Secrets of the Universe

spinning spinning
they called it rejoice
seeing into the eye of God
of the storm
i erupted
screaming screaming
locked away
the walls weren’t padded
of my mind


Diane is apologetically Southern. (American.) She is a lifelong Mississippian and a chemistry/math teacher turned writer. Well, she quit her job and couldn’t find anything else to do. She’s supposedly renovating her grandparents’ hundred-year-old homestead. She can be found on Twitter @SheExclaimed and on the web at

Queer Brown Pop

The way I’m coveted with you – this slut theatre.
Fan-Girl lollipops alongside my breast.
Determined bile alongside yours.
I’m not queer or white enough for you.
Make you sick.

Make you cum.
Still not enough for the squeak of outrage
That you bring to every table.

Throwing spears at the butterflies who stroke me
under the burnt orange cloth your mother gave you.

Your skin glows with impressions.
History & divine sex hymns.
Somewhere your disaproval matters.
But not in my leather boots & catholic

Arse bumping and dripping against
everything, as I fly my lust to two-something
in the morning and I fuck and fuck.

Disappointed when I smell it’s you

and not that cute blue-haired cunt
that licked my fingers like honeyed bees
And trembled


I screamed a slave Madrigal. Blessed
In five pop-up galaxies, even my hair betrays
you, turning brittle, wiry & saltash in breath.

An acid drop moment scours your grid
Nothing sticks except your white wanting.


Ruby Answari  is 37 & ¾. A Queer Retro Muslim – Afghan 1970’s, they describe themselves as “Not Popular” and a “Twat Poet”. Political message? Fuck the veil. That.

the man called lust

stuck to the roof

of your mouth

lotus and lily pads

the frogs won’t stop


and everyone mistakes

you for death;



it isn’t too inaccurate

a description

because you died to this world

i presume before you were

ever born

mistaking nightmares and shadows

for friends and lovers—



always yearning for something

you’re the man always

perpetually grasping for straws,

and i saw the feigned innocence when

you looked my way and the hunger

that remained;

but i learned my lesson



won’t give my heart away to anyone

that doesn’t know that love is

much deeper and lasts longer than the

throaty song of lust and all her

yearning and need

in all your longing you’ve become one of

the seven sins

i always thought lust was a woman but turns

out it’s a man: you.


Linda M. Crate is an author, poet, and writer whose works have been published in numerous journals and anthologies both online and in print. She is the author of three published chapbooks and the Magic Series. 

Suicide Girls

Are you watching?

Contortion is rife in my body,

But it’s all for you.

Stripped naked

Flesh stretched around visible bones


Just displaying my fragility for you

Long, bony fingers




Until the bare


Mound is touched

“Ah, uh, oh, god, oh, yes”

Are you happy now?

Are you watching?

As I stare into your black reflective eyes,

Cold, judgemental eyes

Pricing me up.

Dear Lens, my only friend

Tell me how I feel

Am I pretty enough?

Am I good enough?

Are you listening?

Are you watching?

For I see only you,

And a girl.


In your black, black soul.



Lou M (they like their anonymity) is starting her first year of university in the U.K. She is likely to be found lounging around in the sun like a cat…if cats liked drinking wine and getting horribly sunburnt. She is working on a poetry collection exploring female sexuality. She can be found on Twitter @LoobyLouLou9 or her blog 

Paper Cheerleaders


fair-weather friends—

cut-out paper dolls unfolding
from white paper

cheering triumphs atop pyramids
successes, not struggles

overlooking sturdy shoulders
and bruising practice falls

you start to look the same
row after row

flat and colorless
strung between triangles of air—

pieces of you, missing
that harsh hands snipped away

crinkling and wavering
i see through you

i want to crumple you
pile you in the corner, without care

as missed shots at the wire basket
beneath my desk

because i have other shots to take
with more weight

than paper


Anna Kander is a writer in the United States. She writes with her sidekick, a fearless blue fish who doesn’t realize he’s only one inch tall. Her work is published in some magazines, probably. Find her at


To the expansive flow third eye Go Pro mat I go I go
in pursuit of the path or road to the path the one with no toll but
to be just in this place right here under me right now at this time since that’s all I
really ever really have anyway right or hold or have right now.
Wake up. Expaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand.

I have organically acquired multiple gurus as that is or was
my intention whilst I eagerly manifest the truth that being my truth and
am in slovenly pursuit of my inner self in a kind of hatefully wonderful bipolar way.

My limits are non quantifiable along with my inner thoughts which are
most of the time collected in my decaf subconscious (at least the experienced side) as I
am rorschach shadowing the HOV lane of the eightfold path that in actuality only has ONE path
the rest being ladders and chutes and elevated highways and is
that someone’s cell phone ringing?

My shared prana just one drop in the ocean of the transformed manifestation as I
breathe hold release inhalation exhalation and thought awareness releases cleansing
my spinal energies and it’s rooted and well established and
why is always so f#*king cold in here it’s like a hospital!

Now be a little taller the intention being to lengthen the spine expand
and open up and breathe then return to the breath follow it in and out and in out in and
oh my God look at her feet dammit girl get a pedicure!

Pushing the breathe into the back and cycling down and
you surrender to the moment to the now to the process
in honor of my divinity and those whose divinity came before ours
and seriously where is the instructor this pose has gone on for way too long my
hair is in my face is it over yet holy crap where is she?

Transition slowly now to your favorite side and take two breaths here gently gently pushing up
through the chakras as the breath exhales over your heart honor this time honor the self and the
teacher in all of our energetic collective connectedness and
Namaste it’s 6:15 hell yeah that means forty five more minutes of happy hour prices!



Tara Lynn Hawk is a poet, writer and artist. Her work has appeared on Occulum, Anti-Heroin Chic, Uut, Spelk, Excavating the Underground, Spilling Cocoa, Social Justice Poetry and others. Her poetry chapbook, The Dead, is available on Smashwords. You can find more of her at and @taralynnhawk


Democracy had its own aisle,
the shelves ravished disproportionately.
I pushed my crooked wheeled cart
banging into another hysterical shopper.
We competed over some vitamins.
Instructive warnings were not hanging well,
old signs sagged with faded blurry lettering.
Every week a new unsubstantiated theory,
labels up toward bad lightnings ambiguity.
The bathroom was smaller than I remembered,
flyers taped to a leaking sink.
Phone numbers of adversarial sheiks.
I found my supplements in the bargain bin.
Outside, crude ribbons flew in a man made wind.

Colin James has a chapbook called Dreams of the Really Annoying over at Writing Knights Press. He has another chapbook, A Thoroughness Not Deprived Of Absurdity from Pski’s Porch Publishing. He is a great admirer of the Scottish  landscape painter, John Mackenzie.

On Listening to ‘Ohne Dich’ by Rammstein and Getting a Bit Carried Away

Without you, the dozen bottles of beer
in the fridge deplete to zero. A mere
hour with my own thoughts for company
becomes an aeon, then a low-grade eternity.
Loneliness comes sneaking in. So does fear.
Self-doubt’s outside. Existential dread is near.
Hello, worthlessness. The gang’s all here;
they’re here to stay. This is what happens to me
without you.
Time’s ebb and flow is regulated by the weir
of your absence. There’s nothing clear
or sparkling about these waters; nothing coolly
inviting. They’re sluggish, dank, scummily
fuzzed with algae, waste, dead leaves. It’s drear
without you.
Neil Fulwood was born in Nottingham in 1972, son of a truck driver, grandson of a miner. Fuck knows where the whole poetry thing comes from. Neil holds down a day job and goes out boozing a lot. His collection No Avoiding It is published by Shoestring Press.

REVIEW: Deadly, Delicate by Kate Garrett

1 Deadly, Delicate High Res Smaller


Deadly, Delicate by Kate Garrett is a new semi-historical pirate-themed poetry chapbook with a decidedly feminine focus.

First things first, there are no lasers. This is a major limitation and the further lack of spaceships, Mormons, and Flash Gordon quotes do nothing but hurt the collection. However, the purpose of the reviewer is to assess what is presented and not to muse on missed opportunities. In this regards, this debut chapbook is an astounding success.

The opening poem Picaroon, a prose poetry piece with strong internal rhymes, sets the tone for the rest of the book .  It prepares the reader for rollicking adventure and is followed by the equally wonderful Keep your cutlass clean, a short wry piece, and Shore Leave, where Garrett makes excellent use of a more poetic style.

Crack Jenny’s Teacup possesses perhaps the most interesting narrative of all the pieces, examining with empathy the relationship between a pirate and her prostitute girlfriend. Its really beautiful. This leads to Astrolabe, which sadly is probably the weakest of the pieces, lacking the narrative power or humour characteristic of the other poems and Back From the Dead Red , second prose poem in the collection, which compares unfavourably in terms of power and tightness to the introductory piece though serves as a reliable introduction to the historic and more introspective middle section.

Give no quarter represents the only mention of Blackbeard in the entire book. This is done to meet International Pirate Law that says Blackbeard must be mentioned in all Pirat- based media. This is also why a fourth Pirates of the Caribbean film was made. The poems is great and brings a more swashbuckling focus to the poetry with lines full of action and energy. However, it does lack a three way fight between Blackbeard, Anne Bonny and a shark that just wants to learn how to love. We understand no piece is perfect. Anne Bonny walks out to sea, Calico Jack on the scaffold and  Mary Read pleads the belly are all wonderfully introspective pieces from a pirates position, forming a strong backbone to the book. Their informal and honest construction gives them a powerful emotional resonance. These are followed by Shorn, another historic piece. Less introspective than the previous three it suffers from an impersonality and the last line in particular reads more movie trailer cliché than poetic closing line, making it a rare disappointment across a generally spectacular array of poems.

Gold in the lead shot is another introverted poem, swapping perspective to the victim of a pirate. Whilst not particularly stand-out, it serves well a purpose of building atmosphere and highlights that Garrett works best when adopting the voice of a character. Siren, however, is amazing. Perhaps closer in tone to horror than adventure, it’s clever use of dialogue makes it a genuinely chilling read. It’s followed by the equally amazing What God wants. Combining introspection, action, and poetic language, it is an ambitious piece and completely successful in its ambition. The final piece, Splice the mainbrac, is serves an excellent summary and closer alongside being a great poem in it’s own right, returning to address the reader and somehow, in a book about pirates no less, impart sage advice.

The book also includes three (three!) appendices. These are a biography of the pirates mentioned, an explanation of historical terms, and the authors notes on some of the poems. These are all informative and interesting, particularly the biographies, and serve the book well through giving context to poems that already sing beautifully on their own and allowing the reader to avoid an awkward Bing search midread. More chapbooks should contain such appendixes. We will judge all that don’t.

In conclusion,  Deadly, Delicate is an ambitious and unique poetry collection. Whilst some pieces fail to shine the vast majority and have poetic gust in their sales. Taking the perhaps niche theme of female pirates, it is more daring and brave than many other collections and transcends its own restrictions. It doesn’t just represent fantastic pirate poetry; it represents fantastic poetry, period. We highly recomment it as worth a read for both poetry and history buffs as well as serving an excellent primer for those unfamiliar with either subject. Its also recommended for Pirates.

Deadly, Delicate is published by Picaroon Poetry You can find out more about the book and buy it here: . Alternatively, we’re organising a raiding party to steal some copies for ourselves and your welcome to join us. It’s a pirates life after all.




The Expected Guest

He is sitting there staring out the window. Nothing ever changes in this unreal
city. Neither the weather nor the scenery. However today, at last, the expected
guest arrives. He is proud. Proud people are easy to manipulate. It is simple to
flatter them into doing exactly what you want them to.

The faded man wants his guest to feel comfortable, relaxed if possible. But the
first thing he asks is what that sound, high in the air, was. That awkward
murmur of lamentation. A crow? A seagull, perhaps?

The city becomes real, afterwards.


Cristina Bresser is a Brazilian writer who is fluent in English, Spanish and French. She graduated from Universidade Federal with a degree in Graphic Design and went on to study Creative Writing at University of Edinburgh in 2016. She has two published books: Torre de Papel (Paper Tower) a short stories anthology released in 2015 and  Quase tudo é risível (Almost Everything is Laughable) a 155 pages novel published in November 2016. Find more of her stuff at