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Poetry Summer 2023    fiction    all issues


Joel Filipe

Kristina Cecka
& other poems

Gillian Freebody
The Uncivil War of Love
& other poems

LuAnn Keener-Mikenas
Skunks at Twilight
& other poems

Alyssa Sego
& other poems

Anne Marie Wells
Forest of One
& other poems

Brent M. Foster
Ode to Darwin
& other poems

Jack Giaour
trans man is feeling blue
& other poems

Alan Gann
how strange
& other poems

Richard Baldo
The Privilege
& other poems

Michael Fleming
& other poems

Holly York
As it turned out, there was no bomb on board
& other poems

Celeste Briefs
Late Poppies
& other poems

Kayla E.L. Ybarra
Goose Song
& other poems

S.E. Ingraham
Leaving to Arrive
& other poems

Rachel Robb
Molting Scarlet Tanager
& other poems

Bruce Marsland
Sauna by a Finnish lake at Midsummer
& other poems

Ellen Romano
Seven Sisters
& other poems

Greg Hart
False Coordinates
& other poems

Greg Tuleja
& other poems

Corinne Walsh
Southern Charm
& other poems

Writer's Site

Alyssa Sego

This Isn’t Poetry

There is nothing poetic about rising from the ashes,

nothing lovely about the way we survived.

We did not emerge like a miracle, wet and crying

and new. No one marveled at our lives.

Survival was like the quietness after a storm; it was ominous

and not to be trusted. I would not say that we rejoiced.

I would say we looked at each other with the shock

of being alive, with suspicion, our bodies unsure

of what to do with the “gift.”

This second life wandered toward us tentatively

like a stray dog orphaned by the disaster.

To this day, he keeps watch by the window.


Someone walks under the archway in the yard across the street, carrying a hedge trimmer. I swear, when he starts it, I take it personally. I peer out from the window and watch as the foliage collapses. I consider his labor representative of me; I am shedding with the hours. My body, over time, has been carved into shapes I don’t recognize. They say it’s the years that change you, but I find the hours to be worse. An hour swings like an ax. An hour can sever something vital.

I Could Tell You about the Illness

but I don’t want to write about that.

I want to tell you about a dream I had:

Something was stuck in my leg, it was squirming its way into my skin.

I remembered how to dislodge a tick and went about it the same way, counterclockwise,

twisting till I pulled it out. Its head was stuck—

which I knew, even in my dream, was bad—

so I dug and dug, and retrieved the head of a snake.

I crushed it and threw it in the dirt

and for the first time in months I woke up thinking:

Maybe I have the power to kill the things that want me dead

I’m Too Young to Die

and this is my only consolation. There is an unwritten rule that should prevent death from overplaying its hand. I am summoning things that should not be awakened; I am raising the dead every time I get out of bed. Every morning the universe gawks at my appearance—every morning it gasps she’s alive.


When I’m gone, use my

Bones as oars, hulls, or other

Means to cross water

Alyssa Sego is a poet and writer living in Louisville, KY with her husband and two dogs. She enjoys traveling, baking, and discovering new coffee shops for her writing time.

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