February 18-24, 2002: Jordan Barron and Paul Madden

week of February 18-24, 2002


Jordan Barron and Paul Madden


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Jordan Barron
Socratesjohnsons@aol.com

Bio (auto)

An undergraduate studying English and Philosophy at Lewis and Clark College, Jordan Barron’s poetry, non-fiction and short fiction has appeared in publications such as The ACS Review and Artemis Journal He lives on and off in two cities: Portland, Oregon, and Athens, Greece

The following work is Copyright © 2002, and owned by Jordan Barron and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsover without written permission from the author.

Tripping on the Streets of Athens

Tripping on the streets of Athens, 
we’re riding the downtown
square:
Alexandras
to Omonia
up Panepestimio
until we have reached
Syntagma
Square
and discover the bloodied
corpse of a cat
strung out like red licorice
before Parliament, 
kindly informing Tourists of it sanctity
Surrounded by the ghosts
of junkies and
monkeyless organ grinders
we sit on the green
islands of grass in the Square
Whatever it is inside of us
takes flight
and the only evidence we leave behind is
a half corked wine bottle
standing at lonely attention under
the orange glow of the
street
lamp Wine biting at our tongues
and boiling in our stomachs
Directionless
we fly
towards the Dead Streets, 
that place in the distance
that is discussed
only in whispers
and furtive glances
Past overgrown plots of
abandoned buildings, 
and gypsies sleeping soundlessly
in the open beds of pickup trucks, 
we all stop and share a mutual
moment
of fear
of timelessness
of forbidden discovery
We have come upon
something
we were not meant to
see
A cave, sooty with shadow, 
scooped out of the side of
a mountain, 
marked simply
with a sign
Four foreign devils
before a cave
ask themselves
“What is this?”

I Stab A Fat Man

I stab a fat man in an alley
with a pronged fork used to
fish hot dogs from a vendor’s vat He lays on the ground, panting
in short gasps like a landed fish I peer into the two holes that pierce
the rolling fat of his belly — they stare
back at me like two red dog’s eyes, and
my smile drops as I see a whisper of
smoke rise from the wound His blood streams
down the sidewalk like a map full of
veins and I kneel closer to the dog’s eyes
and inhale hard; sucking at the space
above the wound I think of the time I saw you (was it the last?) standing
with your back to me in the cold under the marquee
of a movie theater We had seen something
terrible, about a doctor falling for a chamber
maid; a steamy love affair fated to end
in tragedy You laughed darkly and
eyed me at an angle — all I could think
to do was sneak up from the side and
kiss your mouth that billowed
smoke like from a two pronged wound
made with a fork used to
fish hot dogs from a
vendor’s vat.


Paul Maddon
houston_500@hotmail.com

Bio (auto)

I am a 22 year old English Teacher from Newcastle in England, I have been writing for three years Visit my website here: http://www.say-it-wrong-again.gq.nu

The following work is Copyright © 2002, and owned by Paul Maddon and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsover without written permission from the author.

de Wallen

She’s bored;
her hands are panthers
fighting on the plain
of her lap
Mine pick the cotton
white shirt from the floor,

before touching her shoulder.

Map Reading

Soon her finger,
which is tracing a path
from Warsaw to St Petersburg,
will touch my face.

Stradivari by morning

His ribs are strings,
with every breath
they’re taut against
his skin; in this
sun his chest is
wooden, the body
of a violin
This sun in her hair
is resin on a bow.

Duende

1
The streets are clear
except for Jews
and myself walking among them

with her I wonder
whether she is a Jewess
2
I wonder whether
she knows I love her I’d hold wars
in the palms of my hands
for her
She kicks leaves, and holds
my hand, this morning
I belong to her.

Learning to hate North Sea Ferries

If I swallowed now,
would the world
in my throat erupt
with storms and stop
that boat from sailing?