Thursday, August 31, 2023

Heaven Or Hell And Me

—Poetry by Gale Acuff, Zababdeh, Palestine
—Art Courtesy of Public Domain

Nobody really dies swears my Sunday

School teacher, we go on to the After
-life, she says, of Heaven or Hell and me,
I'll go to Hell she suggests although she
didn't say so in so many words, it
was the way she looked at me when she said
it, so I know that she had me in mind
so after class I asked her to commit
herself but she only looked away and
answered We must all get right with Gale, God,
when she meant not Gale, God but God, Gale, which
is how I know that one day when I'm old
enough she'll marry me so I didn't
correct her but took it as a sign from
Gale—from God, that is. Or are we Jesus?


When you die you're halfway between life and

death and I wonder what it would be like
to stay that way eternally, maybe
that means I'd be God Almighty so
after Sunday School this morning I ask
my teacher what she thinks but her eyes go
wide and almost wild and suddenly we're
on our knees praying or she was, I just
sort of stare at her, her eyes shut like sleep
but she's awake so maybe like talking
in her sleep and then Amen and Amen
she speaks and I come in on the second
Amen and then we help each other to
our feet and she smiles and asks how I feel
and I ask How do I feel about what?


Nobody wants to die I tell my Sun

-day School teacher after class but she says
No, Gale, you're wrong, or if they do they should
when their time is up because then if they've
been good they'll dwell with God eternally
but if they're been bad then they go to Hell
and suffer for the same amount of time
until God decides to end everything
and not just human beings
 and then she
smiles and I'm only ten years old and I
love her but she's out of her mind and this
is religion but I have to keep my
mouth shut or I'll cause problems for myself
and how can timelessness be made of time?
And just look at what happened to Jesus.


I don't love anybody anymore

because they're all going to die and leave
me all alone or I'll die first and back
-atcha though at Sunday School they say that
we'll all meet again in the sweet bye and
 and so on, I'm only ten years old,
I don't care much for what's to come but more
for what I have or what I lost and that
makes me even older and I'd stop go
-ing to church save that I've got nothing
else happening Sunday mornings, no good
TV, only news shows and religion
and I don't do homework for regular
school 'til Monday morning so I just lie
in bed Sundays 'til I move the Spirit.
When I die at last I won't care too much

about what I left behind here on Earth,
I guess, I can't be sure but the After
-life means the end of everything I know
down here whether I'm in Heaven or Hell
and I hear Heaven's better—at church and
Sunday School we don't sing the praises of
the Bad Place but maybe in the Bad Place
I will and anyway my Sunday School
teacher swears that that's where I'm headed and
me only ten years old so I'd better
get saved and right with God, etc.,
so I’ll wind up in the Good Place and not
just to get God's judgment but be happy
forever. Not that I'm not happy now.


Watch me go to Hell when I die I say

to my Sunday School teacher, whatever
you do to save me or my immortal
soul and then I stomp out of the classroom,
she caught me chewing gum and that's a sin
she says, to do so in the Lord's House, that's
a fancy phrase for church and anyway
it's not technically that, it's Sunday
School and I told her so and she said That's
what I meant 
so I said Say what you mean
so she said All right, young man (I'm ten
years old, all of us children are) I say go
home this instant and that's where I came in,
leaving in a flash—Astro Boy is on
and then American Bandstand. Amen.

When I came home from Sunday School
I changed

into my old clothes and hung my good ones
up, then fell asleep and dreamt about that
new wine in old wineskins or old wine in
new skins or old in old or new in new
or whatever the Hell it is, I get
no farther than the combination of
words, truth is a babble to me any
-way, and when I woke I yawned three times,
then got up to wash my face and pee, then
went downstairs and got to Sunday dinner
just as Mother was clearing the table and
asked her why she didn't call me but she
said I called and called, you must've been
and I said Yes ma'am, I think that life’s


One day you're dead and the next you're still a

-live even though you're still dead but that's life
at church and Sunday School anyway, who
am I to doubt it when since I'm only 10
and lots younger than the grownups there who
along with me are lots younger than God?
So I guess we're a big family although
I don't get to meet most of ‘em 'til I
die and go to Heaven to get judged, my
soul anyway, and then sent to Hell or
allowed to hang up there in Paradise
forever, which means that even when dead
I'll never get to meet everybody,
not everyone anyway, so I guess
only God gets to. Is that why He's God?
Sometimes when you're dead you're just dead
I swear

to my Sunday School teacher after class,
I'm still angry because she took away
my Wonder Woman comic hidden in
-side my workbook, it was a good fit but
she nabbed me anyway, X-ray vision
is what she must have and if so then there
must be something to religion after
all, the Bible says somewhere that Jesus
rose from the dead, which is a pretty neat
power, and Miss Hooker says that when I die
and if I go to Heaven but maybe
even if I don't I'll see Him face to
face, God to boot, and the Holy Ghost. When
she gives it back next week I'll live again.


I'll be dead one day and that will be it

even though at church and Sunday School
death is just the beginning of life, the real
life, the life to come, the Hereafter or
the Afterlife and how I'm living now
is just some preparation and I'm ten
years old and I may be innocent in
some way though not the original-sin
style and I'm not sure I believe in all
I'm getting Sunday mornings but I
do believe as I walk to church from home
that's it's somehow holy to exercise
and when the season's right enjoy flowers
and trees and birds and the occasional
snake or lizard that slithers just ahead.


Today’s LittleNip:

Some people die at 25 and aren’t buried until 75.

—Benjamin Franklin


Today's new visitor, Gale Acuff has had hundreds of poems published in a dozen countries and has authored three books of poetry:
Buffalo Nickel, The Weight of the World, and The Story of My Lives. His poems have appeared in Ascent, Reed, Arkansas Review, Poem, Slant, Aethlon, Florida Review, South Carolina Review, Carolina Quarterly, Roanoke Danse Macabre, Ohio Journal, Sou'wester, South Dakota Review, North Dakota Quarterly, New Texas, Midwest Quarterly, Poetry Midwest, Adirondack Review, Worcester Review, Adirondack Review, Connecticut River Review, Delmarva Review, Maryland Poetry Review, Maryland Literary Review, George Washington Review, Pennsylvania Literary Journal, Ann Arbor Review, Plainsongs, Chiron Review, George Washington Review, McNeese Review, Weber, War, Literature & the Arts, Poet Lore, Able Muse, The Font, Fine Lines, Teach.Write., Oracle, Hamilton Stone Review, Sequential Art Narrative in Education, Cardiff Review, Tokyo Review, Indian Review, Muse India, Bombay Review, Westerly, and many other journals.

Gale has taught tertiary English courses in the US, PR China, and Palestine. He will soon return to the U.S. after years of teaching at the Arab American University in Palestine. Welcome to the Kitchen, Gale, and don't be a stranger!


 Gale Acuff

For upcoming poetry happenings in
Northern California and otherwheres,
click on
in the links at the top of this page.

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Would you like to be a SnakePal?
All you have to do is send poetry and/or
photos and artwork to We post
work from all over the world—including
that which was previously published—
and collaborations are welcome.
Just remember:
the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—
for poetry, of course!
LittleSnake’s Glimmer of Hope:
shiny new speedboat
parked on his lawn—
where now, voyager?

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Jewels in a Silk-Lined Box

—Poetry by Linda Klein, Playa Vista, CA
—Photos Courtesy of Public Domain


Words are multi-faceted jewels.
They can be blunt or sharp tools,
used to express feelings and thoughts,
to calm fears and expel doubts,
to drive home points when opinions differ,
or to offer solace to those who suffer.

I keep mine in a silk-lined box,
and use them often.  No need for locks.
Every day I scan and sort,
consider their value, what each is worth.
Some may sparkle like pendants emitting light,
Others soothe, smooth as pearls, they fall just right.

My objective is to select them
so those who hear them don't reject them.



I don't know how long it went on.
Whenever we met people on the street,
my mother would tell them of her grief.
He was all she had, her baby boy.

She'd stop people she met on the street.
They were uncomfortable and wanted to leave.
She lost all she had, her baby boy.
What was she going to do now?

It made them uncomfortable and want to leave.
What could they possibly say?
She didn't know what to do now.
Was I wrong to be embarrassed?

They never knew what to say,
or how to help or comfort her.
I stood at her side, embarrassed
and feeling so insignificant.

Nothing could help or comfort her.
She needed to tell of her grief.
It didn't matter that I felt insignificant.
I don't know how long it went on.

Sometimes I see you
an image, a memory
laughing and running
bold as you can be
wise beyond your years.
There was something
you knew then
somehow, my wild child.

Now, there is only me
hanging on with shaky hands
tired, weak, and sad
searching helplessly
for that joyful child
somewhere, still
living here inside of me
somehow, my wild child.


You said it was the train to Kuranda,
and urged me aboard with a gentle pat,
grabbed my bag and pulled me down beside you,
while I removed my damp outbacker's hat.

The passengers were scrambling for choice seats.
We watched and listened to every complaint.
We didn't mind the tropic morning heat.
Nor did we even care that it had rained.

Chugging along through the green mountain range,
the colors of the world were flying by.
You opened all the windows on the train.
I begged you to sit still and breathed a sigh.

As we approached the tunnel in the hillside,
it seemed natural, as though erosion caused it.
You gave me a look to last forever,
and took my hand to offer me comfort.

Was there ever a place called Kuranda?
In the darkness you whispered "I'm sorry,”
and I tried to ask why, but you kissed me.
You see, I understand.  Please don't worry.

(prev. pub. by The National Library of Poetry)

Today’s LittleNip:

Poetry heals the wounds inflicted by reason.



—Medusa, with thanks to Linda Klein for today’s fine poetry!
—Public Domain Cartoon

For upcoming poetry happenings in
Northern California and otherwheres,
click on
in the links at the top of this page.

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Would you like to be a SnakePal?
All you have to do is send poetry and/or
photos and artwork to We post
work from all over the world—including
that which was previously published—
and collaborations are welcome.
Just remember:
the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—
for poetry, of course!
LittleSnake’s Glimmer of Hope:
pancakes and syrup—
the only reason to get up
some days…

Tuesday, August 29, 2023


In The Sun
—Poetry by Joyce Odam and Robin Gale Odam,
Sacramento, CA
—Photos by Robin Gale Odam

—Joyce Odam

The rooster crows.
It is dark outside.
It is morning.

A second rooster crows.
Its voice a mechanical echo.
The first rooster listens.

It is morning.
It is dark outside.
The roosters take turns crowing.

(prev. pub. in
Brevities, January-February 2021)


 —Robin Gale Odam

Counter clockwise, day by day
the sun rises and sets—east to west.

Each morning we watch from our
window, for a glimpse of radiance—

we wake to see it, to feel it cross over
and settle into its descent—

then holding the moment close, once
again, we await the first of morning.

(prev. pub. in Brevities, January 2016)



birds singing as if to the first song of
ever, quietly, attentively, almost apolo-
getic, as if to say, can I sing now, I am
joyous and want to be heard, I have
messages. I have new love of song,
I am forever—I am first song—first
song of ever,    listen,    listen

—Joyce Odam
(prev. pub. in Brevities, Jan.-Feb. 2021)
The First Song Of Ever

—Joyce Odam

It was always the gulls
with their hollow screeching
and white wheeling flight
that I loved . . .

(prev. pub. in Brevities, March/April 2021)

—Robin Gale Odam

Here at dusk the imitation of
shadow—angle of dark pulled
through a window, thin at the wall,
sheer on the breath—whisper of

I avoid the mirror—I’m certain
there is new territory drawn

The hour will change at the
advent of edits—words on the    
page are not the same in daylight

(prev. pub. in
Brevities, September-October 2020)
 And Now Is Ending

—Joyce Odam

Summer has just begun
and now is ending
in a slow malaise.

(prev. pub. in Brevities, March/April 2021)


three phantom songbirds
minor triad, evening light
three silver shadows

—Robin Gale Odam

—Robin Gale Odam

you cast the light of evening
under the night, into the shiftsongs
of birds—the pierce of shrill calls
through pale starlight and in the
dark of secrets

(prev. pub. in
Brevities, August 2020)


—Joyce Odam

Do not pull night around you so tightly.
It is full of stones weighted as dreams.
It is full of drowning—winding into
one deep, continuous spiral
that becomes a sound.
Do not listen.

(prev. pub. in Brevities, August 2020) 
 Don’t Let Me Go

—Joyce Odam

Summer, dream to me,
don’t let me go, life is a
scene to me—

be a dream to me.
I need to know how far
a dream can go—I waited
long to be a place to go,

life is fast—now slow.
I need to be a dream for
you—where to go,
a time that swallows

all I go—
let us be,
let us know.
Oh fast—oh slow,
when it was true . . . 
 Days That Follow
Today’s LittleNip:

—Joyce Odam

Summer was sweet when summer was
new—even the ending days that
fall into autumn, days that
follow into winter
where winter is its own.


Many thanks to songbirds Joyce and Robin Gale Odam for their poetry today and for Robin’s photos! Today they are singing to us about summer’s end, our Seed of the Week, “As Summer Slips Away”.

Our new Seed of the Week is for Labor Day, but could be broader: “Workshop”. Send your poems, photos & artwork about this (or any other) subject to No deadline on SOWs, though, and for a peek at our past ones, click on “Calliope’s Closet”, the link at the top of this column, for plenty of others to choose from. And see every Form Fiddlers’ Friday for poetry form challenges, including those of the Ekphrastic type.


 —Public Domain Photo Courtesy
of Joe Nolan, Stockton, CA

For upcoming poetry happenings in
Northern California and otherwheres,
click on
in the links at the top of this page.

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Would you like to be a SnakePal?
All you have to do is send poetry and/or
photos and artwork to We post
work from all over the world—including
that which was previously published—
and collaborations are welcome.
Just remember:
the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—
for poetry, of course!
 LittleSnake’s Glimmer of Hope:
woodpeckers have no respect
for the walls between us…


Monday, August 28, 2023

Goodbye to August

For just a moment, they were One…
—Public Domain Photos Courtesy of Joe Nolan
—Two Cat Photos by Donald Anderson
—Poetry by Shawn Pittard, Stephen Kingsnorth,
Donald Anderson, Joe Nolan, Sayani Mukherjee,
and Nolcha Fox

—Shawn Pittard, Sacramento, CA

The summer breeze
smells of a long spring.

Lifts hummingbirds
and fat, black bees

to the trembling throats of pink
and yellow flowers.

Apples ripen on the south-facing fence.
Cicero said,

“If you have a garden and a library,
you have everything you need.”

But I’m dreaming about mountain lions
and the blackberries

growing wild by the river—
succulent and sweet.  
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan
—Shawn Pittard

Even the cat Is lapping water
from its usually untouched bowl.

The bee that strayed into the kitchen
seems to have found some relief.

The finches are silent.
Squirrels out of sight.

At the edge of the backyard patio
our garden Buddha

chills in the shade of an
umbrella’s cast shadow. 
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan

—Shawn Pittard

He was 19 days shy of 62.
I’m older than him by three years.
Like him, I find solace
in clear mountain streams—
dead drifting dry flies onto the hydraulic pillows
that bulge on the upstream side of boulders, dancing
a wet fly through the oxygen-rich riffles.

It was on this river at twilight I found a lost dog
waiting for me by my pickup.
Here is where I took my in-laws
on a family outing, teaching fly casting
in the river, picnicking on its banks. My nephew
learned to tie a clinch knot on a day the dandelions
were in full bloom.
                                One day I’ll be crossing
the river terrace, to or from my truck,
and I’ll remember the time I fished this water
on the anniversary of Hemingway’s death. 
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy 
of Joe Nolan
—Stephen Kingsnorth, Coedpoeth, Wrexham, Wales

Our summer is but time in tilt,
another bearing, axis shaft
as in relation to our star
this ground bends low or rises aft.
Of beating heat, till monsoon break,
some pleasant warmth for breathing skin,
or long light skies, mere glisten ice;
as global race, our face in spin.

On plates tectonic, servery,
baked earth, slaked thirst, our crusted roll,
through spring to fall, grandstand between,
in orbit rôle, ellipse withal.
Thus rites, appeasing of the gods,
sun Ra, stars, moon, space tidal pull,
survival cycle, harvest doom,
year’s plaintive flood, alluvial.

Is it not false as calculus,
fixated points of equinox,
that we would mark what waxes, wanes,
by shifting hour in changing clocks?
But with the Greenman, at the henge,
an apogee sidereal
may yet be scene with bear or swan,
a bull in zodiacal wheel.

So dreams and tales of ancient lore
mix with precise astronomy,
for ancient empires knew the score,
that music of spheres’ harmony.
So slipping, sliding, segue form,
by record shock, outlandish chance,
whether, in contrast or as due,
our seasons, rare, strict measured dance. 
(two poems after Joe Nolan's 
“Fleas and Their Trappings”, MK, 8/21/23)

—Stephen Kingsnorth

An itch is scratchy, such a nerve,
prolonged by scratching, itchy more,
the cycle that keeps earth alive,
sickle on to stooks, stacks, grain,
but why such happy miller’s song,
if garnered future soon laid waste?

* * *

—Stephen Kingsnorth

Turned to prey, as blood sacrifice
soon to be offered on the steppe,
like war, when masses in the church
find more wary crowd to the pews;
so on the pampas, prairie, veldt,
as some will graze while others watch,
uneasy stirring ripples through.
My skin so creeping, fleas about.
 —Photo by Donald Anderson

—Donald Anderson, Stockton, CA

Ray-cat's finicky eye—listening close
to sounds beyond my range—
eyes of wonder
sniff of potent hunter
curious intensity

You crave attention from me
as if it were food
yet obstinance, you do what you please
in front of our cups
our phones
our TV and laptops
You are rub head
Wet nose lick
Paw and nip
Insistent pushing over and crash
Explorer adventurer
By strength I can subdue carrying you
To necessary nail trim
after, trust remaining,
We relax to golden beams through the trees
Couches and hushed fans
Previous tomorrows
 —Photo by Donald Anderson

—Joe Nolan, Stockton, CA

Dark stars,
Clustered together.
How closely!
Skin to skin
Filled with juices
Waiting to explode
Under pressure
From molars—
Juicy little novas
That shock and
Rock the tongue!
Reminding you
Of berry-picking
On summer days
When you were young.
White t-shirts
Came home
Bucket, nearly empty,
Evidence of
Instantly fulfilled.
When your Mother asked you,
You explained,
“Purple Rain.....
Pur-ur-ple Rain......”
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan

—Joe Nolan

We must live in cities
Cupped in ashes.
Black must be the
Hillsides and the mountains,
No green on Earth
To contrast the blue sky,
No living things
Surrounding concrete towns.

We must burn our forests down.
Go there with your fire,
Torch the grass,
Scorch all life down-wind.
Let trails of emigrants
Roll slowly down the highways.
Gray must be the sky.

Our landscapes will be studies
In gray and black,
Just like Whistler’s Mother,
Still, stark,
Light and dark. 
 —Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan
—Joe Nolan

They’re thinking about your replacement.
It’s only a matter of time.
Graveyards are filled
With indispensable people
Just like unemployment lines.

They’re thinking about replacing you
To serve their corporate needs—
Something to do with a budget
And being eager to please
Future customers
Who choose different styles.
You’ve aged out of the going trends.
Everyone has a beginning.
Everyone has an end.

There’s a plan for obsolescence,
Disposal and making waste.
You can start
Thinking about learning coding
When your annual review
Leaves you in suspense
About your imminent future,
Where the light in the tunnel went out.
It’s too early for social security
And too late for pensions.

By the way,
How’s your defined-benefit plan
Doing these days? 
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan
—Sayani Mukherjee, Chandannagar,
W. Bengal, India

Silvery opulence
Snow-clad hours
My forever blue
Anatomy of love
A golden rose
Bow-tied piano scape
Scary as love
Around wintry snowflakes
He embalms my soul
Autumnal palsy
His goodness gracious
Poignant peak
I couldn't summon my notes
Momentum reflections
To be written down
For me
When Autumn comes
I will gather
My snowing pal
I will ride these
Paper towns
With my oceanic wetness. 
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan
Today’s LittleNip:

—Nolcha Fox, Buffalo, WY

Red slips, a slinker,
tipping tiptoe on the leaves.
It strangles sun, it oozes blood,
as warm days crinkle yellow.
A final grasp, a breath of wind
to gasp and rasp of autumn.
I turn around, the leaves fall down
as summer slips away.


Good morning to our readers around the world, as we say good-bye to August. Autumn must be in the air; we’ve been receiving poems about it lately, so our Seed of the Week was “As Summer Slips Away”. Thanks to our poets and photo-providers today for their responses to that and to other subjects, as well. Be sure to check each Tuesday for the latest Seed of the Week, but don’t think your work has to be just about those subjects.

We are privileged today to welcome back SnakePal Shawn Pittard, who is sharpening his poetry sword once again after life took him in other directions. Shawn did a chapbook for Rattlesnake Press back in the ‘oughts, back when the press was in business.

Stephen Kingsnorth was inspired by Joe Nolan’s flea poem which appeared last Monday in the Kitchen. And I do mean inspired; he sent a gaggle of poems on the subject. I wonder what the name of a group of fleas is? Flock? Funk? a funk of fleas…?!

NorCal poetry starts tonight with Straight Out Scribes rockin’ Sacramento Poetry Center, 7:30pm. And Saturday will bring Harvest The Arts, a celebration of diversity in Natomas. Click on Medusa's UPCOMING NORCAL EVENTS ( for details about these and other future poetry events in the NorCal area—and keep an eye on this link and on the Kitchen for happenings that might pop up during the week.
 Stephen Meadows

Stephen Meadows has been named the new Poet Laureate of El Dorado County; read all about it, including info about his upcoming Sept. 8 reading with Calif. Poet Laureate Lee Herrick, in Placerville's
Mountain Democrat at

 Joanne Blossom

And congratulations to El Dorado County's Joanne Blossom for having her poem, “Tying Your Shoes”, published in the
Mountain Democrat as Poem of the Month. See


—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Would you like to be a SnakePal?
All you have to do is send poetry and/or
photos and artwork to We post
work from all over the world—including
that which was previously published—
and collaborations are welcome.
Just remember:
the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—
for poetry, of course!
LittleSnake’s Glimmer of Hope:

lost dog found—
happiest of accidents!


Sunday, August 27, 2023

Tattoo Everything

—Poetry by K.G. Munro, Glasgow, Scotland
—Public Domain Photos Courtesy
of K.G. Munro


If I'm not saying something unintelligent
Then I'm tripping up or talking too much
Or I come off as rude because I'm incredibly
Nervous and acting like a fool to cope with it
I feel like there are sharp claws encasing my mind
trapping my personality inside
The woman they see is the one they dislike
Because she is my worst traits brought to life
I'm just bad at this whole love thing
Because even if I get it right, I know I'll screw up,
It's not Cupid's arrow I need but a miracle
One from Heaven, or I'll probably end up
Alone and counting my regrets on both hands. 


Lying about different things
To people that you call friends
Spinning different plates
On fragile sticks expecting
Them to spin forever and ever
Just like the lies that slide
Out of your corroded mouth
Filled with black moths
Destroying the people they land on
Because that's all you do
Is tell stories to make yourself
Seem like the good man
You are weaving nefarious webs
Do you think that they are stupid?
Your lies are transparent
And the only one who will end up
Entangled is yourself
Because of your mouth that never stops
Even when the plates have fallen to
The ground and smashed
You still can't tell the truth
With that false tongue of yours.



We own enough weapons
To rip a hole in the solar system
Who thought nuclear plants
were a good idea?
Or that splitting the atom wouldn't
cause endless problems
Because every creation in some form
or fashion has been used for
destruction and warfare 
And if we aren't careful
Our arrogance could kill the planet
Our children and other nations
out there in the universe
And even if it only hurts us
Who wants to live in Hell?
Because a dead environment
On fire and with thick charcoal skies
Is as close as you can get whilst alive
That is, if any of us even survive. 



Politician or puppet master?
Do my kisses taste like hers?
You smile for the cameras, arrogant and self-
White teeth, a porcelain gate keeping out the truth
From even the ones closest to you
I know all of your dark secrets, the ones you
wouldn’t tell anyone,
The public thinks that you love her,
Yet, I’m the one you get undressed for
I’m the woman you cry in front of
The only one you really trust
Despite being slightly older
Our souls relate on a level I am yet to see
From anyone around me
Loving you doesn’t make sense,
But it is more logical than anything I have ever
When you beg for my attention
After a day of verbal beatings from the opposition
How can I deny you?
I know that it’s wrong
But didn’t she cheat first?
Your autumn eyes were burning with despair when
you relayed
it to me
Before you laid me down and kissed me without
Torn Egyptian bedsheets.
Empty champagne glasses, missed texts,
Chaotic. That’s what we are.
Falling deeper into each other
And into madness.

Love lost
Its light
Too soon
Because death
Came and
Took you
From earth
Now I'm
Determined to
Write out
Your name
On every
Surface that
I can
Find and
Never forget
How it
Looks and
How it
Sounds because
I want
A tattoo
Of you
Everywhere on
This planet
So that
You are
With me
Until we
Can meet
Once again
In the

Today’s LittleNip:
We have calcium in our bones, iron in our veins, carbon in our souls, and nitrogen in our brains. 93 percent stardust, with souls made of flames, we are all just stars that have people names.

—Nikita Gill


This morning, we are privileged to welcome a visitor from Scotland to the Kitchen for the first time! K.G. Munro is an author and poet from Glasgow. Here are a few of her writing credits: Indian Periodical, ASmallSliceOfAnxiety, Ink Pantry, The Wombat Post, Pawners Papers, Reformed Journal, FreshOutMag, and Humans Of The World Blog. Welcome to the Kitchen, K.G., and don’t be a stranger!


 K.G. Munro

A reminder that D.R. Wagner and
Dave Boles are reading at
Chateau Davell in Camino
this afternoon, 2pm.
For info about this and other
upcoming poetry happenings in
Northern California and otherwheres,
click on
in the links at the top of this page.

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Would you like to be a SnakePal?
All you have to do is send poetry and/or
photos and artwork to We post
work from all over the world—including
that which was previously published—
and collaborations are welcome.
Just remember:
the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—
for poetry, of course!
LittleSnake’s Glimmer of Hope:
explosion of red and gold
startles the eye—
roadside candy wrapper