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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. This issue features 39 poets from the United States (18 different states) and one poet each from Canada and India. This issue we also include artwork with companion poems: “Jasper County Courthouse” by Judy Anne Kanne with John Groppe’s poem “Courthouse”; and a line drawing by Allen Forrest, which accompanies his poem, “Look.” Our cover photo, “Late November Blues” by Maik Strosahl is fresh out of an Indiana cornfield harvested mere weeks ago. Print versions of Tipton Poetry Journal are available for purchase through amazon.com. So far, Issues #29 thru #34 are available. Issue #35 (this issue) will be available soon. Barry Harris, Editor

Cover Photo, “Late November Blues” by Maik Strosahl Copyright 2017 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 Patrick T. Reardon .........................................................................1 Mary Hills Kuck ...............................................................................2 Thomas Locicero.............................................................................3 Janet Butler.......................................................................................4 Joe Gianotti........................................................................................6 Evan D. Williams .............................................................................8 Maik Strosahl.................................................................................10 Jack D. Harvey ...............................................................................12 Tobi Alfier .......................................................................................12 Jennifer Cherry .............................................................................14 Tom Raithel....................................................................................15 Milt Montague ...............................................................................16 Bruce Pratt .....................................................................................17 Maryfrances Wagner ..................................................................20 Roger Pfingston ............................................................................22 Steve Lambert ...............................................................................24 Mark Tappmeyer .........................................................................25 Pat Anthony....................................................................................28 Amy Katherine Cannon..............................................................30 Allen Forrest ..................................................................................33 Judith Skillman .............................................................................34 Gary Duehr .....................................................................................36


Tipton Poetry Journal Amritendu Ghosal........................................................................38 Daniel Gleason ..............................................................................39 John D. Groppe ..............................................................................40 Peter J. Grieco ................................................................................42 Henry Ahrens.................................................................................43 Karen D. Mitchell...........................................................................46 Jack Powers ....................................................................................48 Rose Bromberg .............................................................................50 Holly Day .........................................................................................50 Janet Reed .......................................................................................52 Charles Rammelkamp................................................................54 Norbert Krapf ................................................................................55 Joan Colby .......................................................................................56 Tim Robbins...................................................................................58 Frank De Canio..............................................................................59 Carol Hamilton..............................................................................60 Kelly Granito..................................................................................61 Elena Botts......................................................................................62 Andrew Hubbard .........................................................................64 Contributor Biographies.....................................................65


Tipton Poetry Journal


Tipton Poetry Journal

Itch Patrick T. Reardon He reached out his hand and I took three steps upon the sea and, then, with the strong wind, feared and sank to the bottom where I have been ever since as stupid armies with waterlogged firearms clash in soundless strife. The brochure tells the story of when truth and knowledge met and the still, silent itch dug under my thick skin. Thrones and dominations fell asleep at their angel duty and the Son escaped out a side door to go bowling with the blind weightlifter and the hip-hop doorman, a radical trinity, if there ever was one. God bless the child.

Patrick T. Reardon is the author of eight books, including Requiem for David, a poetry collection from Silver Birch Press, and Faith Stripped to Its Essence, a literary-religious analysis of Shusaku Endo's novel Silence. Reardon worked for 32 years as a reporter with the Chicago Tribune. His essays and poetry have been published widely in the United States and Europe. He lives now in Chicago.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Luck of Pigs Mary Hills Kuck I I’m told the Chinese character for house is a roof and underneath a pig. The soothing snorts of future meals and the warmth of a porcine body help to make you feel at home. Some Jamaicans keep a pig, fatten it with scraps and let it roam, to clean the gullies of their yummy trash. A sow can breed a portly passel of pigs For jerk barbeque or gold. My girlfriend’s father tended hogs. When the eastern summer breeze rustled doors and entered windows, piggish scent pervaded every room. “That, he said, “is the smell of gold.” My mottled gold glass piggy bank held my saved-up cents; I should have smashed it when it filled, but with a knife I slid the coins out one by one and saved that lucky pig. In the Alps on New Year’s Eve we ate sow’s ear with tangy sauce that blasted through our noses, eyes. Porcelain pigs in every shop wished us happiness and luck. II A sow with brood in tow waddled through a seminary gate, snuffled paths, rummaged in the bins behind a class. “She has a spirit,” students whispered, pointing. “See how pig and piglets follow her?”

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Tipton Poetry Journal In secret candled ring the girl lay prostrate, arced by students’ lamentations, hymns, pleas and incantations to the demon, “Let our comrade go!” But Satan knew the novices weren’t Jesus, hadn’t yet acquired his white-hot power. Pig and piglets hovered at the edge, resolved to do their duty and receive the spirits, leap right off the cliff behind the sheds. The demon snorted, did not budge. In the morning shoats and students went to bed. Originally from Illinois, Mary Hills Kuck retired from teaching English and Communications, first in the US and for many years in Jamaica and now lives and walks with her family in the woods in Massachusetts. Her poems have appeared in Long River Run, Connecticut River Review, Hamden Chronicle, SIMUL: Lutheran Voices in Poetry, Caduceus, The Jamaica Observer, Fire Stick: A Collection of New & Established Caribbean Poets, Fever Grass: A collection of New & Established Caribbean Writers, Massachusetts State Poetry Society, Inc. Anthology and The Aurorean.

Connective Tissue of the Night Sky Thomas Locicero I reel amid a throng of stars indifferent to my company and settle where the darkness drinks the verdigris of residue that spills beside the radiance unspooling from embroideries, that wondrous connectivity from bobbin, spindle, cylinder, the drum, the coil, the restless pin, the tapestried astrology, invisible to even me. Thomas Locicero is an award-winning poet, short story writer, and essayist, as well as a playwright and monologist. His work has appeared in Roanoke Review, Boston Literary Magazine, The Long Island Quarterly, Riverrun, Omnibus Arts & Literature Anthology, The Good Men Project, A&U: America's AIDS Magazine, and Beginnings. Originally from East Islip, Long Island, Thomas resides with his wife, Lil, and their sons, Sam and Ben, in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

My Mother’s Death Janet Butler She lay quiet, drifting in and out of the infinite as life left her. Her eyes deepened to liquid pools that looked through and beyond me. There were moments when she would pull back, her eyes tightened to a fierce focus as a remembered life filled the room in swarms of bits and pieces, almost reassembled to order. But the chaos drifted away and the light left. The pools deepened and her gaze again spread out to where night and the light of stars no longer there awaited her.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

I dream a dream. . . . Janet Butler The white snow lies in softness on the ground, its purity a glow folded in thick downy flakes. And yet I dream of a tomorrow, when spring will break - buds about to bloom on brown branches framed in a Japanese design of tangled limbs against blue skies. But I race forward, into nights with shadows the color of twilight, warm from the long linger of a sun slanting into dusk. There I’ll wait, that distant prick of light perhaps the glow of your cigarette as you walk towards me.

Janet Butler currently lives in Alameda, California, with Rocky, a 10 year old mini-pin senior rescue, and teaches TOEFL Test Preparation in Berkeley. She has focused on the Tanka these last three years, a form she finds very congenial, with some success. She is planning on a return to Italy, where she also holds citizenship, so future poems may involve cobblestone streets and windows that open out over red-tiled rooftops.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Three Shell Game Joe Gianotti You accuse me of being something less than your idea of a man, a writer of poetry, English literature, composition 101. And I guess you’re right, if the only way I can pass your test is to work in the home and garden section at the local Lowe’s hardware or rebuild lemons with a keen eye at the pick and pull. You say my hands lack calluses, but you’ve failed to check my heart for its toughened wall of skin that you built up as you swapped it in and out of my body like a street magician mixing shells, intermittently raising one to expose the red rubber ball only to shuffle some more until, voile! Nothing left but air and space.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Chad’s Birthday Joe Gianotti The tree tore at us quickly, and then the world shuddered at once as his head crashed through the driver’s side window. Shards of glass sprayed out, and his neck folded into the top of his back. Momentum flung me into his stomach. My two front teeth shattered as his life evicted his body. I shiver as I lie on the frozen ground. Red and silver lights whir around me, distorting the stars that I have slept under. My eyes begin to focus and the mirage of swirling flashes materializes. I feel chilled, as if the butcher has laid me out. A part of me has vanished, riding away in the screaming ambulance that will not prevent death, a part locked inside his wounded tree.

Joe Gianotti grew up in Whiting, Indiana, an industrial city five minutes from Chicago. He currently teaches English at Lowell High School. He is a proud contributor to Volume II of This is Poetry: The Midwest Poets. Among other poets, he represented Northwest Indiana in the 2014 Five Corners Poetry Readings. His work has been published in Blotterature, Former People: A Journal of Bangs and Whimpers, Steam Ticket: A Third Coast Review, The Tipton Poetry Journal, This, Yes Poetry, and other places. You can follow him on Twitter at @jgianotti10.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

lost in translation Evan D. Williams try to sanctify the inevitable pain of an autumn death: one with wet slate eyes hunched under an oak on some old hunting grounds a cold hearth in fevered dusk and try to keep vigil (what, could ye not watch with me one hour?) with the young widow her hair now slate-gray too unslumbered hearing voices spindling through the branches an old ballad half-remembered: “yonder stands your orphan with his gun…”

throng Evan D. Williams one day you will wake up and there will be a throng of adulators twenty or more in white shepherd’s cloaks dervishing in your begonias they will have made a messiah of your father who will still be asleep upstairs unaware and you will beseech them to leave him in peace and they will bowing and bending with apologies in ancient tongues

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Tipton Poetry Journal

ten o’clock pm on the upjohn farm Evan D. Williams a little flicker a thread of smoke the gaslight is snuffed out and the old donkey shuffles drowsily in his stable a thread of smoke a little flicker could set ablaze this little farmhouse and its little red-gabled barn groaning with hay but tonight the farmstead will stand square and silent under the cold quarter moon

my egypt Evan D. Williams the river rolls the grackles strung like black pearls the grain elevators standing in ancient silence the hard ground freezes the farmers' feet: my egypt is not of foreign lands

Evan D. Williams's poetry has appeared in Borderlands, IthacaLit, Mud Season Review, Penned Parenthood, and Stillwater. He is an art appraiser by vocation and lives with his wife in Ithaca, New York, in the foothills of the Appalachians. Photo Credit: Marion Ferguson

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Pickle Bucket Drummer Maik Strosahl Everything has a rhythm. Everything has a beat Just dying to be played— Tires paradiddle Over an asphalt pock, A flam rev churns above, Of Diesel strained, Seventy-four cars Loaded and northbound, Counting rails with An increasing click, Pounding the tons Through the rust and cement Of this ancient bridge underside, Even every step Of the southsiders Making their way up to Comiskey, With the occasional shuffle Of a child’s shoe Trying to keep up with daddy While staring at the old man Banging the pickle buckets For the money they throw. His hands keep sticking, His feet keep Kicking at the bucket, Kicking up the lip from the ground And letting it slap back down With the next stroke. His eyes have been closed, His soul is Playing somewhere else, Out east in Jersey, And man, The band tonight, Wow, Are they tight! Rocking up some jazz piece With a heavy grove, And the packed house is just Drinking it all in. A drop of water From the tracks above

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Tipton Poetry Journal And another, Slaps unexpected ghost-notes Into his solo And his yellowed eyes open. Going to be A disappointed crowd soon, Back from the park As the rain picks up, And he pauses a moment To pick a new beat From this wall of sound, Modifies his left grip, Cross-sticking his way Into a new tune For those returning to their cars, For those crossing back under His 42nd street bridge, And he closes Those old brown eyes, Loses his soul once more As another train rumbles through, As the thunder joins with a crash, As another tire Splashes through the pothole And the returning steps are his rhythm, And their shoes have the shuffle.

Michael E. Strosahl was born and raised in Moline, Illinois, just blocks from the Mississippi River. He has written poetry since youth, but became very active when he joined the Indiana poetry community. He has participated in poetry groups and readings from all parts of the state and at one time served as president of the Poetry Society of Indiana. Maik currently resides in Anderson, Indiana.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Cats Jack D. Harvey Cats' philosophy. Stay close to home. Avoid people with cold hands; in plain sight hide all the time. Walk alone. Live at night. Trust the moon. Jack D. Harvey’s poetry has appeared in Scrivener, Mind In Motion, Slow Dancer, The Antioch Review, Bay Area Poets’ Coalition, The University of Texas Review, The Beloit Poetry Journal, The Piedmont Journal of Poetry and a number of other online and in print poetry magazines over the years, many of which are probably kaput by now, given the high mortality rate of poetry magazines. Jack lives in a small town near Albany, New York. He is retired from doing whatever he was doing before he retired. He once owned a cat that could whistle Sweet Adeline, use a knife and fork and killed a postman.

Economies of Scale Tobi Alfier This, she learned her first day at bartending school: make six at once. You won’t need to sell your soul in a bikini for a decent job, your tips will be to the moon and back,

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Tipton Poetry Journal just how you love your kids and the man who made them. To the men with their ungainly step, iron-toed boots, biceps and lunchboxes passed from their fathers, pictures of fighters and pin-ups in lids, a prayer on the bottom for safe days and safe keeping, she made Jack and Gingers all night, five-thirty till close. For the women, smooth and silky, graceful as the sound of nightbirds in dark trees along the river, sadness a fable of loss on their faces, she made perfect White Russians— well vodka, Kahlua, real cream, the same cream she’d pour in their coffees before they were escorted to anywhere. Where they came to a bar, so did the men. She judged not. She smiled, watched the night air tremble with cold, pocketed their warm cash, eyed the clock, listened to pick-me-up tunes on the jukebox. No one lingered in the doorway, asked what she was doing later, just like she wanted. Freed in the chinablue moonlight she heads home, heart suing for peace. Tobi Alfier (Cogswell) is a multiple Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee. Her current chapbooks include Down Anstruther Way (Scotland poems) from FutureCycle Press, and her full-length collection Somewhere, Anywhere, Doesn’t Matter Where is forthcoming from Kelsay Books. She is coeditor of San Pedro River Review (www.bluehorsepress.com) and lives in California.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Shivering in the Passenger Seat Jennifer Cherry I’m stuck in December 2012, at least a part of me — heart, soul, core — whatever you want to call the capacity each of us has to love another. That tiny, jagged scrap is suspended, forever a fixed point trapped at mile marker 38 on Route 24 in western Indiana. I felt the fragment snap, ricochet against the bones of my ribcage, like a steel pinball clanging off targets, until one rib yawned and it hurled out, tearing muscle, breaking skin, then free. I watched it careen towards the window, and I rapped my knuckles against the pane, but it slipped through the glass like a ghost. You asked me to take off my jeans and panties for the two-hour drive home — I want to see you — I wondered how you couldn’t see me shivering in the passenger seat.

Jennifer Cherry is a former Indiana girl now stuck in an Illinois world. She teaches writing and literature at a small Midwestern community college. Her fiction and essays have appeared in The Storyteller Magazine, r.kv.r.y quarterly literary journal, and other publications.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Deer Tom Raithel They look so lost, staring in windows or standing wide-eyed by a neighbor’s pool or stumbling up to a boulevard island, pausing and gawking at cars around them. With heads high or close to the ground, they wander as if looking for something, a highway sign for a home-bound exit, a key they dropped to a door now closed. Glassy new corporate towers above them, around them the labyrinth car lots of malls, they tread along roadways and well-mowed paths that lead them to think they have somewhere to go. A car honk startles. Sharp ears erect, they take trembling steps, unsure what to do, then quicken their journey on long, thin legs through a world that won’t welcome, nor leave them alone. They’ll lie down tonight on some golf-course green or brambly edge of a railroad yard and dream of a brook through a columbine meadow, moonlight breezing through landscapes of pine.

Tom Raithel grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and has worked as a journalist at several newspapers in the Midwest. Today, he lives in Evansville, Indiana with his wife, Theresa. His poems have appeared in The Southern Review, The Comstock Review, Nimrod, Midwest Quarterly, Atlanta Review, and other journals. Finishing Line Press has published his chapbook, Dark Leaves, Strange Light.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Procedure Milt Montague It is all arranged My doctor has decided I need a medical procedure to reopen a blocked artery It’s a minor operation But requires an overnight in the hospital We arrived at the hospital promptly at 3:00PM in good spirits Were admitted at 4:00PM Procedure finished by 6:00PM NO PAIN Only minor discomfort Not bad at all Just the damn waiting It took almost an hour I was awake all the time not allowed to move A stent was inserted into the artery that was blocked restoring normal blood flow probably extending my life several years

Milt Montague was born and raised and lives now in New York City. He survived The Great Depression, the school system, and World War ll. Finished college, married happily, raised 3 lovely daughters, retired. Back to college and after 20 years discovered poetry at 85. Now at 90 plus years, he has 131 poems published in 40 different magazines in under 5 years.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A Grosbeak in The Simmer Dim Bruce Pratt When I pass this time, I should prefer to return as a male, red-breasted grosbeak, who frequents a window feeder at a house like mine, where an aging couple thinks I’m handsome, and never begrudge me a daily scoop of black oil sunflower seeds, discarded hulls littering their flowerbeds, in the long lilac-scented evenings of late June— the time the Orkney and Shetland Scots call The Simmer Dim, that light of reflection whiskey and kinship, that migrates away before the birds.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Rain Dimples the Pond Bruce Pratt (A Villahaikunelle) For Kathleen Ellis Rain dimples the pond, blackbird lights on a cattail, dusk of high summer. Murmurs of thunder, caress the beaver’s dark wake. Rain dimples the pond, quilts of purple clouds, lightning south over the bay. Dusk of high summer, chickadees burst from, white petals of mock orange. Rain dimples the pond, bold goldfinches sway, on the sunflower feeders, dusk of high summer. The wind swings northwest, storm crawling toward the sea, rain dimples the pond, dusk of high summer.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Pandora at the Grocery Store Bruce Pratt Some years ago, before debit cards, before the store became Hannaford Bros., I made out my check to Shop and Slave to see if the cashier would accept it, or if the bank would bounce it, but neither noticed. I wonder if that is what Emily is doing sporting a nametag, that reads Pandora S. Boxx. She was like that in class, too, even as a freshman, signing her tests, Nymm Foe or Lawn Gawn, below her perfectly printed given name, the E in Emily always in red the rest of the letters in black. I knew she wanted me to ask, but I never did, never needed to know. When she says, “Did you find everything you were looking for?” I pause, wanting to ask her the same question. “No, Pandora,” I say, “but it isn’t important.” She stares a second and says, “Do you prefer paper or plastic?” But before I can answer, she says, “Only kidding. You’re old school. Gotta be paper, right Mr. P.?”

Bruce Pratt is the winner of the 2007 Ellipsis Prize in poetry, a finalist for the Erskine J. Poetry award from Smartish Pace, and his poems have appeared in Only Connect, an anthology from Cinnamon Press, (Wales) Smartish Pace, The 2007 Goose River Anthology, Revival (Ireland), Puckerbrush Review, The Poet’s Touchstone, Rock and Sling, Red Rock Review, Crosscut, Iguana Review, Tipton Poetry Journal, The Unrorean, Heartland Review, and Wild Goose Poetry Review He teaches at the University of Maine.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Bob Willow and the Milky Way Maryfrances Wagner “Then felt I like some watcher of the skies” — Keats

Miles from lights and years from youth, we lie in hammocks, our last night of vacation, to stare at stars. Orion seems closer here at the beach. Cassiopeia brighter. The longer we gaze, the more we are sky. How many summers since we sloshed tea from chaise lounges on the patio at night? Since Linda’s see-through blouse, Robert and Becky behind the wisteria, and Miss Aikmus’ algebra exams. Most nights, our neighbor, Bob Willow, shuffled across his backyard to the observatory he had built. With the push of a button, the silver dome whirred open, wide to sky, and he was alone with Venus, falling stars, and the little bear. His wife, Virginia, never joined him, and he never invited us to peek through his telescope. Now, having been in other observatories, we’ve seen so much more than what our plastic planetariums distorted on squared bedroom walls. Most nights Bob stayed out after we went in, maybe searching for the Orion Nebula or meteor showers. Older now, we know something of Bob Willow’s nights. We pay attention to what passes over us as comet dust incinerates, sparks across the sky, a lit fuse seeking its keg, skywriting into Bob Willow’s darkness.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Walking the Dog Maryfrances Wagner I tell people I take my dog for long walks on Little Blue Trace, even though our dog died a year ago. It’s comforting to think a dog ambles beside me, sniffing bark and dark earth. If someone recognizes me and asks where’s my dog as I pluck a pawpaw from a tree or pocket a rock, I say he’s home asleep, not up to a long walk through the woods. Fall is a warning, its winter cost still unknown, but for now I sniff my pawpaw and admire the golden slant of sun as people pass with their dogs tugging on leashes to smell under leaves now turning red. They say how much brighter red is in the fall than spring and how expensive the pumpkins are this year even though in patches around town bumper crops await them and their dogs. This morning I pass a dog walker with a mutt, a greyhound, a lab, and a terrier synching their gait, so much dog leashed in one hand.

Maryfrances Wagner ‘s books include Salvatore’s Daughter, Light Subtracts Itself, Red Silk (Thorpe Menn Book Award for Literary Excellence), Dioramas (Mammoth) and Pouf (FLP). Poems have appeared in New Letters, Midwest Quarterly, Laurel Review, Voices in Italian Americana, Unsettling America: An Anthology of Contemporary Multicultural Poetry (Penguin Books), Literature Across Cultures (Pearson/Longman), Bearing Witness, The Dream Book, An Anthology of Writings by Italian American Women (American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation), et.al. She lives in Independence, Missouri and coedits I-70 Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Dad Roger Pfingston He’s dead. She’s dead. It’s dead. Dad, I say, they’re all dead. Oh well, he says, dead is dead. Do you remember Bud, Dad, your brother, or your other brother Roy? Do you remember Ted who was married to your sister Kay, or Oscar whom she later married? Do you remember me or your other sons Larry, Mark, and Steve? Do you believe when I say some are dead and some are not? Or does it even matter a whole hell of a lot? They say it’s genetic, or partly so, this gradual absence of names and things, but kinetic activities can slow the go, or go as slow as your kinetic inclination. Dad, a Welshman said do not go gentle as you age; resolve, Dad, you can still do the rage!

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Local Traffic Roger Pfingston Having walked my two miles, I sit trying to read, distracted by birds, their silhouettes flying in and out of sunlight’s cage on the hardwood floor, the road this morning crawling with wooly worms bearing riddles of weather, their banded bodies emerging out of spiky shadows of grass, some, come spring, Isabella tiger moths, others already the dark stain of local traffic.

A retired teacher of English and photography, Roger Pfingston is the recipient of a poetry fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. His poems have appeared in American Journal of Poetry, Poet Lore, Spoon River Poetry Review, Innisfree Poetry Journal, and Ted Kooser’s column, American Life in Poetry. His chapbook, A Day Marked for Telling, is available from Finishing Line Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

After Reading John Clare Steve Lambert I sit on my back porch and listen to the dreary weep of whippoorwills. One calls close by, and another, far off, seems to answer. I find it almost irritating, the irksome way this world signals to itself. I go in and listen to the inside singing: the dust-bunny hum of the fan in our bedroom, the small-engine purr of the cat on the couch, and the low chatter of the night-watchman TV in Abi’s room. All worlds have their ways. Time moves in cool swells in this moment: so much is required.

Steve Lambert has work which appeared recently in Sky Island Journal, Emrys Journal, Into The Void and Deep South Magazine. His work twice has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His debut poetry collection, Heat Seekers, was released in September 2017 by Cherry Grove Collections. Steve lives in the uncool, unhistorical part of St. Augustine, Florida, works in a public library, and teaches part-time at the University of North Florida.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Eye of the Needle Mark Tappmeyer It is easier for a camel . . . than for a rich man . . . .� Mark 10.25

The call went out and camels came. Sahara plodders, Gobi cruisers, zoo specimens from Omaha, sleek one humpers, even twos, a strange three mounder fashioned in a petri dish, a conjoined pair, all trying to squeeze through. The dwarfs and the diminutive brought great hope, the runts and newborns, the pigmy camels, the midgets who would seem to have the best shot. But others tried. The contortionist camels, the slicked down, greased, the ramrod, hardboiled group, the jackhammerers and stiff-lipped, the insinuators, the butt-in-liners, the sneaker, the prestidigitators, the thin and airy and ethereal, the wispy ones, the dream-chasers. The totally-convinced-of-the-fool’s-errand-of-slipping-through camels, The against-all-hope camels, the thin, dieting, anorexic, surgically-lightened camels. The abbreviated, elliptical, truncated, bipolar, split, finagling camels, conning, sweet-talking, spellbinder camels, those harebrained and scheming, a pachyderm cross dressed as a dromedary. So too came the beaten down, debased, abused, disadvantaged, downtrodden, ostracized, the pitiable, the let-em-through-because-we-feel-sorry-for-them camels. The whole wide world of cameldom came. The complete registry of camelness. All came. All tried. They all tried.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Baby Grandson Mark Tappmeyer Napping on my lap, all skin and skeleton, you look like Mahatma Gandhi, your head oversized and hairless, your hands small. I half expect you in wire rims round as a water buffalo’s eye, and under your nose a Sanskrit of whiskers, a walking stick tucked in the path of your arm. One day crowds will hush and bow and say to you Namaste, honored one, but until then you will need your dhoti changed, unwrapped from the spindles of your legs, and scrubbed, maybe pounded on rocks, like every great soul, in the flow of a Ganges.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Egg Mark Tappmeyer I’m reading Josephus, who doesn’t mention eggs in his history of the Jerusalem siege of 70 A.D. Neighbor turning on neighbor for a fist of barley, a pocket of dried dates. What quarrels could have erupted over the last egg in the great walled city, a small brown one no larger than a quail’s! No doubt some thought it worth dying for, had the last hen in the Holy City survived the hatchet of starvation and mustered a feeble cluck to push out a final offering into the hand of a thin boy who hid his treasure from the street gangs, the desperate. In secret he must have rolled this fresh world in his palm, his eyes wide, and pondered-like the Creator must have done— what pleasures lay ahead if only he could protect it from snatchers, from cracking.

Mark Tappmeyer s a retired teacher living in Brownsburg, Indiana.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Autumn’s Pulse Pat Anthony Goldfinches ride the sunflowers now feathered sprites on slowly revolving Ferris wheels, their tiny beaks always plucking, plucking the ripening seed in the center of the yellow whorls feather and petal tossed by wind fall chirpings punctuating air above the heavy scents of giant ragweeds, feather-plumed goldenrod the honeyed aroma of lipped lupine compass plants having given over telling directions for shouting autumn with stems bent into the ground while around the barn iris and yucca pods rattle like tiny maracas beating, beating.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Totem Pat Anthony My father is the owl and my brother a great blue heron. I am coyote the shape shifter, lurking in shadows. Silent. Watchful. I am the loping figure across bronze pastures, the lifted head that scents a kill with which I feed my young. I sing on moonlit nights, make fields come alive with my voice joined with those of my pack. I appear to fly when in pursuit of rabbit or vole but in autumn I become a snow goose calling out in deepest night, take the lead in the skeins of Vs , beating two wings, tucking two legs, but always returning to earth, to prairie wind, sky, the icy trails of winter. I am dog and keeper of the family. I am wisdom and manic energy. My roots are Mandan Sioux and the longhouses are my shade. I am coyote.

Pat Anthony writes from the rural Midwest (Kansas), pondering the furrows in land and on the faces of those who work it. A recently retired educator, she has work in numerous journals, writes daily and edits furiously.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

if all the tumult of the body Amy Katherine Cannon were to quiet our busy thoughts of earth and sea and air if the very world should stop and the mind go beyond itself stripped of speech and sign if all perishable things grew still the heart tamed its aimless circling the soul would seem to see in brilliant darkness hidden silence alone to the alone a moment of illumination singular vision a spark that time and place have never touched would alight in you and you would enter into joy

sacrament of the present moment Amy Katherine Cannon what is the secret of finding life’s treasure? I say to you there is none: the treasure is everywhere offered at every moment wherever we find ourselves all creatures pour it out abundantly from every filament if we open our mouths they will be filled if we surrender wholly welcome everything that comes allow the waves to sweep us forward we will be borne up into the present moment all else must be regarded by the soul as being nothing at all

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cloud of unknowing Amy Katherine Cannon frail mortal try to understand yourself pursue your course relentlessly never mind what you have gained center your attention let yesterday be abandon everything forgoing time and place do all in your power to forget awake only to the work of contemplation far from god you must protect the heart choose an arduous way the body is brief as an atom all desire is eloquent a dart of inward fire no secrets are hid measure yourself by bare existence reaching up toward god

Amy Katherine Cannon is a writer and writing teacher living in Los Angeles. She received her MFA from UC Irvine, where she was the recipient of the Gerard Creative Writing Endowment. She is the author of the mini-chapbook to make a desert (Platypus Press, 2016), and her work can be found in BOAAT, BODY, Juked, and LIT, among other places. These pieces include found elements drawn from Christian mystics and theologians.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Allen Forrest is a writer and graphic artist for covers and illustrations in literary publications and books, the winner of the Leslie Jacoby Honor for Art at San Jose State University's Reed Magazine for 2015, and whose Bel Red landscape paintings are part of the Bellevue College Foundation's permanent art collection in Bellevue, Washington. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. http://art-grafiken.blogspot.ca/2016/12/graphic-narrative.html

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Look Allen Forrest Sally was there, Dick and Jane and Spot too. They're standing at the front porch and below them one word: Look. Our first grade teacher said “Look.� She pointed to the word. I looked at Look, my first word, it was the first word for all of us kids. The book was very large, had some sort of wire support to hold it up while she turned the pages. Our teacher was beautiful, a brunette, olive skin, not tall, but shapely, I can't remember her last name, kinda like Sputnik, but that was a Russian satellite. I knew she was sexy before I knew what sex was. Once I waited after school and played with a ball in a covered courtyard nearby, just so I could be near her. A man came to visit, probably her boyfriend, he sat in one of our little chairs and they talked. I could see him through the windows sitting there while she cleaned the black board. I've never forgotten how lovely my first grade teacher was. Sometimes I see a woman of her physical type and I get turned on. I guess I have a thing for brunettes, since my teacher, Miss Sputnik, or whatever her name was. One time I was shooting spitballs at her in class, she saw me and told me to stop. I guess I was just a natural clown, always wanting to perform and get attention. One day we had a dancing contest. I was judged the best dancer, so every morning I used to dance in front of class, dance here, dance there, dance right next to Miss Sputnik, until one morning I noticed she wasn't watching me dance anymore, nobody was. So I stopped and went back to my seat. I never danced in class again.

Allen Forrest is a writer and graphic artist for covers and illustrations in literary publications and books, the winner of the Leslie Jacoby Honor for Art at San Jose State University's Reed Magazine for 2015, and whose Bel Red landscape paintings are part of the Bellevue College Foundation's permanent art collection in Bellevue, Washington. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. http://art-grafiken.blogspot.ca/2016/04/poetry-and-prose.html

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Orangeries Judith Skillman So much falseness in the tiny fruits, as if they’re artificial, and perhaps they are. They never existed except as words. The Jews here, and the Germans, agree. A jewel in the lake, maybe the sun fell in one day on its appointed rounds. The woman who dropped two bunches of grapes turned to stone. The lions gaze. I would say they look across a moat but that would indicate decorum, or safety. * Extortion sewn between the rows. The statues bright and numb. Here a woman, there an urn. Red foxes hide in these woods, and hares gallop through grounds beyond the pond. Bats bound neatly between the sky and the earth. Their pleated wings open and close, scissoring. For the English word that means a tiger’s roar, only a murmur. For dinner, sterilized milk, a hunk of gouda, and chocolate.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Dollars in my clothes, dollars for my collar, here I am again, just a small woman, the Americaine. * Plaques about the war. A bunch of marble grapes, a daisy folded neatly between the women’s skirts and what might have been the earth. Certain figures lost their arms or legs, others had chipped breasts, hints of dirt clumped in shadows of bas relief. I never saw the oranges, though their scent was everywhere. Each morning my father’s dying happened again, as if he hadn’t yet begun to die.

Judith Skillman’s recent book is Kafka’s Shadow (Deerbrook Editions). Her work has appeared in LitMag, Shenandoah, Zyzzyva, FIELD, and elsewhere. Awards include an Eric Mathieu King Fund grant from the Academy of American Poets. She is a faculty member at the Richard Hugo House in Seattle, Washington. Visit www.judithskillman.com.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Soliloquy Gary Duehr Should I stay or should I go, That's my question. What long-ago imbroglio Upset the balance of who I am? Mom, Dad? Anyone...anyone? It's all the same In the end. I saw, I came, I went back home. (All in iamb.) On the plane, the blinking light on the tip of the wing Tracks the far blue arc. It's something I love, floating up here. As if the passenger cabin is a kind of sphere That's weightless, warm, suspended In vastness. Not to get all Freudian, but isn't it Nice to be almost alone? Like drifting down the street, iPhone In hand, texting a pix of tiny white leftover lights on trees To the one I love. Or when a moment freezes Standing at a crosswalk, eyes closed, hearing the traffic Whir by. It's sick. Time slows, I feel like I can touch The tops of clouds. Later, in the hotel, scanning— What else—CNN For signs of life, I wonder how much Polarization one country can take. I feel my head ache On the pillow. I miss everyone. I miss everything I've ever known. Bar none. Is it possible to connect the dots From TV and what's Unrolling, tragically, to on-the-ground life— Never mind the hypothetical what if: What if everything were magically different? Yet this is where the story went And here I am. The clock flips its red digits To 1 a.m and it's Up to me. Spray paint a red A For Anarchy on the wall of the student union? Find a way To shout down hate? Is it time to dress in black and storm the White House gate? The questions all hang out there in space Unanswered. (Pray for grace.)

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Postscript Gary Duehr Let’s say everything you’ve ever known— The things that hold you, the way contacts on a phone Stick to who you are, or how a bus Delivers you beneath the bridge’s black trusses At day’s end, the distant lights Blinking red through the rain—let’s say the rights To your whole past Are in danger of being usurped, misplaced. You simply refuse to believe it’s possible. Whatever happens, you think, you’ll Find a way to keep your emotional-DNA intact. When others argue a fact That counters what your gut knows, you’re unfazed, As if they’re speaking a different language. What is it they’re saying? It’s so hard to gauge. Are they even words? Dazed, You drift through the nights in an altered zone Of your own making, your own Personal bubble—through a bluish mist Of cigarette smoke, some sips of cognac, an almost-tryst Or two. Sigh. You find yourself alone. The house is empty. Somewhere in the distance, a lone Dog is barking. You can hear the keen Whine of a chainsaw, cutting away what’s left. (Scene.)

Gary Duehr has taught poetry and writing for institutions including Boston University, Lesley University, and Tufts University. His MFA is from the University of Iowa Writers Workshop. In 2001 he received an NEA Poetry Fellowship, and he has also received grants and fellowships from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the LEF Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation. Journals in which his poems have appeared include Agni, American Literary Review, Chiron Review, Cottonwood, Hawaii Review, Hotel Amerika, Iowa Review, North American Review, and Southern Poetry Review. His books of poetry include In Passing (Grisaille Press, 2011), THE BIG BOOK OF WHY (Cobble Hill Books, 2008), Winter Light (Four Way Books, 1999) and Where Everyone Is Going To (St. Andrews College Press, 1999).

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Rumors in Bihta Amritendu Ghosal [Bihta is a village in Bihar, near Patna. This is based on true circumstances, if not on a true story.]

They say the witch who lives under the bridge Casts spells on girls and suckles baby pigs. On full moon nights when men sleep in the fields, She lies beside them until— the next morning, They return to their wives, forever ill. They say Sonu’s mother had seen her once, And has not come to her senses still. Three fits a day, neither tantra worked, Nor the doctors from Patna with their pills. Jaggan’s mother —they said—was insane. She’d see the witch on her daughter’s face. Evil had turned her eyes toward the girl, After her father hanged from the peepal tree, The hot loo swayed his corpse, his lips curled, Jaggan’s mother— they said— was insane. She’d see the witch in her little girl. And it came to pass, she needed to be cleaned, And though some said that there was no witch, Only Shame— and maybe the villagers wanted a scene. But not the Lady of Fate— and what do they see, Two hours before the ritual the girl vanishes, free. Rumors still float, About where the girl might be— murder, Rape suicide maybe, working in the factory. Never to return again like her brother, Working far far away in Delhi.

Amritendu Ghosal teaches English at A.M. College, Gaya, India. He divides his time between teaching, research, poetry and music. He has recently finished his PhD on Allen Ginsberg from B.H.U. Varanasi. Previously, he has worked as a Fulbright FLTA Scholar at Brown University. His poems and articles have appeared in journals and newspapers such as Visions (Brown), Shot Glass Journal, Volcano (BHU), Collage, The Hindustan Times, The Sunflower Collective, and others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Sleepwalking Daniel Gleason Someone’s 90-year-old aunt would escape or wander out of the nursing home and walk one small stooped step at a time down the sidewalk ending up at our front door, her cotton dress crooked around her shrinking body. It would be the middle of the night, and I would have been up sleepwalking, my legs moving lithely, skipping down the stairs with my eyes wide open but blank only coming to consciousness—confused and panicked— when I arrived at the door and looked at my face half-reflected in the long vertical window and then through it at the drooping eyes and forehead furrows of a woman who thought she had finally made it home only to find herself locked out and unable to outrun her pursuer.

Daniel Gleason lives in Dayton, Tennessee where he teaches literature, composition, and creative writing at Bryan College. He and his wife, Kathleen, have two young sons.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Jasper County Courthouse, watercolor, Judy Anne Kanne (reprinted with permission)

The Courthouse John D. Groppe The late afternoon sun and the artist's palate have softened the facade of the courthouse, muted its gray solidity and righteousness. The cropped view has clipped its high rectitude. The few steps minimize the climb to the broad portico. The artist's soft brush has dissolved the mocking grins of the gargoyles atop the columns of the entrance. Light and artist have united justice and forbearance, standard and variant, rule and circumstance, statute and discretion, law and prudence.

Judy Kanne is a retired Saint Joseph’s College education professor and Director of Student Teaching, who became the Jasper County Historian in 2011. Judy is the wife of 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Court Judge Michael S. Kanne and mother of Anne Kanne Padly and Katherine S. Kanne.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Guns of August 2014 John D. Groppe The canons at Liege fire volleys To remind the world of those who died A century before, an aftershock Through these now green fields. We have yet to remember The boys who were born before the scars On these fields healed, The zig-zag trenches and the bomb craters, And would fight and die here Before they were men. But now greater tremors further east shake the earth as if fissured Europe and broad Russia Were tectonic plates testing for weaknesses While in the desert beside the fertile crescent, Fissures widen through souqs and mosques, Groves of date palms and oilfields. Like a shamal out of the northwest A pick up truck army beheads Its way to Baghdad scattering Boundary lines in sand drawn far away When the guns of Europe fired their last shells And people obedient to a god proclaimed Long before Mohamed affirmed Allah was great Flee to a bald mountain with only their terror. Westward the peoples wait To see if food and water airdropped by soldiers And bombs from carriers in the Gulf Will open the abyss of war.

John D. Groppe’s The Raid of the Grackles and Other Poems was published in 2016 by Iroquois River Press. His poems have appeared in Tipton Poetry Journal, The Edge of the Prairie, Through the Sycamores, Flying Island, and other journals. Mr. Groppe was listed on Indiana’s bicentennial literary map 18162016 Literary Map of Indiana: 200 Years-200 Writers. He is Professor Emeritus of English at Saint Joseph’s College and a resident of Rensselaer, Indiana since 1962.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

On the Impossibility of “Innocent” Dreams

Peter J. Grieco An asparagus is very seldom only an asparagus. Havelock Ellis, however, does not concur: “This is the point at which many of us are no longer able to follow Freud.” In response, I will gladly demonstrate how, as a rule, dreams are “wolves in sheep’s clothing.” An intelligent & cultivated young woman dreamt she went to the market, with her cook carrying the basket. She asked for something from the butcher who said to her: “That’s not attainable any longer” & offered an alternative, assuring her, “This is good too.” She refused & continued to the grocery stand where a woman held out to her a black vegetable tied length-wise, “I don’t know that,” she said. “I won’t take it.” An innocent dream? She had indeed gone to the market the previous day, too late & got nothing. —But dreams are not simple. Direct speech, when it occurs in a dream, is sure to be derived from something spoken before in waking life—frequently cut up & slightly altered. In this case, I was the source of one of the speeches. I had been explaining to my patient that earliest experiences of childhood are “not attainable any longer” as such, except through transferences & dreams. Thus I was the butcher & she was resisting these insights. But that was not all she was rejecting, & with this came the fulfillment of her wish: that there might be something to reject. Hence the zipped-up meat shop & the forbidden asparagus with Spanish radishes. Peter J. Grieco is a native of Buffalo, New York and teaches writing at the University of Buffalo. His work has appeared recently in Bond Street Review, Tiger’s Eye, Right Hand Pointing, Poehemians, Paper Nautilus, Constellation, Sand, Beard of Bees, and Chiron Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Real Paper Henry Ahrens You know what a piece of paper is said the old man to the child. Sure, the child replied, and pulled his phone out of his pocket, called up a program and thumbed a button iconed "new page." The old man smiled. No, not that kind of paper. Real paper. And here he thought of all those boxes and reams of paper, recycling programs, green bins in a corner overflowing collection. He was sad to see all of that go. The ridges and whorls of real paper unique like fingerprints, fiber, grit, and dust, punched out chads, notebook chaff, “perfs,” gone to smooth digital ashes. It’s the children who’ll miss the mess most of all, he thought, though they won’t even see that zeros and ones don't make new pulp.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Punctuation Henry Ahrens The exclamation point sags her slender body onto the couch, kicks off platform shoes, sits with scotch to calm trampoline nerves, dark circles under her eyes, though eyebrows bounce in perpetual surprise. Overworked and underpaid, aren't we all, but the exclamation point leaps to her tall task evermore in the ether where everyone is Glad to hear it! and having A great day! Facial muscles tremor, overstretched perma-smile, bouncing fingers bobble a cigarette to lips that work to purse. She closes her eyes and inhales‌

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Antonie and Cornelia Henry Ahrens Antonie van Leeuwenhoek got up from bed, lit a candle, adjusted his spectacles, examined his sperm in a microscope. whiptail swimmers scurrying round spastically looking for a mate, blind in their lonely panic, van Leeuwenhoek observed in the chilly room serving for a lab. His thoughts like the sperm searched this way and that, candle burned low, he never remembered to put on pants. Cornelia Swalmius lay in her bed, post-coital, no candle to light her solitude, squinted beyond the French doors to see what Antonie was up to, pulled at the bedcovers to gather lost warmth, her mind racing this way and that making observations of her own, her eggs never to be joined by Antonie’s sperm; no children of the womb for them.

Henry Ahrens writes from the forested hills of Cincinnati, Ohio, where he teaches a variety of high school English classes. His work has appeared recently in Tipton Poetry Journal, From the Edge of the Prairie, and Indiana Voice Journal.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

On the Third Day Karen D. Mitchell I. Guilt After the accident, Tiger stares at me as he’s carried away in a cardboard box. Red paw prints scatter across the porch, but I can’t cry. I hear that Russian villagers have drowned a winged cat, believing it was a messenger of Satan. I open the piano, caress its bones, pretend I never had a cat. Later, I dream that an orange cat with black wings flies out of an ivory box and bleeds into my arms. II. Atonement We have to decide. Either the baby or the cat must go. The baby wins. So Nomad lives up to his name and leaves us to eat another’s fruit. When I see the blue winged cat perched on a wooden throne behind glass at the art museum, I want to smash her cage and offer a spoonful of pureed bananas.

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Tipton Poetry Journal III. Resurrection On the Day of the Dead, I visit altars that coax back the lost. Green and pink sugar grin skulls linger on picado-lined shelves. Clay bowls hold water for the journey. Incense mingles with marigolds that bloom around a memory mosaic: china pig, cigarettes, tattered diary, bottle of tequila. Living eyes water inside glass frames as if they smell the freshly-baked bread and feel the candle’s heat. I watch him dangle from the diorama’s black ceiling, a wooden cat with wings. He soars over a graveyard, where skeletons wave red handkerchiefs. All night, I dust off the bones until they shine and bury them again, wrapped in velvet, beneath the moon. [This poem first appeared in Karen’s chapbook, Thanatology of Moths]

Karen D. Mitchell’s poetry has appeared in genesis, Flying Island, Tipton Poetry Journal, Jake Magazine, Green Man Review, Open Minds Quarterly, ScribeSpirit, Right Hand Pointing, remark!, and many other publications. A 2005 Pushcart Prize nominee, Karen is the author of one chapbook, Thanatology of Moths, published by 3 Legged Cat Press. When not reading, writing, sharing poetry at the 10 Johnson Avenue coffee shop in Irvington, playing and listening to music, spending time with her partner and friends, or wrangling cats, she works as a kennel attendant at the Cat Care Clinic of Indianapolis and also operates her own pet sitting business, Neko Nanny. Karen lives in Indianapolis with her partner, Kaleigh, roommates Ellen and Millie, and a menagerie of rescue cats.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Eleven Jack Powers When Maggie died, she was just gone. My dad said she went to a farm where she wouldn’t bite the neighbor’s children. Donny said they killed her, put her to sleep for jumping in whenever I got into a fight. My dad was in Puerto Rico every week and Maggie was taking charge. He said that’s what German Shepherds do. I was calling her, standing on the cement steps and calling her. I looked out into the dark yard. She wasn’t coming. Grandpa’s dead. He lived two hours away, it seems like he’s just not here. Like we’ll see him at Easter. Even after seeing him lying there in his Sunday suit, pink hands folded at the waist holding his rosary beads, it seems like he could just open his eyes, say, Jackie, how did I get here? Grandpa’s dead and in the back room of the funeral parlor they were playing cards. I was looking for the bathroom. I was getting away from my mother's crying and Donny punching my arm. And I saw through the crack of an open door a round felt table. The same men who stood in the parlor with clasped hands, lowered eyes, held their cards in a fan. There were stacks of red chips on the table. One of them laughed. Another shushed him. They didn’t see me. Grandpa's dead. My mom said he just didn’t wake up. His heart was bad - hardening of the arteries. His heart veins got too hard and the blood couldn’t flow. He just didn’t wake up, she said. But I heard her tell Dad that he bolted up in bed and grabbed his heart. By the time he hit the pillow again he was gone. That’s what she said. Donny and I held our breath, straining to hear through the wall. Grandpa’s dead and Maggie’s dead and Granny said bad things happen in threes. She says things like that. Tosses salt over her shoulder. Says God willing when we say See you soon. George the cat, is ten years old. Nanny’s looking very pale. Granny can’t walk very well. Nanny’s always looked pale. They’re the only old people left. Sometimes when I’m riding my bike, I hear an ambulance. I peddle home fast.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A Mother’s Tale Jack Powers Marnie tells a story about her husband's sister's handicapped brother-in-law that seems close enough to be legit. He was 50 and three hundred pounds, couldn't hold a job, lived with his mom and dad – when his mother, near 80, became crazy with worry over what would become of him when she died. So she took him out to their garage, turned on the car and slit both their wrists. She must have tried to comfort him, held his hand, told him, "It'll be okay, hon. Just relax," while they sat in the car, folded towel beneath their wrists so they wouldn't stain the leather, and waited. But someone – maybe the father? – heard the car running and called 9-1-1 and they lived. The mom went into counseling, and the son – let's call him Henry – was taken away, settled into a group home, given new teeth, put on a diet. An aide would take him shopping. Henry had a stipend for clothing and his parents would visit. But one day, his aide brought him to Costco and lost him. Henry found a hotdog stand and emptied his wallet. Taking eight hotdogs, he locked himself in the bathroom, so his aide couldn't keep him on his diet and he choked to death. Marnie swears it's all true. She went to the wake. Her husband smoked a cigar with the father. I picture Henry's mother kneeling by the open casket, straightening his tie, slipping a snack beside him. I wonder if she can let go now, knowing she didn't leave him behind and believes she'll see him again in some heaven where he'll be thin and happy with good teeth and they'll know each other by their matching scars, where she can say, "I told you we'd be fine," and brush a stray hair from his eyes.

Jack Powers is a high school special education teacher who has had poems appear in Southern Review, Rattle, Cortland Review and elsewhere. Jack lives in Connecticut.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Chatham, Cape Cod Rose Bromberg why do those windjammers that f

l

o a

t

moored to docks in the bay decline to sail Rose Bromberg lives in Florida and is the author of two poetry chapbooks: Poemedica (Finishing Line Press, 2011) and The Language of Seasons (Finishing Line Press, 2018).

Like Snakes on Asphalt Holly Day My father’s horizon was always Nebraska, he never grew past being a tiny spot surrounded by miles of cattle-flattened silage stunted sagebrush. I don’t know the names of either of my horizons, can only guess at who lives in the row of dark houses across the street. I am also an unnecessary pinpoint surrounded by flat, black asphalt waves of heat radiating from crumbling tar.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Harvest Holly Day we found the tomatoes grew best in the cemetery sending their thick roots deep into the soil, wrapping thickly-furred cilia between sinew and bone, found new life in places left for the dead. we threw our seeds random between the overgrown plots, hoping the tiny plants would escape the eyes of the caretaker, the blades of his mower the heavy footsteps of other people visiting other graves. late summer, when the vines rose high climbed around the rough trunks of ancient willows of firs we crept into the graveyard, baskets under our arms collected enough ripe fruit to last through the long, cold winter ahead.

Holly Day has taught writing classes at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, since 2000. Her poetry has recently appeared in Tampa Review, SLAB, and Gargoyle, and her published books include Walking Twin Cities, Music Theory for Dummies, and Ugly Girl.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Salvation, 1964 Janet Reed “Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back.” —Robert Frost My father succumbed to salvation one Wednesday night a year after my mother fell in love with thou-shalt-not shouted by a preacher she thought was a god, a man so in love with Leviticus, he let a-BOM-in-A-shun hiss and hang in the air like a lit fuse ready to blow the lakes of hell into a blaze of brimstone. If my dad had been able to feed his love of fast cars and finely-tuned engines through my mother’s zeal, found enough synergy in NASCAR, pit crews and Goodyear tire checks to silence snake charmers playing promises to troubled sons of small-town drunks, maybe he could have evaded the Call until my mother fell in love with Avon calling. Instead, he took to that Black Book like his father took to whiskey, slurring sin like gin straight up, preaching the wages of death in the levels of Dante’s Hell, the cries of the damned on his lips, the gnashing of teeth his own, his fury flashing faster than a race car crashed against a Daytona wall. I was pinned inside, a passenger on the fast track to collision, held past bedtime, past the news at ten, quoting his Book until every word was King James perfect, lambs and goats, prepared for the devils and his angels, released finally to dream his fires, my small body consumed by its heat.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

“No Coloreds” -- Sinclair Station, Missouri, 1968

Janet Reed I knew nothing of lunch counters, bus boycotts, or Jim Crow, didn’t argue with my mother’s refusal to let me swim in certain pools, or pay attention to dueling water fountains, holes above them still visible where words once hung. I was eight and didn’t question bathroom keys hung on pegs behind service counters, or wonder why those old words above water fountains moved to hand-lettered signs on cardboard inside store windows, like the gas station behind my grandma’s store, until I saw a girl like me refused her right to pee. So small and still in her dad’s back seat, I would have missed her had the attendant attended. The silence of nothing in the expectation of something made me look up, see her waiting. I was eight, but I saw what I saw. The hired man, stiff as his uniform pretended not to see dad and daughter parked at the pump. Time hung in the haze of the sun, until the dad untethered his long legs from behind the wheel and lumbered toward the door advertising friendly service. I saw him speak, nod back to his girl in that back seat, saw the clerk, gaze unchanged point only to his sign, to those old water fountain words, the keys behind the counter cold and untouched. Janet Reed is a recent second-place winner in Common Ground Review’s poetry contest and a 2016 Pushcart Prize nominee. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Chiron Review, Common Ground Review, Avalon Review, I-70 Review, and others. She is at work on her first collection and teaches writing and literature for Crowder College in Missouri.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Flowers in Their Hair Charles Rammelkamp “All the way to San Francisco?” the spidery little guy in shorts and t-shirt remarked as I settled into the passenger seat. “When I saw you just had that little bag, I figured you were going only a few miles down the road, Denver tops.” His disappointment was like an accusation. “My brother lives out there, I’m going to see him before school starts again,” I explained, as if apologizing for being caught in an outrageous lie, and I wondered about Julian’s apparent resentment, as if he’d made a huge miscalculation he was certain to regret. Was it paranoia, imagining the thought bubble hanging like a halo over his head?: Oh shit! “Name’s Julian,” he said, offering his hand. I would have said, same as my father, except he pronounced it, Who-lee-yan. What a stroke of good fortune I’d felt when the Peugeot slowed and stopped on that long stretch of pavement to the interstate – like a gangplank leading to a mysterious pier – after I’d left the sweating salesman in his Impala at the gas pump outside Lincoln. A life rope thrown overboard. “OK, but I’ll need you to help pay for the gas,” Julian conceded, resigned, checking traffic, then swinging onto the interstate. “No problem!” I promised. Such a strange vibration. People in motion. Charles Rammelkamp is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books in Baltimore, where he lives. His most recent book is American Zeitgeist (Apprentice House), which deals with the populist politician, William Jennings Bryan. A chapbook, Jack Tar’s Lady Parts, is forthcoming from Main Street Rag Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Holding On and Letting Go Norbert Krapf Little one, I 'm holding on to you as I'm letting go of someone else, a great-uncle you'll never meet. As he slips away, barely able to breathe and unable to give voice to his words your voice is coming into your mouth to give shape to what you will say to the world. Across a sad ocean from you I'm listening for your emerging voice to sing me into the morning as the brother of your grandmother fades listening to the coming night. I listen to both of you in your worlds coming and going in different directions as I sit up in bed absorbing the hushed silence of this pre-dawn Thanksgiving Day and give thanks for both your lives as I move in his direction but savor the light rising in your opening eyes.

Former Indiana Poet Laureate Norbert Krapf is the author of eleven poetry collections and the forthcoming Cheerios in Tuscany: Poems by and for a First-Time Grandpa. He is the winner of a Glick Indiana Author Award, a Creative Renewal Fellowship from the Arts Council of Indianapolis, and the Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America. He collaborates with bluesman Gordon Bonham.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

In Common Joan Colby Checking out the collie books Of Alfred Payson Terhune, I believed I was the only kid entranced with Lad a Dog and his wife Lady. Some of the references were confusing. The Pine Barrens where Jackson Whites Slunk with their curs that Lad Would swiftly dispatch while the Master Waved his walking stick at trespassers. I thought of a Jackson White as furtive, Skinny, stoop-shouldered and feral As his lurcher. Poacher. Unfamiliar terms But obviously undesirable. I got the message About pedigrees and breeding. Our spitz Tippy would not pass muster With the Master of Sunnybank Farm. After Tippy disappeared for the last time, I pestered my parents for a collie pup With papers; my entrĂŠe into the World of exclusion. When I read An interview with Billy Collins Where he confessed a childhood interest In the collie books of Terhune, I felt A kinship passing poetry. Just as when I read the Queen At 90 still rides her horse and eats Special K for breakfast. Me too, I want to holler. O Billy, O Queen: what we have in common Means everything and nothing.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Conviction Joan Colby Convictions are more dangerous than enemies of the truth….Nietzsche

Convictions erased twenty years. I said we can Practice avoidance. You said you’d still know What I am thinking. They wear matching t-shirts That proclaim “I’ve Decided”. Baptized in the blood of the lamb Or something. Guns. Animal rights. Abortion. Celibacy, The Free Market. Passions that flourish like Buckthorn. Invasive. Hobgoblins of little minds Inflexible convictions. Pyramids in the desert Stocked with embalmed ideas. A convict is dangerous. Someone who was judged On the conviction That what’s yours is his. The dead grin in the graves. They know everything About nothing. Nietzsche, Saint of despair, Also had convictions. Joan Colby has published widely in journals such as Poetry, Atlanta Review, South Dakota Review,etc. Awards include two Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards, 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 Good Works Review and FutureCycle Press.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Children’s Bible Tim Robbins Folks, if you don’t want your boys to grow up queer don’t give ‘em the children’s Bible they gave me. I can’t quite see the curve of Bob’s arm anymore or the blond of John’s thighs. But I’ve never forgotten the men in that Bible. Every one of them could have starred for Catalina. Even the extras. The men mowing in the fields or stranded on a rock, waiting for the flood. There was Adam with his five o’clock shadow and his two cons — Cain the Top and Abel the Bottom. There was Jacob with the angel like the guys in wrestling flicks, only fair of face. And Jacob’s dream. He was stretched out at the bottom of those stairs sweeter and more sultry than Marilyn Monroe, and more angels than I could count were going up and down like jocks doing stair-laps. Most of all there was David. How he came to be blond, I’ll never know. But I know why Jonathan died. And just what he felt when the spear hit.

Tim Robbins teaches ESL. He has a B.A. in French and an M.A. in Applied Linguistics. His poems have appeared in Three New Poets, Slant, Main Street Rag, Adelaide Literary Magazine, Off The Coast, Tipton Poetry Journal and others. His collection Denny’s Arbor Vitae was published in 2017. He lives with his husband of twenty years in Kenosha, Wisconsin, birthplace of Orson Welles.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Metropolis Frank De Canio What a riot of white corpuscles pass through the arteries of the subway’s thruway. Surely, life has cancerous leanings. And I see it metastasizing into the A train, down the stairs, up the platform, sapping energy from my middle age, circumscribing my life with their proliferation. How wonderful it is that these cells can thrive, albeit at my expense. I grow pale even as I watch them colonize my body’s outer extremities, then eat into the heart of the matter. But I get therapy in the doctoring arts of the opera, theater and ballet. Despite such dear expense, life continues through its final stages. [This poem previously appeared in I-70]

Frank De Canio was born & bred in New Jersey, works in New York. He loves music of all kinds, from Bach to Dory Previn, Amy Beach to Amy Winehouse, World Music, Latin, opera. Shakespeare is his consolation, writing his hobby. Frank likes Dylan Thomas, Keats, Wallace Stevens, Frost , Ginsberg, and Sylvia Plath as poets.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Autumn Came While I Was Gone Carol Hamilton No soft dampness now. I return to brittle gold and air cleared of all except departure and jittery leaves dancing their crisp sweeps and turns across yellow Pointillist fields above and below, this all seen against blue, blue sky. I will welcome winter when these showy guests have left, finished with their flourishes and their eager, excited goodbyes.

Carol Hamilton has published 17 books: children's novels, legends and poetry, most recently, Such Deaths from Virtual Arts Cooperative Press Purple Flag Series. She is a former Poet Laureate of Oklahoma and has been nominated seven times for a Pushcart Prize. Carol has recent or upcoming publications in Paper Street Journal, Cold Mountain Review, Main Street Rag, Gingerbread House, Pontiac Review, Louisiana Literature, Homestead Review, Poem, Sandy River Review, One Trick Pony, Plainsongs, Texas Poetry Calendar 2017, Oklahoma Humanities Magazine, Inscape and others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Pantoum for Totality Kelly Granito At the lakeshore with my grandfather, compass held to the sky, we tracked the space station. A man was killed in the street today, I said. We’ve gotten nowhere. Compass held to the sky, we tracked the station. He said: Farmers hold fruit to the sun to check ripeness. I said: …we’ve gotten nowhere. The station hummed in the stillness above us. A farmer eclipsing sunlight with fruit must toil in hunger’s curved shadow. The station hummed in the stillness above us. My grandfather was silent. To obsess over ripeness, he toiled in hunger’s curved shadow. As a child he begged strangers for bread; now he was silent. To obsess over stardust—how absurd my life must seem. As a child he begged strangers for bread; now a man was killed in the street over stardust—how absurd my life must seem to him, at the lakeshore with my compass.

Originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan, Kelly Granito has lived and taught in Michigan, New Orleans, Washington, D.C., and New York City. She traces her passion for placebased writing to her family’s relentless belief in the promise of road-trip togetherness. She now works in education policy research, in a job that takes her into public schools all over America to study what works for kids in diverse classrooms. She has been published in Midwestern Gothic, the Laureate, Lines + Stars, and elsewhere. She currently lives in Brooklyn with her husband and cats.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

lyme Elena Botts a day in the grass and i come upon a disease in my skeleton. joints undone, there is a question, i say— am i losing my mind as in suffering i seem to suffer from nothing. but a weakened face. they said existence is your only headache and my thoughts are made light upon the surface, in pain, of the earth. but there is no doubt in my mind as the rash spreads i have no breath, only a small storm on my forearm: blacklegged, tickbite delivers in my blood borrelia burgdorferi. from which comes the fever of me. three weeksit was late, do you feel this heart?i feel intravenous brimming with antibiotics, doxycycline, amoxicillin, or cefuroxime axetil. overcome, i am post, even as the bacterium life is extinguished, a fire in my tissue, the body as ember burnt out. after, am i here or have i become a symptom of my skin, here is an epoch of new sleeplessness, of new tiredness, and the way the memory goes with no way to digest this head of pain i move, i twitch, muscles thrown in paroxysm through the nowhere lands i have less of a thought in me as though an impossible depression. my bones worn, in a fatigue i walk the landscape. is this the aftermath of a ruined kingdom of my own webbed tissue, or the unknown storm that still gathers in me, the secret colonization of my flesh, the bacteria still alight, resurrected as i fall? there is a great uncertainty about my heart.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

i’ve forgotten Elena Botts writing, i am too weak to flourish. by winter, i'll be dead. my dear friend lived a long life between ours and neighbors i'd say, wiry, gingery, and affectionate. something glowing between the fences. he won't be put out, a light in the next, a light in the next, worlds. in the meantime, you've caught me which is fine. i can watch the trees move. you can mark up your face with charcoal just so i might tell you where to take it off and not to eat it. someone is watching us like another story, once unobscured becomes uninteresting. we are like that too but at least it is daylight and we still know how to pass the time just by sitting and asking if the other had been alright.

Elena Botts grew up in the DC area, lived briefly in Berlin, Johannesburg, and NYC and currently studies at Bard College. She's been published in fifty literary magazines over the past few years. She is the winner of four poetry contests, including Word Works Young Poets'. Her poetry has been exhibited at the Greater Reston Art Center and at Arterie Fine Art Gallery. Check out her poetry books, we'll beachcomb for their broken bones (Red Ochre Press, 2014), a little luminescence (Allbook-Books, 2011) and the reason for rain (Coffeetown Press, 2015). Her visual art has won her several awards. Go to o-mourningdove.tumblr.com to see her latest artwork.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Hindsight Fantasy Andrew Hubbard When lightning stitches the afternoon sky, And thunder is a low, contemplative grumble And the autumn wind strips willing leaves Into a spinning free-fall, That is when I most want to be alone And not alone—talking in my mind With those I am close to Or was close at one time. I seek out places of peace—forest paths, And hold each memory like a lucky coin Turning it over and over, replaying history The way you replay an old favorite song. And often, if I have to tell the truth, I replay the story with facts slightly altered. I say what I thought of saying a year too late Or you have the gentle insight To hear what I meant, not what I said. And our circumstances are less convoluted. The stars, perhaps, better aligned To give us the chance It feels like we should have had.

Andrew Hubbard was born and raised in a coastal Maine fishing village. He earned degrees in English and Creative Writing from Dartmouth College and Columbia University, respectively. For most of his career he has worked as Director of Training for major financial institutions. He has had four prose books published, and his fifth and sixth books, collections of poetry, were published in 2014 and 2016 by Interactive Press. He is a casual student of cooking and wine, a former martial arts instructor and competitive weight lifter, a collector of edged weapons, and a licensed handgun instructor. He lives in rural Indiana with his family, two Siberian Huskies, and a demon cat.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Barry Harris is editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal and two anthologies by Brick Street Poetry: Mapping the Muse: A Bicentennial Look at Indiana Poetry and Words and Other Wild Things. 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, Writers‘ Bloc and Red-Headed Stepchild. One of his poems was 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.

Contributor Biographies Henry Ahrens writes from the forested hills of Cincinnati, Ohio, where he teaches a variety of high school English classes. His work has appeared recently in Tipton Poetry Journal, From the Edge of the Prairie, and Indiana Voice Journal. Tobi Alfier (Cogswell) is a multiple Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee. Her current chapbooks include Down Anstruther Way (Scotland poems) from FutureCycle Press, and her full-length collection Somewhere, Anywhere, Doesn’t Matter Where is forthcoming from Kelsay Books. She is co-editor of San Pedro River Review (www.bluehorsepress.com) and lives in California. Pat Anthony writes from the rural Midwest (Kansas), pondering the furrows in land and on the faces of those who work it. A recently retired educator, she has work in numerous journals, writes daily and edits furiously. Elena Botts grew up in the DC area, lived briefly in Berlin, Johannesburg, and NYC and currently studies at Bard College. She's been published in fifty literary magazines over the past few years. She is the winner of four poetry contests, including Word Works Young Poets'. Her poetry has been exhibited at the Greater Reston Art Center and at Arterie Fine Art Gallery. Check out her poetry books, we'll beachcomb for their broken bones (Red Ochre Press, 2014), a little luminescence (Allbook-Books, 2011) and the reason for rain (Coffeetown Press, 2015). Her visual art has won her several awards. Go to o-mourningdove.tumblr.com to see her latest artwork. Rose Bromberg lives in Florida and is the author of two poetry chapbooks: Poemedica (Finishing Line Press, 2011) and The Language of Seasons (Finishing Line Press, 2018). Janet Butler currently lives in Alameda, California, with Rocky, a 10 year old mini-pin senior rescue, and teaches TOEFL Test Preparation in Berkeley. She has focused on the Tanka these last three years, a form she finds very congenial, with some success. She is planning on a return to Italy, where she also holds citizenship, so future poems may involve cobblestone streets and windows that open out over red-tiled rooftops.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Amy Katherine Cannon is a writer and writing teacher living in Los Angeles. She received her MFA from UC Irvine, where she was the recipient of the Gerard Creative Writing Endowment. She is the author of the mini-chapbook to make a desert (Platypus Press, 2016), and her work can be found in BOAAT, BODY, Juked, and LIT, among other places. These pieces include found elements drawn from Christian mystics and theologians. Jennifer Cherry is a former Indiana girl now stuck in an Illinois world. She teaches writing and literature at a small Midwestern community college. Her fiction and essays have appeared in The Storyteller Magazine, r.kv.r.y quarterly literary journal, and other publications. Joan Colby has published widely in journals such as Poetry, Atlanta Review, South Dakota Review,etc. Awards include two Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards, 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 Good Works Review and FutureCycle Press. Holly Day has taught writing classes at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, since 2000. Her poetry has recently appeared in Tampa Review, SLAB, and Gargoyle, and her published books include Walking Twin Cities, Music Theory for Dummies, and Ugly Girl. Frank De Canio was born & bred in New Jersey, work in New York. He loves music of all kinds, from Bach to Dory Previn, Amy Beach to Amy Winehouse, World Music, Latin, opera. Shakespeare is his consolation, writing his hobby. Frank likes Dylan Thomas, Keats, Wallace Stevens, Frost , Ginsburg, and Sylvia Plath as poets. Gary Duehr has taught poetry and writing for institutions including Boston University, Lesley University, and Tufts University. His MFA is from the University of Iowa Writers Workshop. In 2001 he received an NEA Poetry Fellowship, and he has also received grants and fellowships from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the LEF Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation. Journals in which his poems have appeared include Agni, American Literary Review, Chiron Review, Cottonwood, Hawaii Review, Hotel Amerika, Iowa Review, North American Review, and Southern Poetry Review. His books of poetry include In Passing (Grisaille Press, 2011), THE BIG BOOK OF WHY (Cobble Hill Books, 2008), Winter Light (Four Way Books, 1999) and Where Everyone Is Going To (St. Andrews College Press, 1999). Allen Forrest is a writer and graphic artist for covers and illustrations in literary publications and books, the winner of the Leslie Jacoby Honor for Art at San Jose State University's Reed Magazine for 2015, and whose Bel Red landscape paintings are part of the Bellevue College Foundation's permanent art collection in Bellevue, Washington. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Amritendu Ghosal teaches English at A.M. College, Gaya, India. He divides his time between teaching, research, poetry and music. He has recently finished his PhD on Allen Ginsberg from B.H.U. Varanasi. Previously, he has worked as a Fulbright FLTA Scholar at Brown University. His poems and articles have appeared in journals and newspapers such as Visions (Brown), Shot Glass Journal, Volcano (BHU), Collage, The Hindustan Times, The Sunflower Collective, and others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Joe Gianotti grew up in Whiting, Indiana, an industrial city five minutes from Chicago. He currently teaches English at Lowell High School. He is a proud contributor to Volume II of This is Poetry: The Midwest Poets. Among other poets, he represented Northwest Indiana in the 2014 Five Corners Poetry Readings. His work has been published in Blotterature, Former People: A Journal of Bangs and Whimpers, Steam Ticket: A Third Coast Review, The Tipton Poetry Journal, This, Yes Poetry, and other places. You can follow him on Twitter at @jgianotti10. Daniel Gleason lives in Dayton, Tennessee where he teaches literature, composition, and creative writing at Bryan College. He and his wife, Kathleen, have two young sons. Originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan, Kelly Granito has lived and taught in Michigan, New Orleans, Washington, D.C., and New York City. She traces her passion for placebased writing to her family’s relentless belief in the promise of road-trip togetherness. She now works in education policy research, in a job that takes her into public schools all over America to study what works for kids in diverse classrooms. She has been published in Midwestern Gothic, the Laureate, Lines + Stars, and elsewhere. She currently lives in Brooklyn with her husband and cats. Peter J. Grieco is a native of Buffalo, New York and teaches writing at the University of Buffalo where he wrote his dissertation on working-class poetry. He is a prolific song writer and poet. His work has appeared recently in Bond Street Review, Tiger’s Eye, Right Hand Pointing, Poehemians, Paper Nautilus, Constellation, Sand, Beard of Bees, and Chiron Review. John D. Groppe’s The Raid of the Grackles and Other Poems was published in 2016 by Iroquois River Press. His poems have appeared in Tipton Poetry Journal, The Edge of the Prairie, Through the Sycamores, Flying Island, and other journals. Mr. Groppe was listed on Indiana’s bicentennial literary map 1816-2016 Literary Map of Indiana: 200 Years200 Writers. He is Professor Emeritus of English at Saint Joseph’s College and a resident of Rensselaer, Indiana since 1962. Carol Hamilton has published 17 books: children's novels, legends and poetry, most recently, Such Deaths from Virtual Arts Cooperative Press Purple Flag Series. She is a former Poet Laureate of Oklahoma and has been nominated seven times for a Pushcart Prize. Carol has recent or upcoming publications in Paper Street Journal, Cold Mountain Review, Main Street Rag, Gingerbread House, Pontiac Review, Louisiana Literature, Homestead Review, Poem, Sandy River Review, One Trick Pony, Plainsongs, Texas Poetry Calendar 2017, Oklahoma Humanities Magazine, Inscape and others. Jack D. Harvey’s poetry has appeared in Scrivener, Mind In Motion, Slow Dancer, The Antioch Review, Bay Area Poets’ Coalition, The University of Texas Review, The Beloit Poetry Journal, The Piedmont Journal of Poetry and a number of other on-line and in print poetry magazines over the years, many of which are probably kaput by now, given the high mortality rate of poetry magazines. Jack lives in a small town near Albany, New York. He is retired from doing whatever he was doing before he retired. He once owned a cat that could whistle Sweet Adeline, use a knife and fork and killed a postman.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Andrew Hubbard was born and raised in a coastal Maine fishing village. He earned degrees in English and Creative Writing from Dartmouth College and Columbia University, respectively. For most of his career he has worked as Director of Training for major financial institutions. He has had four prose books published, and his fifth and sixth books, collections of poetry, were published in 2014 and 2016 by Interactive Press. He is a casual student of cooking and wine, a former martial arts instructor and competitive weight lifter, a collector of edged weapons, and a licensed handgun instructor. He lives in rural Indiana with his family, two Siberian Huskies, and a demon cat. Judy Kanne is a retired Saint Joseph’s College education professor and Director of Student Teaching, who became the Jasper County Historian in 2011. Judy is the wife of 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Court Judge Michael S. Kanne and mother of Anne Kanne Padly and Katherine S. Kanne. Former Indiana Poet Laureate Norbert Krapf is the author of eleven poetry collections and the forthcoming Cheerios in Tuscany: Poems by and for a First-Time Grandpa. He is the winner of a Glick Indiana Author Award, a Creative Renewal Fellowship from the Arts Council of Indianapolis, and the Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America. He collaborates with bluesman Gordon Bonham. Originally from Illinois, Mary Hills Kuck retired from teaching English and Communications, first in the US and for many years in Jamaica and now lives and walks with her family in the woods in Massachusetts. Her poems have appeared in Long River Run, Connecticut River Review, Hamden Chronicle, SIMUL: Lutheran Voices in Poetry, Caduceus, The Jamaica Observer, Fire Stick: A Collection of New & Established Caribbean Poets, Fever Grass: A collection of New & Established Caribbean Writers, Massachusetts State Poetry Society, Inc. Anthology and The Aurorean. Steve Lambert has work which appeared recently in Sky Island Journal, Emrys Journal, Into The Void and Deep South Magazine. His work twice has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His debut poetry collection, Heat Seekers, was released in September 2017 by Cherry Grove Collections. Steve lives in the uncool, unhistorical part of St. Augustine, Florida, works in a public library, and teaches part-time at the University of North Florida. Thomas Locicero is an award-winning poet, short story writer, and essayist, as well as a playwright and monologist. His work has appeared in Roanoke Review, Boston Literary Magazine, The Long Island Quarterly, Riverrun, Omnibus Arts & Literature Anthology, The Good Men Project, A&U: America's AIDS Magazine, and Beginnings. Originally from East Islip, Long Island, Thomas resides with his wife, Lil, and their sons, Sam and Ben, in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Karen D. Mitchell’s poetry has appeared in genesis, Flying Island, Tipton Poetry Journal, Jake Magazine, Green Man Review, Open Minds Quarterly, ScribeSpirit, Right Hand Pointing, remark!, and many other publications. A 2005 Pushcart Prize nominee, Karen is the author of one chapbook, Thanatology of Moths, published by 3 Legged Cat Press. When not reading, writing, sharing poetry at the 10 Johnson Avenue coffee shop in Irvington, playing and listening to music, spending time with her partner and friends, or wrangling cats, she works as a kennel attendant at the Cat Care Clinic of Indianapolis and also operates her own pet sitting business, Neko Nanny. Karen lives in Indianapolis with her partner, Kaleigh, roommates Ellen and Millie, and a menagerie of rescue cats.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Milt Montague was born and raised and lives now in New York City. He survived The Great Depression, the school system, and World War ll. Finished college, married happily, raised 3 lovely daughters, retired. Back to college and after 20 years discovered poetry at 85. Now at 90 plus years, he has 131 poems published in 40 different magazines in under 5 years. A retired teacher of English and photography, Roger Pfingston is the recipient of a poetry fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. His poems have appeared in American Journal of Poetry, Poet Lore, Spoon River Poetry Review, Innisfree Poetry Journal, and Ted Kooser’s column, American Life in Poetry. His chapbook, A Day Marked for Telling, is available from Finishing Line Press. Jack Powers is a high school special education teacher who has had poems appear in Southern Review, Rattle, Cortland Review and elsewhere. Jack lives in Connecticut. Bruce Pratt is the winner of the 2007 Ellipsis Prize in poetry, a finalist for the Erskine J. Poetry award from Smartish Pace, and his poems have appeared in Only Connect, an anthology from Cinnamon Press, (Wales) Smartish Pace, The 2007 Goose River Anthology, Revival (Ireland), Puckerbrush Review, The Poet’s Touchstone, Rock and Sling, Red Rock Review, Crosscut, Iguana Review, Tipton Poetry Journal, The Unrorean, Heartland Review, and Wild Goose Poetry Review He teaches at the University of Maine. Tom Raithel grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and has worked as a journalist at several newspapers in the Midwest. Today, he lives in Evansville, Indiana with his wife, Theresa. His poems have appeared in The Southern Review, The Comstock Review, Nimrod, Midwest Quarterly, Atlanta Review, and other journals. Finishing Line Press has published his chapbook, Dark Leaves, Strange Light. Charles Rammelkamp is Prose Editor for BrickHouse Books in Baltimore, where he lives. His most recent book is American Zeitgeist (Apprentice House), which deals with the populist politician, William Jennings Bryan. A chapbook, Jack Tar’s Lady Parts, is forthcoming from Main Street Rag Press. Patrick T. Reardon is the author of eight books, including Requiem for David, a poetry collection from Silver Birch Press, and Faith Stripped to Its Essence, a literary-religious analysis of Shusaku Endo's novel Silence. Reardon worked for 32 years as a reporter with the Chicago Tribune. His essays and poetry have been published widely in the United States and Europe. He lives now in Chicago. Janet Reed is a recent second-place winner in Common Ground Review’s poetry contest and a 2016 Pushcart Prize nominee. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Chiron Review, Common Ground Review, Avalon Review, I-70 Review, and others. She is at work on her first collection and teaches writing and literature for Crowder College in Missouri. Tim Robbins teaches ESL. He has a B.A. in French and an M.A. in Applied Linguistics. His poems have appeared in Three New Poets, Slant, Main Street Rag, Adelaide Literary Magazine, Off The Coast, Tipton Poetry Journal and others. His collection Denny’s Arbor Vitae was published in 2017. He lives with his husband of twenty years in Kenosha, Wisconsin, birthplace of Orson Welles.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Judith Skillman’s recent book is Kafka’s Shadow (Deerbrook Editions). Her work has appeared in LitMag, Shenandoah, Zyzzyva, FIELD, and elsewhere. Awards include an Eric Mathieu King Fund grant from the Academy of American Poets. She is a faculty member at the Richard Hugo House in Seattle, Washington. Visit www.judithskillman.com. Michael E. Strosahl was born and raised in Moline, Illinois, just blocks from the Mississippi River. He has written poetry since youth, but became very active when he joined the Indiana poetry community. He has participated in poetry groups and readings from all parts of the state and at one time served as president of the Poetry Society of Indiana. Maik currently resides in Anderson, Indiana. Mark Tappmeyer is a retired teacher living in Brownsburg, Indiana. Maryfrances Wagner ‘s books include Salvatore’s Daughter, Light Subtracts Itself, Red Silk (Thorpe Menn Book Award for Literary Excellence), Dioramas (Mammoth) and Pouf (FLP). Poems have appeared in New Letters, Midwest Quarterly, Laurel Review, Voices in Italian Americana, Unsettling America: An Anthology of Contemporary Multicultural Poetry (Penguin Books), Literature Across Cultures (Pearson/Longman), Bearing Witness, The Dream Book, An Anthology of Writings by Italian American Women (American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation), et.al. She lives in Independence, Missouri and co-edits I-70 Review. Evan D. Williams's poetry has appeared in Borderlands, IthacaLit, Mud Season Review, Penned Parenthood, and Stillwater. He is an art appraiser by vocation and lives with his wife in Ithaca, New York, in the foothills of the Appalachians.

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Tipton Poetry Journal #35  
Tipton Poetry Journal #35  

Fall 2017

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