“RED-SHIFT” by RYAN SILVA

Down It went — direct, sans demur — descending as if determined by doubtless deities. On the palace’s poolside patio, a picked selection of patrons puckering lips on Perrier spritzers perused the parabola of the projectile dematerialize into the pink horizon point.  Murmurs manifested throughout the mansion as the missile disappeared from view. The reaction of the soiree’s host, M. de Kuhn, was a simple stretch of his supremely ambivalent expression into a subtle smirk.

I had the opportunity to watch the whole affair from the patio’s private mezzanine. The gasps, the booster’s disappearance into the desert scrub, and the angular, severe face belonging to the angular, severe body of M. Martin de Kuhn, whose eyes were squarely laid upon me in his dashing dinner suit.

“Did you want to visit Cyrene tomorrow?” He asked, lifting an eyebrow.

I reeled at the suggestion rather reflexively, but I did my best to remember the advice of my editor, Tony Bactria of Wire — “go anywhere he wants to go, agree to anything he wants you to agree to.”

Wire is Silicon Valley’s premiere tech magazine. Prior to this, I was a one-time contributor. Now I’ve got the fancy title of “Guest Editor”. A month ago, I had written an article of sorts on my own personal blog called “40 Years of Vaporwave 2009-2049” that one of Bactria’s associate editors, Mara Wesley, enjoyed and syndicated on their entertainment sub-vertical, ArtWire. The site traffic app recorded 3516 hits. ArtWire averages 750,000 hits a day. It appeared on Election Day, when no one on the country is reading musical sub-genre retrospectives. I had been jobless that month. Continue reading

TWO POEMS by ZAN DE PARRY

 

Container Day

 

I have a box big enough to make love in.
It touches the ceiling.
It was slapping in the wind in the yard of the neighbor,
The Duchess of Delights.
What is it about this box, about big boxes?
I get in and see. She knocks softly on the door—

I thought they’d mention the lump on your neck at the haircut.
I thought it a much less robust consequence of diet.

She takes me to Lollies—
for being so tired,
for dealing with so much.

I walk into the bathroom.
In the mirror a friend’s face painted like a yellow cat. This is how I does it:
a room for the hole I puts my head in and the hole my head comes out of. Continue reading

“LANDFILL” by *_*__ *___*__ *_

The unnamed village lay in a wide shining circle of sheet metal shacks and engineless trucks all blackened by fingertips prodding for balance and coppery blistered with rust bark-like and eating. Beneath floor and feet is spread a bleached desert of gritty pallor and collapsed white stone and concrete; all is colorless save for the glass and mirror shards that hold gilded day-shimmer and the pollen-colored dust laying as a veil on all unmoving things and the flaking sheets of blood that cut their color into dry wind like would sere crumbled roses. White-dusted faces peer from smeared windows. Packs of feral adolescents throw sediment at unflinching gulls. Skeletons with faces of black gorges glare. The dead lay as bones picked smooth as river stones and crushed under child feet. All other movement is windblown.

In the scant distance, the eleven loose-packed mounds tower over all things. They are built up daily by the stout planes that fly low; planes that, with a cacophonous hydraulic release like some great mechanical sucking, unlock their bellies and rain down great wet shining clumps of trash collected from that somber hungry city to the west. The planes go small then gone, doors dangling, salting spare salt-hued land in sparsest color.

The low sun turns the mounds to blushing copper and flushed out by cooling dimness the people emerge from bare shelter. In the soundless slow-motion of hungry aching strain, the gaunt and bearded fling together little mountains of tires and bags and soft paper in the image of the great giving larger ones and they are all set aflame. Then when the fire is high and eating and its mephitic black haze clouds the deep blue dusky sky and befogs the moon and the day’s last planes drop their final tumbling loads the men start their climb. Continue reading

FROM ANALECTS: ABYSS SEQUENCE by R

Actus Impurus

The Abyss was a map of its digressions from its essence, an infinitely broken chain of its being, a labyrinthine passage from its right path, a misshapen and impossible sphere that contained itself within its all-embracing circumference, alongside a dim image of its centre in the distance.

 

Cosmological Argument for the Existence of the Abyss

The Abyss, a thing of seemingly absolute complexity and infinite contradiction, was that of which nothing more confusing could be imagined, and from which our slightly less confusing and contradictory existence must thus have descended.

 

Contraphatic

Analogies of the Abyss are true only in their imperfection in illustrating the Abyss, for only that which is false to coherence is true to Abyss, and thus it is only by misleading and deceiving that this sentence can be true to the Abyss.

 

Tunc motu vitae suae intellectivae in se descriptum reperit quod quaerit

The Abyss, which was absolute imprecision itself (or at least so in language, in which it was almost always described imprecisely), baptised the mind in immeasurability itself when the mind delved into measuring Abyssal things, and then emerged from itself somewhere in the imprecise distance.

 

Abyssinia

A peculiar feature of Abyssinia is its tendency to make minds marginal in their imagination of its landscapes: to make the mind an incongruous caravan in its visualizations of Abyssinia. Continue reading

THREE POEMS by CHARLES JOSEPH

The Sadness Buried In the Frames of Film Stock

 

She was a silent film starlet
who always wore
too much pancake makeup
and she was a bit flat chested

but aside from that everyone
really loved her eyes
even in sepia they were
a premium shade of dejected blue.

Sadly, she never made it
into the talkies
so she faded into Technicolor
as a Hollywood hooker

when reefer madness was a hoax
to cover A and H bomb tracks
and people didn’t argue over tits or tats
as long they didn’t give you hepatitis. Continue reading

“LETTER TO A CERTAIN ECO-TERRORIST” by CONTENT CREATOR

Hello, I hope this finds you well

I mean besides the whole life in prison thing

Today I planted a tree

While twelve whole football fields worth disappeared in Brazil

I read about sustainable logging

Where they replant as they chop

Never mind that the ecosystems from the canopy to the undergrowth are gone for good

What is sustainable is their bottom line

Continue reading

“69 FUCKING DOLLARS” by BLAKE MIDDLETON

I had a day off today.

I was sitting in my closet-sized bedroom scrolling through twitter.

Felt bored.

My girlfriend was at work.

Decided I was going to walk to the restaurant I work at to pick-up a tip-out.

I put on sweatpants and walked outside.

The first thing I noticed was all the trash everywhere.

I walked down the road and saw a shoe on a roof, and that was nice, too.

Saw some more trash.

Saw a punching bag punch in the shape of a person. The person-shaped punching bag was wearing a gorilla mask. It was in the driveway of a cinderblock house with at least a dozen NO TRESPASSING signs.

I saw a house with too many American flags to feel okay thinking about.

The fenced-off retention pond across from the Family Dollar seemed to be a little low.

I crossed the street.

Saw a car coming towards me.

Felt like the car sped up to hit me, but I did a little jog.

And for some reason I thought, “Yee-haw.” Continue reading

FIVE POEMS by JACK BIDESE

Vespertine

I become less depressed whenever I’m snowed in.
For some reason, I’m always reminded that the sun
will be back eventually, a thought which usually doesn’t cross my mind
in winter.

Winter is depressing, all the trees lose their green,
I always end January feeling generally worthless. Right now,
though, I feel fine. I try and hibernate through the winter,
sleeping to avoid feeling.

When I was in high school, in winter, I would
sleep, head down on my desk in three
different classes, just to skip forward
the clock towards eventual sun. Continue reading

“STILL THOUGHT HAVING” & “NATURALLY” by SHANE KOWALSKI

Still Thought Having

 

It could be not true but I’m pretty sure my family had a plant with a face that could sing when I was young.

There was a magic car movie where the car had no driver but would let couples choke each other inside it.

Yes, I had a teacher, too, who told us that all weather could be explained by God’s disgusting body. Rain was sweat, snow was dandruff, fog was bad breath, the warm sun was pee.

Of course there was a dog. It died playing with a stick. The stick was a stick of dynamite. Continue reading