2 Poems by Based Mtn

Blade Runner 2069
Our sleek, candy and blue lit, forged-cast titanium pizzas are mind meltingly mouthable and come with your choice of sides, like fried spanners, everything the wired doll needs. Necromancy in case of malfunction is not advised.


Aqua Vitae
Emotionally numb, I walk, down, down, down, into the ocean. The vampire squid are in bloom. I can’t extract soluble oxygen. Don’t wait up for me. 


based mtn is a poet manque from Sydney, Australia

“Do Aliens Paint Their U.F.O.’s?” by Logan Roberts

When I was in high school, my friends and I were vandals.
We talked about burning down a house, 
spray painted penises on dumpsters,
and on more than one occasion,
a crowbar would scream into a mailbox.

One time, we filled a milk jug with old paint
we found in the basement.

We put it out in the middle of a busy road
really early in the morning.

We hid in the bushes for like,
20 minutes.

Just as we were losing hope, something happened.

It was straight out of a science fiction film—

a tractor beam started dragging the jug into the sky
towards some hazy blue lights hidden in the clouds.

I still wonder today, why?

Why do aliens need paint?

I thought they liked butts and corn.


Logan Roberts is an artist and poet from Ohio. He tweets @hello_im_logan.

“1984” by Jason Love

In 1984 we watched music videos of 
Van Halen on MTV.  
1984 was the year of  
Michael Jackson, Ronald Reagan, Farrah Fawcett,  
and Andre the Giant.  

Eddie Van Halen died today.  
Like the King of Pop, Reagan, Farrah, and Andre,  
Eddie no longer walks the earth.  
He was 65 years old  
and a rock & roll giant.  

1984 was only 36 years ago   
(which is essentially a lifetime).  


Jason Love still lives in New Jersey. 

‘Birdshit’ by Laurie Welch

Birdshit

There is a canary
trapped in the mind.

But can anyone tell
if he’s alive yet?

Well, are you
having any ideas

about what dying isn’t
wanted for?

Birdshit

Isn’t what you thought was
how can I fake my own death
when I am probably already dead?

(I found a great canary
and he was so great
in the faked-up backdrop with me…)

Maybe a fake death is more painful.
You have to keep waking up
to plan for it

Eulogy for A Great Canary

He couldn’t replace himself
in a language famous for

making up mistakes. So he kept
all of his receipts on the nightstand

wondering oh how yellow
they get, and wrinkled.

You can’t return anything
to what it was

no matter how fake it was
trying to make it count.

Birdshit

I’m thinking the sky is
one coat on a hanger.

In a closet?
Don’t know.

What about these sequins
in our fists like it meant

we would probably have
ten billion mirages for an exit?


Laurie Welch earned an MFA in Poetry from the University of Nebraska. Her poems have appeared in LA Review, Forklift, Ohio, and others. She lives and teaches in Omaha.Attachments area

3 Poems by Giacomo Pope

I Was in a Band Too, Back in the Day

Men who lift
their gut
up over
a belt strap
while looking
in your eyes

earnestly
telling you
their jeans size
hasn’t changed
for 15 years.

I renewed my gym
membership recently.

I’m really excited
to get back into it.

Peacock

Spring reminds me of the snap
As my nail cut a daffodil from the ground.
I would place the stem behind my ear.
It was a terrible way to make friends.

Chainsaw Poem 14

No, I’m sorry.
You see, I tore off
the starter chain.

I wouldn’t be able
to turn it back on.

Giacomo Pope is the author of Chainsaw Poems & Other Poems (Ghost City Press) and the founder of Neutral Spaces. If you ask, he will do your maths homework for you.

Velvet Darkness by Brooke Nicole Plummer

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After looking at the Hart Crane memorial sculpture,

I vomited into the Cuyahoga River

because I had too much cannoli at Sainato’s.

Even with a broken foot, I climbed Brandywine trails
to look down upon boulders the size of Megalodon skulls,

which are landscaping rust belt conservation areas.

One of my worst fears
is being too faint of heart,
in regards to myself.

A raccoon scuttered into pink shrubbery. It can feel the rain without getting wet.
I need the same ancient intuition, like Emersonian ink being a lifestyle of velvet darkness.

‘Bob’ by Danie Hensley

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bob used to walk his dog taffy past my place every day

taffy shit on my lawn
i didn’t mind

bob moved here from Florida and was always cold;
he wasn’t prepared for the cruelty of Michigan’s weather. as an ex-Floridian myself, i assured him that things would get better, that it’s not so bad here
things would get better
things would get better

so bob and taffy walked on- just as they had done the day before and would do the day after
it’s been a year since i’ve seen them
the seminoles flag in bob’s yard is at half-mast
and my lawn is clean.

2 Poems by Wallace Barker

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Origami City

heading back to work on a cold and sunny day
ive earned a living my entire life now i support
plenty of other people i drive to the office
spend 8 or 10 hours frustrated and cross
then drive back home at night often eat dinner
alone that i have warmed up in the microwave
i know about quiet desperation but i also know
about real desperation because i have driven beneath
the overpass and seen the homeless encampment there
the city folds over onto itself and some people
are crushed that way and some people navigate
the creases over and over even as the folding
leaves a smaller and smaller page

 

Peaceful Easy Feeling

I was very drunk at a martini party
sitting around the fire pit with some
young successful tech bros and lawyers
my friend gave me a vape pen with
indica weed when I first arrived and

I was stoned losing my grip.
These guys were talking at me about
something but the fire was so warm
I couldn’t really respond and I thought my
normal thoughts about being overwhelmed
and possibly inferior and then you arrived
Alicia in your green dress and black boots
with your bangs falling across your glasses
and I liked that so much I like you so much
you seemed very cool to me.
I told the guys around the fire that you
are my wife in an interrupting manner and
I felt very glad and self-assured about you.
That made me calm and strong in my thoughts.
The fire was indeed warm so I sat back and
you talked and made everyone laugh.

 

Wallace Barker lives in Austin, Texas. He has been published in Neutral Pages, Reality Hands, Soft Cartel, and Philosophical Idiot. More of his work can be found at wallacebarker.com

Rusted by David Bassano

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Rusted brick-red Chevy van

with our sleeping bags

spread out on plywood

in the back

 

Carrying our amps through

slushy parking lots at three AM

 

Playing those bars in

Wildwood

Somerset

Vineland

Stockton

Atlantic City

 

We lived from our music

and a little theft and dealing

eighteen, nineteen,

very poor and very happy.

 

We said a musician’s life

was the best in the world.

Enjoy your 9 to 5 prison, drones.

 

One by one, we left that life.

I remember Mike saying,

quietly and decisively,

“I’m tired of this,”

 

of having no money

of sleeping on friends’ floors,

of eating on the sidewalk,

 

of sex in back rooms

and hangovers

without stability

without love

 

So

we cut our hair

went to college

bought new clothes

 

Got jobs, wives, houses, and children.

 

And then

we got tired of those lives, too.

 

You get tired of everything

eventually

I guess.

 

It worries me about heaven.

I’m sure we’ll get bored with that, too.

But where do you go from there?

David Bassano gives history lectures for fun and rent money. He likes bike trails, Paris along the river, and Glenmorangie on the rocks. He published a novel called Trevelyan’s Wager. Any complaints should be addressed to: https://www.facebook.com/davidbassanoauthor/

F/24/Manic by Jenna Houchin

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The smartest mouth breather
In the conference room,
And I yell, “fuck a 9 to 5”
Mr. and Mrs. Miserable
On a good day,
Wish we could just
Fuck while getting high.
Wouldn’t take it back
Even if I tried,
I was raised poorly.
It feels like a waste.
Sitting right here,
Now with first class seats,
And still, with an economy sized taste.
No matter how sweetly
I write the chorus,
My therapist never seems
To comprehend
The duality of man:
I think apple juice
Is the best chaser,
And I’ll never be as
Close to the Son there again.

Jenna Houchin is an artist based in Los Angeles, California, originally from the midwest. She recently has self-published her first poetry book, FULL THROTTLE. For more information, check out her website at jennahouchin.com, or reach her on Instagram (@jennahouchin).