July 18-24, 2005: Rumit Pancholi and Jennifer Gomoll

week of July 18-24, 2005

Rumit Pancholi and Jennifer Gomoll

click here for submission guidelines

Rumit Pancholi

Bio (auto)

As an undergraduate at the University of Maryland at College Park, I am pursuing a double degree in English, with a concentration in creative writing and English Education Beginning the Fall 2005 semester, I will be participating in the Jimenez-Porter Writers’ House, a living/learning program which will enable me to hone my skills in creative writing with fellow writers of fiction and poetry alike I enjoy writing, especially travel writing, and poetry has transformed from a mere pastime to a full-fledged passion and career goal I plan to break away from my small town of Olney, in Montgomery County, Maryland, and pursue graduate school in either New York City, New York or Madison, Wisconsin.

The following work is Copyright © 2005, and owned by Rumit Pancholi and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.


girl once again,
he has bought the fish and told you lies of
how great, how hard he tried,
all day, by the pier,
reeling in til the perfect
one struck the bait
And you will believe him
as you carve away
in your kitchen sink the meat
and ignore
that it is spoiled

A New Trick

Once again I must tell you that you are
mistaken, and once again we will come back
to that lonely, cold alley where you first
taught me and told me you loved me

oh how sweetly you touched me in those places
I resisted myself to touch, and how generous your
fingers were, digging in my hips making sure
it was certain they had been there, as if

in a lame attempt to put some label on me
that sounded, I bet, like your voice!
No, I’m sorry, you were wrong then, and you are
wrong now, as you find me in your dirty bed

with some random guy And just to make you
squirm, I teach him the same tricks that you taught
me, and the others, so well You must certainly
remember your own innocent words:

“What good is it to learn something new, something
perfect, if you can’t show it to someone else?”

garden boy

under a hot, disheveled noon
the mosquitoes swarmed
like poison, circling overhead
the shirtless garden-hand
tilled & ploughed & sowed,
a shiny sun rattling against

his slick and tanned spine,
his muscles stiffening
like the back of a hungry ox
he ignored the flying gnats
pecking him for blood,
knowing they’d never leave,

and greeted the owner, Hello,
Mrs Salise,
artlessly back like a quiet

moon passing into its phase,
knowing that it only took
a cold wind so long to fly away.

Jennifer Gomoll


Jennifer Gomoll lives in Chicago Her fiction and poetry have most recently appeared in Sycamore Review, Iodine Poetry Review, VerbSap, Verse Libre, and Highlights for Children.

The following work is Copyright © 2005, and owned by Jennifer Gomoll and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

This One’ll Get Me in Trouble

the hippie poet got what he wanted
all the factories in the world shut down
there was no work to go to
everyone was happy

and flooded the forest preserves
to contemplate sequoias, lichen, trout,
waterfalls, cumulonimbi, their own hands
and feces and pansexual longings

they danced naked through nature trails
and trampled down the bracken
until their mescaline wore off
and all the women were bursting with babies
and the deer got so sick of everybody’s shit
they moved into the abandoned tenement apartments
and worked the salt mines, or at least licked them

then some began missing video game rentals
and others, Monday night football,
flavored vodkas, butt facials, blogs,
deep-fried jalepeno poppers,
spiked heels on concrete, the jingle of coins
in deep pockets

they started charging possum meat for marijuana
snail shells for monthly cave rent
antlers and horns for blow jobs

and so red-faced, squalling, dirty Capitalism
was reborn unto the people

Bunhill Fields Forever

At the National Gallery in London
you stare at Lord Byron a while He’s not wearing his Albanian costume
very well You can’t imagine him
getting any girls, despite the hypnotic,
oily green of his eye John Keats’
death mask is less romantic than that,
its grim frown an attraction to rival
the wax entrails at Madame Toussaud’s,
that museum’s piped-in stench of burning
flesh, its Michael Jackson circa 1983. 
For sheer tears in the eyes, none match
the Beefeater tour guide at the Tower: 
“The dungeon was frightening in its day,
more frightening now that it’s a gift shop.”


Nights are unsuitable for walking alone, safety
questioned in outsider status, taste affronted
by blaze of adverts adorning historic facades. 
Every hair rises with electricity you possess,
but all merry-making wafts from beyond a solid row
of empty shops, arm-in-arm, red rover, red rover,
pretending to be one building, a barrier Voices
are laughing and ringing out disco high above
the cobblestones:  Hey hey I will survive. 
Nothing doing in Soho but to count businessmen
climbing narrow flights to those glowing red flats; 
no Wonderland for you, looking for gin
to make you alternately small, and tall

Once, post-afternoon rain, lost beyond markets,
museums, pubs, clubs, theatre, you stumble back
nearly two centuries into a graveyard, Bunhill Fields,
where concrete crumbles so, you hallucinate
a glimpse of casket, bone, first hand in town
to wave hello, and welcome Know: this is not
where Americans go on holiday It’s not the glorious
postcard stand of Westminster Abbey, where one shuffles
round the illustrious dead Here, find the dead no one
erected statuary for, here lies what’s left of the mortal
William Blake In memoriam, someone has offered
a bottle of red plastic roses You feel emotion beyond
the dictates of guidebook and embrace it, traveler,
the only way you know–taking a photograph, final
exposure, the last on your last roll of film
(“Bunhill Fields Forever” first appeared in the journal Night Rally in 2002)

At the Rest Home for Celibates

At the rest home for celibates,
almost everyone visits the chapel,
keep themselves zipped for God (or
parents, who slide rings on tiny fingers
like spouses or first-time buyers )

The bitter stay in their rooms,
muttering at the doors they’ve closed We’re not coming out for body on the tongue
or blood in a cup of wine Not
‘born again virgins’ neither Our sheets
will never be white again Devils stick us
with needles at the chest and thigh,
a pretty boy or girl who puts words
who puts words who puts words devils
who lie and pelt our barred windows
with hot little stones of false hope
For us there’s not much temptation We know
every serenade has a final chord, understand
that hell is a perpetual set of footprints
receding from where we lie alone
by choice not by choice by necessity by choice
in a time no slight is forgotten,
a place that’s hard as a pew
(“At the Rest Home for Celibates” first appeared in the journal Grasslands Review in 2003)

The Job for a Day Game

If you could take any job
for just one day what would you be?

I say Rockette, flashing sequins and legs,
kicking high as the Chrysler Building’s spire
Or Sea Captain, smoking a pipe in salt wind,
stumping along on my peg, damn you, Moby
Orange Picker Fruit in hand, shaking rainwater leaves Citrus permeating skin O sunshine!

Inspector 12 A celebrity, my name
in every brand new pocket Quality guaranteed
Typesetter one hundred years ago All the alphabet blocks in reverse
lined up for the kiss of ink, the fresh page
No, wait I’ve got it The Guy The guy who could drop
the bomb Strokes the red button Chooses not to push.


Press the lens of your camera or eye
between the links of a chain link fence,
past blackberries which are not blackberries
but fruit of weeds grown long and strong
Your viewfinder will find a loading dock,
what’s left: a wall of doorways,
no trucks and no more loads Inside
is outside, concrete ground a meadow

of rubbish Shoots push through fissures,
open to sun, rain, a dust of snow Wonder what it is about walls, a wall that holds up
nothing, does not divide or provide entry,

stands against cinders and mud-tracks
of bulldozers long gone home.

Subscribe to our weekly Newsletter: