False Promise of Time

Two poems
by James Diaz
Matador’s Prayer
not desperate
not clawing
at the furniture
not dead
and out
how many friends
would visit you
in jail?
the heart
in the wrong
a cloud
you can’t
pinpoint light
leaking courage
like a punctured lung
spilling its oxygen
you think you can stand
the weight on your shoulders
but you’ve been laid out on the floor
all these years
little seed,
your bloom
is all wrong
& the people
you loved
stepped all
over you
& time
does not
heal as
much as
you think
it does.
They Don’t Tell You About The Losses
No one notices
that final moment
when darkness
along the path ways
of your skin
a turn of your sleeve
catching what little light
is left
and offering it
to the most broken
note in the room
sad songs taped
on the underside
of a broken piano
the last leaf to fall
reminding you
most things in life
are about losing
seems like the sort of thing
you should know
how to handle by now
dropping covers
and standing bare
at the threshold
letting loss
do what it was made to do
take from you.
James Diaz is a writer and activist, living in upstate New York. His work has appeared in HIV Here & Now, Chronogram, Cheap Pop Lit, Ditch, and Foliate Oak. His first collection of poems, This Someone I Call Stranger, is forthcoming from Indolent Books (2017). He is founding editor of the literary arts & music journal Anti-Heroin Chic. http://heroinchic.weebly.com/

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Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry, fiction, essays, interviews, reviews, and books can be found. He is a Best of the Net and three-time Pushcart Prize nominee. Scott's poetry books include: Songs of a Dissident (Transcendent Zero Press, 2015), Chaos Songs (Weasel Press, 2016), Happy Hour Hallelujah (CTU Publishing, 2016), and Poison in Paradise (Alien Buddha Press, 2017). Scott is a member of The Southern Collective Experience; he also serves as an editor for Walking Is Still Honest Press, The Blue Mountain Review, The Peregrine Muse, and Novelmasters.

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