Issue #9

Hell & 

after H.D.’s “Helen” 

Tyler Friend

All this grease, these stained hands. Still eyes 

like olives & stands of white hands

reaching up. All these Grecian revels, these smiling faces. 

Remember the past? That was sick. We were sick & 

our daughter unborn, thank God.

Tyler Friend is a non-binary, probably-human entity found in the rolling hills of Tennessee. When not writing (and often while writing), they teach high school, check out library books, and draw on post-it notes. They edit the online lit mag Francis House and design for Eulalia Books

when i touch myself i think about a hand rubbing circles on my back

Danielle Rose

because want is like a hammer / & i flatten

like a paper fan / here is an analogy

it is grasslands then a forest

& then grasslands again

i am thinking

about a hand on my back 

rubbing circles / & i flutter 

like a girl discussing all the possibility

in the words if maybe / & if this is where my mind 

travels during sex i cannot be a temple / i will not 

become a cloud of incense & just quietly depart 

because between my legs 

is a valley i named & renamed & dedicated

again & again / on my back a hand a birdsong

a sudden frost / a detour / a way to make myself

into a fond memory that calmly drowns

Danielle Rose lives in Massachusetts with her partner & their two cats. She is the managing editor of Dovecote Magazine & used to be a boy. Her work can be found or is forthcoming in The Shallow Ends, Barren Magazine, GERTRUDE, Luna Luna Magazine, Empty Mirror, Homology Lit & elsewhere. You can find her on Twitter or at her website here.

noon beach scene

Jan Ball

Today, no black snake claims territory

coiled beneath the sea grapes to absorb

the noon sun like an ebony Victorian

funeral necklace displayed on the chest

of a buxom elderly lady in black satin


Instead, beside the Gulf of Mexico, 

the over-seventies stay inside at noon,

eat half a ham and cheese sandwich

with a cup of chicken noodle soup and 

sometimes drink a glass of buttermilk,

the way my mother used to, sprinkling

salt, pepper and Tabasco sauce in it; 

they stumble along the faded sand 

at dawn in search of shell skeletons, 

plastic supermarket bags in hand like 

invasive brittle jellyfish ballooning 

in the subtle breeze.

Tonight, at cheaper, early seating 

Happy Hour, the blue-tinted women

emerge in helmut hair and chic knee

length shorts and blouses with YSL 

logos on the pocket to sip Rob Roys 

or “tinas” as martinis are euphemized 

on Longboat Key, accompanied by hearty 

balding men in Tommy Bahama plaid 

pants who later smoke cigars outside

companionably, then pick at their salmon 

filets with a Caesar salad side until 

the waiter, inconspicuously brings the bill 

and soon prepares the table for the next 


           four water glasses with knives 

                and forks in a navy blue paper 


Jan has had 299 poems published in various journals including: Atlanta Review, Calyx, Chiron, Connecticut Review and Nimrod, in Australia, Canada, Czechoslovakia, England, India and The U.S.. Jan’s two chapbooks and full length poetry collection, I Wanted To Dance With My Father, are available from Finishing Line Press and Amazon. When not traveling, Jan and her husband like to cook for friends.