August A Place | Lori Brack

Image: Nick Kaufman

August A Place

The front was sand and yellow wheat and brown horseflesh and night whistle of a train. The back was a gate unlatched onto summer – flower patches and sprinklers, blue television windows floating in the dark. Before builders poured foundations down the block, I ran there between rows of corn. Sunsets blazed or whispered and disappeared past railroad tracks at the horizon, the distance I could figure going under my own steam, the faraway I imagined growing up to find.

Lori Brack is the author of A Case for the Dead Letter Detective (Kelsay, 2021), Museum Made of Breath (Spartan Kansas City, 2018) and A Fine Place to See the Sky (The Field School, 2010). She lives on the prairie two blocks from the Garden of Eden and 14 miles from the geodetic center of North America.

This poem is from South Broadway Press’ new anthology, 
Dwell: Poems About Home. Purchase here.

House of Blues | Susan Carman

Image: Drew Beamer

House of Blues

She eyes the tired roadhouse
tucked between junk yards filled
with car doors and still-good hubcaps,

hickory smoke heavy on night air,
rubbing against her like a cat.
Inside, past shadowy booths

grimy with time, guitars draw her in
with a walkin’ blues line,
shuffle through 12 bars like they mean it.

Ya feelin’ blue? the drummer growls,
and the crowd spills onto the dance floor
where she joins women with tight jeans

and tight smiles, moving alone, faces painted
hopeful. When the tune slows,
she takes the hand of a sad-eyed guy—

they slide and sway, his breath
on her neck a sweet refrain
in a song of love gone wrong.

Susan Carman is a Pushcart Prize nominee, and served as poetry editor for Kansas City Voices. Her poetry appeared most recently in I-70 Review, Heartland! Poetry of Love, Resistance &  Solidarity, and the anthologies Curating Home and The Shining Years. Retired from non-profit management, she lives in Overland Park, Kansas, where she is an ESL volunteer.

This poem is from South Broadway Press’ new anthology, 
Dwell: Poems About Home. Purchase here.

Your Current GPS Location | Jason Ryberg

Image: Jeremy Bishop

Your Current GPS Location

She tried to tell me that the past
could be simply abandoned like
unclaimed baggage at the airport
or bus station,

or even, one day, with the closing
of a door and the turning of a key—

left behind forever in the rear-view mirror
like a house full of someone else’s belongings
(not yours, not anymore) in a town full of strangers
who never did you any favors.

But, I say the past can slip
a microchip on you
when you’re not looking;

I say the past always knows
your current GPS location.

Jason Ryberg is the author of fourteen books of poetry,
six screenplays, a few short stories, a box full of folders,
notebooks and scraps of paper that could one day be
(loosely) construed as a novel, and, a couple of angry
letters to various magazine and newspaper editors.
He is currently an artist-in-residence at both
The Prospero Institute of Disquieted P/o/e/t/i/c/s
and the Osage Arts Community, and is an editor
and designer at Spartan Books. His latest collection
of poems is Are You Sure Kerouac Done It This Way!?
(co-authored with John Dorsey, and Victor Clevenger,
OAC Books, 2021). He lives part-time in Kansas City, MO
with a rooster named Little Red and a billygoat named
Giuseppe and part-time somewhere in the Ozarks,
near the Gasconade River, where there are also
many strange and wonderful woodland critters.

This poem is from South Broadway Press’ new anthology, 
Dwell: Poems About Home. Purchase here.

The Return – Melissa Ferrer

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Photo: Bogomil Mihaylov

The first nine months
Of our life
Was spent
In quarantine
Nurtured by the wisdom
Of our mother’s mothers
Nutrified by the Earth
Suckling
As one being in body
Organic
In nature.
Symbiotic
Symbol of continuation.

Why
Have we not returned
Awareness to the womb
In these times
Seek the divine dark
From which the spark of life
Was bourne?

Why
Have we not sought
The wisdom of those who came
Before separation
Before degradation
And desecration of mind
And spirit?

Why
Have we not embraced
The girth of the earth
Beneath our feet?
Learn of what this bigness
Be. Hear what the bees
Buzz; news
Of the Ancient Ascent
And the absence
Of each.

Noise.
Uttered in tongue
And misidentified meaning
Ideological demons
Occupying the homes
Turned house–
The bodies
Turned louse–
Parasitic
Prophet of death
And termination
Living in the fauna
Of our mouths.

Hands balled into fists
Tightness taught us
To savor our anger
As a way to resist
The falling dominoes
And kingdoms
Devoid of glory and
fortified, sanctified
Foundation
Tumbling– remains
Creating another story–
Debris, and crumbs
Of those numbed
Translated as the way
To salvation.
And thus, the birth of this new nation.

Always and always
More and more
Preaching the gospel of lonely
And fragmentation
Disintegration of awareness
Assimilation of fear
Abandonment of what is
In search of what was never there—
Perfection in the flesh
Salvation in what we can hold
What we can mold
From our dastardly desires—
…………..A kingdom foretold
…………..Whose fall approaches.

In the wombs of our rooms
Let us croon ourselves into
Gestation
Into carry
Into hold
Let us sing, sing, sing
Lullabies of light light light
And drift,        drift,                     drift
into the silence of the Darkness
That brought us to be

Behind every word that we speak
Let us abandon every pit-
……………………………………………ting against

Form us into I
Into one
Into yo soy
Io sono
Je suis

Daughter and Son
Husband and Wife
Mother and Father
Sister and Brother
man/woman
Divinity made flesh
Masculine-Feminine
Oneness in our chest
And from this cavity
…………………………………..—this hollow—
That breathes
Blood and remembrance
Let us grow our seeds.


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Melissa Ferrer is a renegade with hippie tendencies.  Through poetry she seeks to provide a sense of solidarity to all people, encourage people to act unto peace and love, and foster community among both the like and unlike minded. Recently, she’s been yearning to set down her ego and replace it with a jubilation of the spirit. She wants you to join in, in whatever capacity you can.

 

This poem is from our first print collection
of poetry,  “Thought For Food”, an anthology
benefiting Denver Food Rescue. To support
our fundraiser, please visit this link.

Thought For Food Promotional 1

they are under my comforter of stars – promise clutter

redwoods
there will be an October surely,
my love,
suspended in fog
spiced with bark
& trapped beneath a canopy of mules
blocking the heavens from knowing
which way the wind blows
i do not catch in the chill
nothing here brings me to you
i see love in the gold glint on green
in the heat of the day
at night, the dogs hear
my mournful howls
i am not for you
as the redwoods are
i shed my leaves
before the first frost
i think you are the only one
to have ever seen the moon,
my love,
with candied cheek awe
trimming back eyelashes
exposing lakes of arcane calm
it is silent in comptche
we shuffle across dirt paths
i grab our elbows
to make us stargaze
they too are under
these lights
when you shine on them
won’t you send my love?
i grew accustomed to living without you,
my love,
here where the candlewax waves
crash against the stones
& the crow’s caw pierces my heart
my heart that aches for you
cropped-ghost-january.jpg