Moon Child

Moon Child by Morgan Soulantikas

She brightens the sky with a Cheshire grin.
Her stars dance among the glow.
What it must feel like to trace the curves and shadows of a celestial goddess.
How do the nebulas contain their colors in her presence?
The milky way can’t help but overflow its banks with her radiance.
The sun must melt when dusk blankets the hemisphere.
She has always been his greatest weakness.

<strong>Morgan Soulantikas</strong>
Morgan Soulantikas

Morgan Soulantikas is a Naturalist by trade and writer by birth. She spends her time teaching others about the beauty of the world and the creatures that inhabit it. When she isn’t traveling the waters of Alaska, she gets back to her roots at home in South Carolina.

She gains inspiration from personal experiences, grand adventures, and her overactive imagination. As a person who has lived with depression, anxiety, and other mental health challenges, she makes it a point to put these issues in the spotlight with her work. If one poem describing the struggles of a worried twenty-something can help someone along their own journey in life, that’s a beautiful victory.

Morgan hopes to publish a collection of her work in the near future, but you can find all of her poetry on Instagram @soul_anne.

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Hinted Misery

Hinted Misery by Carlota Guzmán

His eyes locked mine
in an instant we knew
not one soul would love us
the only ones that could, were us.

Ending before starting
dreaming before sleeping.
Momentarily in love with you
inside my mind you are, my love.

Sentimental reasons lock our
eyes, turning love into lust
rolling our bodies
you smile at me; you knew.

<strong>Carlota Guzmán</strong>
Carlota Guzmán

I am 21 years old, I study Communication in Mexico City. My poems have been published in Train River Publishing, ERR Magazine, Espacio Ulises, Autor Libro Nº 13.

In 2019, I collaborated on an entertainment website called Cultura Colectiva writing articles. 

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Love in a Tweet

Love in a Tweet by Aloysius S. Harmon

For you are, the mirror
of admiration.
The chord to my saddened muse.
and keys to my wilting soul.

You are, the lightening
beneath my depleted bones.

The silent strike,
in my body cells.
And muffler to my flaming heart.

For your lips are silky,
To scorch my body into ecstasy.
To drive my heart in the cesspool of romance,
My heaven is your warmth felt.

For you are the love, I behold,
Priceless gold in human silhouette
The last rhyme,
To my voiceless heart.

<strong>Aloysius S. Harmon</strong>
Aloysius S. Harmon

I am Aloysius S. Harmon, a Grebo-Liberian Poet, Author, Motivational Speaker and aspiring Orthopaedic Surgeon. 

I was born unto the union of Aloysius S. Harmon Sr. and Karyor A. Karteh. I am a student of the Mother Patern College of Health Sciences studying Biology as a major and Chemistry, minor. 

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Companion

Companion by Aayushi Gupta

Anxiety and me,
we dance spinning
in huge ballrooms
forgetting everything around us.
You and me,
are in a tight embrace
too tight to let go
too much to even breathe.
You study me,
flipping my thoughts
like the pages of a book
you’ve read too many times.
Looking too deep in me,
unraveling all the layers
all the inhibitions
to see what you’ve made me.

You’ve held my gaze,
for too long now
trapping my soul
in your power.
You’ve held me,
your arms around my waist
for such a long time that I don’t even know
where my body ends and where yours begin.

There’s a fear inside me,
caught me in its trap
I may lash out or protest
but I’m just too weak.
So I just back track,
right into your arms
of darkness
and falseness.

We’re both entwined,
combined together
leaving my old self behind
making a new existence for myself with you.
My hands,
clasped firmly in yours
trying to shoo you away
but you’re too stubborn.

Anxiety and me,
you’ve taken my life
not mine anymore
but soaked in sadness.
It’s lost in madness,
trying to undo all these years
but still the people around me don’t see
the anxiety in me.

<strong>Aayushi Gupta</strong>
Aayushi Gupta

Aayushi Gupta is a shy soul from India, who bleeds all of her sorrows on the pages of her diary, sitting in the corner somewhere. She’s a bibliophile and has been creating various tales for more than four years now. She enjoys chill sessions with friends and family, and singing her heart out.

She’s currently working on her Masters in English Literature, and is just trying to get through life one ice-cream tub at a time.

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Two Lies and a Truth

Two Lies and a Truth by Taruni Tangirala

i slurp on the vanity of superior
beings in the lounge of contemplation;
a trifold of mirrors reflects three
different aspersions back at me.
i see a centaur;
dressed in battle gear and a dunce cap,
ready to run away as soon as the battle
horn sounds. next, i see a telly-tubby
festooned with participation medals and
an eye, exactly one eye, for shiny things.
last, i see a simple silhouette of myself.
nothing’s there except for a facetious
void; a black hole replete with black dust.
suddenly, a vine grows out of the void and
ivy grows all over the mirrors like ants on
a cookie crumb. succumbing to the pressure,
the glass splinters into a mosaic, and a
pastiche of my former self glowers at me
with the rage of a bull shark. then, her
refulgent eyes twinkle like the millions of
nocturnal suns that put us to sleep every night.
no, not twinkling;
she winked at me
such that no one else could see.

A Kid and Some Global Warming by Taruni Tangirala

you are mount everest and
i’m a molehill. look me down

like how the sun thrusts its
rays onto the uneven topsoil,

but you’ll never blind me.
in a picturesque watercolor painting,

you’re the one who sullies the top half;
blue skies replaced with gray air. i

giggle, and a dulcet sound escapes
from my larynx; as if gray could blind

me; blind anyone. i see you everywhere
but you can’t see me; you have constructed

your own demise in steel traps made of
carbon. thanks for entertaining the kids,

mommy says. next please, she says,
not waiting for your puny gray conscience to protest.

the silvery crescent in the night
sky is so close; i grab it and tug.

the handle reveals a whole world
obfuscated by the pollution of this one.

i enter through the threshold;
i faint.

<strong>Taruni Tangirala</strong>
Taruni Tangirala

ITaruni is a writer from the Houston, Texas area. 
She serves as the founder and editor-in-chief of Réapparition Journal, an online literary journal that is dedicated to de-stigmatizing all forms of chronic illnesses (reapparitionjournal.org).

As someone who also enjoys thinking about abstract ideas and how they relate to various facets of society such as politics, human rights, and sustainability, she loves writing poetry that reflects her ideas on these themes in a profound manner. 

She has work forthcoming or published in The Louisville Review, MORIA Literary Magazine, SORTES Magazine, and others. In her free time, she enjoys archery and watching movies such as Inception and The Imitation Game.

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Winter Whispers

Winter Whispers by Francesca Mari

Winter whispers willful to Time’s Tale
For the fourth chapter of this masquerade
As quiet undercover luring nightingale
Silver its feathers, freezing the jolly serenade
Sang in the dim light of a Sun now pale,
Imposes his coming on every window pane,
Steals from the leather leaves a steel rail,
Spring is a weary memory of the older maid,
Persistent stumps announce his steed: Hail
He engraves dense fog with an ice blade
The figure escaped from crisp folktale
Creases tell of horror and barricades
His eyes liquid mirrors for the sky of Dales,
Immutable indomitable General leading the charade

<strong>Francesca Mari</strong>
Francesca Mari

I’m Nobody! Who are you?
Are you Nobody too? 
– Emily Dickinson

I’m a Nobody finding her way towards being Somebody, Francesca Mari, nice to meet you. I’m a young poet and aspiring writer born and raised in Italy or, in other words, a little woman following a dream. I believe in the power of words and the change they can inspire, which led me to choose Modern Literature at university.  

I’ve always expressed myself and tried to encapsulate the world around me through writing and art in general, being music, acting, dancing, photography or with brushes and paint. 

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The Midnight Sun

The Midnight Sun by Lindsay Schroeder

I wish to see you
every hour of every day,
watch the sun come up with you
and watch it as it goes down.
Making coffee, holding mugs,
interlacing our fingers one by one.
Each hour goes by and I miss you more.
Our desire like the midnight sun,
never sleeps but glows brighter.
The winter has a way of connecting
our souls in the silence of its balance
of long days and sleepless nights,
learning to rest, learning to wait.
How valuable it is to grow in
the delay of gratification,
finding that we took the right risk
in letting each other in.

<strong>Lindsay Schroeder</strong>
Lindsay Schroeder

Lindsay Schroeder is an artist turned poet from Vancouver, Canada. Her art ranges from landscape painting to mixed media collages, gathering inspiration from hiking into the mountains and sharing memories with the ones she loves. Her poetry speaks about love, heartache, beauty, healing, and nature, and her poetry book The Art of Letting Go combines both poetry and her moody collages. You can find her on instagram: @poemsby.lindsay 

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Yair Michaeli

Nurse Mary (I Need You) by Yair Michaeli

I checked into the lobby of her one room apartment,
darkened corridor filled with paintings of Jesus.
The fountain throbbed in the hall of this hotel,
shuttered windows,
subtle innuendos,
three knocks.

The night was hot and black,
clothes stuck to our shirts.
The story is about summer and you,
and her dark little island of a room,
and all of her crooked roads,
that had their footprints in my odes.

She was born under the star of Venus, three stars above me.
Her light blue eyes, filled with humbleness, softly saddened.
Her painter’s eyes, mercury mouth at the biblical times.
Hair that was colored like wine dark sea fell down on her breast,
on lips that looked like bare roses,
blushing with blood, eating themselves with desire.

I was a wounded soldier, long afloat on a ship less sea.
Deserted and displaced from the war.
A war between the black and white,
A war between the man and the woman.
Utopian infant, Eutopian mother.
Born into this life, thrown into this world.

We entered the darkened room, and purposely didn’t turn on the lights.
She threw her house keys and bag on her bed, lit a cigarette.
Offered me one, however she took some of my own.
Looking into her eyes through the smoke, where the moonlight floats.
Lit lamp that was hanging from a distant boat.
Now I saw, there was a painting by Arnold Bocklin hanging on the wall.

Spoken Word by Yair Michaeli

A small rowing boat is just arriving at a water gate and seawall on shore.
An oarsman maneuvers the boat from the stern. In the boat, facing the gate, is a standing figure clad entirely in white, a lone loon dives upon the water. Just behind him, there is a festooned object commonly interpreted as a coffin. The tiny islet is dominated by a dense grove of tall, dark cypress and willow trees. The Mephistopheles is just beneath him. As siren grabs him from the of the edge of the boat, underwater.

And she wraps up my tired face in her hair
And she hands me the apple core,
Two birds in a cage, drinking lovers wine and eating bread.

I’ll stop in the middle and skip things between me and her. (It comes to us all, soft as a pillow)

The oarsman has gone
And the loons have flown for cover.
And me I am on trail, in the funeral of my lover.

<strong>Yair Michaeli</strong>
Yair Michaeli

Yair Michaeli is an aspiring Israeli poet, musician, painter and an upcoming short stories artist. He has been a lifelong writer and first began creating other worlds and characters at third grade.

In addition to the Bible, many other literary influences can be found in his texts, such as Leonard Cohen, Homer, William Faulkner and Bob Dylan. But his most significant muse is Leonard Cohen, saying that he is the reason why he writes. His poetics are romantic, melancholic and are often based on transcendence, often taking the Old Testament as a point of reference. Citing Romantic painters and 20th century philosophers as a significant source of inspiration.

Maintaining lyrical obsessions that frequently describe death, religion, love and violence scenery. Yair lives and works out of his home, and spends his summers traveling and going to the beach with his friends.

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Ari Lohr

A Poem I Wrote for My Hypothetical Husband While Stoned by Ari Lohr

hi. nice to meet you. my name is Ari. better known as the poet, known as the guy who saw you on tinder once, swiped right, wrote three half-assed similes about you and told you that i was a writer over text. when i say i’m a writer, i mean that i’m awkward. when i say that i’m awkward, i mean i will double-text you a love poem.

apparently, i’m not that good at first dates.
turns out
hiding all your flirting in mixed metaphors
because you’re too scared to talk to people
is a terrible way to continue a conversation
or establish any sort of human connection.
who knew?

some might say i’m a prick but i prefer the term rosebush. i’m cute, flowery, and pink, but at the same time i’m not afraid to cut a bitch. i am the type of guy who calls themselves badass, but gets embarrassed when their cat sees them naked after a shower. sometimes, i fantasize about gravity, write some weird metaphor about saturn, or love, or beg for you to dip me in your wedding ring arms like watch this, like listen to this rising pulse reach crescendo, like each heartbeat i give is a manifesto to breathing, like i love you so much i cannot breathe without being in your orbit, like sometimes, the difference between cardiac arrest and love is simply how poetic it is to write about. when i tell you that no one can write you like i do, i mean when you comfort me in the middle of an anxiety attack, i thank you by exhaling despite being breathless at your touch, by holding hurricanes in my chest and calling you my storm chaser, by not knowing what else to do but make noise, because indecision is the loudest form of silence i know. in that moment, i will tell you i love you for the first time that is not a poem. but what is this if not a poem? what is love if not the lonely language of ink? what is a poem if not the home of the heart’s most violent vocabulary? give me a pen or make me a god – i will love with the same penmanship. when i tell you i love you, i mean that in some stanza, somewhere, we are still sharing our first kiss. that in the space of three lines, our hearts harmonize in 1000 different dialects and swell to the silent song of the same supernova every second. when i write, the paper sings. with a single sonnet, i could serenade the sky to sleep ‘till this night lasts forever. there is no eye in this storm, only us. somewhere, i once saw a bottomless pit and jumped, which is to say that i am always falling for you.

when the sun rises and the ink dries, i’ll press my ear to the page and hear your name thaw in the warm morning air. i’ll text you and say i’m a writer, when, really, i am just braver over a keyboard than in person. i’ll be so crazy and chaotic and weird, but i’ll cherish every minute i spend searching for the right words. when i say that i’m a writer, i mean that every day, i greet the morning with ink, close my eyes and reach out and again, you are right here. i am always too awkward to say anything except

hi. nice to meet you. you know my name already.

<strong>Ari Lohr</strong>
Ari Lohr

Ari Lohr is a wannabe-astronaut-turned-poet attending university in Boston, MA. He is a Brave New Voices semifinalist, and has performed at various regional slams such as Slamlandia, Portland Poetry Slam, Verselandia, and more. Focusing on the symbiotic relationship between gravity, mental health, queer love, and grief, Ari’s poetry appears in the Big Windows Review, Kalopsia Lit, and Incandescent Review, and is set to appear in various publications in 2021 including the Imperial Death Cult. He is also the managing editor for the Bitter Fruit Review magazine, and the editor-in-chief of the Jupiter Review. Ari can be found at arilohr.com or @i.o.jupiter on instagram.

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