Photo credit: Ravi Roshan
By Omar Kayyal
Moccasin socks look for room to breathe.
On the coffee table? No-
crossed, under opposite knees.
The couch is soft.
Sinking a little is a must.
Toes crinkle, to and fro-
caught in the wind,
of the ocean floor.
To this side,
Two dominoes have fallen,
catching each other on a thin,
boundary. In each other’s arms,
they speak of love, you see,
but not love you see in movies.
Their embrace is one of The Deep.
It colors in another color wheel.
Toes swim away, to leave them be.
As it should be.
To that side, there is the one who sleeps.
An eye opens, to the tickle of seaweed.
It gleams although it is droopy.
The eye moves in a reflexive study.
It sketches the outline of moccasin socks,
In the blinks and betweens of a -tock.
Reflected in the moonbeam gleam,
Swaying to and fro the ocean wind of the deep,
Moccasin socks shimmered shimmering.
And room to breathe, room to be,
Was found in the saccades, in the in-betweens.
Photo credit: Elijah O’Donnell
Behold My Paradox
That is all I see.
Everybody is scanning for a bond,
While I lie in the shadows angling
My mode of perception, to correspond
Your routines and rituals of acting,
And asking for boundless love.
So I abscond and you can’t ask for more.
Because you noticed my kind and my codes.
You knew I was designed to be alone.
I lay my tranquil smile and keep observing us coincide
Feeling the pulse from the inside
I drift trusting I am the aftermath of a calculated plan
But something is always missing somehow
Lost in my thoughts
I blame the inventor
And I grow wiser,
Knowing I will never understand the true motives of my designer.
Photo credit: Rainier Ridao
By Marc Chamieh
A precious stone. Precious in every detail. Perfect in every pore, pretty in every reflection.
One glance is enough to trap you. One glance is enough to imprison your heart. One glance is enough to enslave you forever, just like a temptation; dying to taste.
As she looks into your eyes, she doesn’t only look she tells you a story.
A story of a girl that once was.
A story of a girl that once did.
A story of a girl that once played.
Looking into her eyes, you get lost. You get lost in every perfect imperfect detail.
You get lost in her pearl white eyes…eyes of an angel.
Attractive from every angle.
Attractive in every manner.
Attractive on every glance.
Attractive in each detail.
Fluffy rose cheeks, pearl white eyes, and naked lips.
A true desire, a desire wanted by many. A desire, all do.
Her eyes tell a story not even a thousand pages could explain.
Her eyes tell a story not even she knows.
Her eyes tell a story, only her lover can understand.
A Jude she is; a bright sparkle indeed.
Photo credit: John-Mark Smith
A Tea Party with My Uncle
By Sara Houmani
This upcoming poem is a checklist..
of metaphors and inside jokes
that stopped being funny the third time
I told my therapist I was moles….
A tea party.
with my uncle.
And an uninvited guest.
And a slimy starving serpent hiss.
And an infant army vest.
In the beginning was the word
and the word was No
and the chapter was hell No
and the whole goddamn book
as he finished,
as he finished pinpointing the plot holes
of the story of my childhood
with his finger licking’ good
was still a fuck No
It doesn’t take two to tango
One is more than enough to steal your spotlight
One minute you’re pouring him midnight from the teapot.
Next thing you know you ARE the Teapot
is drinking alone
is dancing alone
in your tutu,
your tutu that soon became your fatigue,
Fatigue literally means
& ugh the biasness
a metaphor within a metaphor
a dream within a scheme
a green light within a red light
and a yellow light I didn’t bother to consider
as I fled the abyss
to the streets of no nation
to the tablecloth
like a blanky that is 12 minutes late
Elvis has left the building
This ship has sailed
The train has left the station
& I’ve been running past this toy store
for the past 27 years now and
I’ve still not come to papa
The tablecloth had soon molted into an army tent
and I’ve been paying the rent
of my own asylum ever since
Don’t presume me dead just yet
Am the fucking revenant
So before you go about digging for extents
in black holes
You must know
You must know I am an orbit of 4 million suns
can keep your
Do not talk to strangers they said
but find yourself a fucking hideout instead
every time you hear your uncle’s coming
because see, in his caffeine intolerant mind
the “T” Stands for “Thighs”.
Photo credit: Jake Melara
And she looked at me
Like a believer –
She looked at me
Like a preacher
Infused with the power of god
And she spoke about
About the world
About the cultures
And the people
She spoke about expanding horizons
In a shrinking world
She spoke about developing my writing
About creating new experiences
About becoming a forgotten tourist
In some lost city
For a day
And I sat there
Half-looking at her
Half-looking at her green dress
That glimmered in the midday sun
Listening to dialogues about traveling
Only she was the one going away
To new beginnings;
She was the one
Reaching out for greater horizons
Taking deeper breaths into this small world
And I was still here.
They will write about the existential poet
Who made it in a small world
Not knowing the odes and sonnets and verses
He was made famous for
Were all written
For the traveling girl.
Photo credit: Erin Walker
Christmas We Need to Talk
By Richard Nasr
Christmas is coming
Let’s pause for a while
To think about everything
And go for the extra mile
Christmas is on the door
A homeless kid is freezing
Would you let him sleep on the floor?
Or give him the hug of healing
Christmas is getting colder
A lonely grandpa is sad
Wishing for a crying shoulder
To forget the pain he had
Christmas we just can’t wait
A father needs medical care
Hurry up before it is too late
Show us that life is fair
Christmas is all about gifts
That can’t be bought with money
Do good, so your soul lifts
Instead of feeding your tummy
Christmas here is my wish list
“Hope, Happiness, Love and Faith”
Make the world feel you exist
By drawing a smile on everyone’s face
Christmas we need to talk
People are not getting you right
Christmas is an everyday walk
And not just for one night
You can check out our earlier editions of 2018 here: