Dotted Line Dotted Line

Poetry Fall 2013    fiction    all issues


Chris Joyner
Wrestlemania III
& other poems

Carey Russell
Visiting Hours
& other poems

Marc Pietrzykowski
Cabinet of Wonders
& other poems

Jonathan Travelstead
Prayer of the K-12
& other poems

Jennifer Lowers Warren
Our Daughter's Skin
& other poems

Jeff Burt
The Mapmaker's Legend
& other poems

Patricia Percival
Giving in to What If
& other poems

Toni Hanner
& other poems

Christopher Dulaney
& other poems

Suzanne Burns
Window Shopping
& other poems

Katherine Smith
Mountain Lion
& other poems

Peter Kent
Surliness in the Green Mountains
& other poems

William Doreski
Gathering Sea Lavender
& other poems

Huso Liszt
Fresco, The Forlorn Virgin...
& other poems

Clifford Hill
How natural you are
& other poems

R. G. Evans
& other poems

David Kann
Dead Reckoning
& other poems

Ricky Ray
The Music of As Is
& other poems

Tori Jane Quante
Creatio ex Materia
& other poems

G. L. Morrison
Baba Yaga
& other poems

Joe Freeman
In a Wood
& other poems

George Longenecker
Bear Lake
& other poems

Benjamin Dombroski
South of Paris
& other poems

Ryan Kerr
& other poems

Josh Flaccavento
Glen Canyon Dam
& other poems
& other poems

Christine Stroud
& other poems

Abraham Moore
Inadvertent Landscape
& other poems

Chris Haug
Cow with Parasol
& other poems

Mariah Blankenship
Fiberglass Madonna
& other poems

Emily Hyland
The Hit
& other poems

Sam Pittman
Growth Memory
& other poems

Alex Linden
The Blues of In-Between
& other poems

Bobby Lynn Taylor
& other poems

D. Ellis Phelps
Five Poems

Alia Neaton
Cosmogony I
& other poems

Elisa Albo
Each Day More
& other poems

Noah B. Salamon
& other poems

Sam Pittman

Growth Memory

A cluster of hungry cells on my chest racks a bill

Fit to pay for a martyr's resurrection. Conjecture

Alone could prove my innocence. Hive mind of the body.

My body is not my body when the hill is still raised

In my skin's memory. I'm poised, aching to pick

At phantom cancer, wanting to have hoed this row myself

But knowing one must unthink such ambition. To myself

I've mailed a letter, no return address. What works is to pick

A font I've never used. Anyway, I was raised

On shirtless pleas in cardboard California, where a body

Is worth what it can sell. But forgetting's all conjecture.

Besides, I'm in the mirror when the envelope arrives. It's a bill.

Another Stupid Question

Did the doctors sedate her or had she drugged herself?

The toaster starts talking in tongues and even I know

to risk a burnt ear to listen. The papers mention battle

but when the woman, a learned dropout, comes to,

she'll see signs meaning bottle. Had she read more

Agatha than Emily she would have said I imagined it,

said I was seeing things. Her monument in the closet,

a box the color of potatoes, or so many crushed insects,

or her memory the sound of a cannon traced in midair.

The lines “said I imagined it, / said I was seeing things” are borrowed from Agatha Christie’s Three Act Tragedy: “What does Mrs. Dacres say?” “Says I imagined it. Says I was ‘seeing things.’”

Imaginary Vigil for My Mother

In the city they go on about marriage.

The three-walled studio, a hollow darkroom

Where the same negative outlives each new bite

Of the shutter. 1: Tawny couch with hemp blankets.

2: Tented blankets of hemp over tawny couch. 3: Hemp

Blanketed, couch tawny. A swingtop full of vodka

Prisming the light before it reaches the urn.

She made sure to say this and that was vulgar.

If she knew I lived in the city and went on

About marriage, went on about marriage, went

On and on about marrying another man, surely,

Surely, this or that bottle would be close to empty.

Daily Burial

I am the urn

itself. As I wane

my cells eat

me up. Deep

belly pocket

hordes my body

in long quiet

vigil. Hunger of


army sucking

poison for good.

What prayer

stops intent

burn or flood

in dark empty

porcelain neck?

Flick of fast

dream ghost

from in my

boiling bellies.

Again the rote

swallow, sweep.

Again, blind

mouth, again.

A Brother’s Love

We’ll see what holds your interest.

I’ll lock the front, you the back,

making sure to leave no hair,

pubic, otherwise, or prints.

Take the pillow, whatever

you want to call it, to rest

the feet, the head: we don’t want

you overworked. Remember

the betting system? For all

we know this never happened.

When everyone leaves, you can

clean the room so it’s ready.

Sam Pittman lives in Pittsburgh, PA, where he writes poetry and teaches composition, writing, and ESL. He has received awards from the Academy of American Poets and fellowships from the American-Scandinavian Foundation and the Sperry Fund. He holds an MFA in Poetry from the University of Pittsburgh and a BA from the University of California-Berkeley. Sam’s poems have also appeared in ditch,.

Dotted Line