Thursday, December 17, 2009

by Andrew

SMALL WORLD - by Andrew

Well, I don't agree.

I think the world is pretty damn big,
big enough that everyone I know
is going somewhere else
for the holidays
and I
which I get into free
because Mema works here
and she uses it as a babysitter
even though I am old enough
to walk to school
with Dustin and Egger.

I hate this fake world.

But if I sit and really look,
the small world Christmas lights
are pretty.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

by Vera

Stumbling Rumpled - by Vera

like this dead land of rubble.

like the beliefs
in folds of my brain.

like Lon-scented blankets
on his bed
in the trailer.

And stumbling this morning,
Emma's feather-fine pale blond hairs
on the other pillow.

Monday, November 16, 2009

by Kaitlin

Crochet Guerrillas - by Kaitlin

We scoot in at sundown,
flashlights in our teeth,
to wrap chill metal
in a pre-measured cuff of wild warmth,
whipstitching up the side to secure,
top it with Mae's freaky failed glove,
and shrieking with glee
we pound around the corner
to Jamie's waiting Jetta,

Softening the urban landscape
one cold post
at a time.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

by Javier

Last Laugh - by Javier

You taunt me, sukka
from away over there
on the sidewalk.

You think it's funny?
You think I look crazy
with mold and leaking dying juices?
Step closer, sukka.

Step closer, I'll tell you
what it means to laugh
at the only jack-o-lantern
left on the street.


I'll breathe my putrification on you,
you laugh at me.

Your skin starts to peel
your nose will melt down
alongside your mouth,
blackening teeth,
jawbone exposed,
goop running south from your eye sockets...

Alright get outta here
before I bite your ankles.


Monday, November 2, 2009

by Thalia

Influenza has rendered me imaginationless for the moment.

Tune in soon for more from the voices, who are suspiciously waiting patiently in line for the virus to finish its dirty work...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

by Deyna

Trapped Pictsy - by Deyna

Welted glass tears layering her cheek,
she silent made.

Permeating wing sweat,
spraying wide,
she flapping so hard.

Skin oozing poison,
she transforming to hate.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

by Jimmy G.

Invasion of the Kingdom - by Jimmy G.

Ant brigade marching
around the toilet -
I lean over from my throne
as fast as I can.

Monday, October 12, 2009

by Ellory

Pumpkin Tossers - by Ellory

Well if you ask me,
I think
pumpkins are
big fat porky
without a waist.

Like me.

I'm dying for these guys
to drop just one.

They haven't yet.

Monday, September 28, 2009

by Markus

Breakfast - by Markus

Picking up Su for the morning meet,
and this
is what she was eating.

"You eat rice and soybeans for breakfast?"

She stood back
so I could snap the photo.

"Not always," she said,
elbows out,
swishing her hair into a pony tail.

"Usually rice and vegetables."

She started wolfing it down,
one sneakered foot
facing out from her chair,
ready to run.

"Rice sure is funny breakfast food," I muttered,
leaning on her counter,
Trying to keep my eyes
from the smooth
Asian thigh.

"Yeh," she spat, laughing,
"like the cold anchovy pizza you ate
was breakfast!"

Dumping the edamame skins
in the compost,
Suki flicked a piece of rice
at me,
a tiny sticky smack in the cheek.

She laughed and brushed the grain
from my face,
a cool sweep
on my flush.

"Let's kick their asses today!"
she cheered,
and was out the front door

Monday, September 21, 2009

by Dylan

Happy Birthday, H.G. Wells - by Dylan

Hours of shooting
hours of screams, snot and lisps
on the playground.

They called it a 'shadow assignment'-

half the afternoon
spent in a standing camera cramp,
thinking I was getting something

And then I download.

And all I can think is,

sinuous shapes
with levitating balls and rings.

Little beings from Mars.

And damn.
They are.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

by Vera

Spying - by Vera

Crouching here
spying in on the Boys,
I am suddenly counting
how many
days of desert
I've scraped through -
have I worked for them a whole month?

I am raw,
like I've been itching
scratching on a cheese grater,
not trusting Lon
still doing crunches to make sour stomach

Hunkered in the scrub
with a crackling breeze at 6 am,
I spit out bile,
pissed off.

At Lon.
The Boys.
Tilly, Milo, Dempsey especially
the whole frickin mining town,
Carole, the Motherload,
maybe Amy,
yes, Amy.

Pissed off.

At myself.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

by Aubrey

Manduca sexta - by Aubrey

Ms. Pellium's Solanaceae
are deranged,

first by one
then by three,
and today
by many
too many Manducas
of four inch length,
fifth digit girth
(but squishier.)

The Administrators of Mastication,
leave branches denuded,
inflorescences demoralized,
lycopersicon esculentum
lies barren,


Ms. Pellium is tomato sauceless,
due to those

machinators of

Sunday, August 30, 2009

by Clarissa

Mica Scales - by Clarissa

Low tide.
Miles of radiant silica.



I feel a dry rasping tongue
running up the shore

like a desiccating dragon -

End of Summer.

Monday, August 17, 2009

by Thomas

Bull - by Thomas

They're fake.

Look how green his face is.

Fake frogs.

Not even breathing.

On a real farm,


they go and plant

fake frogs

by the pond.


He blinked.

Did he?

C'mon frog,

blink again.


Friggin' frog, blink.

He's not blinking.

He's fake.

Fake frog.

Look how green he is.


He blinked!

He's real!

He's real!



Monday, August 10, 2009

by Thalia!

Hello, said the ghostly visage of the author...

Taking this week off, since I have just returned from the SCBWI conference in Los Angeles and am zooped out.

Tune in next Sunday...

Sunday, August 2, 2009

by Philip

I Wanna Be Back In Oregon - by Philip

My first visit to Uncle Craig's.

So cool, SoCal! I thought.

But we walked
two concrete miles
to find the Pacific,

and there it was,
pacifically laying there
flat as the pavement shore,

with the rumble of traffic
instead of the sound of surf,

all the freeway
at 30 mph,
looking at my
skinny white chest.

Monday, July 27, 2009

by Arlon

Cat-Trapped - by Arlon

He's strolling round the pool
on freaky silent feet,
little slitted eyes,
a sneaky flailing tail,

and I back into the corner
almost in the scratching branches,
no, don't see me,
just go by me,

but he bee-lines for me,
tail up like a spraying skunk,
and sits beside the drips
from the edge of my shorts,

content to stay awhile.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

by Summer

Little Sister - by Summer

"Bike with your sister round the block,"
and so we did,
but more brake
than bike
because Katie the Kollector
had to stop at every leaf
and stick
and feather
and place them carefully
in her front basket.

"What're you
doing?" I demanded
every other stop,
maybe in a not-so-nice way.

"You'll see," she said happily.

And when we got home
she set up shop.
Carefully cut a piece of grape vine
with her snips,
got out twine,
a glass of water,
and sat there an hour,

"Ta-dah!" she said.

A Summer Wreath, she said.

"For my big sister," she said,
"who learned me biking."

All sniffling,
I hugged her,
and my wreath hangs
right next to the Jonas Brothers
on my bedroom wall.

Monday, July 13, 2009

by Vanessa

Reaching for Tea - by Vanessa

In the cool and curling
stretching hour of morning,
modern slips of
shape objects,
sharp in quiet,
soft in distance,
and I am yawning
no one else would ever wake
and stir this
slice of perfect.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

by Rocco

Escape to Planet Zoip - by Rocco

And the chlorophilic pods shall encapsulate us,
screen us from the
ultraphenolic rays of the binary stars,

White Permeation Fibers emitting our waste and
plumbing the atmosphere
for particles useful to our thrivation,

Ray Barbatons thrusting beyond the stratosphere
to intercept intruders
with weapons of might.

Although, of course,
our mission is to start life
in peace.

Despite the massive arsenal.

Monday, June 29, 2009

by Kelsey

Jammin' - by Kelsey

Splatter steamy
poppling pot
blopping sticky
sugary hot.

Ladling jammies
simmering stop.
Cooling jewelies
lids go pop!

Monday, June 22, 2009

by Vera

Blird - by Vera

I hate how
no matter what I do
she's way in the background
fuzzy and washed in my memory now.

I was thinking for a long while
that it was just because
immediate life is so sharp

that by comparison
Amy is distant,

but no.

Even if I focus on her
she's caught in haze
what is
life now.

Anger flames me
that I seem to be moving on,
my lens of life
trained on beef jerky and silent packages and
arguments with Lon and
this wind-scoured scrub and
a mining town
this far from what was home.

I still see her.
Amy fading like background.

But if I don't see her at all,
my sister'll really be gone,
and I can't let that happen.

So I'll keep my eye on the blurred distance
and remain angry.

Monday, June 15, 2009

by Effron

Order - by Effron

tightly wound round
arcing out
losing ground
charged with gold
guilty found
florets angry
bursting soundless
pollen chaos
shoved and tumbling
sidewalk bound
homeless landing
face down.

Monday, June 8, 2009

by Manny & Patricia

Porsche - by Manny & Patricia

"She was hot once."

He invited me here
to talk about another girl?

"The 914. The car."

Hot in the sun, maybe.

Hot like you are now.

Pale teal and lime green -
who knew they'd paint the inside
like that,
where no one can see it?

She's leaning in.
Inspecting the engine compartment.

She's really interested!

And the shadows waving over
the curves inside,
hash marks on the cords.

"You know about electrical stuff?"

What is he talking about?

"The wiring."
She's wrinkling her freckles.
Love that.

"Cool shadow pattern."
I move my hands,
sprinkling lights-and-darks.

What is she talking about?

He's running his work-rough fingers
through his dark hair again.

Hot out here in the driveway.

A halo around him,
the sun at his back.

Wrinkling her freckles at me.
Makes me wanna
take her face
in my hands.

I wonder what those hands
feel like.
On me.

Monday, June 1, 2009

by Patrick

I Madonari - by Patrick

Well I'm not sure
what it is
I'm supposed to see.

A woman dead?
Posturing Native American?

I don't get this kind of art
Huge colors
people stuck in poses
black furry background
like those velvet paintings in Grandda's garage

But it's not a painting.
It's chalk on pavement.

A festival of
hundreds of chalk drawings-

and I don't get why you spend
three days on a masterpiece
and let the fog come in and dull the edges
let cars park in the parking lot again
let dogs walk their people over it,
smearing all your work,
the sharp clouds holding the sky,
her smooth skin,
fabric folds,
one-by-one blades of grass,

and then it's gone

and you have to do it again next year
for the show.

Now that I'm really looking,

But I still
don't get
that it's not
permanent art.

Or is that the point?

Monday, May 25, 2009

by Vera

BBQ - by Vera

"Of course you're invited," he said

But Lon is chinking bottles round the grill
with Da Boys,
his back to me,
that wide-stance arms-folded rocking posture
guys all do together.

Oh, he gestured with his elbow
to the cooler of beers,
before sweeping gracefully
back again to the posse.

Hospitality at its shortest.

And sitting alone,
I find to my horror
I'm picking up pebbles and tossing them -
the ultimate in
"I'm Friendless" entertainment.

Time to take off,
before I flounder in the webbing
of his low-slung chair.

I fling one last rock
toward Lon's feet
and saunter away back down-trail,

Sunday, May 17, 2009

by Carly

Jesusita Oranges - by Carly

They look like vivant orbs from space
resting on crushed cinders
of apocalypse,
these oranges in the ashes.

I wasn't here when it came this time
but oh lived through fire before,
snapping heated teeth,
flamedevil swirls seventy feet tall,
antithesis of thirst driving the gallop across gates and
swingsets and eucalyptus and
whole homes
to alight
and here,
leaving a green tree there
and there a wooden house unscathed by anything but
tender swirls of trailing smoke,
then back to torch the shed beside it -
or the house next door.

Brittany's house next door.

My house stands.
Brittany's is this -
chimney alone in a rectangle of saltandpepper crunch,
metallic winds and the strange scent of something sweet.

And I cry and curse the oranges
safe in their cheery skins,
aliens of the ashes.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

by Kate

Volleyball Photo - by Kate

High five
in black and white,
captures historical,
(recently allegorical)

Monday, May 4, 2009

by Anke

Launch Day - by Anke

Look at all these people
she knows.
All here for her
and maybe for me.

She's overwhelmed
I can tell,
and I think I'm overwhelmed too
I want to hide

or cheer and jump up and down
or throw up
but mostly
I'm grinning
from my spot at the top of the stairs.

We did it.
We are not furniture.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

by Jen


Even right up close
you stand calm, eyelashes still,
nose breath wuffling soft.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

by Hessa

Wildflowers of Figueroa Mtn - by Hessa

My gawd
it's purple and orange everywhere
and it stahnks!
I thought this trip was wildflowers,
luxurious fields of waving petals,
wafting breezes -
screeching halt, man.

I'm not running through this scratchy scrub
like Maria
in Sound of Music.
If I did
I'd have to wrap
my bare legs in medical gauze,
check for ticks,
oh, and probably get a shot of anti-venom
for the chomp of the rattler
nestled in beside that rock.

Freakin 95 degree

They say the flowers'll be gone next week.
Wonder why
they don't stick around.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

by Anke

Pub Date - by Anke

It's here.


that hidden life

inside that

each book a block of wood shavings,

until someone opens
even just one

sees me
on just one page.

Page 105,
for instance.

There I am.

In every book.

For everyone to read.

And maybe


Sunday, April 12, 2009

by Matthew

Pickin off rust

waitin for the 10 bus,
Charlie's gone again.

No buffalo jerky
no readin from that Hugo book
nobody throwin an arm over my shoulders
like he use to
Charlie's gone again.

Guess I'll figure out
my own algebra

Guess I gotta laugh out loud alone

Guess I'm gonna hafto walk
because the dang bus ain't comin
Charlie's gone again.