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featured poets & artists


g.a. morris-michael

Born and raised in the Allegheny Mountains of Pennsylvania -- one in a long line of those who have no choice but to write. Refugee from 10 years of life on the East Coast. Living the conventional suburban life in Northeastern Ohio with husband, 3 children, 1 cat and 2 fish. recently adopted the world's fattest Yellow Labrador (currently too large to be placed on scale, but suspect more than 125 pounds of good-natured dog). Embarking on a fitness program to try and save her life. wetchen@zoominternet.net



There you stand.

Thick-muscled legs well apart,

Broad chest expanded,

(with your head up your ass)

Sucking on a bottle of beer.

And I wonder –

What in the world was I thinking?


Nosferatu in a Housecoat

The overhead light flicked on

And you moved across the room.

I awoke, eyelids lifting and sagging like weak, wet wings.

I’d wonder, later, which claw reached me first --

light or motion.


Inconsequential, of course

Since neither did more than score

Red lines in my sleep-thin skin.

It was the slavering maw that did the damage,

The yellowed fang-words.


Shredding my quilted cocoon

Leaving me shivering

And thick-headed with confusion.

Not thirsting for the blood you’d drawn,

You came to give me an anger transfusion.


Body Paint

Body Paint

Two words

That never mate

Under our roof.



When brother puts his hands on me

I want to say I want to put a gun on him.

But.I’m too busy wanting to get away.


When brother puts his hands on me

He says “C’mon-just-dance-with-me!”

His hands slip along my new near-curves

My mind dips.

My mind swerves.

I’m busy trying to set myself free.


When brother puts his hands on me

I want to say I am angry.

But I’m not.sure I ‘m allowed to be.


I wear a short bathrobe.

It must be my fault.


Count on the Maaa-maaas

In the first days, we stood in line,

Sizing up the other members of our maternal flock,

Assessing the details

That we’d use to keep each other in our proper places

(which clothes? what bag? those shoes? that hair!)


All firmly established now,

No need to revisit the order

No need to break the peace.

(don’t like it? oh honey, that’s too baaaaad)


When the door opens, we surge forward,

Filing up the ramp to gather our little lambs.

Jerking awake it seems,

Though no flushed dreamers could reckon

as coldly as we do. 


Another Damned Ice Sculpture

Valentine’s day is over.

Time for the Ice Festival.


We stalk through the square,

Two frosty paces apart.

Sharp words carve the cold air between us.


We stop at the intersection,

(north to court, west to liberty),

Check out a couple of swans on a ratty pedestal.


Immaculately unmatched.

Stiff necks arched with pride, wings pulsing,

Pushing into flight…


Clear-as-crystal, we are too.


My Outrageous Beauty

I have finally, at age 36, had to face it.

I will never intimidate anyone with my outrageous beauty.

Heads will not turn, there will be no sharp intake of breath,

Slowly released in a sigh of desire as I walk by.


I remember, as a child, watching Ursula Andress rise from the sea,

Like the goddess that she was, and thinking

‘What fun it will be when I am older and look like her’.


Twenty-eight years later, still waiting for my Moment

To rise shining from the waves like a cinematic Aphrodite

I failed to notice that the tide was just starting

To ebb away from me.


How fortunate that I had you,

My tender darling, to remind me

Of what I’d overlooked.


I dressed for you, and wanting to please,

Had laid it on a bit too thick, my hair teased

Up, my skirt at least an inch too short, and wearing

more eye makeup than was really good for me.


My heart displayed where my sleeve would be

If I weren’t in a strapless dress, you looked me over slowly,

From anxious head to painted toe, and said in your whiskey voice

“Isn’t that a little young for you?”


Well, sonofabitch.


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