Archive for the ‘Out of the Cupboard’ Category

I just returned from a work trip to Vegas and was reminded again of the immense darkness that lies behind the relentless marquees, the canned attractions, overdone resorts, and extraverted casinos. What intrigues me are the people, the ones who live off the scraps: the immigrants in stained shirts flicking pornographic cards at tourists; the oversunned men undoing the failed Harmon Hotel, tier by black-shrouded tier; the old men levitating objects on the sidewalks for spare change; the trio of girls in extensions and eyelashes who stood in the Cosmopolitan, smiling nervously at the men who ordered them. Those who have nothing extraordinary to show, or no money to buy the time and wares of others, are seen only in flickers: shadowy figures crossing the six-lane intersections, dragging their bags or carts or unresponsive limbs. They do not rest until the others have finished consuming and, when they do, they are always waking.

This issue is dedicated to the darkness—not necessarily melancholy or evil, but the unseen, quiet vacuum that lies between the attractions that compete for our conscious attention. From what do we turn when we look for diversion? From what do we hide when we fill our time with noise, with conversations, with souvenirs, with spectacles—with what I call the dimestore world?

~T.M. De Vos, Editor

Current Issue


Meat and three by Rachel Adams

Dim, but not darker than me and What he pawned was black by Ashlie Allen

Inviable and Who Was the Girl in the Window? by Maureen Alsop

Deciding When to Die by Paul R. Davis

Our Dimension by Peycho Kanev

Three Poems by Simon Perchik

Strand, The Golem Visits Coney Island, and The Golem Rides the Amtrak by Yosef Rosen

Creative Nonfiction

Exhibit I[ntrovert] by Kristin Fitzsimmons


Sleep Paralysis by Valerie Borey

Public Viewings by Chase Eversole


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Presenting: Christopher Savage

Editor’s Note:

I don’t remember how, exactly, I found Christopher Savage and his compatriots, the Boho Cocos. I do know that I was still living in Ohio (although at this point I was preparing to come to Austin), and trying to start writing again after graduate school had sucked out my creativity. While hopping around on poetry blogs, I somehow got referred to Austin New Blog. And I loved everything I read (or heard, or saw) there. I still get excited when I see that there are new poems waiting to be read. (more…)

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Presenting: Patrick Braun

On the nights when we sit silently together

the room is still except
the second hand moving
with deadly precision,
each tick
an explosion.

We stare
as the clock
destroys time.


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Presenting: Justin Hyde

sitting alone at the authentic mexican restaurant

a young family
in the booth behind me.

the daughter:


about my son’s age.

she stands up

turns around

little finger tapping my shoulder
she asks:
where’s your family?

your father said
sit down,
her mother says
plopping her back
into the booth.

where’s his family?
she asks.

probably at home
or at the store
now sit down
and eat your dinner,
her father says.

no my child
they are not at home
or at the store

i pissed them
down the drain.

but things,
and lurid
as they are:

i’ll string something else
soon enough.

four different single mothers
are tripping over each other
to lash themselves
and their children
to this
jalopy frame of mine.

i pretend
they’re not just after
the health insurance
and security
of my state job

they pretend
i’m not just after
the hockey puck
between their legs.

their children
watch us
very closely:

to it all.


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Presenting: Shane Allison

If I Was the Editor of a Literary Magazine

I would reject anything that didn’t have the words dick, tits or pussy in it.
And I don’t mean the Biological terms like penis, breasts or vagina.

Some places don’t take erotica, pornography or gay and lesbian themes,
but I would welcome the shit. I would write the acceptance letters myself

to writers of poems entitled,
Day in the Life of My Big Black Dildo or Brenda’s Fat Cunt Speaks in Tongues.

Give a thumbs up to coming out stories
and leather wearing, whip popping grandmas.

My advice to writers is to send poems
with 12-inch titles, stories dripping wet with smelly plots.

Feel free to send in naked photos of yourself taped to those cover letters.
Double-space if you like to get spanked or like the sensation of titclamps

pinching those rose-pink nipples. Put a real orgasmic feel into your writing.
I want to be able to come with you in your work.

Send religious work only if you have had fantasies about giving God head
or ever wondered how big Jesus’ dick was.

I don’t want sweet, poofy poetry you would give to your mother on her birthday.
I don’t want shit about log cabins and red ribbons in the hair of little girls.

I want stuff about 50’s Hollywood stars doing drugs and twisting themselves in
unusual positions in underground porno films to make ends meet.

I want to read about Marilyn Monroe getting fist-fucked by Humphrey Bogart
or getting her pussy eaten out by Ava Gardner.

Stories about giving your own cousin a blowjob would be great.
I want Non-fiction work about your boyfriend’s semen tasting like macaroni and

cheese or your girlfriend’s cum tasting like lime green jello.
I’m no fickle, vague editor who sugar coats what he seeks.

I get right to the point. If I can jerk-off to it, then I might invite you into
my bathhouse of naughty literature.

I want full-frontal writing that’s not afraid to show me what its got.
The work has to deep throat my interests.

Want to feel like I’m being fucked in the butt with your stories.
It’s gotta jack me off and make me shoot bucket loads.

Want a face full of ejaculate after reading your work.
Simultaneous submitted shit is okay.

A cover letter makes for good foreplay.
Without a self-addressed stamped envelope my mind goes limp.

You’ll ruin that Barry White moment between your manuscript and me.
Don’t be pissed if you get your shit back with the pages stuck together.

Write me some meaty, tender bios.
Come on, be a little nasty. Be creative for once.

Pull up your shirt and let me see your tits.
Zip down those faded jeans and pluck out your prick

I want to know what makes you tick, what drives you to do this.
Give me Homo erotica, Lesbo biographa.

Members of the mile high club have an even greater chance
of getting in.

My advice to beginners and those emerging
from suicidal Goth and love-struck verse, make it stank and rank.

I want to feel the breath of your confessions on my neck.
Show me some nipple, a little pube.

And as for you Robert Pinsky,
good luck submitting your shit elsewhere.



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Presenting: Dave Bryant

Slow Death Of Another Trade

I watch the fluorescent tube flicker.
I am still stuck here, but it’s dependable.
There are gentle erosions to mark the passing of time.
The bumper telephone message pad is almost finished. (more…)

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Presenting: George Anderson

Jenny, the Blindman & I

We stroll intimately
with locked arms
up Symonds Street
up to the Thai Archer
the Blindman quietly
humming a tune
any tune
which pops into his head
the songs simply appear
he can’t explain why

He feels her nails scratching his
plaster cast & he halts cattle like
at the corner. He prefers the early
bop phase of jazz- music as impro-
visation. Music as making it up on
the spot. Totally living for the moment. (more…)

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Presenting: Ben Barton


my pen is my weapon
a limb of

my sharpened tongue
Here to set wagging

all your dirty
little secrets

Everything you have
tried to forget

I play them
Little scenes in my head

over and over.

I remember.


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Presenting: Andrew Taylor


A heartbeat, a dawning of process.
Let’s ride it until the formal eyes
tune in, absorb the light of newness.
I’ll take a hold, engage like

the first breath after coma. (more…)

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Presenting: Peycho Kanev

picture of a dog

someday she will look exactly
like my body
and then I will not be able
to love myself
I will be old dog blind
of old age
and if this happens
I will say;
my Heart is a dead cat
the bitch of my night
drags the dogs of my days
while I read Dylan Thomas
and watch on the roof across the street
1 cat between the winter’s pigeons.


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