Tag Archives: Third Wednesday

“Of Things Past” by Lenny Lianne

A long time, too long, since we have done — this,
he said and plopped a fat bottle of Mateus
and two small paper cups from the bathroom
onto the table. He took out a maimed box
of Jolly Time Blast O Butter popcorn
from a grocery bag, and grinned at her.

She could tell that this was a campaign
to coax her to laugh, to forget
about the future. The distant past
would be the tactic tonight, the way
they used to take turns telling
each other about what had come before

— about those freakish Christmas gifts
from screwball aunts, sibling pranks,
his teen summer by a cirque-cupped pond.
And after a third refill of new wine,
they spilled out stories of lapsed romances
as though, by sharing their own secrets,

they’d earned whatever alighted afterwards.
Shag carpets, concrete block with wood
plank bookcases and black beanbag
chairs, each had departed by now,
passing away for better or worse,
like something familiar that’s lost its way.

     after a line by Lucia Perillo

Lenny Lianne is the author of four full-length books of poetry. She holds a MFA from George Mason University. Her poems have appeared in Rattle, California Quarterly, Third Wednesday, The Dead Mule of Southern Literature, and others.

“The Last Massacre in My Lonely Notebook” by David Spicer

Solitude isn’t a gate that opens.
 –Norman Dubie

I volunteered for the nightshift,
so don’t surprise me, Emma,
with your tribe of goats.
I can’t sleep, and if I could,
I’d dream of standing
on a snow-topped mountain
to view the valley below.
Emma, I need solitude,
not couriers from Eros
or a copper cup
filled with black coffee.
I’d rather watch reruns
of Alfalfa and his gang
chasing geese or wait
for angels to hold umbrellas
for me—I doubt if I’d
leave with them: my soul
has too many scars,
and gunshots on the beach
don’t help. God, I miss
the lack of terror now.
Windmills circle in my ears,
and I need to call a shrink,
but my throat is a cipher.
No, I want my black bones
to heal, ice to drop from the sky
like frozen tears, and a vase filled
with scarlet pimpernel adorning
the window sill. Then I could
savor a slice of pumpkin pie
before I write of the last Indian
massacre in my lonely notebook.

David Spicer has had poems in Alcatraz, Gargoyle, Third Wednesday, Reed Magazine,  PloughsharesThe American Poetry Review, and elsewhere. The author of Everybody Has a Story and four chapbooks, he is scheduled to have From the Limbs of a Pear Tree (Flutter Press) released in the Fall of 2017.