Thursday, October 20, 2011


Paul Fericano, Annie Menebroker, B.L. Kennedy, 
and Genelle Chaconas
at last night's final Red Night Poetry reading 
at Beatnik Studios in Sacramento
—Photo by Michelle Kunert
(For more photos of last night's reading, go to
Medusa's Kitchen's Facebook page)

—charles mariano, sacramento

gathered everything
all my painful,
dirty secrets

of traumatizing misery,
embarrassing failures

bad writings,
that go way back

locked it all
in a lead-lined box,

so Superman
and his damn x-ray vision,

can’t find it


Yard mist turns to Brontë
sonnets are not as thick
hegiras will scout out forward as far as
orgone booths will permit,
mastadoons shirk their collective duties
jinxing fireballs falling to earth
comet cleansers wallow in pits
tallow is never allowed to penetrate
impetigo left behind after
leiderhosen and legatos balance each other out
vicunas wait on the rancho
marabous abandoned in the annual
flight to Kilamanjaro and Mauritius
winnowing out the weak
Uruguian twinberry transplants
nimble enough to avoid shibboleths
poised to anchor the world's whimsical
girdle to an escarpment
diluted and dilated by saturnalic
argot swaying to a New Orleans beat
xenobiotic to a Strauss waltz
bilious to a Yorkshire moor
zoned to indulge the cambering fog,
egalitarian in its loutish
quietus of a Heathcliff and his forever

Kathy he helped to quash

under a dry bloodied moon.

—Michael Cluff, Highland, CA


Valerie has been engaged
for five years to dear old Chester,
she did hook up with once
with Wally
at a desert rave,
she a girl child by him
it did not bother Chester

They may get married or May
or March or September.

It may depend on the weather.

—Michael Cluff


—Michael Cluff

I am willing
with fervor
to kiss her ardently
even though
smoke is on her breath
clothes and

Some things are
as addicting as another.


—Kathy Kieth, Pollock Pines

Midnight on calm water: quiet creaking of
Seahorse II as she marks time under

a full moon: warm night—but still
a mistake to leave the hatches open, risk

clear passage for pirates and other trouble-
makers: foolhardy invitation for ghosts

to climb aboard, steal over the stanchions,
crawl into my cabin—not those prissy

white ghosts of Halloween, tiptoeing over
from the five-and-dime, but dark monsters

dripping blood of my victims: hunks of flesh
hanging from crooked teeth: massive boots

on hardwood as the ghosts clomp and palaver:
take over the helm: drown out the gentle

creaking of my cradle on the sea…


—Kathy Kieth

Silvermoon waterfall
shimmers along the edges
of silhouetted evergreens.

Nightbirds wait silently
for the leaf-rustle of
busy tiny prey.

Bandit-eyed raccoons
knock over the birdfeeder—

Young man in love
slips secretly back into
his parents’ dark home…


Connie Post writes: I am happy to announce that my poem, “Tree Sitters in Berkeley”, was in the top three of the 2011 Jack Kerouac Poetry Contest [which was held in conjunction with the Jazz and Beat Festival in Davis this weekend]. I’ll be reading the poem sometime between 8-10pm on Friday, Oct. 21 in Davis at the John Natsoulas Gallery. If you get a chance, please “come on down” to 521 1st St. in Davis. Also reading at 7pm at the gallery is Neeli Cherkovski; see   For a complete schedule, go to


Today's LittleNip: 

—Janet L. Pantoja, Woodinville, WA

trees rust: cedars shed
burnt orange, maple leaves flutter
form amber carpet



Photo by Janet L. Pantoja