earned his MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University. A former co-editor of Cider Press Review, he has published 6 chapbooks, and 3 full-length books of poetry, the most recent being “Self-Portrait as Odysseus,” published in 2011 by Tebot Bach Press. He’s won numerous prizes, and his poetry has appeared in magazines and anthologies throughout North America. He lives in Burleson, TX with his wife and 2 rambunctious dogs. His online home is www.rwynne.com.
The following work is Copyright © 2020, and owned by Robert Wynne and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
Enlightenment: A Treatment
Okay, so Christ, Buddha and Krishna
Walk into a bar; no really, they walk
Into a bar called Enlightenment, and
Next thing you know all hell breaks loose.
Gets pretty crazy when they escape
To Jerusalem with these grizzled bikers
On their tails, especially when
The flight attendants mistake them for
Happy-go-lucky college students visiting
Europe for a summer of backpacking.
Forgetting the seat belt sign for
A moment, there’s also a sub-plot
Concerning the reappearance of a
Templar Knight, long thought lost
To the wilds of India, and his quest to
Hamper the spread of televangelism
Americans have come to treat like
The word of God, even though it’s
Simply a marketing campaign
Only designed to pad church coffers
Until the United States can finally rival
Little Vatican City in riches amassed
In the name of the Father, the
Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Finally, our three buddies step out
Onto the streets of Israel, the bikers
Using tiny rented scooters to make chase,
Relegated to bumping along old roads
Littered with shrapnel, army personnel,
Even bootleg DVD’s of all
The newest releases. They come to
The wailing wall, where a crowd
Encircles them, and then they just
Read aloud every creation theory ever
Written, share a laugh and a wink,
Only to be arrested for disturbing the
Relative peace, while a bomb
Detonates to setup the sequel.
war should be door
change lie on to lion
stretch to reach
kill becomes skill
change tumor to humor
replace guardrail with heart
frame turns to flame
wall becomes fall
grief is relief
harbor should be inlet
change cave to cove
please becomes release
love remains silence
Konstantina Theofanopoulou was born in Greece and lives in the East Village, New York. She holds a PhD in the neuroscience of language, and currently works as a Post-Doctoral researcher at Rockefeller University. You can read her poetry in her monthly column on Natural Selections magazine, on poetry magazines (Lumiere Review, The Rye Whiskey Review, Eneken), on her IG (@newyork_rhymes), and listen to her poetry in podcasts, like the Hack Sessions (Spotify). Her poetry has been awarded twice (Minoan Publications Award, Panhellenic Poetry Award).
The following work is Copyright © 2020, and owned by Konstantina Theofanopoulou and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
Mother, I see you turn off the lights and I remember
all those nights you tucked the covers under my feet.
I remember playing with your ears and singing a song about a goat and lentils.
It was my first ever song when I could barely speak.
I still love your lentils, mother.
Mother, your love could be counted on the times you said you’ve had enough food, just for the rest of us to have more.
You’ve chewed food into our mouth, mother.
I see you turn off the lights and I think
Behold my ancestry.
A Slip of the Tongue
As your tongue slips in your palatal cavities,
I imagine glottal stops unearthing fricatives from narrow caves of my body.
Instead I say: ‘In essence, all humans are equal, but this doesn’t mean all humans are the same.’
Your ‘hmmms’ make me wonder if nasal sounds really help us think.
You speak, but I keep hearing sounds only.
I can’t help but catching ‘Plato’.
I think this might be because I am attracted to liquid sounds and I now remember people say this for cats too.
‘Lucy, Luna, Charlie, make sure your cat’s name has an ‘l’ or ‘r’.’
Instead I say: ‘If we stop perpetuating rumors like this, it could really mean a new era for humans,
in fact, for all animals.’
—Jazzing around the blue skies
It was so long ago—
But for you I’ve still got the
Jazz me up
Roll me away
—but I’ve still got the blues for you. —