Tipton Poetry Journal #49 - Summer 2021

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021


Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

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 47 poets from the United States (22 different states and the District of Columbia). Oddly, there are no poets from outside the U.S. in this issue, the first that has happened in a long time. Our Featured Poem this issue is “Preservation,” written by Lisa Hase-Jackson. Lisa’s poem, which also receives an award of $25, can be found on page 2. The featured poem was chosen by the Board of Directors of Brick Street Poetry, Inc., the Indiana nonprofit organization who publishes Tipton Poetry Journal. Dan Carpenter reviews Matthew Brennan’s Snow in New York. Cover Photo: Old Barn – Brown County by Brendan Crowley. Print versions of Tipton Poetry Journal are available for purchase through amazon.com. Barry Harris, Editor

Copyright 2021 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 – Summer 2021

Contents Douglas Nordfors ...................................................................................... 1 Lisa Hase-Jackson ..................................................................................... 2 Robert Okaji ................................................................................................ 4 Patrick T. Reardon.................................................................................... 5 Simon Perchik ............................................................................................ 6 Lynn Pattison ............................................................................................. 6 Edward Bynum .......................................................................................... 8 M.A.Istvan Jr.............................................................................................. 11 Kim Garcia................................................................................................. 12 Patricia Davis-Muffett ........................................................................... 12 Charles Cantrell ....................................................................................... 14 Jake Bailey ................................................................................................. 15 Jeanine Stevens ........................................................................................ 18 Lorne Mook ............................................................................................... 19 Vincent J. Tomeo ...................................................................................... 20 Janet Reed .................................................................................................. 20 W.F. Lantry ................................................................................................ 22 Kenton K. Yee ............................................................................................ 24 Donna Pucciani ........................................................................................ 24 R.S. Stewart ............................................................................................... 26 Alessio Zanelli .......................................................................................... 27 Nancy K. Jentsch ...................................................................................... 28 Claire Scott ................................................................................................ 28 A.D. Winans ............................................................................................... 30 D. Walsh Gilbert....................................................................................... 31 Gilbert Allen .............................................................................................. 32


Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Timothy Robbins ..................................................................................... 34 Matt Prater ............................................................................................... 35 Robert Tremmel ...................................................................................... 36 Doris Lynch ............................................................................................... 36 Leslie Schultz ............................................................................................ 38 Edytta Anna Wojnar .............................................................................. 39 Allen Shadow ............................................................................................ 40 Roger Pfingston ....................................................................................... 40 Anne Whitehouse .................................................................................... 42 Milton P. Ehrlich ...................................................................................... 43 Bethany Bowman .................................................................................... 43 Sarah Rehfeldt ......................................................................................... 46 Tim Kahl ..................................................................................................... 46 Melanie Weldon-Soiset .......................................................................... 48 Russell Rowland ...................................................................................... 49 Donna Pucciani ........................................................................................ 50 D.R. James .................................................................................................. 51 Susan Cossette.......................................................................................... 52 Rosaleen Crowley ................................... Error! Bookmark not defined. John Haugh................................................................................................ 54 Michael Keshigian .................................................................................. 54 Lois Marie Harrod................................................................................... 56 Morgan Hamill ......................................................................................... 57 David Melville ........................................................................................... 58 John Maurer .............................................................................................. 60 Review: Snow in New York by Matthew Brennan ........ 61 Contributor Biographies.............................................................. 65


Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021


Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Giving Advice Douglas Nordfors Hope for the best, and define the best as a watered-down version of heaven. To thank for such nonsense I have a part of the brain that shouldn’t be used, the part that considers a red rose and a red rose and finds one lovelier. Obviously, I don’t know what I’m talking about. I shouldn’t be giving advice, prone as I am to making breathtaking mistakes, like looking for solitude in a public park, like seeing a glob of trash that rainwater glued to a street, and rainwater sticking to a gutter's path, as a reflection of all that happens when people strive to make the world a better place. I should be receiving spiritual guidance from a child sliding down a slide in a public park, should be imagining mothers and fathers forming a chain around the park to prevent disappointment from entering our lives, should be defining a street as an artery that can require cleansing, a stop sign as an interval of peace, a dead end as the mouth of a river, an ocean as a deep humanity filling a breathable society the moon governs with a soft hand.

Douglas Nordfors, a native of Seattle, now lives in Virginia. He has a BA from Columbia University and an MFA in poetry from The University of Virginia. Poems have been published in journals as The Iowa Review, Quarterly West, Poetry Northwest, and Poet Lore, and recent work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Burnside Review, The Louisville Review, Poetry South, Chariton Review, The Hollins Critic, Potomac Review, California Quarterly, 2River, BODY Literature, The Broad River Review, JuxtaProse Literary Magazine, Valparaiso Poetry Review, and others. His three books of poetry are Auras (2008), The Fate Motif (2013), and Half-Dreaming (2020), all published by Plain View n

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Preservation Lisa Hase-Jackson Drive the tractor. Your husband guides the plow. His stubbornness will require alcohol well before noon. The day must be dry, the earth warm the stakes high – made from straight twigs flagged with strips of cloth, old flannel will do. Furrow straight as can be managed, no matter the barrage, and as true as good seed scattered on warm soil. Remember to stagger plantings, water well from the house spigot, and pray for rain and a straight back. Pray the neighbors don’t spray herbicide on the pasture across the road on a day when the wind is from the east, that wildlife and livestock won’t pilfer, that there are no more frosty mornings. When luck becomes blooms becomes beans to be picked on a dry day in August and placed on ice until ready for the water-bath canner sort the Mason jars and the Kerr jars, often used for moonshine, and boil. Blanch the beans, blanch the lids, pack the jars and place them under pressure on the kitchen stove after shooing away the children but before your husband returns home from work, demanding dinner, quiet, and a can of beer.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Planting Season Lisa Hase-Jackson Harney soil sustains early green beans sweat peas, tomatoes, too; hides seed potatoes, carrot seeds, radishes and grubs. Black and warm from the sun's May rays, loam collects under nails, tracing the palm's life line. Will it nourish this over-ample garden, and the children, too? Can it fill the gaps between dreams and addiction, stifle old screams or call me back to root as I roam and wander afield?

Lisa Hase-Jackson lives in Charleston, South Carolina and is the author of Flint and Fire (The Word Works), winner of the 2019 Hilary Tham Capital Collection Series as selected by Jericho Brown. She is Editor in Chief at South 85 Journal and founding editor of Zingara Poetry Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Scarecrow Wonders Robert Okaji I think, therefore I cannot be. Yet here I stand, vigilant amidst the black birds and below the cloud-rimmed sky, rotting in my mildewed coat and tied-off trousers, counting tail feathers and collecting rumors of insurrections and confederacies, of lovers and lynchings and injustices replayed in perpetuity. Purposes elude me. As do symbols. Some would deny my soul, others would box and sell it, while I worry mostly that my left arm’s bulk has sifted away by half, that a heavy rain or curious cow will hasten my departure. Though I do not live, this form of myself will erode as surely as that word's etymology, gnawed away by weather or yes, the rodents. And what of these tales? Folk stopped for one invalid reason, shot dead for another or bludgeoned on the basis of appearance alone. What is humanity but a misshapen bundle of hate fed by lies, bigotry, and ignorance entwined with fear. Hollow and straw-made, I pity those who cannot see beyond their red hat brims and shallow truths, those mere descriptors, shapes and colors that comprise but do not define. I cannot be, yet here I stand, mingling with corvid cries and the incomprehensible, but alone in my wonder, acknowledging existence, understanding little of how the world works and what I might become if only I had substance, a role, a place, a voice. Robert Okaji is a displaced Texan seeking work in Indianapolis. He once owned a bookstore, served without distinction in the U.S. Navy, and most recently bagged groceries for a living. He is the author of multiple chapbooks, including My Mother's Ghost Scrubs the Floor at 2 a.m. (winner of the 2021 Etchings Press Poetry Prize). His work has appeared or is forthcoming in North Dakota Quarterly, Vox Populi, Buddhist Poetry Review, Book of Matches and elsewhere.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Lot’s brother Patrick T. Reardon I keep walking and dream of ocean bottom. Unhallowed brother candescent with angry song and furnace flame, keening. He pulled his own trigger, exploded into darkness. Bread is broken as siren interrupts ceremony. Resolute brother, doped up with fault from crib, whirled so fast he evaporated like so many tears. His frail voice echoed over the network, final call. Lost brother’s sword and shield buried in backyard where he ended. I am turned into salt.

Patrick T. Reardon, a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee living in Chicago, is the author of nine books, including the poetry collection Requiem for David and Faith Stripped to Its Essence, a literaryreligious analysis of Shusaku Endo's novel Silence. His poetry has appeared in America, Rhino, Main Street Rag, The Write Launch, Meat for Tea, Under a Warm Green Linden and many others. He has two poetry collections forthcoming in 2021: Puddin: The Autobiography of a Baby, a Memoir in Prose-poems (Third World Press) and Darkness on the Face of the Deep (Kelsay Books).

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

* Simon Perchik You take the black umbrella to bed convinced its simple twist and snap will wash over you, hold back the walls that last the way the blind unfold their arms around the night they know better than you ̶ you will die holding on while the sheets make room for the darkness your heart is used to, opening and closing little by little, waiting for rain.

Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Forge, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker and elsewhere. His most recent collection is The Osiris Poems published by boxofchalk, 2017. For more information including free e-books and his essay “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website at www.simonperchik.com. To view one of his interviews please follow this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSK774rtfx8

It’s summer and the ants are suicidal Lynn Pattison I soap and wash the window to remove trails ants follow to the prize, and spray around the sill—hands in gloves before replacing the hummingbird feeder. Eyes and hands focus on balance – keeping the nectar un-sloshed and inside – avoiding splash or little seepings. To feeder hook I glide

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 like a timid, anxious beau afraid to spill a fragrant drop and call the beggars back. I rise on tiptoes to ensure the feeder’s swapped. Yet passing by, not ten minutes gone, there’s the first seeker laying down his trail of pheromones, relentless, hungry, and eager. One taste of sweetness sends him back for reinforcements – euphoric bit of sugar goads their faith that greater effort=more snacks and, crazed, they enter feeder holes and swim into that rich syrup whereupon they drown and, dying, surface where their turned-up mandibles are prows of small boats bumping against each other and snagging like logs floated down a northern river. Never failing, hearts unflagging queueing up hell-bent, at cost of life, to deliver. The mission’s a death march, a futile expedition. They end swollen and engorged. I’m elected ant mortician.

Lynn Pattison lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Her work has appeared in Ruminate, Moon City Review, The Mom Egg Review, Glassworks Magazine and Notre Dame Review, among others, and has been anthologized widely. Her published collections include the book, Light That Sounds Like Breaking (Mayapple Press), and three chapbooks: tesla's daughter (March St. Press), Walking Back the Cat (Bright Hill Press), and Matryoshka Houses, released last summer from Kelsay Press. Her book mss, Milky Way Stardust Aquarium is in search of a loving home.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

The Doctor Who Listened Too Closely Edward Bynum I With the orange pumpkin scattered in the field Like one of the moon’s children fallen from the sky I returned to the dream One of my patients told me About a carriage, her late uncle who mused constantly About the devil, the underworld, About a magnet seething at the center of the earth. As I listened with the third ear It was as if the light of my mind Were washed overboard Like the lantern from a huge ship in a storm at sea, Dropped down to the depths of the great fish Who travel alone, Dark and incapable of hope, Consumed by phantoms, parables of the bones. I thought about the wreckage in those waters. I thought about the mule Who looked like he could talk by the way he moved his ears But never did And the way my grandfather kept his false teeth in a glass of water By his bedside at night. There were fireflies in those days Flitting through the backyard after sunset. I tried to catch them in a jar, Keep them, Like my grandfather’s teeth, Just long enough to see if they would give off the same kind of light He did in the first dream I had about him After I heard he had died. He is the one who told me about the rules That govern the afterlife; how Jesus could forget your name, How the big light in the distance Was for burning off your memories, How you could fly beyond all the expectations of being a Mulatto In the global economy Provided the beautiful and the brave were at your side.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 II One of my patients conjured up medicine And had odd things to say about the blood. He claimed insurance companies Climbed way up his ass Looking for his credentials but settled for the genitals, Took delight In the minstrels of frauds And the watery way his emotions drowned out his pride When the whole thing later appeared on the evening television screens. After the divorce He claimed he could make fire come out of his hands If only the right woman knew how love him. He measured himself by all the short stories he meant to write But never did. He had Two cousins who committed suicide States apart on the same night. They say Their voices are still moving under the trees When the orange moon is calling out for her children. III Another patient is actually a raven. I’ve seen it in his black fingers And the way he leaves the office, Legs spindly, eyes keen, head jousting back and forth. He too came out of the sky, one of those injured children The nights hold close to their ears So they can hear the miracle no other ear can hear. He has much to say about winter, the scarcity of seafood When the snows maraud the roads, How precious little jealousy there is between the trees Now that they have re-entered death for the trillionth time. He claims to be the repository of all the hopes and failed excuses Ever heard, including his own about the birth of a new god Under the ovum of the moon When the whole universe is turning inside out. He reads backwards, Not so much for dyslexia, but because he is determined To catch time and space oaring In the opposite direction the universe is expanding, expanding In waves that keep emptying out into other dimensions Subsuming and eating us. He has many digestive problems.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 IV The one whose face is a beautiful orchard Came to see me the other day, Something about retracing the trail of dreams Her father left her in his books Before the abrupt suicide. I did tell her I knew about ravens but only tangentially, That my strong suit was hypnosis, How the moon could be barren of justice, and why There is always something subtle Drifting through our hearts. She understood given her background in astronomy And penchant for celestial harmonics. We worked in the desert for twenty six weeks. Each day was The devil fields of Rommel with two unseen Panzer divisions, The sea at my back, But knowing secretly I could fly. She took a new name, wove it into a mythology, Then rewrote the animal narrative of her story, Discovered she was still close to god. We ended with my fee. She later went on CBS evening news with the astonishing insight That there was intelligent life Beyond the moon and that one of the eight planets Was an alien satellite. V My tallest patient is a widower Living on disability and survivor’s benefits But the money is getting low And his dreams of reincarnating as Thoreau are gossamer and evanescent, Like fireflies flitting around an open fire. In one of his dreams that he repeats to me I too forget his name as quickly as it’s uttered. It is something like Rumpelstiltskin, but full of knives That seems to move on their own. Last April he awoke in the middle of the night from a dream About children lining up in small coffins To be shipped out in the morning When the mist was still hanging thick like smoke in the mountains. He had to put his coat on To tell me about it. It made me cold too. It made me afraid To walk home alone at night

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 As though the stars were out shopping for bloodworms by the pond And they saw me shivering, faithless and hungry. Eventually he dreamed of his mother’s suicide. She rose up to him like a brook trout, Nosed the surface of his consciousness Before falling back and drifting downstream. He followed her, thinking himself a rainbow after a rain. Then she flowed into a drainage ditch And plunged down deeper Than he could see or hear. His last thought Was of her rising like a great swan on fire, Speeding into the sunset, Calling back to him “it’s all true, it’s all true.” Edward Bynum is a practicing psychologist in Massachusetts with several book publications in psychology and poetry . This is a poem about a doctor in session, listening to his own inner thoughts as his patients speak. He is married and the father of 2 adult sons and a practitioner of yoga.

STEM Students and Moby Dick M.A.Istvan Jr. Just as vaccines, wherein dwell frail forms of the disease, train immune systems to face the full-bodied thing, literary experiences, wherein we grow invested in diverse fates, train empathy systems to hold in mind that there is a what-it-is-like-to-be the other. M. A. Istvan Jr., poet and philosopher, teaches at Austin Community College and is the current editor of Safe Space Press. Visit pw.org/directory/writers/m_a_istvan_jr_phd

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Imagining the space Kim Garcia where we might meet, a basement room or up a stone stair, baseboards scuffed with strangers. You might be shaking out the doormat, embarrassed, not meeting my eye. What would I say? So much I meant to tell you, before we met, before you closed the door and took nothing of me where you went.

Kim Garcia is the author of The Brighter House (White Pine Press), DRONE (The Backwaters Press), Madonna Magdalene (Turning Point Books), and a chapbook, Tales of the Sisters. Her poems have most recently appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry Northwest, New Ohio Review, Sugar House Review, IMAGE, Waxwing, and Tupelo Quarterly (winner of the 2019 Broadside Prize). Garcia teaches creative writing at Boston College.

What Is Mine Patricia Davis-Muffett for Merie

Returning from a long weekend pretending no responsibility becoming once again grad students forging the steel cord of friendship outlasting a decade of neglect when we never shared a meal, a glass of wine, walked a path together, sat silently, pens furious across the page--

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Returning is a hard re-entry: our space capsule in a halo of flame breaching atmosphere, hurtling toward sea. Back at home, there are dishes to do, homework to check, emails to answer, each family member hoarding me, though it’s only been four days since they felt my lips on their cheeks, flung their arms around me in the stolen embrace of teens. This morning, up with whining dogs, I shepherd them into pitch dark almost sleepwalking. I am ready to give myself a softer landing another hour of sleep. I return to my sleeping husband wrapped up in bedclothes this fall and chilly dawn, but there, at the foot of the bed, is the quilt you pieced me that I carried in the car, on the plane, in the cab, clutched back from my youngest, explaining this one thing belongs to me.

Patricia Davis-Muffett (she/her) holds an MFA from the University of Minnesota. She was a 2020 Julia Darling Poetry Prize finalist and received First Honorable Mention in the 2021 Joe Gouveia OuterMost Poetry Contest. Her work has appeared in Limestone, Coal City Review, Neologism, The Orchards, One Art, Pretty Owl Poetry, di-verse-city (anthology of the Austin International Poetry Festival), The Blue Nib and Amethyst Review, among others. She lives in Rockville, Maryland, with her husband and three children and makes her living in technology marketing.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Vince Charles Cantrell He writes lines like, The vacuum cleaner in my brain sucks away all bad thoughts, as a witch climbs spider silk toward the moon in my blood. I call that the irrational heart on its trampoline, from moon to lake and its reflection to dark docks where couples sit, sometimes dangling their toes in the water. I wonder how I could get a snake with a frog in its mouth into a poem. The snake makes me recall a student with a rattlesnake tattoo on his wrist, who whispered one day to Vince while I was explaining Coleridge’s love for imagination over fancy, that he’d rather be riding his Kawasaki than listening to this poetry shit, and I overheard Vince say, Cool it.

Charles Cantrell has poems in recent or forthcoming issues of Miramar Poetry Journal, The Café Review, The Hamilton Stone Review, and Stand. A book of poetry, Wild Wreckage, was recently published (2020) by Cervena Barva Press. He’s also been nominated 3 times for a Pushcart Prize, and has received fellowships form Ragdale, Ucross, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Thirteen Blackbirds Jake Bailey Another mouth inside me breathes. Everything breathes on the other side. Listen to the woods and the pale colors embracing ghosts and the soft thunder of hooves in the distance. Thirteen blackbirds fly over the ferryman, worn hands grasping rope like bread dipped in wine. Another mouth inside me breaks into thirteen pieces. Thirteen blackbirds. The horizon. The fading light.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Blood pools in the back of my throat. Blood pools into a river threatening to carry this body across. The ferryman drifts. The blackbirds fly to that place without a name. I am afraid that nothing breathes on the other side.

Ghost of my Ghost Jake Bailey I was convinced that my childhood home was haunted. My father kept my grandmother’s ashes in a box in the hall closet, closet beckoning imagination to ruin. A ghost serves as well as substance when absence becomes a stone. A stone serves as well as absence when it’s lodged in your shoe and digging into soft flesh.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 An instant inside chaos painted to look like meaning, subtext stretched into fibers and woven as tapestries of faith. Tattered. Vibrant in their overtures. Symphonies understand the hollowness of a note and what rises beyond an outstretched hand. Matrix of sound. Sound of incarnation meeting pavement, a soft thud. I’d pace before the door wondering what would happen if I stripped it of its hinges. What an opening looked like without a form. The collapse of a star. I asked my mother about the shape of God. If a leaking body knows that blood cannot pump itself by design. Years later, my father scattered the ashes across a river, a ghost made water. Which makes up most of a soul. Aqueous. Untamed. In dreams, my grandmother asks me if I know what it means to be a man. Yes, I’ve seen a mouth become a dagger, slice clean through bone. Yes, I’ve seen what becomes of a haunting. She paints a soundscape before me, soft notes of what it means to end. Ghost birthing ghost. Absence revealed to breed nothing. Ghost of my ghost. Haunt me so that I may become a door. Jake Bailey is a schiZotypal experientialist with published or forthcoming work in Abstract Magazine, The American Journal of Poetry, Constellations, Diode Poetry Journal, Frontier Poetry, Guesthouse, MidAmerican Review, Palette Poetry, PANK Magazine, Passages North, Storm Cellar, TAB: The Journal of Poetry & Poetics, Tar River Poetry, and elsewhere. Jake received his MA from Northwest Missouri State University and his MFA from Antioch University, Los Angeles. He is a former editor for Lunch Ticket, current associate editor for Storm Cellar, and reads for Grist: A Journal of the Literary Arts. Jake lives in Illinois with his wife and their three dogs. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram (@SaintJakeowitz) and at saintjakeowitz.xyz.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Poems on Vacation Jeanine Stevens Poems that refuse to correspond, not even a penny postcard. On returning, they have a new complexion, new cologne, new ski togs, insist on a title change. The ones that demand the last say, have greater wisdom than the poet, tote that bale. Go slow, the poem wants more. Others haunt you and walk away, hunt you down in a shoe shop, so many soles need repair. Some hide between pages of a book, thumb their nose, advise, “Move on to new work!” The poem that insist on slumming: seedy clubs with hairy bouncers, neon Coors signs, rancid toilets, then offeran on-line ad for Speedy Alka-Seltzer. Most love the word, Elusive! Others hide in old files, hoping you won’t find them, do anymore damage, excise a line or mangle a thought. Fannie Howe writes, “I once knew a man who was a poem, like the man who disappeared suddenly.” Rushing home from errands, I hope to find inspiration; there the poem sits at an outside table at Carl’s Junior’s noshing on a Famous Star. Then, the poem as beast, always wants more words; you give it thirty or so, keeps one and spits out the rest, then jumps into the shredder. After a long dry period, feeling abandoned, you watch an action film, in the credits, a poem is featured as a stunt double. You decide to take up sailing. On your first day out from Sausalito, that darn poem waves from a fancy yacht then cuts right in front. Poems that mock, defy logic, want bluet instead of blue, nostril instead of Nostradamus. The one that says, “You have me backwards, the last stanza should be first.” Tit for Tat. Then, you sit twenty minutes, meditate on cigarettes, salsa, and snakes—and, you have your Frida sonnet.

Jeanine Stevens is the author of Inheritor and Limberlost (Future Cycle Press), and Sailing on Milkweed (Cherry Grove Collections). She is winner of the MacGuffin Poet Hunt and The Ekphrasis Prize. Gertrude Sitting: Portraits of Women, won the 2020 Chapbook Prize from Heartland Review Press. Jeanine recently received her seventh Pushcart Nomination. She studied poetry at U.C. Davis and Community of Writers, Olympic Valley and is Faculty Emerita at American River College.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

The Friend Lorne Mook In dark woods well east of state road 86 two miles of dirt road erase the decades. I watch for the long driveway carved into memory and see it just too late to turn. But past it there is a place to pull over and look back at a vista—the gray barn and, hugged by trees, the house he lived in the year his dad was on sabbatical, and we best friends and seventh graders. Here it remains—real, unmarred. And though I know his pet goat Obi-Wan and his parents I wished could be mine and the ball and bats and mitts for the game between the garage and the grass-covered barn ramp are gone, it seems he could walk as naturally as breath from under that weeping willow and still be twelve instead of fifty, as I know he is—wherever he is— and don’t want to think about us being.

Lorne Mook teaches at Taylor University in Upland, Indiana. Some of his poems are gathered in his book Travelers without Maps. His translations of Rainer Maria Rilke’s poems have appeared in journals and in his book Dream-Crowned, the first English translation of a collection that Rilke published in 1897 when he was 21.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Cemetery Poetry Reading Vincent J. Tomeo No one cares if I read them my poetry. It's been a long time since anyone had read a poem to them. Who cares if my words echo between headstones Who cares if I sit on wet sod or kick up dirt I can even scream! Will you hear me? I sit on your headstone, knowing you won't care. Your tombstone reads: Hello, Take a seat, stay awhile. Vincent J. Tomeo was born and raised in Corona, Queens, New York City, and has lived in the most diversified urban area on the planet his entire life. He has recited his poetry everywhere across the United States, throughout Queens, and internationally; South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Italy, Tanzania, Kenya, Spain, Morocco, Portugal, Germany, and France. His book, My Cemetery Friends: A Garden of Encounters at Mount Saint Mary in Queens, New York was published in 2020. His poem, “A View from a Tower in Calabria, Italy,” won Honorable Mention in the Rainer Maria Rilke International Poetry Competation.

After the Belly Fills Janet Reed Too often lately I find myself like Jonah after his three-day tour of the whale’s belly washed up and woke on a stranger’s beach, slathered in the foamy slough of beastly juices, covered by the consequences of bad bargains willfully made, asking what happened to that girl who once stopped traffic for turtles, rescued perishing dogs, and saved the shells of the wayward

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 with Greyhound tickets out of their Ninevehs? The one who ran a run-away for girls escaping or eloping from her teenaged-bedroom? That girl, so sure of iron will she sought righteousness in numbers and words, let 3-5-7-11-7-5-3 pattern in her head because primality, proofs of difference mattered, because time counted, a thing she knew every morning and evening spitting verbs and toothpaste on the bathroom mirror, conjugations running over teeth and tongue passing past to present, feeling the bite of future time. When did the scratch of bristle on gum grow calluses, tenses and math magic root too comfortable in the roof of her mouth? At least Jonah heard the call and said, hell, no, knew his defiance defeated him, his head never in doing right. I came to, emerged from the under belly of my whale past my best-use date surrounded by rotting rutabagas and green meat. Bloated and bewildered, I couldn’t see where I’d let seaweed strangle all I’d once believed possible. It is late, but I now remember future perfect tense: I will have breast-stroked fast enough to avoid being swallowed again.

Janet Reed is the author of Blue Exhaust (FLP, 2019), and a multi-year Pushcart Prize and Best of the Web nominee. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Sow’s Ear Review, Emry’s, Tipton Poetry Journal, and others. She began writing knock-off Nancy Drew stories on wide-lined notebook paper at age 11. Now, she teaches creative writing, literature and composition at Crowder College in Missouri and thinks about how to write her own stories while walking her dogs.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Multiverse W.F. Lantry Each pond contains a universe unknown: its borders unimagined by those eyes too small or large to see within those bounds or see past them: the trillium-lit shade may well hide galaxies we only dream, and myths are made of broken limbs, or trunks bridging the newly bridled hurried stream. Here in the shadows of a flooded day we sense another presence: what had torn the banks apart reshaped this turning course again, as when a hurricane remade all distances, as if a veiled hand beneath our surfaces sculpted a path we still may travel if we light our way with undiscovered lamps, primordial as rough glittering mica newly cleft from cliffs that held their light a thousand years, opened just now, for one day, to our sight, replacing elements of vision known to ring these edges of our living earth and flow across the confines of our lives.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Jewel at the Heart of the Lotus: Om Mani Padme Hum W.F. Lantry

I’m going back to stringing level lines and measuring diagonals. Plumb bobs and lasers are about to be my world. It’s easy, building ponds: you have to dig a little while and rearrange the earth whose weight is fairly measured into tons. It’s even easy when it rains for days and fills the half-completed pit with mud: just get an in-ground pump to clear it out, and maybe get a ladder to descend down to the lowest level you can reach, that’s where the digging’s hardest, even wet. They make electric jackhammers for times like these, but they will shake your very soul, and you’ll crawl from that pit completely spent. Remember: all this labor brings repose: the simple calming peace of rising koi cavorting among water lily blooms.

W.F. Lantry spends time roaming the Eastern Forests from Maryland to Vermont and gardening near Washington, DC’s Anacostia River. His poetry collections are The Terraced Mountain (Little Red Tree 2015), The Structure of Desire (Little Red Tree 2012), winner of a 2013 Nautilus Award in Poetry, and The Language of Birds (2011). He received his PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston. Honors include the National Hackney Literary Award in Poetry, CutBank Patricia Goedicke Prize, Crucible Editors' Poetry Prize, Lindberg Foundation International Poetry for Peace Prize (Israel), Comment Magazine Poetry Award (Canada), Paris/Atlantic Young Writers Award (France), Old Red Kimono Paris Lake Poetry Prize and Potomac Review Prize. His work has appeared widely online and in print. He is the editor of Peacock Journal.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

The Monday Following Your Execution Kenton K. Yee You keep checking your wrist even though it’s your tie that needs loosening as you stroll past the tall glass doors again. You’re sweating up your new suit but it’s still thirteen minutes till nine— and then it’s nine till nine and a line is forming at the elevator bank inside. You swipe the badge hanging around your neck and join the line. Stout is bellowing for new hires to get off at thirty-nine. There, a man with flames for horns will take you to your cube. You will sign finely printed forms, fill in your W-4; then it’s I.T., usernames, passwords, tea or coffee. You shall sit in front of a bright screen for sunlight till nine and nine again— the temerity of plastic.

Kenton K. Yee has recently placed poetry in Plume Poetry, Matter, Ligeia Magazine and Sommerset Review, among others. An Iowa Summer Poetry Workshop alumnus, PhD physicist, and former Columbia University faculty member, Kenton makes his home near Berkeley, California.

Hope hides Donna Pucciani in the thickness of a gray dawn, for what is there to look forward to? But don’t be foolish: The day stretches before us into a flickering sunshine, sweeping the snow-clad roofs of suburbia, making the dark streets shine with false promises.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

The hope of night, even moonless, is far more practical. There’s no hypocrisy: dark is dark, predictable, universal in its grasp, terrible in its truth. Old folk, knitting and muttering, know this: Hope is for the young, who embrace life as it scrolls its scripture into the future. Work, love, the patterns of uncountable days, are never gathered in the soul until everything is finished, when time turns back on itself. Death sings its own psalm when, tired of searching the dim or too-bright planetary spheres for something resembling peace, we settle for the immediacy of rain on a windowpane, the smell of bread baking, a dog barking in the distance, a train whistling into nowhere.

Donna Pucciani, a Chicago-based writer, has published poetry worldwide in such diverse publications as Shi Chao Poetry Meniscus, Gradiva, Acumen, Voice and Verse and other journals. Her most recent book of poems is Edges. EDGES.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Bird Psychology R.S. Stewart Only a bird can figure out why it hops along a fence when it would rather fly across a field. Happenstance is probably not a factor, but when a schooled ornithologist bares down to the forked toe of the foot of a wood thrush to note again that an avian direction and decision are somewhat superior to a human assumption, sequential questions pop up about birds and their ears, eyes, and brains. Capacities run deep, deep as psyches in the afterglow of discovery. The pelican’s, the heron’s beak has that more than half-harried look while alighting on a post, wading a river bend. In their element is where birds spend most of their better hours when not searching for nesting spots, not curious about the human on the bank, up a tree, peering through the spy glass.

R.S. Stewart, who lives in western Oregon, has published in many journals in both the U.S. and Europe, most recently in The Dark Horse (Scotland). Two poems are forthcoming in The Wallace Stevens Journal.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Reviving Wounded Knee Alessio Zanelli No sward, no pond, no tree is left. Of all time the most appalling theft, plundering, deportation, genocide. What’s become of Rain-in-the-Face, Kicking Bear, He Dog, Spotted Elk? What’s become of their fatherland? They’d always believed they’d win, then hoped they’d avoid constraint, in the end had to settle for survival. They’d not imagined it’d be a horde, there swarmed as many as the stars, and brought along no happy ending. I can't help feeling I am one of them, zuyá wičhášá and wamánuŋ s'a at once, as my anguish trickles on both sides. So my ghost rides about undaunted and, though I have never been there, leaves me entangled in one thought: I am the prairie, and I am the bison. I am the storm cloud on the horizon.

Alessio Zanelli is an Italian poet who writes in English and whose work has appeared in over 180 literary journals from 16 countries. His fifth original collection, titled The Secret Of Archery, was published in 2019 by Greenwich Exchange Publishing (London). For more information please visit www.alessiozanelli.it.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

It’s Sweet to Lie Awake in the Early Morning

Nancy K. Jentsch (Title from Edward Hirsch’s “In a Polish Home for the Aged”)

Honey-capped fingers reach to deflect the bright-eyed eastern sky The line between night and dawn sags sugary as thoughts drizzle back to dreams glaze them till they glint till sun’s flint flames them and they taste like the crisp Eden of a crème brûlée Nancy K. Jentsch lives and writes from Kentucky.

A Cup of White Tea Claire Scott for John

He brings me a cup of tea in a tall glass mug the steam smells of white peony he smiles softly, touching my shoulder Even though the flotsam of my life floats around me flashing silver like schools of sardines a notebook covered in shiny hearts a soccer trophy from sixth grade the sapphire ring from my first love even if this world is growing short And there is no word for where-the-hell-are-you-god searching Safari or Chrome to find an understudy even a puny godling or a retired rock star

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 praying to Siri and Alexa I don’t know the answer to that for guidance in this unmoored time Where Monarchs are unable to find milkweed where gaunt polar bears float on melting ice and rising seas threaten millions of turtles even if this world is drenched with loss and we speak in dialects of sorrow knowing we will soon be erased as easily As fifth grade spelling words on a blackboard earthquake imperative countdown even though our nights are sleep-lorn our sheaf of hours thinning like old coins or the sallow skin of our grandmothers yes, even if chalk outlines are waiting I hold the taste on my tongue like a wafer savoring its warmth, there is more than enough love to last in this steaming glass of white tea

Claire Scott is an award winning poet in Oakland, California who has received multiple Pushcart Prize nominations. Her work has been accepted by the Atlanta Review, Bellevue Literary Review, New Ohio Review, Enizagam and Healing Muse among others. Claire is the author of Waiting to be Called and Until I Couldn’t. She is the co-author of Unfolding in Light: A Sisters’ Journey in Photography and Poetry.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

In the Twilight of Insanity A.D. Winans in the twilight of my insanity the sun beats down on me like the gleam in the eye of a butcher lowering a hammer on the head of an unsuspecting cow being led to the slaughterhouse the memories circle me like old-time Indians circling a wagon train as I walk back into my birth each new year like a sharpened knife in the hands of a trembling surgeon lost in insomnia like a blind man walking a dark road in the dead of night waking like a shotgun blast in a killing field lost in a language I cannot translate the priest passes the collection plate rejects my confession my sins laid out like a sea of stars in a faraway constellation the creaking coasters of my grandfather's rocking chair sing in my one good ear the Holy Ghost devours me like a python the Pope gets down on his knees begs for Jesus to come out of hiding and deliver the long-promised resurrection A.D. Winans is an award-winning native San Francisco poet and writer. He edited and published Second Coming from 1972-1989. Awards include a PEN National Josephine Miles Award for literary excellence, a PEN Oakland Lifetime Achievement Award, and a Kathy Acker Award in poetry and publishing.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

A Maid Chooses Her Fish D. Walsh Gilbert ~ an interpretation of Bonitera by Francisco Gutiérrez Cossio (Cuba/Spain) 1894-1970

I’ve been drawn down to the docks to gather what’s been pulled from the sea, to pick a brave one, now stillgilled and armored in polished scales, one who speaks to me. The gangplank rolls— the tide is rising. I can balance only one more for the market. You, Sir, sunburned, sweat-slick, barechested, hand me that one still wriggling in the hold. It carries the depths, the salt and currents. It learned to sound the waves when storms break. It knows fight. It knows it’s beautiful.

D. Walsh Gilbert is the author of Ransom (Grayson Books, 2017). A Pushcart nominee, she has received honors from The Farmington River Literary Arts Center and the Artist for Artists Project at the Hartford Art School and was recently named the winner of The Ekphrastic Review’s 2021 “Bird Watching” contest. Her work is forthcoming in Canary and The Dillydoun Review, and has recently appeared in Montana Mouthful, Entropy, Third Wednesday, and the anthology, Waking Up to the Earth: Connecticut Poets in a Time of Global Climate Crisis, among others. She serves on the board of the non-profit, Riverwood Poetry Series, and as co-editor of the Connecticut River Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

26 Gilbert Allen Ancient for a gymnast? True. But boyish for starting quarterbacks, callow for first-year congressmen. Depressing as a debutante's enviable waistline, or her final exam in math. Yet how godly for the Sunday back nine holes at Augusta National! Irons (forged FE 26) just made that green jacket happen. Keats died in sight of 26— less than three to the third power, more than five raised to the second. No time to overtake Shakespeare or even Milton, but enough perhaps to sweep the 35s. Quantifiable Arabic replacement for XXVI space/time dimensions, albeit too old for Selective Service, underage for a senator. Versed well in Psalm 136 (where His mercy endureth as X in some divine equation, Yahweh in numerology) Z's our latter-day Omega.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Just Like This Gilbert Allen The peach sits on the kitchen windowsill, his face upon it in the tempered glass reflection. Breakfast, in a few days. Still the ripened peach sits on the windowsill forgotten, while he takes his final pill. And this is how flesh always comes to pass. The rotting peach sits on the windowsill, no face upon it in the tempered glass.

Gilbert Allen's most recent books are Believing in Two Bodies (a collection of poems) and The Beasts of Belladonna (a collection of linked stories). Since 1977 he has lived in Travelers Rest, South Carolina, with his wife, Barbara.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Bowling Timothy Robbins The years since I last went bowling are piled up in the corner, mixed in with a mess of other discarded changes. They urge me tonight and I agree to become a choreographer and make pas de deux and whole ballets and Busby Berkeley showstoppers based on the working class grace of bowlers from my hometown; young svelte Korean men who stray to the other side of the world with their sexy bowlers’ gloves, leather cats that sleep in their trunks and purr on their palms; my choicest Stanley Kowalski fantasy (the hand dryer’s warm breath plays a crucial role); the awkwardness of the awkward who gather at the lane for fun; the strike I made against all odds at a high school party; Robert Endris, a wrestler for whom I set up my pins every night. More often than not he scattered them with a meteorite.

Timothy Robbins has been teaching English as a Second Language for 30 years. His poems have appeared in many literary journals and has published five volumes of poetry: Three New Poets (Hanging Loose Press), Denny’s Arbor Vitae (Adelaide Books), Carrying Bodies (Main Street Rag Press) Mother Wheel (Cholla Needles Press) and This Night I Sup in Your House (Cyberwit.net). He lives in Wisconsin with his husband of 23 years.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Remote Sketches Matt Prater No. Much good happens after midnight. The first birds are out in the cool air singing, and the worms burrow under the may apples, and to the light of one candle mystics do silence. Sex is good, too, and long beers lined with mosquitoes, and the smell of rotting chicken livers at a night fish. Someone is reading the last chapters of a dystopia under a flashlight, about to churn strange dreams. Boats come into the harbor, and fry cooks clean and bakeries begin their day and the stock crew slips on their headphones and lines up ketchup. Newspapers burn through the regional printers and are shipped out to chain convenience stores, where cops and 3-11s and designated drivers assemble to trade coffee and condoms and hangover cure-alls. Some people sleep well, and some who don’t turn to a T.D. Jakes sermon and hear the call to call their mother tomorrow, call back Jesus, go into to work tomorrow, give two weeks and finally answer their calling. Some others turn on Bob’s Burgers or Welcome Back, Kotter, remember the bottled coffee drink they’d saved in the fridge, and watch cartoons for a while with mocha and pot. The house settles. The air settles. The road cools off. New lovers touch finger to finger, nestling down in the wide expanse of her soft California king bed. A mother gets a respite from her mothering, and for a slow hour on a starlit deck plucks a ukulele to the rhythm of her clattering dypsis. Someone dies, but dies well, quiet and expectedly, with the last thing they were awake for their child kissing them on the forehead after turning off Jeopardy.

Matt Prater is a writer and visual artist from Saltville, Virginia. Currently a PhD student in Comparative Studies at Florida Atlantic University, his work has appeared in Forklift, Ohio; The Moth; Little Patuxent Review, and Appalachian Review, among other publications.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

I live like a hummingbird Robert Tremmel hovering light years only millimeters from precious petals jewels buried deep within the dragon’s throat Robert Tremmel lives and writes in Ankeny, Iowa. Recently, he’s published in Stoneboat, The Sun, Comstock Review, Poet Lore, Chariton Review, Pinyon, and others. He’s also published three collections and a Chapbook titled There is a Naked Man. His most recent collection is The Records of Kosho the Toad, from Bottom Dog Press. His newest book, The Return of the Naked Man, is forthcoming from Brick Road Poetry Press and is the winner of the Brick Road Poetry Press Book Contest.

August Night in a Field Beyond the Glacier

Doris Lynch Juneau, Alaska

In Mendenhall Valley we sensed the dark shapes of horses in the night, smelled their dung and the sweet promise of hay. Stars revolved in the heavens close enough to caress and a sliver of moon gave us hunger, but the whole night was about hunger:

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 the way wind off the icefields erupted stars on our naked flesh, the way the light of other stars pulsed through our blood. The way you eclipsed the celestial beings by climbing on top of me, borrowing their fire. The way coyotes claimed night once, twice, thrice. And the way the aurora borealis shook her sky-blanket of viridian and red, how love was like that night light-filled and primal, and how memory prodded those horses into the northern fields to graze and graze until dawn.

Doris Lynch lives in Bloomington, Indiana and has recent work in Flying Island, Frogpond, Modern Haiku, Contemporary Haibun Online, Drifting Sands Haibun and in the anthologies: Cowboys & Cocktails: Poetry from the True Grit Saloon (Brick Street Poetry, 2019), Red River book of Haibun (Red River, New Delhi, India, 2019) and Another Trip Around the Sun: 365 Days of Haiku for Children Young and Old, (Brooks Books, 2019).

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Worldly Goods Leslie Schultz Good that the world sticks fingers in its ears and la, la, la, hums. Good that the world doesn’t help by flinging your closed doors open. Good, too, that the world remains stony-faced when you start singing your good-for-the-world song, the one you wrote, that pours from your throat whether anyone in the world listens to even one sweet note.

Leslie Schultz (Northfield, Minnesota) has three collections of poetry, Still Life with Poppies: Elegies; Cloud Song; and Concertina (Kelsay Books, 2016, 2017, 2019) and a chapbook, Larks at Sunrise: Light-hearted Poems for Dark Times (Green Gingko Press, 2021). Her poetry is in many journals, including Able Muse, Blue Unicorn, Hawai’i Pacific Review, Light, Mezzo Cammin, North Dakota Quarterly, Poet Lore, Third Wednesday, The Madison Review, The Midwest Quarterly, The Orchards, Tipton Poetry Journal, and The Wayfarer. Her work was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2017. In 2020 she served as guest associate editor for Third Wednesday’s Winter Issue. In 2021, she will serve as a judge for the Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest.). Schultz posts poems at www.winonamedia.net.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Cosmic Rules Edytta Anna Wojnar There is the Sun & other massive stars smaller than thumbnails. What interests us is a planet abundant in water & trees with its own orbiting moon where night twists people inside their heads—their lives in horizontal chaos. There is a mountain & at its foot a man on his knees.

Edytta Anna Wojnar, born and raised in Poland, now lives with heƒr husband in northern New Jersey, where she teaches at William Paterson University. She is the author of chapbooks: Stories Her Hands Tell (2013) and Here and There (2014). Her work has been published in The American Journal of Poetry, Calyx, Lumina, and Paterson Literary Review, among others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

The Box Allen Shadow The box from the Admiral TV set was home was rocket ship was womb Star granules in the concrete were everything that wasn’t that I could not know Like death like space like the love of a father Allen Shadow is a poet and fiction writer from Catskill, New York. His poetry has been published widely in the small press, including two chapbooks. In 2018, he was selected as a finalist in The Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry. Poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Twyckenham Notes, I-70 Review, Broadkill Review and White Hall Review.

Only Jesus Knows Roger Pfingston According to his daughter, who visits less these days, our neighbor Earl is happily demented in his ninth decade, more under the thumb of his wily wife than ever before. My wife and I miss the Earl of twenty years ago who kept his lawn mowed, went down on his knees to dig dandelions, dragged the hose wherever needed—his preferred deterrent to moles—and flooded their tunnels,

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 then waited patiently for the ground to move as they “tidied up,” Earl hovering with his shovel. Seventy-two and he’d be up on the roof first thing after Thanksgiving, securing Santa and his reindeer to the chimney, wrapping the house with blinking lights. We always wondered if Earl kept his driveway cluttered with three cars and an RV as therapy—a couple of flats and a bucket of rust among them— something to tinker with out of range of Betty who opted for the bed, lamp table stacked with Bible and paperbacks. The other day Earl asked who I was as I sat mid-morning with Betty who’d come knocking at our door in her housecoat, a cane in either hand, to say the phones were out and I needed to come over. Sure enough, both phones gone silent, so I came back home and called AT&T who recognized their number, tagged for health alert. They came out faster than expected, Betty squinting, watchful, questions festering until Earl wanted peanut butter toast for breakfast which Betty said he’d already had and he should just go back to bed. Pretty soon the tech guy said, “You’re good to go…” and Betty, flicking a smile, replied, “Thank you, but only Jesus knows when that will be.” Roger Pfingston is the recipient of two PEN Syndicated Fiction Awards and a poetry fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. He lives in Bloomington, Indiana and has new poems in recent issues of Hamilton Stone Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, Innisfree Poetry Journal, and Sheila-Na-Gig. His chapbook, What’s Given, is available from Kattywompus Press. In 2020 he was nominated twice for a Pushcart Prize.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Yahrzeit Anne Whitehouse My parents were rarely on the same wavelength. Most of the time they talked at each other, not to each other. But here they are, by a quirk of the Hebrew calendar, yoked forever and forever, until the end of time, sharing the same Yahrzeit, although one died in February and the other in March, two years apart. Every year I pray for them together and speak their names together, before my congregation.

Anne Whitehouse’s recent poetry collection is Outside from the Inside (Dos Madres Press, 2020), and her recent chapbook is Surrealist Muse, about Leonora Carrington (Ethelzine, 2020). A new chapbook, Escaping Lee Miller, is forthcoming from Ethelzine. Anne is also the author of a novel, Fall Love. She lives in New York City and Columbia County, New York. www.annewhitehouse.com

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

My Born-Again Trees Milton P. Ehrlich Are bare again every winter until Spring when they sprout new leaves on every branch with the words of my poems on each and every new leaf— almost always poems inspired by messages of the Illuminati that whisper in a wind of divinity: During the war I was a spy— We must love one another or die. Milton P. Ehrlich Ph.D. is an 89-year-old psychologist and a veteran of the Korean War. He has published poems in Poetry Review, The Antigonish Review, London Grip, Arc Poetry Magazine, Descant Literary Magazine, Wisconsin Review, Red Wheelbarrow, and the New York Times. Ehlirch lives in New Jersey.

Waiting for the Aurora from my Porch in a Small Town in East Central Indiana

Bethany Bowman The last time the aurora came to Indiana I was inside doing dishes and missed them. A retired professor friend from the town next door posted on Facebook; by the time I ran outdoors in my apron, they were gone. This time, I’m ready. It’s Labor Day weekend, and with no school tomorrow, I can stay up as late as I please. I make myself a cup of tea. Grab the oversized robe I bought to wear in the hospital when my daughter was born. I didn’t know anything then. Didn’t know about the blood that would stain my plush robe red, that my husband would be diagnosed with autism. Didn’t know my daughter, hearing her dad’s voice, would turn her perfect tiny head to him first.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 We’ve lived in this small town for eight years. I suppose we’ve built a life. Our daughter just cheered her first high school game. Her metal smile was magnificent until she dropped a girl, basing a stunt. She’s too small to be doing that, I think. What I mean, is that sometimes I feel too small: For life in a red state. Neurological disorders. For friends—even retired professors who care about the aurora, but aren’t family. I worry our sensitive, non-aggressive kids will develop hard shells. I move from the porch to the middle of the road, remember what the news article said, “a scenario where the northern lights may be visible.” May. I sigh, wrap my stained robe tighter, sip too strong tea. Thunder in the distance; these clouds aren’t feathers. They’re cumulonimbus—the kind that flooded our garden last spring. It was so wet I couldn’t plant early girls; local farmers had to take out insurance on their crops. Of course, now, because of tariffs from trade wars with Beijing, the same fields are being plowed over. My neck hurts from staring north and from want. I walk back to the porch, swat a mosquito and hum the first line of Neil Young’s Pocohontas, the only song I know that mentions the aurora—a song about the massacre of Native American Indians. I wonder if the singer-activist feels as badly about what’s happening at the border as I do. Wonder if he’s recalling Cortés’s letters to King Charles of Spain, thanking Jesus for all the infidels he killed. Macho men seemed so sexy to me as a teen, so violent, like geometric storms. Now, all I want is a husband who reads to our kids. One who uses spiritual direction to curb his carnality. One who counts stars. Stars behind clouds that aren’t cirrus, stars that shine here, in Indiana, despite thousands of soybeans rotting in barrels.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

I’ll wait for them like I’ll wait for the aurora— in a robe without a crown, wait with blood, bare feet, mosquito bites, and undrinkable tea, wait like my Christian neighbors wait for the second coming—with outrageous, impractical faith. Tonight, the coronal hole on the sun has turned towards earth, but it doesn’t want to turn towards me. But I’m lucky. At least I’ve seen the Northern lights— once, in New York, on Barto Hill, in winter. They were green. A floppy-haired boy put his arm around my waist and electrically-charged particles slammed into my heart. I wonder if my daughter will ever experience that kind of wonder, something I knew, even at that moment, would never be replicated—not by falling in love, keeping promises, or swallowing leaf dust and fannings.

Bethany Bowman is the author of Swan Bones (Wipf and Stock, 2018). Originally from New York’s Mohawk Valley, she has lived and taught in Indiana for the past decade. Her work has appeared in Nimrod, Apple Valley Review, and The Lascaux Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Smooth Stone Sarah Rehfeldt There are many ways to kill a giant. I’ll bring a stone. You can take it out of the water – polished, struggling for nothing, the pulse of it weighing strong and smooth and steady in your hand for a lifetime – every glittering piece of sun inside it gathering such intensity and force – before sailing, completely empty, completely void of any lingering doubt or hesitation, clean into the heart of the deep blue myth. Sarah Rehfeldt lives with her family in western Washington where she is a writer, artist, and photographer. Her poems have appeared in Blueline, Appalachia; and Weber – The Contemporary West. Sarah has published two collections of image poems – most recently From the Quiet Edges of the Forest in 2018. It can be purchased through her photography web pages at: www.pbase.com/candanceski

Perfect Insult Tim Kahl Never watch Loretta Young after midnight when your mother has been gone for more than twenty years and they share the same hair. That’s a steep slide into a nostalgic ride that will drop your thoughts on the doorstep of your father’s face, which no movie star resembled. He was the extra, the voice double, the guy who was brought on set to holler. It would make my oldest brother straighten up and dig in to defend his unruly opinion. But nothing he understood could help him when the ataxia settled on his voice and tortured his vowels. Neither one of them could swallow at the end. My other brother

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 lost all interest in food when he signed off. Some demon in his colon was set loose and shut down every other system. I have one brother left who imagines himself as a cowboy ropin’ dogies on the range. Every day he’s in Monument Valley with John Ford, slapping backs and swapping yarns. He dreams he’s in the back of the sky blue Mercury, the whole family headed to Davenport to see the grandparents. But there’s a dispute. Everyone in the car thinks a pickle is best at the center of the rouladen. He insists on bacon, but he’s not convincing anyone. The teasing leads to more serious threats: ridicule, shame, hostility, embarrassment. Then he blurts out Hey I thought you guys were dead. What are you doing here anyway? Nobody can put one over on him. Not even in a dream. That requires a certain kind of unconscious resolve, an instinct for sniffing out death as a stunt man dangling over the edge and daring those drawn to it to bear witness to its perfect insult.

Tim Kahl [http://www.timkahl.com] is the author of Possessing Yourself (CW Books, 2009), The Century of Travel (CW Books, 2012) and The String of Islands (Dink, 2015). His work has been published in Prairie Schooner, Drunken Boat, Mad Hatters' Review, Indiana Review, Metazen, Ninth Letter, Sein und Werden, Notre Dame Review, The Really System, Konundrum Engine Literary Magazine, The Journal, The Volta, Parthenon West Review, Caliban and many other journals in the U.S. He is also editor of Clade Song. Tim is the vice president and events coordinator of The Sacramento Poetry Alliance. He also has a public installation in Sacramento {In Scarcity We Bare The Teeth}. He plays flutes, guitars, ukuleles, charangos and cavaquinhos. He currently teaches at California State University, Sacramento, where he sings lieder while walking on campus between classes.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Sharing Charlotte Melanie Weldon-Soiset Gray hairs sprout from my temple like an ashen spider web. I see Charlotte, beloved eight-legged lawyer from children’s literature, lauding me like the runt Wilbur. Some Pig indeed! I tell my Korean-American colleague how much I enjoyed the bibimbap at Lotte Plaza’s food court. It’s pronounced “Luo-day,” he says, correcting my botched dictation. When I read Charlotte’s Web as a kid, my tongue whipped about my mouth like a ribbon in the wind, dancing to whatever tunes it heard, declaring every thought that passed through my mind. My tongue has slowed since then. I try again: Lo—tte? My colleague just shakes his head, as I swallow my sour-tasting flop. I’d rather eat Lotte’s crispy rice and boiled egg simmered in hot pepper sauce. “Lotte” means “Charlotte” in Korean, he explains. Apparently, the grocery chain owner really loved the barnyard tale. Maybe I’m not Wilbur after all, but Charlotte. I now use my lumbering tongue to question: which childhood stories are silk, worthy of pushing into the world with my spinnerets? And which stories do I send off for slaughter? I look in the mirror again. I clasp those silver flyaways with a barrette, my lightly wrinkled hands now weaving.

Melanie Weldon-Soiset’s poetry has appeared in Geez, Vita Poetica, and Bearings Online. A finalist in the 2021 New York Encounter poetry contest, Melanie is a #ChurchToo spiritual abuse survivor, and former pastor for foreigners in Shanghai. Find her in real life biking on Washington D.C. greenways. Find her online at melanieweldonsoiset.com.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Chipmunk Whisperer Russell Rowland I’ve time in any woods, however late, for chipmunks making their beelines. I purse my lips to produce a facsimile of their intercommunication by chirp. They freeze in their scampers. Once, four left their holes to see what was the commotion in the neighborhood. Hope they get what I’m telling them. “I bring you good news of great joy: a bumper crop of acorns will accrue to you this fall. Store well! Winter will be longer than usual, and bitter.” Or else, “Caution! Suited wolves who walk like I do are conspiring to trouble the climate of our lives, turn the hardwoods into swamps! We face the Deluge together. Soon the Ark must sail. Send two of you.” Russell Rowland lives and writes from New Hampshire.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Hope hides Donna Pucciani in the thickness of a gray dawn, for what is there to look forward to? But don’t be foolish: The day stretches before us into a flickering sunshine, sweeping the snow-clad roofs of suburbia, making the dark streets shine with false promises. The hope of night, even moonless, is far more practical. There’s no hypocrisy: dark is dark, predictable, universal in its grasp, terrible in its truth. Old folk, knitting and muttering, know this: Hope is for the young, who embrace life as it scrolls its scripture into the future. Work, love, the patterns of uncountable days, are never gathered in the soul until everything is finished, when time turns back on itself. Death sings its own psalm when, tired of searching the dim or too-bright planetary spheres for something resembling peace, we settle for the immediacy of rain on a windowpane, the smell of bread baking, a dog barking in the distance, a train whistling into nowhere. Donna Pucciani, a Chicago-based writer, has published poetry worldwide in such diverse publications as Shi Chao Poetry Meniscus, Gradiva, Acumen, Voice and Verse and other journals. Her most recent book of poems is Edges.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Wait for It D.R. James The forecast hovers between soggy and gratitude, verges on awe, balances muted light against lopsided gladness. Meanwhile (though Cosmos clatters its remote stones, and Existence casts its Theater of the Unheard from among the docile), the man’s morning’s pouring itself into day—and he stares off, fathoming the frayed front sliding past outside has flagged in him imponderable streaks of fleeting joy. [This poem was first published in Red River Review]

D. R. James’s latest of nine collections are Flip Requiem (Dos Madres Press, 2020), Surreal Expulsion (The Poetry Box, 2019), and If god were gentle (Dos Madres Press, 2017), and his micro-chapbook All Her Jazz is free, fun, and printable-for-folding at the Origami Poems Project. He lives in the woods near Saugatuck, Michigan.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

The Blue Nude Wishes the World Was a Snow Globe Susan Cossette I am not lost. Leave me in peace, to count paint chips on the shabby wooden floor. I am not singular, indistinguishable from your vague, empty background. Content to shut my eyes, curl inward, as you coldly tally each vertebra of my bare spine, bruised thighs delineated by crude black brush strokes. I expect or desire nothing, but to be rooted in a plastic dome among fir trees and singing red-breasted finches, thatched cottages, distant gothic cathedrals, smiling gnomes. A shake brings silver snow, dark crows. For a second I am that forgotten child. The music box bells tell me, Sleep in heavenly peace. Then particles rest on the plasticine ground.

Susan Cossette lives and writes in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The author of Peggy Sue Messed Up (2017), she is a two-time recipient of the University of Connecticut’s Wallace Stevens Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Rust and Moth, Vita Brevis, Adelaide, Clockwise Cat, Anti-Heroin Chic, The Amethyst Review, Ariel Chart, Crow & Cross Keys, Loch Raven Review, and in the anthologies Tuesdays at Curley’s and After the Equinox.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

When I was Young

Rosaleen Crowley when I was young my mother never owned a washing machine. she had two hands that lathered soap then scrubbed, rinsed and squeezed out water, cold as ice, she shook them until the wrinkles dropped. with pegs between her lips, she carefully released one at a time. garments were hung out to dry where wind then rain and wind again would make the clean clothes fly. the finer lace, she would lay flat later, she would steal a look from time to time to see if dried. at end of day, she unpegged the trove of clothes and brought them in to fold, familiar scene across Ireland another day, another way a mother showed her love.

Rosaleen Crowley was in born in Cork, Ireland and graduated from University College Cork. She relocated to Carmel, Indiana, in 1990. Along with images of water, nature and open spaces, themes of home, love, conflict, loss and isolation are explored through her poetry. Her third book in her trilogy, Point of Perception, was published in 2020 and her compilation of rhyming poems, For the Sake of Rhyme, is now available on Amazon.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Our Lady of Costco John Haugh where I stand, 48th in line an hour before opening, masked and gloved and six feet apart the day before our isolation Easter. she will stand at counter, masked in plastic like a welder, offer bottled water for a quarter, a pepperoni slice for two bucks, all the onions you want, the closest we’ve had to baskets of loaves and fish in two millennia. John Haugh’s writing has been published in Main Street Rag, Notre Dame Magazine, Rat’s Ass Review, The Tipton Poetry Review, The Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere. He won the Nancy J. Heggem Poetry Award, and was selected for WinstonSalem’s Poetry in Plain Sight. Mr. Haugh lives in North Carolina, was a NCAA national champion in fencing and spent untold hours browsing Powell’s City of Books in Oregon when young. With help, he is working on a chapbook that might be titled Six Conversation, a mixtape and repurposed ghosts.

Landlord Michael Keshigian The tenants left him a bar of soap, two rolls of toilet paper, shredded paper towels, and a ripped sponge mop with bucket. He tried to rub the white wall clean, discovered it impossible, realized they tried as well. He decided to paint it over.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Hair choked the bathroom sink, long hairs, male and female, they both wore ponytails, short of acid, nothing else would work. The hardwood floor wore rubber scuffs and high heel turns, no doubt they danced and laughed, but only broom swept it clean. He began to know who they were, seldom did he speak to them, the check always arrived in the mail. They breezed through, a great wind, leaving behind a trail of dirt, a thank you of sorts, the residual continuity of broken leases and painstaking interviews. He seized their soap, a green veined, marbled bar, curved like a woman, took a bath after he cleaned the tub, and dried with no towel, in the air with the walls and floors.

Michael Keshigian from New Hampshire, is the author of 14 poetry collections, his latest, What To Do With Intangibles, released in 2020, by Cyberwit.net. He has been published in numerous national and international journals and has appeared as feature writer in twenty poetry publications with 7 Pushcart Prize and 2 Best Of The Net nominations. His poetry cycle, Lunar Images, set for Clarinet, Piano, Narrator, was premiered at Del Mar College in Texas. Subsequent performances occurred in Boston (Berklee College) and Moleto, Italy. Winter Moon, a poem set for Soprano and Piano, premiered in Boston. (michaelkeshigian.com)

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Municipal Lois Marie Harrod Here is my town. When Sunday leaves its slick of snot on the sidewalk I slide to eye level, confront the worm. It’s mine, I say to the robin– and the antique umbrella someone left open in the grass. What can say who’s hiding under? When can say it isn't shade. You know the bumbershoot I’m yapping about. Stay off submerged grave stones. Seers, keepers. Losers, sleepers. The surly bird catches the sun in his throat, but I’m not singing. I’m marking my territory.

Lois Marie Harrod’s Spat was published in June 2021. Her 17th collection Woman won the 2020 Blue Lyra Prize. Nightmares of the Minor Poet appeared in June 2016 (Five Oaks); her chapbook And She Took the Heart, in January 2016; Fragments from the Biography of Nemeis and How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth (Dancing Girl Press) appeared in 2013. A Dodge poet living in New Jersey, she is published in literary journals and online ezines from American Poetry Review to Zone 3. Online link: www.loismarieharrod.org

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

you type Morgan Hamill I hope this email finds you doing well but it doesn’t. It finds you hunched over your phone on the train under the whitish-yellow light with one foot lodged against the foot of the man next to you who is wearing a Patriot’s hat and an Eagles jacket and you think that doesn’t make sense but then again a lot of things don’t, like this email that found you you left your desk, for this woman angry that you’ve avoided her all week because we can’t that she has early stage mild cognitive

even after tell her impairment

until the neuropsychologist gives us the release forms which is just a long-winded way of saying you’re about to play God with someone’s life, so you have to keep telling her I’m sorry, I don’t know what’s taking so long but you do.

Morgan Hamill is a disabled poet and a first-year MA/PhD student in English Literature, with a focus in Critical Disability Studies, at Penn State-University Park, where she has been awarded a McCourtney Family Distinguished Graduate Fellowship. In 2019, she was a poetry semi-finalist in Nimrod's Francine Ringold Awards for Emerging Writers. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Cimarron Review, Copper Nickel, The Journal, and The Southern Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Mexican Carnival David Melville Henpecked and paddy whacked, I sit boot shod on the Octopus, a tentacled ferris wheel that spins notions from noggins, whirling – bumblefooted hit of a bongwater dream. Children scream. The car tips. We flip. Grease drips down the egg-shaped sides of this inverted submarine. Dangling restrained by the rusted bar, suddenly she is mine again – fingers curled in my palm like the January nights she’d slipped against my chest and we were two cupped Cs. Whipsawed upright I brace. Spinning, thrown flat against the cage, I choke back vertigo’s aftertaste as grill slats press diamonds in my cheek like the one I’d hoped would dot her knuckle. The seat spins, then tips. Palms grip the cold bar, frantic to quiet metallic rattle. Strung lights leave neon slurry, red bulbs lace the Nayarit night. Gravity rights. We pause above hawker’s cries, floating over barker stalls filled with

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 popcorn and pink purses, the bear I would have plucked from the glass box with long tongs to hand her. Then to ping-pong again, whipsawed by the thought, She’s gone to slather a barber, fuzzbump a shoe company exec, someone who’ll make her dimple-wide happy. Slammed by this trajectory I sense the cage that contains me. Beyond is calm. In that lull I repose in mechanical arms, afloat on the Octopus, the dusk studded – a thousand jeweled fingers. I hover over knife throwers, fire eaters, goateed ladies until we drift down slowly to the dirt and the carnie braces my cage as it comes shuddering to a stop. The bar lifts. A one-toothed smile. I am released into the carnival night.

David Melville lives in Portland, Oregon. Water~Stone Review has featured his poetry, as will the next issue of Rhino. His poems have been anthologized in the college textbook, Listening to Poetry: An Introduction for Readers and Writers (2019); and published in journals such as Pilgrimage, Buddhist Poetry Review, and The Timberline Review.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Post Luminance John Maurer If the universe wore a cocktail dress And looked me in the eyes by stiletto It would split its constellation-cracked lips And introduce itself with your name And introduce me to all the apples To all the good that is a bit too good Universe asks me if I am bleeding Why else have blood? Why have a heart if you don't use it? Why have love if you don't give it? So, I spin around in your stars In your stars, in your eyes

John Maurer is a 26-year-old writer from Pittsburgh who writes fiction, poetry, and everything in-between, but his work always strives to portray that what is true is beautiful. He has been previously published in Claudius Speaks, The Bitchin’ Kitsch, Thought Catalog, and more than fifty others.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Review: Snow in New York by Matthew Brennan

Reviewed by Dan Carpenter

Title: Snow in New York Author: Matthew Brennan Year: May, 2021 Publisher: Lamar University Literary Press

The title work of Matthew Brennan’s sixth book of poetry serves as a handy sampler of preoccupations that have distinguished his work for more than four decades: storytelling, graphic description, blindsiding metaphor, personification of nature, a keen (if nomadic) sense of place and a gallant shouldering of tristesse marked foremost by family lamentation. Brennan’s place these days is Columbus, Ohio; but he spent 32 years teaching at Indiana State University, and that western Indiana milieu receives its due among the 102 entries in Snow in New York: New and Selected Poems. So do a spate of other stops revisited in a collection that represents Brennan’s life from early childhood onward – San Francisco, St. Louis, Minneapolis, England and the ancestral Ireland among them. “Snow in New York,” the next-to-last of the 21 new poems, is one of several poignant glimpses into Brennan’s brother’s struggle with the cancer that took his young life. It’s winter, the poet has come to the big city to accompany the patient across town to treatment, and shares the frustration of finding the car by morning encased in ice “like a great glacier / never thawed.” . . . You struck and clawed and quarreled with the cold, stony block, a sculptor scorned by his hard-hearted muse . . .

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 When he cares to, Brennan can depict natural surroundings with a worshipper’s delicacy, reveling in how the wind . . . animates the higher limbs, lifts them Enough to let a slant of light slip through Their folded hands and land on each green leaf And me, the trees translucent as stained glass. More often, our uneasy relationship with the non-human environment, and its correspondence to human relations, prompt a less congenial picture. The lovers in “Picnic in Iowa” might have stayed in their car and pretended “The puddles of tar-black mud and mounds of brush” were a little patch of Eden, just as Manet limned his idyllic portrait of the Seine on a day the river “reeked, a dung-filled barn.” On another famous river, at St. Louis, the poet’s grandfather, weary from double work shifts at a hospital during the Great Depression, stripped to his underwear and dove in, only to encounter “a ring of turds” and realizing “this down-and-out decade / was not about to let him go.” We make the best of it. We strive to see beyond the grim circumstances that are going to defeat us. There’s heroism in that, as well as an invitation to pity. So it was for several family members and other intimates, in addition to his brother, whom Brennan memorializes in mostly-narrative pieces that appear in roughly equal distribution, chronology-wise, across this 40-plus-year oeuvre. His father, an object of fear as well as sorrow and fascination, is “like me, abruptly glad to be / alive, right now” as his lung cancer relents in one poem, then comes to the end of a miraculous stint of survival in another, “His boat, capsized in cold, uncharted waters,” finally shattered to bits. Brennan’s gift for the elegiac applies to his marital, as well as filial, life, though the element of divorce (he is happily in a second marriage) injects some tonal cacophony here and there. Between you and me, I know as much as I care to about the ex with the “poisoned voice” who hates the poet’s “goddamned guts.” More poetic, if you will, is one called “The Gravity of Love,” in which

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Ten years ago, at Heathrow Airport, our bodies Touched, like the orbits of two planets, coming Together at last, guided since creation By the gravity of love. Now we’re apart. You have your own space. But still, at night, Above the dark that hides to dead trees And the scarred fields upturned like graves The same stars shine light-years away. To be sure, Brennan’s body of work ranges far beyond the personal, displaying an easygoing worldliness and erudition that accommodate his peculiar lyrical and philosophical riffs on history, culture and (sparingly) politics. His extensive writing about art and artists is well represented here, notably Grant Wood and J.M.W. Turner as well as Manet. He has a knack for worming inside the heads and hearts of historical figures such as Turner, Manet and William Hazlitt and Thomas Merton, the latter two of whom he channels to explore their love affairs. It’s good fun, much of it; yet never frivolous, never less than reverent for the lives and the life that draw this disarmingly approachable teacher-poet’s attention. Matthew Brennan is the author of six books of poetry and four of criticism. He has published poems and articles in many journals, including Poetry Ireland Review, Sewanee Review and The New York Times Book Review. His many honors include the Theodore Dreiser Distinguished Research and Creativity Award and the Thomas Merton Center Prize for Poetry of the Sacred. His 2009 poetry collection, The House with the Mansard Roof, was a finalist for Best Books of Indiana. He formerly taught poetry writing and Romanticism at Indiana State University. He resides in Columbus, Ohio.

Dan Carpenter is a board member of Brick Street Poetry Inc. and the author of two collections of poetry and two books of non-fiction. He has contributed poems and stories to many journals and anthologies. He blogs at dancarpenterpoet.wordpress.com.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Editor Barry Harris is editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal and three anthologies by Brick Street Poetry: Mapping the Muse: A Bicentennial Look at Indiana Poetry; Words and Other Wild Things and Cowboys & Cocktails:Poems from the True Grit Saloon. He has published one poetry collection, Something At The Center. Married and father of two grown sons, 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, North Dakota Quarterly, Boston Literary Magazine, Night Train, Silver Birch Press, Flying Island, Awaken Consciousness, Writers‘ Bloc, Red-Headed Stepchild and Laureate: The Literary Journal of Arts for Lawrence. 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. He graduated a long time ago with a major in English from Ball State University.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021

Contributor Biographies Gilbert Allen's most recent books are Believing in Two Bodies (a collection of poems) and The Beasts of Belladonna (a collection of linked stories). Since 1977 he has lived in Travelers Rest, South Carolina, with his wife, Barbara. Jake Bailey is a schiZotypal experientialist with published or forthcoming work in Abstract Magazine, The American Journal of Poetry, Constellations, Diode Poetry Journal, Frontier Poetry, Guesthouse, Mid-American Review, Palette Poetry, PANK Magazine, Passages North, Storm Cellar, TAB: The Journal of Poetry & Poetics, Tar River Poetry, and elsewhere. Jake received his MA from Northwest Missouri State University and his MFA from Antioch University, Los Angeles. He is a former editor for Lunch Ticket, current associate editor for Storm Cellar, and reads for Grist: A Journal of the Literary Arts. Jake lives in Illinois with his wife and their three dogs. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram (@SaintJakeowitz) and at saintjakeowitz.xyz. Bethany Bowman is the author of Swan Bones (Wipf and Stock, 2018). Originally from New York’s Mohawk Valley, she has lived and taught in Indiana for the past decade. Her work has appeared in Nimrod, Apple Valley Review, and The Lascaux Review. Edward Bynum is a practicing psychologist in Massachusetts with several book publications in psychology and poetry . This is a poem about a doctor in session, listening to his own inner thoughts as his patients speak. He is married and the father of 2 adult sons and a practitioner of yoga. Charles Cantrell has poems in recent or forthcoming issues of Miramar Poetry Journal, The Café Review, The Hamilton Stone Review, and Stand. A book of poetry, Wild Wreckage, was recently published (2020) by Cervena Barva Press. He’s also been nominated 3 times for a Pushcart Prize, and has received fellowships form Ragdale, Ucross, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin. Dan Carpenter is a board member of Brick Street Poetry Inc. and the author of two collections of poetry and two books of non-fiction. He has contributed poems and stories to many journals and anthologies. He blogs at dancarpenterpoet.wordpress.com. Susan Cossette lives and writes in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The author of Peggy Sue Messed Up (2017), she is a two-time recipient of the University of Connecticut’s Wallace Stevens Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Rust and Moth, Vita Brevis, Adelaide, Clockwise Cat, Anti-Heroin Chic, The Amethyst Review, Ariel Chart, Crow & Cross Keys, Loch Raven Review, and in the anthologies Tuesdays at Curley’s and After the Equinox. After 34 years with Eli Lilly and Company, Brendan Crowley set up his own consulting and executive coaching business, Brendan Crowley Advisors LLC. He helps executives grow in their roles and careers. Brendan is originally from Ireland and lives with his wife Rosaleen in Zionsville, Indiana. He has a passion for photography and loves taking photographs of his home country, Ireland, and here in Indiana.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Rosaleen Crowley was in born in Cork, Ireland and graduated from University College Cork. She relocated to Carmel, Indiana, in 1990. Along with images of water, nature and open spaces, themes of home, love, conflict, loss and isolation are explored through her poetry. Her third book in her trilogy, Point of Perception, was published in 2020 and her compilation of rhyming poems, For the Sake of Rhyme, is now available on Amazon. Patricia Davis-Muffett (she/her) holds an MFA from the University of Minnesota. She was a 2020 Julia Darling Poetry Prize finalist and received First Honorable Mention in the 2021 Joe Gouveia OuterMost Poetry Contest. Her work has appeared in Limestone, Coal City Review, Neologism, The Orchards, One Art, Pretty Owl Poetry, di-verse-city (anthology of the Austin International Poetry Festival), The Blue Nib and Amethyst Review, among others. She lives in Rockville, Maryland, with her husband and three children and makes her living in technology marketing. Milton P. Ehrlich Ph.D. is an 89-year-old psychologist and a veteran of the Korean War. He has published poems in Poetry Review, The Antigonish Review, London Grip, Arc Poetry Magazine, Descant Literary Magazine, Wisconsin Review, Red Wheelbarrow, and the New York Times. Ehlirch lives in New Jersey. Kim Garcia is the author of The Brighter House (White Pine Press), DRONE (The Backwaters Press), Madonna Magdalene (Turning Point Books), and a chapbook, Tales of the Sisters. Her poems have most recently appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry Northwest, New Ohio Review, Sugar House Review, IMAGE, Waxwing, and Tupelo Quarterly (winner of the 2019 Broadside Prize). Garcia teaches creative writing at Boston College. D. Walsh Gilbert is the author of Ransom (Grayson Books, 2017). A Pushcart nominee, she has received honors from The Farmington River Literary Arts Center and the Artist for Artists Project at the Hartford Art School and was recently named the winner of The Ekphrastic Review’s 2021 “Bird Watching” contest. Her work is forthcoming in Canary and The Dillydoun Review, and has recently appeared in Montana Mouthful, Entropy, Third Wednesday, and the anthology, Waking Up to the Earth: Connecticut Poets in a Time of Global Climate Crisis, among others. She serves on the board of the non-profit, Riverwood Poetry Series, and as co-editor of the Connecticut River Review. Morgan Hamill is a disabled poet and a first-year MA/PhD student in English Literature, with a focus in Critical Disability Studies, at Penn State-University Park, where she has been awarded a McCourtney Family Distinguished Graduate Fellowship. In 2019, she was a poetry semi-finalist in Nimrod's Francine Ringold Awards for Emerging Writers. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Cimarron Review, Copper Nickel, The Journal, and The Southern Review. Lois Marie Harrod’s Spat was published in June 2021. Her 17th collection Woman won the 2020 Blue Lyra Prize. Nightmares of the Minor Poet appeared in June 2016 (Five Oaks); her chapbook And She Took the Heart, in January 2016; Fragments from the Biography of Nemeis and How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth (Dancing Girl Press) appeared in 2013. A Dodge poet living in New Jersey, she is published in literary journals and online ezines from American Poetry Review to Zone 3. Online link: www.loismarieharrod.org

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Lisa Hase-Jackson lives in Charleston, South Carolina and is the author of Flint and Fire (The Word Works), winner of the 2019 Hilary Tham Capital Collection Series as selected by Jericho Brown. She is Editor in Chief at South 85 Journal and founding editor of Zingara Poetry Review. John Haugh’s writing has been published in Main Street Rag, Notre Dame Magazine, Rat’s Ass Review, The Tipton Poetry Review, The Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere. He won the Nancy J. Heggem Poetry Award, and was selected for Winston-Salem’s Poetry in Plain Sight. Mr. Haugh lives in North Carolina, was a NCAA national champion in fencing and spent untold hours browsing Powell’s City of Books in Oregon when young. With help, he is working on a chapbook that might be titled Six Conversation, a mixtape and repurposed ghosts. M. A. Istvan Jr., poet and philosopher, teaches at Austin Community College and is the current editor of Safe Space Press. Visit pw.org/directory/writers/m_a_istvan_jr_phd D. R. James’s latest of nine collections are Flip Requiem (Dos Madres Press, 2020), Surreal Expulsion (The Poetry Box, 2019), and If god were gentle (Dos Madres Press, 2017), and his micro-chapbook All Her Jazz is free, fun, and printable-for-folding at the Origami Poems Project. He lives in the woods near Saugatuck, Michigan. Nancy K. Jentsch lives and writes from Kentucky. Tim Kahl [http://www.timkahl.com] is the author of Possessing Yourself (CW Books, 2009), The Century of Travel (CW Books, 2012) and The String of Islands (Dink, 2015). His work has been published in Prairie Schooner, Drunken Boat, Mad Hatters' Review, Indiana Review, Metazen, Ninth Letter, Sein und Werden, Notre Dame Review, The Really System, Konundrum Engine Literary Magazine, The Journal, The Volta, Parthenon West Review, Caliban and many other journals in the U.S. He is also editor of Clade Song. Tim is the vice president and events coordinator of The Sacramento Poetry Alliance. He also has a public installation in Sacramento {In Scarcity We Bare The Teeth}. He plays flutes, guitars, ukuleles, charangos and cavaquinhos. He currently teaches at California State University, Sacramento, where he sings lieder while walking on campus between classes. Michael Keshigian from New Hampshire, is the author of 14 poetry collections, his latest, What To Do With Intangibles, released in 2020, by Cyberwit.net. He has been published in numerous national and international journals and has appeared as feature writer in twenty poetry publications with 7 Pushcart Prize and 2 Best Of The Net nominations. His poetry cycle, Lunar Images, set for Clarinet, Piano, Narrator, was premiered at Del Mar College in Texas. Subsequent performances occurred in Boston (Berklee College) and Moleto, Italy. Winter Moon, a poem set for Soprano and Piano, premiered in Boston. (michaelkeshigian.com) W.F. Lantry spends time roaming the Eastern Forests from Maryland to Vermont and gardening near Washington, DC’s Anacostia River. His poetry collections are The Terraced Mountain (Little Red Tree 2015), The Structure of Desire (Little Red Tree 2012), winner of a 2013 Nautilus Award in Poetry, and The Language of Birds (2011). He received his PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston. Honors include the National Hackney Literary Award in Poetry, CutBank Patricia Goedicke Prize, Crucible Editors' Poetry Prize, Lindberg Foundation International Poetry for Peace Prize (Israel), Comment Magazine Poetry Award (Canada), Paris/Atlantic Young Writers Award (France), Old Red Kimono Paris Lake Poetry Prize and Potomac Review Prize. His work has appeared widely online and in print. He is the editor of Peacock Journal.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Doris Lynch lives in Bloomington, Indiana and has recent work in Flying Island, Frogpond, Modern Haiku, Contemporary Haibun Online, Drifting Sands Haibun and in the anthologies: Cowboys & Cocktails: Poetry from the True Grit Saloon (Brick Street Poetry, 2019), Red River book of Haibun (Red River, New Delhi, India, 2019) and Another Trip Around the Sun: 365 Days of Haiku for Children Young and Old, (Brooks Books, 2019). John Maurer is a 26-year-old writer from Pittsburgh who writes fiction, poetry, and everything in-between, but his work always strives to portray that what is true is beautiful. He has been previously published in Claudius Speaks, The Bitchin’ Kitsch, Thought Catalog, and more than fifty others. David Melville lives in Portland, Oregon. Water~Stone Review has featured his poetry, as will the next issue of Rhino. His poems have been anthologized in the college textbook, Listening to Poetry: An Introduction for Readers and Writers (2019); and published in journals such as Pilgrimage, Buddhist Poetry Review, and The Timberline Review. Lorne Mook teaches at Taylor University in Upland, Indiana. Some of his poems are gathered in his book Travelers without Maps. His translations of Rainer Maria Rilke’s poems have appeared in journals and in his book Dream-Crowned, the first English translation of a collection that Rilke published in 1897 when he was 21. Douglas Nordfors, a native of Seattle, now lives in Virginia. He has a BA from Columbia University and an MFA in poetry from The University of Virginia. Poems have been published in journals as The Iowa Review, Quarterly West, Poetry Northwest, and Poet Lore, and recent work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Burnside Review, The Louisville Review, Poetry South, Chariton Review, The Hollins Critic, Potomac Review, California Quarterly, 2River, BODY Literature, The Broad River Review, JuxtaProse Literary Magazine, Valparaiso Poetry Review, and others. His three books of poetry are Auras (2008), The Fate Motif (2013), and Half-Dreaming (2020), all published by Plain View Press. Robert Okaji is a displaced Texan seeking work in Indianapolis. He once owned a bookstore, served without distinction in the U.S. Navy, and most recently bagged groceries for a living. He is the author of multiple chapbooks, including My Mother's Ghost Scrubs the Floor at 2 a.m. (winner of the 2021 Etchings Press Poetry Prize). His work has appeared or is forthcoming in North Dakota Quarterly, Vox Populi, Buddhist Poetry Review, Book of Matches and elsewhere. Lynn Pattison lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Her work has appeared in Ruminate, Moon City Review, The Mom Egg Review, Glassworks Magazine and Notre Dame Review, among others, and has been anthologized widely. Her published collections include the book, Light That Sounds Like Breaking (Mayapple Press), and three chapbooks: tesla's daughter (March St. Press), Walking Back the Cat (Bright Hill Press), and Matryoshka Houses, released last summer from Kelsay Press. Her book mss, Milky Way Stardust Aquarium is in search of a loving home.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Forge, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker and elsewhere. His most recent collection is The Osiris Poems published by boxofchalk, 2017. For more information including free e-books and his essay “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website at www.simonperchik.com. To view one of his interviews please follow this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSK774rtfx8 Roger Pfingston is the recipient of two PEN Syndicated Fiction Awards and a poetry fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. He lives in Bloomington, Indiana has new poems in recent issues of Hamilton Stone Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, Innisfree Poetry Journal, and Sheila-Na-Gig. His chapbook, What’s Given, is available from Kattywompus Press. In 2020 he was nominated twice for a Pushcart Prize. Matt Prater is a writer and visual artist from Saltville, Virginia. Currently a PhD student in Comparative Studies at Florida Atlantic University, his work has appeared in Forklift, Ohio; The Moth; Little Patuxent Review, and Appalachian Review, among other publications. Donna Pucciani, a Chicago-based writer, has published poetry worldwide in such diverse publications as Shi Chao Poetry Meniscus, Gradiva, Acumen, Voice and Verse and other journals. Her most recent book of poems is Edges. Patrick T. Reardon, a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee living in Chicago, is the author of nine books, including the poetry collection Requiem for David and Faith Stripped to Its Essence, a literary-religious analysis of Shusaku Endo's novel Silence. His poetry has appeared in America, Rhino, Main Street Rag, The Write Launch, Meat for Tea, Under a Warm Green Linden and many others. He has two poetry collections forthcoming in 2021: Puddin: The Autobiography of a Baby, a Memoir in Prose-poems (Third World Press) and Darkness on the Face of the Deep (Kelsay Books). Janet Reed is the author of Blue Exhaust (FLP, 2019), and a multi-year Pushcart Prize and Best of the Web nominee. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Sow’s Ear Review, Emry’s, Tipton Poetry Journal, and others. She began writing knock-off Nancy Drew stories on wide-lined notebook paper at age 11. Now, she teaches creative writing, literature and composition at Crowder College in Missouri and thinks about how to write her own stories while walking her dogs. Sarah Rehfeldt lives with her family in western Washington where she is a writer, artist, and photographer. Her poems have appeared in Blueline, Appalachia; and Weber – The Contemporary West. Sarah has published two collections of image poems – most recently From the Quiet Edges of the Forest in 2018. It can be purchased through her photography web pages at: www.pbase.com/candanceski Timothy Robbins has been teaching English as a Second Language for 30 years. His poems have appeared in many literary journals and has published five volumes of poetry: Three New Poets (Hanging Loose Press), Denny’s Arbor Vitae (Adelaide Books), Carrying Bodies (Main Street Rag Press) Mother Wheel (Cholla Needles Press) and This Night I Sup in Your House (Cyberwit.net). He lives in Wisconsin with his husband of 23 years. Russell Rowland lives and writes from New Hampshire.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Leslie Schultz (Northfield, Minnesota) has three collections of poetry, Still Life with Poppies: Elegies; Cloud Song; and Concertina (Kelsay Books, 2016, 2017, 2019) and a chapbook, Larks at Sunrise: Light-hearted Poems for Dark Times (Green Gingko Press, 2021). Her poetry is in many journals, including Able Muse, Blue Unicorn, Hawai’i Pacific Review, Light, Mezzo Cammin, North Dakota Quarterly, Poet Lore, Third Wednesday, The Madison Review, The Midwest Quarterly, The Orchards, Tipton Poetry Journal, and The Wayfarer. Her work was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2017. In 2020 she served as guest associate editor for Third Wednesday’s Winter Issue. In 2021, she will serve as a judge for the Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest.). Schultz posts poems at www.winonamedia.net. Claire Scott is an award winning poet in Oakland, California who has received multiple Pushcart Prize nominations. Her work has been accepted by the Atlanta Review, Bellevue Literary Review, New Ohio Review, Enizagam and Healing Muse among others. Claire is the author of Waiting to be Called and Until I Couldn’t. She is the co-author of Unfolding in Light: A Sisters’ Journey in Photography and Poetry. Allen Shadow is a poet and fiction writer from Catskill, New York. His poetry has been published widely in the small press, including two chapbooks. In 2018, he was selected as a finalist in The Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry. Poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Twyckenham Notes, I-70 Review, Broadkill Review and White Hall Review. Jeanine Stevens is the author of Inheritor and Limberlost (Future Cycle Press), and Sailing on Milkweed (Cherry Grove Collections). She is winner of the MacGuffin Poet Hunt and The Ekphrasis Prize. Gertrude Sitting: Portraits of Women, won the 2020 Chapbook Prize from Heartland Review Press. Jeanine recently received her seventh Pushcart Nomination. She studied poetry at U.C. Davis and Community of Writers, Olympic Valley and is Faculty Emerita at American River College. R.S. Stewart, who lives in western Oregon, has published in many journals in both the U.S. and Europe, most recently in The Dark Horse (Scotland). Two poems are forthcoming in The Wallace Stevens Journal. Vincent J. Tomeo was born and raised in Corona, Queens, New York City, and has lived in the most diversified urban area on the planet his entire life. He has recited his poetry everywhere across the United States, throughout Queens, and internationally; South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Italy, Tanzania, Kenya, Spain, Morocco, Portugal, Germany, and France. His book, My Cemetery Friends: A Garden of Encounters at Mount Saint Mary in Queens, New York was published in 2020. His poem, “A View from a Tower in Calabria, Italy,” won Honorable Mention in the Rainer Maria Rilke International Poetry Competation. Robert Tremmel lives and writes in Ankeny, Iowa. Recently, he’s published in Stoneboat, The Sun, Comstock Review, Poet Lore, Chariton Review, Pinyon, and others. He’s also published three collections and a Chapbook titled There is a Naked Man. His most recent collection is The Records of Kosho the Toad, from Bottom Dog Press. His newest book, The Return of the Naked Man, is forthcoming from Brick Road Poetry Press and is the winner of the Brick Road Poetry Press Book Contest.

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Tipton Poetry Journal – Summer 2021 Melanie Weldon-Soiset’s poetry has appeared in Geez, Vita Poetica, and Bearings Online. A finalist in the 2021 New York Encounter poetry contest, Melanie is a #ChurchToo spiritual abuse survivor, and former pastor for foreigners in Shanghai. Find her in real life biking on Washington D.C. greenways. Find her online at melanieweldonsoiset.com. Anne Whitehouse’s recent poetry collection is Outside from the Inside (Dos Madres Press, 2020), and her recent chapbook is Surrealist Muse, about Leonora Carrington (Ethelzine, 2020). A new chapbook, Escaping Lee Miller, is forthcoming from Ethelzine. Anne is also the author of a novel, Fall Love. She lives in New York City and Columbia County, New York. www.annewhitehouse.com A.D. Winans is an award-winning native San Francisco poet and writer. He edited and published Second Coming from 1972-1989. Awards include a PEN National Josephine Miles Award for literary excellence, a PEN Oakland Lifetime Achievement Award, and a Kathy Acker Award in poetry and publishing. Edytta Anna Wojnar, born and raised in Poland, now lives with her husband in northern New Jersey, where she teaches at William Paterson University. She is the author of chapbooks: Stories Her Hands Tell (2013) and Here and There (2014). Her work has been published in The American Journal of Poetry, Calyx, Lumina, and Paterson Literary Review, among others. Kenton K. Yee has recently placed poetry in Plume Poetry, Matter, Ligeia Magazine and Sommerset Review, among others. An Iowa Summer Poetry Workshop alumnus, PhD physicist, and former Columbia University faculty member, Kenton makes his home near Berkeley, California. Alessio Zanelli is an Italian poet who writes in English and whose work has appeared in over 180 literary journals from 16 countries. His fifth original collection, titled The Secret Of Archery, was published in 2019 by Greenwich Exchange Publishing (London). For more information please visit www.alessiozanelli.it.

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