Visual Poetry by Maggs Vibo : the Year of the Ox

Wolfpack Contributor Bio: Maggs Vibo

Maggs Vibo (she/her) experiments with glitch films and folklore imagery in the fringes of the art
world. In 2020, her cinepoems debuted with Army at the Arts at the Virtual Fringe Festival and
her visual art showed at the Poem Atlas exhibition ‘Escapisms.’ Her latest poetry is available in
the anthology Fevers of the Mind Press Presents the Poets of 2020 (January 2021). She has
forthcoming and published war poetry in Afterwords (Spring, 2021), ‘My teeth don’t chew on
shrapnel’: an anthology of poetry by military veterans (Oxford Brookes University, 2020), and
O-Dark-Thirty, 5.3 Anthology (Spring, 2017), 4.2 (Winter, 2016); and 4.3 (Spring, 2016). She
tweets @maggsvibo and her website is poemythology.com.

Poetry by Dave O’Leary : There it Is

16.
His parents
divorce.
He can’t understand
where the love went,
how it could
end and leave
nothing but a hardened
rectangle of vitriol
and a slew of insults
that he tries sometimes to bury
in the backyard
and sometimes
in intoxicants.


22.
His first real love
ends without insults
after three years
and they part
like long lost
friends
who won’t recognize
each other when they bump
into each other around town
after months of not bumping
into each other in their apartment.
He looks for it
in photos though,
and he sees it in one
from that time at the zoo
when they bumped into a friend
from work and the secret
of their new love
became known.


34.
He says, “I do.”
His second love
says it too
and after the honeymoon
they set their pictures
about their apartment and sit on the couch
with beers
and binged shows
and foot massages
and silent books
and they settle in,
sink in,
into each other,
each other’s lives,
and he marvels
at their secret to happiness.


43.
His own
divorce.
The sunken couch
that had so needed
replacing
never was and he drops
it off
at the dump
when they both move
out to different
parts of town
and then she
to a whole other town
and in the evenings
he thinks
about how she’d said often in person
these last few years
and through her lawyer
at the end
that it was never
really there,
not really. But he doesn’t
believe her. He just doesn’t
know, still doesn’t
know, where it went,
and she took all the pictures
when
she
left.


56.
Aging
and still single but in a new town
in a new state
by the sea.
The last woman he asked
out turned him down.
She told him he
was sweet but she
wasn’t looking,
wasn’t interested
in that sort of thing,
not in the now
anyway but thanks
for the drink.
And that was fine.
And he went home
to sit on his new couch
with an intoxicant or two
knowing he’d be back out
tomorrow
because it’s always,
at least so he thinks,
he hopes,
just around
the corner
and down
by the swooshing sound of the sea.
Maybe that’s it
just over there.

Dave O’Leary is a writer and musician in Seattle. He’s had two novels
published and has published work in, among others, Slate.com,
Versification, and Reflex Fiction. His collection of poetry and prose–I
Hear Your Music Playing Night and Day–will be published in May 2021 by
Cajun Mutt Press
.

Twitter: @dolearyauthor

Instagram: @d_o_leary

featured photo by Fadi Xd on Unsplash.com

2 poems by Shiksha Dheda : Old Things & If I Ever

Old things


I tried new things
but the carcass of the old things
took up too
much space

If I ever


If I ever wonder within the realms of fantasy, 
the sombreness of your voice 
will beckon me back to reality.
If I ever get lost in the sheets of disillusionment,
the gentleness of your touch
will waken sleeping hope.
If I ever roam around helplessly in the endless maze
of life’s predicaments, the exuberance
of your smile will brighten the dark road;
guiding me back home.
But if I ever forget you:
-who-
-what-
-where-
you are;
let the unsung hymn that you kindle in
the depths of your bosom
sing loudly to my silence.
For I
-being blinded by reality-
-spurned by fantasy-
will grope onto each 
rhythm-less and clumsy note and 
find my way back.
To you.

Bio: Shiksha Dheda uses poetry(mostly) to express her OCD and depression roller-coaster ventures. Sometimes, she dabbles in photography, painting, and baking lopsided layered cakes. 
Her work has been featured (on/forthcoming) in Off Menu Press, The Daily Drunk, The Kalahari Review, Brave Voices, Anti-heroin Chic, Versification, and elsewhere. Twitter: @ShikshaWrites

Pandemic poetry by Liam Flanagan : Say the Word & Vicious Circle


Stress
My minds in a mess
Everything is upside down and back to front
Trump
Off you go to the Florida keys
Keep hitting those wayward drives off the tees!
Complications with the vaccine
Teens
Worried about their exams
Sick of attending the classroom with their video cams
United top of the league!
A season with no fans providing some intrigue
A time in history parallel with no other
Mothers
Home schooling the kids whilst trying to avoid blowing their lids
Everybody hoping and praying this will be all over
Laughter and smiles are as rare as a four leaved clover!

Vicious Circle
Round and round we go
Lock us up lock us down
Drowning in a sea of uncertainty and unrelenting tides
Washing away hope and optimism every single day
Exhausted
By the incessant rise and fall of the numbers
A feeling there is no tomorrow
Every day is the same
Blame
Roll out the vaccine as a matter of urgency
Otherwise the whole country is going to go insane
We will never forget living in these horrendous times
And the long term effect it is having on all our minds

Liam Flanagan is a 47 year old living in Galway, Ireland. Degree in English and Philosophy and a Teaching Diploma. Ten years experience in the IT industry. Likes Sport, Film and Music.

the Fevers of the Mind General Interview with Ken Tomaro

1) Please describe your latest book, what about your book will intrigue the readers the most, and what is the theme, mood? Or If you have a blog or project please describe the concept of your project, blogplatform.

Ken: I actually have 2 books ready to be published but I’m trying to figure out the marketing aspect. I have 3 books on Amazon but my marketing skills are lacking so they are just out in Amazon limbo.. Right now I’m collaborating with an illustrator to do a mini magazine that has illustrations to my poetry. Kind of in the vain of Harvey Pekar and his American Splendor series. I don’t do blogs or websites, which I suppose I should, but then that cuts into the creative process always having to be on some social media plarform.

2) What frame of mind and ideas lead to you writing your current book?

Ken: Everything I write comes from living with depression.

3) How old were you when you first have become serious about your writing, do you feel your work is always adapting?

I honestly never even gave thought to writing of any kind. I started writing poetry about 5 years ago, so about 45 years old. Yes, I would say after 5 books my writing has only gotten better.

4) What authors, poets, musicians have helped shape your work, or who do you find yourself being drawn to the most?

Ken: Hands down, Charles Bukowski. I absolutely love that he can tell a story in such a simplistic manner. “I smoked a cigarette.” Enough said.

5) What other activities do you enjoy doing creatively, or recreationally outside of being a writer, and do you find any of these outside writing activities merge into your mind and often become parts of a poem?

Ken: Before I wrote poetry I was/still am an artist. I worked a lot with acrylics and abstract paintings. I also bake Italian cookies. All three of those things play well together and eventually end up as poetry for me.

6) What is your favorite or preferred style of writing?

Ken: Poetry by far. Because of the depression my brain works in short bursts as far as the writing goes.  Sometimes I don’t feel you need an entire chapter or novel to tell a story. I’ve found often it can be done in a paragraph or less

7) Are there any other people/environments/hometowns/vacations that has helped influence your writing?

Ken: Everything influences my writing…from a childhood memory to standing on the street smoking a cigarette and just watching everything around me.

8) What is the most rewarding part of the writing process, and in turn the most frustrating part of the writing process?

Ken: Outside of the fact that I have been in several magazines and people seem to like my writing I found it was a good therapy to clear my head. I can lose myself in the writing and forget about the hundred daily shitstorms happening in the world. The frustrating part I guess is marketing myself or getting my work seen. I’m pretty quiet and reserved and don’t really know how to say, “Hey world, read my work…it’s good stuff!”

9) How has the current times affected your work?  

Ken: I don’t really write about the pandemic. It’s hard to explain the timeframe most of my work takes place. Even though much of it takes place in current times, it also doesn’t if that makes sense.

10) Please give us any links, social media info, upcoming events, etc for your work.

Facebook: Ken Tomaro Twitter: @anxietyMilkshake

That’s about it…I’m kind of old fashioned.

Thanks

Poetry by Ken Tomaro : Good to Know from FOTM Press Presents the Poets of 2020

Ken Tomaro is an artist and writer living in Cleveland, Ohio whose work has been published in several literary journals. He has also published three collections of poetry available on Amazon. His writing reflects an open, honest view of everyday mundane life living with depression.