Drinking Through by Aaron Leyshon

I love a sunburnt mangrove. The mosquitos, sentimental just like family, drain my desire to write. Yet their incessant buzzing hums a tune I know so well. It’s disquieting and somehow comes across as innocence. Perhaps this depraved innocence is in fact a ruse. Maybe, though, it’s a reminder, a note to remember to buy toilet paper. I haven’t shit for three weeks and I’m still drinking my way through the twelve steps. I’ll admit I have a problem with Christmas and Cyber Monday, Black Friday is darker than my last stool sample and yet I’m dealing with it, the savings are phenomenal. Should perhaps give my problem a name: He’s thirty years old and lives under my arm, in the Diamond mines, scrubbing, scrubbing, polishing my fame. Shame is the spilled champagne from my empty sodden shoe. Humpty dumpty had a great cry and the stars came out and circled the sky. I wonder…

Do you…?

No…?

About what…?

Is there anything worth wondering about anymore? The Sumerians and Akkadians had a name for the space between the Earth and the sky. I forget it. Forget it, it doesn’t matter as much as the bites and the scratches, and the teeth marks on the bones. Let them lie fallow in fields of their own sown seed. 

Knowledge is nothing, if power, only by chance. Not in the biblical sense. That’s the affair of the goddesses, of Ishtar and Artemis, and Britney. She’s no longer under financial house arrest. It must be time to go home. But to where? 

The kettle boils and boulders form in bubbles, sea monkeys stop swimming. They float to the surface kind of like the putrefaction of Guinness as the bubbles go down the sides and come up the middle. They burst. The switch klicks off. The water cools. The coffee is instant. Ready. Almost. The milk smells of dirty diapers. I drink it in through my nostrils. 

And… 

I flush the toilet.  


Aaron Leyshon bends words into unnatural shapes that sometimes resemble poetry and other times fiction. He teaches high school English and suspects that this may be where his love of language stemmed from. You can find out more about him and his writing at aaronleyshon.com which also happens to be his most enduring work in progress.

For Your Birthday by Deborah Woodside Coy

I’m going to show you a night 
you’ll never remember.
I’ll touch you in places 
you’ve been touched before.
I’ll kiss you with pollen lips 
like the last thousand times
we’ve gasped together.

After so many years
there are few surprises.
I know the places to touch.
I’ve memorized the geography
of your body.
The bumping of the bed
and slap squish
when we move together
no longer embarrasses us.

You shiver me with your long fingers.
They liven me with their 
learned paths on my flesh.
I thrill to your slow familiarity. 
You know exactly when to let go.
Never routine, we merge
into our satisfaction.


Deborah Woodside Coy has published one collection of poetry and was an editor of La Llorona, by Beatlick Press that won the New Mexico/Arizona Book Award for anthologies. She has published in multiple anthologies and journals.

Feast by Kim Adonna

Before you
Endings arrived as duvets
And I waved goodbye
As I stifled myself
Beneath them.

Yet
The ritual is different
With us:
Burn the blankets
Flick the noose 
Hanging from the ceiling
Slip only the 
Smallest, teasing parts into the loop 
A pinky toe, an earlobe, a nipple.

I run from us
You catchpole me back
You hide
I prowl and dig
This is our 
trauma-bond-of-a-story
In this moment
I happen to be
Hunter
And I’m on my way
Limping with a
Rucksack packed with 
Neurons and sharp poems
I drank my water
I took my vitamins
But my stomach is growling.


Kim Adonna teaches online, cooks, reads, writes and sleeps in a 400-square-foot apartment in Albuquerque, NM.  Nature, poetry, and a hearty tofu stir-fry regulate her nervous system. @plum_eclipse on Instagram