Thank you all for the love and support for Mad Rush’s various incarnations. It is greatly appreciated. I am, however, moving on to a new small print project: a quarterly zine. Here is its website. I have sent out requests to some folks to assemble a preview issue. Once it is available I will open the official reading periods. Let’s do this, people:
Mad Rush is on indefinite hiatus once again.
My apologies for this.
All submitted pieces are released.
Please do not submit any work at this time.
Identifying a Lover
Stalkers, we make excuses.
Like anyone caught, feign
It’s these beginnings where empathy
has a tendency to not run rampant.
A notebook to document
time, place and environment
hangs from a string.
The convenience of it all
and then a slow stroll
back to the van.
from personal eulogies
align these comforts
with pathological sin.
Nerves transmuted into fireflies,
I wait for your hands, pretend
my couch is a backyard.
I want less fingers to count
the next time we can make
our bodies into swamps
worth leaving secrets in.
The Warm List
Our dreams turned to liquid
And we drank them
Like a rare wine
We tasted before
Though could never afford
You tasted it
Just like me
The sweet nectar reminded you
Of life as you played it
A reminder you lost the tape
Or was it lost
Like the both of us
If we are going to be lost
Let us be lost on love
We floated like clouds
Like the sky
I touched you
And you touched me
Like the world has been touching us
From the very beginning
Since the start of the list we made
Is it complete
Are they whole
Let us start from the beginning
Until we know
And if we never find out
Oh well, we tried
Like the birds in the light
With the sun at our wings
Would warm our minds at least
Substitute for Love #3
We lived in the middle of a long block of modest colonials and silent dogs. As a kid wearing paper tissues under those dreaded starched collars for school, or with ear glued to a transistor blaring “Baby Love,” hands cutting the outlines of paper heroes, I thought the sun and the moon revolved around our house. Nobody dies in this home; nobody flies away. My mother, who loved Maria Callas and Brigadoon, bought two parakeets because she thought a house is not a nest without birds. I became overly attached to the shy one because he reminded me of myself in classrooms, of being stuck for answers. One day in a fit of rage, my father opened the cage and chased the birds out the window. I ran after them because the world was too big for the two of them, especially the one who didn’t chirp much. I didn’t see the car coming. The world was too big for the three of us. So now, I’m holding the world in my hand. It’s made of glass and it’s really very small after you’ve grown beyond it. I spin it around and around in my palm. Inside, I can see a small boy chasing two birds because they mean life and death to him. They keep running all around the world until they catch up. But the birds will always fly away and the boy is growing too tall and too starry-eyed for a life of glass and pain. So I make a fist and crush this world.
You will reach your hand in the fire
to recover the lost pieces of yourself
The unthinkable becomes possible
when your hand is forced
Hunger can overwhelm logic
Desperation is the greatest motive
The sheep will ask why
No one wants to be slaughtered
Some things will only make sense to you
The only option will be to evacuate
In the end
there will be no one to ask
Hey, you dark sky prison for the birds
and their muted songs.
My sister is a flower!
Can you pick her up and lift her up
to the sun drunk of tar?
Allah doesn’t care for alcohol.
Water is the natural state of love,
as old age knits its endless webs hidden in
the dark. Myths dwell in my dusty attic,
and there they play of oblivion with
the yellowing photos.
Hey, you dark sky how many summer moments
do you need just to inhale once?
I have to grease your hinges and you will
stop creaking during the long autumn nights.
I know that your belly is enormous and you
can swallow all of the human sorrow.
We walk under you, with our heads bowed, our
arms raised, waiting.
Your endless clock is our own calendar
to eternity, that we’ll never be able to understand.
Philosophy is the other word of ours that leads us
to another of your countless dead ends.
Hey, you dark sky please kiss the mountain lakes
and search in their mirrors for your grandeur.
Rain is your tears, which I drink with endless thirst.
Could I cut you up with a wing of an albatross?
Could I dream your nightmares?
How many gods do you hide up there in your crowns
I want to climb your highest peaks and look through
your all-seeing eyes.
You’re not blind, right?
Let’s sing together for old times.
The memories are not forgotten, but reborn in your
What kind of photo album you got?
I will play my next heavenly part, then I will
share with you my plans for the future, which includes
wine, fish, and bread.
I believe we could arrange something!
Bring out your chess board, but beware– someone
else has prepared the winning moves.
The game is eternal!
Hey, you black sky peek through the window
and read these lines in my shabby notebook, before
I fed them to the hungry and burning candle.
Because I need some light.
Your imperishable darkness blesses me.
Charles of the Cello
It’s not there, used to be. Eyes. Color that don’t see red smile pretend, what we do. Anyhow. Pretty to see. Want to hear some. Bach. Life. Red.