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Issue 4 August 2016


CONTENTS Prose Blunderbuss Last BBQ Postscript to a Thank You Note Rainbow Girl

(Ron Gibson, Jr.)


(Marie Scampini) 17 (Clio Velentza)


(Stephanie Hutton) 10

Poetry (Roman James Hoffman) (Sheikha A.) (John Repp) (Colton Adrian) (Ian Thompson) (Jon Riccio) (Jon Riccio) (Wayne F. Burke) (Colton Adrian) (Iyanu Adelekan)

12 19 18 21 2 3 14 6 15

(Arlyn LaBelle) Reading the Face that Appeared in the Mirror (Matthew Johnson) Snapshot of Eternity (Scott Thomas Outlar) That Moment (Peycho Kanev) Time (Markeylia Hooks) Tiny Mother (Arlyn LaBelle) Wild God (Arlyn LaBelle) Windows (Roman James Hoffman)

20 1 4 7 4 20 20 11

A Moment?s Reflection Against Odds Another Naive Poem Death Name Egg McMuffins Elsewhere Haiku Glacier Ingredients Haiku Helping In Infinity but Never Beyond Left, and the Sound of Birds


Ink In Thirds - Issue 4, August 2016 Copyright Š 2016 Ink In Thirds

All rights reserved. Copyright in the body reproduced herein remains the property of the individual authors / artists and permission to publish acknowledged by the publisher. No part of this publication may be reproduced, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or otherwise, without written permission from the author(s) or artist(s) herein.

ph oto b y Scott Webb

Readi ng th e Face th at A ppeared i n th e M i rror b y M atth ew Joh nson

M y

tear-running eyes went unblinking in the Broken mirror of my apartment flat. Staring back at me, I was garnished with all the rubbish That a 20-something Indebted-graduate could afford. Daisy cried over the beautiful shirts, I cried when the Invisible Man did not have a name. I hope there is more if this is really it. Maybe I can have the world. They always told me the world was in front of me, And all I had to do was stay straight. But ?The World is Yours? is only true in Illmatic, I mean, Al Pacino died. What good is gaining the world when you die for it. You can?t enjoy it. I guess I will stay here, With my dingy nothing and crude Idealism, enjoying the world I can?t have.

1 | Ink In Thirds

i deal i sm

El sew h ere Hai k u

ph oto by Si yan Ren

b y Jon Ri cci o

R adon parking lot ? air pockets of shopping carts, gas masks, two for one. * Kodak furnace-man, his plume some darkroom print. N o silhouette required. * Letter to the next Gulf Stream usurper: the crawdads are watching. * T he parsnip appeals from its orphan shed, but we gather someone else.

3 | Ink In Thirds

Bl underbuss by Ron Gi b son, Jr.

E ver since Nona Blue was a little girl, she envied grace. When she watched old black-and-white movies with her father, she secretly worshiped the starlet boldly entering a room, blazing with confidence. At night, while the world slept, she drew pictures of Bette Davis and Barbara Stanwyck in her journal by flashlight. She would affix word balloons above their heads, saying all the words she wanted to say. When nobody was home, Nona would put on her father?s girlfriend?s black pumps. Each step she took was a precarious cliff. When she looked in the mirror, she saw a miscast woman. No Bette Davis, no Barbara Stanwyck. A short girl, in a perpetual slouch, bangs wild as thickets, always falling. Her grandfather once said she was a blunderbuss. When she looked in the family dictionary, it said an old gun. She thought she must be a blunderbuss with a faulty trigger, then. In time, Nona discovered the rapture of music. First time she listened to Weezer?s Pinkerton, she felt love. She devoured Herman Hesse books, and wrote and drew a per-zine called, ?Lemonhead.? Inside the appliquĂŠd cover, Bette Davis and Barbara Stanwyck reprised their roles in her art. Sometimes the starlets would comment on the state of the world; the worries that burned holes in her stomach at night. With each word, each illustration, she wore her heart on her sleeve, a silent beacon for her circulation of twelve. When Nona moved into her own apartment for the first time, she discovered herself and the world in her own quiet way. When she heard the roar of a nearby train whistle, she dreamed of where she would go, who she would be, always a work-in-progress, always.

w ork -i n-progress

Th at M oment b y Peych o K anev

I t always happens like this; when the sun slowly sets, when the razor of the horizon cuts through the bulging clouds, when I turn my head just for a second and it?s dark outside. Then you open the door, slightly, just enough for your fingers, but there are no fingers, then a little bit more, for your head, but there is no head at all, and finally you enter the room, naked, no, not naked but transparent, no, not even that, you?re just a heart in your hands, beating, pounding, bloody, and I open the container and then we lie together on the ice and I close the lid, and it is not dark anymore.

g n i t a e b

7 | Ink In Thirds

Postscri pt to a Th ank You Note


to by

S t ep

h en

M ea


by Cl i o V el entza

T he bottom line is: there?s nobody else I can talk to about this. I could say, there?s something fallen from my body. I might never get it back. At this rate, I?m becoming my own ghost. I decided I?m going to live inside a travel brochure, where it?s always sunny, gentle waves kiss my feet and sand trickles from between my legs, where people smile and their warmth spills out into me. I?m going to make some margaritas and spend a night out on the fire escape, humming into the violet sky that song you taught me, spying on couples writhing on their sofas with the tv still on. There?s something living under my bed, I hear it cry every night, I fall asleep with an arm hanging out and every morning I find my fingertips gnawed. My bandages unravel during sleep, and I wake up raw. I have no more clean sheets, and the laundromat has all these harsh angles of neon light that make me want to hide inside the womb of a washing machine, and there are always people there always watching me always frowning always while I chase around stray coins with my heart in my mouth. First day at work tomorrow. ?How do you feel now that you?re back with us?? I will say, marvelous. What can I do? These are not things people want to hear. ?I feel like daisies in my hair. I?m going to bake something very sweet one of these days and we can share it in the break room and pat each other?s shoulders and be linear, be cause and effect, be explicable. Let?s fill the day with booming laughter, forget about the invisible things. I didn?t see anything, did you? Of course not. It was never really there, anyway.? 9 | Ink In Thirds

Wi ndow s b y Roman James Hof f man

W alking through bustling streets of millions of reasons, rejoices, and regrets; I write an inscription on a crumbling wall for my dreams to come alive. The sky, admiring my eloquence, sends clouds to catch my heavy steps and lift my feet to tread upon more sacred streets.

ph oto b y Hi royuk i I garash i 11 | Ink In Thirds

I n I nf i ni ty but Nev er Beyond b y I yanu A del ek an

W hat

will the King say to my grave? Or the Knight?s guard speak in my wake? What will the eagle see in my beyond? Or the chicken feel for this day? What will the lion roar about my name? Or the tiger growl for my pain? What will the drums beat in my presence? Or the trumpet blow in my absence? For once my soul is given, it is freed But whence it is taken shall it not be? This life I live has never been enough Only with thine empty hands my words are satisfied Beyond thine grasp they will not exist Beyond thine eyes they shall not persist But behind thee, they are ever present Even in the midst of unholy absence This life is but a shadow of mirrors long gone Its reflection sweet music of choirs no more This life is but a shadow of mirrors long gone Once lived it hides in the darkest of doors For once locked, in the mind, it lasts for eternity And its reflection as sonnets transcend to infinity What will the king say to my grave? I shall not know, for his words shall be in infinity And my mind far beyond.


13 | Ink In Thirds

Hel pi ng b y Col ton A dri an


work in a gated community. There I get calls from people that I do work on the side for. Last week, Eunice had me plant six Geraniums, three Calicobras, and a lavender for sixty dollars. That?s two hundred and forty dollars an hour. Today, Eunice calls me saying she needs help and to bring another person if I can. As soon as I get there with Torres Eunice?s husband has shit himself. He speaks with one eye open, saying He can?t get up. The chair is too low is what Eunice says. I give all the strenuous facial expressions and muscle flexes when picking him up but, it is Torres who holds him up while I have the pleasure of switching out the shit drawers for the fresh pair. Eunice reminds us of the time limit until her husband's doctor appointment.

15 | Ink In Thirds

LA ST BBQ by M ari e Scampi ni

I t was the last time I would eat a cheeseburger or anything without counting the calories, needing to rid my stomach of the poison of food. All food was my enemy as I desperately tried to disappear pound by pound, inch by inch and I was going to win. A hundred dollars was spent on food and beer alone which was a hundred dollars more than my parents would spend on the ballet lessons I begged for since I was three. ?Your sisters took dance and nothing became of it.? I watched my brothers wolf down hot dogs as if in an eating contest they always won while my father was drunk on seventeen beers or so with his buddies. Friends from the neighborhood, colleagues from where he taught Science and Math. He didn't need that many brain cells anymore, the Master's Degree was wasted on Algebra and breaking up knife fights in the hallway. Right now my little brother was using his fork as an airplane, and I watched him fly the fork into my next oldest brother's forehead, blood geysering onto the semi-manicured lawn. I could hear my mother's screams from the kitchen window, her command post. My father's expression was a snowdrift of expected disappointment as he stumbled to pick up my wounded brother to carry him to the station wagon, to drive him to the hospital, before he remembered to put down his beer mug. My stomach and chest filled with acid. I had to be on high alert or I might get a fork stuck in my forehead and be killed on the way to the hospital by my drunken father. No one would protect me. I had to get the hell out of this place.

di sappear 17 | Ink In Thirds

ph oto b y Jason A l l en

the latticed wall of the adjacent compound is broken from the side; an overgrown plant in a small-sized pot pokes its untidy head out like a cry; every night, as the heat rises in the East of someone?s window, my side of the glass making it hard to see the impoverished peaking of a possible four-petal bunch in the head of the bush slouching from all the pretend lifetime; the un-cuttable; and all I do is draw up circles, from afar, I cannot break.

A gai nst Odds b y Sh ei k h a A .

Death Name b y Col ton A dri an

O h, what do you write? Cannabis on the bus I hope there aren?t any dogs to touch me or my dutches Guess I enjoy being stuck I guess I enjoy being fucked by myself cause I?m always by myself & I did that to myself Figured only way to get my name on a shelf and let?s see, let?s see, there?s something else There?s always something else. Oh yeah, my phone is cancer My phone is giving me cancer I wrote that line ten minutes ago, before I picked up my phone again. I?m consciously unconscious when my thumb automatically unlocks the satanic device with four simple taps That?s all it takes It?s too easy to kill brain cells nowadays.

ph oto by Carol Sh i l l i beer

Sentences? Real and lies, both you know?


Sheikha A. Sheikha A. is from Pakistan and United Arab Emirates. Over 200 of her poems appear in 80 literary venues so far, including several anthologies by different presses. She edits poetry for eFiction India. More about her can be accessed at https://sheikha82.wordpress.com

Iyanu Adelekan Iyanu Adelekan is a young Nigerian writer who suffers from an insatiable thirst for literary excellence. As a consequence, he finds himself constantly buried within sheets of poetry and perusing the web for beautiful prose. His mind is ever roaming and only finds solace in the dance of the pen. http://seunadelekan.tumblr.com @SeunAdelekan

Colton Adrian Colton Adrian is twenty-two. He plays with dirt at work and writes when he's not doing that. He escaped via C-section and was birthed in Williamsburg, Virginia. He?s been there ever since and has been plotting a breakout involving a pen and a pad for the last two years. His work has appeared most recently in The Molotov Cocktail and The Buffalo Almanack. @iamcoltonadrian

Markeylia Hooks Markeylia Hooks is loving this orbit we call life, fully appreciating its beauty.

Stephanie Hutton Stephanie Hutton is a writer and Clinical Psychologist in the UK. Upcoming publications in 2016 include Sick Lit Magazine and Bacopa Literary Review. She is co-developing a project to use creative writing to benefit staff who work in mental health. http://stephaniehutton.com @tiredpsych

Matthew Johnson Matthew Johnson is a 2015 graduate of UNC-Greensboro, and a sports journalist who has written for USA Today College, Fansided, The Carolinian and StoopSports. His poetry has appeared in The Carolinian, Coraddi, Obsidian Magazine, The NewsVerse News, and Yellow Chair Review @Matt_Johnson_D

John Repp A native of the Pine Barrens region of southern New Jersey, John Repp is a widely published poet, fiction writer, essayist, and book critic. His most recent collection is Fat Jersey Blues, winner of the 2013 Akron Poetry Prize from the University of Akron Press.

Jon Riccio Jon Riccio is an incoming PhD candidate at the University of Southern Mississippi's Center for Writers. His poems appear in apt, Booth, Cleaver, CutBank Online, Redivider, and Hawai'i Review, among others. He received his MFA from the University of Arizona. @JonRiccio

Marie Scampini Marie Scampini is a published poet, short story writer and playwright, currently writing 1775 Poems in 1775 Days, to save her life, every day, on the page, at least. She is also working on a short story collection entitled Vigilant.

PHOTOGRAPHERS Jason Allen Jason Allen is a Photographer born and raised in the Pacific Northwest with a passion for the abstract, portraiture, and occasional landscape shot. Often found getting a speeding ticket on his way to beat the setting sun. https://www.facebook.com/Jallenphotographic/

Stephen Mead A resident of NY, Stephen Mead is a published artist, writer, maker of short-collage films and sound-collage downloads. His latest P.O.D. amazon release is an art-text hybrid, "According to the Order of Nature (We too are Cosmos Made)" a work which takes to task the words which have been used against LGBT folks from time immemorial. In 2014 he began a webpage to gather links of his poetry being published in such zines as Great Works, Unlikely Stories, Quill & Parchment, etc., in one place: Poetry on the Line, Stephen Mead

Sara A. O?Brien Sarah A. O'Brien is a photographer and writer based in Boston, MA. She loves to promote other artists, and has founded a digital literary journal, Boston Accent Lit, to provide a platform for underrepresented voices in the literary community. Follow her adventures @fluent_SARAcasm and check out more of her work at http://www.sarahaobrien.com/

Fabio Sassi Fabio Sassi makes photos and acrylics using tiny objects and what is considered to have no worth by the mainstream. Fabio lives and works in Bologna, Italy. His work can be viewed at http://www.fabiosassi.foliohd.com

Carol Shillibeer Primarily a poet and editor, Carol Shillibeer picked up a camera to teach herself how to see. Still learning, she's added painting to her curriculum. She sees great concordances between the limits of the camera's sensor and a poem's line, and of course other similarities still outside her frame. http://www.carolshillibeer.com/

Cover by Jason Allen

Profile for Ink In Thirds

Ink In Thirds - Issue 4  

A magazine of poised prose, precarious poetry, and photography that makes us want to pilot our own realms again.

Ink In Thirds - Issue 4  

A magazine of poised prose, precarious poetry, and photography that makes us want to pilot our own realms again.