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Currently showing posts tagged This Zine WIll Change Your Life

  • High School Night by David Masciotra


    Up against the wall

    We polluted the air with every exhale

    Fumes of alcohol and tobacco

    Dancing to the punk band

    Underneath our noses

     

    It felt good

    To live as

    Criminals

     

    Later in the car my father owned

    You invaded my jeans

    Your delicate hand

    Your nail polish

    The same color as night

    Chipped and messy

     

    I arched my back

    And howled

    At an old man’s open window

     

    Back inside

    The band and their mob

    Like ants out of a sandhill

    Collapsed

    Moving Moving Moving

    I put my arm around you

    Your smile was

    Like cotton candy

     

    Your hair smelled like pot





    David Masciotra is an author, lecturer, and cultural critic. He is the author of Mellencamp: American Troubadour, from the University Press of Kentucky, and Metallica by Metallica, a 33 1/3 book from Bloomsbury Publishers. In 2010, Continuum Books published his first book, Working On a Dream: The Progressive Political Vision of Bruce Springsteen. His newest book, Barack Obama: Invisible Man, was published by Eyewear Publishing in 2017.

    Street Artist unknown.
    Photo by Adam Lawrence.

    Desert Liminal is the Chicago-based dream pop duo of Sarah Jane Quillin and Rob Logan. “Flashbacks” comes from their most recent EP, “Comb For Gold” (Fine Prints, Aug 2018).

  • Finnegan on the Case by David S. Atkinson

    The knuckles rapping on glass were like Tommy gun bullets in my head. Pounding me awake. My mouth tasted sour like old whiskey and grim reminders. They were delicate knuckles though, and the shape of the shadow in front of my office door was curvy as a bad road on a rainy night. A dame: a classy one. I swept the empty bottle off my desktop into the waste bin and called: "Come in!"
     
    And come in she did, and in.  The way she shimmied through that doorway, I thought sure she had to be part liquid. She crossed her long legs as she sat across from me, the only proof I had they ever stopped. My tongue would have been hanging out if it hadn't been so dry it was glued to my mouth.


    "I got a job, Mr. Finnegan," the dame purred. "I hear you handle that kind of thing."


    I leaned back in my chair, crossing my arms behind my head, and tried not to let her see me nearly fall over when the wave of nausea hit. I needed to be smooth.

    "I handle a lot of jobs, doll. I'm the best."


    Too bad the jazz band that must have been playing all night in my head left the place such a mess. I couldn't think straight and I needed to. There was something familiar about this dame. Real familiar. I needed to know if someone was playing me for a patsy.


    "It's my husband, Mr. Finnegan." She took a long, thin cigarette out of a gold case and lit it. "He's missing."


    I tried to remember to listen to her instead of just stare at her lips as she blew out the smoke. The doll wasn't making things easy. Luckily, blood rush started my head pounding painfully again and brought me to my senses.


    "My fee is twenty bucks a day, plus expenses," I said, "no matter what the case is. But still, tell me about your husband."


    She licked her lips, those luscious lips. "My Tommy isn't a bad man," she sighed. "He likes to think he's tough…but he's really just a big old teddy bear. I need to watch out for him, and I'm worried."


    The wheels in my head were spinning with the possibilities, grinding from the lack of oil. I really wished she'd dropped by after I'd located myself a little dog hair. I needed to lubricate up a bit before I could function right.


    But then it hit me like a gorilla with an attitude problem—my name was Tommy. I looked at her good.

    "Doll," I said, "I found your husband…he's sitting right here."

    She leaned over the desk and gave me a peck on the cheek. "Good job, you big lug. Here's your twenty." She slipped me a bill before she got up to stroll out again.


    "What about the expenses?" I asked.

     
    "Guess you worked too fast to rack up any," she replied, turning back briefly to smirk, "but do remember to at least get something to eat today. Maybe even come home sometime instead of just sleeping in that chair."

     

    David S. Atkinson is the author of Apocalypse All the Time, Not Quite so Stories, The Garden of Good and Evil Pancakes (2015 National Indie Excellence Awards finalist in humor) and "Bones Buried in the Dirt" (2014 Next Generation Indie Book Awards finalist, First Novel <80K). His writing appears in Bartleby Snopes, Grey Sparrow Journal, Atticus Review and others.

    Street Artist unknown.
    Photo by Adam Lawrence.

    This is the title track to Austin-based singer/songwriter Adam Torres’ latest EP which was released by Fat Possum back in February 2017. 

  • When in Amsterdam or South Minneapolis by Seth Berg

    The Netherlands cuts fifty million Peony stems annually…
    ...more than any other country on Earth.

    I wake on my front stoop,
    my hands clutching flower pieces.

    I count no fewer than forty
    Peonies strewn about my lawn,

    their heads bursting with flavor
    and heft and ants.

    I once read that Peonies can not bloom
    without their ant inhabitants.

    I imagine an unopened Peony:
    all sweetness and industry

    and layer upon layer
    of silken petal and leg…

    ...I look back at the catastrophe
    spread across my lawn,

    and know that only you
    could fathom the brilliance of it all.

     

    Seth Berg is a zany professor who makes ridiculous stained glass sculptures and writes absurd books of poetry. He travels the multiverse in search of perfect glyphs. He is addicted to hot sauce and survived a 20 day coma. This poem is from his forthcoming third book which will melt your heart and blow your yearning, mackadocious brain.

    Street Art possibly by Dewey.
    Photograph by Adam Lawrence.

    French Vanilla is an art-punk band from L.A., and “Social Trappings” is the second single from their Self-Titled debut album due out March 24th, 2017 via Danger Collective Records.