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Issue Two 30/11/2011

Editor: Amanda Claire Eades


Contents Editorial…………………………………………………………………………………………..5 An introduction to the thematics of the Railroad ethos from the Railroad Editor

Issue Three – the beat goes on…………………………………………………………8 The Editor gives a run down of Issue Two and the poetry it has to offer, from the human condition to the concept of time Paul Gallaer In The End…………………………………………………………………………………………………………10 Despair……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..10 Flesh…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………11 Andrew Farnan Romantic and Sad……………………………………………………………………………………………..13 Let loose the dog……………………………………………………………………………………………….13 Thoughts like lost keys………………………………………………………………………………………14 Henri Maddocks Particles…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….15 Jade Leaf Willetts Poem for Stevie Nicks………………………………………………………………………………………..16 Kyrsten Bean Still Affected………………………………………………………………………………………………………18 P. D. Lyons Box Set………………………………………………………………………………………………………………20 Factories of Men and Beer…………………………………………………………………………………21 Grandview Avenue…………………………………………………………………………………………….22 Steve Shultz Origami Toothpick……………………………………………………………………………………………..24

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Misguided Missilies…………………………………………………………………………………………….24 Craig Sernotti Jumper………………………………………………………………………………………………………………26 Hopeless……………………………………………………………………………………………………………26 Dog Sitting…………………………………………………………………………………………………………27 Alex Layman Book on the Driveway………………………………………………………………………………………28 Matt Fallaize Sidings………………………………………………………………………………………………………………30 Slid hour……………………………………………………………………………………………………………31 Joe Clifford Ballad of a waitress on the late shift at the Olympia Diner………………………………..33 Places I refuse to sleep………………………………………………………………………………………35 Jason C. Segarra Free……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………39 What the birds know…………………………………………………………………………………………40 P. A. Levy Snap……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………41 Migrations of Footprints……………………………………………………………………………………42 Veronica…………………………………………….………………………………………………………………44 Donal Mahoney Leaving the station……………………………………………………………………………………………45 Hams of August smother……………………………………………………………………………………47 Wade Lewis Stylish left-wing tights……………………………………………………………………………………….48 Quaint, legal, writerly…………………………………………………………………………………………49

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Ray Morgan Thursday, September 15th 2011…………………………………………………………………………50 I have a small and respectful umbrella………………………………………………………………52 Evelyn Adams Groundhog Day…………………………………………………………………………………………………54 Gary Memi Voicing Concern, Perhaps Even Shut Up……………………………………………………………55 playing games not to be won, not for fun, for one set of eyeballs, or it's all a coverup……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..56

Railroaders……………………………………………………………………………………………………….57 The cast or Railroad Poetry Project Issue Two, in order of appearance Stations…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….61 The Editor’s choice of site of the month Call for submissions…………………………………………………………………………………………..62 Issue Three is already on the way… .

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All that hitchhikin All that railroadin All that comin back‌

Kerouac, Jack. Lonesome Traveller. London: HarperCollins, 1994 [1962]. p. 11.

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For any fan of the literature of the Beat generation, Jack Kerouac’s Lonesome Traveller (1962) reveals to the reader a certain way of life – the way of the road – the restless energy of the wayward traveller, the nomad, the nonstop mover. For me, this has always been indicative of the position of the writer. Whether you write poetry, prose, critical pieces or simply words, the writer is always moving, always roaming – always hitchiking, railroading, coming back. By no means is this nomadic sense of being lost when it comes to getting your work out there. This is where the Railroad comes in. As a critic, so many times have I seen a writer’s sense of purpose slashed by publisher’s guidelines, stipulations and rules – stretching from the form of the piece, through the core of the writer’s essence, right up to the content. It’s not fun to compromise your creativity for the sake of getting your work out there, and that is why, at Railroad, I want to give the writer of contemporary poetry the chance to hitch-hike their way to being known. Take charge of the railroading tactics of modern publishing houses – whether online and print – and create your own platform on the Railroad – with your own rules. Your platform at Railroad is indicative of you as a Railroader – you can have as much or as little coverage as you want. Our Railroaders page showcases all of the contributors to this e-magazine, with details of Twitter and Facebook accounts, blogs, chapbooks and publishing history (if you are fortunate to be that far along in your journey). Railroad is still in its infancy – but is busy creating a relevant and successful way of reaching out to the online literary community, and getting your name – and work – out there. This week has seen the start of Railroad’s #talenttrain hashtag on Twitter – look out for regular tweets giving you the low-down on the poets and poetry that embodies the beat

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of contemporary writing. Why not use #talenttrain yourself, and start creating platforms for fellow writers in the online community? As Railroad develops, daily posts will showcase the work of a chosen poet, from the current or past e-magazine issue, giving you the chance to experience a huge range of writers as the months progress. Railroad is also working on an Outreach database – simply fill in your details to be one of the Railroad volunteers, dropping business cards and receiving merchandise as and when we get our hands on it, all to spread the Railroad beat. All this gives you the unique opportunity to be part of a community of likeminded poets and writers who know how hard it is out there for the wordsmith. Railroad is all about harnessing what is out there for the writer – so start your platform today, become part of the community, and start spreading your own beat.

Amanda Eades Editor-in-chief

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Issue Two – the beat goes on… Issue One laid down the foundation of the Railroad Poetry Project, and within two days of the e-magazine going ‘live’ – the inbox was filling and it was obvious Railroad is on to something quite powerful. So thank you – to all those that tweeted, liked, followed and read Issue One – your support is invaluable to the Railroad mission! This month saw the departure of the Railroad co-founder and team member, J. L. Willetts. Moving on to pastures new and exciting new projects, Willetts was invaluable to the creation of the Railroad beat, and his input will be felt through every issue. You might see Willetts appear from time-to-time in Railroad issues, so keep an eye out for future work. I will also keep you posted on our co-founders progress. Fingers crossed for a busy year for JLW! This month has seen me move forward with the project. It’s been a busy month, but I hope to deliver yet again another impressive issue. If you have any comments or suggestions, please email railroadpoetryproject@gmail.com with ‘Comments’ in the subject line – this is a community venture, and your input is so important. This issue is showcasing the work of eighteen poets, all of whom have submitted in the past month. You might recognise some of the names – Railroad welcomes repeat submissions, so save us to your address book! But, most importantly, these are all Railroaders, who are submitting because they share the importance of community, coverage and poetry. This month, we will be delving into the human condition with poetry from Paul Gallear, Andrew Farnan, Henri Maddocks and J. L. Willetts whilst accessing a rather human creation – time – through the verse of Krysten Bean and Matt Fallaize. The city-scape will be ripped open by the work of Ray Morgan and Donal Mahoney whilst the boundaries of

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language will be deconstructed through the linguistically aware writing of Gary Memi. Particular favourites of mine this month are the poetry of Steve Shultz, Jason C. Segarra and Paul Levy, whose strong imagery and careful control of language delicately question the meaning of things, subverting the reader’s hold on the poem and questioning the association of language with concrete meaning. This is just a selection of the writers Railroad has to offer this month – the standard of submissions has been as high as ever, so I would urge you all to read on and discover poetry that has, until now, gone largely undiscovered – precisely what the Railroad is for.

Amanda Eades Editor-in-chief

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Paul Gallear In The End

In the end There were no false hopes, No gospels or gloss paint And no romantic goodbyes.

Although you are gone I will not fall apart Do not look for that.

Instead, I will grit my teeth Until the molars crack Crimson and enamel. The crunch of grit Children eating at the beach.

Despair

I came across a deadthing Half torn and flyblown, A brilliant, vermillion smear, Red on a side road.

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I froze, caught a throat-load Of its sweet reek And dry wretched.

I could not turn Its half closed, glazed eye Caught and stalled me Like poison seeping slowly Into sleeping waters.

Once quick muscles Now thick with sleep; Quiet, rising panic; Despair in the silence.

Flesh

A mindless wander in the garden Attentionless, drifting, daydreaming.

When suddenly A fast fleet thing A blur, a passing bird’s wing, Half-seen, flashing green streak 11


Of fullflight feathered freedom; A bright bird, beyond reason; A dawn-caught glint of light.

A sudden thought spawned, A wing-borne fantasy: I’m flying and sunlit In rooftop kingdoms And backyard dominions, Lord of the trees, the leaves, the breeze; I’m free, a fantasy, An idea, a thought, A laugh, a cry The voice of the wind.

And, just as sudden, The comedown. I’m lumpen and Earthbound. A human hewn from clay.

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Andrew Farnan Romantic and Sad I had awoken romantic and sad to a cold sun and a rain full of sorrow when it fell still a little drunk

Let Loose the Dog take that book from the shelf and let loose the dog from its leash let it run wild in the excitement of its hunger because it mourns for nothing

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Thoughts Like Lost Keys I was in the chair thinking and there was a noise a snippet of conversation or something outside the window and the thought was interrupted now it's lost, gone like the white whale or the ever elusive set of keys if it was a hai ku or a song, I'll remember it and if I don't, I'll think of another

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Henri Maddocks Particles Formed of matter, pressed from the same cloth — I thought I wanted Do I want it – Slipped out from under similar doors; we each paid the costs for having vanished in the night. And now — notes to pseudonyms I am finding in all of my favorite books: ‘Everything is beautiful here, love’ And I am sifting through the memories of bloodied knees and people I’ve called Beloved. But who was it These tides have exhaled me out into room temperature vastness a greatness, and I am spitting every wanton reason into something I can hold and harbor at night Whose life is this? I feel Nothing.

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Jade Leaf Willetts Poem for Stevie Nicks after the latest heartbreak I sat and cried thought of all the things I could have done differently or better thought of words unsaid I have been assured that I am not at fault that the lover had in her heart another love and would have left on the same day had I never raised my voice or made a mistake had I a suitcase full of money and plans for America but it didn’t stop me obsessing over each word spoken between us searching for the one that might have made all the difference it didn’t stop me reliving every single memory and grieving for what I thought would be

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as I tried to contemplate an alternative I considered the reasons that it always goes sour (sooner or later) with each person that I love I know that I drink a little too much (In the view of those who don’t drink at all) and I have a view of money that most don’t care for but I suppose I am as good or as bad as any other soul after much introspection I didn’t find all the answers I spent days and nights in reflection and in the end could only conclude that deep down I am holding out for Stevie Nicks.

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Kyrsten Bean Still Affected How are you you might ask if you met me now and I would stand on the other side of duplicity cast out into the black-lit region of better chance remembering the twin pistons pumping in your revved engine the flipped screen of my alternate experience driving the knife that jagged little red line up the vein in one last effort to make our meaning not dry. When you subject yourself to something you knew you should have walked away from when it changes your life forever beyond the event And the people who were privy to it move on slip out creep away how do you hold the past in your own hands remembering those little cracked lines

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on your palms how they revealed to you a future you could not comprehend at the time how are you. For years I swallowed concoctions in order to not know that answer perhaps you knew it, just bruised me you loved to bruise me and you would bruise me again you would most certainly bruise me again so I keep it in here keep it in this tiny locked box to pull out when I feel safe when life is going alright when it’s OK to fall apart

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P. D. Lyons Box Set Stopped in the library Wandered around while I waited for Morgan to be ready. Picked up a set of Kerouac CD’s Poetry I never knew before.

Later back at home Read the liner notes Small town Factories gone Smoke n drink A loner dedicated to the written word Interracional national vagrant Working class lover

It was pretty scary stuff.

Put one on. Sat down at the kitchen table with a cuppa Got up washed dishes 20


Clean counters Sat down poured another cup Thought, well I like the energy, the piano, the urgent lone ranger Plugged into by the muse trying to express every electrical inch But I don’t think I really got it Which came as a relief because after all I was quite happy to still be purely me.

The Factories Of Men And Beer

Trains I have never seen Or been on But heard Yowling every evening Prehistoric beasts Quagmired in the tar pits of this town

As if like me unable to go beyond

The factories of men and beer

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Grandview Avenue

We were walking Hand in hand Up the hill In the rain

You had your bright red scarf Wrapped around your head

Traffic swooshed by Lights on Wipers on sometimes squeching

We didn’t know what the day would bring But I turned my face up to the sky Trusting my own two feet and you to guide me

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Steve Shultz Origami Toothpick Who's gonna bail out my boat? folder paper that it is fashion unfashionable hat for this bitter fall day watch the leaves fall like so many regrets inflatable raft filled with air from exhausted lungs holes patched with chewing gum smashing turtle shells against salt water dreams trying to get at the meat inside origami toothpick picking at cavities and rotting things stuck between here and there drinking kings bath water

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Misguided Missiles God made man and man made rush hour so that we may sit in traffic and stare at others' views on god plastered to car bumpers favorite deity beer of choice the president sucks who is on deck my child is smart your choices are dumb meat is murder pro-life, pro-choice if you don't like it run right off the road what would Jesus drive? would he stop for red lights in the bicycle lane

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if god had a car I can't help but think the bumper would be bare

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Craig Sernotti JUMPER There’s a man defining love on the pharmacy’s roof. The woman next to me knows him, says he lived with his mother & his mother died & he hasn’t been the same since. He jumps when the ambulance arrives. A boy on a skateboard records everything on his phone.

HOPELESS who can have hope with nose hairs this long & missing hands

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DOGSITTING She was an old girl, blind & deaf. I was dogsitting for my parents while they were on vacation. I looked down by the train tracks & thought I saw two people making love, but it was actually just a bag of abandoned trash. I then noticed the dog had laid down on her side & was not moving. She didn’t respond to my touch. I carried her home & brought her to the veterinarian. By then she was cold & limp. I paid for her cremation & for the ashes to sent to my parents. Then I went for a walk. I walked & I walked & I walked. The sun went down & still I walked. I didn’t want to stop. Something might’ve caught me.

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Alex Layman

Books On the Driveway

Something about boxes, clanging in the attic, shifting in my sleep.

Cardboard puncture wounds, bruises on my forearms from moving out old shirts, skirts.

Curbside nights beneath city lights, thinking about forever, and ever, and flashes of Heaven.

Old books on the driveway, guidelines to who we thought we’d be, yet here I am on broken ground.

Fingers clinching to my toes,

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watching the neighbors flee, like water over wrinkled hands, Studying their lying faces - still afraid of dying.

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Matt Fallaize Sidings

broken fence posts through bramble boxed in dense vegetal silence no breath little time carve the past whittle it, turn it make it a bowl pour in water drink

still silent ivy on boxes starling frozen focal jewel pinwheel sky head down

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drink our past your words lost knives words pared to nothing

one last breath before we stop

Slid hour

time to stop time to stop time listen there’s

a sheet of ice thundering into the sea a sycamore holding a pose the plains high and inviting

stop time

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a heavy drowse the hours you and I some bees saving the world the lowering sky settling on our heads like a blanket stop time stop it it’s ruining everything

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Joe Clifford BALLAD OF A WAITRESS ON THE LATE SHIFT AT THE OLYMPIA DINER My sisters leave this late shift to me, the baby; they say they’ve done their time. Small hour stragglers camped in booths, milking six bucks as far as it’ll go, college kids stopping off to sop up a drunk with French fries and ice water before heading back to suburban homes. Every time I walk up the aisle, skirt riding thighs, I hear their giggles and whispers, though they never look me in the eye. Fixed behind the counter, I refill ketchup bottles and salt, stuff napkins into square slotted metal boxes, rearrange pastries, muffins, donuts, and wonder if I’d have liked college. The first shift factory boys lumber in, their noisy pick-ups left cooling in the yard, early editions tucked like footballs under heavy arms. On stools in their dark dungarees, they wait, oil-stained hands and ball cap, for that 5 a.m. bell to ring. They’re here the same time every morning. I fetch them coffee and stacks of pancakes, pepper omelets, corn beef hash, slabs of ham. They never stare, they never whisper when I walk away. Bacon grease spits

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from the grill, egg meats sizzle, the Mexican cook deals the early rush. The college kids laugh, talk about upcoming exams. The factory boys scrape their plates, smile when I ask if they’d like a refill. The washed white lights of the turnpike fade, give way to a brighter purple sky. I tally bills, collect my change, say my “thank yous” and “please come agains.” I watch them all stretch and file outside— the college kids into daddy’s car, the factory boys into their Fords. Soon the back door will unlock, and I’ll hear the cook lay down his spatula, grunt something in Spanish, and I’ll cash out the register and stash last night’s receipts. And just as the sun is coming up, I’ll climb the steps to my tiny loft and into bed, drifting off to sleep to the din of metal spoons clanking against cheap clay mugs, dribbled coffee splashing with grace into tiny bowls of sugar, hard sweet caramel drops.

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PLACES I REFUSE TO SLEEP There are places where I refuse to sleep. Buses. Bathtubs. The state of Nevada. Invariably, I’ve found myself, at different times in my life, getting off a Greyhound after dark in Reno, dirty, tired, and trying to get to somewhere else. 11:00 p.m., the outskirts of Vegas. On my way to rendezvous with the aliens in New Mexico, I meet a man, a boy really, skittish, amped-up, anxious. Under my arm, I have a pail to gather ice from the cooler, padlocked and chained, by the Coca-Cola machine, behind the stairs. He corners me, asks if we can stick together for the night. I say all right, since I have nothing else to do and am happy to have made a friend. The car I stole coasted downhill from the Sierras, as I tried to save fuel, before landing at this ranch style, $19 a night motel, between a ravine and a gun store. Two hours later, my new friend, this stranger, and I are driving around in my car, looking for his “whore of a wife,” who he knows, he says, is fucking some other guy. And while he doesn’t know where or with whom, 35


he is certain that it is she who has given him “the worms.” We never make it as far as the bright lights, the palisades of the Casinos, the high-rise towers of the strip; instead, we stick closer to out of the way shacks, the greasy eateries and slummy railroad tracks, the graceful arches and sloped humps of the graveyards. He says she is into some “freaky shit.” I don’t catch his name, won’t catch much at all except that he calls himself “The Pilot,” has very big eyes, and one of those seventh grade mustaches, the envy of the spindly set. And he wears a trucker’s cap. Gnawing his jaw, he keeps offering me speed, which he has stored in a plastic sandwich baggie, tucked into his sock, the last place the cops ever think to look. I politely decline. I know I am in no condition to withstand the harsh glare of a come down startled, fractured by daylight. For I, too, am on a mission, although, perhaps, not one so readily defined. The radioactive glow from the slot machines illumine the giant black cattle in the distance, as the purple plains shift, come in and out of focus. Conversation starts out stilted, reduced soon to a series of grunts, sniffs, and “turn left heres.”

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The night fast becomes another one of those ill-fated situations that I frequently land myself in: The desperate search of the desperate people trying make sense of their desperate lives. We never find his wife, and give up looking by four. We wake together tender in a Railroad Salvage lot, his head slumped over the dash, hand brushing my thigh, crusted amphetamine spit around mouth and eyes, the waifish dry clouds doing their best to filter the expanding heat. Garbage men are empting large receptacles and bins into the rumbling bellies of their dump trucks. The morning shift snaps their cars shut, while whispers cast spells across time lines. I ask him if there is anywhere else he wants to go. He isn’t in the mood to talk, so I drive him back to the motel, where he darts off inside a red booth. I gather the backpack I never had a chance to unpack, and then check out. Trying to find the highway, I pass a tiny cemetery, enclosed by what used to be iron wrought. A woman, windblown hair knotted, skirt scrunched, is straddling and writhing atop a crumbling anonymous marker.

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Her blotted black eyeliner and tearstained face immediately makes me think: clown. She has a fist full of cropped dandelions, a little tuft of crabgrass sprouting from her hands. I slow down to ask for directions, but decide it would be rude to interrupt the ceremony.

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Jason C. Segarra

free on that day, rea chi ing down into the sky...

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what the birds know they collect on the roof. the birds and i are perched alike steeping in the sun. they move one by one by three and so forth and i wonder what it is that they know, flying about in sequences of no particular balance to my understanding. i wonder if my marvel is viewed as ignorance. the sun begins to nestle itself in the horizon and i must let them be to their business.

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P. A. Levy Snap

*lie+ tango sentences of the ordinary into accents of the night unspoken unrefined promises *fact+ you’re hanging around on my wall posing as laughter and innocence a sixtieth of a second captured happiness *lie+ you swore devotion on the bootlegged history of kisses lipstick written in ancient sweet perfumed sanskrit *fact (past)+ back-lit by counterfeit moonlight every smile you ever gave became colour crushed into sex stains *fact (present)+ i’m transfixed by the eyes of the storm that look attacks exfoliating fragments of dirty talk *fact (future)+ the camera and lies can be the best of friends

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Migration of Footprints

yesteryear comes in with the tide oil makes a rainbow charm / wonder / wide-eyed the waves crashing / the waves crashing / crash on the banks of the severn where a child’s footprint / passage / fossilised / \

stop following footsteps / footsteps / footsteps they only lead you backwards / run aground / in the dark strike a match / hold a torch / artist of a blank expression catch your reflection in a flicker / \

we’ve been here before / in disguise as the new bright future / when we were tomorrow and we came ashore as waves / crashed ashore it took all our energy / footprints / 42


but we made a contour / a beach / sand glass / hourglass // time we are the art of passing / \

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Veronica Two hours from London and I’m driving with the ghost of Nick Drake. I check the rear view mirror; still the gorgeous hippy princess you smile back and say: “if this is a three spliff journey, we need to stop and get some skins, we’ve only five leaves left.” No, my enchanted thoughts this is our Autumn … it must have been around 1969, I can clearly visualise your house near West Ham Park. Your room smelt of patchouli, and the scarves and shawls hanging like cobwebs in a Bohemian tent hid the damp patches, for it was always so cold, cuddling up getting stoned by candlelight until the dark warmed us. I might take a small detour and pay drive-by homage to that old Georgian town house set right back from the road into its own daunting silhouette. It’s probably been pulled down to make way for a new road or cul-de-sac housing estate. At the time we weren’t even thinking about making memories, now we’ve become archaeology. 44


Donal Mahoney Leaving the Station Each morning I step from the train and march with the others leaving the station. The weatherman's warned of rain so we're armed with umbrellas, our briefcases swinging. Across from the station there's an old hotel high in the sky. King Kong, everyone calls it. In tall windows old men appear, disappear, reappear. It is August in Chicago and the old men wear overcoats and homburgs so no one can steal them. They light cigarettes, mumble and curse at the daily parade leaving the station. Traffic is thick

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but even in winter no one looks up since no one can hear them.

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Hams of August Smother The folks are angry, really. They can’t explain the diaper, yet they would explain poor Jack. It’s a plot, you see, to show poor Jack’s been had. Folks can’t see why no matter what Jack does, even if he scrubs in water warm enough to soften turnips, sheathes himself in eaus, colognes, dons, perhaps, a silk of talc, folks can’t see why the night still squats on Jack, jiggling its hams of August smother. Or why the cleric in the courtyard chants, ”Elements of Jack will always reek.” It’s a plot, you see, to show poor Jack’s been had. That’s why the folks are angry, really; they can’t explain the diaper, yet they would explain poor Jack.

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Wade Lewis Stylish left-wing tights Stylish left-wing tights Her miscellaneous feet adrift in night In her eyes a working party of communists or something undisturbed by little truths On a cold morning she revels in rickety histories And even the light like a stain creeps in Unnecessarily invasive and frame by frame, she weeps, forgiving fame and all that tosh That seems the same that seems The same

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quaint, legal, writerly I'm happy with the old drugs, the ones that are legal, quaint and writerly Though I want to be purposefully holding a 2B pencil while I write this; hand shaking, quaint physician counseling me against it even while he scrawls the prescription in his sloping forgotten longhand I am, I admit, a little chilly in these old bones: the ones that are quaint, legal, writerly

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Ray Morgan Thursday, September 15, 2011

the platform is a pebble’s width from the sand, a wash of frothy sea my morning sound. I smell salt, and broken shells – ripe, bursting seaweed and newspaper print.

the train slicks into view, a gleaming rocket, pregnant with station-bought coffees and station-bought toast in damp paper bags.

the city is erupting; drills shake my feet and charity buckets shake themselves and the street smells like someone has blown out a birthday candle.

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Sweet: coffee shops with morning pastries, and sour: pavement dust, cigarette smoke blown into faces.

a craving for rain to wash it all clean, and a craving for home, for air you can breathe.

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I have a small and respectful umbrella

I have a small and respectful umbrella; a 1 pound, children's 'bought in Battersea in a charity shop when it was raining' umbrella, a modest affair, not like your banker's bank umbrellas taking over HALF THE STREET, not like those, no not like those. Not like the Barclays Corporate patio umbrellas that pointy-shoed City boys wear to detract from the fact that they've got one in the first place, Not like the oversized Radley ones sported by Elizabeth Arden commuters, to match their Radley bag, Radley purse, Radley fucking pantyliners, no not like those. Rain at 8.45am in the City is a minefield; dodging spokes at every step; walking the tightrope curb, watch your side for Boris bikes and MIND THE BROLLIES: duck under the Deloitte, rise over the Radisson Edwardian, the corporate umbrellas sneering at my children's charity special. 52


I'm not on a brolly power trip, it's functional, not weaponry, I have a small and respectful umbrella: your pub garden capitalist brolly ain't got nothin' on me.

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Evelyn Adams

Groundhog Day Boot cracking! thought you were stronger but the hollow high-pitched release tells me water-skin slim after all


Gary Memi

Voicing Concern, Perhaps Even Shut Up Speak words to me In your head Then write them down They sound so much more beautiful When I say them to myself Imagine them coming out of your mouth But write them down instead Read them to yourself Then make a few changes Before sending them on their way And when you send them Use a stamp Flowing words like rapids over rocks So majestic from far away The spray becoming a cloud, a rainbow, a silken haze Then walking closer The scent of sulfur The rush of noise The constant pulse of movement A headache An overdose Something better as an idea

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playing games not to be won, not for fun, for one set of eyeballs, or it’s all a coverup Bag of: Trick Tools of: Trade or Tolls of: Passion When dressing, Think Giant; Don't stop until Another person appears One that SLAPS! An icon or Character That has flaws Covered In sublime paint And luxurious fabrics Make it tight The shot Up close Lacking personal

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railroaders This is your community – spread the beat… In order of appearance

Paul Gallear Paul is a twenty-five year old poet from Wolverhampton who currently writes for the arts blog Artsy Does It (@ArtsyDoesIt) Website: http://artsydoesit.wordpress.com/ Andrew Farnan Andrew Farnan studied English Literature as an undergraduate and completed his MA in Women’s Writing at Edge Hill University in 2009. He lives in Lancashire and works in Merseyside. Twitter: @andypilgrim Henri Maddocks Henri Maddocks has written poetry, short stories and narrative non-fiction for over seven years. If she owned a time machine, interstellar teleporter or had access to a dimensional wormhole and could transport to any era in history, Henri would go directly to either the late 50s during the Original Beat Generation in New York, or to 1920s Paris to live among the expatriate American writers. It all depends on the day and the weather. Henri currently works as a writer in the greater Los Angeles area and resides with her loyal canine accomplice, Fievel, until the day they can (somewhat ironically) go East. Website: http://henriwrites.com Twitter: @henriwrites Jade Lead Willetts Jade-Leaf Willetts is a writer, artist and musician. Jade-Leaf blogs at What Would Neal Do? and is the co-founder of Railroad Poetry Project. Blog: http://jlwilletts.wordpress.com Twitter: @JLeafWilletts 53


Kyrsten Bean Kyrsten Bean is a writer and musician raised by a pack of artists in the Bay Area. They instilled in her a need to create stuff, much to her chagrin, putting the roots so deep into her DNA and her core that she cannot possibly live any other life without precipitously self-destructing. Her work has been published here and there, you can find it on her website, kyrstenbean.com or on her blog thestifledartist.com, where she encourages other crazy wild peeps to pursue their creative stuff or die an ignominious death Website: www.krystenbean.com Blog: www.thestifledartist.com P. D. Lyons PD Lyons began writing long long ago in the dream time when it was said he was 12 years old. Meanwhile has worked some traveled some and lived as intensely as possible. His work has been published by Lapwing Press, Belfast. As well as in many small press venues in the US and abroad. Current titles are available form Amazon or direct from Lapwing. Website: http://pdlyons.wordpress.com Steve Shultz aka Uneven Stephen Steve Shultz is a poet, journalist and music aficionado. He is a designer with The Denver Post, and has been writing poetry for about 15 years. Blog: http://fracturedphrases.blogspot.com/ Craig Scott Link: http://www.lulu.com/product/hardcover/tales-from-a-frenchenvelope/17266921 Alex Layman A 2010 Graduate from UT – Austin; writer, blogger, poet; traveler. Presently unpublished poet and writer always coming up with new poems and currently working on a coming of age travel memoir that began as a surfing trip across the Panamanian countryside, and became an unforgettable trip about humility, perseverance, and understanding what it means to examine oneself, as most people never do. Website: www.scribbledwanderland.webs.com Matt Fallaize Matt Falllaize is a writer and chef holed up in Ormskirk, Lancashire, where he doles out dishes and poems ain uneven quantities. Concerned with the margin,

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constraints, broken moments and the mundane his work has appeared in Stride, Neon Highway and Erbacce amongst many others, most recently in the Oulipian edition of Ekleksografia magazine. Blog: http://coastaltown.blogspot.com/ Chapbook: http://erbacce-press.webeden.co.uk/#/matt-fallaize/4538954968 Joe Clifford Author of the memoir Junkie Love, the noir novel The Lone Palm, the blog ‘Candy and Cigarettes’, and an editor and rock ‘n’ roller. Blog: http://joecliffordcandyandcigarettes.blogspot.com Twitter: @JoeClifford23 Jason C. Segarra Jason C. Segarra is a husband, father, writer and photographer, born and raised in New York City and currently residing in Madison, Alabama. He loves the harmony in disharmony that occurs in life. He does not wish to duplicate reality with his words but wishes to bend it just enough to where reality and what his eye sees is separated by tiny nuances. Some of his work will have many nuances and some, maybe just one. Blog: http://jcsegarra.wordpress.com/ Paul Levy Born East London but now residing amongst the hedge mumblers of rural Suffolk, P.A.Levy has been published in many magazines, both on line and in print, from ‘A cappella Zoo’ to ‘Zygote In My Coffee’ and many stations inbetween. He is also a founding member of the Clueless Collective and can be found loitering on page corners and wearing hoodies at www.cluelesscollective.co.uk Website: www.cluelesscollective.co.uk Donal Mahoney Donal Mahoney, the son of Irish immigrants to the United States, is now an immigrant himself, having relocated from Chicago, a magnificent city, to St. Louis, Missouri, due to employment. He has had poetry and fiction published in a variety of print and online publications in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. There was a time when he thought Gregory Corso, an ally of Allen Ginsburg, was the greatest poet in the world. He was young then and had not yet read the early poems of Seamus Heaney. He still likes Corso but is startled anew every time he reads the work of Mr. Heaney. BookonBlog: http://booksonblog12.blogspot.com/

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Wade Lewis W. M. Lewis is a Brisbane-based poet and fiction writer, whose work has appeared in Best Australian Poems 2011, Cordite Poetry Review, and Eclecticism. you can find me (a little too often) on Twitter at @w_m_lewis. Website: https://sites.google.com/site/wmlewis102 Twitter: @w_m_lewis Ray Morgan Ray was born in 1984, which paved the way for a life of literary adventures. She started writing stories aged 6 on her mum’s typewriter at the dinner table. Ray completed her degree in Creative Writing in 2007 from Roehampton University and went on to take on a freelance copywriting role (which she loved). She is now a creative producer for Sundown Arts, a voluntary-run arts organisation that curates spoken word, music and comedy events in both Southend-on-Sea and London. She also works in Marketing, writing words for other people. Ray has performed her poetry on Colin Murray’s Spoken Word Surgery on BBC Radio 1, and at many venues and festivals including Whitechapel Art Gallery with Apples & Snakes, poetrywivenhoe, The Fling, Metal Culture’s Village Green festival, Leigh Folk Festival, and also as support for Jude Simpson and Salena Godden as part of their East Anglia ‘Poetry Link’ tours. Ray has also had regular articles published in Fat Quarter magazine. Blog: http://www.raypoetry.blogspot.com Myspace: www.myspace.com/raypoetry Twitter: @raypoetry Evelyn Adams Evelyn is recently reconciled with words and the magic you can make with them. She is an addict. She loves Boston. She is easily obsessed. Although she considers herself a poet, she also writes short stories, prose and other creations that defy such suffocating labels. She loves cinquain. Blog: www.fillingahole.wordpress.com Gary Dubola Memi Gary Dubola Memi currently lives on Long Island and commutes into Manhattan five days a week. On these mornings, you can find him writing poems aboard the Long Island Rail Road. These poems are instantly posted on his personal blog. Gary lives with his wife, his dog, his mother-in-law, his son, dust and belongings of various weight. Select works have been published by Snakeskin, ProtestPoems.org, a handful of stones, and qarrtsiluni. Blog: http://railroadpoetry.blogspot.com Twitter: @enri_zoltz

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Like the Railroad beat? Then make sure you bookmark Stations – a continuously updated list of websites that echo the Railroad ethos. Each issue of Railroad Poetry Project is going to showcase a featured Station – the place to check out this month.

On The Road 4 Kerouac

As any fan of the Beat generation will know, the highly influential novel On The Road by Jack Kerouac is being made into a film. Typed in one long manuscript by Kerouac himself (see image, above) On The Road embodied individual expression, Beatdom and free writing – qualities very close to the heart of Railroad. For many, the arrival of the film will give fresh access to a slice of Beat reality that remains the cornerstone of the generation, even in the twenty-first century. Noemie - the founder of On The Road 4 Kerouac - is pioneering a fascinating project to celebrate Kerouac's 90th birthday, the arrival of the film, and to promote the buzz of the Beat generation. Simply submit a testimonial about Kerouac, his writing, his life, or simply his beatific soul, and get the chance to appear on one continuous transcript of testimonials that are going to be presented to The Beat Museum - that's 37 metres of Kerouac inspired words the same length as the original On The Road manuscript. This monument to the worldwide influence of Kerouac will land on the doorstep of the place that brings together everything about the Beat Generation - the Beat Museum. Take a look at the On The Road the Movie blog and get involved, and keep an eye out for in-depth interviews with myself, the founder of OTR4K and, of course, Railroad's own Kerouac testimonial.

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Issue Three – December 31st 2011

Call for Submissions

Do you write linguistically innovative poetry? Are you a writer of visual poetry? Do you struggle to find an outlet for your work? As said by the Black Mountain poet Robert Creeley – is the form of your work an “extension of content”? Railroad is looking for poetry that smashes the boundaries of language and expectation. Be part of the Railroad beat and submit your genius to the editor at railroadpoetryproject@gmail.com

Issue Three will be brimming with exciting contemporary poetry from the poets of tomorrow. Don’t miss out, bookmark http://railroadpoetryproject.wordpress.com and follow us on Twitter @railroadpoetry

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A critical platform on the way to your writing success http://railroadeditorialservices.wordpress.com/

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Issue 2