New haiga by Jeffrey Winke

* Jeffrey Winke is a regular IS&T contributor – we'll be publishing some of his latest haibun over the next few weeks.

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Casey Quinn wants to be like John Wayne

i want to be just like john wayne


drink my whiskey
while laying down
the law.
a real, gritty, down to earth,
no bull, straight shooting,
type of man.
lead with actions,
not words.
stand up for
what is right.
take the moral
high road.
a man respected
and beloved,
by all.
i want to be
john wayne.
right after
i finish
my mocha latte,
i'm going to my salon
and get my hair styled,
get new denim clothes,
a big hat,
and cowboy boots.
i'm going to be
just like

Casey Quinn is a writer of prose and poetry. He is also editor of the online magazine Short Story Library as well as the managing editor of ReadMe Publishing

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Patricia Mullin is looking at a pile of kitchen utensils

Today (Tuesday 27 January) is National Holocaust Memorial Day. This poem was written in response to a pile of kitchen utensils on display as part of The Holocaust Exhibition at The Imperial War Museum in London.

The Whisk, the Spoon and the Grater.

The handing down of recipes grandmother, mother, daughter.
How much grated lemon rind? ‘Is this a pinch mama?’
Almonds blanched or toasted?

The blending of butter, the tender folding of egg white.
Simple acts of love.

In a small brown case, Ira placed the whisk the spoon and the grater
she would never use.

The whisk, the spoon and the grater, were added to the pile.
Simple acts of hate.

Patricia Mullin trained at Colchester School of Art, Central School of
Art & Design (now Central-St Martins) and Goldsmiths. Her first novel Gene Genie
was published in 2005 and in 2007 she graduated from the Writing the
Visual MA at from Norwich School of Art. Patricia is completing her
second novel Casting Shadows, writing short fiction and teaching creative writing at Norwich Cathedral.

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John Grochalski's wonders where Judy is tonight


judy said she had a tattoo
of calvin and hobbes
on each ass cheek
and she had dirty blonde
hair and almond eyes
that looked at you, pierced you
in a way that said you could
really learn to understand
each other when you weren't
too busy fucking.
when she spoke she said
stupid things, but who didn't.
she said things like
we really see eye to eye
and aren't weddings the best
or beer will make me fat.
and when you took judy
on the dance floor
she laughed every single time
you dipped her
and when i pulled her close
she breathed heavily on my shoulder
that is, until my friend, colby, cut in.
judy came to the wedding with colby,
and afterwards he was going
to take her to a hotel and fuck her
in order to get back at his girlfriend
for getting pregnant.
i'd forgotten that part.
i really wanted judy
but colby was like family
and he said isn't she the kind
of woman your friend should really be dating
and how could i argue with that?
but more than everything else
judy could nuzzle a man under
his ear just right,
and she was a master
at playing one fool off another one.
her kisses tasted like roses
and hell, after all of these years
i wonder where judy is
on this ugly earth tonight.

John Grochalski is an American writer whose poetry has appeared in a
wide range of magazines. His short fiction has appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and the forthcoming anthology Living Room Handjob.  My His collection of poetry The Noose Doesn't Get Any Looser After You Punch Out is published by Six Gallery Press.

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New podcast by Graham Burchell

Here's our latest poetry podcast recording, courtesy of The poem – Still Waiting – is by Graham Burchell.
Graham Burchell has published a pamphlet Ladies of Divided Twins (Erbacce Press, 2008) and a collection Vermeer’s buy lasix tablets Corner (Foothills Publishing, 2008). His poems have appeared in a number of print and online journals including Borderlands Texas Review, Euphony, Acumen, and South Crannog. He was nominated for a Pushcart prize in 2006.

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Jon Tait's been called to prayers

Call to prayers

There’s no chance of me getting off the ship in Tunis as I look at the endless green embarkation cards in Arabic & as I gaze from the rails spot not only industrial metal towers and buildings and old tugs puffing black smoke but a serious looking cop with a smart grey uniform and a machine gun across his chest although behind him up on a yellow hill in the distance I can see the ancient city of Carthage & I’m wondering about the mysteries there & the exciting busy bustle of the souks with fantastically coloured carpets & the throng of chatter rising in strange tongues I’d had the excitement all morning looking at the black African coastline in the muggy brown darkness before dawn with the lights from strange towns twinkling like distant stars from the round porthole & I can almost taste the spices in the food from a dark street vendor as I stride along in a cream suit and panama hat like a secret service agent on my way to meet a contact just got to get past that cop cross the large car park & there are the white domed buildings blinding in the sun with a heat so oppressive it hangs heavy in your lungs while in the distance a megaphone calls people to prayers.

* Jon Tait is a former sportswriter and was the press officer at now defunct Gretna FC in the Scottish League.

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Kayode Isaac's got a life

My Life’s Back

I was doing this before, steadily –
And for my age and range, doing it well
Cuddling you, molding you, making-up and dressing your contents
I was using you, not only as the butter for my bread
But also as the point of my strength – the only meal that truly revives me
Eating you with all my strength to gain more.

No fame, fortune or flaunt
I wasn’t looking for them anyway, their fourth friend is failure
Within me though, I was getting what you give and give abundantly;
You were giving me life
Until I chose the path of lifelessness – not death
For they are three: life, lifelessness and death!

Now that I’ve squandered my lifelessness and hate death,
I need my life back – the pen and paper; the creativity; the tranquility
My bread, on which I coat you, my butter
My palm oil with which I eat the yam of life
I need you in my life, dear life
Death I hate and lifelessness I have exhausted!

* Kayode Isaac is a reporter for a society magazine in Lagos, Nigeria.

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