Your Name by Leslie Dianne

You name had
too many consonants
all scrunched up together
robbing each other of space
still trying to figure out where they
belonged after so many years
of fighting each other
your name had to be said
all at once
in a rush
there was no slow
rolling of your sound
through me
instead it was sharp
and razor edged
and every time I said
your name I
bled consonants
and healed the wounds
with vowel stained rage

Leslie Dianne is a poet, novelist, screenwriter, playwright and performer whose work has been acclaimed internationally in places such as the Harrogate Fringe Festival in Great Britain, The International Arts Festival in Tuscany, Italy and at La Mama in New York City. Her stage plays have been produced in NYC at The American Theater of Actors, The Raw Space, The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater and The Lamb’s Theater.  She holds a BA in French Literature from CUNY and her poems have appeared in The Lake, Ghost City Review, The Literary Yard, About Place Journal and Kairos andare forthcoming in Hawai’i Review. Her poetry was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

PERU by Kiran Bhat

Buraya gelmek için hem dünyanın gölgelerinden geçtim.
Ailemle bağları kopardım,
Tasavvur edilemez renkleri kanadım,
Düşmanlar yaptım, arkadaşlar edindim.

Ama geldiğim yerinde hiçbir şeyim yoktu.
Param yok.
Işim yok.

Sadece kültürüm var,
mirasım ye var,
benim ye var.

Hayatta kalmak istiyorum

I walked through the shadows of the earth to get here.
I cut ties with my family,
I bled whatever colours my blood could turn,
I made enemies, I made friends, I made myself into whatever I needed to be.
but I came, and I had nothing.
I made myself into nothing.
I became nothing.

I don’t have money.
I don’t have work.

But, I have my culture,
my heritage,
and I have come far.

I only want to survive

Kiran Bhat is a global citizen formed in a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia, to parents from Southern Karnataka, in India. He has currently traveled to over 130 countries, lived in 18 different places, and speaks 12 languages. He is primarily known as the author of we of the forsaken world… (Iguana Books, 2020), but he has authored books in four foreign languages, and has had his writing published in The Kenyon Review, The Brooklyn Rail, The Colorado Review, Eclectica, 3AM Magazine, The Radical Art Review, The Chakkar, Mascara Literary Review, and several other places. His list of homes is vast, but his heart and spirit always remains in Mumbai, somehow. He is currently bumming around Mexico. You can find him on @Weltgeist Kiran.

November Stars by Satoshi Iwai

November afternoon is the shadow of a retired wrestler who is sitting at the table in the old kitchen. He doesn’t remember his name any more, but a thousand scars all over his skin take him to the memories of a thousand nights. The shorter the days get, the sweeter the pains grow.

     Outside the window, the houses are about to lose their colors. The cats in the backstreet sit on their idleness. Some of them are suffering phantom seasickness, because they feel as if they are boarding a phantom ship. By the way, the other cats are phantoms.

     Minute by minute, the evening air is shrinking into a tin pot. Until the tea leaves stop dancing in the water and lie down on the bottom of the pot, the wrestler sees a vision of distant woods silently burning behind his eyelids. When he opens his eyes, the kitchen has become darker than darkness.

Satoshi Iwai was born and lives in Kanagawa, Japan. He writes poems in English and in Japanese. His English work has appeared in Heavy Feather Review, FLAPPERHOUSE, Small Po[r]tions, Your Impossible Voice, Poetry Is Dead, and elsewhere.

Easy Prey by Lexi Inez

“The name of my dread disease is Lupus Erythematosus, or as we literary people prefer to call it, the Red Wolf”
– Flannery O’Connor

I’d never kill an animal
I’d let it kill me.

I’d let a red wolf snack
On my toes purple and cloudy
Like an old grape
Popped into his mouth.

I’d let the wolf’s howl
Draw me away from weather
And make me hot and cold
According to his call alone.

I’d let the wolf run
And feel slow as he swells
My joints and tires
My mind.

I’d let the wolf’s hunt
Keep me from the rays of day.
Keep me in the dark
Foraging for pills
That make me blind.

I’d let the wolf taste
What’s vital
My organs an offer like
Crackers and cheese

I’d let that be enough.
I’d make him stop.
My hands wrapped
Around his muzzle
I’d tame this predator
And make him my puppy.

Lexi Inez is a writer from Houston, Texas. Her work has previously appeared in Yawp Journal and is forthcoming in The Spotlong Review. You can find her on Twitter, @LexiInez.

Translations by Ivan de Monbrison

Тишина такая тяжёлая.
Лист дерева летает в воздухе.
Ухо к стене слышит что
Происходит на другой стороне,
Убить или любовь
Это то же самое.

the silence is so heavy.
A leaf of a tree flies in the air.
An ear on the wall hears what
Is happening on the other side,
to kill or love
this is the same.

Мир вверх ногами.
Собака в темноте.
Все красное,
Даже лес.
Стена кровоточит
И лицо исчезает.

The world is upside down.
A dog in the dark.
Everything is red,
Even the forest.
The wall is bleeding
And the face disappears.

Я тебя убью…
Но ты убил меня раньше,
И если у меня больше нет зубов,
Чёрный стриж крик
И быстро летит…
Остальное не важно.

I kill you …
But you killed me before,
And if I have no more teeth,
A black swift screams
And flies fast …
Nothing else matters.

Ivan de Monbrison is a French poet, writer, and artist born in 1969 in Paris, he currently lives in Saint-Mandé, France, near Paris. His poems or short stories have appeared in several literary magazines. Eight poetry chapbooks of his works have been published: L’ombre déchirée (1995), Journal (1997), La corde ànu (2000), Ossuaire (2009), Sur-Faces (2011), The Overflowing Body (2018), Irradié (2020) and La Cicatrice Nue (2020). His novels include: Les Maldormants (2014), L’Heure Impure (2016), Orgasmes et Fantaisies (2016), Nanaqui ou les Tribulations d’unpoète (2017), Le Vide Intime (2020).

Descend to Find Smoother Air by Beth Mulcahy

my dolls are mute
sipping tea things
and talking about the weather in my head
hoping for a parcel that day
news from the old country
will there be a visitor to receive?
my dolls are old fashioned
and silent
but they think they are modern
because tea time is different every day
and lemonade in summer

my dolls are mute
sipping tea things
staring at flour water
cake creations
i made them myself
what shall we do today?
in my musty basement
problems are easy to solve
when baby’s head falls off
i put it back on with a paperclip
my dolls are mute
their voices in my head
but you can’t tell me they don’t listen
eyes that don’t move from your face
know your thoughts without words
convincing me in silence
they give me no reason not to believe
they don’t understand me

Beth Mulcahy, a gen X-er from Dearborn, Michigan, lives in Wooster, Ohio where she works as a lawyer for a company that provides technology to people without natural speech. Beth lives with her husband, two teenage kids and loyal Havanese dog sidekick. When she isn’t lawyering or parenting, Beth loves to travel and write poetry, fiction, and memoir.

2 Poems by Mary Oishi

for Susan

didn’t make headlines
cameras weren’t rolling
earth didn’t shift, rivers didn’t rise
no geiger counters moved
no seismographs

stock market didn’t tick up
or down as a result
not a penny was spent or made
bookies didn’t cash in
gamblers didn’t cash out

pundits didn’t comment
politicians didn’t weigh in
scholars didn’t write papers
pollsters didn’t call

heck, the barmaid didn’t even notice

but oh the joy! the smile
that spread across her face
when after twenty years
she danced

last visit

there was a window:
she looked in that direction but
she didn’t see

she didn’t see the trees
at the end of her yard
she didn’t see the birds
singing in them
she didn’t see the pleasant
summer sky with the faraway clouds

all she could see
was five years of memories,
her granddaughter waving,
not knowing it was goodbye

Mary Oishi is Albuquerque’s Poet Laureate (2020-2022). She is the author of Spirit Birds They Told Me (West End Press, 2011), and co-author of Rock Paper Scissors (Swimming with Elephants Publications, 2018), finalist for the New Mexico Arizona Book Award. Her poems have appeared in numerous anthologies and reviews, and have been published in translation in both print and digital platforms.