PC:Lisa Marie Kaspar
We were sitting on a blanket
In the afternoon heat when
You said you were Jesus
You could see numbers
And hear the birdsong
And read the signs
And answer to world peace
Convinced, concerned, confused
The zodiac and the colours of blue
And the power of mind reading
And the way light bounced off the walls
Had the power of God
Now indebted to you
A leaf falls feather like and soft
It parachutes down onto your hand
Plant power, Psychology and Physics
The pyramids and personality
Splitting yourself into three
Matching birthdays and future tense
Laying down then jolting back up
Fresh ideas swarming and swimming
Consuming the person you used to be
The one I thought I couldn't see
I encouraged tiny sips of water
To ease away the sleepless nights
Relaxing those wide eyes and tired hands
And sore taste buds from sour sweets
The diet of a holy prophet
Had to be one of endless energy
Lighting a bonfire in the woods
Hidden away in the washroom
You kept a stack of notepads
And art books and pens
Alongside matches and
Pictures of friends
What else was there todo
But sit with you and wait
For older adults to arrive
And take you someplace
About The Author: Sophie Fisk
Sophie Fisk is an emerging poet and recently graduated psychologist. Residing in London, England, they took the leap into writing to ground feelings and experiences that would otherwise remain elusive. You can follow them on Twitter here: @SOPHIE_SESF
PC: Selma Reis
Today the wizard actor plays,
a role he self creates.
He energizes every cell
and wanders stores and streets.
Above his head, he calls the clouds,
and mantras fill with rain.
Thunder and his waving arms,
keep time within his brain.
This wizard knows the secret signs,
of every oak and maple.
He counts the numbers 6 and 9,
and dances near the willow.
Back at home the TV screen,
gives messages of grace.
Music from the phonograph,
affirms the wizard’s faith.
Nonetheless, the wizard rides,
inside an institution.
Believing wizard’s ought to hide,
They make his reservation.
As the wizard’s magic fades
dissolving into gloom,
he waits to greet the other saints
who greet him in his room.
From deep in her soul,
A feeling- purely inspired- ascends
That promises magic and purpose.
This girl unfurls her mind
To chronicle rhythms and signs
That quickens her poem’s foundation.
But slowly her vision
Grinds down into pieces of memory,
And soon her ideas become fragments.
As deflated thinking
And dehydrated words lose their power,
The left-over verse bubbles over.
This insecure poem
That breeds self-conscious musings
Finally collapses in on itself.
The “wanna be” artist
And make believe mystical prophet
Then sadly returns to her anguish.
A Day in Hell for the Mentally Ill
tap water coffee
hand me down cigarettes
salvaged from the floor.
They walk like zombies down dark dreary halls,
while their silent
screaming drones on within
Then half competent doctors
Ask their sanity questions
Like “Who is the president?”
as if it matters at all.
Then appear the nurses’ medications that
make the residents
sleep on the floor and perpetually wait on line.
In the end the residents’ only releases
are recycled Spam
mind numbing sleep, from which they pray to God they will never
About The Author: John F. Zurn
John Zurn has been faced with the challenge of bipolar disorder for his entire adult life. Despite this challenge, he still managed to work as a teacher and counselor for over thirty-five years. He was also a member of NAMI of Dupage Speaker’s Bureau and has given around four hundred presentations to various groups including police officers, medical students, and volunteer groups. John continues to volunteer in various capacities. He has also published several books with Chipmunka Publishing and Authorhouse. Now retired, he continues to write and publish poems and stories and recently has had two stories published by cc&d magazine, poems published with FreeXpresSion magazine and The Avocet, A Journal of Nature Poetry, and a play published by Off the Wall Plays. As one of seven children, his experiences growing up continue to help inspire his art and influence his life. John was born in 1954 and has an M.A. in English. He has been married to his wife, Donna, for thirty seven years.
PC: Iosune de Goñi
The Black Dog
That Black Dog
The one people refer to
Seems to enjoy the food
I leave out at night
It munches mercilessly on the
Flowers left unwatered
On the clothes left unwashed
It drinks from my weepy eyes
And takes air from my wheezing chest
It follows me home through familiar streets
Tainted with hazy unfamiliarity
It sits on my feet and nibbles at my toes
Clawing for attention as I sit froze
It sniffs out dishes that collect mould
And hobbies that lie forgotten
But at night I let it sit on my bed
Curling into my weighted blanket
I share with it my daily embarrassments
My greatest fears and hearts longings
A childhood slumber party
I pet and I stoke and I hold tight
To the thing that always wants to fight
But as the sun pours in through the window
And bird song urges me to wake up
I notice that Black dog
The one people refer to
Is now fatter and hungrier
Than the one before
About The Author: Sophie Fisk
Sophie Fisk is an emerging poet and recently graduated psychologist. Residing in London, England, they took the leap into writing to ground feelings and experiences that would otherwise remain elusive.