Essay from Donal Mahoney

Long Before ISIS

Thirty years ago, long before ISIS started executing Kurds, Muslims and Christians, I hired a Pakistani Muslim as an art director in Chicago. I was an Irish Catholic editor putting out a small national magazine. I hired him because his work samples were good and he had worked for the United States embassy in Pakistan for more than a decade. The embassy facilitated his emigration to America. It didn’t hurt that he had seven children and I had five. I too knew the misery of being out of work with a family.
Different as we were, Mohammed and I were also much alike. Deadlines and details were important to both of us. Other than the two of us, the staff was female. It helped on occasion to have another man around the office.

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Christopher Bernard’s Trumplandia sampler

The following poems have been mauled, marred and mutilated by Christopher Bernard

Trump Chaucer

(Adapted from Geoffrey Chaucer)

Whan that Novembre with his shoures sote                                                 The drought of sumer hath perced to the rote,                                           And bathed every veyne in swich liquor                                                         That wine must come out of its every flour,                                              Whan Fox News eek with its bitterr breeth                                   Depressed hath in every holt and heeth                                                         The rotting croppes, and the ageing sonne                                                   Hath in the his last halve cours yronne,                                                           And smale foweles maken threnodye,                                                             That slepen al the nyght with open ye                                                         Acause they cannot sleep, for comes the snowe,                                       And all must end that we will ever knowe,                                                   Then voters con to go to polling places                                                                   To cast thir votes in the correct spaces.

And so they came this yeere and voted dead                                               The world that made them, and us buriéd.


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Rui Carvalho reviews Living Will, book collection by Andre Oliveira and Joana Afonso

Artwork from Living Will

Artwork from Living Will

The comics “Living Will” is an original idea by André Oliveira (writer) and Joana Afonso (graphic designer). I strongly recommend you to try this collection of seven small books because, I believe, their content is truly unique and, most of all, it is “an arrow to our hearts,” capturing our attention.

The very first sentences are revealing: “My pops used to say life’s just like a pint of beer. It begins as a sparkly refreshing nectar, bringing some kind of golden and sacred joy, and it ends with bitter taste.” There’s a depth of feeling or an unusual sacred revelation (or not) in these words that takes the piece to another level of meaning where time really matters.  Especially if we take into account that old Will’s life as he understands it has “reached sort of a dead end, so it seems.” He is the main character, the hero of this adventure and all he feels is that something has happened that he should take into account. He misses Judith, his dead spouse, but, on the other hand he has a bag full of pieces of memories encrypted in small white papers…

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Poetry from Joan Beebe

Softly treading through the mossy grasses in a pristine wood,
There is a feeling of peace that envelops you as well as
The strength that seems to fill you with a confidence not known before.
Gazing at dew drop leaves that sparkle in the sunlight
Finding the small beginnings of renewal from a once devastated forest.
Small shoots of trees that will become again a tribute to nature.
The constant moving and shifting of the earth causing new
Life to appear in the way rivers can change their course
Or new life may appear in remote areas of the earth.
Nature gives life to the world around us –
From the variety of animals, birds and those who crawl on the ground.
Each species contributes to the life of the forest and everyone
Benefits from the growth and renewal of the great forests across our land.
From a sandy shore we gaze at the far away horizon.  It seems endless but we know that it will end thousands of miles from us, at a distant shore.
The waters look peaceful but below the surface there is a constant struggle between Life and death.  All of the aquatic species have predators and the last one is man.
The oceans are constantly replenishing themselves to keep life and growth for the needs of our civilization. There is a  quiet and peaceful feeling in your soul when walking on a beach.  The shimmering sun shines down upon the sand causing the illusion of waves in motion as it softly runs between your toes.  You feel the water tickling and soothing
your feet.  One feels relaxed and free in this environment. 
Nature not only provides man with food, materials and water but  beauty beyond description and we are thankful for its gifts.

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Poetry from Mahbub


A boy Without Name

I am a boy without name

hovering in the limitless sky

I am a storm hitting strongly on

making the door and windows

upside down uprooted the trees are

I don’t abide by the rules of any law

of the restricted country

my act is to switch

on the radio

off the television

and so do on and off

radio, television and computer

I play with mud

I build a castle

I break it, I rebuild and I rake

I am a boy without name

I don’t care for the charge

you bring for

I can go out and come back

as per my desire

I can love any whom I think to

I am a boy fully hovering from place to place

as a morning bird playing on a muse
from ears to ears.


The deaths of us

Death is not any single matter to us
like the people of our country, Bangladesh
here politics is so powerful
that we, the people, are meaningless ants

a hunting ground
the lives  have no right
to continue in this world any more
the commons are the tools to their clutch
they do when and whatever they like to
our lives depend on the mercy of the lords
Its alright if one party is victorious on the other
If not, their animosity beams on the common people
throwing bombs on the running bus, truck and train
nothing can be done we are helpless to their powerful hands
pull out the fish-plate of the running train causing deaths
the lords like to satisfy their hunger day after day
we, the helpless common people nothing to do
we are the observers we are the deaths
we sleep in fear we rise in fear
life goes so suspicious
then what does it mean ‘life’?
when we recollect
the recent past dealings of our politicians
how can we think we live safe in this present world?

Top of Form

Bottom of Form


My Prayer

Death is the last word to say in the present world

We come here empty

We leave the world empty

but there is something difference between

coming and leaving the world

our deeds might show whether it would be

our mental and physical peace depends on how we deal with us

if I do good for me, good for you and for everyone with whom

I spend my time

then there may have the possibility to get

peaceful blowing on the ground with colorful light

O my Creator, lead me to the right road

to go in this world

that I can get peace here at home

and there in the doomsday.


To My Darling

When my eyes are burning, my body is trembling

but no response of you

then what should I do?

please darling o my darling

but no its no use of calling

I am dying,

I can’t play my ball

as its not on the side

I deserve the fair only for you

O my darling don’t break my heart

no more waiting

everything is lost before my eyes

come and get me in touch

I am lost, can’t  see anything

if  not get you without saying

find me no more

O my darling, please  —–.


In The Evening

Clouds are floating, lambs are grazing

in the evening

birds are turning to their nest

I am exhausted , wants to come back home

just at that moment whistles in my ear

don’t enter

it’s  light and dark

before night

who is coming to me and say

don’t enter

I am in absent minded wanted to learn

waiting for moments

and thought of my surprise

a golden axiom is over head and I lost myself there.

Balubagan, Chapainawabganj


Essay from Tony Nightwalker LeTigre

The Winter Depression
By Tony Nightwalker LeTigre

Let us call this the “winter depression,” premature as it may be on our part to count winter’s frigid malice out of the game so early. We could call it “the post-election depression,” but I don’t want to. Why give them such power? I made a comment to a friend a couple weeks back, shortly after its onset, to the effect that “if I’d known Trump was going to win, I wouldn’t have talked so much shit about Hillary.” But it was a throwaway, disingenuous, wasn’t it? Throwing to the audience (of one) what they wanted to hear. And actually, they are legion here in Pdx, which has a large & mobile mass of young radicals, Outside Inners, Rad Fae types sporting shiny new self-entitled gender pronouns that nobody else is ever going to use, Standing Rock-ers, cute young tall slim ba(b)es dressed all in black with black hats & black boots & white or red bandannas around their mouths carrying war mallets (hot!!) & weaponry & paint cans ready to fuck some shit up, & related righteous ragers ready to take to the streets & stir up a public shit storm. As well they should! And I ran with those wolves when I heard their howls & saw them coming, answering the primal call of the hunt—for am I not one of them at bottom, despite my frequent plaints; but by my own choice, & therefore free to come & go at my own wish & not at the beck & call of another?

(He does not try to dominate you, but you cannot dominate him.)

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Poetry from Michael Marrotti

Freedom is Overrated 

Certain people

are far from


When they hear me

proudly proclaim

my allegiance

to the Light Of Life

Rescue Mission

through volunteering

Some people say

the food isn’t

all that great

Other people say

they force Jesus

on you

There’s also

people who say

it’s restrictive

no man should

have a curfew

I consider all

these potentially

pertinent points

as I enjoy

a delectable meal

courtesy of

Light Of Life

before my shift

On my way

to the cafeteria

I think of Jesus

wine and the

blood of Christ

Jesus has saved

many people

from relapsing

I think of rent

and how much

it sets me back

each month

as I serve food

to a homeless man

who once lived

better than I did

I take into consideration

after the completion

of my shift

how all that freedom

has dragged these men

down to the bottom

of society

I have a new life


by thinking

for the first time

in my life

that maybe freedom

in this particular


is a bit overrated