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featured poets & artists


jennifer vanburen

Jennifer VanBuren lives in Baltimore, Maryland with her husband and two sons. With experience in the fields of science and education, Jennifer has always considered herself to be a poet. Over the past year, she has dedicated herself to writing and studying poetry, taking and manipulating digital photography, finding venues in which her poetry is welcomed, and creating and editing mannequin envy, a quarterly journal of art, poetry and flash fiction. Her work has appeared in 10,000 monkeys, Admit 2, American Feed Journal, Clean Sheets, ERWA, Erosha, from East to West, Full Moon, JMWW, Justus Roux, Literary Mama, Poetry Superhighway, the Beat, thieves jargon, Word Riot, zygote in my coffee, Free Verse, Poetry Motel, Bear Creek Haiku, Midwifery Today, Haiku Headlines, The Autism Experience Anthology. Poem: “Another Missed Performance” was nominated for the 2005 Pushcart Prize.


you don't need a weather man

pass the butter
save the salt for superficial wounds that we groom
like so many – primates - before us

slap tack and
tickle the blue from your sky
don't ask me how I do it
baby don’t ask me why

mother was a war funk silent skirt
let's re-invent her, amplified
with girly legs all pink

                      and satin

into this   hard         edged
suit case   with        marimba
mallets & flame     resistant
brassiere.        She drives me

a w  a  y

you know how to find me

stepping out the answer
    how do you do what you do when you do that thing to me?

it lies
hardwood tree rings--
co u n t   i n    b y   s e v e n t e e n s     there!

you got your poem

you do not need my needle point

or wind farm rooster,
just a skyward index finger
and                                         bingo!

you know when Mary will be back
tapping out the roof top weather report,
spit dry evaporation cooled,

I know you have seen me walk away before
with my svelt side step






nothing means

you hide under heavy cloth
claiming protection
from sun's revenge for full exposure
pleasure, feeding off energy like trees

always the dramatic reasons to hide
from me, but truth is never as poetic
romantic or pedantic as this fantasy
you sell, weaving a glittered veil
that looks just like someone you knew

slip slap stickity whack
"nothing" means
it could be anything
just a two bit stick
whittled down to the shaded side
of the barn

we counted cats and sticky-eyed kitten paws
that massage arms like breasts
that withhold milk

this is what I want to say:

wash dirt down river
nothing remains
you are already dead to me

the grime of time alone
holds us together

come catch the leather snap
stop pretending this means something

there is a knock on the door
someone said
"it is time to get paid"


Counter balance

Safety strapped and counter-balanced,
the centrifuge spins the dark, densest parts
down to her secured feet.

He pulls the lever until friction
slows the rotation to a stop
then snaps off each one of her toes.
Like vitamins, he grinds them
between his teeth.

They taste of kohl and mercury,
copper, almonds, red wine.
Instantly blood thins and begins its return
to his extremities. Tingle.

With vertigo vision she watches
him straighten and return to blank canvas.

He paints her titanium white.



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