March 11-17: Colin Lichen and Mitch Grabois

Colin Lichen and Mitch Grabois

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Colin Lichen

Bio (auto)

Colin Lichen lives and works in London, England. Still undecided as to which pair of poetry slippers keep his feet warmest (but strangely drawn to a simple, chequered pattern for his left foot, and some sort of radical, flashing electronic slipper for the right), he writes on subjects as diverse as death and dodgem cars.

The following work is Copyright © 2013, and owned by Colin Lichen and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

An Ex in the Box

Argumentative on an industrial scale
she was not much missed.
Some basic excuses – visiting friends, a new job,
and they were satisfied.

They admired the conservatory as they left.
Do it yourself?
Yes, I confessed.

Summer Came Today

Delivered by a small bald man
wearing shorts.
I thought I’d spotted it earlier
in the windows of a shop,
wearing a flowery top and listening.

Taking me by surprise, waiting by my bed
until I opened my eyes.
Reminding me.

Feigning illness and carrying a small case,
it walked with me pretending to be confidence.
Echoey and unclear above the babble,
insistent – smelling mostly of coffee.

I’d imagined it would stay.

Mitch Grabois

Bio (auto)

Mitch Grabois was born in the Bronx and now lives in Denver. His short fiction and poetry appears (or will appear) in over one-hundred literary magazines, most recently The T.J. Eckleberg Review, Memoir Journal, Out of Our and The Blue Hour. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, most recently for his story “Purple Heart” published in The Examined Life in 2012. His novel, Two-Headed Dog, published by Xavier Vargas E-ditions, is available for all e-readers for 99 cents through Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords (which also provides downloads to PC’s).

The following work is Copyright © 2013, and owned by Mitch Grabois and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

R Beef

From behind the deli counter
Goldstein gave me a significant look
that said: you are nothing more than a roast beef
then he heaved a roast beef onto the slicer
flipped the switch that starts the blade homicidally spinning

Eppa his daughter my girlfriend was on her period
She should not have been in the deli
it wasn’t kosher
so I thought
My father, a rabbi, abandoned me at age two
so I wasn’t sure
He never taught me how to fish
or mow the lawn he was elsewhere
pretending to be holy

I have the barest memory of him
smoking a cigar
and reading a holy book

the book a chunk of wood
catching fire

Eppa had been fucking me to death
An important holiday was quickly approaching
and I’d forgotten to buy her a present

B Teeth

A bucktoothed little girl with tangled blonde hair
approached the ice cream counter
I’d never seen her before
I wondered if she were new in town
if the other kids taunted her because of her teeth
They weren’t the worst buck teeth
I’d ever seen
In fact, in fourth grade I’d “gone steady”
with a girl whose teeth were far worse

Eppa had had
two sets of braces
The first ones hadn’t been enough
to do the job
Now she had chronic headaches
that only rough sex could mollify

We went to strange towns
where she wasn’t known
There she threw rocks through
the windows of dentists’ offices

Those are not orthodontists, I said
Those are just regular dentists

She threw a brick
out the car window
She was strong as hell
and had great aim
some of her bricks likely
sixty miles an hour

They just do cavities, I insisted

C Stick

My ice cream cone broke
collapsed beneath my bite
I swore I would invent
an unbreakable cone

I went into the cottage
where I keep butterflies
and rabbits

The inside of the cottage smelled of Chap Stick
and shredded business papers

I looked down the mountain at a
bankrupt chicken ranch
Cowgirls in tight jeans
and shirts with pearl buttons
were loading chickens into trucks

If a fire came I would stay right where I was
let it roll over me
watch the rabbits sweat
watch the wings of the butterflies

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