April 20-26, 2015: Lynn Marie Houston and David Gale

Lynn Marie Houston and David Gale

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Lynn Marie Houston

Bio (auto)

Lynn Marie Houston’s poems have appeared in Painted Bride Quarterly, Poydras Review, Hartskill Review, Uppagus, and others. She is the author of a book of poetry, The Clever Dream of Man, forthcoming from Aldrich Press and The Poet’s Playground, a book of poetry exercises for beginners. After graduating from Hartwick College and spending time in Switzerland on a Fulbright grant, Houston earned her Ph.D. from Arizona State University. She now lives in a vintage Airstream camper in Newburgh, New York. When she isn’t teaching English, she tends her honeybees and kayaks local rivers. Visit Lynn on the web here.

The following work is Copyright © 2015, and owned by Lynn Marie Houston and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Molly’s American Yes

for T.M.

Yes, the roads were torn up after winter but lazy hosta grew in his father’s garden, his mother bent weeding after her nap
Yes, on the wooded lot he shot the cardboard bull’s-eye with his boyhood BB gun
Yes, I chided him, the receding hairline, a red spot on his temple where he forgot the sunscreen
Yes, the darkness was the Catalpa’s silhouette, the only light from a Weber grill
Yes, we kept out voices hushed, talking close after his family slept under open windows – it was June
Yes, Led Zeppelin’s “Tangerine” was the song that made us dance between the plastic lawn chairs
Yes, we would have more tequila
I thought, yes, our bodies have aged. It’s a 2-pack, he smiled, rubbing his belly
Yes, he did apologize for the Marlboro reds, but only after he wanted to kiss me
Yes, I heard the hum of wasps in my ear with his teeth on its lobe

We could have joined the carnival, yes: acrobatics and daredevil plate spinning, his hands on my breasts, desire loosening outward, crashing on our heads like blows punishing us for the something personal we’d pilfered
Yes, his hair smelled like smoke and I worried about the cancer he might have
Yes, I remember twenty-six years earlier, the cul-de-sac, my first kiss, the children from a house on the hill watching us in his father’s Sentra, the stick shift everywhere we didn’t want it to be
Thank God, yes, we came of age before cell phones and Facebook
Yes, I said yes, despite the other women, the happy couple we would never be
I said yes

David Gale

Bio (auto)

Native to Los Angeles, David Gale is a poet grown out of the open reading tradition and a stage performer since 2002. He began his poetry career performing poems and starting readings in parking lots. He later came to co-host The Verity Room Poetry Reading, The Worst Poetry Reading, and The Lamp Light Poetry Reading. David Gale is a graduate of the creative writing program of California State University Northridge and spent six years as a member of the traveling band The Pirates Charles. These days he mostly spends his time making music with The Paper Tradition, working in the garden, or trying to find a happier way to make a living. David is one of the co-founders of Mad About Ink, a collection of poets working together under the belief that people need poetry in the way we share each other to survive. Visit David on the web here.

The following work is Copyright © 2015, and owned by David Gale and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.


I see myself becoming
a most articulate ambassador of dust,

turning the best-laid plans
into the best ways to lie down.

I grip the back of my head,
turn my nose into the corner of my armpit,
and try to find the most expedient way
to hide from myself.

I have to remember to get up
and bring the world close,
………………….piece by piece,
one by one
make the names of places, things,
and people feel safe in my mouth.

There is so much for us,
before and after us,
enough to hide the poems,
hide what makes them,
hide I who writes them.

But somehow by the transitory,
from the muscle of voicing
you and I are pulled close
and that does feel good, doesn’t it?
and that is important, isn’t it?

The power of touch,
the dangerous beautiful.
Bring me close. Smell my pages.

I will breathe warm and heavy on you
so that neither of us
can remove the scents of the other–

no matter
how lonely.



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