The reactionary mind must have an enemy, or two, or three. It must always believe it is threatened by something dire (and Other), and must rally to fight that threat — whether that threat truly exists or not. Nine times out of ten, the threat as described is pure invention, and the powers that be manipulate reactionaries further down the totem poll, play them like violins, hypnotize them like sheep. Those pulling the strings know full well that the threat they describe does not exist, but they gain greater power when they create bogeymen, as this distracts the masses from their true enemies — those who strip the value of (and from) labor, endlessly redistribute it upward, and concentrate all value at the top. . . . Read more. “Labor and Amnesia”
September brings us new poetry by Ali Zaidi, A. J. Huffman and Raymond Farr. Returning champ, Donal Mahoney, writes about the well-springs of art. And Jack Galmitz favors us with photo collage, which may well magically grow in number over the course of the month . . .
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How does one’s health impact writing, reading and making art in general? How does it derail or derange one’s sense of priorities and connection with life’s mission? I am certainly not alone in thinking about such things in moments such as these, when faced with certain severe alterations to the norm. Pick up most any biography of most any artist and you’ll find maladies aplenty — some so painful, endless and agonizing, you almost feel embarrassed for ever uttering a complaint about your own scenario. . . . Read more. “Chronicle of the Wind-Down Bird”
Ali Znaidi lives in Redeyef, Tunisia. He graduated with a BA in Anglo-American Studies in 2002. He teaches English at Tunisian public secondary schools. He writes poetry and has an interest in literature, languages, and literary translations. . . . Read more. “Ali Znaidi: Aphrodite’s Teeth”
Anyone who has written fiction or poetry probably has been asked at one time or another, “Why did you write that?” I’ve been asked that question and I have never been able to provide an answer.
Some writers may set out to write a poem that will address an important question about life, such as who we are as human beings and what purpose, if any, we have on Earth. I have never tried to write a poem like that. Nor have I ever written a poem knowing in advance what it might say. I just write down “words” that come to me, provided I like the way they sound and like their “rhythm” when heard together. . . . Read more. “Donal Mahoney: Why We Write”
The photo of you reading, as a child on the east side of the willow, is not enough anymore—a mint on the tongue in the horrors of evening! But what do we stand for if not correlations? We are being snubbed out. We are glam-ing it down. We are starved for each other. Are you that indifferent to what we’ve become? Our lives are a nightmare always coming to life. Too much “me” in the mirror. & having you in the picture just proves we’re alive. This is the part where death stacks the deck. We are raging on steroids. Our fingers are daggers, stabbing at the first bite of winter breaking. . . . Read more. “Raymond Farr: Love and Ennui”
I miss your eyes in the night. The silent peace of their closing. Tucked. Secretly inside a whisper. They leave a bare imprint. Subconsciously re-assigned. I consciously resign to dream them back into memory. Each night they emerge. Another shape another shade another layer. Soon the image will be soiled. Again. Faintly glittering. An ephemeral altar.
For worship or sacrifice? Will remain to be (un)seen.
A.J. Huffman is a poet and freelance writer in Daytona Beach, Florida. She has previously published four collections of poetry: The Difference Between Shadows and Stars, Carrying Yesterday, Cognitive Distortion, and . . . . Read more. “A. J. Huffman: Walking Trance”