Thursday, June 10, 2021

Chemical Exposure by Ian Hanks



I grew up on the coast of Maine, both of my parents were professional artists and under their guidance, I learned to draw and paint at an early age. My paternal grandfather, Fletcher Hanks, Sr. was an accomplished cartoonist back in the “Golden Age” of cartoons. Several compilations of his work have been published by Fantagraphics Books. My father, Ted, was an author, watercolorist, and nationally recognized woodcarver whose body of work includes life-sized ducks and geese displayed in private and public collections across the United States. My mother, Consuelo, was an accomplished artist in both pencil and watercolor mediums with a body of work that gained her a national reputation and following.

     I studied criminology at the University of Southern Maine and pursued a career in private security and investigations. I did everything, from working an access gate at an industrial complex, catching shoplifters at a retail chain, and conducting sensitive high-level corporate investigations.

     I have been drawing and painting since I could hold a pencil and paintbrush, thanks to my parents’ inspiration and encouragement. About twenty years ago, I first tried my hand at cartooning, drawing funny sketches to make people laugh which I find particularly fulfilling. A short time later, I took a break from art to focus on my career and raising our daughter, who we adopted from Guatemala. Since my parent’s passing in late 2015, I have taken over their art business, now called Maine Treasures Art Prints, representing my mother’s pencil and watercolor prints and launching my own full-time art career. Along with my latest foray into cartooning, I also paint maritime scenes in watercolor. My paintings are displayed at Gallery’s in Maine and my works have been included in several exhibits, including the International Maritime Art Show at the Mystic Maritime Museum and Gallery in Mystic Connecticut, and the Maritime Art Exhibit at the Coos Art Museum in Coos, Oregon.

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Coyote Tales The Return Of The Gonz by John Patrick Robbins

It was a bright and sunny day early that morning at four in the afternoon.
Which is annoying because I seldom wake up that early and I hate daylight. 
Because Odin's lava lamp is really harsh on my corpse-like complexion.

The people in the Dollar General on Knotts Island North Carolina all stared as I walked through the door.

I mean being I'm their living God slash local celebrity.
I fully understand the awe of the moment as most said nothing.

But I knew from that repulsed look.
They all secretly wanted my autograph or to have a mass orgy.

In aisle six which is the best to shoplift.
Not that I know or anything.
But I haven't paid for mints in like two years.

Tic tacs are great for dinner and really pair well with chardonnay.
Wow, I know how wet that's getting you already random reader.

I mean It's kinda weird your reading in the pool . 
But, fuck it, your neighbor's a total asshole and what he doesn't know won't hurt him.

Well maybe aside from the fact you're porking his wife but she does have awesome boobies.

And to think I'm a pushcart nominated writer. I'm truly a classy bitch.
But enough with the foreplay children.

As always, I checked to see if my books were still in stock at my shrine I paid to have placed in the store.

And to my shock it was gone.

My heart beat rapidly as the room began spinning.
 It was like drinking with Bill Cosby minus the rape.

Everything went suddenly dark and when I awoke that asshole who runs the store Randy was standing above me.

"Don't piss on me!"

I shouted in my outdoor voice even though I was inside because duh dumbass.
 It's not a fucking flea market.
Besides, everyone knows that's just a front for the gypsies to sell children to third world countries to work in the sweatshops of Canada or New Jersey.
Really what's the difference besides the shore?

"What the fuck John! Didn't I tell you I didn't want your crazy ass coming back in here!"

"Well I didn't think you meant it. I mean I am the only poetry famous person here. I'm like a national treasure you know like Dolly Parton. 
Minus the theme park and awesome boobies. And by the way, what happened to my book display?"

"I took it the fuck down you idiot! Besides you put it up yourself and why the fuck did you include a cardboard cutout of Mel Gibson from The Road Warrior?"

"Umm because it's fucking badass and you wouldn't let me put up the one of Betty Page because she was naked you Nazi bastard!"

Randy just stared at me with that same look he always has on his face.
You know the one most writers have when you mention my name.

Like someone farted.
When in all truth they're just jealous because I get to sit at home binge drink and sexually harass all my pen names.

Yeah I'm so lonely and oddly entertaining. Like a train wreck because I have mental problems like you couldn't tell already.

"Look jackass if I give you a corner near the toilet paper will you cut the shit and just try to act semi normal?"

I thought deeply about this statement for what was this strange word he spoke of called normal.

I kept thinking to myself as I laid there on the floor just hoping a woman with a short skirt would walk by.
I mean a cheap thrill beat's none at all.

And just like that old fart who flew a kite in a lighting storm. It hit me.

Build it and they will come.

Which I totally stole from that movie with sexy Kevin Costner you know that one about baseball Gone With The Wind.

"You know Randy, I will take your offer and even give you this collectable autographed picture of me. To hang on your wall or in the ladies room which may or not have a camera in the frame, so make sure it's placed properly asshole!"

"Why is it signed Betty White?"

"Well I would have had all the Golden Girls signatures but they had restraining orders on me at the time Randy."

"Fuck my job, why don't I just buy a gun!"

Randy said as he returned to his register clearly this moment had changed his life forever.

As I had truly made a huge step with my award winning book.
What? Just because I printed the awards out myself I created online didn't make them any less credible.

I swear reader, the way you torment me really is a turn on.
Hey are you single and have ultra low standards and have your own vagina or can borrow one for the weekend?

Then hit me up, just call 911. And just ask for me and extra pepperoni on your pizza that's what I always do.

Silly operators I'm probably going to prison.

Now where were we?
Oh yeah my books being sold next to where they stock the toilet paper.

Yes, sure they may not sell as good as toilet paper but they're just as useful.

Ouch John, that really hurt.
I know dude but sometimes I have to abuse myself just for kicks.
And to write totally batshit insane works to make writers question when the fuck is this going to end?

Kind of like half the broken english batshit insane submissions I have to read through every fucking day.
While being called a worthless hack no good batshit fucking cockless wonder.

And that one came from a motivational speaker.

Yes I bought my beer with just a little bit more pride that day and made sure I stared at the cashier's tits just a little bit longer and slightly drooled.

Till I realized he wasn't feeling it.
I really needed glasses but I need booze far more besides.

Everyone looks better with a hundred proof flowing through your veins and the lights off.

Until next time hamsters.

Stay crazy.

Coyote out.


The Mad Editor aka Coyote, is a off his meds lunatic who is also a Grammy award winning bio writer. He is also a member of the illuminati and the most hated editor in all of poetry.

He enjoys making sacrifices of his critics and is a chieftain  of his Viking tribe now residing on Skull Island.

His many publications include Better Homes And Gardens , Serial Killer Quarterly, Modern Viking The Not So Sexy Swimsuit Edition, A Journal He Left In a Park Somewhere, Esquire, Fearless Poetry Zine and some shitty e-zine called the Dope Fiend Daily which only runs once a week.

He has been called the greatest human being within his mind and is voted the worst of the net which is title he has won now three years in a row. Because I won it so own it bitch!

He is currently working on his screenplay for the sequel to The Sliver Surfer vs The Bronze Bastard which will be released in the summer of 1892.

He is currently on a reading tour in Germany where he is opening for David Hasselhoff. 

And he thinks you look very nice today but you should probably change your shirt because it really clashes with that skirt.

Yeah I know everyone's a fucking critic.


Monday, June 7, 2021

How the Fuck by Jason Melvin

(upon finding a banana, where once was towel)

am I supposed to dry off with a banana?
I can take a joke, I can
but this has grown tiresome
It’s the price I pay, I guess
Having shitty friends is better
then having none at all, right?
This isn’t high school, we’re supposedly adults
I did my own laundry this morning
I miss home
Hiding all my shoes was funny
until I went to class barefoot
in the rain
Maybe Ramen noodles under your bedsheets
maybe that was too far, but I was pissed
but I’m done, you win
Standing here shivering with my dick in my hand
I can hear you in the hallway giggling

and I’m eating this fucking banana. 

Jason Melvin received a gimmicky T-shirt from his teenage daughter on Christmas with a picture of one large fist fist-bumping a much smaller fist.  The caption read, “Behind every smart-ass daughter is a truly asshole Dad”.  It fit.

His work has recently appeared in The Beatnik Cowboy, The Raw Art Review, Rat’s Ass Review, The Electric Rail, Front Porch Review, Shambles, Spillover and Last Leaves, among others.



Friday, May 28, 2021

Rolex Club by Susan Tepper

So this guy X. Jack Matalan hires me to serve subpoenas.  He’s a lawyer in the same office building where my friend Marcie is a paralegal.  She plugged me into this new gig.  

I’d been doing the gram circuit:  balloons, eroto-grams, monkey suit — whatever.  Marcie is the one person from high school I’ve stayed in contact with.  She’s a stacked blonde (for real) who was voted most likely to succeed.  My brother Nat derides Marcie, calls her a regular US senator; but that’s out of total male frustration.  Years ago she gave him the toss for a woman.  

A lot of men wanted to marry her.  One was a guy who managed big name bands.  He blew in from LA once a month to scout talent.  Took her to rock concerts downtown.  Marcie claimed he was selfish.  Even though he bought her a Rolex watch.  She said all the guys in LA do that.  She said it’s like a Rolex Club out there.  Nothing to do with love.  Just to impress the other guys. 

I’ll admit I coveted that Rolex.  I told her I wouldn’t mind having one.  Marcie said here take mine.  She actually slid it off her wrist.  I’ll admit I was tempted.  She said the band guy was selfish with ear plugs.  Always carried only one pair for himself when they went scouting bands, dragging her into smoky clubs so loud you could hear the music a block away, she said.  And that it left a permanent ringing in her ears.  

Marcie ended up marrying a guy who walked dogs for a living.  But she always had some woman on the side.  Nat likes saying walking dogs is not a reliable source of income.  I want to tell him to grow balls.

Being no dummy to the dog walking situation, Marcie got herself paralegal training. Then became super friendly with a lawyer in the firm and got her divorce for free.  Free, I like reminding Nat.  He shrugs it off.  I like mentioning the huge sums of money it takes to get a divorce.  I know he wants to divorce Sherry.  

I’ve been bunking in their partially finished basement.  There’s a drop-ceiling with florescent tube lights underneath.  I can hear the fights that go on upstairs.  The walls and floor are rough cement painted marine gray.  Definitely not my shade but the balloon-grams add a nice color punch.  It was supposed to be a playroom for Rosalie their kid.  

By five or six the kid turned schizoid.  Rosalie cannot be left alone with the washer and dryer.  I’m not quite sure why, but it’s a house rule.  

Down in their underground dampness I can make myself scarce.  Not that I’m lonely.  I’m not even miserable.  I just feel turned around.  Like you’re meant to go one direction and find yourself in the other.  That’s significant.  East is east, west is west.  Vastly different experiences.  Marcie being the first to agree.  There’s no Rolex Club here on the east coast, she said.

Originally published in Blue Edge chapbook from Cervena Barva Press.

Susan Tepper is a twenty year writer in all genres, and the author of nine published books.  Her most recent are CONFESS (a poetry chapbook by Cervena Barva Press, 2020) and a quirky road novel WHAT DRIVES MEN (Wilderness House Press, 2019).  Currently Tepper is in pre-production of an Off-Bdwy play titled THE CROOKED HEART which she based on artist Jackson Pollock’s later years. 

Monday, May 3, 2021

Sugar by Susan Tepper

Henry Potts fell out of the maple before he ever got to the milking barn.  

“It was that damned mirror,”  said Mildred banging cake batter off the mixer blades. “Who puts a mirror in a treetop?” 

Spitting tobacco into smoldering embers Henry sulked near the fireside.  Then knocking off the crocheted rug she’d wrapped around his legs, he stood up wobbly.  

“How else to tell the weather that’s a comin’?  Mirror brings the cloud formations closer.”  

“Henry you’re daft.”  She held out a dripping beater.  “Want a lick?”


“How many cups a coffee you had before climbing that tree?”

He paced the kitchen slowly then had to give up. Moaning he sat again in the rocker. “Five.  Mebee six.”  

“Five or six cups of caffeine.  And how much sugar in each cup?”

“Dammit, woman, I don’t keep track.”  He swung his neck like the old horse they put down last month. “Where’s my newspaper gone to?”

“You had about half the sugar bowl before you even stepped outside this house.  You got the diabetes, Henry.”  

But he’d already shut his eyes against her; resting his head on the back slats of the cherry rocker.  His dad’s rocker.  And his grand dad’s before.

Mildred came and stood over him.  “Fact is, you’re killing yourself.  You drink all that sugared coffee then expect to climb a tree?  At your age?  Maybe it’s time to make some arrangements.”

“I want my coffin lined silver satin.”

She laughed saying,  “I’m throwing you in an old pine box.  Let the worms have a feast on all that sugar.  It’ll be a regular birthday party for them.  Cake and candles.”  She walked away humming a tune that sounded vaguely familiar.

He opened his eyes, saw her pouring cake batter into a loaf pan.  “What kinda icing?”

“Forget it, Henry.  You had enough sugar for a month.  This cake is going to the bake sale.  You remember the church supper?  You even know the day of the week?”

He scratched at his scant amount of gray hair.  “The day a the week now?  Or the day a the week for the church supper?”

“Clever.”  She bent to put the cake into the oven.  “All the same I’m phoning Douglas.  I need my peace and quiet.  He can do the milking and the chores piling up.  Like the fence that needs fixing in the north pasture.”

Scowling, Henry gripped the chair arms.  “Douglas ain’t gettin’ near my cows.  Ya hear?  He’s got no sense about livestock.  Last time he broke two milking machines.  Had to hand-milk myself for almost a month.  Damned near broke my back, too.”

Pale-looking since the tree accident, his face suddenly took on a mottled purple color.  He glared at her, saying, “Besides.  Douglas sneaks looks at you.  I seen it the last time he come.”

She giggled in a way that made his old knees jump.  

Susan Tepper is a twenty year writer in all genres, and the author of nine published books.  Her most recent are CONFESS (a poetry chapbook by Cervena Barva Press, 2020) and a quirky road novel WHAT DRIVES MEN (Wilderness House Press, 2019).  Currently Tepper is in pre-production of an Off-Bdwy play titled THE CROOKED HEART which she based on artist Jackson Pollock’s later years.

Monday, April 26, 2021

Drugs Aren't Always Fun, Kids by Kevin M. Hibshman

Here are a few important health and safety tips:

1.Always make sure you grab the intended prescription bottle.
If you mistakenly ingest your room mate's muscle relaxants instead of your blood pressure
pills, you may notice the following:
Inability to wake up.
Showing up to work wearing two different pairs of shoes.
Blurred vision.
Difficulty in completing a single thought.

2.Monitor your alcohol consumption in public to avoid:
Being unable to reach a bathroom before relieving yourself.
Becoming overly flirtatious which can lead to unforeseen and unwanted situations you are too smashed to apologize for.
Going home with a stranger you discover you loathe as soon as the buzz fades.
Driving home from the bar in a snow storm with someone who has somehow drank twice as much as you did.
3.Never combine rum, whiskey, Kahlua and vodka within the same half an hour as the effects will be startling but highly unpleasant.
4.If the police arrive, try not to converse with them.
5.Don't imbibe alcoholic beverages on the way to the amusement park.

6.You may realize that you have smoked enough medical marijuana when: you cannot see anymore but you're still laughing.
You no longer care about what you're laughing at.
Bright flashes of light begin streaking across the room but no one else sees them.
You hear yourself talking but no longer feel yourself talking.
All of your friends bid you goodnight suddenly and rush out the door.

I hope you will find these tips helpful.

Kevin M. Hibshman has had poems published in many journals and magazines world wide. In addition, he has edited his poetry zine, Fearless, since 1990 and is the author of sixteen chapbooks including Love Sex Death Dreams (Green Bean Press, 2000) and Incessant Shining (Alternating Current, 2011).

Chemical Exposure by Ian Hanks

    I grew up on the coast of Maine, both of my parents were professional artists and under their guidance, I learned to draw and paint at a...