Thursday, August 16, 2018


heaven is hell

you can’t justify
the rape and assault
of thousands of kids

you can’t explain it away
or apologize

this catholic “problem”

you can’t reason promising children heaven
while putting them through hell

ruining countless lives in the name of christ

back then we knew the priests to stay away from
…or some of the lucky did

father richie who always wondered
why martin never came around

used to call us and whine on the phone
used to grab us in the hallways

the ones who didn’t attract him as much

oh, where’s martin?
why is martin treating me this way?

father richie who the pittsburgh dioceses
moved around from church to church
for almost twenty years

letting him take nude photos of boys
fondle their gentiles and whatever else
pine over their adolescent flesh
while watching us sweat at cyo basketball games

before some bishop put him on leave
because the heat grew too big
because ignorance in sin have always been the catholic way

father richie who died in columbia
living his “flamboyant” gay lifestyle
murdered in his apartment

while running a boy prostitute ring
for horny american men

“flamboyant” is a catholic word for shame

you can’t justify
the rape and assault
of thousands of children, motherfuckers

you can’t apologize this horror away

there are no sorries
there are no one million our fathers
no thousands of hail marys
to serve as a penance

no bullshit words from the pope
no bullshit edict from rome

no confessional booth big enough to house
your reverent flock of rapists and pedophiles

there is nothing left on this earth
for a religion as corrupt at its core

that has damaged so many lives

except to die
its withered and black death

die on the vine
and be no more.

--John Grochalski


Wednesday, August 15, 2018



you call a woman a dog
you call a black woman a dog

you’re the dog
mr. “president”

the orange mutt of america

smearing your orange diarrhea lies
on each and every street

you’re the dog
little kick-me racist

putin’s poodle
pulled along by a russian leash

with no balls

sowing hate
from sea to shining sea

with every single whiney
twitter bark

--John Grochalski



Tuesday, August 14, 2018


Clean Sheets

The Cova Hotel
is getting all new blankets
and the old ones
are sitting in boxes
in the parking lot
Arlen is drunk
he drops the boxes on the pavement
and they split open like apples
“Careful, dammit!” says Stubbs
When Arlen is done
Stubbs gives him $3
and a hit off his pipe
then puts up a sign
“Clean Sheets- $2”
The sheets and blankets
form a big white cloud
on the sidewalk
and the junkies line up
to buy them
Around here
the clean sheets
never last long.

--Jon Bennett

Monday, August 13, 2018


                                      The Day Job (For Nancy Krieg)

we work till we’re blind
figuratively perhaps
but when the garage door
goes up in the darkness
comes down in darkness
it becomes hard
to tell if we haven’t
accidentally transformed
into moles
and then the days bleed together
and together and together
until they become a river
we can’t actually see
for having our heads
under, the paycheck
gets no bigger, we stretch
and stretch and stretch
to the point of breaking
it’s a wonder we can even pretend
to be alright, all our heart
given out before we have time
to even rest with ourselves
of course, the world seems crazy
of course, it feels insurmountable
we wait, look for a magic wand
something to clear cloud cover
give you a few minutes to feel human
again blank without the flow of the world
and with the sun directly on our faces
breathlessly easy for a short while

--Jason Baldinger

Sunday, August 12, 2018


white boy roy

white boy roy is at it again
he doesn’t like all of these trump doomsayers
i mean who’s bombing our cities?
the economy is doing well….so shut up
white boy roy won’t buy into the hysteria
white boy roy is white
so white boy roy is above hysteria
white boy roy thinks you’re hysterical over trump
white boy roy uses coded language
but, still, that means he doesn’t have to consider women
or homosexual people
or people of color
in his opinions
white boy roy is SO beyond identity politics
YOU people lost him the election with that shit
white boy roy wants to speak to the working class again
the WHITE MALE working class
white boy roy wants the rest of you to take a seat
and let us handle it from here
his privilege is as rotten as a dead dog by the side of the road
he doesn’t care about kids in cages
reproduction rights
black people being shot by cops
muslim bans etc.
white boy roy sites articles that entrench his patriarchy
he posts links that have been sculpted to his opinion
when you disagree
you can smell white boy roy’s smugness
from across an ocean
white boy roy calls for social media civility
while he tries to tear you down
white boy roy sticks a russian flag in his mouth and smokes it
he says it’s good to talk to russia
then he sits there sipping on craft beer
waiting on you to respond
white boy roy thinks he’s a contrarian
but he’s got contrarian confused with the word capitulation
if he had hitchen’s ashes in front of him
he’d piss on them
white boy roy still claims that he’s a liberal
but he doesn’t have anyone fooled
white boy roy is NOT your friend
he’s that wolf in sheep’s clothing hiding in the forest
no matter what goes down in america
white boy roy will be fine
to spin his bullshit anew
white boy roy is blood shed on indigenous land
he should take a good hard look in the mirror
next time he speaks
white boy roy
you need to read some history
and shut the fuck up.

--John Grochalski


Saturday, August 11, 2018


Your president

constantly, incessantly,
calls the press an enemy
of the American people

praises a foreign leader
for his tendency to
kill journalists, naming it
“good leadership”

says nothing about T-shirts
worn by his crowd
with the words:
Rope. Journalist. Tree.
Some assembly required.

How do you feel
about your grudge
against journalists
at a newspaper
you hate

(It’s Just a Question)

--Rachel Toalson

Friday, August 10, 2018


The Canteen Fascists

The canteen fascists meet and watch Sky News
each night at 2 a.m. to hate the world.
The factory business clatters on beneath them.
Led by the manager, they pour vitriol
on the refugees of Calais and how well they’re dressed,
and the phones they’re pictured using (‘That’s a fuckin’ Samsung!’);
it even makes them livid that the men play pool.
The boss says, ‘Send the fuckin’ bastards home.
Those cunts, every one of them’s with fuckin’ ISIS.
They only want to come here for the benefits.
Then they pray all fuckin’ day and blow your arms and legs off.
A tank and a machine gun, that would do it.
Send the Army into Calais, then they’d all fuck off
back home to whatever fuckin’ stinkhole made them.’

--Bruce Hodder