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Poetry Winter 2016    fiction    all issues


Cover Joel Filipe

Alexander McCoy
Questions to Ask a Mountain
& other poems

Alexandra Kamerling
& other poems

Debbie Hall
She Walks Into Starbucks Carrying a 2 x 4
& other poems

Michael Fleming
& other poems

Jim Pascual Agustin
Sheet and Exposed Feet
& other poems

Melissa Cantrell
& other poems

Martin Conte
& other poems

AJ Powell
The Road to Homer
& other poems

Paul W. Child
World Diverted
& other poems

Michael Eaton
& other poems

Lawrence Hayes
Walking the Earth
& other poems

Daniel Sinderson
Like a Bit of Harp and a Far Off Twinkle
& other poems

Sam Hersh
Las Trampas
& other poems

Margo Jodyne Dills
Babies and Young Lovers
& other poems

Nicole Anania
To the Dying Man's Daughter
& other poems

Lisa Zou
Under the Parlor
& other poems

Hazel Kight Witham
Hoofbeat Heartbeat
& other poems

Margaret Dawson
& other poems

James Wolf
An Act of Kindness
& other poems

Jane A. Horvat
& other poems

Bill Newby
& other poems

Jennifer Sclafani
Hindsight Twenty Twenty
& other poems

Writer's Site

Sam Hersh

Las Trampas / The Traps

as if by chance

you are drawn down a whisper path to a forest cove

where a strand of vertebrae marks the entrance

to which crows anticipate trespass

and there in a hollow

lie cream-colored catkins

wild rose hips awash in miner’s lettuce

oyster mushrooms ripe with maggots

hazel    buckeye    black oak    bay

and ways blazed

by foragers

                                      don’t go there

even now, amanita ocreata

destroyer of what was and is

craves your kiss

                        don’t go

she will tempt you in twilight

to kneel on a pillow of death and duff

and reap overtures of golden chanterelles


                                      be still

                                                   very still

still, you won’t see it coming

Meme Quarantine


that time when

I thought outside the box?

That’s a great question.

So glad you asked.

Let me help

unpack that for you.


it’s technical, isn’t it!

Not so fast.

What he just said, not so much.

It’s like, truth be told,

trending now.

Trust me, you people.

That said, say no more. Right?

Black Bread, Rye

I nearly forgot how sour salt caramel

crust and crumb can lap the tongue

or how caraway and wild spikes

of fennel can seed a grin.

I hadn’t savored that black bread, rye

from who knows where

since butter churned, someway

south of Houston Street.

The month after mother died,

my son baked bread that obeyed gravity,

my daughter rekindled ancient grains

and my wife drew back the curtain.

Winter fell, we took note,

blindly tasted and closed in,

on a collision course with an elusive hearth,

bygone, though not forgotten.

A good story ends

with sheaves of wheat or slashes

that score the surface, living proof,

maker’s marks.

We give rise, break bread

and leave the pointed end

for someone in particular.

Do Not Disturb

Darling, please wait

until rap rusts out,

Reali-TV is wrong, gone

and Cryogenic Relaunch goes 2.0.

I can wait until euthanasia

bears your imprimatur

so don’t be a brick shy

            more rest will do me good.

Before waking me,

cue that Bach cantata

you know, the one

we played, come Sunday.

Best wait and wonder where or when

the here and now became the there and then.

Going ...

after David Alpaugh’s double-title form

Just as I came up

on the inside

of a fleet-footed thought

a honeymoon of a poem

segued by

going easy, casual as a coyote

vanishing at the crossroads

scribbling something

it chanced upon

along these lines, then

... Gone

Sam Hersh, a lapsed psychophysicist, lives at the foot of Mount Diablo, with his muse, Jan, and plays at beaches beginning with letters, SAN. By day he figures in the Valley of Heart’s Delight. By night, he rewrites poetry, twists porcelain and refreshes lactobacillus sanfranciscensis to perfect sourdough. His poems appeared in The Ina Coolbrith Circle Gathering, Monterey Poetry Review and the Scribbler.

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