Jack Grapes


Photo by Alexis Rhone Fancher

( The haiku are from Jack’s forthcoming book,
301 haiku.)

Hearing Mom and Dad
fighting in the bedroom room.
Outside, the red moon.

I lost who I was.
Then I found who I would be.
Only who I was knew.

In the safe darkness
of the theatre I find truth:
Annie gets her gun.

There’s Charlie Chaplin
running but getting nowhere—
a plan for a life

falling in rhythm
to the buzzing of the bees
over something dead

Would that I was wise,
not this enlightened monkey
wearing monkey mask

They open my chest
and then put my heart on ice
while my brain simmers.

To write War and Peace:
In the stationary store
ask for more paper.

Poetry kills me.
I can’t face its stern demands,
heart filled with cobwebs.

When I’m gone, I’ll sure
miss that dove whose song wakes me,
but will she miss me?

Fortune cookie says,
“You will go on long journey.”
Pay check. Leave at once.

How to eat this life?
Break the past into pieces,
eat one piece at a time.

I love this sharp knife.
How it cuts the red pepper.
Salad filled with blood.

My childhood is gone.
I don’t want to go back there.
Too much mystery.

Once I was a dog.
No one was afraid of me.
I licked people’s hands.

I’m a proud Virgo.
One day I’ll be organized,
surrounded by worms.

Some things are too sad
to write about on paper.
My closed mouth writes too.

Poems not money
give such meaning to my life.
Sometimes meaning sucks.

Shakespeare, bricklayer.
Dante, the wise carpenter.
Me? Corn to chickens.

At a loss for words?
Call Jack Grapes, home or office,
day or night, for help.

I’ve squandered so much,
and given less than I could,
asleep in the rain.

Sit still a minute.
Now, let your heart open wide
and see what falls in.

Jack Grapes


Susan Hayden


Photo of Chris Allport


Souvenirs and Evidence

The Search and Rescue crew handed me the bag

like a forgotten sandwich. I held it for days;

a Zip-Loc of belongings: his taxi wallet, damp

from melted snow with twelve, crisp hundred dollar bills,

weekend cash to pay for my 45th birthday.

His red bandanna covered in rocks and ice,

smelling of sweat and torn mountain skin.

Our son’s fifth grade picture in his wallet:

Hazel eyes, pirate t-shirt, gypsy hair;

face staring back at me with that “I am safe” look.

And then the goggles, still foggy,

still defrosting from a long night and buried.

I held the bag for days; it was the last of him.

Later, when people came to pay their respects,

to tell me how “He was in a better place,”

“He died doing what he loved”

only the ache remained,

like heart surgery without anesthesia.

I would share the bag and its contents

with anyone who was interested.

A friend put her arm around me and said:

“You don’t have to worry anymore. All the things

you were afraid of have already happened to you.”

Susan Hayden, c. 2016

3 poems by Mike Meraz

M MerazYour soul


Took a
Living on

But now
I miss


Artists are
So much
That comes
Their way


Poems & Self Portrait by

It’s been a long while my Darlings…


(Photo by L.K. Thayer)

Let’s just say I have been on hiatus, a sabbatical…whatever the fu@k. 

I’ve been in the theatre, and when you’re on stage, time gets oh so, Bo-Jangled.

Let’s wake up now and wash our over-night peel masks off shall we????

Welcome to “Nowsville”…Let’s get S Q U E E Z E D…

and turn Lemons into Lemonade. After all, it’s Apples & Oranges, really.

  • L.K.Thayer