Fall Issue 2022
Mired in the Last Supper of Mass Murder
(after watching the Buffalo, NY shooting live-streamed)
It hovers in depths plaguing the twisted hearts
from bodies of the swimming stillborn –
now gone from crystal light of a common humanism,
their crimes for a dying century are here forever
inside the market of martyrs
/forging an elemental end
to new hope
in (your) hungering eyes,
like twin cockerels
of insufferable smallness/
invisible to the lure of shooting victims
preening, in indecent exposures
of the bedraggled afterlife,
disguised as nubile virgins
auditioning in America’s big talent show.
What was taken from us
belongs to coming generations more fully
than the wisp of madness,
what civilization has bequeathed to
the multitude of current events
into a present anarchy of ephemeral being
the hours barely move around;
until the past remains ubiquitous with
we smell rotting in the temporal sod
of a shallow water bed, exhibiting remains
of the fallen reflected in the CCTV.
Now we go beyond the dream of progress
marching stately, across
a ground zero still intact
drugging us with lies, an intolerant sophistry
of skeletal music – just wind missing
the ear of salvation, what belies the coming spring.
Peter Magliocco writes from Las Vegas, Nevada, where he’s been active in the small press as writer, editor, and artist for several years. He has poetry in Ink In Thirds, The Pangolin Review, Literary Yard, I Am Not A Silent Poet, New Ink Review, and elsewhere. His most recent poetry book is Particle Acceleration on Judgement Day from Inspired.
The Devil’s Screenplay
Trying to save you, I walk into a world
(shadows slithering) through complicated
jungles of primeval darkness.
SCENE 1: where appearances are remade
& the electronic gods resemble apes?
No, jump-cut to another
Of your fallen mauve scarf, edge-frayed
Having fallen over the face of a stand-in Jesus,
& once worn around necks of alabaster
The camera’s lens will lovingly linger on
Before panning, slowly, to a pool of glistening blood.
You will CUT to the sanguine sword
(upraised, love-dripping?) in my hands guilt
like the stigmata of lovers –
Covered with forensic stills, then in kinetic motions
reflecting the killer’s panic. I mumble the occult
imprecations to the dramatic background music
Drum-deafening me; you rise,
Moribund but alive (cue the special effects here,
let all the secrets of cinema hang out in nude pixels
in exhibitionistic frame-frenzy):
“Your dialogue upsets me here
& I halt the camera
Eyeing you in the flesh now, seeing reality
For the first time on your face, not the screen
Or pixel-bright viewing surfaces….”
Yet voodoo in a makeshift rosary
Scents the tabernacle’s flesh
You bear on your sylvan back for me,
Reframing each image into a self-portrait
Of perverse desire I carve into the backbone
Of blinding vision
we FADE TO BLACK
Wakening to Starfish
Between the barriers of consciousness
sentient things mutate in a fishbowl
known as the mind’s ocean.
Not just the cell in us perishes
but also the respective shadows
lingering in ghost-like metaphor
must awaken from a cloudy memory.
I wish “thought” was a supernova then,
a brain-powered star reborn to send
old fissions beyond a cosmic basement.
Someday I’ll awake from long sleeps of reason
to greet my multiple personalities –
more alive than facts of abnormalities,
more real than Rembrandt’s self-portraits
glinting endlessly on fathomless light waves.