Destruction of Erudition by Leroy Mourer

Leroy Mourer


Destruction of Erudition



Fire in my soul

let me perish in the night.

From the ice in my heart,

I fear the destruction.

A world gone insane,

no help to suffice

or a favor offered.

Has desire gone by

to be filled with hate.

Struggle to survive

in need to be great.

The Ever Road by Patrick Willock

Patrick Willock

The Ever Road

My steps go walking clip and clop,

my feet go stomping flip and flop.

I see the land go rolling by,

I feel the rain go plip and plop.

I walk beneath the azure sky,

while little pebbles catch my eye,

and on and on my path does spread;

this path belongs to only I.

Now all along this path I’ve tread,

I see the ways my feet have sped,

and all the pits that blocked my way,

they dragged me down with sacks of lead.

But as I walk both night and day,

Someone keeps evil at bay,

and gives my head a place to lay,

and gives my head a place to lay.

Home by Monica Cerezo

Monica Cerezo


Home all day in this house;

four blank walls closing in. Peeking out

the window shade, the sun

is bright and beckoning.

The kids wake, hungry now-

wanting a cooked breakfast

of eggs, pancakes, toast, and juice.

They interrupt my

few moments of quiet

time to reflect and plan

the day ahead. I need

more time and energy.

“Enjoy these years,” they say.

I try hard to give them

all of me in each moment.

Even though my house is

full and bustling, I

still feel trapped and lonely.

I need to escape these

square walls that block me in

every day, all day.

Just a few hours of

refreshing me time

is all I think I need.

Running is my outlet.

I can run for miles and

miles out in the sunshine.

I cannot hear the kids

asking for this or that.

I can only hear the

beat of music in my

ears as each foot lands on

the pavement. As I run

my thoughts are cleared and I

get a new sense of who

I am. I can sing and

pray and release all my

frustrations while I run.

It is a free feeling

to run without any

restrictions in my path.

I feel like a bird who

flies high in the sunshine.

The bird is free yet

takes care of her young.

She nurtures them and loves

them but flies about free.

Out in the sunshine is

where I crave, but nothing

can keep me from the four

walls of my home sweet home.

Lost Affair by Fatima Abdul-Aleem

Fatima Abdul-Aleem

Lost Affair

I am crying,

the tears are falling,

down they come.

An outpour of loneliness,

expressed in the only way I know how.

You see,

I miss the warmth,

the feel of  someone’s caress

on my pages.

Massaging my covers,

touching my essence,

as they delve into the words

enveloped inside me.

They seek the promise of escape,

the illusion of make believe,

the power of growth.

I miss their scent.

That sweaty smell

of a hard days’ work,

that lingering aroma

of the morning’s perfume.

I miss being alive.

A thumping passion

in the hearts of the young,

as they eagerly look ahead.

A resounding memory

of the elderly,

as they prepare to exit

this adventure, called life.

For I have been replaced with

touch screens, audio, live feeds.

Machines bellow out my contents,

videos explain what I mean.

Computer keys are punched

to replace his fingers,

her hands.

The melody of the love we shared


for an iPad, a Kindle, a Nook.

Always Them by Amanda Hart Miller

Amanda Hart Miller

Always Them

(Previously published in Apeiron Review)

Little girls can be stolen, especially a little girl with sad, heavy-lidded eyes and a too-small jacket, a girl who carries a stuffed unicorn in the crook of her arm and rubs it against her lips again and again. She waits all alone at a bus stop by a patch of winter-gray woods. The few houses on the street have cardboard taped to the windows and junk on the porches. To put a bus stop here, Johnny feels, someone must have been asleep at the wheel.

Johnny has been watching her now for 41 school days. He marks off the days in his notebook, which he then tucks away. Johnny’s head doesn’t work as well as it used to, so he can’t remember these things unless he writes them down. He writes other things about her, too:


Girlie has ribbons in her hair today but they fall out she keep putting them back in. Girlies hair don’t cover that bruze. Girlie got candy bar today. Girlie stares and stares at the moon this morning I want to be there too Girlie.

On his most daring of days, he trills a bird call and she turns around to see nothing because he’s behind the trunk of a big tree. He rests his cheek against the bark and listens to his heart scurrying back down his throat.

He wears trash bags and rides his bike along the main drag in what is a small town. People say it’s because his wife got burned up in a house fire and he went crazy. He’s written this down. He doesn’t remember that happening, but he does remember lying with Bea after love, her skin silky and scented like almonds and sex, don’t ever leave me but he doesn’t know where she is now. And sometimes he remembers the men under the overpass tying him up and lighting him on fire Ooh-wee… he’s lit up like a Christmas tree but usually this stays deeper inside him in someplace that can’t be remembered but eats him up just the same.

Girlie sometimes tries to trick him, he thinks. She brings chalk and draws pictures on the sidewalk, and she works on them so hard that she has to press her lips together tight so she can think, but suddenly she’ll look up quickly, at his tree. The mornings are getting darker, though. It will soon be the longest night of the year.

After the bus comes and takes Girlie away, he copies her chalk drawings into his notebook. She mostly draws hearts and flowers, and he likes to pretend she draws them for him. When he copies them into his notebook, they are for her.

On January 20th, the sky is much more gray than white. A van pulls up to the bus stop. When the man inside puts down the window and says something to Girlie, she stands up from her drawing and cocks her head. She takes three steps back from the van, and Johnny feels like he’s one of the tiny hairs on her skin—just as bristled and scared. She takes another step back and then looks toward Johnny. He forgets to hide because he falls into her eyes for years before she looks back to The BadMan, who is opening the van door until he, too, sees Johnny.

The man shakes his head and mutters something angry that Johnny can’t hear. The van purrs as it rolls away.

Girlie is smiling at Johnny, thin lips closed and dimples showing. Now there’s this thing linking them, hurtling him through a rabbit hole of jittery nerves so he comes out the other end pumped and fretting at the same time.

The bus comes then and Girlie gets on. He can see her through the window, through her clothes to her skin and even deeper, to her heart sending all that blood around, and even deeper than that, to what it all means. The world has always been just the three of them: Girlie and The BadMan and this block of flesh that is Johnny’s to place between them. With trembling hands, he pulls out his notebook.

Escape from the Siren’s Lair by Stephen Barber

Stephen Barber

Escape from the Siren’s Lair

The ancient who first told the story of Athena’s birth from the skull of Zeus must have had a hangover like this. I may not be the mythic god-king of Olympus, but I surely feel a tiny enraged person trying to burst forth from my head. My mouth feels like it is lined with a particularly old and ratty carpet, and my stomach is a churning maelstrom of cheap booze and chicken wings.

As the world became clearer in the morning light, I realize that the smoke stained, floral print wallpaper and wrinkled pink bed sheets were unfamiliar. There was also a gently snoring creature under the covers to my left.


What had happened? How had a quiet night of libations at the Badger’s Den led me to these odd surroundings? Who or what is this comatose form lying next to me, and for the love of God, why am I naked? All of these thoughts bounced around my already aching skull. Recollection of the night before was still fuzzy; my brain was trying desperately to shift out of first gear.

There was something about Popov and a hint of shame but a more complete picture was not quite forming. An investigation of this sleeping being under the covers next to me was in order. I leant over and pulled down the sheets to reveal the sum of my indiscretions.

Oh unmerciful Bacchus, what hath you wrought upon me!

The naked wrinkled visage of the Badger’s Den’s most storied and reviled barfly, DeDe, lay before me, a woman old enough to be my mother and in no way the sexy Miss Robinson type. If Helen of Troy’s face could send a thousand ships, DeDe’s distorted mug could sink twice that number.

With this jarring discovery, my synapses began firing and the mortifying memory of the night before began to invade my tortured mind. What began as a quiet evening of beer and billiards had turned into a debauched foray of plastic bottle vodka and reckless abandon.

While the vile liquid was disarming my inhibitions, DeDe had closed in like a hungry wolf to a wounded lamb. With a devilish toothless grin, she put her hand on my lap and asked if I could buy her a drink. Unlike wise Odysseus, I veered right into the siren’s boulder-like breasts. The unmercifully vivid memory of her telling me that I looked like a young Marlon Brando before slamming me into the cigarette machine and latching her gaping maw onto my mouth flooded back. I was not even spared the recollection of how her tongue was the flavor of bubble gum martinis and halitosis.

I began to shudder as the fuzzy details of the events after we stumbled back to her dingy apartment materialized. How she grabbed my crotch with a level of aggression that would have made Michael Jackson uncomfortable. It then proceeded to a coital experience comparable only to being caught in a fat, drunk crocodile death roll.

The decision to flee came quickly; I snuck into the bathroom, finding my crumpled clothes. Glancing at the mirror, I saw that my neck was covered in hickeys that looked like they must have been created by some sort of industrial vacuum. After leaving the bathroom, I went to make my final escape, only to be met with a sight of abject horror. DeDe had awakened and positioned herself between the door and me. Her whole shamelessly bare body jiggled menacingly.

She gave me a leer so filthy that it encrusted my very soul with its profane grime. Before my terrified mouth could make words, DeDe turned around, put her hands against the door, and jutted her megalithic ass towards me.

“If you want to leave, you’re going to have to unlock my door with your key one more time, honey.”

Vomit began to swell up my throat as I stared into the infernal abyss stretched open before me. Wildly looking about, I could see that all the windows had bars and that I was trapped. There was only one option left, and it certainly was not to use my “key,” as DeDe so euphemistically put it. I let out the war cry of a man who had nothing to lose and charged with all my might into the bovine buttocks blocking my path. With a tumultuous crash, the weight of DeDe’s vast carcass splintered the door from its frame, sending me tumbling to my freedom.

Achilles and Patroklos by Angelique Sites

Angelique Sites

Achilles and Patroklos


I have feared this time would come,

for like the wind you have swooped in and taken my heart.

I feared its capture, though it has not been enslaved by you, but set free,

free of wrath and replaced by hope.

Even death’s cold departure could never steal the gifts that you have given me,

for I am left forever changed by you.


-Achilles’ love professed to Patroklos

Imagine if a Butterfly by Rebecca Woody

Rebecca Woody

Imagine if a Butterfly


Imagine if a butterfly could sing.

            oh! The joy that could fill the air.

A glowing aurora of voice would ring,

            the world couldn’t help but dare

To reach out to a sun-soaked flower,

            fingers longing for the capture.

Imagine if a butterfly could sing. 

Yet, instead, as one approaches,

            a fearful, flirtatious flutter encroaches.

A blur of blue and purple flashes

            upon the silky green.

Timid, silent, filled with fear.

never wanting one to hear

The God-granted mystery, to one so dear.

Only God can reveal the beauty

            in the rhythmic beat of the innocent.

Only He can reveal the beauty,

            oh! That day is imminent

When the butterfly will sing.

The Gleaming by Jeremiah Sater

Jeremiah Sater


The Gleaming

Gleaming grandeur attracts the many,

drawing them into a forever trap.

Possibility of escape is rare,

though can be found when all is lost.

When escape is seen,

they often turn back,

never knowing life without

that gleaming grandeur.

Held tightly within its grasp,

at first they may have resisted,

while accepting the fate,

but now resting comfortably.

The gleaming grandeur holds them in awe,

blinding them from the things around them,

never knowing what truly should be seen,

trapped with the grasp.

They hold onto it,

serving it, rather than it serving them,

forgetting what should control what,

living forever in its grasp.

Forgetting their past,

and those outside the light of the grandeur,

they walk with the blind,

the blind leading the blind.

But can those blinded find the sight filled?

impossible is not impossible,

but first they must look past the blinding gleam,

to see that there is life beyond it.

The gleaming grandeur only controls

what the heart allows in,

bringing reality to perspective,

the grandeur loses its hold.

The gleaming grandeur will always remain,

near the heart,

waiting to enter,

to fade out reality, slowly regaining control.