FAUNA QUARTERLY ISSUE TWO: Table of Contents

Tamara Franks | 2 Poems: “there is no poetry in the now” & “you see me”

Nicholas Van Lott | 2 Poems: “Some Tree in Virginia” & “Graveyard”

Jennifer Cody | Poem: “Lever Du Soleil”

Mickey J. Corrigan | 3 Poems: “Everywhere Sky and Sea”, “Until Death”, & “Opening”

Anna Kennedy | Poem: “Old World”

Jason Bates | 2 Poems: “We’re On the Road to Messy” & “Dangerous is the Way Your Eyes Shine in the Deep”

Laura Thiessen | Poem: “So Long, Fare Thee Well” & Flash Fiction: “Hara-kiri”

Alexandra Twyford | 2 Poems: “It’s Not Important, Anymore” & “(Don’t) Think About”

Scott Thomas Outlar | Poem: “Sweet Explosion”

Issue Two: Scott Thomas Outlar

Sweet Explosion

Her veins are spiked with chlorella

aqua seafoam blue-green algae

with a drip of phytoplankton

pumping from the pores of velvet antler

 

Her eyes are carrot juice lasers

candy cucumber lids of alkaline salt

seeping in where the violet aura

surges with a fury of synchronistic flash

 

Her smile is a pearly white paradise

coated in celery crunch gene therapy

keeping calcification at bay

while smooth ships sail nearer to shore

 

Her tongue is laced in ghost pepper fetish

sweating out the lust of combustive flesh

sending shivers down the spine of kundalini

in white ignition pulse of pineapple explosion

 

Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry and fiction can be found. His words have appeared recently in venues such as Straight Forward Poetry, The Peregrine Muse, Yellow Chair Review, and Creative Talents Unleashed. Scott’s chapbook “Songs of a Dissident” was released in 2015 through Transcendent Zero Press and is available now on Amazon.

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Issue Two: Alexandra Twyford

It’s Not Important, Anymore

I am a sculpture, my body made of veined white marble and

you are Michelangelo, chipping slowly away at me,

from the outside in.

Every inhale cracks the fragile stone so –

you press your hand over my lips as you carve

the indents of my spine and your initials into my ribs –

you say that you are breaking me free but

it feels as though you are just breaking me

and even when you abandon this, your pet project,

I will still have scars from when your hands shook

and your chisel slipped.

And without you here to trap my breath

and block my lungs –

I breathe. Too quickly,

too hard and too deep –

and my fragile exterior is cracking, sharp

chasms in the facade of my body, veins that fracture

from one another, rivers to streams.

The perfection you never managed to give me

was temporary, anyway, and now

I am falling away in shards of sharp stone.

 

(Don’t) Think About

Sunday morning bruises, dark blue

and crisp on thighs and hip – bones, pressing

back into metal tipped fingers, blooming

into angels’ wings along spines and hollow ribs –

broken capillaries whisper false memories and

ink splits on coffee stained paper, ruled and dated,

writing pours over the lines and twists sideways,

prose and verse and secrets long forgotten,

long dead.

If you don’t write it down – burn if you did – it

didn’t happen, if there is no proof – it didn’t

happen and if it lives on in the minds of

other people take the parts of them that live

inside you and cut them out, raw and bloody – gut

your mind like a fish – head, tail, heart and soul and

don’t mourn them when you let them splatter –

red, between the teeth of a starving dog.

If you don’t remember – it didn’t happen – if you do –

burn it.

 

Alexandra Twyford is an Irish second level student and amateur poet, currently living in the suburbs of Dublin with a vast collection of drugstore lipsticks and houseplants. More of her work can be found at alexandraspoetry.tumblr.com
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Issue Two: Laura Thiessen

So Long, Fare Thee Well

My grandmother left in shades

of salt and pepper,

the shadows of crevices, deep

memories of bygones.

 

My friend waved on walls painted

with blood and matter,

hints of desperation, seeped

and gleaming no more.

 

My first love offered a gradient

of lethargic adieus,

pigmentation of false promises

and a glow that fades.

 

My swan song has not been cast

light is yet reflecting

values and undertones in complexion,

dyeing in degrees.

 

Hara-kiri

The crowd hushed when I entered. I drew up, as if on a string, straightening my back to show them my spine was not as weak as the circumstances that led me here might have them believe. The soft line of my jaw jutted out, a dare against their skepticism as the purity of my spotless white robes swirled around my ankles, defying them to speak.

 

To the right, my mother wept silent tears, her defeated shoulders begging my father for comfort. The refusal was evident in the hard set of his countenance, irises narrowed to pinpricks, waiting to see if I would fail at this too.

 

Before me lay a white mat. I almost laughed at how pristine it looked.

 

I parted the robe wide, wider than was necessary, as I kneeled, feeling audacious and unconcerned at the mob in front of me. Some, the men and few women ogled with appreciation and perhaps a bit of regret they would never have this opportunity again. The rest looked away, flushing with the awkwardness of their own impure thoughts or anger at my boldness.

 

The tantō that had been my grandmother’s lay in front of the mat. I picked it up with my right hand, testing its weight and balance. It would do.

 

From the folds of my robe, I produced a small scroll and set it down where the tantō had been. I kept my eyes on the blade, ignoring the hard cadence in my chest beating out a longing to seek my mother’s face, but I knew it would undo me.

 

I must be quick.

 

The blade pierced my left side. The sake I had consumed prior only grazed the pain, but I could not stop now. I had requested no kaishakunin be present—none would have volunteered to be my second anyway—so I must complete the ritual alone.

 

Forging my grip from the rock of ice in my soul, I forced the tantō through skin and muscle across my abdomen until viscera spilled, polluting the chaste white around me. I slumped, agony bleeding from my midsection, pouring out my misery for all to see. As if from a great distance, I heard my mother scream and my father’s hand silence her.

 

It would take some time, yet I did not wish for a quick end. I wanted them all to see what their ignorance and stupid societal rules had wrought. With more strength of will than of body, I twisted to the floor, my broken stomach open for all to see. I lay, eyes open, waiting.

 

***

 

Later, someone opened the scroll and posted it on the town’s main gate.

 

Death comes to us all

Disease, sword or accident

Mine came by my hand

Know that when your end is near

The shove at your back is mine

 

Laura Thiessen endeavors to be a vegetarian, but misses seafood and will occasionally cheat.  After an extended recess, she has returned to school to obtain a degree in English. In anticipation of your next question, no, she has no desire whatsoever to teach. In her free time she enjoys video games, although school often preempts the killing of internet dragons. While she enjoys an excellent margarita on occasion, she wishes she could drink like Jessica Jones. More of Laura’s work can be found on her blog at pomegranatepithos.wordpress.com

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Issue Two: Jason Bates

We’re On the Road to Messy

I’ve never hitchhiked

this stretch of road

before

 

really,

not any stretch,

for that matter

 

I know

I was lied to about heaven

being in the arms

of the mountains

 

I know

that the devil doesn’t reside

along the thighs

of merging rivers

 

But either where

is better than nowhere

 

If I hook a car with this thumb,

I’ll have a decision to make

 

Dangerous is the Way Your Eyes Shine in the Deep

The plunge I take through

the full-flavor smoke

of your voice

is a slow descent

played

on fast forward

 

You change souls

with half-dreamed words

and compliments

meant to test

the resilience of will

and the pliancy of warmed skin

 

I gave in to the danger

 

Money can buy

the sweetest

honey

but that’s for soothing

sore throats

not broken hearts

 

Jason Bates will interject movie quotes into conversations even when the person on the other end of the conversing has never seen the movie being quoted. His friends would call him odd; his enemies, something much worse. He is also the founder of PunksWritePoemsPress LLC. www.punkswritepoems.com

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Issue Two: Anna Kennedy

Old World

it is not vast

 everything is small

and ugly

it is only the grand that has beauty

squinted at

  turn three-quarters to the left

     no, not quite

a little to your right

now – there

                 don’t move

 

the land is breathless

crammed

and crawling

 

idolise only the leaf

            only the forest

the trees do not branch beautifully

 

the middle distance is no longer

than the gap between

 

Anna Kennedy is a recent graduate from Australia, with a degree in English literature, Philosophy and Linguistics, currently living and working in London. Aside from non-fiction pieces for the University of Sydney’s BULL magazine, and a poem for the Sydney Arts Students Society’s ARNA journal, she has never been published, and currently shares her work on a personal tumblr.
Anna Kennedy

Issue Two: Mickey J. Corrigan

Everywhere Sea and Sky

Today’s ocean rough-handed,

you could use a bigger boat

in such a hurl of crushing surf.

A posed nonchalance

and you swamp

while paying homage

to other things.

You are a wreck

waiting for whatever

comes to you now.

Above you, fast clouds

sail across the yellow moon,

wild

in an enormous hostile sky.

Somehow you wash up,

sand sticky on your palms.

The tiny island suits you.

Coconuts fall, break open.

Lime-hued parrots in troops,

downshift

squawking,

onto sea grape branches.

The flock’s overcrowded

cranky, but as one.

Later they explode

in a black thunder

of winter crows,

transformed

while you looked elsewhere.

 

You are immersed in harsh,

violent metaphors

for your own life.

Squeezed by circumstance,

then scattered

catapulted so casually

to a distant shore.

 

Until Death

When the wound blooms

flowering into its own body

and you enter it,

enter into the hurt

No longer moving ahead

slowly

like blood

through a straw

You surge at full blush

squirt yourself around

feeling every lost corpuscle

as it oozes out of you

feeling every blued bruise

as it wells and pools

on your hot flesh

This is what I mean

about pain and orgasm

we suffer together

interconnected

chain links

in the chokehold collar

holding you fast

to me,

to this raw scrape earth

 

we drag ourselves across

until we are planted

six feet below

the rest of them,

all the walking wounded.

 

Opening

At the cemetery gate,

in the crowded café:

a face like a daisy in bloom.

This is a person. She is

not yet white credits,

blackness.

Your catharsis bleeds through her

easy,

like sunlight or sweat.

In the obligatory night scene

violence follows harsh-lit love-

making, flesh smacking flesh.

The audience waits for this.

She gives them what they want.

This is a person. She is

not who you

not who they

imagine.

This is beauty,

petals bright as summer,

weeping pollen

dusting us

bystanders, voyeurs

party to a brief moment

 

of blush, inevitable fade.

 

Mickey J. Corrigan writes pulp fiction, literary romance, and psychological thrillers. Recent books include the neo-noir satire The Blow Offand the crime caper Ex-Treme Measures from The Wild Rose Press, and the literary thriller Songs of the Maniacs from Salt in the UK. Poetry and short fiction have appeared in Akashic Books, ELJ Publications, Big Pulp, Flash: The International Short-Short Story Magazine, Deep Water Literary, and elsewhere. Salt will release her new novel in 2017. Visit at www.mickeyjcorrigan.com or on tumblr: http://mickeyjcorrigan.tumblr.com/.