Both foreign and familiar
you patrol the hidden
You don’t care about
selling the most
You know how
to tell a joke but you don’t
You’ve learned to be
learned to be always
on the lookout.
You’ve heard the stories
from the battlefields—
academic, financial, political
and yet you refuse
to run away and join
the circus even though
so you walk
in perpetual Lent
concentrating ashy guilt and
polishing it to a
for you need things
to be raw &
to the eye.
Tom D’Angelo works in the Writing Center at Nassau Community College in Garden City, NY, and teaches courses in Mythology, Film and Literature, and Creative Writing. In addition to poetry, his current projects include a series of creative non-fiction essays on his formative years in Queens, NY. His poems have most recently appeared in The Flatbush Review.
near an alpine singer
Earl Grey tea rests
near pattern parchment
mama picked one of these
burdas to unburden her mind
which regularly cliff dwells
what she makes is
not as relevant as
sweet ’n’ sour chicken
featuring my cup spilling
for dinner, table clean now
downstairs, antique lace lives to the
morning along with
gauze and cotton
in an embroidered “organized” blue basket
I think that basket was lost in a move.
Bara Elhag was born in Alexandria, Egypt in January 1996 and has spent most of 9 years living half in Minnesota and half in Egypt. He received his high school diploma from America and graduated from Rutgers University in 2018. Bara is currently pursuing a M.S. in biomedical sciences and has a good family, wonderful friends, loves soccer, hummus, and jalapenos. He also treasure traveling and spontaneous journeys to NYC, when his bank account allows for it.
One question. That’s all I have. How long did you plan?
I’m a planner. Are you?
Earlier that day I took a test after years of prep.
And a lifetime of crap.
At 12 PM, the testing timer buzzed.
High pitched and loud. Others jumped. Not me.
I planned my time well.
Dropped my #2 pencil. Wiped
my sticky palm across my leg.
Twisted my ring counter-clockwise, twice.
Heck, I’ll take good vibes any day.
The computer processed scores.
I passed. Like I had always planned.
At 2 PM, I was a newly minted EMT.
Planning to save others my entire life.
First, I’d celebrate at a favorite club.
Like I had always planned.
With my study pals. Friends for life.
Wearing matching leather jackets and our favorite denim.
Before scrubs would become our preferred attire.
At 8 PM, we waited at the crowded entrance.
Joking about the trick question,
the one about cardiac arrest, that we each got right.
At 8:09, I felt it.
At 8:10, I felt nothing.
I never planned to be the victim of a random act of violence.
One of many. Last year, our city lost 100s to drive-bys.
The year to date rate climbs higher.
I planned to be an EMT my entire life.
Studying manuals. Saving pennies.
A day off from my minimum wage
dead-end job at the warehouse,
near the corner of Broad and 10th,
to sit for the test that would change my life.
Then, it was over. Because of you.
How long did you plan?
Jen Schneider is an educator, attorney, and writer. Her work appears in The Coil, The Write Launch, Anti-Heroin Chic, The Popular Culture Studies Journal, One Sentence Stories, and other literary and scholarly journals.
Well, I was walking trying to mind my business
and guess who came by on his bike!
Yes, it was him and his hair was short,
if you can believe he’d let someone cut his hair.
He stopped to call my name and come beside me,
walking his bike and the chain came off.
Do you mind waiting just a minute?
And I waited, because there is something about his voice
I’ve always liked, and I wanted him to walk
beside me, asking questions people don’t ask.
Do you go to New York a lot?
I said I did, sometimes, but I don’t like it there.
We should go. In the summer.
He even went so far as to ask where I was walking,
so I said to get my ears pierced, and he asked
if I had any other piercings on my body,
as if he’d never seen me naked.
But no, I said, I only have them on my ears.
Then he was away on his bike,
and for a sudden moment it was the fall again,
when at the crossroads as he walked me to the doctor
I said I knew the rest of the way, and it was raining,
and I saw his eyes afraid before he turned and ran
down the street, catching the arrow green.
Sophie Cohen is a rising junior at MIT, where she studies mathematics and creative writing. She is a writer for MIT Chroma Magazine, and a teaching assistant for calculus. An active member of her sorority, Alpha Phi, Sophie leads the fundraising effort for the Boston Walk to End Lupus Now. Her favorite poet is Brigit Pegeen Kelly.
Love was pressed between
Stained smudges of downy diction
Creased along the edges
Bent over backwards
Then folded forward
Sealed by the weight of waxy hope
Sent with a flick—
but the sun beat on
So it flut ter ed
Hitting the water
A distraught Icarus.
The whole of its failure upon it
Contributed to its
The inky black deep.
Kristina Gibbs is an emerging writer from Tennessee pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in English and minor in Linguistics. She has previously published in Speaking of Marvels and North of Oxford Review. When she is not reading or writing, you may find her clambering over both hiking trails and paint brushes.
We all have ways to weigh ourselves.
Eden’s way: stay in motion.
She would still the silence by
praying to God, eating her vegetables,
journaling in the achy fog of morning.
She would lean against the counter when she stopped.
Chairs were much too comfortable.
I never saw it was defense
until I, too,
heard bees in my head.
I see myself in Eden’s race
against the unfair haste of silent time.
There isn’t ease in inner peace
when a piece of you is missing.
Kayleigh Macdonald was born and raised in San Jose, CA. She is a recent graduate of California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Communication and a Minor in English.