / For looking back / You abused mental health practices / Monopolized trauma / You listed point-by-pin-point your account and dropped your mic expecting grovel / Having never questioned what I might be expecting from you / I lie with my smile smeared on the table, my body on my wings, kicked in the ribs figuratively and then, later, more fucking real / You manipulated our history / Denied the dumb union / Because to accept it, you’d have to accept what you’d achieved / The scale you’d tip / The bowling ball on your head / You’ve choked me out / You choked me out and ripped my shirt and bruised my already sore legs because I wasn’t open minded enough to follow through with our plan of having a threesome / Sorry for being a bitch lol / What about the time you fucked me in my sleep and wrote a letter, breaking down your disgust with me / You advanced in the academy of monstrosities but never finished, placing the guilt on me / What about the time I could hear you two fucking / You’d come in after and force your southern party onto my moaning lips / Funny / It was always about what you had survived / My hell was inherently deserved / You always knew the pain I was born into and how it carried itself into the scene of humping the couch during the pilot episode of Power Rangers / I told you my theories / I told you my truth / Austin Powers one night, my idol brother threatening to have me taken from my mother the next, because he would never, ever, do that to me and I were dreaming and, I were dreaming; I were having gay fantasies and it’s okay but they had a lawyer / And so what if personal is embarrassing / And so what if none of this makes me better / Thx for making me feel the same 

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Barracuda Guarisco / C. C. Hannett / Kris Hall is a bisexual crybaby obsessed with cheesesteaks who enjoys absurdity at varying levels. Barry is the author of several books, including Uncomfortable Music (Vegetarian Alcoholic, 2021) and The Gold Boys Are Back In Gold Town (Really Serious Literature) with Joshua Robert Long. He is the Founder and Editor of Really Serious Literature. His work has been placed with Maudlin House, Silent Auctions, Dream Pop, The Night Heron Barks, South Broadway Ghost Society, Thirty West, DREGINALD, among others. You can find him if you want to and it’s pretty easy.

Categories
ADHD Poetry

little fishies go swimming in my head by Syl Xing

little fishies little fishies swimming in my head/bite at my nerves and make my eyes go red/ little fishy little fishy nipping at my skull/ the water’s sloshing in and out but I’m just waiting for a lull/ little molly little guppy don’t eat that card/ just sit and watch all the data crumbling into shards/ film colours blurring bright, spread like poison bitter/ every SIM card I try to catch dissolves like glitter/ little fishy little fishy please make the call/ for now you’ve eaten my memories and there’s nothing left at all!

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Syl (they/them) is an aromantic writer with ADHD living in Singapore. A fan of fantasy and speculative fiction, they can often be found badgering their friends about social issues, politics, and their latest writing ideas. They have previously been published in the 11th issue of the Cauldron Anthology and are very fond of coffee.

Categories
Depression Poetry

Redemption of Bodies by Iliya Kambai Dennis

Your tongue is in conflict with your teeth
The same way you struggle
To maintain your stamina on the ground
But your grandma says you are a child of water
A way of saying your mother is a mermaid
Or your father had sex with your mother in her dream
To conceive you & you were born
Stepping out with your legs instead
Even when the doctor says you suffer from neurological fear
That only a therapy can get your lying body walking
And we tried to crave poetry from your mother’s song
To help align your blotch figure with imagery
We write you poems and sing lullabies
And tell your mother to carry you in wishes
Therapies are not as strong as prayers
They wrap you in a spectrum
And allow you to fold into a beautiful song
Of redeemed bodies that have reconciled with nature
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Iliya Kambai Dennis hails from Kaduna state, Nigeria and is a graduate from Usmanu Danfodio University, Sokoto. He is passionate about writing. He often find himself writing poems when obsessed. He sees writing as an art that heals. His works have appeared in Youth shades magazine, Afreecan read, praxis magazine, African writers, BPPC Anthologies, FWGE and elsewhere.
Categories
Poetry Self-Harm

Red by Fizza Abbas

it’s fun

to use words to paint flowers

when you want to talk about slitting your wrists

it saves you from read koran, talk-to-God kinda advice

who cares why the petals are red

why whorls on my notepad resemble a spindle

onto which a razor-sharp blade could twist –

the euphoria, the joy – your pretty little secret

who would wonder why the anthers look pale

(maybe this is the right shade of yellow)

or why the style looks so weary and tired

(who cares how difficult it is to give birth)

they would look at the flower in its entirety

assuming you’re a person: the whole, the self

and you can smile and say, i know i can write well

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Fizza Abbas is a Freelance Content Writer based in Karachi, Pakistan. She is fond of poetry and music. Her poetry has been published or is forthcoming in quite a few journals including Poetry Village, The Daily Drunk, Indiana Voice Journal, London Grip and Poetry Pacific.

Categories
Poetry Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia by Adedamola Jones Adedayo

elsewhere in the bellybutton of Africa, I approximate as a misnomer
you do not want to measure in litres of normalcy

people say my body is already colonized by an influx of strange audio-visuals
which are toxifying its fractions with syrups of misinformation
& they say my body is festooned with antonyms of realities because
every filament of my thoughts, they think, is naggingly nauseous.

But, I swear, they fail to understand me—

that it is perfectly normal to find heaven inching closer downwards
riding on the mien of regal attachment
& mimicking rapture whenever outside is endearing enough
to see me walk my leisure in abridged sunlight.

they insist that I’m a man with compromised brains,
saying heaven is immobile, a remote delicacy of the surreal.

they do not understand how a cocktail party tenants my room
at the invite of each fortnight when a saturated mind squats
in an emergency suaveness of the wall clock & the standing fan.

I won’t tell them about my dead father whose throat is always guesting
at my luncheon table;
I won’t tell them since they must be mad not to see the things I see.

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Adedamola Jones Adedayo writes from a remote town in Lagos, Nigeria. When his muse falters, he takes pleasure in watching Chelsea F. C. maul other football teams. His writings have made it to Poetry Nation, BPPC anthology, Aceworld, Writers Space Africa, etc., and are being considered elsewhere for publication.
Categories
Anxiety Poetry

White Walls by Aleah Dye

[a Golden Shovel poem after a line from Kitchen Sink by twenty one pilots]

 

I am so full of a

bitter idea— that I could dress my kitchen

with all my friends, one leaning on the sink,

all laughing, while I’m left to

stare up at the dead ceiling with dead thoughts, you

three feet away, but three feet is

nothing like what three feet should be, not

even close because like everyone else, you’re a

live-wire, and I’m just a fixture in my own kitchen, 

and I sink

to

the tile, and all above me,

I see the wet lips and laughter and chaos and I think Okay,

who here is really my friend?

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Aleah Dye (she/her) primarily writes poetry, tending towards topics of morbidity, love, social justice, and philosophy. She is dreadfully afraid of imperfection and spiders, in no particular order. She has a one-eyed cat named Ivy and a one-track-minded (food!) cat named Rosebud. Aleah hopes to make hearts grow three sizes with her words. She is a 2020 Sundress Publications Best of the Net nominee. Read her latest work via POCKETFIRE, The Daily Drunk, and Lucky Pierre Zine. Follow her @bearsbeetspoet on Twitter.