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Tipton Poetry Journal


Tipton Poetry Journal Editor’s Note Tipton Poetry Journal, located in the heartland of the Midwest, publishes quality poetry from Indiana and around the world. We review two books in this issue: Jared Carter’s The Darkened Rooms of Summer (reviewed by Christine StewartNuñez) and Matthew Brennan’s One Life (reviewed by Barry Harris). Jared Carter’s poetry has appeared in TPJ a few times, including our first issue in 2004. Four of the poems included in Matthew Brennan’s One Life have appeared in TPJ including “Walking Man,” which also appears in this our 30th issue. [TPJ consider reviews only if the author has previously been published in TPJ and if the book is recent.] Barry Harris, Editor Tipton Poetry Journal Cover photo, “Country Road” by Ben Rose Copyright 2016 by the Tipton Poetry Journal. All rights remain the exclusive property of the individual contributors and may not be used without their permission. Tipton Poetry Journal is published by Brick Street Poetry Inc., a tax-exempt non-profit organization under IRS Code 501(c)(3). Brick Street Poetry Inc. publishes the Tipton Poetry Journal, hosts the monthly poetry series Poetry on Brick Street and sponsors other poetry-related events.


Tipton Poetry Journal

Contents Gilbert Allen ........................................................................1 Cheryl Snell ........................................................................2 Matthew Brennan...............................................................3 David Jibson .......................................................................4 Doris Lynch ........................................................................6 George Fish.........................................................................8 Dan Jacoby .........................................................................8 Charles Rammelkamp.......................................................10 Carolyn Adams ..................................................................11 Rich Ives............................................................................12 Noel Sloboda .....................................................................13 Jack Conway .....................................................................14 Prerna Bakshi ...................................................................15 Jenny Kalahar ..................................................................16 John D. Groppe .................................................................18 Lylanne Musselman ..........................................................19 Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois.........................................20 George Moore ...................................................................22 Katherine Givens ..............................................................24 Timothy Robbins ..............................................................24 Ed Doerr ...........................................................................26 David Craig ......................................................................28 Holly Day .........................................................................30 Saloni Kaul........................................................................31 CL Bledsoe.........................................................................32


Tipton Poetry Journal Helga Kidder.....................................................................34 Jayne Marek .....................................................................35 Martin Willitts Jr..............................................................36 Robin Throne ....................................................................37 Judy Young.......................................................................38 Allan Johnston ..................................................................38 Erren Kelly .......................................................................40 Jeanine Stevens.................................................................41 Catherine Keller................................................................42 Tracy Mishkin...................................................................44 Frances Klein ....................................................................44 Patrick Theron Erickson ..................................................46 Kenneth Pobo ....................................................................47 Ajise Vincent .....................................................................48 Rhonda C. Poynter............................................................48 Robert Weibezahl .............................................................50 Donal Mahoney .................................................................51 Fae Spurrier......................................................................52 Jeanine Stevens ................................................................53 Christine Valentine ...........................................................54 Richard Alan Bunch ..........................................................55 T.D. Richards ....................................................................56 William Doreski ................................................................56 Joan Colby ........................................................................58 Thomas Alan Orr ..............................................................59 David Allen .......................................................................60 Review: One Life by Matthew Brennan..............................62 Review: Darkened Rooms of Summer by Jared Carter ......66 Poet Biographies ..............................................................69


Tipton Poetry Journal


Tipton Poetry Journal

Setback Gilbert Allen the most profound sciatica —Measure for Measure, I, ii

Ouch. But it’s not only the pun that’s painful, that’s referred literally to anywhere in our person at the whim of our malevolent Bod. Don’t even ask how it happened. Easier to determine the origin of the universe than the source of this dark matter. But misery, like money, is a kind of poetry. How many spiniferous readings have you attended, only to end up thinking Please God make it stop. I’ll do anything. Eventually it does, and so do we.

Gilbert Allen's most recent collection of poems is Catma, from Measure Press. His book of linked stories, The Final Days of Great American Shopping, is forthcoming from USC Press in 2016. A frequent contributor to TPJ, he is a member of the South Carolina Academy of Authors and the Bennette E. Geer Professor of Literature Emeritus at Furman University.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Parenthetical Cheryl Snell He said he was coming. So far, he has not. She keeps an eye on the door, the in and out of it, the swing and stick of it, the way it has it both ways. While she waits for him, it begins to matter less whether she holds him in the flesh, or holds only her fury against him—both have the capacity to keep her warm through the night’s stutter of ellipses. When he finally appears in her window, he drags in more than excuse. Words emerge from his mouth’s asterisk and the woman has to admit the language was worth the wait. The story itself is possibly probably a lie. She asks him to repeat it. It does not give, even on the third telling. He has always believed repetition yields a truer truth, granting gravitas to ditto marks. She no longer believes anything he says but the way he says it. It’s not as if she could see typos in his spoken words. Had he ever loved her, or had she misunderstood? A comma changes everything.

Cheryl Snell’s most recent collection of poetry is called Geometries (Moria Books) and was written in collaboration with expressionist artist Janet Snell. Cheryl lives in Maryland.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Walking Man Matthew Brennan Each morning, while I walk on the treadmill Centered before a second-story window, A lanky man, late sixties, ambles by Along the street. His swinging arms keep pace In rhythm with his moving feet; his eyes Stay fixed on something just ahead, a future He almost sees, but it's a mystery. Again today he saunters by as always, Inward, subdued, at one with the sidewalk, The wind, the morning light that gleams behind him. Once he's out of view, I look beyond The leafless trees into a front of clouds. Beethoven's Fifth shudders through my earphones And I remember reading of John Dwight, A Transcendentalist who'd walk long miles Round trip to Boston from Brook Farm to hear The first four notes: they filled his mind with strangeness And led him, passing by the wind-thrashed trees, To feel a dark foreboding in the night And a nameless exultation too. Just so, when my old life foundered, I walked The lonely, moonlit streets for hours, this wild, Uncontainable surge within, a wedding Of fear and longing, and yearned for the stars Drifting away into the shipwrecked night. But walking man is quiet, even-keeled, And calm; he takes the measure of the world In ordered, stoic, meditative steps— One who has lived through thunderstorms of grief, Trekking dark passages, and who now seeks The power underlying solitude. [From One Life] Matthew Brennan teaches at Indiana State University. His most recent book of poems is One Life (Lamar University Literary Press, 2016). Earlier books include The House with the Mansard Roof (Backwaters Press, 2009) and The Sea-Crossing of Saint Brendan (Birch Brook Press, 2008). In 2012 Story Line Press brought out Dana Gioia: A Critical Introduction as part of its monograph series on contemporary poets.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Gary Abbot’s Mother David Jibson “Gary, this is your mother. Call me back as soon as you hear this message.” I had no idea who this Gary was or why his mother would be calling him on my phone. The next day I was home when she called again. “Gary Abbot, why didn’t you call me back?” “I’m not Gary Abbot,” I said. “You have the wrong number.” “I’ve been calling you at this number for years,” she said. “Don’t you try to fool me. I recognize your voice.” “Your father has had a heart attack. He’s in the hospital. You need to go see him right away. He’s been asking for you.” “But, really, I’m not Gary Abbot. I don’t even know who Gary Abbot is.” “You listen to me,” she said. “You get yourself to Boston today. I know how much you hate him, but he is your father and this will be your last chance to bring the poor man some peace before he dies.” On and on she went for the better part of an hour, detailing everything I (or rather Gary Abbot) had ever done wrong. I started feeling guilty. “Yes, yes,” I get it mother. I understand.” I finally convinced her to hang up the phone by telling her I had to start packing for the trip. “I’m here Pop,” I said. “It’s me, Gary.” “You’re not my son,” he said. “You don’t look anything like him.” “People change,” I told him. “It’s me.” “I suppose they do,” he said. What have you been up to lately?” “I've cleaned myself up,” I said .”I'm a lawyer now. “I always knew you’d come to no good,” he said. He closed his eyes. His breathing labored. I noticed an extra blip on the monitor by the bed.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

“I came to tell you I’m sorry,” I said, “Sorry for what?” he asked. “Sorry for everything, everything that’s happened.” “Never say you’re sorry,” he said, “even if you mean it. Now get out of here, leave me alone and don't tell your mother you were here.” When I got home the answering machine was blinking. “Gary, this is your mother. I called to tell you I’m never calling you again, not after what you’ve done.”

Having grown up in rural Michigan, David Jibson now lives in Ann Arbor where he is an associate editor of Third Wednesday, a literary arts journal, a member of The Crazy Wisdom Poetry Circle and The Poetry Society of Michigan. He is retired from a long career in Social Work, most recently with a Hospice agency. His poetry has appeared in Third Wednesday, Brasilia Review, Waccamaw Journal, Peninsula Poets, A-Literation, Apex Magazine and Highland Park Poetry. He sees “story” as the most important element of his poems.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

No Longer a Virgin Doris Lynch Chicago to New Bern by train, May 1945

Did your sister Millie with her dark hair, swishing taffeta skirts and beau of the week accompany you to Union Station? Did you leave enough time to share a strong Manhattan at the bar by the Great Hall with its barrel-vaulted skylight? And linger in the concourse with its flashing lights inviting you to every city you’d never been: Boston, Amarillo, Charleston, Santa Fe? Was your kiss goodbye hurried as her carrot-haired vet fingered the silk band of his civilian Stetson? Or did you cling to Millie, she who’d rescued you from the Lutheran Home, gave you the freedom of no curfew at age 16, your first suitcase, the only person in the world who’d ever mothered you. Squeezing down the carriage aisles, did you ever consider turning back, say when that sailor’s wrist trailed your hip as if by accident? Did you want to race off the train in Kentucky or Tennessee? Forget marrying the Irish Catholic from Philly you’d met only once, bowling before spooning together on Millie’s single cot, the one you shared each night though luckily that evening Millie had gone out dancing. Did you feel angry at Joe’s mother, Mamie, who stubbornly argued against this marriage, having promised her only son to God if God only would ensure his safe return from Guam and Midway? When the last of the Midwestern fields disappeared, did you realize that you were leaving the only world you’d ever known? That your punched ticket stub was your lone link between today and tomorrow between the known world and one you could scarcely imagine?

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Casings Doris Lynch In this world our bodies are borrowed like the flowing capes of highwaymen or the lace camisoles young girls wear when they first sprout breasts. To the cicadas, we share our heart’s pulse, but they keep it only for a short while. The stars mock us with billion year light until one collapses into fire and nothingness. Even blizzard gales eventually stop rampaging and creating artillery from ice. How deep the silence that hovers over the Ohio when ice stymies the current and the Indiana sun retreats into its January pall. How loud the quiet when elms stop thrashing. What can be more soundless than a still oak or more utterly over than gusting wind that suddenly stops.

Doris Lynch has published work recently in Willow Springs, Sow’s Ear, The Atlanta Review, Haibun Today, Frogpond, and in the anthology Cradle Songs: An Anthology of Poems on Motherhood. Finishing Line Press published her chapbook Praising Invisible Birds in 2009. The Indiana Arts Commission has awarded her three individual artist’s grants in poetry and one in fiction.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Patsy George Fish Cline that deceptive voice so silky smooth yet underneath each word, a torrent of raw emotion mellow Kentucky bourbon straight-up with a marijuana chaser

George Fish is a widely published writer and poet, whose poetry has been published in Flying Island, New Politics, Poems 4 Palestine, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal and elsewhere. George has written extensively on blues and other pop music, politics, economics, and other topics, chiefly for left and alternative publications. He also performs Lenny Bruce/George Carlin-inspired comedy, videos of which can be seen on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/aannyytt.

paradox Dan Jacoby no one can win black comedy of history rising candidates further the abyss crazy or too bumbling like henry the second king of Jerusalem fell to his death in the arms of a dwarf kissing every local ass like citizens united performing on life support cracking rubber jokes

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Tipton Poetry Journal processed sociopathic liars all bad actors with dog whistles historically two hundred years old right wing religious gangbangers folding up american dream on a government credit card driven by a novelty act realism a non copacetic no brilliant planks here like dents on a Mercedes trumped up hale woman screaming at a printer producing facile images imagined mined embryos just three pages taxed and bleeding out resisting cameras always on ratings through odin’s gate dark horses, physician healing himself migrant drones crossing borders played third base for hell’s angels trying to be more unhinged than the next filling old cheops with political grain at a point most repeatedly mad that some begin to inevitably believe it is the most reasonable course

Dan Jacoby is a graduate of St. Louis University, Chicago State University, and Governors State University. He lives both in Beecher and Hagaman, Illinois. He has published poetry in Arkansas Review, Belle Rev Review, Bombay Gin, Canary, Cowboy Poetry Press-Unbridled 2015 (Western Writers Spur Award), Chicago Literati, Indiana Voice Journal, Deep South Magazine, Lines and Stars, Wilderness House Literary Review, Steel Toe Review, The Opiate, and Red Fez to name a few. He is a former principal, teacher, coach, counterintelligence agent, and Green Beret. He is a member of the American Academy of Poets. Nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Cowboys and Tyrants Charles Rammelkamp In the movie Smoke Signals, when their seats on the bus are taken by a couple of burly gringos, Thomas says to Victor, resigned, “The cowboys always win.” Victor demurs, and after a moment, the two sing a song about John Wayne’s teeth: Are they false, are they real? Are they plastic, are they steel? But the Duke did elude Stalin, who ordered the KGB to assassinate him. Uncle Joe considered Wayne’s anti-communist rhetoric a threat to the Soviet Union, so he sent agents to Los Angeles to kill him. Nikita Khrushchev told Wayne about it in 1958: “During his last five mad years” Stalin had ordered the hit. “When Stalin died, I rescinded the order.” It was stomach cancer that finally killed him, attributed by some to radioactive fallout from U.S. atom bomb tests in Nevada, not far from the site in Utah where Wayne, Susan Hayward and Agnes Moorhead all worked on The Conqueror, along with Dick Powell, the director: cancer, every last one of them – no bigger bully.

Charles Rammelkamp edits an online literary journal called The Potomac http://thepotomacjournal.com - and is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books in Baltimore, where he lives. His latest book is a collection of poems called Mata Hari: Eye of the Day (Apprentice House, Loyola University). Apprentice House has accepted another manuscript, American Zeitgeist, for publication later this year.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Keep Carolyn Adams It’s strange how things that don’t exist support the things that are. Take our silence in the car. It kept us rigid as we drifted down the road, and turned toward that office. The office with the chairs and door where we’d been before, and yet, each visit new and odd. I told the doctor how you felt, and you surrendered to her will. And mine. You didn’t fight to have your say. You weren’t really there that day. I sat with you to wait your turn to talk and meet the needle’s point. I knew your heart, perhaps your mind, surely your soul, if that’s the word, remained intact. The rest of you was falling down, subservient to errant cells that wouldn’t stop their endless reproduction until the surplus killed you. I’m waiting here with you right now while what I cannot see stands up in spite of all the damage done, and tells you to keep breathing.

Carolyn Adams’ poetry and art have been published widely, most recently in Skylark Review, Hawaii Pacific Review, and Forge Journal. She currently lives and writes in Houston, Texas.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Klaustenmeier the Good Demonstrates the Difference Between Prudence and Vigilance

Rich Ives I give the birds a piece of my dinner and that night dream of squirrels stealing my tonsils, removed when I was five, and I’m surprised to find it makes me happy and a little too quiet when perhaps I should be cold and weeping like a snowman from every part of my body. How far do you have to go to get away? I’ve been told the arrow that hits the target trembles. I’ll have to hang a rock from my tree until I return it to normal.

Rich Ives lives on Camano Island in Puget Sound. His writing has appeared in Verse, North American Review, Dublin Quarterly, Massachusetts Review, Northwest Review, Quarterly West, Iowa Review, Poetry Northwest, Virginia Quarterly Review, Fiction Daily and many more. He is a winner of the Francis Locke Memorial Poetry Award from Bitter Oleander and has been nominated twice for the Best of the Web, three times for Best of the Net and six times for The Pushcart Prize. Light from a Small Brown Bird, a book of poems, is available from Bitter Oleander Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Pennsylvania Dutch Noel Sloboda Every April the stories changed though our rituals remained the same as I sealed beds behind Oma’s place, blanketed rain-soaked ground under layers of black and white— a foundation for mulch to follow. Oma saved papers for months, stacked headlines about ice storms, holiday sales and pep rallies atop plow ads and obits. As I laid out pages capturing everything that mattered most during the shortest days of the year, I made sure all perfectly aligned to ring the house with a winter hex warding off spring weeds. This rough magic never took hold, never prevented eruptions of thistle and oxalis I spent May weekends ripping out. Oma supervised my labors and muttered German curses— more macht nichts words forever scratched into memory yet powerless over profaned ground. [This poem previously appeared in Fourteen Hills]

Noel Sloboda's poetry has appeared in Bayou, Harpur Palate, PANK, and Rattle. He is the author of the poetry collections Shell Games (2008) and Our Rarer Monsters (2013) as well as several chapbooks, most recently Risk Management Studies (2015). Sloboda has also published a book about Edith Wharton and Gertrude Stein.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Bees Flee Jack Conway Bees flee in winter although some still hum among the lavender plants on sunny November days. They do not go away in noisy parades like geese, in perfect formation honking and flapping their wings like feathered oars in unison, rowing through the sea blue sky, heading south. They simply abandon their summer house, leaving gray paper mache nests hung from bare limbs, no one within, no steady drone, no chance of being stung. When we were young, some one of us would get it in their head to poke it with a stick driving great buzzing swarms out after us and we would flee, not like bees, but geese, honking and flapping our arms in the summer breeze until the chase was over and we escaped their wrath. We are taught that honey is made of clover, but there is more to it than that. It is made of something else, beyond our grasp; something that escapes us, like the bees, no longer there, when they flee, magically, without fanfare.

Jack Conway’s poems have appeared in a variety of literary journals and anthologies, among them: Poetry, The Antioch Review, The Hiram Poetry Review, The Columbia Review and Rattle and the anthologies, In A Fine Frenzy: Poets Respond to Shakespeare and The Norton Book of Light Verse. His most recent book, Outside Providence: Selected Poems, was published in 2016. Jack lives in Massachusetts.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Thirst Prerna Bakshi My Uncle tells me when the calls for Partition filled the anxious air, everything was up for partition, not just the land. Nothing remained outside its purview. Everything was to be partitioned. Including water. On a railways platform, shouts of Hindu water, Muslim water could be heard as fleeing refugees searched through their ragged pockets to fish out a few coins in exchange for water. The journey was long. Not everyone made it to the other side alive. Those who did had their thirst quenched but what about the water? What quenched its thirst? If water could speak, it would confess its thirst. Its thirst for peace. Thirst for sanity. Thirst for to leave it the fuck alone. [This poem was previously published in Sick Lit Magazine] Author’s note: When the calls for Partition echoed, both my maternal and paternal grandparents and their families, had to flee Pakistan. The poem is a meditation on the chaos and political climate that existed at that time.

Prerna Bakshi is a writer, poet and interpreter of Indian origin currently based in Macao. Her poetry has been published in Linden Avenue Literary Journal, Indiana Voice Journal, Red Fez, Muse India, Postcolonial Text, Hysteria, Grey Sparrow Journal, and others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

While She Was With Us Still Jenny Kalahar “Katrina Beatrice,” Patrick replied When asked her name while she was still attached to me Our daughter was declared just fine one minute But rushed off to intensive care the next We were told that after thirty days After a month under artificial yellow warming lamp Plastic tubes and respirator, eye protection Tiny pink mittens so she would not pull things out After thirty days she would be ready for home And then suddenly she was worse We asked—I asked—for a baptism Though I was unable to speak or to sit upright I was gurneyed down freezing hallways to her tiny bedside So that we could meet So that we could, at least, meet And with a strange, fierce determination She gripped my finger when she heard my rasping voice Saying “Katie Bea, Katie Bea! Here I am; it’s your mommy” And Pat let teardrops fall, petting her amazing baby fingers As they held onto me for dear life My parents drove to us from Michigan Worried their granddaughter might not live My mother came into my room Rain-coated, perfumed, busy Shooing Dad into the hallway. While she was standing beside my bed Pushing her large orange sweatshirt tenderly over my head Handing me her leftover potato chips from lunch Talking of the drive, of autumn leaves, of nothing I confessed: “I don’t know if I should fall in love with her or not. If she’s going to die … should I fall in love with her?” I watched carefully as her mouth nearly said something else She nearly said a different word, a different sentence But instead she sighed out, “Yes” I was sent home with a breast pump and bottles Brochures and instructions and phone numbers and NICU codes With a stapled stomach that was still bulging, but empty With Polaroids to look at of our baby To encourage my milk to come in. I was sent home when we were given assurances That she would be joining us in weeks And it would be like there had never been a problem at birth She would catch up fast She would be just fine—we’d see

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Tipton Poetry Journal

At home, a two-hours’ drive from baby My milk did not come in My anxiety never left I knew I knew I knew when the phone rang that I must get dressed And that Pat must rush those two hours on the road into one If we were ever to see her alive again: Our soft-skinned, angelic, undersized girl Back home that night After reviewing the phone calls we’d made After I had told my mother she was wrong, or she was right (I can’t remember now) After we had spent hours with Katie Bea Singing lullabies, reciting poetry Telling her all about our lives After the harsh alarms were shut off She passed away in my arms, in an oversized rocker She passed away, away, away After we had dressed and diapered her limp body Had taken photos, said goodbye Back home, just the two of us alone I released her there, in our too-quiet house A house not filled with baby sounds. I said goodbye again More fully than before When caring faces were yet one more burden we had to bear I curled up on the carpeted floor in front of the heat register My long flannel nightgown like a pink floral sheet The puffs of air weren’t warm enough And my chest felt very cold. Looking down, I saw that in my grief And in my sorrow My tears And Katrina’s milk Had, at last, come in

Jenny Kalahar is the author of three novels and a collection of poetry, One Mile North of Normal and Other Poems. Jenny helms Last Stanza Poetry Association in Elwood, Indiana and is treasurer for the Indiana State Federation of Poetry Clubs. Her humor column, A Twist in the Tale, is published twice monthly in Tails Magazine. Jenny is a used & rare bookseller with her husband, Patrick, from their old schoolhouse home in Elwood.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

When the Soldiers Came John D. Groppe When the solders went east, they praised my farm, said it was an honor to the fatherland, and blessed me left shoulder to right. When they came back, bandaged, limping in twos and threes, cursing, they hated my farm, me, my family and, even though we fed them, would have shot us if they had had the time. When the soldiers came from the east, they praised our farm, said it was a joy to the motherland, praised us since we could speak their language without hint of accent and blessed me right shoulder to left. When they shambled east, bandaged, limping, abandoning stragglers— my wife and children and all but one frightened son in hiding— they pissed in my kitchen, shot what cattle I could not hide and left them rotting in the sun and straggled on. I don’t know when to bring forth my family, when to plant a new crop, when to feed the lambs from what little we have. My son and I watch both horizons— he now with a rifle some soldier dropped— but I fear some partisans will come and ask what side we are on.

John D. Groppe is a Professor Emeritus of English at Saint Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Indiana. A native of New York City, but a convinced Hoosier since 1958, his poetry has previously appeared in the Tipton Poetry Journal, Snowy Egret, The Flying Island, Crossroads, Embers, The National Catholic Reporter, and other journals. He is listed on the Indiana Bicentennial Literary Map, 200 Years-200 Writers.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Rhubarb Run Lylanne Musselman With a taste for rhubarb pie like grandma made, fresh from her small Indiana patch: from sturdy stocks, picked ripe, and cooked down to sugary perfection; my friend, Tony, and I set out in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, with cravings to satisfy. We shopped every farmer's market or any Amish shingle visible, not knowing how rough rhubarb could be to find, until a handwritten roadside sign we thought spelled success quickly turned sour when it read “strawberryrhubarb pie,� not quite the same as the plain rhubarb taste we were driving for, stewed and saucy, syrupy and tart, full of itself.

Lylanne Musselman is an award winning poet, playwright, and artist. Her work has appeared in Pank, Flying Island, The Tipton Poetry Journal, The Rusty Nail, So it Goes, Issue 3, among others, and many anthologies. In addition, Musselman has twice been a Pushcart Nominee. Musselman is the author of three chapbooks, and she co-authored Company of Women: New and Selected Poems (Chatter House Press, 2013). Presently, she teaches writing at IUPUI, American National University, and online for Ivy Tech Community College.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Caliber Thoreau Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois Henry David Thoreau has a pistol At dawn he dresses quietly so as not to wake himself and gently pulls the gun from under his pillow He walks out to the pond and scans the ice for thickness Then he takes his gun and, with a motion like bowling sends it across the surface It slides as with intent The ice is not perfectly smooth and Henry David wonders if the gun will discharge He’s not hoping it does and he’s not disappointed when it doesn’t He watches it where it has come to rest for a long time as if, through his concentration it will sprout legs and dance a Celtic waltz but it doesn’t It just sits there black and ugly against the snow swept ice Thoreau ventures out to get it He doesn’t walk gingerly but with confidence as if the ice were a wooden floor he had built himself

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The ice doesn’t flex or crack It respects Thoreau’s trust Thoreau knows that objects respond to trust as people and animals do He retrieves his gun puts it in his coat pocket walks back across the ice doesn’t hesitate when the ice transitions to land coated with pine needles and snow walks to his cabin puts the gun back under his pillow feels even safer than when he awoke

Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois has had over a thousand of his poems and fiction appear in literary magazines in the U.S. and abroad. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and The Best of the Net for work published in 2011 through 2014. His novel, Two-Headed Dog, based on his work as a clinical psychologist in a state hospital, is available for Kindle and Nook, or as a print edition. He lives in Denver.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Goats George Moore Goats have got an unfair rap. They procreate without restraint, but so do the trees, bees, flowers, and moon on nights it spreads its pearly seed. ~ Anonymous

The priest reminds the mourners of the goats, like a friend who may one day enjoy a padded darkness, her cell a complete invisible space. Insensible lace circles her insensible face. The rest of us will burn in hell. That is enough from the pews to signal a complete surrender to the day outside, where sheepish things are still living. I dream of goats running up and down the street, butting buses and taxis, nearly knocking off a baby carriage. I look down at my own cloven feet. Goats sharing a beer after work talk too sweetly of the departed. At best, she could have been among the sheep, while the furry beasts are dancing on her grave.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Age of Reason George Moore They glued me into time, they dressed me up in a live soul and a body in pieces. ~ Murilo Mendes, “Map”

In rows upon rows of faces on faces, the few giving themselves up to the ocean beneath them, an ocean of faces, superimposed eyes and noses, those cute smiles, those angry frowns, three decades deep like a school of fish in a black hole, in the depths of time, disturbed by gravity waves, starbursts, that circle the man standing with his hands in his pockets at the board at the center of the whirlpool in the whiplash of the page buried in the gravity of questions spontaneously resurrected like a tall ship out of a history none of them can name but mistake for Johnny Depp or the last season’s worst Peter Pan, who carries them further into cell phone land, light fantasies, the screenies, true to the surface of their worlds, and this dressed up soul and body in pieces simply scrambled eggs, or meatloaf, a moment the Romans cannot negotiate when the gates break down.

George Moore now lives on the south shore of Nova Scotia. Recent poetry collections include Children's Drawings of the Universe (Salmon Poetry 2015) and The Hermits of Dingle (FutureCycle 2013). Publications include the Atlantic, North American Review, Poetry, and Colorado Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Seldom in the Morning Katherine Givens Seldom in the morning Do I wake into life With dreams crossing from the ether. Darkened gates withhold their glints, Until the moon again rises Into the night’s village. Through my realm of work and throes I languish, until eyelids close, And from the ebon Illusions incarnate.

Katherine Givens is working towards an M.A. from Drexel University. She has publications in numerous print and online magazines, including WestWard Quarterly, Tipton Poetry Journal, The Copperfield Review, Nazar Look, and From the Depths. She also published Passages of Love: A Collection of Poems with Nazar Look in November 2015. Katherine lives in New Jersey.

Tannenbaum Timothy Robbins Arbor vita outside a Denney’s window. Across the parking lot white pines fanning high in the air. In front of the Motor Lodge three cedars like Christmas trees stripped of their rank. Tannenbaum piped into the dining room

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The town seems confused with the students gone. In the first scare after the test results you talked of changing your life. No more cigarettes. No more beer. No more days when you just forget to eat. No more euchre till four in the morning, making love till six, snatching two hours of sleep before feeling your way to class. You wanted to decorate your crib for Christmas. A tree bigger than childhood, bulbs of every color, lights flashing like a migraine. The florist thought I was crazy when I asked for the tree of life. This morning I’m breakfasting alone. The sunshine bleeds like the words of Jesus in a red letter edition. You are in Gary by now. For the first time in your life you don’t feel safe in your mother’s home. The danger is in your blood. No amount of prayer, no crib, no cross will change you to the rose e’er blooming.

Timothy Robbins teaches ESL and does freelance translation in Wisconsin. He has a BA in French and an MA in Applied Linguistics from Indiana University. His poems have appeared previously in Tipton Poetry Journal, in Three New Poets, The James White Review, Slant, Main Street Rag

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Imprint Ed Doerr For all the history of grief An empty doorway and a maple leaf. ~ Archibald MacLeish, "Ars Poetica"

An empty doorway and a maple leaf, the letter “i” dotted by a discarded fleck of a late-October evening. It’s not a leaf, not exactly — but a sketch of a leaf that I covered with a sheet of white paper and dusted over with a charcoal pencil. It’s a shadow of a leaf, a ghost, a frozen imprint on a brick wall in the aftermath of a bomb raid. I brought it home from school, clutching it in tiny hands as if it were a sacred text, and she looked at it, her mouth widening in an O of delight — not unlike the yawning gape of the kitchen doorway I stood beneath. She took it from me. Chamomile warmth wafted from her as she leaned down with a smile to trace a proud finger along my cheek. On white tennis shoe tips, she stood to prop it atop the doorframe, where it perched precariously, an autumnal gargoyle. But now, standing in the open mouth of the yawning doorway, lost in charcoal wonders, I see it as I couldn’t before: its veins roads on a worn-out map, its frayed edges battle scars of loss. Dancing a tango with October winds,

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Tipton Poetry Journal it had plummeted, disconnected and alone, cast aside by a callous maple to drift to the ground, knowing it should feel more but supplicating, instead, to the fall — that’s all it can manage. Will someone, then, find me — scattered, strewn, lost — and take me in a pair of spongy hands, to run a charcoal pencil over my cracked and frayed frame? Will a mother take this imprint of me, this ghost of me, in proud hands to prop it atop her kitchen doorway, reaching up on tennis shoe tips, as my mother once did, to immortalize her baby’s creation?

Ed Doerr has work published or forthcoming in Water~Stone Review, The Tishman Review, Postcard Poems & Prose, Firewords Quarterly, and the New York Times bestselling collection It All Changed In An Instant, among others. When he is not writing, he teaches middle school English in New Jersey, where he lives with his wife and pursues a Masters degree in Creative Writing.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

I found this old entry about my son David Craig in bed with an over-sized Piglet, arm draped over the thing, head hidden with strep. Apparently, I’d peered under the substantial pink ear to see his eyes––wrapped in sickness. He did not plead, but was stuck in sweat, good to see his dad. And I think of my own mother, pacing at the foot of my bed, clearly realizing that there was nothing she could do, either for my illness, or for my other plight. Years later she’d say: “I don’t know if he has what it takes to make it in this world.” (Why get on the playground round-about? “It just keeps going in circles.”) She knew I was too concerned with every wrong, stuck on the first one. There was nothing she could do, and she grieved; I could see her dismay as I tried to keep the thermometer in place. (She certainly didn’t trust my father’s Jansenistic glee at my First Communion: me all shiny and clean in my first suit, affirmed by heaven and earth: the tie, the straight fold of the hands. She disliked the Irish squeeze: probably wanted some light, success, a little Protestant money. She wanted, like the rest of us, a God with sandy beaches.) My son is still sick, though, back there in the past––nothing I can do for him either. (I hope I stroked his brow, kissed him, thanked him for being so brave.)

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Tipton Poetry Journal

And now, later: a grown man, an Aspy’s in his parents’ basement, frustrated by his stuck, looking for a career to stamp him. If I could make paper cranes I would; I’d put two on his basement table, one on either side of his computer. I’d fly a few around the ping-pong table for his amusement. I would read Chinese poetry aloud, the Rexroth translations, but that would not help. No, life is lonely. Ask Basho. That’s why our mothers always tried to feed us too much. He will, mercifully, move past this. We all do. And there will be a future for him, whether he comes upon it, or it upon him. And there will be a woman somewhere, as fine as his own mother. She will help, offer her wounds to help him grow, just as he will offer his. I raise my glass, Mr. Bringer-of-the-New, My-Heart-Who–Walks-Away-from-Me–– as he always has, in a fine stride.

David Craig lives in Steubenville, Ohio. He has published close to 300 poems in journals as well as 21 books.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Crazed Holly Day it was a long time, but I still remember fondly what it was like to kiss you. you said it felt better kissing me, someone your own age, than it did making out with my mother, your aunt. I was just young and insane enough to take that as a compliment instead of thinking how weird it was to be curled up in the back seat with my cousin. years later, nobody knows where you are, last seen homeless somewhere in California I don’t want to know.

The Snowman Holly Day we drive our stakes and shovels through the heart of the beast and pray for an end to winter. we stomp on its head, kick its black coal eyes far across the yard and take back our old clothes from its body. no more snow, we pray. no more cold. the snowman lies where we kicked it down arms outstretched in supplication, begging for mercy against the onslaught of our thick winter boots, lit torches paper packets of early-sow seeds held close to our chests in anticipation of spring.

Holly Day has taught writing classes at the Loft Literary Center in Minnesota, since 2000. Her published books include Music Theory for Dummies, Music Composition for Dummies, Guitar All-in-One for Dummies, Piano All-in-One for Dummies, Walking Twin Cities, Insider’s Guide to the Twin Cities, Nordeast Minneapolis: A History, and The Book Of, while her poetry has recently appeared in New Ohio Review, SLAB, and Gargoyle. Her newest poetry book, Ugly Girl, just came out from Shoe Music Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Feast on the Rocks

Saloni Kaul Lake Sixteen, Indiana Outcast like farflung rock on which he sits Most greedily tears open his newspaper Wrapped castaway apparent charity And gobbles hungrily down all the fish and chips Much faster than that fish eater voracious The cormorant that in a thirty second dive Emerges with its prey tight firmly tucked In its own unmistakably stark prominent Bill heavy thickset tip downcurved , consumes it all Perched on the selfsame nearby rocks and posts, And then in stylish tilt adopts a loonlike stance And swims with back affectionately slapped by waters, Upward inclined most unconcerned. Then hunger satisfactorily abated he resigns himself To newfound fate settled by circumstance Of educating his new self with that worn greasy sheet That is spread out wraplike across the rock Flapping months old news merrily And stoutly updating the world. The breeding plumage whitest head great cormorant Docked on this rocky farthest of outposts Having caught up with him on eating terms, Matches the broadsheet spread dramatically Drying soaked wings in stunning pose ; Till with its neck dark long outstretched it flies Low over the water ( bronze scale-like feathers upper Glistening, bluish underparts, white cheek white flank patch seen by me newly only when in flight ) With regular strong beats in line astern. Saloni Kaul, author and poet, was first published at the age of ten. As critic and columnist, Saloni has enjoyed 38 years of being published in leading dailies and magazines. Saloni Kaul's first volume, Saloni Kaul’s Book of Children’s Poetry, was published in 2009. Subsequent volumes include Universal One and Essentials All. Her work has been published in Poetry Quarterly, The Horrorzine, Eye On Life Magazine, Poetry and Paint Anthology, Misty Mountain Review, Inwood Indiana, Mad Swirl, FIVE Poetry Magazine and The Voices’ Project, and is forthcoming in Sentinal Quarterly and AJI Magazine. Saloni lives in Toronto.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Fame CL Bledsoe We had a blowout on St. Paul’s, not the busiest street, but a narrow one. Taxis veered towards us as we tried to change the tire as quickly as possible to avoid being late. Still, I was by ten minutes. Had to leave the baby and the wife in the car with instructions at the information desk on where to find me after they’d gotten situated. I came in mid-sentence, sat, cotton-mouthed and unsure what I would even read because the baby was teething, I’d just gotten back from a work trip, we hadn’t even started packing and didn’t even know where we were going, just that we had to get out of our current situation before it killed whatever hope we shared between us. I stood, read badly, sat, surprising everyone with my speed. There were questions I tried to answer thoughtfully, but I was preoccupied wondering why the wife and child hadn’t found me. Then, it was downstairs to man a table and finally have a chance to text and find the family. Another reader said, “Hey, you know your picture’s outside,” and then they fed us! Outside, after it was all over, after plans had been made for future readings, a beer, even, I remembered as I was strapping my daughter into the car, unsure if we could even make it home on our donut. We scoured the front of the library and found it. The friend who’d told me about it wasn’t pictured, nor were any of the other readers from my session. Alongside my picture were headliners at the literary festival. I wanted to stop and consider this, but it was my daughter’s nap time,

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Tipton Poetry Journal we had a long way to go to find some place to fix the bad tire, not to mention how we’d pay for it. Someone took a picture. I hope to look at it soon.

The Hawk CL Bledsoe I eased the block or so to the gas station on the nearly-flat tire, wondering how I’d make rent if the thing wouldn’t take air. If I got lucky, I had a job interview across town in an hour. Cars zoomed past, my hazards keeping them from honking. I scrounged three quarters from the cup holder and pumped air for three minutes with no gain. Inside, the mechanic was sitting down to his lunch at nearly dinner time. “Give me three minutes.” He held up dirty fingers. “Have your lunch,” I said. Back outside, I stared at the tire as though there were something to learn from it. Across the lot, a homeless man waved. How he thought I’d have anything to offer, I couldn’t imagine, but I finally looked. He pointed. A murder of crows circled like a whirlwind above the cars parked around the corner. On the hood of one, a massive hawk perched, eying the birds, me, something I couldn’t see. “He’s big as hell,” the man called out. I could only nod and stare, its feathers vibrant red and brown against the dull asphalt, the fading cars, winter wearing down the soul of the world. The mechanic came to remove the tire, all noise and business, and the hawk rose slow, like it was swimming to the surface, and was gone. We exchanged nods as the homeless man passed. The tire would come tomorrow. I drove home on the donut to wait, its tread loud on the broken asphalt as another line formed behind me. CL Bledsoe is the author of a dozen books, most recently the poetry collection Riceland and the novel Man of Clay. He lives in northern Virginia with his daughter.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

There is a Poem in Every Passion Helga Kidder There is a poem in potatoes, thick-skinned, eyeing peppers and periwinkles for success. What a poet wants depends on her wishes. Wishes personified in Pinocchio’s nose growing longer and longer or in Potiphar’s hands open for Joseph, gaining only his coat. I learned wishes are pantomimes that rely on others’ interpretation. So they are thrown into a pot or set on a pan or cookie sheet without grease, burn into the bottom. Parchment after the fact is useless. Helen of Troy also had trouble letting Paris leave her pillows. He pondered paradigms on papyrus as palm fronds invited the winds. After he piloted his ship to perdition, somewhere in the panhandle, she spread peanutbutter and jelly on sandwiches, watched Oldies, a similar remedy as purgatory is to hell.

Helga Kidder lives in the Tennessee hills with her husband and dog. She was awarded an MFA from Vermont College. Her poems have been published in many journals and more recently in Broad River Review where she was a 2015 Ron Rash finalist. She has three poetry collections, Wild Plums (2012) Luckier than the Stars (2013) and Blackberry Winter (2016).

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Prognosis Jayne Marek Raking and raking, But the long tines cannot gather up grief That waits beyond the fence. Grief is like fear Seen from another direction. The two hunch over, Stare like stone monsters guarding a stoop. The lion-dog of fear is agape with fangs. The lion-dog of grief grips the pearl of the world With suffocating claws. I rake the wet lawn, flattening it In one direction. It will stay that way Through several more rains. Even when I go inside I know the shapes are out there. Even in darkness. I remember the cries made by rake tines As they scarred the fence, Unable to clear out the fallen Leaves, the soaked moss, Broken sticks Left by the storm.

Jayne Marek’s poetry has appeared in publications such as Blast Furnace, Gravel, Lantern Journal, Siren, Spillway, Driftwood Bay, Tipton Poetry Journal, Isthmus, The Occasional Reader, Wisconsin Academy Review, and Windless Orchard and in several anthologies; she is a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee. She also has a chapbook and a co-authored book of poems, as well as articles, short fiction, and art photographs. Jayne now lives in Port Townsend, Washington.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Finding Peace Martin Willitts Jr Find a place so relaxed it never knows you are present. Ease into that place, never causing ripples. Drain your muscles back onto a rock. Sit, uncoil, absorb heat like a snake. Feel the sun as a rock does. Hear the rock whisper, It’s ok. Become vapor, become the untamed breath of rampaging horses settling down. Become the emptiness where land does not exist. Welcome to where I am. I am the silence inside slowness. Notice whatever is in front of you until it is gone and you are gone. Whatever is behind you is behind you. You will know silence when your heart rumples.

Martin Willitts Jr is a retired Librarian. He won the 2004 International Dylan Thomas Poetry Award. His poems have appeared in Blue Fifth Review, Big City Lit, Comstock Review, Tipton Poetry Journal, and others. He has over 20 poetry chapbooks, plus 11 full-length collections including How to Be Silent (FutureCycle Press, 2016).

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Tipton Poetry Journal

un·en·cum·bered Robin Throne She told me I was an Apostate. An absconder of others’ light, running only from myself so they had to place me. Yet, I found solace there from my glutton-mess. Cloistered in that last incarnation, she said. Shed all my diamonds and rope. I entered the hermitage unencumbered by soul-accoutrements that confined my light Embellished only by a cloak of sharp lines of habit and routine meditation. Those simple rituals had shaped me then. Coarse muslin edges defined me there like some false mantle Borrowed as somebody else’s cloak. magnified and reflected by penance as gifts to others who were left free to judge and shame without consequence and I thrived on the reflection of the stiff faces that found us. Too many lost wandered in and our purpose became squandered by self-abnegation dissolution of wealth. A parody really of what it all meant. It is in this life where you will find Yourself, She whispered it to me now and I still remember How safe it all was there. Unencumbered.

Robin Throne's work has appeared in The New Poet Journal, Gypsy Cab, Mankato Poetry Review, North Coast Review, Split Lip Magazine, Crab Fat Literary Magazine, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal among others. She was the recipient of the third annual fiction chapbook prize from Gambling the Aisle and received the fourth David R. Collins Literary Achievement award from the Midwest Writing Center. Robin lives in Rock Island, Illinois.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Heat Wave Judy Young I watch the heat-soaked pavement Leaning back one foot against the wall Eating an ice cream bar The big rigs coming in Their tires making ruts in the parking lot Asphalt soft as marshmallows in hot chocolate Wavy heat rays reflecting in the distance Everything moves in slow motion Even the birds in the sky Hate waiting on a load Judy Young is a member of Last Stanza Poetry Association and attends Brick Street Poetry events in Zionsville, Indiana. Judy has been writing poetry since childhood but, until recently, had kept all of her writings private. She spent every weekend in a small cabin in Brown County, Indiana as a child and teenager, one without electricity or plumbing or any modern conveniences. It was nothing she would have lived through by choice, but it added a raw flavor to the beginning of her life that she still can recall so many years later, like a perfume or powerful dream.

Potato Farming Near George, Washington 1975

Allan Johnston It was a town you'd never return to if you had the ill star of ending up there for god knows what. I was there for potatoes, camped by a rusty, half-sunk trash can of a Quonset hut and up each day at four to torture my lips with coffee boiled to mud in a ten cent pot from the Salvation Army and spiked with hooch to get us through the day. One gas station, two bars, and Rosy's Cafe was just about it.

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Tipton Poetry Journal At Joe's Club you could hear the farmhands jaw through their tractor dirt for hours and hours about the tits of some waitress or who was dinking the sheriff's wife. You were listening to America's heartbeat, I guess, after thirteen hours riding the harvester, throwing the cow bones and blight-sick milky hulks of potatoes into the trashed fields, the digger beneath you loud as a B-52. Rosy's was the place where you'd tabasco your hash-browns week after week finding the same farmhands jawing, jawing till you walked out the door and ran into the morning that lit up the highway from Spokane to Yakima in a way you never noticed from your place on the diggers, no bonus if you quit. So Rosy's it was and always would be—the sky bright all the way to the Rockies, crisp as a French fry, golden as heaven, there for you here, now. [This poem first appeared in Rhino and was included in his chapbook Northport]

Allan Johnston has been publishing poetry for over 30 years, and has had work appear in Poetry, Poetry East, Rattle, Rhino, Weber Studies, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal and more than forty other journals. Allan has received a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a Pushcart Prize Nomination, and First Prize in Poetry in the 2010 Outrider Press Literary Anthology contest. He has published one book of poetry, Tasks of Survival, which appeared in 1996, and three chapbooks, Northport (2010), Departures (2013) and Contingencies (2015). Allan teaches writing and literature at Columbia College and at DePaul University, both in Chicago. He coedits the Journal for the Philosophical Study of Education, is a review editor for the SPSE Roundtable. He also is an outside reader for Word River and reader for the Illinois Emerging Poets Competition.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Inglewood, Los Angeles Erren Kelly Black tea and Jazz goes down Like silk I don't even notice The gunshots For the second Day In a row I've been through too Much to be Scared Black tea and jazz Goes down smooth Like dreams Like the planes going Over my head

Erren Kelly is a Pushcart nominated poet from Los Angeles. His work appears in such publications as Hiram Poetry Review, Mudfish, Poetry Magazine, Ceremony, Cactus Heart, Similar Peaks, Gloom Cupboard, Poetry Salzburg and Black Heart Literary Journal. He is also the author of the book Disturbing the Peace (Night Ballet Press) and the chapbook, The Rah Rah Girl (forthcoming from Barometic Press).

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Technical Terms Ghazal Jeanine Stevens A cage of my own making. Instead of lolling in this garret writing poems, I could be dancing the odalisque in Morocco. I avoid street corners, go the long way home, startle as I pass your stop, watch shop doors open, envelopes unseal. On the treadmill I know how a rat feels in his revolving basket. Increase speed! Screech for a crumb of cheese. I’m timed, programmed. Have I misread the signs? Are you the great attractor or only a stand in for a luscious tidbit? The eye of a fly fragments, jagged pieces. A tisket, a tasket. In this moment, I think I’ve eaten loco weed. Stones in shoes, trudge, bruised foot, no wise blood. I’m driven at the cellular level, the bird that returns for crumbs.

Jeanine Stevens has graduate degrees in Anthropololgy and Education. She has five chapbooks, the latest, Caught in Clouds, from Finishing Line Press. Her poems have appeared in Poet Lore, Ekphrasis, Ibbetson Street Press, South Dakota Review, and Poetry Depth Quarterly, among others. She was raised in Indiana and currently lives in Northern California where she divides her time between Sacramento and South Lake Tahoe.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Here’s Your Sign Catherine Keller You didn’t want them to find you, With bullet holes or a wringed neck, Less of a mess to clean up, Less of the hassle you thought you were, And when the doctors slice you open, And find intestines filled with pills, Mouths will drop and tears will spill. Your parents will keep your bedroom door shut, Because they will get nauseous just from walking passed it, It will take months before they are ready, To pack your clothes in cardboard boxes. They will have to clean out your locker, And throw out the birthday present, They never got the chance to give you. Your house will be a shrine, Quick glances at your pictures on the wall, Your mom will be beside herself, Thinking she could have done something more, Your friends won’t talk to anyone for weeks, Your brother and sister wouldn’t dare venture into your room, Just like you told them to do, It will be as if yellow caution tape, Is wrapped around everything, That reminded them of you. Too many ‘sorry for your losses’. Your parents will never get to hug you when you graduate, Congratulate you on your wedding day, Or hold your firstborn child, You will never see who you wanted to be. Your favorite songs and movies will be strictly avoided, Because the memories of you will be too fresh, No matter how much time has passed. You said to yourself, ‘At least they won’t have to pay for my college, Just my coffin’. No grandparents should have to be, At their grandchild’s wake, Praying for revival. You will be dressed up in your favorite sweater, And they will put concealer on you, As if it would make up for the fact,

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Tipton Poetry Journal That the color has long drained from your face. People you thought hated you, Will be at your funeral sobbing, Do not wait until you are dead, To realize you are loved. You were looking for a sign, weren’t you? This is it. Do not let this disease devour you, Do not let the cackles control you, Do not let your worst nights keep you, From seeing the best day of your life. Do not let the bullies beat you down. On days your doubt your strength, Remember how many days, You were forced to hold your own head up, And how far you made it. Every day you wake up, Is a nightmare defeated, Continue to defeat. You are not merely an expense, You are not worthless, You are beautiful, And your life matters.

Catherine Keller is 19 years old, majoring in communications with a minor in sociology at the College at Brockport. She has had 10 articles published in the NeXt section of the Buffalo News, and poetry published in Teen Ink Magazine and Slipstream Magazine. She has been writing creatively since she was 16. Let-meelive.tumblr.com.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

My Black History Tracy Mishkin I remember Keith, the only black counselor at sleepaway camp. He was only a few years older than junior counselor me. Keith didn’t go into town on his night off—town was Martinsville, still stinking of the Klan, still living down that murder in 1968. Keith was cute, with a bushy moustache and a short Afro. He must have been warned by the counterman when he got off the Greyhound in Naptown. Instead of hitting the bars with Zink and CJ, Keith chilled with me in the walk-in, picking tidbits off long blocks of government cheese. Keith joined the Army. I went to college. We wrote letters. He asked me out one summer when the sun browned my skin like toast—on the lightest setting. I pretended not to hear the question in his words. Sassafras, sassafras, sweetgum, pine. Are you a girl who could be mine? Tracy Mishkin is a call center veteran with a PhD and an MFA student in Creative Writing at Butler University. Her chapbook, I Almost Didn't Make It to McDonald's, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2014. Her second chapbook, The Night I Quit Flossing, is forthcoming from Five Oaks Press. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Tracy lives in Indianapolis.

The End of the World on Mount Tam Frances Klein You said you wanted to see if the world kept on going, and I wanted to see you see it. Deep in Marin dark, one finger in your belt loop, angler-fish eyes bathing in blackness.

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Tipton Poetry Journal When I lost my hold, and the void pressed on all senses, my skin felt alive to the lack of sensation- the sway of a branch after the bird has left. We moved from one darkness to the next until you breathed, “here,� and as if spoken into existence my starved eyes began to feed on morsels of light. Faces east, heads tipped back, we soaked in the slow tide of the rising sun that seeped up through oaks and redwoods. It washed first over the bare winter treesnegative space outlines on a chalkboardthen the bookends of the mountains, then you. With your shoulders slack, the alchemy of dawn transforming honey skin, I knew how the Israelites must have felt at their first glimpse of Baal. How could any distant Father-God compete with this golden lust; softer than it should be, heavier than you expect?

Frances Klein is a high school English teacher. She was born and raised in Southeast Alaska, and taught in Bolivia and California before settling in Indianapolis with her husband Kris. She has been published in the Indiana Voice Journal and GFT Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Standing Room Only Patrick Theron Erickson What about a station wagon you can drop the seats and lay down in? What about the flowers they’ll lay out with you? What about the choir and their flower song? What about a van or a bus you can really ride high in? You can take out the seats; you can live in that You can see the country. You can take out the windows and smell the night air. You can smell a skunk before you see one. You can hear the storm gathering overhead bending back the sagebrush rolling down the highway. You can smell the rain You can hear it under you, feel it hydroplane; you can hear the asphalt start to whine. You can hear your tires whining back What about the little red car that takes us to the edge of morning? What about the black one that takes us to the edge of night? What about the long black Cadillac that takes us over the edge? What about taking our family along? Start at the back of the chapel. Start with the pallbearers carrying you out What about our ancestors? Start at the gate of the cemetery and branch out from there. Start at the edge of dawn standing room only.

Patrick Theron Erickson, a resident of Garland, Texas, a Tree City, just south of Duck Creek, is a retired parish pastor put out to pasture himself. Secretariat is his mentor, though he has never been an achiever and has never gained on the competition. He resonates to a friend's definition of change, albeit a bit dated: change is coming at us a lot faster because you can punch a whole lot more, a whole lot faster down digital broadband "glass" fiber than an old copper co-axial landline cable. Patrick's work has appeared in The Penwood Review, The Oddville Press, Danse Macabre, Wilderness House Literary Review, Cobalt Review, Poetry Pacific, Poetry Quarterly, Red Fez, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal, and will appear in Grey Sparrow Journal, Burningword Literary Journal, Former People, Crack the Spine, and Futures Trading.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

High School Term Paper Kenneth Pobo I wrote mine about Thomas Hardy. He’s depressing. That’s why I chose him. People say I’m depressing. I’m not, I don’t think. I have a good sense of humor. I laugh at hot air balloons drifting over my pancakes. Don’t you? I doubt that my teacher, Mrs. Grinmore, reads what we write. On page four I wrote f___ three hundred times. I get an A. Maybe Hardy would love page four, his characters like markers stashed in books that end up in garage sales or under beds.

Kenneth Pobo, professor of English and ccreative writing at Widener University in Pennsylvania, has a new book out from Urban Farmhouse Press called Booking Rooms in the Kuiper Belt. In addition to Tipton Poetry Journal, his work has appeared in Nimrod, Indiana Review, Mudfish, Caesura, and elsewhere.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Chronicles of War Ajise Vincent i see war on the faces of toddlers, sniffing the smoke and odor of their burnt fathers – men who watered the barren earth with their sweat till it yielded fruits found only in eden. i see war in the eyes of sheiks, in the candor of monks, eating the nucleus of their integrity. i see war in the vaults of the aristocrats, their mammon dueling against the witches of devaluation. yester night, my six month old daughter cried till the rust of crow. i inferred she also saw the war through the throb of her eyes: two slippery bodies panting in a room where mosquitoes were throwing a party.

Ajise Vincent is an economist and social researcher based in Lagos, Nigeria. His works have appeared in Oddball, Eureka, Jalada, and various literary outlets. In 2015, Ajise was shortlisted for the Korea-Nigeria Poetry Feast Prize. He also won the Eriata Oribhabor Poetry Prize in the same year. He loves coffee, blondes & turtles.

Sonnet (Lupus at Three A.M.) Rhonda C. Poynter I have this figured out, at last: This is because of a past life. I no doubt stood on deck and turned my back On drowning souls in dying light I left them to their God and prayers, As I escaped into a small warm boat: Midnight rocked me, moonlight smoothed my hair While others swallowed heartless night. I have this figured out, at last - my bones Were always meant to drown;

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Tipton Poetry Journal This is just a strange and different ship And I will go down Into the depths. I've always known What's meant to come of me: This will take my blood, my bones, my soul And commit them to the sea. [This poem was first published in Wordgatherings]

It’s More Than Thunder Rhonda C. Poynter for Gannon Blue I have to tell the truth: If you catch me in a lie You'll have every right to Doubt my words When morning comes, and Things are better. I have to tell the truth: Love, if you catch me in a lie You'll be blank - eyed to when You said come on, then and took the Mountains down and Put the skies to shame.

[This poem was previously published in Blue Note]

Rhonda C. Poynter has published recently in Blue Bear Review, Rio, vox poetica, Sleet, Triggerfish, Wascana Review, Frontiers, The Lake, No Extra Words, Suprimal Poetry Arts and other journals and magazines. Rhonda lives in Alameda, California.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Lamentations of the Wolves Robert Weibezahl Out west, east of L.A., the woods are filled with wolves whose lamentations elude all but the most obeisant pilgrim. There, coffee shops and colleges crowd tarmac-parceled valleys and commerce teams with sanctity. There, the wolves, rumbling beneath the cellophane of cultivation, summon their dispread progeny. In New York, the wolves usurp the subways. Heard from corporate canyons, they rally wild dogs to flight. By day, light abets the warders, beats back the errant, wolf-roused minds. But in the clarity of the pregnable night, the vapored sky evokes the gray dust mountains. Concrete piers reshape into woods where roam those versed in wild instinct and in the restive baying of the moon.

Robert Weibezahl has returned to writing poetry after a long hiatus. His poetry has been published in Long Island Quarterly and previously here in Tipton Poetry Journal. He is the author of two novels, The Wicked and the Dead and The Dead Don’t Forget, as well as a number of short stories. He has been a finalist for the Short Mystery Fiction Society’s Derringer Award. A columnist for BookPage for more than a decade, his work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Daily News, Los Angeles Reader, Ventura County Star, Mystery Readers Journal, Bikini, and Irish America, among others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Waiting Room Donal Mahoney First time seeing this doctor, a specialist. Took a month to get an appointment. The waiting room’s packed. I grab the last seat next to a lady in a wheelchair knitting something, perhaps for a grandchild. I pull out my cell phone like everyone else but just to check messages, not into games. No one’s looking at magazines, it seems, any more. It’s a cell phone world, messages and Tic-Tac-Toe. Half an hour later the lady stops knitting and whispers, “Sit back and relax, son. Life’s a waiting room. We all have appointments. Every name is called. Even those who believe no doctor is in."

Nominated for the Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize, Donal Mahoney has had poetry and fiction published in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Some of his earliest work can be found at http://booksonblog12.blogspot.com. Donal lives in St. Louis.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Daraa Fae Spurrier If the desert never loved me, and the desert never loved me, why wouldn't it ungrip my tired limbs and send me, sprawling, home? In dreams hands and eyes touch my hands and my eyes. Then I looked for words and your words destroyed tiny railways across my yellowing skin. (I know I'm no longer good at keeping contact at holding a gaze. I watch them chew on "nervous" and "distant" and I don't mind. I am of one mind. I am of several. I know I threw a chair into the hotel pool. I know I don't reply to emails or answer the phone. A cloudy sort of sickness envelopes me. I know that too.) Maybe you look a little too calm in the portraits. For a long time after I couldn't walk alone. Maybe the cities are cruel. Maybe I prefer the vast expanses the abrupt endings no monoliths can invalidate. Afterward, for a long time, I couldn't see Damascus. [This poem was previously posted in the comments section of the Poetic Asides blog on WritersDigest.com on April 24, 2015]

Fae Spurrier lives and writes in Saudi Arabia.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Order of Things Jeanine Stevens Wanting a quick break from revisions, I order the tomato bisque and coffee at La Bou, settle in for a long lunch. From the bus stop on Watt Avenue, a stately women comes in with large backpack and rolling duffle that was once expensive. Stylish in cherry red sweater, black pants and worn clogs, she orders a small coffee and sits close to me. She takes bottles of water and large paper cups from her backpack, sniffs the bottles, pours some into a paper cup which goes directly into the microwave. Another sniff, she eats the contents. I’m not sure if its bread or meat? In her other cup fresh water, also microwaved, cooled, another bottle filled. She leaves the coffee untouched, purchased, so she could come in and prepare her lunch.

Jeanine Stevens has graduate degrees in Anthropololgy and Education. She has five chapbooks, the latest, Caught in Clouds, from Finishing Line Press. Her poems have appeared in Poet Lore, Ekphrasis, Ibbetson Street Press, South Dakota Review, and Poetry Depth Quarterly, among others. She was raised in Indiana and currently lives in Northern California where she divides her time between Sacramento and South Lake Tahoe.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Rare Lotus Christine Valentine I am attracted to a man with a good mind His physical state doesn’t matter much As long as his words throw a switch in my brain And my body glows like a firefly On a moonless summer night Some men are snakes Whose words writhe and twist Designed to flatter and cajole Promising everything But prepared to give nothing Like cheap margarine All container and oil Puffed up with air Totally without flavor A man with a good mind is rare And with kindness all through his bones Even rarer A Brahma Kamal Lotus Whose blossoms last only for a single night Buds emitting fragrance before the bloom As hypnotic as a well-aged wine With a finish that lingers

Christine Valentine came to the USA from England in 1964. She worked for the Northern Cheyenne Tribe for 25 years. Christine writes poetry and non-fiction. Her work has appeared in: Crazy Woman Creek: Women Rewrite the American West; Big Sky Journal; The Lowdown Literary Journal and The Emerald Coast Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Tidy Um Tidy Tum Richard Alan Bunch “It’s Old Norse to me,” she said, looking puzzled at her tomboy flowers while admiring the parrot tulips, poppies of liquid gold, and star jasmine. Sunlight highlights earth colors such as timberlands, corn fields, and wheat farms with its insatiable ardor in monotone beats of the wind as incessant tides push driftwood alongside names chiseled in the sand. After walking over the mountains, she munches a pomegranate and espouses the enchanting melodies of mystic half-moons and rhapsodic resurrection hymns.

Richard Alan Bunch is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee and the author of several collections of poetry, including Greatest Hits: 1970-2000; Wading the Russian River; and Gazing Anew. His poetry has appeared in Windsor Review, Poetry New Zealand, Hurricane Review, Poem, Hawai’i Review, Many Mountains Moving, Red River Review, Slant, Homestead Review, Dirigible, Haight Ashbury Literary Journal, West Wind Review, Comstock Review, and the Oregon Review. His latest work is titled 120 Poems of Love. He resides with his family in Davis, California.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Old age T.D. Richards is a rutabaga ripening inside us unnoticed till winter when knuckles sprout knobs and lips turn purple, skin the color of mud. An earthy scent issues from the unwashed hollow of our arms. Exhausted roots crave to be unearthed.

T.D. Richards was a career Correctional administrator and a University professor and is now a poet. His poetry has been published in Tipton Poetry Journal, Flying Island, and Sounds and Words. His first book of poems is This Side and That (Dog Ear Publishing). He was born in Indiana and lives in central Indiana with his wife, Carol, and their Australian Labradoodle, Morgan.

November Song William Doreski In watercolor autumn dawn you’re singing off-key to the cats to amuse them as you slop canned food onto their dishes. This morning your dental appointment looms like the Rosetta stone,

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Tipton Poetry Journal

both an object and an event. Tomorrow at the hand clinic in Boston I’ll offer my paw for appraisal as if an old dog had learned a new trick. Gradually our bodies undermine us. The middle-aged son of our friends in Wilton is dying of cancer— fluids pouring into fluids that otherwise would never mingle. The sister-in-law of a colleague suffers with a ventilator and can move only two fingers with which on a tablet she types words she hopes will memorialize the collapse of all her systems. The pale light in the white pines looks plain enough to accept the faintest scrawls of language, yet nothing occurs except a crow, and in the malleable distance a V of Canada geese. A scrape of leafless maples excites for a moment. Then the chill recovers its poise, retaining only your voice trebling in the kitchen, and the cats responding with cries of pleasure that back in nature they’d reserve for the triumph of a kill.

William Doreski teaches writing and literature at Keene State College in New Hampshire. His work has appeared in various journals and in sevelera collections, most recently The Suburbs of Atlantis (AAA Press, 2013).

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Bible of a Dog Joan Colby Staring at my chicken sandwich, she Suddenly shows her wolf face, Eyes fierce with desire. Pushes in too close. I say enough of that! She regains the composure Of her training. How repetition processed In the circuits of the brain Rewires ambition to seize and swallow. She offers her paw for nail-trimming. The once refused manicure accepted By dint of over-and-over. The conditioning We believe we are immune to. Free Will and intellect. The bible of a dog Is sit and stay and fetch. Surely, God Asks no more of us than that.

Joan Colby has published widely in journals such as Poetry, Atlanta Review, South Dakota Review, Prairie Schooner and others. Awards include two Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards, Rhino Poetry Award, the new renaissance Award for Poetry, and an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Literature. She has published 16 books including Selected Poems from FutureCycle Press which received the 2013 FutureCycle Prize and Ribcage from Glass Lyre Press which has been awarded the 2015 Kithara Book Prize. Colby is also an associate editor of Kentucky Review and FutureCycle Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Aeolus Means Prairie Thomas Alan Orr This is a place of wind. In winter cold gnarly fingers Pry at windows and doors. In summer a hot wet breath Engulfs every living thing. Here in this place of wind The neighbor’s wife is leaving him. She is restive and has no peace. The wind, she says, it never stops. He watches her drive away. In the barn he putters absently With trusty tools, nothing left to fix. A keening wind cuts the fallow ground. High overhead the sandhill cranes Cruise the jetstream, a world away From windborne sorrow, yet their wild And holy voices lift this grief to God.

Thomas Alan Orr's most recent book of poems is Tongue to the Anvil (Restoration Press, 2014). A sampling of his poetry, along with an interview, is featured on Indiana Poet Laureate Shari Wagner's website, Through the Sycamores. He has recent work appearing in Yellow Chair Review, The Merton Seasonal, and in Brick Street Poetry’s anthology Mapping the Muse: A Bicentennial Look at Indiana Poetry.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Driving Aimlessly David Allen I’m driving around aimlessly trying to drown my inner tears. It’s what I do instead of drinking the pain away. A new hurt came today from my eldest son, who says, “we’re done.” After almost 31 years, most spent in mental combat to undo the damage done by his crazy Mom, she’s finally won. My son believes all of her lies. I pass fields of corn and leaning, faded barns, trying to focus on how he lost his way. Then, the ruins of a rural one-room, brick schoolhouse causes me to pause. Of course, I think, he’s boarded himself in and, rambling through the rubble of a mind tortured by the psychosis inherited from his Mom, he has lashed out at the one stable supporting pillar in his crumbling life.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

I want to turn around, speed to his house, comfort him, help repair the damaged walls of his mind; unboard the windows so he can see out. But I don’t. I drive on. I am done, too.

David Allen is a retired journalist and poetry editor of the Indiana Voice Journal who has two books of poetry, The Story So Far (Writer’s Ink Press) and (more) (Paradise Islands Press). David has been published in numerous literary journals and was a member of the Eat Write Cafe and Traveling Poets' Society on Okinawa, where he was Okinawa Bureau Chief for Stars and Stripes for 17 years. He meets regularly with the Last Stanza Poetry Association of Elwood, Indiana.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Review: One Life by Matthew Brennan Book Review by Barry Harris Title: One Life Author: Matthew Brennan Year: 2016 Publisher: Lamar University Literary Press

One Life is Matthew Brennan’s most recent and fifth collection of poems. Its contents are arranged into five sections: One Life; Liber Amoris; Still Life; Elegiac; and One World. Brennan introduces us to the first section with an epigraph from Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem, The Eolian Harp: O! the one Life, with us and abroad

The Eolian Harp was one of Coleridge’s “conversation poems” in which he explored his idea of “One Life” – that humanity is spiritually connected through nature to the divine. It had been decades since I last read Coleridge, so I took the opportunity to rediscover a bit of the Romantic Movement before I ever laid eyes on the first poem in One Life. The first few poems in One Life contain lots of light and dark and dreams – sunrises and sunsets and even noontime glare: For even in its dying, bleeding prism, The sun can splash on any windshield’s glass, Blinding as daybreak in Sahara glares. [Noon Glare: 12-14]

Then, with Home Movie, this book begins to turn with a vignette of the poet on his eighth birthday dressed like a pirate and blowing out his eight candles with his mother: She is dark-haired again, blue eyes blinded by the sun-gun’s glare but shining: her teeth glow white as crossbones on a pirate’s flag when it meets the morning light.

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[Home Movie: 6-10]


Tipton Poetry Journal This poem is the first time we are ushered in to meet Brennan’s family through childhood memory. In Flash Flood he remembers how his mother felt exposed and vulnerable whenever his father travelled by air on business. The poem recounts a pre-dawn car trip back from the airport with siblings sleeping and dreaming in the back seat when her husband nowhere near, the car broke down at Dead Man’s Curve, Mom at the wheel, as rain came down at once, flash flooding drapes of darkness everywhere: All I saw was what’s inside. [Flash Flood: 17-20]

I marvel at Brennan’s skill at extended metaphor as his Queen Anne house is a well-timbered ship patched and rebuilt after months of labor [After an Eight-Inch Rainfall, over Labor Day Weekend] and the branches of Daphne and Apollo – twin ash and poplar trees that survived the ravages of straight-line winds – become a church with arched branches forming a nave as the wind moves through the higher limbs whose folded hands part allowing light to “… land on each green leaf/And me, the trees translucent as stained glass.” [One Life: 13-14]. Here his title poem echoes the “One Life” ideas laid out by Coleridge as even the wind in the trees creates a living sacred moment to the poet. The final poems in the first section expand the focus onto a wider view of history as Ruins tells the story of Union troops sacking Columbia, South Carolina in 1865 and The Tigris River tells of twin wars: the first stanza set in 1258 when Mongol hordes rage into Baghdad and in 2003 when a coalition army invades Iraq and a mob in Baghdad burns a library down reducing the oldest Qur’an a thousand years old to ash. As I started the second section, Liber Amoris, I discovered the history of William Hazlitt, the English writer, literary critic and painter. I knew the name but little else. Liber Amoris, or the “book of love,” was Hazlitt’s anonymously published narrative which was an outgrowth of his sad infatuation with Sarah Walker, a young housemaid at a lodging house. Hazlitt reveals his narrator’s infatuation with his fantasy object of affection even while we suspect that others see her as more ordinary. In Brennan’s poem Hazlitt in Love, we learn: … Though friends may think her eyes are slimy like a snake’s and others she’s bony like crag-ends of mutton chops, I’m bit; I’ve lipped her as she strode my lap [Hazlitt in Love: 11-14]

While in Edinburgh to obtain his divorce, Hazlitt had left Sarah Walker at the lodging house with a gift of his favorite bronze bust of Napoleon

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Tipton Poetry Journal Bonaparte. In Hazlitt Unbound, it all comes apart when Hazlitt discovers her walking with her arm around fellow boarder John Tomkins: … She had played The double game with both of us together, Though no serpent ever kissed so sweet. Feeling like a man thrown off a roof, I broke the well-wrought bust into tiny bits. [Hazlitt Unbound: 12-16]

Brennan moves on with more scenes from other volumes of the book of love. In What the Lamp Lights Up, he poses a scene where a riverboat pilot on the Sienne spies light coming through a window on the shore. He cannot see any objects within the room, but just then thinks of his wife’s thighs through her lingerie. Inside the room is Flaubert, “a writer carving phrases with his pen/who has read the pilot’s mind and sees/ a pretty, aging woman, bored with life/ and sick with the sweetness of romanticism.” [What the Lamp Lights Up: 16-20] The middle section, Still Life, contains mostly ekphrastic poems derived from artwork and other poems that forge moments of life into quick glimpses of life. La Cuisine des Beaux Arts serves up Thanksgiving Dinner as a work of art with the turkey as a canvas and some chive and oil a chef’s palette. Revisiting Vietnam is a freeze-frame moment when Brennan finds himself in the same retirement community dining room as General William Westmoreland. Brennan, in comfortable knee-long shorts, is asked by the hostess to don a navy blazer and cautioned not get up again or he’ll make the general mad. The Elegiac section explores themes of death and heading home. Dry Farming presents us with an aging writer passing through the drought of late-term writer’s block when his notebook is as “dry as the family farm” but then remembers how “from long ago dry farming grows crops too [Dry Farming: 4, 11]. In Remains, Brennan addresses his father, who had lived a decade alone after his wife’s death, and had rarely spoken for fifty years about fighting Germans in World War II France until “At seventy, the river/You’d dammed inside since ’45 broke through.” [Remains: 21-22]. In Afterlife, an adult Brennan discovers his grandfather’s grave and, at an extended family’s Christmas dinner, blurts out the good news only to be surprised at how he had opened up an unknown family wound. His grandfather had a history of driving drunk and, after divorce, had driven his own children home. You drove them home, too stewed to keep the Packard’s wheels straight, swerving side to side, steering with only knees and elbows, peering ahead as if into a blizzard . . . Some nights, you’d park across the street and stare up at the windows till the lights went out. [Afterlife: 35-38, 46-47]

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Tipton Poetry Journal The final section, One World, is a bit of a travelogue, consisting mostly of poems written during or thinking about places Brennan has traveled. On a river cruise down the Rhine passing the Lorelei Rock, Brennan recalls in Cruising that Mary Shelley’s characters Victor Frankenstein and Henry Clerval had once in literature cruised past the same spot. In Walking Man, he writes of walking on a treadmill in front of a second-story window looking at a lanky man who ambles by on the street day after day, his swinging arms keeping pace with his moving feet while his eyes stay fixed on something unseen ahead. Beethoven’s Fifth comes through the walking Brennan’s earphones and he remembers reading of John Sullivan Dwight, a transcendentalist who walked long miles to Boston from Brook Farm to hear the famous first four notes. But walking man is quiet, even-keeled, And calm; he takes the measure of the world In ordered, stoic, meditative steps – One who has lived through thunderstorms of grief, Trekking dark passages, and who now seeks The power underlying solitude. [Walking Man: 26-31]

Walking Man is not quite the final poem in this section and the book, but it feels like it should be. Near the end of a fascinating mix of poems, Brennan too seems fixed on something unseen ahead and makes you wonder just who is the Walking Man. Poets will admire Brennan’s use of forms, the mathematical beauty of lines and stanzas as well as his subtle use of internal rhyme. Readers may also, as I did, avail themselves with a little bit of research and Google any unfamiliar vocabulary or references to places and people: Samuel Taylor Coleridge and William Hazlitt. Those who do will gift themselves an even richer experience. Matthew Brennan teaches at Indiana State University. His most recent book of poems is One Life (Lamar University Literary Press, 2016). Earlier books include The House with the Mansard Roof (Backwaters Press, 2009) and The Sea-Crossing of Saint Brendan (Birch Brook Press, 2008). In 2012 Story Line Press brought out Dana Gioia: A Critical Introduction as part of its monograph series on contemporary poets.

Barry Harris is editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal and has published one poetry collection, Something At The Center. Barry lives in Brownsburg, Indiana and is retired from Eli Lilly and Company.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Review: Darkened Rooms of Summer by Jared Carter Book Review by Christine Stewart- Nuñez Title: Darkened Rooms of Summer Author: Jared Carter Year: 2014 Publisher: University of Nebraska Press

As a diligent scholar-poet, I intended to read Jared Carter’s Darkened Rooms of Summer: New and Select Poems with a distant, critical eye. As the debut title in Ted Kooser’s Contemporary Poetry Series, published by the University of Nebraska Press, this book felt weighty. As Kooser writes in the introduction, he hopes the books in this series will “introduce a significant selection of poems from the life work of a writer whose work… deserve[s] more attention.” Darkened Rooms of Summer was a wise inaugural choice; it brings into conversation poems from Carter’s five fulllength collections as well as new material, conveying the breadth and depth of this Indiana author’s oeuvre. The distance with which I approached this book soon disappeared as Carter’s words enchanted me. Over several months, I sipped poems in stolen moments – over morning tea, after my son fell asleep, as I prepped to write my own creative work. Just as Carter describes the mystery of cracking geodes open in the book’s first poem – “It is all waiting there in darkness” (12) – turning pages felt the same way; once inside, each poem shines. Carter’s work seduces with its plainspoken spark and with its long glances at people, landscapes, and objects that makes them shimmer with authenticity. The magic in Carter’s poems is subtle but powerful, often emerging in just a few lines. Take “Glacier,” for instance:

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Tipton Poetry Journal Last night I saw it form again along the woods’ dark edge; heard it gathering out of a wind from the northwest. (1-4)

A poet less assertive might say, “I imagined it form again.” But no. Carter pronounces it so, and we believe him, especially when he describes how plants and animals reacted to the glacier’s sudden presence. “Landing the Bees” conveys this alchemic quality as well. The swarm’s hum is echoed in the neighbors’ “watery voices,” (2) in the way “things / rising of their own accord are beckoning / to themselves” (13-15) – a sound which becomes “your own voice murmuring” (15). In the small spaces of a word or a phrase, Carter conducts the transformation, imbuing images with transcendence. A consummate storyteller, Carter spins narratives from threads of legend, history, memory and artifacts. Whether it’s the story of two feuding Kentuckians who killed each other en route to the battle of Tippecanoe (“Phoenix”) or of Sefe, an old man charged with the duty of moving three-hundred-year-old graves to higher ground (“The Undertaker”), Carter’s narrative dazzles. I admire “Barn Siding” for its epic length – eighteen pages – as well as for its haunting plot and breathtaking imagery. We know, from the opening stanzas, that the speaker is done taking risks looking for barn wood. As the poem unfolds, we grow to admire this connoisseur’s strategies for picking over abandoned farms, barns, and houses. When he breaks down his labor – prying apart the tongue and groove boards, stacking them in his pickup, stopping to sample wild raspberries on the path between truck and barn – we are fully immersed in his world. So when he reveals the accident, it feels both inevitable and surprising, the ways most excellent turns do; it even pulls readers deeper in the speaker’s reflective nature. But that’s not the turn of the poem. When someone happens upon the scene of the fallen narrator – that’s when the darkened room of his character is revealed. Whether it’s a multipage narrative poem or a series of poems written in tripled quatrains, Carter’s hand moves deftly in, out and across forms – a fascinating study of how a voice moves through the music and constraints of lineation over decades of writing. What remains constant, however, is the way Carter grounds his poetry in place. In poem after poem, he pulls images from his Midwestern landscape: cornflower, tornado, peony bush, cicadas, cecropia moth, mourning dove, ditchweed. Sometimes these details serve as evidence of time and tension; they characterize a town, a person, a story. “Visit” is a favorite example:

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Tipton Poetry Journal Whatever day you choose, rain will be falling out of that granite sky. Whatever path you take will make no sound. A lone bird calling through the double row of hemlocks seems half silenced by the gathering mist. (1-5)

The opening secures readers in qualities of sound and weather, preparing the mood for the meditation on Emily Dickinson’s life. Other times, such as in “Cemetery,” place becomes the poem’s subject: “Broken tombstones, paper flags – one sways. / Two blacksnakes come together in the maze” (18-19). The image of the snakes on the tombstones becomes the central one, grounding the refrains of this villanelle. Even after closing Darkened Rooms of Summer, the poems lingered with me, an afterglow of story, image, and music. I suspect it will draw me in again and again because there is so much to admire about Carter’s wellcrafted verse. His words in “Shaking the Peonies” says it superbly: I would lie down again in your bed of fabrications like a quilt of many voices covering me in darkness – colors stitched from the motions of your hands bringing water from low places, or your kneeling each morning to build a fire, as though the sun had come to call, and we were all new.

Jared Carter lives in Indiana. He has received the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets, the Poets’ Prize, a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and two literary fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. Christine StewartNuñez is the author of Untrussed (2016); Snow, Salt, Honey (2012); Keeping Them Alive (2011); Postcard on Parchment (2008); Unbound & Branded (2006); and The Love of Unreal Things (2005). Her piece “An Archeology of Secrets” was a Notable Essay in Best American Essays 2012. Her work has appeared in such magazines as Arts & Letters, North American Review, Prairie Schooner and Shenandoah. She is an Associate Professor in the English Department at South Dakota State University.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Editor Barry Harris is editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal and Brick Street Poetry’s Mapping the Muse: A Bicentennial Look at Indiana Poetry. He has published one poetry collection, Something At The Center. Barry lives in Brownsburg, Indiana and is retired from Eli Lilly and Company. His poetry has appeared in Kentucky Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, Grey Sparrow, Silk Road Review, Saint Ann‘s Review, Boston Literary Magazine, Night Train, Silver Birch Press, Flying Island, Awaken Consciousness and Writers‘ Bloc. One of his poems is on display at the National Museum of Sport and another is painted on a barn in Boone County, Indiana as part of Brick Street Poetry‘s Word Hunger public art project. His poems are also included in these anthologies: From the Edge of the Prairie; Motif 3: All the Livelong Day; and Twin Muses: Art and Poetry.

Cover Photo Ben Rose is a multi-disciplined artist who started his artistic career in music and spoken word poetry. He is an award winning director as well as professional actor with a degree in photography from the Indianapolis Arts Institute.

Poet Biographies Carolyn Adams’ poetry and art have been published widely, most recently in Skylark Review, Hawaii Pacific Review, and Forge Journal. She currently lives and writes in Houston, Texas. David Allen is a retired journalist and poetry editor of the Indiana Voice Journal who has two books of poetry, The Story So Far (Writer’s Ink Press) and (more) (Paradise Islands Press). David has been published in numerous literary journals and was a member of the Eat Write Cafe and Traveling Poets' Society on Okinawa, where he was Okinawa Bureau Chief for Stars and Stripes for 17 years. He meets regularly with the Last Stanza Poetry Association of Elwood, Indiana. Gilbert Allen's most recent collection of poems is Catma, from Measure Press. His book of linked stories, The Final Days of Great American Shopping, is forthcoming from USC Press in 2016. A frequent contributor to TPJ, he is a member of the South Carolina Academy of Authors and the Bennette E. Geer Professor of Literature Emeritus at Furman University.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Prerna Bakshi is a writer, poet and interpreter of Indian origin currently based in Macao. Her poetry has been published in Linden Avenue Literary Journal, Indiana Voice Journal, Red Fez, Muse India, Postcolonial Text, Hysteria, Grey Sparrow Journal, and others. CL Bledsoe is the author of a dozen books, most recently the poetry collection Riceland and the novel Man of Clay. He lives in northern Virginia with his daughter. Matthew Brennan teaches at Indiana State University. His most recent book of poems is One Life (Lamar University Literary Press, 2016). Earlier books include The House with the Mansard Roof (Backwaters Press, 2009) and The SeaCrossing of Saint Brendan (Birch Brook Press, 2008). In 2012 Story Line Press brought out Dana Gioia: A Critical Introduction as part of its monograph series on contemporary poets. Richard Alan Bunch is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee and the author of several collections of poetry, including Greatest Hits: 1970-2000; Wading the Russian River; and Gazing Anew. His poetry has appeared in Windsor Review, Poetry New Zealand, Hurricane Review, Poem, Hawai’i Review, Many Mountains Moving, Red River Review, Slant, Homestead Review, Dirigible, Haight Ashbury Literary Journal, West Wind Review, Comstock Review, and the Oregon Review. His latest work is titled 120 Poems of Love. He resides with his family in Davis, California. Joan Colby has published widely in journals such as Poetry, Atlanta Review, South Dakota Review, Prairie Schooner and others. Awards include two Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards, Rhino Poetry Award, the new renaissance Award for Poetry, and an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Literature. She has published 16 books including Selected Poems from FutureCycle Press which received the 2013 FutureCycle Prize and Ribcage from Glass Lyre Press which has been awarded the 2015 Kithara Book Prize. Colby is also an associate editor of Kentucky Review and FutureCycle Press. Jack Conway’s poems have appeared in a variety of literary journals and anthologies, among them: Poetry, The Antioch Review, The Hiram Poetry Review, The Columbia Review and Rattle and the anthologies, In A Fine Frenzy: Poets Respond to Shakespeare and The Norton Book of Light Verse. His most recent book, Outside Providence: Selected Poems, was published in 2016. Jack lives in Massachusetts. David Craig lives in Steubenville, Ohio. He has published close to 300 poems in journals as well as 21 books.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Holly Day has taught writing classes at the Loft Literary Center in Minnesota, since 2000. Her published books include Music Theory for Dummies, Music Composition for Dummies, Guitar All-in-One for Dummies, Piano All-in-One for Dummies, Walking Twin Cities, Insider’s Guide to the Twin Cities, Nordeast Minneapolis: A History, and The Book Of, while her poetry has recently appeared in New Ohio Review, SLAB, and Gargoyle. Her newest poetry book, Ugly Girl, just came out from Shoe Music Press. Ed Doerr has work published or forthcoming in Water~Stone Review, The Tishman Review, Postcard Poems & Prose, Firewords Quarterly, and the New York Times bestselling collection It All Changed In An Instant, among others. When he is not writing, he teaches middle school English in New Jersey, where he lives with his wife and pursues a Masters degree in Creative Writing. William Doreski teaches writing and literature at Keene State College in New Hampshire. His work has appeared in various journals and in sevelera collections, most recently The Suburbs of Atlantis (AAA Press, 2013). Patrick Theron Erickson, a resident of Garland, Texas, a Tree City, just south of Duck Creek, is a retired parish pastor put out to pasture himself. Secretariat is his mentor, though he has never been an achiever and has never gained on the competition. He resonates to a friend's definition of change, albeit a bit dated: change is coming at us a lot faster because you can punch a whole lot more, a whole lot faster down digital broadband "glass" fiber than an old copper co-axial landline cable. Patrick's work has appeared in The Penwood Review, The Oddville Press, Danse Macabre, Wilderness House Literary Review, Cobalt Review, Poetry Pacific, Poetry Quarterly, Red Fez, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal, and will appear in Grey Sparrow Journal, Burningword Literary Journal, Former People, Crack the Spine, and Futures Trading. George Fish is a widely published writer and poet, whose poetry has been published in Flying Island, New Politics, Poems 4 Palestine, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal and elsewhere. George has written extensively on blues and other pop music, politics, economics, and other topics, chiefly for left and alternative publications. He also performs Lenny Bruce/George Carlin-inspired comedy, videos of which can be seen on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/aannyytt. Katherine Givens is working towards an M.A. from Drexel University. She has publications in numerous print and online magazines, including WestWard Quarterly, Tipton Poetry Journal, The Copperfield Review, Nazar Look, and From the Depths. She also published Passages of Love: A Collection of Poems with Nazar Look in November 2015. Katherine lives in New Jersey. Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois has had over a thousand of his poems and fiction appear in literary magazines in the U.S. and abroad. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and The Best of the Net for work published in 2011 through 2014. His novel, Two-Headed Dog, based on his work as a clinical psychologist in a state hospital, is available for Kindle and Nook, or as a print edition. He lives in Denver.

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Tipton Poetry Journal John D. Groppe is a Professor Emeritus of English at Saint Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Indiana. A native of New York City, but a convinced Hoosier since 1958, his poetry has previously appeared in the Tipton Poetry Journal, Snowy Egret, The Flying Island, Crossroads, Embers, The National Catholic Reporter, and other journals. Rich Ives lives on Camano Island in Puget Sound. His writing has appeared in Verse, North American Review, Dublin Quarterly, Massachusetts Review, Northwest Review, Quarterly West, Iowa Review, Poetry Northwest, Virginia Quarterly Review, Fiction Daily and many more. He is a winner of the Francis Locke Memorial Poetry Award from Bitter Oleander and has been nominated twice for the Best of the Web, three times for Best of the Net and six times for The Pushcart Prize. Light from a Small Brown Bird, a book of poems, is available from Bitter Oleander Press. Dan Jacoby is a graduate of St. Louis University, Chicago State University, and Governors State University. He lives both in Beecher and Hagaman, Illinois. He has published poetry in Arkansas Review, Belle Rev Review, Bombay Gin, Canary, Cowboy Poetry Press-Unbridled 2015 (Western Writers Spur Award), Chicago Literati, Indiana Voice Journal, Deep South Magazine, Lines and Stars, Wilderness House Literary Review, Steel Toe Review, The Opiate, and Red Fez to name a few. He is a former principal, teacher, coach, counterintelligence agent, and Green Beret. He is a member of the American Academy of Poets. Nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015. Having grown up in rural Michigan, David Jibson now lives in Ann Arbor where he is an associate editor of Third Wednesday, a literary arts journal, a member of The Crazy Wisdom Poetry Circle and The Poetry Society of Michigan. He is retired from a long career in Social Work, most recently with a Hospice agency. His poetry has appeared in Third Wednesday, Brasilia Review, Waccamaw Journal, Peninsula Poets, A-Literation, Apex Magazine and Highland Park Poetry. He sees “story” as the most important element of his poems. Jenny Kalahar is the author of three novels and a collection of poetry, One Mile North of Normal and Other Poems. Jenny helms Last Stanza Poetry Association in Elwood, Indiana and is treasurer for the Indiana State Federation of Poetry Clubs. Her humor column, A Twist in the Tale, is published twice monthly in Tails Magazine. Jenny is a used & rare bookseller with her husband, Patrick, from their old schoolhouse home in Elwood. Saloni Kaul, author and poet, was first published at the age of ten. As critic and columnist, Saloni has enjoyed 38 years of being published in leading dailies and magazines. Saloni Kaul's first volume, Saloni Kaul’s Book of Children’s Poetry, was published in 2009. Subsequent volumes include Universal One and Essentials All. Her work has been published in Poetry Quarterly, The Horrorzine, Eye On Life Magazine, Poetry and Paint Anthology, Misty Mountain Review, Inwood Indiana, Mad Swirl, FIVE Poetry Magazine and The Voices’ Project, and is forthcoming in Sentinal Quarterly and AJI Magazine. Saloni lives in Toronto.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Catherine Keller is 19 years old, majoring in communications with a minor in sociology at the College at Brockport. She has had 10 articles published in the NeXt section of the Buffalo News, and poetry published in Teen Ink Magazine and Slipstream Magazine. She has been writing creatively since she was 16. Let-meelive.tumblr.com. Erren Kelly is a Pushcart nominated poet from Los Angeles. His work appears in such publications as Hiram Poetry Review, Mudfish, Poetry Magazine, Ceremony, Cactus Heart, Similar Peaks, Gloom Cupboard, Poetry Salzburg and Black Heart Literary Journal. He is also the author of the book Disturbing the Peace (Night Ballet Press) and the chapbook, The Rah Rah Girl (forthcoming from Barometic Press). Helga Kidder lives in the Tennessee hills with her husband and dog. She was awarded an MFA from Vermont College. Her poems have been published in many journals and more recently in Broad River Review where she was a 2015 Ron Rash finalist. She has three poetry collections, Wild Plums (2012) Luckier than the Stars (2013) and Blackberry Winter (2016). Frances Klein is a high school English teacher. She was born and raised in Southeast Alaska, and taught in Bolivia and California before settling in Indianapolis with her husband Kris. She has been published in the Indiana Voice Journal and GFT Press. Doris Lynch has published work recently in Willow Springs, Sow’s Ear, The Atlanta Review, Haibun Today, Frogpond, and in the anthology Cradle Songs: An Anthology of Poems on Motherhood. Finishing Line Press published her chapbook Praising Invisible Birds in 2009. The Indiana Arts Commission has awarded her three individual artist’s grants in poetry and one in fiction. Nominated for the Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize, Donal Mahoney has had poetry and fiction published in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Some of his earliest work can be found at http://booksonblog12.blogspot.com. Donal lives in St. Louis. Jayne Marek’s poetry has appeared in publications such as Blast Furnace, Gravel, Lantern Journal, Siren, Spillway, Driftwood Bay, Tipton Poetry Journal, Isthmus, The Occasional Reader, Wisconsin Academy Review, and Windless Orchard and in several anthologies; she is a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee. She also has a chapbook and a co-authored book of poems, as well as articles, short fiction, and art photographs. Jayne now lives in Port Townsend, Washington.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Tracy Mishkin is a call center veteran with a PhD and an MFA student in Creative Writing at Butler University. Her chapbook, I Almost Didn't Make It to McDonald's, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2014. Her second chapbook, The Night I Quit Flossing, is forthcoming from Five Oaks Press. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Tracy lives in Indianapolis. George Moore now lives on the south shore of Nova Scotia. Recent poetry collections include Children's Drawings of the Universe (Salmon Poetry 2015) and The Hermits of Dingle (FutureCycle 2013). Publications include the Atlantic, North American Review, Poetry, and Colorado Review. Lylanne Musselman is an award winning poet, playwright, and artist. Her work has appeared in Pank, Flying Island, The Tipton Poetry Journal, The Rusty Nail, So it Goes, Issue 3, among others, and many anthologies. In addition, Musselman has twice been a Pushcart Nominee. Musselman is the author of three chapbooks, and she co-authored Company of Women: New and Selected Poems (Chatter House Press, 2013). Presently, she teaches writing at IUPUI, American National University, and online for Ivy Tech Community College. Thomas Alan Orr's most recent book of poems is Tongue to the Anvil (Restoration Press, 2014). A sampling of his poetry, along with an interview, is featured on Indiana Poet Laureate Shari Wagner's website, Through the Sycamores. He has recent work appearing in Yellow Chair Review, The Merton Seasonal, and in Brick Street Poetry’s anthology Mapping the Muse: A Bicentennial Look at Indiana Poetry. Kenneth Pobo, professor of English and ccreative writing at Widener University in Pennsylvania, has a new book out from Urban Farmhouse Press called Booking Rooms in the Kuiper Belt. In addition to Tipton Poetry Journal, his work has appeared in Nimrod, Indiana Review, Mudfish, Caesura, and elsewhere. Rhonda C. Poynter has published recently in Blue Bear Review, Rio, vox

poetica, Sleet, Triggerfish, Wascana Review, Frontiers, The Lake, No Extra Words, Suprimal Poetry Arts and other journals and magazines. Rhonda lives outside of Los Angeles. Charles Rammelkamp edits an online literary journal called The Potomac http://thepotomacjournal.com - and is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books in Baltimore, where he lives. His latest book is a collection of poems called Mata Hari: Eye of the Day (Apprentice House, Loyola University). Apprentice House has accepted another manuscript, American Zeitgeist, for publication later this year. T.D. Richards was a career Correctional administrator and a University professor and is now a poet. His poetry has been published in Tipton Poetry Journal, Flying Island, and Sounds and Words. His first book of poems is This Side and That (Dog Ear Publishing). He was born in Indiana and lives in central Indiana with his wife, Carol, and their Australian Labradoodle, Morgan.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Timothy Robbins teaches ESL and does freelance translation in Wisconsin. He has a BA in French and an MA in Applied Linguistics from Indiana University. His poems have appeared previously in Tipton Poetry Journal, in Three New Poets, The James White Review, Slant, Main Street Rag, Two Thirds North, and others. Noel Sloboda's poetry has appeared in Bayou, Harpur Palate, PANK, and Rattle. He is the author of the poetry collections Shell Games (2008) and Our Rarer Monsters (2013) as well as several chapbooks, most recently Risk Management Studies (2015). Sloboda has also published a book about Edith Wharton and Gertrude Stein. Cheryl Snell’s most recent collection of poetry is called Geometries (Moria Books) and was written in collaboration with expressionist artist Janet Snell. Cheryl lives in Maryland. Fae Spurrier lives and writes in Saudi Arabia. Jeanine Stevens has graduate degrees in Anthropololgy and Education. She has five chapbooks, the latest, Caught in Clouds, from Finishing Line Press. Her poems have appeared in Poet Lore, Ekphrasis, Ibbetson Street Press, South Dakota Review, and Poetry Depth Quarterly, among others. She was raised in Indiana and currently lives in Northern California where she divides her time between Sacramento and South Lake Tahoe. Robin Throne's work has appeared in The New Poet Journal, Gypsy Cab, Mankato Poetry Review, North Coast Review, Split Lip Magazine, Crab Fat Literary Magazine, previously in Tipton Poetry Journal among others. She was the recipient of the third annual fiction chapbook prize from Gambling the Aisle and received the fourth David R. Collins Literary Achievement award from the Midwest Writing Center. Robin lives in Rock Island, Illinois. Christine Valentine came to the USA from England in 1964. She worked for the Northern Cheyenne Tribe for 25 years. Christine writes poetry and non-fiction. Her work has appeared in: Crazy Woman Creek: Women Rewrite the American West; Big Sky Journal; The Lowdown Literary Journal and The Emerald Coast Review. Ajise Vincent is an economist and social researcher based in Lagos, Nigeria. His works have appeared in Oddball, Eureka, Jalada, and various literary outlets. In 2015, Ajise was shortlisted for the Korea-Nigeria Poetry Feast Prize. He also won the Eriata Oribhabor Poetry Prize in the same year. He loves coffee, blondes & turtles. Robert Weibezahl has returned to writing poetry after a long hiatus. His poetry has been published in Long Island Quarterly and previously here in Tipton Poetry Journal. He is the author of two novels, The Wicked and the Dead and The Dead Don’t Forget, as well as a number of short stories. He has been a finalist for the Short Mystery Fiction Society’s Derringer Award. A columnist for BookPage for more than a decade, his work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Daily News, Los Angeles Reader, Ventura County Star, Mystery Readers Journal, Bikini, and Irish America, among others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Martin Willitts Jr is a retired librarian. He won the 2004 International Dylan Thomas Poetry Award. His poems have appeared in Blue Fifth Review, Big City Lit, Comstock Review, Tipton Poetry Journal, and others. He has over 20 poetry chapbooks, plus 11 full-length collections including How to Be Silent (FutureCycle

Press, 2016). Judy Young is a member of Last Stanza Poetry Association and attends Brick Street Poetry events in Zionsville, Indiana. Judy has been writing poetry since childhood but, until recently, had kept all of her writings private. She spent every weekend in a small cabin in Brown County, Indiana as a child and teenager, one without electricity or plumbing or any modern conveniences. It was nothing she would have lived through by choice, but it added a raw flavor to the beginning of her life that she still can recall so many years later, like a perfume or powerful dream.

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Profile for Tipton Poetry Journal

Tipton Poetry Journal #30  

Spring 2016

Tipton Poetry Journal #30  

Spring 2016

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