Jordan Rosenberg

I like the way he cuts lemons. He does it the long way, vertically, delicately, cradling the fruit in his fingertips as he places his weapon.

I watch him do it, an arm dangled over the back of my chair. His knife, my knife (as we are in my kitchen) struggles for a moment at the lemon’s thick peel.

Bracing himself, he thrusts inward, piercing the skin and then he’s gliding through. The pulp and flesh splatter and the lemon concedes, falling open in two on the countertop.

It’s clever, I think, that he cuts it like that. Vertically, to make wedges, so it’s easier to squeeze, he says. Easier to bleed the citrus into tonight’s cocktails or pasta this way.


he squeezes lemons into my mouth
i am laying on the ground, hands bound, and he
squeezes lemons into my mouth
the juices splash and i catch droplets on my tongue
they burn and warm my body
as he drops fire inside me

I Imagine Carrying a Child

by Ivy Lockhart

And in my imagination
I’m very slim
except for my stomach
bloated with a wee parasite
kicking and stretching
somebody new
my spine will have curled
the fat that perks
my cheeks will drop
sag and crease.

You tell me
(with some small triumph)
I’ll be sort of ugly then
Since I won’t have moisturized
(like you tell me to)
I refuse to eat my vegetables too,
the greens and roots you like
I refuse to take my vitamins,
I refuse to maintain my figure.
I won’t hydrate
I’ll take up cigarettes.

I remember once a softish-nipply
blobbish person caring for me
with big-salty-fat
juicy-yummy tears rumbling
to my open baiting tongue
liiiiike mmmhmm
swaddled in a big-black blanket
secure-unconditional ease
limbs tied down
and I liiiiiiiiike it
I am nothing and
teeny-tiny and itty-bitty and pretty
my imaginary feet
are in my imaginary mouth
they are mmmmmmm

the garden you grew for me

by Jonathan Ramirez

i swore we would never fall out of love. saturdays, when we
wrapped ourselves in conversations about our future, were only
a reminder of how lucky we were to have found each other.
we became what we needed, until we didn’t.
summer skies found their way into your house,
and we were left with rain, texas heat, and many regrets.
nothing turned out the way we wanted it to.
we imagined different blue skies…

but i remember during lunch hour,
when we danced to the rumours and blamed others for our actions,
the garden you grew for me, roses blooming all year long.
we watched it flourish,
unaware of the clouds roaring across the sky,
watering our roots, feeding our growth, leading us to separate directions…

but i promise,
i will always hold my hands out for the roses you throw at me. to catch
the petals. to forget the bitter. for the mistakes that were made in the name of rage,
and the tender moments we let fade away.
all that we needed was each other, until we didn’t.
and now we stand on our own, in different corners of the world
ready to explore conversations we couldn’t afford.

Stardust Soul

by Meghan Davis

Hovering nearer time and again
Iced planets spiraling around each other
rotating about separate axes
Steady gazes remaining tethered
peripheral to the parallel trajectory
carved out beside them

An alluring, inconceivable glimpse spurs
ceremonious slowing of elliptic orbits
Reversing direction, beginning to align
Timidly drawing warmer

Until gravity overwhelms hesitation
and celestial bodies collide
in an earth-shattering explosion
Sending shockwaves across silent plains
Melded afterglow burning up
remnants of endured solitude
Piercing once empty darkness
with freckled light

our house by the waterfall

by Zack Mintz

Our house by the waterfall was 

the dream we rebuilt, and we shared the lines in the ceilings, these wonderful feelings the kind you can’t fathom 

to be there.

When your breath hit the windows 

it sauntered and mellowed 

it had nowhere to go 

but the rafters above. It clung to them dearly 

like pearls on necks dreary 

or diamonds strung zig-zagged 

across streams that flow bleary. 

These storms we kept 

the times the creeks wept 

they bind us to earth, 

the places leaves slept. 

The mystical whirling 

the drops’ slated swirling 

Though I stand vigorous and tall 

I haven’t forgotten it all. 

*inspired by “our house by the waterfall” by Dahm.

Pictures of Summer

by Jonathan Ramirez

My mother, she paints me a navy blue sky 

with stars to guide me through the dark of night

she takes my hand and whispers into my ear todo estara bien

and I believe every word that comes out of her mouth. 

My mother, she loves to be a mother so much she never lets me go 

says there are peligros out in the world too intense for me to handle on my own 

and I believe her and dread the times I stand alone.

Now, my mother has grown old, 

and I’m no longer a little kid

she still wants to hold my hand but I shake my head 

and tell her camina detrás de mí instead ,

solo dime que estarás ahí si me caigo, eso es todo lo que quiero saber.

With each season that fades, my mother recites stories untold,

chanting the secret each one of them holds,

 a lesson deep within the words engraved in her tongue.

My mother, she paints me pictures of summer perfectly where we are right now

and tells me anything else esta mal

so wrong like a cold winter in the middle of July.

I’ve learned gritos don’t fix anything and silence only makes things worse

so now I whisper softly in her ear, créeme cuando digo que

estoy listo para tomar tus palabras y añadir las mías

y así crear mi propia historia. 

I hope one day I find the words to build my own world

and she learns to love me even when I’m not home,

even if it hurts.

Amor Negado

by Jon Adams

Cuando pienso en nosotros

No me siento vacío

Ni enojado

De verdad, me siento fatigado.


De esperar un cambio

En el panteón de tu vida

Soy un dios pequeño


Sin la gravedad de Júpiter

Ni la sabiduría de Minerva

Mi altar sólo tiene una vela

Que se ha quemado 

Hasta al final de su mecha

Y algún incienso viejo y apagado

Ofrecidos por una tierra y un pueblo

Cuyos nombres el tiempo ha olvidado

Mi día festivo es un asunto sencillo

Sin carne ni vino

Solo pescado y leche

Una combinación que en una época

Tenía sentido.

Hoy en día ninguna recuerda el origen

Y francamente yo tampoco.

Pero se sigue observando

Se continúa practicando

Con la esperanza de que

Algún día todo volverá a memoria.

Love Denied

When I think of us

I don’t feel empty

Or angry

Truthfully, I feel fatigued.


Waiting for a change

In the pantheon of your life

I’m a little god


Without the gravity of Jupiter

Nor the wisdom of Minerva

My altar has only a single candle

That has been burned 

To the end of its wick

And some old, extinguished incense 

Offered by a land and a people

Whose names time has forgotten

My feast day is a simple affair

With neither meat nor wine

Only fish and milk

A combination that at one time

Made sense.

Nowadays no one remembers the origin

And frankly neither do I.

But it is still observed

Still practiced

In the hope that

Someday it will all come back.


by Alexander Eliasen









My Night Sky

Each night, day surrenders to a golden dusk

And you begin looking after me from above

You are my night sky

Face like midnight, shining star-like eyes

Your smile inspires the moon’s return

Constellations form your body

The trees and I reach to try grasping you

I miss experiencing the black night together


by Paula Gil-Ordoñez Gomez

Toes tapping to the rhythm

Of thunder shouting 

Pushing neighboring trees  

To crack and crumble

Sometimes I understand 

Those branches laying 

Defeated on my doorstep

Fractured and fragile 

Snapped into twigs

Crushed under careless feet

But tonight

I feel whole

Like the trunk two doors down

Refusing the wind’s shoves

An Ode to my Body Hair

by Anonymous

Zach started wearing shorts

Fabric cutting off nine inches below the waist

Matted rivers of glistening soldiers

Stood erect on his ankles, shins, and thighs

Bent knees traversed my forests of envy

Desire overtook my fingers and they crept

Closer towards his displays of masculinity

With realization comes clambering to the bathroom

My thick traitorous fingers poking

At the mass of naked flesh covering my vital organs

I sat hairless, defeated, yet empowered 

Plans forming with revolutions of hope and the end of PE

Walking home, I prodded the protruding lump 

Which resided above my hips

Its smoothness recalled the pure power held 

By Zach’s happy trail of fur

Outside my house I kindled a fire

Teeming with jealousy and follicle fascination

Crossing myself, I prayed for growth

She arrived, smirking, agreeable, auspicious

Floating, her eyes bulging with instability

“What is your desire?”

A hairy demeanor or a flash of Zach’s abdomen

How can one choose whether

A body of thick layering masculinity

Fairs better than the brief glimpse 

At an apologetically full manhood

Sitting here with hair contaminating my vision

Spilling over my brow bone, I begin to rethink my decision

The hair I’m covered in replaces the man I’ll never be