June 18-24, 2012: Dustin Junkert and Geraldine O’Kane

week of June 18-24, 2012

Dustin Junkert and Geraldine O’Kane

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Dustin Junkert

Bio (auto)

Dustin started writing in order to impress girls. Most girls aren’t all that impressed by writing, he has found. But here’s hoping. Dustin lives in Portland, OR. He recently had an essay published in the New York Times, and poems in The Journal, South Carolina Review, the minnesota review, Weber, Georgetown Review, GW Review and New Delta Review.

The following work is Copyright © 2012, and owned by Dustin Junkert and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

American Embassy

At the first Starbucks in Moscow
I ordered a latte in Russian.
“What size?” the barista asked.

I told her I don’t speak English then said
“Grande,” rolling the r. “You speak Italian, then?”
She asked wryly, again in English.

The drink cost the equivalent of fifteen dollars.
Everyone was sitting around in sweaters
reading The New York Times between phone calls.

With a sharpie in hand, she asked my name.
“Vladimir,” I told her. She looked up
at me, smirked and wrote

American on the side of the cup. I told her
she’s a crook for charging so much.
She told me I’m a crook for paying so much.


for Charles Simic

My favorite,
if that’s what we’re doing, is the one where
the tortoise waddles home and, awfully late,
of course, is slated to give a motivational
speech at the local Knights of Columbus
chapter. He’s discouraged when Zeno,
drunk by the back water cooler, about dies
laughing at the prospect of finishing a race.

Plein Air

Today the lake is terribly watery
and the trees are made of wood.

At night the lightless fields reflect
the dark spots between stars.

Deep cries out to deep.
The sun seeks out our brightest.

The moon is not for us, and no one
has a word for the colored clouds.

The Lessons of the World

For A. Camus

For the one-hundredth, and certainly not
the last time, I stared at the mosquito
bite on my arm. A searching

stare, as if it were The Gospels
or an Escher painting.

The paramedics rushed past me
to attend to what I would later find
out was the last breath of a man in my building.

Two small birds visit me most
mornings, perched
on the windowsill looking in,

but if I open the window they will fly. Believe

me. The lessons of the world

are few. In fact, there is only one.
But it is always right.

The State of My Heart

God and I share a small bed and I am dead
tired. In the silence, I think

of something funny
and can’t hold a laugh
back. Nothing, but

I must try
to explain.

This is how we talk.

There are other beds, you know. I know.


 Geraldine O’Kane

Bio (auto)

Based in Northern Ireland Geraldine O’Kane has been writing poetry for over 10 years, she has had several poems published in local magazine’s and online e-zine’s, Black Cat Poems, Speech Therapy and Allo Trope. She has previously been part of a local writing group at the Craic Theatre and has performed some of her work in local Theatres and the Dungannon Borough Council Arts Festival. Her poetry is mostly inspired by observation and the human condition and emotion. She is currently working full-time for a national newspaper and is currently studying for her degree.

Visit Geraldine on the web here: voicaversa.weebly.com

The following work is Copyright © 2012, and owned by Geraldine O’Kane and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Portrait: Reaction

A convoy of salty emissions
traverse your cheeks,
tangible – they magnify
a newly discovered world,
population two
you and I.

Life and Dreams

They sleep in separate bedrooms,
dream in parallel


at each other’s

Theory: San-Chol

Framed by a copper mane
dark sanguine limbs
curl to hide charred intestines,
veins and roots reposing unstirred
their final resting place;
etched morosely over the backdrop,
of melancholic beeches
lamenting for the beautiful and the broken.