by Loren Haas

The smoke screen; breathe it in
Taste the virulent sulfur
Choking, suffocating
The toxins are familiar
Retch on the morose tar
The stench burns at your nostrils
Sticking to your drained skin
This viscid smog is hostile
Your knees shake and buckle
Your heart trembles in your chest
A guttural screech rips
Out from your frail, gasping breast
Black dots dance in your eyes
All else has already drowned
Fall forward; fall empty
To be greeted by the ground

The Book

Isabella Burlingame

The book dries her tears,
it keeps her company.
The book calms her
anxious mind
and tells her everything
will be okay just to see
her rare, beautiful smile.
Her normally haunted eyes
light up with each turn of
its tattered pages.
The book makes her forget,
it makes her disappear from
her world-until
she reaches the part of
the book she despises,
the dreadful last page.
The girl looks up and
she realizes that
her treasured book
lied to her once again.

Long Island Blue

by Aubrey Keller

Blue are her eyes, perpetually laughing in the Sun.  Its celestial body will outlive us all, despite the deceptive feel of infinity in my cousin, Daisys, joy.  Contrary are her words- notice taken of the stillness of late summer days and of her life of confinement.  For a fleeting moment, her own blue sparkled, given hope of adventures like in fairy tales shed been intrigued by as a child.  Now, that moment has ended.
Blue sky is still above us as the blood of her knight, her beacon of hope, mixes with the shallow, controlled ripples of water he had meant to enjoy.  Or perhaps hed meant to drown by a means that resembled his tears.  Sorrows over a life that was once attainable but now has no way to exist, though it has all components to be sustained.
Blue, orange, and pink were once colors of the lights shining upon my neighbors garden on Saturday nights when he was surrounded by a calculated mix of strangers.  And now, the uninvited, colorful guests are replaced by bleak, uninvited ill fate.  Only blue remains, and in blue we shall dwell as long as we linger among the islands thieving ways