Poetry Showcase: Mike Zone (March 2023)


To the all the alpha-widows I’ve known…
You used me
which is fine
done this so many times before
when you said you weren’t quite ready for intimacy
I smiled 
It’s never been about that
and I meant it
You used me
getting accustomed to having someone in your bed again
as we held each other- chastely
exchanging innocent, affectionate kisses
You used me
afraid to develop feelings
so you wouldn’t get hurt
needing immediate consoling 
for things I’ve never rendered upon you
in exchange
freezing me out for days
You used me
developing feelings for him
another apology
wanting to remain friends
dick in a glass case syndrome
as you chase alphas
the kind that
physically and psychologically pummel
see, the thing about alphas is…they’re primarily psychos, narcs and sociopaths
so keep getting exhausted from your self-engineered funerals and constant half-hearted resurrections sculpting punching-bag trauma into bright-side venomous ideals
white fences
I’m no beta-simp
As always
I’ll go my own way
with a clear mind
does this make me a sigma?
but here’s some notes for your understanding


at the open bar
glass of tequila 
in hand
all around
painting love
in full sensory exploration
canvas, wine, consumption
ritualistic romance
image based display
pristine simulation
this positive space
has become so negative
steeped in stipulation
a real love affair to experience
there’s no sense of belonging 
in the state of genuine communion
heart touching earth
reaching for the sky
in tender joy

Almost criminal

Sweating out anxiety on this cold February night
no gun is shy tonight
shots fired
grabbing a fish sandwich and cup of coffee on the way back to work
walking straight past the cops
seemingly wanting an answer from me inside the job
three doors down
from where
some dude just got shot 
up in the barbershop
a fight 
at the dive bar 
across the street
where we would plan rips
a burglary
 two doors behind
 the shop
barely legal
slinging pot
on the west side
things stopped going deeper a long time ago

Dirt rides at night

Blood on my loins
hummingbird silence
lord is a man biting dog guiding northern shores toward the effortlessly awakening green light


god is your name
after we make love
a dirty consecration of the purest
a natural synchronicity
when the two of us
in a universal outpouring
one another
when the only absolute is

Bio: Mike Zone is the Editor in Chief of Dumpster Fire Press, the author of Shedding Dark Places (almost), One Hell of a Muse, A Farewell to Big Ideas and Void Beneath the Skin, as well as coauthor of The Grind. frequent contributor to Alien Buddha Press and Mad Swirl. His work has been featured in: Horror Sleaze Trash, Better Than Starbucks, Piker Press, Punk Noir Magazine, Synchronized Chaos, Outlaw Poetry and Cult Culture magazine.

A Super Poetry Showcase (re-post) from Mike Zone including interview

A Super Poetry Showcase (re-post) from Mike Zone including interview


Mike Zone is the Editor in Chief of Dumpster Fire Press, the author of Shedding Dark Places (almost), One Hell of a Muse, A Farewell to Big Ideas and Void Beneath the Skin, as well as coauthor of The Grind. frequent contributor to Alien Buddha Press and Mad Swirl. His work has been featured in: Horror Sleaze Trash, Better Than Starbucks, Piker Press, Punk Noir Magazine, Synchronized Chaos, Outlaw Poetry and Cult Culture magazine.

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Mike: In my early teen years…of course being a pretentious kid and believing I had the world by the balls and was reading something new my influences were: Alan Moore, Jim Morrison, William Burroughs, Albert Camus and Irvine Welsh

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Mike: That’s difficult to say…I’m inspired by a plethora of societal factors but if we’re looking at specific writers whom I admire who actually push me to challenge myself…Kevin “Wolfman” Martin, Roz Washington and Robert Ragan, all of whom I worked with on the collaborative project THE GRIND…though who doesn’t want to name drop Hunter S. Thompson. Erich Fromm and Mark Fisher?

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing?
Have any travels away from home influence your work?

Mike: I grew up in Holland, Mi…the western part of Michigan on the lakeshore which is considered the Bible Belt of the North I believe…we’ll leave it at that as I live in Grand Rapids now…travels here and there and everywhere in-between allow to reconcile and instigate a mental restart in general when contemplating one’s existential quandaries in a new environment. It isn’t always doom and gloom when you realize most of it is a simulation and cerebral elasticity tends to take hold even if it’s a beautiful woman in a sundress whose arms you will never die in.

Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

Mike: This a tough nut to crack. I will always cherish THE GRIND but you have to keep going forward…Dumpster Fire Press being editor in chief seems to be a good candidate as there is always something being cranked out…my latest book SHEDDING DARK PLACE (ALMOST) published by Alien Buddha Press is a collection of poetry and prose written during the pandemic that I didn’t realize was meaningful to a lot of people but honestly whatever I’m working on at the moment.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

Mike: Oh yeah, when I was seven I won a Young Author’s Award but still wanted to be Darth Vader, when I realized it truly was a long time ago in a galaxy far away…I thought “Hey, I take away other people’s dreams too…”

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

Mike: I run a press and work full time in a pot lab…writing saves me…but I like to clean my house and take meditative walks. Eventually I’d like to dig live shows and travel again…Sicily, anyone?

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?


Whoa, Whoa…




Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others? Favorite art piece?


Favorite art piece is Van Gogh’s Wheatfield with Crows

Favorite line…well, just heard a Holocaust survivor being interviewed about Polish Jews digging their own graves and then being shot into them “…and the Earth was shaking for days” don’t take my new poetry collection title…

This particular line though is taken from my poem “The last days of us”

a jagged blues tune sung by dusty angels

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

Mike: I have to say my brother in writing Roz Washington…after my mother died he actually kept me going even while I took care of her before her passing. He would tag me social media posts to write poetry on the fly which wound up becoming a salvation of sorts.

Running scared

my heart is a chainsaw
chasing you in broad daylight
but I don’t care who else is playing this game
introduced you to the family
but you wouldn’t taste 
from a feast of fiends looking for friends
of apples and human meat
wrapped in the skin of a snake
like a siren you’re wailing
as in pain and danger
wanting the cops to come
calling doom
the kitchen table
why’d you have to break everything we could’ve done?

Arbitrary species

Fireflies of the apocalypse

A cerebral pattern of psychedelic geography both of time and place where the external universe and inner space go where existential dread fears to tread

junkie switchblade glowing

angel gleaming in the backseat

carjacks a Mercedes with a blowtorch

ecstasy itself riding shotgun

peels the jeweled peach as motorized wheels burn a rubber haze

blind singing serial killers hiding inside nuclear clouds

feels like we’ve been here before

voluntary madness

in the time of corona 

Something about a dream

Something about a dream…
Something about a gun…
Something about something…
Something about nothing…
eyes wide shut
rapid fire pinballs
the realization that when I awaken- you’ll actually be here
perhaps even real
eyes guided by touch
feeling an image
sculpted by longing
fingers, loves, woods
sitting in a movie theatre
we feed off emotions
factory made

Shakedown Street (deadhead poem)

Was it worth the trip?
arriving at Terrapin Station
searching for guidance 
among the boney faces
from the haven you started from
everyone thought Joe Shakedown was a good old man
coming on up from the street
headshop in bloom
peace, love, kindness
groovy bears
cosmic skeletons
all ghost dancing around
no one knew about the iron cross
the badge he wore
underneath the rest
when the people cried “Justice”
he cried “Treason”
when they demanded answers
he demanded punishment
love that black market
don’t you Joe Shakedown?
don’t dig those taxes 
but you’ll take our money
be it consumption
or state sanctioned
we see you, Joe
the tower
up north
you brag about
where you take strippers
and questionably underage girls
didn’t you plan to abduct someone once?
“Reeducate her. Ply her with alcohol, good drugs and gifts, she’ll change her mind about the dark meat..”
yeah, you sold the business
“Jerry Garcia was a junkie.”
there’s a big difference between smack and what you’re addicted to…
renovating a white building with a big black cross
love the silver medallion
that’s the virgin Mary, right?
trading in the tie-dye shirt
for a leather jacket 
coupled with a black and yellow polo
what a proud 50-year-old boy you are
hey, Joe
where you going with that gun of yours?

*strong language content warning*

we wish

fever dream
‘cause I don’t get laid in real life
virgo somehow in my room
fung-shuis the space
presents a plentitude of multicolored condoms
cast aside
we don’t care
we take each other inside
atomic level equilibrium
these are the unstable molecules of dreams
penetrating each other’s eyes
oceans and nocturnal skies crashing
intricate ink on her body moving
freeze frame
thumb on her lip
somehow we’re both begging for something
in silence
equally stained
equally cleansed
with a paradise kiss
virgo ascends
capricorn down low
goat and virgin entwined
I might rob a bank for her

mourning thoughts

cityscapes decay
the necropolis crumbles
sometimes home just becomes another mausoleum
what if we abandoned cemetery grounds?
what if we acknowledged stardust angels and demons…
just to touch the earth?
an outdoor amphitheater
instead of stones and ghastly statues
we had trees
and the winds blew
breezes splintered by branches
atmospheric impression of bodies
reminded of you
vibrations along the skin stirring memories
then there’s your voice
solar ray presence
a phantom hand presence on the shoulders
maybe heaven can be a place on Earth
where no one
has truly departed


Sharing this meal
Knives over forks
Forks over knives
bloody cracked feet from the long walk home
from freezer warehouse
to freezing streets
bus stops running past 11
another ten-hour day
decided to treat myself
frozen pizza
flaky croissant crust
garlic powder
day and night wasted
keep one light on
heat down low
four bites in
stomach shrank
wages of precarity
we share our meals alone
exhausted and worn

Hollywood Land

the winner is…
woke up dead
belly ache
throbbing shoulder pain
inflammation in a shrinking kidney
babies on fire in Ukraine
bullets in cats and dogs
doom scrolling
news- jilted algorithms
social media- impersonal friends
cinematic ceremony
burned-out star calls for ZELENSKYY
smelts his Oscar
Zelenskyy’s got a war and genocide to abate
Hollywood Land needs his strange-love appearance
a wealthy man slaps another wealthy man for insulting his wife
coked out tears
consoled by Macbeth
you can see why the prince isn’t so fresh anymore and why everyone hates Chris
social fabric receding
disparity increasing
the glamorous dead need constant resurrection
even amidst a world on fire crisis
Hollywood can go fuck a narcissist’s ass
giving blowjobs to fascists and neoliberals alike


Catfished by a crossdresser
using his sister’s pics
tells me “I’m just like my sister,
only you can cum in me.”
“Not really.”
I don’t come to him
distracted by a screen
peyote and vision quests
I start talking about shamanism 
the masculine and feminism combined in other cultures to undertake these transcendent journeys
he hands an odd-looking pipe
we smoke meth
rancid chemical taste
brain like cloud
ego struck spinning silent dark
talking about identity and existence
displacement of genuine evolution
I had just lost my child
presumably a son
touching hands in the ether
exiled from the realm of the carnal
toward the valley of desolation

Exiled Division and Hall

Leaving home
on the road to…
car crash
left for dead
back to the condo
it was her birthday
by her grace
gave me three hours
she was moving her ex back in
my parents lost their lost house
living in a one bedroom
exiled near division and hall
visitors only get 10 days
hot blood ruminations
and an overpass
can be surprisingly warm

Alone sometimes

Solitude is god
planting new seeds of contemplation
whipping the light from Horus’ infinite eye
finite in cosmological options
divine right equals god-driven boundaries
crossroads of deception
there’s a depressing jewish revolutionary dying roman style
next to a couple of zealots
political bandits
crescent moon side pocket q-ball
\John gets down
offers his head to Salome- the barmaid
Moses starts the chant
slapping Bacchus on the back
sound and fury
ignoring Shakespeare’s and Faulkner’s ghosts painting Macbeth 2: The Musical
we wear the crown of thorns
growing laurels from our wounds
“the bane 
is the way we live
the boon
is who we are”
so says the new god
legless on the sidewalk

Solomon Lawry
"and the Earth was shaking for days"

Solomon Lawry died today
Out by the apartment complex’s pond
Nothing on 
But a big black overcoat
Crushed brim brown faded black fedora
Stuck with goose feathers and leaves
Eyes reflecting morning sky
Promoting Professing Prophesizing 
“like some porn theater” he gasped
Over half a century
Recorded seven years before
Polish Jews in the dead of winter
Digging graves
For the soon to be dead
They had finished
They laid their shovels down
Order to strip
Machinegunned down
“like some filthy red-light joint”
He coughed
between brandy and a cigarette
“and the Earth was shaking for days.”


Yeah, that’s what it said
checking out dating profiles
co-managing the thrift shop
needed new material
to escape 
second job hell
was her best quality
according to her
she wouldn’t meet anyone in the park 
after dark
nor sell anyone her panties
used or otherwise
she was ready to “finally settle down”
3 kids from 3 different fathers
possibly pregnant
but she didn’t want yours
“looking for a father, a protector, provider. My be-everything and forever.”
“God first, family second and cocktails”
But no cock tales
“no dating unless it ends in marriage”
no relationship unless it ends in death was my reply
“been there done that with sex…”
“if you want sex…watch a porn.”
I was used to that
“NO 420, AT ALL!”
“I’m rough and country but cleanup real nice…need a professional but strong man who loves kids and most of all, LOVES TO LAUGH.”
Well, sure I continued talking to her
obviously, a couple wires, got crossed…
what’s with all the spelling and grammatical errors? I can’t figure out what you’re even saying
she wouldn’t settle for anything less than a 220k mortgage and the big wedding followed by the opulent honeymoon
with her $12 dollar job
you provide the rest
no sex
no offspring
her version of Heaven
“I’m upset because my screen is wet and I’m pressing all the wrong buttons because of what you’re saying!”
Are you going through a carwash with your windows rolled down?
we all had a giggle about that
never heard from her again
my screen name NOT A SHINING KNIGHT
tagline- Business Owner. Five figures. 
I don’t want to have sex with you.
Family guy.
People who love to laugh are psychopaths.

Judas hole

Dry drunk
broken bottles
can’t handle yourself
hide behind your cross
still addicted
try to feed off light
you’re the void
still empty inside
here’s 30 silver pieces
go on back
to the Judas hole
buy yourself a drink

New Amerikan Policy

Housing options limited
the homeless are growing
gun control?
rampant shootings?
Lack of healthcare?
We got plenty of insurance to buy.
defund the police?
Arm the homeless with AR-15s
over 400 rounds of ammunition
problems solved
guns over homes
bullets over mental health
ban weapons for the rest
increase the disparity
the poor as peacekeepers
deliverance unto the destitute
let them defend
what those you elected want
right in the middle
furthering right
happy now?

Maximum News Coverage REAL POLITIK

Cointel Pro
What he said was just too mean
Being progressive is unelectable and won’t get us far as we stand in the middle negotiating further into fascism
Objective banal glowing screen – I LOVE TIME AND NEWS WEEK MAGAZINE in the global era of diminishing print into digital onslaught dread
Sometimes when I’m real angry and want to enrage my narcissistic father I put my red lipstick on and say “I’m trans!”
He sucks down a can of beer
Iranian woman stabs online date 200 times for invasion of-   insert blank middle-eastern country
Young Patriot shoots transexual 228 times runs it over
“Now that’s what I call trans-liquid.”
Enjoyed by plenty of freemasons
“ I did it for the flag”
Open wide for dulled consciousness and silly shows
Atavistic accompaniment to serious issues
Have to keep that in the middle thing going so we don’t step on any toes as it’s too late to reconfigure society, something must be wrong with you to even question the war on drugs along with the lack of a universal healthcare system
War is okay but we prefer the mild violence of a non-violent response
Pre-packaged for you
A patriotic news network
Killing Baby Hitler
Killing Teen Barack
Killing god
There’s a new edition of the Bible coming out
The Real Patriot’s Bible
“Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, George Washington and Abraham Lincoln riding on white horses to save Jesus from certain to death by Lucifer so he can be crucified for all our sins”
Peroxide Barbie gleefully plugs needing to be waterboarded
Let’s elevate business
Warm apple pie and baseball
Be suspicious of hotdog homosexuality
Say history is wrong
Economics (currently) says so
Economics- a trust-based system
Faith based?
Money the new religion?
Real speech?
Words are treason and blasphemy
Speak cliché 
No words
No minds
Real patriotism
Say no to drugs now
We can’t have all this social spending
What about all the business owners?
Middle-class, Middle-class
Even though it’s just 20% of the populace
Abortion, mass shootings…you wonder if all the celebrities could get together and just talk everything out about it and leave the hate behind?
These protests are causing so much tension
Two celebrities kiss each other then hated each other
They’re just people and so are we
44 was good he didn’t change much
He was the hope and change needed
45 was angry and mean. He divided our country
Those progressives want too much they’re further dividing the nation
We need unity
Bring on 46
To enable another 45
Media matters
Let’s head back in time to 2014 to head back to the mythic 50’s as perceived in the 80’s
Don’t you wish you could be a celebrity and suffer so little yet immensely in your soul
They have it harder than you
Don’t make waves
Just stay in the middle
See the positive in all this negativity
Just think positive
None of this is working
Empire falling
Economics – econocide
Ban assault weapons for everyone- even cops
Issue each homeless person an AR-15
400 rounds of ammunition
Let them patrol wherever, whenever
Citizen protectors
No homes
No rest needed
Only the elite can watch
And you like it
Amerika the beautiful

Dead star politiks (it's over)

It’s over…really
What does it mean?
in the end you all fell for the vicious circus and psychopathic circles
understanding power to escape from “freedom”
narco- for the narcotics laws
eroding constitutional rights
implanting soft-machine fascism
narco- for narcissism
there’s a dark triad of personalities
governing nations and individual bodies
world on fire
narcissists, sociopaths, psychopaths
economics is a religion
we’re all cast in a grand performance
don’t act out
bad avatar
will put you in line
clutching coins
cast by the crown
celebratory mass
for the wicked who slew
enshrining reptile brain behavior
how many throats does it take to slit through the bloody sands of time to get your family to where they are today?
Paleolithic minds
Medieval institutions
god-like technology

A July 2022 Poetry Showcase by Mike Zone

A July 2022 Poetry Showcase by Mike Zone

Icarus Wings

Stumbling around with waxwork wings
ground flights amidst underground turmoil
I looked to the sky and saw the sun and it was you
solar rays far reaching
tigress burning bright
I took flight
knowing all too well
how worth it, it would be
to burn bright
to burn away at your touch
wings melted
to touch the Earth
a crash wrapped in ecstasy

"my god"

that phrase- MY GOD
MY GOD- humble thyself before thee
I need your assistance
Your restoration
Taken aback
Give me understanding
MY GOD- I ask thee, let me plead with thee
A self-serving prayer
I cannot comprehend my misery
Divine nor man-made
MY GOD- whom I own
Do not mock what is mine
Do not question nor conflate this narrative
My god and I are one
Reflective of one another
Made in his image
We are the divine face
Of the divine face
Every knee shall bend
Head will bow
Tongue shall break
it’s just all too incomprehensible

the language of stars

older than words
cosmic orbs elongated through a lunar light shining liquid
constellations- maps of voluntary imaginary worlds as real the as mirror held up to reality in a picture or video-drone captivity 
take an atomic breath
inhale depleted ozone
remember the void
conjuring the map from whence we came upon the origin of this pale blue dot
I’ll always remember the ghosts of electromagnetic fields
how dust is really ash and that the land may waste as psychopathic empires collapse
pockets of savagery will survive in urban wilderness
compassion and insight begin anew
a much finer world
but for now
I’ll caress nocturnal puddles washing more celestial bodies into an infinite sea


Remembering the fire
what we were then
what we are now
how the flame quickly licked my back
there’s this small scar I got
we never got to talk about
but that’s okay
being mostly forgotten
seldom echoes keep our fury caged
you’re staring at a wall of concrete for about forty-five years
I’m just sitting here, sipping tea, writing


Trigger and implode
Society is imploding
I love it
trigger and implode
keep voting centrist
trigger and implode
keep voting conservative
trigger and implode
give me more implosion
trigger and implode
bring on the reset
trigger and implode
trigger and implode
narco-fascism= narc-rot
love it or leave it
trigger and implode

Bio: Mike Zone is the Editor in Chief of Dumpster Fire Press, the author of  Shedding Dark Places (almost), One Hell of a Muse, A Farewell to Big Ideas and Void Beneath the Skin, as well as coauthor of The Grind.  frequent contributor to Alien Buddha Press and Mad Swirl. His work has been featured in: Horror Sleaze Trash, Better Than Starbucks, Piker Press, Punk Noir Magazine, Synchronized Chaos, Outlaw Poetry and Cult Culture magazine.