Fall 2019, Volume 27

Poetry by James Miller


Dark, hard globules,
like tapioca in a frothy
mango slurpee

The new credit card is smooth and silver,
cool enough to cut the quicks
on every charred remnant
you’ve got

On the tarmac you’re lying face down,
trying not to move. The head
next door crumples
with a bullet

On Yahoo News you read
there’s a new cult in the Arizona desert.
They sleep coiled like brass snakes
round the idea
of whiteness

The jobs aren’t moving
either south
or north 

Last night
you were telling a story
about Jesus camp, when Mr. Marcus
forced a spoon between
your glossowailing

On the light rail
you heard a woman say sugar sugar,
at every stop. She wore at least two dozen
bluebottle earrings, in every
drooping lobe.

Open Plan Kitchen

We can watch only
house shows now: the word
reno quivers like an aspic
newly set, while open
plan kitchen hangs
ominous as an email
from HR.

The couple headed for
a fracking job in North Dakota
insists on matching fracked
eyelines with fracker
friends as they pull
pinterest nachos from
their smearless
steel oven.

Every episode ends with
a voice-over, congratulating
all parties on embodied wisdom.
Fresh pisco sours
froth with egg white.
Fingers register coolness
along the rounded
edge of the matte
marble island.




BIO: James Miller is a native of Houston, though he has spent time in the American Midwest, Europe, China, South America and India. Recent and forthcoming publications include Cold Mountain Review, The Tishman Review, The Maine Review, Gyroscope, 2River, After the Pause, Lunch Ticket, Across the Margin, Gravel, Atlanta Review, Juked and Main Street Rag.