Three Poems


parable of the 
                                        accretion of labor, 
                                        queen at the height
of her powers, 
pulse of the
                                        hive audible, warm 
                                        aura of affirmation.
waterfowl, birdcall,
houses sleep
                                        as ravens gather 
to weave
                                        with sky.
believers scatter
                                        witness to
                                        plundered flesh.
bones in the earth
                                        sun bathes
                                        the surface
of water
in light.
                                        lagoon, a cradle:
                                        water lilies poise
for painting—
the illusion of stasis
                                        where life sings:
                                        the resurrection
and the light.
hillside in
                                        shadow. roots
                                        gather energy,
a poplar's nimbus
                                        buds sparse
                                        but insistent
in early spring.
herons clamor
                                        over the late.
                                        a pilgrim's
new continent:
ocean of waving
                                        the weight
of vast spaces,
                                        the western
fires, sky ablaze
with the desire
                                        of destruction,
ashes to ashes)
how we saved
                                        what we could,
                                        nothing more.


a sudden implosion and then nothing 
but tunnels covered in bone dust
a hawk with a human grin looks down 
as I pick up coins I’d buried in childhood
they smell of oak/smoke/pumpkin seed/
my mother’s hands showed how much she worried
the form of her fears a tiny beast: black and shiny/ 
tops of wheat wave as the wind shifts clouds
and the moon comes out prematurely/ 
the dying sun is a month’s worth of blood
smoothed on canvas/hillside in shadow/black stamens 
alert, petals a yellow warmth/birdcall blooms—
waves of sound—a refrain evoking prayer/earth an edifice— 
its backbone a witness—a barnful of solitude/your unholy
absence an artifact/we could not save us/gather the sea 
faithful angels, the yellow stars/it is time I become who I am

Once Upon A Time

We ate rabbit for dinner.
This story saddened me most of all.
Cynthia the psychic asks: How have you gotten this far with one oar?
Old Miss Tilford pulled books out of a battered, upholstery bag like a good witch.
Any story would do.
In school I believed a thin, gruel-like self propped up by the alphabet.
I stopped responding to my name.
They thought I could not hear them but I could.
You are one of the watched ones, she adds.
I became my mother’s story, unable to respond to myself as she could not respond to me.
Valium’s lovely blue notes became my lullaby.
Cynthia in her ballet slippers dances in the airy loft between readings.
Halifax is full of parables of drowning.
When there I spoke in a language heard only by the dead, found words in an old can by a
chips wagon and began again, my past as loud as silence in a Bergman movie.
The tale of recovery does not end.
My life remains narrowed by what I can’t accept.
So much depends on who does the telling.
I dream spring, a long life, fear I will be loved.
Who is
watching who
deserves to be
Marc Frazier

Marc Frazier has been widely published in journals including The Spoon River Poetry Review, ACM, Caveat Lector, Ascent, Permafrost, Plainsongs, Poet Lore, and Rhino. He is the recipient of an Illinois Arts Council Award for poetry. He is the author of The Way Here, a full-length poetry collection, and two chapbooks, The Gods of the Grand Resort and After. His second full-length collection, Each Thing Touches, is now available from Glass Lyre Press or on Amazon. He has led numerous workshops and has participated in poetry readings in the Chicago area for many years. His website is

Arthur Asa

Arthur Asa was born in Monterrey, Mexico. He studied graphic design and industrial design but decided to leave everything behind and become a construction worker. During this time he discovered all he ever wanted to do is draw and tell stories. He is now an illustrator by afternoon and a comic artist by night. Sometimes both by night. He has a comic called Where the Heart Is which you can find online.

First Featured In: No. 4, spring 2016

F(r)iction #4

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